Friday, February 27, 2009

the one about good deals at Holiday Inn Hotels

This is the new promo that Holiday Inn is doing. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT!!! Pass it on to any one you know!

Great News! I've enrolled in the IHG Friends and Family program and am now able to offer you discounted hotel stays. As a friend or family member, you now have access to special hotel rates only available to friends and family of IHG employees! Information and rules for booking the rate are available on the program web site accessible through the link below.


Getting started is easy:

* Click on the link to enter the exclusive booking site
* Book a Friends & Family rate by May 31, 2009 at any of the over 4,100 IHG hotels anywhere in the world - including InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites hotels.
* Download the voucher - which you must present at check-in
* Enjoy your trip!

*The Friends and Family rate is only available through the above link. You must use the link provided to make your reservation or you will not get the discount.

Feel free to share this with other friends, but if you forward the email to anyone else, please make sure they know to use the link to get the discount.

Regards and have fun traveling

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

the "onesie" about one piece p.j.'s

I don't want my baby to grow up.

I saw these funny one piece P.J.'s on clearance for $3 the other day, and I just had to get them. I actually thought Quayd would throw a total fit about them, but to my surprise, he LOVES THEM! I was teasing him, though, telling him how I used to put him in one piece things all of the time when he was a baby. Then I BEGGED him to let me dress him. I know, I am a freak. It was so funny though!
(hey, Janice! Look at my TV! It is the opening credits for "Friends" on KJZZ! Funny, huh!)

Then Brett had to get in on the action and snuggle his baby! ;)

When I bought these jammies, Tara was with me and she bought a pair for Eli as a joke. Well he wanted nothing to do with them. Tara had left for a bit and when she came home Amelia had them on. So they came over so we could take a picture of them. Aren't they so cute??

Shae and Brett thought they were such dorks. They kind of were.

the one about soccer

Quayd started indoor soccer last week. He loves soccer so much. It's so strange because neither Brett or myself were ever into soccer. We never really pushed him to try soccer out, it was all his own doing. He played indoor and AYSO last year. He was not any kind of a super star, in fact, he didn't score one point last year, but he enjoyed it. Recently, he and his friends have been playing soccer at recess. He tells me about it all of the time. So he has just been freaking out excited to start this year. Their first game was Saturday. I was so impressed at how much he has improved since last year! He even scored his first goal!!! They played again last night, and you know what?? He scored again!!! Quayd is in the 5-6 year old league and I am shocked at how much bigger and mature he is than some of the other players on his team. He is 6, but he is not even an OLD 6. Some of those kids aren't even in school yet, and Quayd is in first grade. It's so weird. Anyway, he is doing awesome and it is so fun to watch him!!! He is such a good kid.

Friday, February 20, 2009

the one about Quayd's new digs

This post has been a few weeks coming. I didn't want to post until I had pictures and my SD Card Reader on my printer was being weird. Now I got that all figured out, so I can post. Looking at it now, my pictures weren't really all that great so I just took a few more. It is a more accurate look at his room since it is a little cluttered and "lived in," if you know what I mean.

When we first moved into this house, nearly 5 years ago, I decorated Quayd's room in these really cute tractors and trucks. It was bright, fun colors and he really liked it. He was almost 2. Well now, at age 6 1/2, it was time for a change. We took him to the Clark Planetarium last fall and since then, he is obsessed with space, stars and planets. We thought that would be a perfect theme to decorate! I searched online for a cute bedspread and found a few that I liked, the cutest one being on K-Mart's website. One afternoon, Quayd and I were bumming around town and we had to stop at K-Mart. I thought I would just look and see if they had anything. To my surprise, they had it in stock!! I bought it right then, and got the decorative pillows and sheets to match. I was so excited. The next step was a new bed. He had a full sized bed before, but his room is so tiny that it left no room for his other stuff. We knew he needed a twin. Another problem we had was when he had friends spend the night, there was no place for them to sleep and I ended up tearing my living room apart to make beds on the floor. We thought a bunk bed might be a good idea. He plays video games in his room a lot so this fouton bunk bed seemed PERFECT! It gives him a place to sit and relax alone or with friends, and he can sleep on the bunk. The other day, he and I were watching a movie in his room and I laid on the bottom part and actually fell asleep. It was so nice! We bought it, used actually and we are SO happy with our purchase. It was from a lady here in town and Brett found it on the classifieds. It was in such good shape, very well cared for, clean and PERFECT!!! We had to buy a mattress for the top. Altogether, the bed cost us around $300. Not to bad. Quayd loves the colors blue and turquoise, so he wanted at least one wall that color. This is the color we chose, and we actually did two walls that color. (this is when we were putting the bed together)

