Wednesday, June 29, 2011

3 Years

Yesterday was Luke and my 3 year wedding anniversary.  Luke sent me some cool flowers at work and I got him a card.  

For dinner we went to Ruth's Chris and ate tons of great food!  When making the dinner reservation online it asked if we were celebrating anything special so I clicked Anniversary.  Upon arrival at the restaurant I said our name and that we had a reservation and they immediately looked up and congratulated us on our anniversary.  I glanced nervously at look and he rolled his eyes at me.  He's not really into that stuff so I laughed at the fact that they had said it in front of other people.  Ha!  Our nice booth table was adorned with fake rose petals and we received free dessert.  To me well worth the embarrassment!

Since I don't have any other great stories from our anniversary I'm going to leave you with some photos from our wedding.

Happy 3 years Luke!
Photo booth fun

The girls

The kiss

Capitol Building

Suit models

Monday, June 27, 2011

Hot as balls... baseballs that is

Yesterday we took a trip to Milwaukee to cheer on the Brewers baseball team as they played the Minnesota Twins.  As a member of the Involvement Committee at work I was part of making this event happen.  More than just work employees came along but the hotel supplied the bus and tailgate food!  Super!

I was very excited as it was my first time ever tailgating... EVER!  As we piled onto the limo bus we realized that although they said it could seat 28 people we probably should have invited less as it was a tight squeeze. One hour after departure we were at Miller Park.  Driving through the sea of tents and barbeques we all started to cheer... {ok there was no cheering but in my head I thought that would have been a nice touch}

We pulled all of our gear out of the bus and set-up shop directly behind it.  Our own little "bus campsite."  Then it all went downhill from there.  It was HOT.  80 degrees and sunny with no cloud cover at all.  Being from northern Minnesota I don't do hot weather.  I'm the girl that likes to find a palm tree to put my chair under, I made my mother-in-law rent me an umbrella on the beach in Miami but no one else wanted my umbrella to block their sun so I stuck it 5 feet from our chairs and would get up every couple minutes to go stand under it. {no joke}  Even though I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt I was melting.  I'm just glad I wore a hat because sunglasses make my face melt off {for reals} and no one wants to see my mask melting down my face.  Imagine sitting in a black parking lot surrounded by buses with no breeze in 80 degree weather.  I couldn't wait to get to the game where I envisioned it would be a lot cooler.
Ladies hanging out at our bus campsite, a game of bags going on in the background.

View of Miller Park from our campsite

The black bus is ours

At least the tailgate food was amazing.  Good thing our Chef decided to come on the trip as he made pulled pork and beer brats along with potato salad.  We also brought cookies shaped like baseballs in the colors of the Brewers.
Chef Tony cooking up some brats

Once at the game my heart sank when I saw where our seats were.  Directly IN THE SUN!  You have got to be kidding me.  I wondered if there would be more of a breeze here than in between the buses.  Nope.  After 10 minutes sitting in my seat I started making jokes about how if I slip out of my chair it's not because I've had too much to drink it's from sweating.   Which at that point I was told by our guy friend that was TMI {too much information}.  I spent the rest of the game making any excuse to go in the shade and complaining about how hot I was.  {I sound like a fun person to attend a baseball game with, don't you want to invite me next time?}  Luke and I discussed what positions on he field were better than others and why Ryan Braun is the only person in all the advertisements.
Me and Luke in the park.
Our group

Sausage races.  Italian won. For those of you that don't know what the sausage races are go here

In the end it was a fun day.  Thanks to my pink Brewers hat I didn't get a funky face burn {hate those} and I can now say that I have tailgated before.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Margaret?... here

Thursday night I went back to school.  It was the first night of my 6 week Creative Writing class at Madison College.  As part of my decision to do more fun things I pulled the trigger and registered.  I knew if I thought about it too long I would make excuses to not sign up.  The class said it was for all levels so I figured why not start somewhere.

All day before class I was extremely nervous.  I had no idea what to expect.  I haven't been in school in 6 years.  Some may not believe this but I enjoy blending into most situations.  Yes I love bling, crazy wild and large jewelry, big hair and sparkly things but other than that I don't exactly like to be noticed in group situations.  Thoughts kept running through my head like... what if everyone brings their lap top and I'm sitting their like Elle in Legally Blonde with my pink flower patterned notebook and pen?

Ever since joining the working world I have had to force myself to do things that are out of my comfort zone and I have found that with prayer and some self talk I can do almost anything... ordering a pizza, not there yet.  I walked into the downtown campus of Madison college 10 minutes ahead of class time and not wanting to stand out from the crowd of 20 somethings with backpacks and sweatpants pretended I knew exactly where I was going.  Obviously I had no idea so I just followed the flow and finally found my classroom.  Upon arrival there were 5 other people sitting in various areas of the class ages ranging from a little younger than me to my mother's age.  I figured this was it!  I sat down and introduced myself to the girl closest to me.  She smiled and said her name back.  I then realized that most people probably don't jump in and introduce themselves to their classmates.  I guess it's just a habit from attending to so many networking events and seminars.

