Once upon a time....

Once upon a time I went to Jamaica in March for a little thing called spring break. Then I went again in August. And then again in January. No, I'm not obsessed or anything, I just kind of fell in love with the place. They food, the scenery, my god the general attitude towards life! It just amazed me, I made friends with locals who literally lived in shacks on the beach and they were such happy people. It didn't matter that their house was 3ft x 3ft, it was a home. The one thing I left knowing was that so much of their passion revolved around music. I've had such an affinity for reggae ever since my first trip there!

Of course, Mr. Marley can always put a smile on my face, even in the worst of moods. With another doctors appointment looming tomorrow morning, I've been listening to my reggae XM station : The Joint non-stop! (Not to mention, this Nickelodeon Noggin version of the video is absolutely adorable!)

Just like Bob says, every little 'ting is gon' be alrite! Hope ya'll had an amazing weekend, hear's to kickin off March the right way! Since this will be my first year as a "grown up" sans spring break, I plan on ending this post with a little picture-reminiscing of sun, sand and unlimited drinks (hey, who doesn't love an all-inclusive resort!)

(I love this photo of my pal Jason - he would sell his paintings and conch shells)
(Meet my pretty friend Mandi, love her!)
(That fellow with the crazy hair was ALWAYS singing)

Ok, ok I'll spare you. I truly do love that country though, and I would KILL for some authentic jerk chicken right now. 


5 for Friday: Pet Peeves

Do you all remember my friend Jenn (I dedicated a whole post to her here) that up and moved to Salt Lake City, well she finally hopped on the blog bandwagon and has started a fun new feature - 5 for Friday's. This week's topic is Pet Peeves, and  you all KNOW I have more than 5! Hah!

1. THAT GUY that talks bad about something just because everyone else likes it.
I have someone at my work who does this. If anyone mentioned the Colts he was like "GO SAINTS", but in reality he went out and bought a Colts jersey. I can't stand people who try to be obnoxious.

2. Serial bail-ers.
You all know one of these people. They always agree to plans until something better comes along, or they have an excuse every time for backing out. Drives me insane. Just say you don't want to join in the first place! I don't get it...

3. Leaving doors & cabinets open / lids off things
Ahhem, Chrischris does this all the time. He puts away dishes and will leave like 3 cabinet doors wide open. Really? Yah can't exert the energy to close them? Haha!

4. On the topic of doors, when gentlemen don't hold the door open.
What the heck happened to chivalry? Yes, I do expect you to open the door for me, even if I don't know you and you're just walking into a store before me, I expect you to hold it open. Otherwise I will reply "thanks for holding the door jackBUTT (pardon the language). Yes, I did say I expect it. I hold doors for people! Men, women, children, it doesn't matter! It's so rude to let it slam in someones face if they're two steps behind you!

5. Being in the fast lane if you aren't even going fast.
I have to take the interstate every morning on my way to work. And every morning I deal with people going 50 in the left lane! There are 3 lanes my friends, if you are passing be my guest - cmon over, but if you are lollygagging please choose the lanes located to the left and far left. I typically have to go 75 to get to work on time, and you get in my way and hinder my ability to make it to work on time. Please stop. Plain and simple.

Take a little venture over to Jenn's blog, Jagged Little Life, and play along!



I've mentioned this already, but I'm having a hard week. Chrischris learned that his time is coming to an end at his current job (and I mean, quickly, like 2 weeks). I've been helping him job search, but there just isn't much out there. We're hopeful! It's so hard right now though - with so many people being out of jobs, places are really choosey, and while he may not look like a rocket scientist on paper, he is a great, hardworking employee! So we're trying to figure out how to make people realize that, when everything is done through the web, and hardly ever involves person-to-person contact (atleast not in the application stages)!

I'd be lying if I said it wasn't really hard. He gets down after filling out a bunch of applications and never getting any responses, and I get down because he's down and then we're just a bunch of Debbie Downers seeing no light at the end of the tunnel. We try to remember that we are healthy (well, for the most part... hopefully), we have amazing families, and we are a lot more fortunate than many in struggling nations around the world. But sometimes it's just like "ok really, can he please just get a break!"

