Friday, March 25, 2011

Favorite Kitty Pic Friday!

I actually scheduled this post very early in the week to make sure I at least had this post in for the week.  Here’s my choice for this week:
DSCF0031 Dusty sleeping in his own bed.  We bought this bed for about $10 at Wal-Mart as a Christmas present for him this past year.  He always loved sleeping in pet beds before, but we haven’t had much luck with them, all thanks to Jasper.  For some reason, Jasper likes to pee in pet beds.  The very first one we had for them was a small foam dog bed – eventually Jasper peed in it.  So we upgraded to a large foam dog bed, hoping they would both fit in it together again, like they originally did with the first one.  The first one took him a long time to destroy.  The second big one was a $40 bed, and we had it less than a week before he peed in it!  We gave up on the beds for a while after that, until we moved into our house.  My parents had an old foam bed, same size as the one that lasted us a week, and offered it to us since they didn’t have a cat at the time and were just going to throw it away.  I told them Jasper would probably pee in it, but we took it anyway.  Sure enough, he did!  I don’t remember how long it took him to get to that one, and those foam beds have removable covers you can throw in the wash, but they have a shaped foam body, and once the pee gets in there, it’s very hard to completely rid the bed of the smell, even if you manage to rinse out all the fluid.  So, pretty much those beds are trash once he pees in them.  We decided to avoid beds from that point.  But, I felt bad for Dusty because he always loves to sleep in them until Jasper ruins it.  We decided maybe to try a bed that you could throw the entire thing into the washing machine to really clean should Jasper strike again – except all we found were really expensive ones.  Finally this past Christmas we saw this one at Wal-Mart, and decided to buy it.  At first Dusty wouldn’t sleep in it unless one of my towels was covering it (he had most recently been making his bed out of the dirty towel pile).  Eventually we got him to sleep in it without a towel, and it made me so happy to see him all snuggled in his own bed.  Until recently…  I’m sure you’ve guessed it by now – Jasper peed in this one too!  I noticed Dusty wasn’t going in the bed, so I checked it out, and sure enough, full of pee!  I threw it in the wash right away, gave it a rinse cycle, and a full wash cycle.  I don’t really notice much of a smell now, but since I put it back, Dusty still hasn’t gone back in it.  I’m afraid Jasper ruined it for him.   :(   But at least he looks happy and cozy in it for this picture.  Anyone have any suggestions to coax him back to his own bed?
If you want to share your favorite kitty too, you can create your own post, add the badge at the top of this post to yours, and just link back here in the comments section.  If you don’t have a blog of your own, you can leave a link to the photo if it’s viewable online somewhere.  Hope you all have a good weekend!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Decisions, decisions…

Wow, I’m actually getting a post in before Favorite Kitty Pic Friday this week!  I scheduled that post for tomorrow very early in the week in order to make sure it got posted this week since I didn’t get to do it the last 2 weeks.  But I thought about something I wanted to post, and I figured I better do it now or it will fall to the wayside.

I have made some decisions lately, and there are still a few decisions I have to make.

1. I have decided not to peek at my baby registries.  This is very hard for me because I’m so curious and would love to know what kinds of things we are getting and what necessities might be left for us to purchase.  I did end up seeing a couple items that were purchased because it was early on after shower invitations were sent out and I was still adding/removing things from the registries.  Also, my mom can’t really keep a secret, so I even know who the one item is coming from.  Which is one of the reasons I know about my shower as well.  It was never planned as a surprise, because we had to coordinate scheduling with the out of town in-laws, but she would never have been able to keep it that way anyway.  She says she would have been able to, but she blurts out everything at some point, and I’m absolutely sure I would have figured it out somehow either way. So – no more looking at the registry.  We’re done adding things to it at this point anyway, and I need some surprises from this shower!

2. I have decided that the “joys of pregnancy” are not always so joyous.  Sleeping is becoming more difficult since I have to sleep on my sides and apparently want to sleep on my back more than I ever thought I would want to or ever did in the past.  My hips hurt so much throughout the night and it feels like I’m a beached whale when I try to get up for middle of the night bathroom trips or even (especially!) just to roll over to the other side.  I have reflux issues.  I’m somewhat of an emotional person, but lately, “somewhat” emotional doesn’t even begin to describe it.  I notice I get irritated sometimes at stupid things, and so much more that I watch on TV makes me cry.  The show “One Born Every Minute”?  I bawl during every episode.  I used to be able to watch those shows in peace, but now I just cry all the time.  What am I going to be like when I finally have Bean??  One emotional mess coming up!

