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>Interior Design

>Our home has been needing some new decorating updates lately, at least so Little Bear seems to have been thinking. She also informed me that there were some holes in the wall that Poppa Bear had not fixed yet and she was going to fix it for Mommy. 

Our Interior Designer set out to work….

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After hours of planning and the blood and sweat that went into the labor of repairs and decorating, the final outcome was this…..

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Isn’t the remodel just lovely?  I am so lucky to find such a talented interior designer at such short notice…and with such creativity. Amazing!

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>Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! I’m going to bring back the weekly freebies installment here on the ol’ bloggy. Below, please find all the freebies that i’ve come across via blogs, facebook, emails or the likes over the course of the week. For those that I find and know will go quickly, i’ll post on my daily posts otherwise look for them here on Friday’s.  Without further ado…

Health and Beauty
Bath and Body Works Signature Collection Travel-Size Item with any purchase
Origins Plantscriptions Serum
Vaseline Intensive Rescue Lotion

Food
Free Cup of Yoplait Yogurt
Coffee-Mate Creamer
Cheez-Its
Brownie Sundae at Chili’s

Home
Homeschool Study Charts and Worksheets
Organize in Style Coupon Book

Entertainment
14 FREE MP3 songs from Amazon

And then, of course, we cannot forget about this week’s Freebie Events…
February 4 – 10

4Michaels: Create a Valentine’s Day Candy Photo Holder, 4 pm – 6 pm.
5Michaels: Create a Wilton Candy Melt Pops, 1 pm – 3 pm.
5 Home Depot: Build a Heart Shelf, 9 am – 12 pm.

I’ll see you here next Friday for another installment of Freebie Friday! Enjoy your weekend and your freebies!

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Search & Win

What does this mean exactly? Well, every Friday the wonderful people at Swagbucks increase the rewards on your everyday searches! For today only you will have greater chance of earning larger SwagBucks! You could even win up to 500 SwagBucks! (Just now I earned 3 for searching Blogger to post this. Anything more than 1 or 2 SwagBucks just rocks my socks.). You can also learn more about it from my post here.

If you don’t have a SwagBucks account, today would be a great day to sign up! You’ll earn 3 SwagBucks just for signing up!

If you hit the 500 SwagBucks you’ll have to let me know. I’d be so excited for you.

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Whelp, I did it. Despite being sick yesterday I did my Week 3, Workout 2 of the Girls Gotta Move 5k training program. I was not feeling so in-the-depths-of-dispair sick that I couldn’t workout. I mean, I just did not want to miss this workout. It was an important progressive one. It was one where instead of running for three walking for two I was running for four walking for two for 25 minutes. See, I could not miss this workout! 

Since I was sick and quite determined I took the proactive approach and used my noggin. When it came to running I just ran at a 4.5 pace and walked at a 3.4 pace. It was super easy and smooth sailing. Truth be told, it didnt feel like working out too much. I did not want to push it tho…being sick and all. Actually, truth be told, I felt pretty darn good after the workout.  🙂 

I did not wake up feeling that same greatness tho. I ended up waking up with the dreaded chest cough that the Poppa Bear and now Little Bear have as well. Rut Ruh Rorge!!!! That’s okay, today’s a scheduled rest day on the program and depending on how I feel, I might just skip out on the cross training day tomorrow (or do yoga instead!).  We’ll see how i’m feeling but until then…it’s lots of fluids, lots of vitamin C and lots of Dayquil and Nyquil.

And yes, despite my sickies the last few days, i’ve managed to eat exactly what was on the schedule. If I didnt, it was in the form of not being hungry and I just skipped that meal. O wait, scratch that..no, i had cereal for dinner last night. OK, so not too bad yesterday but it could have been a major derail. Glad it wasn’t.  Now please excuse me while I go and blow my nose……but before I go….

How do you handle your workouts when you get sick? Do you skip them? Take them down a notch?
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>Earlier last month, I mentioned one goal of mine this year was to read more. I took the Goodreads challenge and am planning to read 24 books this year.

The books that were on my list for January were The Hungry Games and The Corner of Bitter and Sweet.

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I am happy to report that I did complete The Hungry Games but did not finish The Corner of Bitter and Sweet. I could not even renew my rental because it had a hold on it for another reader. Le Sigh….so, for now, it’s back on the “to-read” list. However, it was replaced with Honolulu.  Which, I am still finishing off.

The Hunger Games Triology by Suzanne Collins
(Description below from MomAdvice)
This story follows an unlikely heroine, named Katniss, who lives in District 12 with her mother and sister. It is not an easy life as Katniss is responsible for the hunting for her family just to make sure their family has food on the table, especially since the death of her father.

