Saturday, April 30, 2011

Day 33, 34, 35: Grandma Jean Goodell

I've been up since 5:30 this morning, when the sun got up. I don't want to wake anyone up so I'm on Adams iPhone waiting for it to be a decent time. Sorry for the typos, it s hard to type on this phone super accurately and I keep hitting the "done" button.

We got in early Thursday morning and I had such a hard time sleeping I only got 2 hours of sleep and didn't get any on the plane. We tried to nap when we got to my parent's house but with so many people it was nearly impossible and I think made us more grumpy. We went to PF Chang's for dinner and I took photos that I will upload when I get to a computer. My dad paid for every one of us. Adam got their hot and sour soup and neither one of us liked it. I got the egg drop soup because Ive had it before and knew I liked it. Adam tried it and really liked it too. I got crab wontons which were absolutely delectable... Adam tried a bite for the sole reason being he was starving. I knew he wouldn't like it, it doesn't have anything he would like... He despises all types of seafood and I was shocked he tried it! I wasn't shocked he hated it and chased it with a full glass of water. For the main entree I got sesame chicken (my favorite!) and Adam got Pepper Steak which he devoured. He's never really eaten Chinese food before and I was proud that he was able to find something he absolutely loved. Their mini desserts are fabulous and everyone let each other have a bite. Drew had carrot cake, mark had chocolate cake (this was my favorite), Adam had apple pie and I had red velvet cake. Ok I guess when I mean "everyone" I just mean the few on my end of the table. We also shared/tried each others main courses. Mark had Ginger chicken I think, it was really good. I don't remember what anyone else had except for Amy at the other end of the table. Her Kung Pao Chicken was really dry and tasteless.

Yesterday was a slow day of nothing but passed so fast. We played games, ate leftovers from the night before, went to Hobby Lobby and found some African Violets. The violets were the only request my grandma had that was hard to fulfill. She wanted a bouquet of them wrapped in a handkerchief when she is buried. Luckily they are right in season but no florists had any and my sisters called every number in the phone book. Better yet when we went to Hobby Lobby we couldn't find fake ones either. Adam and I tried to find an employee that worked in that department that could help us look for them. We ended up going to the register and were told she was out to lunch. I asked if there was anyone that could help us. The lady asked what we were looking for and she said she grows them in her garden so she could certainly help us look. When we told her what it was for she became really determined and even suggested we come pick some out of her garden! In the end she suggested we try Lowe's or Home Depot. Adam called Lowe's right up (literally down the street - you walk outside the doors of Hobby Lobby and you see the Lowe's sign) and they had some! How perfect was that!

Late-ish last night my brother Scott and his family arrived. They drove from Denver and his wife Amy brought all the flowers for the funeral today since she has a wholeseller's license for doing wedding flowers. When they arrived, my brother Coray was moving his car so Scott could back up into the driveway for easy unload of the flowers. He wasn't paying attention, turned too quickly out of the driveway, and demolished the brick mailbox at the end of the driveway and put a pretty good dent in his brand new (2011!) Ford. I felt so bad for him. I'll take pictures today after the funeral.

The first night we arrived here we stayed with my parents. They have limited space and we got kicked out of the bed (not really kicked out, we knew we only had the bed for one night) to let Scott and Amy have it while they are here. With so many people at my parents house and our sanity running thin, we asked my brother Rob and his wife Ann if we could bum a ride with them up to Bountiful to sleep in their spare bedroom like we have been doing for he past two Christmases. I think that was an awesome choice, I get a little bit of sleep which makes me less cranky which makes everyone happy. Adam and I definitely aren't used to a loud house and it's ridiculous how much noise we can't handle. It also helps with shower limitations... I think there are 10 people at my parents this morning that have to share 2 showers. It would've been 12 with us there.

The viewing is at 9:30. We plan to arrive at 10 or so. I don't have any waterproof mascara so I hope I can hamper my emotions today. Grandma had a lot of jewelry and my mom is having every girl and woman take a piece or pieces that they want. I took a broken, gold butterfly brooch/pin, a Target ring my mom bought her for this coming up mothers day that of course she never received, a single pearly earring (it had no partner) and a red clutch. Also a hankie, everyone gets a hankie. I'll wear her green gemstone ring that I blogged about earlier this week and her clutch today.

