Friday, October 28, 2011

Travel Apps - Thailand

Is this not the busiest time of year?!
Goodness gracious.
If it isn't a Fall's an oppurtunity for my girls to wear their costumes.
And you know I'm going to show those off as much as I can!

And did I mention that Hubby and I are going to Thailand on Saturday?!
As in...tomorrow!
We're kinda busy.

I was worried that our trip might get cancelled.
There is flooding in Bangkok right now with more on its way.
The leaders of the conference we're helping to run have been in prayer about it...a lot.
As of this moment...we're still going.
The area our hotel is in and the airport are still bone dry.
Hoping it stays that way for the next couple weeks!

So you might be seeing some blog posts from Thailand next week!
ooo getting all International on ya!

With that being said.
I wanted to share a travel app tip.
My hubby tracked down one really cool one that I'm sure we'll use in Thailand.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand developed this one.
Makes me think that a lot of other countries and cities may have similar apps.
Make sure to research that before your next trip.
There might be a really useful app just waiting for you!

Speak Thai

It translates over 2500 words and speaks in Thai for you.
Now when I need to go potty...
I just find "Where are the restrooms?"
and the app will ask for me.
phew...that's a relief (horrible pun intended) :-)

I'm off to finish packing and prepare myself to leave my babies for 2 whole weeks.
I mean...I'm not one of those moms that misses their kids when they're sleeping
or anything crazy like that ;-)
I'll be ok.
But I'm pretty sure I will miss them while I'm half way around the world.
{deep breath}

I mean...seriously?!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Embrace the Camera - Turkey Pumpkin

Best and easiest pumpkin decorating EVER!!

At a garage sale a couple weeks ago...
I opened a box to find some painted wooden turkey parts.
A head and five feathers.
I instantly knew what it was for and confirmed with the lady selling it.
I think I got it for around $1
(it was bundled with other it's hard to say exactly)
Bottom was CHEAP!

We decorated our pumpkin in like 2 minutes :-)
With no mess...I might add!

We'll probably carve one next year...
but for this super busy month...
it made my life so much easier!

We just shoved a couple things in the pumpkin...

my concentration face lol

And...we're done.

Anna was not I got a pic with my Ellie.

I look tired and my hairs a mess...captures me pretty well lol

***Embracing the Camera with Emily***

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My Prima Ballerinas

Last weekend we took our girls to Sea World
(with free tickets woohoo!)
to enjoy Halloween Spooktacular!
They got to trick or treat and show off their costumes and see some animals.

Here's a few highlight pics.
If you want to see can view my FB album here.

I made their ballerina fascinators :-)
I love how they turned out!

Our skinny little preschool ballerina...

And Chris Farley in a ballerina costume :-)

It's ok Ellie - you'll be that skinny prima ballerina in about a year ;-)

Our chubby ballerina just can't put down the candy lol

Anna was posing for all the pictures all by herself...she was in character all day!

We had a very fun day!
Looking forward to the girls wearing their costumes 3 or 4 more times!
Love getting more use out of them!
Let's put a couple more !!! of these in here!!!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Giddy Up...It's Friday!

Thank you nice lady for giving Anna this horsey for free at a garage sale!
And when I saw they had a mini one too!
I was like shut up!
Yes...I must MUST pay .25 so my girls can have matching horseys!

Best 25 cents I've ever spent :-)

Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Embrace the Camera - Photobooth Fun

Ellie and I spent some time alone last night.
Daddy took Anna with him to worship band practice at church.
He plays bass.
Ya...he's pretty cool :-)

So...back to my cute baby Ellie...

We had a little fun with my phone :-)

She is at a ridiculously cute age!

I couldn't figure out how to make my pictures look like a photo strip
then I found this website Big Huge Labs
I know nothing about it except I used it to make the cute photo strip above
but I thought someone else out there might want to know where to make one too
So there you go!
Photobooth strip away!
hmm...that can be taken out of context lol

Embracing the Camera...Join us!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Silhouette Necklace

About a month ago I posted about some craft projects I was "itching" to do.

