Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Link-Up : I should get an award for how bad this date was...


Hi y'all! Today I'm linking up with Neely for the Valentine's Day Challenge and today's topic is Worst Date Ever. I've had some good dates and I've also had some pretty rough ones. One was so bad, I seriously cannot even post it here because it's definitely not rated G. JERKFACE!!! Never talked to him again! But for this post, I think I've got a pretty good one... 

It was about 6 years ago. I was living in Oklahoma City, going to college at UCO (University of Central Oklahoma) in Edmond. The church I was attending had a good sized college group and I had hung out with this one certain guy a couple of times... once in a group setting playing volleyball and once one-on-one at IHOP for a homework session. We chatted online and what not and things seemed to be going really well. He finally asked me out on an actual date and I was excited. I was thinking this might actually lead to something. Awesome. YAY! You know, thoughts like that. 

So, we picked a day, a time, and I was really looking forward to this. The day of the date arrived and I was even more excited. I was all dressed up, casually cool, ya know, and was waiting for him to pick me up. And I waited. And I waited. Finally I called him and he told me he was on his way. 45 minutes late, he finally showed up. I asked him what had taken him so long and he said he had to stop and get gas. Really. He had the world's slowest gas pump, apparently. 

Needless to say, I was already a little annoyed when he arrived, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt and still went out with him. We were supposed to go to dinner and a movie (I know, completely original) but now we were too late for that. So he decided we could just eat in the food court at the mall (the movie theater is in the mall so I guess this justified his reasoning) to save some time. We picked one of the diners and that's when he told me he didn't have much money on him. (Which was very interesting since one of the times we had talked in person he had told me about this settlement he had gotten years ago and how he wouldn't have to worry about money for a long time.) So... I paid for my own meal. Food court Chinese food. Every girl's dream. 

After some awkward conversation over dinner, we finished up and decided to go to a movie. (Why I gave him so many chances, I have no idea...) We get in line and he tells me that he has this coupon for a discounted movie ticket. But that it's only good for certain movies. The movie it was good for at that particular time? Ice Age 2. And while I have nothing against the Ice Age movies, I had just never seen the first one or really wanted to watch the 2nd one at the time. But whatever. He paid for the portion of my ticket that wasn't covered by his coupon (at least he got that, right?) and we went in. 

During the movie, there was some conversation. It made up a little bit for the awkward dinner conversation, and although I was annoyed from the overall date, it did help a bit. After the movie we talked and laughed on the way to his truck and things didn't seem to awful at that point. 

When we get to his truck he turns to me and says that it's not really too late and asked if I'd like to go to the lake. (Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City, which is only like 10-15 minutes from the movies and one of my favorite places in all of Oklahoma City.) I'm not sure why, but I said yes. Maybe it was the hopeless romantic in me. Maybe it was just my wishful thinking that this guy I liked might have just been off that day and that sitting and talking by the lake would make up for everything. 

I. WAS. WRONG!!!

We get out to the lake and we sit down facing the water. Things are nice and we start talking about various things but then, he decides to drop the bomb. Sitting there, under the stars, at one of my favorite places ever, on OUR date, he decides to tell me he's still in love with his ex and that they're talking about getting back together. 

He then wants to weasel out of his guilty feelings by talking to me about how torn he is and how this is so hard for him... blah. blah. blah. 

It's at that point that I have FINALLY had enough and stand up and start walking towards his truck. He chases after me, apologizing profusely and I quietly get in and ask him to take me home. We get back to my apartment, he parks the truck, turns to me and starts in again about how hard this is for him, how much he loves her, how he doesn't know what to do. I remember mumbling something about thanks for ruining my night by wasting my time, then I slammed the door of his truck as hard as I could and stormed up the stairs to my apartment. 

Seriously.

Worst. Date. Ever. 


Monday, January 30, 2012

Photography Dabbler & a Decision

 Ahhh... the weekend. The only time when you can have one day of complete laziness followed by one day of complete busy-ness, and it's all okay in the end. :) 


This weekend, we were SUPER lazy on Saturday. I felt completely pathetic and unproductive by the end of the day, but then again, it was nice not doing anything. Although I did laundry. Because there's always laundry. 


