Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Fancy Feet

Hope you are all having a great day! I have never been one for shoes. Do you own tons of shoes? What's that like??? I am not much for cute shoes, I usually go for cozy shoes.

This past weekend, I bought 3 pairs of shoes, which is insane for me!

These are my new dressy work shoes.. I love flip flops, but not super professional. These are cute, go with any outfit and were only $25 from Kohls!

Then I found these cute flip flops! So cute and cozy. Only $5 at JcPenny! I love me some good flip flops. I usually toss each pair after the season. They aren't super great for your feet, but they are so stinking cute!

A new pair of running shoes- clearanced for $27 !! I just ran in them this morning. They say to rotate your running shoes, especially for marathon running. I am going to try it. I ran in Saucony for Riverbank, so I thought I might try out this pair! They felt comfortable on this mornings run!

And then I found this cute shirt!

It is a petite Medium! Holy cow! I think I could have gone Petite small, but I wanted to go a little bigger in case it was going to shrink in the washer.. So cute.. I love it... 

What are your favorite shoes??

Ps.. Don't forget to enter my blog giveaway here

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Stronger Self + Giveaway

Happy Hump Day! Half way through the work week! 

I wanted to write to you about something that is near and dear to my heart. I, like many other women have really struggled with weight, body image and shopping. I used to HATE shopping because nothing ever fit me! I hated what the mirror reflected.

 I started running as a way to lose weight, which I did, but more importantly, running gave me a stronger self image. The more I ran, the stronger I felt. The farther I ran, the more inner strength I found. 

One day I found myself on the ground not sure of how I got there. Two months later, I found myself on floor in the shower, two more months after, on the pavement and finally, one evening I hit my head on the bathtub. After a year of testing, I was diagnosed with Epilepsy.Last June upon receiving the diagnosis, I thought my life was going to be spent claiming disability, giving up my drivers license and never running again. Funny how one moment can put your life into perspective. 

The worst had hit, and now I was back to the starting point of hating my body, but battling the demons in my head telling me I would never run again. When the rug is ripped out from you, you revert back to old habits and disoriented thinking. Good thing I wasn't ready to give up and neither was God. I was just beginning to knock on the doors of freedom. 

Each run this past year, was one step closer to freedom. Each mile proved that I was just as strong before Epilepsy. The PR made me believe that Epilepsy is my freedom. I believe that God has healed my body and unfortunately, I needed something tangible to re-affirm that belief. Why are we such doubters? 

Body image is a daily battle for me. Some days are better than others, but for the first time in a long time, I am finding freedom.

I am finding freedom: in not having negative thoughts about my self.
 I am finding freedom: in the dressing room. I can finally fit into a Petite Medium shirt or a Petite Small :)
I am finding freedom: in believing that I am God's child who was fearfully and wonderfully made.
I am finding freedom: in looking at myself in the mirror and realizing that I am okay.
I am finding freedom: in the arms of Christ, who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

This month marks one year of being diagnosed with Epilepsy, but in August I will celebrate a year of being seizure FREE and I will be able to apply for life insurance! 

In honor of my own personal freedom from body image issues, I am giving away this awesome, humorous, authentic book, which is titled  "My Big Bottom Blessing- How hating my body led to loving my Life" written by Teasi Cannon.

Ready to go through an adventure of tangled emotions that will leave you feeling full, understood and loved? This book is full of guts and honesty about Teasi who struggled with self-image. It will make you laugh, cry and draw you closer to God.  Women have been lied to for years by the media and Teasi exposes the truth through scripture giving women biblical truths about who they are in Christ. 

In this book Teasi talks about how she felt like she couldn't live life until she lost weight.  She talks about the deep pain that women feel about themselves and how weight or a big nose will affect or keep women from having freedom in their lives. Media  plays a huge role in our lives and we believe the lie,  if we are not thin enough, we are not good enough, which often leads to low self -esteem, depression and many other emotional issues. I love that this book is scripture based, allows room for reflection and has several parts in the book where you can  write down your thoughts. I love that this book allows you to go on a journey.

