Thursday, April 30, 2009
Mother's Day shopping: Earth Friendly Edition
For several years I have been sending flowers to Veronique's mother on Mother's Day. It wasn't until last year that I asked myself why in the HELL am I sending dead flowers??? and started sending plants instead. At least with a plant I wasn't killing something.
So my first bit of "advice" for shopping for Mother's Day this year is please try not to kill anything!!
One of my favorite sites for shopping is Viva Terra. If you click on that link, it should take you to their plant section. They have very cool bonzai plants... Everything from Japanese Maple to Apple! Very cool.
And if you are looking for something even cooler, try their Living Wreath. It has five groups of green-gray, burgundy and silver succulents and only has to be watered every three to ten weeks! How cool is that??

Succulents aren't your thang? That's cool. They also have an herb wreath! One that you can use! Hang in your kitchen and it will smell fabulous and you can use it!
Errhhh... I mean, whomever you give it to can use it.
Because we're shopping for other people here.
Not ourselves.
Other people.
Focus Kate.
The thing that originally had me on Viva Terra was the recycled glass dinnerware. A while back I was shopping for dinnerware and I was having one helluva time trying to decide what I wanted.
It turned out that the reason I couldn't pick was because I was really wanting something recycled. But MAN recycled dishes are effing expensive. And with the reality being that I will so totally break them.

If I EVER get married, this will be the ONLY thing I register for. Everyone can bring me one plate! :)

But since you probably won't be buying mom a whole new set of dishes, how about these bad ass bowls made from old records?

Golden oldies never die, as proven by our gifted and imaginative artist who creates a mandala on her recycled platters from the past then molds them into flower-shaped containers. The spindle hole's have been sealed to make these former LPs water-tight, but they're the real deal: Flip one over and you can read the original label. How groovy is that?
Groovy indeed.

Ok, so how about some ETSY?
If you haven't made it to Etsy yet, well you are about to be VERY mad at me and I'm sorry.

How about this super cool ring made from recycled tin?
And this fabulous locket made from recycled car parts with a magnetic lid!

You know what guys?
I dig birds.
I don't know what it is... maybe it's the whole colorful modernized version or something, but I freaking like birds.
Check out this bag...
Now see, I intended to find about a half a dozen more things for ya'll but sadly, I found recycled scrabble tile pendants and my afternoon has now been shot.
There seems to be a slew of people out there in Internet Land who are turning Scrabble Tiles into jewelry. And if you had told me that and I hadn't seen them, I would probably chuckle at the idea of wearing random letters around my neck.

But I have seen them.
And now I want about two hundred different tiles.

Ok I've got to go lie down.
And cut up my credit cards.
Not necessarily in that order.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 1:34 AM
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Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Red Envelope Mother's Day shopping
I was doing a little Mother's Day browsing and decided to show ya'll a few things I saw on Red Envelope this morning that I thought were super cute... It may help ya out with your shopping... and you know, I'm all about helping ya'll out ;)
This is an adorable jewely tree. They have a few different styles, but this was the one I thought was the cutest:

There must be something about approaching thirty that has me loving glass. I am still prone to breaking things so I usually avoid glass, but I find that I am starting to want it more. I want glass drinking glasses and vases and candle holders. *sigh* Anyway, I love these. They are so pretty and they remind me of Under The Tuscan Sun...
You know, I feel like I should confess something.
I am the worst framer of pictures in the world.
I want to frame pictures. I want to hang framed photos all of my house. And I certainly take enough pics for that to be possible... but for some reason, I never do. Maybe I can't commit to buying frames, maybe I can't commit to printing up pics.. I don't know.. But I do love this frame set. You could put several of these in a hallway and it would looks super nice...

I love, love, LOVE this necklace. Must be another getting older thing because I could totally take or leave jewelry for pretty much my whole life and now I am finding stuff I just adore. This would be super duper special if one of the girls gave it me one day...

Ok, now this last one would be something amazing to give a friend for Mother's Day. It's so sweet and very pretty...