Then Sunday we had church that morning, a potluck for lunch and then Sunday afternoon I drove to Levelland to do a photo shoot for one of our former youth group girls. She's graduating this May (sniff, sniff) and asked if I'd take some of her senior pictures. Of course I would. I was honored to be asked. I love dabbling in photography and am hoping to be able to buy a new fancy shmancy camera by the end of the year. *Fingers Crossed* We spent about 3 hours and had a lot of fun driving around, taking pictures and lots and lots of laughing. 


Except for one stop. When I took off into the brush (I was wearing toms and leggings mind you) and got my ankles all scratched up. Which is better than being eaten by a huge rat. Which M and her mom saw in the field so we ended up not shooting any pictures there at all. So I have battle scars for nothing now. ;) Oh well, it was still totally worth it. 


Anyway... here are some of my faves:



I found this effect on picnik that I'd never seen before. I think it's totally cool!



Not only am I an amateur photographer, I'm also a tree climber. Or in this case, an instructor or tree-climbing. She might have thought I was completely nuts, but these next few pictures turned out completely awesome! And we didn't even ruin her pants... which was her mom's concern. ;) 

One of my favorite all-time pics I've ever taken. It's so romantic. Like a Jane Austen tree angel. 


Another cool effect I found on picnik that I'd never used before. 
I love it! ♥♥♥


That's all for now... I might show off some more another time. ;) It was super fun and something I really enjoy. Maybe not for an all-the-time gig. But every now and then, it's totally fun!

We had to get these pictures done already because 1) we took some with her show sheep and she won't have them for much longer and 2) picnik is what I use to edit photos and with it closing (at least in the way we know it and are used to it) in April, we needed to get these done asap. 

And speaking of picnik closing.... 

I've been using picnik to make the collages for my shades of summer/autumn/winter series. Picnik doesn't have that option anymore. So I've been thinking about it all weekend and I've decided to discontinue that series. It was fun while it lasted, but for now, it's done. I will however be bringing back more "wishlists" which might be inspired by a photograph now and then. 

Anyway, that's that. 

Right now, I feel a little overwhelmed because I've got several projects I want to do. But I've also got a few things I need to do while I can still use picnik. I've got a couple of deadlines for myself and while I'm a month away from the first one, I'm still feeling the pressure. EEK! 

Which leads me to asking you all 2 questions:

1) What do you do to handle the pressure of deadlines and projects and all of that jazz? What helps you to get focused so you can actually be productive instead of just curling up in a ball on the couch and watching the DIY network because you don't know what to do or where to start? Not that I'm saying I've been doing that or anything... >.>

2) Does anyone have any suggestions of photo-editing sites that you've been using and love? 

I guess technically that's 3 questions. Or 2 1/2. 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

inspiration : thursday thoughtfuls (& a great deal!)

Hi y'all! I'm kinda cranky today. I'm tired and cranky actually. I don't know why, I got plenty of sleep last night and I have no reason to be cranky. Well, no reason other than I'm a woman, which pretty much entitles me to bouts of unexplained crankiness. But don't mention that I'm cranky or I could bite your head off. This is another womanly entitlement. And I have no idea why Joey thinks I'm sometimes moody and impossible to deal with. He obviously hasn't read my book on womanly entitlements. Probably because I haven't written it yet. But the fact that I can be mad at him for not having read a book that doesn't actually exist... another womanly entitlement. 


Ahh... God bless women. And the men who put up with them. 




Anyway, I'm trying to get over my crankiness. Partly because I need to stop snapping at Joey. Partly because I have bible study tonight. And partly because I have no reason to be cranky. Which kind of makes me cranky in a way because my feelings of crankiness can't be justified for any reason which means I just need to get over it. 


So... getting over them, starting now. 



One of the best ways to cure crankiness is to play around on Pinterest, looking at wonderful quotes. This is also one of the best ways to put off doing whatever it is that you should be doing and kill time. For today's thursday thoughtfuls, here are some of my favorites:






First I love the typography. Second I love the quote itself. 




I really like this quote. When I first saw it, it reminded me of how one of my goals for 2012 is prioritizing my life. I haven't done a great job of that these past 2 days. But, I can start anew at any time. Like right now. 




I love fireflies. Just thinking about them takes me away to a magical place. In fact, just thinking about fireflies helps take away the crankiness. ;) But I love this illustration, it's just lovely. 




