~my thoughts about life~

Friday, September 28, 2012

Shutterfly Winner!

A winner has been chosen for my free Shutterfly album giveaway!  I did it in the most fair way I could think of.  I wrote each number on a slip of paper, closed my eyes, and picked one.  #3 was the winning number!
Linda is the winner!  Congrats!  I will submit your information to Shutterfly and they will contact you with information about redeeming your code for a free album.
Thanks, everyone, for playing!  Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Shutterfly Giveaway Update

After reading my post about the Shutterfly Giveaway (which ends Thursday), I realize I may not have been clear about bonus entries for being a follower.  If you are a follower of my blog, please leave a second comment stating so.  I'm going to draw a random number based on the number of comments and I want to make sure followers have both of their entries counted. 

Got it???  Don't comment on THIS post, comment on the original post!  Good luck!

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Rules of Vacation

I recently vacationed at Disney World, where apparently the rules are different than those of real life. I am going to share the top ten rules with you today. Pay attention because you are about to learn some great things here.  (If you do not care for sarcasm, please skip this post as it is absolutely dripping with it.)

1. If you feel that you are personally more excited to get into the park or an attraction than those around you, it is OK to push and shove others. I guess we all revert to our childhoods when we go to Disney, so that's perhaps why adults behave like children.

2. If you are on a motorized scooter, for whatever reason, you own the world. You do not have to stop for other people. You can and should run them over whenever necessary. Hubby got hit by scooters twice with no apology following. Maybe tall, skinny guys are worth more points in the game of Scooter Frogger.

3. If you don't speak English, you don't have to wait in lines at all. Since you don't know how to speak their language, the citizens will assume you also don't know how to stand in a line. This goes for all beverage machines, restrooms, and character greetings.

4. Speaking of beverage machines, it is perfectly acceptable to stand at one as long as you want, as long as you are:
A. Washing out your cup
B. Trying to decide what you want
C. Mixing flavors to figure what tastes best, dumping, and trying again
D. Making up your coffee or tea.
It does not matter how many people are in line behind you. It also doesn't matter if there is a large, empty counter next to you for the purpose of steeping your tea. Stay in front of the machine. All those other suckers can wait.

5.  If you park your stroller outside an attraction, do so at your own risk.  It WILL be in a different location when you return.  I think they give away a prize at the end of the day to the family who spends the most time looking for their stroller.  The 15 minutes I once spent put me only in fourteenth place, compared to the twelve hours spent by the winners. 

6.  Disney World, the family vacation capital of the world, is a totally appropriate place to wear your thong bathing suit, your too-small string bikini, or your tight, revealing workout clothes.  Don't be bothered by all the children running around you (whose eye level happens to be right at your buttock area).  They certainly won't notice your bare, naked butt cheeks staring them right in the face.  (I actually took a photo of once such person with my cell phone to send to my sister-in-law.  I, in good conscience, could never post that photo here.  After all, I am not a pornographic blog.)

7.  When the Disney employee at an attraction tells the crowd over and over and over to go ALL THE WAY TO THE END OF THE ROW, they do not mean you.  They're talking to the 247 other people in the room.  You may stop right in the middle of the row and make everyone else step over you.

8.  Bring a wheelchair or motorized cart.  It gets you into the front of every line.  No, you don't have to be injured or handicapped to use one.  When your friend gets tired of walking, get out of the chair and let him sit in it for a while.  As long as one of you is using the chair, you can skip all lines.  (Yes, we totally saw someone do this.  Then we saw the guy walk for ten whole minutes to get somewhere he needed to go.  Maybe he was miraculously healed all of a sudden.)

9.  Do not shower before coming to the park.  It's hot there anyway, so why bother?
Funny story about this one.  On our bus ride to the park one morning, we were standing next to a man with major B.O.  It was gagging me so badly that I had to cover my mouth and nose with my shirt.  Halfway through the day, we were waiting in line for Nemo.  I mentioned to Hubby that it must be really hot because everyone here seems to smell so bad.  As I was turning the corner, I noticed the same guy from the bus!  He stank at nine in the morning and still stank at two.  Amazingly, I remembered his smell and recognized him by it.

10. If you're walking in a large crowd, it is totally acceptable to stop in the middle of the walkway to:
A.  Look at your map
B.  Discuss with your group where you want to go next
C.  Fumble through your bag, looking for something
The people who were forced to stop right behind you don't mind waiting on you.  They are actually quite interested to hear where you're going next or what you found in your bag.  Never move to the side of the road to accomplish these tasks.


11. (Since I numbered wrong the first time...) NEVER give up your seat on the bus. You got there first, so you earned it. Pregnant women and old people are on their own.
It's unreal how often I saw parents allowing their small children to occupy seats when other people, who would really appreciate the seat, had to stand. Hubby and I each held a kid any time we sat on a bus, but usually ended up giving our seats to others. Each of my boys ended up holding one of their sisters so we could take up as little room as possible. Standing on a moving bus, while holding my 3-year old was nearly impossible. It surprised me how few people offered to give their seat up.

If people could just learn to follow the same rules I try to teach my 3-year old, the park would be so much more enjoyable for everyone else there.  People are just naturally rude, I guess.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Shutterfly Yearbooks & Giveaway!

Just a reminder to all those PTA parents out there, Shutterfly, my very favorite site for creating perfect Christmas cards and awesome memory albums, recently launched their Yearbook Campaign.  I blogged about it a few months ago out of my own excitement for the new products.  I looked into it for our upcoming church directory project (that I have been put in charge of - lucky me!) and someone got back with me right away. 

This school year, why not talk to whomever is in charge of your child's yearbook and suggest that they check out Shutterfly Yearbooks?  They're so cute and totally personalized.  Plus, it just might save the school and parents some money (which we all need right now)!