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 4:40 AM
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Tuesday, April 28, 2009
neither here nor there
She hadn't heard him walk up behind her. She idly fiddled with her phone, spinning it in slow circles on the counter. She stopped for a moment and considered checking her phone for new emails but thought better of it and spun it around once more. The teenager behind the counter startled her by asking him what she could get for him. It was then that she glanced behind her and saw him for the first time. He smiled as she excused herself. Feeling foolish for having stood in his way, she silently lectured herself. He placed his order charmingly and the annoyed teenaged girl went from pissy to adoring in a matter of seconds.
She was growing impatient, not wishing to stand around waiting with him. He looked over and made a flutter of eye contact, just enough to have her chest tighten up a bit which surprised her. She decided to check her email after all so she had something to do with her hands since they suddenly felt very obvious.
He looked over at her again but this time she was immersed in her phone and didn't look back. Since she didn't notice, he allowed a few moments to look at her. She brushed the hair from her eyes, her forehead was crinkled in thought and she was absently chewing on her lower lip. He had a sudden urge to grab her and take over that task. Blinking, he took a step away from her and purposefully looked the other direction. The restaurant had only a few other customers; a couple seated by a window sharing a banana split and a mother who was reading as her two young children climbed the playscape.
He turned back to her but she had gone. He spun on his heel but saw no sign of her. Raising up on his toes, he surveyed as much of the parking lot as he could see from where he was but didn't see her.
Snapping back, he smiled at the cashier.
Your order's ready. Have a nice day.
so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 6:00 AM
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Monday, April 27, 2009
My Starbucks order...
There are occasionally mornings where our maintenance dude isn't here. And since he is The Maker of The Coffee, when I remember to, I pick up coffee at Starbucks on those mornings so I don't die from lack of morning caffeine.
It could happen.
Well, in the beginning when I was under The Starbuck's Awesomeness Powers, I would order a White Chocolate Mocha or a Caramel Macchiato or during the holidays a Pumpkin Spice Latte. And those are like five bucks a pop.
So now I usually order a house coffee.
Because it's like half the price.
Unless it's the middle of a summer day and a hundred and two degrees outside. Then I order a Java Chip Frappuccino. Which I've just learned has six hundred calories. Damn you Starbucks.
Anyway, today when I pulled up to the little box to order my coffee, I said the same thing I always say, "Can I get a venti house with two raw sugars, toffee syrup and a ridiculous amount of cream?"
*peers into crowd* Lola? Is that you?
*ahem*, "I mean a ridiculous amount of non-fat milk"
But this time, instead of just chuckling at me, this guy redid my order.
He is apparently a Connoisseur of The Coffee.
A fixer of messed up orders.
A straightener-outer of confused customers.
First, he repeated back to me exactly what I had ordered with air quotes on "ridiculous amount of cream" so prominent that I could hear them through the speaker. When I laughed and said yes, he revised my order.
"So, what you really want is a grande house in a venti cup with two raw sugars, toffee syrup and the rest cream?"
That is exactly what I want.
You, Starbucks Man, are amazing.
All of these years that I have been sporadically coming in for coffee on the days when my maintenance man is absent and I didn't even know what I wanted. But now, now I know.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 5:11 AM
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Sunday, April 26, 2009
On raising a deaf doggie...
When your almost twelve year old daughter begs you, ruthlessly, about having her own puppy and you repeatedly tell her NO WAY IN HELL and then eventually cave in, make sure you don't get her a puppy puppy.
Get a dog with a little age under it's belt.
There are plenty of people out there who want puppies because they are all cute. But trust me, you will be glad you got one a little older... One that is more like six months old and less three months old.
Why? Well because it is much easier.
I was going to type make sure the dog can actually hear you...
I was but I don't want to create any prejudice against getting a deaf dog.
Even if you get one unknowingly.
Why? Because so far having a deaf dog is really no different than having one that can hear.
I am not kidding.
Except, well, it can't hear you.
I actually think that he is a more mellow puppy dog than any of the other dogs at his age.
And people, this doggie is not mellow.
Not even a little.
He is a bouncer off-er of the walls, a ball of the energy, a runner, a chaser, a picker, a grinner, a lover and a sinner, he plays his music in the suuuuuunnnnn, a joker and a smoker and a midnight toker, he sure don't want to hurt no ooooonnnne... ok, well not really all of those things but don't you just love that song?
What I'm trying to say is that Blue Moose?
Has spunk, pizzazz and moxie darn it.
But more importantly, this little... er big ball of energy has a really sweet heart.
He is a good dog.
He doesn't have shit for manners yet nor does he obey hand signal commands and he still cries when he gets put to bed at night and he tears shit up in the yard, but he's a sweetie pie.
And I am pretty glad we got him because we will love him and teach him and appreciate him.
Even if he can't hear it.


so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 11:53 AM
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Thursday, April 23, 2009
Earth Week - Carbon Footprint
"A carbon footprint is the measure of the amount of carbon dioxide -- the major man-made global warming greenhouse gas -- that goes into the atmosphere as you go about your daily life."

