December 27, 2011

just some inspiration for your tuesday.

I found this on pinterest.com. And I'm pretty sure I squishy-heart love it:

People are often unreasonable, irrational and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.
Give the best you have and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God.
It was never between you and them, anyway.

December 26, 2011

hello, world.

So, yeah. It's been like, two years since I last blogged. Notice the change in the design? I paid a designer to make this blog all pretty-like and I do believe she did a great job...then, I go two years without blogging a gosh darn thing. Lame.

I am *hoping* that my blogging days will soon return because just today, I bought a wireless keyboard for my iPad2. Ever since I got this iPad2 for Mother's Day, I have spent zero to very little time on my actual iMac desktop computer. I know, I know. #FirstWorldProblems. But because the iPad is so easy to access from anywhere, I just havent had the need to get on the big computer.

Blogging on the iPad wasn't easy. I've gotten used to typing on it now, but I don't ENJOY it. Enter the wireless keyboard. This thing is awesome! I am sitting in the living room, on my couch, with my iPad docked on the couch arm, while I lay back and type, type, type away. Yay!

On a different note, I hope everyone's Christmas was magical and wonderful. Mine certainly was am I am gently fading into the post-Christmas depression I always siffer about this time of year. I hear they make a seasonal anti-depressant for the winter and if you know a guy who deals them, I'd like his pager number...

So the holiday has come and gone and now we settle in for the longest three months of the year. Winter. Blah.

I guess that's all for now. I just wanted an excuse to use my new keyboard. I know this post was pretty pathetic.

Here's hoping for more! ;)

October 13, 2011

i did it!!!

It took me ten months to gain 50 pounds. Yes, FIFTY!!! And it took me ten months to lose it.

As of this morning, I am officially my pre-pregnancy weight!

And this is how seeing that number made me feel, grey sweatpants and all!


I know I sound like I'm tooting my own horn but, well, I am.

It was no easy feat. I had to restrict calories and workout. I know, wild concept, huh? But it was soooooo worth it! Seeing that number put a little skip in my step today and made me literally do a fist pump in the bathroom.

My goal, or comfortable weight, is still ten pounds away. I can do it. I know I can. If I can lose 50 pounds, I can lose 10 more.

It's not about being hot (although that is nice, not going to lie), but more about feeling like me again. Carrying around this extra baggage brings me down. I don't feel like myself. It causes me not to be able to wear some of my favorite outfits and jeans. I just want to feel confident again, you know? Today is definitely a step in the right direction.

Fist pump!

This is what an extra 50 pounds on yours truly looks like...yikes!



October 12, 2011

beautifulness.

Lyrics to "After the Storm" by Mumford and Sons:

And after the storm,
I run and run as the rains come
And I look up, I look up,
on my knees and out of luck,
I look up.

Night has always pushed up day
You must know life to see decay
But I won't rot, I won't rot
Not this mind and not this heart,
I won't rot.

And I took you by the hand
And we stood tall,
And remembered our own land,
What we lived for.

And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more
tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your
fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

And now I cling to what I knew
I saw exactly what was true
But oh no more.
That's why I hold,
That's why I hold with all I have.
That's why I hold.

I will die alone and be left there.
Well I guess I'll just go home,
Oh God knows where.
Because death is just so full and man so small.
Well I'm scared of what's behind and what's before.

And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more
tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your
fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

And there will come a time, you'll see, with no more
tears.
And love will not break your heart, but dismiss your
fears.
Get over your hill and see what you find there,
With grace in your heart and flowers in your hair.

September 14, 2011

remember when i used to blog?

Yeah, me too. And it was glorious.

I have a few minutes, so I'll update bullet-style.
  • I absolutely love my new job. I've never really been able to say I loved a job before, except for when I waited tables (I know, what?!) and worked at the coffee shop. I really, really, really love this job and the people in my office. We have fun, but work hard. I am designing magazine layouts, taking photos, doing interviews, updating all our social media, and truly feel like I am in my element. It doesn't feel like work most days. What a blessing! The best part about it (and what I've never experienced in any other "real" job) is personal autonomy. They trust me with things. I get to spearhead projects. I get to dream big and they actually listen to my ideas and encourage me to press on. I am actually able to set new things into motion. It feels so good!!
  • Vivian is growing like crazy. She has a third tooth and is starting to not want as much baby food anymore, as she is CRAZY about "big people" food. The girl can put a hurting on some Ritz crackers, goldfish crackers, and cheese puffs. It's adorable.
  • Husband continues to be consumed with his current course. Last night, he got home at 3am. The night before? Midnight. It's crazy, but I've gotten into a routine and most days it's not unbearable. I will be glad when it's over, though. Five days in Vegas to celebrate? Yes, please!
  • I don't blog as much anymore because I feel like anything I have to say is boring. Work. Baby. Husband. That's all I got these days.
  • I lie. We do go out and do fun things here and again, when we can. Last weekend, we went and biked the river trail, which was beautiful and FUN! The wind was in my face (in a good way) and I felt like a kid again. I even got a little sun on my shoulders and face and just felt overall healthy and happy.
  • But other than THAT, there's not too much of interest going on these days.
  • I need to change that.
  • Do you think I'd blog more if I paid someone to snazzy up this place? I am thinking about hiring someone to make my blog pretty again. But would that just be a big waste of money? Or motivation?
  • It's time to wash the dishes and hit the hay.
  • Riveting, I tell ya.

August 22, 2011

lessons, lately.