This book is about spiritual transformation and will help women transform their lives from the inside out. I would recommend this book to women, mothers and counselors or social workers who deal with body image issues, eating disorders, and disoriented thinking. I think this book will bring a lot of freedom in women's lives!

You can download the first chapter here.

Here are the ways you can enter my giveaway:

1) Like my facebook page

3) Tweet me on Twitter @ Sarahsmithstorm

4) Tweet about this giveaway! 

5) Leave a comment down below telling me why you want to win and your email address.

5) Shoot me an email @ sarahsmithstormdotgmaildotcom

6) Click "join this site" on the right side bar for future blog posts!!

Ps. Make sure to leave me comment every time you do one of these, so I can track your entries!

Good luck everyone! This blog giveaway will end  Friday, June 29.

Running 4 my Life + Insomonia = Perfect

In the mail this afternoon, I received "Running for my Life" written by Lopez (Loepepe) Lomong. I have a huge stack of books waiting to be read and reviewed, but instantly I was drawn to start reading this book. I have always been completely fascinated with the " Lost Boys" of Sudan. In highschool and in college, I had the privledge of getting to know two different lost boys, who had big dreams of becoming doctors  and returning to their home country. 

I started reading the first 3 chapters earlier this afternoon and upon going to bed, I couldn't help but wonder what would happen to Loepepe, so I started reading and finished in less than 3 hours.

At a very young age, Lopepe was taken from his family to a rebel prison camp where he endured harsh conditions, diseases, malnutrition and the death of other boys. "Three angels", three friends decided to sneak out of the camp and run for their lives. They ran for three days straight until they reached the Kenyan Border Guards who eventually took them to Kakuma, a refugee camp for displaced people. Upon staying at the refugee camp, Lopepe began to learn Swahili and also began to eat, even though it was 1 meal a day. He played soccer and ran a lot. He was always fast, a natural born athlete. One evening he had the opportunity to go and watch the Olympics at a farmers house 5 mile down the road. That is the first time he saw Michael Johnson, world recorder holder for the 400 meter dash. This sparked a dream in Lopepe that took him to Olympics.

More importantly than the Olympics, Loepepe had the opportunity to go and live in American, be adopted into a new family, become a citizen, attend and graduate college,  visit him mother and father in Sudan, create a foundation and is currently going to be competing in London!   Lopez is amazing man with an amazing story. He even got to meet former president, George Bush and former first lady, Laura Bush. 

This book is full of stories and reminders of how blessed we truly are in America. One of my favorites is when his American mother and father were trying to calculate 30km, which = 18 miles to figure out how far Lopez wanted to run. He planned on doing this w/out shoes too.  As a runner, I can appreciate this story and appreciate his God given talent to run as fast as he can. I am excited to see what he does this year at the Olympics and am honored to review his book. It is truly remarkable and inspiring for any runner out there!

Thank you to booksneeze for allowing me to review this book. The opinions expressed are my own and I was not compensated for a positive review.

Monday, June 25, 2012

5 miles, 5 things you need to know

Well, I am gearing for my first ever,  Marathon and it's at the happiest place on Earth, Disney World! Since I am gearing up for this thing, I have several things to tell you. My mind is racing with post ideas, but I gotta keep it simple because I really need to pack for Georgia! 

This morning I ran 5 miles. The mitten tends to be very humid, but this morning was cool with a gentle breeze. Perfect weather for 5 miles.  I did get a great sweat and burned 584 calories :).

As I was running, I was thinking about a couple of things I wanted to tell my runner friends out there that I have been learning & thinking on.

