Friday, September 28, 2007

Further Proof (of that mouse in the freezer!)

Sure is a sneaky one.....

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Updates at the Bargainista

Finally! I'm nearly caught up with my recent goodies so go read and check back. I have some great stuff from lovely readers to post as well.

My pretty roses

Here are a couple of the rose bushes in the landscaping at the front of our house. Aren't the beautiful with those bright and lively flowers? (Don't look at the few that have already fallen apart.) I know you're in awe of my green thumb, but really it's more brown. I owe this entire to the gorgeous September weather.

Now if only my hydrangeas would look a bit of alive rather than brown, wilted crumbs. If they come back, I'm naming them all Lazarus!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Monday, September 24, 2007

Comfy and Inviting

After a few weeks of searching online and visiting every furniture store in our city, J was proud to bring home this:

A 100% leather (back off PETA!) chair and matching ottoman. This one is just the right color (dark brown), just the right size, the right decor (double stitched, slight nailhead accent), the right look (very tradtional and Ralph Laurenesque), the right plushness, and the right fit (in that corner as well as with the den furniture should we use it with that in future housing). Finally--he found the right one.

This now resides in the corner of our home office. We rearranged a bit after I sold my large Broyhill executive desk (J has another even larger executive desk in the room and it's an antique family heirloom. Also, I must tell you I bought my Broyhill desk at a garage sale for (you'll love this) $35 about 3 years ago. I sold it online for $120. Now that, my friends, is an ROI!) I think it looks rather nice! Ignore the picture sitting in the floor. We're still rearranging the walls after the office makeover.

My favorite thing about this new chair is that I can be all cozy in it reading a book this winter when J is in there studying. Finally, we can spend time together again as he does school work. It will also a be a nice place for him when he's just reading and not working on the computer. In the past he took books out to the den and read from the sofa. And you know what? That silly ol' TV came on every time. Can you believe that?

If you need me, I'll be curled up in the chair. I have just the right khaki chenille throw for it as soon as I monogram the big "M" on it.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Just a bit of Narcissism, but I'm rather Excited

Did I ever tell you guys that I won free bridal portraits? Well, I did! I know, I've been married a year and a half. Recently my wedding photographer held a drawing for free bridal portraits and I was the winner. Woot! I was pretty excited to get dressed up in my wedding dress and pose for the evening. She did a fabulous job, just as she did with my wedding pictures (which are on this here blog somewhere).

This session was so great because I was so laid back and casual about it. I mean hello? I'm already married so this was just for fun. I recommend all brides have pictures after the fact. There was no stress or pressure, I did my own hair and make-up, and the flower are a seasonal mix my husband and I picked up that morning and tied together with a pretty ribbon I had at home.

I think the pictures turned out lovely. Also, you may notice that I took a bit of an, um, excursion if you will. The photographer was super excited when I dunked right in. I mean, after all, my next husband won't want me to wear this dress. (Kidding, kidding! I'm only kidding! Besides, the little adventure didn't hurt it at all. It's as pristine as ever and ready for me to cut up to make a Christening Gown for our children. By the way, I made my own veil. I know, toot, toot!) Be sure to scroll to the end for a little, um, surprise twist!

(yes, that's real fountain!)
(yes, I'm plunged)
(what? you don't float lazy river style in your wedding dress? that's weird!)
Now are you ready for the fun part? Well you didn't think I was going to look like a show-off did you? So here goes, if you read this post (and I know you did, I can see that you know) then you have to post a few of your bridal pics and link back so we can all look at them. I don't care if they are snapshots, a portrait session, or on the wedding day.
AND, it gets better. Email me your favorite and we're going to have a little bridal photo gallery over here. Send them to themrsm (at) gmail (dot) com.
Get to scanning and sending, even if you were married a million years ago. Don't ruin the fun for everyone!


