One of my favorite blogger, Natalie from Designer Bags and Dirty Diapers, has done a post like this before, and I just loved it!  Given that I have something to share in all 3 areas, I thought it was a great idea to borrow from her.

 Lisa Scottoline Save Me

I randomly picked this book up at the library, and am absolutely loving it!  This is the first book I've read by Lisa Scottoline, and if I remember correctly, I think most of her books are mysteries. This book isn't a mystery, and more similar to a Jodi Piccoult book without being nearly as depressing.  It tells the story of a mother who is forced to make a difficult decision when an explosion occurs while she's volunteering at her daughter's school.  She leads 2 girls to safety, before going to rescue her own daughter, but is quickly turned against by the community when one of the girls she tried to help was severely injured. 

I can't wait to finish it soon, based on what I've read so far I highly recommend it. 
I'll definitely read more of Lisa Scottoline's books in the future.

True Blood

Just as I'd hoped, CAhusband and I spent a majority of our time last weekend watching all of True Blood season 3 while we dog sat for my parents.  We rushed so that we would hopefully be able to watch the premiere of season 4 on Sunday night, only for my husband to crash on the couch 10 minutes before it premiered.  I'm so bummed we didn't get to watch the premiere because I heard it was really good, but I'm really hoping we'll be able to see it soon!

Nicki Minaj Super Bass

For someone who isn't a huge fan of Nicki Minaj, I sure do love this song!  You can find me blaring this song on my stereo and singing out loud any day of the week! 

What are your favorite books, shows, and tunes this summer?
Blog Signature


The Bachelorette

Now I know I swore I wouldn't watch The Bachelorette this season, but the lack of other programming lured me in, and I was easily hooked.  The first week drama with Bentley was just too enticing to look away.  Little did I know he would only be in 3 episodes, but would become the most infamous bachelor of the season. 

Basically, right now I can't stand to watch, but I also can't look away.  So as much as it pains be to devote a post to this, I'm going to do it.  There are just too many thoughts to share...
1. Ashley puts together some seriously questionable ensembles, and clearly loves to tie up shirts to expose her stomach. 

2. If you used the word Bentley as the key word in a drinking game while watching the episodes that he didn't even appear in, you would be seriously drunk.  Like scary drunk.

3. I'm not sure how much of a role Ashley plays in creating the dates, but they have really been awful this season.  I still can't get over what awful ideas planning a wedding in Vegas and the roast were. 

4. Ashley says she had so many regrets from her season of The Bachelor, but has wasted almost her entire season whining about Bentley.  I can only imagine she's kicking herself constantly while watching herself this season.  I really didn't think she'd let her insecurities mess it all up again.

5. I am constantly getting Ben F. and Constantine confused.  Don't they look like twins?

6. JP is the only bachelor that I'm rooting for at this point.  Technically, I don't even think I really want him to win because the thought of him being stuck with Ashley is just too disappointing. He's a serious cutie though, I kind of love him.

After seeing the previews for the rest of the season, it looks like Ashley's crying and pouting is far from over.  I hate to watch, but you and I both know that I will.
Have you been able to tolerate this season?  What do you think?  Who are you rooting for?

Blog Signature


New Hobbies

Maybe it's my endless hours of stalking Pinterest, but I've recently decided that there are two new hobbies I would love to pick up in the future. 

Don't get me wrong, I actually keep myself decently busy with reading, blogging, hours of online window shopping, going to the gym, working, etc. ... but there are two particular hobbies that I think would allow me to be creative that could also be really fun.

First up...

Please note: I don't want to be the crazy cake lady in town, and I don't want to be asked to bake a cake for your child's 3rd birthday party. 
I do, however, want to be able to bake yummy treats for my family.  In particular, yummy cupcakes, cakes, and cookies!  I'd love to start by taking some basic baking classes at our local cooking school, and maybe a cake decorating class to learn how to make homemade frosting not look like a runny mess.  Then I'd just like to practice at home for fun.  The idea of baking cupcakes someday without using a Betty Crocked mix and frosting in a can is something I would love to do. 

Next up...

Don't worry, I'm not one of those people that wants to buy a DSLR camera and start an on the side photography business, I promise.   Basically I just want to invest in a non-point and shoot camera and be able to take nice, non-blurry pictures of my family.  I think I'd need to take a few classes just to learn how to use it, and then just practice as much as I can.  Once I learned how to take some decent pictures, I would love to learn some basic editing on Photoshop. 

