New Year Resolution Review

New Year Resolution Review
New Year Resolution Review

I was just thinking about my big New Year’s Resolution for 2013. I wanted to learn a new hobby- particularly focusing on crocheting/knitting. While I haven’t quite gotten excited about knitting, I feel pretty good about nailing the crochet part of my resolution.

Here is a year in review with some of my favorite projects.

corchetcollage2I did a lot of crocheted flower/bow-tie collars for rescue, along with birds that could be sold to raise money for IGCA rescue, too. (And I made several birds as gifts for friends, too!)


I have made several cute booties and accessories for friends and others, but these are my favorite. Evelyn’s owl hat was a blast to make. I still adore her pink boots That she wore for a while back in February, along with her “Converse sneakers“. (Now that I think of it… those “barefoot sandals” from the same post as the sneakers were pretty sweet, too!) The fingerless gloves in the middle were a Christmas gift for my sister-in-law, and it’s hard to tell from the picture, but there’s strands of glittery silver mixed in with the yarn, which is a super soft blend of merino wool and silk lace weight yarn. They were so soft and beautiful!


And of course, all the stuffed animals/ amigurumi items I made were both a major pain and so fun to try out. While I thought that Link and Yoshi were going to kill me to assemble, the end results were absolutely worth it! (You are welcome, Jacob and Stephen. Like my college-aged brothers have time to read my blog, though! 😉 ) Evelyn’s birds, bear, and birthday owl were easy enough, but great softies for her. And the patterns from Creepy Cute Crochet (Ninjas, Amazon Warrior Princess, and Grim Reaper) were all great learning experiences, as well as fun gifts and decorations.

As far as meeting a New Year’s Resolution, I think this year I hit it out of the ball park! It’s so neat to look back on the past year and see what I’ve accomplished when this time last year, I couldn’t even do a single crochet stitch. 🙂

Mosaic Review: Udderly Smooth Udder Cream

Mosaic Review: Udderly Smooth Udder Cream

It’s been awhile since I have had a chance to review a product effectively for Mosaic Reviews, so when I heard about the option to try Udderly Smooth Udder Cream, I jumped at the opportunity!

First, I was just expecting just one jar/tub of the product, but WOW! When my box arrived, it was like Christmas came early. I pulled out their body cream, foot cream, two sizes of their hand cream and several smaller sample sizes. (That means if you live near me and you want to try one, come on by! I am happy to share!)


One of the biggest things for me is that I have extremely sensitive skin. Ever since I got pregnant with my daughter over 2 years ago, something went completely crazy with my hormones, and I have to be very careful with products that I use now on the majority of my body. I have to moisturize, but all those pretty smelling things from Bath and Body Works or Victoria’s Secret that I used when I was a teenager and college tend to make my skin more irritated and itchy.

So when I started using Udderly Smooth’s body cream, I was very pleasantly surprised. It doesn’t have a strong scent, and while it’s heavy enough to feel like it’s doing work, it does it without leaving that greasy, don’t-touch-your-smart-phone’s-screen-for-fear-of-leaving-grease-trails feeling that lots of lotions do. And it doesn’t irritate my skin! What a relief.

I love that they sent the 2 oz version of their hand cream, too. It is PERFECT for carrying around in my purse. During the winter, (mind you, Texas winters aren’t even THAT rough, though this has been our coldest here yet!) my hands  gotten cracked and yucky, and when you are out and about during cold/flu season, all the colder air mixed with lots of washing and hand sanitizers make having lotion with you a definite must. And this does the job. Again, not at all greasy or heavy. I actually tend to wish it was a little heavier as I usually apply a small second round after the first has soaked in!

The same goes for the foot cream. I will say, be aware that the hand lotion and foot cream are actually much runnier than the body cream. All the foot creams I have used on my nasty feet in the past have been very thick, heavy, and yes, greasy, so when I opened the foot cream for the first time, I actually spilled some of it on myself because I was expecting it to just stay put in the tub, more like the body cream does.

I have absolutely no complaints about this product. Even the prices are extremely reasonable, and it’s carried in many stores, meaning there’s a chance you can find one near you! Or, if you want to order online, a quick search or going to the U.S. Only order page on their website. If you “Like” their page on Facebook, you can often find coupons to save even more money on their products, too! (And who DOESN’T love saving a dollar here or there when we can?!)

If you are looking for a new or different moisturizer, (or as a gift for all ages- my toddler thinks the containers are so fun with their cow spots and loves it when Mommy “shares her lotion”), Udderly Smooth Udder Creams are definitely worth looking into. I know I will be keeping an eye out next time I’m at our local Walgreens to get Udderly Smooth lotion with a pump top to keep next to our kitchen sink.

Udderly Smooth Review



I realized that there were some technical difficulties with my last post, because I wrote most of it ahead of time and set it to publish last Thursday, and then it disappeared into the interwebs never to be seen again. Boo. So, I’m going to end off the month of November with 10 things that I am thankful for (because 14 is just a weird number to stand alone).