I made the necklace!
And I bought the paint for the that almost counts ;-)

The playgroup I'm a part of tries to have a Mom's Night Out once a month.
Last month we did a craft night and all made silhouette necklaces using this tutorial.

my finished product

WARNING: cutting out the tiny silhouettes is crazy hard...BUT doable.
I made the Ellie one and then gave up.
I thought "I'll get hubby to cut out Anna for me."
Well, he gave it a try.
Handed me his finished product and said "I don't know if this looks like Anna or not."
I laughed and said "It looks like a muppet."
So I got er dun.

Here's my Ellie on the left and Anna on the right.
I think it actually looks like them...right?

And here it is making its debut at the Fall Festival at our work.  We were on a hay ride :-)

Anna's is flipped over...sad.  But it looks cute nonetheless!

Wish I had taken a pic of everyone else's necklaces at our Mom's Night Out!
I was too busy trying to stop myself from cursing at the tiny scissors ;-)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Did you know that the hubby and I are going to Thailand in less than 2 weeks?!
I know...crazy...right?!

The last time I traveled internationally
(except the Caribbean and Mexico and Canada...but those don't really count)
I was 13 and a freshman in high school.
That was quite a LONG time ago.

13 year old Cheryl in Spain with big bangs and glasses to match

You might be wondering...where exactly is Thailand?!
That's the question I asked myself when I heard we'd be going there lol
So...I googled it.
and's a 26 hour travel day to get there
26 hours of planes and airports
[deep breath]
so if you have any great book suggestions...I'm wide open!

We will be going to Bangkok, which is the capital.  Map from here.

My hubby and I will be helping run a conference there.
People will be coming from all over the world to talk about Internet Ministry.
More info on that here.

There was no way we were traveling
literally half way around the world
without checking out the country a little.
So we're staying a few days after the conference ends to experience Bangkok.

[in case you were wondering...
my fam is coming to Orlando to watch the kids for us...
26 hours on planes with a 3 year old and 18 month old...
and trying to navigate a foreign country with little ones...
NO THANK YOU ;-) least not this time]

Here's a little taste of what I hope we get to see.
It seems like such a neat mix of old and new.

Source: via Cheryl on Pinterest

Source: via Cheryl on Pinterest

Have you ever been to Bangkok?  If so, have any tips for us??

Friday, October 14, 2011

Let's Talk

If you are my Facebook friend, then you know...
I enjoy FB ;-)
IMO - it's such a great way to keep in touch with people,
to get to know people better,
to keep up with people's lives who live far away,
to continue to develop existing relationships,
and to help foster new ones.
Not to mention sharing pictures and commenting on your friend's cute kids' pictures :-)

Blogging is different.
There isn't as much interaction.
You might leave me a comment...which I LOVE...
but I don't know how to turn that into a conversation :-(
I try to comment back...but you probably don't see that.
Unless...I'm missing something.
Am I missing something?

I want to interact with you all!!!
I am new to this blogging thing...
so it is highly likely that I am missing something.

So how do we do this?
How can we interact more?
Suggestions please :-)

[Pretend like there is some amazingly funny or witty picture right here
that exactly captures the message in this blog post]

[and then enjoy this picture of my cute kid]

"you KNOW you want to be my friend"

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Embrace the Camera - Love my Girls

Here's the back story to these cute pictures.

