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Family-Friendly Entertainment

New Year's Eve 2009

12/31/09
Myspace Graphics
Myspace Graphics, New Year Graphics at WishAFriend.com

It's New Year's Eve already, can you believe it? It's funny how as you get older, time seems to move faster.

Tonight we will be spending our New Year's Eve hanging out at home. My hubby will probably be doing a bit of work down in our basement. Then we'll be playing some games like Scene It! or Uno. And watch New Year's Rockin' Eve with the ball drop. My son loves being able to stay up until midnight and toasting with sparkling cider (although I drink sparkling grape juice because I'm not a fan of cider). He may also be wearing his snuggie as he is this morning. Seems he doesn't want to take that thing off!

If you're at home like I am, check out the New Year's Eve twitter giveaway @ The Bear Bunch. Mommy Bear is giving away prizes like Mary Kay and Discovery Toys. The winners will be announced at midnight to ring in the New Year.

So, what are your New Year's Eve plans?


Wordless Wednesday: USPS Priority Mail

12/30/09






For more Wordless Wednesday, visit Five Minutes for Mom. You can also share your Wordless Wednesday post here by linking up below.
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Noah Built An Ark But I can't Find One at Walmart

12/29/09
We had a great Christmas filled with games, cookies, presents, Christmas movies and lots of love. I thought that we'd get through this holiday without incident.

Or so I thought.

The day after Christmas, Santa's mischievous elves decided to play a nasty trick on us. We were out spending a gift card and running a few errands. We came home, watched some more of our favorite t.v. show 24 on DVD, and then my hubby innocently walked down to the basement.

Next thing I knew, he was yelling up to me "Honey, there's water in the basement!"

He must have been joking, right? We've lived in this house over 2 years and it has been completely dry.

I didn't believe him, so I walked downstairs and walked into the basement and stepped into about 6 in. deep of water. I splashed around through it still in disbelief. Our basement was flooded.

We had 2 straight days of rain and snow melt and our sump pump decided to quit on us. We don't know when it started, but the damage was done.

Back out to Sears for some parts for the shop vac. Out to Home Depot for a part for the sump pump. Off to Walmart for some clean up bags and a mask for taking out the dry wall. Bye bye to my Christmas gift card. Too bad they don't sell arks at Walmart. It might have saved all of our stuff.

We lost scrapbooks, high school memories, photos, all of my teaching files, boxes of stuff and my basement office is now in shambles. No more carpet, flooring, or cabinets and counter space. The dry wall has to be removed up to a certain point and the cabinets and counters taken out because the carpet was installed first rather than after the shelving was put in.

It's 3 days later, and my hubby is still trying to rip out everything so we can start bleaching for mold. We can't afford to pay someone else to do this. The rest of our house is a mess because we've had to move what we could save upstairs and haven't figured out where to put it.

I'd like to ask Santa's elves to take back their little gift. Or to provide us with a time machine so we can go back to when the water started and prevent it. But I can't. So maybe I'll ask Walmart to start making arks. Think they will listen?

New Year Coming & A New Look

12/28/09

Photobucket



Welcome to the new and improved Attic Girl.

You may have noticed that my design changed over the Christmas holiday. I am incredibly excited about my new look! I have wanted something original for quite a while, and now I finally have something that I love! And it's a perfect way to start off a new year.

Huge thanks go to Emily Joy from Rainy Day Blog Design. She took the idea I had in my head and made it come to life. She is an incredibly talented young lady who also has great tutorials for blogging. Stop by her site and let her know what you think about my new design.

While you're here, please grab my new button by copying the code on the right sidebar. You can also subscribe to my blog via email. Just fill in your email address below.

Enter your email address:


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Merry Christmas My Friends!

12/24/09
Myspace Christmas Graphics

I will be spending time with my family over the next few days. I will be back on Monday to talk about my new design! I hope that you all have a very Merry Christmas with your friends and loved ones!

