If you know me, you know I'm a creature of stability. Of routine. Of not shaking things up too much. Hubby is, too; maybe even more so than I am.
Friday, November 29, 2013
Posted by Amber at 12:10 AM
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Let me start this post by saying that this is NOT an ad or a sponsored post in any way. I don't do those. These are my thoughts alone.
I mentioned here a while back that there were some really cool things happening in our family. And when I said really cool, I meant really cool. I had looked forward to blogging about all of this for a long time - like for over two years - but I've decided that because there are some very sensitive people in the mix, it's probably best that I don't. It's not worth risking hurt feelings.
But I'll tell you this. It involves my hubby learning he has a ton of family he didn't previously know about. And finding this out when one is in his early 40s is enough to knock one's socks off! Let's just leave it at that, shall we?
This has been an incredible thing to watch unfold. It could have gone terribly wrong, but it went incredibly right, and the benefits of taking the risk and making contact have been immense. Bigger and better than we could have ever imagined.
But it got us thinking - do most of us really have an idea about our roots? Do we really know where we came from? I've always known that I am part Cherokee and that I have some Irish, too. But how much? I have no idea. Hubby always told me he was, in large part, German. Now that we found out about all this new family, we were dying to know what else might be in his blood.
I was delighted to learn that Ancestry offers a really simple service for this. You pay them $99, spit in a tube, mail it off, and they send you their best guess as to your genetic roots! How cool is that?! We invested in a kit for hubby. He sent off the sample and prepared to wait the 6-8 weeks that were indicated in the instructions. Imagine our shock when his results came back 8 days after they received the kit!
Turns out hubby is, according to Ancestry anyway:
Posted by Amber at 11:28 AM
Sunday, August 25, 2013
I'm just going to put a few things out there into the universe.
I can't stand it when people breed animals, especially puppies, for money. As in, for a source of income. It makes me crazy. And sad. And irritated.
Why? Why would you intentionally create more dogs and cats when the Humane Society of the United States estimates that 3-4 million are euthanized per year? That's somewhere between 165 and 220 dogs and cats euthanized every day, in every state in our country. And let's not even start on the number beyond that who are abused, neglected, used for fighting... it just makes my heart sick. Why would you deliberately contribute to this problem just so you can make a few extra bucks?
I was asked a while back to share a Facebook post from a friend who was trying to sell puppies. I thought it must be an accidental litter or... something. It wasn't. He bragged to me privately how much money he was making off these puppies. I didn't share the post and I unfriended the person. (This was not someone I was very close to in real life.)
I've seen people who breed for money scrimp on things like vaccinations, checkups, deworming treatments, food supplements... and even worse, they have virtually no incentive to screen new owners for the animals. After all, they make the same amount of money no matter who they sell to. Unsavory people buying puppies from Craigslist or the backs of pickups for $500 apiece can abuse and neglect to their hearts' content. When they get caught, the animals end up in shelters and often euthanized.
It just makes me nauseous. So please, don't do it. Or you owe me a box of Tums.
On another note, I miss birthday surprises.
I started writing about this on my birthday. Which may or may not have been over a month ago, but hey, I'm just not as prolific a writer as I used to be. I write a lot in my head. Less than 1% of it makes it out of my head. I need to get better about this.
Anyhow, I used to think I wanted presents for my birthday. I probably did. But in the last few years, I've realized it's not the presents I really long for. It's the surprises.
When I was a kid, my parents threw me great parties. They weren't necessarily extravagant, but I never wanted that anyway, so it was perfect. My gifts were always big surprises. Again, not expensive, but they didn't need to be, because the buildup was huge and the surprise was always worth it.
I remember my first bicycle. It was purple with a white banana seat with a flower print on it. It had a white wanna-be-wicker basket on the front with plastic flowers on the front. And the little streamers coming out the handlebars. I was just about the most excited kid on the planet when I laid eyes on it, because I had no idea it was coming.
I guess I'm that person who loves surprises.
And I miss them.
Don't get me wrong, I always get taken care of on my birthday (and at Christmas, and lots of other special times too). But there aren't usually surprises in the mix anymore.
And I miss them.
But there's good news. Ever since I became a parent, my memory has been fairly poor. I forget where I put things and I forget appointments and people's phone numbers.
So the good news is, I can start engineering my own surprises any day now. It's going to be awesome.
Monday, June 10, 2013
There are 3-4 other Ambers that use my email address by mistake on a regular basis, and by "by mistake" I mean "because they're idiots."
Friday, May 24, 2013
Aidan is now past the 2-1/2 year old mark and, I swear, getting smarter every day. At least once a day I find myself surprised at something he knows, remembers, or catches on to. He's big on starting to identify letters, for instance. Thanks Super Why!
Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Posted by Amber at 9:58 PM
Monday, April 1, 2013
I mentioned back in this post that I've been nagged recently about not blogging more. I enjoy it, I really do. But I'm a victim of chronic writer's block. I need a little nudge to get me writing, most days. But I do need to make more of an effort. If I'm going to write a book someday, I can't let my writing bug die!
To that end, I found a few sites that offer daily (or almost daily) "one minute" writing prompts. I have no intention at all of only writing for a minute on these, however they do provide just the starting point that I so desperately need lately in order to start writing.
Here goes my first one!
"If money, work, and family ties were not an issue; and you could choose any kind of natural environment / climate to live in that you wanted, what would you pick? A desert villa, beach hut, a cabin in the woods? Maybe for you the best kind of nature is an urban apartment?"
Ahh, this prompt brings me to a happy place. I would choose a large house in the pacific northwest on a lake. I love the pacific northwest because the air is clean, the weather isn't too hot nor anywhere near as cold as I'm used to, and you have a chance at a white Christmas but probably won't freeze to death within an hour if your car breaks down in January.
As far as the house itself, I don't require (nor really enjoy) luxury per se, but large and only somewhat shmancy would make me very happy. The house would have wood siding and a pretty dark green color trim. There would be windows everywhere. I'd have about 8 bedrooms; one for us, one for the kid, one craft room, one computer room, and the rest for all the people I would demand to come visit me. Ha! The kitchen (also large) would have beautiful oak cabinets with my son's artwork plastered all over them, just like mine are now. The living/family room would have vaulted ceilings open to the upstairs, a fireplace, and a ginormous TV on which to watch football and HGTV.
The house would also have a lovely, manicured front yard, immediately past which would be the lake. Dark blue water with fish jumping everywhere. I wouldn't be able to hear traffic from my yard. Only the fish jumping. In the backyard would be a little shed to match the house, and my garden. I want a BIG garden so I can grow healthy food and save myself tons of money while also eating right. I also want beautiful trees in the backyard for shade and yummy smells, like crab apples or chokecherries or whatever my in-laws have in their yard. Maybe an apple tree or two, too. It IS the pacific northwest, after all.
Best of all, this house would be situated only 20 minutes from a quaint little city that's small enough that I can feel safe there, but large enough to have a Target. (See? I told you I don't need luxury.) Oh, and maybe an Olive Garden, for those days when my garden food won't cut it.
What's your ideal environment and why?