3. We have decided to have a 3D/4D ultrasound done.  This was up in the air for us at the beginning, mostly due to cost and the fact that it wasn’t a necessity, but furniture and such is.  Well, since we are well furnished now and it was all gifts, we decided to go for it and get a peek at Bean in there.  I have to schedule it yet, but I’m hoping to do that tomorrow and will hopefully have it done in about 2 weeks – depending on appointment availability.

4.  We have decided to take on the biggest paint job of our whole house in about 2 weeks.  Due to the layout of the house, we kind of have to use one color for the front living room, entry, entry hallway, staircase, and upstairs hallway.  It’s such a huge undertaking that we have recruited my dad’s help for a weekend, and Hubby will even take the week off work to continue and finish the job.  We decided we wanted to get at least this paint job completed before Bean arrived, because after that who is going to feel like taking on that huge job, and it will be done for when he starts crawling around and can touch walls with messy hands and such.  Right now those areas are still painted with contractor grade paint, which is not scrub-able at all.  If we get it painted, it will be easier to clean, and our house will finally start to look more finished.  We will still have some more rooms to paint yet, but those are smaller easier rooms and can be done anytime then.

5. We decided to go on a trip in August.  The baton group that I teach for is going to one of the Jersey shores for almost a week to perform on a stage right at the boardwalk.  I’ve taken this trip many many many times, but this will be our first with a newborn, and depending on when Bean decides to arrive and how he ends up entering the world, we’re not sure if this is going to be ok, or not such a great idea.  Guess we’ll have to wait and see!

6. We decided Hubby should have his wisdom teeth removed last week.  He had it done last Friday and is still in some pain from the one extraction site.  That particular tooth hadn’t really come up through the gum much and was actually sideways in his jaw.  I feel really bad when he’s hurting because I told him he should have it done after hearing all the reasons from the oral surgeon why it would be a good thing to do now, even though they weren’t bothering him now.  He goes back tomorrow to have things checked out, so hopefully his pain is all normal and there are no infection issues or anything.  I can’t remember how long I had pain when I had mine done, but I seemed to luck out with my surgery – no swelling or bruising, and I don’t remember the pain being that bad or lasting longer than a couple days.  So, hopefully everything is ok with his mouth. 

And for the decisions yet to be made:

1. We have a first name picked out.  Everyone seems to like it.  We’re still not 100% committed to a middle name though.  At least, we have not both said we are 100% committed to it, though I have a feeling we will end up going with it.

2. To circumcise or not to?  That’s the big question…

So, that is all for now.  Look for my Favorite Kitty Pic Friday post tomorrow, and next week I might have a video for it instead of a photo, if I can figure out how to add in a video that has to come from Hubby’s phone.  It’ll be a funny one though!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Getting to know YOU is back!

Mannland5 decided to bring back this great post opportunity!  If you were a follower from the start, you might remember me participating in some of these – maybe not every week, but the ones I felt I was able to answer.  She posts questions you answer about yourself, create your own post, and then link your blog on her blog.  So here are this week’s questions with my answers:

1. if you won the title of miss america, what would your platform be?  world peace, of course!   ;)  Isn’t that every beauty pageant contestants platform?  I don’t think I would even know what else to say…maybe something against animal abuse?

2. outdoorsy or indoorsy?  a little of both.  We used to go camping a lot when I was younger, but we had a trailer and the campground had a bathroom with showers and all, so it was a little cushy for camping.  I am indoors a lot, but I still like to go hang out on my porch or patio on nice days, and hopefully this year we will get some more use out of our fire bowl on the patio.

3. pajama's out in public..classy or tres tacky?  You will never see me out in pj’s…the only way would be if something terrible happened and it was the only clothing I had to wear period.  I like to go out in comfy clothes a lot, but that’s what cotton/yoga/dance pants are for (and track suits, if that’s what people still call them).

4. what's your favorite room in your house?  I guess the family room, since that’s where I spend most of my time.  But I am loving how the nursery is turning out and that may soon become my favorite room!    :)

5. nook, kindle, or book?  I still only read from real paper books.  Mostly because we only have one Kindle, which was Hubby’s Christmas present, and the books I have lined up to read I bought before we owned a Kindle.  If I were to ever switch formats, it would be Kindle.

6. would you rather wear the same outfit for a week or not brush your teeth for a week?  Neither, especially if the same outfit wasn’t allowed to be washed.  I’ve gone a lazy/sick day at home without brushing my teeth already, but even then I still usually tried to bathe and at least put on clean underclothes.  A whole week though?  Not going to happen.

7. what's your favorite blog at the moment?  Um, not really sure.  All the blogs I read offer different posts, and each person is obviously different, so it’s hard to pick a favorite.

