Friday, September 28, 2012

My House is a... Race Track?

I have these two dogs.

Siri - my 15 month old, 43 pound, pit bull.

Cupcake (aka Cakes) - my 5 month old, 35 pound, English Bulldog.

They can make a running/chasing game out of anything, any where.

This video is proof.

Just a little slice of the insanity that is my house.

Happy Friday everyone, have a fantastic weekend!

Monday, September 24, 2012

A Tricked Out Pitbull

The last few nights the dogs have been waking up in the middle of the night crying. We make them go outside but it always turns out that they (Siri mostly) is cold and just wants to cuddle.

Siri has also been pitching a little pity party in the mornings when it's time to go for a walk.Her little pity party is super pathetic. She sits perfectly still, her knees pulled up to her chest, and just shakes. But she has to walk in the morning or she is buck wild when we get home!

So we decided we should get Siri a shirt or coat to wear when walking and a bed for her crate to help keep her warm at night.

Cakes needed a new collar because her big fat neck is growing.

And Siri needed something reflective for when we walk in the dark.

So we took a trip to Petco and $213 later we walked out with...
* 2 new reflective collars
* 2 new dog beds
* a new chew toy for Cakes (which Siri has horded since we got home)
* a thunder shirt for Siri to wear for walks and at night (I am not going to call them her pajamas!)
*  a pack for Siri to carry stuff in. Cesar actually says this is a good way to tire your dog, make them carry stuff! And as a bonus, it is reflective.

In the end I think it's all worth it. Even though my sister in law, who dresses her dogs in pajamas with trap doors, said Siri is wearing a fanny pack. And my uncle asked if she needed to bring pencils and notebooks to dog school.

Bring on the teasing. I can take it now because she slept through the night last night and I am well rested!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Book Review: The Kite Runner

Wednesday night on my flight home from Ohio, I finished reading the Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.

This is yet another in a very tall pile of books I purchased many, many moos ago but never got around to reading. But a few weeks back I finally picked it up and was not disappointed at all.

The story starts with Amir being called back to Afghanistan by his fathers business partner telling him there is a way to make it all okay.

Then the story quickly jumps into Amir's life as a child living in Kubal with his father, their servants, and all of the people his father surrounded himself with.

We follow Amir and his father as they flee to America, witness Amir's adjustment to the America but most importantly we witness his fathers adjustment to America.

At the mid way point we are brought back to the phone call that changes and shapes the direction of Amir's life and let him begin healing for past sins.

This is a coming of age story turn a story of making up for life long regrets.

I believe my life is fuller now that i have read this story. It was heart wrenching at many, many points but it also touched my soul.

I give it five out of five stars and recommend it to all my reader friends.

Picture borrowed from Amazon

Windseaker? No Thanks!

I was just watching a story on the Today Show about a ride at Knots Berry Farm called the Windseaker. Yesterday this ride triggered a safety alarm and came to a halt leaving the riders stranded high up in the air for three hours.

They spoke briefly to a woman named Donna who went on the ride at the urging of her husband to help her with her fear of heights. She said the first 30 minutes were daunting but then, with the help of her husband, it got better.

This story brought me back to last summer when Erin and I took the kids to Valleyfair, the local amusement park in the Twin Cities. The girls wanted to go on rides that required adults to go with them.  I am NOT a ride person at all but there were four kids and two adults so I had to buck up and get on some of those rides.

The one that really sticks out in my memory was the Mouse Trap.

"Is it a roller coaster, because I DO NOT do roller coasters." I say.

"No! It's not a roller coaster" they assure me.

But guess what!! It most certainly was a roller coaster and by the time I figured it out there was nothing I could do but get on that ride.

It jerked.

It twisted.

It went really fast.

I hated it.

I screamed.

I might have cried a little bit.

I laughed hysterically (because that is what I do when I am freaked out).

It totally sucked.

Then I was told we would have to do it again with the other two kids.

I panicked.

But then I was saved. It started to rain and they shut the ride down. And it stayed that way until we left.

And I swore I will never get on that ride again. Because unlike Donna from the Windseaker, going on that godforsaken ROLLER COASTER did not help me beat my fears but sealed them as real fears for ever more.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Live from Ohio!

I am talking to you live from the Dayton Ohio Airport! And I am so excited!

No, not because I am able to talk to you from the Dayton Ohio Airport but because this means I am on my way home.

There are people there who are excited to see me. And I am equally excited to see them.

Heidi and Shawn are such troopers, they get big hugs when I get there.

Probably after Siri and Cakes who are going to attack me at the door.