Well dear Internet, I'm happy to announce that gambling earnings for hubs and I this week are in the triple digits! I was the big winner at Bunco last night bringing home a pocket of cash. I was also tied for the most Buncos, but lost that prize in what we termed as a Bunc-off! It was a door prize, not a cash prize. Anyway, I'm taking myself to the Clinique counter for bonus time with my earnings. I'll post about that later.

P.S. Hubs and I aren't like big, bad gambling people, really! We're not standing over a craps game with pistols in our pockets, we totally quit that last year! But seriously--we're not those people--I promise! It's small stakes and small winnings, but gives me such joy to talk about as I can see our families being aghast at our yuppy ways!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Bunco Night

Tonight is my monthly game of bunco (come on snake eyes!). If all goes well and I come out the big winner, J and I will have quite a gambling income for the week.

I'm sure our parents are proud.

By the way, anyone else out there into Bunco? I (big, fat, juicy, puffy heart) Bunco!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I have more wit than decorum.

I was returning to the office after lunch today enjoy the lovely weather with my windows down, roof open, radio up. I was at a light near a large truck and didn't realize there was a passenger until he stretched himself at the window looking at me. It could have been because I was singing badly and loudly, or because I was picking my nose.

The light turned green so I guess I'll never know.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Autumn is in the Air

Autumn came in last week and didn't even knock. I walked out the door one morning and suddenly there he was with chilly weather and dew on the grass. It seemed so sudden but then again it is September. Even the 85 degree afternoon sun felt cooler. Well, it was cooler compared to the heat wave of 105 degrees and the Caribbean of 125 degrees.

I love these days of autumn before it gets too cold. However much like the days of spring they're all too short. I do love getting out my long sleeves and jackets, putting on a sweater and going to a football game, building a fire and sitting on the patio, eating soup, firing up the grill for smokey barbecued ribs, watching the leaves change and fall, planting mums, hiking in the mountains, having hot apple cider, visiting a pumpkin patch and corn maze, going on a hayride, taking road trips, baking pies......

What do you love about autumn?

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Best Case Scenario

We had the best Saturday! My friend JB hosted a fabulous UT vs FL Shrimp Boil with great food, cold beer, and indoor and outdoor television's for the fifty plus guest's viewing pleasure. Unfortunately the viewing wasn't a pleasure as UT has not game, literally. However J did win $50! (He bets on ending score number per quarter and was the 4th quarter winner.) So it was indeed the best case scenario for us, err, him.

Regardless of the game, we had a fabulous time and can always find an excuse for a party. It was fun to spend the day with such great friends and enjoy the fabulous authentic food. Yum!

Every girl needs a Big Orange Manicure.
Mr. and Mrs. O.

The lovely JL girls.
J and I
How cute--the three of them match.
JB, the fabulous hostess with the mostess, and her beau. (Don't let the LSU hat fool you! He's not a bad guy.)

Friday, September 14, 2007

It's a lovely day for a duck.

Rain, rain go away...

While this weather is great for my flowers (I have twenty roses blooming, twenty!) and hopefully it will help my crunchy, crispy hydrangeas, it's making me rather groggy at work today. Yes, I shouldn't already be blogging at work, but the VP's etc. are out and everyone else is playing and looking at a new baby that was brought in, so I'm having a difficult time staying on task with the lady who is training me. She's pretty much over everything at this point, and I can't say I blame her.

I need a nap. I see it in my future this afternoon. That said, who wants to come clean my house and go to the grocery and do the baking for the big football party this weekend? More than one are welcome. I'll make you a towel animal.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Here's the Scoop!

Thus far, I'm really enjoying my new job! That said, I'm still rather overwhelmed. Do you know what my new job is? That would be Marketing Executive. Good grief I just wanted to be the assistant. At least we know I can sell, as I obviously sold myself to this guy rather well.

It's fortunate for me that I'll have been able to train with the lady leaving for three and a half days. I'm still not sure it's enough! Tomorrow is the last day with her and I'm a little anxious about being at it alone on Monday.

