2 months of catching up!

I'm sorry for the lack of posts it's been yet again crazy around here! From April till now I haven't had much time to do anything other than pack, move, unpack, potty train a pup, job search, get lost and learn my way around CLE, OH just to name a few!

Ohio summer! 2015

Ohio summer! 2015
How am I 33 years old!?! Where has the time gone!?

Within 2 weeks of being settled in Ohio, I could hardly stand being alone so for my 33rd B day, hubs agreed to add a new member of our family. 

Our hearts are full! She's completely different from Aspen girl that much I can tell you! Lucy barks (unlike Aspen) she also chews everything! Ahh! Fingers, papers, door stops, you name it! We have mastered the potty on the pee pads and sit now if we can just get her to go outside or let us know she has to go we'd be in good shape! 

Introducing Lucy Lu! 


In case you were recalling be blogging last summer about moving..... Here's a refresher.
Last summer we attempted to move back to Ohio before our house sold. (Mistake) as it forced us to come back to AZ. Well we upgraded a few things this time in our house, (Granite countertops in the kitchen and changed out a few gold hardware door knobs for silver and presto magic our house sold in 4 days this past March!) 

We then decided to have me finish out the school year of teaching and decide to relocate back to Ohio for good this time.  I think this big change was a good thing. Losing Aspen was so hard and being in our home in AZ was hard everything triggered memories of her. I now completely understand why people (including my dad) decide to move or leave homes after someone dies. It's just easier. As a child when my mom passed away, I was super angry for my father uprooting us kids out of our childhood home. I thought it had everything to do with my step mom who just didn't want to live there. But in hindsight, it was really about the pain my father felt going inside the home that my mother passed away in. It was just to hard. I don't blame him. 

As far as teaching in Ohio goes, finding an art position is no easy task. The openings are slim to none for full time. :( If any of you that read my blog know of ANYONE in the school district in the CLE area please let me know! :) 

For the love of Burlap

When hubby and I got married in 2012, I put on my wedding registry this adorable burlap monogram print. The print came from a seller on Etsy of course that custom made burlap prints for $20-$25 for an 8x10 sized print. 

Since then, I've had some time for once to actually try out little art projects for our home, rather than for my students or teaching related stuff! 

I did a little research and attempted my own burlap print. I am happy that it turned out just marvelous! 

Here's what you need:

There are 2 ways to do this-- the first way I attempted it had a few more steps involved.
  • IRON
  • BURLAP (cut to fit the size of your printer)
  • YOUR IMAGE OR TEXT you want to print via from your computer!

Take your iron and iron the freezer paper to the burlap SHINEY SIDE DOWN on the burlap. 
Go over it a few times your main concentration should be around the edges. 


Place your burlap into your printer. This is the only tricky part because everyone's printers are different and feed differently. I had to put my burlap face down to get it to print the right side up! Do a test sheet on regular paper to get an idea of which way you need to load the burlap. 


Don't be nervous about putting the burlap in the printer. So long as you don't have any frayed edges you'll be fine! 

The other way you can do this project is buy buying pre cut burlap from walmart. They only give you 3 sheets per pack for around 3 dollars a pack. Ideally, this is the way to go. No iron or freezer paper needed as the burlap is already coated for the printer. 


And the final results turn out like this! 

Adding this beauty to our gallery wall! 

The Age of Adaline


"Like many women, Adaline (Blake Lively) is 29 this year, and was 29 last year and the year before that. Unlike other women, she is telling the truth: She has been 29 for 78 years, and “The Age of Adaline” is an entire century and change.

Echoing “Groundhog Day” and “Benjamin Button,” “The Age of Adaline” is a romance with an enticing emotional structure. Adaline (who stopped aging after a freak accident that combined hypothermia with a lightning strike) feels she can’t tell anyone about her condition, so she hasn’t allowed herself to be photographed since 1954 and uses forged identity papers. Every 10 years she picks up stakes, changes her name and creates a new life, retaining emotional ties only to a series of identical spaniels and to her daughter — who today looks old enough to be her grandmother and is played by the venerable Ellen Burstyn."-blurb taken from NYPost 

So I saw The Age of Adaline on Friday afternoon and loved it. All I wanted to do was time warp back to earlier eras so I could be around the fashion and good mannered people of those times. Seriously why don't women today dress as they did back then!? It kills me! 

Some might say the narration in the film is a little cheesy, but then again you know going into the film that no one lives forever or doesn't age so you have to play along. I couldn't drag my hubby to this one, so I went alone. It's worth seeing in my opinion. I couldn't tear my eyes of the big screen from Blake Lively. She was stunning. 

