Saturday, October 31, 2009

Vampire, Witch, or Zombie???

I Am a Vampire

Like a vampire, I can be a bit cold and heartless at times. I am very calculating. I think with my head, and I know better than to follow my heart. While I am as thick skinned and resourceful as a vampire, I am not evil. I can easily manipulate people into doing what I want. Whether I actually choose to manipulate them or not is a different matter.

Trick or Treat??

I am a trick!

I was a very mischievous kid, and I still have a naughty streak in me as an adult. I may not go off and toilet paper people's houses anymore, but I'm still up for a lighthearted prank every now and then. I am truly fearless. I live in the moment, and I'm ready to take on any challenge or dare. My wild antics sometimes do get me in trouble, but I'm also very talented at getting myself out of trouble!

Double, Double, Toil and Trouble; Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble

My witch name is Vesta. Luba's witch name is Esmerelda. Dasha's witch name is Other Esmerelda.

Discover my Halloween Personality

I See Halloween as Fun

The scariest thing on Halloween is me! Sneaky and devious, people should really watch out for me. I am usually underestimated and forgotten. My inner child is open minded, playful, and adventurous. I truly fear the dark side of humanity. I am a true misanthrope. I'm logical, rational, and not easily effected. Not a lot scares me... especially when it comes to the paranormal. I am picky and high maintenance. If I wear a Halloween costume, it's only when I really feel like it. And it has to be perfect.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

My Family Rules (They Really Do!)

thank God for this day, for this family, for this home
sing silly, dance crazy, hug often, snuggle up, say i love you
be creative at all times
use kind words - obey your parents - always tell the truth
share everything... except bad ideas
say what you are sorry for... forgiveness is mandatory
give your guest your best
husband love your wife - wife always be on his side
hands are for hugging not hitting
there is no "mine" in this house - it's all God's
encourage your siblings... share in their joy
too much t.v. is bad. too much reading is good.
act responsibly, be respectful, choose wisely
love the Lord your God

Happy National Candy Corn Day!!!

National Candy Corn Day is today. Enjoy a handful of this sweet Fall treat. And, what perfect timing. National Candy Corn Day comes just a day before Halloween. That means you can eat plenty of it, before you go out Trick or Treating.

Candy corn is enjoyed all year long. Place it in a candy dish any time of the year, and watch it disappear by the handful. By far, the vast majority of candy corn is consumed during the Fall months, with both Halloween and Thanksgiving being the biggest times to eat it.

Candy corn was invented in the 1880s by George Renninger, and first manufactured by the Wunderle Candy Company. The Goelitz Candy company was the first to manufacture mass quantities around the turn of the century.

Candy corn consists primarily of corn syrup, honey, and sugar. There's lots of carbs(sugar), but it's fat free!?

Have a happy National Candy Corn Day.

Vacation.......What's That?

Have Family, Will Travel: While I would love to take a 5-star vacation with no kid-friendly amenities, the kids wouldn't like that very much, so my vacation style tends to be of the family-friendly variety. School vacation schedules also limit when I can travel, but the good thing is that all of the other families with children travel at that time too, so there are plenty of friends for the kids to make

Eleven Ways to Layer and Wear Sweaters

1. Dynamic Duo. Add a classic cardigan sweater twinset
to your “must
have” pieces. This twinset
consists of a knit sweater shell with a matching
cardigan sweater. Dress this classic set up or down. Mix or
match the pieces for a variety of different looks. For a more dressed up
look simply pair it with a popular pencil skirt or classic Aline
skirt and
boots. Or match your classic sweater set up with a pair of dark washed
2. Whitewashed. Wear a crisp white collared shirt with a longer length knit
sweater vest over the top. (The waist being highlighted this year, belt it, if
you like.)
3. Tee Time. Try a long-sleeved
tee in a pretty color and match it up with a
men’s wear vest over the top. Jeans, a classic skirt or dress slacks and
boots will complete the look. Add a one-of-a-kind
statement necklace for
an eclectic look.
4. Short over long. Wear a ¾ sleeved cropped sweater over the top of a
classic long-sleeved
tee you already have. What a great layered look to
5. Plaidtastic!
Wear a lightweight
turtleneck sweater, a red knit scarf and
a glen plaid skirt or pants in charcoal gray. Plaids are always ontrend
fall fashion.
6. Black is back! You can’t go wrong with a woman’s best friend…figure
friendly black! Look for body slimming black and grays this fall, from
heather gray to charcoal. Liven things up with a splash of red in your
shoes, accessories or handbag.
7. Go Long. Wear a thin longer silhouette knit sweater or tee with a newer
fitted jacket over the top.
8. Flashback Baby! Go for black leggings or opaque black tights this season
and wear a sweater dress over the top (belted or unbelted). What a stylish
way to stay warm!
9. What’s old is new again. Take that cardigan (from the twinset)
wear a cami or tee in a contrasting color underneath. Pull your look
together with a vintage-style
locket. What’s old—is new…again!
10. The Sassy Librarian Look. Wear a cream colored shirt blouse and top
it with a chocolatecolored
“boyfriend” sweater (longer length cardigan).
Now add a belt over your sweater for some feminine definition. A plaid
pencil skirt or trumpet skirt (flared at the hem) completes this sassy style.
11. Layered in Lace. Layer a lacy camisole underneath your shirt and wear a
sleeveless pullover or cardigan on top. Mixing classic pieces and lace give
you an ultra feminine look others will envy.

