Friday, March 21, 2014

High Five for Friday!

It is finally Friday and I couldn't be happier! In celebration of making it through the week, I am linking up with Lauren Elizabeth to share with you five of my favorite things from this week!

1. The Bus Stop Ducks are back! Yeah! I love these ducks and I look for them every spring. Once again, Mr. Duck is trying to encourage Mrs. Duck to get a move on, but she isn't having it. I can't blame her. I don't like being awake this early either!

2. Joel and I were able to hit the slopes on Wednesday night for some night skiing. I love that we live so close to the mountains that we can just zip on up there after work and get in four hours of skiing on a work night! I am getting better at skiing each time we go and I just love it.
3. Today is Joel's last day at his current job before he starts his new job on Monday. It is going to be a really nice change for us and I am so proud of my hubby!
4. Tonight I am heading over to my sister and her boyfriend's apartment for a much needed game night. It has been way too long since we have hung out and I am really looking forward to a fun and relaxing evening.
Having two out of my three sisters live nearby is wonderful. Now we just have to get the third sister to move down here too!
5. I am leaving work a bit early this afternoon to take my new car back to the dealership so they can install all the extras we ordered that the factory didn't install; roof rack cross bars, door guards, floor mats, etc. I am so excited to finally get this car ready for all the adventures we have planned!
Well, that about wraps up my week. I hope everyone else has had a good week. Now bring on the weekend!!
Check out the link up to see what everyone else has been up to!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Live & Learn Thursday :: Keep Your Bling Blingn'

You all know what time it is! Time for another Live & Learn Thursday link up! This week I will be sharing I keep my bling nice and sparkly.

Life As Always

I love my wedding rings. Clearly. But they get dirty. I am always putting on lotion, I work out with them on, I pull weeds in the yard with them on, I do everything with my rings on. I even went through a little scare with my rings. A while ago I started to develop a terrible rash on my ring finger that go so painful and swollen I couldn't wear my rings. Joel was really upset about it. He made sure my rings were platinum, because I have a slight skin allergy to nickel in jewelry. He wanted to be sure my rings would never cause me grief. Turns out, my rings just needed to be cleaned. Don't get the wrong idea. They were clean by sight, but deep in those tiny nooks and crannies, stuff was getting trapped and it needed to be cleaned out.

I have heard a lot of conflicting information about the best way to clean your jewelry. I have heard that the cleaning solution used by jewelry stores, you know the liquid they soak your rings in for about ten minutes or so, well, I heard that can actually damage your rings over time. Something about it stripping off a tiny layer of your ring each time... I have also heard it is just fine and doesn't do anything. But the idea of having to take my ring into a store to be cleaned by strangers a couple times a week, sounded awful. So I did some research, tried out a few things, and eventually found the perfect solution for me.

So today, I share with you...

How to Clean Your Rings
The Quick and Easy Way to Keep Your Bling Blingn'
Step 1 :: Place your rings in a small dish. Be sure to be gentle putting your rings into the dish, don't want to cause any damage. I like to use my little pinch bowls, like these.

Step 2 :: Add two pumps of good old dish soap.

Step 3 :: Fill the bowl with hot water. I like to use my K-Cup brewer because it is fast and the water is nice and hot.

Step 4 :: Swirl the bowl a bit to mix the soap and water. Be gentle!

Step 5 :: Leave the rings to soak until the water cools to room temperature.

Step 6 :: Rinse the rings very carefully and set them to dry on a paper towel. If you are in a hurry you can dry the rings with the paper towel or another no-lint towel.

Step 7 :: Once the rings are dry, put that bling back on your finger and watch it sparkle!  

I usually clean my rings about twice week. Mostly because I love that freshly cleaned sparkle! I start the process when I cooking dinner or while doing the dishes after dinner. I leave my rings out to dry in a safe place over night.
I haven't tried this on any other piece of jewelry but I wonder if it would work just as well? Hmmm...
Be sure to stop by the link up and see what other lessons are being shared today!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I Can't Wait for Summer...

The Daily Tay

If it weren't for ski season still being in full swing around here I would be desperate for summer to arrive. Why can't I have both??

Today I am linking up with The Daily Tay and Helene in Between to share with you my list of why I can't wait for summer.

I can't wait for summer because one word: Floaties.
I can't wait for summer because it means more daylight.
Enough with the darkness.
I can't wait for summer because it means my skin becomes less see through.

I can't wait for summer because it means hiking the millions trails around my house.
I can't wait for summer because I can wear flip flops all the time.

I can't wait for summer because we can go on camping trips.

I can't wait for summer because it brings backyard BBQ's and bonfires.

I can't wait for summer because I heart sunglasses.
I can't wait for summer because I will finally be finished with my thirty-by-thirty list.

