Monday, April 30, 2012

Verizon Droid Razr Review-2 months in

I have hit the two month mark of using my Verizon Droid Razr phone and I have to say that I am still in love with it. It's like opening a present each morning. A little enthusiastic? Maybe, but seriously I am having so much fun using it. While I still have some things to learn about this phone (it seems I am learning new things every day) I wanted to share a few of the things I have gotten down so far.

  • Tons and tons of apps.
  • Adding an app to the home screen is very simple. Just access the app in the app folder and touch the app but don't let go, hold your finger down and a menu box with pop up with the option to add to home screen. Told you, easy.
  • Easy notification access with touch and slide down feature.
  • The camera rocks! Like most camera phone's they take the best photos outside in the natural light. It definitely has the speed if you need to snap a really quick shot.
  • I really like the edit options before and after you capture a photo. You can do your simple crop edits or there are a few presets such as sepia, black and white, etc.
  • Vibrate touch option. I like it because it vibrates with every key touch so you know if you've pressed something by accident (if you're like me then you like knowing you've touched just the right amount of buttons per word you're typing out and you count them as you go).
  • Spell check. At first I didn't like the possible word matches that show at the top of the type pad. I felt it got in the way but as time has passed it has come in handy.
  • Menu Options. Three lines on bottom left screen are your menu options, there's a home button, back button (great if your in the middle of something and you accidentally touch a button and want to go back) and the search option. All great features to help you maneuver around the phone.
Did I mention the tons of apps. Really there's an app for almost anything you could need. And the way apps keep coming out I am sure if you can't find what you're looking for now you'll probably be able to find it in the not to distant future.

And just to show some of the cameras abilities I included a few shots I took. Did you know the Droid Razr can do panoramic shots?? How cool is that!

Verizon Ambassadors

*Disclosure: I am participating in the Verizon Wireless Ambassadors’ Program & have been provided with a wireless device along with 3 months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the product.*

Share Your Heart with Macy's Heart of Haiti

This Mother's Day, I'm working with Clever Girls in support of Macy's Heart of Haiti to shine a light on the "trade, not aid" program, which provides sustainable income to Haitian artisans struggling to rebuild their lives and support their families after the 2010 earthquake.

Today I want to share a story about my hardest experience I've had being a mother. It is one that I will never forget and it can still bring tears to my eyes. But it is also one that reminds me of what a gift it is to be a Mom.

Ever since I was a little girl I knew that one day I wanted to become a mother. I played dress up all the time with my younger sisters and I was always the mommy. I imagined getting married to prince charming, becoming a beautiful princess and having a lot of babies. Not only were my sisters my "babies" when we played but so were all of my cabbage patch kids. In 2003 that dream became my reality. I was so excited to find out I was pregnant and would be becoming a mommy. I still remember the day my oldest was born. It seems like yesterday. It was the happiest moment of my life. I couldn't believe I was actually a mommy. My childhood dreams had come true, excluding the being a princess part of course. 

I will not lie and say it has all been peaches and cream. Motherhood is amazing, beautiful, a blessing and the most amazing thing I have ever known but it can also be hard. The hardest thing I have come across is seeing my babies in pain. The best way to describe it is it's like a piece of my heart breaks. I want to protect them from anything that can cause them pain.

In 2008 my youngest was born. He was a little surprise from the beginning. And not much of that has changed even though he is almost four years old. He is the most energetic little man I have known. When he was three weeks old he started throwing up non stop. In just under 24 hours he went from my smiling little giggling baby to my pale, quiet and tired baby. It wasn't just simple reflex and in my heart I knew something was wrong.

In 24 hours, two hospitals, an ambulance ride and no sleep later we were waiting for him to brought into surgery. I had dealt with boo boos, sickies and tears from my children before but this was a whole new territory for me. I was sleep deprived, scared, worried, emotional, lost. I was completely terrified. My baby was about to have surgery. My flesh and blood who was barely one month old would be in a room with people I didn't know and I had to put my faith in them to keep my baby safe. It was the hardest thing I have ever gone through.

