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Bye-bye eBay- Hello Amazon! August 19, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Amazon, eBay, Feelings, life, random, shopping, thoughts.
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2 comments

Through a stroke of good luck, I won a $50 gift card to Amazon. At first I had trouble figuring out what to buy because I wanted to buy this and I wanted to buy that but luckily, I thought of a movie that my family loves and decided to buy it. It was Will Vinton’s Claymation Christmas Celebration. When I first saw it when I was a tot, I absolutely loved it and didn’t get it on VHS until a few years ago but that tape has since been lost and we’ve been without our Claymation Christmas!

Claymation Christmas Part 1

So thanks to this gift card, I was able to buy it. The thing on Amazon said it should be here by September 8th, but I was expecting it to ARRIVE ON September 8th. I purchased it on the 16th and it arrived today! Talk about some fast shipping! That’s even better than eBay and I used the standard shipping! I love Amazon a lot better than eBay because while Amazon has its fair share of crooks, you can search for something better and eventually find it. Not to mention that 85% of companies/users fulfill their requirements as to eBay, where you have to sometimes wonder if they’ll actually send the darned thing. With Amazon’s universal wishlist, I am able to add things to my Amazon wishlists from different websites instead of bookmarking each page. With eBay, you have to “watch” the item and grow in disappointment as you watch the bids get higher and knowing you can’t bid on it. With Amazon, you just add it to a wishlist, wait until you can buy it, and away your order goes! I have a couple of more things coming (even 1/2 of Mom’s Christmas gifts). I should get another tomorrow (Mom’s gift)- yippie!

I know it’s 5 months early, but I know what I’ll be watching later!

Kitten Cuteness August 17, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Animals, cats, family, fun, funny, kittens, life, random.
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4 comments

I have to say that the kittens (temporarily named Brother and Sister) are thriving and really quick, too!

Brother is what people call a “Mama’s Boy”. He wants to be near Smokie a lot and will whine if Sister or Smokie get out of his line of vision. But he still likes to walk around and play with either Mommy or Sister. Sister, on the other hand, is definitely the more adventurer of the two. She doesn’t give it a second thought about walking around all over the bed or biting Brother. Both of their baby teeth are starting to come in and Brother is actually drinking water- sometimes. He’ll drink a drop and go for nursing. But of course, they’re still in the “need Mommy’s milk” stage. They are walking around for as well as they can. They are still a little wobbly and can’t quite run yet but they’re a bundle of energy.

If they are anything like Smokie was when she was a kitten, they will be Tarzans and Janes. When Smokie was a kitten, she had no problem scaling the curtains and just hanging there. I’ve opted to call one “Monkey” because I thought it was just weird and cute- which is totally me. But Manders said we would have to talk about names. We will most likely end up going with mythology names like we went for with Zeus.

I bet ya’ll want to see how big they’ve gotten, right?

Brother and Sister sleeping

Brother and Sister sleeping

Sister

Sister

Brother and Sister playing

Brother and Sister playing

Help Our Cause! August 13, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in best buy, Boise, Charities, Contests, Giveaways, life, Organization, sweepstakes, Toys For Toys, Uncategorized.
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4 comments

I usually don’t solicit votes or anything because that just isn’t me. But because of my cause that I’m helping, Toys for Tots, I couldn’t help but let you know that you can help Toys for Tots just by voting.

Boise® X-9® is having a Holiday Carton Promo. Boise will be producing a limited quantity of special edition Boise X-9 paper cartons during the holiday season and they want you to choose your favorite design. But that’s not all- for every vote received, they will be donating $1 to Toys for Tots. Since Manders and I are advocates for the Toys for Tots organization, I know I will be voting every day. But wait, that’s not all!

You can also enter to win 1 or 2 WEEKLY $50 gift cards to Best Buy. So if the Toys for Tots votes weren’t enough incentive for you, I know the gift cards are!

So help us help our cause and enter for the chance to win a gift card to Best Buy!

Summer Memories August 10, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Feelings, life, memories, music, summer, thoughts.
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2 comments

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I’m gonna take you back to about 2003 or 2005. It was July 4th and we were out at the Waco 4th of July event. Besides the fireworks as the main event, country singer/songwriter Anthony Smith was performing. He has written hits for many country artists including George Straight and Trisha Yearwood.

