Saturday, June 30, 2012


Did I have an accident?

Did I get sick with a terrible summer flu and could not drag my body to the computer?

Did I suddenly get a book deal and was so drunk with all the partying that the hangover that ensued prevented me to write anything that even looked like a post?


I went on my yearly camping trip with the family... and with all the last-day-of-school-stuff for the kids and the endless packing and going over lists......

I forgot to Schedule my posts......

This weekend is going to be dedicated to making my rounds blog hopping and searching for stuff for Pinterest (yes, I sense an addiction)

Next week I will have some cool pictures and stories from my vaca in the woods~

                                       Checka, Later
                                         Blessings, Joanne

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Moment in the Sun~ for my Son

As I write this post...I am crying. It's OK....Mothers cry a lot.

The idea came to me last summer.

Three years ago when my daughter graduated fifth grade she received many many awards at her graduation. I was not really surprised, she is a great student that works hard at everything she does.

My son  "D" is also a hard worker, but for him it is much harder. He tries twice as hard and gives it his best to get average grades... and never are his efforts met with a tangible reward...almost never.

But he has this quality about him,
 I can only explain by saying that this kid is all love.

He will root for his friends and he is always the one who will go to someone that is feeling down and try to cheer them up.

So years ago at his sister's graduation as he proudly hooted and hollered for his sister I thought how much I wanted him to feel that feeling of working hard and getting rewarded for it.

He tries so hard, and quietly he waits his turn only to be disappointed over and over again. He is hardly ever discouraged, he falls, gets backs up and keeps on going. see post-->Successful Kids

His Graduation was a few days ago, and as I wrote before I had a plan.

       again, I wanted him to feel the feeling of being singled out, to be told hey you did a really good job from people other than his family. 

For two years he was part of Chorus and band , and even though he was dedicated.... almost all his friends were called up to receive certificates...except him.

My heart broke for him, not because he was sad, but because even though he didn't get recognized he still smiled and clapped for his friends that did.

You see if there was a certificate for being kind....he would get one.

if there was a certificate for being polite...he would get one.

if there was a certificate for being giving ...he would get one.

If there was a certificate for being dedicated and selfless...he would get one.

But there are no certificates for those qualities...I wish there were.  

So as I wrote before... last year I had a plan. Maybe he wasn't the best student in the school, and perhaps his work would just be average. Average don't get awards. ...but I wanted to find a way for his name to be called out and be acknowledged. I wanted him to stand and feel the feeling of being rewarded just once.

All year I prayed that he would not get sick, because the plan was for him to get the perfect attendance award.

I know I know. Desperate dumb plan. I mean what good is perfect attendance anyway. right? It's not going to help him get into college or make him a better person. He is already the best kid any mother could ask for.

 I thought for sure that he would  have to take a day from school...I mean the chances of him not getting sick at least once was slim...but as the year sick days, no coughs, no fevers, not even a sniffle.

I wasn't  sure if they would even give him the award for perfect attendance for just one year. I just hoped.

So as all his friends received certificates for other things....

When they announced The certificate for Perfect attendance I held my breath...

My heart pounded loudly in my ears.

                           and then...

They called out his name


He stood there tall and proud.

He smiled a smile that I can only describe as angelic. Now there were others that received this award too,( maybe their Moms had the same idea)  but his name was the very first name called.

Later when he walked up to receive his diploma my husband, my daughter and I hooted and hollered as if he had won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Later he proudly showed me his diploma and certificate. He was so proud and so happy. He had a smile from ear to ear. He asked if I could frame his award  along with his diploma and I of course said yes!

It's amazing what a bit of paper can do for a kid who always almost gets the prize, but this time it wasn't almost. He got to feel what it was like to stand up and be recognized and I know that he will never ever forget that moment.

My Baby got his moment in the sun and it was great.