I couldn't help but question and ask my self, why aren't women today more like what I saw on the big screen? Why don't we speak more eloquently and act more lady like? Sometimes I just don't get how all of these great things got so lost in translation over the years. 


I think this quote on the picture below pretty much sums up the movie and why anyone should go and see it! 


San Francisco

Sorry for my lack of posts, I haven't had to much to really share or write about since losing our sweet Aspen in February. 

Hubby and I saved our pennies over the past few months and decided it was now or never to take the trip to San Francisco, a part of California that neither of us had been to. This was such a learning trip for me! San Fran has so much history I felt like I was a student sitting in a class trying to take down as mental notes as I could so I wouldn't forget anything! 

We did a 4 day 3 night trip to San Francisco and decided after seeing the hotel prices in the city that it would be best to stay a little outside of the city in a town called Burlingame. I'm glad we did after hearing from a few people if you stay anywhere near Fisherman's Warf that the noise would just be constant. 

On our "to do" list was of course seeing the Golden Gate Bridge, Alacatraz, tour of Muir Woods, Sausalito, Alamo square  and of course get the whole tour of San Fran the city it's self. 

There were so many things I learned about the city--some things shocking, some things I wasn't surprised! The first interesting thing I found out/saw was that San Fran is a VERY pet friendly city. We saw so many people out walking their dogs, playing with their dogs. There was so much dog interaction it made my heart swell with happiness. I loved this about the city. LOVED IT. I also saw a ton of Frenchies in the city! Apparently that was like "the breed" to have! 

Parking. Is slim to none all the time 24/7 7 days a week. And when do you find it, its NOT CHEAP. Some parking meters we fed coins to were $4 for an hour of parking! Parking garages were anywhere from $20-$25 dollars for a few hours. Compact cars are a must and way easier to cram into small spaces. I Saw very few trucks or Suvs. That was really surprising to me.  We saw more Teslas (electric fancy cars) than we've ever seen here in AZ. 

Public Transportation....everyone rides it. And I do mean everyone. My husband and I referred to the random people of San Fran riding on these as "packed sardines." I often remarked to my husband that I would probably be only thinking if I had to ride one each morning gosh I hope no one stinks and all have deoderant on! There was so many forms of transportation, buses that ran off wires not gasoline, subway looking type cars, trolleys, biking is huge, as well as good old walking. 

Speaking of walking, i did not see ANY women wearing heels. I think it would of been like social suicide to walk on such an incline in heels! hah Having a jacket with you is a must, since the weather changes so much along the coast! Clothing wise I also noticed wearing your work out clothes as your outfit is like the "thing" to wear. IE I saw tons of women dressed really cute in really cute work out clothes mainly lululemon of course but like from head to toe they were rocking matching shoes with their leggings and work tops and headbands. 

My husband and I also noted that people in general were way better mannered than what we encounter here in AZ. People in the city especially the drivers (SHOCKER!!) the drivers don't seem to want to run pedestrians over and don't honk at them to hurry across the street. Anytime we went into a store, restaurant a man or woman always held the door open. It was so nice. 

People in general are also 10-20 lbs lighter than people we see in AZ. No joke we didn't see anyone over weight at all. Everyone is somewhat slim as we are confident with this being due to all the crazy inclines that city people must walk on a day to day basis. 

Food, room and board.....are all EXPENSIVE. Our tour guide told us that San Fran has officially surpassed New York as the most expensive city to live in in the United States. 

Here's what I didn't like about the city:
Super Touristy. Being from the Chicago area, I can honestly say I've never felt more packed in a city than I did in San Fran. There were literally people everywhere and my husband and I often joked that this is what it must feel like to live in China. 

How expensive everything was...let's be real here...there's no way a teacher could live in the city. The rent alone is more than what my husband and I ever paid on our mortage on our over 2,000 sq ft home! I can't even fathom paying 3k for 500 sq ft 1 bedroom apartment! That's insanity! 

The weather. I'm complaining about the weather? hehe a little bit! It kind of drove me crazy that I had to take my coat everywhere or wear it everywhere since you can drive a few blocks over to another section of san fran and the weather would be completely different than what it was. Ladies don't bother curling your hair and be anywhere near the bridge or any water...even the best hairspray won't help you out. lol True story. I tried. Epic fail. Cali=1 C Mae= 0. 

With that being said, we had a great time, and I'm so glad we took a few days to check out the city. It truly was a learning experience! 