8. lately i've been daydreaming about.........?  Having my baby boy here safe and sound, and what life will be like then.   :)

If you would like to participate, just go to the blog address in the picture, read her post and create your own!  I’m looking forward to adding this back to my somewhat regular posts, since at the moment I only have one weekly post for sure, and I even skipped that one this week again!  Hubby had oral surgery on Friday to remove his wisdom teeth, and it was a long day, especially since we had to travel an hour to the office.  I also ended up in 2 different grocery stores and Target to pick up soft mushy foods and medicines.  I’ve been kind of pooped out this weekend.  I do have to go clothing shopping badly, since on Thursday I started to feel very pregnant all of a sudden and started realizing a lot of the clothing that I was still able to wear is now not fitting so well anymore, but I’m conflicted between staying at home today and going out.  It seems nice out, so I want to go, but I like to go out with Hubby, and he’s not feeling up to an outing today.  So, now I go off to figure out what to do with my day…

Monday, March 14, 2011

My Weekend…

I totally skipped my weekly Friday post of my kitty pictures, but I was hardly home at all that day, and the rest of the weekend was the same.  Saturday we went to Babies R Us to buy the crib mattress, ate lunch with my grandmother and uncle, I had a baton lesson to teach, and until all was said and done for that day, it was late, I was exhausted, and my hips and pelvic bone were hurting very badly.  Sunday we went out of town to a “Planning for Baby” show, where we learned a few good things, but I was having other issues that day, didn’t sleep well the night before, and in the end didn’t really think it was worth my entire day with the discomfort I was having.  We were supposed to get a FREE gift (supposedly worth about $139)…yeah, big gimmick there.  I expected things along the lines of free pacifiers, bottles, blankets, diapers, samples of bath products, etc. and maybe some coupons to fill in the value.  Our “free” gift was 3 vouchers to send off to receive different coupons.  These were not gift cards you would receive, just coupons.  AND YOU HAD TO PAY A MINIMUM OF $15 IN SHIPPING FOR THEM TO SEND THEM TO YOU!  I’m going to pay $15+ dollars to receive unknown coupons I might not even be able to use?!?  I don’t think so!  The point of the seminar was to explain crib, highchair, and monitor safety and products, and of course, try to sell you the products he was promoting.  We knew it was some sort of sales pitch going into it, but we wanted that free gift, and weren’t doing anything else that day.  They were trying to sell Babee Tenda cribs, feeding tables, and some other brand of motion monitors.  I never heard of this brand before, and apparently you can only buy it through these shows or on their website, and it’s a company that’s been around for many many years, but the whole day was not worth the discomfort I ended up having, especially since we weren’t buying anything anyway, and our “free gift” was that ridiculous.  I ended up with so much discomfort (not pregnancy related – other issues I’ve been dealing with for years) and nothing seemed to be helping last night, that I didn’t sleep well again last night, and after a previous night of wrecked sleep and an hour lost, I am exhausted today.  I hope to have a very good night of sleep tonight with as few interruptions as possible!  So, that was my weekend.  If you receive an invitation for a “Planning for Baby” show in your area, where they will offer you discounted items and a “free gift” worth $139, check into it more before you go, and unless you want to purchase Babee Tenda items, stay home!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My Ventures

I know I have gotten a few new followers recently, and I’m guessing at least some of my followers read my posts through Google Reader and don’t actually see my blog page often.  I don’t typically like to “brag” as I might call it or really push things on people, but I guess it would really be considered “marketing”.  Since there are new followers and probably some Reader people out there, I was feeling the need to “market” myself and remind everyone of some of the ventures/sites I’m associated with to allow me to try to earn some extra income for my newly growing family.  We’ve been lucky with baby gifts so far, but there’s a lot more to buy and pay for as the year continues, and since I currently don’t work and will be a SAHM, I felt the need to try to earn a little something where I could.  So, for any of you interested in any of the following, here’s what I’m trying:

1. I have my own Artfire shop called My Style Crafts with my handmade crafts listed.  If you have never heard of Artfire, it’s pretty much exactly like Etsy, but without the fees for listing an item.  Right now I currently only have some jewelry pieces listed, but as soon as I try out a printing service, I’d like to add some of my photography prints, and whenever I decide to sew again I could offer items such as catnip cat mats, cat toys, and kitchen towels.  I currently do not have any candle making supplies, but I love to make candles, and at some point would like to add some of those to the listings or at least take custom orders.  I also decorate picture frames, but unfortunately due to some of the materials I use to create them, that particular type of item is on hold until at least summer since I can’t use those materials while I’m pregnant.  So, like I said, there’s currently only jewelry and one set of wine charms listed, but the other items mentioned are ones I’d like to add at some point when I have the supplies, ability and time to create them.  If you’re interested in something, or would even like to inquire about a custom order (which may or may not be able to be fulfilled, depending on the item), please check out my Artfire shop at

