Sunday, November 28, 2010

Does This Boy Need a Haircut?

Last week, my Bubba was called a "she" 3 times within a 2 hour period.  And he was wearing the cute cowboy tee below.  He has the most gorgeous blond hair that curls when it is humid out.  Unfortunately, with the dry, cold weather, it tends to go straight and look extremely messy.  Sissy had the same hair ~ she had beautiful curls that lasted until her first haircut.....and then they all disappeared.

I think it is precious and don't want scissors anywhere near his adorable little head.

Hubby is so done hinting that he needs a haircut and has threatened to cut it this week.

the wind helps illustrate how long it is....

What do you think?
Time for his cut?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Best Use for a Lolipop

A few weeks ago, we had some visitors here in Texas - Our cousins from Virginia came to celebrate Halloween with us!  I really wanted to get a picture of these cuties together, but knew that posing 3 under the age of 3 would be difficult....

Until we gave them a lolipop........

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Wow- it is already Thanksgiving?  Really?  Where does the time go?  I know so many who are already preparing for Christmas, but in this house, we like to take time to enjoy Thanksgiving before speeding right into Christmas.

So when I asked the kids this week what they were most thankful for this year, I got the typical answers:

Our Teachers
Our School
Littlest Pet Shop
Liverpool (for Dad)
Mom (gee, thanks!)

Gotta love that shout out to their beloved candy.  I guess that's because we are still working on our Halloween candy.....

There are many material things we are thankful for.  My computer, my coffee maker, Stacy's Pita Chips, and Chuy's are some things I am thankful for.  But when it comes down the what you are truly thankful to have in your life, it's the people you surround yourself with. 

These past two weeks I have been encouraged and loved by sweet friends ~ running races together or celebrating life together ~ it makes you so thankful to have them in your lives.  And life would not be the same without them.

And family.  Ah family - Life has really been great in our family and even our extended family - this year we are celebrating new people joining our family!

As for me, God has placed 4 specific people in my life who I am so very thankful for.

Happy Thanksgiving to You! 
I hope it is a wonderful day filled with relaxation, laughter and great food!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Free Holiday Cards? WHAT?!?!?!

You had me a FREE.  What do I have to do?  Blog about one of my favorite things of the holiday season?  Christmas cards!!!!??  Easy-peasy.

or so I thought.

I love making holiday cards.  The hard part is trying to outdo the one from the previous year....each year.  Anyone else struggle with that?  I'll fess up.  Matt hates me when I am taking the kids picture for the Christmas card.  I take a bazillion.  Literally.  But it takes a bazillion to come up with this perfection:

yes, i'm biased. so what?

So I do get a little nervous when that time of year rolls around again.  What setting should I shoot their pictures against?  What should they wear?  Should I go for a classic card or more whimsical?  What is the baby doesn't cooperate????

When I came across this offer from Shutterfly (50 free cards when I post about Shutterfly's awesome cards), I immediately went to their site to see what they had to offer.  Ladies, this isn't your grandma's Shutterfly anymore!!  There is so much to choose from this year!!! Take a look at the cards they have this year. 

Look at these cute, whimsy ones:
Go here to link this one


Go here to link this one

Go here to link this one

And I love the fact that Shutterfly allows you to completely customize the inside, so if you want to write a blub or a dissertation about your family, you now can!  They more I looked at, the easier it became to see exactly what I wanted.  I love that I was able to narrow down a few cards before getting the pictures.  Now, I know what kind of shots of the kids to get for the cards I liked - should make it that much easier to take pictures this year.  ahem...we hope.

The more shopping I did on Shutterfly, the more fun stuff I found.

Ever decide to have a party because you found a cute invite?  Ya, me neither.....
we are so having a cookie party this year...

And they make photo playing cards??  How fun! 
Jan, if you get this for Christmas, act surprised, ok??

They also make incredible calendars for every family member on your list!

And to sweeten the deal even more, Shutterfly is offering a Cyber Deal right now - up to 50% off and free shipping...hurry cause that offer ends Dec 1!!

Go check out Shutterfly's fabulous photo holidays cards NOW!!

So, the card is picked out.  Now I just need the pictures...wish me luck!!

