• Adventures of the Hubster & Wifester – 2008*

    As it’s the last day of December I thought I’d end the month by posting this year’s Christmas letter–slightly altered to make it "blog friendly". :) Enjoy!!

    Adventures of the

    Hubster & Wifester*

    2008 Edition

    Since our last letter there is much that is new,

    And we’re very excited to share it with you!

    So, let’s start with the Hubs this year,

    For he has been busy—there’s so much to hear!

    The Hubster has been working on projects galore,

    Designing courses for professors and so much more!

    He is finally in his last year at Hippe U,

    His four years of school are nearly through.

    It’s been a long road but he’s been so strong,

    School eleven months of the year is incredibly long.

    But he’s on his final project (which is really way cool),

    And is just waiting for spring when we’ll both be done school.

    I have been absolutely giddy with glee,

    As in June I finally graduated from university!

    After four years of essays, exams and much more,

    I grabbed my degree and walked out the door.

    But something marred my happy little heart,

    It looked like the Hubs and I might have to live apart!

    Last year to teacher’s college I did apply,

    And was accepted to O-Town, but not here… …WHY?!

    I was devastated and cried through the night,

    But the Hubs “put up his dukes” and got ready to fight!

    We fought up the ladder, right to the Big Boss,

    Who gave a firm “NO.” …I was at a loss.

    The Hubster never gave up (he really is the best),

    Until, one day, we finally got our “Yes!”

    And so, after a grueling duel,

    I picked up my books and went back to school.

    I’m as happy as ever to have stayed with my Hubs,

    (Who does all my dishes, but I still clean his tub!)

    I love what I’m doing and all that I’ve learned,

    I work with great teachers—can’t wait for my turn!

    And then we’ll both be done in the spring,

    And together we’ll dance! And jump! And sing!

    For school will be DONE, and our moving day will arrive,

    And we’ll go to a city with people under sixty-five.

    In short, our life is still wonderfully grand,

    We still love our date nights and walk hand in hand.

    We have great adventures as husband and wife,

    We’re as happy as clams and are loving our life.

    And so, dear family and friends,

    That brings our letter this year to an end.

    We love you; we miss you, and hope you are well,

    Have a wonderful Christmas—we sure hope it’s swell!

    Much Love,

    The Hubster & Wifester (aka Shop Girl)



    Shop Girl*

  • An Explosion of Clothes*

    Holy mother of pearl.

    The Hubster and I got home from our Christmas vacation / traveling to see our families this afternoon, and since we walked in the door until now I have been cleaning non-stop. I haven’t even had time to read my lovely little Amish books. *sigh*

    Christmas was a little, well, bigger for us this year as the Hubster and I did a lot of shopping. As he is beginning to apply for full-time jobs in a few weeks, and I start teaching every day for 10 weeks in February, we both decided it was time to trade in our jeans for some professional wear. We went to Sears for the Hubster and he got absolutely stupid deals (this is a good thing) and walked away with amazing clothes. For example, he got beautiful Rockport suit shoes for $80 (half off), Ralph Lauren pants at half off, a ton of fabulous ties, belts, more shoes, socks, shirts and so much more at RIDICULOUS prices!! All the boxing week sales started a week before Christmas and so we shopped until we dropped!!

    I love long sleeved shirts for teaching. They are so so comfortable, and keep me at just the right temperature in the classroom. Until last week I only had 3 or 4, in a couple of colours… and then I went to Old Navy! The Old Navy in B Town had all their shirts down to $6 (from $20) and I pretty much bought out the store and took one in every colour! haha! It was exactly what I had hoped to find in our boxing day adventures, only at half the price I expected to pay! I was so so so excited and I LOVE them!! I’m not sure if it was only the B Town store that had them marked down so low, as I went to a couple of different locations in the City this week and they were more expensive. So I am very happy.

    I was also extremely happy to find 4 new pairs of dress pants that fit me (some of my old ones were too big now that I’ve lost weight) for $15 each!! They aren’t brand name or anything, but I don’t care. I’ll probably muck them up in the classroom anyway, so it was perfect!

    Anyway, we did well with our shopping… but then when we put it all in the car to come home, with our bags and gifts, we realized that we had waaaaaaay too much stuff. So, when we got home today, I followed my mother-in-law’s lead and started cleaning up and cleaning out. We left all out bags and purchases in the living room (it looked like a bomb went off) and I attacked my dresser and closet. I decided to be utterly ruthless with my clothes and shoes and managed to fill 2 bags of clothes to get rid of, as well as one bag of sandals and shoes. It always makes me sad to say goodbye to my shoes… but it was time. (besides… now I have room for new ones!! YAY!! I’m on a hunt for new teacher shoes and new knee-high black boots. I’ll keep you posted!)