Even tougher for the family though is the annual reaping day where the government chooses two children from each district to compete in a battle to the death, leaving only one winner of their annual Hunger Games. When Katniss’ sister’s name is drawn, Katniss does the only thing she can think of…she volunteers to take her sister’s place to save her life. Paired with the baker’s son, Peeta, whom she has known since she was a child, she is thrown immediately into the ring to begin a battle to the death.

The battle is televised for everyone in the district and it is the stories of those in battle that the audience can find endearing or come to hate. Should they love who is competing, they can gather the proceeds in their district to offer their team’s district team gifts to help sustain them in battle. The coaches for the District 12 team realize that one way that they can make the audience members truly love Peeta & Katniss is by creating a love story between them. It is this story that they must continue to act out throughout the battle as alliances are made, broken, and lives are lost.

Lucky for Katniss, she is strong with a bow and arrow and it is her strength that will help carry her through the battle. The series is written for young adults and young girls will definitely find a lot of love for Katniss as a strong female who can measure up to the men in battle.


I really, really, really enjoyed this book!! I thought it was a rather slow start and a bit confusing at first but by the time I reached about page 30 or so it captured me and I did not want to put it down. Very rivitting and a big page turner!! I’m anxiously awaiting the arrival of the second in the trilogy as I currently have it on hold at the library and it’s not in yet (after three weeks of waiting! eep!) This book is a definate must read.

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
(Description below from MomAdvice)
The book is an endearing story about Henry Lee, a Chinese American living in Seattle, who has just lost his wife to cancer. After he hears that the belongings of Japanese immigrants were found in the basement of the Panama Hotel, the book begins a journey through his life currently and flashing back to his childhood where an unlikely friendship began with a Japanese girl named Keiko that has carried with him through his adulthood.

Henry Lee’s father desires for him to have the “American dream,” and he receives a scholarship to attend an all-white private school where he can get the education he needs to succeed in America. The other students taunt him mercilessly and his only reprieve from the taunting is when he is serving food in the cafeteria. While serving the food, he finds the only other student of minority, a beautiful girl named Keiko, and they develop a fast friendship. Unfortunately, Henry’s father wants nothing to do with the Japanese and his growing love for Keiko has to be kept a secret.

When Keiko is shuffled over to a camp, to protect the Japanese from the anti-Japanese sentiments during WWII, Henry knows that he must find a way to go to her and to be with her. Through the help of the lady on staff in the cafeteria, he scores a position working on Saturdays where he can see and be with Keiko. Their friendship and love grow through their letters and Saturdays together and Henry is forced to choose between his family or the girl that he loves.

As I said, I did not get to finish this book yet but I really enjoyed it thus far and have the other half to finish. I certainly would recommend this one as a must-read also.

Honolulu by Alan Brennert
(Description below from MomAdvice)
This book chronicles the life of Regret, whose name speaks volumes about how her father felt about having a daughter, in 20th century Korea. Regret has a strong desire to read and learn and through some unlikely assistance from her aunt, she makes friends with a prostitute who offers to give Regret lessons in reading. As Regret learns, she begs her family to allow her to go to school, but her father has no desire to have a learned daughter. When he discovers Regret knows how to read, he raises a hand to her and Regret knows that she cannot stay in their home any longer.

When she hears that prosperous Korean men that have moved to Hawaii are looking for mail-order brides, she decides that this will be the best way to get away from her traditional family. She submits her picture and is accepted as a bride, she looks forward to beginning a new chapter in Hawaii.

Prosperous does not begin to describe the men that meet these mail order brides though. Many are much older and much poorer than the pictures led these brides to believe and Regret finds herself with a field worker who has very little and expects no less than a traditional bride.

The reader gets to go on the journey with Regret as she is in a loveless marriage, as she struggles to make ends meet, as she makes friends with unlikely people, as she finds true love, and as she finds that her best friends and allies just happened to be her fellow mail order brides. This is a beautiful tale filled with the politics and history of 20th century Korea, including well-documented research surrounding court battles and politics that were happening during this era.


I am really enjoying reading this story thus far. I’m only into three chapters and am already captivated by the story plot. I cannot wait to continue and finish reading this beautiful story.


Althought I did not meet my two book challenge this month I feel that a book and a half is still a great read for someone getting back into reading. I can’t wait to dig my nose into all these books and see where they take me.