I hope I don't put a black cloud on your day....I just needed to vent for a moment. I've been hesitant to share this, and for good reason. But just talking blankly at whoever wants to listen is helping me cope a little bit, and if I'm happy it's a lot easier to cheer up Chrischris if he gets down!

With that being said, I'm going to try really hard to not worry so much about tomorrow, or the next day or the next month, but live our life now. Instead of waiting and wishing that it was 3,4, 5 or 6 months from now when I believe we will be happy I am going to enjoy our togetherness today. Keyword being try!


Something good did come from my blah mood the other day.... I pulled a pretty fun selection of fabrics from my stash! I plan on doing all improv blocks, and almost have the first done (give me a break, I was in a blah mood! Not conducive to creativity or sewing!)

It's already been deemed the pee & poop quilt. Yes, we have the maturity of 2nd graders around here!


I'm skimpy

My posting is skimpy I mean. I've got a lot going on right now, a lot aside from the most adorable niece in the world that is. I am still alive, I promise! I'll leave you with a very cute picture that we have titled "The Grandpa Hand-off"


Olivia Lauren

Bloggie buddies, I want to introduce you to my newest obsession...
Baby Olivia

She was born today at 1:13pm, weighing in at a healthy 8lbs, 4oz. The new parents are doing wonderfully, but quite wore out!
That's my mom in the photo, the new grandma! I will post more pictures soon, but I can't find my camera cord right now! 

Another update!

Looks like little miss Papaya is just as stubborn as the rest of our family. This is how the day's played out so far
11:30pm (last night): B texted me to say that Courtney were having contractions 5-6min apart so they were heading to the hospital to see if it was time.
3:15am: Another text from Brandin, they were admitted, Courtney is at 6cm
6:30am: I checked in to see how it was going, Brandin said everything was good til Courtney got the epidural, she had been puking ever since, and no progress
9:15am: Still stuck at 6cm
10:04am: Moved along to 7cm, they gave Courtney a little more epidural (she was given too much the first time, that's why she got sick)

Thanks for all the happy thoughts, will keep you updated!


Papaya Update

The mama-to-be is having contractions about 10 minutes apart. I see a baby making her way into this world (and our hearts) soon soon soon!


That's how I feel today.
Not blah in the sick way, just blah in the attitude way. I got two new cookie cookbooks (I LOVE making cookies) for Christmas, and was flipping through them with the intent of making cookies, but nothing looked appealing. I went to the antique mall, and wandered around there for a good hour or two, but didn't find anything. I sat down to sew, and made a block for one WIP, a block for another, and then was just burnt out with that too.

I don't know what my deal is! I've been really anxious lately, and am hoping that it fades after Tuesday's biopsy. My niece will be here soon... that makes me excited, but today that excitement won't stick around.
I can't figure out a darn thing that will shake this mood though! I've tried playing Wii, catching up on my blogs, I even washed my hair (dirty hair makes me grumpy. Super grumpy. Just ask ChrisChris) but nothing is working.

I think I'll just figure out how to be content with my grumpus mood today. It doesn't look like it wants to go anywhere, and I am tired of fighting it! Do you ever have this problem? How do you shake it? Help!! Ha


You all are so fun! I've really enjoyed getting to know you all and checking out the new blogs of those of you who entered from SMS!

Some of your $150 answer really cracked me up - I'm not gonna lie, if I found $150 in a new pair of jeans I would probably put it in my bank account! Boring I know, but that's a nice chunk towards a vacation! 

I'll quit babbling though, and announce the winner.... thanks to the Random Number Generator, out of the 20 of you who so kindly left comments and played along....

Comment #9, Mateya from Our Journey from Iraq to the Alter,  is going to win my Favorite Things gift bundle! 

