My Life of What Ifs

Monday, August 31, 2009

OMG!! I just LOVE this guy

At the suggestion of author Jen Lancaster who tweets as @altgeldshrugged I found Justin who tweets as @shitmydadsays.

It's freakin' hilarious, you have to check it out!!!!


Sunday, August 30, 2009

We hosted a Wizards of Waverly Place premiere party!

Friday night we hosted a Wizards of Waverly Place Movie / Island Magic House Party.

Courtesy of (which if you haven't checked it out yet you should) I applied and was picked to receive a box of goodies from HouseParty and the Disney Channel. We invited about 18 kids plus our two to watch the movie, listen to the soundtrack, win a wand in a scavenger hunt and sleepover! We had great treats and the kids, ranging in age from one year to fifteen all had a great time.

The movie was really good, and I'm sure the girls will watch it several more times, and the sound track is fantastic. You can check out some pictures below. We received 10 Wizards of Waverly Place bags, 10 forbidden spells notebooks, 10 posters, 10 flower leis to go with the island theme, the soundtrack, some great Sara Lee coupons and the magic wand. It really was a great experience.

I have signed up for a few more "HouseParty" parties and I can't wait to see if we are picked, but what a great way to entertain and get free stuff! I love free!!!!


Saturday, August 29, 2009

The simple days of summer are winding down

The simple days of summer are coming to a close. As of this morning there are only 10 days left until school begins and the daily grind of lunches, homework, soccer practice, gymnastics and clothing choices take over the world.

Earlier this week I spent an afternoon out and about with my girls and two of my honorary nieces.

We stopped first to feed my addiction at Starbucks and Ryann was overwhelmed by how lucky our day was so far. You see, the nice man at the drive thru window had two extra strawberries-and-cream frappuccinos that he gave us- foooor freeeeeeee! (Have you seen the movie Bedtime Stories? Go rent it. Now.) How grand!

Then it was over to McD's to feed their addiction to child friendly fast food. Where much to my chagrin nothing was free, far from it in fact.

We then drove to downtown Brighton and ate our lunch under a shade tree by the mill pond. As you can see the four girlies doing in the pictures to the left. Yes, that is Ryann with her frappuccino that she got foooorrrrr frreeeeee!!!!

As luck would have it, and because I rock, my trunk was stocked with stale bread to feed all the ducks, geese and swans that hang out at the Mill Pond. The girls loved it and were followed around by their flying friends long after they ran out of carbs to share.

We ended our adventure with the girls playing on the large playscape and by visiting the candy store for lolli pops.

There are still a few things I hope to do with my girls before the next 10 days are over. I promised them a trip to the water playground at the metropark, and we have yet to make it to the roller rink so they can use their summer passes. Even so, this has been one of my best summers ever. I've had the opportunity to relax and have fun with my kids, and that is worth more than any amount of money.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Up for Renewal: A book that answers "what if?"

Anything can change a life that's ready to be changed.

The greatest thing about covering Chick Literature over at the Examiner is the books that are brought to my attention that I would have never found otherwise.

Sure, I know about Sophie Kinsella, Jennifer Weiner, Meg Cabot and Emily Giffin to name a few of my faves, but I've learned of so many more like Julie Buxbaum, Binh Ming Nguyen, and now with a memoir spin on Chick Lit I have found Cathy Alter.

I just finished Alter's Up for Renewal: What Magazines Taught Me About Love, Sex, and Starting Over. If there was a book written about what-ifs, then this is it.

The premise is a simple what if. "What if I give my life over to the advice of women's magazines for one year?" Well, Alter did it and with all the craziness of my last year the book could have easily been written by me, or at the very least for me, since I don't have the ability to write anything longer than a blog post or a board meeting brief.

It's a great book and I recommend it highly. So to hear more about it click on over to the Examiner and read my review of Up for Renewal: What magazines taught me about love, sex, and starting over.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Nights and Days of Drummond Island

The night sky at Drummond Island is unlike anything I've ever seen. Even when it's cloudy you can still see the moon and a few stars. It's crystal, untouched by smog and highway pollution.

The day sky can be as blue as anything, and even when it's raining there's just something about being there that's still lovely.

Our story seems unique. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. We started coming to Drummond with our friends in 2002. Our daughter was 22 months old and quite unaware of what fun she would have there in the coming years. Her sister joined us in 2004, both in life and for our Drummond trip. She was almost six months old her first trip and blissfully cooperative sleeping in her car seat while two-tracking through the woods.

We can't really pinpoint why it took us so long to start visiting Drummond with our friends. We had been invited for years, but for one reason or another never made the trip until we had our kids. But maybe that was the point- to wait until we had kids to give them an annual summer vacation unlike anything we had growing up. To show them that life isn't all iCarly and Spongebob and constantly planned entertainment.

It's about lovely friends who are like family. It's about being outside and breathing in the air. It's about adventure and stepping a little outside your comfort zone. But mainly it's about love. A love for what you have, who you are, and what you are growing up to be.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Promoting The Locals


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

When it's good, then it's good, it's so good, 'til it goes bad

Even without episodes of depression life is full of ups and downs. People often say they are waiting for the other shoe to drop, or things are going so good, when is the bad thing coming?

So I can go along having a great freelance month. Lots of newspaper assignments, a lot of traffic here and at the Examiner. I even got a new gig covering my county at Detroit Mommies, and then here comes the crap, I mean, not so good things.