I just want to mention that Shutterfly is not paying me to discuss all of their fab products.  I really like Shutterfly and they did offer me a sweet deal on Chirstmas Cards in exchange for my post.  Who wouldn't jump on a sweet deal like this? Thanks Shutterfly!

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Christmas Winner!

Hello friends!  The Holiday Season has officially begun!  It seemed to have begun even earlier this year, as I read several of my friends on facebook had begun decorating over this past weekend!! And there is no time like the present to start thinking about those holiday greetings!!  This is where a Virtual Christmas Card comes in handy!! Let me do all the work in creating your "holiday letter"!

Thank you all so much for the wonderful feedback on the Virtual Christmas Cards we are making over at Darling Memories.  With the wonderful help of Jen from Tatortots & Jello, we were able to reach many with our fun giveaway!  We had over 50 entires and I am very happy to announce the winner of a Virtual Christmas Card is.........


Congratulations Andrea!!!  I am thrilled to make a Virtual Christmas Card for you!!

There is still time for all of you who would like to make a Virtual Christmas Card - I am offering a 10% discount for anyone who signs up by Wednesday!!  Simply email me at and say "I want a  Virtual Christmas Card!!" to lock in your special price!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

13.1 - Check!

Want to Win A Virtual Christmas Card?
Giveaway Ends on Sunday!

I never planned to do this in my life ~ run 13.1 miles ~ what was I thinking??  My sweet hubby has run them before and while I admired him, I always thought he was crazy.  And here I was,  signing up for one myself.  What??!!??

It happened by accident ~ I started the Couch 2 5K running plan last January as a way to lose weight and get healthy.  I completed the 9 week plan and went from "huffin' & puffin'" though a run to being able to run a full 30 mins without dying.  I never ran that 5K race though.

But I did keep running.  I ran with friends in the neighborhood last Spring - many of us had babies in joggers, so it was a great social time too.  That totally made it fun and easy to do.

Summer hit ~ living here in Texas, you gotta go early to withstand the heat ~ so my neighbor, Mel, and I would run in the mornings before our hubbies went to work.  Slowly we started to increase our distance...and we'd slowly have to get up earlier to accommodate how far we wanted to run.  In June, Mel had signed up to run the San Antonio Half Marathon.  I was proud of her, but that was not on my bucket list.

School started and we fell into a great pattern of running right after the kids got on the bus - the baby loved his morning runs with us.  Nothing like pushing an extra 35 lbs to get your heart pumping.  I had told Mel that I would train with her for her run, so our miles started to creep up...6...7....8.... At this point, it would have been silly to not have run along with her in San Antonio.  So I did.  Mid October, I signed up to run it with her after we ran a 11 mile run and I knew I could do it.

We did it!!!  This past weekend, I accomplished a 13.1 mile run!!  And it was fantastic.  I enjoyed it so so so so much more than I ever thought I would!

I took along my iPhone to document the journey (even though I got several laughs when I would take it out to snap pictures along the way!!).  There was no way I was going to run that far and NOT have pictures to show for it!!

 Getting my packet & race bib
 4 runners - which one it not like the other??
The crazy man (Mel's hubby) on the left running the full!
(he did it in 4 hours - he rocked!!)

 Ready to run - leaving the hotel at 6:30 am
 I noticed right before the race started that my race # had my favorite number in it
 ~ 18 ~ 
no, I  didn't request it.
 20 Corrals ahead of us to start - 45 mins after the race started, we started.
 Almost to the starting line - did I mention there were over 26,000 runners???
Running by the Alamo at mile 3.  
I came here so much as a child, never thought I'd ever be running by it in a race!
 Around mile 7- at this point we hadn't even stopped to walk
we kept going.....
 Our last mile!! We ran it out and finished 5 mins early!!
 Proud Mommas!!!  We did it!!
 This was Matt's 3rd half-marathon to run!
So proud of him!  It was so special to have done this together.

There it is - in black & white!  Our goal was 2 1/2 hours and we beat our time.

I never was a runner.  I always wanted to be.  During the race, the shouts from the sidelines "Good job runners!"  and "Keep going Athletes!" and "Almost there!"  were so encouraging, they would bring tears to my eyes.  I had never been called an athlete.  But now I am one.  I didn't have to go to the Olympics to be an athlete, I just ran my neighborhood.

