Zoorific

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NATIONAL ZOO KEEPER WEEK

I was pretty excited about this holiday because I will use any excuse to go to the zoo. It worked out perfectly too because I had already scheduled a day off this week in order to have a ‘day-o-fun’ with the kiddos. I like to do that every so often, especially in the summer months, to give us all a free day to do something we wouldn’t normally attempt on a regular weekend day. It’s nice to take a well day rather than sick day sometimes. I was especially pumped when we got to the zoo and they had this fabulous sign:

Oh yeah, that’s rad. This was actually our second trip to the zoo this summer (I told you I liked the zoo!). It was a lovely day with perfect weather. The animals, of course, were mainly just lying around sleeping. The thrilling life of a zoo animal, right? Sometimes I feel bad for the animals that are stuck in an enclosure for all of their lives, but then you read many of their stories. A lot of zoo animals were rescued and brought to live in a safe environment because they were either in danger due to dumb people or because their species is on the verge of extinction. For example (I pulled this from a news article written about the new lion habitat at the zoo):

The Detroit Zoo is home to six lions, five of which were rescued. Bikira, 19, was born at an Arizona zoo and came to Detroit when she was 9 months old. Katie and Percival, also 19, were exotic pets that were confiscated and brought to the Zoo. Katie was relieved of “guard duty” at a crack house in 1992, and Percival was discovered in the basement of an abandoned home in 1993.

The Zoo’s lion population doubled in 2009 when the Detroit Zoological Society saved three lions from a junkyard in Kansas. The rescued trio, male Larson and females Emily and Erin, are estimated to be about 11 years old.

That’s right, a crack house. Seriously. Who in their right mind thinks it’s a good plan to have a guard lion. Oh wait, crack heads….I get it now. Anyhow, getting back to the zootastic excursion now, it’s picture time!

Turtles! The only creature that doesn’t totally freak me out in the Reptile House.

Looking cool by the fountain.

Having an intense stare down with the meerkats.

The giraffe that we didn’t get to feed…..again. They sell food for a special Feed the Giraffes exhibit and they are always sold out by the time we get there. Am I bitter about this? You betcha.

Watching the seals.

On the lookout for polar bears.

We love the zoo!

As a closing note, for everyone who reads this blog that is not a resident of Metro Detroit, the city is really not that awful. Yes, there are some areas that are far from stellar, but there is still a lot worth saving downtown. I hope, as I’m sure everyone else who lives in this area, that Detroit is able to make its grand comeback in my lifetime. I would hate to think that my children are going to grow up so close to such a major city and not ever have the opportunity to experience all that I know it has to offer. I only wish for the best and I look forward to what the future brings for Detroit.

 BONUS PICTURES

Leo palming that ball like a boss!

Our first Quinceañera! Roman and ‘Princess Vanessa’.

Goo Goo Gourmet

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NATIONAL BABY FOOD WEEK

I’m a bad mom. I have never made baby food from scratch, nor did I ever have any desire to do so. This week was my time for redemption – National Baby Food Week. I started my mission by searching the interweb for ‘interesting baby food recipes’. I came across the site weelicious.com and picked a few recipes that I thought I could handle. The first one was called Spinach Gnocch-wee. Basically this is just spinach and ricotta & parmesan cheese blended together and then made into little balls that you boil. Simple enough, I can handle this one. Since the recipe calls for the balls to be put in the freezer for 30 minutes before boiling, I opted to make these during my lunch hour so they were ready for cooking after work.

Ready to freeze my balls.

Dinnertime arrived and I was ready to boil:

Ewwwwww

Hmmmm…..something seems awry…..my beautifully rolled balls instantly disintegrated as soon as they hit the boiling water. That’s not supposed to happen, right? I was perplexed. I looked back at the recipe and quickly realized my mistake….flour. I have completely overlooked the 2 tablespoons of flour as one of the ingredients. Awesome. On the bright side, I had only obliterated half of my balls. I was able to mash the rest of them back into a dough and added the flour (only 1 tablespoon…see, I’m not that dumb!). Boiling part 2:

Much better!

Great success! Now after all that, how will they stack up against my baby boy’s palate?