I'm No Helicopter Parent

I am a Straightforward Parent: I am not overly involved with all the details of my children's lives. While I certainly make sure my children have everything they need, I am not one to baby them. I would prefer my children be independent and self-sufficient.

Someone Else for One Night

Historical: In an ideal world, I would love to don a wig and go dressed in period Marie Antoinette costume. Or in a vintage flapper dress as a bohemian from the roaring '20s.


I'm Moderate Marianne:
I'll go along to get along, but I'm not a total pushover. If there's something worth fighting for, I'm all over it, but I'm not going to become a total diva-queen just to get my way. The picture fairness and balance, I've got my diva in check and am not too difficult to handle – making me a pleasure to be around.

Are You a Skilled Survivor or a Rose-Receiving Romantic?? Which Type of Reality Show Star Are You?

I belong on The Apprentice: I have always had a will to succeed and my drive will help me rise above the rest. I love all things business and am not afraid to dress the part. After putting in a little overtime there is no way I would get fired.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Have You BEAN(sprout) There?

Is it possible to love a camera? But I do! I totally do love my new camera. Couldn't take the consuming worry & fear I felt every time I took our "real" digital camera to my classroom. Always seemed to need it at home AND in my classroom, too. So I bought one to keep in my classroom. And I lurve it. It is the simplest, least expensive, (and cutest) one I could find. PLUS it is a carabiner camera so I should be able to just clip it on and therefore never forget, right? So what is this new love in my life? Check out all the dirt below:

The Sprout is here to help your little adventurer keep their exploits with them anywhere. The Sprout is the Bean’s little cousin; just as tough as the Bean, but just the right size for younger fun-lovers. The simple Sprout is a great way to introduce a first-time user to the convenience and value of digital camera technology. Due to the Sprout’s versatile clip-on design, there’s no need to worry about your sprout losing track of their Sprout.

Camera Specifications:

Status LCD Display


USB cable (included)

Li-Ion Rechargeable

Friday, October 23, 2009

What is Your Virtue?

What's Your Virtue® is excited to offer its first line of lip gloss "lip bliss™". Lip Bliss™ contains cranberry seed oil, a fantastic moisturizer that contributes to the lipid barrier protection of the skin and assists in moisture retention. Lip Bliss™ will keep your lips silky soft and is long lasting with just the perfect blend of color and shine.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

It's about time for a post-surgery update. Sean visited with Dr. D'Astous today and came away with a glowing report. There is still much pain ... and now boredom with the whole ordeal. But physically he is healing well and making the adjustment to all the internal change. Dr. Osborn also put Sean on Tamiflu to protect him from all the nasty bugs out there. And Sean got his swine flu vaccination.

So I suppose there's nothing more for us to do except to try to ease him back into life after surgery. He is quite enjoying wearing underwear again! Clothes are also a nicety to which he had become unaccustomed. Hoping for lovely weather so we can make some outings out-of-doors.

Here's to looking tall & handsome!!

Jazz Up Your Wardrobe

Tips and tricks to get more mileage from your clothes and accessories....

If your focus has been on looking after the kids, the husband and the house, it’s high time you got your groove back by adding beauty to your daily routine. Sounds impossible? Think again.

Breathe Life Into a Brooch

Take an old brooch and pin it to a cloth clutch or quilted cosmetic case, says Robert Verdi, celebrity stylist and host of the Style Network’s “Fashion Police.” Suddenly you have a fashionable evening bag. Or pin a rhinestone or crystal brooch to a ribbon and wear it as a choker.

Cinch Your Waist

Fitted waists look very fresh right now, declares Dannielle Romano, editor at large of the e-mail newsletter “Daily Candy.” An easy way to create one is with a wide belt. Dig one out and wear it with flowing dresses or skirts. Want another belt trick? Verdi recommends saving a beautiful ribbon from a holiday gift and wearing it as a belt with jeans or khakis. “Whether it’s grosgrain or satin, a ribbon can kick an outfit into high gear,” he says. “It can make a casual weekend outfit look festive.”