An Irish Christmas Blessing

The light of the Christmas star to you
The warmth of home and hearth to you
The cheer and good will of friends to you
The hope of a childlike heart to you
The joy of a thousand angels to you
The love of the Son and God's peace to you.





Wordless Wednesday: It's a White Christmas

12/23/09
Here are some photos of the Blizzard of '09:



These are our Christmas candy cane lights marking the path to our front steps glowing from underneath the snow!



Our dog Oreo wasn't sure what to make of all this snow. This is the most she's ever seen!



View from our front porch

For more Wordless Wednesday, visit Five Minutes for Mom.





Teaser Tuesday: Dear John By Nicholas Sparks

12/22/09


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My Teaser:

"I think my dad was happy. I phrase it like this because he seldom showed much emotion. Hugs and kisses were a rarity for me growing up, and when they did happen, they often struck me as lifeless, something he did because he felt he was supposed to, not because he wanted to."

pg. 9 Dear John by Nicholas Sparks

What are you reading? If you have a teaser, you can head on over to Miz B's blog or share it here by leaving a comment.




Fall Into Reading 2009 Wrap Up

12/21/09


I can't believe that it's already Dec. 21st and I have come to the end of my first reading challenge with Katrina at Callapidder Days! Wow, that sure flew by fast! I'm glad that I started a short list for my first challenge. I have been very busy these last few weeks.

My Original List:


The Transformation by Terri Krauss
Texas Heat by Debra White Smith
Take Two by Karen Kingsbury
Shades of Blue by Karen Kingsbury
Sound of Sleigh Bells by Cindy Woodsmall
Love Finds You in Lonesome Prairie Montana by Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss

Did you finish reading all the books on your fall reading list? If not, why not?

No, I wasn't able to finish all the books on my list. I was on the waiting list at the library for Take Two and Shades of Blue by Karen Kingsbury. My turn on the list still hasn't come around yet.


Did you stick to your original goals or did you change your list as you went along?

Yes, I stuck to my original goals to finish the books on my list.



What was your favorite book that you read this fall?

My favorite book that I read was Sound of Sleigh Bells by Cindy Woodsmall.



Did you discover a new author or genre this fall? Did you love them?

I discovered Cindy Woodsmall's writing and most definitely have fallen in love with her writing style.


Did you learn something new because of Fall Into Reading 2009 – something about reading, about yourself, or about a topic you read about?

I learned that I need to schedule time for reading. I am often so busy on the computer doing business stuff, tweeting, blogging, etc. that I just haven't found time to read as much as I would like.


What was your favorite thing about the challenge?

My favorite part about the reading challenge was being able to set some goals and try my best to follow through on them. I have never tried this before and I think it gave me a lot of motivation!



Want to find out how others did in the Fall Into Reading Challenge? Stop by Katrina's blog. You may find some new books you'll want to read!




Aloha Friday: What's Up For The Weekend

12/18/09
writing prompts, blogging prompts

Here is how Aloha Friday works from Kailani's blog An Island Life:

In Hawaii, Aloha Friday is the day that we take it easy and look forward to the weekend. So I thought that on Fridays I would take it easy on posting, too. Therefore, I’ll ask a simple question for you to answer. Nothing that requires a lengthy response.

I'm feeling pretty zapped. Antibiotics are really draining. This weekend we are supposed to do Christmas cookies and Christmas light watching, so hopefully I will be up to it. Then there's the snow we're expecting on Saturday that weather forecasters are saying might be up to a foot. I will have to stay inside while my kiddo and hubby go out to play, which will be hard for me to do.

My Question For This Week: What are your weekend plans?




Matthew West Free Download of the Christmas Story

12/17/09
One of my favorite things at Christmas is listening or reading about how it all began: a humble stable, a young woman, her husband, and the birth of Jesus. For me and my family, that is the true meaning behind Christmas. Not the presents under the tree or the time that we spend together (though those things are fun), but the celebration of our Savior's birth.