I wont go into all of the details because we would probably be here forever but in the end every thing turned out okay. They warned me he would probably have a bit of trouble gaining weight for a little while but he proved the Dr's wrong. He was the chubbiest little baby and three and a half years later he is now my big boy. I will never forget that day and even though he will never know it he still has the scar to prove what a little trooper he is. He calls it his "rainbow". He came up with the name all on his own and just hearing him call it his rainbow brings a smile to my face. His rainbow is a constant reminder to me that while motherhood may not always be easy it is the greatest blessing and reward that any woman can experience.

Here's a little bit more information on Macy's Heart of Haiti;

What is Macy’s Heart of Haiti? Heart of Haiti is a “Trade, Not Aid” initiative launched by artist and social entrepreneur, Willa Shalit, The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund and Macy’s. Already, Heart of Haiti has led to employment of 750 artists in Haiti, providing financial benefits for an estimated 8,500 people in the country.

Each item is a one-of-a-kind design and handmade by a Haitian master artisan from raw materials such as recycled oil drums, wrought iron, papier-mâché and stone. The collection features more than 40 home decor items including quilts, metalwork, ceramics, jewelry and paintings and is made almost entirely from recycled and sustainable items such as old cement bags, cardboard, oil drums and local gommier wood. 

Heart of Haiti products are available online at Macy’

Thank you to Macy's Heart of Haiti for sponsoring my participation in this “Share Your Heart" promotion. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunset Sunday-The calm before the storm

Since it is now spring time that also means the storms have arrived. Or should I say become more frequent. It's almost every weekend that they come and while I do love the thunder and lightening it also makes for some gorgeous sunsets.

The first photo shows the building of a thunderstorm. It's kind of hard to see when you don't know when you're looking at but lucky me I am married to a weather nerd lover. So towards the middle and off to the left is where I am talking about. When the cloud first started it looked like a giant mushroom and then it just kept growing and growing. It's really spectacular to watch.

And this one was just a random shot I took that I liked more then I thought I would.

Do you love sunsets? Have tons and tons of photos of them? Even just a few photos? Craig from StayAdventurous and I would love for you to join us in Sunset Sundays. On the last Sunday of every month we will include a linky at the end of our post for you to share your photos. We can't wait to see everyone's Sunset Sunday photos!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Wordless Wednesday-Earth Day

My daughters preschool class spent Monday at the local park picking up trash in honor of Earth Day. It was so adorable seeing all these little kids so excited to pick up trash. I think we might have to make this a family tradition with the kids and I each year on Earth Day. And of course they all played, I mean what is a trip to the park without actually playing there right.

For more inspiring photos be sure to check out:

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Tuesday Tunes-Songs to slow dance to

Well maybe you could have slow danced to these songs back in the 80's at clubs such as The Roxy but probably not now. I have to admit I am a little bummed that this month is coming to an end because I have really enjoyed taking a look back and doing Amanda's nostalgia theme. But alas all good things have to come to an end at some time right.

I have always been a big Duran Duran fan. There's just something about their music that speaks to me. I can't not listen to it. It doesn't matter what song may come on the radio, if it's a Duran Duran song I will not change the station. I know I mentioned my favorite song by them last week but I couldn't just leave it there because there is another song by them that comes in as another favorite.

Keeping with the slow'ish rhythm I couldn't pass up sharing Mad World by Gary Jules. Now I know it's not the original and I may be slammed for saying what I am about to say but....I like this version better. Don't get me wrong, the original by Tears for Fears is okay but I like the heart put into Gary Jules version. It's more melodic which in my opinion is what makes it a heck of a lot better.

I included a link to both versions of Mad World. Now tell me which is your favorite?