Anyways, I was first in line after his performance at his bus to meet him. I watched the fireworks from there and not even 5 minutes after the fireworks ended, Anthony and his band members walked out of the bus. One member said “I can’t believe we missed them!”. Anthony walks up to me and asks my name. I told him my name and handed him a picture to sign. I ask him if I could take a picture with him (since I had already taken pictures with Blake Shelton, Cory Morrow, and Pat Green years before). He was so nice, he gave me another hug after the picture!

The next day, Monday, I received a check from Country Music Weekly for a survey I sent in. I cashed it and ended up buying his CD. I thought it was really weird that I received the check the day after I met him! Unfortunately, the picture of him and I are in a photo album that’s stashed somewhere so I can’t show you.

That was one of the coolest Summers I remember! Do you have a cool favorite Summer memory?

BTS: Back To Studying August 10, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in back to school, College, Feelings, learning, life, Mathematics, random, thoughts.
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4 comments

Study Skills

Since everyone else got a Summer break from school, I thought I would get a Summer break from studying. And honestly, who can study when the temperature outside can easily reach 100* by Noon and the inside of the bedroom feels like a sauna? Not me!

I understand that it will take me longer to return where I was as I have to go back to a few things and re-study Algebra because I pretty much forgot some of the stuff I learned this past Spring. I know there are some things I will never learn in Algebra. I hate Math and Algebra. I will never use it in my career, so why do I have to learn it? But because it is required for me to know it in order to go college, I will learn it. I won’t like it but I’ll learn it.

I’m actually excited to start studying again. I an only read so much, watch TV so much, and sleep so much before it just becomes boring. Well, sleeping is NEVER boring. In fact, I’d love to sleep in if I could. But now, I am waking up anywhere between 7:30 and 8:30. I’m not happy about it, but my body just won’t let me sleep late. Plus, I felt a sense of accomplishment when I studied. Like I was working on something great. Maybe I was actually learning and didn’t know it.

But as I cracked open the book last night when I started to study again, I found 5 different sections folded down (kind of as my bookmark) and almost started writing in each section because I had forgotten where I was. Eventually I found my notes and the right section. I didn’t do much because it was late at night (almost 10 PM) and I was kinda tired. Am I happy to be studying again? Yes and no. Yes because I might finally be able to take the diagnostic test they have in book without freaking out and no because I suck at Algebra and Geometry. I understand that it’s part of college education, but in my career, I HIGHLY doubt that I’ll be using equations and area in my career.

Organized Chaos August 5, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Animals, cats, dogs, family, Feelings, kittens, life, thoughts.
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3 comments

Have you ever felt like your slowly losing your sanity? Like everyone is out to destroy your day? Well, it’s somewhat like that for me. Except destroying my day, the pets are out to drive me crazy.

Because it’s been too hot to train him, Zeus has had super energy and no where for it to go. So he barks at us and barks at the kitties. When we try to put the muzzle on him, he goes berserk. So whenever I feel like I’m not going to rip my heart out, I start training him again today. Last night, I finally taught him patience for food. I’ll work on it again today so he does it without being asked. He can still shake hands, but of course, he still needs reminding. Right now, he’s asleep, which I am so thankful for that. Maybe tonight, when it finally gets below 100*, we can take him outside and let him run all of his energy out. Yea, I like that idea- a lot.

Smokie gave birth to a small white kitten around 6:30 AM on July 30th, while we were waiting for some severe storms to pass through. She usually needs help but as I was watching TV, I peered into her nesting box to see if she needed help. Much to my surprise, she didn’t need help and I saw this adorable kitten! I picked it up to see how healthy it was- does it have a set of pipes! It started squealing and squiggling … It’s pretty damn healthy. We thought she was going to only have 1 kitten. Then on Friday morning, as I walked into the bedroom after a shower, I saw a strange kitten. She had another one! It was white, just like the first, but a little darker. It is healthy and just as loud as the other one. Last night, I saw a kitten pant. I reached my hand into the box and realized that it was blazing hot. So I took their bed and put it under the air conditioner. I realized that even Smokie got to hot in the box and that’s why she didn’t stay in there long. She slept with her babies all night. When I went into the bedroom this morning for the iPod, I noticed she moved a kitten but found her and a baby as Smokie peeked around the corner of a box. I grabbed the kitten, explained to Smokie about the heat, put it on the kitty bed, and went on my merry way. Then, as I went to check on them, I realized she had moved BOTH kittens. I checked her regular spots but because Manders is asleep, I can’t search for them until she wakes up. With triple digit heat all week, I don’t want to risk the kittens getting sick or Smokie getting too hot. Here is a picture of one of the kittens sucking its thumb:

Pictures Aug 2 09 068

Then of course, Princess and Patches aren’t sure what to make of our newest family additions. Once the kittens get older, they’ll realize they have now have a new lifelong play buddy. Yep, Mom said we could keep them. Woohoo!

Still haven’t gotten the site up yet. Still having trouble figuring out what the heck to do with my DNS settings. I try to ask but their too technical and I have no clue what they’re talking about.

It’s not exactly crazy, but organized chaos. But I sure wish it was organized in a different way.

Moving… August 1, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in blogs, Domains, Ideas, thoughts, Websites.
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3 comments

30_10_2008_9_15_4510_moving_clipart

Now before you think that my family and I are moving, take a deep relaxing breath. Texas Banter is moving! Very soon, I will have my very own .com. This shouldn’t happen for a couple of days/weeks so don’t worry. I decided to make it easier for my readers to find me instead of a big long URL to type in. It will be texasbanter.com. Kinda cool, huh?

You will still be able to find all my posts once I get the website up. Any giveaways going on when we go .com will still be held via THIS website. I don’t want to take away people’s chances of winning some cool prizes. If anyone has any questions, don’t hesitate to e-mail me, Twitter, or leave a message.

Back-To-School Giveaway August 1, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in back to school, Blog Giveaways, Giveaways, Product Reviews, Products, School Supplies, Stationary, thoughts.
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143 comments

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The time has come for parents and college students to start buying school supplies. Backpacks are filled with binders, spiral notebooks, planners, file folders, pens, and pencils. If you’re tired of the same old stationary places like Wal-Mart has to offer, then I have the coolest products for you! Since 1945, Carolina Pad has been offering designer stations that is unique and for everyday use!

Carolina Pad‘s products are not only the hottest trends when it comes to stationary, their quality is unmatched. Their pages don’t bleed and their folders are sturdy. Their products  have shown up in TV shows like CW’s new “90210” and ABC Family’s “Greek”. If you can trust TV, trust me when I say that their products are amazing! They are bright, cheery, and so colorful. Why use a solid purple binder when you can make everyone ask where you got it with the Whimsical Flower Binder? I promise you, nobody else will have it. If you don’t want to hodge podge your school supplies, they also have collections to suit your personality. They even have a Kendall Kollection, where every sale benefits The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Become a Carolina Pad fan on Facebook, follow them on Twitter (carolinapad) and visit our web site at http://www.carolinapad.com to sign up for the Consumer Insights Panel.

BUY IT

Carolina Pad is offering Texas Banter readers 15% off a total order. Enter the code BTS2009 at checkout. The offer is only valid from August 1st to August 22nd. Any orders of $30 or more are eligible for FREE SHIPPING.

WIN IT

One (1) reader of Texas Banter has the chance to win a collection of Carolina Pad products from one of their collections: Sasquatch or Kendall.

To enter, visit CarolinaPad.com. Find one of your favorite items (or collections), come back and tell me. In this initial entry, tell which collection you prefer: Sasquatch or Kendall.


THIS IS MANDATORY! “Enter me” or “Nice giveaway” does not constitute as an entry and will be removed. YOU MUST LEAVE A VALID E-MAIL TO ENTER! OPEN TO U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY.

Extra Entries (7): Leave a separate comment for each entry and/or link.

*Follow me on Twitter (Username- texasheartland.)
*Subscribe to Texas Banter Mailing List (via E-Mail, Google Reader, etc.)
*Tweet about this giveaway (profile link or status link- Back To School Giveaway @ Texas Banter! http://tinyurl.com/n3cj9j @texasheartland)
*Follow Manders on Twitter (Username- confettidreams.)
*Add my Texas Banter Button
*Blog about this giveaway

The giveaway starts on Saturday, August 1st upon going “live” and will end on Saturday, August 15th at 11:59PM CST. Entries submitted after that time are voided and are not counted.

