Nov 26, 2011

Italian Thnaksgiving

The only reason I truly love Thanksgiving is the time off of work. I know that sounds insensitive but I think I have figured out why this holiday isn't such a big deal to me. Growing up, my family never really went all out with the whole dinner thing. I cant' really remember ever gathering around the table and giving thanks for the things we had. When I moved to TN at 15, we went to my Mamaw's for Thanksgiving breakfast. Since it's just the three of us plus the Grammy and I didn't want to travel anywhere except to the comfort of my couch, we decided that our Thanksgiving menu would consist of Homemade Spaghetti & Meatballs, garlic bread and salad! Yup, that's how we do it here at the DeFelice house! And it was delicious! Here's a few pics I snapped of the G-man!

Look at those two kooky kids!
Takes one seven year old to know one!

Nov 25, 2011

a bigger boy bedroom update

On my list of to-do's over the Thanksgiving break was to clean and spruce up Grant's bedroom. Lately,he's been sleeping in the same bed as Grammy and I know she loves the company but seriously, he's a wiggle worm when he's asleep. So, I started by taking all the toys off of his two shelves and putting them on his IKEA bunk bed.

Ugghh....what an atrocity!

I took the advice of the BFF and put the two shelves together. The good ole' hubster screwed them into the wall just in case some one gets the urge to climb them! by the way, I have had these shelves forever, I snagged them from a daycare I once worked at when they were getting rid of them!
here's what they look like stacked!

The boy is obsessed with Star Wars Lego's and there is no such thing as an inexpensive set of Star Wars Lego's, so I stole the idea of putting sets into those plastic containers and later I will label them. I totally reduced his collection of "junk" toys and got rid of some games he hasn't played in months.

I kinda just threw some decor up on the top. No rhyme or reason. Those books on the right are old and eventually I want to read them with him. I made that silhouette of him last year and of course his crown is a souvenir from the circus.

I was going to flip his bed over and nix the bunk bed idea but it really opens up the room when I moved the dresser which was next to the bed. He had a tent thing on the top bunk but I took it off. He didn't like it much but I convinced him that it's going to be easier for me to tuck him in. I also bribed him with the glow in the dark stars. l let him stick them wherever and then I put double sided tape on the inflatable shuttle and stuck it on the wall. Moved his "work" table next to the bed and hung up the posters. Ignore the stack of books sitting in the chair. They have to go downstairs to be stored for a future classroom?!

I moved the dresser over to this coiner where I hung a floating shelf to display the Lego sets he and Bill have done together. I didn't center the shelf because then it would be too near to the other shelves on the side. Makes sense?

I would just like to point out that the Bible is just as important as those Star Wars books! LOL :D
That locker basket on the right use to belong to Grant's Grandma Grace whom he never got to meet.
I love the feeling of accomplishment!

gallery photo wall

I couldn't wait to get this little project done! Last year on Black Friday, I bought 2 sets of ten frames in different sizes. I finally got them up on the wall in my hallway. I "him hawed" about if I even wanted to put them there or on the wall in my bedroom. The hallway won!!! Here is my process.....
 I had some plain brow paper bag type wrapping paper. I traced each of frames out on this and started figuring out how I wanted to arrange them. This took the most time but when it was all up, I could change it without making holes all over the wall.  When I had the pattern down, I measured between each frame 1/2 in to 1 inch apart depending on what frame was next to another.

My 70's built house has narrow hallways so this is the view from the bathroom door LOL

This is the view from the dining room! :D

All of my favorite pictures on one gorgeous photo gallery wall!
I have 5 more frames to fill but I'm going to use them somewhere else.
I want to cut my own vinyl saying to put above the far left top frame. We'll see!

Nov 14, 2011

A trip to remember....

Whew! it's over! As I sit here on my warm comfy couch, I can reflect on this memory I made with my mom and even though I have nicknamed it "The trip from Haiti's", it all is seems pretty comical!

My mom and I made a mad dash to Maryland to get her things out of storage. She sold her house in 2009 and sold as much as she could but still had quite a bit left. We had planned to go get it all in June (thank God, it would've been so flippin' HOT!) so we planned on a long weekend over Veterans Day holiday.

We left Thursday morning at 6:00am! We took ALL four seats in my van out and only took what we needed. The drive was great! We stopped about 5 times for gas, snacks, dinner and potty breaks.
We got to Winchester, VA (hotel location) around 6:30pm. Mom and I freshened up and went to a local Mall to browse. We ate dinner there and I tried to convince her to do one of those photo booths with me but she "didn't have any make-up on". we went into JCPenneys and I was hunting for a new purse. I love fall and I wanted to find a "autumn" purse. Cha-ching!!! I hit the jackpot with a cute little Liz Claiborne diddy! I love a new purse!
 Anyway, we went to the hotel and vegged out.

