It's official! We've had our first snow of the year. No, I don't mean a flake here or there. I mean an "inches" snowfall ... the kind that prompts the kids to throw on snow pants and boots and make a snowman. Every year that goes by, I dislike this winter routine more and more. However, there is something to be said for a fire, cup of hot chocolate and watching the joys on my daughters faces and suddenly it doesn't feel quite so bad!
About 3 months ago I bid farewell to my blackberry and traded it in for the new iPhone 4. It was life changing. I've had iPod's for years, two iPad's since last year and didn't think that life could get any easier. The iPhone convinced me otherwise but it's happened again! I like to think that I can "wait" to get my hands on new little gadgets but seriously, who am I kidding? Two days ago my darling husband inherited my iPhone 4 and I got the new 4S. It's AMAZING! Siri, in two days you've gotten me out of more jams by reminding me what to do and when to do it and I love you madly.
While playing I came across this new app - maybe you've seen it. It turns your photos into something that looks hand drawn with pencil or chalk. I think it's pretty cool ... what do you think?
Just the other day Maggie reminded me (again) that I haven't been updating this site. When I went out to it, I realized that it's been MONTHS! Ugh, I'm so bad at this stuff. So, for those of you that read this, I'm sorry. I officially have lost myself in the day to day routine.
So, it's a new day. Lots has happened since I talked to you last. Maggie turned 8 and started 3rd grade, Emma turned 6 and started kindergarten, Steve is inches away from finishing school up and I'm still plugging along with not a whole lot new to report!
No, there are no photos on this post. Why? Well, I'll tell you. Back in September, Maggie tried to download a game to my laptop and POOF 33 viruses. So, all of my photos from the summer are on a USB drive and the photos I've taken since the computer crash are still on the camera.
Anyway, we're back on track! Come back and visit! I'll have more updates soon.
Hula Girl Outfit", said Maggie Mantel. Every day I'd call home and she'd ask, "Mama did you get me a grass skirt and a pair of coconuts?" I couldn't believe that of all things, this is what she wanted. But, if that's what Maggie wants, that's what she got! (And of course a set for Emma too!) I really debated on if I should post these or not but I couldn't resist. It's not so much "cute" but just pretty funny. You should see them hula in these babies!!!
So, I'm a little behind but hope to pick up some speed!
On Super Bowl Sunday, my wonderful husband handed his "man card" to me ... we had tickets to see Wicked that night and the thought of missing the Packers in the Super Bowl wasn't working for me. However, I had a solution waiting in the wings! Maggie had just received her report card (which BTW was OUTSTANDING....YAY MAGS!) and kept seeing the commercials. Since she knew a few songs from an early episode of Glee, she really wanted to go. Know where I'm going with this??? Yup! Steve and Maggie had their first dinner-and-a-broadway-show date night. Mags was SO excited! Steve was thrilled to take his little girl on a date and Emma and I were delighted to head across the street for a Super Bowl party with our friends! I'm the luckiest girl in the world - I have an incredible husband who is an amazing father, 2 great daughters and the best friends ever. Life is good!
I can't believe it's been a whole month since my last post. It's been a busy month! Last night I returned from my latest trip - Maui and then Las Vegas.
I had never been to Maui and honestly, thought it was overrated ..... until I arrived. It is truly a magical place - the beauty is indescribable. I took tons of photos that don't do the island justice. Hawaii has always been on my "list" but I had always imagined I'd visit for my first time with my husband. Although that was not the case this time, it was still an unforgettable experience that I'm so grateful for.
Goodbye Maui ... Hello Las Vegas (for the 3rd time in a year). Maybe its that I'm getting older, maybe I've just been there too many times but Vegas just doesn't do it for me anymore. There are too many people, too much smoke, too much yuck. Although it will always be a bit near and dear to me as the place that I married my best friend, I really don't need to go back for a few years now ... unless duty calls, of course.
No pictures from Vegas but here are a few from Paradise!