When Brett was working out of town a lot, Quayd got used to sleeping with me. When Brett was home, Quayd wanted to sleep in our room. It was also around the time Brett's dad passed away. Quayd would wake up crying all of the time because he was so upset about losing his Papa. He also went through a spell of night terrors. We wouldn't let him sleep with us, but he had a little bed in our room. I know what you are thinking... PSYCHO! But I don't care. I loved having him in my room, and it was sure handy when he woke up freaking out every night. He was sad when we told him he needed to sleep in his room now, but the transition was really smooth. I think it was time for all of us!!!

Now we have all of it decorated and put together. He LOVES his new room and has had no trouble sleeping in there. He doesn't even wake up during the night. I love it! He is such a good boy and he deserved an awesome room! He is doing so well in school and he is growing up so fast. He feels so grown up in his big bed and he is so proud of all of it. He takes good care of all of his stuff and he has been doing a great job of keeping it clean. Good job Quayd!! We love you!!!!

Here are a few more pictures...

the one about handmade gifts

Chauntue' had this on her blog and I think it sounds fun....

Here's how it works-the first 5 people to leave a comment on this post will receive, at some point during the year, a handmade gift from me. What it will be and when it will arrive is a total surprise! The catch is that you must participate as well-before you leave your comment here, write up a pay it forward post on your blog to keep the fun going. Then come back, let me know you're going to play, and sit back and anticipate the arrival of your gift! Remember that only the first 5 comments will receive a gift from me, so be quick!"This offer does have some restrictions and limitations:1. I make no guarantees that you will like what I make!2. It'll be done this year (hopefully sooner than later.)3. You will have no clue what it is going to be.4. What I make, may be strange. Who knows!

I love this idea!!!


I am going to make gifts for the first 5 that not only comment, but agree to do it too and post it on their blog. AND get me your mailing address!!!! Even if there are 5 comments, doesn't mean you lost your chance!!!!! Keep checking my comments to see who gets it! :)
P.S. I make GOOD gifts! ;)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

the one about being employee of the month

I have to brag just a little bit. I feel kinda stupid for talking about it though, but I am pretty excited and proud of myself so I am going to do it anyway.

I am Employee of the Month at the Hotel! The way you get selected is by your co-workers nominations. So that makes me feel even more special. Tara and I made a poster, had it laminated and every month we just change the name, month and pictures. So this month, I get to see my name and pictures on it. Here are some of the things people said about me.
"I would chose Mandy for her humor and the way she treats everyone."
"Mandy. she always has a smile and says good morning as you walk through the door. She's awesome"
"Mandy for employee of the month. She made me feel really comfortable and taught me a lot!"

