27 February 2009

A Quickie of the Boring Variety

Had my EGD today, and the results were inconclusive. They now believe I am having esophageal spasms, and either way it means that as an otherwise healthy 24.11-year-old, I now have to eat like a geriatric patient. Boooo.

Funny things happen under sedation: Apparently, I told a handsome "murse" (male nurse) that I wanted to have his 3rd baby (but only if it was a boy) and that he should go order me a pizza. I remember NONE OF THIS, but my husband walked into the room at the end of the conversation and I looked at the hot murse and stated "Your not my husband!". Then Michael walked over to hold my hand and him taking my hand is the very first thing I remember after waking up. Lord KNOWS what else I told that really hot nurse man. 

On the way out, he laughed at my husband and said "Good to see she found the right one. I bet you are going to go get a pizza now..."

*EMBARRASSING!*

I'm going to have a  super fun BLOGGERVERSARY coming up early this week! And you are ALL INVITED TO PARTAKE IN MY FESTIVITIES! 

Woot. Woot.

Now, off to enjoy the feely good meds and tornado warnings.

25 February 2009

A Party In My Tummy

UGH.

I went in today for a re-enameling of 3 teeth, and walked out with a numb face. Now, I feel something similar to being donkey punched in the face. 

You see, I LOVE pain though. So tomorrow, Michael and I (whilst the Wild Thing is at PreK) are going to a "Parental Screening" at a local total waste of money Very Expensive Private Schooling Institution for Mediocre Learning. We're thrilled, really. AND! We get to be "evaluated" during Chase's naptime. Aren't we a special kind of beautiful crazy? Shucks... *blush*
I'm sure to blog more about the screening post-screening... 

But HECK Amanda, why stop the fun there???

Let's schedule a 9 AM EGD, in which I get an IV (WITH NEEDLES), and some really nice doctor-type-man to shove a camera-on-a-tube down my throat, into my esophagus and upper tummy and then biopsy my esophageal lesions. Oh yes... I really know how to throw a party. If you wear the right shoes, you're totally invited.

But why stop with 6 shots, 3 new enamels, 1 filling, an overpaid snobby-two-shoes checking to see whether me and the Mr. are "of quality", AN IV, and 1 camera in my tummy (sorry, no 5 golden rings or french hens)??

AFTER THAT I GET MY IUD!

That's if my body cooperates.

Needless to say, I'll be more than happy to blog it up about the paid for Judging of Ye Ole Parental Skills and all the pieces of my esophagus they remove, but don't expect me to like it. By that point, I'll be all partied out.

23 February 2009

One-Eyed, One-Horned, Flying Purple NOT MY COUCH!

Conner's stomach just growled quite loudly. I looked at him and he explained "That was my tummy telling you it needs a cookie."

Funny thing is, I just opened a new screen to post a few pictures of the boys over the past week, but was stumped on an intro. Boy is Conner useful.

Although, his artwork on the other hand is more of a pain.
Here, let me show you:

That's a "dadda, a momma, a Conna (conner) and a Chasey" on momma's leather sectional. Now I have two issues with his creation, with the first being obvious. But, packed away in my Super Mom arsenal I have both the never ending knowledge of a thousand university level libraries AND Axe Deodorant Spray, which used in small amounts, takes ink right out of leather. I do suggest testing a small spot if you ever find yourself in a similar predicament, as some leather surfaces have been treated with special dyes and I don't know how they'd react.... just a disclaimer.

My second issue with this beautiful masterpiece has something to do with this:

Which would be Alien Apocalypse, a crappy Sci-Fi channel movie that was one of four that Michael subjected me too over the weekend. I. HATE. SCI-FI CRAP. Good Sci-Fi is a different story, but those movies don't make it to the sci-fi channel's Saturday/Sunday 9am lineup. Gee... wonder why?

On a side note: I once read a study about how men watch this mindless crap because their brainwaves actually simulate the early stages of REM. Apparently, they need mindless television as a form of "mini nap for their brains". The study also pointed out how less likely it is for a man to be able to watch tv and talk on the phone simultaneously, whereas women are able to because tv watching does not have the "comma like" effects that control their husbands.

Back to Conner's Alien Family, you notice how we have one eye? (ALIENS WE ARE)

The first "person" is Michael, and the second one is me... we share an arm in the middle that also doubles as a smile across my adorable little one-eyed face. 

Isn't he clever? 

Conner is up next and not because he's taller, but because he has "two eyes" (I had to ask) ... then comes Chase. No more alien movies for Conner (although in defense of our parental-ness, he was watching My Life as a Teenage Robot... or is that a defense at all? Funny cartoon though.)