1) Safety is your first priority as a runner. I run very busy streets, in neighborhoods where I know people. One of the things about living in a small community and the areas I run, I know a person or a place I could go to for every half mile I run, if I were in trouble.  Speaking of trouble, this morning on my run, I got a very weird feeling about a man on a bike that was passing me. Usually, I don't really get worried, but something felt funny to me, so I kept my eye on him, turning my back every few seconds, until I was out of the distance. Be vigilant! Be aware! Know your surroundings.
 I always tell my husband the route I am taking and how long I think it will take me to run it.. I usually give him about a 15 minute window in the event that I get tired or am forced to walk.  He knows that if I am not home by the deadline, to jump in the car & start looking for me, which he has never had to do.. Make sure you have a plan and someone knows your plan!

2) Do you have an ipod, ipad, iphone or any other electronic device that allows you to download apps? I found a great one, especially for my friends who are trying to lose weight.... I know I am...  I found this great app called Lose It!  This app allows you to set a goals for weight loss or weight maintenance. Each day you add the food you eat and it tracks the calories. You can add work outs to your plan, which will give you more calories in your food budget.  It will also give you a date of when and if you follow the schedule, when you will be that weight. It is very nice having it on a device that goes everywhere with me! It is a FREE APP too, so check it out!
3) This is brought to you from my Lisa, over at  joggingoncoffee. Have you heard of smartcoach?    Smartcoach is this individualized training plan to help you run any event. You type in your race time, distance and how long you would like to train and it POPS out a schedule for you! How nifty is that? Here I have been doing it the old fashion way with a calendar! Now, I don't have to do much of the guessing work! I may add or take-away work outs, but for the most part, I like this!! 

4) Have you heard of Glucosamine? I had never heard of it until I started having knee pain, which was really joint pain. Taking the supplement, Glucosamine helps prevent cartilage degeneration and treats arthritis. With daily wear and tear on joints, cartilage is going to get damaged, especially with the natural aging process and not to mention, running.  Testing has shown that glucosamine can help reduce the damage to cartilage in the joints and reduce inflammation and pain. I take two of these after every run!


5) What is your inspiration behind running? Why do you run? We all know it isn't the best for our knees and joints. A lot of us get injured, so why do we do it? Are we all just crazy? I have several reasons for running and I am reminded of those reasons on a regular basis. This could be a whole post in itself, (I will post more later this week on this topic) so I will stop and just ask, why do you run?

Why do you run and what are some thing I might not know about running?

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Where does the weekend go?

 Happy Sunday Evening! 

I intended to write several posts this weekend, but things kept coming up, which inhibited my time on the inter-webs and my lack of blogging.. I hate not keeping up, but I have a feeling this is going to get worse as I start my new adventure on Saturday. I am departing the mitten for a month to Macon, Georgia. 

Let me catch ya up on this weekend.

Friday night, Drew and I babysat Connor & Sidney until late Saturday Evening! We had a good time and I took the kids to see the new Disney movie, Brave. It was a good movie. I especially love Merida and her firey red hair! This girl is fierce! Great movie. The kids and I had some good laughs. It was nice and cool in the movie theater too!


Saturday, Connor had a swim party, so we took Sidney to Mc. Donalds, which is kid world is the best and to do some errands. We even had a good trip to the grocery store. In the evening, Sidney had a birthday party, so we took Connor shopping at the mall and then for some Wendys!

We had a great time with the kids. We ended our Saturday evening with a trip to AppleBee's for some half off appetizers!

This morning we went to church where our pastor talked a great deal about tithing and offerings. I found his sermons to be very challenging and inspiring to give more. After church Drew and I took a nice long needed Nap! The nap was great, but we overslept and almost missed our lunch date with Jason & Alica! 

My brother in-law and his fiance just purchased a house! We are so excited for the adventure they are embarking on! We had a great lunch and a good time with their dogs! Molly & Diesel (dogs) are such a pair and are hilarious!  They are good humored dogs!

