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Monday, January 25, 2010

Checkered Flag Birthday

My husband turned 30 last week and you can't hit a milestone like that without a party right? So of course we pulled a big group of family and friends together for it. I have to admit I was doing my best to keep this one streamlined. I'm a bit partied out at this point (and have to admit that is shows in the photos too, sorry. I was more interested in playing hostess than taking photos). So I enlisted a bunch of help with the food and kept the theme really simple.
Sam is really into NASCAR, and since I had some black and white stuff left over from the last big party I decided to go with a checkered flag theme. A package of flags and a plastic checkered tablecloth is all it took to pull everything together. And I have to say, Sam walked into the party room and was impressed, so that's all that matters. And he said he had a great time - yay!

The decor:
-white tablecloths with a small piece of the checkered tablecloth (I cut it into six 18" squares for the tables, one large square for the buffet table, and used the leftover strip on the cake table). Then I alternated centerpieces. Some were black and white balloons tied onto a wooden block and others were altered paint cans with flags stuck in them.

The food:
-I wanted to go with a tailgate theme so we had hot wings, pigs-in-a-blanket (biggest hit of the party, I need to do these more often), chips, veggies, pasta salad, chinese chicken salad, and a nice selection of drinks. I set the drinks up on their own table, with the beer (that my hubby snuck in) in a big metal bucket. The cake (Boston Cream Pie) got it's own table, along with the other goodies.

The entertainment:
-well it's a grown up party so everyone is pretty happy just sitting around visiting. The only planed entertainment was singing happy birthday and having Sam blow out the candles. But I did grab a big race track game from the party store to keep the kids occupied.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Coat Racks

The lastest in my 2010 Quest to Get the House in Better Shape - coat racks. See where we used to have the coats in the laundry/mud room?

Pitiful right? Just be glad I didn't think to take the photo BEFORE we moved all the coats off because that just looked like a big ole' pile of coats and boots and backpacks. Ugly. And not enough space. Most of the time the kids stuff would fall off the hooks and then the wet dirty shoes would end up on top of them. And the stuff that didn't fit on hooks ended up hanging on the ironing board. Not good.
So as I stood looking at that mess a couple weeks ago I thought, hey there's LOTS more space on that other wall, wonder if we can move the coats? Turns out we can. And did. (hehe) Check out my new Wall of Coats.
Custom built by my wonderful handy husband. He was going for "sturdy" instead of "cute" but that's ok, I'm still in love. Because guess what - everything has it's own hook! And in such a prompt fashion too - probably less than 2 weeks ago it was that I mentioned I wanted new racks. And here we are - you all wish your hubbies were that on the ball doncha? :) That was due in part to me being lucky that he got MLK day off and had the time, but mostly he's just that good!

Stay tuned. I know exactly what I want to do with that space where the coats used to be. And Sam has a 4 day weekend this week!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Word of the Year 2010

I've spent the last week or so thinking about what word I would like to use for my Word of the Year. For those of you that haven't run across this concept before, the idea is to select a word for the year that represents what you want to focus on throughout the year. I first ran across this idea last year on Ali Edwards blog (and yes she is doing it again this year). My word for last year was Enjoy (see post here).

This year I am expecting a lot of changes - events that I won't really have a lot of control over. My husband is in the middle of a career change. The military (husband is in the Reserves) is also going to mess with our lives, possibly more than once. And life with young children is a constant state of changing plans and adapting. So my word for this year is


"Life is a succession of moments. To live each one is to succeed"

I want to keep my focus on living in the here and now, being happy with where I am and what is going on. I want to dial back my "planner" tendancies and go with the flow. I want to quit putting off doing things because I think there will be a better time for it (as in "I'll start eating better after the holidays" or "I'll take that class when my life settles down" or "when we get a bigger house I'll...").

Now that I have decided on my word, I want to explore it further using this Word of the Year Discovery Tool and figure out specific goals that fit in with this. Like how I'm going to manange to motivate myself long enough to finish losing this "baby weight" (I can still call it that even if the baby is 3 now right?). And of course plaster it all over the house so I can remember it - but that requires a craft day so the plastering will be cute as well as functional :)

Has anyone else been thinking about their own word for the year?

*I am also participating in the Feeling Fabulous Challenge over at Somewhat Simple. If you're wanting a ready made way to track/work on some of those typical New Years Goals, this is a great system.
*update (1/5/10) - I had the chance to sit down and make a few signs for me to put up around the house. (thank goodness for craft Tuesdays) Cute huh? I love that I was able to use up scraps from some of my favorite papers.

*linking to 2010 Word of the Year over at Tip Junkie