Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wrapping it Up






Here we are at the end of the year again! Alaina's birthday is today and I can't help but think that she gets pushed to the side when her birthday rolls around, considering it's New Years Eve. As the year comes to a close, and I look back at all of 2009, I can't help but think that this year just flew by. With Pat and I both in school and working and taking care of the kids, it seems we have lost track of time. My baby is 2 years old today! I can't believe it. I can't ask for a better life, I love my life and especially my family and friends! I can't wait to see what God has in store for us in the upcoming year!!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Update

Well, I am going to go ahead and work while our friends are up, as much as I don't want to, it's the right thing to do. Not too much new is going on here. Pat and I finished our last cluster of this year and both of us finished with STRAIGHT A's!!! Pat found out that he does not graduate next December, but in June of next year, so he is super happy about that. It feels really strange to be on break and not have any homework or anything to do. I don't know what to do with my "free time". I presented my marketing plan to my class on Monday night and my instructor was very impressed and asked if she could share it with some other people. My project was on starting my own photography business, so I made a website to show everyone and then I passed around a pricing sheet. Anyway, my instructor showed the website to her class last night and then she e-mailed me afterwards. This was what she wrote to me:

Jennifer,

It took me a while to get the internet to work..as we did not have firefox on the system at the LCIE Building..However, one of the students was able to put it on and we showed the pictures. There was a positive response to your pictures and to your prices. Some one was interested in possible wedding pictures. I did not press the issue..just gave the information and price lists. Unfortunately the system here is not as good as what we have in Wentzville which was very disappointing.
I also left the CD and the information along with the picture you gave me for Lori Malloy..She is the Office Manager of the LCIE Program. I think you know her, she remembered you.
I told her about your still life pictures of flowers as well as your portraits..she is very interested in looking at them and to speak with you. They are redoing the office and walls and are in the process to look for art work. She asked for you to call her and speak with her.
She will be in the office Thursday and Friday and also next week.
I obviously could not give her prices on the pictures...
Lori's number is 636-949-4500. Her e-mail address is lmalloy@lindenwood.edu. I think she comes in after 9 am.
I also gave your price list to an instructor who was teaching, I think his name is Dr. Bailey....
Let me know how the contact with Lori works out...You might have to check with her to see if she has the access on her computer. I also gave Lori the information you gave me for access.
I think you have great potential and I am most interested in seeing how this goes. I think this is very exciting!
Warmest Regards,
Phyllis
314-540-3485 cell

Friday, December 4, 2009

Decisions, Decisions

So, working in retail during the holiday season has posed a few issues this month. Four months ago I requested some days off that I needed in December. It happened to be two weekends in a row, the 11th-13th and the 18th-20th. We also have a crazy amount of birthdays in December such as: Grandma Stroot and Lydia on Dec. 1, Doug on Dec. 9, Dad on Dec. 15, our anniversary on the 18th and Alaina on the 31st. It's a crazy month, plus throwing Christmas and New Years into that mix makes it a little crazy. So knowing that I requested those dates off FOUR MONTHS ago, I assumed that I would have those days off. I am babysitting the entire weekend of the 11th and the weekend of the 18th is our last chance to see the Robertson's before they move to Costa Rica. Well, to my surprise I received NONE of the days off that I requested. So, tonight when I go into work I'm going to be having a conversation with a manager and if they cannot work with what I am able to work, I'm going to have to make a decision of quitting or sucking it up and working even though I gave them plenty of notice. I will keep you posted and let you know what's going on.

