Archive for January, 2010

Seven Quick Takes – I’ve Lost Count So You’ll Get More Random Titles Now

I love Quick Takes Friday – it allows me to compile all my random bits into a nice package I can give you. You’re welcome. Click the logo below to visit my Quick Takers.

1.
I feel that I should address this, even though I don’t want to. I’d rather make you squirm and email me with winky faces. I’ve been on a guest post kick lately because I know so many talented, funny people. Each guest blogger is allowed to write about whatever they wish and promote their blog however they want. John is an almost-daddy who writes about almost-daddy things. So that’s what his guest blog was about. But if you want to think otherwise, be my guest. I can out-wink you any day.

2.
I’m making a dark chocolate cheesecake tonight. Tomorrow I’m going to Lauren’s house to hang out in our PJ’s and drink wine and eat cheesecake. Doesn’t it sound like bliss? She rented Shop Around the Corner and swore she wouldn’t watch it without me. I’m super excited!

3.
I don’t want to talk about how much laundry I need to do this weekend. See. This is me… not talking about it.

4.
I’m considering taking a knitting class or a sewing class. I can’t do both because I just don’t have that much time in my day to devote to two different hobbies. I think knitting has a great appeal because you can take it with you. But sewing seems fun because you can do more with it. But then there’s the whole problem of not having a sewing machine. So now, you see, I’m confused.

5.
Last night I made this spaghetti sauce I saw on Smitten Kitchen. It’s just canned tomatoes, butter, and onion. Everyone swears it’s the best. So I thought I’d give it a go. My review? Delicious taste, a bit runny. I think next time I’ll add an extra can of tomatoes but DRAIN it so there is less juice.

6.
Normally I’d show you a picture of Avery right now since I saw her last night. But I was a bad aunt and didn’t take any pictures. I will now put myself in the corner.

7.
If you still need the address for the Book Swap, use the Contact Me tab at the top. Or just leave a comment in this post and I’ll email it to you. Make sure you read through the Book Swap tab to learn all the details. You should participate because you have the chance to get a book from my very cool aunt. Wouldn’t that be fun? I’ve heard from a few of you that you are waiting on Amazon to ship your book. Please let me know if you need me to push the date back a bit. I have no problem doing that if it means that more of you can participate. I bought my book at Half Price earlier this week. It’s chick lit fluff!

January 29, 2010 at 9:41 am 19 comments

Handling a Pregnant Wife

Good day everyone.  My name is John and I’m filling in today for Chelsea.  She’s out grabbing some lunch and doing her nails while skydiving.  She told me they dry faster that way.  I write a blog called Fatherhoody.

I wanted to get the word out to all you ladies and to any husbands that might be reading though, there are certain things you must do to handle a pregnant wife.  My wife and I found out we were pregnant way back in 2009.  That’s like… a year ago (2010-2009 = 1).  That also means we’re getting closer and closer each day to her popping out a small human.  (The human will grow to be a larger human and eventually go on to play right field for the St. Louis Cardinals, make millions of dollars, and place me into a very nice retirement home.)  Anyway, as we approach A-Day (arrival day) a husband must care for his pregnant wife in a very different way than one would care for a non-pregnant wife.

You see, the Pregnant Wife (Wifius Pregnasius), is a creature like no other.  She can be emotional.  She will always be tired (and will always use the word exhausted to describe her current state).  She will also always be uncomfortable.  She’ll be uncomfortable standing, sitting, sleeping, driving, walking, running, jogging, especially jump roping and always when mountain climbing.  Therefore, as the helper of Wifius Pregnasius the Husband of Pregnant Wife (Husbandian Wifius Pregnasius) must use the following advice to keep things happy in the household.