Create Some Scarf Magic

Scarves are a simple but elegant way to add some splash to your evening look. Romano likes using a tiny scarf as a headband or as a sweet little bow on a handbag.

Give Your Shoes a Shine

An old pair of clip-on earrings can give your plain pumps an edgy new style. “Take a pair of those great big chunky clip — on earrings from the 1950s and ’60s — the ones you find at flea markets, thrift stores or in your mother’s jewelry case — and clip them to the front of the toe box,” Verdi recommends. Also stash a pair of earrings in your desk. “It’s convenient for a work-to-evening party look.”

Mix Up Your Baubles

Wearing the same earrings and necklace combinations can become passé. Give your accessories a fresher look by breaking up the sets. For example, wear a beaded necklace with diamond studs, Verdi says. If you don’t have diamond earrings, wear inexpensive crystals. Also try layering your necklaces, says Laura Eisman, founder of Pair a longer necklace with a shorter one. “This can make your everyday jewelry look brand-new,” Eisman says.

Forward Fashion on a Budget

Looking to inject your closet with a little more fun — like trendy diaphanous dresses and boho beading — without stretching your budget? These looks can be yours for the taking, New York City stylists say, if you know where to look and what to look for.

But first, a word of shopping caution: For good coats, boots or other items that you’ll wear for years to come, stick to the classics. For up-to-the-minute fun, shop on!

Hit the racks. Stylist Laura Maffeo makes a point of popping into some of the fast-fashion retailers that have made a mark in recent years with their spot-on, yet affordable apparel. “Stores like Target and H&M have designer lines,” she notes. “These lines are very fun, very fresh and very inexpensive.”

Think ahead. You’ll always find the best deals on clothing that is out of season, says Jay del Rosario, another New York stylist. “I tell people that the way to save is always to be shopping.” The rewards can be great. “I love finding leather jackets in the heat of summer and swimsuits in winter,” del Rosario says.

Accessorize. Want to try out a new trend without committing to it? It’s easy with accessories, says stylist Kayte Terry. “Add a bangle or two in purple or citrus — the hottest shades of the season — or a scarf with an interesting ethnic print and you’ve instantly updated your look.”

Shop sales. Even the best stores have regular sales. “Don’t miss out,” Maffeo says. “Call up your favorite store and find out when the next one is.” You may have to wait only a week or two to get a terrific deal on, say, new hothouse floral motifs.

Think two for one. Don’t shop solely by event or season, del Rosario says. Instead think broadly to get more use out of your apparel. For example, he says, consider buying lightweight cashmere separates rather than bulky winter knits or light summer sweaters. “When it’s cold, layering cashmere can be warm and cozy and add a touch of luxury,” del Rosario says. “In spring a cashmere knit is perfectly lightweight and always appropriate.”

Surf for coupons. You’ve found the perfect coral clutch for spring while shopping online; before you check out, take a moment to Google for an online shopping code or coupon. “Often,” del Rosario says, “you’ll find a savings, ranging from free shipping to a good percentage off, that wasn’t offered directly on the site.”

Get thrifty. Another great way to update your wardrobe on the cheap is to hit your local flea markets and thrift shops. “New trends are often recycled from eras goneby, so it makes sense to buy pieces secondhand,” Terry says. This spring, for example, Terry says she’ll be on the hunt for dirndl skirts, romantic blouses, wide-leg trousers and anything patchwork — all now-fashionable looks that were also in a few decades ago.

Be unique. Consider buying an artful item directly from an indie designer or crafter. You’ll get something unique for a price that’s right. Websites that group crafters together, such as, are a great place to start. Also, Terry notes, springtime means a new craft fair season: “Fairs can be the perfect places to find that special new skirt or one-of-a-kind necklace.”

How Healthy Is Your Hair?

Take this quiz to see how your mane measures up.

What we do — or don’t do — to our hair can have a big impact on how it looks and feels. If your tresses need TLC, simply alter your hair care routine. Do your hair habits need a change?

1. On a regular basis, I dry my hair:

A. with a blow-dryer on high heat. I’m always in a rush!
B. with the dryer set to low or no heat, or I just let it air-dry naturally.

2. I use a conditioner:

A. a few times a week when my hair feels tangled and unruly.
B. every time I wash my hair.

3. My hairbrush has:

A. hard metal bristles.
B. soft short plastic or natural bristles.

4. To get my hair off my face, I:

A. pull it back into a ponytail with a rubber band.
B. secure it with a snag-free band to prevent damage.

5. I choose my shampoos and conditioners based on:

A. their fragrance. Always having great-smelling hair is extremely important to me.
B. what my hair needs. I pick products that help keep my hair moisturized so it always looks great.


