Monday, January 31, 2011

Valentines Day Decorations

In the 3 years I've been married and had my own house, I've never really decorated for Valentines Day, but always wanted to. So since we got to go home a little early today because of the icy weather, I decided to decorate my table with mostly stuff I already had around the house. I did stop off at Schnucks to get a couple things and while I was there I picked up some heart shaped red hots for my centerpiece, a super cute heart shaped candy dish, some V-day m & ms and some V-day confetti for my table. I really want to do so much more, but this will have to be it for now. I know Target has some super cute stuff and I'd like to make a trip there this week to see if I can get a cute table runner and maybe some cute napkins/napkin rings, some V-day salt and pepper shakers and a dish towel. But with the impending bad weather the next 2 days, it may have to wait til the weekend. :-( This is what I came up with for now.

Our dining room table decorated for Valentines Day

Our bakers rack decorated for Valentines Day

This is my new Valentines Day candy dish.

This is a heart shaped tealight holder from PartyLite.

This is a frame I've had since Jake and I first started dating, in fact the picture in it is from 2002.

Well its Monday again...

I'm always sad to see the weekend go by so fast. I even had a three day weekend and it still went by super fast. It was a great weekend though...

Thursday night I volunteered at Stray Rescue of St. Louis after work. I walked dogs from around 5:30 p.m. til 11:00 p.m.. There are so many dogs that they've rescued from the cold and there wasn't a lot of help that evening, so we were there pretty late. I had a great time though, walking the cutest and sweetest dogs. I really wish people would do the right thing when it comes to their pets and take better care of them. I just hate to think of the poor, innocent dogs and cats out on the cruel streets. It just breaks my heart. :-( My prayer is that someday, in the near future, people will wake up and realize what treasures these loving animals are and stop treating them so badly. I think the more education people get about pets, the better things will get.

Friday was my "Friday off" from work. I work 9 hour days and have every other Friday off. So I spent the day with my Mom, Sister, Grammy and nephew Landon. Then when all the guys got off work, we all had dinner at my parents' house. We had a nice evening.

Saturday, Jake and I were in a bowling tournament that my work has every year. We didn't bring home a win, but had a lot of fun anyways, which is really what matters. Then Saturday night I cleaned the house and Jake went to the grocery store. He also fixed dinner and we watched a movie. It was a nice evening.

Sunday we went to church, then had lunch with my parents at Las Fuentes (a yummy Mexican restaurant close to our house). After lunch my parents spent the afternoon with us at our house, just watching t.v. and relaxing.

After my parent's left I made some cookies and Jake and I started watching season 1 of Lost on Netflix. We watched the first couple seasons of Lost back when it was first on, but we lost interest after the second season. Now that the show is over, we thought we'd go back and try to watch all 6 seasons since we really want to know what happened. We had forgotten so much of what happened that we decided to just start at the beginning. Its going to take us a while to get through all 6 seasons, but we'll just watch an episode here and there and we'll get through them eventually.

With the bad winter storm in the forecast for the next couple days, we may get more episodes watched than we thought. The weather men are predicting 1/2" to 1" of ice and then 4-6+ inches of snow on top of the ice. Their warning about power outages and very little to no travel. So theres a chance we could be snowed in for a day or 2. Hoping and praying it doesn't end up being as bad as they're saying and I'm really hoping we don't have any power outages, especially since they're saying Wed. night the temp. is supposed to drop to 5 degrees and the Thurs. the low is predicted to be 0 degrees. Ugh, I'm soooo ready for Spring!!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

And Man Created Dog

Stray Rescue of St. Louis, where I volunteer and adopted Max from, was involved with a special that aired on National Geographic this past summer. It was called "And Man Created Dog" and it was all about the history of the dog. Nat Geo followed Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue of St. Louis, while he rescued and this clip is the portion of the program that involved Stray Rescue. Its a touching video and will probably make you cry (it did me and everyone I know thats watched it), just giving you a heads up... but its well worth watching and it will hopefully inspire you to help stray dogs whether it be volunteering your time or money to a rescue group. I'm so happy to have Stray Rescue here in St. Louis. They do so much and save so many dogs from a miserable, lonely life on the streets. Thanks for watching.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


Max is our newest member and the youngest of our three dogs. I started out fostering Max, along with his sister. I picked them both up on Oct. 1st, 2010, when they were about 6 weeks old. Randy Grim, founder of Stray Rescue of St. Louis, rescued Max along with his Mom, 2 other brothers and 3 sisters. There were 6 puppies total in the litter. Randy rescued them on the first day of Fall 2010. You can read all about his rescue story here. Max's rescue name was Vasser (explained in his rescue story attached), but we changed it to Max.

