Friday, June 28, 2013

Dear Coffee Gods...

Dear Coffee Gods,

I apologize. I apologize, from the bottom of my heart, for whatever I did to anger you all. If it's because I haven't been to Starbucks in ages, I'll go today, I promise. If it's because I quit drinking a cup of decaf at night because I ran out of decaf, I will buy some today, I promise. Just let me know why you have frowned upon me, and I will fix it.

About 2 weeks ago, my Keurig died (may it rest in peace). Only a member of our family for not even 2 years, I did everything I could to save it, including taking it apart and putting it back together, googling answers, and cleaning it out. My last hope was Keurig customer service, and Lindsay informed me that it was, indeed, time to grieve and move on. My Keurig will be missed.

Thankfully, we had my red coffee maker ready to commence its job as Head Coffee Maker. She was programmable, so Hubby and I would set her at night, and we'd have a fresh pot of coffee ready for when we woke up. Great system we had going.

Until this morning, when Hubby noticed the green light was on, but no coffee had brewed. This time, panic

Monday, June 24, 2013

Hott Hollywood Role Model Ladies

Thanks to that amazing Friends episode over 15 years ago (good grief, that long ago?), we all have The List. Not a to-do list, or a grocery list, but a list of 5 (or 10 or however many you and your significant other agree upon) celebrities that, if given the chance, you are allowed to sleep with, as a "freebie". Yep, that list.

My list has changed so many times over the years that there is no way I could laminate mine like Ross did. One constant has always been Ryan Gosling. Seriously, that guy's eyes could melt right through... (sigh) I digress. Other top contenders have been Ryan Reynolds, Johnny Depp, Adam Levine, and Channing Tatum- you know, the "regular" Hollywood Hotties. I noticed a slight shift in my list when I recently added Jason Bateman to it. Adorable, yes, but his personality is what caused him to make the list. That man just seems down to earth and someone I'd love to... hang out with. Yeah, that. Robert Downey Jr, too. Amazing... um... personality. (Sigh)

I've always had a second list (which my husband loves), and that's my Chick Crush list. These ladies don't get grouped onto the list with the men, but if I were ever given the chance... good grief. Now, for the record, I will state that Katy Perry would be very disappointed to know that I've never even kissed a girl, so while I'm not rolling around in lesbian tendencies over here, I highly respect these women and, let's face it, they are hot as hell. Alyssa Milano, Eliza Dushku and Carla Gugino have always been on my list, for as far back as I can remember. After watching The House at the End of the Street, Elisabeth Shue made it onto my list, and after Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, Famke Janssen made the list. And while I'm a HUGE fan of Charmed (the ONLY TV series I own every season of AND have watched it from beginning to end... twice), it wasn't until Pretty Little Liars that Holly Marie Combs made my list.

Yes, I understand that's 6 on my "other" list right now. If I had to remove someone, to make it an acceptable list of 5 female celebrities, it would be Eliza Dushku, because she hasn't been around much lately. Anyway...

I started to really look at my list of ladies, wondering why I had only 3 on the list for years, and now I've added 3 more, 1 of which (Holly Marie Combs) was on a TV show alongside my #1 (Alyssa Milano), and I never included her before. Elisabeth Shue is the star of one of my favorite movies growing up, Adventures in Babysitting, but she's never made the list until now, and while Famke Janssen was hot in The Faculty, I watched that movie for Josh Hartnett (and Elijah Wood's beautiful baby blues), not for her. So, why now? What makes things different now than even a few years ago?

These women have aged beautifully.

I looked back at pictures of Holly Marie Combs, Elisabeth Shue and Famke Janssen, and while they have always been beautiful ladies, it's just been in the last few years that, to me, they've become hott (with 2 T's, yes). The late 30s and 40s have been amazing for these ladies. So much so, in my opinion, that they made my Chick Crush list- not their 20-something selves, their now selves.

I must give special recognition to Alyssa Milano and Holly Marie Combs in this post, too. While in Charmed

Friday, June 21, 2013

Tea Time!

Y'all know I lived in England for 3 years, and terribly miss my time there. So, when the people of Davidson's Organic and Nature's Bakery contacted me about hosting a tea party, and having their tea and fig bars as the refreshments, I was happy to do so, as I hadn't truly had a tea event since my time in England! We even dressed up for the event (pictures below)!

