Monday, May 2, 2016

Mother's Day With Hallmark

You know Hallmark. You love Hallmark. You two have been through everything together: birthday, holidays, anniversaries, and everything in between. Is there a Hallmark commercial that doesn't make you cry? I didn't think so.

I actually just celebrated Mother's Day with my mom yesterday. It was totally unexpected. She called me on Saturday, in the midst of a hectic day, and told me she and dad wanted to come over on Sunday! I was shocked! They hadn't been to our new house yet, and I was elated. When 7:30pm came, and I realized I hadn't gotten anything for her for Mother's Day, I made plans to go at the end of church the next day to Hallmark for a gift. I had planned on sending her something, so I wasn't prepared. Here's what I got her:

Now, Hallmark has given me the opportunity to work with them on their Ken Sheldon line for a Mother's Day review. I was beyond elated, and emotional. This line...I feel like this line captured the essence of what it means to be a parent, at least for me. I had actually run across it when I went to Hallmark about a month ago when I was searching for a gift.

I actually welled up with tears right there in the entry way of the local Hallmark store.  I'd never heard of Ken Weldon, but I was sure glad they had it smack dab in the entry way...aside from the tears. I'm truly a sap when it comes to sentimental family products. What I love about this line is it's not relegated to just parents, and how we feel towards our children. It's also for siblings. Like my girls, they have a very loving bond, and are only 2 yrs apart so they have truly done life together. My boys...well, they're not quite there yet. HA!

"So much more than brothers."

"Life side by side."                                                          "First friends."

Back to moms. I love my mom more than I can explain. I wouldn't have been able to say that years ago as a teenager. In fact, I never thought I'd be able to say it. Now I can't get enough of our time together.

On the flip side of that, of being a daughter to my mom, being a mom to my kids is something I can't put into words. I don't feel like anything I would try to say about being a mom would come close to being adequate. I just love my family. I'm beyond thankful that God allowed me to be a mom, when being a mom was the last thing on my mind. I can NOT even fathom what life would be like without my children. My identity has been as a mom for over half of my life. It's the greatest job in the world!

Now, I'm hoping that I'll be getting this pillow because, Holy Bible (secret phrase that means I'm telling you the truth no doubt about it), every time I see it, I start to cry.

Oh my goodness, walked away from this post for the day, came back to pick right back up, looked at the picture of the pillow, and welled up with tears. Not kidding. I'm pitiful.

Isn't being a mom one of the best things in life? I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Now for the best part of celebrating our moms or being a mom is this giveaway! I'm not going to cry alone because I'm a sap. I'm taking you down with me! Thanks to Hallmark, I'm giving away Signature & Kim Mallory greetings as well as this set:

Be sure to enter and visit your Hallmark store or shop with convenience online!

TAKE NOTE: This giveaway will NOT be finished in time for Mother's Day. Please don't count on this as your only gift for mom. =)

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Thursday, April 28, 2016

Baseball Season Has Begun

It's been an interesting few years of baseball where we live. When we lived in Minnesota my son was on a team with kids all in the same grade. They all pretty much knew each other. Two years ago, he played up an age bracket. So as a 5th grader, he was playing with 6th graders.

Last year he played down because there wasn't an age bracket above him or in his age range. This year is an interesting mix. He's finishing his 7th grade year, and he's playing with kids who are finishing 5th AND 6th grade. I have no idea what next year will look like, but I sure hope when he hits high school there are kids who are still playing and are in his age bracket.

That being said, we needed to do a LOT of updating of pretty much everything baseball related! Sakes alive, replacing his bad, cleats, sliding shorts and protective cup to start. They also changed the name of their club from Storm to Bulldogs so that required new uniforms. Thankfully I was contacted about working with Anthem Sports. Just in time because my kiddo's hands have grown over the last few years, and he needed a good outfielder glove. How could I say no to doing a review?

We went through some of the gloves, and I learned that outfielder gloves have longer fingers than infielders. I was always just randomly buying a glove that could fit on his hand. I didn't realize that there was a difference. I also didn't know that there were measurements with the gloves. Let's just say, he's been playing outfield with an infield glove for the past couple of years. Oops my bad.

Ok, if I can be totally honest, I don't know a lot about the technicalities of baseball gear. For example, I wanted my brother to get my son a baseball bat for Christmas. I had no clue what kind for him to get. He didn't either. lol We now have some random bat sitting in the garage. We ended up talking to one of the guys from church to find out what to look for in a good bat, and voila, we got him the one he needed.

