About Me

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Texas, United States
Hello! Welcome to my blog! I'm Jennifer, but most people call me Jenny. I'm a small town Texas girl, born again Christian, mommy to 2 beautiful boys, wife to my high school sweetheart, scrapbook supply junkie, and occasional paper sniffer. :) Here you will find bits and pieces of my scrapbooking projects, daily thoughts, and just general randomness. Enjoy and thanks for reading!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Good Riddance, February!

Oh February....you're the shortest month of the year, but you were also one of the craziest months we've had in quite some time.  It was expensive and tiresome, to say the least.

Let's take a look at what February brought us, shall we?:

1.  As hubby and the boys were driving home one night (in my Toyota 4Runner, mind you) during one of our infamous West Texas wind storms, a shopping cart from a local grocery store came speeding down the road out of nowhere.  Hubby didn't see it in time and hit it, crushing in my front bumper and grill.  Thank God no one was hurt, but we got an estimate to repair the damage, and it was $700. OUCH.  Not cool.  Thankfully, our insurance covered all but $250, but still....that was $250 that we were not prepared to spend this month. 

2.  We got the ER visit bill in from when I took my oldest son to our ER at the end of January to check on his hand, which he had hurt at school. We thought he may have broken some bones, so we got x-rays.  Now...I'm not gonna go all political on you, but let me just say...the healthcare system in this country is MESSED UP.  We spent 2 hours in the ER and got 3 x-rays.  When we first got there, it was our first visit to our little county ER, so we had to go through all the new patient paperwork, etc.  The nurse was incredibly RUDE, and the poor older lady taking our insurance info and paperwork didn't have much of a clue.  She asked for my insurance, made a copy of it on her copy machine, commented about how colorful our insurance card was (taking her sweet time the whole time my kid is in PAIN)....During our 2 hours in the ER room, not one nurse or any kind of staff came in to check on us and see if my son was okay.  Toward the end of our visit, an ER doctor came in for less than 2 full minutes, I kid you not.  He simply said, "Well...I don't see anything on the x-rays. We'll get your paperwork ready for you to be discharged."  That's it.  Didn't ask if we had any questions, didn't give any discharge instructions, didn't talk to us about ANYTHING...said those two sentences and walked out.  Fast forward to this month.  This ER doctor sends us a bill for $363 for saying those 2 sentences to us.  And this wasn't the bill from the ER, it was just a bill from this doctor.  The ER bill was close to $650, because guess what? The little old lady taking our paperwork didn't enter any of our insurance info into the computer.  So when we got the bill, it said we had no insurance and had to pay the whole amount ourselves.  WHAT?!!!  She went on and on about how colorful our insurance card was and how most of them are just black and white, yadda yadda yadda....but she didn't include any of that info into our paperwork?  Wow.  So, long story short...we had a massive hospital bill that we had to call and get the run-around about because someone didn't do her job right.  And, like I said - not gonna get on a political soapbox here - but why in the WORLD is healthcare so flippin expensive?!  For someone to come say 2 sentences to us and get
$363 for it...it just blows my mind!

But wait...there's more.....

3.  My Gateway computer that I JUST BOUGHT in November suddenly decided to die.  Ever since I had bought the computer, I would put it to "sleep" at night and would notice in the morning sometimes that it would just completely turn itself off.  No warning or anything...just off.  I thought, "Okay, whatever...maybe it just does that since it's been on so long or something."   So when I tried to turn it back on one morning and discovered that it wouldn't come on at all without a "BOOT DISK" error...I knew I was in deep doo.  We have a PC genius friend who we got to look at it and try to figure out what went wrong, but it even stumped him.  Yeah...we stumped a PC genius.  I'm telling you....that's the kind of month it's been around here.  So, we had to pay to ship my computer to Gateway, and now we're playing the waiting game to see if they can fix it.  Hopefully, the 1-year warranty will cover any expense, seeing as though I've only had it for a few months.  Ugh.