We were sent a nice variety of fig bars from Nature's Bakery, and Davidson's Organics sent a box of the Rooibos Spiced Chai tea, which I was very excited to try. I love herbal teas, and the fact that Davidson's are organic, just made it even better!

The kids loved the fig bars from Nature's Bakery, and I was pleasantly shocked to find that they were full of

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Did Mary Have a Lamb or a Garden?

There are times in life that you realize you went wrong somewhere when it comes to raising your kids. For me, that moment came during our weekly Family Game Night. I had acquired the game Outburst Jr, brand new, never opened, for $2 at the Goodwill- heck yes!

If you aren't familiar with Outburst or Outburst Jr, you are given a category, and your team has 1 minute to say as many things that come to mind that fall within that category. There are 10 answers on a card, and you get a point for every one of the answers on the card that your team shouts out.

By the way, we've played 4 times now, mixed up teams each time, and I'm the only one in the house whose record is 4-0. Everyone else is 1-3. They even all ganged up on me, 3 against 1, and I STILL won. Yep, that's how I roll...

The Ginger was on a team with me, and chose the card Nursery Rhyme Characters (Female). The timer was flipped, and I started...

"Mary Had a Little Lamb... Mother Goose... Jill, like, Jack and Jill, Jill ... Little Bo Peep... the Cow that Jumped Over the Moon- was that a girl? ... Old Mother Hubbard... crap... umm... the Little Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe... Little Miss Muffet... the Itsy Bitsy Spider may have been a chick... umm... Humpty Dumpty... nope, he was definitely a boy..." and by that time, my minute had passed. I looked up to find a very confused look on The Ginger's face.

"Um, yeah, Mom. You got like seven of them. You missed Mary Mary Quite Con... something, Little

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Girl, My Little Prankster

There is never a dull moment in my house. Summer vacation has been in full swing for a few weeks now, so the kids have gone through the "bored" phase and have moved on to finding creative ways to spend their time...

Like pulling pranks.

The culprit is The Girl, and let me tell y'all, she's good at it. We have absolutely no idea when she's setting one up, and they are funny as hell. She takes great time and care in planning and executing them, so we've only had the pleasure of 2 of her pranks thus far. But these are too amazing to not share as they come along.

The first one made me fall into the floor, laughing so hard. This is our downstairs bathroom...

Toilet Paper Roll Prank

And tonight, she got Hubby with the next one. After dinner he went into the freezer to get some ice cream,

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

I'm Such a Tease, aka Upcoming Book Excerpt #1

I'm getting pretty excited. The end is in sight, so close I can almost feel it.

What on Earth am I talking about?

My book. Yep, a real book, written by me, soon-to-be available to the masses for their reading pleasure. I've mentioned it here and there on the blog and Inklings' facebook page, but to be honest, I didn't want to jinx it by saying more. I'm not even releasing the title to the masses until it's in the printing process. I will say now that it's a nonfiction book with parenting advice mixed with humorous anecdotes and stories of how I learned to parent the way I do... pretty much, Inklings on steroids, complete with random tips, cute little drawings (done by me) and stories from my readers (I'm still accepting submissions to possibly be included in the book, so if you are interested, head to this post for details).

But now... now, I tease. I couldn't figure out which teaser to start with, so y'all get 2 teasers this first time around. Oh, I will tease you more in the future, I promise.

The first teaser is from the introduction to the book, and the second teaser is from the chapter entitled "Unplugged and Ready to Rock!"


I’m very honest, very open about motherhood and its ups and downs. When you are forced to strip

Monday, June 10, 2013

I've Been Doing It Wrong My Whole Life

I've been creating art for as long as I can remember. My mom is an artist (and a writer- now y'all know where I get it from), so I grew up around the creative spirit. As most artists, however, I have majorly struggled with my art. Believe it or not, I've always had this problem where what I see in my head, and what comes out on paper, aren't the same things. I can replicate like a champ when I look at another picture, and if you set a bowl of fruit in front of me, I will rock out a painting, pastel drawing or sketch like no other. But if someone were to tell me to "Draw a cat", the beautiful Himalayan Persian playing with a ball of yarn that's going on in my head comes out looking like a furball that had toxic waste dumped on it, playing with what might be a chunk of swiss cheese or severed head- it depends on how you squint your eyes.