Checking it out.

NOT a fan.

Well, I think it’s safe to say I will most likely not be locking this one down in my recipe box. The next one I found was MUCH easier – Avocado. That’s it! Avocado! I can totally not mess this one up! I opted to cut it up into chunks rather than mash it up since Leo prefers finger foods these days. He seemed a little more receptive to this one:

Ready to chow down.

Leo likey!

I am all for experimenting with new foods for my kids, but I will probably hang up my chef hat and stick to the culinary creations by Gerber.

BONUS PICTURES

Richie Rich and I enjoying the Vintage Cars at Cedar Point. Burn Rubber!!

Big Bro Roman riding his sweet bike. I’m sure he’s going to be thrilled about all these pics of him in his undies when he grows up.

Grillin’ Like A Villain

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JULY IS:

NATIONAL GRILLING MONTH

No surprise that July is National Grilling Month. Summertime is in full swing and we Americans love to celebrate good old Independence Day with some tasty grilled meat treats. Luckily, I already had two grill dates set up before I even decided to start this blog up again, fancy that! The first was the 4th of July, naturally. Richie Rich had to work so me and the boys went over to my parents’ place for a lovely grilled dinner. Now, I didn’t take a whole lot of pictures of the actually grilling, because that’s not all that exciting. Since my goal of bringing back my celebrations is to take more pictures of my kiddos and document fun times, that’s what I will be doing here. So, here we go with the barrage of family photos!

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Mom and the boys on the Fourth

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Obligatory grilling picture #1

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Grandma and Papa with their grandkids

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Me and my handsome boys

Next, we had planned a BBQ with the Nagle family since it had been FOREVER since we had gotten together with the kids. Of course I forgot to take some shots of Roman and Nataleigh playing…..yep, dropping the ball already. They are both potty-training though so Roman was running around sans bottoms…..no one needs to see that. I did get a few photos of our impromptu festivities:

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Obligatory grilling pic #2

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The snazzy dinnerware I purchased for this special occasion. Thanks Target dollar bins!

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Chowing down in our VERY boring dining room….man, we really need to paint in there….

In true American style we made waaaay too much food and will have leftovers for days. I am glad we got some good grilling in this year so far!

 

BONUS PICTURES

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Simple, classic, understated. Roman prefers a plain white brief.

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Little swimmers

 

I’m Baaaack!

That’s right friends, it’s true. Yesterday I overheard a coworker talking about how it was Canada Day. I immediately reverted back to two years ago when I began this blog. It has officially been one year since I have completed my daily holiday extravaganza. Do I miss it? To be completely honest, no. I got really burnt out towards the end of that adventure and life got real crazy not too soon after I finished (more on that later….). I do miss some aspects of it though. I miss the actual joy of the celebrations and I really miss the pictures I took every day. The blog gave me an excuse to document my life and the life of my growing baby boy. I now have another little man who I feel is already getting the short end of the stick. He is growing up super fast (10 months already!!) and I feel like I am missing the boat when it comes to giving him new and exciting experiences. I thought about bringing back the holiday celebrations, but not quite to the scale I had done them previously. The cumbersome aspect of blogging every single day is not going to pan out at this point in my life. My mom gave me some sage advice after I gave birth to Leo and then had a major emotional breakdown the first time I took both of the boys out of the house on my own. (Roman had decided just before leaving that it was a good time to ‘paint’ the kitchen floor with some nail polish he found in a drawer….yes, this is funny now, but at the time I could not stop crying about it. Mothers – you know what I’m talking about….newborns/pregnancy/labor make you a blubbering fool.) Anyhow, I digress; Mommy told me that the next 5 years of our lives were going to be a blur. A wild, fun, emotional, what the hell is happening here blur. It has been nothing short of what I was warned about. I love my family and I love where we are at right now in our lives, but sometimes it is just too much and I just want to push fast-forward. Rich and I have done a pretty good job with finding time for ourselves. This is an important part of parenting/marriage as well as maintaining your own personal sanity. My blog was a little piece of me every day. I had made the commitment and I accomplished it and I have wonderful memories forever. I want something like that again. I need it. So, in that vein, I have made a few new commitments. One actually just fell right into my lap this morning. I sort of took it as a sign that I need to do it. Some of the Western Wayne Fire Authority (WWFA…you will be seeing this acronym a lot so get it straight in your brains!) wives are going to run the Tough Mudder obstacle course next year. This thing is hardcore. I have been quite the lazy lady these days and I needed something to give me some fitness motivation. This is going to do it….or it is going to kill me. Either way, it will be a fun adventure getting there. I made the commitment and I will stick to it. Mark my words – one year from now you will be seeing pictures of me and all the other tough firefighter wives covered in mud and loving it! My second commitment is going back to my holiday blog. As I mentioned earlier, this will be nowhere near the daily posts I had required of myself before. I will commit to celebrating a holiday weekly. This may be a daily holiday that falls during that week (no repeats from before!), a weekly holiday (yes, those exist too!) or a monthly holiday. I am going to be a lot more flexible with it this time around. My only constraints are that I have to post at least once a week. I am not going to be nearly as organized this time around either. I am not going to keep track of how much money I spend or figure out every holiday a month ahead of time. My sole purpose here is going back to why I did this in the first place – to find happiness in the everyday. I want my kids to have these memories and this blog forces me, in a good way, to 1) take more pictures and 2) write things down. The simple act of recording what at the time may seem like a small, unexciting event is really solidifying an awesome memory for both me and my children. That, for me, is more than enough reason to start it up again. So, readers, this blog is a bit more ego-centric and personal than my last one. I invite you all to read and follow along and I welcome your comments and participation as always. I’m excited about this and I’m ready to start a new chapter in my life. Now, back to my ‘more on that later’ statement earlier, here is a quick and dirty wrap-up of the past year in the Dege Family:

 

Leo – Leo Peo Pizza Pie (this is his weird nickname for no apparent reason) was born on August 23rd. He is a good baby, but he unfortunately gets sick a lot (downside of daycare). He has already had 3 ear infections, boo. When he is not sick/teething/tired/hungry he is actually pretty great to be around! We thought he was going to be the calm child….he is not. He is getting crazier each day and I fear what is going to happen when he starts to walk. He adores Roman. The feeling is not mutual. He is tall and built like his daddy – tough! I am currently trying to decide on his 1st birthday theme. I cannot believe he is almost a year old!!

 

Roman – Roman talks….a lot. He talks about everything. He will give you the play by play for the most mundane task. “Momma’s making banana bread. Oh, she’s melting butter in the microwave. That’s sugar in the bowl. We’re gonna mix it up. There it goes! She’s mixing it up!” Yeah…..no filter whatsoever. We love it though, he is hilarious. He has a love/hate relationship with Leo. I think he secretly likes him, but he does a good job of hiding it. We are currently working on potty-training with him. It is not going well.

 

Rich – Rich made it through his one year probationary period with the Westland Fire Department. Yay! He loves his job and we are all extremely proud of him. As most of you readers may know, the Westland Fire Department lost one of their own in a structure fire in May. It has been a really difficult time for everyone and this tragedy has opened our eyes to the true dangers of his career. On the other side of things, this has really brought the WWFA firefighters and their wives together. It is a true brotherhood and family and I am taken aback each and every time I see the support everyone has for one another. Rich is lucky to have his dream job and we are lucky to be a part of something much bigger than our little family. In other Rich news, he is doing a fantastic job with his second occupation – watching our boys on his days off. I love that they have this time with their father and I am eternally grateful that Rich is such a great dad to our boys. He’s just the best!

 

Hayley – The most major thing that has happened to me over the past year is moving to a new position at work. I made the choice to leave the department I was in and take a lesser role at the same company. I am much happier now and I am glad I made the move. Less stress is always the way to go. Speaking of less stress, we FINALLY closed on our Garden City house last Wednesday. Yes, that is correct, it only took 14 months to go through that process. It was awful but it is over now and we can now move forward and start really settling into our Farmington Hills home. Yippee!!!