4.  As if car #1 problem wasn't enough, hubby's 2002 Hyundai Elantra decided to start overheating even when he would just drive a few blocks to work and back.  This car is paid for, so it's nice only having one car payment, but...that was all about to come to an end.  We took it to the car shop, and they informed us that he had a blown head gasket.  Only $900+ to order and fix it.  Are you kidding me?!  So, after talking with several people, they advised us to hurry and trade in the car while we still could, or we would probably just have to sell it for parts.  We only have 2 little car dealerships here in this tiny town, so we had to go to a big city an hour away to try to find something else he could drive.  We took a HUGE risk by driving this car an hour away because frankly, we didn't know if it would make it or not.  We had to stop halfway and let it rest/cool off before continuing on the trip.  It got REALLLLLY close to overheating a few times, but by the grace of God, we made it.  I followed hubby in my 4Runner just in case we got stranded somewhere.  So, last Saturday we drove around (with our 2 boys, keep in mind) to every car lot in the hour-away city to try to find something.  Hubby was dead-set on a small truck because we are always needing a truck for something, and let's face it...if we're gonna have another car payment anyway, we might as well get what we want/need, right?  It was exhausting hauling the boys around to truck shop, but they tried to be good at least.  We finally found something we wanted, and thankfully they would take hubby's car as a trade-in, so that helped.  After what felt like HOURS of signing our lives away in the dealership, we finally walked out with a 2011 Nissan Titan.  It's awesome...but oye...all I see right now is another payment.

5.  Winter finally came to Texas, and so we quickly noticed when our central heat wasn't working.  Air was coming on and blowing, but there was no hot air.  Lovely.  Turns out, it was just a little rusted something that needed to be cleaned off and put back on, and then it worked fine.  THANK GOD.  I really couldn't handle another expense at this point.  Seriously.

6.  While trying to leave for church last Sunday, one of the boys used too much toilet paper and then flushed the toilet, and then the next boy came along and used the toilet right after that...causing it to clog up and overflow.  Yeah. Right as I was trying to get them in the car to leave.  I called hubby in a panic (he goes to church before we do because he leads music) and told him to come home IMMEDIATELY.  I didn't know what to do, how to make it stop, and there was already a huge mess all over the bathroom floor.  This was literally like 10 minutes before church was supposed to start, and hubby HAD to be back in time for it to start...so we just pretty much threw down some towels and left.  After church, we came home and hubby went to work on the toilet.  And to spare you gross details, I'll just describe it this way...it was "full," if you know what I mean....with stuff in the toilet and all over the floor.  Disgusting.  After hubby fixed the toilet and got it unclogged and flushable again, I got the awesome joy of being on clean-up duty.  How is this the bathroom that I NEVER use, but yet I got to clean it all up?  Anyway....I spent probably 2-3 hours in there, bleaching, disinfecting, scrubbing, rescrubbing, sanitizing, cursing under my breath, and hoping that I never had to clean up a mess like this again.  And when I was done cleaning the bathroom, I got to start on washing, drying, folding, and putting up all the towels that we had used on the floor.  Not a day I would want to repeat...like, ever.

So you see, I'm so over February.  So glad it's over.  March has GOT to be a better month....right?  RIGHT?!  Oh please, oh please be better to us, March.....

Saturday, February 16, 2013

DIY Saturday

I have officially named today, "DIY Saturday."  I've been busy (with a little bit of hubby's help) doing some DIY projects around the house today, and I love how they turned out!

I have pinned some "gallery wall" ideas on Pinterest, and I've always wanted to create one of these in my own home.  We have a very little hallway, but at the end of the hallway is a blank wall between the boys' rooms.  I had some artwork and pictures on there, but they were getting old, and I knew I could make better use of that wall.