Mostly As: You want beautiful hair, but you may be causing damage. Hair responds best when you treat it gently and use products made for your needs. Try lowering the heat on your blow-dryer, using a soft-bristled brush, opting for hair accessories that don’t snag, and using a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner specific to your hair’s needs.

Mostly Bs: Congratulations! You’re good to your tresses. The gentle products you use and the regular conditioning you do keep your hair manageable, maintained and healthy. Now get out there and flaunt your lustrous locks!

Congratulations to me (ALL Bs she says smugly) - looks like some lock flaunting is in my future.

When to Toss Makeup

Cleaning out your bulging makeup case, crammed medicine cabinet or jam-packed bathroom drawer? To help you find items that are past their prime (or squeeze a few extra months out of seasonal ones), here’s a product-by-product breakdown that can help you put your best face forward.

Cleansers, Moisturizers, Exfoliants

If a product has changed color or texture, separates after being shaken several times, smells strange or is missing its lid, toss it. As a rule, skin-care staples are good for a year after they’re opened. An exception: Products with vitamin C should be thrown out after six months.

Powder, Blush, Bronzer, Eye Shadow

All powdered items are safe to use for up to three years. Keep them fresh by gently scraping the surface of each with a butter knife, which will remove facial oils and restore the product’s original consistency.


No need to ditch this too quickly; lipstick is good for about two years. Try blending shades—layer a spring pink over a darker hue, for example — to get year-round use out of them.


Replace liquids and creams about every six months and powder formulas once a year. As the seasons change, you can alternate a more hydrating winter foundation with a newly purchased water-based or oil-free version; once your skin adapts, toss the old foundation and switch to the new one full-time.


Replace it every three months, but save the wand: Wash it thoroughly with soap and water, and use it as a brow-grooming tool.

Makeup Kit Essentials

A no-nonsense guide to easy makeup application.

It doesn’t take a battalion of brushes or an expensive makeup kit to polish a fabulous face. “With the right essentials, you can freshen up in minutes,” says celebrity makeup artist Billy B. Here’s everything you need.

Eyelash Curler

Every woman should own this little marvel. Hold the curler at the base of the lash line and squeeze lightly, gradually moving outward. Your eyes will instantly look more alive.

Cotton Swab

The secret to truly top-notch makeup application is to blend, blend, blend. Blur edges of color with a Q-tips® cotton swab, and you'll achieve that professional look each time.

Concealer Brush

Instead of masking your face in a heavy foundation, use a concealer brush to cover up dark spots and blend away imperfections.

Slant-Tip Tweezers

Good tweezers are a must for maintaining a polished arch to your brows. Slanted tips make it easier to grab hairs at the root — just tweeze in the direction the hair is growing.

Big Powder Brush

An oversize brush is great for dusting on translucent powder as a finishing touch to your look. You’ll get a sheerer application than you'd get from an old-fashioned puff.

Hot Makeup for Cool Weather

Feeling a little intimidated by fall’s brighter makeup shades? Try these expert tips for choosing and applying your best cool-weather colors.

The fashion world is abuzz about bold, bright makeup colors for fall and winter, says professional makeup artist Mally Roncal. “Think peacocky jewel tones,” she says. But how do real women make these vibrant hues work for their everyday lives? It’s easy — when you learn a few of Roncal’s tricks.

Choose the right color eye shadow for you. Any woman can wear this season’s deep plums and lush greens, says Roncal. It’s all in the tone you choose. “We’re not wearing those colors the way we wore them in the ’80s,” she explains. “Today’s look is more subtle.” Still nervous? “Experiment with eyeliner in one of these colors instead of shadow,” suggests Roncal. And choose pencil over liquid liner. “It’s more forgiving,” she says.

Go for a smoky–eye look. “Q–tips® cotton swabs are your friends,” says Roncal. “They really help give you a professional look.” After you apply that pencil eyeliner, “smudge it out for an instant smoky eye,” she suggests.

Cover your bases. What if you do want to try that forest–green shadow? Make sure it doesn’t end up in the crease of your eye by lunchtime. “Apply eye–shadow base before you apply your eye makeup. That’s my No. 1 secret for a professional–looking eye,” says Roncal. She also recommends using a makeup primer before applying foundation. “Many women fight a constant battle with their makeup, and it ends up running by the end of the day. Using eye–shadow base and makeup primer is a bulletproof way to look fierce all day!”

Make fall lip colors work for you. Red and hot pink are big for fall, but that can seem like a lot of color if you’re used to having a more natural–looking lip, says Roncal. “We have to get used to seeing ourselves with a bolder lip,” she explains. “It’s all about training the eye.” One way to ease into a bolder lip color is to start with a gloss “for just a pop of color,” says Roncal. “Then transition to a sheer lipstick. Finally, you can go to a full–on lipstick.”