How funny - we're both the boring ones who would save the money! Anways, congrats Mateya! Everyone else should go check out her super cute blog!

Thanks for helping me celebrate my 100th post, I've really enjoyed gettin to know you all! I had a lot of fun with the giveaway, I hope to do them more frequently!


Papaya Rose will be here soon!

I feel I should preface this post by saying Papaya Rose is not going to be her real name. It was a joke name I came up with about halfway through Courtney's pregnancy, and it has sort of stuck. (Mama & Daddy haven't decided on a name/aren't telling until she is born).

(print by SycamoreStreetPress, found on etsy here)

I'm sure you are all familiar with Papaya, I posted about her here when they found out she was a girl, here when I was looking around for gifts, and here when we threw her a shower!

My brother emailed me today to say that Courtney is half effaced, and 2-3cm dilated!! I'm not exactly sure what all this means... BUT the doctor says the baby will be here by Thursday! Please keep Courtney & Papaya in your thoughts and lets hope for a fast, smooth, healthy delivery whenever she decides to make her grand debut!

I can't wait to be an aunt! Any and all suggestions are welcomed - aside from babysitting gigs, I haven't had much experience with little babes! I was the youngest in my family!

These are a few of my favorite things

Since this is my 100th post, I felt like I should make it somethin' special! I already filled you in on the giveaway I am hosting in the last post, although I didn't tell you what it was for. Is the suspense killing you yet? I can only imagine! (Kidding. Although, I would be flattered!)

I am giving away a little bundle of my favorite things! Chrischris & I wandered around last night collecting goodies, and since they are all still in the bags in my trunk and I am at work, I can't very well post a picture so I will fake it!

The first goody is a super cute scarf (not the exact one pictured, but VERY close!). I love love love scarfs. My typical work attire is a plain colored shirt, dress pants, cute heels and a scarf. Even in the summer. I have probably 15-20. It's bad, real bad!

The second item in my rad giveaway bundle is a tube of Burts Bee's. Absolutely addicted to this, I've probably gone through 6 tubes (that's a lot in chapstick land!). Favorite balm ever, nothing more to say!

Maybe I should have titled this the Things Chelsea is Addicted to" hah - Orange tictacs and dark chocolate. Yum!

I've also included one of my favorite games - Left Right Center. It's a dice game, we play for quarters, sometimes dollars, but if you want to be gambling-free it comes with little plastic chips. SO fun, and you can play with anywhere from 3 to 300 people?!

The last item is a reusable plastic cup. It looks like a to-go cup, but is sturdy plastic, with it's own lid and straw. (The one in the bundle isn't Starbucks brand, but plain so you don't have to be a Bucksy-snob!) I am pretty passionate about doing what I can to reduce my footprint, and while I'm not an all out tree-hugger or what have you, I think any little bit helps. I use a Sigg bottle, but when I saw this I seriously was considering keeping it for myself!!!

So, that's the giveaway, friends! Make sure you enter here! I will number all the comments and use the Random Number Generator to pick a winner Sunday! (I'm having a lot of fun reading all of your comments so far btw, you guys crack me up!)


Hey you over there... yea, you.... (GIVEAWAY!)

I want to meet you! I noticed that I have 36 followers (!!!!) Holy cow, now people actually read what I'm saying and notice when I don't use semicolons or dashes correctly. The pressure! I like you guys, every time I write on my blog it's kind of like calling my best friend and chatting! Except, some of you BFF's out there don't chat back, so I'm sittin here babbling on, and then I'm all like 'hello? hello? did AT&T drop my call again??'

Exciting news, this is my 99th post. That means 100 is the next, and I think that deserves a giveaway! (cue exciting music) My first one ever! Want to be part of this giveaway? The giveaway that I have yet to name because it's THAT awesome that I'm waiting to reveal it til my 100th post....