Friday, November 13, 2009

the dreaded DIET


I go back and forth all the time on working out, eating healthy, trying to lose weight versus being engrossed in schoolwork, being lazy, and relaxing frequently. I do well with working out and eating healthy for about a month and then I get bored of eating the same things all the time, so I splurge and it takes me a while to get back on the weight loss bandwagon. I don't have enough will power to stay motivated to lose the weight that I want to do. I am the kind of person that if I don't see results right away, I give up. I have decided that after the soda I currently have in the refrigerator is gone, I am going to try to start drinking diet in hopes that eventually I will give up soda all together. The two things I love the most are the first that need to go in order for me to lose weight, they are: soda and all junk food. :o( I know, I'm an adult and I should be able to have the self-control and will power to overcome these evil things, but so far I have not had too much success. I use the busy thing as an excuse all the time...I'm busy doing homework, cleaning, working, playing with the kids, whatever but the truth is, I could spend the time that I'm normally playing around on the computer and do some exercise, eat a healthy snack instead of a snickers bar and eventually if I stick to it, I believe I can lose the weight that I want to lose. I know you probably are wondering how much I am wanting to lose and the answer is 50 pounds within a year. That's less than a pound a week. Sounds pretty reasonable, don't you think? I'm going to pray that God helps me to stay motivated because I want to be a healthy mom for my kids, I want to be able to run around and play with them and right now I just feel like a fat, lazy blob. It will change, you'll see! (this is a pep talk to myself!)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Learning Something New

As I have mentioned many times before, I am currently in a marketing cluster. We just had to do a paper on personal branding and I found it to be very exciting. It has given me an idea of who I am, what I want to be perceived as, and which direction I want my life to be headed. I am having a hard time deciding what I want to do whenever I get my degree whether I want to try to do an office job such as accounting, or at least something with numbers, or if I want to be risky and start my own business.
If any of you know me well, you know that I am not a risk taker...at all! However, while sitting in church a few weeks ago, Pastor Erik was talking about taking risks and doing what God has called you to do instead of just sitting by taking the easy path because it is safe, secure, and much less risky. I know the idea of starting my own business has a lot that would go with it but at the same time, I truly believe that it is where I am the most gifted, the most talented, and I absolutely love it.
In this class I have learned that sometimes it is okay to take risks. If you fail, you learn from your mistakes and move on. I think my problem is the failing part. I choose not to take risks because I am afraid to fail. Through my wonderful Pastor and my current professor I have learned that failing is part of learning and growing. If I don't have a clear vision of where I want my business, life, marriage, whatever to go, it will fail. If I listen to God and define the vision that I believe he has set before me, I believe I will be more successful than I could have ever imagined.
I am willing to take the risk, as soon as I finish the marketing plan and the vision for our future!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Sweet Hook-up!!!

Today I had to go do a focus group on Sparkle paper towels. In the marketing class I am currently in the teacher makes us do a focus group or a mystery shop. I tried doing the mystery shop and nothing ever seemed to work out right, so I called up Lucas Market Research in Earth City and asked if there was a focus group I qualified for. I know boring...snore! Anyway, I got put on a list to do a focus group for this morning and in preparation, they sent me a journal that I had to do for 5 days! It seems like a lot of work but really it's not. We were getting paid $25 for our journals and $75 for doing the focus group. If we got to MLR early, we were put into a drawing to win an extra $25 and guess who won!!! That's right, my name was pulled right out of that basket and I just beamed. Yeah, I know it's only $25 but I WON! So I was all happy waiting to go sit in the room with these 6 other women to talk about the paper towel that we all "love" when I hear the receptionist tell me that someone wanted to talk to me. I thought to myself "uh-oh, they found out I work at Sams and aren't going to let me do this group (you couldn't work at a place that manufactured, distributed, or marketed paper towels. To my surprise, the lady said in a whispering tone "we accidently overbooked this group so we are going to pay you and you get to go home!" I couldn't believe it! Not only did I win the $25 drawing but I get paid $100 to go home?!?! God never ceases to amaze and take care of me and my family!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

More Pictures






I just can't help myself. On nice days I love to go out and take pictures of the kids, scenery, whatever, I just LOVE taking pictures. I'm trying to get better at the editing, but right now with being in school it is difficult to find extra time to read up on editing photos. So, in the meantime, enjoy what I have done with them so far!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Nothing much to say


Here are some more pictures from this month. If you haven't already, you can check out: http://thepatrickmahoneyfamily.shutterfly.com/
That website I update once a month with all the pictures from that month.