I am pretty sure Siri thinks I abandoned her with this being my first trip.

Or she didn't even notice. Shawn says I project my feeling on the dogs.

He might have a point...

While sitting here, eating my Sbarro Stromboli (yes it's my second pizzaish item of the week, shut it please!), I am thinking about all the stuff going on at home.

I am thinking about my Aunt Kitty who had surgery yesterday to remove a tumor. Her battle is still in the early stages but she is a strong woman who has won a lot of battles. I know she will beat this one to. I am sending her love and positive energy. I hope to get to see her in the next day or so.

I am also thinking about my best friends dad who is in the hospital recovering from a string a strokes brought on by two blocked pulmonary arteries. Six days ago his family was called to the hospital to say their goodbyes but he rallied and is now making positive steps towards recovery. His battle and road are also very long but he is on the right road now and that is what matters. I am sending him love and positive energy. I am sending his kids, my friends, all the love and support I can find.

And I am thinking of my friend whose wife is in the hospital as well.  This is a better story though! I hadn't talked to him in a few days but something told me to text him before I started my drive to the airport.

My text - I am in Dayton and your name came up which made me miss you so I am sending you a text to just say Hi.

His response - Well, maybe you were thinking of me cuz we are in the hospital... L has been in labor pretty much all day.

This totally made my day! And I am sending them love and positive energy!

But I need to save just a tiny bit of positive energy for myself so I can get home and see my family.

So I just have one little favor to ask of you. If you are a prayer or a believer in positive energy would you please do what you do and send some thoughts out for these three families? And maybe a little bit to my pilot?

Looking forward to being home in a few hours!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Love Is A Four Letter Word

Sunday night Erin and I took the night off from our motherly duties (and my packing) to attend the Jason Mraz concert. Boy, am I glad we did that!

We started our night off with a nice dinner of shared apps and soup at a place called Fire Lake Grill House in downtown Minneapolis. It was such a warm and cozy place that we later realized is actually the restaurant for the Raddison next door.

We went for wine and ended up with this awesome Crispin Hard Apple Cider in 22 ounce bottles. It was Honey Crisp Apple and I have been dying for another one since we left the bar. In fact we wanted to ask the bar tender for a paper bag so we could take it as a roady!

After dinner we walked over to the Target Center to find our seats and arrived just before Christina Perri started her opening set.

Let me tell you. That girl is amazing. 

You may remember how much I love her via this post here.

To be completely honest, I went to this show for Christina Perri. I really do like Jason Mraz but for me, it was all about C.Perri. And she did not disappoint. She belted out every song and totally rocked Jar of Hearts.

My only wish? That she sang it twice.

Jason Mraz was pretty A.W.E.S.O.M.E too. Do your self a favor and watch this video. It was one of the top three songs of the night. (but don't let the kiddo's hear it!). Jump to the 2 minute mark if you don't want to hear the banter.

Erin and I enjoyed the people watching as much as the show.

There was the lady who stood the entire show. Which would have been fine but no one else was standing! She was just standing there, stick still, and then she left with about 3 songs and the encore left.

And then there was the lady who danced by herself.

And then four women to Erin's right. Two late teen aged girls and their mom's. We cannot figure out who from that motley crew actually wanted to be at that concert. One girl sat with her legs swung on the seat next to her and her head rested on her hand the entire show. The next girl stared at her friends across the stadium the entire show. Head resting girls mom did not speak, crack a smile, clap, or anything really at all the ENTIRE show. And starring girls mom sorta of got into it but she seemed like one of those people who would smile and nod at her neighbors grand kids kindergarten concert. They were really something.

The girl to my left was a bright flashing photographer so I am pretty sure my retinas are scarred for life.

And finally there was the super drunk girl who not only spilled beer on the lady in front of her and did not apologize but let her boy friend deal with it but she got in a screaming match with said boy friend during the encore then stormed out of the arena only to meet him at the top of the stairs. Bet she called in "sick" on Monday!

If you ever get the chance to see Christina Perri in concert please, please take it. Then tell her I sent you. Because we are BFF's now. She totally knows me because I follow her on Facebook and twitter. So, you know. That means I am like her favorite aunt now. Right?


Never mind! Please enjoy my links!


Monday, September 17, 2012

Follow Me Little Birdy

I made that little leap last night and I am now an active Twitter user, not just a twitter stalker so if you want to follow me I am @HeidiNae. Let me know you are a new follower and I will follow you back.

Okay, now that we have that out of the way, I am writing to you from a hotel room in Dayton Ohio. Just away on another work trip. I think this is my sixth trip of the year and I have two more planned.