Well then comment! Right here, right now! I want to know some things though...
1. your name
2. where you call "home"
3. why you come here (if it's cause we went to high school together, and you followed the link on my Facebook and you hated me then and still do now.... that's ok too you can still win!)
and a fun question... 
4. if you bought a new pair of jeans and found $150 in the pocket what would you do with it?
5. your email (when some of you comment, I get a 'no-reply' email address and it makes me sad, plus if you win I want to make sure I can contact you! BTW- Katieballa posted an awesome lil tutorial on how to solve this!)
*6. If you're a newby here, it's not too late - you can become a follower now and still enter!

Don't worry, I'll show you what you can win tomorrow, I promise it will be awesome though! Happy 99 loves,

UPDATE: Giveaway is now closed! Thanks all for playing along!


Control freak seeking answers, pronto.

God has the strangest ways of teaching us things. Inspired by a post on wishing by Ms. J at Smelly Life, and a post on limbo I just read at Through Rose Colored Glasses, I've decided to write this.

Roughly two years ago, I had a foray at the doctor in which certain tests came back abnormal. I was told that this could turn into cancer. I then spent many a night freaking out with lots of crying. The next step was a biopsy and removal of tissue for testing. These came back ok, and no action needed to be taken other than "keeping an eye on it". While it was a relief, this meant I had the pleasure of visiting said doctor every few months. I know that doesn't seem like a lot, but ugh it is. Especially if you are someone like me who wants concrete answers and doesn't like feeling like something is out of my control.

I've done lots of google-ing, which in turn freaked me out more. I've done a lot of crying, but that doesn't get me anywhere but a fasttrack to sinus-headache kingdom and puffy-eye ville. And lately I've resorted to a "You can doooo it" attitude (you have to read this with a Spanish accent, otherwise it doesn't have the same effect)

I go in next Tuesday for another biopsy. I just wish these cells would just get their act together, and be normal! I hate this state of "well... you're ok for now, but we want you to come back in a few months to check again", twiddling-thumb-ness. Regardless, I'm learning to be patient, I'm learning that I won't have all the answers and all of the conclusions and that I am just going to have to accept that and move on!

Ugh, wish me luck. I'm tryin to roll with the punches! It's hard.... I'm a worrier!


Dewey Color System

I've heard of the Dewey Decimal System... but the Dewey Color System? I stumbled upon this a few days ago and jumped at the chance to take their personality test! (Honestly, am I the only one who loves to take these things?)

You go through 5 different stages, and choose the colors you most prefer and least prefer to look at. My results were pretty accurate! (I guess they do claim that this is the world's only validated color personality test)

I guess I did go with the right path in college... either that or my intuitiveness led me to pick colors that I just knew would relate to my "creator" status.  I only kid! If you go take it, you'll have to share.... did you think your results were accurate?

Top 2 Tuesday : Top 2 Dream Vacations

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Today's Top 2 is a fun one, I actually did a post about vacations not too long ago, check it out here!
It took me approximately 3.2 seconds to decide on my Top 2 Dream Vacations! Without further ado....

1. Greece, preferably the Greek Isles - Santorini, Mykonos, Crete ooh la la yes please!
(Photo found at About.com, sadly not mine! )

2. A cruise to Alaska. I am fascinated by the wildlife up there. Sure I would complain about the cold approximately every 2 seconds, but I have this thing with whales (my brain can't seem to wrap itself around something that large!), and it seems like everyone who goes on an Alaskan cruise sees a whale so maybe that will solve it!

I've been fortunate to visit some of my "dream" destinations already, I save up my pennies and travel any time I can so if you want input on any of the following non-US destinations feel free to ask! I love helpin a fellow travel chick!

Mexico - Cancun, Playa del Carmen, Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan
Jamaica - Montego Bay, Trelawny, Negril
Dominican Republic - Puerta Plata, Punta Cana
USVI - St. Thomas
Bahamas - Nassau
Turks & Caicos - Grand Turk
Puerto Rico - San Juan

As always - don't forget to visit Taylor's blog and check out what everyone else has to say!


