Monday, October 31, 2016

Our 2nd Annual Halloween Party Was Spooky-Licious!

Last Halloween we had so much fun hosting a Halloween party, we decided to do it again this year. It's officially become tradition. It's a small gathering with our dearest friends. Some dress up. Some don't. We eat, drink, dance on the porch, hand out candy to the adorable trick-or-treaters, eat more, drink more, get silly, laugh until our belly hurts, and the evening ends with the adult candy exchange.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Budget Friendly Holiday Parties: 7 Ways To Eliminate Extra Costs

This year, for Halloween, we're having a small party here at the house with our dearest friends. Yesterday we ran a few errands and picked up the last of what we needed for our Halloween party. With it being so close to Halloween, a lot of Halloween stuff was on sale. From platters and cupcake sprinkles to decor and festive tablecloths. I'll admit I was tempted. I seriously could have spent about $200 on sale items easily.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

8 Useless Bits Of Advice For A Work At Home Dog Mom

My skin crawls when people who aren't work at home pet parents give me advice on how to be a better, more productive work at home dog Mom. I know they mean well, but I can assure you, the advice doled out is about as useful as me attempting to give advice on surviving labor pains and calming a teething toddler.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Rescued Is Our Favorite Breed

Last week, we had a wonderful conversation with an acquaintance of ours about Bodacious Biscuit Love, our fur-kids, spreading biscuit love for the past 3 years, the time we've spent at shelters, fostering, changes we've made, etc. Towards the end, they asked, "After spending time with so many dogs, what is your favorite breed."

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Budget Friendly Holiday Parties: 8 Ways To Save On Food And Drinks

The other day I shared a story about the Holiday party that changed all future parties to come. It was festive. The food was incredible. The guests went home happy. You'd think from a hostess perspective I'd be doing a successful-holiday-party dance. Nope. On my end, this holiday party was a disaster. I promised myself that I would never put myself in that position again.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

I Couldn't Stop Thinking About An Episode From The X-Files...

Most days, right around 2:30 in the morning, I wrap up work stuff and give myself an hour to unwind before Lisa gets up for work. I find that watching something on Netflix, reading, or doing a little housework helps to slow my brain down enough to fall asleep. Once she's all set and has eaten breakfast, I snuggle with the kids in bed and try to get a few hours of sleep.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Holiday Party That Changed All Future Parties To Come

In the process of putting together and outline for a series of blog posts to make holiday parties a bit easier, I was trying to figure out when I could share my holiday party from hell.  It's the holiday party that opened my eyes and set the stage for all holiday parties to follow. As I thought about it, I realized the story alone is worthy of having its own blog post.

Monday, October 24, 2016

I've Never Been To One Of Those Events Where You Sip Wine And Paint. But...

We've never been to one of those evening events where you sip wine and paint. However, on Saturday, I spent over 4 hours hand-painting almost 100 snowmen on our Bodacious Country Crackle Holiday Ornaments. Yesterday, I spent the same amount of time hand-painting names on each ornament.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Our Home Is A Throw Blanket Haven

About a month ago, we picked up a few large throw blankets at Kohl's. Their Big One blankets were 75% off and they had pup prints available. These blankets are close to being twin-bed-sized. And they're super soft. Butter soft. I'm a sucker for throw blankets. I love 'em. The kids love 'em. Lisa does too, but she'll roll her eyes and say, "What are we up to now...over 100?"

Saturday, October 22, 2016

No More Dread. No More Months Of Darkness. No More Dungeon.

We moved into our home the summer of 2012. At the time, we only had one air conditioner. We were impressed at how well the single air conditioner cooled off our entire home. Our mind frame was if a single air conditioner could cool things off, we'd have no problem heating our home in the winter. Long story short, we were wrong. Very. Very. Wrong.

Friday, October 21, 2016

When Favoritism Trumps Professionalism

I wanted to write this blog post in letter form. Those seem to be popular when stuff happens or written to get a point across to a vast amount of people. In the past, I've written a few. However, today, I'm resisting the urge. Those letter-form blogs get stale. Too many people have written 'em. They're safe. It's a style that allows people to dance around the bush. Speak in a sugar coated tongue. Those days are over with for me.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

We Raise Our Glasses To Grammy. With Love. With Honor. With Peace.

