Wednesday, November 30, 2011


I am pretty certain I unsubscribed from these weekly emails last week... But then this ended up in my email today... Ugh...

Invitation Christmas Ornaments - DIY Tutorial

Earlier in the week I discussed how I had a goal to make at least 3 things from my Pinterest boards...and well tonight I made my first thing.

This was so easy to make.  I made this one for a cousin who is getting married this weekend.  As soon as I find my stash of leftover wedding invitations... I will be making one for ME!!

These are selling on Etsy for $10-$20.  Craziness!!

I suggest making your own.

I bought a 4 pack of clear glass ornaments from Michaels.  They were regularly $4.99 are are 50% off through Saturday.

I took the wedding invitation and used my paper cutter (you could use scissors) and cut it into thin strips making sure to leave all relevant information (names, dates, etc..) in tact.

Next I used a pen to curl the strips.

Then I opened the top of the ornament and stuffed in the paper pieces.

You could also make them using shower invitations.  So if you have a leftover invitation, this would be an easy ornament for you to make for your tree this year.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I WAS Doing So Well... {and wedding cookie favors}

Yesterday I worked from 9-4.  After our Monday morning meeting my boss kept me on and asked me if I would be interested in more hours in 2012 (like TWELVE more) and of course I said yes.  Then I proceeded to tell her she most likely saved me from being forced by my husband to go back to work full-time. I am really enjoying my job...and even more so because I get to stay home.  I feel so fortunate to have this job.

Around 11 AM I felt like I was on labor while sitting at the kitchen table working.  No lie.  Contraction like pains...and lots of pressure.  It was BAD.  The physical pain of the miscarriage hasn't been that painful since early Friday morning of last week.  I loaded up on some prescription strength Tylenol and finished my work shift.

I worked on a cookie job yesterday as well for my cousin's wedding that is this weekend.  The cookies are going in the out of town guests bags.  I had labels designed from the great Etsy shop, The Preppy Ladybug. I had to run out last night to get bags for the packaging... I had three sizes which I thought would work... one was way too big and the other two were too small.  Luckily I got in and out of the store quickly with the right sized bags.  I loved the way they turned out and I hope the bride and groom enjoy them... I packed some extras for them.  I sent them off overnight from the post office this morning.

Chris, Madison, and I were invited to the wedding but decided not to attend as of yesterday...which I feel TERRIBLE about.  However, I still feel pretty wrecked both emotionally and physically.  This morning when I woke up I was in the kitchen making breakfast  I froze and became hunched over the counter and couldn't move.  The pains from yesterday were back and oh so bad.  After being able to move to a chair, some orange juice, and some more tylenol...they have remained fairly scarce and mild the rest of the day.

Aside from the physical issues... I am trying to be more upbeat, positive, and to get stuff done around our house.  I was having a great day today... I worked from 10-2...then I logged onto Facebook.  I have a cousin... who I love dearly...who is EXACTLY one week ahead of where we should be in our pregnancy.  She is 12 weeks today.  I should be 12 weeks a week from today.  Today she posted her first trimester had ended and she got to here her baby's heartbeat...and well I lost it.  Absolutely lost it. Now I have a headache...feel like crap...and want to get in bed.

I am sort of thankful I don't have to go to this wedding this weekend and see her.  Or hear about her baby to be.  I hid her posts on Facebook took.  I feel like a big bitch.  Oh well.  I know in time it will get easier and I will be able to be happy for other people who have what I should have, but right now, in this very instant I cannot be.

I am going back to the doctor's on Friday for a follow-up.  Sitting in an office with new babies and pregnant women should be a fun way to spend my Friday afternoon.

I WAS doing so well...

Monday, November 28, 2011

Stop PINning... Start Doing...

If you are anything like me you probably PIN a ton of stuff... but never get around to making any of it yourself.  I have decided this week will be different.

I will be making two of these ornaments - one using OUR wedding invitation and one using my cousin's wedding invitation (she is getting married this weekend).  Isn't this a fun and easy idea?