I haven't used Photoshop since high school yearbook, but I secretly long to be a Photoshop whiz!  I'd love to take some classes on using it again because I know it has likely changed a ton since using it 8 years ago.  I'd like to use Photoshop for not only photo editing, but also basic design for fun projects.

In all honesty, these aren't hobbies I'm going to be starting right away, but I'd like to start saving for a new camera and exploring my options as far as classes go. 

Are there any hobbies out there that you'd love to pick up?
Blog Signature


Odds and Ends

My summer vacation is going really well so far, and I'm getting so much done!  I absolutely love marking things off of my to-do list, having time to exercise, and still having plenty of time to relax.  I'm trying to make the most of every day though, because I'm pretty sure I'm going to blink and it will be over. 

Anyway, here are some odds and ends I've been meaning to share...

-We had a great weekend!  We went to our favorite restaurant with friends on Friday, had a going away party at the park for some some friends Saturday morning, went to a surprise graduation celebration for another friend Saturday night, and spent yesterday evening celebrating Father's Day with my parents.  It was a busier weekend than we usually have, but it was so much fun!

-I've been a reading machine lately, and just finished Catching Fire on Saturday.  For as unsure as I was about this series in the beginning, they're so addicting.  I'm plugging away at my summer reading list, and am going to read a few other books on my list before I get to Mockingjay.

-I have had less than 12 ounces of soda in the last 5 days and I can hardly believe it!  I've never gone this long without Diet Coke!  I've decided I'm not going to ban it completely, and will still get it occasionally when I'm out to lunch or something, but I have decided that I'm not going to let myself purchase it at the grocery any more.  Big steps people! 

-We're dog-sitting for my parents soon, and I can't wait to use their HBO to watch season 3 of True Blood!  I'll be interested to see if we can squeeze in the whole season in a 4-day span.... althought it would be pretty pathetic if we did.

-On the trip that I will leave for next week I will have a bachelorette party, a rehearsal dinner, a bridal shower, and 2 weddings!  I can't wait for all of the fun wedding celebrations for several different brides, but the stress over what to wear to all of these fun parties is getting to me!  I'm trying really hard to make use of what I have, and not buy anything new.  It's not nearly as much fun, but I do enjoy saving the money. 

-It must be the heat, but I am obsessed with the idea of lemon desserts right now.  I think I've pinned 3 different lemon recipes on Pinterest lately, and I can't wait to make some of them.  The idea of lemon bars is so much more appetizing than a bunch of chocolate in this heat.

Well, those odds and ends weren't nearly as meaningful as I meant for them to be!   I'm off to watch my friends adorable baby boy this afternoon, before going to the gym, and making a new recipe for dinner tonight (gasp, I'm actually cooking). 

I hope your week is off to a great start!

Blog Signature


To the Max

For a trend that I was very unsure about this time last year, I am fully obsessed with maxi dresses this summer!  I don't know if I love the comfort, or if all short dresses just got too short, but they seem to be all I'm gravitating towards these days.  I've purchased a few and absolutely love wearing them, but I keep running into the same problem... a lot of maxi dresses are pretty expensive.

Here are some of my favorite maxi dresses, that I would love to snatch up!


Do you like the maxi dress trend? 

Blog Signature


My Summer To-Do List

Now that summer is here, I want to relax and enjoy my break from work, but I also want to get a lot accomplished.  I need to take advantage of the next 10 weeks as much as possible, so I decided to make a list of things I need to get done, as well as some fun goals.

My to-do list isn't too exciting for any of you I'm sure, but this is my way of holding myself accountable.  I don't want to let the next few months pass me by without having something to show for it!

-Print and frame wedding and engagement photos (this has only been on my to-do list for 18+ mos.)
-Try 1 new recipe a week
-Organize all of the recipes I've been clipping and saving in a recipe binder
-Re-organize all of our files/paperwork, and go paperless on any accounts that I haven't yet
-Back-up all of the pictures and music on our computer
-Clean out and reorganize my closet and CAhusband's closet
-Deep clean the house every Friday

-Read 15 books
-Re-watch all of the Harry Potter movies, and see Deathly Hollows Part 2 in the theater
-Watch Friday Night Lights on Netflix (Rachel has been raving about FNL for awhile, and I've never watched it.  I'm hoping it will be my TV project for the summer)
-Complete this pinboard/map idea I've had in my head forever
-Complete and send the invitations for my sister's wedding
-Blog 4 times a week
-Exercise 4-5 times a week.