After naptime, Ellie was fussy and tired.
Why the child won't just sleep longer is beyond me!
So she was laying on my chest while I layed on the couch.
I thought...Embrace the Camera Picture!!!
So I asked Anna to go get my phone and take our picture on the couch.
Yes, my 3 year old totally knows how to use my iPhone.
So she took some pics and as I reviewed them I decided my arm looked majorly huge.
Not going to work what with posting it on the World Wide Web.
I like keeping it real and all...but even I draw the line somewhere.
So I adjusted my as to make my arm look skinnier.
AKA fake a skinny arm
Then Anna, all on her own, decided to do one of those
I'll hold the camera out in front of us and try to get everyone in the shot type of pictures.
She's fun.
And here's what came out.
I love my girls :-)

beautiful Anna

cute grumpy Ellie

Would you like to Embrace the Camera with us??

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Impromptu Groupon Dates!

I am thankful for:

1. Impromptu dates with the Hubby 

2. Friends that will watch our kiddos at a moments notice

3. Trying out new restaurants

4. Not letting a Groupon expire, because my smart hubby realized on the last day we could use it!

this picture was actually taken in CO this summer, because the thought didn't even cross my mind to take a picture on our impromptu date last night :-)

I've been kind of MIA this week!
The stomach bug that hit my family this past weekend has really thrown me for a loop.
I'm out of my blogging groove.
Hoping to get my groove back soon :-)
Can you picture me grooving right now?
I am.
I'm a pretty sweet groover.
Oh ya.

Monday, October 10, 2011

My Big Little Girl

I learned something about my daughter this weekend...she's pretty much amazing!

My family got a stomach bug this weekend.
First, Ellie got it on Thursday.
Her first "incident" in her carseat.
Daddy had to be called for backup...caus this Momma was about to have an incident herself.
Oh my...I don't wish that on anyone!

Then it was poor Anna's turn.
I had been on a women's retreat with my church and had been home seriously 5 minutes.
I went to check on Anna, because she was still awake yelling for us.
And...she threw up on me.
That was a first.
Welcome Home Mommy!

And she proceeded to be sick about 8 more times that night.
But let me tell you a little about her character.
This 3 1/2 year old child NEVER cried about it.
She NEVER even complained about it.
And she thanked us every time we brought back her trash can after cleaning it out for her.
I mean seriously...who are you??

I'm going to be honest here.
When I am that sick...I cry...a lot.
I cry out of pity for myself.
I complain about it.
I lament over the fact that I'm going through something so horrible.

She is such a strong person.
I am so proud of her.
I have even more reason to love my big little girl.
I cannot wait to see her grow up.
She's going to be a pretty amazing woman some day.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Leaving a Legacy

If your death preempted live prime time're a pretty big deal.

I think we would all agree that Steve Jobs has left quite a legacy here on earth.  He will forever be known as a creative genius, innovative genius, business genius, visionary genius, and just all around smart guy.

His death has reminded me of my desire of leaving a legacy too.

Before I had kids...before I was even married...I imagined my kids running around the house singing "Jesus loves me this I know..."  It was kind of symbolic of how I wanted to raise my children to know Jesus.  To know how much he loves them.  To know the price he paid for them.  To know him as their friend and Savior.

But I don't just want my kids to have a relationship with Jesus.  I want their kids to know him...and their kid's kids to know him...and their kid's kid's kids to know him.

I want them to remember their Great Great Great Grandma Cheryl - the one who loved Jesus.  I want to be up in heaven and be surrounded by the family Steve and I created on earth.

That's the legacy I want to leave.

Now if only I can keep that perspective all the hours of the day.  You know...the hours where your child is disobeying you for the umpteenth time, or peeing their pants, or hitting their sibling, or just plain on your last nerve.  That's when I am most thankful for God's grace.  Because the Lord knows I do not always display the most "Jesus Loves You" attitude during those hours.

I pray the Lord brings my children to himself despite my bad attitude hours.  And he is more than able.

What kind of legacy are you leaving?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Please by Ellie

Ellie is finally starting to say some words!
She will be 18 months in a couple weeks.

Her current word list:

I don't ever want to forget this stage.  So glad I caught it on video :-)

Joining Embrace the Camera via YouTube this week...

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Do I Really Need Another Fall Wreath?