  1. Act Excited About Everything. A request to do the dishes for her on a night should be met with the following: “You want me to do the dishes?  I’D LOVE TO DO THE DISHES!”  During statements such as these keep your voice pitch an octave higher than usual to show extra excitement.  Also, be extra excited about doing anything outside the home.  It is very difficult for Wifius Pregnasius to get the energy to leave the nest, so if the opportunity arises make sure you act like she just asked you to be her date to every single game of the 2010 St. Louis Cardinals season and you get to sit right behind home plate and wave to it throughout the whole game while on your cell phone.  “WHAT??  You want to go to Target to look at maternity tops??  Oh my GOSH!!! I was just thinking how I’d love to go to Target and do some shopping!  I’m so glad you thought of it too!” If Husband does not act excited, there could be tears involved.
  2. Strength Training.  As Wifius Pregnasius enters into the third trimester, the Husband must be prepared to help her with every larger scale movement.  This means any movement that is more than one step forward.  Getting up from the chair?  A Husband must have an arm extended.  Getting up from the floor? Husband must have arm at the ready.  In the middle of the night and she needs to turn over?  Husband must have arm raised throughout night for her to grab onto.  (If arm is not raised, she will punch you in the face.  It’s happened to me.)
  3. Help Out a Little More.  Wifius Pregnasius is growing a human.  Husbandian Wifius Pregnasius had no pain in making said human (in fact, he had a pretty good time creating said human).  Therefore, it’s the least Husband can do to take on a couple more chores than usual and maybe even make the bed… even if it is his most hated chore in the world.
  4. Entertain.  Wifius Pregnasius will encounter incredible mood swings.  These will mostly occur when she is “exhausted” and it will usually end with her being quite depressed for no reason.  There is very little Husband can do to prevent this sadness.  (“Hi honey!  I just brought home a million dollars!”  will lead to “That makes me so sad…” which will lead to “Why are you sad?” which will lead to “I don’t know!!!!” and a tear.)  Therefore, it is up to Husband to find someway, anyway, to make Wife happy.  It’s a difficult task, but for my wife, there’s one thing that can put a smile on her face.  Me dancing.  (Now, before you hit play, I should have you know that this was a very big debate in the house about whether this was for the “internet” or just for the “family”.  I sided on the side of “internet”.  Wife sided on the side of “family” fearing she will be forever embarrassed by sharing my incredible talent with the world.  I’m not quite sure one would be embarrassed when they are met with award winning style points.)

John Dancing for Pregnant Wife

And people… I want you to realize that that was pure talent without any music or a beat.  Eat your heart out dancing reality show peoples.

So there you have it folks.  Four suggestions to help both Husband and Wife make it through nine incredible months of amazing joy, amazing trials, and an absolutely amazing journey.  God bless.

See you at the hood… Fatherhoody that is. (That was a dumb way to sign off… sorry.)

January 28, 2010 at 8:15 am 22 comments

Loser 9:04: A Great Episode Without Any Good Quotes

Michael’s mom is gone and he’s sad about it. The contestants talked to him about his attitude and his work. He said he’s going to step it up. We’ll see.

Pop challenge. Run The Presidential Mile, grab a key card, come back and test the key. You can either get a check or an x. The first team to three checks, wins immunity. My guess is that the Presidential Mile is not actually a mile. Tough break for Michael, can’t get a good card! My guess is also that I want Alison’s coat. Poor purple girl isn’t getting anything either! And lookie there, the red team won immunity.

“With great power comes great responsibility.” The red ream team had to give out three envelopes: No Gym Access, No Elimination Vote, and 2 Pound Disadvantage. I think this is mean. This is Biggest Loser asking for drama. It’s not fair to the red team. No Gym Access went to John who spent most of his time in the pool (smart). They gave the No Vote to Michael so he wouldn’t make any rash moves this week based on hard feelings (smart). And they gave the 2 Pounds to the green team since they had a bad week last week and they hoped they’d have a good one (not a BAD move, any choice they made would have been bad). GREEN TEAM IS NASTY. Nasty.

Bob decides to talk to the red team about the weigh in. Melissa is sticking with her story that she isn’t playing the game. He’s choosing to just drop it. Bob and Jillian sneakily separate Lance from the group so Jillian can confront him. He’s sticking to the story as well and has also decided that he’d no longer like to work with Jillian because he doesn’t respect her. NICE MOVE. Be mad and refuse help from the best trainer in the world. Very very smart.

