Friday, December 7, 2007

St. Nick's

So, I realize that our family is pretty much the only family of all the families i know who knows that this holiday exists. I was accused today of even making it up. Not true. I'm about to get educational on you so grab your number two pencil, your trapper keeper and take notes!

St. Nicholas was kindof the precurser to Santa Claus. It's a European tradition that came here along with all the immigrants. Mostly a Dutch holiday it's celebrated on December 5th, the day before the Feast of St. Nicholas or St. Nicholas Day, which is December 6th. Anyway, the tradition goes that St. Nicholas would travel to the homes of children on the night of December 5th and bring small gifts. Sound familiar? Well it should, the Dutch name for St. Nicholas is Sinterklaas (much like Santa Claus, right?). Sinterklaas eventually morphed into Santa Claus. Like so many other countries, in the US Santa Claus delivers presents on Christmas Eve. In Holland, among other countries in Europe, the gifts are delivered on the eve of the big feast. We are selfish in our family and celebrate both. St. Nicholas is on a much smaller scale and is kind of a "taste" of the big ol' Christmas extravaganza.

Ok, about the celebration now. The actual tradition has children placing their shoe out for St. Nick to deliver their goods into. This morphed as well, into stockings. If the child was good, they would expect fruit and nuts. If not, coal was their prize. WIth time, this grew to different types of gifts. Typically it's still a smaller, much less expensive gift. Maybe a cd or a small toy. Gifts are opened the morning of December 6th.

Anyway, we celebrated Connor's first St. Nick's this week. I hassled Jeffrey until he gave in and we opened our gifts on the night of the 5th. We'll do it right when it counts and Connor is old enough to know what is going on. So, I got Superbad the movie. Hilarity. Jeffrey got some Christmas cds he'd wanted and an Office quotes page a day calendar--this was truly a hint from me that it existed and I wanted one on christmas:) . when he didn't catch the subtlety of my hint-i told him where and how much. connor got the book The Night Before Christmas, which was originally based on St. Nick and eventually retold to include Santa stuff. He also got cute Christmas clothes.

I love holiday traditions:)

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Go Elf Yourself

So, I've had this emailed to me from about a dozen different people so i broke down and made our own. by the way, i wanted to add the kitties, but there is only room for four and i just couldn't choose between mira and zoey. after considering letting them fight it out in a winner take all kinda pay per view extravaganze, i decided to just post the humans:)

Enjoy and Happy Holidays!

The Barnes Family Elves

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Cake? Yes please.

well, i love television. i found a new show today. well, new to me. though i've told this to several people only to be told that it's been there favorite show for ever. nice. thanks.

anyway, it's Ace of Cakes on the Food Network. This show is hilarious. It's about this comany in Baltimore I think and they make custom cakes for weddings, birthday parties, whatever. so, today they made cakes to look like the following...

scrabble board...

They also had a slot machine cake, a bubble gum machine and lots of other stuff. check them out here. so, that's just a few of them. i think geof (jeff) is my favorite person on the show. he's sarcastic and super dry and i like that.
Does anyone else watch this?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Minimum Wage at work

so, i've often been told (over and over really), that my expectations on those in customer service is far too high. i am sorry, but is it truly too much to ask for the kid who rings me up at target to acknowledge me standing there in line purchasing my random goods?? aparently so. sad, sad.

here is a prime example of what i'm talking about...

my conversation with joann's fabric kid...

fabric guru: Joann's fabric, this is Karl.
me: yes, i'm calling to see if you carry scrapbook paper.
fabric guru: yeah, we've got that
me: great, do you have Christmas styles?
fabric guru: um, sure
me: ok, well i'm going to have to run over there on my lunch so you're sure?
fabric guru: i should really check first
me: great, thank you.
fabric guru: we have stickers for Hanukah
me: super. i'm actually looking for Christmas paper though.
fabric guro: the stickers are on sale though.
me: great, i'll check out the jewish stickers. but I really need Christmas paper.
fabric guro: yeah, we've got that too. I'm sure it's by the stickers
me: ok, because again i'll be using my lunch to go over there...
fabric guro: ok, i'll check

dialtone...super duper.