Want to share the message of Christmas with your family and friends?

Matthew West, Christian recording artist and author of 101 Ways to Give This Christmas Away is offering a free download of the Christmas story from the gospel of Luke, read by the singer himself.

Go to http://www.thechristofchristmas.com/ to get your free download. You can use it as a family listening experience, include a link in your Christmas E-card, embed the file into your Facebook page or website to play automatically, or send it through a text message to play on your phone.



This information was provided to me through Tyndale Publishers.

Wordless Wednesday: Sun Bathing

12/16/09


For more Wordless Wednesday, visit Five Minutes for Mom. You can also share your Wordless Wednesday post by linking up below.


Teaser Tuesday: Becca By The Book by Laura Jensen Walker

12/15/09


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My Teaser:

"Kailyn's one of those disgusting morning people. She bounds out of bed at seven a.m., all bright-eyed and squirrel-tailed, humming and dancing around like some Disney princess with a halo of happy bluebirds twittering around her head. Good thing I'm a pacifist. Otherwise, I'd blast those stinkin' bluebirds to kingdom come."

pg. 12 Becca by the Book by Laura Jensen Walker

What are you reading? If you have a teaser, you can head on over to Miz B's blog or share it here by leaving a comment.

A Hop Skip & A Jump & Some White Hot Chocolate From Starbucks

12/14/09
This weekend I pretty much stayed attached to the couch. I have come down with the ick. The nose blowing, coughing, fever, achy, can't get myself off the couch kinda ick.

In honor of said ick, my hubby was kind enough to go to Starbucks and get me a nice hot drink to soothe my throat. I have never had Starbucks before. Gasp! I'm not a coffee drinker, so I've never been interested. But when I found out they had hot cocoa, I knew that this was the perfect time to try me some Starbucks.

My hubby bought me the White Hot Chocolate. Can you say WOW! This hot frothy thing became my new best friend. Hot chocolate with white chocolate and vanilla syrup and topped with whipped cream. Worth every single calorie! I actually felt a little more human after drinking it. Perfect for taming the ick if only for a few minutes.

Oh, and by the way, I was this week's featured blogger on Lynn's Meet 'N Greet Monday. I'm so excited I nearly coughed myself back onto the couch!

Hop on over and check out my interview and Lynn's awesome blog.



Bloggy Blog Designz Giveaway

12/12/09


Bloggy Blog Designz is having ANOTHER Holiday Giveaway!!! Last week every entrant won something, so they decided to do it all over again! They are giving away blog designs and all kinds of goodies. Plus ALL entrants will receive 20%off their purchase through the end of the year! Be sure to check out their website for more information, or to enter yourself. Take a look at their portfolio and packages to see what you want for Christmas ;) With 6 giveaways this week, who knows whats in store for next week?
The first 5 entrants will receive a $10 giftcard. The giveaway will close on Dec. 13th, so be sure to have your posts done and comments left by midnight! Good Luck to everyone! We are so excited. Merry (early) Christmas!

Aloha Friday: Christmas Sweaters

12/11/09
writing prompts, blogging prompts

Here is how Aloha Friday works from Kailani's blog An Island Life:

In Hawaii, Aloha Friday is the day that we take it easy and look forward to the weekend. So I thought that on Fridays I would take it easy on posting, too. Therefore, I’ll ask a simple question for you to answer. Nothing that requires a lengthy response.

I was blog hopping the other day and saw a very funny post about tacky Christmas sweaters. Jenny @ Simply Delightful Designs discussed tacky Christmas sweater parties and showed some great Christmas sweaters that made me laugh. You'll want to hop over and see her post as well as check out her great blog designing skills!

So, confession time. I own a Christmas sweater that others might consider tacky. I've even worn some of those reindeer antler headbands and light bulb necklaces when I was in the classroom. But I think it's playful and fun and what would Christmas be without a tacky sweater?