Chase spent his weekend getting over a bug-type-thing with fever. On Thursday, he spent the morning napping off a fever in our master closet. Which looked a little something like this:


Sorry it's so dark. The whole nap thing means no lighting. And the whole "in the closet while napping" means a lack of natural light.

He's better now though, fyi.

Conner's really supplying The Funny this morning, as I sit here and type, he's watching a Disney movie... like this:






But that's most def not the funniest thing he's worn lately. As a matter of fact, his "Lucy" (his friend from class) gave these manly "sun in faces" (sunglasses) out for Valentine's Day. And... he wears them... Heaven help me:



Note to self: Throw away heart shaped sunglasses.

21 February 2009

Kaboodle, Slap Braclets and Does Zak Morris Tweet?

Does anyone remember the old school chat rooms?

When I was 12ish, we had the internet and I spent way too much time in chat rooms (before they were creepy... ok, like 15 minutes before they became creepy). Anyways, I spent most of my time pretending to be 16, talking to some guy named Nikos from Greece, he was "16" too. Oh, how many nights I lie in my bed dreaming of Greece and it's beautiful water and rocky shores. Sigh. 

That was Yahoo! Chat, and I'm referring to chat rooms even before then. You know, back when you would type something, press enter, then refresh... and refresh ... and hit refresh one more time before your "friend" would reply?

So now we've advanced in the ways of instant communication. Everything is there. Fast. Now. Bam.

Facebook keeps us connected to people that, before our generation, we would have stayed completely disconnected from until an awkward run in at a super market or our 10-year reunion

My iPhone sends me my email the second they come in.

And Twitter is blowing up. I listen to my morning radio show on the way to Conner's Preschool on Tuesday & Thursdays and the weather guy has a Twitter update. Businesses tweet about sales and specials. Movie theaters stream about sold out shows. Local television stations Twitter breaking news. The Conversion Diary is even considering Tweeting her way through her 4th labor. How cool is that? Pretty tweet if you ask me. (Oh, I crack me up).

...The thing is Twitter is no more than a new fancier version of those dilapidated old chat room formats. You type a short message, follow a few friends,
 they can reply to you, all of which is updated by refreshing your page, right?

Refresh...refresh...refresh... OH LOOK THEY REPLIED!!

Have we regressed?

Soon are bigger phones going to be in again? Should I invest in this:


 Hang on to your VCRs kids!

19 February 2009

No Quick Takes Today...


We've all got a bit of The Funk in the Zaremba house, and Chase has been robbing me of sleep for 3 nights in a row, so I'm not really up to for 7 Quick Takes today. (But if you are, head on over to The Conversion Diary for more of other people's 7 Quick Takes)

Oh, and if you haven't already, read my post below "The Roof over my Rant". Here's a linky thing if you have questions about the mortgage relief available under Obama's proposed aid.

I'll have a super duper fun filled post this weekend though (after my grandparent's 50th wedding anniversary party that I'd rather not go to because I'm lazy Chase and Conner have fevers).




The Roof Over My Rant

I try not to go all political rant on your rear ends, but I've got to this time:

Michael and I pay our mortgage every month on time, every single month, just like a lot of Americans (even if that means putting the gas bill on a credit card... YIKES!)

And just like a lot of Americans, our pocket books are bleeding, our adjustable rate mortgage is flying through the roof and our mortgage has become unmanageable. It's becoming harder (and near impossible) to pay our rising mortgage costs, especially with the cut of Michael's bonuses, which were taken into our "income" when our house was financed. When we bought this house, we COULD afford our mortgage. Now? Not so much.

When we tried to sell our house a few months back we discovered a major problem: our home is no longer worth what we purchased it for. Some call that being "underwater" others call that negative equity. Either way, it means that this market has cost us close to $40,000 and growing. 

If we wanted to get out of our mortgage, and move into a smaller home with a smaller mortgage, we would have to literally bring a $40,000 check MINIMUM to the table. Where would we even come up with that money?

------

Michael would be the first person to stand up in a crowd and question President Obama's first 100 days in office, pointing out his trillions of dollars in bailout money and whether half of it was even necessary or properly spent. He would also be the last person to ask for a handout.

But the thing is - this time we really do need the help.

Under Obama's proposed Mortgage Relief, Michael and I will finally be able to refinance our home. We will qualify for a fixed mortgage, that we can afford, without us owing more than our home is worth. 

This could be our saving grace. The one thing that keeps us from failing down on payments, from dishing out unimaginable amounts of interest on our loan. We might be able to keep our home. 