It never ceases to amaze me how God places events in our lives to challenge us, make us better.  This one was unique...I never saw it coming.  But he did.  And I ran though it, hands held high!  

Thanks for all your love & encouragement on here and on Face Book!!  It really means a lot to have so many thinking of you!

So, when's the next race?

Friday, November 12, 2010

A Christmas Give-A-Way like No Other!

Christmas, Christmas Time is Here (almost)
Time fore Joy & Time for Cheer!!

I am getting excited about Christmas!!  What got me in the mood so soon??? Making a Virtual Christmas Card!

Rather than type out a long Christmas letter this year, I'd thought it would be more fun to make a Virtual Christmas Card and SHOW everyone what a fantastic year the Darlings had!!  Many of you know that i have a side business, Darling Memories, and I thought this would be a fun opportunity to make unique Christmas greetings this year!

And you can too!  For only $30, I will pair 30 of your favorite pictures with a great Christmas tune, add all the captions you'd like, and send you a personal link on the web for you to share with all your family & friends!!  It's that easy!  Who wouldn't love to see all those adorable photos of winning soccer goals, funny vacation moments, and sweet smiling kiddos??

And to celebrate our first year of operation, Darling Memories is giving away to one special family a Virtual Christmas Card!!  And just in time for the holidays!!

How can you win?  Each of the following will count as a separate entry, so please post a comment for each one you do:

1. Take a minute to visit my business site, Darling Memories.  Then come back & post a comment telling me what type of event you would like to commemorate with a Darling Memories DVD.

2. Become a Darling Memories follower while you are there.

3. Follow Darling Memories on Facebook (click here or see link on the left).

4. Follow Darling Memories on Twitter (click here or see link on the left).

5. Blog about our Darling Memories contest (and please put the link to the post in your comments). Receive 3 entries for this one!!!

6. Tweet or post on your Facebook wall about the Darling Memories contest.

This contest will close on Sunday, November 21, 2010 at midnight.  Contest winner will be announced the following Monday.  Good Luck!!

Thank you so much for all of your support!!  I'd love to make a Virtual Christmas Card for your family too, please feel free to send me a quick note!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Bubba Likes to Boogie

Anyone out there with a Wii try this game???

It is only the MOST FUN game on the market right now.  At least it is in my families' eyes.  

Sis & I can dance away to fun songs from Elvis to Katy Perry to N-Sync to the Cotton Eye Joe.

That happens to be Sis & Bubba's favorite song...

Bubba Likes to Boogie - Just Dance Wii from Rebecca Darling on Vimeo.

So when given the opportunity to sign up for the House Party Just Dance 2 Wii Party, I jumped on it.  House Party asks for volunteers to host parties featuring products.  They send you product samples and coupons for free/reduced $$ stuff and ask you to host a party to "get the word out".  It is a brilliant form of advertising...who doesn't like hearing about a product from a trusted friend?

In September, we hosted a Star Wars Clone Wars House Party for Bubba & his friends.  We gathered to watch the Season 3 Premiere and he received a fun game for all the boys to play.  Each boy went home with a SWCW goodie bag - instant party.  

So, I was THRILLED to find out last week that I was asked to host the Just Dance 2 Wii House Party.  Sis & I are planning a fun night with friends - we are planning a big Mom versus Girl tournament - the Ultimate Dance Off!  We received the box from House Party yesterday and was very surprised to receive BOTH Just Dance 2 & Just Dance Kids - and I am having a very hard time not opening them up (Sis would be playing it 24/7 and would end up beating all of us!! Oh who am I kidding, I'd be the one up until 2 am playing it!)

If you are looking for a fantastic Christmas present - this is it!  Everyone....even my boys (as seen above) love this game.  Here is is on Amazon.  Game Stop even has a great price. Once again, your welcome.

Happy Dancin'.  Don't blame me when you become addicted to the Cotton Eye Joe!