Isn't that so nice?? I am sorry to sound boastful. This was just really exciting for me. My job is so fun and I am so happy to be recognized by my peers for the work I do. THANKS HIEx!!!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

the one about Valentine's Day

Brett and I are not super duper lovey dovey kind of people. I like snuggling, holding hands and all of that stuff, but only in the privacy of our own home. We are TOTALLY not into PDA's (public display of affection). I much rather have a little note or something than flowers. I don't like all of the cheesy teddy bears and stuff either. I like to eat out sometimes, but I hate crowded places and I really hate waiting a long time. Brett would say ditto to all of the things I just said. So when it comes to Valentine's Day we just don't really get into it. We usually stay home and I cook a big, super fancy dinner for all three of us. I can't imagine taking Quayd to a sitter while Brett and I have fun without him. We always get him a little gift, but don't like to spend money on each other. (This year Quayd got the movie "Space Buddies," a new BIONICLE, and a huge Hershey's kiss.) Anyway, this Valentine's was going to be no different. We had some movies to watch and we were just gonna veg out. I had to work from 8-3. At three, my replacement was supposed to come. 3:00 came and went. 3:30... nothing.... 4:00, 4:30.... Nothing. I realized I was gonna be stuck there all night. I called Brett and told him and Quayd to come to the hotel, we would stay the night and hang out. I had to be to work again at 8:00 the next morning anyway. Quayd had been playing with Amelia and he wanted her to come too, so they loaded up all of their stuff and joined me at the hotel. We called Wingers, Brett picked it up and we ended up having a pretty good night, considering the circumstances. When I got off work, I was so tired! We had asphalt pie from Wingers that we put in the freezer, so we ate that, exchanged our gifts (I'll tell you about that in a second), took a shower and went to sleep. It was a nice, quiet evening at the hotel so that was nice. Brett and Quayd were able to come into the back, eat with me and hang out. And we only had a few interruptions. Not the way I had planned to spend Valentine's Day, but it was ok.

Now let me tell you about our gifts. A few weeks ago, my friend Alison posted on her blog about 6 word memoirs. It is basically summing up your life in 6 words. It is so much fun. These can be silly, sweet, sad, anything. Just stick to 6 words. Here is a little snippet from the book.

Legend has it that Hemingway was once challenged to write a story in only six words. His response? “For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” Starting in 2006, SMITH Magazine re-ignited the recountre by asking our readers for their own six-word memoirs. They sent in short life stories in droves, from the bittersweet (“Cursed with cancer, blessed with friends”) and poignant (“I still make coffee for two”) to the inspirational (“Business school? Bah! Pop music? Hurrah”) and hilarious (“I like big butts, can’t lie”).

Our newest book, Six-Word Memoirs on Love & Heartbreak, is a roller-coaster ride through the complexities of the human heart. It's just $10 — bring it instead of a bottle of wine to your next party.

Click here to read Alison's post. Also, you have to check out this website. SO COOL!

Anyway, Brett came home the other day and asked if I had read Alison's blog yet. I had not, so he told me all about it. He was so excited about it and insisted that we do this for each other this year. I was all for it. Brett doesn't like people to see his soft side. Of course, I have seen it. I promise it is there! But he has written me some beautiful letters before. He is VERY good with words. Before he had talked to me, he had already started writing his. The deal was that we had to write 10 for each other. These are the rules. At least one had to be funny, and at least one had to be serious. And because we are us.... at least one had to be dirty. ;D So on Saturday night, I got finished with work, and headed for the hotel room. I ended up getting adjoining rooms, so Quayd and Amelia were in one, us in the other. We got the kids all settled down for the night, then we shared our 6 word memoirs. We just took turns. Some of them were awesome, so I wanted to share. Don't worry. I will leave the dirty ones out!! I have to warn you though... Brett's are SO much better than mine. He was SO good at this. He is a man of few words. I, on the other hand... well, woman of MANY words, to say the least.

being mother to your son... extraordinary.
disliked, liked, married. fell in love.
baby boy. greatest blessing. toughest trial.
carried baby. gave you a gift.
big boobs. small brain. your wife.

I only have one true friend.
a promise to never ever leave.
measuring my love in light years.
only one kid. please stop asking.
days spent crying. can't parent alone.
new baby. death bed. true love.
days spent laughing, lifetime spent together.
best thing for me since me. (that is SO Brett!)

Aren't his so great! He rocks.