Thursday, April 19, 2012

It's Grilled Cheese Month

Did you know that the month of April is Grilled Cheese month? I didn't either until recently. Maybe that explains why my youngest has been requesting a grilled cheese almost everyday this week. My other two aren't big fans of grilled cheese but my youngest, well he loves it. To be honest I haven't had a grilled cheese in ages. Last time I think was before I had kids. Such a same considering I am a huge cheese lover.

My favorite thing to eat with grilled cheese is some tomato soup, I especially love dunking my sandwich into the soup. But alas I have no tomato soup. I made two versions of grilled cheese this week. The classic and then my own simple yet full of flavor version.

Each version starts the same way, with buttering your bread (for the classic I used the Millet Chia bread from Udi's).

Next brown the bread with your cheese on so it can start melting into it's ooey gooey goodness. Once it's to your desired brownness put the other piece of buttered bread in and flip the already browned piece and place on top of the piece you just put in.

A lot people tend to cook it on a high flame with will get you browned results faster but you also risk burning your bread while waiting for the cheese to melt. Try next time cooking on a medium heat, it will take a little bit longer to brown but you won't end up with burnt bread.

The ends result. Not too crispy, not too browned, just perfect.

Oh look at all that cheesy goodness.

Now for my version I used the Omega Flax & Fiber bread from Udi's. Same basic instructions as the classic version but with this one I used a slightly bigger pan so I could cook up some a lot of sliced red onions and both pieces of bread all at the same time. When the onions were all  done I placed them on the piece of bread with the cheese on it, then I topped it with a handful of baby spring mix and then placed the remaining piece of bread on top.

The final result was mouth watering. The combo of sharp cheese, extra sharp cheese along with the onions and lettuce was amazing. I added this to my favorite recipe list.

I was provided samples from Udi's and coupons from Horizon Organic to facilitate these recipes. No monetary exchange was made. All opinions expressed therein are my own.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wordless Wednesday-Lion face

My little mans facial expressions always make me laugh. He comes up with new one's all the time and they are almost never the same.

He calls this his T-Rex face but I think it looks like a lion face
Lemon face? 

For more inspiring photos be sure to check out:
The Bonafide Life, Better in Bulk, From Dates to Diapers, Not Your Momblog, The Divine Miss Mommy, Colorado Moms, Rajean Blomquist, High Impact Mom, BrainFoggles, The Centsible Life, Rachel Ferrucci, Lil Kid Things, Resourceful Mommy and Zensible Mama and don't forget to link your own photo stories.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tuesday Tunes-Growing up

It's week three of Amanda's nostalgia theme on Tuesday Tunes and today instead of keeping around my teen years I decided to go back a wee bit further. Just a wee bit though because :::cough cough::: I am still a youngin. I will not however be revealing the years because it should be easy enough to guess the time frame based on the music. I'm going to make you think while you listen to the music I have this week, I know I know so rude.

So here we go. Some of my favorite songs from when I was younger. These are should be in order by year.

Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, I Love Rock 'n Roll

Eurythmics, Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This

Culture Club, Karma Chameleon

A-Ha, Take On Me

I have always loved this video.

Duran Duran, Wild Boys

My all time favorite song by Duran Duran.

 Don't forget to go visit Amanda and link up your Tuesday Tunes!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Our first time in the shelter

My babies were a little worried but handled it much better then I had originally anticipated.
Today was our first time using our tornado shelter and man am I glad we have it. A tornado touched down in our town around 4 pm today. It was only a few miles away from us and my husband was able to view the funnel cloud from our house. The tornado went down parts of Main street and did some damage. I don't believe it was devastating damage but in a time like this damage is damage. The storms are predicted to get worse tomorrow for Oklahoma so good thoughts, positive vibes, prayers, anything, the people out here can use them, as well as the people of Kansas since it will be heading there tomorrow night.

