29 March 2012 | 10 Comments

Finn: Mom, what did the world look like in the eighties?  Was it all white?  {Not sure if he thinks it was some kind of bad sci fi futuristic planet 20 years ago or what??}
Me: Well, it looked a lot like it does now.  
Finn: Well, were you a grown up?
Me: No, I was a kid. 
Finn: And Punka was a kid too?
Me: Yep.


Me {to Tate}: Want to go shopping with Aunt J?  We get to go to Costco while Finn is at school.
Finn:  Um, WHY do you guys get to have fun and I get to have NO fun?
Me: School is fun! 

{Followed by an eye roll from Finn.}


Finn: What are you doing? 
Dave: Reading a story about an aggressive turkey in Detroit. 
Finn: Huh?
Dave: You know turkey that we eat at Thanksgiving?  That is a picture of a turkey.  It is chasing someone around. 
Finn: Do we eat that kind of turkey?  The aggressive kind?


We have questionable neighbors across the busy road by our house, there are 83 of them... or they have a lot of visitors very often. They refuse to mow their lawn and spend and extraordinary amount of white trash time on the porch, just sitting there in the morning, the middle of the day, the evening, at night... you get the jist.  They don’t really have a porch sitting porch, but they’ve made it a porch sitting porch with a hodgepodge of junk to sit on.  Recently, the weather has warmed up.

Finn: There they go again.  Out on the porch smoking and talking.  DAD!  Dad, go by their house and honk the horn at em.  Tell em to get off that porch. 


Me:  I can’t believe you’re going to be FIVE!  I don’t want you to get big! 
Finn: Well, don’t worry Mom, I will still love you when I am five… 
Finn: and six and seven and eight and nine and ten and eleven and twelve and thirteen.  And that’s it. 
Dave: That sounds about right.
Me: What??
Finn: You get thirteen years.  Don’t worry, you still have TayTay.  See?  She will love you.


Finn: Mom, this shirt is too big, look.
Me: Well you have your pack on your shoulder and it’s puling it over.
Finn: {takes the pack off} Look!
Me: Yeah, it is kind of big, isn’t it?
Finn: {He pulls the shirt up.} Belly shirt! {Then he pulls the neck down. To his credit, it is way too big.} Mom, look at my nipple. Nipple time. Nipple party.

Make Your Own Veggie Pizza Bar

28 March 2012 | 2 Comments

The Veggie Pizza Bar ended up being a fun addition to Jen’s baby shower and it was really easy to pull together.  Cold vegetable pizza appetizers are always good, but not everyone likes every vegetable.   Here, you can make it to suit your tastes!   You can add as many different vegetables, types of shredded cheese, or veggie dips as you’d like.  Next time I might add some hummus or dill veggie dip also.   You are only limited by your imagination.

For ours we used:

  • carrots
  • black olives
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • red peppers
  • cucumbers
  • shredded cheddar
  • ranch veggie dip

I used two cups of the most popular veggies as well as two of the shredded cheddar.  To make the pizza ‘crusts’ you will take a package of crescent rolls, open and press the seams together.  Leaving flat, cut the rolls into squares or whatever shape you’d like and bake according to package directions.  These would be fun in fluted circles or smaller triangles.


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27 March 2012 | 8 Comments

My friend Lori and I threw a sweet little shower for our friend Jen who is expecting a baby girl in just a few short months.  She is one of those glowing, perfect pregnant Mamas with the tiny little baby bump.  She looks freaking adorable. 


It was so nice to shower her with lots of fun baby gifts and spend an afternoon with some of my very favorite women. They are hilarious and completely riotous and they are still friends with me despite my f-bombs. We always tease Jen for having a box full of chicken trophies from her younger years… she was apparently one hell of a chicken raiser. Thus, the silly chicken sign.

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There were lots of goodies including our group’s “must have,” Emily’s Party Bread. We also had cake pops, strawberry cupcakes, delicious fresh fruit skewers, sea salt chocolate covered Oreos, a make your own veggie pizza bar, and other goodies.

Lori also whipped up a batch of these {found via Pinterest} for those of us not baking a baby.