Winners have 48 hours to respond to the winning notification. If the winner(s) have not responded within the 48 hours, a new winner(s) will be chosen.

All winners chosen via Random.org.

CIJ: Favorite Songs July 31, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in blogs, Christmas, Christmas in July, family, Feelings, fun, holidays, life, music, Siblings, sisters, thoughts, twins.
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Thanks to Confetti Dreams, I thought I would end Christmas In July here at Texas Banter with some of my favorite songs. I know it seems like I am copying her, but c’mon! She’s my twin! She has some of the best ideas!

But it was VERY hard to choose my Top 10 all-time favorite Christmas songs. It’s like asking someone who loves chocolate to choose their favorite piece. It’s impossible! But here goes:

10. The Christmas Song by Luther Vandross – I consider Luther Vandross a legend when it comes to love songs. While “The Christmas Song” isn’t exactly a love song, it can sure turn into one. When I hear him sing it, I just want to sit by a fire with someone and cuddle. It’s always been a favorite of mine, even if it isn’t sung by Vandross. But his rendition will always remain a favorite of mine.

9. Christmas Cookies by George Strait – I am not afraid to say that I listen to country, especially George Strait. We own every Christmas album George has put out and know every song by heart. While “Frosty the Snowman”  and “All I Want For Christmas (Is My Two Front Teeth” are so greatly sung by this King of Country, I prefer “Christmas Cookies”. It’s hilarious and you can just feel the Christmas magic when you hear it. Sure he doesn’t talk about Christmas trees or decorations and it’s more about cookies, you know it’s Christmas.

8. Let It Snow ’98 by Brian McKnight – I absolutely love Brian McKnight. When he sings Christmas songs, you get the feeling of Christmas. It just feels a lot more like Christmas when you hear him crooning out songs that are filled with magic. And considering he sings it with Boyz II Men just makes it that much more wonderful!

7. O Come All Ye Faithful/O Holy Night by Trans-Siberian OrchestraYou’re probably wondering why I didn’t choose “Wizards in Winter” from Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Well, it’s widely used and not a lot of people know about their other works, which are amazing. I have this CD and I have loved it ever since. I wish I could see them live.

6. Believe by Josh Groban – This is from “The Polar Express”, which is an amazing movie. But this song is so powerful and you can just feel what Groban is feeling. This song gives me chills every time I hear it. It will forever remain a favorite and one that I will play for years to come.

5. Heavy Metal Christmas (The Twelve Days of Christmas) by Twisted Sister -I am a metalhead through and through. But because I enjoy all kinds of music, this ranks #5 on my list. I love Twisted Sister’s Christmas album “Twisted Christmas” because its Christmas and it’s metal, what more could ya ask for? But this song is somewhat humorous. Instead of 5 golden rings and and 2 turtle doves, Twisted Sister gets 5 skull earrings and 2 pairs of spandex pants. It’s heavy metal the magic of Christmas! Oh yea!

4. This Christmas by Jagged Edge – Now you should already know that Jagged Edge would have been on the list somewhere. This isn’t the song you hear from Elliot Yamin or Chris Brown. This has different lyrics and a different feel, but one that I enjoy so much. Their harmony just brings out the song that no one can compete with. Once I play it on my iPod this Holiday season, there it will stay!

3. Here Comes Santa Claus by Gene Autry – Manders forgot about this one! It’s a classic and I love classics! I remember when I was little and our parents had an old record player and old Christmas records. Every time Christmas came, we would put that album on and turn it to this song because we just loved it. In 1946, he wrote the song because of a Christmas Parade in Los Angeles. Pretty cool, huh?

2. Winter Wonderland by George Strait – You can’t deny that George Strait is great! I love this song, especially when George sings it! He brings a fun vibe and it just feels like Christmas! I’m surprised Sissy forgot to add it to her list! But then again, she wouldn’t have to. She could just add every single Christmas album by the King of Country!

1.  Here We Come A-Wassailing – So many people sing this but I still love it! It’s a fun song and so much fun to sing! It’s joyful and so cheerful, that you can’t help but feel happiness when you sing it with friends. No one knows exactly when it was written or it’s exact origin, but to know that it is still sung through the centuries just to show that it’s such a great song!