When I agreed to foster the 2 puppies, I don't know why, but I didn't expect to get as attached as I did to them. It was so hard. As a foster, you are in charge of finding the puppies the best possible home. Stray Rescue has a website where the dogs, up for adoption, are listed. They also set up adoption events at several local stores for you to attend with your foster dog. These adoption events give your dog a better chance at someone falling in love with them who maybe hasn't looked at the website.

On Sat., Nov. 13th, 2010 we had a home visit set up for each puppy. The home visit for Max went well but they were also interested in another puppy at Stray Rescue and ultimately chose the other puppy. Which was fine with me, lol. By this time I was already very attached. Perrier's home visit went well and she ended up staying with the couple who went on to adopt her. She is now "Tater Tot" and is very happy in her new home with her mom, dad and fur-brother, Dodger. I heard from her new mom right after Christmas and she said she was doing great. :-)

We had one other couple interested in Max the week before Thanksgiving, but they ended up changing their minds since they already had two dogs. We had already been considering keeping Max, and when the second couple backed out, we took that as a sign that we should keep him and we couldn't be happier that we did. 

Max is now about 5 months old and is a typical puppy. He loves to play and has a great appetite, LOL. He scarfs his food down and can't wait for breakfast and dinner. He's also a pretty laid back puppy. He's very smart and learns really quickly. I just adore this dog and am so happy we decided to adopt him. Here are some pictures of Max.

I took this picture of Max the night I brought him home to foster.

This is Max laying on his foster sister the second day I had him. He was sick the second day I had him. I don't know if it was the change of food or location, but he wouldn't eat that day and just layed around. Thankfully the next day he felt better.

Max and Marley (we renamed them because we didn't really like their rescue names Vasser and Perrier) Marley went on to be named Tater Tot, LOL.

Max, out in our back yard.

Max, a week or so after fostering him.

Max out in the yard.

Max sitting on our bed, Nov. 2010

 Max in the kitchen, Nov. 2010

Max and I in front of the tree, Dec. 2010

Max playing with his toys, Jan. 2011


Hunter is actually our oldest dog, but we got him after Libby. When Jake and I got married, we wanted to get a friend for Libby. We weren't really looking yet, but a co-worker of my husband's was needing to find a new home for her male lab mix. He was around 4 or 5 years old at the time, housebroken and already neutered. He was perfect for us because we weren't really wanting to train a puppy and he needed a home.

So on July 26th, 2007, just a couple weeks after getting married, my husband brought Hunter home to live with us. :-) He was a perfect fit. It did take him some time to get used to going inside, as he had been an outside dog for the most part. He didn't like the laminate floors or the stairs, but it didn't take him too long to get used to the life of an inside dog.

Now he's a big couch potato and thinks hes a lap dog, even though he's about 85 lbs. LOL. We think he might be a Lab/Great Dane mix, but we've never had him tested to see for sure. He's such a loveable dog. He's happiest when he's up in our bed, right in between Jake and I, with his head laying on one of us, getting a belly rub. He's definitely a gentle giant and we love him so much. Here are a few pictures of Hunter. :-)

The day we brought Hunter home.

Hunter, laying on Jake.

Hunter, all curled up in a little ball. So cute.

Hunter the couch potato.

Hunter laying on the dog bed. :-)

Hunter out in our back yard. I just love this picture of him.

My nephew Landon was over one Sunday afternoon and was laying on our futon downstairs, which is typically where Hunter likes to lay. While Landon was watching a movie, Hunter got up there and layed down with him. It was too cute.


Liberty Bell Smith (aka, Libby) was our first dog. We got Libby in 2005, while I was still living at home with my parents. Jake and I were dating at the time, but hadn't gotten engaged or anything yet. We picked Libby up from the breeder just a week or so after my sister got married and took her dog, Colby, with her.

I knew I wanted a Labrador Retriever after having been around them while working at the animal hospital. I also did a little internet research on the breed. They are such great dogs. A friend of mine had gotten a chocolate lab from this same breeder a few years prior to us getting Libby, so thats why I chose the particular breeder I got Libby from. They lived out in the country, took great care of their dogs and were very nice. Jake always said he'd like to have a yellow lab someday, so since I new I wanted a lab, we decided to get a yellow lab rather than chocolate or black.

On, May 20th, 2005, Jake, Myself, my Mom, Sister and Bro.-in-law, all drove out to the breeders home to pick out our little fur ball. I knew I wanted a girl, and they had 3 yellow females ready to go to their fur-ever homes that day. We played with the three puppies, but ultimately chose Libby because she was the calmest and most cuddly. ;-) She was about 8 weeks old when we brought her home... born on March 19th, 2005.

