It’s not me, it’s you. (or your husband. or your babysitter. or your kid. *ahem*)

An awkward in-person conversation I recently had:

This person: Um, the ads on your blog are kinda adult themed right now. Adult, playthings. Are you aware?

Me: Um, you know how google generates those ads, right? Were you aware?

Clearly, this person was not aware how ads show up on their favorite (always wholesome) web pages.

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You guys, YOU GUYS. You know how google generates sidebar ads, right?

Ok, fine. I’ll throw you a bone if you don’t. In fact, I didn’t know either until about 18 months ago. At the time, I was researching a potential trip to Disney, and pricing out various lodging options for the family. I found it very interesting that every time I got on the internet, even for something totally unrelated to researching the trip, I saw an ad for the exact resort I really wanted to stay at.

And then the exact purse I had been coveting from Zappos (which I continued to stalk on their site, just waiting for the price to drop) started randomly show up in all the ad sidebars. Taunting, come back and buy me, Emily….

Coincidence? Nope, not a chance in cyber hell.

Friends, google and his sneaky-sneakster friends are watching. Google ads generated in any given sidebar are typically ads BASED OFF YOUR SEARCH HISTORY.

And sure, site owners (such as myself ) can for the most part customize what types of ads show up, if they are truly worried about offending readers. But for real, I can barely find time to publish a post these days, let alone make sure weird pantyhose art doesn’t show up in the sidebar.

Let’s prove a point, shall we?

Exhibit A:

googlead Its not me, its you. (or your husband. or your babysitter. or your kid. *ahem*)

These are the ads that popped up for me this morning on the various sites I frequent. They make complete sense based off my resent search history.

Breaking it down:

I’m doing a series of spring cleaning posts over at CafeMom. They’re sponsored by, you guessed it, Bissell.

GAP had a big 40% off Memorial Day sale, hence the GAP ad. I didn’t buy anything, but I did do a bit of cyber browsing.

And lastly, The Simple Moms site has been down all weekend with some epic server issues related to the company in the solid state ad.

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So when you see an undesirable ad in your sidebar, don’t look at me. And don’t email me being all judgy and stuff telling me how I’m trying to sell ya gross hippo lip decals or bowling balls that look like human heads.

Look um, at yourself. Or your husband. Maybe even your kid or your dog.

Yes, it’s totally the dog’s fault. He’s always up to no good, giving everyone the shifty eyes.

kittybutts Its not me, its you. (or your husband. or your babysitter. or your kid. *ahem*)

But definitely don’t blame me. Because things will get awkward fast.

 

The Fourth was with us, cinco de Sith didn’t bite us, and now it’s Monday!

Friends, it’s been an interesting few last days.

The weekend started with a wee bit o poopie, reeking (pun intended) a little bit of havoc into our previously schedule weekend plans. Sewage ejector thingies on the fritz? Yeah, you don’t want those to break. Especially on Friday afternoons. Our plumber was “busy with boy scouts”, which, let’s be honest: whatever.  I’m going to go ahead and also speculate it actually meant: “ew, no way in hellz I’m dealing with that on a Friday night, find yoself another crazy foo”).

Thankfully, Michael is really awesome at dealing with this family’s crap (again, pun intended) so he became the man for the job. Three trips to Lowes, a few dry heaves, a basement that smells like a turd, and 12 hours later, whatever was broke has now been restored.

*three cheers and a growler full of beer for the stinky husband*

Anyway, enough about our bathroom habits. Aside from the unfortunate events mentioned above, we really did manage to turn a turd of a weekend into somewhat of a rainbow.

And as I’m sure you are aware, Saturday was May the Fourth. And well, we had a date with the Millennium Falcon Experience.

We donned our best Obi-Wan Kenobi gear, and headed out to the Indiana State Museum.

starwarsCollage 1024x1024 The Fourth was with us, cinco de Sith didnt bite us, and now its Monday!

We enjoyed a virtual “ride” through hyperspace, and I think my kids minds were officially blown.