I appreciate everyone joining all of us for our first Christmas in July event! It was so much fun that we have decided to do more events! We will have a Halloween event starting the first week of October, maybe a Thanksgiving event, but definitely Christmas will be our 3rd major event (considering Manders and I love Halloween and we plan to make it a major event as well). We hope you enjoyed everything and our memories!

CSN Giveaway- ENDED July 29, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in blogs, Furniture, Giveaways, Office Furniture, Products, thoughts.
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302 comments

It’s almost that time- almost time to go back to school! Parents are buying their children school supplies and furniture for their college students who have decided to live off campus. Everyone remembers the basic necessities for furniture: couches, beds, chairs, desks, and televisions. But let’s not forget another basic necessity for computer desks- that all important office chair!  CSNChairs.com has an amazing array of office chairs for just about almost any price. They have the executive chair, reception area chair, classroom, and even folding chairs. So if you’re looking for a specific office chair for a specific purpose, you can bet that CSNChairs.com is the place to go!

But as a college student, you read a lot. And where are you going to put all those books you accumulate during your years at college? That’s right, a bookcase! CSN Office Furniture has you covered! They have all sorts of office furniture for your basic office furniture needs! If you need a basic computer desk with nothing too fancy, they have hundreds of basic computer desks for under $450, which is practically a steal! You can’t find that anywhere else. I have a computer desk and a computer chair. But I have tons of books and nowhere to put them! That’s where the Mylex Five Shelf Bookcase comes in handy. It’s really sturdy, easy to assemble, and it’s considered a “space saver” because it only has a 9″ depth, which is excellent for books, DVDs, VHS (for those of us who still use our VCR) and even CDs.

Thanks to our friends at CSN Office Furniture, we are giving one (1) Texas Banter reader the chance to win the MyLex Five Shelf Bookcase in Black! So what do you have to do to win this amazing back-to-school necessity?

Go to CSN Office Furniture, come back and tell me what item you would LOVE to have!

THIS IS MANDATORY! “Enter me” or “Nice giveaway” does not constitute as an entry and will be removed. YOU MUST LEAVE A VALID E-MAIL TO ENTER! OPEN TO U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY.

Extra Entries (7): Leave a separate comment for each entry and/or link.

*Follow me on Twitter (Username- texasheartland.)
*Subscribe to Texas Banter Mailing List (via E-Mail, Google Reader, etc.)
*Tweet about this giveaway (profile link or status link- Win a 5 Shelf Bookcase @ Texas Banter! http://tinyurl.com/kwbhlx @texasheartland)
*Follow Manders on Twitter (Username- confettidreams.)
*Add my Texas Banter Button
*Blog about this giveaway

The giveaway starts on Wednesday, July 29th upon going “live” and will end on Wednesday, August 11th at 11:59PM CST. Entries submitted after that time are voided and are not counted.

Winners have 48 hours to respond to the winning notification. If the winner(s) have not responded within the 48 hours, a new winner(s) will be chosen.

All winners chosen via Random.org.

CIJ: Electronics July 28, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Christmas, Christmas in July, Electronics, Gift Ideas, gifts, holidays, shopping.
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2 comments

christmas-presentIf you have a gadget buff in your midst, then give them more gadges- electronics! With the Kindle (Amazon’s Original Wireless Reading Device), you can take eBooks that are downloaded onto your computer or bought at the Kindle Store and read them as you would a regular book, except it is almost like a tablet! I personally would love to have one, since I am an avid reader. Millions have already been sold and this should be a hot ticket this year for bookworms!

Of course, digitized photos are VERY hot right now. With new digital cameras coming out all the time, it’s hard to choose which one to get. I say get one that would be appropriate for the person’s age and experience with digital cameras. If they aren’t that experienced, the Nikon Coolpix 4100 would be a great simple camera for them to get their feet wet in digital photos. There are also digital photo frames. What you essentially do is plug the frame into your USB port, upload the photos to the frame, and set the frame anywhere in your home! It’s like have a regular frame except all your photos rotate so they have their own moments to shine. If you want to take it for on the go, there is always the Digital Photo Keychain from Overstock.com that can hold up to 60 color photos.