I love this idea. I think it is so much fun. It really makes you think about those defining moments in your life. I wanted to go search for this book for Brett, but I just didn't have time. This was such a good gift! I loved it. It meant more to me than any flowers, chocolate or a romantic evening alone. Our evening was spent just the way I would want it. Laying in bed, Quayd in the next room and us trying not to wake him because we were laughing so hard at some of the ones we had written. Then we made up a few more. So much fun! And that was our night. I was so tired from working a double, so I crashed.

It was one of the most memorable Valentine's Days EVER. Thank you Brett. Will you be mine? Forever?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

the one about the octuplets

Ok. I don't ever care what any of you write about on your blogs. Happy, sad, annoyed or even if you are mad at the world. I read it all, respect it and totally enjoy it! I, however, try not to use my blog as a venting tool. Just a personal choice. No biggie. But today, that is going to change. I just read my buddy Ramanda's blog and it made me want to shout out the fire within me concerning a certain topic.

Let's talk octuplets. Certainly you have heard the story of this crazy woman, a single mom, in California who gave birth to the 8 babies, while already having 6 children. Yah you know the story. Here is my take on it.

Brett and I are a normal (sorta) couple. We are not wealthy. We live paycheck to paycheck. We don't exercise very often and we don't have good eating habits. We are not the best when it comes to Church and spiritual stuff. My house is seldom spotless, and if it is, it is because I have hired someone to clean it. Sometimes, when I am lazy, I wear a pair of pants for a few days in a row so I don't have to wash them. I don't always flush the toilet when I make a #1. We are just simple people trying to survive in this crazy world. I know we aren't the best parents in the world. We make many mistakes, but I will guarantee that no child has ever been loved more by his parents than Quayd. When we found out that we could not have anymore children, we were devastated. We knew there was nothing more that we could do about it, so we better just make the best of it. We have found everything positive in our situation and we don't complain very often. We realize that these are the cards we were dealt. We would not trade Quayd for ANYTHING! But, my heart breaks everyday when I see how loansome Quayd is. I wish more than anything that my body would allow me to give him a sibling. And I know that Brett never wanted to be the father of one. I feel so inadequate and like such a disapointment when he talks about wanting another baby. We have looked into adoption, unfortunately, the cost is so high it is unrealistic for us. I feel like it would be unfair to Quayd and selfish of us to use our "everyday" money for that. Anyway, getting to my point... I think that this woman is horribly selfish and has put her wants and desires for the spotlight ahead of all of the children, her parents and everyday people... just like us. The government will support her and her children forever. They will always have food, health care and their needs will be met. However, they will never get the love and attention that each one of those 14 children deserve. I would love to have 14 Quayds. I would love to have two!! But I realize how special one Quayd is and that makes me perfectly happy. But this issue of the octuplets INFURIATES me to the core. It makes me think that this world is just not fair. I deal with feelings of guilt, anger, heartbreak, sorrow and inadequacy, every single day. While this selfish B#@%& has, now 14, children that she cannot possibly care for. All for her moment in the spotlight.

Please... I don't want sympathy!!! That is not why I posted this. I don't want advice. I get that everyday. "You know you could adopt." Yes, thank you. We know that. "It's time for Quayd to have a brother or sister!" Yes, it is time for that. It was time for that about 5 years ago.

Really, I am fine. Now I have vented and I feel TONS better.

Ramanda did awesome, by the way. If you are interested, click here.