 

Other News – My brother and Vanessa got married in April. Rich, Roman and I were all in the wedding (Leo stayed home that day) and we were very happy to officially welcome Vanessa into the family. My mom quickly turned Steven’s old room into what is now referred to as ‘Roman’s room’. Talk about spoiled grandchildren, both Leo and Roman have their own rooms at my parents’ house now! Over the past year we have welcomed 3 more (4 more if you include Leo) posse babies into the mix – Pierce, Cole and Morgan. Babies everywhere! I am sure I am missing some major events here, but these are the biggest things I am remembering right now.

 

So, that’s all the news that’s fit to print for now. I feel good writing this and I have only positive feelings about this new undertaking!!!

 

Be Happy!!!

*Hay*

 

 

 

The End

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Now that it has been a few weeks since my yearlong holiday adventure came to an end, I have had time to reflect on those 366 days (remember, it was a leap year). Let me just start by saying that a whole lot can happen in a year! This year, blog aside, was probably one of the craziest and most stressful years of my life so far. When I began this project I was not anticipating so many changes. Getting pregnant, buying a new house, packing/moving, Rich switching jobs…..those are just the major ones. Committing to celebrating a holiday every single day and blogging about it did not seem like it would be that difficult when I initially started. The second half of the year is when things started to get hard. I’m sure my loyal readers were able to see a marked difference after the halfway point. I don’t know how I was keeping up with multiple holidays in the beginning, there was no way I could have maintained that pace throughout the whole year. While it was a crazy year of ups and downs, one thing remained constant in my life…happy holiday hayley. Am I glad it is over? Yes. That being said, I loved the experience and I am happy that I did it…and actually made it through an entire year!

My motive for starting this blog was to bring more happiness into my life. Did it work? Yes and no. Yes, because it was fun to celebrate something each day and it made life much more interesting, to say the least. I tried many new things and did a lot of weird stuff that I would have never done otherwise. It gave me an excuse to go to different places, try new foods and document an entire year of my life. Now that I am done, I truly treasure what I have been able to create. I have a whole year of my life, as well as Roman’s life, down in writing and photos and that can never be taken away. It is amazing for me to look back and remember some of the holidays and also to see how little Roman was when I started. This blog is something completely unique and I hope when Roman is older he will be able to go back and read it and see all the cool adventures we had during this time. Now for the down side. No, this did not bring more happiness into my life because it ended up causing unnecessary stress, mainly towards the end. If I knew no one was reading this thing I would have quit months ago. June was the most difficult month of all. Maybe because I knew it was finally coming to an end, maybe it was because I was already under major stress with the new house/getting rid of the old house/pregnancy, or maybe it was because I was just tired. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely enjoyed celebrating the holidays. It was the actual act of downloading pictures and writing a post for each and every day that became very cumbersome. Therein lies the conundrum…if I hadn’t done the posts then I wouldn’t have been held accountable and therefore probably not actually celebrated each holiday. The blog kept me honest and it kept me going, even as difficult as it was in the end. Since I have had some time to chill and decompress, I realize that I am extremely proud of myself for sticking with it. It is always easier to quit than it is to keep going. In the end, it has brought me much more happiness than it has brought me stress and sadness. So, yes. Overall, the project did bring me happiness. I think it brings me even more happiness now that it is over and I have such an awesome keepsake to carry with me the rest of my life.

As I mentioned above, if no one was reading this then I would have had the perfect excuse to stop. YOU readers kept me going! I want to sincerely thank all of you that read my blog, whether it was one post or the whole shebang. I loved when people came up to me and told me how much they enjoyed the blog. It reminded me that more people were getting something out of this other than me. Thank you to everyone that sent it pictures and participated in the holidays. Thank you to everyone that commented on posts and let me know they were reading my daily meanderings. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am 100% serious when I say that the only reason I was able to successfully finish this year is because of you.

A special thank you goes out to my husband for helping me through this whole project. Rich was always willing to celebrate with me and was always very positive and complimentary about my posts. Thank you for being my personal photographer too!