I feel (slightly) certain that I can do the job, but she is obviously the golden child, so I have big shoes to fill. I think I'm most terrified of not being able to find materials that I need. She's rather organized, but all brains think differently about things like that. The computer files are a shared server so things get a little mixed up and aren't always titled to what I'm looking for in a certain document.

However, all that said, I did get a fancy new laptop. Yes, right now I'm live to you from the fancy corporate laptop. My goal is to run through all the Marketing Server files and pick her brain at any questions tomorrow being as it will be my last chance. And also on the plus side is my fancy new office space with a large L-shaped work station and a floor to ceiling window across one entire wall. Not too shabby!

I'm rather excited about the work that I get to do as well. I think I'm going to enjoy it, as far as work goes. The projects are so diverse. For example, you know those little binders you get in resorts that has all the information, attractions, dining, emergency info, etc. I'm doing that! I'm also doing lots of other random things that are in-room materials that you just don't think about such as researching, designing, quoting, and ordering branded toiletries. Other projects include market research and advertising research to determine where the company should advertise to help the sales and reservation teams, designing ads (although the fancier ones are done by the web designer) writing and proofing all materials, copy writing Internet material, and the copy, designing, and ordering of all promotional materials.

The bad part is that being the marketing person means that I don't have anyone to fall back on so I've got to be on my game. But overall I think I'm going to love it, I just hope I can stay on par and be successful. I've wanted this for so long and now that it's hear I'm a bit scared! But thinking back at the road I've taken to get here, I realize that God so had a plan for me and that He meant for me to have this job in this time. Although I've been a little afraid and anxious the entire time, I felt confident in my decision entirely. It was definitely a peace on He could give me.

Wish me luck Internet! I hope our love affair can continue.....

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I need a paperbag!

The new job starts today. I've already got up, took the pooch for a run, had my shower, and I'm contemplating what to wear. What do I wear? I think the run helped to calm me down, but I'm still a little anxious, ok, a lot anxious!

This is my 450th blog post. That's exciting right?

Monday, September 10, 2007

Five things you probably don't know about me.

I was tagged by Michelle--I knew I'd get around to it eventually.

Five Things You Probably Don't Know About Me

  1. There are some noises I just can't stand. For example the hair dryer ( I have a "quiet" one and it still annoys me), vacuum cleaners, and loud obnoxious cell phone rings. I hate those!
  2. Speaking of cell phones, it annoys me when people can't hang up their phone long enough to check out at the grocery, department store, etc. So rude!
  3. I used to be left handed. I broke my arm when I was three and had to learn to use my right hand. I never went back.
  4. I really don't have a lot of self-esteem or self-confidence, although I come across as very sure of myself. I think it's a defense mechanism.
  5. I have a strong Southern accent. Not hick and not country but Southern. It's quite beneficial too. In my experiences everyone loves the charm of a Southern Girl.

Just one more day.

Today I'm chilling out and enjoying a day to myself. I mean, I just had a seven day Caribbean Cruise, I need a day off, right? Friday was my last day at the old job. I happily did the "last-day dance" all day long. I will miss some of my coworkers, but I'm so eager to move on. I start the new job tomorrow afternoon and decided that I'd just enjoy a long weekend before I began.

Of course that means I popped right out of bed this morning ready to go. I think getting up and going to work and getting up to enjoy my day is a mind over matter thing. I ran errands this morning and bought myself a cute fall handbag as a congratulations gift for the new job. I've already made lasagna for our dinner tonight, walked the dog (he's not tuckered out in his bed) and it's time to finish up a few of my freelance type projects while there is a spare moment.

I love these days to myself. I just think of how perfect the world would be if I didn't have to work and could run errands and do projects everyday. However, I think I'll enjoy the type of work at the new job much more although I'll be super busy and work a little more.