I also should mention that Lori is a hygienist so a million years ago when she was in school, we {and by we, I mean, I can accept the blame solely} started calling her DentaLori and it stuck.  So when I forgot the ribbon for hanging the paper lanterns, we substituted with none other than floss.  She’s got that in massive supply at her house and it put a signature minty freshness on the decorations. 


We can’t wait to meet baby girl, Jen. 



23 March 2012 | 6 Comments

Today, my Meme turns 88.  I would say 88 years young, but she would call me on my bullshit.

She quietly keeps our secrets.  She marvels at our achievements.  She laughs at our irreverent humor.  I wish more than anything that all of you could know her awesomeness.

She is the sun and the moon and the stars.

Happy Birthday Meme, you are immeasurably loved.  I’m glad Ohio State pulled a win out of their asses for you, I know it is all the present you wanted.

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I’ll Take the Davester for 1800, Alex.

22 March 2012 | 8 Comments

Dave and I play Jeopardy. 

We also make fun of Alex when he acts like a pompous ass about answers that the three contestants screw up. 

Oh no, sorry, you mispronounced part of the answer.  It is, what is soy un culo pomposo?  If you would have said it with an exaggerated, fake Spanish accent, we would have given you the points, but alas dear contestant, with minus eleventy billion, you don’t get to move on to final Jeopardy.

As if you knew the answer without cards right in front of you, ALEX.

We used to keep score on a spreadsheet, with actual dollar amounts, but then we had Tate and life is too busy for keeping Jeopardy spreadsheets.  To be fair, we never subtracted for wrong answers and we’re {obvs} not like freaking Mensa over here, we’re just highly competitive and I’m not going to lie, a little assholeish in our Jeopardy play.

I was the overall winner by like a million points but who is counting. 

Now we just shout out answers and I still win, but Dave can lie and say that he’s winning because scores aren’t being kept and four {almost five} year olds named Finnegan are also yelling out answers that he’s heard other {read smarter and adult-er} people in the house yell out and then he pretends that HE is winning.  So, now I’ve got two cheating bastards on my hands, but I digress.

He would beat me on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire though 9 times out of 10.  Those questions are harder by a mile because they are all over the place, but you get more time and time is good to the Davester.  He seriously knows the most random information from engineering terms to geekery things and all things music related.  I suck at the math things and he remembers the Pythagorean Theorem and how to deviate shit which is the only way I passed college Calculus.  Not going to lie, that Statistics grade was all him too.

Before you think he’s a genius or something, he also does really stupid shit all the time… including the story of when he {also Jeopardy related} started calling himself the Davester.

So there’s that.  And the belt buckle.  And the one about the thumb.  And the time he ruined Elton John because he wouldn’t sneak a camera in because he stinks

But I still like him. 

And I still win at Jeopardy. 

Suck it Trebeck.


20 March 2012 | 8 Comments


Finn has never met a character he didn’t like.  He’s got all of the Scooby gang.  Every Marvel superhero and a Batman, just because he can.  Close to every Cars character from both movies.  Thomas and all his friends.  And every member of the Toy Story gang.  Throw in some Angry Birds for good measure and you’ll get a picture of what it’s like at our house.  I am just waiting for him to discover Star Wars.  He likes all of his guys and plays with them daily creating all kinds of worlds where Iron Man and Hulk defeat the ghoul from Scooby Doo while riding on Rex from Toy Story. 

His imagination lately has totally blown me away.  I can see him being a writer.

I find Velma hiding out in the fridge while getting ‘frozen’ so the gang has a mystery to solve.  I see Spidey casting a web on my kitchen counters.  I step on Captain America regularly when getting out of bed in the morning.  Lightening uses my buffet table as a track.

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Tate’s favorite toys are {not surprisingly} Finn’s. She steals anything she can get her hands on. Velma is, by far her favorite, she holds her in the car, while picking up Finn at preschool, even while nursing. There is rarely a time when she’s crawling that we don’t hear a click, click, click across the dining room floor and notice she’s got a slobber filled Spidey or Scooby or Iron Man.


We are a house full of characters.