    I also got the Hubster to go through his things as well and he also came up with a bag of clothes and a bag of shoes to give away, all of which I’m freecycling! If you haven’t yet heard of this organization I insist that you check it out. So now we have bags and bags of clothes and shoes in our hallway that I’m waiting for people to pick up but I feel SO good to have it gone! Our new things fit well in our room, and we have some extra space! I’m already terrified about our impending move this spring and all the packing it will entail… but I’ll fret about that later.

    Anyway, it’s been a long day of cleaning… and I’m right tuckered out. Unfortunately our living room is still disasterous as I did laundry and have clothes drying everywhere, but I’ll get those away tomorrow and hopefully we’ll have something that resembles an apartment in the near future! haha!

    Tomorrow we are heading back to the mall to exchange a tie the Hubster bought and to hopefully find me some new “teacher” shoes. I had these wonderful old leather black shoes that I loved and wore all last semester… but they died over Christmas. (RIP) So, it’s off to the shoe store to see what I can find!!

    Hope your day was a little less hectic than mine. :)

    Shop Girl*

  • Addicted to the Amish*

    I haven’t been writing…

    …because I have been reading! Non-stop. I have not been this addicted to a series since my Pillars of the Earth spree a while back. My mother-in-law surprised me with a massive bag of books to read when we visited at Christmas! Over the past several weeks she has delved into and become addicted to reading novels about Amish communities.

    I have to admit–when she told me she had a bag of “Amish” books for me to read I wasn’t overly thrilled to crack them open. But as the Hubster’s house is much quieter than my family’s, (and as I flew through the two Shopaholic books I had brought in one day… oops), I found myself looking for some reading material late one night and decided to give it a go.

    Three hours later (at nearly 2am) I was HOOKED. Oh my gosh. SO good!!!! I’m currently reading a series by Beverly Lewis called Abram’s Daughters, and it tells the story of a family over the years and the joys and struggles they endure through life. I am also learning so much… before I started reading I knew nothing about the Amish religion and culture, aside from what I’d heard through Weird Al Yankovich’s “Amish Paradise” (click here to view).

    I am currently on book 4 of 5, and I have laughed, bawled my eyes out, and have been absolutely unable to stop reading. I have read at least a book a day. If you are looking for something to read, I highly, highly recommend these.

    Screw Twilight (which I haven’t read, yet)–bring on the Amish!

    Shop Girl*

  • How Facebook Opened my Eyes to the Reality of Parenting*

    I’ve reached a point in my life when people I know are having children. Actually, scratch that. Not just “people I know”, lots of people I know are having children and I see it every day on Facebook. Just yesterday another girl I knew in high school announced over Facebook that she was pregnant with her first child–and that makes it somewhere between the 15th – 20th pregnancy announcement I’ve seen over Facebook over the past 6 months.

    I’m positive that if I opened my Facebook “home page” right now I would see either a status update regarding a pregnancy, a congratulations on a pregnancy, or the ever-classic month by month belly photos. Now don’t get me wrong–there is nothing wrong with this–it just boggles me that somehow I’ve reached “that” stage in life, where many of my friends are now parents. I know I’m 23 years old and have been married for 3.5 years, but I just can’t wrap my head around everyone I know having kids! haha!

    Most of my pregnant friends, or friends with children, all have and use Facebook regularly. Many of them are also very open and honest in their Facebook status updates, which has opened my eyes to some of the realities of parenting that I might not have otherwise thought of. For example, a couple I know had a baby a little over a year ago. The baby was beautiful, but was extremely colicky and nothing my friends did would get rid of it. I saw their updates at all hours of the day and night and could read their frustrations and exhaustion as they tried to help their baby. I had no idea what colic even was before I read what they were going through as they were going through it. My heart constantly went out to them, but it was months and months before any change occurred.

    Also, I learned about things that women go through during pregnancy (which I won’t detail here) that I hadn’t ever thought about. Changes the body makes, baby movements, etc. I’ve also learned all about the midwifes vs. physicians debate all through status updates, as well as ultrasound photographs, which cities will tell you the sex of your baby and which won’t, and when you should see your doctor when you find out you are pregnant.

    I’ve also learned a lot of what life with a newborn could be like, again, simply by reading through my friends’ status updates. I’ve read all about the late nights, the constant feedings, the silly moments, the “first” moments, and illnesses babies can contract.

    I find it kind of incredible that these parents with newborn children find the time to update their Facebook so regularly with what is going on in their lives. I had always imagined that having a baby means zero free time, but apparently this is not the case! I obviously don’t know what the living or financial situations for all these people are, but they all seem to make time for themselves as well as care for their newborn.