  1. Rain- I LOVE the rain! One of the great bummers of our area lately was that we have been in such a horrible drought situation since we moved here. The last two months have brought several bouts of rain, and it is very refreshing to the land and the soul to see the flowers bloom and the occasional gray skies!
  2. DVRs/Netflix and all those wonderful ways to record and watch the myriad of shows out there. It’s helped with several of my loves of shows like “Castle” or “Downton Abbey” or even “Top Gear” (BBC version, of course!). And the ability to pause live TV, and rewind to watch a punchline you might have missed? How simple and great!
  3. Siblings- It stinks being so far away from our siblings, but having siblings is a great thing. Hopefully Evelyn will be able to have siblings and have a good relationship overall with them.
  4. Evelyn’s buddies: Evelyn has a few very special buddies around her age, one in particular, and it’s so fun to watch them play together. I am so grateful that she has the opportunity to interact with others her age and have fun fairly often. We can’t afford a preschool situation or programs like Gymboree right now, and I worry about her not being able to social with other little ones more. But she’s growing up so beautifully, and it’s even better when she and I get to socialize with others outside the home!
  5. Our Texas friends: We were so lucky just this week to be involved with others’ holiday celebrations on more than one occasion. We are far away from the family we grow up with, but this season, we were so lovingly included that it makes being far away from family so much more bearable. We love our Texas family!
  6. The miracle of babies- I was just looking at pictures of Evelyn at Thanksgiving last year… and the change is remarkable. I can’t believe how quickly my little girl is growing up!!!
  7. Cars- We got a new (new to us, that is) vehicle over the summer, and I LOVE it. And it has a BACK UP CAMERA. It’s the little things, people. But I love the wonderful comfort a nice working vehicle is.
  8. Email/Blogs/Instant messaging- I love the fact that email exists. I won’t argue that there’s nothing quite like getting a real, meaningful letter in snail mail, of course. But when you have a very active toddler and your only time to get things done is when she’s asleep, being able to use Google Chat/Hangouts or email or whatever have you to speak with loved ones all over the world helps keep them much closer, and updated on the ever-changing Miss Evelyn.
  9. Mother Nature: I LOVE the outside world. I miss the mountains, but where we live has many beauties of well. And I think of some of my favorite places that I have visited, like Arches National Park and Bryce Canyon, which are some of the most beautiful places I’ve seen, and I am so grateful there are so many lovely places in the world that I hope to share with my family.
  10. Thanksgiving- We need more times to focus on being grateful for what we already have. Which is part of the reason I hate “Black Friday” shopping so much. One day it’s “I have so many great blessings in my life!” and the next day, it is: “I need more STUFF, and I’ll fight tooth and nail to beat other people to the STUFF!” I have so much in my life, and so much to be grateful for. I wish we had more days every year to focus on all that we have instead of wanting more.


Thankful Thursdays II

Thankful Thursdays II

What a week! Many of my things I am grateful for are things that suddenly have been in short supply. Nothing like a good dose of change and challenge to remind you to appreciate when things are good.

1) I am grateful for the days that I get a good night’s sleep. I’ve always had a hard time sleeping, but having a child of my own has really brought “sleep deprivation” to a whole new level. Especially when teething, or growing pains, throws a wrench into the nighttime workings of toddler sleep!

2) I am grateful for warm weather. We’ve hit uncharacteristically cold weather for our locale this week, and it reminds me of several  reasons why I prefer the really hot summers here over the very cold (and snowy…yuck!) winters of my childhood.

3) I am so grateful for our beautiful home. Even with all the maintenance (some of which has been taking FOREVER lately!) and random “Oh no!” moments  of home ownership, it is so neat to have our own home to make memories in with our family.

4) I am grateful for Pinterest! How many amazing, cute ideas have I come across on that site (many of which I will never get to replicating), and how many amazing, quick and easy recipes have I come across to spice up our dinner rotations? And I know there’s always that feeling that sometimes some of these people who do these projects are crazy overachievers, it gives me something to aspire to on the crazier days of being a mom.


5) I am grateful for crock pots. Seriously, whoever made the crock pot, I love you. Not only does my crock pot help me made chicken and pot roasts so tender they just fall apart to the touch,  it makes it possible for me to make dinner while Evelyn is having some down time, usually mornings. Unlike the days where 4:00PM hits and her separation anxiety is so bad that she must be held constantly or else break down into hysteria. And then I end up calling Jared to pick something from Chick-Fil-A because I get anxiety just thinking about trying to contain her wiggles while trying to cut veggies or cook on the stove!

6) I really enjoy the chickens. In the cooler weather, they haven’t been laying as frequently. (Frankly, that is a relief for me- I have been having a rough time trying to keep up with 3-4 eggs a day! 1-2 are much more manageable!) But they have been a lot more fun than I had anticipated them being, and Evelyn thinks that they are hilarious to watch. She’ll run to the back door and sign bird, squealing “Bir-Bir-Biiiiir!” and I know she’s hoping to catch a glimpse of the chicklets. And it’s kind of fun to be a little more “self sustaining” with having them, too. Maybe we need to get a nanny goat next, Jared?  😉 JUST KIDDING. Mostly.


7) I LOVE Evelyn snuggles. This girl isn’t the most snuggle-bunny of them, and so the moments that I can get her to sit still next to me and cuddle for a few minutes on the couch are PRICELESS. And when it is snuggling with Mom, Dad, Evelyn, and three doggies on the couch? Nothing beats snuggling with the loves of your life!

2013-11-05 14.41.53


Foxy Dancing

Foxy Dancing

So, this is what happens when people get creative at our church’s annual “Trunk or Treat” party: Flash mob fun! (If you look closely, you might find yours truly out there amongst the foxy ladies.)

Picture 1

LOOSELY based on the music video “What Does the Fox Say”. Though, I will say I think we all did a pretty dang good job when it was all said and done, and the kids especially loved it!