19 March 2012 | 10 Comments

This weekend was inexplicably difficult and lovely all at once.  I’m not even sure how to write this post, so I’ll start with the weather.

It was 77 degrees on Saturday.  That is approximately 30 degrees above our normal March temps here in the O-H.  And it wasn’t just Saturday, oh no, it has been like this for a week now.  We have the heat off, Peeps.  And the windows OPEN for spectacular sleeping weather.

It’s cray.

And these kids of mine, they can’t get enough.  Short pants!  {That is what Finn calls shorts.}  Sidewalk chalk!  Bike rides!  Walks!  They are soaking up every second and taking advantage.

Two weeks from now, it will probably snow another 6 inches.  It is, after all, still winter.


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The Davester has been a grilling fool.  He isn’t just a handsome face, no… he’s got mad skills too.

He also surprised me with a completely cleaned out sparkly car. 

He pretty much rocks.


We spent the weekend rooting for Ohio State basketball.  Playing with cousins.  Spending much needed surprise Friday afternoon time with friends.  Having donuts for breakfast.  Drinking lots of sweet tea.  Hugging and snuggling in for naps together.  And just being a family.



And now for the part that I wish I weren’t writing.

Dave’s amazingly kind, wonderful friends lost their two year old son last week in a horrible, tragic accident.  It isn’t my story to share and so I won’t, but it has been weighing heavily on our hearts these past five days. 

Today, they are laying their sweet Ethan to rest.  Please keep this family in your thoughts, his brother and sisters and mostly his Mama and Daddy as they begin to heal from this unimaginable loss. 

Hug your children a little longer, a little tighter, and tell them how much they are loved so they feel it at their very core.


16 March 2012 | 7 Comments

Last year, Finnegan was obsessed with the fact that he had to wear green on St Patty, he woke up every day for a week and asked if it was green day.  His much beloved Miss Brandi told them at school that if you don’t wear green, someone can give you a pinch.  He went around the rest of the day not pinching, but warning people to put green on so they wouldn’t get a pinch.

I’ve taken care of mine already, just in case Kegs & Eggs goes awry and I am tipsy first thing in the morning.

A rainbow on one hand, a pot of gold on the other.


Take a peek at my very favorite little leprechaun picture, he was 11 months old in this and it still makes me laugh every time I see it.

Any big plans for you this weekend?

Clean Freak? Um, No.

14 March 2012 | 14 Comments

The fact that I am cleaning challenged is highly disappointing to my mother whose nickname is Joan Crawford.

I feel like I should clarify, it’s because of her insane clean freak-ness and not because she woke us up screaming about wire hangers. She did however wake us up to the Ohio State fight song blasting on Saturday mornings to clean the house, which may be just as bad.  Janet can not sit still.  She comes over and does my dishes, folds my laundry, and tidies everything in her path.  Dave calls her the tornado and just knows to get out of the way. 

I’ve talked about it before, but cleaning and organizing is not my forte.  I don’t have that gene, either that or it’s the adult ADD.  I mean, I do it because I have to.  But, it’s really the exact opposite of an enjoyable experience for me.  If we ever have the opportunity to meet, go ahead and ask me, I can name 25 things I would rather be doing. 

I do love it when the house is clean though, I just don’t want to be the one to do it.  The ONE thing I miss about working?  Having someone else clean my house.  It was heaven.  I would walk in the door and everything would be sparkling, just like when Jeanie would twinkle her nose and clean up the house for Darren only Jeanie was Lori.

Lori is magic with some Windex.  Magic, I tell ya.

Are you a super organized cleaning machine or can we hang out at the slightly unorganized cool table?


13 March 2012 | 9 Comments

This little peanut is cute. She is cuddly. She is sweet. She loves to laugh and giggle and play with her brother’s super hero toys.  She enjoys long naps, exploring everything, and big happy grins.


This little peanut is mad. Why? Her Mama put her down, her teeth hurt, she is lonely… maybe she’s been abandoned!  ABANDONED!  A “stranger” came within 5 feet of her.  She doesn’t want ANYONE else, she wants her Mama and she means now.


We’re in the throes of some serious separation anxiety around here.  Send help.  Send advice.  Send some sanity.