Thursday, October 15, 2009

12 Simple Ways to Reimagine a Room

The goal: re-imagining a room’s design and then using what you already have to pull your vision together at no cost.

Here are some tips from Doyle McCullar of Doyle McCullar Fine Interiors.

Pull Away from the Wall

In many rooms, all the seating is up against the walls—creating an unwelcoming look. “Rearrange the living room furniture to create a new focal point,” says McCullar. For example, you could pull the sofa and loveseat away from the wall and arrange them into an L-shaped area, midroom.

Use Bookshelves as Dividers

Bookshelves can help break up big spaces into more manageable, livable areas. Put a bookshelf next to a sofa to serve as a divider and create a more private space.

Create a "Zone"

A rug adds instant definition by breaking up a large room and creating a “zone.” Take an area rug from another room and use it in your bedroom seating area or beneath a group of living room chairs to quickly reinvent and pull together the whole space.

Lift Up Your Lamps

Literally. “Add height to existing table lamps by placing them on top of large books with attractive covers,” says McCullar. You can even create custom book covers yourself.

Tell a Color Story

Tabletop accessories have more impact if you group like colors in one room. “Go through the house and find accessories from one general color group, and put them all in the same room,” says McCullar. Doing this creates a story with color and makes things look focused and cohesive.

Let There Be Light

"Throw open the shades and blinds you normally leave closed," says McCullar, noting that will help you look at the space in a new light.

Rethink the Walls

Check the attic and basement for forgotten art; everyone seems to have old photos, prints or paintings tucked away. "Change the pictures on the wall with ones you have stored, for an instantly fresh look," says McCullar, noting that this is one of the most dramatic ways to change a room’s look.

Reposition a Vase

Often, colorful vases get lost in living or dining rooms, even if they’re on shelves or in a display cabinet. If that’s the case, McCullar says, move them to a sunny windowsill in the kitchen to better reflect light and create a more playful look.

Move Your Pillows Around

"Try switching all the accent pillows from the bedroom with the ones in the living room," proposes McCullar.

Group Collections Together

To add an interesting focal point to a room, consider all the types of items you collect and then pick one and group all like items together. Accessories are more effective in a grouping of four or five on a shelf or cabinet, rather than one or two per room, where they might get lost among the other elements.

Make Potted Plants More Important

If plants are not in visually appealing pots or a big plant appears to be teetering in a little pot, it’s time to reimagine your houseplants. "Repot a large plant into a larger container than what it’s already in, using one you may have stored in the garage," says McCullar.

Bring In Nature

Don’t be afraid to blur the lines between inside and outside by bringing the outside in. If you have a backyard, you have access to instant décor. "Make an arrangement of newly budded branches from trees or flowering shrubs in your yard to bring a bit of spring indoors," says McCullar.

Doyle McCullar has developed a loyal client base and has accepted projects across the greater Western United States.

He has developed an especially loyal client base in San Francisco and the Bay Area.

His reputation for excellence and his resource knowledge run deep from many years of experience within the architecture and design community

He has made several national guest appearances on Home & Garden Television's "Curb Appeal," "Double Take" and "100 Sizzling Ideas For Summer."

His offices are located in San Francisco, California.

My Glade Scented Oil Candle Tin

  • Glade® Scented Oil Candles Tins are an attractive way to quickly fill any room with fragrance.
  • Each candle tin is portable and unbreakable, so you can now enjoy Scented Oil Candles in any place you choose, from your living room to your bathroom and kitchen.
  • Each tin is refillable with any Glade® Scented Oil Candles fragrance.

I chose the scent of Glade Clean Linen. It brings back memories of childhood. It evokes the song a grandparent hummed while pulling fresh sheets and towels off clotheslines on a warm afternoon. It recalls summer days spent lying on the grass watching clouds drift lazily overhead, the sound of screen doors swinging shut, the joy of teaching a dog to play catch. It reminds me of country visits, running barefoot through a sprinkler and catching fireflies. As someone once wrote, "A clothesline holds our history, our personal stories, the progression of our families, the color and texture of our lives revealed in the clothing we hang on the line."

I am showing off my style with my own Glade Scented Oil Candle Tin design. You, too, can show off your style and design a tin now!

My Ideal Car

Convertible sports car: I'm always up for an adventure, whether it's day or night - beachtime fun or cruising through town. I like to drive fast and feel the wind in my hair, and am ready for a weekend jaunt at a moment's notice. No boring sedan or bulky SUV - a convertible sports car I've been eyeing will feed my soul every time I put that top down.