Tonight, as Michael and I sat listening to the news over dinner, we heard the argument (several times) that the American people don't want to "bailout" people who "don't deserve it". That helping people own a home they can't afford is "not their problem". It makes my stomach churn to think that people could assume that without considering that people, like my family, could afford their house when they bought it. When it was plausible to refinance 5 years later into a fixed loan.... back when our bonuses hadn't disappeared because of the market conditions and Michael's employer's last ditch efforts to avoid layoffs. 

To those people - I hope you hear my story, or someone else's similar to mine. We don't want a "hand out". What we want is to save what we've worked so hard for.

18 February 2009

Hulu Review Woohoo

Have any of you seen the commercial featuring Alec Baldwin (*rolls eyes*) for the free tv-over-your-computer service called Hulu?

Well, I hear free and roll my eyes anyways, with or without Alec Baldwin.

But people.... seriously, lend me your mice and click on over to Hulu!

It's positively amazing. I got caught up on Nip/Tuck yesterday during nap! Only tiny little 20 second commercials about 4 times during the show. I mean, hello! That's less (WAAY less) than if I were actually AWAKE at 10 pm each Tuesday night to WATCH IT!

The selection is quite nice too! I've found House, 24, Family Guy, The Real Housewives of OC, Hell's Kitchen, The Office, Top Chef, and many, many others.

As far as the selction for children, ehh... it's limited: a few Veggie Tales, some random cartoon movies (that would entertain if necessary) (Oh, and Ice Age, the Pink Panther and The Night of the Headless Horseman).

(Michael liked all the crap movies that are played on weekends, like Dragonheart and SwimFan... blarg)

But FREE. Like, really free. Me likes free.

17 February 2009

Notes From the Stirrups

                                                                            (yes, that's really me in a pickle)

Well, I never made a decision on whether or not to go ahead with the Mirena implant. It’s not for a lack of research, cause dudes, I’ve googled the begeezus out of it. I’ve spoken with high school friends about having something rammed up their hoo-has and into their uteri although I’d never of thought I’d of been speaking to people I once shared a swing with about post-baby birth control options.

Staci even shared with me about having to get the strings trimmed because her husband’s special member needed them to be shorter. I mean, ewww… he has cooties woman! You shouldn’t even share your animal crackers and juice with a nasty boy much less let him……….

Riiight.

Michael and I have had far more discussions than he even deemed necessary or plausible about how we were going to prevent anymore ridiculously cute children from partaking in my Uterus Parties (known AROUND THE WORLD – I’m sure…), and his final decision: It’s my body, so I should choose how to violate it. Hurmph. He’s no help.

He does agree that the Baby Parade has ended. Obviously, you kind people know how I feel about Being Pregnants again, but he has his own concerns. And according to this article, the economy has had some interesting affects on our baby makings – bringing a baby into the Apocalypse is EXPENSIVE and more people are turning to Mr. Latex than previous years. It’s cheap… it doesn’t require you to have anything plastic shoved through your cervix and into your uterus… it doesn’t cost $20 a month nor mandate you remember to take the darn thing every day… but as my Vagina Doctor says “It also doesn’t work in your nightstand”. So…. Yeah… he has a point. Umm -  Point:

 

                                                                             (but, isn't he adorable?)

Riiighht again.

So I’ve taken Michael’s “opinion” into consideration and the verdict is simple: I’m not doing crap for right now.  I’ve considered Natural Family Planning before, but my biggest concerns involve the length of my period staying lengthy, PMDD (Yoda says: diagnosed I am), and.. oh yea… IT NOT WORKING. [read: Dear Uterus, please cooperate and stay babyless. Thanks, The Management].

That’s just for now though. And although I say that, I can’t possibly imagine what would surface to change my mind. More information? Doubtful. My husband gaining an opinion? Ha. Silly you. My fear of bleeding rivers for weeks and labor contractions (!)? BRAAHAHA. Contain yourself, Amanda! 

-------------------------------


And I wrote all of that before I even went into the exam room.... I arrived at 2:50, my appointment was at 3, called into an exam room and disrobed myself around 4:45, then saw Vagina Doctor at 5:45! People, it was DARK OUTSIDE when I left, I was the very last person in the BUILDING, his practice CLOSES AT 5 and I had to UNLOCK THE FRONT DOOR JUST TO LEAVE! WTFrench?