Then you have the newest phones, like the iPhone 3G, which seems to be the hottest phone around. Not only is it a phone, it has internet connection, applications, and tons of other things to do! But it can cost anywhere from $200-$600 so I would wait for sales before buying so you get more bang for your buck. BlackBerry is also becoming popular. Texting is a lot smoother than on regular cell phone and they have a lot of applications for you to choose from whether you like music or travelling. They pretty much have it all. BlackBerries usually range in the same price of the iPhone.

iPods aren’t as popular, but as soon as the iTouch http://www.apple.com/ipodtouch/ hit the shelves, the demand has been grand. It’s not like the iPhone where you can talk or text to each other. But it’s just the same! You can download your favorite music, movies, get online, and even get weather or stocks! These tend to be a little less expensive, starting at $190 for the cheap versions up to $400 for the official iTouch device. But don’t forget that you have the Zune Music Player, iPod Nano, iPod Shuffle, or the SanDisk Sansa.

If you’re man doesn’t know where to go and won’t stop to ask for directions, give them a GPS so you won’t nag them to stop and they won’t argue back that they “know” where they’re going. At GPSCity.com, they have hundreds of different kinds of GPS to choose from. According to BestBuy.com, they can range anywhere from $80 for the easy and simple to over $400 for the high-end GPS systems.

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CIJ: Retro Christmas July 27, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Christmas, Christmas decor, Christmas in July, family, Feelings, hilarious, life, memories, thoughts.
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4 comments

I was watching the Christmas in July special they had on QVC yesterday and the day before. Yesterday, they had a special segment called “Christmas Memories” where they brought out all sorts of retro Christmas ornaments and decorations. While I don’t remember having any retro Christmas decorations, I thought it would be neat to have a retro Christmas this year!

Instead of putting up a big artificial green Christmas tree, I love the idea of putting up an aluminum Christmas tree with the color wheel! Mom told us about them and ever since that story, I wanted one! I thought it would be so cool to go retro for Christmas, but that also includes the tree! Every year, it frustrates us because we can’t get the lights to go the way we want. They’ll blink when we don’t want them to or they won’t blink when we would prefer they do. So to counterbalance all of that, I want an aluminum tree!

When I was little, Mom used to have this HUGE collection of Santas. I mean, there were a lot. They were given to her as gifts or she would see it, and say “I have to have it!”, thus ended up buying it. But a house fire in 2001 destroyed it all, including everything we had. So one year, Manders and I bought her this beautiful and colorful ceramic Santa that stood a little over 12 inches. Mom loved it. So she put it on a shelf. But one of the cats we had at the moment (I hope it wasn’t Smokie!) jumped on top of the shelf, where we thought they couldn’t reach, and knocked it over. It was broken into a million pieces. So one day, Manders and I decided to start re-collecting Santas for Mom. But this time, I would love to give her a retro Santa! It just brings back that magic that Christmas held close as children.

I don’t know if anyone remembers these, but way back when, they started making plastic Santas that you could put out in your yard and there was a light so Santa could shine. I believe they also had Frosty and Toy Soldiers. As I was watching QVC’s “Christmas in July” event, they had a Toy Soldier ornament. It brought back the image of those plastic Toy Soldier’s outdoor decorations and I thought it would be so neat, if I can ever find them, to snag 2 and place them outside. I know as older people drive by, they will be reminded of Christmases that features these outside their home. It would bring back a lot of memories.

I would love to buy all the retro Christmas decorations I can and just make on Christmas completely retro- down to even the tiniest decoration! I think it’s because it was a simpler time when Christmas didn’t mean the hottest iPhones or the coolest toys. It was about family and being together. I think most of society has lost that idea and I would like to see it come back!

“V” Shape July 26, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Animals, Autumn, dogs, fall, Feelings, life, random, Seasons, Texas, thoughts.
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4 comments

It’s been a few days since Zeus has been outside due to the fact that Mom and and I haven’t been feeling our best the past few days. We both suffer from ulcers (which is normal for some who have had their gallbladders removed), and on top of that, I was having issues with my sinuses. Of course, for us sinus sufferers, this isn’t something new. Summer always brings out the worst of allergens and I am always sniffling or stocking up on tissue. I hate Summer. LOL Have I mentioned that before?

geesev_bigSo last night, Manders and I decided to take Zeus out to play in his kiddie pool we had bought for him. As he splashed around, getting us wet, I looked up at the sky and saw birds flying in a “V” formation. A chill ran down my spine. Seeing that, for me, means cooler weather will soon be here. It has also been getting darker sooner. That’s another great sign! Texas has had such a brutal Summer that any sign of cooler weather just sends our hears aflutter. Most Texans enjoy the Summer, though I’m sure they changed their minds this time as temperatures easily hit 108* by the time it’s 3PM. As I look to see what the temperatures are for the rest of the week, I can’t help but smile. It seems as if the triple digit heat will leave us alone atleast until Friday.