Monday, February 9, 2009

the one about my career shadow

Several weeks ago, Brayden asked me if he could career shadow me. I was so flattered that he would even ask. Of course, I was ecstatic and couldn't wait for the day to come around. Well, it finally came. It was last Thursday, Feb. 5th. He came to my house a few minutes before 8:00 and we headed off to work. It was just a typical day for me. I have a lot of paperwork and reports to run in the mornings. I also have to check all arrivals, assign rooms etc. So there wasn't a lot of cool stuff going on in the morning so we put Brayd-O to work. We have all of this old paperwork that needs to be organized and shredded. I showed him what to do and he rocked it. He worked really hard and I was so proud of him. Later in the afternoon, I took him to lunch. I offered to take him home after we ate, but he was excited to come back to work. I was able to take him on a big tour of the hotel. I showed him how everything worked, where the laundry is washed, how to make keys and all kinds of other stuff. He said that he was surprised at how much really goes on in a Hotel. He had to do a worksheet at the end of the day telling what he thought of his job. He said he liked it and might consider doing something like that as a career. I had to evaluate him as an employee and he got a big fat A from his "boss!" He really did a great job. I was so proud to have him there with me. He is so special to me. I adore him and I am so glad he likes me enough to want to come hang out with me at work. We giggled all day! He is so much fun. In the morning, my boss was asking him a bunch of random questions. then she said something to the effect of "If she gives you an A, Mandy will probably be your favorite Aunt." He just looked at her, put his arm around me and said, "WHATEVER! She is already my favorite Aunt!" It made me so happy. He is the BEST!

Poor kid got his braces on the day before, so he was pretty sore. He could only eat soft foods, but he did really well. He complained of pain a couple of times, but truly, he did AWESOME! Is he cute or what?

the one about Gavin's Birthday

I feel terrible that I haven't posted this yet. I don't know how I managed to skip it, but better late than never, I guess.

When I first started working at the Hotel, Kandice asked me if I could get her some kind of a deal for Gavin's Birthday party. I told her I could probably swing something. Apparently, Gavin has wanted to stay at the Hotel since he could see it being built. He would ask his mom every time they drove by if they could stay there. Of course it is foolish to pay to stay in a Hotel in your own town so they never did. Well as his Birthday grew nearer, I was able to work something out. One condition, of course.... I could invite myself to the party! The only guests Gavin wanted were his big sister Hallie and my little Quayd. We got adjoining rooms and Kandice and her kids stayed in one, Quayd and I in the other. We had Chinese food for dinner; Gavin's choice. Then the kids swam at the pool, played games, watched a movie, played with Gav's new toys, ate tons of snacks, played with their DS's and just had a great time. The next morning, they went to the Dinosaur Museum. It was probably one of the best parties ever. Kandice and I even had fun!

Kandice is such a great friend to me. I love her more than she will ever know. I treasure her friendship!!!! So that is why I couldn't pass up this opportunity to hook her up. I got the rooms for free so it was no big deal to me. I am just so glad I actually had something I could offer her. She would do anything for me, and I hope she knows I would do it right back for her.

Here are a few pix of the fun night.

the one about sugar cookies

The other day, Brett and Quayd decided they wanted sugar cookies. I love to bake, I love to make cookies and I love to make my two favorite boys happy, but I HATE making sugar cookies. Seriously, I despise it. Here are some of the reasons why I hate it so bad.
1. They make a HUGE mess
2. I hate cookie cutters (that is why mine are always round)
3. Everybody always says they will help, but after a few minutes, I am left alone to not only finish the cookies, but also to clean up the mess
4. I hate that they are so delicious that I make my self sick eating the dough
5. I hate that they are so delicious that I make my self sick eating the cookies
6. I hate that my frosting is so yummy that I can't leave that alone either

You get the idea.

Anyway, I told Brett that he and Quayd could make them, but he whined that he didn't know how. I made him a deal that I would make the dough and frosting, but they could do all of the yucky stuff. They agreed. And I have to hand it to them. They did a great job. Quayd stuck it out for quite awhile and they even cleaned up the mess! It was great. Aren't they cute!?!?!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

the one about a funny picture

I was going through pictures the other day and found this one from this last summer. Brennen and Quayd must have dressed up as superheroes every single day. Then they would go from door to door (Only my mom's, grandparent's and brother's houses) trying to scare everyone. One day, I was trying to catch them being sneaky. They were trying to scare Ga. Of course this is posed, but I think it is so funny!!