Friday brought out the worst of me! I knew it was going to be physically exhausting for me and I prepared myself for that. What I didn't prepare for was the delirium I would experience and the physical pain of hunger and cold after 12 1/2 hours of moving, pulling, pushing, tugging, and exerting every muscle in my body.

After eating breakfast around 10:30am, we headed to the storage unit and began to pull everything out. All the big, heavy stuff was towards the back of course. After making a disastrous mess while pulling things out, we both knew that some things weren't going to make it. I am a firm believer in divine appointments. God sent a couple to us whom we had no idea what their circumstances were. We were just trying to get rid of two televisions and some other things. This lady who was my age just happened to come by to get something out of her unit and we asked if she wanted or needed a t.v. Her husband was in the car and we asked him. Anyway, they both agreed that they would take it from us. They had to go back an get a bigger vehicle. Long story short, we ended up giving them the two t.v.'s, a chest of drawers, a t.v. stand, a mattress and box springs, a desk and chair and we found a baby doll for their young daughter to take. During our conversation with them, they told us that they were starting over. They had lost most of their stuff in their previous home (maybe an eviction?). It was just good to give this all to people trying to make things better for their families.
Divine 'em!

My mom and I worked hard for a few hours and I had to go get some water. And I wanted to turn some heat on! It was in the 40's but the wind was blowing something fierce. I came back and I really thought that we'd be done by 8pm o so. It took a long time to get the big stuff loaded. More than I expected. I lost all sense of time after the furniture was all in. I just focused on getting as much as I could in as quickly as I could. It must've been at least 9pm and I was at the end of my physical capabilities. I was in so much pain and I was hungry and cold and exhausted. My mom had to end up throwing some good stuff away. We were shoving, stuffing, and packing all kinds of things in every crevice, nook, and cranny in my van and the moving truck. We were down to a dining room chair, a living room chair, a bed spring, a metal baker's rack, half of a bed rail, and a suitcase!
I went to Walmart to get some bungees while my mom broke down some cardboard boxes. It must've been almost 10pm when I got what I needed at Walmart and wouldn't you know, they were locking the doors on the general merchandise side and I just about had a nuclear explosion. I told the "old man" that Walmart is notorious for hiring as "greeters", that I was NOT going to walk all the way to the other end after the pain I was in and I was NOT going to move from that spot until he unlocked those dumb doors. As I was waiting for him to move as slow as Christmas, this other guy with a cart full of groceries stands behind me and says "excuse me" like I was all in his way! I turned and said " I'm waiting for the door to open too!!!" Some people!!! I really was not me in these last hours of the day.
I got back to the storage unit and wouldn;t ya know that the gate hours are from 9:30am to 10:00pm and my mom was done with her part. I was so cold, I was shaking and groaning in pain. I had my phone on my leg when I went to Walmart and I was so delirious that when I got back, I went to look for it and couldn't find it. I seriously lost my mind! I began to yell and cry and holler and panic. I was a terrible mess. At this point, it must've been 11pm. We strapped the rest of the leftover stuff to the top of my van and I started my car to leave. My mom came to my window and said that the battery int the moving truck was dead..............(crickets began to chirp)

It took us until 12:45am to get roadside assistance to come and jump off the truck and we were finally on the way back to Winchester. I think it was about 2am and when we got back to the hotel, I peeled my clothes off and got into the shower. The hottest water I could stand.  I was in so much pain, I was moaning loudly. My mom said that people next to us were going to light a cigarette after I was done. I have to admit, it probably sounded like I was having a good time with a man but I really was hurting and didn't care what sound I made or who heard me!

We both slept until about 11am. It took us over an hour to get going on the road. We had to find a place to get some breakfast and coffee. We stopped every 2 hours or so. It must've been 8 or 9pm on Saturday and we went into a McD's to get some coffee and use the bathroom. Suddenly I looked down and found that good ole' mother nature's friend showed up to greet me! Great! the trip just got even better! I mentioned it to my mom and she began to laugh hysterically in the bathroom stall. We went on to get some gas and headed on to Cookeville. We stopped one last time at a rest area about 45 miles from home. My mom  was beat down, I was exhausted in every sense of the word and she thought she just couldn't make it. I told her to push through the pain and try to make it just a little bit longer. Gosh, those last miles were so long!