Let me tell you, I love to travel but traveling for work is not that much fun. It takes me a lot of time to prepare both my professional and person lives to be away. Then there is the packing which I have gotten down to a science and can do in under ten minutes. But the worst part is being away from my family.

This trip is probably the hardest one with the exception of three out of about 50. Those three being my first trip when Heidi was a baby, the first trip that Heidi got really upset about (I think she was 5), and the last trip I took a few months back which fell two days after we put Daisy Mae down.

This trip is hard because I know my family is at home tending to my buck ass wild dog, Siri.... I am so stressed about her jumping a fence when someone is there letting her out. I am stressed that all the progress we have made with her and Peter will go down the tubes. I am stressed that she is going to freak and hurt me with her tail when I return home!

That sure is a lot of stress! I think I need to go find a glass of wine to go with my Sabra Hummus and Pretzels I am having for dinner. Then I am going to kick back, read some blogs, and watch some tv without having to crank the volume to hear the Bones Season Premier over a dog fight in my living room.

I will leave you with a little video of my girls having a WWE match in my living room over the weekend.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

And With That, It's Fall

The kids went back to school last week and the weather turned cool for a few days but yesterday we the day I knew summer was over.

And I am good with that. I am ready for fall.

Yesterday one last hot day rolled through. I saw 97 degrees on the read out in my van and people on Facebook were toying with the idea of turning their air back on.

That hot day, along with the events of the evening, were my final sign of the end of summer.

Our Girl Scout Troop had our first official meeting last night with the Investiture Ceremony where the girls get their Elf Brownie Pin. We followed that with a quick parent meeting that, I feel, went really well. We are beyond excited to start our new year with these amazing, smart, funny, talented, buck wild girls.

After the meeting I sat in the backyard while the dogs got out the last of their evening Bully energy. If you have a bulldog or a pit bull, you know what I am talking about.

It was only 8 pm but it was completely dark out. No more bed time with the sun still up!

I had my tablet and was catching up on emails. I had my dogs. I had a warm, breezy evening with no bugs. I had quiet. All I needed was a glass of trashy pink wine and the night would have been perfect.  These are the nights I am looking forward to now!

After putting Heidi to bed I settled onto the couch to read a few blogs for a couple of minutes before heading off to bed myself.  The dogs were playing quietly on the floor when out of the corner of my eye I start to see white stuff flying by.

It all happened so quickly.

Well, maybe that is not too bad. Just a little stuffing right?

From here Cakes ran into the kitchen, kicked all the water out of her bowl, and stomped around on the now lake like floor. I watched her in horror. It was 9:30. I wanted to go to bed. Now this?

But when I turned back to the living room I saw that it had snowed!

Cakes went and jumped on her sister and they rolled in the snow for a minute or two. Heidi wandered out of her bedroom and said "What happened? Dad is going to be mad!"

I sent Heidi back to her room and gathered up some towels for the floor and a bag for the snow.

At this point Shawn came home and his only remark (after What the heck happened?!) was "Girls, this is why we cannot have nice things."

Then he proceeded to clean up the kitchen (it took two beach towels) while I scooped up the snow.

Which just turned out to be half of the stuffing from their soccer ball so that's good.

When all was cleaned up I crawled in my bed with the fan cranked on high and thought, "That's it. Summer is over and the craziness of Fall is here. Bring it on but I better go pick up some of that trashy Pink wine..."

Happy fall everyone. (I am sure I will with you a happy fall again on Sept 21st but that's all good!)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Why Siri Got Spayed...

Well, maybe that is a bad title. She got spayed because I think there are already to many puppies in this world and I am not the person to allow more.

So a better title would be something like Why We Spayed Siri.

Us, instead of someone else.

Here's the short of it.

We rescued Siri from a foster organization this summer. Her paper work said she was spayed.

This past Thursday she started bleeding. Basically she got her period.

How can a spayed dog get their period? They can't.

So I after being pretty upset most of the evening I called my vet first thing the next morning. They wanted to see her as soon as possible because if she really was spayed but now bleeding something very wrong was happening.

I left work early and took her over to see our vet who confirmed within moments of seeing her that she was in fact in heat and there was no way this dog had been spayed.

I had brought her paper work to the appointment (well, I forgot it so Shawn and Cupcake ran it up to me) and showed them where it said FS for Female Spayed. They called the foster group who were mortified and apologetic.

We got her scheduled for surgery a week later.