I can't wait for summer because it means float trips on the river.
I can't wait for summer because it means baseball games again.

 I can't wait for summer because Farmers Markets will be open again.

I can't wait for summer because it means going back to Lake Roosevelt.
I will stop there. It is just making me too depressed. Oh summer. Why aren't you here already. I am ready. Why aren't you?

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Sh*T Men Say

So, last night Joel and I decided we would take advantage of the extra light in the evening after work, thanks daylight savings, and go for a quick run outside.

When we go for runs, we drive our car down to the park and ride which is just across the street from a lovely little trail the locals like to call the Burke-Gilman Trail. It is a great spot to run because it has lots of shade, great views of the lake, and very few street intersections. We love living so close to the trail.

Last night as we started out on our jog, we approached the street where when driving we would turn left to go home. Joel turns to me and says...

Oh wow! Did you know there is a trophy shop right there?
Look at that.
It is called Mr. T's Trophy's.
Well, that is good to know.

I totally did the slow head turn with one eyebrow raised up, which is a bit trickey when you are jogging. Did you seriously not notice the two story, blue building with the giant sign that is on the corner of the street we turn down nearly every day? In four years, you never noticed it. I have imaginged Mr. T himself walking into this store and demanding a free trophy for Best Gold Chain or Best Haircut a millions times. That is how I entertain myself while waiting for the green left turn arrow at the traffic light. Seriously. Joel responded to my look with...

I'm guessing you have noticed?
Yes, dear. Yes, I have noticed. And I still love you.

Voyage of the Mee Mee
Check out the link up to see what other crazy Sh*t men are saying!

Monday, March 10, 2014

What a Wonderful Weekend

I had a very wonderful weekend. It started with a gathering at Mark and Andi's house to celebrate the start of their wedding weekend. Justin was in town and the party was started.

Saturday was busy with putting the finishing touches on the ceremony script, picking up the cupcakes from Anna, and getting a pedicure and manicure with the bridal party. Amy stayed the night with me, since Joel was off celebrating Austin's birthday that night. We stayed up way too late watching movies and drinking wine.

Finally, it was Sunday. The day of the wedding. I was so excited that I quickly forgot I had only gotten four or five hours of sleep. It was truly an honor to officiate the wedding of two good friends, two people who found their happily ever after.

The officiant, the best man, the groom, the bride and the maid of honor.
It's official!
First Dance
Joel knew which flavor he wanted, and so did Chris!

Even though this is a terrible photo of me and is clearly evidence of why I have several chins - those cupcakes were worth every single bite! My bestie Anna makes the best cupcakes ever. I had one of each flavor!

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Bailey!
Joel and I are so happy for you both!
P.S. Can you believe that Joel and I didn't get a single photo of the two of us. I couldn't believe it. I officiated the wedding and he was a groomsmen. And we didn't get a single picture of us all dolled up. Epic Fail. 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Live & Learn Thursday :: How to Become a Minister

You all know what time it is! Time for another Live & Learn Thursday link up! This week I will be sharing how I became a minister.
Life As Always

I bet you didn't know that I am an ordained minister. But it is true. It isn't something I had ever planned to become, in fact I am not that religious or spiritual. But when my friends, Mark and Amy, asked if I would officiate their wedding, I was delighted. I took my role very seriously and wrote a beautiful ceremony that had Amy in tears before her wedding day. Writing the ceremony and preparing to speak at such an important event was the hard part, the easy part was becoming a minister.

Thanks to the Internet, becoming an ordained minister is easy. Let me break it down for you.

Step One :: Check out the laws in your state. Each state has different requirements for a wedding ceremony to be legal. Be sure to check these laws first.

Step Two :: Find a church that will ordain you online.  I went with Universal Life Church. I went with this organization, because it was low cost (free to be ordained, $15 to ship you the certificate) and Conan O'Brien is ordained through this church. A bunch of other famous people are also ordained in this church, like Rob Dyrdek, Fran Drescher, Bobby Flay, Goldie Hawn, Hugh Hefner, Ringo Starr, and Hunter Thompson, so why not add my name to the list.

Step Three :: Fill out the form. This part is pretty easy unless you don't know your own name, where you live, or if you want to join the monthly newsletter list. Seriously. It is that easy.

Step Four :: Celebrate. You are an official minister. At least enough to officiate weddings and help your friends get hitched. You will get a fancy certificate in the mail, which you can proudly show off to anyone who will look. You can start requiring people to call you, The Mighty Reverend Jess.

I guess I did such a good job at Mark and Amy's wedding, that Mark and Andi have asked me to officiate their wedding this Sunday. I am really excited to play such an important role in one of the biggest decisions Mark and Andi will make.

Be sure to stop by the link up and see what other lessons are being shared today!