A few fun facts we learned:
We drove by OJ Simpson's high school, which I guess had the field named after him, but since his accused murdering days they had to change the name of the field. That same high school was also where Joe DiMaggio attended (He didn't graduate though) 

I had no idea Danielle Steele owned one of the biggest homes in San Fran or that Both Bob Marley and The Grateful Dead resided in San Fran for several years (we drove by their residences) 

That's all I'll write for now, stay tuned for tomorrow's post with pictures of our trip! 

Mrs. Soules to be is.....


Where are all my bachelor peeps??! Who watched the grand finale last night?! 

He picked Whitney! Seriously though, if I hear another person complain about her voice, I am gonna smack them! Obviously it doesn't bother Chris so get over it already! 

Did anyone else feel like Whitney was a shoo-in just from how much his family praised her and said such positive things? I felt like it was a no brainer from that point in the show who he was going to pick. 


I thought the who dialogue between Chris and Becca was very classy. They were both so honest and she held exited with such class. 

What did y'all think? 

Both of their dresses on the finale I thought were so ugly! lol I don't know if it was just so freaking cold in Iowa that they dressed them in such warm looking dresses or what? 

pic from here

Waking up is the hardest part

broken heart


I'm not really sure how I am making it through these rough days. I have cried more and more each day and I just wonder how I have any tears left. It has been pretty unbearable coming home to our house from work each day. Yesterday after working out at the gym, my husband and I sat in my car in the gym parking lot debating if we wanted to go home because we just dreaded opening the front door and entering into a home of complete silence. No bark, no little jingle bell on her harness to great us. My heart is just so heavy. Sharing John Mayer's song felt very fitting. Aspen's normal vet called me at work today, and I have to admit as difficult as a conversation as it was, I am really feeling a little better hearing her tell me that she would of done the same thing. And from what she saw on the X rays or doctor's notes, that the surgery would of been to risky and we probably would of lost Aspen during the operation. She feels we did the most humane thing, which still leaves me without her and hurts so much, but I am trying so hard to comes to terms that she is in a better place. It just isn't easy.

Untitled  I have very sweet friends and neighbors that dropped off these flowers and sweet little succulent plants for us. It's calming to know that certain people do care, and the people you least expect will do things for you. Today the two first grade teachers gave me these flowers and had each and every single one of their kiddos give me a big hug. of course that made me cry of course. Kids hugs, esp the kids that know you are feeling down, really do help.Untitled

Heart forever broken

It is with deep saddness that I share with any of you who even still read my blog, that last night we had to make life changing decision to let our sweet little Aspen girl go to heaven. 

It was very unexpected. Friday morning she woke up trembling and was very uncomfortable. You know when dogs try to burrow to get comfortable? She was doing that over and over and over again. I stayed home from work and a few minutes later she seemed to have calmed down and our day went on of nap time and laying outside in the grass. 

this is the last photo I took of her on Friday after her scary morning of breathing weird. She appears so happy and content doing what she loved, lying in the grass. 

Saturday morning hubby and I went to the gym aroun 9:30 and returning around 11:30 we found Aspen in the same state as friday morning shaking and trembling. Her breathing was awful. We rushed her to the emergency 24hr vet clinic which is thankfully right down the street from where we live. From Noon till 7 seven pm we were in shock of finding out from an Xray, that our sweet little baby girl had some calcium tumor that was either in her lung or right next to her lung and heart. Given the location of this mass, and Aspen's age, (she was only 4 days from turning 9 years old) we were left with 2 options. Operate on her, costing us up to 6k for this extremely risky chest surgery, which wouldn't guarantee she'd survive the surgery or if they would even be able to remove the mass since they weren't even really able to tell us if it was in her lung or to close to her heart. Or option B, humanely send her to doggy heaven. 

It was never about the money for a second. If the surgery would of costed us 10k we would of paid it, but it was about the fact that she was a little old for such a risky surgery and it was to big of a risk to take knowing she could die from the surgery since it was in such a bad place to operate on in her small little body. 

All I could see was my baby struggling to breathe. It was like she was constantly out of breath for the entire 6 hours she was there. I felt powerless. I couldn't make her better. There was only one thing to do. I'll never forget holding her in my arms telling her how much I loved her. Seeing my husband bawl as she licked his face one last time. And just like that, she was "sleeping" and then they made her little heart stop beating. 

I don't think my hubby and I slept a wink last night. I've cried non stop all morning even thoughout church. I'm sure people were wondering what was wrong with me. I've beat myself up about our decision. Did we do the right thing? Were we supposed to have taken the chance with the surgery? Am I a murderer for chosing to end her life? Why is God punishing me yet again? Wasn't taking my mom so early in my life enough? Now my sweet Aspen is joining her early. I thought for sure since she was a small dog I'd have her till she was 14-15 years old. She was almost 9. 