Being a Cali born and raised girl the thought of tornadoes scare the crap out of me. I have never wanted to experience once but I knew once moving here it wouldn't be something we could avoid. That's why when we went on the hunt for a home having a storm shelter was number one on our priority list. We didn't have too many must have's because we were realistic in our home purchase, but having a shelter was not something we wanted to budge on. Would you believe that out of all the homes we looked at there was only ONE with a shelter. None of them even had a basement. Guess which house we bought? Yup the one with the shelter.

Now I don't know if we were just being paranoid seeing as were Cali folk and all but this is my/our thinking. If all hell breaks loose and we ended up being in the path of a tornado we wanted the absolute safest option for our family. One were the possibility of us coming out completely unscathed was at it's highest and for that to be accomplished you either need to have a basement or some type of shelter. So if you can get one why the heck wouldn't you try to?

Since spring and summer are the season for storms I am thankful we made the decision not to budge on our priority list. While the shelter makes me claustrophobic and it's hotter then a mofo with five people shoved in there I wouldn't be able to take comfort in the fact that we have a place to take cover.

If you live in Oklahoma please check out Red Dirt Ready for information on preparedness, volunteerism, youth education and neighborhood security for Oklahoma weather.

Also if you are interested in getting a shelter but worried about the cost Oklahoma now offers a Storm Shelter Rebate up to $2000 for most cities and some cover up to $2500.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Instagram now available for Androids

Have you heard the great news??? Instagram is now available for Android based phones. If you aren't excited you should be. I may or may not have jumped up and down with glee with I heard the news. Yes I am a dork but I love taking photos and Instagram is my favorite smartphone photo app. So naturally I downloaded it immediately.
Instagram allows you to either choose from your existing photos or to snap one directly while using the app. After you have your photo chosen you can then edit it with the
And don't worry, there are social options for you to share your photos on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and even Foursquare. There's also talks that sharing to Flickr is in the works. When you connect your social account's it's easy to follow all of your friends. You can comment on peoples photos and like the photo by taping the little heart or by double taping the photo. Changing to the different edit options seems to be running a little slow but I'm sure as time goes on the little quirks will be resolved.

I have heard some mixed reviews from users using this app but I myself have not experienced any problems. I have every option available while on the Droid as I did on my old iPhone. So in short, if you love sharing photos and haven't tried out Instgram!

Verizon Ambassadors

Wordless Wednesday-Medieval Fair

A few weeks ago the kids and I took a little trip to the local Medieval Fair. I think I may have had more fun then the kids since there was so much to take photos of and I don't let the kids go on carnival rides. I know I am such a mean mom but they scare me so no kids on carnival rides. I won't bombard you with all of the photos I took but I did want to share these beautiful birds they had there.

For more inspiring photos be sure to check out:

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Tuesday Tunes-The era of mixed tapes

Making a mixed tape is not something we hear very often anymore. Those days are long gone, which is a darn shame because seriously what better way to tell your girlfriend I have the hots for you then with a tape filled with songs about being sexy. The 90's were an awesome time!

Continuing with Amandas nostalgia theme I dug through my nightstand and pulled out the tape my husband, then boyfriend made me back in 1997. It was the first mixed tape he made me and I promised him I would never loose it. Fifteen years later I still have it. I have made sure it stays in my nightstand so it would always be close. For someone who is notorious for loosing everything I think I've done pretty darn awesome that I still have it. Yay me.

So today I am sharing a few, some who am I kidding. I am sharing a lot of songs off the mixed tape that my husband made me many moons ago.

Side A Song #2: Think of Me by Good Riddance

Side A Song #7 Smile by Lagwagon

Side A Song #25 Hazardous to yourself by No Use for a Name

Side B Song #5 Skin Deep by Guns N Wankers

Side B Song #22 Gotta pull myself together by Hi-Standard

Side B Song #21 Andrea by MXPX

I will stop now so I don't completely bombard you with my songs of the past. I really love going back and revisiting things of the past, music especially. It always brings up great memories for me. What songs bring back great memories for you?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Wordless Wednesday-Spring has arrived

While the kids were on spring break the other week I packed up a lunch, loaded them in the car and took them to the park for a picnic and some fun. Between all the flowers, the gorgeous 70 degree weather and smiling kids that ended up playing and not eating, it was a perfect day.