On average, every American is responsible for about 22 tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year. (You can calculate your carbon footprint here.)

Some ways to cut down your carbon footprint:
-Replace your light bulbs with CFLs.
There are people I work with who tell me that they haven't done this yet which just blows. my. mind... Why wouldn't you replace all of your light bulbs with CFLs? They last an amazingly long time and use a fraction of the electricity that your regular light bulbs use. I don't think I even have a regular light bulb in my whole house.

-Adjust your thermostat by just a few degrees.
Again, I know a ton of people, especially here in Texas where it's super hot, who are 65 degree junkies during the summer. Really? 65 degrees? My family gets pissed at me but I am a stickler for keeping the thermostat set at 77 degrees during the summer (sometimes 80) and 65 during the winter. And I don't usually even jack with the heat or ac until the weather has really gotten severe. My AC doesn't usually even come on until June and my heat can sometimes stay off all winter if the temps don't get too crazy. Not everyone needs to be that severe, but be conscious of where your thermostat is set.

-Unplug things.
Ok, ok, ok, I am terrible about this one but I AM trying to improve. Pretty much everything in your house that is plugged in pulls electricity. It's pretty simple, when you aren't using your toaster, unplug it. After you charge your cell phone, unplug the charger. Not using your Wii? Unplug it. I used to have those six plug things that you plug into a two plug thing? Not anymore. While it's slightly inconvenient, it's saving you money and making your carbon footprint smaller.

-Buy local.
I know, easier said than done. And I really do know because I am constantly looking for ways to buy local. The reasoning behind buying local is that having your food transported for thousands of miles on trucks which of course contribute to your carbon footprint as well as your country's. But try. My brother thought I'd lost my mind when I stopped at one of our local daycare's last week because I know one of the women who work's there sells her chicken's eggs for $2 a dozen. It might cost me a little more but they are completely organic and they were only transported from her house. Check out your area for a local farmer's market too.

The problem with trying to be more Earth Friendly is that it feels like you aren't making a difference. There isn't anyone sending you a How You Are Saving The Planet statement every month. Sometimes when I am dropping off my recycling, I think I wonder how much recycling I've dropped off since I started doing all of this.... And there isn't even going to be anyone who can tell me. But what I do I know is that there are a lot of people like me out there who are doing little things and trying daily to do more. And if there are a lot of people like that, then I know we are making a difference not only by doing little things but also by setting an example for our children too.
So you may feel insignificant when you recycle your paper or turn your thermostat down, but I assure you, you aren't. Remember, we do all of this for our children. And for our children's children. Doing the little things to help keep our planet healthy will be the best gift you can give them.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 4:33 AM
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Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Miss Pettigrew Lives For A Day
(Spoiler Alert)
"Forgive the intrusion. I'm glad to see you're safe."
"Oh, yes. Quite safe."
"Am I right in assuming you are no longer employed Miss Pettigrew?"
"Quite correct."
"So you're free?"
"Quite free... Might you be looking for a social secretary?"
"No. Absolutely not."
"I'm looking for you."
"I've been looking for you all night, and, I believe all of my life. If you'll have me?"

Forgive me, I must now go and cry in a corner.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 7:16 PM
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Earth Week - Let's save some water!
When your water is too hot, turn the hot down, not the cold up.
This was one I'd never thought of until I read it on a conservation site. I immediately started turning the offending temperature down instead of turning the other up. What was awesome was the first time I heard Emilee telling Triniti about it!

Run your clothes washer and dishwasher only when they are full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.

Use the garbage disposal sparingly. Compost vegetable food waste instead and save gallons every time.

Use a broom instead of a hose to clean your driveway and sidewalk and save water every time.

Empty unfinished glasses of water into plants, not down the drain.
This has been one of the most used savings I have implemented at my house. You really don't realize how many unfinished glasses of water go down the drain until you start watering plants with them or giving them to pets. It saves a bunch of water!