I'm not trying to start a political or religious debate. But I saw this on Pinterest and was like, YES! EXACTLY! I hate getting into those debates on Facebook and it still happens 2-3 times a year. And the biggest pet peeve of mine is when I voice my opinion about certain things and am called a religious bigot or close-minded or intolerant. When I saw this, it was exactly something I've thought many times before. 





Source: piccsy.com via Regina on Pinterest

I have this "friend" and she interrupts me ALL the time in the middle of my sentences. I've never said anything to her about it but this makes me think of her. It's just funny. :) 








Also... in other news, some of you who have been with me for a long time remember my shop, VivatRegina. Well, I'm closing it down. I've been phasing out my VivatRegina facebook page and steam rolling ahead with all things Live Delightfully. It's not just that I'm phasing out VivatRegina, I'm also phasing out my jewelry making. It just doesn't excite me like it used to and as per my 12 in 2012 project, I'm prioritizing my life and getting rid of things that don't excite me. But closing down a shop, isn't very easy, mainly because I have all these things that I need to purge from my office closet including some lovely jewelry that I've already made. So, in order to get these things out of my closet, I'm passing them on to you in the way of excellent deals. Here are a few things up for grabs. They are all $4 each OR 2 pair for $7 and this includes free shipping anywhere, worldwide. If you're interested, just leave me a comment below with your email address, and let me know which pair(s) you would like. 




# 1 : Pocahontas

# 2 : Gypsy Lady

#3 : Twilight Purple

# 4 : Smokey Blossoms

# 5 : Red Robin




Alright, I think my crankiness has subsided. I hope you're having a splendid Thursday!













Wednesday, January 25, 2012

me: My A-Ha Moment

There we sat. In a restaurant we had never eaten at before. I'm not big on trying new places most of the time, but that's a story for a different post. I had let the hubby pick so there we sat. 


We were the first people in the restaurant for the day. And with the place to ourselves we started soaking everything in. Looking over the decor, reading all the gimmicky signs and sayings around us. Enjoying the amazing music they were playing. (Seriously, a place gets big points with us if they play good music and this place was playing some good music.) They delivered our "mafia queso" complete with tortilla chips and garlic bread. (This was an Italian restaurant with a Mexican flair. lol.) It was delicious. We kept scrutinizing everything and being critics of the food and such. I asked Joey what he thought the guy from Restaurant Impossible would say about this place. We imagined him bashing the decor, criticizing the food, and yelling at the wait staff. (Note: I love that show and don't think he's mean. But he comes across really rough and tough in the beginning of every episode. Just saying.) We chuckled to ourselves as we "acted out" what would be said and done about everything. 


I was checking twitter on my phone and came across a tweet from a blogger I follow that shared a link back to her most recent blog post. I started reading and it was crazy how the things she had blogged about were resonating with me. And not only that, how they paralleled to the conversation I was simultaneously having with the hubs. 


In Jennifer's blog, which you should go read right now and come back here so you'll have a better understanding of everything + her blog is wonderful and I know you'll like it too, she's talking about getting the "Blogger Blues". That wretched feeling that happens to all of us bloggers when we suddenly hate our own blog. I got it. I got what she was saying. I've been feeling a bit that way lately.... not that I necessarily *hate* my own blog, but just that it feels off. Like the whole design of it, really isn't the me-in-blog-form that I want it to be. And the posts have been so scattered and all over the place. I mean, I go from outing myself about PCOS to posting inspirational quotes a few days later. Wha-What?!?


I've been wanting to get a complete blog makeover, and as soon as I save up enough spare change, I'm totally doing that. But that's just the aesthetics. What about the material, the writing, the part of the blog that actually matters? Does that need a makeover as well? Or like in Restaurant Impossible, does it need more of an overhaul?


As I set there, at the table, talking with my husband and with the words and thoughts of Jennifer's blog bouncing around in my head, I had this a-ha moment. The thing is, this new (to us) restaurant that we were trying out, I really LOVED the queso. The salad was good, Joey loved his burger, I wasn't blown away by my pasta (I make better at home) but overall, it was a good place and we liked it. I'm sure we'll go back sometime to try out some different food (maybe the pizza) and see if it's good too. I'm not sure what Robert Irvine would say, but really, it doesn't matter. We liked it. We will go back until there's a reason not to anymore. 