My Question For You This Week: Do YOU own any tacky Christmas sweaters? What do you think about them?

Looking for a Great Gift Idea? Check out CafePress Customizeable Christmas Ornaments (Review)

12/10/09
Shop or Create What's on Your Mind at CafePress

I love decorating our Christmas tree! We have lots of special ornaments collected over the years. Some of our favorite ones are Baby's 1st Christmas, Our First Christmas Together, and ornaments I received while I was teaching. Ornaments are a great way of sharing family memories!

Amy at BSS Media and Cafe Press were kind enough to offer me the opportunity to make 2 of their personalized porcelain Christmas ornaments. I was very excited about this, as I have purchased a few Cafe Press items in the past and had a great experience!

(When I was getting married I created some cute t-shirts for myself and my hubby-to-be. One of them was similar to this shirt:)


The process was very easy for me to do. Whether you have a lot of computer experience, or a little, it is very user friendly.

Step 1: Choose your design. There are nearly 30 styles you can choose from.



Step 2: Upload your photo. (It may take you a bit of time to choose the right one) Once you have it uploaded, you can use the edit design button to fit your photo into the design. There are arrows which allow you to increase or decrease the size and move the position. There are also some designs which allow you to insert text such as "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays 09."



Step 3: Preview your ornament. This shows you what it will look like on your tree. And the cute red ribbon comes with it for hanging on the tree.



Step 4: Add your ornament to your cart and proceed with checkout. The ornament costs $12 plus shipping. This may seem a bit pricier than other ornaments, but this is a unique item that you will cherish in your home or will make a great gift for your friends and relatives.

Want to make your own personalized Christmas ornament? Click here.

CafePress also has a specific ornament designer they have created for their partner Autism Speaks. Cafepress will give an additional 10% of revenue from these ornament sales to Autism Speaks, dedicated to helping kids with Autism. This is a different designer tool with different templates which can be found at http://www.cafepress.com/designer/ornament/index.aspx?theme=autism.

If an ornament is not on your gift list, you can also find other unique items at CafePress. Right now, they are having a special promotion: $9 special tees!


Find 1000's Christian Themed Products at CafePress


Disclaimer: I was provided with a gift certificate to purchase two ornaments in addition to receiving 15% potential commission for the purchase of any ornaments through this review within a 30 day period. The opinions shared are my own and have not been swayed by the receipt of said compensation.

Wordless Wednesday: Snow

12/9/09
We got a bit of snow this past weekend. It was mixed with rain, but it was a good enough dusting to play in. Now it's all melted and Mr. Frosty lost his head. But it was pretty while it lasted!










For more Wordless Wednesday, visit Five Minutes for Mom. You can also link up here and share your post.

A Very Merry SITSmas to You

12/8/09
Have you heard about the SITS girls? These lovely ladies make blogging fun. They came up with this fun idea to share special holiday photos and visit each others' blogs. And there are some prizes to boot! Stop by and see what all the fun is about!






My hubby & son making our favorite sugar cookies



My favorite is the angel



Last year Santa brought me my favorite: Gilmore Girls on DVD! I wonder what he's up to this year?

I will leave you with one of my favorite Christmas songs:



Merry SITSmas everyone!

Great Giveaway at a Blog To Brag About

12/7/09
A Blog to Brag About
Huge Giveaway:
Join the fun!



Is your blog in need of some bling? Stop by Jessica's 6 weeks of giveaways. She is giving away the following:

Weekly Prizes:

--One Standard Package ($40 value!)
--One Premium Package ($50 value!)

--1 Custom Button
--1 Custom Signature
--5 Custom Sidebar Titles

I've Been Tagged for Some Christmas Fun

Kristin at Whole Lotta Mama tagged me in this fun Getting to Know you game. Kristin is a stay at home mom of 6! She has a wonderful site dedicated to educating women on domestic abuse. Drop by her site and show her some love!



Ok, on with the game...

