Wednesday, September 27, 2006

My New Baby :)

Monday night, we picked up my new baby.....a 2006 Dodge Charger Daytona R/T :) I was trying to hold out for the new Challengers to be released, but since our lease was almost up on the Durango & they just started offering a nice rebate on the Chargers, we decided to get one of those instead. I used to own a Challenger way back when, but never had a Charger before, so I'm happy that I decided to get one. You can click on each image to enlarge.

Here is it at the dealership, all clean & shiny. And of course, it has a Hemi :) Since gas prices are finally going down, I gotta have my Hemi's :) I've never owned a red car before either, but I hope what they say about red cars getting more tickets isn't true! Guess we'll see :)

The Daytonas are limited editions with the TorRed red ones being the most limited.....only 2,000 TorRed ones were made whereas there are 4,000 Top Banana yellow & 4,000 Go ManGo orange ones. So that was another deciding factor of getting the red one.

Here is my Navigation system with Sirius satellite radio. I never used the Sirius in the Durango, but I get the first year of service free in the Charger & I'm really loving it! Jim also has Sirius in his Ram truck & it was really nice to have when we went to PA in August.....didn't have to keep searching for stations all the time. I also like the heater/air has dual controls so that the driver & passenger can set their own temperatures. No more freezing when Jim has the A/C too low!

Here's a picture of the inside. I love the red accents & stitching on the seats! And the seats are so comfy! Now I just have to get used to sitting on the ground instead of up in the air like I did with the Durango :) But trust me, I'm getting used to it FAST!

Here's a close-up of the headrest. Love how the Daytona is embroidered into it! Be on the lookout for a scrapbook layout about my new baby soon :) That is, if I can stop driving it long enough to sit & scrapbook, hehe.

Well there you have new baby. Wanna go for a ride? :)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

1st Magazine TooT!!!

When I got home from bowling Tuesday night, I came upstairs to check my email & boy, am I glad I did! I had an email from Scrapbook Trends requesting one of my layouts for their January issue :) I'm on cloud 9! This is my 2nd time being published, but my first time in a magazine. My first published layout will be in an upcoming Cantata Idea Book which should be out in a couple of months. Amy on 2 Peas made this Out For Pub sign for me & I just love it! Thanks Amy :)

Speaking of scrapbooking, I was going through my albums the other day, adding some layouts that I did recently & needed to be put away when I came across a layout that I did when I first started scrapbooking. I hated the layout, but always used to tell myself that I would never redo a layout because if I started doing that, then I'd never get caught up! But this one was just calling out to be redone. It was so boring.....just some photos & stickers! So I took the plunge & tore it all apart & now here is the new & much improved version:This is the very first home that Jim & I bought when we lived in Virginia Beach, so these photos are very special to me & that's another reason why I redid the layout. Supplies used: Bazzill, BasicGrey Phresh & Phunky PP, Monograms & alphabet stickers, BasicGrey jumbo bookplate, Primas, mini brads, MM metal signage words, Doodlebug Tokens, metal keys & ribbons. You can see the layout closer here: Our 1st Home.

Now, you're probably wondering why I was bowling when I said that I wasn't going to be bowling this year after our teammates quit on us, right? Well, I was asked to join a women's league & since Jim is bowling on a men's league on the same night at the same house, I decided to go for it. I guess bowling is in my blood & I can't give it up :) Now I just need to figure out the lanes at this house! It's been a couple of years since we've bowled there, so Jim & I are both struggling right now. Plus I'm only bowling one night a week so that isn't helping my average much, so Jim & I are trying to find a mixed league to get on because we both miss bowling with each other :)

Now, onto the 10 for Tuesday (or Thursday in my case) challenge. Carrie's question for this week.....list 10 things you'd do if you had the time:

1. Scrapbook more often!
2. Sleep more!
3. Shop more :)
4. Go on more vacations.
5. Go to PA to visit my family more.
6. Read more books.
7. Bake.
8. Exercise even longer than I am now!
9. Clean more. Okay, maybe I'm nuts for saying that :) My house isn't dirty, but it could use a good decluttering right now!
10. Take more day-to-day pictures.

There you have if someone would just bottle time & make it last longer :)

Have a great day.....I'm off to take a shower & then head to the Zone's anniversary sale. Happy 10th Anniversary, Kelley & Kevin :)


Monday, September 18, 2006

"For One More Day"

Mitch Albom's newest book titled "For One More Day" comes out on September 26th & I can't wait to buy it. There was an article in this Sunday's Parade about the book, asking the question "If you had one day with someone who's gone, who would it be? What would you do?" There's more than one person that I would want to spend one more day with.