On my last day as a housewife/SAHM a few weeks ago, I felt the Lord speak into my heart to make a home-cooked meal for my Husband and his six other classmates who often have no time during the day to eat, let alone eat anything healthy or homemade. The course they are in keeps them gone all day and most of the night and food is the last thing on their minds.

So, I felt the prodding. And I followed through. For once.

I really didn't want to make them dinner, necessarily. It was a lot of work on my LAST DAY as a lady of leisure. But I listened because I just felt compelled to. I brought green beans, pecan and cornflake-crusted chicken, and jalapeño cornbread. I didn't stick around to see their reaction because in that moment, that just would have felt weird. I told Husband to bring home the dinnerware and spoons and then I left. He then called the rest of the guys to the meeting room where they ate their dinner while taking a much-deserved break from the grind.

When I got in my car to drive home, I was beaming. It was such a good feeling. Not that cooking dinner for seven men is like, the most amazing thing anyone can do, but it was more that I actually listened and followed through. It felt so nice to do something kind for someone else. It was then that I asked to hear Him even more. That He would speak more things like that into my heart. That my ears would be tuned to Him and his leading. Boy, does He deliver!

A few days ago, I was driving around base dropping off marketing materials to various facilities. I was almost done with my "route." In fact, I just had one more stop to make. I was hot and quite irritable and was hoping that no one would be in next office. That I would be able to simply leave the poster on a desk or slide it under the door. Didn't happen. I pulled up and was greeted by a very zealous, overly-eager airman who asked me if he could help me. I asked him to please hang up the poster in the meeting room. He said he would be happy to and asked if there were any more marketing materials to distribute in the dorms. I said my supervisor had sent an email to so-and-so about 400 flyers but we hadn't got confirmation to proceed, blah blah. He said he wasn't So-And-So, but that I could email him next time and he would see to it that they get distributed. Then, he handed me his business card. Apparently, he was the dorm manager. I was so annoyed at his gusto. When I saw the card, I thought: "What a dork. Like, seriously? You need a business card to indicate that you're a dorm manager?" I smiled and thanked him for being so helpful and then walked back to the van. Before I even took three steps, a message rang in my ears so loudly that I stopped walking and repented right then and there for my terrible attitude. The message? "You stop it right now. This is the first time he has ever felt important."

Even now, days later, it still brings tears to my eyes that I was so judgmental. But I am THANKFUL that I was able to hear such an important lesson. I asked to hear Him. That never meant that I would hear only good things :)

Today my sweet baby girl had to go to the doctor because she has contracted pink eye :( I had to go back to work, but I felt wretched leaving her when her eyes looked so bad. She was acting fine, of course, but it just looked awful. I picked her up as soon as I could and was pretty disappointed with what I saw. She was fussy before she knew I was watching (she didn't get a good nap today) and her eyes hadn't been cleaned and her nose was running. Nothing irritates me more than a messy baby. Babies are human beings and need to be treated with dignity. What adult would want to go around all day with snot coming out of his nose and food caked on her cheeks? I am a big stickler for clean children and it just really bothered me that she was so filthy :(

I brought her home and promised her extra snuggles and love tonight. It had been a rough day for both of us. After dinner, I gave her a good, long bath and wiped her beautiful, blue eyes with a warm washcloth until they were all clean. I put the antibiotics in her eyes (which she hated), used the aspirator for her drainage (more fussing), and applied the special medicine for diaper rash that we got from the children's hospital when she had a horrible stomach bug when she was 6 months old (more and more fussing). I put lotion on her skin and brushed her hair. I put extra-clean-just-came-out-of-the-dryer-warm pajamas and changed her sheets and dusted her crib. I wanted everything to be perfect for my baby tonight.

I turned on her lullaby machine and snuggled her up in her sleep sack. I turned off the lights and held her close in the glider as I gave her her "night cap" bottle, as I do every night. As we rocked and she had her bottle, all the while mesmerized with the pretty lights on the ceiling, I told her, "You know, I do these things to make you better. Those eyedrops aren't fun and I know you don't like them, but they're going to make your eyes pretty again. They won't hurt anymore and won't be yucky. I know you get mad at me sometimes, but I do things like use the aspirator so that you can breathe better at night time. Mama's never going to hurt you. Everything I am doing is because I love you and want you to get better."

Do you see where this is going?

I held her close and breathed in her sweet, baby smell. As she was drifting off to sleep in my arms, my eyes welled up with tears for two reasons. One, because I absolutely cannot stand my baby being sick and want to fix her immediately, but know that I can't. And two, because at that very moment I heard: "You see how you feel about her right now? That's just a drop in the bucket of what I feel for you, Cassandra..."

If you ask to hear Him, He is quick to answer. And it is revolutionary.

August 13, 2011

vivian blogs for the first time.

Deep thoughts by Vivian:

milk,, [//???????????????????????????????????? ???????????

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????P
?::::::::yby g b jjjjj m ygyygughvß´stvftbgyvff6



Clearly, she sees life just like I do.

(I laughed so hard when she typed all those questions marks).

August 2, 2011

j-o-b!

I start my new job tomorrow! I should be readying an outfit, taking a shower, or doing something much more productive than blogging, but I'm excited and wanted to say that I start my new job tomorrow.

The End :)

July 29, 2011

July 25, 2011

day one of daycare.

I don't really want to write about the details of my kid's daycare, the staff, the toys, etc. Because I'm tired and that's boring.

I just want to write something out so I don't forget the moment.