Instructions: Simply copy and paste the questions into your blog, and then answer them. Then tag 5 or more of your favorite blogs, and leave a comment telling them they’ve been tagged.

When you post your blog, please spread some Christmas cheer, and leave a link back to Top 10 Christmas, and the blog that you were tagged by. (You can participate even if you were not tagged)


Have you started your Christmas shopping?
Yes, and I'm pretty much finished. Things are tight this year so we're keeping it simple.

Tell me about one of your special traditions.
One of the traditions I have always loved in my family is staying up til midnight on Christmas Eve and getting to open one present. It adds to the excitement and anticipation of Christmas morning!


Are you a Black Friday Shopper?
Nope! I'm not a morning person, so there's no way I'd go out at the crack of dawn. Plus, I hate crowds, long lines, and crabby shoppers. But if there is a super duper deal, I might send my hubby out for it (tee hee).

When do you put up your Tree?
The first weekend in December that we have my son; I have joint custody

Do you Travel at Christmas or Stay home?
We usually stay at home for Christmas.

What is your funniest Christmas memory?
My mom & step-dad came over one Christmas and stayed in our rental townhouse before we moved. For some reason, my mom couldn't sleep and rearranged most of the kitchen before I got up. She also cleaned and it took a long time for us to be able to find anything.

What is your favorite Christmas Movie of All time?
I love Home Alone. My son really likes it too! Plus, when he does the "face", he kinda looks like Macaulay Culkin.

Do you do your own Christmas Baking, what’s your favorite treat?
LOL I am the last person to ask about baking things. I'm not the best cook. But my hubby helps us make sugar cookies every year and they are delicious!

Fake or Real Tree?
We get a fake tree. The real ones smell great, but the needles drive me nuts and the pets try to eat it. The fake one is less maintenance.

What day (as a mom) does the actual panic set in to get it all done?
It depends, because I don't always have my son on Christmas Day. I panic usually the night before we celebrate together and try to cram everything in. I hate wrapping!


Are you still wrapping presents on Christmas Eve?
Depends if I have my son on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day that year. But I am usually wrapping the day before I have him.

What is your favorite family fun time at Christmas?
When we are all in our pajamas opening presents together and having a special Christmas breakfast.

What Christmas craft do you like the best?
Crafts? What are those? lol I'm not very crafty. But when I was teaching, I used to love making crafts with the kids during our Christmas parties.

Christmas music. Yes or No, and if yes What is your favorite song?
I love Christmas music! My favorite songs are "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer", "All I Want for Christmas is You," and "O Holy Night."

When do you plan to finish all your shopping?
I'm finished! Woohoo!

I'm tagging:

Molly @ Book Reviews by Buuklvr81
Emily & Elyssa @ Daughters of the King
Too Many Hats
Kelli @ Three Boys & A Dog
Brooke @ Wee Shananigans


This fun getting to know you game started at Top Ten Christmas.

Aloha Friday: Twitterpated

12/4/09
writing prompts, blogging prompts

Here is how Aloha Friday works from Kailani's blog An Island Life:

In Hawaii, Aloha Friday is the day that we take it easy and look forward to the weekend. So I thought that on Fridays I would take it easy on posting, too. Therefore, I’ll ask a simple question for you to answer. Nothing that requires a lengthy response.

Ok, I have a confession to make. I have become addicted to TWITTER. Shocking, I know! I have joined a couple of twitter parties this week, entered some great giveaways, and made some new twitter friends. And just like McDonald's, I'm lovin it!

So my Question for This Week Is: Are you twitterpated and if so, what's your Twitter handle so I can follow you? (I gotta feed my habit!)

P.S. I'm atticgirl76

April Showers Blog Design Giveaway

12/3/09
April Showers Blog Design is having a HUGE giveaway and celebrating her OPEN waiting list that starts January 1st! April not only does blogs - but also invitations, announcements, calendars, cards, business cards, custom illustrations, and so much more! Just by pasting this paragraph on my blog I'm a winner! www.aprilshowersblogdesign.com

Time Out For Theta Mom Thursday





Yes! Heather is back with another Theta Mom Thursday after transferring her blog over to Wordpress. Missed you Heather!

