The Busy Giffs: July 2012

July 31, 2012


I don't watch much TV.
I am die hard for Pretty Little Liars, every Tuesday night at 8 pm. but that's it. That's my only must watch tv show.
Most times, I end up watching my DVR'd version because Emmalee decided she wanted to stay up until 8:30.
Tonight I realized they have full episodes on ABC Family so really, I could just watch them on the computer rather than the DVR...

Which got me thinking, 
Do we really need the cable?

We're not big tv watchers, I mean, if it's on, we'll surf and find something but I think I could live without it.
I'm pretty sure we'd get channels 2 to like, 25 without a cable box and for another few bucks we can stream Hulu or Netflix to the Xbox and still spend much less than we spend now.

Have you ever given up cable?
What do you think?

Could you do it?
Am I crazy?

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 27, 2012

Friday Brain Dump

There is SO much going on...
but really, not much of anything which is kind of nice!


I got to spend today with my friend's amazingly wonderful 6 week old.
I must say, holding a 6 week old and watching Emmalee try and hug her was one of the most amazing things I've seen in a while. 

Emmalee was pretty content trying to climb up to the second floor and feed the dog, but when I let my friend go take a shower, Emmalee was pretty happy snuggled up against me and the baby on the couch.

This is my theory: 
Moms who breastfeed have magic boobs. And obviously, when the baby is near mom, they are fussy because they know that food is there. When they are with a stranger without magic boobs, they are content because they know there is no food around.
So they are on their best behavior, knowing that no matter how much they fuss, they know the boobs will not give them anything. 
So as soon as they get back to mom, they fuss like crazy saying "Look Ma, I was good so feed meeeeeee".

Emma did it to me and I watched the baby do it to my friend.
Maybe it's just us, but I think I'm on to something.

We finally have a working washer and dryer again... after three weeks!
First they lost the work order, they it was filed but the necessary phone call was never made...
needless to say, I called and was a bit of a jerk and I had a working dryer 4 hours later.
However, doing 4 loads of laundry yesterday, sucked.

Speaking of laundry, we found out that the house were moving into will no longer have a washer and dryer in it. Waaaaaah.
Sucks because we had planned on them being there and our funds are still very tight so buying new ones seems kind of out of the question.
I started looking on Craigslist and the local scratch and dent stores but we'd still be looking at a few hundred for the set... and then it's like if we're already spending $400 on a sued set, why not just spend $700 and get brand new ones?! But we barely have the money for used ones, never mind new ones! 
I'm just going to cross my fingers that someone is giving up an amazing brand new set because they have too much money than they know what to do with and we end up with them.
I can dream right?!
We'll make it work, we always do.


I'm obsessed with Modern Family.
I just, just started watching it last week and I die every time.
I rented the first season from the library and plan on watching all of it, I think I may have even gotten Dave hooked! And yes, I know I'm late to the party but I'm very happy to be a part of it now!

I want to chop off all of my hair.
Like Chelsea Kane or Ginnifer Goodwin short, Good win before she buzzed the sides...

I'm debating between some highlights to help it get closer to natural, or sticking to some light golden brown color.
I'm not really sure but I know I need a big change before school starts!

And sadly, Sable no longer lives with us. :(
After a couple snaps at Emma that resulted in Sable biting David, it was time to say goodbye.
She's currently at moms and although the cats are not too pleased with it, the other dog is pretty thrilled and we're hoping this works out well!
As much as I hate to see her go, it's nice to not have to worry about her biting Emmalee while she's eating dinner, worry about her growling at Emmalee if she moves too quickly...
I'm very happy that she's only at mom's so we'll be able to see her still.

I guess that's it for now.
I know there's more in my head but I'm sleepy and ready for bed!

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 25, 2012

Copy Cat

Emmalee has become a super copy cat.
I think its adorable personally.

If I'm in the bathroom putting on mascara, she grabs the closet thing she can find, and "brushes" her eyes with it.

When I brush my teeth, she goes "ehh ehh ehhh" until she gets her toothbrush. She even pushes the brush around in her mouth!

If I have a trash bag and say pick it up, she puts the paper in my trash bag.

If I'm doing laundry, she tries to help.

If I'm reading a book, she gets one of her own.

If I'm eating with a fork, she needs to have hers.

If I'm eating or drinking something, she walks right over and wants something.

This morning, I found her with my chapstick, trying to put it on her mouth.

Really makes me stop and think about what I'm doing.

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 23, 2012

Book Swap


I love book swaps!

I was paired up with Suz over at Suz' Bookshelf Blog for Heather and Katie's Book Swap!

She sent me:

I've never heard of it, which is awesome. Hellooooooo new book!
I used to love Judy Blume books when I was reading the likes of SuperFudge so I'm hoping her older reading is just as great!

Thanks Suz!
Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 20, 2012

I GOT...

A JOB!!!!

I guess I should clarify that I currently have a job, actually I have two, but neither is wonderful nor is it in the field I went to school for!