Wash your pets outdoors in an area of your lawn that needs water.

If you accidentally drop ice cubes when filling your glass from the freezer, don't throw them in the sink. Drop them in a house plant instead.

Avoid flushing the toilet unnecessarily. Dispose of tissues, insects and other such waste in the trash rather than the toilet.

What other water saving techniques are ya'll using that we may never even have thought of?

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 5:01 AM
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Happy Earth Day Humans

There is hope if people will begin to awaken that spiritual part of themselves, that heartfelt knowledge that we are caretakers of this planet. ~Brooke Medicine Eagle


so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 12:09 AM
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Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Earth Week - shopping bags (again)
I was thinking about all of you yesterday when I was shopping. I frequently forget to put all of my reusable shopping bags in the car. I know, I know - it may be a little shocking to hear that I am not perfect. I was shocked when I first found out too.
Yesterday when I stopped to pick up groceries, I looked into my backseat and saw a single, albeit jumbo sized, Target bag. Knowing that I was going to need a heck of a lot more groceries than I could fit into that bag, I considered my options.
Shop tomorrow? No, I'd left work an hour early specifically to shop. And we really need groceries.
Just get what I really needed? No, that never works. I hate shopping twice.
Be a big old hypocrite? Nope, not after the hard ass speech I'd just laid down on my blog, yo.
So I scurried around in the car and managed to find two black reusable Wal-Mart bags and my reusable Half Priced Books bag (which was AWESOME for all of my bread). That was only four bags, but I figured it was worth a shot.
I bought $115.00 worth of groceries and with the exception of my gallon of milk and two sleeves of juice boxes, it all fit into my four bags. I was super pleased. And seriously, the Half Priced Books bag was great for bread. It held five or six different packages of different bread without squashing it.
Why am I telling you all of this? Well, I wanted you to know that I am as hard on myself as I am on ya'll. There have been times where I forget my bags and have to use the plastic ones and when that happens, I keep some at home to get reused and I recycle the rest. But you know what? I hate it. Like I am genuinely pissed off when I am loading the fourteen million Wal-Mart bags into my car. Genuinely. Pissed. Off.
This is partially because it takes fourteen million Wal-Mart bags to accomplish what four reusable bags can. Partially because I don't feel like I do enough anyway and here I am not doing what little I do do. (yes, I know I just wrote "do-do"- shut it) Partially because I have invested money in my reusable bags and I hate when I don't get to use them. And partially because it's so easy to just use them.
Ok, I'm done ranting about the shopping bags. I promise.
Tomorrow? Tips that are easy and that you might not even realize you could be doing.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 10:19 AM
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Monday, April 20, 2009
Earth week: shopping bags
Last night I watched a Focus Earth Special called 6 People Saving Our Planet. Let me tell you, Planet Green is one of my favorite channels. As much as I would miss the drama of Grey's, if I had to only have one channel for the rest of my life, it would be Planet Green. I am aware that not everyone shares my enthusiasm for being a better inhabitor of our planet and while I don't understand it, I am aware that some of you look at me and think I'm smokin' crack in my spare time. Especially if you called me yesterday and I told you I had to call you back because I was in the middle of separating my earthworms from their castings.
But you know what? It straight pisses me off that people, even some of you willingly choose not to recycle, not to conserve, not to take simple steps to try and do a little more. Because simply doing a little more, one person at a time, is a lot more.
Last night, there were so many seriously inspiring people featured on 6 People Saving Our Planet. People who make the rest of us look wasteful and selfish. I mean, I realize that most of us don't have the cash, knowledge or space to erect a wind turbine in our backyard, but what are we doing?
What are you doing?

In that order.