He's a keeper

ChrisChris told me to be ready and at the condo by 4 o'clock. He said I didn't have to get super fancied up (thank goodness, because the thought of going out in this weather in anything but my not-so-chic red winter coat made me grunt in disgust!)

I arrived at 3:30 (freakin' saint valentine's miracle! This girl is never on time, let alone early.) to a beautiful bouquet of flowers and a box of Andes Mints, YUM my favorite, and some other goodies. He gave me a really sweet card and I let him open his gift.
I got him this Diesel watch, I didn't want to share on here because I know he has looked at my blog a time or two and didn't want to chance it! He finished getting ready then we headed off to our first destination! (I was told that it was a two part surprise!)

Chrischris had made us dinner reservations at the restaurant we had our first date at (which was also his birthday! But that's another story), Mama Carolla's, a DELICIOUS little Italian restaurant in Indy. Here's the best part - he even made sure we sat at the same table as our date. Adorable, I know!

After dinner we headed off to surprise #2 - he took me to see Valentine's Day! I had been talking about it non-stop and I loved that he sacrificed sitting through a girly movie for me! All-in-all it was my favorite Valentine's Day yet! Nothing over the top or super expensive, we just spent a thoughtfully planned day together, and I loved it!



As if the tummy ache I now have from eating an entire box (movie theatre sized box, mind you) of Junior Mints today isn't bad enough.... the very last one in the box was stale. You know where the creamy mint isn't so creamy but more chewy.


On a side note, according to ChrisChris I have a Valentine's surprise awaiting me on Sunday and i hope it involves a celestial sort of festival ;) (cough cough Cirque du Soleil, mentioned HERE!)


Let's chat about vacations

How's your weather? Cold, bitter, snowy, unbearable and not conducive to 4" peep toes? Mine too. (To all of you readers that have 80degree winter, I despise you right now.)

It makes me daydream about vacations! Or playcations. Or staycations. Or any other economy-induced variation of the word. Anything that doesn't involve draggin my sleepy butt into my windowless office at 8am every day.

What's your favorite? I want input! I am stuck in a Caribbean rut. Not that it's a bad rut, but a rut never the less. I don't ever want to go anywhere else when it comes to trip planning. What's your dream vacation? Have you already been on it? What makes a trip perfect in your eyes?

C'mon, share, let's be BFF's! I'll spill the beans on my favorite(s) later!

(Oh, those cute luggage tags up there- they are by Pamela Barsky, I got mine from See Jane Work and I LOVE them!)


Look! Look!

Guess what I had waiting for me today when I got home from work....

Holy cute. And reversible. And my favorite color, teal! (Yes it's a total coincidence I had on a teal tank, I wore it to work today!) Remember me mentioning the apron swap here? My partner also included not one, but two, totally cute painted martini glasses! This was my first apron swap, and it was really fun. I'd love to do another!


Top 2 Tuesday : Top 2 Dream Jobs

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This is becoming one of my favorite weekly posts! I always enjoy learning a lil bit about the bloggers I follow, and I hope you guys have fun reading my answers and maybe even participating over on Taylor's blog, Jimmy Choos & a Baby Too.

My Top 2 Dream Jobs are:

1. A tie, either owning my own home goods/boutique type store. I'd have a mix of vintage and antique goods (that I get the fun of hunting down of course) and new items. Or owning a fabric store/crafting place!

2. Establish a crafting/indie business for myself and be able to work from home and be self-employed! I hope to have an etsy store open selling my goods at some point in 2010! 

I would also love to be the visual coordinator for an Anthropologie store, ahh I'd die! (total Zoe-ism there!) or being a beach bum and braiding hair on some tropical Caribbean island always seems like a viable option! Be sure to visit Taylor's page and see what everyone else would love to spend their 9-5's doing!


Snowed in?

Take a look at this....

They're calling for all of the rain to turn into snow here within the hour. It's supposed to snow from now until 6am tomorrow morning!

