With Just a Bit of Magic

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With Just a Bit of Magic: August 2010

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Complete & Total Blog Neglect

I had such high hopes for the past couple of weeks... really I did! I even had a plan written out on what I was going to post each day. It was thought out and thorough. But something happened and I didn't even get half of them done.

And now my blog is so sad.  It knows that I've been neglecting it. And I'm pretty sure that this is no way to get new readers or even keep the handful that I have now! Geesh.

Okay, so I'm totally blaming my job, all the meetings that I have to attend, and the endless housework that I have at home (note to self - look into getting a maid). Oh, yea. Also sleep. I really like my rest and it seems to be playing a major part in how much free time I have each day.

So once again I will make a plan! And maybe instead of daily I aim for every other day or every two day. How does that sound?

Now, my question for all you moms out there who work, take care of a family, and blog is how do you manage it all? How do you keep up with everything and still manage to have simply amazing blogs?

Let's discuss this! Does anyone have the same issues that I do? If so, let's come up with a plan that will help us become better bloggers!

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Thursday, August 26, 2010

I was holding on tight but....

For the past few weeks I've been participating in Mama Kat's Writers Workshop and it's been a lot of fun. It's easy because it's only once a week and I have almost 4 days to think about and write on one (or more) of the assignments that she emails out to everyone.

Mama's Losin' It

This week there were several choices that I pondered and it was finally today that I chose one. It just came to me! I knew exactly what I wanted to write about.

I was holding on tight but... eventually you have to let go. You can't hold on forever although you can try. I know I have been doing exactly that.

Yesterday I took #1 daughter (Caitlin) to registration for her freshman year of high school. It was hard and even harder is today I'm taking #2 daughter (Natalie) for registration at the middle school.

Somewhere along the way I missed about 10 years of my kids life. It just slipped by so quickly that I have no idea where the time went. I know I was there! I have pictures, memories, and keepsakes. But they grew up no matter how hard I held on or how much I wanted them to stay little.

All to soon they're be going to college and moving out of the house forever. I know I won't be able to handle it! Seriously.... Caitlin went away for two weeks this summer and I didn't know what to do!

People always say that taking their kids to their first day of kindergarten is hard, sad, or difficult for them. Well, I'll tell ya what... taking your child to their first day of middle school is much worse. Dropping them off and then watching them walk away to talk & laugh with their friends without a care in the world is hard to watch. They've grown up. Reached a point in their lives where they're not little kids anymore and you're not the most important thing in the world to them. The second day, third day, and there after get better. Trust me they do!

I still try to hold on tight and they often fight it, but they're always going to be my babies. And I will always be here for them no matter what.

On the other side I still have one in elementary school who still thinks I'm the greatest and of course there's my little man who's 7 months old and I am the world to him! I still have time to hold on tight to the little ones.

I will always hold them tightly to me in my heart even though I have to let them grow and learn and become who they want to be as adults. And someday (hopefully not soon!!) they'll be in my shoes and I'll have cuddly cute grandbabies to hold tight.

Hold tight while you can and cherish the time that you have because it goes by so fast and one day you wake up and they're teenagers and you don't even realize where the time went.

Enjoy the time with your kids. Hold tight...

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - August 25th

I know it's called Wordless Wednesday for a reason, but I have just a few to explain the situation.

So, the kids were starving and Andrew wanted my undivided attention and of course my super mommy powers had dwindled for the day so I couldn't deal with him and make dinner. I asked the girls to keep an eye on him and entertain him.

When I came out to check on them this is what I found......

They told me that he wasn't happy doing anything until they put him in the basket. Uh huh....

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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

This for That McKlinky - Get Help by Helping Others!

What is This for That? You help someone out with a "need" on their blog and in turn they help YOU out! Here's how it works:

Post your "need" in the McKLinky below and link it to where others can help fulfill that need. Then, meet the need of the 3 people directly above you, then you are done! If you want more than 3 people to help you out, then wait a bit and come back. Enter your need again, and then again YOU will help the 3 people out directly above your link. The idea is that you help 3 people out and then 3 other people will help you out. You may come back and link up as many times as you want!


**Note** If someone asks that you follow via GFC and you already do, I'm sure they would appreciate it if you find another way to follow or help them.  Or you could comment and let them know you already do and ask if there is anything else you can do to help them.  



Thursday, August 19, 2010

Why I blog! Because I work full time...have 4 kids... and still have some sanity.