Once we get back from our 4th of July trip, I want to get my classroom completely organized.  Then I only want to allow myself to go in 1 full-day a week to work on other projects until the 2 weeks before school starts.  At that point I know I'll have to put in a little (or a lot) more work.
-Re-organize/plan my first 2 reading units
-Re-organize/plan my first 2 science units
-Create new plan for writing

Well there you have it!  If I stick to this list I should be able to keep quite busy between now and the end of August.  Do you have any big goals for your summer?
Blog Signature


Summer is Here

Well, I didn't really intend to take a whole week off of blogging, but the last week of school was WAY busier than I had anticipated!  Between finishing report cards and meetings, my evenings flew by and I didn't even give blogging a second thought. 

-Last Thursday the 3rd grade teacher and I planned a field day at a local park for our classes.  It was a wonderful day and the kids had a blast.  We played lots of games, and in the end let them have a water balloon fight.  Needless to say, my whole class ran right for me once we blew the whistle, and completely soaked me to the bone.  Even in our warm desert heat, I was still damp when I got home 4 hours later.  I truly hate being in wet clothes, but it was well worth it. 

-The school year officially ended on Friday.  I still have to go into work on today and tomorrow to finish up some paperwork type things and pack up my room, but the hard part is done.

-Although I've been counting down the days until my summer vacation since February, the last day of school was really sad.  Looking around our beautiful school campus and realizing it would be empty next year was really heartbreaking.  It was also hard to say goodbye to so many kids and families that I know I probably won't see again. 

-I haven't really shared much about my job situation for next year, and still don't  feel as though I can share too many details, but I do have a teaching job.  It's at a new private school in our same town.  I'll be teaching 2nd grade again. 

-I'll be busy packing  for the next few days, but plan to be back to blogging some MUCH more regularity starting on Wednesday (my first official day of freedom). 

What have you gals been up to?

Blog Signature


Five Friday Faves

Oh, it has been one heck of a week!  I'm having these crazy allergy fits, CAhusband has been working like a mad man, and kiddos with 1 week left of school definitely don't make for an easy work day.

Needless to say, I'm a happy girl now that Friday is here.

Here are 5 of my current favorite things this week ...

1. Mary McDonald from Million Dollar Decorators
Day Old News posted about Mary earlier this week, and after watching the premiere last night I'm absolutely in love with her.  She cracks me up, has a killer style, and definitely makes the show.  I can't wait to see more of her on this new Bravo hit!

2. Pep Talks from Family
I had a mild melt-down on Tuesday night and my mom, mother-in-law, and sister-in-law, VAbelle, were all there to help me realize everything is/will be a-okay.  I'm so lucky to have such great people to go to when I'm having a bad day.  I love them all!

3. State Prints from oneCANOEtwo
I recently found these prints, and really want to buy the Indiana and California versions to frame for the wall I'm planning in our office.  I think they're so cute, and are the perfect way to honor where we once lived and where we live now!

4. Real Housewives of New Jersey
I'm probably a broken record with all of my housewives chatter these days, but I am obsessed with RHNJ this season. It's so full of drama that CAhusband has even gotten sucked in and watches with me.  Obviously the drama is out of control, but it's definitely one of my favorite TV shows now that  all of my regular TV shows have wrapped for the summer.

5. A Fun Filled Final Week of School
Aside from the packing and report cards, the last week of school should be a lot of fun!  We have our 2nd grade play, a field day at a local park (complete with water balloon toss), and lots of other fun things planned to make those last 5 days of school as painless as possible. 

What are your favorite things this Friday?

Have a great weekend!

Blog Signature


This June...

Yay, the month I have been anticipating since January is finally here!  June means the start of my summer vacation, which makes it easily one of my favorite months of the year.

This June I will...

-Enjoy Palm Springs restaurant week, and try a few new places we haven't been to yet!
-Finish practicing our classroom play, and put on a show for our school and the parents.
-Download this adorable June calendar wallpaper from Ashley Brooke Designs.

-Wrap up the school year with 4th quarter report cards.
-Celebrate the end of another school year on June 10th.
-Pack up my classroom.
-Finish up my summer goals list to share with you all.
-Enjoy Father's Day with my fantastic dad!
-Head to St. Louis for my friend Monica's wedding.
-Plan the details of our 4th of July DC visit with Virginia Belle.
-Hit the gym at least 5 days a week once break starts.
-Read the first 4 books on my summer reading list.
What will you do this June?
Blog Signature