She's been such a great dog and we love her so much. When she was a puppy I taught her several tricks, (sit, shake, lay down and roll over, to name a few). We even took her to a puppy class where she learned to walk on a leash and all the basic lessons a dog should know. She's never really walked on a leash all that well, but she does great off the leash. She enjoys playing with other dogs and loves to swim when she gets the chance. She enjoys going to the dog park and loves to get treats!! She's the princess around our house and is very spoiled!! :-)  Its hard to believe she's going to be 6 years old in March. Time has really flown by. Here are a few pictures of her from when she was a puppy. :-)

This picture was taken on our way home from the breeder. We took her to Petsmart once we go her home and I remember she only weighed 7 lbs. Now she weighs about 70 lbs., LOL. 

I took this picture of her the same weekend we brought her home.

This is a little video of Libby when she was a puppy. 

Libby and I when she was just a puppy. :-)

Libby laying on my bed. She was about 4 months old or so here.

Libby, after she graduated from Puppy Class in August of 2005.

Libby's first Christmas. :-)

Libby in her bed. She loves her Kennel and goes in there even when she doesn't have to.

Libby going for a ride in the car. She's very used to the car and goes with us a lot of places.

Libby in her princess costume at the Halloween Party at the dog park. 2006. Her cousin Colby is the little Yorkie in the picture.

Libby and my nephew Landon in Libby's kennel. So cute!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Dog Pile!!!

Wed. night, while I was watching t.v. in bed, all the dogs piled up on the bed as well. My husband came in the room and noticed Max had his head laying on Hunters back. They were all sound asleep and we were able to snap these couple pictures. I just love my babies. :-)

A close up of Max, using Hunter as a pillow. :-)

More Snow...

Well, we got more snow Wed. night into Thurs. morning. 10-12 inches of SNOW!!!! This is probably the most snow I've seen in my life. St. Louis always gets snow in the winter months. Usually 2-3 little snow storms that accumulate around 3 inches or so a piece. This Winter season we've had about 4 storms, all accumulating between 3-5 inches of snow I'd say, all except this last one. Yikes, theres a lot of snow out there.

Jake was sick yesterday and wasn't going to work anyways and we both thought I better stay home too cause they didn't even clean off our street until around 12:30 yesterday afternoon. Plus I work about 40 minutes away from our house. It was a mess out there and I'm not that used to driving in snow anyways, much less a foot of snow!! So we both stayed home with the fur-babies yesterday and had a snow day. Here are a few pictures around our house that I took yesterday morning. Unfortunately we are expected to get another inch possibly tonight and then another storm on Monday with even more accumulations (I've heard 6 inches, but we'll see).

Our back yard.

Our front yard.

Our front yard. As you can see they hadn't plowed the roads yet.

Max in the snow, It covered up his whole legs.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Back to work today...

I'm back to work today after a nice, long weekend. I hope you all had a nice weekend as well. Mine was nice and laid back. Friday we had our bible study group over to our house and then some of us went bowling after-wards, which was a blast. We bowled several rounds because it was all you could bowl for $13.99. The last round we crazy bowled. Below is a picture of me Granny bowling, LOL. :-)

Then Saturday I did some cleaning around the house and then Saturday night I met up with my sister and our friend Holly for a girls night out dinner. We ate at a restaurant called Bella Milano in Edwardsville, IL. It was very good. :-) Then we went over to Starbucks for a latte. :-)

Sunday we went to church and then had my parents and my sister and her family over for lunch and football. While the guys were watching the football game, my sister and mom wanted to try out a recipe they had found for cinnamon rolls. I don't have the recipe, but here are the ingredients and some pictures of them before and after baking.

Cinnamon Rolls after being prepared. Rising and then they go in the oven.

Cinnamon Rolls after coming out of the oven.

A close-up of one of them.

 Cinnamon Rolls with icing. Yum. :-)

Yesterday I was off  work for MLK, Jr.'s B-day. I spent most of the day at home with my fur-babies and then yesterday evening I had an appt. to get my hair cut and colored. I was super excited because it had been since last Aug. that I got it cut and colored. Yikes. The roots were grown out pretty bad and my hair was in dire need of a haircut. Here are the before and after pictures.

This picture was taken last month . You can see how long my hair was and that the roots were a lot darker than the rest of my hair, lol. 

I took this yesterday after my appt. I really like it. It actually looks blonder in person. 

Heres a side view. I really hate my side profile, lol.