The End. Well, almost. turns out I just run over on lunch, buy my christmas paper and some other junk. then when i leave, he forgets to put the paper in my bag. i get all the way back to work and realize that this stellar employee gave me everything but the ever-important paper. seriously!?! so i call back and he truly says to me, yeah, i was wondering why you left them here. grr. thank you joann's fabric guy. you topped it off for me.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Paging Mr. A Knife

Oh wow. Last night was full of Hilarity with a capital H. I cannot decide if my favorite part was when Dwight broke out all of his hidden weaponry around the office, thank you Mr. A Knife or maybe it was when Jim nearly cried when Phyllis called him Michael. I have to say though, that it has to be when Michael yells "blacks do crack" to Stanley about his wrinkles. I peed a little I think:)

by the way, I just saw Melora Hardin who plays Jan on Chelsea Handler who is also hilarious. I'm sure it's on You Tube somewhere. She looked like a completely different person. She talks about her recents growth spurt on the show:) funny, funny.

Mommy brag time...

Yes, I have really been slacking on the blogging. I plead the exhausted mommy card on this one. I would say that I promise to be better, but I'd hate to promise that and space out on it again.
So, let's see...sticking with the mommy stuff Connor is amazing us with how much he's growing and developing! He now has two teeth which he uses on everything from the coffee table to the food tray on his stroller. When we took him out on Halloween he was gnawing on the stroller tray so long that he actually fell asleep on it...teeth locked in place! I tried taking a photo but was laughing too hard to get a shot!
Speaking of Halloween, we joined my sister in law, Megan, her husband Ryan and their kids Kaden (6) and Jacob (2). Yes, Connor went trick or treating. We didn't collect candy of course, but it was fun to just show him off in his adorable Tigger costume. It's got tummy padding and everyone kept calling him chubby, it was pretty funny. He was really good the whole time and just looked around at all the kids walking around in their costumes. Can't wait until next year when it will actually mean something to him!

Well, Connor has been making huge strides as far as development and that kinda stuff goes. He's full on crawling now, well for the past few weeks. He's fast enough to give the cats concern now so that's pretty darn fast. They used to just walk past him and smirk that he'd never be able to get to them before they'd be outta, they keep an eye on him at all times. Not only is he fast, but he's sneaky:) "Get the kitty" is becoming a funny daily event. He's also standing and pulling himself up on anything he can now. We had to drop his crib mattress to the lowest point a few weeks ago because we walked in to find him standing up in his crib just watching us. It was amazing and scary all at the same time. As freaking cliche as it may sound, he's just grown up so quick.

One of my best friends Ashley had her daughter yesterday morning and I just can't believe that only 6 months ago Connor was that tiny. Claire was 8lbs 3 oz and that's more than 2lbs more than Connor weighed. He just looked at her like, yeah, i'm bigger than you.

We had his 6 month photos taken in October, so here are some of the results. We are in love with them. Shout out to Portrait Innovations for doing a stellar job. Helps that my kid smiles constantly and is a complete ham for the camera!

Connor with all his animal friends. That's Righty the Elephant, Chomps the Alligator, Morris the Cat and Pepper the Puppy...

Yes, we had a professional photographer take a photo of our kid drooling...

Crawling baby...

Another cute one...

I believe I mentioned that he loves having his photo taken...
Ok, just a couple more...

You can always check out his site as well:

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Stupid Applejuice

So, as a parent you need to grow accostomed to messes and with messes come ruined items. The potentially ruined item provoking this entry is my cell phone. Only, the disappointing this here is that the cellphone, applejuice episode i'm referring to has zero to do with being a parent and everything to do with being a dummy.

Yesterday morning, i'm driving into work at 6 or something painfully early and i get a call on my phone. It's jeff needing to know where something or other is. when i'm done with the call, i go to put my phone back down on my console thingy in between my two front seats and i hear a slight splash. damn. this can't be good, right? correct. i look down and see my once clean phone, which is full of photos, texts i've kept, etc. seriously? damn.

so, of course i freak and while in traffic, attempt to forward my important photos and texts to jeffrey so i will have them once my phone implodes, which it inevitably will. Unfortunately, what i'm discovering is that with each passing moment another key is rendered useless in the applejuice flood of 2007. damn again. after about 10 minutes the only button that functions is the off key, so i use it.