People have asked me many questions now that the project is over and I figured this is a good time to answer them: 

  • Are you glad it is over? Yes.
  • Why are you stopping? I am not stopping, per se, I committed to one year and I met that goal.
  • Are you going to do another year? No.
  • Are you going to start another blog or update this one from time to time? Not at this time. I need some time off to use my free time to work on about a million and one other things I have going on (i.e. – have a baby (that’s kind of a big one) and work on beautifying our new house). I would like to do another blog in the future, but it would be something different. I like the idea of putting things down in writing and really forcing myself to take more pictures. I want our second child to have something special like this too, so we will see what I come up with down the road.

So, that is it. No more posts. I hope you all enjoyed celebrating with me, I know I had a lot of fun. It is a bittersweet ending, but aren’t all great endings bittersweet? I leave you all with one final thought – find happiness wherever you can. Be happy, be positive, live life.

The end.

The Final Wrap-Up

THE FINAL WRAP-UP

I had to take a little break there before I tackled this final portion of the happy holiday hayley blog experience. Compiling all of this information was a bit more time consuming than I thought it would be. I am finally done though, yippee! Here is the final wrap-up from my entire year of celebrations:

Total Holidays Celebrated: 480 – The first half of this adventure I was quite ambitious and took on multiple holidays each day….this did not last.

Total Cost Celebrating: $1,727.69 – Wow. I added this up several times because I could not believe the number was that high. My most expensive month was August ($420.89) and my least expensive month was March ($27.45). I realized after the first few months that I needed to minimize the expenditures for this project. When you actually break it down and average everything out I technically only spent $4.72 per day and $3.60 per holiday. Okay, those numbers are not as scary. I suppose if I was a smoker and I smoked a pack a day this is comparable. See? I can rationalize anything.

Most Expensive Individual Holiday: National Night Out (August 2nd) – $121. If you recall, I did not even celebrate this holiday correctly. Oh, the irony.

Total Amount of Cash Given to Charity: $135 – hmmm….this number looks pretty weak when you look at how much I spent overall. In the end though, this was the best money spent throughout the past year.

Total Hits: As of today, there have been over 23,300 views on happy holiday hayley. I know for larger blogs this is basically a daily (or hourly for that matter) hit tally, but I am happy to know that I wasn’t just writing all this stuff for myself and other people are getting something out of it too.

Most Visited Posts: The top 3:

               One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish – Dr. Seuss Day, March 2nd

               Scout’s Honor – Boy Scout Anniversary Day, February 8th

               Nurse? I Need a Shot of Morphine – Nurses Day, May 6th

I know why the Dr. Seuss post is so popular, but I am not too sure on how the Boy Scout and Nurse posts climbed the ranks so quickly. WordPress allows you to see what search terms led visitors to your blog, but only to a certain extent. I see that many Google Image searches have pointed people here, but it does not give specifics on what images or exactly what term was being searched. I also know that I started getting a lot more hits after the Winnie the Pooh post because if you search ‘Winnie the Pooh quotes’ in Google Images, the second one that pops up is from my blog. Crazy how this stuff works, isn’t it? As you can see, I am no internet genius.

Favorite Holidays: Looking through all these posts again has brought back a lot of memories. That sounds funny to say because it’s not like all of this happened years ago, but I truly had forgotten about some of the holidays already. My top 3 favorite holidays are as follows:

               Girlfriend’s Day – August 1st

               National Museum Day – September 25th

               Scooby-Doo Day – September 13th

I like Girlfriend’s Day the best because I really think this is a holiday that I will celebrate every year. The girlfriends that I have in my life are very important to me and this day is a perfect excuse to celebrate our friendship. National Museum Day holds a special place in my heart because I have always loved going to museums of all kinds. I think it is very important to support local museums. That being said, the Detroit Science Center (the museum we visited for this holiday) is still closed. I feel lucky that we were able to go there during the last week they were opened, but it makes me very sad to know that we cannot go back anytime soon. Scooby-Doo Day was just funny to me. I was very happy with how our costumes and pictures turned out and that is still one of my favorite blog posts.

