Friday, May 28, 2010

Aloha Friday - Collecting

In Hawaii, Fridays are a day to take it easy and get ready for the weekend. So, Kailani at An Island Life came up with this Friday meme to help us take it easy on posting, too. Here's a simple question to which you can respond quickly and easily....

Do you collect anything?

To participate in Aloha Friday, visit An Island Life

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Me And My Gangreen Thumb

You've heard the phrase "green thumb" right? Well, that definitely does not apply to me! Most every living plant or flower that has found itself under my care, has met an ugly, premature demise. I posted awhile ago about the beautiful jade plant that had thrived with my grandmother, and then my mother, only to wilt away and perish when it came to stay at my house. You might say that I have a "gangreen thumb."

Now, after my father's funeral last week, I find myself in possession of three new living plants: an azalea, a schefflera, and a hydrangea.

I'm feeling the pressure. I HAVE to keep these plants alive and well. The only other plant that I have in my house (that has actually been able to survive for quite awhile) is this tree and even it's not looking too great these days.

I know the picture is not very easy to see, but, it is a huge tree. It was given to us by my mother-in-law (who, of course, has a MAJOR green thumb). We have had it for about 4 years now. If this tree ever dies, I may be disowned by my husband and in-laws. Seriously. There was a fern incident a few years ago (also involving my mother-in-law) that nearly did me in. Here's how that went mother-in-law has always had big beautiful ferns at her home. When she was short on space, she gave one of her VERY LARGE ferns to us. Not to be unappreciative, but, I did not want the fern. I don't like ferns, they drop their leaves all over the place and make a mess, and, as mentioned earlier, the whole gangreen thumb issue would not bode well for the fern. But, because my husband wanted the fern that his mother had so lovingly offered to us, we took it. It stayed in our house for awhile and did okay. But, when it started dropping all those dang leaves every time any person or animal crept by, I couldn't take it anymore. We relocated it to the back porch. More time passed and, needless to say, the fern began to die. Once when my in-laws were over for a visit, the subject of the fern came up. My husband and I actually got into a verbal argument because I made it clear that I never wanted the fern. My mother-in-law took it all in stride and laughed, but, I think she was a little surprised at my pent-up hostility about the fern. Anyway, I never touched the dying fern again. It literally sat on our back porch (dead as a doornail) for over a year. My neighbors were even in on the story and knew of my disdain for ferns. They cracked up every time they looked over to see the dead plant sitting there. Long story short, I never want to own a fern again.

Now, I've gotten this crazy idea in my head that I'm going to attempt to grow a tomato plant (in a pot on my back porch). For some reason, I think that maybe I will enjoy growing vegetables more than caring for flowers. So, wish me luck in my quasi-gardening adventures. If I'm able to grow a tomato, I'll be sure and share a photo of us enjoying some yummy BLT sandwiches.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Movie Trailer Tuesday - Hachiko: A Dog's Tale

When Parker stumbles upon a mysterious unclaimed puppy at the train station, he takes the dog home. After convincing his wife to let him keep the dog, the two quickly become best buds. The dog, Hachi, travels to the train station each day to greet his master as he arrives home from work. Even after Parker unexpectedly dies, Hachi continues his daily trek to the train station, keeping vigil, waiting for his master to arrive. Somewhat based on a similar true story that happened long ago in Japan. Break out the tissues for this movie! Rated G

Friday, May 21, 2010

Shop And Have Access To 200+ Stores

Are you familiar with CSN Stores? I recently learned about this awesome shopping site which offers over 200 stores to shop from. You can find just about anything you might be shopping for; whether you need a lamp, oriental rug, kitchen ware, sleeper sofa, baby gear, shoes, luggage, or exercise equipment, CSN Stores has all that and much more.

I'm actually in need of some new kitchen ware and love the selection that is available at CSN Stores. Check back soon as I will be posting a review about my own experience with CSN Stores. Until then, be sure and visit CSN Stores website and see for yourself the incredible variety of items that they offer. You will be impressed with the selection and prices you find at the 200+ CSN Stores.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Another Update

My Dad passed away on Sunday evening. We knew it was coming, but, I admit that I thought he would have a few more days than he did. Throughout the weekend, he became increasingly restless, uncomfortable, and unable to communicate with us. I'm not sure if he really knew us or not on Sunday and we could certainly tell that he was a lot worse. It's so very sad but I couldn't stand to see him like that and I know he is at peace and in a much better place. Thank you to everyone who has sent me your means so much!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Update Post

I have posted a few times to tell you about my father and his battle with lung cancer. I haven't really talked about it much lately, but, I wanted to let you know that things have taken a turn for the worst. Around the first of the month, he had another set of scans/MRI and we found out that the spot on his brain was growing. Also, the cancer has spread to his liver and his spine. His condition has delicined so fast and there are really no treatment options left at this point. He is at home and under the care of hospice. I just can't believe how fast it all happened. He was first diagnosed with lung cancer this past September. Now, eight short months later, he is confined to a hospital bed at home - too weak to even sit up. He has become more and more confused and is not eating. I worry about my mom because it's a lot to take care of someone like that 24-7. My sister, brother and I are taking turns staying over there as much as we can. It's so hard to see your loved one in such a state of decline. I can't say enough good things about the hospice organization that is helping us - they are wonderful. Please keep us in your prayers and I'll keep you posted.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Sugar Free Ring Pops Review

My kids LOVE candy, especially suckers, hard candy, chewy candy - that kind of thing. Often I worry about letting them have too much, so, recently I have tried to make an effort to reduce the amount of sugary treats they are allowed to have. One of their favorite candies has always been Ring Pops. I was happy to hear that Ring Pops now offers a sugar free version that is made with Splenda. We had the opportunity to try out the new Sugar Free Ring Pops and they were a hit! My kids didn't even notice a taste difference in the sugar free version and thought they tasted great.