It's taken me two hours to type this entry on this iPhone. I'm hungry and my wrists hurt!! And I'm sick of hitting the "done" button when I'm obviously not done!! I'll post 100 pictures when I can.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


I already posted today but I'll be out of town for a while and I don't know I'll be able to update regularly. Plus I have some really lame photos I want to share.

My grandma passed away on Easter Sunday and her funeral is this Saturday in Utah. Adam and I were able to get plane tickets and we are blessed to have a mother that loves us and will be able to help us with some of the cost. Last minute flights are super expensive - we ended up spending $1000 on just the two of us. And we got crappy flight times. Our flight leaves tomorrow in Milwaukee at 6 in the morning. Milwaukee is an hour and a half away, meaning we probably don't get to sleep tonight.

Adam's work allows him 8 hours of bereavement time for her passing but he still doesn't have much PTO. He will be coming back to town on Monday and I will be able to stay until next Saturday, after my good friend Cari's wedding. They got engaged several months ago and I think I was one of the first to know (what a fab friend). I swore I was going to be there and I put in a PTO request and made sure it was approved. And then I got fired and I couldn't afford a plane ticket. How bittersweet that my grandma passed so close to the wedding and her funeral is just 6 days prior. I told Cari I will be 100% at her disposal as long as she gives me a couch to sleep on. Gary, her soon-to-be husband, will be taking the week off work to help clean and get her mom's house ready and I get to tag along to help! She has a fabulous site and you all should at least click on it to see the awesome picture on the front page: here. She's having a steampunk themed wedding. I won't be able to afford to dress up but she said there will be props I can steal. I'm so excited!!

I've been so unbelievably exhausted recently... since Sunday. Probably from a lot of stress - hearing about it on Sunday, then trying to deal with anxiety when I don't know when or where it's going to be so I can't plan until I know, and then I know and I have to plan and try to find a flight that won't make us go bankrupt. Oye vey. Oh, and the time of month may have a factor in that too.

On happier news, I checked our bank account this morning and found our federal refund is pending to hit our bank account tomorrow! I really don't like getting big refunds but we figured it was better to overpay last year than to underpay... we weren't sure with getting married and buying a house how much we would really owe. It turned out to be a huge blessing for us. With all my medical problems and two surgeries late last year we had a lot of medical bills that were taking a long time to pay off. With this refund we'll be able to completely pay all my medical bills and still have a little money left over. This is especially exciting because Adam and I made an agreement a few months ago that we'd do something special when they were paid off - something I'll actually blog about when we do it.

My camera is now charged and I uploaded the photos from yesterday and found out how really sleep deprived I am.

I would like to know why cameras have ONE object in front of it and it even has a little box it puts around the object before you snap the photo, but then when you click the button the BACKGROUND is in focus? I love this camera except up-close photos are NEVER in focus! So Merry Freaking Christmas - you get blurry photos.

This is the ring I posted about yesterday. I was 18 when my mom and my aunt Kathy went out to Gering, Nebraska to visit my grandma. We were sitting in Sacrament Meeting (like Mass for Mormons) and I was sitting next to my grandma. She was wearing this ring and I told her I thought it was beautiful. She took it off her finger and put it on mine and said "it's yours." I started to say no to be polite, but a lady nearby was watching and whispered to my mom "you make her take that ring!" So I did. And I love it.

Yesterday I did and didn't get much done. As I said yesterday, I get distracted easily when in that spare room. I went in there to finish the wedding card for Cari and in the middle of it I put some stuff on the wall:

Distraction #1
Does anyone else have a hard time putting things on walls? I just feel like there's a certain place to put things and I don't know the formula so if I put it on the wall it's going to look tacky and out of place. What's wrong with me?

Distraction #2
See like this. I love the "dream" and I love the butterfly. I wanted it in a place I would always see it, but doesn't it look awkward here?

Distraction #3
Last week I was looking for a product that would easily make circles. I knew of die cuts but they were so expensive. I was tracing objects and cutting by hand but that was getting tedious and puts a lot of strain on my wrists. I found a product called Fiskar's Ultra ShapeXpress. I bought it and a $5 circle template card thing. I can't stop making circles now - it's so fun!