Let's take shopping. Shopping was the first thing for me. It's no secret that I haven't been Earth Friendly forever. And I knowI can thank the lovely city of Toronto and the amazing Lola for opening my eyes to how un-Earth friendly I was.
Does that mean I have no carbon footprint? No. It does mean I am working towards a MUCH smaller one.
Shopping bags.
Are you one of the people still using plastic bags at your local grocery store?
Why in the world wouldn't you stop doing that?
People, you can get reusable grocery bags at practically every store now. Want to know where the best ones are? Target. And I don't even shop at Target but I tell you what, when I am near a Target, I so totally go in and buy two of their BIG bags. I probably have eight of them now. They are huge and they fold up and snap together into these little, very easy to carry squares.
And I will let you in on a secret about Target's bags that I have noticed in all of my reusable bag shopping: they sew their handles all the way down the bag. Handle on other bags seem to only be attached at the top of the bag and break fairly easily. Target's bags are reinforced somehow. And they can walk the walk. I have put thirty pounds worth of stuff in a Target bag and it handles it.
Stop using plastic.
Start saving the planet.
Be a part of the solution.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 6:20 AM
| link to this post | 3 spoke |

Friday, April 17, 2009
preparing my acceptance speech
It's raining here in the dry state of Texas and this morning when I was telling the girls goodbye as I was leaving for work, Emilee offered to come outside and open the gate for me. Which is ridiculously sweet since it's rainy and yucky outside. But that's just how Emo rolls, she is super sweet.
So what do I do to repay my darling daughter for offering to help her mommy out?
I run over her foot.
With my car.

Oh yeah, Mother of the Year Award, here I come.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 6:11 AM
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Thursday, April 16, 2009
From Tuesday's game...
This was the first game that Camille pitched. She did REALLY well!
Camille pitching

I love these shots. When it could go either way.

Aww, my Manda is so pretty.

Our coach's daughter is a bad ass.

An action sequence for ya'll...

Another action sequence...

Emilee hitting her home run...

Emilee running in on her home run, our assistant coach was pretty jazzed!

Amanda hitting her home run... Did I mention that BOTH of my daughters hit their first home runs on Tuesday?

And here is Amanda playing first base.

We lost that game 8 to 7, but it was definitely one of the best games ever.

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 5:49 AM
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Wednesday, April 15, 2009
then and now
2008 kiddos

2009 kiddos

2008 Group

2009 Group

2008 SnowElf Family

2009 SnowElf Family

2008 Surfer babes

2009 Surfer babes

2007 KHE Family

2009 KHE Family

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so eloquently put by katehopeeden at 10:38 AM
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Who: katehopeeden
Where: San Antonio, Texas Yeah, so I am all that you see here. I am friendly and kind, crazy and bitchy, playful and flirty... sometimes I am funny but mostly I just write the first thing that comes to mind and then stop when it ends. I love life and I am lucky to be living the one that I am. Want to know more?
Click here!

12/14/84 - 1/26/05

"The most wasted day is one in which we have not laughed"

"Life moves pretty fast, if you don’t stop and look around once in a while you might miss it."

"Guys are like stars, there's a million of them out there but only one of them can make your dreams come true." "Don't spend your life with someone you can live with, spend it with someone you can't live without."

"Reach for the moon, even if you miss you will still land among the stars"



Hot Toddy

Finding Liz

The Adorable DB

Tux Baby
Malcolm (he'll be back)

They'll All Fall

we grabbed the lion

Red Hot Sexy Papa



Madi (my stalker)

Did I miss you?
Do you feel left out and sad?
Click that link up there
and email me your blog!

Childhood Memories

My Mother

The Story of AZ

The Time In Between

The Beginning Of NY

The man from my dreams

The End Of NY

Growing and Changing

Learning to Cope

These are a work in progress. They are in the right order, but more will fill in the blank spaces in time as I write them.

"I just got done reading the history lessons on your blog (yes, I've been lurking on your blog). All the respect I had for you...has increased, like, tenfold. I don't think I could have done it. To go through what you have and not only still be able to discuss it with such wit and poise, but also to raise those three gorgeous girls. You are truly an inspiration. You are honestly one of the strongest people I have ever known, either online or IRL. Thank you so much." -Stef
katehopeeden's photos More of katehopeeden's photos

That cracked my shit up! TM

Kate went to Dallas?

You asked Kate questions?

Kate was stung by a Scorpion?

Kate met Mr. I?

Kate got pissed?

There was a mouse?

Kate shared?

Kate confessed?

Kate turned 25?

Kate shared some more?

"There are some of us out here who are living vicariously through you, okay?! So for god's sake, let us have some fun and excitement!" -Educated Liberal

"I LOVE inner monologues. They rock!"
-Hot Toddy


The Gym

Morning Monologue

RHBlogger 2nd runner

sizzling RH 05

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