I think at this point, Melissa has convinced herself that she’s not playing the game. Biggest Loser Simple Swaps. Melissa has convinced Lance to go back and give Jillian a shot because they need her. Ziplock.

Challenge time. Alison is look like a cute little construction worker. They don’t look like that in real life, trust me, I know. The players have to pull themselves up 120 feet in this contraption. The winner gets phone calls from home and the ability to give phone calls to three other teams. Green team is immediately pissed because they think they won’t get chosen. Well, YEAH. Maybe if you smile every now and then! This is brutal, it’s a lot harder than I originally though it looked. Hate the red team if you want, but man alive, they are fighters. Gray team won. Atta boys. “I told myself I wasn’t going to cry on this damn show.”

They chose to give the calls to the red team, the green team (who didn’t cry… what?), and the brown team John. Great choices dudes!!! The phone calls always pull on your heartstrings. They also give you a little glimpse into their home lives, which I like.

Brita. Subway. Bob takes he contestants to Subway for their lesson on eating then takes them outside for their last chance workout. He points to a mountain and tells them they are climbing. Daris (orange team) starts running back and forth to get extra exercise in. Well done! Then ask they reached the bottom of he mountain, Jillian was waiting o put them through more hell. Man, she really made them do some crappy stuff. Throwing giant rocks and chasing them, pushing each other in wheelbarrows, crawling. Fun stuff. They actually looked like they were having fun.

Weigh in time! Alison has ruffles and a bumpit. Ugh, she’s so cute. Let’s just say that I’ve had it with the green team. I’m ready for them to go.

Red: Melissa (11) & Lance (6) – 3.16% Immunity
White: Michael (15) – 3.18% He’s lost 70 pounds is 4 weeks!
Black: Andrea (5) & Darrell (10) – 2.37%
Orange: Cheryl (6) & Daris (6) – 2.38%
Pink: Ashley (7) & Sherry (4) – 2.10%
Brown: John (10) – 2.29%
Gray: Sam (14) & Koli (12) – 3.78% Rockstars!
Purple: Stephanie (6) – 2.54%
Green: Migdalia (4) & Miggy (1) – .67% — arms crossed, angry at the world. (For the record, the 2 pound disadvantage didn’t matter.) 

OH THE GREEN TEAM! Awful. Bitter. Angry. Migdalia started crying and Miggy told her not to cry. NOT OKAY. We are women. WOMEN CRY. So then they screamed at the rest of the contestants to vote Migdalia off. Whoa nelly. These women. There are just no words.

The contestants voted Migdalia off- just barely. She started at 265 and is now 219. I have nothing else to say.

Anyone see the preview? We watched it on DVR so we missed it.

January 27, 2010 at 9:20 am 13 comments

Ten on Tuesday (15)

Today’s batch of questions comes from the lovely Lisa from Lisa’s Yarns. It’s a good batch!

1. What accomplishment are you most proud of?
I’m pretty proud of getting into the business school at The University of Texas, apparently it’s not an easy thing to do. But mostly, I think I’m most proud of the fact that I didn’t remain the person I was when I started college. Instead I changed my life around and figured out what it meant to be a true follower of Christ. At a school like UT, it’s easy to get sucked into the party life. Although, maybe I should say that I am most thankful for this, not proud of it. Because I’m pretty certain that this has less to do with me and more to do with God.

2. How much did you weigh when you were born?
Seven pounds eleven ounces. Stephen weighed almost 11. I don’t want to talk about how that may or may not give me a preview of our future children.

3. What is your favorite perfume?
I don’t really wear perfume because it tends to give me headaches. Occasionally I use Japanese Cherry Blossom body spray from Bath & Body Works. I’m smells bueno!

4. How many siblings do you have?
Two- Older bro, Younger sis
Three in-laws- My brother’s wife and my husband’s sisters

5. How many children would you like to have? (Or how many do you have?)
We think we’d like to have 3. If we win the lottery, we’ll have 4.

6. What’s the best class you took in college?
I had a few that I really enjoyed. Some of my higher division marketing classes were pretty interesting. I loved Children’s Literature because it was the easiest class in the world and all I had to do was read children’s chapter books. I also loved Nonverbal Communication. Oh and Interpersonal Communication. Those two classes were so popular at UT that people would go to them even if they weren’t enrolled in the class.