It feels like I was just here! (Maybe because I was about 6 weeks ago.) After spending a few stressful hours in Mexico City yesterday I landed here in Cabo. The weather here is SO different that Riviera Maya - it's about 76-80 with no humidity which is a nice break. The whales have come down from California to Cabo and are having babies and you can see the whales fom my balcony. Today we have a large group coming in that I'm told is quite a rowdy bunch so we'll see what this week brings!
I know I'm not Oprah ... although I'd like to have her bank account! As I'm sitting here working this morning I started thinking about the things that I love about Mexico. Of course, I really do miss my family more than I could ever describe BUT since I'm here, I better find the positives. Right? So, here goes!
I love that I wake up to sunshine and palm trees.
I love that it's not even 8:00 a.m. and I'm sweating my you-know-what off and I haven't run!
I love that I can go to bed at night with my patio door open and listen to the waves hit the beach.
I love that when I ask someone to do something for me the response is always "It's my pleasure" without hesitation.
I love that I can eat the freshest of my favorite fruit every day.
I love knowing that I will go home with a tan!
And finally .... I love that everytime I come here I shed a few pounds even though I'm eating like a horse. Now granted, some may call it Montazuma's Revenge but I call it STRESS! (Day 3 here and 4 lbs. down though from when I arrived so I'm really not complaining!)
So there you go, Miss Maggie. There's Mommy's list of favorites so when you talk to your class about why Mommy likes Mexico you have something to go on.
Riviera Maya ... cold and pouring rain? What a bummer! Don't these people know that I can't go to Cabo on Thursday without a tan? :) I know, I know, I can't complain. It's cold and snowy at home but baby it's cold outside here!
It's starting out to be a lovely day here today - already 75 and a little overcast but that will pass soon. Today is day 2 of the nearly 2 week trip away and I'm already counting the minutes until I walk in my back door. I'm staying at a resort called Grand Velas Riviera Maya. If it weren't for work, I'd never be here - the rates range from $800-$1,200 per night normally which really isn't in our current vacation budget! :) My room is nice - modern, big and I even have my own pool on my patio which you can sort of see on one of the photos. Anyway, this is where I call "home" until Thursday. The weather's great, room is beautiful, food is good, I'm already eaten up by mosquitos but as I always say ....... there's no place like home. (Even if that means snow and cold.)
I've been a lot of places - cities, resort towns, countries, parks, theatres, arenas, you name it. But one place that's always been on my bucket list has been Vancouver and I hadn't had an opportunity to visit ... until last week. It was everything and more that I had imagined. Beautiful, hip and cosmopolitan city that reminds me a lot of Seattle and just 10 minutes outside of the city you'd swear that you were in Alaska. In one day I experienced 50 degrees and rain downtown Vancouver (it doesn't snow in the city because it's too close to sea level) and up on top of Rouse Mountain in 0 degrees and blustery snow. Did I mention that Vancouver is not only home to Ryan Reynolds and Corey Monteith from Glee (and YES, I was on the look out THE ENTIRE TIME I WAS THERE) but it's also the most used city by Hollywood to film movies in because they can turn it in to just about any location needed. While I was there they were filming Mission Impossible 4 right outside my hotel room and Tom Cruise and his entourage were out and about. No, I didn't see Ryan or Corey but, heck - I'll be back in April! :) Enjoy!
To see what it's like to update my blog on the iPad. I'm trying to get a well rounded look at how it all works before I take it on my trip this week. So far so good!
Speaking of trips, next stop: Vancouver, British Columbia. I've never been there and it's ale ays been a stop on my bucket list so we'll see! I have huge expectations which is usually a set up for disappointment but I'm hoping for the best! I'll be back soon with an update but for now ..... Hugs and kisses, get to bed. Momma loves you!
So, since this is the first post of the year, I decided to start the year off right ... according to us Mantel's, that is. Today it is a balmy 9 degrees here in northeastern Wisconsin, and I'm not talking about the windchill that is coming from the 40 mph winds. Our FAVORITE time of the year is summer and we are all dreaming of the days at the pool, soaking up the rays and splish splashing around! Here are some of our favorite's from 2010 and here's to hoping that 2011 is as good, if not better than last!