Next I have high hopes to make this canvas for my bedroom.

And maybe if I am feeling motivated I may even whip up a batch of these three ingredient peanut butter cookies.

If you are a constant pinner like me... who has way more pins to do than pins you have done, I encourage you to challenge yourself to choose two pins to work on this week.  Then make a board called Things Pinterest Inspired Me to Make like I did... and you can move those pins over there.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

I've Stopped...

I've stopped...

making great dinners,

taking photos,

putting effort into my baking,


reading good books,

caring what I look like when I go out ( shirt I wear all of the time and eyebrows who haven't been waxed in forever),

taking my time with the things I do,

putting forth much effort in connecting with family and friends,

volunteering at Madison's school, and

being interested in doing anything social.

Some of these things stopped with the move from hell this summer... some stopped as the months passed where we weren't conceiving, some stopped when I was pregnant and just too tired for anything, and some stopped once I knew our baby was no more...

I want my life back.

I want all of those things back in it.

I want it to be better than if ever was before.

2011 has sucked.  I refuse to let the last month of it continue to suck. 

There are some changes to be made.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

~FREE~ Square Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays Printables

These print BEST as 12x12 square prints or smaller.  Choose one or choose all 4.  They are available for FREE to download below.  If you download one, just leave a quick comment to let me know... just because I am curious.  Keep your eye out for other winter holiday printables coming soon. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

I am Thankful For...

Happy Thanksgiving.  We are off to my aunt's house in Massachusetts for Thanksgiving dinner.   Today I will share some things (in no particular order) that I am thankful for this year...

{1} I am thankful after many months of trying to conceive we finally got pregnant...and even though it didn't end up with the outcome we hoped and dreamed of I am thankful that my body allowed me to conceive... as I know others are not as fortunate.

{2} I am thankful for the awesome 12 year old daughter we do have who brings us so much joy and happiness.

{3} I am thankful for a roof over our heads, our jobs, a warm home, two cars that work, a great school for our daughter, food in our kitchen, clothes on our backs, and our friends and family.  Have we struggled this year? Of course.  We went from 2 incomes to 1 income + 1/4 income.  But our basic needs are met.

{4} I am thankful for the Internet... which allows me to work from home, shop from home, connect with friends and family, blog, and look up just about anything I need to know.

{5} I am thankful for my husband who gets up every morning and heads to work without complaining most mornings to make sure we have the things we need.

{6} I am thankful for all of the silly little things that bring me joy like reality TV shows, trips to Target, lunches at Panera, baking, making crafts, painting, and reading magazines.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Such Sadness {Not About Me}

One of the blogs I follow through Google Reader and Facebook shared a friend's blog post today about the loss of her sweet baby girl who was born just 1 days shy of 26 weeks. It was absolutely heartbreaking.

If you want to read her blog - go {here} but please be forewarned she shares some photographs in her recent posts that may be hard for some people to view... they are sweet photos of her baby girl... but they may be hard to look at.  So please read/view at your own risk. 

My heart aches for this family... that I do not know... that I have never met... for the loss of their baby girl.  So if you are pregnant... embrace it.  If you have a newborn baby... hold it a little bit closer tonight.  If you have an older child... give it an extra hug tonight.  Whatever your situation is... be thankful... because not everyone is as lucky as you are.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Even those that never fully bloom bring beauty into the world...

I haven't actually "miscarried" yet.  We were given three choices when at the doctor's office last week.  We chose one thing (suppositories)... and later through careful consideration between my husband and I chose something else (letting nature take its course).  Something that feels right for us.  Something that we sought a second opinion on before deciding from a medical professional.  How we are handling to have this end... is my decision... that I made as a woman with my husband... that isn't up for discussion or criticism.

I no longer feel pregnant though... my symptoms have disappeared.  I have more energy.  My carpal tunnel which totally vanished during my pregnancy... was back this morning.  The diet cokes I couldn't wait to drink after our baby arrived... somehow don't taste as good now... as I thought they would.