I'm really in a crafting mood lately.  Like for real.

There is a blog I follow called Ucreate.  They post craft tutorials every day!
Some involve sewing, which I don't do, but a lot don't.  It's kind of like Pinterest, I guess.

Every month they post a project and invite people to make it and send in their pictures.
Then they post the pictures at the end of the month on their blog.

Here's this month's project:

photo and tutorial here

I'm so tempted to join in this month!
Even though I just made this wreath a couple weeks ago...

There's room in my house for another wreath...right??
You can never have too many fall wreaths...right??

hmm...someone talk me into it ;-)

P.S. I updated the Fall Events post with a couple new events.  Including a really fun little craft show this weekend.  Check it out!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Fall Family Events in Central Florida

This is definitely my favorite time of year in Orlando.  The temps have finally fallen under 90! and will keep getting milder and milder and more fabulous as the days pass.  We'll be enjoying 70 when most of the rest of the US is enjoying temps that are slightly chillier.

Last year I put together a list of some of the fun family events in Central Florida.  A couple people have asked for it here it is!  Please let me know if you hear of something that's not on my list.  I try to be "in-the-know" and love sharing that info along to you all.  If you aren't in Central Florida...then what kind of fun Fall Events do they have in your area?  You should do some research and enjoy this fun time of year!

(I'll have to do another one of these mid-November to highlight Christmas events - someone remind me if I don't do it!)

Now until Dec 11th
my babies at the Corn Maze last year

Friday Oct 7th
  • Celebration Oktoberfest and Falling Leaves - We usually go to this event every year.  The kids love watching the "leaves" fall from the sky and we love walking around and listening to the music.  And the church that we usually park by has a really great pumpkin patch! 
trying to catch the "leaves" last year

Saturday Oct 8th

Sunday Oct 9th

Friday Oct 14th

riding the hay ride at the Avalon Park Oktoberfest 2 years ago with our friends Liz and Autumn...look how little those babies were!

Saturday Oct 15th

Saturday Oct 22nd
  • Mount Dora Craft Fair - I LOVE going to this every year!  There are a billion people, but SO MANY booths of fun crafts and food. 
Mommy and Anna at the Mount Dora Craft Fair 2 years ago...she's so little!

Sunday Oct 23rd

Friday Oct 28th
  • Center Pointe Church Trunk or Treat - 5:30-8:30pm - my daughter goes to preschool at this church and I've seen signs that they are having a trunk or treat and festival this night.  I'll link up to more information once they post it on their website.
  • Blanchard Park YMCA Trunk or Treat -

Sunday Oct 30th
  • CrossPointe Church Fall Festival - Trunk or Treat and Food Truck Bazaar - My church is again having a Trunk or Treat and this will be the first of a monthly Food Truck Bazaar.  How cool is that?!  We're totally in to food trucks :-)

our little family at CrossPointe's Trunk or Treat last year

Monday, October 3, 2011

Chalkboard Jar Thank You Gift

Before our road trip to CO, I wanted to make a few thank you gifts for people who were hosting us on our trip out there.

I was in a chocolate making phase and so I decided on this idea.

It's so's ridiculous!

Here's what you'll need:
Jars - I got them at Hobby Lobby 50%...score!
Black Chalkboard Paint - Hobby Lobby
Painters Tape - already had some
Chalk - Hobby Lobby
Sweet Treats - made them myself

I already had a lot of the supplies, so I think it just cost me a couple dollars per jar.
I love high impact, low cost, low work projects! ;-)

These pics are from my phone...sorry for the low quality...sad.

I just taped off an area on the jar and followed the directions on the chalkboard paint and painted away!


I made some yummy treats and stuck them in there!
You could easily fill it with just about anything...cookies, toys, nuts, fruit...


Of course I didn't get any pictures after I wrote "Thank You!" on the chalkboard area :-(
But I think you get the idea!