Sugar Free Ring Pop is the ideal treat for today’s active kids. It’s a candy kids wear on their finger, so they never have to worry about dropping it.

Parents can now feel even better about giving Ring Pop to their kids because Sugar Free Ring Pop won’t cause cavities, has no fat, and has only 30 calories per great-tasting, long-lasting pop! Sugar Free Ring Pop is the perfect treat and comes in Blue Raspberry, Watermelon, Strawberry!

Look for Sugar Free Ring Pop at Wal-Mart stores nation wide.

Visit the official website for fun Ring Pop games and let us know what you think about Sugar Free Ring Pop on the Ring Pop Facebook fan page!

This post was written in conjunction with Ring Pops, who provided me with 2 bags of complimentary Sugar Free Ring Pop candy. No other compensation was received.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Movie Trailer Tuesday - Australia

This is another of my favorite period pieces, taking place in the days leading up to World War II. Nicole Kidman plays British Lady Sarah Ashley. Her husband has died and she has inherited his sprawling cattle ranch in Australia. In an effort to save the ranch, she convinces rough-neck Australian cowboy, Drover (played by Hugh Jackman) to help drive their herd of cattle across the outback. It's a grueling and difficult journey in which they not only save the ranch but begin to fall in love. Upon their return, they settle into a happy life on the ranch - a life they also share with an orphaned biracial boy named Nullah. But, soon, the Japanese attack on Darwin takes place and the three are torn apart.

It's a tear-jerker for sure and I loved the chemistry between Kidman and Jackman. You will fall in love with Nullah, who has somewhat mystical ties to his Aboriginal grandfather and also narrates the story.

Rated PG-13 for some violence, a scene of sensuality, and brief strong language. The film is quite long at 165 minutes.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Are You Earning Swagbucks?

Search & Win

Are you earning Swagbucks? If not, you should be. It's a no-brainer easy way to earn free prizes.

I have talked about Swagbucks before, but, just wanted to take another opportunity to do so again. is an online portal dedicated to helping you earn digital dollars called "Swag Bucks", which can be redeemed for exclusive merchandise and/or gift cards. Earn Swag Bucks periodically by taking part in easy activities, some of which you already do everyday (such as searching the web, finding Swag codes, submitting poll ideas, shopping online, trading in cell phones or video games, and more). Earn at your own pace and then redeem your Swag Bucks for free reward items in the Swag Store. Best of all, it's free to join.

I joined Swagbucks a couple months ago and have already cashed in swagbucks twice for paypal cash. I only earn swagbucks using the free ways to earn, but, there are special offers that you can sign up for and participate in if you wish. It's all very easy and fun. If you want to learn more, check out my referral link at for the details.

*This post contains my Swagbucks referral link

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Happy Cinco de Mayo

Today is Cinco de Mayo, which is Spanish for "fifth of May". Although I've heard of Cinco de Mayo, I wasn't really familiar with what it was all about. Here's a little information that I learned about Cinco de Mayo....

From Wikipedia
  • Cinco de Mayo is a holiday celebrated in the United States and primarily limited to the state of Puebla in Mexico
  • The holiday commemorates the Mexican army's unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.
  • Cinco de Mayo is not "an obligatory federal holiday" in Mexico, but rather a holiday that can be observed voluntarily.
  • While Cinco de Mayo has limited significance nationwide in Mexico, the date is observed in the United States (also voluntarily) and other locations around the world as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride.
  • Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico's Independence Day, which actually is September 16, the most important national patriotic holiday in Mexico.
  • For the most part the celebrations combine food, music, and dancing.
  • The date is perhaps best recognized in the United States as a date to celebrate the culture and experiences of Americans of Mexican ancestry, much as St. Patrick's Day, Oktoberfest, and the Chinese New Year are used to celebrate those of Irish, German, and Chinese ancestry respectively. Similar to those holidays, Cinco de Mayo is observed by many Americans regardless of ethnic origin.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Movie Trailer Tuesday - Lars And The Real Girl

Ryan Gosling plays Lars, a delusional introvert who lives in the garage behind his brother and sister-in-law's house. He is a loner who fears human contact and feels actual pain when he is touched by another person. When his new internet girlfriend, Bianca, comes to town, everyone is shocked to discover that she is actually a life-size doll. But, Lars acts and treats her as if she is a real person. On the advice of Lars' doctor, everyone in town begins to go along with the fabrication in order to try and help Lars. This story is quirky and funny, but, more than that, it's a very touching story. It's heartbreaking to see how much pain Lars is in and the extent to which he believes that Bianca is real. The way everyone in the community rallies to try and help Lars is heartwarming.

Rated PG-13 for some sex-related content