After we spent the afternoon with Drew's family, we went to go visit Grandma Storm.  She fell Wednesday evening and broke/ fractured her Tibia. She is in a great deal of pain. We had a good time visiting with her. I won't see her for a month, so I am nervous about her health. I pray that she heals, but I also know that her health is declining. I am praying that God will heal her and keep her in good spirits!  

What have you been doing this weekend???

Friday, June 22, 2012

Cottage By the Sea

Want to read a book that will change your life direction? Want to jump right along side the characters and feel moved by their life? Are you struggling with what is important life? Do you need a paradigm shift?

Look no more!  "Cottage by the Sea" written by the talented Robin Jones Gunn will help re-direct your priorities this summer. Maybe you haven't visited your grandparents in a while or you have a strained relationship with a relative, this book will make you think twice about continuing to remain bitter.

Erin Bryce and her best friend Sharlene start a new wedding business when she receives the phone call from her step-mother, Delores that her father has had a stroke. Upon arriving to the Hidden Cottage, Erin is confronted with memories from her past. Erin leaves her father as he regained his health and continued to live her life. Her son Jordan  got engaged to Sierra! Yes, our Sierra, our forever friend! So lovely! I would like to hear the Sierra side of the wedding planning and such..( Robin here is an idea for another book! ) 

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On Jordan and Sierra's wedding day, Erin learns her father is not coming to the wedding. Upon further questioning of Delores, Erin finds out her father has had several strokes and has become paralyzed. Erin and her husband rush out to see her father. At that time they are left with several decisions and a series of unexpected events.  Delores (stepmother) walks out of her sick father. Erin is left with the burden of taking care of her sick father. Will Erin's brother, Tony make amends with her father?  In the mean time, " The Happiest Day" business of Erin and Sharlene is hanging by a thread. Will their friendship survive? Will their business thrive? Will Delores come back to her husband? 

You will not be left disappointed. I cried my eyes out! The story of redemption, forgiveness and ever lasting friendship is all intertwined in " Cottage by the Sea." Ps.. Glenbrooke shows up in this story too! I love how Robin ties everything in this book!!   You have outdone yourself again, Robin! What a wonderful book!

May God give you
For every storm, a rainbow
For every tear, a smile
For every care, a promise
and a blessing in each trial.
For every problem life sends,
a faithful friend to share,
For every sigh, a sweet song,
And an answer for each prayer. 

This book will be released to the Public July 10, 2012! To find out more about Robin and her other books, go here!

I was not required to give a positive review for this book, nor was I compensated for my review. Thank you Howard Books for allowing me the opportunity to review this wonderful book!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Summer Bucket list

Being home for the summer, even though I am going to Georgia for month, makes me always want to accomplish big goals that have been piling up all year long.  I like to make a bucket list of accomplishments to get done. I find the more lists I make, the more I get done because I hate lists.  Here is my summer bucketlist! I have already crossed off a few items on the list.. Hopefully at the end of August, these will be accomplished!

My Summer Bucket list:

1) Register for the Walt Disney World Marathon 
2)Create a new blog look... (I am slowly working on this)
3) Clean out the massive filing cabinet!  Just finished this!
4) Read the 2nd and third book of the Hunger games
5) Organize my Social Skill materials into a functional manner
6) Get halfway through scrapbooking our wedding pictures
7)Finish the rest of "Friends" two more seasons to go
8) Go on a road trip.
9) Get rotators on the vibe.
10) Organize/ pitch scrapbooking materials not being used.
11) Cook some new recipes.
12) Watch the Summer Olympics
13) Hunt for Sea shells
14) Bring sand home from the beach
15) Go to a casino
16) Read my Bible Daily
17) Go stargazing
18) Be in two places at once
19) Take 500 pictures this summer
20) Lose 10 pounds
21) Get a 10 mile long run
22) Visit another state 

 What's on your summer bucket list?

If you need some ideas, go here!!!