One of them would be this little angel, Bonnie Mae Keller. She was my niece, Donna's little girl & such a joy. She made everyone that knew her smile. And once she learned how to walk, she was everywhere, which is how we ended up losing her. She was just your typical little girl that loved to play outside & one afternoon, she opened the front door & was running like any kid would do. As her Mom was running out the door after her, it was too late. A car was backing down the firelane (where it shouldn't have been in the first place) & hit Bonnie Mae. She was in ICU for several hours, but we were told by the doctor that even if she did survive, her brain was already gone :( The hardest thing Donna ever had to do was let go of her little girl! If I could spend one more day with Bonnie Mae, I would just hold her & rock her & smile with her!

Two more people that I would love to spend one more day with are my oldest sister Karen & brother-in-law Jimmy. I'm sure if you read my blog enough, you already know how we lost them tragically on August 29, 2004. If I had one more day to spend with them, I would tell them just how much I love them & how much they both have influenced my life! I would go visit them at their house, not caring that it was 2 hours away from Williamsport. I would go shopping with Karen one last time so we could laugh, catch up on each other's lives & just enjoy being sisters & best friends.

Lastly, I would love to spend one more day with my ex-husband, Ron. I would love to know why he commited suicide. What was so hard for him to deal with that he felt like that was the only answer? What could I, or anyone else, have done to stop you? I did this layout a few months ago asking those very same questions. Yes, he was my ex-husband when he killed himself, but he always held a very special place in my heart. He was the father to my son & a friend to everyone he met. What would we do if we had one more day together? Talk......just talk! Something we were both good at.

One thing I have learned from losing so many loved ones is that you truly do need to cherish each & every moment you have. Show the people you love NOW what they mean to you! Don't wait until later because later may never come! Trust me, I'm speaking from experience.


Saturday, September 16, 2006

A Gothic Grandma???

As we were walking through the parking lot of Pine Knob (aka DTE Energy Music Theater, although it will always be Pine Knob to me) last night to see Godsmack in concert, my daughter was talking on her cell phone to her best friend & told her that her Mom was dressed more gothic than she was. So I asked her "does that mean I'm a 'Gothic Grandma'?" And she said "yep!" :) Kids! Gotta love 'em!

Yeah, I wore mostly black last night (except for my sneakers, lol) & had on a shirt that has lacey sleeves & also eyeshadow & liner, but I didn't think I looked that gothic, did I? Maybe the black & pink hoodie, not pictured here, made me look too gothic? Or maybe it was my angel wing earrings that I purchased at Hot Topic? Hey, at least I had some clothes on & wasn't showing any cleavage like the hundreds of other women that were there :)

The concert was absolutely amazing! But of course, we couldn't get my small digital camera past security & since the camera on my camera phone stinks, I didn't get any good pictures at all :( What's a scrapbooker to do without photos???

Sully, the lead singer, is so cute (& tiny!) & he has such a fabulous smile :) There was just an article about Godsmack in our Friday newspaper & he said that he has completely cut out smoking cigarettes & drinking alcohol because he wants to be a good influence & father to his 4 year old daughter. I think that's excellent because I can only imagine how hard it must be to be in a band & be pressured to do those types of things & worse!

Sully did a drum solo up against his drummer & it was fantastic! I was SO close to catching a drumstick that he threw out into the audience.....I only missed it by about a foot! ARGH!!! Like I said, my camera phone stinks, but here are 2 pictures that I managed to get & as you can see, we were pretty close to the stage.....only 9 rows away to be exact :):

My ears are still ringing like crazy, but I don't was worth it! Hope you have a great weekend!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Happy Birthday, Karen!

Today, September 12th, you are celebrating your 54th birthday with God in Heaven. I made this layout last night to honor Karen on her birthday. Donny found this photo of Karen with what appears to be a live owl (or maybe it's stuffed?) one knows for sure. She had this love for owls that no one but Karen really understood. Her home was filled with owls.....owl nick-nacks, owl pictures, owl jewelry.....everywhere you looked, you would see owls. Maybe they made her feel free. Maybe they were just a symbol of nature to her. I never asked Karen why she liked owls so much, but now I wish I knew the answer to that question.