I'm half way through a masters degree in English Education, and I currently wait tables and watch kids.
Not exactly what I was hoping for.

But like I said, I was offered a job as a paraprofessional for a Vocational high school which will be 3.74 miles away from the new place when we move!!! :) 
I'm so so excited.

Granted, it's not a full out teaching job but since I was unable to do my practicum ( I had a baby and an unemployed husband... 16 weeks of unpaid practicum just didn't fit into my schedule!) I'm happy to be in a school at all!

I'll work 181 days, 7:30-2:16 with holidays, sick pay, etc.
I know that's not much to some people but I've never had that.
And it means I'll have more time with my family, which alone, is the reason I want this.

And, they've already mentioned an upcoming ELA teacher retirement so I'm excited that they are already thinking ahead for me! Sadly, today it's much more who you know than how qualified you are. This is a step in the door, and that's all I asked for.

My largest concern now is getting a wardrobe!
Like I said, I currently work at the restaurant where I wear black pants and company provided shirts.
When I'm with the kids I'm in shorts or jeans and a shirt.
Working in a school means I finally get to buy pretty clothes, wear my pretty shoes and actually think about what I'm wearing more than "Will I care if I get paint on this?"
I'm already searching a few sites and am hoping to snag some deals on a few pieces to at least start the year, and I can always add pieces.
Otherwise, feel free to send me some money or clothes and I'll go for it all at once!

However, I will be rewarding myself with 2 gifts.
I'm very sure I'll be packing my lunch everyday, so I am desperately pining over a real lunch box a la Vera Bradley
How cute!?

And if I'm already at Vera Bradley, I might as well buy myself a great tote for all my school stuff, right!?

I'm loving these three... just have to pick one... I keep going to the pink one... ;)
Theres a Buy one get one sale going on at the Vera Bradley outlet this week/weekend so I may try and finagle my way out of work to get up there! 

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 19, 2012

Lobstah Pahty

Last weekend we went to Chatham for the annual lobster party with the Longs!

Emmalee wasn't sure how she felt about the lobster at first, but warmed up pretty quickly to it!

How stinkin' cute is this onesie!?
Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 18, 2012


We signed the lease on our new place last week and I popped over today to see how progress was going on it!

What progress?

The beautiful thing about this is that the place were moving into is being completely renovated as we wait for our lease here to expire.

New paint in the rooms, new appliances in the kitchen, a new tub/bath surround put in.
In addition, the upstairs closets were sheetrocked, the landing to the basement was also sheetrocked and the basement has been painted white to make it not quite so "basement-looking"..
They're putting in new rugs, and new windows.

When I went today, the sheetrock was up, the windows are done, the kitchen has been repainted and the old appliances are gone!
The bathroom has already been fitted with a new tub and bath surround and is painted! They even restained the wood cabinets!
I cant believe how much work has been done already!

So obviously since I'm looking at almost a clean slate, the decorating wheels are spinning!

I (obviously) turned to Pinterest for some inspiration and found I keep going towards beach cottage! The house has some dark wood trim, but the rest will be done in some great beachy neutrals!

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 17, 2012

Officially A Walker

Emmalee has been walking for a while now, but I just noticed, she doesn't crawl much anymore.
I mean, at all. She is completely walking. All the time.

There is no restraining the girl anymore.

The best part is she is super funny about it.
She doesn't just walk around.
Oh no, she throws her arms up and runs while squealing.
I affectionately refer to it as her "orangutan arms" because that's all I can think of...

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 16, 2012

My Wish List

This is a bit of a shopping list/wish list because everyone knows that when you move you need to buy things to make up for what you lose in your original space.

We are moving in September and although it's a (much) bigger space, we are losing two super important things, kitchen cabinets and closets.
I know, right?

Our current kitchen is a galley kitchen with cabinets down both sides, so even though we'll be in an eat in kitchen, the cabinets only form an L shape so we're losing half that space!

And currently, our closets are to die for. We have a 6 foot, double door, walk through and Emmalee has an 8 foot closet. Where we are going, we will have a 6 foot closet with the normal siding doors but Emmalee will have a very small, 3 foot closet stuck in an eave-space.

Meaning we have to figure out some storage space for the kitchen and her closet.

For the kitchen:

One of these would be perfect.
Both are 71" tall meaning they would absolutely be tall enough for some true storage.
And are both less than $80!

Speaking of the kitchen, we reaaaaaally want to get a square or rectangular table.
I keep going back to this style:

Emma's room should be an easy fix.
Surprisingly, KMart makes a wonderful dresser that is frequently on sale for $40.
We've had one for Emma for over a year already and it's been great, even better condition than the Target brand one that we bought around the same time.

We figure one more should be able make up for the extra stuff hanging in her closet.
We're also assuming we'll need to be one more for me and one more for David.
Otherwise, we'll need to find 3 dressers for our clothes.