My Shoe Personna

Sporty Running Shoes: For me, life isn't worth living if I can't squeeze in some kind of workout. Exercise is an important part of my life- as is having the ability to be on the go, spontaneous and ready for anything. No matter where I am, a good pair of running shoes is not far behind.

What Decade Do I Belong In?

I belong in the 1950's: Traditional, poised and full of polite charm, I would feel most at home in the well-ordered domestic decade of the 50's. I wouldn't want to rock the boat with anti-war protests or pull all-nighters at Studio 54. I'd rather be cooking at home and tucking in the kids after a long day of domestic bliss. Family and domestic bliss would make me happiest and I'd find both of those in the Eisenhower decade.

How Much Do I Know About Columbus Day?

My Score: I got 50% out of 100% correct!

Not bad: I didn't get 100%, but my results weren't too shabby either.

Have All You Desire

Twilight Beauty, a new cosmetics brand themed after the series of films from Summit Entertainment, will launch two lines debuting this Fall: Luna Twilight and Volturi Twilight. The two lines will be available in conjunction with the release of the second film, “The Twilight Saga: New Moon,” which arrives in theaters on November 20, 2009.

The goal for Twilight Beauty was to create two beautiful and striking lines that women could fall in love with, much in the same way they fell in love with the Twilight saga. The hope is that, beyond the lure of its edgy, sophisticated packaging, true makeup consumers will find they have discovered products they can’t live without.

Luna Twilight reflects the mood and spirit of the beloved book and film series with the highest caliber products and visually stunning packaging. Gold shining through the translucent black represents the light coming through the darkness, the power of Edward's love for Bella despite the obstacles that stand between them. Haunting trees wrap the componentry to recreate the forest backdrop of so many of the story's romantic moments. The line was created for everyone from the Twilight enthusiast to women looking to highlight their own radiance. Every aspect of Luna Twilight embodies the beauty of this truly timeless tale.

Inspired by the blockbuster film series and acclaimed novels of the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer, we present to you Volturi...Undying Beauty. The Volturi represent the largest and most powerful reigning coven in the acclaimed novel's vampire world. Their unquestionable authority evokes such reverence that they have been marked the "royal family" amongst all vampires, remaining unopposed for centuries. The Volturi and their kind are creatures of supernatural beauty that transcend time. Being in their presence stirs up feelings of respect, fear, and awe. The crest of the powerful Volturi family is the centerpiece and logo of the brand, appearing on every item of the line. The line has a sharp clear prismatic quality halved with a solid timeless black, symbolizing the never ending struggle between good and evil, right and wrong, love and lust.

Friday, October 9, 2009

My Happy Home Colors

Putting Color to Use!

I am not one to go in for crazy color, and I want to keep things fairly neutral and sophisticated overall. A duo or trio of colors work well together, one or more of them in my curtains, wall color or rugs. This will tie the overall palette together in a coherent way. I could even incorporate my color palette in smaller doses, like in my tablecloths, cushions, throws, or bedspreads.

My Home Design Personality

My Style: Country Casual

My home expresses my open, easygoing approach to life. I love unique finds, and can turn a few mismatched garden chairs or floral teacups into a charming arrangement. I appreciate a pretty mix of relaxed pieces, like painted wood or weathered furniture, lovely florals and other patterns, lots of throws and pillows, mementos and bunches of fresh flowers that give my home a unique sense of breeziness and charm.

I value comfort. My home is a warm and open friendly place, and I feel happiest when everyone is cared for and relaxed in my space. Elements like pillows, throws, overstuffed furniture, and good lighting set the mood. I also enjoy layering different fabrics or mixing patterns to create a cozy effect.

Putting My Style to Work!

With my style and needs in mind, here are a few tips that will help me make my home a little happier.

1. Your Design Challenge: MAXIMIZE Design is all about tricks, and with small spaces, the game is to literally trick the eye. Mirrors obviously expand a sense of space, and if possible, place them across from windows so they pick up the light and the outdoors. Leggy furniture gives the illusion of more space, as you can see under it. And, a mix of upholstered and non-upholstered pieces also makes a room feel less dense. Multi-tasking furniture, like a dining table pushed against the wall—can be a desk by day and gets pulled out for dinner parties. Or a bedside table big enough to accommodate a chair and function as a desk.

2. My Happy Place I can make my bath like my own private spa, an escape from the world! Every useful thing can be beautiful—from the soap dish and toothbrush cup to a pretty jar for cotton balls and a plush, new set of matching towels (white is the most calming and spa-like). I deserve this! Using trays for corralling perfumes and bowls or cups for makeup will make things look organized and attractive. A really lovely idea is to include some real furniture like a little lamp or a stool for setting towels or even a comfy chair by the tub!