The next day he went to school and they were finally going to receive their yearbooks. As all the fifth graders ran around getting friends and teachers to sign, my son noticed another little boy who stood there with his own yearbook in hand. No one was asking this little boy to sign their book.  My son said the boy stood there alone and a bit sad that no one was coming up to ask for his signature.

No one noticed....

                        But my son did.

 "Mom, he looked so sad there, no one was asking him to sign their book."

He walked up to this little boy and said "Hey, will you sign my yearbook?" My son said that the little boy smiled and said "sure!"  and so they signed each other's books.

D said this boy had a smile from ear to ear.

"It was great to see him smile mom." was what he told me.

One day my son is going to be a great man. He may not have straight A's, and he may not be the best athlete in the world...But someday he is going to be a great man...because he is already a great Kid.

Now I am going to dry my eyes and go out to buy an award frame.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Ok, I am getting old

Conversation with my daughter

    "Mama, I was reading one of your Artsy Fartsy posts...." J says.

    "Oh which one?" I was excited because no one in my family really reads my blog.

    "The one about the world's smallest stop motion movie"

    " Oh yes, DOT (a film made by (NOKIA). Did you like it?"

    " Yeah, it was so cute, but you said you had a Nokia camera and that you didn't like it."

    " Yea, I hate that thing."

    Here's where it gets interesting

      "Mama, you DON"T have a Nokia camera, In fact Nokia doesn't make cameras; they make phones."

      "I do TO have a Nokia camera." I insist, because how can I not know what kind of camera I have had in my possession for a year now! I take it to all functions and outings. I have complained endlessly about my NOKIA camera. I Complained how my NOKIA camera will take great pictures only after I have wasted 10 shots that have come out blurry. "I have a NOKIA camera J."

     "Mom, you have a NIKON....not NOKIA."

                           Silence, as I realize she is right  


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day 2012

 Father's Day is a bit bitter sweet for me. On the one hand I celebrate the wonderful man that is both my Husband a the greatest Father our kids could ever have. On the other hand I miss my own Dad.

My Husband is a great Father, I knew he would be even while we were dating.
            He is the absolute best. I am so grateful to God he is in our lives.

                       and I think my Dad had a part in it too

Let me explain.....

             I had a great Dad. He was patient, kind , giving, and he made friends wherever he went.
                                                           The Lion King          
                                   He was NOT wishy washy. He had Old fashioned ideals with a beatnik spin and I respected him even though sometimes I didn't agree.

                                    He respected my feelings, my ideas, and he listened and understood me.


It's a wonderful Life
Because of that Great Dad.... I had a great example of what to look for in the man I would later marry. I looked for a man with the same qualities .....Granted I met a few frogs in between, but ultimately I got my prince.
                                            Does this mean I am Cinderella? Woohoo!!!!

He is Kind, he Loves God, He respects me and my ideas. He listens and understands me....and with all my faults he loves me.

                   He loves his children more than anything in the world and he makes sure that he tells them everyday...

                              "I love You God Bless You."

        Norman Rockwell                        source  


                  He is a strong man. He is not wishy washy. He is a hero to his kids and they love him.

So for all you hero Dads out there...Happy Father's Day.

                   May God Bless you All.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Artsy Fartsy Friday~~~The Art of Phil Hansen

      Hi Everyone! Well It's Friday and so that means it's time for a bit of Art.

A while ago I came across this young man on You tube. His creativity and ability to think outside the box intrigued me.... and yes I think he is  very very talented and a bit kooky too!

His name is Phil Hansen and when you see his art you will understand why I think he is awesome.

             This first video is self explanatory so here we GOOOOOO!
                           Uploaded by    Artist~ Phil Hansen


                   In this next one he asked people to call him and tell him something that changed their life. The Artist in turn used those words to make this next Art piece called " Moment"                    
                       Uploaded by    Artist~ Phil Hansen

I really hope you enjoyed this week's art. I love posting art on Fridays~
                         Here's hoping you have a Kooky outrageously fun weekend!