And just like an animal that can smell fear, I swear the local reporter sniffed my socially awkwardness out from across the room. Of course I was interviewed for the evening news. Here’s the live link if you want to giggle nervously with me:

Star Wars exhibit at Indiana St. Museum

Any-who, if you have Star Wars fans under your roof, you absolutely must checkout this exhibit (if you live in Indy) while it’s in town. I mean, only if you want to geek your geeky freak out.

And then on the 7th day, May the 5th, cinco de Sith, we drank margaritas and discuss the events of the day before.

Not a bad weekend, not a bad weekend at all….

 

The dickies have passed and we’re feeling fine

Funny how a literal rise in temperature can warm and uplift my mood. I mean, today isn’t really any different than last week. Same ole stuff, except it’s 80 degrees out which makes everything so much more tolerable. The weather outside makes a huge difference when it comes to my anxiety. A much bigger difference than I care to admit.

We’re enjoying these warm days by doing what we always do. Work a little. Play a little. Clean a little. And love a little. Gage has upgraded his black rain boots to red rain boots, and rain or shine he wears them.

Little boys, they make me laugh all dang day.

For instance, last week he was a little dick. Like, dick enough to not eat dinner, and so dick he just wanted to lay around and watch screen all day. But not so dick that he couldn’t ride his gooter, or eat copious amounts of nacks whenever he felt like it. Fortunately for all of us, the dickies have passed and he’s feeling back to his normal unintentionally hilarious self.

8695817147 afc782a648 The dickies have passed and were feeling fine

And our new favorite “treat yourself because it’s Tuesday and you deserve it” celebratory beverage has become chilled bubble tea. Basically, it’s a smoothie with tapioca boba balls mixed in. Friends, I could drink these unexpectedly delicious concoctions everyday all day if I didn’t have to drive across town and pay $2.75 a glass to enjoy them.

Fortunately for us, it’s not too hard to justify a treat. You know, we treat ourselves for not throwing a tantrums in Trader Joe’s. And we treat ourselves for waking up with dry SpiderMan under-roos. And sometimes, we treat ourselves because it’s the very last day of the month and mama met all her writing deadlines.

Speaking of which, working from home is probably the best gig ever, of you can keep yourself motivated enough to stay on task. For my last Disney post of the month, I wrote about baby Paul taking his first four steps. He hasn’t taken a step since, but you guys, I’m calling him a walker.

Work things. Tasty things. A few of my favorite things:

numberedsweetstuffPicMonkey Collage 1024x1024 The dickies have passed and were feeling fine

 

1. My dear friend Casey turned thirty-fun last week. Last night a handful of us ate sprinkle cake to celebrate. Shireen out-did herself with this one. I mean, it didn’t even look or taste anything remotely like clown puke. Happy Birthday Casey, DesignHER Momma lurvs you.

2. Kids shoes. I’ve giving away a $60 gift certificate to UMI. Friends, they’re expensive I’ll admit. But totally worth it. If you win, shop the sale section and I bet you can hop away with two pairs. (because that’s what I would do)

3. Freakers, man. Have you ever become obsessed with something and wanted to buy it in every color? Yeah, that. They came out with some new ones recently and I’m resisting the urge. Also, I’m considering hosting a sweaty backyard party in August just so I have an excuse use ALL THE FREAKERS.

4. You say BUMBLE, I say RIDE! It’s not everyday I get to give away a $400 stroller. But guess what, it’s totally happening right now. And if you don’t win, I honestly do think this stroller is tops and would 100% spend my own money on it. Honesty is the best policy, right?

5. Cool threads by AXL Brand. This small start-up is my new favorite and I wish I could afford to dress Paul “axl cool” everyday of the week. I’m having a blast promoting their gear, and of course there is a giveaway.

6. Page turning. I’m reading this book, Dark Places The dickies have passed and were feeling fine, by Gillian Flynn for book club. It’s dark and scary, in a good way. Kinda like me. Kidding not really.