Right before we left for vacation our dryer stopped drying, it's spins but doesn't heat up. The wall of our shower caved in (water was getting behind the tile). The fridge in our camper stopped working, and the A/C in my car died. Oh and while we were on vacation, our lovely oldest daughter hurled on Cory's laptop while watching a movie. Luckily, it still works, but is in the shop for cleaning and a new keyboard.

Some may think, bad karma? And I admit I have said "Who did I wrong in a previous life?" But let's not go there. Let's just say, it's all put us a little further behind than we already were, and how far behind we are is just a result, again, of me quitting my job nine months ago.

Oh yeah, that again. It's very hard to relaunch your life and redirect your career when the crap keeps showing up. But who am I kidding? It's just that other old saying "no one said it was going to be easy." It's not easy, the crap is hard, and every time I jump a hurdle someone puts another one up in front of me. But I wake up everyday thankful for what I don't have to do, and thankful for what I have, and I try not to let the crap get to me. Because honestly? The crap is worth it.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Hey Metro Detroit Mommies!

Southeastern Michigan Mommies have a great new place to find out what cool things are going on in the area for families. Check out for events, giveaways, reviews, etc.

I cover Livingston County and some events beyond. So click on over and check it out!


Friday, August 14, 2009


Did you say it? I love you. I don't ever want to live without you. You changed my life. Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it, but every now and then, look around; Drink it in 'cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow.

I stockpile Grey's Anatomy.

When I woke up Tuesday morning I had eight hours of Grey's to watch. I'm done now. The promos that were intermixed with the show were from March. It was hilarious. You may recall I did the same thing back in February with the first part of the season, and the next thing you know I'm behind again, and then I'm thankful because I have something to watch in August.

Saving eight hours worth of TV drama has advantages- something to watch in August- and disadvantages- friends can ruin the ending. Oddly no one told me about George. I read tons about Izzy and her tumor, and I heard that T.R. Knight was not returning, but I had no idea about the road kill of George O'Malley, and it shocked me. Meredith's reaction, or rather Ellen Pompeo's was stunning. Two thumbs up. Even though it's after midnight I had to go back and watch his parts again, now that I know it's him.

Now I'm wondering how exactly they will "write" him off. Will he die? Recover and then go off into the sunset? Who knows. But don't tell me because I probably won't find out until February.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The magic of Drummond Island

I still plan on blogging about our whole trip to Drummond Island, but I had to share this picture right away. Our weather was tinged with Michigan moodiness this year, in fact swimming was done by brave children only, and even then it was quick :) But we spent some time geocaching on the island and the kids loved treasure hunting. This picture was taken on one of our adventures and all I had to say was "Dad make them laugh" and the fake, cheesy smiles faded into the true joy they were feeling. My girls love this trip, and so do I.

MckLinky Blog Hop


Saturday, August 8, 2009

Easing back into it

Vacation is over, and it was wonderful. I will post about it later in the week. Tonight I am playing catch up. I have four stories to cover for the newspaper this week, and countless other obligations. But tonight I just caught up on my favorite places on the internet, including PostSecret.

I love this blog. Each week I like to pick out my favorite post card, one that I myself could have written. Here is this week's choice. Life is good.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

No regrets, no tears, just silent smiles and maybe a what if

One of my favorite quotes that helps me through some hard times is usually attributed to Dr. Seuss.

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

Sometimes when things come to an end, it can be so easy to cry, hard even, not to. But when I can I try to remember all the good that came from the experience and encourage the sadness to go away. Think of the good, and ignore the bad and ugly. It makes me happy, and that’s not always easy to do. I use this quote to help others, and in the meantime help myself as well. You gotta love the wisdom of Dr. Seuss.

MckLinky Blog Hop


Monday, August 3, 2009

Heaven on Earth

I’m starting to think that following my dreams included returning to tradition. But I mentioned that right? These past nine months have allowed me time to do things I haven't done since I was a kid. But it’s also allowed me to remember how to value and truly enjoy things I have always done.

Since 2002 we have spent the first week of August camping on Drummond Island, off the eastern coast of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. We spend the week with five other couples and their eight kids. This results in six couples, and ten kids- nine girls and one boy.

My friend Tammey grew up on the island, and she and her husband Joe own property there now. We park our campers and set up our tents to make a large circle and for week we relax, eat, swim, two-track through the woods, have a few drinks and enjoy the simple life. The ten kids, ranging in age from 15 to five, make “houses” and open “stores” in the woods. They ride their bikes, pick wildflowers, play ghost tag, and have nightly s’mores. The guys fish, the girls read magazines and try new recipes. We play hillbilly horseshoes, “cornhole” and scrabble.

It’s quiet for the most part, except for when one of the five dogs is barking or when the iPod is on and we can hear about 30 seconds of a song before someone else thinks of a better one to play.

The sunsets are phenomenal and the sky is so clear that the stars seem within reach. Sitting around the nightly bonfire it’s common to see several shooting stars, and a satellite orbiting on by. Cell phones don’t work on the property, we you can go in town to send a blog post or a quick email. That need for technology does negate the simplicity, but it does allow a freelance writer to stay in touch, and post on her blog.

All in all it’s the best vacation ever. You pay for gas and a week’s worth of food with a high cholesterol content, and you come home with a lot of laundry and much less tension in your neck. It’s heaven, or at least as close to it as you’ll find on this side of life.