I would love to say the week from when we learned this little info to when she had her surgery was peaches but really, it was anything but.

We had to get diapers to keep her from 'dripping' all over our house. These diapers had liners in them that had to be changed regularly. Siri did not fit in the diapers correctly due to her build so we rigged them to stay on her. She would rip them off any chance she got so she didn't wear them when in her crate. Yuck.

She was a different dog ranging from sleepy and cuddly to a bit crabby.

Siri was very stressed when we got her ready the morning of the surgery. We were asked to bring her crate and a blanket so Shawn loaded that into the van for me before he left for work. I am pretty sure Siri thought we were packing her up to move in with another family. It was heart breaking.

Now, keep in mind, I know what it is like to have a dog go through a major surgery. Remember our three legged wonder? Well, none of that helped me keep my stress about this down.

My emotions ranged from sad to mad to furious to worried.

I had to leave my baby, the one who has had an unknown past, the one who lost her eye six months ago, with people I didn't know who were going to operate on her in the back of a semi truck. (Since the foster group was paying, not me, I didn't get to use my own vet)

I brought her home on Friday afternoon and she could hardly walk. I put her in the van where she slept all the way home. When I touched her she jerked away otherwise she didn't move.

We got her set up in the house where she went right back to sleep.

Cakes didn't like that her best friend was not awake to play with her and spent a lot of time trying to break Siri out of her crate.

On the up side, Siri is recovering very well. In fact, sometime Sunday afternoon she was completely back to normal. She is on limited activity right now but that is nearly impossible to manage as she is constantly playing, rolling, chasing with Cakes.

Thanks to all of you and my friends and family for all the support during this mess. I am just so happy we are on the other side of it now!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Our Weekend in Review

Happy Monday everyone! We survived what I was expecting to be an insanely stressful weekend with a reasonable about of stress - hooray!!

Friday morning Siri was spayed. I am finishing up that post and will share that saga with you tomorrow.

But Siri being spayed on Friday meant we didn't do anything on Friday night. Heidi went to a birthday party at Skyzone and had a blast. And reminded me that I have 8 punches left on my skyrobics card!

Friday night was rough with me sleeping on the floor to be near Siri. I felt slightly beat up the next morning from the hard floor. This is why I prefer to camp in my camper and not in a tent. My hips are too old for the hard ground!

Saturday was very low key. Shawn and Heidi ran a few errands while I hung out with Siri then Shawn worked on the new hand rail for the front steps. I need to paint it then I will share pictures.

By about 4 pm on Saturday Siri was feeling much better so we crated her up and went off to a gathering of some of Shawn's childhood friends.

Not to get all confusing but Shawn and Bobby grew up together, went to a year of college were together, attended/participated in each others wedding. But then life takes over and we don't see him much. So Bobby's wife Sarah invites a group of us over to their house to surprise Bobby. It was a blast.

There were eight adults and ten kids. Lets say it was a bit buck wild at times but we are all excited to to it again!
We didn't think to take a picture until after Graham left. Bob, Jimmy, and Shawn, friends since they were 5!

I was so happy Graham and Amy brought Thomas. He is such a cutey! This was the first time he had been out after his bedtime which threw him a bit. He kept asking his mom who turned off the lights outside and if they would turn them back on. When she explained it was dark because it was bed time he decided it was time for them to go home.

I was really worried about Siri but we had such a good time I was distracted from my worries.

Sunday was another low key day. We went grocery shopping then just hung out. It was clear by this time that Siri didn't really know or care that she has just had her stomach cut open so the day was spent trying to keep her from sprinting around the backyard.

My Step-Uncle Dave had us all over for dinner in the evening so we were able to end the weekend with a nice, relaxing dinner on my parents deck with our family. I left the camera at home so this is the only picture I got...

Shawn and his mini peanut butter pie!
 Oh! And this one! Isn't my niece Eile just the cutest little thing? She was wearing a tank top which was making me cold so we put Heidi's tshirt on her. It is a bit big but she totally rocked it!

Happy, as always!

It was so nice to have our weekend end up being pretty low key. I am not sure how I will keep Siri calm as the days progress but she is doing so well I know she is going to make it thru this minor set back just fine.

Friday, September 7, 2012

A Friday Dance Party

Happy Friday everyone! What a week. Did everyone survive?

I will have to let you know my answer on Monday.

Today Siri gets spayed!  I will be leaving here shortly to bring her to the clinic and then I willget to pick her up after work.

When that is all over I will write about why my 15 month old rescued Pitbull Terrier is being spayed today, not back in March like I had been lead to beleive... So, look forward to that post next week.