I know I sound like a slacker today, but in comparison to yesterday, I'm doing quite well. We were out until 1am Saturday night (I know, so not like us old people) so we slept in on Sunday. After sleeping in I had pancakes and started a new book. Then I promptly took a nap. Yes, rough day I had.

Friday, September 07, 2007

The excitement continues at the M house.

As if this week can be any more celebratory and full of warm fuzzies, my best friend Mrs. Bex (mother of the adorable Pie) is pregnant and just found out she's having another girl! Her name is darling and I'd love to tell you, but alas, I'm trying to protect the privacy of my friends and family. So we'll just call her Tart. (Pie and Tart, get it? Cute, yes?) Little Miss Tart will be here in January. J and I are so excited to be an Aunt and Uncle again! Now if you'll excuse me I must get started on preparing a full monogrammed wardrobe and accessories line for the darling child.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

I think I'm a Mermaid.

J and I had such a wonderful vacation! We absolutely love cruising. It was nice that our time didn't seem to fly by either. The week seemed very relaxing and luxurious.

We arrived at the Miami Seaport Saturday afternoon. We'd only had about 3 hours of sleep because of our crazy flight schedule. The embarkation process was, well, a process as usual. I guess it could have been worse. But when you're there you're just ready to be on that ship and sailing. It did provide some interesting people watching. There was the middle aged Asian lady who had a mullet. There was also an older man (I'm guessing 60) who apparently couldn't grow a mullet and opted for the teeniest pony tail I'd ever seen in the back, and a slight spiked comb-over. It was interesting. Hmmm, oh then there was the 50-year-old man who dressed in Hollister clothing. That was a sight. There was a great girl who was the epitome of tacky tourist who gave me great entertainment. Oh, the list could go on.

The Carnival Triumph set sail late afternoon and watched Miami disappear from the 10th deck. The weather was lovely, the drinks were good, and we were ready for the week. Well, after the stinking boat drill anyway. Ugh, I hate the boat drill. I get so clasuterphobic!

(Our ship, the Carnival Triumph)
Sunday morning we were in Half Moon Cay, Bahamas, a private island. The scenery was amazing, soft white sands, clear water with a beautiful turquiose sheen and changed to teal and sapphire the further you looked out, and so many bright and vibrant tropical flowers. We spent the entire day on the island (hiking, lying in hammocks, walking the beach, snorkeling, climbing the jetties) before taking a tender back to our anchored ship. We hit the afternoon sushi bar, had dinner, and enjoyed the nighttime comedian.

(Relaxing in a beach hut in Half Moon Cay)
(Me standing on top of the jetties)
(J and I on the jetties)
(A view of the beach at Half Moon Cay)
Monday was a day-at-sea. We lathered in sunscreen and took some books to the top of the ship to catch some rays. We of course found our usual-a spot where I can lay in the sun, and J could lay in the shade. However, I didn't lay in the sun nearly as much as I usually do. The Caribbean sun in August was sweltering. You should see the tan we both have despite wearing sunscreen 70 and hats. We spent the day lazily enjoying the ship and eating, eating, eating. The ice cream machine is such a curse I tell you!