7. Götz. Dare I say these dolls are better than those other 18″ doll with patriotic flair. About four years ago Michael bought Piper one when he came home from a business trip to Germany. Guess what? You can now buy them in the states (which is a new exciting development). And yup, there’s a giveaway for that too!

So yeah, stuff around here is good and well. Now go find yourself a frozen boba tea and relax in the sun for a few minutes. Because you deserve it!

I let her shop, while actually keeping my opinionated mouth shut (sponsored)

 I let her shop, while actually keeping my opinionated mouth shut (sponsored)

She came into my bedroom this morning at 6:15am. “Hey Mom, I lost a tooth!”

Also (she said), “I don’t believe in the tooth fairy. I know you put those sparkly dots on the coins yourself…”

I play the game, telling her she’s crazy. This mama loves the magic and everything that swirls around with it. The shiny nail polish, the hiding of the quarters in the bed sheets. I hold tight to her young childhood memories, even if she wants to shake them loose forever.

8483334893 a7e996242c I let her shop, while actually keeping my opinionated mouth shut (sponsored)

A few days ago I took her shopping for spring clothes. I typically don’t take any of my kids shopping with me, my preferred method is to go by myself and bring the already purchased clothes home to them. I like to be in control, and I’ll admit it’s easier to avoid  obnoxious pieces if my children don’t realize they exist.

But on this particular trip, I took Piper with me. She’s getting older, and her desire to make her own choices is becoming more and more apparent every day. I tell myself I need to respect this, and let her grow up. Even if it results in selections I wouldn’t necessarily make. Because clearly, I’M NOT EIGHT, and I suppose our fashion sense should differ a bit.

We went to Old Navy, which isn’t out of the ordinary, as we’ve been going there for years.

As a fun little experiment, I basically told her she had free reign of the store, and could pick out anything she wanted. The challenge? She needed to come up with at least 5 items, bonus if they could be mixed and matched to create a few different looks.

Naturally, she first headed to the epic wall of flip flops and picked out the happiest pair she could find. I understand this method well, as I too have tried to build a wardrobe around a shoe collection.

8483657128 f640d47b5d I let her shop, while actually keeping my opinionated mouth shut (sponsored)

But her challenge stood:

A skirt.
A pair of shorts/capris.
A dress.
A tee.
A cardi.

…and apparently a pair of rainbow flip flops.

Five items, easy-peasy. But she could not go over $70-ish.

We were in and out of the store within the half hour. She came out victorious, got everything on her list, even a second dress to boot. Not bad, not bad at all. I *think* she might have inherited my love for treasure hunting.

oldnavy I let her shop, while actually keeping my opinionated mouth shut (sponsored)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the highlights of the day was that we actually tried a few things on, and then if they didn’t fit right, got the proper size and re-tried. This isn’t a big deal to most people, but for Piper (and myself), who typically only shops second hand or online, it felt really good.

It’s like, we had options!

I probably don’t have to tell you this, but Old Navy prices are really hard to beat, especially if they have a good sale going on. I also really appreciate that almost all their girls clothes are age appropriate (and I’m talking about modesty here) which is super important to me if I’m going to allow Piper to make her own decisions.

I’m a fan. Piper’s a fan. Are you?

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

48 questions answered and whatever.

Because I’m lazy, I stole this from Zakary (love!), who stole this from someone else.

I’m doing my best to bring back that bloggy feeling, feel free to steal this away from me (and please let me know that you did!)

So I got my hair fancied this weekend. Nope, I’m not posting an “after” photo, but I assure you my new stylist Veronica (at Salon Orange Moon) made me look fantastic, given what she had to work with, anyway.

I haven’t had my hair cut or colored since last June, so there’s that.

8396117982 1b3bd75efd 48 questions answered and whatever.

I know, I’m such a freakin’ fashion martyr.

Onto the burning questions you’ve never asked:

1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE?
Not that I know of. Mom? If you’re reading this please chime in, I have no idea how you came up with my (overly popular) name.

2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED?
I honestly don’t know. That’s bad, right? Wait. I know. School shooting.