i call verizon on my way in and the idiot laughs at me...who can truly blame him. in hindsight i suppose i could have simply told him that my phone got wet and it wasn't absolutely necessary to relate dipping my phone in juice, but who cares. i don't know this guy. he tells me to take my phone apart to let it dry for two days minimum. right. i'm going to be without my phone for over 48 hours?!? hardly. so, i give it four hours instead and put my phone back together. at this point, the bottom row of keys work...hooray, i was hoping to salvage that asterisk key-whew!! so, i turn it off again and try aboout six hours later. to my avail, all keys are working. slow and sticky but working.

so, in conclusion, my phone is restored, all photos and texts are safe and accounted for and all is right in my world again:)

Friday, September 28, 2007

My new job

so, since i'm new to this blog thing i'm doing some catch up.

i got a new job. after over 6 years of selling my soul at a job that i really think i thought i loved, i had a baby. this newfound family member forced me to take stock of my life and where i placed my priorities. i was way off. i think this truly hit me when i was sitting at my desk at 7pm the day before connor was born having full on horrible, nasty contractions and trying to train my replacement. what the hell is wrong with me??

now, this wasn't totally the fault of the job...i take responsibility as well. i tend to take on a lot. i've recently been labled a "joiner" which i fully concede to. i'm the president of our hoa (shut up, i don't care if you hate your hoa and they fined you for leaving your garbage can out-it's been two weeks, bring the sucker in!), a member of my sorority alumnae group, i'm in a book club, dinner club, card carrying member of the Republican National Committee. i'm sure there are other things, but i'm so damn overscheduled that i can't think of them now. i have a friend at the new job that relates me to Tracey Flick from the movie Election. This is an accurate comparison. Plus, it's reese witherspoon and i think that if i were a celebrity or she were a normal person, we'd be friends. Anyway, i digress, the job was quite overwhelming. 10 hour days at the office just to come home and work for a couple hours. then there is the cell phone umbilical cord that would suck me in at least once a night and several times throughout a normal weekend. i couldn't hide from this job. there was constant turnover in certain positions that i was responsible for and why this came as a shock to some people there, i'll never know. when you hire an 18 year old and pay them $10/hour to do way too much work they don't tend to stick around. it's called self preservation.

anyway, what this is leading up to is that i went on a quest to find a job that my responsibility was minimal and that when i clocked out for the day, i really went home. i left the job at the office and my time at home was spent the way it should be--with my family. now, i realize that this is not such a novel idea to some of you, but when your entire life has been overtaken by a job for several years you start to trick yourself into thinking that it's normal. it's not. my new job is great. i traded a job where i had several assistants booking my travel, getting me coffee and all that goes along with it to a new job where i am the assistant. i've got to say that at first, i struggled a bit. i was somewhat embarassed to say that i'd taken such a cut in "work status" which i know sounds horrible. but it is what it is. my focus was improving my quality of life and i truly did. this new job has vacation time that is nothing to scoff at, unlike said previous job. the benefits are amazing and you actually get holidays off. i know that getting holidays off is something many feel is obvious, well not in the previous job. you're lucky to get the big 4: xmas, easter, thanksgiving and new years day off, so you can imagine my delight at the thought of enjoying Labor day at home:)

Here I go

well, after much consideration, i've decided to go ahead and start up my own blog. Do people out there really want to know what i'm thinking, what i'm doing, how my world is, well probably not but i do think these serve as a great outlet to journal about what's going on without reverting to junior high and cracking out the pink and purple diary. so, that being said, i'll begin.

some things about me. i like to write in all small letters. this is surely out of pure laziness, i am aware, but it also allows me to type quicker and with greater ease. so, now i am not just lazy but time conscious.

i live in chandler with my handsome husband jeffrey and our son, connor who is 5 months old right now. connor has his own site if you want to check it out. i'll still use his page for All Things Connor and will use this one for me stuff, and Jeff stuff and the small, occasional Connor update. here's a photo of our little family on mother's day this year...

As you can see, the little guy is super small here...about one month old i think. he's much bigger now. sitting up, rolling over, trying solid foods...the whole thing. he'll be crawling any day now. here's a pic of him now...

well, that's all for right now. i'll post again next time i'm feeling clever or when i have something to update everyone with.