Baseball season started a few weeks ago, and so far it's been a rough season. At this age, the kids are at different skill levels, and this is the time they're learning the sport. My son is still loving the outfield. I kept trying to get him to infield, and maybe into the shortstop position. He's not interested, so I'm totally fine with him being the center. He has a great arm, so outfield fits for him! He'll play professionally one day dontcha know? ;)

So far his Easton MKY 1200 Mako YOUTH Baseball Glove, 12" has served him well. My guy is really specific about how his glove fits, and because this has "hyperlite design" it's easier for him to manipulate! He's done a great job in the outfield. I love watching him play. I have a feeling it'll fit him for the next couple of years, thank goodness. he probably should've gone with an 11.5, but all they had was a 12. Turns out, it's pretty much just the right size!

What sport do your kids love to play?

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Wordless Wednesday Cats In The Yard

We have two indoor cats. Simba used to be an outdoor cat, but he's gotten pretty old and feeble. He doesn't get around like he used to. Then there's Pearl. She's always been an indoor cat since she was declawed as a kitten. She loves to go outside, eat the grass, and then puke it up. Good times, right?

I do like letting them outside while supervised though. They love it, and I'm sure Simba is reliving his glory days. They finally made it outside last week, and loved it! Pearly girl was outside long enough to digest the grass and give it back to nature. So much better than having to clean it up off the carpet!

Simba has always been my shadow outside. He loves following me through the garden.

Do you have indoor or outdoor cats?

Date Day At Miss Shirley's Cafe

My husband is a restaurant recruiter. That means we get to visit restaurants where he'd like to find people jobs or ones where he's gotten someone a job. I know, rough, right? Not too bad, but we really need to cut back on all the eating out we do.

That being said, this past Saturday we visited Miss Shirley's Cafe. I had never been to the cafe before, but Fred had gone to a different location. We headed down to Annapolis for brunch. Now, for the record, I eat breakfast every single morning. It's the only routine that I know of in my life. I wake up, I eat.

This morning, I didn't eat. We ran to the bank, then drove down to Annapolis. There's parking behind the restaurant, and they validate the parking! Score!! We walked around to the front of the building, and proceeded into the restaurant. I almost circled back through the revolving door when we saw how many people were waiting.

I wish I would've taken a photo of the crowd. We were squished near the revolving door, after finding out it was a 40 minute wait. FORTY MINUTES people...for the gal who hasn't had breakfast, and it's a little after 11am! People who came in after us, would actually get hit by the revolving door because at some points, there just wasn't any where to go. The waiting area, was big and spacious. I just think half of Annapolis chose that morning to eat at Miss Shirley's Cafe!

Fred offered to go back on a different day, but I wasn't feeling well, and going somewhere else just meant having to wait there as well. So we waited, the 40 minutes. There were a handful of kids there, but none of them were screaming or being obnoxious because the servers give them Etch-a-Sketches to play with!

We had a nice spot for two, and our waitress was enthusiastic, in a good way mind you. She was bright and bubbly. She gave us a rundown of what was on the specials. I should've taken notes because what was offered were mostly things I'd never heard of before. They do a lot of specialty food at the Cafe.

We started off with an appetizer of Fried Green Tomatoes. I'd never had them before, and actually wasn't a fan. I really liked the batter on the tomatoes. I just think the green tomatoes had...well, a green tomato taste. lol Go figure. I'm a traditional red tomato kind of gal I guess. =) Fred on the other hand enjoyed them. I think if you're a fried tomato kind of person, then you'd really enjoy these.

I never loved omelets until I tried my dad's one day in my late teens. I don't ever make them, and should, but since we were out for brunch, I was going for it. I ordered the "An Omelet To Call My Own" I ordered 3 ingredients that are part of the basic price: asparagus, tomato, and ham. I paid the extra .99¢ for cheese. The side I chose to come with my omelet was potato & onion hash browns.

Fred ordered the "Grandpa's BBQ On A That's How We Roll." It's pulled barbecue chicken topped with coleslaw & fried pickles. He had the same side dish as me. Copycat!

My omelet turned out delicious! Very good flavor, the cheese was melted inside like I love it! Asparagus is one of those things that I think can be tricky to add to a recipe. I'm thinking that people like theirs cooked differently. I like mine somewhat soft. This was kind of hard and crunchy. For me, it tastes more bitter when they're still hard. Plus, it's hard to compare other asparagus to my husband's because he does it best in my book. Oh, and I had an interesting biscuit.