I wasn't emotional when I left Vivian this morning. I had her on my mind all day, of course, but I wasn't sad or scared that something would happen to her. I am thankful we started a Mother's Day Out program when she was 3 months old to help me with that anxiety. I wanted her to have a good day and to be happy when I picked her up. I wanted her to be clean, rested, and have a full belly. I dealt with a little guilt here and there, the little devil on my back making agreements with me about leaving her, blah blah blah. But I didn't cry...

Until I picked her up.

I pulled into the parking lot around 4:30pm. Moms and Dads were getting out of their vehicles everywhere I looked. Most of them were wearing military uniforms. One woman in her blues because it's Monday, one Daddy in his BDUs. One mama pulling on her flight cap because rules regulate that she wears it when she's outdoors. It hit me then that we parents, all of us, no matter who you are, are all doing the best we can. It matters not if your child is in daycare, if he stays home with you all day, if she has a nanny, if she stays with family, if he goes to work with you, if she goes to daycare part-time. It doesn't matter because we all love our children. And you know what? They'll all be okay.

A mama and her son were walking out of the child care center while I was walking in. He was holding her hand. They were silent until he said, "I had a fun day at school today, Mommy!" She smiled at him and said, "I'm so glad!" It was reassuring!

It just made me happy to see that we all live different lifestyles. And that's OKAY. The guilt I wrestle with for being gone from my child for eight hours a day is nothing compared to how a military mama must feel when she gets orders announcing that she'll be deploying to Afghanistan for 6 months.

All of us are just doing the best we can. And no one has the right to tell us, or make us feel, any different.

July 19, 2011

going back to work.

I mentioned several weeks ago that I had a job interview the following day.

Well, I GOT THE JOB!

Since then, I have been doing paperwork and getting things in line for this new chapter in my life. Yes, I want to work. No, I don't have to work.

*Cue my defending wanting to work while having a child*

I like to work. I like to make money. I love my child. I love my child more than I love money. BUT, this staying home everyday is driving me crazy. SHE is not driving me crazy; staying HOME is driving me crazy. I tried working part-time, but all I could find is weekend work. I did that for about 4 months (did I even tell you about that gig?), but that soon ran its course. The weekends are the ONLY time I see my husband and it just wasn't worth it. Moving on, the job is in marketing, a field that I have been wanting to break into for quite some time. The job is also NOT 45 minutes away from home (i.e. there is no commute). The job is five minutes away from the best day care in our area. The job is too perfect to pass up.

I know it will be hard, especially at first. But I think once we get in our groove, things will work out fine. I am worried about how I'm going to be able to do it all, though. I'll not only be a working mom, but I'll be a working mom who is also a military spouse. Pretty much the hardest combo, ever. Ok, being a single mom is probably much harder, for sure. But with the program that Husband is currently involved in, I sort of feel like a single mom already :( He hasn't seen our kid in two days. He gets home right as I'm putting her in her crib (not by choice, of course). I know, waaa waa, but it sucks. Single moms, you have my utmost respect. Wow, that was a tangent!

Working moms: When the heck do you fit in time to exercise?! I thought about waking up super early to get it out of the way, but I just don't think I'll have time. I take forever to get ready, especially when I'm trying to look nice, so I think the morning is out. I won't have enough time on my lunch break, either...so I'm slowly coming to the realization that I might have to do my workouts in the (gasp!) evening! The evenings are already kind of crazy what with dinner, dishes, bath, bedtime, playtime, etc. How do you supermoms do it?! Perhaps if I do it as soon as I walk in the door? But that cutie patootie face is so tempting. It's amazing how much time I lose while hanging out with her. She is a BIG distraction - in the best kind of way, of course.

So, that's me. Going back to work. Thoughts totally scattered. Feeling a little, no, a LOT, overwhelmed. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

July 7, 2011

normal day.

I stumbled upon a blog while stalking strangers on Facebook doing some research on the Tracy Anderson method.

This inspires me.

And is now my new life's motto.

July 5, 2011

caylee marie.



I watched with bated breath when the judge announced that the clerk would soon be reading the verdict in the Casey Anthony murder trial. I could tell by the way he thumbed through the papers that the verdict would be

Not guilty.

I had a feeling it would happen this way, but I was hoping with every fiber of my being that it wouldn't.

I respect the law incredibly. I am even seriously considering going to law school one day. My favorite courses in grad school were the media law seminars. I dig the judicial system. So, I understand that she was found not guilty based on the lack of evidence. There was no proof beyond any doubt that she did, in fact, murder her daughter. The verdict makes sense, legally.


But we all know she did it.

Tonight, there is an event circulating around Facebook asking folks to turn on their porch lights at 9pm tonight in remembrance of Caylee Anthony. I will be joining in on this. I think it's a lovely gesture. The event indicates that the lights will be on for Caylee to see and know that her little life mattered. This whole thing just makes me so depressed.

I mourn for the little girl who's life was stolen from her. I mourn for women who so desperately yearn to be mothers, but who, for whatever reason, can't be, yet this woman was blessed with a perfectly healthy child and disposed of her like she was trash.

My heart breaks for every child out there who has no voice.

I am thankful, though, that this world is not my home and that this world is not all I have to look forward to.

Sweet girl, your little life did matter. And in your tragic death and story, you bring us all back to the Giver of all good things. We take comfort in knowing that you forever live in glory, free from all harm and resting peacefully in Jesus's arms.

July 4, 2011

i'm 29 and america is...old (and other things).

Happy 4th of July, everyone!

Today is my 29th birthday and it's been wonderful! Our whole weekend has been quite a whirlwind, so we took is easy today, which was much needed and appreciated.