Least Favorite Holidays: I never included this category on my monthly wrap-up because it essentially is not a positive thing. I decided I would put it in the final wrap-up though just because it was semi-interesting. While I found some holidays to be rather dull, especially the ones about history or politics (not my bag, baby), I had 2 particular holidays that I was especially not fond of:

               Bikini Day – July 5th

               Hagfish Day – October 19th

Bikini Day. I am not a chick that really likes to strut her stuff in a bikini. This post was the bane of my existence for awhile since it was the most searched one for a good majority of this project. Just knowing that there were people out there searching ‘girl in bikini’ and finding my picture creeped me out. Hagfish Day was one that just plain old grossed me out. I know it is about the fact that not everything is beautiful and all that, but the hagfish is just icky. I can still see that image…it is burned into my brain and it makes me want to gag. Ew.

Weirdest Holiday: I have to give this one to Barbie in a Blender Day, July 27th. While there were a lot of strange holidays, I think this one takes the cake.

I could make up a dozen more categories, but I think I am going to stop here. I have one final post after this one that will finish this blog once and for all.

June Wrap-Up

JUNE WRAP-UP

Most visited post – June 1st – Oh No, Please Don’t Tell Me You Are Choking…Heimlich Maneuver Day. This makes me happy to know that people are learning the correct way to save someone from choking by visiting my blog!

June 6th – Yo-Yo Day Contest – I challenged you all to guess how many complete yo-yo revolutions I was able to perform. The answer is…..ONE! That is me being quite liberal too. Thank you for all of your overly confident guesses (especially you, Kendall!). I blame my lack of awesomeness at yo-yoing on purchasing a super cheap yo-yo. Karri had the closest guess at 3 so she will earn a prize of sorts. I know I said closest without going over, but no one guessed zero or one!

June 27th – Sunglasses Day – Miss Melissa was the first to correctly post that the title of this blog (I’m Putting On My Shades To Cover Up My Eyes) is a line from Ridin’ Solo by Jason Derulo. Congrats and look out for a totally rad prize coming your way soon!

Total amount spent celebrating the month: $122.60

Most expensive holiday this month: Sushi Day – $42

My personal favorite holiday celebration this month: Beautician Day

What If…

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June 30th Holiday

METEOR DAY

I will admit, when I saw that Meteor Day was my only option for holidays today I was a little distraught. What a boring holiday to have as my very last holiday to celebrate. After giving it some thought I figured out a way to make it into a good post. Here is the scenario: you, and you alone, due to some fantastical knowledge (let’s not think too much about how or where this knowledge came from, shall we?) know that a meteor is going to hit Earth in exactly one year and everything is going to be obliterated. What would you do? This is a similar scenario to people who have terminal illnesses or things like that, but today is Meteor Day so it fits a lot better. Basically, what would be on your Bucket List? Well, first I would immediately quit my job…this is obvious. The main thing I would want to do is travel and see the world. Travelling is always something that has been of great interest to me, as I’m sure it is to most humans, but I am basically waiting until retirement to really dedicate some time to it. This is where the ‘coulda, woulda, shoulda’ factor comes into effect later in life. Because I’m waiting so long to do a lot of things, who knows if they ever will come to fruition or not. That is why I like this little fantasy I have here. I KNOW how much time there is and I can finally get off my butt and do all the cool stuff I dream about. So, travel is number one. I would like to go pretty much everywhere. I have always wanted to go to London and of course I would want to hit up Italy and Paris and Alaska and Hawaii and Australia and Japan……you get the gist. Next, I would go skydiving. I have always been interested in this, but the older I get the scarier it sounds. I would save this for the end of the year in case something went wrong. I would eat at all the fanciest restaurants all over the world. I would buy whatever clothes and shoes I wanted and not give a second thought about the price. I would let my kids do whatever they wanted – space camp, Disney World, you name it. I guess I would just do whatever I wanted that sounded fun at the moment. I wouldn’t stress about money or making sure everything was perfect, I would just live in the now. I wish this was something I could really do, but I do not have a money tree in my backyard and I have many ‘normal life’ responsibilities. This doesn’t mean that I can’t have my moments. That is what this blog was all about, finding happiness in the simple things. Celebrating a holiday for no particular reason, just because! It was my way of living in the moment for a small portion of every single day for an entire year. So, if and when that meteor does decide to come plummeting towards Earth, I will be prepared to let go of my worries and just have fun. Isn’t that what life is all about when it really comes down to it?