So, I had alot of time to think about this.... again... And the unbelievably late nice Vagina Doctor tells me that the hormones levels in the Mirena are so small, that it does seem like the best option for me. He agrees that the pill, patch and ring are non-options, and with me not being regular in my cycles because I'm still breastfeeding, natural family planning would be fine if my husband is ok with avoiding me like the plague for about 12 days every month (I would love to tell you why condoms don't work if they break due to lack of lubricant in a breastfeeding woman, but people... that's so TMI for a blog! gah!).

He is giving me a cytotec (oh hell, after hyper extending during labor with Chase...), a valium and a pain killer. I think I'll throw in a handful of crack and some vodka (I kid people! I can't drink. SAD FACE!).  So the pain issue? Ha! I might not even know where I am! WOOHOO.

I'm going for it. 10 days. Right before my EGD (gulp). February is looking kinda painful...

16 February 2009

You Know What They Say About Intentions

We spent Friday/Saturday in Birmingham, had two lovely meals out (one sushi at Sumo, the other at TGIFriday's), and some down time since Mike's parents chased handled the kids for us 75% of the time.

Niiiice.

Then on Sunday we. did. nothing. For reals.

So today, Michael had a friend over (doesn't that sound like Michael is my third child and he had a playdate? Wait... that's exactly what happened...) to shoot off michael's Conner's rocket ship that "Santa" bought him for Christmas. Needless to say, they ended up meeting some very lovely neighbors due to the rocket making its landing on top of their home. A ladder and broom were required for removal.

Then, around 2:40ish I headed off for my annual Pap and the big birth control nonsense I've been racking my tiny little head over for months. I figured I'd be gone for an hour, maybe 90 minutes tops, then back home for a relaxing evening.

I took my laptop and planned a big ole Live Blog-a-palooza for all you lovelies that humor me by reading this "fart space for my brain". It was going to be exciting, whitty, chock full of me making fun of other people in the office, and praising Jesus that I'm not pregnant (those women looked SOOO uncomfortable today!), and I could have even had a live video stream right from the stirrups! Well, that wouldn't have happened...

But...

THEY DIDN'T HAVE WIRELESS INTERNET!

Who the FRENCH doesn't provide wireless internet??? SHAME!

After nearly 2 hours of SITTING and MORE SITTING, I started chatting it with several buddies via facebook (including my hubby, who was begging for me to come home - PATHETIC are WE?). At one point, I was literally naked from the waste down, feet resting comfortably on the stirrups, head and back propped up by a pillow, IMing Staci about... well.. my position...

More about that tomorrow peoples, as Amanda is tired. And tired Amanda is a grumpy bitch. So, yeah... BEDTIME! Tomorrow ALL about my crazy date with Dr. Vagina.

15 February 2009

I Heart You Apple.



While in Birmingham on Friday, I made an appointment with a local Genius (how genius is it to call them geniuses?) at the Apple Store at the Summit. My iphone has been asking me for several months now "Would you like to turn on the Airplane mode?" ... and I'm obviously not living on an airplane so I was sick of answering no.

As a back story, this is my 3rd iphone - the first died last May at the beach. It wouldn't charge, it wouldn't turn on and after calling Apple, they determined that making me drive from Montgomery to Birmingham was a smidge ridiculous and they shipped me a box so that I could ship my phone to them and determine the problem. I shipped on a Wednesday morning at NO COST TO ME WHATSOEVER and by Friday afternoon they had replaced my phone with a brand new one and it was in my hands. Same story, different problem about 6 months back - the phone had "numb" area... just this band across the length of the screen where touching it did nothing. Shipped on a Tuesday afternoon, Friday morning - Brand. New. Phone.

So, I wasn't expecting my Valentine's gift from the Apple Gods, but after waiting 15 minutes in Apple Paradise (*swoon*), the geek Genius tells me that although my warranty expired (2 weeks ago, actually), they'd wave the $200 replacement fee and GIVE ME A NEW PHONE.

*double swoon*

I heart you Apple. You make my insides go pitter-patter.

13 February 2009

Quick Takes: 3rd Edition

1

We are currently in Birmingham for a long weekend. This is a good thing because I, for some odd reason, love setting up new offices for Michael’s company (which we've done 3 times... I think). There’s something about new office furniture, lists, installing new networks and software, organizing a filing system and adding new signage that makes my inner school teacher swoon. The bad thing is that this isn’t our office. The office that was going to be our Golden Ticket and Yellow Brick Road to Birmingham – HOME! Now, it’s set to be the much-celebrated 400th office for Michael’s company, a big deal in the sense that not only is it a growing company but it’s a company that can actually continue to OPEN offices and MAKE jobs in this economy. Kudos to This Company, that due to SEC regulations and Michael’s job security, I can not name.