We went to a BBQ at a friend's house on Saturday night and then a big party last night, where the host spent $1200 on fireworks. Not joking. We were kind of wiped out today. We did a little shopping, had a bite to eat for lunch, went to Cold Stone to indulge a little, and now we're home. Baby is asleep and pizza is on its way. Healthy? No. But hey, it's my birthday.

Our biggest adventure starts tomorrow, when Husband leaves for the Weapon's Instructor Course. I mentioned it in an ealier post, but it is an intense course that will make him a "master" of his aircraft, so to speak. It will have him bouncing back and forth between here and Las Vegas for the next 6 months or so. It will be very trying at times, but I'm not scared. I prefer back and forth over a 6-month deployment any day. So, these next 6 months should be interesting...to say the least.

I am still waiting to hear back from the job interview I had a few weeks ago. I know they called my references and they have been asking for some more background info...which I am taking as a good sign. I'll go into further detail about it once I know I either have it or the position has been filled by someone who is not me. Ha!

Husband bought me the Tracy Anderson Metamorphosis Method DVDs for a birthday gift. Yes, I asked for this gift. No, he does not think I'm fat and gross and need workout DVDs...just for the record :) I am eager to start the healthy eating and workouts once he leaves tomorrow, but I need a more structured plan for the healthy eating (which I don't have yet) so I am trying to compile a grocery list and will get all the food in the next couple of days. And THEN I will start the DVDs and the healthy eating. I want to be smoking hot for his WIC graduation in December. And these last 10 preggo pounds are just NOT moving, so without him here, I'll be able to kick the healthy eating into high gear. (It's a lot easier to eat healthy when you don't have to cook dinners for two. I can simply eat a Lean Cuisine for dinner and be happy. Husband? Not so much).

That's about it for now! Thanks for being patient with my sporadic posts these days. I know this blog is kind of lame...boo.

June 16, 2011

hodge podge. myriad. stuff.

That last post was annoying me every time I hopped on here to check blogs. So, I changed it to this one.

I don't have much to say. Uhm, bullets, anyone?
  • My last day of bootcamp was this morning. I wrote a little bit about it on Facebook (where I do most of my socializing these days). It feels so good to have completed something I started. Something I loathed!!! I got up at 5 in the morning to do this crap, y'all. But after it was all over, I felt amazing. I shaved off two minutes off my mile run and was able to do more pushups than before and did the wall-sit longer than ANYONE in the class. I could have kept going, but decided anything over 5 minutes would just make me look cocky. I told my instructor that after 20 hours of labor, I could wall sit all day long. Ha! We are having a bootcamp survivor's party tomorrow night in Little Rock and Husband and I plan on making a date night out of it. What a great experience it was! It was definitely the jumpstart I needed to get my fitness back on.
  • I didn't lose any weight throughout the process, but I did lose about 3% body fat and some of my clothes definitely fit a lot better than before. I'd say that's progress! If only I could eat a little better. That's my down fall. I could work out every, single day...but passing up chocolate cake?! No way.
  • I have a job interview tomorrow. Yup. I sure do.
  • The fam and I are headed to Florida soon for a little vacation before Husband leaves for the Weapon's Instructor Course. This course lasts about 5ish months and it will have him bouncing back and forth between here and Las Vegas. It will be trying, but I'll take back and forth over a 5ish month-long deployment, for sure. The best perk? I can attend the graduation ceremony in Vegas in December and we will stay and play a few extra days afterward. Viva Las Vegas!
  • That's about all for now.

May 26, 2011

"youth is wasted on the young." -- george bernard shaw

While driving back home from dropping off my daughter at Mother's Day Out, my heart became heavy.

Sometimes I get very sad when I think about events from my past. This usually happens after a night of dreaming dreams in which all those mistakes are remedied.

Last night, I had a very vivid dream where I was able to reconcile with people from years ago - people that I had hurt in profoundly deep ways, and who also hurt me (this group includes, but is not limited to: friends, acquaintances, co-workers, employers, teachers, etc.) This morning, I recalled that dream and got very sad, remembering it was just that: a dream. And that the past is still the past and real life makes it impossible to go back and change.

I know that these feelings of regret and guilt are fleeting and the wise thing to do is pray against them. And I will. And things will be fine again. And then they'll come back again. And the cycle will repeat itself. And that's okay.

I am surely not the most wise person I know. That's a no-brainer. But I do know that I have gained at least some wisdom over the years. To have had just a tad of that knowledge and experience and maturity back then would have prevented so many bad decisions, hurtful words, and broken hearts. I simply didn't have the tools then that I have now. It fills me with regret.

Today's Cassandra would have been amazing in the old Cassandra's shoes.

Today's me would have made a different path for myself than I did back then. That notion makes me so sad. But it is a notion I must reject because, quite simply, it is unhealthy and poison to my spirit to think about "what could have been." Note: I am not wishing away the life I have now. The way things have worked themselves out is nothing short of amazing. That's called grace, y'all. :)

I just wish that I could sit down with these people, share a cup of coffee, rehash the past, explain why I did the things I did, and then apologize. I wouldn't change what I have now. I just wish I could show them who I am now and where my heart was back then. Would they even recognize me?

In my dreams, things are fixed. A warm bear hug is exchanged and all is well. We then turn away from one another and re-enter the realm that has become our real lives, knowing that the wounds in our hearts have been healed. It's just so beautiful.

And then I wake up...and realize it was just a dream. And then I write blog posts like this.

And then I make some coffee, take a hot shower, pray against these feelings, and hope that somehow, someway there is an understanding in the spirit of these people that I would make things better if that opportunity was ever made available.

"I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. I say to myself, "The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait on Him." -- Lamentations 3:19-24

May 22, 2011

1/2 birthday.