Distraction #4
Buttons. I was looking at every single button in my stash. Why? I don't know. Because they're interesting?

Distraction #5
I found this next to the
Ultra ShapeXpress templates for $5. I love the look of flowers on projects but spending a dollar per flower for the fancy, pre-made ones I can't justify. I thought I'd give it a try since it was cheap.

This is the template I chose - you trace the design, cut where it says to cut and fold where it says to fold. You make however many it tells you to make, in this case 3. On the left is what it came out looking. Maybe it would've been better on plain paper but I had scraps I wanted to use.

Another view. I'm not too impressed with this one. I'll have to play around with the other templates. What do you think?

This wasn't part of my distraction, but I wanted to share my story about it. I was watching a free video/lesson on stamping techniques on one of my favorite websites ever, Two Peas in a Bucket. The lady was using a technique I use all the time, embossing, but in the video she had her embossing powders in plastic containers. Ingenious! The powders come in a tiny plastic jar thing and you sprinkle like half of the container on your project but then you dump 95% of the powder off and have to get it back into the tiny jar. It gets messy. This way you just spoon the powder onto your project and can easily dump it back into the container. No mess!

I used this embossing powder (clear) for part of the card, the only part I'll show you today:

I used a new stamp I got from Hobby Lobby in the clearance section. Originally $10 and I think I got it for $3?

I got distracted again when I decided it was time to write my sentiment inside the card. I went to the computer and didn't get done for two hours. I probably worked on the card for a good 20 minutes, the rest was messing around.

Today I had to stop by Walmart to pick up some beloved travel size items. Gotta love the stupid 3 ounce rule. In the travel item section I found this thing and I loved it.

Closed. What is it?

Open. Ok, a mirror, cool, but what's on the right?

BAM! A brush! Super awesome!

I blame a picture of these different colored bottles on my lack of sleep.

Does anyone have any victorian-era/steampunk stuff I can borrow? I need it for May 6th and can have it back to you the next day. Anything like:
  • Parasol
  • Gloves
  • Hats with plumage
  • Fans
  • Lace
  • Ruffles
  • Bustled skirts
  • Brooches

Hat and hairpiece

Day 32: Count Your Many Blessings

Why does it have to be sunny for people to appreciate the weather?
What's wrong with warm rain? At least it isn't snowing!


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Day 31: So tired I can't even think of a title.

I tried taking a few photos today but I didn't get one in focus and then my camera died. It was just a picture of a ring my grandma gave me when I was in High School - back when she remembered who I was.

I've been doing laundry and packing today. Also spent a long time trying to make a card for Cari. I was able to get a few photos of that but I'm going to wait until after I give it to her in case she wanders by my blog. I have a hard time making cards because I'm TRYING to make something presentable. When I make a scrap page I can do whatever I want, make it plain, girly, pink, black, grunge, or all of the above. When I make a card I feel like I have to try to impress and I have to make something they will like otherwise I fail at life. Also I have a hard time staying on task. When my camera is charged tomorrow I'll show you photos of what I mean...

I also got a few things up on my scrapbook wall. Cari will be giving me some vinyl when I come to Utah. She works at Uppercase Living and gets it for free and I'm abusing her for it. Once I get back I think I'll have an easier time seeing where things should go around it.

I'm exhausted.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Day 30: Just Keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming

I love Dory from Finding Nemo. She's one of my favorite characters out of any movie or TV show on this beautiful earth.

This part of the movie makes me cry and hurt from laughing.

Yesterday was a hard day for me. I spent the entire ride home bawling like a baby. Adam's family is so good, just let me do my thing. I couldn't sleep until 3 last night. I woke up at 8:30 with Adam. I'm not 100% sure I'm making sense in this entry but just play along.

Yesterday was a good day before I got the g-ma news and I promised Erin lots of photos of cows since she doesn't know what one looks like. Also she wanted pictures of Jerrod, Adam's brother, because they're g-friend/b-friend and mushy gushy. AND. I.... cut my hair today.

Because I'm super tired and still have twenty million things left to do today I'll just spew out all the pictures from the farm and my hair with little to no commentary.

I love you all and I can't wait to see my family this weekend.