Here's Michael this morning making a sad face that this is not our office, and we aren't coming home :(




2

Since I’m having a bit of a struggle with this not being “our” office, I think this will be a quicker seven takes. So, my number 2 is that when I typed SEC earlier, I actually typed SEX and didn’t notice it for a while. What am I thinking about… maybe I'm thinking about my number 7 quick take... Now don't cheat!

3

Right now, Michael is just short of offering Conner bars of gold and chocolate rivers if he will JUST EAT SOME DINNER. I know kids are picky, and Conner is JUST THAT – but PEOPLE – it’s like corporal punishment for him just to get a few bites of FRUIT! Come on! It’s FRUIT! I’m not ASKING for him to eat Tofu and Whole Grains for Pete’s sake (although I do sneak those in, I’m like a Fox). Geez Kid. Good thing we use Pedisure.

4

I’ve got a few product reviews coming up! Aren’t you supa excited! Me Too!! Two companies are in the process of sending me samples and giveaways. Stay tuned my peoples.

5

It seems that I need to post at least one current events story in each Quick Takes as with an economy-centric husband and my mild obsession with the national news coverage, it is a major player in the Zaremba game. On our 2-hour treck to Birmingham, Michael and I were discussing (over Wall-E blaring in the backseat…) how the pot heads accomplices (alleged, of course) to Michael Phelps being totally human and 23 smoking some Marijuana scandal have been investigated and charged with possession. Apparently, two people who own or rent the house where the event took place are facing up to 30 days in jail (!) and a $200 fine. To which, I have the following statement:

Dear State of South Carolina,
Don’t you have better things to do? Wouldn’t 30 days in jail not only be overkill on a small possession of pot and paraphernalia charge but a MAJOR expense on the tax payers for his lodging, food and activites while incarcertated? Did you guys not “experiment” in college? What the crap is wrong with you? Isn’t there like, a crap load of meth trailers in South Carolina to deal with? Dudes, seriously.


Thanks,
Amanda


6
I’d LOVE to discuss the crazy, needs-to-be-locked up, please someone REMOVE HER UTERUS and JAIL HER FOR LIFE, NUTJOB and POOR EXCUSE FOR A HUMAN MUCH LESS A MOTHER PSYCHOPATH out in California, but I might get on my soap box. And once on that soap box, I’d have to also tell of the CORUPT and INCOMPETENT, LAME EXCUSE FOR A MEDICAL DOCTOR who CLEARLY abused his patients and NEEDS HIS LICENSED REVOKED IMMEDIATELY and ALSO JAILED. Or maybe, they should just make him take care of all 14 of those children. All the diapers, formula, late nights, colic, diaper rash, car seats, school fees, proms, COLLEGE, weddings, you know… EVERYTHING… since I’m sure his at home swimming in his money pool financed by all the poor women who sought him for fertility treatments.


But, I’m not going to discuss those things. Head on over to ALittlePregnant.com and Julie will gladly summarize my thoughts in a manner that I can’t compose myself to do at this moment.



7

This just in. Hold your breath people as Michael and I actually have a DATE NIGHT TOMORROW NIGHT. Shocker – I know. ANDDDDD… we might go see a movie; which, for the record, I have not been to a movie theater since March of 2005. Oh, that’s right… ALMOST 4 YEARS AGO. I can barely contain myself. Leave any “Now In Theaters!” suggestions in the comments!




For more 7 Quick Takes, head on over to The Conversion Diary.

10 February 2009

You Say Grande, I Say Medium

I will never forget walking into Starbucks at the Ferg for the first time, a Sophomore in college. I had never been much of a coffee person, and to be frank - I rarely drank caffeine back then (and not at all now), but after 2 weeks of getting up for my 8 a.m. Chemistry class I was desperate. So being that it was my first time to order anything other than a hot chocolate from a fancy schmancy coffee establishment, you can imagine how scared I was to see all the crazy Italian words on the big order board behind the counter. I just needed some stinkin' coffee that morning - not a Portachelli Machiavelli Ricco Sauve Ravioli Meatzaballi (...please)!

I ordered a Caramel Macchiato ... that is... I told the Kind Girl Behind the Counter that I wanted the "one with Caramel about 4 lines up on the second column"... and that I wanted it "medium sized" and "not over ice".

Sometime later in the semester, I got the meatballs to ask the Kind Girl Behind the Counter how to pronounce "macchiato" and I've never forgotten it since. And although I specifically recall 2 times when I needed a larger size, I always hesitated because I wasn't exactly sure how to pronounce 'Venti' (it is, btw, exactly how it looks... but when words sound exactly like they look in other languages, I always end up with a puzzled look and no confidence because surely it's a joke and it can't be that easy).