I don’t remember it being this bad with Finn and yes, I know it’s such a short time that they are insane, but I want to help her if I can.  I’m just at a loss what to do about it. 

Springing Forward Can Suck It.

12 March 2012 | 14 Comments

I’ll be the first to admit, I am not a morning person.  My nightmare is the daylight savings “spring forward,” when apparently the government decides that time will shift forward an hour, just as God intended it to. 

Oh, don’t worry though, you’ll get it back in the fall.

This is why I hate springing forward, in no particular order…

  • You ‘lose’ an hour of the day.  Except you don’t really lose it, it’s just borrowed from the fall whom I like a lot better because it ‘gives’ me an extra hour that it doesn’t really give.  Yeah, figure that out.
  • Figuring out in my head the time change and what is ‘real’ time and do we keep Finn up another hour or put him to bed an hour earlier and WHY is math so hurty to my brain???
  • Kids don’t get it and they continue their non-sleeping {Tate} and getting up early {Finnegan} thing.
  • Did I mention I lose an hour of sleep?
  • Every electronic clock changes and the manual clocks don’t change and you can’t remember what time it really is until the Davester goes around fixing time like someone out of the Matrix.
  • You will wake up in a panic on Monday morning that it is 8:30 in the morning, HOW is it so late???  Why does it feel so early?  Oh, because two days ago it WAS early, except now it’s late.  Thank the Spring.

Happy Monday.  Do you like the change or is your brain all hurty this morning too?

Plus-Sized Spring Dresses!

08 March 2012 | 5 Comments




What will you be wearing this year? What are your spring trends?

Sunday night, it snowed.  Yesterday, it was a balmy 66 degrees.  I’m not sure Mother Nature knows what is going on here in Ohio, but the warm weather has me itching for some new spring things.  Of course, this means that we’ll probably get more snow.  That is the way it goes.

After wearing layers all winter long, I’m all about the dresses this spring.  I love dresses, they are feminine, they are comfortable, & after you add some accessories you are ready to walk out of the house.  Here are some cuties I have my eye on.


Ralph Lauren Sleeveless A-Line $224


Womens-Plus Pintucked Linen Dress $42.94



Laura Embroidered Dress $190



Ruffled Surplice Sundress $79.95


large image view

Johnny Was Collection Plus Size Lace Trim Dress $358

I will definitely be indulging in a pedicure soon to show off some cute new sandals too.  What are your favorite spring colors?  I’m thinking a punchy tangerine or a bubblegum pink.

Don’t miss all of the Life Well Lived posts, visit the main post on and add your two cents!   You can also enter the Life Well Lived Sweepstakes for a chance to win a Kindle Fire & Amazon Gift Card.

Word to Ya Mutha.

06 March 2012 | 34 Comments

I have a Pinterest board for books.  It’s called Word to Ya Mutha.  There are currently five books and two posts about documentaries that I’d love to see.  No one pigeonholes me into only posting books on a book board!  I want to fill that sucker up with all kinds of good reads so the next time I’m lamenting about not knowing which book to read next, I can go to my handy dandy Pinterest board and choose one that is awesome sauce. 

So here is where you come in…

I want to know your favorites, your MUST reads, your recent likes.  Tell me, tell me!  What are you reading?

I am also going to make a note on the Pin who recommended it so I can thank you {or tell you that you have awful taste in books} later.

Oh, and since we’re sharing good stuff, for helping me out, I’m going to give one of you a $20 gift card to the bookstore of your choice.  On me.  Because I like you and also because I am a little desperate for book club ideas too.

The Fine Print:  Leave a comment telling me your favorite reads.  I will select a random winner from all entries on Sunday, March 11 at 11:59pm EST.  Winner will be notified and let me know which bookstore they love the bestest.  US Residents only for this one, of course you Canadians are also welcome to leave a comment, ya just can’t win because I don’t know how to convert dollars to dOOlars.  In which case you have to start your comment with I am Canadian so we can all point and laugh at your Mounties and your Ehs.  Muah.  This giveaway is solely on me {and the Davester} and hasn’t been compensated in any way.


05 March 2012 | 13 Comments

So, what are you doing now?