Like I said, they make  It was a normal biscuit, but it was a peach and goat cheese biscuit. I guess they're always trying new recipes, and make everything from scratch. I was curious as to what it was because when I went to eat it, there was this chunk of peach that fell off the bottom, and I thought it wasn't supposed to be there. Our waitress had to double check what the biscuit was that day. =) It was pretty delicious to say the least.

Fred's food looked good. It was a pretty tall sandwich. At one point he took the top bun off and was going to eat the sandwich open face. He finally just put that too the side, and ate the meat.

All in all, the food was good, and the atmosphere was really nice. Next time we go, I know to eat something a couple hours earlier in case there's a long wait, and we won't go on a Saturday morning. lol By the time we were leaving, there really wasn't anyone in the waiting area.

I think the next time we go back, I want to try their dinner menu. I like trying new foods at restaurants where they're always coming up with something new!

What is your favorite brunch food?

Friday, April 22, 2016

Pampered By Massage Envy

Hi! My name is Mimi, and it's been a year since my last pampering. I like to be pampered, and I'd do it a lot more if I could, but it's not always on my schedule. Get this, almost 2 yrs ago, my mom got me a spa package for my birthday. I was able to get a manicure, pedicure, and facial. Not a bad deal, right? I mean, I was so crazy excited. The only problem? It was at a salon by her. Two hours away from me. It took me nearly a year to use the manicure and pedicure. Still haven't used the facial. We just haven't spent time over there long enough for me to do it. I'll probably never get it done at this rate. Such is life.

That being said, I just got a facial done at Massage Envy, and it was fantastic. Another blogging friend, Keonte, gave them my name to see if they would work with me for a review, and sure enough, they reached out and I whole heartedly agreed! I mean, honestly, who wouldn't? I was given the option of a massage or a facial. You have Massage Envy, don't you? Eh, eh, see how that works?

No brainer for me. I went with the facial. Now, you might think I'm out of my mind for doing something like that, but wellllll let me tell you a thing or two if you haven't had a facial, you're TOTALLY missing out. here's the secret about facials...they also massage your neck, shoulders, and occasionally your hands. So, you don't miss out on a massage at all. You get a facial and the bonus of a mini massage.

So, I headed to the Annapolis Massage Envy looking forward to an hour of being pampered! They were super warm and friendly when I walked in. Kendall who called me to set up my appointment was absolutely delightful.

They get you started in the waiting room, which is dark and tranquil. It gets you into a relaxed state of mind. I was completely prepared to be relaxed. Ericka walked me back to the room she was working in, and asked me some questions about what I was hoping to achieve while I was there. I told her I just wanted to have my face feel soft & hydrated, and to walk away feeling relaxed. I didn't actually have any skin care goals.

Ericka gave me the option of 4 facials: Anti-aging, Clarifying (acne related), sensitive skin, and environmental. It took me a nanosecond to choose anti-aging, although at this point, it's probably a moot subject. lol There's not turning this train around.

Once we got that figured out, Ericka left the room while I slipped under the covers. I have to preface this experience by saying, this probably wasn't the most relaxing facial I've ever had. Not because of anything at Massage Envy, but because I talk to so few people during the day, that I talked the poor girl's ear off! hahahaha

I kept telling myself to relax, and she kept pressing my shoulders down gently, but she let me talk away. At one point I thought, it was like going to my hair dresser because I was talking so much while someone was working on me. When we both stopped talking, it was so amazingly quiet in the room, and tranquil.

The facial was wonderful! My face was so relaxed. All of the massaging, and products made it feel like it was like butter. As Ericka went through the entire process, she told me at each step what product she was using, and what its purpose was. Now, all of the product is Murad, and all of the franchises are Murad franchises. After you get done with your facial, you're shown which products were used so that you have the option of buying any or all of them.

After the facial, Kendall told me a bit about the membership option! Yep, you heard me right, they have a membership option! An example of the membership saving is a 1 hour massage for members (as of today) is $69.99 and for non-members it's $119.00! Totally worth the savings. You can even do little add-ons like a foot scrub, aroma therapy, and deep muscle therapy for a nominal charge.

Copyright 1st image in collage: samotrebizan / 123RF Stock Photo

Once you finish your facial, be sure to follow these 4 tips:

1. Keep your makeup and skincare to a minimum for the next 24 hours.

2. Be sure to use sunscreen.

3. Consider not using products that are perfumed.

4. Drink lots of water and stay hydrated.

What's your favorite way to pamper yourself?

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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.