So when Mrs. Abby D. over at My Crazy Beautiful Life posted a Starbucks 101, I was THRILLED! I know I mentioned earlier about not drinking caffeine anymore, but that's only because I have severe reflux. I LURVE Carmel Macchiatos and Pumpkin Spice Lattes and the other 5 things I've had at Starbucks but that I've ordered by pointing because I was too afraid to attempt pronunciation...

Go on over and read her Guide To Morons That Order at Starbucks Tutorial on All Things Starbucks! It's brilliant!

09 February 2009

It's Not Easy Being Green

 I've seen countless posts and heard a handful of stories about children, in the 3-5 age range, that choose to answer to another name other than that which we, as parents, rattled our mother lovin' brains out to come up with.

Personally, my mother tells me that I refused to answer to anything other than SaraBeth for one full week. Oddly enough, the Sara I was referring to was a friend in my preschool class, and although we were not friends after that time period, in some weird twist of fate or hell ended up as college roomates my Freshman year. 

So, tonight, when Conner announced that he was not Conner ("I'm NOT Conner"), we weren't at all surprised with his new name. He's apparently, from this point forth, to be referred to as Count Dooku.




But, for the record, Conner thinks Count Dooku is really General Grievous and that General Grievous is really Count Dooku (I can see his confusion). So, he has really chosen to be this dude:

Which for the record, is a lot scarier to answer to. I mean, he's got like 4 arms which means quadruple the light sabers. Yikes.

A lot less scary? The following snippets from bedtime tonight:

Me: "Count Dooku.... You need to come brush your teeth. Now."

...and later...

Me: "Goodnight Conner. I love you."
Conner: "I'm not Conner, I'm Count 'Doodoo'!"
Me: "Oh, I'm sorry Count Dooku. I love you. Goodnight."

...while I'm grabing a diaper and my drink... 
Mike: "Count Dooku, lay down and stop kicking the dog"

...and finally...

Me: "Goodnight Babe, love you"
Mike: "Night. Turn on the alarm."
Conner: "He's not Babe. He's Genewal Geevious"
Me: "Goodnight General Grievious" 

Then Mike tells me I'm Princess Leia.
I object, and choose to be Padme. She's much hotter.
Conner has his say as well (and to be honest, this is the character he always assigns me)....
"Momma not Padme... she Yoda."



08 February 2009

I Really Did Use Paint.

Erin commented on the last post that she was amazed that I used Paint to create my header (ok, so maybe she wasn't that *amazed*, but she did comment.. so... you know). So, in effort to help out My Fellow Bloggers, I thought I'd add a few tips for doing your own header in the Paint program.

Most importantly, you need to know how big your header can be. To do this, go to your Blogger Dashboard and click on 'layout'. From there, click the 'edit html' tab - now don't get scared, we aren't actually going to change any html. You need to look for the Header section (quite close to the top...). Mine looks like this:


/* Header
-----------------------------------------------
*/

#header-wrapper {
width:960px;
margin:0 auto 0px;
border:1px solid $bordercolor;
}


You are looking for the width, in the example above it's 960. This number is important when beginning your project in Paint.

Open Paint, and drag the canvas size (hover your mouse over the bottom right corner) and bring it in till the canvas size is either equal or lesser width than your header width number we just found. You can find the canvas size numbers in the bottom right hand corner (for example: 960x280 with the first number being the width and the second being the height). This process takes a small bit of trial-and-error on the height - just keep in mind that this should be much longer than it is tall.

Then, let your creative juices pour. Ok, more like trickle... this is only Paint for Pete's sakes...

Save your image as a .jpeg.

To import it as your header go back to the Blogger Dashboard and choose 'Layout'. A mock layout of your blog will appear. Then, click on the 'edit' tab in the top box labeled '(Header)'.  Choose 'upload an image' and I suggest selected the 'stretch to fit' option, although I don't think it really did anything to mine (but it might be applicable to yours). Also choose the 'instead of title and description' option or you might end up with a bunch of garbled crap for a header. And that my friend's might make for an ugly blog. Boooo.

Click save and BAM! A new header of your liking out of PAINT! Who would've thunk it?!

(P.S. - If this doesn't work, make sure to save your original header's text somewhere else, in case you decide to put back the original header text and tagline)

And, if you use this method, I'd love to see it! Leave the link in the comments section. Can't believe I thought this program was for 3-year-old's who want to scribble on momma's "puter"...