I can't believe she's six months old already. It goes by way too fast. Seriously. I don't like it.

But I love her :)

Happy 1/2 birthday, little one!

May 17, 2011

May 16, 2011

g-i-jane...or something.

Groupon delighted me with an email a few days ago for a 5-week, $49 membership to Fitness Bootcamp.

Since I'm crazy and a glutton for punishment, I signed up.

The camp began today. I signed up for the 6am class because, once more, I'm a glutton for punishment and really, it's the only time I could work out with my husband's work schedule and the little one.

I went to bed pretty late last night (boo) and had a hard time falling asleep. Then, I woke up at 4am, nervous that I had overslept for the class (when I spoke to the instructor on the phone a few days ago, he informed me that if one doesn't show up for the class, he "sends the dogs out" to find us...I was scared).

I couldn't fall back asleep, so I just laid in bed until about 5:10am. I threw on my workout clothes that I had laid out the night before, grabbed my water bottle and Breakfast On The Go (love these things, by the way) and made the 30-minute drive down to the camp.

I was surprised at how many people were on the roads at 5:30 in ther morning. Other than military personnel, truckers, and medical personnel, who on earth needs to be at work that early?!

I arrived to the camp and there were TONS of people there. Groupon works, y'all.

We met in a room where our instructor (did you see him on the website? Intimidating!) informed us that today we would be performing a PT test, starting with a one-mile run. GASP!!!

It was grueling! I am not a runner! But I want to be one.

So...we ran. It was cold and windy outside and my lungs were on fire. I ran/jogged/walked and clocked in my one mile at an amazing 11:51. Terrible...but you gotta start somewhere, right?

Then, we had our push-up and sit-up test. How many can you do in one minute? I did 27 modified push-ups and 30 sit-ups. LAME.

Then, we had to do the wall sit and see how long we could last. My time? 1:16. LAME! I realized, though, that I was doing it wrong. I had my knees practically touching, thus placing WAY more weight on my quads than necessary. Everyone else had their legs set wider apart and they were able to last a lot longer. I'll remember that for next time!

So, I am about to head for bed and get up and do it all over again. I'm excited about this new adventure and I hope I see results. I don't expect to lose 20 pounds or anything, but if all I do is shave off that mile time by 2 minutes, I'll be happy. Plus, it's awesome getting your workout out of the way to early in the morning. I had the rest of my day to do what needed to be done, I wasn't stuck in a stinky gym, and I knew that I had already exercised. What a great feeling!

1 day down, 19 more to go. HOO-AH!

May 8, 2011

my first mother's day.


There are no words. I love them.

May 4, 2011

working on it.

When I have found the time, I am working on the transition from blogspot to wordpress. Some of you asked why I'm switching.

I mentioned in my last post that I was annoyed my the interface of blogspot. That's nerd talk. Translation: I hate how blogspot looks and am annoyed by how complicated it is to design, etc. That's one reason.

The other is for more privacy. I want to be able to password protect certain posts and allow the rest to be public. I don't like having two blogs - one public, one private. It's too much upkeep.

And speaking of upkeep, sometimes (ok, every day) I feel so bombarded by technology. Between Facebook, this blog, Twitter, Angry Birds, Words with Friends, the iPhone, the iPad, the iMac, and email, I don't have time left in the day to even read blogs for pleasure anymore. I'm tired of that. I'm taking control of my "tech life" and making my new blog more streamlined, more focused. Having a "personal blog" about my daily life is just too daunting right now. Having an objective to my writing will provide me with much more motivation instead of blabbering on and on about how Vivian ate a NumNum for the first time and got it into her eye instead of her mouth.

All this to say I am working on a new blog, with a new concept. It's going to be a great outlet for me, if I am able to do what I vision.

So, stay tuned!

April 20, 2011

under construction.

Obviously, my blog looks jacked. I don't have the time to fix it right now, though. My apologies.

I am going to be making the switch to wordpress to host my blog pretty soon. As soon as I can make this blog a book (to keep all the memories), the change is going to happen. I am annoyed by this blog's interface and more than anything, I love wordpress's ability to password protect certain posts.

I fear there are too many eyes reading this blog that I don't want reading it, quite simply. Thus, I have been forced to censor myself all too often, which leads to not posting at all...which is lame.

I refuse to let the blog die. I just think it needs a new home where I can blog freely. The End.

April 18, 2011

i have a 5-month-old.

Time flies when you're having fun! I can't believe this little peanut is five months old!

(Scroll down if you're looking for the Vera Bradley giveaway winner)






vera bradley giveaway winner!

And the winner of the Zip ID Case is...

Kelly Sellers!

Email me your address at cassandrawebb82 at yahoo dot com and that little VB goodie will be on its way to you tomorrow!

Thanks for playing! :)

True Random Number Generator 3Powered by RANDOM.ORG

April 10, 2011

giveaway, round 2.

Ok, well, it appears my last giveaway was a bust. I saw some of your very valiant efforts on Facebook to participate, but I suppose your friends just weren't down with putting forth any work ;)

That being said, I am nixing the last giveaway and opting, instead, to make this one much easier.

Up for grabs? The Vera Bradley Zip ID Case in Symphony in Hue from last week.



These little lovelies retail for $12 and are perfect for your driver's license, military ID, or teacher badge. I always have one with me when I travel because who likes to carry around a big, bulky wallet when you're parasailing in the Caribbean? Not me!