I am learning that some people just don't know what to say.  I am learning that just saying "I am sorry" or not saying anything at all... is better that some of the things I have heard such as ...

"Everything happens for a reason" - This doesn't make someone who has suffered a loss feel better.  While everything may happen for a reason, it doesn't always provide comfort.

"You didn't really lose a baby because it wasn't formed" - To us it didn't matter... it still hurts.

"It will happen again... do not worry" - Easier said than done.

"I would wait before trying again... if you hurry, you might stress too much about what happened" - See... the person who told me to wait before trying again... they were never asked, they just took it upon themselves to offer up that bit of advice. I never asked anyone (other than my husband) when we should try again.

My husband and I had a great (tear-free) conversation last night about what is happening to us.  We discussed as a couple our wishes, our timeline, and our plan for our family.  We are still disappointed.  We are still sad.  I still have cried every day since our appointment last Thursday.  But we are also hopeful...and excited...for our future...and nervous...and scared.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Feature Your Handmade Shop/Small Business for FREE

Do you have an Etsy shop or another at home business?

If so, I'd love to offer you free advertising space through Christmas as well as a feature in two upcoming holiday shopping posts on my blog.

I don't have hundreds of followers.

But, I do believe in supporting women who have started businesses for themselves.  I do believe supporting small businesses and start up businesses whenever possible instead of big chain stores.

So hopefully this will bring you some free exposure and a little bit of traffic to either your blogs, Etsy shops, or other home based business.

Feel free me to send me your avatars and a little blurb about your shop to my email.  Use "Free Sponsorship" in the subject line. and I will get them up with a day or two.  I am excited to see what everyone sells and to possibly do some of my holiday shopping through your businesses.  I hope you will check back for some of your holiday shopping as well.

I sell Scentsy... so that would be the only competing business I would not be taking on... I hope you understand.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

When the pain you feel is beyond your words...

I am supposed to be planning for a baby.  I am supposed to be creating this amazing idea I had for a Christmas card this year to announce to all of our friends and family that we are having a baby.  I had our new blog designed to be A Dozen Years Later because we aren't supposed to be Just the 3 of Us anymore...

We've known since Thursday October 13, 2011.  I got the positive test first thing in the morning.  I baked cupcakes with pink and blue sprinkles and wrapped up the PREGNANT test in a cute little gift bag for Chris to open when he got home so I could share with him and Maddie we were finally going to have a baby... after months of heartache and trying. 

November 9th, 2011 - Today was supposed to be a great day.  I had my first obgyn appointment and they were going to do a sonogram.  According to my calculations I should be 7 weeks 6 days pregnant today.  When I went in for the sonogram... the technician started moving the wand around and it was very apparent to me there was nothing there.  She kept looking and looking.  She said she saw a yolk sac... which a baby should be in and insisted based on those measurements the baby should be 7 weeks 3 days... which really isn't that far off from my calculations.  I pretty much got no answers today.  They sent me home and I go back next week for another sonogram.  I am trying really hard to not lose hope... but it is hard and it sucks.  I just want to drink a big ole cherry coke zero (which I cut out the day I found out I was pregnant) and climb into my bed until next week.

November 10th, 2011 - I went to bed at 6 PM last night...and cried most of the day today.  Off and on.  Madison doesn't know a thing is wrong... and I am dreading having to tell her.  I am absolutely dreading it and wish it could be avoided at all costs.  While I understand certain people tend to me optimistic... I appreciated a "keeping it real" email from a fellow blogger who I have corresponded with for some time now.  I told her before any of my real life friends because we had talked about struggles conceiving and other things before.  Knowing she recently suffered from a miscarriage/blighted ovum I reached out to her this morning via email for some insight.  The whole "maybe you are earlier than you thought" is bullshit.  I know I am not.  I have been calculating EVERYTHING for close to a year... I know when it happened.  It wasn't earlier... or later... I know when it happened.  And I knew when the lady put the wand in and the screen was an empty black hole... that my darkest fears had come true.  So now I sit and wait... either for my body to physically and visibly let me know things have ended... or I wait for the bullshit that next week will be when I have to sit in a waiting room of babies and moms who are visibly pregnant only to be told what I already know today is true... that this baby just didn't make it... it never really formed as it should have.  Then I get to walk out...passing the babies and the pregnant moms again... as I walk to my car... no further along in this journey than I was months and months ago when each month my period would come... I thought then... the months when I was certain I was pregnant and my period came... that those cries... that that heartache was the worst pain I had ever felt.  I was wrong.