I love Texas in the Fall. It’s absolutely gorgeous. As the setting Sun hits the oak tree in the back in November, its as if the tree were on fire. Seeing the kitten that lives outside play as the leaves fall around him, not sure which leaf to play with since there are so many. Watching a squirrel forage for food before Winter arrives as he brushes past huge bundles of fallen leaves. Watching the trees change from Summer green to burnt orange right before your very eyes.

Texas is beautiful in the Fall. I love Texas.

CIJ: 5 Months July 25, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Christmas, Christmas in July, family, Feelings, holidays, life, thoughts.
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2 comments

In 5 months to the day, it will be Christmas Day. Families around the US (since International countries celebrate it hours before we do) will be waking up early to see what Santa had brought them. Children will feverishly rip at the wrapping to get the toy that’s underneath. Parents will be sitting on the sofa, drinking their coffee, in hopes that the children liked what Santa had given them. “A Christmas Story” is playing on the television for the 900th time.

I enjoy Christmas morning. Texas usually doesn’t get a “white” Christmas but it’s chilly. But it’s fun to pad into the living room with socks on my feet, Manders behind me, and presents under the tree. We are usually not awake enough to play Santa so Mom and Dad are volunteered. We unwrap one gift at a time so that each person have their moment to see what they had gotten and show everyone.

I look forward to Christmas EVERY year. There is just a magic about it that seeps into my body and chills me to the very bone. The pretty lights, the soothing music, the Christmas carols playing on every station, and seeing the Holiday movies. Being with my family as we drive mindlessly around town, looking at all the Christmas displays on the houses and coming up with ideas on how we can make out Christmas display look even more fantastic! We take turns asking to put this CD in the CD player or turning the station to something that fits the mood.

I like Christmas.

CIJ: OrnamentsWithLove.com Review July 24, 2009

Posted by texasheartland in Christmas, Christmas decor, Christmas in July, Feelings, holidays, Home Decor, Product Reviews, Products, Reviews, thoughts.
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If you’re anything like me, you get tired of the generic ornaments on your tree everything Christmas rolls around. You want to add a little flair and personality to your ornaments, but you’re not exactly sure how. Did you know that you can have your own personalized set of ornaments just for $10 or more per ornament? Most places would charge you anywhere from $15 to even $90 just for a personalized ornament! But not OrnamentsWithLove.com!

OrnamentsWithLove.com offers over 700 personalized ornaments and a variety of photo frames and table decorations. Most of their ornaments are handmade from artists and companies all around the United States. Many of the ornaments are made from bread dough here in the United States. Others are made of wood, resin, polymer clay or clay dough. If you are looking for a specific ornament (i.e. a horse or a panda), then they have a lot to choose from. Unless specified, all ornaments come with personalization that you do right at ornament’s page. So let’s say you want to order the Cat – Grey Tabby Personalized Christmas Ornament. When you visit the page, all you have to do is type in the name you want for the ornament, the year, the quantity, and just press “Add to Cart!”. It’s very simple!

I love personalized items, especially at Christmas since it makes it so special for that person receiving the gift. I personally love the Twin category of the ornaments for obvious reasons!  I have no idea which one to choose! At first I thought Bronner’s had the best ornament selection but because OrnamentsWithLove.com has more handmade and personable ornaments that are just too cute for words, I think I may have to take that one back. OrnamentsWithLove.com has been in the retail gifts business for over 50 years! But in just the last 10 years, they have made it a priority to take what they know and apply it to personalized Christmas ornaments!

So if you’re looking for a few places for personalized ornaments but don’t want to spend a ton of money, I promise that you won’t have. They even have a category for items under $10 so if you’re trying to save money this Christmas but still want to show that special someone you care, you won’t want to miss it!