In reading one of my favorite blogs I stumbled upon Mommy Want's Vodka post about why she blogs and she asked why we blog so of course I had to answer. But only after thinking about it for a couple days.

I've really been trying to get better at this blog thing. It's hard. It's a lot of work. It takes a lot of time if you want to actually grow your blog into something. And is it worth it? I don't know yet since I've only been doing it since May.

I spent a lot of time reading blogs on various topics and pondered starting one of my own. And you know what got me hung up... a witty name. What in the hell was I going to call my blog? I mean without a cool name to catch your attention why read it? So I thought about for some time before finally settling on something. And that was the beginning of With Just a Bit of Magic. Is it the best choice? Eh... who knows. But I like it and that's all that really matters!

But why blog... well why not! I have a lot to say and a lot to share. It's a way to meet new people and so far that's been the best part! Connecting with other moms out there has been amazing and the only thing that could make it better is getting to actually meet them!

Like so many mommy bloggers I have kids (duh...). And to me they're entertaining and I need to share all the things that they do. I know you want to know what they do on a daily basis too! Because what else would you do! A side effect of that is that it's an easy way to keep family updated on things that are going on in my life.

I like blogging. Maybe because it's new, maybe not. But only time will tell I guess. Right now I just ramble on and on about things that aren't all that important or even interesting. But someday I'd like to have guest posts, host a giveaway, do a review or two but it's not the most important thing.

I will tell you all that I am a terrible writer. I am the queen of run on sentences and if it weren't for spell check this blog would be even more atrocious! I'm not all that witty. Things don't come to me that quick! It's always later I think, 'dammit! I could've said this... or that...' and of course it's to late then. And the worst part is sometimes things sound good in my head and on the blog it's not the same.... you can't hear my tone of voice and the sarcasm. Hope you get my odd sense of humor!!!

My guess is that it'll be hard to keep up with a post every other day or so. I mean I work full time and have 4 kids! geesh...  but sleep isn't that important is it?

I want to know why do you blog? How long have you been doing it and what keeps you doing it?


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

They're alive! Really, they are!!

KnuffelsImage via WikipediaIt's that time of week again! Mama Kat's Writers Workshop!! I really think that this is my favorite day of the week!

This week the choice was easy. I decided to write about the things you oddly obsessed about as a child.

When I was a child I had lots of dolls, stuffed animals, Barbies, and what not. But then again what child didn't! They were all in my room where I played with them day in and day out, sometimes alone and sometimes with my friends or my little sister. 

At night things changed though. Everything was different. I truly believed that all of my toys came to life. And I'm pretty sure that Pixar mined my brain for the idea for the Toy Story movies! But that aside, the toys in my room were real, alive, and had a life their own. I would talk to them as if they were real people and cared for them in the same way. I was careful with them... okay, that part may be a bit of the truth being stretched. I was a kid after all!

Because the toys were alive I knew that I had to treat them nicely! They would get upset or I'd hurt their feelings. And then if that happened I'd be upset too.

The imagination of a child is incredibly amazing. We think of anything and everything, we believe almost anything. As a child we want to believe everything. As children we don't discount anything as impossible and why should it be? Given time anything is possible!

To this day I let my children believe what they want, because who am I to crush their dreams & hopes and tell them what they believe isn't real? They're only children once and I saw let them enjoy it while they can.

Just remember your toys can come alive at night too!

Mama's Losin' It
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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Mackinac Trip

Here area a few pictures from our camping trip to Mackinac. We stayed right on the water and could see the bridge & island. It was amazing!


Day 19 #31DBBB - It's my opinion... deal with it!!

Okay, first of all I am waayyy behind! But in my defense I was stuck. Seriously stuck! I had no idea what to write about for this task! What!?!? Really.. stuck on this one... I know, I know. The husband kind of laughed and said that it's be easy for me since I have an opinion. And he's mostly true, I do have a lot of opinions but what to write about was the issue. How do I pick something to talk about that'd be some what interesting. So, today I was reading a post by our own Aunt Becky about why she does what she does (I have a post for that too!) and she inspired me! I finally thought of something. It's nothing life changing and it won't help the world or anything like that. But it's something that bugs me and I have thoughts about it. So sit back and listen!

Reality television shows appear to be all the rage now and days. Every single channel on the T.V. has their own reality show.... or two... or three. And why? I have no frickin' idea! It really is truly annoying.