When I realized that, I wondered what else in my life would I like, even love, even if the "professionals" or the "ones with opinions that we listen to" didn't like or love it? Have we, as a society, and me, as a person and blogger gone so far into this judgmental society that we feel we must critique everything? How many movies have I LOVED that bombed at the box office? How many singers do I listen to all the time that maybe wouldn't have made it past the auditions on American Idol? 


And in relating to my blog, I don't have 10,000 followers. Heck, I don't even have 1,000, or 500! But it's okay. Every week I get more followers. And I'm thankful for every single follower I get. It's okay if I'm not as big as The Bloggess, because you're here, you're reading this and I enjoyed writing it. 



Back to Jennifer's blog, she ended her blog with 4 wonderful tips for helping you refocus your blog. Excellent advice. And it made me think, of course, about my own blog and what it is that my blog is about. Why am I doing this? Well, the short of it is this: I started for one reason (because I felt I was supposed to as an Etsy shop owner), fell in love with it for a million other reasons (I love writing, I love meeting new people and hearing their thoughts and ideas, this could go on forever). I'm a woman of many likes, many interests and since you're supposed to write what you know, I write about all of my many likes and interests. It's what I know. And the great thing is, I'm growing everyday. Becoming more and more the person I want to be, more of who I truly am. The posts I write are posts that interest me. The blogs I read are blogs that interest me.


It's okay if I never reach 10,000 followers. It's okay if they never make a movie about me and my blog (although if they do I want Emma Stone to play me because I totally love her). It's okay, because my blog is like an extension of myself. It's not just a part of me, in many ways it's me... just in HTML format. 


As for the Blogger Blues that Jennifer addresses? Well, I get over those by reminding myself that as long as I'm true to myself, as long as I'm churning out good writing about things that I know and love, then that's all I can ask of myself. This is not a blog about food, or photography or DIY ideas. This is a blog about all those things because I am about all those things. That's the rather long, and also somewhat short of it. It doesn't matter if my blog wouldn't make it even onto the audition stage at Blog Idol.  


| image source unknown. if you know, please comment so I can credit properly. |

Jennifer's asking for tips on how you beat the Blogger Blues. Stop by her blog and leave some advice there. You don't know who you may be helping and how much. As for me, I just want to know one thing: Why do you blog?



Monday, January 23, 2012

I love love { Part 1 }

Hi y'all! Happy Monday! That doesn't really work as well as Happy Friday does it? Well, at least we're on our way to another weekend right? Even if it's a few days away. 

While Christmas is my favorite holiday season, Valentine's Day is WAY up there as well! I love the reds, pinks, creams, whites, hearts, and more!  I love that I only have to buy gifts for Joey (unless I want to buy gifts for someone else). I especially love that I don't have to travel anywhere. But really, I love that it's all about romance and love. I'm a romantic (sometimes hopeless, sometimes hopeful). I love romantic comedies & romantic dramas. I love good songs about love. I love love poetry, cards and pictures. In short, I guess you could say I love love. 

And with that in mind, for the next few weeks I'll be doing a mini-series featuring lots of wonderful lovelies from Etsy, maybe some good movie clips, song playlists, who knows what might all go into these features!? Whether you're a romantic, or sit on the sidelines and just watch us goofy romantics walk around all twitterpated (which has nothing to do with the social networking site) I hope you'll enjoy this mini-series. 



{ Part 1 }













Aren't those fun and LOVEly?? I hope you're an advocate of the handmade movement and believe in buying handmade products from small businesses such as these? If you are, awesome! If you aren't, you should consider that. Spending $50 at Wal-Mart isn't going to matter to the Waltons. Spending $50 on Etsy, might help someone make their rent. You never know. It's the small things that make a difference. Plus, the quality of handmade products is AMAZING! These aren't your elementary school crafts here. 

Okay, stepping off my soap box. 

But seriously, these are some gorgeous items! I'm loving them!

In other news... this weekend I almost got completely caught up with laundry. I also learned how to do a new stitch for my felt projects. Which is perfect because I've got plans in the works. I'm way excited about them. Part of which includes these three fellas:

Meet Owlie, Owlijandro and Owlfred. 