07 February 2009

...And Over Here on the Left We Have the Obvious

You may have noticed the new look, and I must say... I'm darn proud of myself!

Let's start with the less than obvious. If you've been a long time reader, first off, THANKS! I know I'm occassionally a giant snore and I've covered topics that fall in the "been there, blogged that" category, but still... I love you all!

So, if you are one of those undeniably beautiful people, you might still type in my old URL "atothezaremba.blogspot.com" and, since you are reading this now, you know it still directs you here to TheMomJob.net. But, if you get the time, change your Blogroll to my new addy since it now has a favicon (for blogger accounts, it's that little orange "B" in a square beside each blog's name. I do believe that changing the URL in your blogroll will help force my favicon show up)(again, shout out to Erin for help with the favicon!)

I changed URLs for a few reasons.
1) I'm taking my blog seriously (laugh now... but I mean as serious as a mommy blog can be!). For the first 1.5 years of college I majored in Journalism. Then, I switched to Advertising/PR because it gave me more "creative license" to write outside of the box, or in the case of journalism "the triangle". I'm using this site for many reasons: to document the happenings of my children, to keep up my writing skills and to hopefully (*fingers crossed*) ONE DAY supplement SOME type of income since this IS partially what I went to college for. I think it's nice to just get that out there.
2) I hated my old URL since my last name is CRAZY and yes, I know I could have changed it but purchasing my own domain sounded so... *sparkly*
3) It's SHORTER!

Next, You'll notice the header. Duh. For Christmas, my mom bought me us a new HP. I miss my Mac, but this computer is nice. However, it has NO editing/creative software (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign... etc.). So, I had to make my header in Paint. Oh, you read that correctly - paint! I recently discovered that the tagline under the main header that says "the hardest job a woman can ever do... will never make it on her resume" (which is SOOOO TRUE. Can I get an AMEN?!?) shows up more yellow than lime - and by yellow I mean bile colored yellow. Ew. I think I'm going to do something about that. You know. One day.

Like my new 3 column layout? Thanks! Me too! And I did it ALL BY MYSELF IN HTML. Ok. That's a partial lie. I used this guide. It requires that you use Blogger and the "Minima" template. I changed a few things, like the padding on the sides, the width of the columns, header and footer, as well as adding the lime color.

Speaking of colors, I also changed my link/visited link colors. I'm still in the air about whether I like them. If you have an opinion, leave them in the comments!

Additionally, I changed some small wordings after each post. It was super simple! In the Blogger dashboard, go to layout. This will pull up a screen that looks like a mockup of your blog's layout. In the middle should be a section for Blog Posts, click 'edit' in that box. This gives you the ability to change anything from how many posts appear on your main page, to the words after the number of comments you have (which I changed *wink*) and several other small things you can do to personalize your blog.

Overall, I'm still working on a few things and am having fun playing with HTML. If you are looking at customizing your blog (on blogger) without downloading one of those pre-made layouts - hit me up! I might be able to help or refer you to a site that could!

05 February 2009

Quick Takes: 2nd Edition

-1-

The neighbors across the street left (sad face), and the new neighbors have been "moved in" for something close to 3 weeks now? Lauren, is that right? Anyhooter, since they've moved in, the GARAGE DOOR HAS BEEN OPEN 24/7.

I totally get having your garage door open to move in your stuff, or for rearranging your attic. But PEOPLE, it's NOT THAT. They leave it open allllll day, then they come home from work, and then it's open allllll night. No lie. Mike had to get up at 2 a.m. the other morning and he checked - OPEN. Then, I couldn't sleep the other day and got up for a glass of water around 5:30 AM - OPEN. Right now it's 10 AM - OPEN. Lunch time? OPEN. Dinner? YOU GET THE POINT. FOR. THREE. WEEKS. Why does this bother me? It was 19 last night. Isn't this bad for your energy costs? There is ATTIC ACCESS in the garage, don't they fear people climbing up in there and waiting all night, then coming out in the in-house access during the night to murder off their faces?? For reals.

-2-

Chase is now sleeping till 12:30* in his own crib (holla!). And for the record, I've made the Executive Decision to continue night feedings till after our beach trip in April. I feel no shame for nursing all for bigger boobies in my bikini.

(*Last night he slept till 3 AM! WOOT!)