Now, if you can't tell I do not like reality T.V. shows at all. I don't see the point. Honestly, they're similar to wrestling. They're both fake. Totally 100%, without a doubt scripted. And you naysayers are sitting there saying, 'No, it's all true... come on!' Nope. Sorry to say it's not. There is no way that any of that could not be scripted because real life is nothing like that, not at all.

I avoid watching them at all costs. I watch T.V. to escape from reality and to be entertained by some 30 minute comedy that lacks the "reality" drama. I want to watch something that I don't need to follow on a daily basis, because some of them seem to be on every damn day! I have 4 kids and don't have that kind of time to devote to some silly "reality" show. 

So there's my opinion like it or not. 

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Binder Park Zoo

A couple of weekends ago we took the kids to Binder Park Zoo down in Battle Creek. We all had a great time there! I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Lauren & Natalie with the Dodo Bird

Tree Climbing

Lauren didn't climb much.

 The zoo has a lot of hands on type animals & employees available for all of my kids questions! This is a 60 year old tortoise that loved having his neck rubbed.

Even Andrew got to pet the animals. Although he wasn't to sure about them... they didn't sit still for him like the dog at home does!

 I think my favorite part was the African Safari. They had this huge open area full of a giraffe herd and other animals that roamed freely. You could feed and pet the giraffes when they came up to the observation deck.

 At the end of the day this is how we all felt!

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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Part 2

My daughter took this picture of herself over the weekend while we were at the zoo and I had to share.

Wordless Wednesday

And here's my first Wordless Wednesday post! Enjoy.

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

My Kids & their Baby Blues

The most unbelievable blue eyes you've ever seen...

I think doing these writing workshops have to be my favorite thing to do!  So setting aside all of the tasks that are building up for the #31DBBB I'm here writing from one of Mama Kat's prompts.

When I think of the prompt that I chose I think how many people are going to write about their kids, that one guy, their husband, or something else. For me the first thing that came to my mind was my kids. Honestly, I don't spend much time gazing at people's eyes! That'd be pretty damn creepy!

My children are amazing creatures. They can be funny, loving, intense, annoying, and challenging all at the same time. There are times I wonder if I'm totally screwing them up or if they'll be well adjusted adults. Guess time will tell!

There is one thing that my children all have in common, and that's the amazing large, blue eyes. And I love it. Each of them has a slightly different shade than the others too and in this respect a bit different.

My oldest, Caitlin, has always had these BIG blue eyes. They're a bright blue and really stand out in contrast to her dark hair and skin.

Natalie is my little blue eyed blond baby. She's the only one who has blond hair, although the jury is still out on what color Andrew's will be. Her's are a light, crisp blue.

Now, Lauren looks similar to her older sister Caitlin in that they have the same skin coloring and hair color. But her eyes are a blue-gray color that seem to change depending on the weather.

My youngest is Andrew and the baby of the family (really he is... he's only 6 months old). By now his eyes would have changed colors if they were going to and I'm happy to say that they stayed blue! He has such a serious look for someone so small.

Of course they got those amazing blue eyes from me! 

Mama's Losin' It

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Friday, August 6, 2010


Nothing really special here.... I created a new signature for my posts. I got the idea from a post by The Pink Crab, 5 Surefire Ways to Trick Your Blog Posts and I wanted to test it out.

What do you think???

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Andrew's Monumental Meltdown Moment

Yesterday Andrew did not have a good afternoon. His nap was not long enough to make him a happy baby... instead he was frustrated with all the things he couldn't do and cried about it.

He had plenty of things to play with as you can tell by the mess all over the floor! But that didn't make him happy. Oh... sorry about how blurry the picture is, he wouldn't stop moving!

And then I tried to talk to him thinking it'd make it better and that there was really no reason for the fit that he was having.


I was very wrong as this picture proves. He turned away and cried harder.

Needless to say this went on for barely a minute.

Because moments after the crying he found that toy he must have really wanted but didn't see in front of him.

And then he smiled. Life was good again!


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Why I'm not going to BlogHer10

Ok, so by now most everyone knows that the BlogHer conference is going to be in full swing starting tomorrow and it's going to be in the exciting, fun filled NYC.

And by now you also know that I won't be attending. Of course a lot of other people won't be attending either. And that's because we're all to awesome! Because I'm not going I thought that I'd join the BlogHer Pity Party that Life Without Pink (Tina) and Mommy Friend (Lori) are having. I'm positive that it'll be a lot more fun!