Total Cost to Celebrate: $0

Song of the Day:

One of the few R.E.M. songs that I actually like:

 

P.S. – Yes, this is the last and final holiday of my yearlong blog spectacular. Don’t worry though, I will be doing a full wrap-up as well as a final post on just how this experience has been for me.

Just Shoot Me

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June 29th Holiday

NATIONAL CAMERA DAY

Since I am late in posting this entry, I am taking a little bit of liberty and including some pictures I took over the past couple days. That’s the nice thing about being master of this domain, I can play by whatever rules I want! Also, this is my second to last holiday so I figured I would include a bunch of pictures as a sort of last hurrah. Here is a pictorial review of the past few days of my life, luckily I had a lot of fun stuff going on so they aren’t too boring!

Me having fun starting today’s holiday at work:

Okay, I know this next one is a really crappy picture, but let me explain. My coworker won tickets to see Magic Mike with a local morning radio show. This is a pic of Jay Towers from 100.3 and the rest of the morning crew introducing the movie. Although we got there quite early, we were at the VERY top because all the crazy 60 year olds (yes, there were a lot of them in there…) got there even earlier and snatched up all the good seats. Side note – I loved the movie! Not just because of the hot guys taking their clothes off, it had a good plot that was actually much better than I expected. But yeah, the male stripping wasn’t all that bad either 🙂

Michigan/Maryland Girl Posse hangout night:

Ava and Roman – The Betrothed:

Roman and Nataleigh having fun at the Toledo Zoo:

Mommies and babies:

Daddies and babies:

The Nagle Family:

This one has been weeks in the making, literally! My pal, Karri, has taken it upon herself to document my growing baby bump. She has been diligent about tracking my progress every week. She sent me this nifty montage and I thought today was a perfect day to share it with everyone. We like to joke about how my bump seems to get bigger or smaller looking depending on what shirt I am wearing, so some weeks I look smaller than the previous pic. She swears they are all in order though! Thanks, Karri!

I love having pictures to look back on fun times. I am thankful for this blog because it allowed me to basically record an entire year of my life as well as the life of Mr. Roman. That is something that I can always have now and he can look back at this when he grows up and see how crazy his mom really was!

Total Cost to Celebrate: $0 

Song of the Day:

Take a Picture by Filter:

P.S. – I really won’t remember if I don’t take a picture.

The Hand Hug

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June 28th Holiday

HANDSHAKE DAY

The handshake is almost an art of sorts.

In different countries it is done differently and each variation means something specific. Here in the U.S., I read that a firm handshake is preferred. Have you ever shook someone’s hand and you felt like they were trying to crush yours in the process? Yes, that is what we call TOO firm. In other cultures, such as Turkey and China, handshakes are preferred to be weaker and a firm handshake is often seen as rude. All these different customs and rules make for some confusion. Today’s holiday, for me, is a reminder that the ‘American’ way of doing things is not always the right way. The handshake can be dated back all the way to the 5th century BC. It is widely believed that it started as a gesture of peace and to show that you were not carrying any weapons. Today, the handshake is “commonly done upon meeting, greeting, parting, offering congratulations, expressing gratitude, or completing an agreement. In sports or other competitive activities, it is also done as a sign of good sportsmanship. Its purpose is to convey trust, balance, and equality.” Thank you Wikipedia for informing me all about handshaking. As luck would have it, I actually did shake a person’s hand today. I began training my temp that will be doing my job while I am out on maternity. I didn’t want to scare him and tell him I needed to take a picture for my crazy blog (I’m sure that would have been a wonderful first impression…). I did have a handshake today though, take my word for it.

Total Cost to Celebrate: $0

Clip of the Day:

Anatomy of a secret handshake:

P.S. – Nerd alert.

P.P.S. – My home laptop has contracted a lovely virus that prevents me from doing anything internet related. I think it knew I was at the very end of my blog experience so it decided to prolong it just a little bit longer. I will have the remaining two June posts, as well as my month wrap-up and OVERALL WRAP-UP (yes, it really has been an entire year already!) posted within the next few days hopefully. Thanks for sticking with me!