Until you have a sister, you can never experience the bond they share. The secrets, the laughs & even the pillow fights. And when you lose a sister, you lose a very big part of your own life....a part of your being.....a part of your heart!

Karen & I shared a very special bond....we were 10 years minus 1 week apart in age. Between 5 girls, she was the oldest sister & I was the youngest. My Mom told me that Karen used to pretend that I was her baby & she always wanted to babysit me, feed me, bathe me & even change my diaper. Even as we got older, we were 2 of the closest friends. She moved away to Montana when I was only 9 years old, but we made sure that we stayed in contact with each other, writing snail mail letters back & forth (pre computer days). When she finally moved back to Pennsylvania, I was then living in Virginia, but whenever I would go home for a visit, she was the one that would always come to see me. We would go shopping together, out to eat, anything just to catch up on each other's lives & to share a few secrets. I honestly don't think that Karen & I ever had a fight. In fact, I know we didn't! No, we didn't always agree on everything, but we respected each other's feelings.

Never in a million years, did I think we were going to lose Karen & Jimmy so suddenly! But we did :( Two years ago on August 29th, 2004, God decided that it was time for Karen & Jimmy to come home. During the past 2 years, my whole outlook on life has truly changed, even though it has taken a while. At first, I was just angry, hurt, mortified that they were taken away from us so soon! Now, as hard as it still is to do, I'm trying my hardest to enjoy each & every day, knowing that this is what they both would want me to do. Just like Karen & Jimmy were doing on that very day, riding on their motorcycle because it was what they both loved!

So on this day, I am celebrating Karen's birthday because I know how much she loved birthdays, even though she didn't like getting older. Happy 54th Birthday, Karen Louise! I miss you!


Monday, September 11, 2006

Remembering 9-11, 5 Years Later

It's hard to believe that it's been 5 years since the day that America was forever changed! And when I think back on that day, I always cry. Who doesn't? September 11, 2001 will be a date that NO one will ever forget!

Everywhere you go today, you will see signs of the day that we were attacked by terrorists. It's on tv, it was on the radio as I took Cassie to school & there's signs at the school as shown above.....all 3 flags flying at half staff.

Take a few moments today to say a prayer for the hereos who died that day, hold your loved ones just a little bit tighter & just remember.....remember why you're proud to be an American! We will never forget!


Sunday, September 10, 2006


I just finished watching the Chevy Rock & Roll 400 at Richmond & I'm estatic that Kasey Kahne is now in the Chase for the Cup! He was 11th in points going into tonight's race 30 points behind 10th place & ended up finishing 3rd tonight which clinched him a spot in the Chase. 10 more races to go!

I can't wait until next year when ESPN takes over the Nascar coverage! I could not believe how many commercials TNT had tonight during the race! ARGH! Plus the announcers didn't even know what track they were at when the race was over! One of them said Bristol & then later on, another one said that Kevin won at New Hampshire! HELLO!!! TNT = Trashing Nascar's Time! Jim & I are both very happy tonight since Kevin won the race (his favorite driver) & Kasey made it into the Chase :)

In other news, the Detroit Shock are once again the WNBA Champs, beating Sacramento 80-75! I'm not much of a basketball fan (except for the Pistons), but having another championship team in Michigan is always a good thing :) Now let's just hope that the Tigers can go all the way!

I've been scrapbooking quite a bit this past week & it feels good to get back into doing something I really enjoy. I've also been doing really good on my treadmill.....I'm up to between 30-40 minutes a day, 4-5 days a week now. I've only lost about 10 lbs. total so far (although I gained some back while we were on vacation), but I can really tell that I have more energy during the day & it actually feels good to exercise :)

That's all for now. Hope you have a wonderful weekend. We're supposed to have a nice, fall-like day tomorrow with temps only in the mid 60's.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Continuation Of Yesterday

Finally! Blogger is cooperating & let me load my pictures :) You can click on each image & it should enlarge. Above is the birthday cake that my very dear hubby got me yesterday. I was totally blown away by this cake & couldn't believe that he did this! If you haven't figured it out by now, I'm a HUGE Kasey Kahne fan & was so glad that he won the race this past Sunday :) Jim took in a sticker that I had to Sam's Club & they did an excellent job making the number 9 look just like the one on Kasey Kahne's car. I didn't even want to cut the cake because it's so cool, lol! I told Jim that I want to freeze the part with the # 9 on it ;) And best of all, it's a marble cake, my favorite kind!