What do you have to do? Just "like" my Backflip Photography Facebook page (see sidebar to get you there) and then come back and leave me a comment here saying you did so. That's all. Already a Backflip fan? Then, friend, your work is over. Just leave me a comment saying you're a fan. The End.

A winner will be chosen randomly and announced next Sunday, April 17th at 6 p.m. central time.

On a different note, since I DID clean out my closet, I have three other Vera Bradley items available for purchase. If you're into VB, I'm offering brand new bags with tags for a total steal. Click here to visit my store, Cassandra's Closet. Happy shopping!

April 3, 2011

i-finally-cleaned-my-closet-out giveaway!

I have spent much of last week cleaning out all my drawers and my entire closet. It was a disaster!

As a result, I have given SEVEN leaf bags of clothes and shoes to Goodwill and am trying to sell some of my nicer items on Craigslist.

However, I thought a giveaway on my blog might be fun, too!

Up for grabs?


A never-used (see the tag?) Vera Bradley handbag in Symphony in Hue print (retails for $52). Yes, I am serious. If that's not good enough for you, I'll also throw in...



The bag's matching Zip ID Case, also never used (retails for $12).

Want to know how to win these goodies?

All I am asking you to do is get 5 of your Facebook friends to "Like" my Backflip Photography Facebook page. I have had 301 fans for over a year now and it's time to boost that number! I'm annoyed by it every time I log in, simply.

They must be NEW fans of the page. Please have your friends "like" the Backflip Photography Facebook page and then copy and paste this message as a comment on the page: "I'm a new fan of Backflip Photography thanks to (insert your name here)."

After you've recruited five new fans, please leave a comment on this post. I'll verify the new fans, and then select a winner at random using a random number generator based on the number of comments I receive.

Giveaway ends next Sunday (April 10, 2011) at 6 pm central time. Recruit via whatever means necessary. Blog about it, Facebook about it, Tweet about it, I don't care. Just get the word out.

The steps, in brief:

1. Get 5 (five) of your Facebook friends to "like" the Backflip Photography Facebook page. They must be new fans and they must post the following as a comment on the Backflip Photography Facebook page: "I'm a new fan of Backflip Photography thanks to (insert your name here)."

2. After you've recruited five new fans, leave a comment ON THIS POST letting me know you did so.

3. I'll verify and then a winner will be chosen at random and announced on this blog next Sunday!

Good luck and thank you in advance!

Note: Vera Bradley is NOT funding or supporting this contest in any way whatsoever. I just had way too many handbags in my closet and I'm feeling generous. That's all. :)

March 27, 2011

great giveaway at good life for less!

A friend of mine pointed me to the Good Life for Less blog several months ago and I have been following Jill and her fashion escapades ever since!

She is offering a pretty awesome giveaway if we would all help her to reach 1,000 followers.

Check it out here and enter for your chance to win some great prizes!

getting my butt to payless.

I usually don't get too excited about shoe commercials, but the latest Payless commercial caught my eye!

Isn't their new Nautical line adorable!?

I will definitely be making a trip to Payless this week while all these goodies are on sale. I am in LOVE with these sling backs. Must have them. They're not ridiculously high and shouldn't make my back hurt, but they are high enough to be cute, cute, cute.

The End.

March 24, 2011

rolling thunder.

One reason I married my husband was because he didn't snore. I'm serious. Any time we tooks naps during the dating stage, I was always so pleased with him because he was a quiet sleeper, like me. No tossing and turning, no weird grunting, no heavy breathing, and definitely NO SNORING.

Well, fast forward six years later and ladies, I am married to a bonafied snoring machine.

And I'm not happy about it.

Does anyone else's husband snore? And what do you do about it?

Here lately, I am retreating to the guest futon. I try to sleep in our bedroom, but it never fails: I am always (ALWAYS) awoken by the sweet melody of rolling thunder. I then gather my pillows and head to the opposite side of the house. Every. Single. Night.

You might suggest ear plugs, right? But then how would I hear the baby on the monitor in the mornings?

Someone please help me. I am not a fan of sleeping in separate bedrooms, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

Help!

March 23, 2011

March 21, 2011

giveaway winner!

True Random Number Generator 3Powered by RANDOM.ORG


Congratulations, Janet! You're the lucky winner of the $15 gift card/code for CSN stores!

Email me at cassandrawebb82 at yahoo dot com to claim your prize!

Thanks for participating, everyone!

March 15, 2011

my cup runneth over's first giveaway!


The friendly folks at CSN stores want to offer one of my wonderful readers a $15 gift card!

Never heard of CSN? Well, they're an online network of over 200 sites that carry a multitude of varying products. Have a room makeover in your future? Then definitely check out their line of pendant lighting

Isn't this chandelier gorgeous?! I know of a certain little girl who's room would look AMAZING with this hanging from the ceiling! Sorry the image is so small. Visit the site and see it blown up. It's to die for!



Here's how to to win the $15 gift card code:

Simply follow the link and and then tell me via comment which product is your fave. A winner will be selected randomly using a random number generator.

Giveaway ends this Sunday, March 20 at 8:00pm central time.

Good luck!

P.S. Shipping is only available in the US and Canada.

March 7, 2011

can ya help a girl out?!

I hosted a 31 Party on Friday evening and I am a mere $58 away from hitting our party goal of $500!

Desperate times call for desperate measures, so yes, I am blogging about how I need just a few more buyers to seal the deal.

If you're interested, please take a look at 31's online catalog here and shoot me an email at cassandrawebb82 at yahoo dot com for ordering details. I'll be best your friend. And you know you want a new handbag...or tote...or thermal lunch box for work...or personalized bloomers for your baby girl...or robot boxers for your son...or an organizer...or beach bag...or picnic blanket...or, well, you get the idea.