I am a little doubtful but you can bet your booty of it starts comin down I'm hightailing it outta work and headin home because my Cammie does NOT do well in snow!

Wish us luck! If we get hit I plan on doing lots of movie watching and hot chocolate drinking! What's your favorite snow day activity?!


Circus of the Sun

Actually, I don't know if that's the translation - my foreign language courses have long been forgotten since high school. We need to work on that retention rate! Chrischris and I saw a commerical for Cirque du Soliel's new performance (show? acts?) Alegria last night, and I really want to go see it!

I've never been to a Cirque performance... have you? They're going to be in Indy over Valentine's weekend (ah-hem perfect gift!!) What are you asking for for Valentine's Day? Any big plans? Or are you a Valentine's basher? Fill me in folks!

In The Kitchen: Week 5: Spinach & Cheese Stuffed Shells

This post should be titled "In The Kitchen: Week 5: FAIL", but that seemed a little harsh. Chrischris and I decided to make Spinach Stuffed Shells out of the good ol' Betty Crocker Cookbook. You can't go wrong with the trusty red & white plaid, can you?! Yes, my friends, yes you can.

Ok, maybe I'm being over dramatic, this wasn't terrible. It just didn't have much flavor. At all. It tasted of noodles, spinach and marinara. It needed a heavy dose of spices. It needed Emeril's BAM! I don't even feel like sharing the recipe. Maybe we will revisit it at a later date and try to kick it up a notch, but until then let's mark this week down as a "nice try kid, maybe next week".

In other news, we watched UP! the other night. It made me cry. I wish I could follow that sentence with a "just kidding" but that would be a lie. I really did cry. Twice actually. When his wife died, and in the end when he was looking at her Adventure book again. Those darn Disney movies get me every time! Don't even ask me about The Fox & The Hound!

Oh my, I need to get back to work. We're swampppppped this week with Superbowl, Lovey Dovey Day and oh yea, those little green men looming on the horizon. This job makes me despise large liquor-drinking holidays. It's quite sad actually.


Top 2 Tuesday: Top 2 Favorite Movies

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I'm back with another Top 2 Tuesday hosted by Taylor! This weeks' topic is movies. I didn't even have to THINK about this one!

My top two movies are classics! Classics that involve dancing!! (Ironically, I can't dance if my life depended on it! Maybe that's why I like these movies? Ha!) 

Dirty Dancing
Hello, duh! Show me a girl who doesn't have this movie in their top 5?! and my number two.... 

A great American classic. Ahh love it! I want to leave work and go watch both of these now! Haha

Taylor posted two good ones too, I adore 'PS I Love You'! I could give a list of my top 20 favorite, but I won't bore you with that! I stuck to my "go to" top two! (To all who know me in real life, How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days is totally third, don't worry!!)



I've always been impartial to Mondays. My mom is (always was) a hairstylist, so Monday's were always her day off. They were the day I would come home from school and get to help her fold laundry and then we'd watch Guiding Light. In the summers, Monday's were the days that we'd run errands and go shopping.

In 2001, my grandma lost her battle with leukemia. My grandpa, bless his heart, never really cooked a meal in his life so my mother and her two brothers & sister took it upon themselves to "assign" my grandpa to an evening (or two) at each of their houses every week. Since my mom is off work Mondays, Monday nights became the evening that grandpa came to our house for dinner.  In college, I would try to schedule my classes so I would only have one on a Monday, or sometimes I would just skip my Monday class to hang out with mom, and I never made plans with friends on Monday nights, because it was family night!

Now that my brother moved back from Chicago and him and Courtney are expecting, they come out for Monday night dinner quite a bit. Chrischris typically makes an appearance at dinner as well. 

Now that I have a "real job", I don't get the joys of hanging out with my momma on Mondays, I miss those days. I'm glad we still have Monday nights though. The best part is that we don't HAVE to be here - we just all choose to be here. To come hang out, and spend a little time with each other (and enjoy moms cooking, of course!) 

Do you have any certain days that hold a special place in your heart?