They are my prototypes for my current project. ;) 

How was your weekend?






Friday, January 20, 2012

inspiration/goodies : shades of winter f7:w11

Hi y'all! HAPPY FRIDAY! You survived another work week, YAY! Good job, you!

You know what I hate? Spam. I hate Spam emails, convos on Etsy and I especially hate spam test messages. I also hate getting spam calls. Whether on my home phone or cell phone, I hate it. It's so annoying! UGH! 

But anyway, you know what I love? My shades of winter series. 

What a great segue huh? I could be a news anchor... ;) 

Here it is, this week's feature of my shades of winter series and I have to say, I love these cool, calming colors. ;) 


shades of winter : f7:w11

This week's inspiration comes from this lovely photograph:

| collage by yours truly |
Did you notice the fly? Look again. 
This is a lovely photograph and would definitely be great art in your home for the winter months. Does anyone switch out their home decor according to seasons? I'm not talking about holiday decor like putting up a tree or a garland for Valentine's Day. I'm talking about switching out throw pillows, knick-knacks, rugs, art work, etc. based on the season? I'm just curious. It's something I'd like to do. Mainly because I love freshening things up. I haven't started it yet, but I'm hoping to eventually. 

Okay, enough babbling from me, on to some wonderful goodies inspired by the lovely shades of blue from this photograph:  


Aren't those lovely?? I don't have an infinity scarf yet, but I'm definitely thinking of getting one soon. And maybe for Christmas presents next year... ;) See how obsessed with Christmas I am? I'm already planning for the next one. Only 339 days to go!

Also... I just wanted to add that I've got some new listings in my own Etsy shop, Live Delightfully. Some lovely headbands in some classic Valentine's Day Inspired colors:

Top Left : Large Bow in Ruby - $7
Bottom Left : Small Bow in Ruby - $5

I also got around to editing my color availability on each listing so now you can see all the available colors that you can order a headband in. LOTS of choices!

Also, have you noticed the new header on my blog? It's okay if you missed it. I only tweaked it a bit. ;) I also tweaked my blog button available in my right sidebar. If you have my previous button on your blog, you might update it if you'd like.

And coming next week... a new short-term series is in the works:


I'm pretty excited! Get ready! 

Okay, I think that's all for now! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Again, HAPPY FRIDAY!




12 in 2012 : an update

Hi y'all! First off, it's Thursday night and I'm watching David Letterman as I write this and I have to say... where did the funny go? Seriously. I've never been a big fan of late night talk shows because I find them mostly to be pretty boring, Conan usually makes me laugh. Well tonight I was watching a show on the DVR and when I stopped that, David Letterman was on and the only time I've laughed at all is when Kathy Griffin was on and was making fun of Ryan Seacrest and the Kardashians. Other than that, it just hasn't been funny, or entertaining and the music was blegh. 


Okay... sorry... that was completely random. 


Anyway.... it's time to do a check-in with how the progress is going with everyone's 12 in 2012 project. So here's my list and any progress that's been made so far...



___ 1. Learn how to make fabric flowers successfully. 
No progress yet. I haven't tried these yet, I've been working on other things first. But I've been told they're really easy so I'm not worried about it. 


___ 2. Read "Gone With the Wind"
Haven't even bought it yet. But I will. 


___ 3. Have a savings account with a balance that never dips below $500. (We've got it right now, let's see if we can keep it.)
So far, so good. It's been tempting to dip into our savings, but so far we're doing good with keeping it above that mark. 


___ 4. Lose 30 pounds. (I reset my Weight Watchers [WW] account today, I'm ready to start again!)
There's been some scale confusion. 4 scales, 4 different weights. BUT, based on the scale I originally used, I'm down about 3 pounds. YAY!!!


___ 5. Run a 5K (oh Lord, help me.)
Well, if I could stop being sick all the time it would definitely help. But I've been out wogging (walking/jogging) once and I did better than I thought I would. I'm looking forward to doing more pretty soon!


___ 6. Purge my life & home of things that aren't beautiful and/or necessary.
Love this. I've cleaned out all my beading supplies, the garage, the cabinets in the laundry room, my makeup tub... it's feeling great and I'm looking forward to doing more. 