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Lazy Days of summer = boring treadmill runs

I am really lucky blessed to have great parents,who live so close and have an outdoor swimming pool! Since I have been on summer vacation and have a limited amount of time to be in Michigan before I leave for Georgia, I have been spending a lot of time at home.. Look at my sweet Candy bear, I miss her! She is slowly going deaf and is losing her eye sight. It's really sad.. She can barely hear me call her name, but she still is so adorable and lovable. 

I have been spending a lot of time in the pool and even more time catching up on some great summer reads. I have a lot of book reviews in the works for the upcoming posts, so stay tuned if you are looking for great books! My sister and I, bought new swimming floats to get our tan on and enjoy some great books.

Since being on medication, I have been getting more sunburn than usual. I have been putting on a lot of sunscreen to ward off sunburn, so I have to remember to keep re-applying ever couple of hours. I am looking for a cute floppy hat to keep my face and nose from burning.. Most of them look stupid. Hopefully, I can find a cute one! Any recommendations on where I can get one?

My husband and I went to the Y this evening to get a run in on the treadmill and it totally STUNK!! I dread hate running on a treadmill. I would rather run 5 miles outside, than run 1 mile on the treadmill. I disregard the treadmill so much, it is so boring! I could barely survive two miles on the treadmill! I am going for another treadmill run Thursday. My husband doesn't mind the treadmill, so I am trying to be more open to the idea of running on it.. I know it is better for my runs and it makes me faster, I just wish I could run longer distances on it. No amount of music or T.V. show can keep me distracted.. Running outside is my thing.

Speaking of running, do you own a Garmin Forerunner? I have never used one of these handy devices, but everyone I read has one of these things. I don't mind using a map online and using a good ole fashion watch to time my mileage, but I wonder if I would improve my time by having one? They are so darn expensive too!

I am also in the process of working up a marathon schedule. Any schedules or books you recommend? I cannot wait for Disney Marathon. Both my husband and I are so nervous !!

Happy Wednesday! Hope your week is going well!

What are the books are your summer reading list??

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Girl's Still Got it

I had the opportunity to receive an advanced copy of The Girl's Still Got It by Liz Curtis Higgs. Liz Higgs is the best selling author of Bad Girls of the Bible.

This book provides an in-depth look at the life of Ruth and her uncertainty about the plan God has for her life. What I love about this book is how relevant it is to the reader. Higgs does a great job of taking you through the life of Ruth, Naomi, Boaz and other individuals that are a part of their lives with the greatest relationship of all, God.  This book could be used as a 12 week Bible study. Really, its a study! It's almost like a commentary, but written as a story so the reader really can engage in the story. 

The Girl's Still Got It - Liz Curtis Higgs
The neat thing about this book, is how  Higgs takes the reader through the first four books of Ruth, phrase by phrase. It may sound boring, but that is the furthest from the truth. Higgs does a great job in utilizing different Bible translations, studies, commentaries, her personal thoughts and prevalent life topics to make this book come alive. I enjoy her honesty, humility, humor and the time she spent researching Ruth. This book is well done, great for a bible study or great to dig deeper into Ruth. Liz did a great job at making Ruth come alive for me and I felt like I could really relate to some of Ruth's struggles. It didn't feel like she was from way back when, but an old friend that I could relate with. I really liked it! I feel like I know Ruth better and understand the way Ruth was written.

At the back of the book, Higgs provides a section on this used as a Bible study. It also says there are a companion set of DVD's. I would be highly interested to do this as a Bible study with my small group.

If you are interested in this book, it will release July 10,2012. Look at amazon or your local Christian Book store. I want to thank Waterbrook Press for allowing me to review this book. The opinions expressed are my own and I was not compensated for a positive review.

Monday, June 18, 2012

20th Anniversary running Mouse Style

Since I finished Riverbank this year, I got the gumption to want to do something BIG! I always say... "Go big or go home".