This never stopped me, though. I decided to switch to 3D art for a while, and that turned out much better. What goes on in my head translates to clay much better, and when it comes to gluing things onto canvas in an artistic manner, no one can beat me. I'm proud to say I even found phrases for this type of art: Mixed Media or Altered Art. Yeah, buddy, I just thought I was an amazing gluer. I took to photography for a while, selling my prints at my new age store years ago.
This pic always makes me
giggle, because that's
how I am!

How on earth did I become a tattoo artist, you ask? Well, I can still draw, and I love coloring, and once I learned the canvas that is the skin, I created art just as if I had picked up a paint brush. Unfortunately, I wasn't one of those tattoo artist who could draw your tattoo directly onto your skin with a sharpie (though I did that a few times with things like tree branches and vines with flowers), but if the customer gave me a little bit of time, they'd have a custom piece, drawn by me. What they didn't see was in that week of time I took to draw it up, I had 27 different references out of books or the internet, may have made one of the guys at the shop hold a pose for me for an hour while I figured out exactly how the leg would bend if a fairy was up on her tiptoes, and the finished product that I showed them was actually sketch #82 in my creative process.

Eventually, every artist finds their niche, and in tattooing, for me, it was outlineless, full color tattoos that

Friday, June 7, 2013

Custom Inklings of Life T-Shirt Giveaway from WhoopTee (Ends 6/14)

Is your life Colorful and Chaotic, just like mine is? Are you proud of it? Then this t-shirt is just for you!

My friends over at WhoopTee contacted me about wanting to give 3 of my readers a FREE shirt of my design. Seriously, how could I resist that? I get to be artsy and design a custom shirt and have my readers get free stuff... Yes, please!!

The design process at WhoopTee was super easy! They have more fonts and clipart than I've ever seen on other custom t-shirt design websites, and you aren't as restricted as other sites to placement of items as you are designing.

While I played around with a few designs I had in my head, the "Colorful and Chaotic Life" design I came up with was my favorite. I figured, if you are a reader of my blog, your life is probably just as colorful and chaotic as my life is. This shirt simply states, "My life is Colorful and Chaotic... and I love every second of it!" Soooo true!

You can head to WhoopTee, check them out, and create a design of your own. They are GREAT for family reunions, work T-shirts, special occasions like birthdays or ladies' weekends out, sports team shirts, or just to have a shirt that no one else has! You should also check out WhoopTee's facebook page, twitter account and what I found most fun, their YouTube account, called WhoopTee TV (makes me giggle).

So, now's your chance to try and win the Colorful and Chaotic Life t-shirt pictured here. This shirt is NOT currently for sale, so the 3 winners and myself are the only 4 people to have these! Pretty cool, huh? Just enter below, and 3 winners will be chosen at random to receive coupon codes for this FREE shirt (including free shipping, one shirt per winner), which will be sent directly from WhoopTee. Now's the perfect chance for you to show your love of your chaotic life and your support for Inklings! Giveaway starts on 6/7/13 and ends at 11:59pm on 6/14/13, and is open to the US only. Good luck to all who enter!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Moms, Now It's Your Chance to Be Heard!!

I'm calling all moms, dads, and parental figures, now is your time to be heard! If you are an existing reader, you should know by now that I've been hard-at-work on my first book. I am almost finished writing it, but need your help!

My book is a non-fiction book on parenting. It's not one of those dry, cookie cutter, 'do this or your kid will be scarred forever' boring books; it incorporates some out-of-the-box parenting advice, humorous stories about motherhood and more, all in a positive manner.

So here's where you come in! I would love to have some random sayings, stories and tips thrown here and there throughout the book, and I would LOVE it if they came from my readers!

What I'm Looking For (Specifics):

  • Worst parenting advice you ever received
  • Best parenting advice you ever received
  • A funny story (keep it short, please) about any of the following topics:
    ~A child's sleeping, eating or playing habits
    ~Potty training
    ~A lie your kid told
    ~A time your child cussed
    ~Kids and chores
    ~Winning some sort of battle with your kids (argument, a battle over eating, clothing, music, movies, etc.)
  • Random tips that have worked for you when it comes to parenting
  • Best advice you could give a new mom (from personal experience)
If there's anything else you can think of, or if you have a story that doesn't fit into a category above, email me with it anyway and I'll take a look. You can either leave a comment below this post or email me at, with a subject of something along the lines of 'Book story' or 'Hey, my kid did the craziest thing once...'. Let me know how you would like your submission credited, too, whether it's your full name or a nickname! If I choose your story to be included, I will send you a free copy of my book as a thank you!