2. I have 2 Cafe Press shops.  One shop is called My Style Crafts – Photography Gifts.  I have created a few different items with some of my original photography printed on them.  Items include coffee mugs, note cards, and tote bags.  You can check out the items available at

     The other Cafe Press shop currently only has one design on a few different products, but it’s called My Style Designs.  I created this shop during Breast Cancer Awareness month in order to try to raise some money for breast cancer research.  I would eventually like to create some different designs to add to products, but for now all items (which is still everything at the moment) with the breast cancer awareness design will have all profits from sales donated to The American Cancer Society.  This shop can be found at

3. I am a Say It On The Wall affiliate.  Say It On The Wall is a great place to find some awesome gifts or home decor items created using vinyl.  They have items such as subway art, wall vinyl sayings, door greetings, decorated glass blocks and so much more.  You can even create your own vinyl saying through their website.  If you are interested in seeing what they have and helping me out as an affiliate, you must go to their site via my link listed in my sidebar on my actual blog page.

4. I am also part of the Amazon Associates program.  I have a shop through where I categorize and list products that I think are wonderful from personal experience or would just like to offer potential shoppers because I think the product seems worthy of promotion.  The store is called Steph’s Creative Life Store, since it’s associated with my blog.  I currently only have a “Baby” category and “Music” category (all Glee mp3’s listed at the moment), but I plan to add categories such as electronics, household items, home decor, crafting supplies, and more.  Look for those categories and listings to be added over time, and if there’s anything at all you want to buy from and would like to help me out as an Associate, but don’t see the item listed in my store, please contact me through my blog and let me know what the item is so I can add it to the store for your purchasing needs.  If there is any issue adding the item to the store, I will let you know, and you will also be notified once the item is listed and available for purchase.  You can get to my store to see listings through the widget on the sidebar of my actual blog page or by clicking this link:

I have also been thinking about becoming an online Tupperware consultant.  I don’t like to do home parties certainly as a consultant (not even a host!), but they have a way you can just sell via an online store, or even create online parties for hosts so no one has to deal with the in-home party.  This is still up in the air yet, because in the past I thought about being a consultant/sales person for other companies (Avon being the major one), but I know a few people who already sell for the other companies and thought I might not succeed at it for that reason.  So, I found out about Tupperware’s opportunity, and I haven’t made a final decision yet, but I’d like some feedback from you.  If I had an online way of purchasing Tupperware or hosting online only parties, would you be interested?  Would you come to me for your Tupperware needs or do you already have a consultant that you buy from?

That’s all I have for now.  If you are interested in any (or all!) of my ventures above, please check them out and help me succeed!  Feedback about the Tupperware opportunity will be greatly appreciated!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Favorite Kitty Pic Friday! (on Saturday – oops!)

I know the post is titled “Favorite Kitty Pic FRIDAY!”,  and it’s already past 5pm on Saturday, but at least I’m getting it in this week, even if it’s late.  I can’t even make excuses as to how busy I was yesterday.  I did have one thing to do – I went for my one hour glucose test to start checking for gestational diabetes, but that obviously didn’t take all day.  No, I was just lazy otherwise.  Same as today.  We are headed out very soon to shop for curtains, shelves, and a dimmer switch to replace the regular light switch in the nursery – Hubby thought we were going earlier this afternoon.  My nap on the sofa changed that.  I would really like to know when this nesting thing kicks in, or if it ever will for me, because my house is a complete wreck and I have no desire whatsoever to do any kind of cleaning.  It’s bad lately, and it really needs to get done, but day after day I just really don’t feel like doing it and now my house looks like a tornado came through.
Anyways, I have a couple pictures for this post this week.  These were just taken on Thursday night, and this is a rarity to see these days:
snuggle buddies 1
They snuggled up on the recliner with each other!  Usually when they are this close to each other for a certain amount of time, it turns into an epic battle and one of them (usually Jasper) gives up and leaves the area.
snuggle buddies 3

They stayed like this for quite some time!  No fights, nothing.  Jasper passed out (obviously) and I just thought the way Dusty was looking at him in this picture was too cute.  And then, eventually…
snuggle buddies 4 Dusty gave in and relaxed too.  :)   It was so sweet to see them together like this.  They used to snuggle all the time when they were kittens, and gradually outgrew it.  Like I said, if we do ever get them together, it usually ends up in a battle for the spot they’re in, and Dusty typically wins.  He may be much smaller, but he’s feisty!
I’d like to do at least one nursery post soon, but I’m thinking I’ll split it into a couple parts to show the progress we’ve been making on it.  Hopefully I’ll get to the first one within the next few days!
Have a great weekend everyone!  :)   And wish me luck that I passed my one hour test (though, I’m not having any expectations – I’m very nervous I failed…)


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