7. What was your favorite game to play when you were a child?
I LOVED Skip-bo! Man, I could play that game over and over. I also loved Operation even though it always scared the crap out of me.

8. What character on Friends are you most like?
Monica – because I’m motherly, stubborn, get my feelings hurt, and I love to cook. But not the cleaning part. I’m more like Joey when it comes to cleaning.

9. Are you a phone person? (ie: Do you like talking on the phone?)
Nope. No way, no how. No siree Bob. Not at all. No.

My heart starts beating really fast if I have to call someone. I almost never answer calls from unknown numbers. I’d MUCH rather an email or text. I don’t know what it is about the phone, but it scares me. I once saw an episode of Dr. Phil and this lady was scared of the phone. He discovered that it stems from the phone call she got years and years ago saying that her mother died. As treatment, he made another one of his “patients” (a lady who called her son hundred of times each day) call her instead. They would talk about things that were fun and not scary. They were both cured.

I don’t know where my problem stems from but I plan to stay far from Dr. Phil.

10. What was the best vacation you ever took?
Well naturally I loved my honeymoon. It was a perfect week (minus the whole not-pooping-for-7-days-but-still-getting-in-a-bathing-suit-and-taking-full-advantage-of-the-free-food thing… is that TMI?). I also loved my trip to New York with my mom. We went with my aunt and uncle and cousin. It was so much fun. I loved all trips to Disney World and all cruises. Want to know what I didn’t love? The two week car trip up and down California when we spent approximately 75% of the time looking at trees. There is such thing as too many trees.

Your turn! Add your link and visit around.

———-

If you didn’t stop by yesterday, be sure to visit he Book Swap tab at the top of my blog. We’ve got a good number of people interested. And to answer the most common question: YES, it’s okay to choose a fluffy chick lit book! That’s the point. You can be sure that The Rocket Scientist isn’t going to choose something that would normally be on your list!

———-

Below are the winners of the address labels. Please take note of the giant remote control. Winners, I’ll get you in touch with the seller! Congrats.

January 26, 2010 at 8:00 am 26 comments

Blog Ideas From A Rocket Scientist

I have this rocket scientist friend. He’s a pretty smart fella with a witty, dry sense of humor. He comes over a couple times a week to work out with Stephen and every now and then he’ll say, “Oh I have a great idea for a blog post!” A while back I told him to keep his mind open so he could guest post for me sometime. His ideas quit coming. Something about pressure or writer’s block or something.

On Saturday we went to lunch with a few friends to celebrate one of our friends’ birthdays. The Rocket Scientist leaned over and said, “Okay. I have a great idea for your blog.” And he spilled it. And friends, let me tell you, it’s brilliant. You’re going to love it. Especially since the first sentence was, “So I know your readers love to read.” Well yes. Yes they do.

Ladies and Gents, I introduce to you: The Roots and Rings Fantastical Book Swap!

Here are the details. Anyone can participate. (Probably a good time for your lurkers to show your face!) All you do is mail me a book and you’ll get one mailed to you. Not just any old book though. It has to be one you love. It can be a random book that nobody has ever heard of AS LONG AS you like it. You may receive a book that you’d never think to pick up at the book store but you now know that someone loves it. So you have to give it an open-minded chance!

If you want to participate:
-Go to the Contact Me tab at the top of my blog and get in touch with me. I’ll give you the address to mail your book.
-Choose a book! (So much pressure!)
-Write a short review and stick it in the book. Not a book report, nothing that’ll give anything away. Just a few sentences on an index card about why you love the book.  
-Mail it to me. I’ll give you two weeks to get your book here. I need all books by February 8.
-Wait for your book. I will pick one out of the stack JUST for you!
-Read your book. IN IT’S ENTIRETY. This is the only rule of the game. You must read your book from front to back.
-Review it.

I’m working on a tab at the top of my blog for all book swap related information. (It may be active by the time you’re reading this.) Then you can add a link to your review once it’s posted.