Running a marathon(26.2) has been on my bucket list for quite some time and I am going to be honest, the task seems daunting. It seems farther than I have ever thought I could reach, but I am ready. My mind is made up.. I am going to do this! I want to finish the good race that has been started. I want to run for those who cannot!

So... Yesterday, Drew and I officially registered for the 20th Walt Disney World Marathon in January 2013!

2013 marks the 20th anniversary of the Walt Disney Marathon with lots of surprises. The race will begin at Epcot and allow runners to run the the Walt Disney World Speedway oval track, through ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex along with some major enhancments at mile 20. I am nervous, excited and scared out of my mind! It will be our FIRST marathon.. Can you believe I talked my husband in to it??? I can't!!

Mile 20 will contain some special entertainment and a specially designed 20th edition Mickey Mouse Medal, plus a post-race party at Downtown Disney! 

I can't believe we are going to do this! The race entry has been paid for both of us, now let the training begin! Cheer us on as we begin to start of our marathon training!! I can't believe we are doing this!!!  AHH!!!

"It's fun to do the impossible"- Walt Disney

What are your summer fitness plans? When have you reached a goal that didn't seem possible?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Bittersweet- Stressful Long Week!

Happy Father's Day to my Dad!! I am so thankful to have such a great role model and leader in my life like him!

I am officially on Summer vacation, which is going to fly by. Most people are jealous of those who have the summer off, but don't be envious, I don't get paid summers off yet.. Hopefully, I will some day :)

Speaking of someday..... 

I got offered a School Social Work job!!!!  It is a one year maternity fill, it may turn into full time if the individual on maternity does not return. I am trying not to get my hopes up. For the next year, I will be doing my dream job and I am so excited, scared, nervous, but thrilled! I got my BIG GIRL JOB!

With accepting this new job, it also meant leaving my current district. I was very bummed that Thursday was my last day with the kiddo's! I have made such great memories with each of them.. It was a very bittersweet day.. I will miss all the students and staff that I have built great relationships with. I know that I will visit them, but I sure will miss them!

The Stress of the week...

Since I got a new job, which is great, but sad because we had to cancel our Disney trip, we also have to cancel our non-refundable plane tickets.. The kicker is that the travel insurance we purchased, does not cover getting a new job... Why purchase trip insurance then??? I thought the insurance was good for any reason, but apparently it isn't.. I was contacted by Disney Customer Service and the best they could do was refund our travel insurance. I was bummed.. I really was hoping Disney would be able to do something for us, especially since we were hoping to reschedule our trip this summer.. I don't think that is going to happen, not this summer.

The Ugly: The bug odemonitor has gone out.. Now, we don't know how many miles we are driving.. Hopefully, the gasoline gage doesn't go out or we are screwed... This is crazy and I am so sick of car problems.. Wish we could find an old lady car.... It couldn't come at a worse time, especially since we were going to put it on the market next week as we don't need two cars for the summer...

And to finish off our week, we went camping with my inlaws.. I got lots of stories, but for now, I will leave you with this picture!

How did your week go??

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

MIXED Emotions

Great News:
 Wow, what a day! First, I got offered a new job yesterday, which is so thrilling! I got offered a part-time school social work job!! WAHOO!!! 

Okay News:

Today, I had to tell my kids the news and I think I took it harder than they did. Honestly, I was in tears and got chocked up every five seconds.. I had tears.. I was very sad... I will miss these little honeys!  We did a "wish" party. Each student writes on a piece of paper a wish they have for me as I start my new job.. .Then, they each put their penny in my mickey head, so their wish comes true!  

"My wish for Mrs. Storm is"...............................................................


This is the Mickey head where they put their pennies in.. Mickey Mouse is good luck! I love it!! I am going to put it in my new office!! WAHOO!!