3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING?
I do, which is a good thing because I honestly took a handwriting 3 credit class in college for my design degree. Obviously, mandatory college credits well spent. *eye-roll*
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCH MEAT?
Nope, just say no to lunch meat. ew.

5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS?
Four that I’m aware of. And an additional 3 fur-babies looking for good homes.

6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON, WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU?
Casual friends. I over-use and abuse the good ones (and you unfortunately know who you are. Also, sorry.).

7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT?
so much so that it’s a sin.

8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS?
Sure thing. But I’m about to get a cadaver skin graft in my mouth. True story.

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP?
Hellz no. I also won’t climb ladders or do any sort of high dive activities.

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL?
Non-pregnant: soaked granola with fresh fruit. Pregnant: Cinnamon toasted crunch, baby!

11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF?
Mope. In fact, I avoid shoes with laces in general.

12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG?
The cross walk security guard at Nola’s school thinks so. He tells me daily, as I carry two sleeping boys in to school pickup…

13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM?
Mackinaw Island Fudge. Find it, enjoy it, pronounce it properly.

14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE?
What they are wearing. (also, I personally dress like a hobo, and only shop secondhand)

15. RED OR PINK?
Red. Because pink lipstick looks retched on me.

16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF?
My body. Ugh, I such a freakin’ cliche.

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST?
My friend Wendi. I mean, she lives 5 hours away, but she might as well live on the North Pole. Assuming I visited the North Pole about twice a year.

18. WHAT IS THE TECHNIQUE THAT YOU NEED TO WORK ON THE MOST?
Curling my hair? I don’t know, this is a dumb question. I also don’t know how to chop an onion, which is a serious life skill.

19. WHAT COLOR SHOES ARE YOU WEARING?
Grey FRYE Chukka’s 48 questions answered and whatever.. Girl, they are amazing.

20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE?
Renee’s re-fried beans. And yes, they were worth the time and wait.

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW?
The Iron & Wine 48 questions answered and whatever. channel on Pandora. I’m open to suggestions.

22. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE?
Grass green. Also, I secretly want to be a official crayon nam-er, in my next life.

23. FAVORITE SMELLS?
The chlorine smell of an indoor public pool. I know, ew. My psudo-hippy heart can’t deny what the nose loves…

24. HOW IMPORTANT ARE YOUR POLITICAL VIEWS TO YOU?
#unfortunatelynottoomuch.

25. MOUNTAIN HIDEAWAY OR BEACH HOUSE?

Um, I freakin’ live in central indiana.  I’ll take both, or either!

26. FAVORITE SPORTS TO WATCH?
College basketball. GO GREEN (go white…)

27. HAIR COLOR?
is this question about what I was, or what I am? (see above)

28. EYE COLOR?
Blue-ish

29. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS?
Keep your stuff away from my eyes. Frames for everyone!

30. FAVORITE FOOD?
I’m an equal opportunist when it comes to food. But basically, stinky cheese from Goose the Market holds the key to my heart.

31. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS?
This isn’t even up for debate one single bit.I don’t come near anything unhappy.

32. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED?
Matilda 48 questions answered and whatever.. Currently on family movie night rotation…

33. WHAT COLOR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING?
lime green-ish. Also, ew.

34. SUMMER OR WINTER?
Winter. I know, right?

35. FAVORITE DESSERT?
My ears perk up with the words “cheese cake”

36. STRENGTH TRAINING OR CARDIO?
Gimme the treadmill (only because I can watch tv in front of it)

37. COMPUTER OR TELEVISION?
‘puter. Sadly, no tube in this house…

38. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW?
Vaclav & Lena 48 questions answered and whatever., per her suggestion.

39. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD?
What’s a mouse pad?

40. FAVORITE SOUND?
The sound that nothing makes.

41. FAVORITE GENRE OF MUSIC?
I don’t even understand this question. Alabama? Phish? Widespread Panic?

42. WHAT IS THE FARTHEST YOU HAVE BEEN FROM HOME?
Mabey Hawaii, maybe Paris. Maybe Lima. I’m lazy when it comes to math, but it’s one of the three. Also, I never travel.

43. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT?
Um, I have small hands. I also used to twirl the baton.

44. WHERE WERE YOU BORN?
Zeeland, Michigan.(I think)

45. WHERE ARE YOU LIVING NOW?
The Circle City, baby.

46. WHAT COLOR IS YOUR HOUSE?
On the outside or inside? Also, I hate both. Also, Iave I mentioned I’m an interior designer by higher education? Gah.

47. WHAT COLOR IS YOUR CAR?
Black. Black Black Bloook.

48. DO YOU LIKE ANSWERING 48 QUESTIONS?
It was the easiest post I’ve written in a long time.

suddenly I see’s (and eats) candies

Last night one of my little girl dreams came true. Only 29 years after my 5th birthday, I was given the chance to eat all the chocolate in the candy shop. No, literally. I went to a real live candy shop and could unabashedly eat whatever my little gooey heart desired. Picture the scene from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory suddenly I sees (and eats) candies where Augustus Gloop starts drinking out of the chocolate river. Basically, that’s what I looked like and felt like last, sans the part where he gets sucked up the pipe and sent to the Fudge Room.

You see, I was invited to a little media preview for the new See’s Candies store that recently opened at The Fashion Mall in Indianapolis. (Side note, if you love shopping, this mall in itself is worth a trip to Indy. I’m talking West Elm, Anthropologie, LUSH, Nordstroms, Urban Outfitters, Saks, JCrew, Apple, and now See’s Candies. I think you get the picture, don’t forget to pack life’s savings.)

signageImage 17 suddenly I sees (and eats) candies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Any-who, back to the chocolate.

Until yesterday, I had never heard of See’s Candies and in hindsight I can’t believe I’ve survived this long. And while it’s a new company to me, it’s been around since 1921. Ninety years is a long time to be making and selling chocolate, which means it’s probably a household name to many of you. And for those of you that knew about this candy company and forgot to tell me about them? SHAME, I THOUGHT WE WERE BETTER FRIENDS.

But last night, I rocked the candy shop Willy Wonka style. Or was it Lucy and Ethel style? Remember that scene from I love Lucy? Yeah, Casey and I went head-to-head competition style.

This is my nervous face, psyching myself up for the competition:

Clearly, Casey is not phased.

nervesImage 18 suddenly I sees (and eats) candies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And this is me in action:

You can’t see my hands, because they’re moving too fast.

8391228052 64f0095697 suddenly I sees (and eats) candies

You can see my determination, and you can also see Casey’s hands. (*ahem*)

So guess who won all the bragging rights forever? THIS GIRL!

(I attribute my success to my time spent as a carnie, and the fact that I have suspiciously small hands.)

Screen shot 2013 01 18 at 11.34.50 AM suddenly I sees (and eats) candies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*victory dance photo snagged by @justshireen.

So what did I learn? Well, other than realizing I missed my true calling as a chocolate candy boxer-upper (that’s the term, right?), I learn that I have a new chocolate addition so intense it might take the place of my past desires to eat all the hot wings. Specifically, I can’t stop thinking about the fruit centered ones.

But I also learned that every time you visit, you get a free sample (over 1 million pieces given away annual). And I learned that at any time you can custom make your own box, which means you can get 12 pieces of lemon truffle (or raspberry cream, which is a close second in my favorite book) and nobody can stop me.

Also, they hold the world record for the largest lollipop.

You guys, See’s candy is a must. If you’re privy to living close to a local store (over 200 nationwide), you must stop in, at least to nab your free sample. And if See’s Candies is new to you, well, Valentines Day is right around the corner and they have an online store. DO IT.

Disclaimer: I’m a chocolate eating professional. If you try eating as much as I did last night you might really hurt yourself, and I wash my hands of your stupidity.

Disclaimer 2.0: All the chocolate was provided to me by See’s Candies. My opinions are my own, just like my love-handles.