Tuesday we arrived at Charlotte Amalie in St. Thomas, USVI. We walked around the shops and then took a taxi downtown. We walked along the waterfront, visited more shops, and found the cute little place where we purchased Mack's pirate outfit. St. Thomas is such a fun place. The biggest downfall is that you can't walk along and enjoy yourself without dozens of people bombarding you to take their tour, taxi, excursion, etc. That part is frustrating.
(Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas USVI)
(The Harbour)
We returned to the Seaport and boarded the Island Girl Ferry to head for St. John. It was such a lovely ride. We crossed the Pillsbury Channel, we passed French Cap Key and could see St. Croix, we saw Tortola, BWI in the distance and the ferrys that were going to and from the island.
(J and I on the Island Girl Ferry) (French Cap Key)
(The only alligator we saw in the Caribbean)
We arrived at St. John and went to Trunk Bay Beach to snorkel. It's a beautiful beach in a National Park and is also on the top ten list of places to snorkel. There was an underwater trail designed by the park service that helped to identify the different fish and sea life you were seeing. The beach was very quaint and such a nice place to relax.
(The small island we snorkeled around at Trunk Bay Beach in St. John)(The rare onehornbuttfish)
(J and I after snorkeling)
(J after snorkeling)
Wednesday when we woke up, we were in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Wow! What an amazing place! There is Old San Juan and New San Juan. The city is full of history yet also very modern. It's a good sized city, and then there is the beach and the waterfront are with the Seaport. It has so much to offer. We got a map and decided to explore the city ourself on foot. We visited forts, For San Cristobol and El Cañuelo which has the Spanish Lighthouse. We visited the San Juan Cathedral and the San Juan Drug Company which is a pretty neat little store. We checked out tons of the other shops too. Then, we stocked up on Puerto Rican Rum before returning to the ship. The good thing about Puerto Rican Rum is that there is no customs limits!
(For San Cristobol)
(View of El Cañuelo and the Spanish Lighthouse from Fort San Cristobol) (At the top!) (La Escuela en San Juan)
(Rocky Beach below the Fort)
(Pretty San Juan Street. It's like Rainbow Row in Charleston, SC)(Intersection of San Juan)
(J sitting outside of the San Juan Center)
(We went al the way to San Juan for J to find his old friend Jack.)
Midmorning on Thursday we were in Grand Turk (Turks and Caicos, BWI). We stood upon the decks and watched the island come closer into view. We got some pictures of the lighthouse, which is great for us because we have a thing with lighthouses. Once there we shopped around the port area, snorkeled at Governer's Beach, and lied in the hammocks for a bit. However, most of the day was spent kicked back and chilling in Margaritaville. I hate that we didn't get to explore the whole island, but we still had a fabulous time.
(The airport in Grand Turk. So glad I'm not flying in and out of there!)

(Relaxing in the pool in Margaritaville)

(Governer's Beach, Grand Turk, Turk and Caicos, BWI)(Wasting away again in Margaritaville)
Friday was our last day and was spent at sea. We enjoyed lying around in the sun listening to the calypso band. They played some great cover songs but with the island twist to it. I loved it. We also did a bit of miniature golfing, water sliding (ok, that was just me), and shopping on board. Oh, and I tried the best rum cake ever. I mean EVER! I think I could have been over any legal limit of blood alcohol content after a few piece. Oops! Another favorite place of mine on the ship, the Californal Wine Bar.
(Me with my love, the wine bar)
Our ship was pretty wonderful. It's the largest one we've cruised on thus far. The food, of course, was excellent. We ate ice cream after every meal. Mine was the fat free frozen yogurt so I decided it took more calories to eat it then I actually consumed. That's a fair assessment, don't you think? We enjoyed all the shows on board. There were several sing and dancing shows with the Carnival singers and dancers. There were also two comedians and a pretty awesome magic show. Not just pulling a rabbit out of a hat either. Plus it was cordinated with lights, songs, and dancers and was very dramatic and entertaining. We also enjoyed some time in the casinos. Overall, we broke even which is all we hoped for. We might have actually left with a little profit. Note to self: do not allow husband to gamble after consuming a bottle of wine at dinner. Speaking of dinner, we had the best time getting dressed up every night and our two servers were very fun and entertaining. The food was magnificent! (I think I've said that once or twice, but it really was!) There was lobster tail, prime rib, filet mingon, beef wellington, stuffed quail, duck breast, sauteed scallops and prawns, delice of the ocean, etc. I had smoked salmon and bagels for breakfast and sushi every afternoon. It was delightful. I think we cruise for the yummy food, but seeing all of the new places is just a bonus!

(the waterslide on the Triumph. It was three decks tall and rather speedy!)(A formal picture taken by a ship photographer.)
(One of the casual portraits taken by a ship photographer.)(On the grand staircase in the Capital)