Here are a few reasons that I wish I was going....

1. An excuse to go shopping - before the conference and while there!
2. It's in NYC
3. My sister lives close in NJ so I could visit her
4. I'd get to meet a lot of bloggers that I love reading
5. Free Swag!
6. Doing something fun with adults instead of my kids
7. Networking

And few why I'm not going...

1. I just started my blog in May - nobody knows who the hell I am!
2. The husband would laugh - see my first reason
3. The kids - if you have some you know why
4. I actually have to go to work :(
5. Being scared that I won't know anyone and will just sit there alone and people watch
6. The trip isn't cheap!

I'm sure that I could go on and on and on, but you don't really want to read my lengthy lists, right?

So for now I'll be at home or at work watching the Tweets fly through the Twittersphere from those attending BlogHer and maybe next year I'll be more established and have a buddy to go with!

Are you going? Better yet... are you joining the Pity Party?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

31 DBBB Blog Hop!

If you hadn't noticed previously I'm participating in the SITS 31 Days to Building a Better Blog!

Add your link below, visit a new blog or two,  and add the hop to your blog!


A Long Drive Through Scottish Countryside

Well, it's that time again kiddies! It's my weekly Writer's Workshop post via Mama Kat and this week there are a few choices that I've been pondering since getting the email this morning. But eventually the decision was made and here it is.

A long drive...

It was an unusually warm, and sunny day as we set out early in the morning for a long drive through the Scottish countryside. It was our first day out and we wanted to make the most of the day and the wonderful weather. I was excited to say the least and it was like a dream come true to be there. We had our map, a general idea of the things we wanted to see, and a car with a tank full of gas.

It didn't take us long to see why people came to photograph the beautiful countryside. It was amazing! Rolling green hills, pastures dotted with cows, farms, and cottages with thatched roofs.

Occasionally, we would pass through a small village and stop to wander the streets and shops. People were very friendly, warm, and inviting. It left me wondering if I ever wanted to go back home. By the time we were in the second village we had found a pub to have lunch in and by far it was the best lunch I had in a while. Home cooked food is always the best! They had fresh, local vegetables, pies, and breads.

The day continued at a slow pace stopping when we felt like it, checking out villages, castles, and whatever caught our attention as we drove. By the time we returned to our hotel we had a camera full of pictures and memories to last a lifetime.

Okay, pretty good, huh? Now if it were only true! Yes....yes, I made it all up.

 Someday I would love to travel to Scotland or even Ireland and spend a couple weeks traveling the countryside and enjoying all that they have to offer. They're beautiful countries, with rich history that's just waiting to be explored and discovered by someone new all the time.

Who knows... I may take that long drive one day and tell you all about it first hand and include all of those amazing photo's that I would take.

Thank you again, Mama Kat for the Writer's Workshops! They're a lot of fun and help me find new and interesting things to blog about!

Mama's Losin' It


Monday, August 2, 2010

Anadama Bread

Crumb - Anadama BreadImage by haleysuzanne via Flickr

This weekend as I was going through the new posts on the blogs that I read there was one that I found very intriguing. It was a recipe for an easy, dark bread.

The recipe was for Anadama bread, which is a traditional New England bread that's made of corn meal, molasses, and bread flour. The recipe has been around for many years and even has a myth as to how it got it's name to go along with it.

"A fisherman, angry with his wife, Anna, for serving him nothing but cornmeal and molasses, one day adds flour and yeast to his porridge and eats the resultant bread, while cursing, 'Anna, damn her.'"

The bread is extremely easy to make and requires no kneading at all! Mix it, put it in the pan, and then let it rise! How much more simple can it get? The result is a sweet, slightly dense bread that is very good warm from the oven, toasted the next day or even the day after that. I served mine the day after it was baked, warmed up in the oven with butter and homemade strawberry jam.

My sister and brother in law came over for brunch on Sunday and I thought that this was the perfect time to make this bread since it makes two loaves. And we'd definitely go through at least one of the them and the rest would make it to the office (which it did). My family and co-workers all loved the bread. This is one that I will make again and again.

The recipe that I used came from a great blog that I read daily, Simply Recipes. She has many great recipes as I've mentioned before.

Try this recipe and comment on what you thought about it! I'd love to know!
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