If you have a book you’re passionate about or just really like and think i’d love to read it, I am always up for recommendations. I also take some of my recommendations from fellow readers over on Goodreads.com. If you are not a member of that site yet and love to read, I highly suggest you register. It’s free to join and a valuable resource for any reader.  If you like, friend me. I’m under sunshinekathie. Hope to see you over there. I would love to see what is on your list of read, to-read or want to read.

What has been in your book stack this month?

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>It was bound to happen

>Before we get into the nitty gritty, I want to show you the map of the weather forecast we had yesterday into today…

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Pretty crazy, right? HAHAHA! (I so loved this and just had to share – and why it got tossed around on Facebook yesterday versus the weekend is beyond me. Still, it’s rather hilarious!)

Tis the season for the sickies. As you all know, the Poppa Bear has been down for the count for the last few days. I finally convinced him to see the doctor as I was afraid it was walking phenomonia (spelling?). Turns out, I was almost right. LOL! The Dr said because he did not have a fever or a constant one all day that he did not have the walking phenomonia but broncitis. That’s not to say he couldn’t get it just that it’s a good thing he came in when he did. He was given an antibiotic, an inhaler and instructions to rest.

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Of course he went into work shortly after his appointment. He’s not the type of guy that can sit and rest if he can help it. I told him I understood but if he has to go in to please take it down a few notches. We don’t want to end up having to admit him into the hospital later on. Well, he woke up this morning already feeling better..imagine that. However, not before giving it to both Little Bear and I.

That’s right folks, i’m officially under the weather now myself. I woke up yesterday morning with an uncomfortable cough. You know the kind, sore but not really. scratchy but not really..just uncomfortable. As the day progressed the throat was getting worse and I could feel my body shutting down. Come 2pm it was really starting to wear me down. I’m a Momma though and nothing stops for us so I kept pushing through, fighting it to get the daily responsibilities done…dinner (The lazy kind because I was feeling SICK), Photobucket dinner clean up, tend to the Little Bear, evening baths and showers. I was fading and fading fast! I can’t tell you how many times I just stopped what I was doing and just laid on the floor. HA!

Poppa bear was kind enough to run to the local CVS for me to grab some tissues, something for my throat (that I forgot to take a picture of), those cool shower tablets for when you’re sick (I really like them). When he went to the store, I managed to gather up the evening necessities Photobucket  because at 6:30, I was getting a hot shower and getting into my jammies. That there neutralizer above I will post about later but I basically I put it in a basin of warm water and soak my feet for thirty minutes. It helps release any toxins my body carries. It’s good stuff and i’ve been using it for six years!

What’s even worse is now the Little Bear has it too. She started coughing on Sunday and last night she was saying her throat hurt and had a hard time sleeping. This morning, she did not want her Mommy to go to work and even brought out the water works. Talk about making me feel bad. =(  My heart was broken but I had to come to work. Le Sigh…..I just hope she doesnt get any worse and I can nip that in the bud fairly quickly. This thing that Poppa Bear is passing around the house is awful and just too awful for a three year old to have.

Needless to say folks, my cross-trainng day on the workout schedule did not happen last night and I’m okay with that. I wanted to rest up because today’s supposed to be a minute increase in my 5k run training program and I dont want to miss it. I am hoping for the best and going to try to do it tonight anyway – despite being sick. Even if I have to run slooowwww im doing it. Im three weeks and am not going to be derailed now and have to start over. I just really dislike when that happens. Here’s hoping today will be a good day, so far i’m feeling like poop!

How’s the Winter Cold Season around your house? Have you been lucky enough to avoid it thus far? How do you handle being sick? What are some of your go-to’s – whether food or over the counter medications?

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It’s that time again…Weekly Check In’s with the Sisterhood. Wow! Has a week gone by already?! Time is moving too fast! I need to step up my game. Ha!

Here’s my check in/recap for this week. Overall, it wasn’t too bad.  Here’s the low down…..

  1. Wednesday through Tuesday I did consume my five servings of fruits and vegetables. I also logged my food every day in my “handy dandy notebook” like a good little girl. I seem to be progressing well although i’m just clearning the five. i’d like to include some more veggies. we’ll see what i can do about that.
  2. Wednesday through Tuesday I did consume my eight glasses of water. it’s starting to get a lot easier now versus having to remember and make myself drink it all.
  3. Wednesday through Tuesday I did get up and move!! The 5k training this week week is going really well as is Gina’s Winter Shape Up 2011 program that I’m following on the cross-training days of the 5k training.
  4. Weigh In….No Loss. No Gain. That’s okay with me. 

  How did your week shape up to be?

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