If you need some more information, check out Shutterfly's website, Facebook page, or Twitter.  Also, they now have an Instagram page, Pinterest, Google +, and blog!  Lots of information out there for fellow Shutterfly addicts like myself. 

Here's another thing so awesome about Shutterfly...they're allowing me to GIVE AWAY a free 8x8 hard cover, 20-page Photo Book just because they heard how wonderful my followers are!  This giveaway is open to US and Canada residents, but ends quickly.  So act soon! 

To enter, leave a comment on this post with your email address.  You may have a bonus entry for following my blog.  The winner will be chosen this Thursday, September 27. You just can't beat a free Shutterfly album!

This is a sponsored post, however, all the opinions are entirely my own.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Return of Randomness

Gone are the days of summer, when so much was going on that I barely had time to breathe.  Here are the days of autumn, when so much fills our schedule that I barely have time to breathe.  I'm just trying to check off one small thing at a time, things that I would rather push aside than give my attention to:  favors for friends, editing pictures from our family reunion, and finally uploading the photos from our vacation that was 3 weeks ago.  Blogging is one of the things on my list that I've pushed aside but that I've really wanted to find time to do.  Today is a great day for that, even though I have places to go and things to do.  Son #2 is home sick from school (ALREADY!) so I can't leave to run my errands.  This is sick day #2 and I'm shocked it hit so early this year.


I have a job now.  That's the main thing that is keeping me so busy.  It's not a real job, in terms of employment, but it takes at least 20 hours a week of my time.  My brother, cousin, and Hubby bought a photo booth together.  They all have real jobs.  So, who do you think gets to manage the business?  This girl.  The truth is, I absolutely love it!  I get to stay at home and do things I enjoy.  I answer the phone, schedule appointments, google maps, manage the website, and design photo strips.  So far, I've only had one client get mad at me, and she was just a jerk. 

Going on the photo booth jobs is usually a blast too (when things don't go wrong).  Hubby did a birthday party with me last Saturday and the people we met were so nice!  The best job so far was a fundraiser full of rich people.  They were all drinking wine and sampling food made by the best chefs in the area.  We set up right next to a golf course where the weather was picture perfect.  Our view included mansions and a lake, and we were serenaded by a guitarist.  Yeah, I actually got paid for that!

We ran a Groupon to help us find business, and boy, did that sure work!  We have every weekend through November booked solid.  Sadly, we're not making too much off the Groupons, but we've already got a couple calls for full price jobs.  This may be the start of something big for me.


Through all this, I still have 4 kids to take care of and a house I'm not cleaning.  Big Sis lost her two front teeth and Baby Girl is overusing the word "actually."  For example, "My room is actually not clean." or "I actually just want to play blocks."  A moment ago, I asked her if I could have a hug.  Her reply was, "Not really."  I just want to squeeze her all day to prevent her from growing up.  It's not working.


Son #1 auditioned for the Youth Philharmonic in May.  We received a letter saying that there was a new director and he wanted to personally hear all the auditions himself.  So, #1 auditioned again last week.  He left the audition very down and distraught.  He said he bombed the song and messed up the scales.  He was rusty from not playing all summer (we don't own his instrument and had to leave it at school).  I was worried what this rejection would do to his self-esteem.  Yesterday, we got a letter saying that he got in!  Already!  I was so proud of him because this is something he totally did on his own, without anyone's help.  (Well, I had to drive him there because he's 13, but that doesn't count.)  I'm wearing my Proud Mama Hat right now.


Baby Girl had a birthday since I've blogged last, but I haven't even looked at the photos from her party yet.  Another thing I'm anxious to check of the list...

I haven't been cooking anything interesting lately, but I'm excited for Fall comfort food!  With the weather being so cool right now, I actually feel like getting out Fall decorations and hanging orange lights somewhere in the landscaping.  Yeah, right.  I'll do that right after my nap and pedicure. 
Oh, the Marathon!  It's mere days away.  Wanna guess the last time I even ran?  I can't answer that question because I don't remember.  It was before vacation, before I got sick...maybe 4 or 5 weeks?  I am totally not going to be able to do this.  I'll likely have a comical story of how I flopped on my face in a week.  I've determined this is my last marathon.  I just can't dedicate the time to running that I should and I don't need something else to make me feel guilty.
Do you ever worry that you're getting stupider?  Sometimes I do.  I don't feel like I'm gaining that great wisdom that folks in their old age are rumored to achieve.  I keep finding myself doing dumb things- like leaving the vacuum at the top of the steps while sweeping the steps with the hose.  Guess what happens when you've reached the end of the hose?  The vacuum falls on top of you and breaks.  Smooth move, Ferguson!
I was the one responsible for setting up all the financial mumbo jumbo for our photo booth.  These people I'm related to sure do have a lot of confidence in me!  I don't understand stuff like that!  I received an email from a company with instructions of how to set up my account to begin processing credit card payments.  I looked at that email and felt like a dyslexic ESL student.  I had to make the kids leave the room and I studied each sentence like I was back in college cramming for finals.  The good news is that I eventually figured it out, but it took way longer than it should have.
Son #1 somehow installed a bogus toolbar on my laptop.  I totally cannot get rid of it.  It causes everything to run smoothly and puts ads everywhere on my computer.  Since my brother gets totally mad at me whenever we mess up our computers, I vowed to take care of this problem myself.  I googled the name of the toolbar (which I won't even mention for fear that it will suddenly overtake this computer too) and found steps to remove it on a website.  Yeah, didn't work.  Then I read that this toolbar is almost impossible to remove and must be done manually.  There was a warning that said if you aren't highly computer literate, you shouldn't attempt these steps for fear of destroying your entire computer.  Yeah, I stopped right there.  I'll just have to live with it, I guess.