Now onto more vacation pictures. The first one is of my Mom. It was so good to see her, even though it was in a nursing home. She just started back up with her therapy after having an infection in her stump, but she's doing really good with it & I just pray that one day soon, she'll be able to get out of the nursing home! I love this woman so much! And as you can tell from the photo, she still has a sense of humor since she stuck her tongue out at me when I snapped the picture :) Love you, Mom!

Here are some photos of Niagara Falls. The first two were taken from the window of our hotel about a room with a view! It was a cloudy day, but I still can't help myself taking picture after picture of the falls :)

Close-up shot of the Horseshoe Falls. If you ever get a chance to visit Niagara Falls, I highly recommend it & stay on the Canadian's such a gorgeous & peaceful place to be! And there's so much to do there....almost like one big amusement park.

The night we stayed there, we heard someone say that they would be shooting off fireworks over the falls, so we took a walk down to the falls & waited for them to start. An hour later, they finally started & although they only lasted for 5 minutes, it was a spectacular show! Here is just one of the photos that I captured. I just kept snapping pictures because I wasn't sure if they would even turn out or not, but surprisingly, most of them did.

I had a hard time getting some good photos of the lights on the falls this time, though :( But here is one photo that turned out pretty good.

I also took a bunch of photos of the actual lights that shine on the falls. Jim thought I was nuts at first, but then when he saw them, he thought it was pretty cool :) Don't ask me what setting I had my camera on because I can't remember, lol. But I just stood there, holding the camera (Digital Rebel) as still as possible to take the picture. Next time, I'm taking my tripod with me!

Here is a photo of the hotel we stayed at, Embassy Suites. While it was a really nice hotel, I wasn't too impressed with this one as compared to the Embassy Suites that we stayed at in Minnesota last year. The breakfast just wasn't as good & the elevators were always so busy that you had to wait for what seemed like hours to even get one.

You can see some other pictures of our trip in yesterday's blog post. I guess that's all for now.....time to go exercise on the treadmill & then I'm hoping to get some scrapbooking done today.

Have a great day,

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Back To Reality

It's been a week since I've been able to even attempt to update my blog. We got home from our trip to Pennsylvania late Friday night & I've been so busy ever since.....doing load after load after load of laundry, cleaning, getting Cassie ready for school, etc. It's so good to be home, but just like I've said before, I need a vacation after our vacation! I've loaded a couple of pics from our trip, but then blogger wouldn't let me load the rest of them.....ARGH! Anyway, here are the ones that I did get loaded:

While I was at my Mom's house, I took some photos of her garden & trees & captured this butterfly on one of her Butterfly Bushes. That's one thing I'm really going to miss when her house sells.....all the flowering bushes & trees that she has! She always took such pride in her gardens.

August 29th: Here are the 4 of us sisters & our Dad standing at Karen & Jimmy's grave. As you can tell by the umbrellas, it was raining & pretty hard at times, but we weren't about to let the rain keep us away from visiting Karen & Jimmy!

Here is a close-up photo of Karen & Jimmy's grave along with the banner that I had made at Kinko's. I'm not sure how it will hold up to the weather, but it should be okay. Donny brought the vase of flowers with him to put on the grave & Barb did her usual weeding while we were there.

September 1st: While driving home through Ohio, we saw the most gorgeous sunset while we stopped to eat dinner. By the time I got out to the car to get the camera, it had already started going away, but I was still able to capture this beautiful photo.
Today is my 44th birthday. I used to get so excited about my birthday, but since losing my oldest sister Karen, it just seems kind of senseless to even celebrate it anymore. I don't know if it's because of the date (1 week before Karen's birthday (we were exactly 10 years minus 1 week apart in age) & 1 week after the day she & Jimmy were killed on August 29th) or if it's just the fact that I no longer get cards from Karen anymore. We used to always pick out the best birthday cards for each other. She would always find a cute one to send me & she never forgot anyone's birthday....she had a way to make everyone's birthday feel special! God, I miss her so much! Even though it's been 2 years now since she's been gone, it all still feels like a nightmare sometimes. When is the grieving process over? Is it ever really over???

Jim did take off from work today to spend my birthday with me, but we really didn't do anything too exciting. He took me out to dinner tonight to my favorite restaurant (Kalloway's) & then we had to go shopping to get Cassie some things for school. Jim also surprised me with a pink sapphire heart-shaped ring & a Kasey Kahne cake which I don't even want to cut into. I'll be sure to post some more pictures of those as well as more vacation pictures once blogger decides to cooperate with me.

Until then,