What do you think? Sounds fun, huh? We’re always looking for new books to read and what better way to test some out?  What’s fun is that we all have such different taste in books. I’ll be especially excited to see what my male readers contribute!

So talk amongst yourself… tell me what you think about this.

** Forgot to mention- ToT questions are posted!

January 25, 2010 at 9:29 am 21 comments

Seven Quick Takes – I’m Back!

After a 6-8 week Quick Takes break for the giveaway blogapalooza, I’m back. And I’m aware that I owe you the winners of the address label giveaway. I’ll get that done over the weekend, you know, to make sure you come back on Monday.

1.
I don’t know if I have ever been more excited for a Saturday in my life. I’m exhausted and dying for a morning with no alarm clock. I get to have a triple date with Lauren from Texas and Kapachino and our husbands, which is pretty great.

2.
Yesterday a guy in my office was talking to me and said, “The CFO… Chief Financial Officer, that’s what that means” in a very condescending tone. Do I really look like an idiot? Besides the fact that I went to an awesome school, I am a human being. A grown up. Who the heck doesn’t know what CFO means??? Always always assume people know what CFO stands for. If they don’t, they’ll google it.

3.
Can you believe that I still haven’t finished Wuthering Heights? I set it down sometime around Christmas and have yet to pick it up again. So far, the story is okay. Not great. If it were great, I wouldn’t have set it down. So, to those of you who haven’t read it, take that for what it’s worth!

4.
The sound on my computer at work is broken which pretty much means I get so bored and annoyed sometimes that I want to pull my hair out one by one. Sometimes a girl needs a little music in her life to block out the menfolk and that bathroom sounds. Which reminds me! My sister came to visit me at work the other day. Upon entering my office, she said, “Wow! You really are right across from the bathroom!” So, yeah. I’m not lying.

5.
How often is too often to wear my skinny jeans and cute boots? See the thing is that I dress casually to work every day. If I wore skinny jeans and my boots, I would get a lot of attention and they’d think I was going to a job interview during my lunch hour. So I typically wear jeans, a t-shirt, and tennis shoes. But tomorrow night I’m going out to dinner (as I’ve already told you) and then Sunday evening I’m going to dinner with my trendy friend Kelly and a friend of ours from college. I plan to sport my boots both night. But now I feel like that’s all I wear.

6.
Did y’all enjoy the guest post? I certainly hope so because I’ve got another one coming next week from a different blogger- one you probably don’t know yet! Sometimes I go through phases where I think that my writing is crap. So instead of throwing crap on the screen, I beg someone else to fill my corner of the internet with something funny.

7.
That’s pretty much all I’ve got for you. If it would make you feel better, I’ll post a photo of Avery! She’s not a big fan of cameras but she was trying to give us a good smile.

January 22, 2010 at 9:54 am 28 comments

Finding Your Blog Soulmate.

Hello! This isn’t Chelsea! Now, before you freak out & run away, allow me to introduce myself. Many of you already know me. I’m Lauren From Texas. Please don’t click the little red bubble in the upper left corner (that’s if you’re a Mac; “x” in the upper right if you’re a PC). Instead, stick around & read this lengthy & not very cohesive post. It’s what Chelsea would want you to do.

Not too long ago, Chelsea posted about what it means to be a BFF Friend Forever & opened the floor for questions directed towards her, her husband, & her family. Little did I know that I would be included in this round of questions, so when Chelsea asked me to write a guest post for her, I thought, “What better time to answer the question?!” Actually I thought “Oh crap I have nothing interesting to say & her readers are going to be so disappointed & hate me forever.” But after a dinner of brain food (leftover cheesy french bread & chocolate chip cookies with milk), I decided I CAN DO THIS. So here we go. I’m armed with only my thoughts & feelings. And a glass of Pinot Grigio.

The question came from Chelsea’s friend Lyndsey, who I have never met but am dying to, & who is a new blogger. Check her out here. Here’s her question:

“When did you know that you and chelsea would be Best Blog Friends 4 Ever instead of just Blog friends or Best Blog Friends?”