For those of you that have followed my blog from the beginning, know how much Aspen girl was a part of my life. She was #1. Everything in our lives revolved around her. I never went anywhere until I came home first from work to see my dog. I never locked her in a crate for 7 hours a day because I felt it was inhumane. She went everywhere we could take her. I am trying to hard to remember all the good times. I wish we would of had caught this a year earlier. We had no idea her 'limp' she developed in the last year was probably related to the mass right there under her sternum. 


RIP Aspen girl. I don't know if I'll ever get over you. You were the best dog I've ever had. Everyone loved you. You had the sweetest disposition. You loved all people, all kids, and all animals. It doesn't get better than that. You never barked, never chewed, did nothing but love daddy and mommy unconditionally. What more could I ever ask for. 

And the Oscar goes to...


If I could pick, Lady Gaga should of walked home with something. She blew.me.away. with her rendition of Julie Andrew's Sound of Music. It's the first time in a long time where she was fully dressed and people were less distracted with how she looked and more focused on her beautiful voice. 

Well done gaga. Well done. 

My top picks for the night are as follows:

Gwen. She looked pretty. Perfect for the part if you would. 

Reese. She's worn a black and white dress before, I think she looks classy, although this isn't my favorite dress/look for her.

Jennifer Hudson sparkles in yellow. Maybe I'm just biased to yellow I don't know but she rocked it!

J Lo. Gorgeous. I think all the photographs of her in her dress don't even do her justice. When I saw her on TV she glowed. So pretty. 

David Oyelowo must of been the "thing" for colored suites last night! I thought all the men who wore them looked dapper!

Eddie R. 

Most unrecognizable Faith and Tim. Woah holy hair chop for Faith and Tim looks real skinny!

Rosemund Pike. She looked ravishing in red! 

Who was on your best and worst list? 

Fifty Shades say what?

I made it to the theater today to see the highly talked about Fifty Shades of Grey.


 If you recall, I read the books and blogged about it back in 2012 here I've also blogged about it here, here, here, & here

I've read opinions all over the place about this film how it being released at Valentines would send the wrong message and blah blah and how the whole submissive is borderline domestic violence and or abuse etc etc....

I walked into the theater expecting to feel really awkward watching this film especially during what I was expecting were some really intense sexual scenes. 

I am happy to report no awkwardness was felt, and those intense sexual scenes didn't really happen. I thought everything they showed was very tasteful and I've seen worse. They really didn't even show much. A few tie ups with a tie, or ropes and a blindfuold which truth be told couples in relationships today who aren't dominatrix do this type of stuff and aren't submissives/dominace people. How often have we seen movies where one person handcuffs the other to the bed? It's not something new that's for sure. 

Raunchy? Nope. The only thing that felt weird was hearing/seeing Jamie Dornan say "laters baby." I thought it was a tad cheesy but hey it's a big part of the book in the dialogue between Ana and Christian. 

Anyone else go out and see it? 

I thought it gave all us fans of the book a well deserved brought to life to the big screen. 

I was skeptical about Dakota Johnson and she ROCKED it as Ana. 

Sweet Treats

I decided to be a good neighbor and make these goodies for 3 of our friendly nice neighbors for Valentines day! 
What you'll need:

Silicone Heart mold. I found this particular one via amazon. I also own another one that I've shown or mentioned on blogger before but I use it for my crayon baking only! 

M & Ms

Valentine colored Sprinkles.

White Chocolate to melt.

Mason jars.

So while I was waiting for the chocolate to melt in the pan on the stove, I got my heart mold ready first. 

Once the chocolate was melted, you have to pour it quickly in the mold and then place in the fridge to cool down. 

The first hearts on the left were my first batch and didn't turn out so great. I learned that I didn't put nearly enough M&Ms and sprinkles to get them to lay on top of the chocolate enough. 

DUMP Way more than I am showing in this picture!

Since I only had one silicone mold, it was taking forever to make the treats. I had to wait 25 min for them to cool before I could make the next batch which meant I had to turn off the stove each time. Super annoying. Note to self always have 2 molds ready to go! 

So while I was waiting I busted out my glue gun and got to working on my favorite part, the decorating of the jars! 

Here's my second batch of treats this is how they were suppose to turn out the first time!

The larger mason jars I filled with Angel food cake, cut organic strawberries, and little dab of cool whip on the top! 


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