Class began and we were asked to write the following on a piece of paper and hand it in.
Where are you from?
Why do you write?
What are some of your favorite genres, authors or books?

The first 3 were easy questions and then I got to the 4th.  Why do I write?  I sat their stumped trying to come up with a good answer.  I could feel everyone else writing and all I could do was stare at the blank page.  I finally just wrote down "for fun."  I still can't come up with a better answer.  The last question was even worse.  I like to read so many things and like certain authors but for some reason I felt embarrassed putting down J.K. Rowling because she can tell such an amazing story.  I mean I'm 28 years old in a creative writing class and I like Harry Potter.  Instead I wrote down that I like memoirs, fiction and self-help.  HONESTLY!  I wrote down self-help... what the hell!  What I meant by that was I enjoy reading things that inspire me to live a better life but instead it came across like I have some sort of mental problem that I need to read psychology books for.  I'm sure if I got graded on this question I would have failed.

The teacher collected everyones pages and proceeded to call on each of us to discuss them.  He never mentioned by last questions answers and I thank him for not embarrassing me.  Next we had to discuss what we would like to accomplish at the end of 6 weeks.  I guess when signing up for the class I never  really thought of that.  Some of the other answers where; write a children's book {that sounds like fun}, write a science fiction novel {I will probably not be doing that}, write a romantic fantasy book {that's a new one}, write my memoir {I would love to write one of those but don't have very many interesting things that have happened to me}.  I started to panic... I have no idea what I want to accomplish.  WHAT AM I GOING TO DO!  Do I want to write a novel? {that could take years and with my attention span...} Do I want to write a short story? {about what? how short is a short story?} Do I want to write a poem? {no}  Do I want to write a memoir? {again, not interesting enough}  I'm still deciding this.  Any ideas?

For our last exercise we had to write for 15 minutes and create a scene based on a premise that the teacher gave us.  This was fun, I enjoyed just getting words out on the paper.  My problem with writing is I over think it.  I want to write the best thing I possibly can and therefore spend all my time trying to decide what to write instead of simply getting the words on paper.  The teacher said this is a common problem and so to get over that we should simply sit down and write.  You never know where it's going to take you.  Maybe once you begin writing something it will lead you to something else even better.

Once we finished writing and he called time he then disclosed that we will be sharing our writing out loud.  Oh crap.  After I read mine I felt as though it wasn't that bad.  In my opinion others were better and some were worse.  I would say I'm in the bottom half.

It turned out to be a pretty fun class.  My assignment for next week is to write about my significant other.  I'm supposed to put them in a fictional conflict and then resolve it according to how they would act.  For those of you who know Luke... this should be easy.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I swear I'm not a weirdo...

Max is spending the night tonight at Grandma's so Luke and I can go out with some friends.  I ran home during lunch to pack up his things and found myself sitting on his floor smelling his sweatshirt.  It smelled just like his little baby boy smell.  I started thinking about how much my life has changed in the past year and how much I love that little guy.  I also have the tendency to smell his head when feeding him a bottle.  Is that strange?  Do other people do this with their kids or am I just a freak?

I'm going to miss him and his little smell tonight.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Where in the world is Margaret?

One of my goals in life is to travel more.  Since having Max almost a year ago I haven't traveled anywhere.  I think the last vacation I went on, that was longer than a weekend, was Miami in October of 2009.  That's too long ago!

Luke for some reason started talking about timeshares and vacations yesterday and now I can't stop thinking about it.  It became one of those thoughts that turned into hours a googling {you know the ones}.  Now that we have a family our idea of a vacation can go two different ways.  We can either bring Max and therefore need to find someplace family friendly; or we can make it a couples getaway and then need to find someplace NOT kid friendly.  I'm up for either but think the next trip should include Max as it would be fun to see it through his eyes.  I guess, until he melts down from being on a plane long hours and away from home, then I wouldn't want to see anything except my own bed!

Some of the vacations I'm dreaming of...
Mediterranean Cruise
Monte Carlo
Some places I have been...
Kauai, Hawaii {personal photo taken from a helicopter}
Paris, France {don't you just love these typical parisian buildings?}
Miami, Florida
I have also visited Manchester, England; Vaxjo, Sweden; Oslo, Norway; Saskatchewan, Canada; Cancun, Mexico.  