November 17, 2011-We had our follow up appointment today.  I was seriously making myself so sick right before... My heart was beating faster than it ever has.  We walked in for the sonogram... and again... I knew.... an empty black hole of a uterus was on the screen... again she said she saw some what of a fetal pole... but she clearly wasn't as talkative as before... no printout was given to us of our baby.  I knew.  We had to then wait for our nurse's appointment.  I joked with Chris that they were playing Paper Rock Scissors in the back to determine which one had to come out to tell this couple there was no baby.  A doctor actually came in to talk to us...sat down and said "Well I am sorry I do not have better news for you".  Then I lost it.  I had expected it... I had prepared for it, but I still lost it.   We didn't have a blighted ovum... there was the beginnings of a baby that had started to develop until around 6 weeks or so... there was an unstable fetal pole she said.  Then she said something about it being nature's way of working things out... and then I wanted to punch her.  Yes lady... you are probably right... but don't say that to me.  We have decided to forgo the D & C at the hospital and have decided to use suppositories at home to finish the miscarriage process at home.  We are sad and we are broken.  I am most sad to tell Maddie. Yet I know I cannot put it off forever... we have to tell her.

So here we sit... 16 months to the day when we got married... realizing the baby we have known about for five weeks... the baby we had already named... the baby who has two sleepers already hanging in the closet... the baby we had wanted so desperately, had dreamed of bringing home, who we had pictured sitting in our living room holding... is not to be.   And as much as we want to add to our family... I don't know when I will have the strength and energy to try again.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I am linking up today for What I'm Loving Wednesday.

I am loving my new blog name and design.  It is so different from my usual pink and green, but I love it.  Miranda at Little Sailor Design did it.  Check her out of you are in need of a blog makeover.  She is fabulous and easy to work with. 

I am loving that I had time this morning to bake up 9 jumbo chewy chocolate chip cookies using a new recipe I found on Pinterest.  I used my muffin top pan to make them.  They are cooking now... I hope they are great.  I booked a job to bake 50 chocolate chip cookies for the out of town guest bags for my cousin's December wedding and I have been trying out recipes for that special job. Update - They turned out great!!

I am loving  support from friends/fellow bloggers.  My blogger friend Brandy sent me an email last week in regards to something that happened that I shared privately with her.  I was so thankful for her "tell it like it is" response.  Sometimes you just have to hear the truth... no matter how painful it may be.  Another blogger friend emailed me and just said "I am sorry".  Sometimes... that is all you need to hear... that is enough.

I am loving that I am probably going to end up doing about 95% of my Christmas shopping online.  I absolutely love shopping online.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I am Thankful for... Printables (Set of 4 - FREE)

I made these fun Thanksgiving printables last night.  Print them as 4x6 images.  Put the Happy Thanksgiving one in a small frame.  Use the others for everyone to share what they are thankful for.  I'd love for you to leave a comment if you use them or even to come back and share a photo of them in use.  Enjoy.

Instead of commenting for a copy... I am trying something new to access the freebies... hopefully this works... click on the links below for the downloads.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Miscellany Monday

I am linking up for Miscellany Monday.

1. I haven't blogged in a week... some things have been going on here with our family... that really could go either way... positive or negative... of course we are hoping for the positive and should have some definite answers on Thursday... when I will share more... either way.

2. My blog design is ready.  I am just waiting for it to be installed. Miranda from Little Sailor Design did it.  I cannot wait to see it live on the blog...hopefully within a day or so.  It is a total new look and name for the blog. 