:)

March 2, 2011

God answers big.

I have been praying the prayer of Jabez everyday for the past 2 or 3 weeks. Don't know it? Here it go!

And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, "Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain." So God granted him what he requested. --- I Chronicles 4:10 NKJV


And God granted ME what I requested. He totally outdid Himself, though, and now I am asking for discernment to understand all of these blessings and opportunities.

I know this is super vague, but it's not time to talk about freely online yet. It is all good. Very, very good.

So would you pray for me? That I would make sense out of what's been giving to me. That I would know the right path to take? Thanks :)

On a totally different note, my husband and I watched Invictus a few weeks ago. And that movie has stuck with me. Especially the poem for which the film is named, Invictus. Read this and I dare you to tell me you're not inspired!

INVICTUS

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley


March 1, 2011

5k?!

So, the latest news is that I am signed up to run a 5K this Saturday as part of the Little Rock Marathon. Husband is running the half marathon on Sunday (because he's crazy).

Have I trained, you ask?

Nope.

This should be interesting.

February 23, 2011

shellac manicure.

So, despite The Pioneer Women's one-upping me on a post about Shellac, I decided to write about MY manicure anyway.

Husband got me a gift certificate to this hoity-toity salon in Little Rock. Instead of getting a spray tan, I opted to try a Shellac manicure. Apparently, it's the "new thing."

$55 dollars later, I had an amazing manicure that I LOVE.

Click here to learn more about Shellac.

Apparently, after posting about it on Facebook, I learned that other salons in my area offer the same service for way cheaper than $55. Thank goodness, too, because this gal cannot afford $55 manicures every two weeks.

I will say that Shellac is worth every penny you spend. It truly does last two weeks and makes your nails hard as...nails (?!)...cement. There is no chipping whatsoever. Next time you want to treat yourself, look into getting Shellac done. You will be VERY pleased! Make sure it's CND Shellac products!

Note: On the CND Shellac website, there is a link to search for salons in your area that offer the service. Call around and get the best price!

February 22, 2011

once you go shellac, you'll never go back.

I finally felt inspired to write a blog post about the Shellac manicure I received almost two weeks ago. Then, I logged on and saw that The Pioneer Woman has a post about...her Shellac manicure.

Why do I feel like she's always one-upping me?

February 20, 2011

extinct.

My blog is going the way of the dodo bird.

I just don't have much to write about these days other than baby stuff and I SO DON'T want my blog to become an "all-about-my-kid" blog. No offense if you have an "all-about-my-kid" blog, I just don't think that you'll find interesting what I find fascinating. Ya know?

I have debated getting rid of this blog (not without printing it all out first...or something) and then making the switch over to wordpress, where I can password protect certain posts. I think I'd be more apt to blog then. I tend to have lots of juicy things to write about now and again, but I refrain because I'm afraid of who might be reading this public blog.

It's a point of stress for me, this not-posting business. It makes me sad. I've had this thing since 2007. I would hate to see it die.

February 5, 2011

black and yellow black and yellow!

Two words for tomorrow:

GO STEELERS!!!!!!!


February 2, 2011

old man winter.

Can die any time.

Bring me some sunshine!!!


January 30, 2011

jenifer.

One of my Phi Lamb sorority sisters passed away this Thursday after receiving a double lung transplant that just didn't "take." She had been battling cystic fibrosis since the age of two.

Not only was Jenifer in my sorority, but we also shared an apartment during my senior year of college. Although she and I lived two very separate lives during that time (I truly believe I was depressed that year and acted accordingly, which was NOT a good thing), a certain bond, I believe, still exists between two people who have ever shared a home.

I knew that most people with cystic fibrosis typically do not live lengthy lives. It saddened me when Jenifer would get sick. I felt helpless and guilty for my perfect health, which I took for granted.

I was so happy when Jenifer requested to be friends on Facebook a few months ago. This meant she was alive and well! I had lost touch with her after college, so it was so reassuring to see her again, even if it was over the computer. She married her college sweetheart, Tony - a truly wonderful guy. She went to physical therapy school. She was doing well. And that made me happy to see.

She truly did fight the good fight. My heart breaks to know that all her efforts to stay healthy just could not sustain her life. The Lord has called my precious friend home. It makes me so sad.

I was at church this morning and it felt like every, single song we sang was for Jenifer. Or maybe I just had her on my mind...

Either way, I heard this song for the first time today and oh, how it made me weep for her. I can only hope that she is basking in His glory, able to breathe freely in Heaven, as she so desperately wanted to do here on Earth.

I hope to share a Home with her again soon.


January 27, 2011

everything that matters.

since my car won't start and i'm stuck at home anyway...

I thought I'd blog.

And yes, our car won't start for whatever reason. I got me ready, the baby ready, the diaper bag ready, the grocery list ready only to walk out to the garage with baby in tow, crank the key, and nothing. I AM SO ANNOYED RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ok, rant over.

What I wanted to blog about was Vivian. Shocker, I know.

Two things:

1. A few days ago, I swore the child said the word "elephant." I know she didn't MEAN to say the word, but she said it...while looking at a toy elephant and immediately after I said the word. My kid's a genius. She repeats things I say often. It's amazing (whether it's all in my head or not doesn't matter). :)

2. No matter how fussy she is, if one sings her Stevie Nick's "Edge of Seventeen," the child smiles and coos like it's the best thing she's ever heard. Can you imagine? That song of all songs?! Listen and tell me that doesn't make you laugh.