What have been your favorite vacations?  I'm looking for ideas!!!... and people to join me!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

{Craft Project} Diaper Box Bulletin Board

Thank you to my friend Jen for sending me the link to a post on the "I Choose to Thrive" blog.  She must know me well because as soon as I saw these bulletin boards I knew I HAD to make one... or two.  You can find the original post here at Thrive.

Last night after work Max and I went shopping for all of our materials to make my fun bulletin boards.  Max enjoyed waving at all the women in the craft store and even threw some spools of ribbon at them.  They giggled and bent down to pick it up for him... only a baby could get away with that!

After dinner I stayed up working on the start of my project, hoping to get at least some of it done before my bed time.  I found that not only were they super easy to make but also really fun!  It was one of those projects that I just couldn't stop.  I seriously want to make more but think it would be weird if my home was covered in bulletin boards.  {at least I would have plenty of places to stick my to do lists!}

Here are the steps: Diaper Box Bulletin Boards

Take a diaper box or any other box and open it up all the way. {I also used a wipes box that was a different size}

Spray the printed side with tacky spray and then fold it together so the printed sides stick.

This stuff is so cool.  I may just google "things to do with tacky spray" in order to use it again!
This makes the base of your bulletin board.  See below.

Next cut strips from the extra tab on the end in order to fill in the gaps.  Tape the pieces into the gaps using packing tape.  Then tape up the end to make sure it stays tight.  Spray what you consider the "Front" of your bulletin board with tacky spray and place that side down onto your choice of fabric.  Cut out the fabric to fit the box leaving an extra 1.5-2" border around the edges.

When you cut the fabric cut the corners off at an angle to make it easier to wrap the fabric around the corners.  Next using a hot glue gun, glue the fabric around the box making sure it's pulled tight.

To hang it up take ribbon of your choice and glue it to the back of the bulletin board.

Hang them up and you are ready to go!

I love the fabrics Max helped me pick out! 
Grab some push pins or thumb tacks and stick whatever you want to them!

Here is the start of my new baby wall.  These used to be on my refrigerator.  If you want me to put your baby on my wall send me your photo!!!

Here they are displayed in my kitchen.
I love how much these bulletin boards add to my space!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Sparkles and TV's

Yesterday Luke, Max and I went to 2 more Parade of Homes sites in Fitchburg and Oregon.  I was starting to feel a little over all the home viewing but today was a whole new story!  I'm in LOVE... with a home.  I honestly think that Temple Construction built their parade home for me!

First we visited 3 homes in Fitchburg and I found a house that I, at that time, considered my favorite out of all of them.  Here are some of the reasons why...

I want a bowl sink in my guest bathroom
These built-in shelves were in the entryway of the master bedroom
This is the tub I want!
These are built in shelves in the shower.  Great to hold all of my shampoo!
Fireplace in the living room.  The actual fireplace has blue stones in it.
This decoration was in the staircase in 2 places, Luke especially liked these.

Now onto the main attraction!  After Fitchburg we decided to quickly run over to Oregon and see the BIG ONES!  Here is the Temple Construction home.  I must preface this by saying there is NO WAY I could afford the next home but that doesn't keep me from dreaming.  Just walking in the front door took my breath away.

Dining room.  Do I have to tell you how much I love the light fixture?!
Double staircase leading downstairs
Wall next to the double staircase that also separated the dining room from the living room area
The coolest bathroom fixture EVER!  The sink is pretty awesome too
Seriously, what an ingenious idea to put a dining room fixture in the bathroom.  Who would have thought?! This was made out of  multi-colored crystals
I wish this showed the light fixture better.  It was really cool textured balls hanging from the ceiling.  The tray ceiling was pretty cool too.  This was right outside the master bedroom in the hallway.
This is a wall sconce in the bedroom!  SO AWESOME!!!!!
Master bedroom.  Love the built-ins

The wallpaper accented behind the mirror was cool, this was in the master bedroom bathroom
Perfect mirror for a master bedroom.
Light fixture hanging over a really cute seating area in a section of the two part living room.  Little crystals are hanging in the middle.  
My screen porch + a fireplace and view of the golf course.
Inlet in the bar area.  Sparkly tile back splash.
I loved the bathroom sconces but they don't show up with my iPhone, what else is neat is the tile behind the mirror.
Seating area in the basement.  Such a neat idea to do the built-in seating near the basement bar.  Also, love the light... typical.
Basement bar and fireplace.
Exterior.  I wish I would have taken a photo of the front door.  It's unexplainable.
Both Luke and I LOVED this home.  If you can't tell I love sparkly things {hence my blog name} and this place had plenty of that!  It also had a TV in every room.  Seriously, it had a 47" flat screen in the kitchen.  That's one reason I think Luke liked the home but he also loved the two sided stair case.  If only... I can dream :)