Since I am a bit tunnel vision on this upcoming surgery and a bit exhausted from taking care of a dog "on the rag" for the last week I am going to leave you with this awesome video of Heidi and my niece Emily preforming a dance routine they put together with the help of my older niece Makayla a few weeks ago.

Have a great weekend everyone!


(Please ignore my laughing, the dogs fighting, Siri's cameo, and Heidi declaring she forgot the routine with about 2 seconds remaining!) 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Back To Reality!

Tuesday was the first day of school for our district so it was back to reality for Shawn and Heidi!

Shawn went back to work last week but Tuesday was his first day with students. His first day with high schoolers, in fact! He said he had a great day and I think he is really looking forward to being in the High School now.

Heidi started second grade!

Second Grade!!

We met her teacher last week. She had just been hired days before Meet the Teacher night so she was still trying to find her way around but she seemed very nice and warm.

Sophia, Heidi, and Piper - the Carpool!
I think she will have high expectations of Heidi and we are all excited about that.  Heidi needs to be challenged or she gets bored and that's no fun for anyone.

When she got home from school Tuesday night she told me her day was "Boring! It was just Rule Day so we didn't get to do anything!"

Heidi and her teacher
I had taken the day off and met Erin for lunch at Yum where we picked up these amazing cupcakes. So for her First Boring Day of School and Shawn's First Day with Kids I surprised them with these delicious cupcakes.

 Shawn and Heidi loved the cupcakes (and so did I).

Heidi reported that yesterday, the second day of school, was awesome. She was happy that they were super busy all day and is excited that they will be having a test today. She loved her math lesson and enjoyed some reading time.

We are all looking forward to a great year. Happy back to school everyone!

(Oh, and Shawn wants to know if you all think Heidi's shorts are too short for school. He actually said "I hope you get a lot of comments about how short Heidi's shorts are..." She is supposed to be wearing leggings under them but it was over 90 degrees on Tuesday. Let me know what you think, please!)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Return The Favor hop

Last Wednesday was the fifth week of the Return The Favor hop, and it's proving to be a success week after week! Please spread the word so this second round of GFC is just as successful! I look forward to you all linking up and finding some new blogs to follow!

If you would like to be a co-host in the future, please send an email to and let me know what type of hop {Twitter, Facebook, GFC, Bloglovin'} you'd most like to co-host!

Follow your host & co-hosts
Share the hop with others, whether it be via Twitter, Facebook, your blog, etc!
Come link up with @chelseaoliviaxo for the GFC hop to find new blogs to follow! 
Feel free to copy the code for the button from above and put it up on your blog.
Take a couple minutes to visit some other people who have linked up and let them know you stopped by from the Return The Favor hop - and hopefully they will return the favor!

Chelsea from Yours Truly
Dalayna from Pointing Up
Rosie from Craftbotic
Sinead from Sinead in the Sun
Alyssa from Impractical Composition

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

What We Ate This Week

I love to cook but have been way to busy to really put my heart in it this summer. I finally got a Sunday to put together a menu and a moment to run to the grocery store last weekend so I was able to cook most nights.

Now that school will be back in session on Tuesday I am hoping I will have more time and this post will become a weekly special.

Monday night we had Pizza Bake. It was super easy, made of things I generally have on hand, and a great base recipe. This one is going in the book for future dinners.

The three main ingredients are Bisquik, Mozzarella Cheese, and Pizza sauce. We topped with pepperoni but you could stack with anything you like. Next time I will make two and one will have mushrooms on it!

From this site

Thursday night we had a variation of these Stuffed Taco Shells. They look so fantastic in the picture so I was very much looking forward to this meal. After three trips to different stores looking for Jumbo Pasta Shells I gave up and modified this to be Taco Lasagna Roll Ups instead.

What a mess that was! The noodles fell apart and I ended up with a not so attractive meal. But it did taste good. In the end it was a lot of work for something that tasted a lot like an Enchilada. I am not saving this recipe because I have a similar Enchilada recipe that is much less work but I recommend you try this if your grocery store has jumbo shells!

From this site

Sunday we had Parmesan Chicken Bake which was not only easy but very yummy. It reminded me of my Caesar Pork Chops but it was made with Mayo, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and Parmesan cheese, all things I have in my pantry on any given day which makes this an easier staple to our menu than the Caesar Pork Chops since I don't always have Caesar dressing on hand.

From this site

Anyway! This recipe would as wonderful on pork as it was on chicken and it is going in the book for sure!

I hope these leave you inspired, enjoy!!