    Lastly, and perhaps the most interesting part about this whole thing, is that in many ways Facebook has become a huge network for parenting tips. Now that Facebook is no longer limited to college and university students, people of other generations are jumping on the Facebook bandwagon. Many of my friends’ parents are now online and connect with people of their own generation and mine. So, in the case of my friends with the colicky baby, I would often see comments on their Facebook status offering words of encouragement, or tricks and tips that had worked with their own children. I haven’t done any type of in-depth study on the success of these ‘tips ‘n’ tricks’, but based on my own personal observations they appear to have some merit. If I was a new parent I don’t know if I’d advertise everything that was going on with my child, but it would be nice to know that there is a wealth of information available to me at my fingertips through Facebook, of all places.

    It’s nice to know that what appears to be a completely useless, procrastination based website has some good to it, doesn’t it?

    Shop Girl*

  • I Bet’cha Didn’t Know That…

    I really liked this and so I borrowed it from one of my favourite blogs, Soaking up the Sun, and changed all the answers!! Enjoy!

    Things you may not know about me:

    1) I have an “x-men” toe. I think the tendons for my big and middle toe are somehow connected and so they bend together. It’s pretty funny, and the Hubster likes to sing the x-men theme to me when I do it.

    2) I LOVE cheesy old dance music. I still love Spice Girls, Aqua, Prozzak, Venga Boys, Run DMC and Dance Mix ’95. Every song has a memory attached to it and they make me laugh.

    3) I like my food to be well done. I can’t eat bacon unless it’s crispy, I don’t like eggs unless they are cooked all the way through, my toast has to be toasted “brown” (no ‘hot bread’ please) and potatoes must not be hard.

    4) I don’t eat chocolate, but I drink hot chocolate.

    5) Hope Floats still makes me cry, even though I’ve seen it a million times.

    6) I hate sleeping without light and noise coming from somewhere. I have a nightlight in my kitchen and a moon lamp in my bathroom, and I need the fan on, even in the dead of winter.

    7) I have lost 11 pounds since August… and have 6 more to lose to reach my goal.

    8) I loathe Donny Darko. I didn’t particularly enjoy it the first time my friends and I watched it in first year, or any of the other 24938274 times we watched it during their obsession phase. The only good thing that came out of that movie was the Mad World Remix.

    9) I wear a CTR ring every day that people constantly ask me about. It stands for: Choose the Right.

    10) I watch more TV than I’d like to admit… but I am going to fess up right now. My weekly shows are: Prison Break, One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl, Private Practice, Grey’s Anatomy, Ugly Betty, CSI, Dexter, How I Met Your Mother, 30 Rock, The Office and America’s Most Wanted. Holy crap. That’s more than I thought. Haha! In my defense, I watch them while I do things (aka eating, folding laundry, cleaning, etc).

    11) I cannot sit still and listen to someone lecture. I need to be writing, doodling or playing some kind of game. I listen better while I am doing something else… weird, huh?

    12) I am relearning my love for the piano, with the support of my Hubster. I somehow stopped enjoying playing, and am slowly finding my passion again.

    13) I have worn glasses and/or contact lenses since I was 10 years old, and I am counting down the days until I can somehow get laser surgery.

    14) My greatest professional goal in life is to become an author. I want to write comedic romantic fiction, but can’t find “my idea”. When I find it I’ll let you know.

    15) I don’t like most of my freckles. In fact, there is only ONE freckle I have that I enjoy, and it’s located between my index and middle finger on my left hand. I just think it’s a funny place to have a freckle and it makes me laugh.

    16) I don’t believe that getting married means that you have to start having children right away.

    17) I love old musicals. (ie – Rogers and Hammerstein)

    18) I have always, always wanted to learn how to play the violin.

    19) I love being organized, but I seldom am. There is nothing that makes me happier than when my space is neat and tidy, and everything I need to do is in an agenda and on an organized list. However, this takes time which I usually use unwisely instead. :)

    20) I read all but 30 pages of Tolstoy’s War and Peace and then never bothered to finish the end. I still don’t know why… it was a phenomenal book. I should probably finish that.

    21) I can’t read more than one book at one time. For some reason it really bothers me. I have to finish one before I can let myself start another.

    22) I love wrapping things. I like shiny paper and ribbons and making things look pretty. I like to buy things for people just so that I can wrap them. haha

    23) I have trouble doing things when I know that I have to do them. If I thought I was doing things of my own free will and choice I can complete a task immediately. If I know it’s only because I have to do it, then I procrastinate forever.

    24) I love listening to water.

    25) I have a mean banana dance.

    So there…25 things about me you didn’t know before, and now you do.

    Shop Girl*

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