My first step was to gather up some things I already had and then make a Michael's trip to gather up other inexpensive things to go on my gallery wall.  Most of the things I bought were unfinished, so I was able to cover them with patterned scrapbook paper or paint them the colors I wanted.  Once I got everything home, I laid them all out on the floor and fiddled around with it all until I came up with an arrangement I liked.  Then, I painted and covered things with paper until I achieved the look I wanted.  After that was all dry, it was time to put everything up on the wall, and this is what I came up with:

Starting at the top left and moving across:
1)  Decorative white collage frame from Michael's - $14 but used a 40% off coupon.
2)  "The Moore Family" wooden sign - Awesome gift from a preschool parent of one of my students!
3)  Wooden star - Michael's (this is a wooden blank star that I got last season, can't seem to find them now...but I covered it with different scrapbook papers to match my decor). I Mod Podge'd over all of it to seal it.
4)  Black wooden frame - Michael's, just painted it black and added my photo. So easy!
5)  Metal cross - I have had this cross FOREVER, but it was a grey color...I spray painted it glossy white and love how it looks! I think it helps to balance out all the white in my collage. :)
6)  "Love" and hearts canvas - I made this a LONG time ago for a craft site that my sisters and I sell things on. It never sold, so I kept it for myself.  Glad I did, because it's made with the same papers I used for my star, so it all coordinates very well.  It's just a little canvas that I painted grey, added some punched hearts and letter stickers, and then Mod Podge'd over the whole thing.
7)  Polka dot small frame - Again, this was a blank wooden frame from Michael's.  I just painted the edges (outside and inside) white and then Mod Podge'd some scrapbook paper over it.
8)  Chevron Letter M - My favorite piece of this gallery wall! :)  I found the white blank letter at Michael's and then used my Silhouette machine to cut a chevron pattern out of contact paper.  I then used the contact paper as a stencil on my letter M and painted it grey.  When I pulled up the contact paper (after the paint had dried), I was left with this chevron design.  Love it!
9)  "What I Love Most About My Home" frame - Another blank wooden Michael's frame! I think it was around $7-8.  I printed out a free printable I found on Pinterest and put it inside the frame after painting the outside of the frame turquoise.

And this is my view as you look down my little hallway:

I've got 1 matted collage frame on the left side and 1 big cross on the right side of the hallway. I may do something different with those later, but for now they will stay.

I'm really hoping my boys don't throw a baseball and knock down something off my wall, but hey...it was so much fun to make this, and I feel a great sense of accomplishment since almost everything on this wall has my own personal touch on it! :)  And if something does happen to get knocked off the wall, at least I know I've got it in me to create something else similar.  Ha!

I also repainted the mirror with hooks by our front door. We use this to hang jackets and backpacks on.  It was a blonde wood color, but I was in love with the white glossy paint that I used on my cross, so I used it to redo the mirror too.  Hope you all are enjoying your Saturday!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A Pinterest-Inspired Valentine's Day

I {heart} Pinterest.  Seriously...what did we ever do without it?

I have tons of things pinned on my own Pinterest boards, but I've decided that it's time I actually start using these pins and trying out some new things!  With Valentine's Day coming up, it was the perfect excuse.

First on the list was my youngest son's Valentines for his classmates.  I made some personalized Halloween buckets back in October for some customers, but each bucket came with a little plastic shovel.  So, I kept all of the little shovels, thinking I could do something with them in the future maybe.  When I saw this idea on Pinterest, I knew it was meant to be!

So, I had multi-colored shovels and decided to use conversation hearts candy with them instead of red and white M&Ms...it just looked better:

The little tags say, "I dig you, Valentine! From: Aaron."  I made 30 of these bad boys in no time, and they were SO inexpensive!

Tonight, I had to come up with a little "treat" for the class party tomorrow.  One mom is already bringing cupcakes, so I knew cupcakes were out.  So, I headed to Pinterest and searched for some "trail mix" type of Valentine treat.  I pinned this:  Valentine Confetti.  And ended up with this, which I quickly bagged up into individual baggies so that we didn't eat it all! It was DELISH!

I made 1 batch with white chocolate candy melts and 1 batch with pink chocolate candy melts and then mixed both batches together to have a pink/white mix.  I also added in mini marshmallows and some "XOXO" candy sprinkles just to make it look more festive. Each child at the party will get their own bag of this, plus it made enough for me to put some into a cute little Valentine's tin to give to Aaron's teacher.

Pinterest to the rescue! Happy Valentine's Day, everyone. :)

Monday, February 4, 2013

February 2013 TSR Kit

It's that time again!  Here are my layouts/cards from the new February 2013 monthly kit from The Scrap Room.  Enjoy! :)