It was about 2am on Sunday morning when we got to my house. She was afraid to pull the truck into my driveway at night so she parked it at Walgreen's. Bill had stayed up to greet us and helped me untie all the bungee cords and straps off the top of my van. I don't even remember what I did after that, I just remember falling into my bed and going to sleep.

Our adventure ended and I had a few church friends come over last night to help me unload the heavy stuff. Thank God for strong men!
Bill couldn't help me with his bad back and besides he was at a Scout meeting.

Thought there were parts that were hard to endure, my mom and I made a lasting memory. I have written about here just in case one day, my son wants to know how his mom can lose her sanity. LOL

Life is short and I'm so glad I still have my mom. She's one tough cookie, a gold medal winner in the category of starting over. If you still have your mom around, go do something out of the ordinary with her. Make  a memory that will last forever.

Nov 6, 2011


Linking up with Mama Kat's Writer Workshop

FAQ's about me:

1. What is your occupation?
I'm a certified teacher but my job right now is an RTI reading "coach". I pull kids out of class and work with them on various reading skills. What is RTI? it's short for Response to Intervention which in essence is a process children have to go through to receive special education services.

2. Where were you born?
I was born in Klamath Falls, OR but I have lived in several states. Since I have lived in TN for the longest amount of time, I tell people I'm from TN.

3. What did you want to be when you grew up?
I went to Sea World when I was 9 or 10 and saw the trainers with the killer whales and I knew I wanted to do that. I wanted to be a marine biologist and work at Sea World.

4. How many kids dd you want when you grew up?
I definitely wanted two but I always thought depending on who I married and how much money we earned, I would go for 3. In reality, I have one child.

5. What do you do when you get mad/upset?
My first instinct is to shut down. It's something I have always done. I don't want to talk to anyone.
I usually go for a walk, listen to music or read a devotional book. If I'm really mad, I tend to be more vocal , depending on the situation.

6. What do you absolutely HATE?
I hate when people lie to me and I hate when people steal from me.

7. What is your favorite season?
I love summer and fall. I wish I could have fall without cold weather. I love the changing of the leaves.

8. What's your biggest pet peeve?
Watching or hearing about adults who expose their kids to stuff that they don't need to know. Grant gets mad at me because I won't let him PG13 movies. Well, he's not 13 and even then, the movie may still not be appropriate. I don't like seeing kids sitting at a bar in a restaurant. I don't like seeing kids with their parents buying alcohol. I don't like hearing kids repeat stuff you know for a certain fact, they've heard at home or from their parents.

9. Who has been the most influential person on your life?
I would say my Mamaw. A woman whose strength to endure a lot of hard times has inspired me to stay strong. She has lost a lot in life and yet she is a faithful Godly woman. She is the epitome of the Fruit of the Spirit.

10. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I hope I am teaching at a great school and enjoying life with my family. I want to go to Italy or a Caribbean cruise. I want to be in better health than I am now. I hope I have a second child by then and I hope that my relationship with Christ is stronger.



I have lived in my house for almost 12's hard to believe at times! There are things I would change about this house and even at times, I get so irritated with how small it is. Then I remember that at least I have a house with all the creature comforts. Anyway, the basement has been a constant irritation of mine. It has been the "dumping" ground for all our crap stuff. I swore to myself that I was going to spend the summer organizing, trashing, rearranging and cleaning up the whole basement. It was very daunting and sometimes discouraging BUT alas I think I have reached some sort of semblance of an organized space. Here are some before pictures. I show you with much agony because it's shameful! the images could be mistaken for someone on joke!


I know it still looks like I have a ton of stuff but trust me, I made a lot of dump runs and recycled a bunch of stuff and gave a away a lot too.
It feels great completing projects of this proportion.
I'm still working on different parts but for the majority of the space, it turned great!

Nov 2, 2011


I never was popular.....not in elementary school, not in middle school and most assuredly, never in high school.....and not much has changed since then.
and another goes along with is not fair......never has been, never will be....
why am I mumbling about popularity?
because I experienced a life lesson this week, that merit and hard work and committment and loyalty will never guarantee you a better position in life's sticky situations.

how will I get past this "injustice"? Only with God's help and a fervent prayer to understand His timing, His will, His plan, His ways, His peace, His love for me, His unfailing and unchanging ways.
Our lives will change, our ciircumstnaces will change, people come and go, friends come and go, jobs come and go, but God and his infinitee wisdom will never change!

one of the many songs that has helped me thorough this has been "These are the Words I would say" from Sidewalk Prophets