                                                       Blessings, Joanne

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Fashion on Thurday~~~Graduation Rings

 Receiving your high school ring was a very very big deal in My High school(I guess it is in every high school).  We even had a ceremony at the School's church where the rings would be blest.

Getting your ring meant that there was finally an outward sign that you were now on your way.  After the blessing of the rings the girls would rush around getting friends to "Turn" the ring on their finger for luck. That last year there was so much to think about...SAT's, prom, last big school trip, Graduation gowns, and everything had a fee attached.

 I had so many things on my mind that I completely forgot that the main balance due on my grad ring was soon approaching, In fact It was due the very next day. I wanted to bang my head against the wall for being so forgetful about such an important thing. By the time  my Dad came home from work I was in a panic.

              "Dad,  the balance of the money for my ring is due tomorrow." He barely had a chance to enter the apartment.

              "How much is due?"

 I think the amount was 125.00. When he heard this he looked dejected.

              Poor man was under a lot of stress.

               "I just don't have that kind of money available right now." With three kids in Catholic school the budget was spread paper thin...and to make matters was the end of the month and all bills were set aside to be paid. There was no extras at all. I had an after school job that allowed me to help by buying a few of the extras ~ lunches at school and prom dresses and help with monies for the year book and one senior trip, there was nothing extra for this very important purchase..

              "I'm sorry Joanne, maybe we can get a ring for you at a later time?" He was hoping that I would think that was a great plan.

 I thought of ring day and how I would have to opt out of the ceremony or perhaps skip school altogether that day. I nodded and went to my room. I was not going to make my Dad feel any worse than he already felt.

               The next day I awoke at six as usual.

               I went to take a quick shower as usual.

               Then back to my room to do my hair and usual.

               Then something unusual...

                            on my dresser was an envelope

In the envelope was a check for $125.00 for my ring. I was overjoyed!

              My Dad had already left for work and when I asked my Mother she simply stated "Now don't lose that check!"

                It was later that I found out that my Dad had taken the Money from the rent due.

It was the first and only time in his life that he was Ever late on a bill.

                                                  VMI 1848 class ring
                                I am guessing that the word in the middle is the person's last name?
                                                  Class of 1848 ring

                                                     1925 college grad ring


                                                                    Newer styles

This one is definitely not your regular Grad ring


Sweet "heart" ring surrounded by diamonds

   This post prompted me to look for my own High School Graduation ring.

            It still fits!!! Granted I wore it on the other hand, but still it fits!!!

                  The gold in the middle is actually a depiction of St.Michael the Archangel~the Latin written around it translates "Who is like God" It goes with the story of St. Michael The archangel Michael drew attention to the excellence and dignity of the Most High God. He reminded the good angels of the beneficence of Him who had created them... he kept them in fidelity and submission by saying to them, 'Quis ut Deus? Who is like God?'"...~source
             I have always loved this ring. It symbolizes so much for me; School days with friends, a love of English class and Art, but...mostly how hard my Dad worked for me to go to Catholic school and how much he loved me.

Did you buy a grad ring? Do you still have it?

Monday, June 11, 2012


There are times you look at your kids and you did time pass so quickly?

There are times when you look at your kids and think, "There is no possible way that I can love them more" ...and then you do.

There are times when you look at your kids and say "OK, go ahead"....when all you want is to beg them to stay put.

On Friday my Daughter went to her first formal dance. It was so much more than the dance for me. It was the weeks before that she and I went from store to store choosing dresses and imagining what shoes would look best. It was fussing--- then laughing . It was arguing about styles, then excitedly clapping when she found "the one" dress that was perfect.

It was just her and I spending that time together... I smiled, but It was accompanied with a lump in my throat because of the realization that time is passing way too quickly and there is nothing I can do to slow it down.