Our hearts are heavy. Lisa’s Grammy Tarte passed away earlier today. She was a phenomenal woman with a zest for life. She loved her family, had a heart of gold, and adored birds, especially cardinals, gardening, and embracing the simple things in life.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Juicy Kisses From Our Whipped-Cream-Mouthed Babies

I'm a java junkie. I have no shame in admitting this. Most of my caffeine fixes are made at home. Hot coffee. Iced coffee. Strong tea. Crystal Light strawberry drink mix with caffeine. The occasional energy drink. Every so often, Lisa surprises me with a decadent caffeinated beverage. It's usually an iced latte with extra whipped cream. The "extra" is necessary because every single one of our kids love whipped cream. It doesn't matter what they're doing. When Lisa walks in with one of these beverages, they rush to my feet.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

I Respect Our Kid's Space And Preferences From Behind The Lens

I adore the month of October. For the past few years I've been determined to get super cute photos of the kids posing beside pumpkins or dressed in Halloween costumes. Or, at the very least, standing in the middle of a tiny leaf pile. Last year I decorated pumpkins with paw prints. We have a small collection of costumes for the kids. And, we have several Halloween themed pup hoodies. All the props are there. However, the willingness to participate from 2 of our kids are not.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Our Kids Just Knew. They Did.

Lisa got a phone call from Mom today. Her Grammy isn't doing well. Grammy's health has been deteriorating slowly for about a year now. However, within the past 24 hours, things had spiraled downward. Quickly. There is slim chance she'll come out of it, but things aren't looking as if they'll veer in that direction. There was a sense of urgency in Mom's voice.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

The Struggle To Get Photos Of Our Daughter Is Real

Our lil' Sophie does not like the camera. And, she knows when I try to sneak in a photo with my phone. She'll turn away. Give me THE LOOK. Now, she's making it quite clear when she doesn't want her photo taken.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

I'm Convinced We Need Two Sofas

This is the scene at least once a day. Today, it happened shortly after the kids ate their breakfast. Our plans this weekend include painting over 103 Bodacious Country Crackle Holiday Ornaments. However, before hunkering down at the kitchen table with paintbrushes, paint, and trays of baked ornaments, we decided to take a few hours to get some stuff done around the house.

Friday, October 14, 2016

The Kids Have Decided To Change Their Morning Routine. Okay. No Problem.

About 95% of the baked goods I make are BOTH human and pup friendly. However, after this week...I needed to make THESE. Double chocolate espresso chunk cookies. A couple of these, accompanied with STRONG java, kept my brain active, booted writer's block, and gave me multiple second winds. Yep. Much needed after only about 12 hours of sleep since Monday. The babies gave me dirty looks because I couldn't share, but...sometimes THIS work at home Dog Mom has to do what she has to do.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

This Year We're Celebrating Low Key. Not Everything Has To Be Over The Top.

Last year, at this time, Lisa and I were scrambling around in final preparation for our Bodacious Yard & Bake sale to commemorate the 2 year anniversary of Bodacious Biscuit Love. The biscuit room, home office, and part of the living room had boxes of yard sale items. Our kids were going nuts. They didn't know what to think of the boxes. Coco, who is very sensitive to change, had the most difficult time. He was restless, paced a lot, and wasn't able relax.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Kitchen. Home Office. Exhale. I've Got This.

It hit me like a wrecking ball yesterday. It's the middle of October. The next couple of months are going to be extremely busy. In addition to completing orders for our Bodacious Country Crackle Holiday Ornaments, holiday biscuit love, assisting pet parents in need with our Bodacious Biscuit Love Bin, Holiday Pet Baskets, there's other stuff on my list o' stuff to do. That would include creating more homemade dog biscuit recipes, sewing a few Bodacious Patchwork Quilts, and making some DIY Dog Mom Projects to sell.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Sink Your Teeth Into These Apple Cinnamon Cheesecake Cookies

Last Friday we had a few of our favorite humans over for dinner. I made a big kettle of corn chowder with apple cider bacon and herbs. I kneaded dough in the afternoon so we'd have fresh baked loaves of french bread. For dessert, I made apple cinnamon cheesecake cookies. In the past, when I've made cookies with fruit, I opt for dehydrated or dried. I've made a variety of cookies using dried cranberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, bananas, and pineapple. On Friday, I decided to experiment.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Our History Shapes Us. The Same Holds True For Our Kids.