___ 7. Prioritize my time, organize my home.
Organization... I'm doing good on. Prioritizing... I could put more effort into this. 


___ 8. Work on my children's book/game ideas.
Nope, not done anything with this yet. 


___ 9. Pay off at least 2 "dumb" debts. (like credit cards, etc.)
Not completed yet. 


___ 10. Read the entire Bible in one year. 
Working on it. I am behind this week and need to catch up, but so far, it's going well!


___ 11. Take more pictures. 
Mostly yes. Right now though I hate my camera, I hate my phone (and camera on my phone) so it's tough. But I have taken a lot a pictures and actually feel a little overwhelmed by the amount of pictures I need to sort, edit and organize on my computer right now. 


___ 12. Write more. (journaling, blogging, letters)
Blogging? Yes. Writing in my journal? Yes. Letters? Not yet. But I'm hoping to write a letter or two this weekend. Does anyone still send snail mail letters to their friends? I love doing that! And I love receiving those letters from them as well. 




That's my update... what about you? How are you doing with your resolutions? OR, if you're participating in the 12 in 2012 project, how are you doing on that?


Today, right now in fact, Joey is on his way to pick up his new (to him) jeep. He's so excited he's beside himself. We're doing a fair trade with a friend of ours, my old car (that Joey drives) for his jeep. My car is a 2006 mercury milan. This is like a 1998 jeep. Which sounds like a terrible trade, except that jeeps can go up in value due to upgrades you make and the fact that people are always looking for jeeps. So really, when it comes time to sell the jeep (if we ever sell it), we should get more for it than we would for my old car. Plus, Joey has always wanted a jeep. Always. This is one of his dream things. I'm happy for him. I'll miss my car, I loved that thing. But I drive the tahoe now since I haul children around and I haven't driven my car in a while.


Also, we got a call yesterday checking in with us regarding a possible placement of another baby. Nothing is happening yet, the baby is still with his mother. But there's talk among the caseworkers that the baby might be removed and if so, they wanted to have someone already in mind for him. Based on what I know so far, it could be a big deal. Like it could be a permanent deal if he comes to us. Yowzah! But, like I said, nothing is happening yet. So we'll just see... 


Last night we went to our town's Chamber of Commerce banquet. It was lots of fun and we won some door prizes: $50 giftcard to the local grocery store, $20 cash and a coffee mug. Good times! We're planning on joining the Chamber of Commerce this year and I'm excited. I love this town! It's such a pleasure to live here!


I have a big weekend planned! The laundry has taken over again, plus some cleaning, catching up on the shows on my DVR and some crafting. Let's hope it all goes according to plan! If so, it could be quite the delightful weekend. 


What big weekend plans do you have?




Thursday, January 19, 2012

inspiration : thursday thoughtfuls

Hi y'all! No crazy Thursday for me like last week... whew! Thank goodness! Today should be a pretty regular day, and tonight we're supposed to attend the Chamber of Commerce banquet. Should be fun... they are rumored to have awesome prizes so maybe we'll win something fantastic! 

Alright, on with the thursday thoughtfuls... I love this day! I always love looking through and finding great quotes. :) 


This is so true! 
I love my Etsy/Bloggy/Twitter friends. :) 

Yes, yes it is. So have a good day. 

This is available on society6's website. Which, if you haven't been there, you should. It's a site where you can purchase skins for various devices OR even just buy the artwork framed. Lots of options... I love this one. 

Don't take yourself too seriously. 

I love the colors of this! It's so beautiful!! The quote is great, the typography lovely and the colors are gorgeous! This is why I love thursday thoughtfuls. 


I hope you're having a lovely thursday! Remember, it's a good day to have a good day! Make it happen! 


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

weekly loves : good deals

Happy Wednesday! 

This week feels like it's FLYING past. Partly that's because I've got this head cold thing going on and I'm walking around in a stupor about 64% of the time. I had Monday off and had all these grand plans of crafting and finishing cleaning. Nope. I cut out a few hearts for garlands, moved laundry over and then set in my comfy chair covered up in a blanket for most of the day. I did, however, write a pretty raw blog post and if you read it, thank you. If you read it and commented, you are the sweetest. I haven't gotten to replying to the comments yet because the two times I've started, I got so emotional I had to stop. But really, thank you all for your sweetest words, well wishes, prayers and encouragement. Y'all are the best!