Great question, Lyndsey. I am going to stretch out my answer as long as I possibly can because A) I like to talk, & B) Because Chelsea told me to write a post & it’s 8:25 the night before she needs it & nothing else is coming to me.

When I started my blog in April 2009, I had no expectations. OK, that’s kind of a lie. I had just figured out that people could become famous by BLOGGING & since I am an English major & have always wanted to be a famous writer, one night I was late for my period & thinking way too much (but not very clearly) & thought, “Hey! I should start (another) blog!” I say another blog because I have had at least 4 blogs since the age of 16, 2 of which are still in existence (and no, you may not read them). So I started a blog and plunged myself into the depths of the blogosphere, saying to myself, “Let’s see what happens.” I’ll tell you what hasn’t happened.

  • My blog hasn’t won any awards. (Yes, I’m still sore from my loss in the 20SB Bootlegger Awards. Never mind the fact that I didn’t know I was a finalist until the day the awards were being announced; I’m a perfectionist & it stings to not win, even if you didn’t know about the contest. That makes no sense so I’m moving on. And clearly, I’m joking.)
  • I haven’t made any money blogging. Unless you count that time a restaurant offered us Happy Hour-priced drinks for the duration of our stay, in exchange for good blog publicity. Let’s see, I saved a couple bucks that night, so I guess you could say my blog has made me SEVERAL NOBLE DOLLARS. You get my point.
  • I have not achieved fame from my blog. Well, one time, at the Pioneer Woman book signing, a girl recognized me from my blog & came up to say hi, but I ended up acting like a huge dork because I was shocked someone reads my blog, had recognized me, and STILL WANTED TO APPROACH ME. (Hi other Lauren from Texas!) My point is, I am not famous.

But you know what has happened since I’ve started my blog? I’ve found a place, a little niche where I can put to use that English degree my parents spent so much money on. I can unleash my creativity, tell funny stories, & make people laugh. And when it comes right down to it, that’s all I ever wanted to do anyway. But possibly the best thing that has happened to me since I started my blog are the PEOPLE I have encountered. When you’re a blogger, you can’t really use the word “met,” because chances are, you haven’t met most of the people you’re talking to. You email, you tweet, & before you know it, you’re telling them your deepest darkest secrets and you feel like they’re your BFF Friend Forever… & quite possibly, they are. It’s not up to me to decide what defines a BFF Friend Forever. Rules like “Before someone can be your friend, you must meet her in real life to make sure she’s a girl & not a 60-year-old pervo with a hatchet” seem to fade away when you have a heart-to-heart email conversation.

I should know, it happened to me.

Chelsea emailed me shortly after I started my blog & we started to correspond. We emailed all the time, & found we had so much in common. We took our relationship to the next level & became Facebook friends. Then, after a few weeks of such correspondence, we decided it was time. To meet.

We met for brunch at a charming place & sat outside. Since it was June in Texas, I sweated my guts out & Chelsea remained cool as a cucumber (probably half from her peach bellini & half because she is a freak who doesn’t feel temperature). I thought, “If this girl still likes me after I am drenched in sweat & my makeup has run down the front of my shirt, this must be real.”

After a brunch date that lasted 4-5 hours, I realized, “I could be friends with this girl. No, I could be blog friends. No, I could be BLOG FRIENDS FOREVER.”

And from that, a title was born: Blog Friends 4Ever.

In going through some old emails, I found this conversation we had shortly after our brunch.

Chelsea: “I wonder what I clicked on that day to find you.”

Lauren: “Probably ‘best blog ever’…. Maybe?”

Chelsea: “That could have been it. Or maybe it was from that eBlogery site where they match you up with your blog soul mate based on compatibility and all sorts of meaningful things. You could view your matches for free… that’s all I remember.”

Lauren: “I filled out that questionnaire. They asked my height, age, and ‘on a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you love food?’ – obviously we were meant to be together.”

In conclusion, dear Roots & Ring readers, friendship is a lot like dating. And blogging is the eHarmony of friendship. For just pennies per month, you too can find your Blog Friend 4Ever.

January 21, 2010 at 9:30 am 25 comments

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