3. Be Party-Ready All the Time! Mood: Nice, flattering light makes us feel good. Think the soft glow from floor and table lamps. Also, some votive candles and a couple of hurricane lanterns set around the room.

Scent: The first thing I notice about a home is how it smells. Like naturally fragrant cleaning products. If I find a scented candle or fresh potpourri I love, I stock up on it. Any scent I like, whether perfume or linen spray, can be used on upholstery, bedding or just spritzed into the air.

Food: Keeping my pantry stocked would enable me to serve food instantly!

Another Medical Miracle Worker

Dr. Carol A. Osborn

Board Certified Family Physician Carol Osborn, M.D. specializes in managing and coordinating health issues and collaborative health and wellness for all ages. She graduated from Brown University with honors and earned her MD degree from the University of Cincinnati Medical School. Dr. Osborn completed her training in Family Practice as Chief Resident at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center where she received several awards for her teaching of both medical students and residents. In addition to her position as Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine at the University of Utah, Dr. Osborn practiced at the Madison Clinic where she served as the Medical Director for ten years.

In September 2007, Dr, Osborn received a Health Care Heroes award from Utah Business Magazine. She was selected for developing an innovative primary health care model, Evolutionary Health Care.

Why is she a hero to me? Dr. Osborn not only provided care during my high-risk pregnancy with Sean and delivered him safe & healthy, she also managed to diagnose his extreme developmental delays with the very first test she ordered! Perhaps the quickest diagnosis of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) in history....

Why does that qualify as heroic? Diagnostic delays are common in DMD. A new survey shows an average of 2.5 years elapse between symptom onset and diagnosis of DMD. Yikes! That's an average of 54 months tortured with the knowledge that something is wrong with your darling child but not knowing what is wrong or what to do about it. I believe knowing must be better than that. And, thanks to Dr. Osborn, I knew quickly.

A study that analyzed medical records has found that the average time between symptom onset and diagnosis of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is 2.5 years, an interval that hasn't changed in two decades. This delay in identification postpones treatment that can slow the progression of the disease and results in lost opportunities for genetic counseling of parents.

The researchers say pediatricians and other providers of primary care could speed up the diagnostic process considerably by checking blood levels of creatine kinase (CK) early in the evaluation of boys with developmental delays. CK is an enzyme that leaks out of damaged muscle tissue, and the serum CK level is elevated 50 to 200 times above normal in children with DMD, most of whom are boys. A serum CK level is considered a good screening test for DMD, although DNA testing is required to confirm the diagnosis.

The initial screen, a blood test for creatine kinase, is widely available and inexpensive. In the past, one might have argued that little is gained by making an earlier diagnosis of an 'incurable' disease. Today, effective treatments are available that can temporarily preserve motor function and prolong survival. There is therefore newfound urgency in making a correct diagnosis that will become more pressing as novel treatments enter clinical trials.

MDA considers earlier diagnosis of DMD to be of paramount importance, because it provides parents with accurate information with which to make reproductive decisions, and because evidence suggests that the benefits of treatments now in development will be maximized if they're started as early in childhood as possible.

About Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD)

I have had some inquiries as to whether Sean will be able to walk now that he has had surgery. I wish I could deliver happier news, but no. The curvatures of his spine were not the cause of his inability to walk. Rather, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) is the culprit.

DMD, a genetic disease that involves progressive degeneration of voluntary and cardiac muscles, results from any of a number of mutations in the gene for dystrophin, a protein that plays a key role in protecting muscle fibers from destruction when they contract. Dystrophin normally is located near the membrane that surrounds each fiber. Without it, these membranes are much more fragile. Almost no dystrophin is produced in the muscles of DMD patients.

DMD is a genetic disease that involves progressive degeneration of voluntary and cardiac muscles, with resulting weakness and heart abnormalities, beginning in early childhood. Delayed motor milestones are an early sign of DMD, and cognitive, behavioral or language abnormalities are seen in about a third of cases. Weakened cardiac and respiratory muscles severely limit life span.

The disease results from any of a number of mutations in the gene for dystrophin, a muscle and brain protein. Almost no dystrophin is produced in the muscles of children with DMD. The dystrophin gene is located on the X chromosome, and, like other X-linked genetic diseases, DMD affects males almost exclusively, although some girls are affected.

Fall Style 2009

Blazing reds, rich browns and neon greens?

Fall is a season of fresh possibilities and exciting colors. And we’re all looking to save some cash while still looking up-to-date.

Embrace this fall’s hottest trends with style tips and beauty buys that combine uptown elegance with kicky colors — for less.