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween






So, Halloween is just around the corner. It is my least favorite of all the holidays. I hate to be scared and so I only remember ever going trick or treating twice in my entire life and one of those times was when I was a teenager. I have yet to take my kids trick or treating either. Thankfully this year, our church is doing a Halloween alternative that we are super excited about going to. It is a carnival from 5-9 and there are rides, games and food and the best part is that everything is FREE!!! I don't know about you, but I LOVE free! Also I have the entire day off so I can't wait to sleep in with my hunnie and just relax until going to the carnival.
Other than that I have just been drowning in homework. I've been trying to make sure I can get everything done before the middle of November because we have a 20 page paper to write (our marketing plan) instead of a final at the end of the quarter. As much as I despise tests, I'm not sure I'd rather write a 20 page paper than take a quick test. Oh well, the professor didn't give us the option. So, I get to do my first focus group on Friday November 6th. It is a requirement for this class so it should be interesting. The cool thing is I get $100 for doing it AND I get 30 points for the paper I write on it in class! I just keep pressing on and looking forward to our 4 week break over Christmas and New Years!!! We only have one more year until Pat and I are BOTH finished!!! We can't wait!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Our Early Morning Visitor

We do the parents as teachers thing and my kids LOVE it! Well this morning I was laying in bed just relaxing and being lazy when Declan came in and said "mommy, someone is knocking on our door." Believing him, after the last fiasco, I jumped out of bed thinking who in the world is knocking on our door, no one ever comes over unannounced to our place. While looking through the peephole on our door I realized it was the Parents As Teachers lady. I opened the door and let her in, meanwhile I was wearing penguin pajama pants and a t-shirt that has about 10 holes in it. I told her to come in and I would be back in just a minute. I went in the bathroom to change and throw my hair up in a pony tail. How embarrassing. Oh well! She said that Alaina is right where she should be for her age and she didn't screen Declan this time, but he's ahead of where he should be. It was a good visit. Alaina got to play a game and Declan got to read two books.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

School.....uuuugggghhhh

I am currently in a marketing class. It's not bad, the work is not difficult it is just time consuming and BORING. We have to do these case studies every week which seem completely irrelevent and pointless to me, however our teacher has us doing a three page paper for every case study just to answer a simple two questions at the end. I cannot wait for December to come because we get a 4 week break from school!!! Most of you know I have switched my major from Communications to Business (B.S. to be exact). I would like to do something with numbers such as accounting, bookkeeping, payroll, something of the sorts. We shall see how everything pans out. I have only been back to school for three clusters or 36 weeks and I'm already wishing I was finished.

On another note, Pat and I are going to see if we can qualify for a home loan because we are getting really crampt in this little two bedroom apartment. The craigslist selling is going well and we have made enough cash for one of Declan's Christmas gifts! Other than that, we have just been busy with homework, kids, and life.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Is this normal?

First of all, I have been cleaning all day. I cleaned both bathrooms, dusted, cleaned the kitchen, vaccumed, did laundry, and even got down on my hands and knees and mopped the floors by hand. Believe me, if you've been to my house lately you know how badly it needed to be done. So, I let the kids stay up a little later than usual for their nap because I wanted to vaccum before I laid them down. So they ended up laying down about an hour late. All I wanted to do was sit, relax and get some homework done.
Then, I was sitting doing my homework and I heard Declan "Moooommmmmmyyyyy" so I ignored it, they had already been in bed for about 45 minutes and he should have been sleeping. Then, I heard it again, "MMMMOOOOMMMMMMYYYYY" so I went in there only to find he was refusing to take a nap and just trying to get me in there to "tell me something". I was pretty aggrevated that he hadn't gone to sleep yet, but seemed to keep my cool until I realized that in the process of him yelling for me, he woke up Alaina. I was LIVID. I had never been more angry at him. Now, not only is Alaina crabby because she only got a mere 45 minutes of nap time, but he is also crabby because he won't go to sleep if she's awake. UUUUUGGGGGGHHHH the "joys" of being a mother.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Costume Party for 2

video

Craigslist

I finally figured out how to resize my pictures to sell stuff on Craigslist. However, I did not do any research to figure out how much things are going for and I sold some stuff WAY below what I could have asked for them. So far I have sold 5 out of the 11 items I posted. I am pretty happy about it. I figure since we're mainly selling the kids toys, we're going to put all the money in an envelope and use it for Christmas gifts this year!
So, later tonight we sold a couple of Declan's toys and at first he was sad, but I told him that we are selling stuff so that we have room for new stuff and he was happy. Then he said, how about we sell some more of my stuff mommy and can we sell the couch too?!?! I wish, one of these days we'll have new(er) furniture that all matches, but for the meantime our couch is SUPER comfortable and we have looked at other couches and have yet to find one as comfortable.
Anyway, tomorrow I am planning on going to another park or something to take some more fall pictures of the kids. I hope the weather is nice and the kids cooperate. I would love to do some family pictures, but if we do those it will have to wait until Saturday or Sunday. In the meantime I am LOVING the fall colors in the leaves and the smell of people having fires in their fireplaces.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Fall Weather