This was my week:

I've been working like crazy trying to advertise our store. Looking at blogs and drooling over their cool designs. Tweaking my Christmas theme on my own blog. Taking the dog out. Watching my hubby slave over our Thanksgiving meal at home.

(Wait, you say, your hubby made the Thanksgiving meal?? Yep! Because he's the most awesome hubby a girl could have! Oh, and I was afraid to poison my family with the turkey so it was better that he cooked.)

I spent a few days cleaning the house because I hate it when you have people over and your family can see dust bunnies and who knows what else lurking around. I tried to get caught up on all the laundry as well.

After all this "busy-ness" I chose to exercise for my time out.

I spent 20 minutes on my ellyptical and made my legs feel like sticks of concrete. Then I went and ate a snack because for some weird reason I'm always ravenous after I work out. I had a couple of chocolate covered cherries. Which probably defeated the purpose of the workout, but why not? It's my time out and I'll eat if I want to.

What did you do for yourself this week?

Wordless Wednesday: Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian

12/2/09
These photos were taken during a day trip to DC with my in-laws at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian.

Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian
Headdress

Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian
Art by Brian Jungen made out of baseball gloves


Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian
Maize display with dancers


Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian
Another View of the Maize display

For more Wordless Wednesday, visit Five Minutes for Mom. You can also link up here and share your post.

Fantabulously Frugal: You Deserve The Best Giveaway

12/1/09
Fantabulously Frugal: You Deserve The Best Giveaway



You will want to check out this awesome giveaway from Fantabulously Frugal. She is giving away the following prizes:



Gift #1:
Here's what's included (starting in the top left corner):

* $50 Gift Certificate to BeautyTicket.com
* Warm Vanilla Sugar Triple Moisture Body Cream from Bath & Body Works
* Lint-On-The-Go-Sheets from GO-GIRL
* Gucci Buckle Sunglasses
* Voluspa Yuzu Rose Bubble Bath Candle
* Pencil case from Etsy seller Made by Hank stuffed with little goodies
* Paper Source note cards
* Gold leather Kate Spade passport case
* Gold Amrita Singh twisted hoop earrings



Gift #2:
Here's what's included in Gift 2 (starting in the top left corner):

* $50 Gift Certificate to OutfitAdditions.com
* Paper Source note cards
* Tom Ford Fiona Sunglasses
* Dancing Waters Body Lotion from Bath & Body Works
* Silver Amrita Singh twisted hoop earrings
* Voluspa Yuzu Rose Bubble Bath Candle
* Lint-On-The-Go-Sheets from GO-GIRL



Gift #3:
Here's what's included in Gift 3 (starting in the top left corner):

* Lint-On-The-Go-Sheets from GO-GIRL
* Vera Bradley Paper Weight
* Burt's Bees Essential Body Kit
* Paper Source Note Cards
* Voluspa Yuzu Rose Bubble Bath Candle
* Coin Purse from Etsy Seller Made by Hank
* Yes to Carrots Hair & Scalp Moisturizing Mud Mask
* Sparkling Sage Open Teardrop Earrings

Want to win one of these gift sets? Head on over to her blog. You have until Dec. 14th to enter. And don't forget to tell her that Shelly @ The Attic Girl sent you! Good luck!

Teaser Tuesday: Gingham Bride by Jillian Hart



Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading.

Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

My Teaser:

"'I'm here to help you.' It was the deepest truth he had ever known on this earth, a commitment that bound him as surely as God was in the heavens. 'I'm going to make sure you are never frightened like that again.'"

pg. 129 Gingham Bride by Jillian Hart

What are you reading? If you have a teaser, you can head on over to Miz B's blog or share it here by leaving a comment.

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