I also need a TON of these:
We'll finally have a basement to store things in but since they're all currently in cardboard boxes right now, they'll probably get that yucky basement smell to them so we need to invest in a bunch of these. I'd love the clear ones so I can see easier but you know me, I'll buy whichever is cheapest!

Thankfully those are the only things we really need to get, but in true "me" fashion, there's a ton more I'd love to get!

A new desk, one where the computer can be hidden from Emmalee. She already destroyed one USB plug on it so we need to be able to hide it behind a door. This one from Ikea is only $80!

I've always wanted a bench like this where we can sit and take out shoes off. This one, from Walmart, would match the decor we're going for perfectly!

With a real back yard, you need a fire pit! I've seen a few around $60-$90 but we're hoping to get one on clearance at the end of the summer!

And since we're outdoors,
we'll have a really large sized deck and would love to have a ding set to set outside at!
This one is only $99 at IKEA! LOVE!

Ok, so this is really not necessary but we're going to be on a full acre and god bless Dave, he's agreed to take care of the mowing duties to save even more off our rent.
We absolutely need the regular mower but a ride on would be to die for.

Plus lets throw in some decorative stuff... pictures and frames, a couple mirrors, and a couple more bookcases and we may just be settled!

I mean, does anyone else do this? Or am I completely crazy?

Keeping Up With The Giffords

July 13, 2012

Book Club

Book #29
The Descendants

From Amazon:

Fortunes have changed for the King family, descendants of Hawaiian royalty and one of the state’s largest landowners. Matthew King’s daughters—Scottie, a feisty ten-year-old, and Alex, a seventeen-year-old recovering drug addict—are out of control, and their charismatic, thrill-seeking mother, Joanie, lies in a coma after a boat-racing accident. She will soon be taken off life support. As Matt gathers his wife’s friends and family to say their final goodbyes, a difficult situation is made worse by the sudden discovery that there’s one person who hasn’t been told: the man with whom Joanie had been having an affair. Forced to examine what they owe not only to the living but to the dead, Matt, Scottie, and Alex take to the road to find Joanie’s lover, on a memorable journey that leads to unforeseen humor, growth, and profound revelations.

I enjoyed this book.
It was a quick read, but very raw. Almost as a stream of consciousness, it was refreshing to just read and feel like you were in his head.
Read it, you won't be sorry.
Oh ya, and you can picture Clooney as the main character because he actually is cast as the narrator for the movie role!

Book #30
The Best of Me

From Amazon:

"Everyone wanted to believe that endless love was possible. She'd believed in it once, too, back when she was eighteen."

In the spring of 1984, high school students Amanda Collier and Dawson Cole fell deeply, irrevocably in love. Though they were from opposite sides of the tracks, their love for one another seemed to defy the realities of life in the small town of Oriental, North Carolina. But as the summer of their senior year came to a close, unforeseen events would tear the young couple apart, setting them on radically divergent paths.

Now, twenty-five years later, Amanda and Dawson are summoned back to Oriental for the funeral of Tuck Hostetler, the mentor who once gave shelter to their high school romance. Neither has lived the life they imagined . . . and neither can forget the passionate first love that forever changed their lives. As Amanda and Dawson carry out the instructions Tuck left behind for them, they realize that everything they thought they knew -- about Tuck, about themselves, and about the dreams they held dear -- was not as it seemed. Forced to confront painful memories, the two former lovers will discover undeniable truths about the choices they have made. And in the course of a single, searing weekend, they will ask of the living, and the dead: Can love truly rewrite the past?

Another Nicholas Sparks' book, right!?
I went from reading none to reading 3 in a month.
This one is my favorite so far. It has the boy and girl meet, fall in love, something bad happens and they end up together again like the other Sparks books do, but this one has a bit more and even though its predictable, I liked that it was different.
I wont give it away but if the Notebook isn't your bag, you will probably still enjoy this one.

Book #31
Jeneration X

From Amazon:

In Such a Pretty Fat, Jen Lancaster learned how to come to terms with her body. In My Fair Lazy, she expanded her mind. Now the New York Times bestselling author gives herself—and her generation—a kick in the X, by facing her greatest challenge to date: acting her age.

Jen is finally ready to put away childish things (except her Barbie Styling Head, of course) and embrace the investment-making, mortgage-carrying, life-insurance-having adult she’s become. From getting a mammogram to volunteering at a halfway house, she tackles the grown-up activities she’s resisted for years, and with each rite of passage she completes, she’ll uncover a valuable—and probably humiliating—life lesson that will ease her path to full-fledged, if reluctant, adulthood.

If you don't already love and breathe Jennifer Lancaster, GO PICK UP BITTER IS THE NEW BLACK. Now. Seriously.
If I was to ever write a book, this is what they would be like.
Her combination of sarcasm and footnotes is hysterical and I've actually laughed out loud while reading parts of her memoirs.
And yes, they are memoirs, real true life hilarity.
Please go read them. Now. Please.

Keeping Up With The Giffords

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