Sad News: 

We had to cancel our Disney Trip and now Travel Gaurd Insurance is telling me our air is non-refundable because I didn't lose my job. Never mind I got a new job and have to be at work when I would rather be at Disney... Come on people! Or how about the fact that the Disney Travel agent never told me the trip insurance was worthless if I got a new job.. Why even buy it...  I am so angry and sad.. .My heart hurts... We lost out on a chunk of change.. Frustrated...

Why does everything have to be so challenging???

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Fancy Pants

I have always wanted an IPAD or an Iphone, but they are so expensive, in my opinion. I think it's crazy to have a big phone bill, especially when the money could be going to pay off Student loan debt or going to a place I call Disney World!

I have a fancy pants Digital SLR camera, I have a decent laptop and I have an ipod nano and an ipod square, but I have now joined the ranks with everyone else and I bought an IPOD touch..

I am very excited! I know it is small and simple, but the fact that I can do so much with it, makes me so excited to see how it is going to change things. Finally, I can join instagram, update my twitter and take pictures whenever I want! I am so excited..

My husband has a black ipod touch, so I decided to go with white. This is going to be great when I am in Georgia.... We can message back and forth and use facetime! I am excited!! 

I bought this case, but upon opening it, I realized it is not very durable. I tried putting the case on and the plastic already bent. Least to say, it's going back to Best Buy. Not impressed with the quality, which stinks! It was so cute!

Drew is is in the process of downloading everything and getting me all hooked up! Soon, I will be able to update blogger via IPOD...

Plus, I am going to announce something big this week!

Happy Sunday!

What is your fancy pants technology? 

Friday, June 8, 2012

Interview #1, Big Announcement

WAHOO! I made it to Friday and I thought this day would never come. This week has been incredibly stressful and I feel very disconnected from the blog world. I don't even know where to begin.  I am so glad it's the weekend and I am ready for a little bit of calmness. 

This week was incredibly stressful for various reasons and I am glad it's over. I had a hard time finding a suit for my interviews, especially being petite and the fact that it's summer. I purchased a suit and then it didn't match my pants. I went back to the store and bought the pants that were supposed to go with the suit, but they didn't match, (different shades of black) so I returned the whole outfit and  found a completely different suit!  Least to say, I was FRUSTRATED!

I found a nice suit jacket with a black dress. It's very professional and nice looking! It only cost $40, which was because I opened a Macy's Credit Card. I hate opening store credit cards and I rarely use them, but I got 20 bucks off and that makes a huge difference. It's not good for your credit either, but I hate spending money on things like this, especially since I know, I won't wear it all that much. I am glad I have it now and it matches a pair of black pants I own. It can be a pant suit set or dress suit set! LOVE IT!

My first interview went really well. I am very excited and hope to have good news next week! Monday, I have another interview, so can you say a little prayer??? These are my dream jobs people! School social worker, all the way!!! 

In case I haven't told ya....

I am going to Georgia for most of July! I am going to spend some time with my Aunt and her kiddo's! I am so excited!! I am thankful to have the worlds best husband, who supports me on this adventure!

 Who wouldn't want to spend time with these cuties??? I can't wait to get on an airplane and experience the culture of Georgia!!! 

What are your plans for the weekend?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Winning Balance- Olympic Gold Medalist

During the 2008 Olympics, I was so impressed with Shawn Johnson and amazed by her gymnastic talent. Not only talented, but driven, determined and focused, Shawn Johnson writes about her journey to the Olympics, which led her to be a contestant on Dancing with the Stars. At the age of twenty, she is beyond her years.