3. Last week was my first full week at my new job... meaning I worked 19 hours.  I am only part-time so my maximum will be 20 hours a week.  I really enjoy it.  Today I logged in 6 hours and 20 minutes.  This morning I was dreading it... because it was pretty much all day while Madison was at school and I didn't have time to get much else done (like watching TLC or napping) but it went by pretty fast.  I really caught on quick and I am so thankful to be working from home.

4. I bought my first Christmas presents this weekend... finally.  I got 3 tank tops for Madison she had been wanting.  I have some other items saved in my online shopping carts that I need to order this week.

5.  My husband is obsessed with Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3 on the Xbox and football... I am annoyed by both.

6. I am so thankful the weather the last week has been slightly warmer.  Yesterday I didn't even need my jacket when we walked out of Target and today I worked with the front door open to let in the fresh air.  I am going to be sad when we have to start cranking the heat up again and lighting fires.

7. My reality TV obsessed self watched Real Housewives of Atlanta (where I SWEAR I saw Kim...who is pregnant drinking white wine while out to dinner with Sheree), Kendra, Sister Wives (I swear I love this show more and more the longer it is on), and All-American Muslim last night.  I can pretty much watch a reality TV show on just about anything.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Miscellany Monday

I am linking up over at lowercase letters for Miscellany Monday.

{1} I am making this crock pot chicken for dinner tonight.  Just cut up an onion, place it on the bottom of the crock pot, rinse a whole chicken, place it on top, and sprinkle with spices.  That's it.  In the crock pot for 5 hours.  I am serving it with mashed potatoes and corn.

{2} Yesterday I tried to take Madison to Panera in downtown Newport.  My husband told me I wouldn't have to pay to park there.  He was wrong.  They were charging $5 cash... which I didn't have.  To say I was annoyed... is an understatement.  I hate that Panera is so far away here... and the one that is 20 minutes away requires you to pay.  How foolish...

{3} I found someone to redo my blog design... so I am hoping to have that new design up and going by the end of the week.

{4} Who watched The Real Housewives of Atlanta last night? I am obsessed with all of the Real Housewives shows... so of course I thought it was great.

{5} I am done training with my job and actually start working "real" shifts this week.  I am kind of excited.  I hope I continue to enjoy it.

{6} We are going to my aunt's in Massachusetts for Thanksgiving.  I told her I would bring appetizers and desserts... so I have been busy looking on Pinterest for some fabulous things to make.  I have a few ideas.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Friday Thoughts...

* Yesterday we had an appointment with a financial advisor at our credit union.  I came home and went through our bank account and divided up all of our October purchases into the following categories in list form - groceries, dining out, cars, bills, and other.  It was eye opening to say the least... Here I was thinking we were doing "better" and I definitely see some more areas for improvement...which was the purpose of doing the list.  Now I am working on tweaking for this month.

* Today is my last shift training for my new work at home job as a help desk analyst.  Next week I start working on my own.  Yikes!  There is a lot to learn about the I am hoping I can handle it next week.  I work tonight from 2-5, so we are having tacos for dinner (quick and easy).

* Last night I attempted to make pizza dough from scratch and it was a BIG fail.  I tried twice.  Then Maddie and I headed to the store for the refrigerated bags of pizza dough the bakery makes for $1.99 each.  I came home, rolled that out, added our sauce, cheese, and pepperoni and it was fabulous... but I am still kind of bummed my dough making attempt failed.  Anyone have any fool proof pizza dough recipes they could share?

* This morning I cleaned my kitchen and mopped my kitchen floor.  My mop is terrible... I need a better one.  Any recommendations?

* I need a blog makeover.  I know what I want.  I already bought the kit with the designs...but I have no idea how to put it all together so it looks okay in Blogger.  Any advice?  I've entered a few recent contests for a free blog design so I am hoping I win of those.

* I need to make an appointment for Madison's holiday photos.  I need them to design my Christmas cards.  I got a great deal from Living Social for $10 for The Picture People.  I need to make her an appointment sooner rather than later.