January 26, 2011

a new venture.

A friend of mine from high school has started his own t-shirt company, Sundown United.

I was asked (after I exclaimed I would be happy to join) to become an editor/contributing writer to the Sundown blog. My task? Write a once-a-month post about books/literature. Uhm, yes, please!

Since I already always have a book going, I consider this job a very easy one. Check out my first post here. My friend used his editing eye and added the photos that you see there. I am proud of myself for joining this movement and feel kind of like me again. I miss writing and being part of something bigger than myself.

Speaking of, I petitioned my old editor to see if she needed any help writing features and taking photos for her papers. And she does! Yay! I'll get back into that as soon as I get my first story assignment. It feels sooooo good to be doing something other than washing bottles. I love my Vivian more than I've ever loved anyone in my life, but the "dailiness" of taking care of her is mind-numbing. Everyday is Groundhog Day and I desperately NEED an outlet, lest I go insane.

So, yes. Sundown United and paper-writing. Sounds good to me.

January 23, 2011

a woman's work.


Time for some venting: I am sooooo tired of always having to do everything around the house!!!!!! Am I the only one?!

No, I don't have a job So yes, I should do more around the house than my husband. I get that. But a little help would be nice!!!

And without being asked would be nicer. It's like that movie with Vince Vaughan and Jennifer Aniston: "I want you to WANT to wash the dishes." Seriously! Why can't men anticipate those needs? Like...if you don't wash the bottles the night before, guess what?! You won't have a clean one for the morning feeding!

If you feed the dog way too late in the day, guess what?! He'll have to go out at 3am!!!

I'm just annoyed at the moment. That's all. Ugh.

But really...does it not seem like a woman's work is NEVER done until her head hits the pillow?

January 18, 2011

vivian is two months old!


And I love her.

what's going on.

In case you were wondering, Jillian Michael's eating and workout plan definitely WORKS. I have lost 4.5 pounds in two weeks. Holla!

Thanks for the help in determining which photo is more "landscape-y." Photo A it is! I have one more portrait to take and then I'll send off my project and BE DONE with my coursework. Hallelujah! I can't wait for this stuff to be done!

I finished reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo last week. What a book! I really liked it until the end. The last 200 pages were grueling to get through. I doubt I'll continue the trilogy as I wasn't enamored with the first book. I am thinking about reading Bush's Decision Points next. Or the Hunger Games. I don't know.

We took Vivian to get her two-month shots yesterday. What an ordeal...for me. She was a champion. Husband said she reminded him of Lucy in the Chronicles of Narnia when Aslan tells her: "My dear, if you were any braver, you would be a lioness." (And of course that made me cry). We were so proud of our girl! She cried for a few seconds and then immediately fell asleep in my arms. She stayed asleep for about 5 hours, woke up to eat, then slept for 12 hours! Then another four. My poor baby! She seems to be herself again today, though. Smiles and coos galore :)

We have completely upgraded the entertainment tech in our living room. We donated all our old stuff (we were still living with college furniture and a college TV) and got a 55" 3D LED TV. Oh my, is it pretty! We also got some surround sound speakers and a Blu-Ray player. It was about time! I am proud of ourselves for living with our college stuff for so long, though. People would make fun of us when they came over because for some reason, a 27" Panasonic monster of a television was no longer "cool." ;) It feels good to pay for all this new, fancy stuff with cash. We can enjoy it more that way, you know? We tested out the 3D glasses and I was grinning like a little school girl. I can't wait to watch football on this television! We are blessed, indeed.

I am probably going to go back to freelancing here pretty soon, as well as saying I'm available for photo shoots again. I need to do something productive other than washing bottles everyday! I doubt getting a full-time job is in the cards for me just yet. I can't bear the idea of taking this little baby to day care. At least not yet. She's got to get a little bigger and more independent first. I know. I'm one of "those moms." It's ridiculous.

Ok, time to make my meal plan for the week.

January 13, 2011

help, please?

I am so close to finishing my coursework with the NY Institute of Photography I can almost taste it. To say I will be glad when this is all over is an understatement.

Because I have a newborn and being adventurous is (slightly) on the back-burner these days, I was forced to shoot my "landscape" portrait close to home. There's not too much inspiration in these parts, but I did the best with what I had...and with a newborn in the backseat of the car.

So, which one of these photos says "landscape" the most to you?

Photo A or Photo B?


PHOTO A


PHOTO B


Please leave a comment with your selection! Thanks so much!


January 12, 2011

is it just me?

Or does it seem like blogs are dying?

January 11, 2011

going to the gym.

I am headed to the gym once Husband gets home.

I am so nervous.

It's been months.

And I don't want to go.

But I gotta.

I'm scared.

January 6, 2011

let's do this, jillian!

Ok, I did it.

I finally signed up and paid for an account at jillianmichaels.com.

I don't get clearance from the doctor until Friday (hopefully), so I haven't started the workouts. I have started the eating better, though.

The recipes on the site are very different from what I'm used to eating - which is kinda the point. It took me FOREVER to grocery shop for all the ingredients because some of the foods were so foreign! I had no idea where to even find them. Who's ever eaten bok choy?!

So it's Day 2 and so far, so good. I am currently trying to eat a "Breakfast Parfait," which would be delicious if it were made with vanilla yogurt. Instead, it's made with plain, non-fat Greek yogurt which, my friends, is nasty. But alas, I need to broaden my food horizons. So if Jillian wants me to eat bok choy, I'll eat bok choy. I'll at least try everything once.

Here's to smaller clothes and a stomach that doesn't double as a pillow!
 
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