Now comes the legal mumbo jumbo. By commenting below or submitting a story via email to me, you are waiving your rights to this story, and are giving me permission to make necessary edits to the story and reprint it in my upcoming book. Not all submissions will be included in the book, but the submissions that are included were volunteered, and no monetary compensation was given, or will be given, for the submission, even after the book has been printed and is selling. If you would like to remain anonymous, then please include a nickname with your submission, otherwise your submission will be credited with just your first name in the book. I promise to not reprint any email addresses or full identities of people sending stories. I do ask that your story is original and has never been submitted to a printed book before.

A huge thanks to everyone who encouraged me to write this book, and I hope to get some really great submissions! 

If you enjoy Inklings, please take a second to just click the banner below. Each click = 1 vote, and you can vote once per 24 hours. I do happy dances when people vote!

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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

My Tree-Hugging Public Service Announcement of the Day

Courtesy of Blogging Matters
I attended a small blogging meeting/workshop this past weekend. It was comprised of local women bloggers, all from different walks of life and different blogging stages. I walked away with some great information, and a huge blogging-confidence boost. Apparently, I'm doing what I need to do to be a successful blog. So, the question then popped into my head...

"Why is The Inklings of Life not a topic of conversation in every mommy circle out there, with tens of thousands of followers?"

I took it upon myself to do some deep research into blogging, mommy blogging, and top mommy blogging, and came up with some very interesting conclusions:

1. I don't over-share enough. I wasn't aware that some potential readers want to know exactly how my ass smells after an intense workout in the gym, or explicit details into my sex life or even the birth of my kids. While I promise that readers will get an honest, yet funny, look into parenthood, my life is still personal. Have you ever actually seen a picture of my kids' faces on here? Nope. Why? Because my kids are gorgeous and I'm afraid some freaky stalker will follow us around Target one day and try and kidnap my kids because they know what they look like. And, I want to keep some things about my family, well, private. I'll share funny stories about farts and how the cats don't leave me alone while I use the bathroom, but as far as explaining things in so much detail that you feel like you are sitting on the toilet next to me- not going to happen, sorry.

2. I don't drink enough or have enough prescriptions. I love my wine, don't get me wrong. But apparently, my glass every few days isn't quite enough for some readers. And, the fact that I currently lack

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Some Days We Need a Reality Show

Anyone who spends a few minutes around my family will get their fill of entertainment. I'm not sure if it's our laid-back parenting, how much personality my kids have, or how Hubby and I have just been doing this for almost 15 years now so we're just completely comfortable, or a combination of it all, but there are some days that we need a reality show. Why? Just to show those of you who don't actually know us how random and funny our home life is.

I'll set the scene for you. Yesterday morning, Hubby got off work and headed upstairs to change out of his uniform. I joined him, in our bedroom, so we could figure out our plans for the day. The Ginger was downstairs playing video games, and The Girl had a friend over who stayed the night, and they were both downstairs, too. Keep in mind, this all happened within about 5 minutes.

(Hubby lays on top of the bed in just his boxers and puts the laptop on his lap to research something, and I sat down next to him.)
Me: Don't you think you should put some pants on? The Girl has a friend downstairs.
Hubby: Yeah, but we're in our bedroom, upstairs.
Me: And? You know our kids.
Hubby: Well, shut the door, then.
Me: (Getting up to shut the door) Okay, but you still need to put some pants on.
Hubby: I just got done with a 9 hour shift on the flightline. My balls are hot. I'll put pants on in second.
Me: Fine. So, we need to go shopping for some more summer clothes for the kids, but I need to make a budget. Does The Ginger need shorts?
Hubby: (yelling) GINGER!!!
Me: Good grief. I figured you just knew since you took him clothes shopping last. 
Hubby: Yeah, I don't remember.
The Ginger: (opening the door) Yeah?
Me: Do you need shorts?