Yesterday, since it was 70 degrees or so, we spent majority of the day outside with some friends. We went to the park and took pictures and all the kids had a great time. I couldn't help but take pictures of the beautiful fall leaves...some of the colors were just stunning. Here are some pictures from our day!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Six Flags

Well we had our last six flags trip of the season. It was fun! Declan and I rode the Old Mine Train and him and Alaina rode a bunch of the kids rides. We all rode the Scooby doo ride together and then Declan and I rode the scrambler, flash, whatever you wanna call it. It was fun, but when it started to turn to dusk, we had to leave because all the scary things started going on and not only was it freaking out Declan, but me and Pat, too! So on our way home both of the kids fell asleep (and me too)! It was a fun family filled day!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Eventful



I was sitting on the couch doing some homework last night and I fell asleep pretty quickly. Then, I woke up at 12 or so and couldn't go back to sleep so I stayed up until 3 am and then the kids woke me up early this morning. Oh well, such is life I guess.
Anyway, I'm in a marketing class right now and as our final project we have to write a marketing plan for a product or service, so I am thinking I am going to do a photography "service" as mine. I get to make business cards and the whole 9 yards. I am pretty excited about it! Besides that, we usually get loan refund money from school and I was told our refunds wouldn't be available until after the 16th and on Tuesday, we got mine in the mail. It was a complete blessing and reminder of how God always takes care of us!
Our family is doing well. Alaina, so far, is the only one that has gotten a flu shot, but we all plan on getting it. We all had the flu really bad last year and we don't really want to relive that. We will probably be moving at the end of February into a bigger apartment or if we're lucky a house (renting). We are quickly outgrowing our apartment. Also the reason I decided to put a bunch of stuff on Craigslist, which by the way, I can't figure out how to load the photos on there with the wording. I think my file sizes are too large, so I shrunk them in photoshop, but now I can't figure out how to find the smaller sized pictures. It's a learning process!
On top of this stuff, I went to take a shower and the kids were watching cartoons (or so I thought) and when I came out Alaina had dumped the ENTIRE box of corn pop cereal all over the table and floor and was eating them. So needless to say after I got out of the shower, I got a workout vacumming and picking up all the corn pops.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

De-Cluttering

Well, tonight I decided that I was tired of being overtaken by our kids toys. I have taken pictures of a ton of toys and some shoes, clothing will follow, to post on Craigslist. I am so happy to have finally done this because I've had this stuff sitting around FOREVER. Declan got all sad when I told him I was taking the pictures so that we could sell the toys to other little boys and girls, but he overcame his sadness when I told him that since we're getting rid of a bunch of stuff now when Christmas rolls around he'll have a place for all the new toys. He was pretty stoked about that. Alaina obviously didn't care one way or the other. So, now I'm on to posting all this stuff on Craigslist. If the toy selling goes well, clothing will be next. We have WAY too much stuff.
Today I did not wake up until about 10:00. For some reason, ever since I had strep, I can not seem to catch up on sleep. Well last night while I was working the kids were crabby and acted up so Alaina went to bed at 7 and Declan was in bed by 8:15. So, needless to say, Declan was up by 7:00 this morning and Alaina actually slept until about 9:00. It's been so rainy and cloudy here the past week I have had a hard time getting up when I should. Hopefully this weekend brings better weather!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What's New



So, we bought Declan a preschool workbook and he has been doing some fun activities in there. He has learned how to cut in a straight line, wavy line, and a zigzag. He LOVES it and he thinks he is so big since he can do it. He has also been putting together puzzles that he got as birthday gifts and he's really good at those, too. Alaina is just as rambunctious as always. She loves getting into things she is not supposed to and she is a climber.