Out of West Des Moines, Iowa came this talented girl, Shawn who was different from other girls her age.  She describes herself as a nerd, tom-boy and girly girl. Shawn likes her name and feels that she is strong.  A local gym started near her home and that is when she slowly developed a passion for being at the gym. Other girls were worried about make up or boys, but Shawn was worried about mastering her back hand spring, the balance beam and the high bars. Chow Liang, owner of Chow's Gymnastics and Dance Institute began to see the determination in Shawn.  He saw her potential and drive, which led him to submitting a video to Martha Karoly (Team USA Cooridnator), even though Shawn was unaware of the video. Maratha invited her to come train at her gym with other girls. This training camp led Shawn to an Olympic Gold career. She continued her normal life of going to school, training, attending school social events and balancing her ever growing career. 
After her 2008 Olympic Success,  she went on to win Dancing of the Stars. Although she has had great success, she has had many struggles in leading a normal life with her road to fame. In 2010, Shawn had a ski injury accident, which led her back to the gym with Chow. The two began an attack plan to get her to the 2012 Olympics. She began training, but  just announced her retirement this past weekend. I am disappointed she will not be competing this year.
As a athlete, I really enjoyed this book and Shawn's inspiring perspective. She comes from a strong value system and a supportive home town (who even re-build Chow's Gym after a flood). I believe her story is one worth sharing and reading. She is a very humble person and grateful for the opportunities she has had. I see her doing great things in the future. She is a great reminder that hard work pays off! She is beyond her years and I wonder if she will train the next Olympian? 
"Failure isn't a bad thing, it's a wonderful thing"- Shawn Johnson
 I am very thankful to Tyndale Publishers for allowing me to review this book. The opinions expressed are my own. To find more information, go here!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Busy as a Bee

This weekend was slammed jammed packed with events, activities and catching up on life. Friday night, I had an open house with my old neighbors, the twins, Aaron & Ethan. I grew up babysitting these young fella's and now they are turning into young men.. Where does the time go? 

Saturday I woke up and knew I had to get a long run in despite the cold & windy weather. I accomplished 8 miles!  Did I mention I found a puppy Pomapoo??? I was running when I came across this puppy, no collar and very skidish. I tried to pick him up, but he wanted nothing to do with me. Luckily, I was exactly 1 mile from home, so I booked it! I rang our door bell and told Drew in my heavy panting voice "get car keys, puppy, now."! He thought something was seriously wrong, but I caught my breath on the car ride to find the puppy and was able to better explain the situation.. We went back to where I found him and he was GONE!  I am very heartbroken and I hope he found his owner.. He was cute. .I miss PEANUT!

With 10 minutes to spare, I jumped in the shower and then headed off to Matthew, Drew's cousins open house! We had a great time with family. Despite all the crazy wind, we had a good time and snapped a few picture for the Grandparents!

This afternoon we went to a surprise retirement party, did some laundry and I made a social work Angry Bird curriculum. I am not quite finished, but I will with the final result! This upcoming week entails two School Social Work interviews, so I am  excited and nervous. We shall see what they bring. 

The weekend was a success! 

This week, I averaged 18.5 miles in running. I happy with that! 

Hope your weekend was great too!

What did you do?

Friday, June 1, 2012

Totally MIA, Art of Animation Opens!

I have been  MIA these past couple of days, but for very good reasons....

1) I have two job interviews for SSW in the next week.
2) We have two graduation open-house parties and a retirement party.
3) I have been searching for new cars.
4) I am in the final stretch of school being over- 9.5 days left.

Although I have been busy, I know this is just the beginning of the craziness. June is about to get crazier and busier. Every weekend we have something planned and I am not looking forward to how crazy it is going to be. I hate being away from blogging, but I think the distance between posts is going to get worse. 

Did you know that 2 men vacation at Walt Disney World for 4 years before getting caught w/out paying? It's insane! Check out the story here!! 

Also, the new Art of Animation Resort opened yesterday and looks amazing! I can't wait to swim in the finding Nemo Pool. 

                                           Take a look at some of these pictures!

                                                    The Finding Nemo Pool

                        Did you know that underwater you can hear all the Nemo Friends?

Disney's Art of Animation grand opening

Check out this Youtube Video!!! You can hear the Nemo Friend underwater.. I love Disney!!

Have a great weekend!

Pictures courtesy of inside the magic!