For more inspiring photos be sure to check out:

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tuesday Tunes-A blast from the past

This week in honor of the amazingly talented and all around awesome Amanda and her upcoming birthday I will be sharing some music from days passed. But first HAPPY early BIRTHDAY Amanda!!!!

I take you back 12-15 years ago, vision a bleach blond chick wearing holey jeans, inappropriate shirts, vans shoes, smoking, all around kick ass chick. That was me, at least I like to think I was kick ass. My music taste hasn't changed much since the days of high school but the music has. Back then the teeny bop sensations were Britney Spears and N-Sync. :::Insert gag::: Unfortunately I had a younger sister who was very much into them so I was exposed to such atrocities but have no fear, I did not let it take me over. I kept my metal and rock playing loudly, just loud enough to piss off the parental figures and drive them slightly mad. Ahhhh fun times LOL.

One of my favorite bands way back when was Pantera. They are still a favorite of mine and I am always in the mood to hear a good Pantera song. A lot of songs bring back memories of me growing up. Ex boyfriends, parties, hanging out with friends, driving around....oh wait I didn't have a radio in my car. I always get so excited when I hear a Pantera song on the radio. Mind you it's not often and it's usually only at night but it always brings a smile to my face. My absolute favorite song by them is Shedding Skin. The solo is just amazing. Trust me the louder you play this the better.

Now I wasn't an all metal girl. I liked the grunge bands and others in that genre. One band that has a bad rep to it is Hole. You know the whole Courtney Love killed Kurt debacle so everyone hates Courtney and all that she has done. Meh....I don't let it affect my judgement in music. If it's good I say play it.  One of the reasons I loved Hole was because they weren't your typical band that was afraid to touch the things they shouldn't touch on. You want loud, you want inappropriate, raw, and of course some punk thrown into the mix well them Hole is your band.

Metallica. Yes I listened to them but I wasn't one of those crazy people that thought they were the best band ever and the fathers of Heavy Metal. I argued back then that they weren't and I will argue today the same thing. But still you have to appreciate the early Metallica. They were a great band.  I will not however argue what their greatest song was and I don't have a favorite so I just chose at random the song that I am going to share.

And of course it wouldn't be a flash back post without me mentioning Faith No More. A group I still listen to now, they never get old. I know that their most popular song is Epic and what a great song title because the song is Epic. It is my favorite by them and I don't care what people say about Faith No More, they are a great band that was seriously underrated back in the day.

So there you have it. A glimpse of what I was like and what I listened to back in the day. Told you my taste hasn't changed. If you'd like to participate in this weeks Tuesday Tunes how about joining Amanda in her birthday celebration and share some songs from your past.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Sunset Sunday-A perfect weekend

With the weather being so beautiful outside lately my family and I have been practically living outdoors. I mean how can you spend your days inside when it's a perfect 80 degrees with a slight breeze. Yesterday was another beautiful day, we spent it at a local festival and then came home washed the car which led to the kids getting soaked which led to hours of fun. It was the perfect Saturday. And what better way to end it then watching the sunset together. By together I mean the kids running around playing and me outside watching them and the sunset. Perfect I tell you.

I hope you all had a beautiful weekend.

Do you love sunsets? Have tons and tons of photos of them? Even just a few photos? Craig from StayAdventurous and I would love for you to join us in Sunset Sundays. On the last Sunday of every month we will include a linky at the end of our post for you to share your photos. We can't wait to see everyone's Sunset Sunday photos!

I did my math wrong last week and thought this weeks Sunset Sunday fell on the 31st so I am doing the linky this week.