Muddy so I wore Aunt Laurie's galoshes

Jerrod wore Laurie's husband's boots that were like 50 sizes too big


Billy the goat was everyone's favorite

The only donkey that wouldn't come say hi.

Tad is one of the coolest in-law cousins. Laurie is his mom.

This is an Erin tree. I thought of her when I saw this. I bet it looks more like an Erin tree in the Summer.

And then 80 pictures of my face because I only take awkward photos. I wanted to take a picture so I could post on my blog/Facebook but every photo turned out more and more awkward. Proof:

I surprised Adam at work with my new cut - he didn't even know I was thinking about cutting it for weeks.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Day 29: Grandma

My last grandparent died today at 1:00 MST. Grandma Goodell.

I don't handle death well.

I was at Adam's aunt's house with a house full of relatives when my mother called me. Hard to say if there was a worse time for me to get the news.

Day 28: Not-So-Extreme Couponing

Heard of that new TLC show Extreme Couponing? I tried my hand at that when I lost my job before I even knew about this show. I've been using coupons found in my in-law's Sunday paper and on several sites online:
  • Coupon Mom - Emails you every time coupons are updated and has links to 4 printable coupon sites in those emails (Red Plum,, Smart Source and Coupon Network)
  • Grocery Coupon Cart - Also emails you every time new coupons are added
A lot of times I find the same coupon in two or more sites and I thought this was a waste. Come to find out it's awesome if you actually use that product and plan to continue to use that product. I found the treats we use for Coco at two or three sites and even two coupons in the paper. We now have a stock of treats for Coco that won't go bad and I was able to get them all at a discount. I also have 5 mascara tubes stockpiled in my bathroom because I was able to get them at $1.00-$2.00 off each. I love that mascara and I don't plan on switching anytime soon!

Adam and I took a trip to a grocery store today that took me about three hours to plan.

How happy am I about our trip?


The grocery store doubles manufacturer's coupons on Saturdays only and normally limit five coupons to double. Today they allowed ten coupons to double, but the coupon value has to be $1.00 or less. I'm not sure if it was because it was a "Double Double Daze" day or if every Saturday is like this, but it was a madhouse there. I've never been to this grocery store before so I already felt out of place trying to find everything. I am still dizzy (what causes dizziness all day long??) so I didn't feel good. Then throw in the mix with entire families in the middle of isles blocking all traffic and employees in ridiculous Sunday-Best attire taking up the entire next isle trying to restock shelves and have boxes and crates blocking the entire row... I wanted to punch every single human in the face.

Honestly why do people stand in the MIDDLE of an isle? People are trying to get past you going both directions! MOVE! lonsfdgvbiusdefrguihsdrfiujugblbgkjn

On top of that I had Adam with his own cart behind me so we could use 10 more coupons if he used a different checkout counter so they didn't realize we were in the same household. Trying to maneuver two carts and trying to make sure I had the correct items on the coupons and non-coupon items we needed for home and make sure I had the right items in his cart and the right ones in mine. I kept telling Adam to move so others could get by and I'm pretty sure I came off as a mega biotch. I'm blessed with a guy that tends to not take things personally when he knows I'm just stressed. I'm working on that.

I should've read the fine print. I didn't realize until I got to the register that they would only double coupons that were a value of a dollar or less. I could've used more coupons.

So how much did my pain and planning save us?


Let me ask myself again how happy I am about our trip.


I guess I had a certain expectation for our trip to turn out to be less stressful and with less shoppers. I was disappointed that some of my coupons didn't double but I had only myself to blame for that. In the Extreme Couponing show the ladies walk out with hundreds or even thousands of dollars of merchandise and food but only pay 5% or less of the total cost. All because of their coupons.

No other grocery stores in my city double manufacturer coupons. This one we visited only allows 5 coupons to be doubled, today was a special case. How often will I ever find me in the same situation as the women on that show? Probably never. But I still always end up with lots of savings.

Does you have any other couponing or savings tips that I missed?

Friday, April 22, 2011

Day 27: Dizzy

I'm very dizzy. All day today. Didn't work out. Just now took a bath. Wanted to stop by Walmart to replace some of Adam's Easter candy I ate but I'm afraid of driving.

Can't think straight.

This picture is what's on my desk in front of me. Doctor bills.