Monday, November 8, 2010

FMM: Top 10 of 2010

Good Morning Friends!!!  I hope you are all doing well this fine Monday morning.  It finally feels like fall here in Texas - so what if "fall" is a brisk 50 degrees in the morning and 80 by noon, we'll take it!

My sweet friend Kenlie from All the Weigh has been hosting Friend Makin' Monday for a few months and asked me to host this week.  Just to give a little history, when I first began blogging, I found a little Monday fun through this bloggy carnival and met many of my bloggy friends through it.  I haven't participated as much any more (life gets in the way) but thought it would be fun to host.  Friend Makin Monday is a great way to visit new blogs, get to know your friends better  and make new ones along the way.  If you'd like to participate, simply answer the question below and add you post to the linky below.  Make sure you visit atleast 5 other blogs and leave comments...we all love the comment love!!!  So, thank you Kenlie for asking...and now, on to the question!

November is a great month to reflect on all we have to be Thankful for.  First to come to mind are my Faith, my Family, my Friends, our Health, and our Happiness.  I wanted to take it one step further and reflect on what I have been blessed with this year......what is it that I am specifically thankful for in 2010?

What is you Top 10 of 2010?

10.  Losing 56 pounds.  Yes I did.  

9.  Summering in Illinois.  Playing in tunnels with my kids, exhausting ourselves in Chicago, swimming all was wonderful.

8.  Skinny Girl Margaritas.  (yes, I am thankful to have my beloved margarita at a third of the calories - don't judge here if you want the recipe)

7.  Dedicating Ian to God.
6.  Pursuing my own company, Darling Memories.  Just a little business, but it's mine.  I have a very exciting Christmas Idea!!  Hop on over when you have some time!!

Darling Memories

5.  Running my first half-marathon. in 6 days...yikes!
4.  Reading 100 books as a family this summer.  It kick-started something with my family - we always have a book close by.

3. Becoming PTA President of my kid's school.  (yes, I am thankful for this opportunity to volunteer in my children's time consuming as it is.....)

2. Hunger Games.  Hands Down the BEST book I read all year.  Absolutely one of the best books I have ever read in my life.  I don't have time to explain how good it on over to Amazon and order it now.  Here is the link. You're welcome.

1.  Celebrating 15 years with the man I love.

That was so much harder than I thought. I really have so much to be thankful for that I found it difficult to narrow it down to just 10.  I hope you take the time to reflect on what God has blessed you with in 2010.  Join us!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Oh Weddings...weddings

Such a joyous, romantic time.  Watching a sweet, young, innocent couple join as one before God & their family.  Being married for 15 years, weddings always bring a little tear to my eye.

My youngest brother was married up in Washington a few weeks ago.  He has lived in Washington for many years now.  No matter how much we'd like him to eventually come "home", the Emerald Coast is where his heart is and where he will stay.  So when we got the joyous news that he was getting married, we were all very excited for him & his fiance.  And we knew, he wouldn't be coming home.

The wedding planning was soon underway.  And no matter how much the bride & groom tried to please all of the families' wishes, we know that is impossible to do.  The hardest part for our family, living in Texas, was not being there for the planning.  But we forged ahead with our plans to get there and make it a special weekend.

Oh, of course there are the stressful moments of the weekend (you try taking a 17m old to the rehearsal dinner when it is wwwwaaaaaaaayyyyyyy past his bedtime- nightmare!!).  There are the moments when you are just shaking your head (so how did my son get his dress pants on backwards?  And how did we NOT notice this until we got to the church?).  And there are moments of exhaustion (why did we choose the bedroom right beneath the community bathroom?). But all of those "moments" are soon forgotten and overshadowed by seeing your baby brother all dressed up to get married.......
 or seeing the bride & groom so in love....
 or seeing your father read an inspiring passage......

or seeing your family all dressed up...and together.
Or maybe it's the goofy kids enjoying themselves......
nah.  It's the exhausted momma & daddy who have been chasing an upset, out-of-routine toddler around all weekend.  See how nicely we can fake the smiles???
Yes, family weddings can be stressful, they can make you never want to host one (seriously, a destination wedding sounds fantastic!), they can even exhaust you.  But, they are special.  And you know all the hard work and effort and means a lot to the bride & groom.  And that in itself is worth it.

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