I stay home.

But didn’t you go to school?



Dave and I once had a conversation just before we were married about me staying home and I laughed at him.  Laughed.  Out loud.  I was career driven.  I thought he was nuts and I pretty much told him so.

But, you all know how that turned out. 

My name is Michelle, and I am a stay at home mom.

Staying home is not for the faint of heart. It isn’t easy. I don’t sit around watching the View and eating bonbons all day.

Want to know something else?  It is, unequivocally, the most difficult job I have ever had. 

Yes, of course, there are perks… like being able to stay in my pjs all day if I choose, like baby snuggles in the morning, and naps in the afternoon.   But it’s hard, you guys.  There are no breaks, you’re on call 24 hours a day, and the diapers… dear LORD, the diapers.  There are no lunches out with friends unless my nosey, high-maintenance coworkers tag along.  Let’s not even talk about the paycheck.

And I don’t feel like I am wasting my education by any means.  I’m proud of my degree.  I worked my ass off to get it, thank you for bringing it up.

I wish I could impart all this information to you while we have our awkward exchange, but the truth is, you ‘getting it’ is not a priority for me.

Because they get it.  And that is what matters.

Half Birthday Shenanigans.

02 March 2012 | 7 Comments

Do you remember my Epic Life Fail post?   If you don’t want to click over… It was basically a post full of me whining and being a big giant baby because two months after a baby is born your world is still flipped upside down and you’re all angsty and hormonal and nothing is back to ‘normal’ whatever ‘normal’ might be… not that anything is ever normal in this house, but I digress.

One of the things that bothered me though was skipping out on Dave’s birthday.  {Previous Birthdays include: a Surprise 30th Manly Beer Tasting Bash, a Ferris Bueller Outdoor Movie Night, the year of the three cakes, and a sit down al fresco dinner for 26 that had to be moved indoors at the very last minute due to tornado warnings}  I always do something special for him and last year, I just didn’t. 

I didn’t even get him a present.  Or a card. 

And really, Dave didn’t even care.

One of the comments on the post came from The Amazing Trips who brilliantly suggested celebrating on Dave’s half birthday.  I did the math in my head, ok, ok, it was on my fingers but whatevs, and figured out that his half birthday would be in February.


His birthday is the 29th which doesn’t exist. 

Except if it’s a leap year…   

It is the universe telling me, dude, it’s totally fine that you missed his birthday, I’m going to give you a do-over.  Or something. 

We partied like it was a Wednesday night.

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I didn’t really care who sat where, so the place cards were all “half” sayings:  half baked, half empty, half full, half nelson, half off, half price, half naked, half assed, half pint, etc…  I attached them to the drinking glasses with mini clothespins.  I also used the Cricut to cut out circles and cut them in half to add a little color to the plates.  If I had my act together, I would have printed the menu on these.




The cake was half a cake inspired by this incredible one from Hank & Hunt. I came up with a cake idea the night before the party inspired by an Almond Joy which is Dave’s favorite candy. Basically, it is a yellow cake with almond extract, chocolate ganache, toasted coconut, toasted almonds, almond buttercream filling and a chocolate almond buttercream icing with toasted coconut and toasted almonds on the outside. I’m actually going to make a full sized version of this soon and post about it because it turned out really well. To make the half sized cake, I made two 8 inch rounds, cut them in half, filled and crumb coated them like a regular layer cake, popped it in the freezer for two hours, then flipped it on its side before icing it and adding the toasted almonds and toasted coconut.


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Dave was also blessed with SpiderGirl and SpiderBoy who made several appearances at the dinner.

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The Menu: Salad with a Homemade Garlic Ranch Dressing {made by Nikki and to die for!}, Skirt Steak, Grilled Shrimp, Rice Pilaf, Balsamic Honey Glazed Roasted Baby Carrots, Roasted Asparagus, & Ciabatta.  Almond Joy Cake + Strawberry Shortcake Mini Cuppies for dessert.


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Our friends Jon & Nikki brought the most ridiculously awesome gift, half a six pack of beer and a half cigar.


Hope you enjoyed the peek at Dave’s Half Birthday Shenanigans.


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