About 5 months after we adopted Lobo, we were participating at an event. Lobo was with us. At the time, his anxiety issues had eased up quite a bit, but not enough to leave him home for any length of time. There had been huge improvements. Still more to make. Some that would probably linger indefinitely. At the event, he barked quite a bit. There were lots of people. Lots of pups. Loud music. Hustle and bustle.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Are You Sure There's Nothing I Can Help You With? Nope. That's A Lie.

I do my best to designate Sundays as a chill day for Lisa. She works long hours Monday through Friday. Her day starts when she gets up for work at 3:45 a.m. As of late, she's been working overtime. By Friday, she's exhausted. Saturdays are spent catching up on stuff around the house. Small projects. Housework. Laundry. Errands. We wind down Saturday evening for family snuggle time on the sofa.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Your Questions Haven't Gone Unnoticed. In Fact, They've Inspired Me.

Earlier this week, we made one of our DIY Dog Mom Projects available to order. In case you missed it, you can order our Bodacious Country Crackle Holiday Ornaments through October 31st. The proceeds from the sales will be used to fund our Bodacious Biscuit Love Bin. You can read all about that here. Since posting the availability of our Bodacious Country Crackle Holiday Ornaments, we've had an overwhelming response. To date. I have close to 70 ornaments I have to make, ship, and deliver. Big. Huge. Smile.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Later Today, I'm Spreading The Love. Paying It Forward.

Today, I'm embracing my great-grandmother's philosophy once again. Make a big kettle of something delicious. Bake some bread. Open your door. Later today, I'll be feeding some of my favorite peeps. Spreading the love in the form of a big kettle of corn chowder with apple cider bacon and herbs, french bread, apple cinnamon cheesecake cookies, and a tossed salad. All homemade.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

No, We Don't Need To Get Out More

I have thick skin. Most of what makes my "list o' things people say that irritate the f*ck out of me" I allow to roll down my back. It's not worth a response. I don't have time for that crap. Life is short. And, I'm in my 40's. I'm not too concerned with what people think of me or the opinions they allow to roll off their tongue. But. Every so often, something oozes from between the cracks. The most recent, being today, is, "You two need to get out more. You spend too much time at home."

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Hurricane Matthew Sent My Brain Into What-If Overdrive

The big story right now, aside from the political crap, is Hurricane Matthew. I've been keeping a close eye on this massive storm. Yesterday, shortly after I got up, I checked my trusty weather site and saw THIS. It took my breath away. I know things can change. Mother Nature is fickle. However, when I see a projected path that's going to hit us and dole out 90 mph winds, it catches my attention.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Here's How We Reduced Our Monthly Electric And Heating Bills

Last week I published a post highlighting how we drastically reduced our monthly expenses over the past few years. This was necessary for several reasons. Bodacious Biscuit Love. Our growing family that includes a special needs kid. Starting and expanding this blog. Being able to focus on creating homemade dog treat recipes and inexpensive, simple DIY Dog Mom Projects. By reducing our costs per month, we were able to do all of the above.

Monday, October 3, 2016

We're Raising Money With Our DIY Country Crackle Holiday Ornaments

One of our DIY Dog Mom Projects for the month of October are these adorable dog bone ornaments. Although a little time consuming, they're fairly simple to make. I took photos of the entire process from start to finish and will be posting that soon. Aside from being DIY Dog Mom project, we're making and personalizing these ornaments to raise funds for our Bodacious Biscuit Love Bin.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Sink Your Teeth Into These Scrumptious Caramel Apple Cupcakes

I'm confessing to another dork moment. Last weekend, we celebrated Life and Love and that included making these scrumptious Caramel Apple Cupcakes. After publishing the post, and THIS photo, several people asked for the recipe. I had a palm-of-my-hand-to-forehead-moment. Once again, I forgot to post the recipe.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

I'm Angry. I Feel Violated. All I Can Do Now Is Wait.

Something happened yesterday and it made me very, very angry. Shortly after making the discovery, and multiple phone calls, we were at Kohl's. I had to fight back tears. Today, I've been a teary mess on and off. I'm angry. I feel violated. I'm disgusted. Nothing like this has ever happened to me. I don't exactly know how to deal with it. I was hesitant to share, but I don't want to hide the messes. I wanted to share in hopes that people who have been through something similar would come forth with their stories.