Her dress

           Her shoes

                       And a little surprise from Dad...a rose wrist corsage

She had a wonderful time and made memories that will last....forever


Friday, June 08, 2012

Artsy Fartsy Friday~~~"GULP"

Busy Busy Busy

 Got a child graduating 5th and another going to her first formal dance tomorrow. Everyday this week has been dedicated to getting my teen ready for the big formal dance. Now, unlike my son who went to his first dance last week we all know that for a girl everything has to be just so. Hence, no time to even breathe...Summer vacation I can't wait!

Anyhoo... Remember last week when I posted the world's smallest stop motion movie? -->"DOT"
Well this week I am posting another stop motion from Nokia (seriously, they should pay me don't ya think?) The world's BIGGEST stop motion and of course I have included a video of how they did it. Please enjoy "GULP"


                      And how they made it...

Hope you all have a sunny weekend!!!

                                            Blessings, Joanne

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Waitin' on Pinterest

Now a word about Pinterest.

A while back I noticed Pinterest. Some blogs were writing about this brand new way to categorize and post pictures of things that were of interest to them. They said it was addictive.

I checked it out.

and I said  "Ehh."

I went on with my life.

I read things like " Hey look at this idea I got from Pinterest!"

and I said "OOoooo"

I went on with my life.

I read about a cool new party idea from a bloggy friend and she wrote " I got it from Pinterest."

and I said "Cool."

So after months and months I went back on Pinterest and checked it out again.

"OK," I said "I'll join." But the only way to join is through invite only. I could browse, but I couldn't join in the fun!

Alrighty then, I'm back at the High School dance where all my friends get to boogie oogie oogie and I am left watching their purses.
                                               Picture source
                                                 Photo editing by Picmonkey
      "Hey, I wanna dance too!"  The only problem was that Pinterest was now holding all the cards. They said "UH UH, not so fast. Now you have to wait."

so I waited

             and waited

                    and waited.

My friend texted me to ask me if I had checked out her pin boards.

What? she had just applied......she got in the very same day!

There  I am

Then the clincher...

I open my e-mail to find that there is a message from Pinterest..

Yes! I get super excited, But it's titled...
 Thanks for Joining the Pinterest Waiting List


I have been WAIT LISTED???!!!

                           back to

Finally I get the e-mail I had been waiting for You've Been Invited to Join Pinterest

Yes! I'm part of the cool crowd!!!

                             I finally get to


Saturday, June 02, 2012

Artsy Fartsy Friday~~~"DOT" Smallest Stop Motion Animation

Hi everyone!

 I know I know I am a bit late with Artsy Fartsy Friday, but my only excuse is that its the end of the year and school activities are crazy!...but so much fun. My son went to his very first school dance. They call it the Fifth Grade Jam and there was a dinner and then a DJ set up in the Lunch room where the kids danced the night away...(well, until 9:30pm that is)... Bitter sweet for me. This is the last year in elementary school.

sniff sniff

OK, I'm fine. Now lets get to what you are here for.......Artsy Fartsy Friday

It seems a few years ago Nokia came up with a camera that has a microscope attachment....Now why would a camera need a microscope? Well, for instance  doctors in third world countries can use it to take pictures of blood cells and send it off to a lab in another country for analysis... Is that great or what?

Ok, I have to be honest....I have a small Nokia camera and well... don't like it. I don't know if it's me (probably is) or I bought a reject camera......but if they came out with something that will stop people from dying...I'm all in.

So to celebrate this awesome invention They decided to make a short film...a stop motion movie...THE SMALLEST stop motion movie EVER.

                            I am HOOKED!

So not only did I post the movie but the second video shows how they did it. Yes, I am a complete nerd. I am the person that loves the "How they did it" portion of every DVD that has some sort of special effects.

        Please enjoy "Dot." The World's Smallest Stop-Motion Animation
                           uploaded by 

                            uploaded by                                   

                   Here's hoping you have an awesome weekend with at least one good hold your belly, pee pee dance laugh  

                                          Blessings, Joanne