Last week, as I was catching up on all of the blog posts that I was behind on, (I'm caught up now... yay Accomplishment Week) I realized it's been a LONG time since my last weekly loves post. So... I decided it was time to post another one and maybe get back on board with this whole *weekly* loves thing. ;) 

I don't know if I've been oblivious to this before, but it seems like January is THE best month for shopping. Seriously! I've gotten more good deals the past week than I have in forever! And this week, I'm definitely loving all the good deals I've gotten lately:

Friday night we were in Lubbock, doing our weekly shopping when I remembered there was a clearance sale going on at DSW. Now I don't know about you, but DSW is fairly new to me. I've only been shopping there for about 7 months, but in those 7 months, I've bought 6 pairs of shoes from there. 3 of those pairs is because I shopped EVERYWHERE else, looking for what I wanted and finally found exactly what I was looking for at DSW. 
The other 3 are some wedges I ordered earlier this month, plus the two pairs of wedges featured in this post. 
(Would anyone like to guess what my shoe of choice will be this spring/summer? Yes, wedges. Totally hot and totally comfortable!)
So I stopped in at DSW and ran inside to see what I could find. First I found these gorgeous wedges for 80% off which made them $9!!!

Then I found these wedges, also for 80% off which made them $8. 
(P.S. you can find the floral pattern of these on sale on the site for $25, which is marked down from $45.)

I LOVE WEDGES!

Seriously! I love the heel of them because it helps my posture, elongates my legs and makes me feel better. But because they're a wedge, they're SUPER comfy to wear. And I often have trouble finding shoes that fit my wide feet, no worries here, these fit PERFECTLY! I love them!

Also, Friday night I went to get my haircut. I haven't had a haircut since August. Seriously. It's been that long. And of course, the stylist that I've been using for the past year no longer works at Regis so I had to just get whoever was available. I got paired up with Sam  (Samantha) and while the haircut wasn't "Oh-My-Gosh-Perfect", I do really like it a lot! Even though I had an appointment, I still had to wait about 35 minutes (after my appointment time) to finally get in the chair. At first I was aggravated, but then I noticed a lot of products were on Clearance and it was buy one, get two free! Umm... YES! So I stocked up on some OPI polishes. These things are normally like $7-$9 and I got 6 of them for only $17! Yippee!

Yesterday, BB had his weekly visit and afterwards, we went running around getting errands done. I stopped in at Lifeway to pick up the "Courageous" movie I'd pre-ordered and I also found to XL teacher totes on clearance for 50% off, which would make them $10 each. However, when I got to the register, they rang up for only $4.99 and I had a $5 off coupon so BAM, two XL teacher totes for only $5! YAY for me! 
I'm giving one away to a friend and keeping the other for my Bible Class stuff. Fun fun!

But alas, bad news. The Courageous movie I picked up was the wrong one. I ordered us the Blu-Ray/DVD combo and was just given the DVD movie. So back to Lifeway I went.  
I had one more $5 off coupon that was expiring soon so I thought I'd pick up a 3rd tote while I was in the store. But I walked in, saw these tumblers and thought I'd like that better. They were marked at $8.99 and I figured I could splurge an few dollars on a tumbler. Well, it rang up at $5 so I ended up only paying $0.42 for this! Awesome? YES! I think so!

That's what I'm loving this week! 

What are you loving?

PS - You can also check out the Clearance section on DSW.com. Prices aren't as low as the in-store clearance, but they do have a lot more styles and colors available. 

Also... 

In completely unrelated news, warmer weather is going to be here soon in Texas and it's time to get my tan on. In years past, I've done the tanning bed thing, but I'm trying to be healthier all around and frying my skin does not qualify. So I'm thinking about trying spray-tanning. Like professional, in a salon/pro tanning business kind of spray tanning. Even though I plan on going to a professional, I'm still worried about coming out looking like an Oompa Loompa or Snooki. I mean, I have red hair with a naturally pale complexion. I can get really dark (for me) using high quality tanning beds, but I don't want leather skin when I'm older. 

So, dear bloggy friends, who can give me some good advice on spray tanning? What are some Dos and Don'ts, what should I ask for, what should I watch out for?? Help!

Thoughts? Opinions? Advice?