-3-

I enjoy the Kelly's Court segment on Fox News (go ahead, roll your eyes). This morning, it's about a dad in a minivan who was allegedly speeding. The police officer turns on her lights and begins a "routine" traffic stop. Then, he puts on his blinker and tries to get off the interstate, slowing down. It is then that she RAMS HIS MINIVAN WITH HER CRUISER MULTIPLE TIMES.
To note, he had 3 young children in his minivan and he was only trying to find a safe place to pull over! He spent 2 nights in jail and it cost the father $1,500 in damages to his car.
The question is, should he sue?
My verdict (as was Kelly's): YES!
This police officer had absolutely NO GROUNDS for use of excessive force. She put this man and his small children in danger as well as the other drivers in the area. With the force she used, this could have easily turned into a much bigger accident. It was CLEAR that his intent was to stop his vehicle. Had he of wanted to run, he would have most likely not put on his blinker and SLOWED DOWN. I hope this police officer is punished and retrained.
Here's a link for the story. And to FoxNews: boooooooooo. Your website is TERRIBLE!
-4-

In case you haven't noticed, I've had a bit of "bloggy flu" the last week. Sorry about that guys. It was a mix of writer's block, lack of time due to my husband's unbelievable work load, the laundry and me being too darn busy with our taxes.
Which, by the way, I am officially DONE with inputting my 'cost basis' (basically that means inputting how much you bought X stock for and how many shares, to determine whether it was a loss or a gain against the information that is imported from your 1099). All-in-all, I'm done and should have a Post-A-Palooza this weekend. Oh, contain yourself people.


-5-

My SIL Ali (hi!!) went to NYC this past week. I'm uber jealous. She also went to some fancy nice dress wearing thing and met John Kerry. She's going to kill me for posting this picture:



-6-

What's more boring than blogging about the weather? Oh not much, so that's why I'm going to do it now!

It's going to be in the 70s ALL NEXT WEEK (starting TOMORROW!). How FREAKING EXCITING IS THAT?!?

-7-

Conner has been on. my. last. nerve. Since Chase can now walk (oh... oops... did I forget to blog that... um... yea.. my bad) Conner thinks he's free game.

Brother walking toward you with little balance and you are bored? Shove him over.
Bath get boring? Body slam your sibling into the water.
Standing on your cozy coupe with nothing to do? Where's Chase?









I've only threatened to ground him till he turns 18 1.4 million times. Here soon, I'm just going to resort to this:





For more 7 Quick Takes point your browsers to The Conversion Diary.

04 February 2009

What about no...

Me: "What about a nap?"

Conner: "What about no?"




He's soooo my child.

If it weren't for the fact that I couldn't stop laughing, he'd of gotten a stern look...

03 February 2009

Dear Girl Scouts of America...

Dear Girl Scouts of America,


I understand that purchasing your deliciously sinful Thin Mint cookies once a year creates a terrific ad campaign. It keeps me yearning for your tasty treats year-after-year, just waiting for a little girl in a green sash to coming knocking on my door. But sadly, GSofA, I only have one freezer. And to be frank, I don't think it's ok to throw out my 3-year-old's Tyson Chicken Fries and all of our "bought on sale" meats just to make more room for the additional 35 boxes of Thin Mint cookies I've purchased, but don't think I haven't considered it.


I wasn't actively looking to replace you ... my inner Cookie Monster was, but me? No.. promise.


So, when I hung out in the cookie aisle at Publix for 20 minutes stumbled upon Publix Brand Fudge Mint Cookie Squares I have to admit, I was skeptical. There's no way they could possibly taste just like my beloved Thin Mints, right? Oh, little Amanda, you'd be wrong. Dead wrong.


Please don't hate me for betraying you my fellow Girl Scouts. I've done my time going door-to-door, begging people to just accept their inner obesity and Eat More Cookies. I've been to Savannah, GA. I've visited the coveted home of our founding Mother, Juliet Gordon Lowe. I really do hate what I've done.

But no matter how guilty I feel after consuming one entire package of your replacement substitute in no more than 2 1/2 days, I've got to tell you ... I'm going back for more tonight. They taste the EXACT SAME I TELL YOU! AND I DON'T HAVE TO WAIT FOR THEM! They fulfill me in ways you've failed to in the past. Maybe you just weren't that into me...

I will promise to still buy a few boxes of your over priced Thin Mints when the annual duty calls, but just know yours aren't the only delicious chocolaty wafer covered in a thin fudgey mint hard shell chilling in my refrigerator (because that's the only way to eat a faux-Thin Mint).



Just don't egg my house.


With Love,
Amanda

P.S. - They look exactly like this:



This isn't my picture, but one I found on google. I'll take a picture of the packaging when I get home tonight. I can't promise they won't be opened though...

And I mean, can you blame me? They are HALF the cost of Girl Scout Thin Mints!

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BirminghamMommy