Art and Architecture

Pick up a sweater, blouse or dress in a geometric design inspired by modern art. Add punch with graphic color blocks paired with simplified structures.

Bling Rules

Nail the look with a purse, belt, blouse or cardigan with rivets, studs, zippers, beads or chains. Or add a flash of high shine with sequins on a jacket or a blouse in a metallic fabric.

The Dress

Fifties-inspired dresses with big volume, sheer fabrics or tailored cuts dominate the look. Go retro and check out thrift stores for vintage pieces. Or shop your own closet for a dress from this era and top last year's turtleneck dress with a short-sleeve sweater for an updated look.

Neon Lights

Stand out with bright shades inspired by the '80s. Try a sweater or jacket as an accent piece in hot pink, bright red or cobalt blue.

I am a Bargain Hunter

Bargain Shopper and Beyond Based on your score, you are a bargain hunter. You seek out any and every bargain you can and are the go-to person for friends and family who need help learning how to shop smart.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

My Guy

My guy is home from the hospital! He charmed his way through surgery & he's home for recovery...and just as charming. Even when suffering, Sean kept his cheerful demeanor - sharing a smile and a giggle whenever the opportunity arose. His compassion and empathy touched many. He brightened days for many with his sense of humor and undeniable courage.

The surgery itself went far better than expected, lasting only five hours instead of eight hours as scheduled. And Sean continued to amaze with how quickly he was able to overcome post-surgery challenges. He is setting some kind of record for healing. A true champion.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Who Inspires the Way You Dress?

Audrey Hepburn
Classic and traditional, you like to look nice, but you don't like to be too flashy or loud. Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, J. Crew all have your style solutions and you're at home in all three. You accessorize with a colorful scarf, gorgeous piece of jewelry, or great pair of shoes, but mostly, simplicity and elegance define your style.

twilight: new moon Quiz

Your Score: You got 85% out of 100% correct!

You're an Expert: Great job, smarty pants! This is clearly your area of expertise.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Letter of Note

I present to you a beautifully observant, expertly written complaint from a schoolboy by the name of Richard Millington which verges on comedy gold. The letter was sent to President Kennedy in February of 1963, just a few years after the U.S. government introduced the President's Council on Physical Fitness with a view to promoting physical fitness amongst Americans, teachers included.


2571 Portola Way
Sacramento, Calif.
February 11, 1963

Dear President Kennedy,

I would like to know why, in this age of stress on physical fitness, there are still paunchy teachers around. These teachers are supposed to be good examples to us poor, disgusted kids. We kids do the exercises the teachers tell us, while the teachers stand around talking to other teachers. How are we supposed to believe exercises are worth it if the teachers don't seem to be interested?

I move that a new law be passed that requires teachers to keep themselves in the pink, too. Thank you for your attention and please reply soon.

Sincerely yours,

Richard Millington

P.S. Even some of the Scoutmasters have midriff bulge.

Uh oh!! I may be on the verge of breaking an almost-law as a not-in-the-pink schoolteacher. I'll spare you pics of my midriff bulge.

My Ride

Apparently I magically managed to buy a new vehicle this week all the while remaining in the hospital with Sean during & following his recovery. Don't ask me how I did it, because I don't really know.

All I know is I am now driving a Super Black Nissan Xterra.

October 2009 General Conference

The 179th Semiannual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is being held in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City on Saturday and Sunday, October 3-4, 2009. The Saturday general sessions will be held at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.; Sunday sessions will be held at 9:30 a.m. (which includes Music and the Spoken Word) and 2:00 p.m. The general priesthood meeting will be held in the Conference Center on Saturday, October 3, at 6:00 p.m.

The First Presidency invites all to participate by attending, viewing, or listening via television, radio, satellite, or Internet transmission at Messages of inspiration and guidance will be delivered by the First Presidency, members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and other General Authorities and general officers of the Church.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Are You a Perfectionist?

Are you a perfectionist? Is it an obstacle that gets in the way of getting organized?

Do you subconsciously think that if something isn’t perfect, it’s a waste of time, money or energy?

How do you overcome those feelings of perfectionism to get things done?

What other things prevent you from taking that first step?

I'm looking forward to reading your comments!

I Am an Organizational Benchwarmer

While I know a little bit about organization, I don't always put good organization into practice. I need to:
  • Schedule time to organize every day. Preparation goes a long way!
  • Use my calendar to mark important tasks.
  • Label different boxes to keep track of different things.
Take the DIY organization personality quiz:

30 Days Until the Great Pumpkin Comes

Sean is so excited that it is finally October. He asked today how many days until Halloween, so I guess it's time to start the countdown. Happy haunting!

How Many Points Are You Worth?

Made with My Cool Signs.Net

NINE POINTS!!!!!!!!!