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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Object of Art...

The object of art is not to reproduce reality, 
but to create a reality of the same intensity.” 
Alberto Giacometti 

 In first grade, Claude Monet be came my favorite artist/painter.  My love for his work has not faded over the years--it has only grown deeper and he still remains my favorite.  But over the years, I've fallen in love with other works of art.

One of my favorite places to visit in New York City is the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  I could spend hours and hours...and hours and hours there.  There's so much to see and there never seems to be enough time in the day to see it all.  My first visit to the MET, just over 10 years ago, I fell in love with two other works of art.  No, these works were not created by Monet, but they're beautiful.  Although I don't believe the photos I found on the web can do them justice, I wanted to share a glimpse of their beauty with you today.

This first one is Auguste Rodin's 'The Hand of God.'  It's a sculpture of God's hand forming man and woman.  It's breathtakingly beautiful!  I was fascinated with this piece when I saw it for the first time.  So fascinated, that I purchased a smaller copy of the statue just a couple of years after laying eyes on it at The MET.  I can never seem to find the best place to display it, but it always brings a smile to my face whenever I catch a glimpse of it



The second piece is Jules Bastien-Lepage's 'Joan of Arc'.  I remember turning a corner in The MET and staring at this large beautiful painting hanging on the wall.  It looked as though someone had gone back in time with a camera and snapped a photo of Joan of Arc and hung it on the wall for us to see.  Seriously, it looks that real!  Again, this photo does it absolutely no justice.  You'll just have to see it for yourself!



What's your favorite work of art?  Who is your favorite artist?

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Take it or Leave it: FlyLady

Hi!

How are you doing today?  I hope your day is going well!  I'm here for another round of 'Take it or Leave it.'  It sounds like it should be a game show or something, huh?  Hahah.  Today's 'Take it or Leave it' is inspired by a photo of my laundry fail...


My Laundry Fail
Those are clean clothes, and linens that piled up because I just didn't feel like folding anything for a few days.  Ugh.  I really can't believe I just posted that photo.  But, you know what?  Life in our house isn't always perfect.  Bahaha...who am I kidding?  Life in our house is never perfect, this isn't "Leave it to Beaver", folks...and we're definitely not the Cleavers.  We're human, just like you.  

Scott and I spent some time folding all of those items and getting things back in order after my laundry-folding hiatus.  I'm not sure if any of you ladies out there are like me, but I sometimes have a hard time accepting help (even from Scott) when it comes to keeping up the house.  Call it determination, call it a pursuit of domestic tranquility (hahah), I call it pride.  Plain and simple...it's pride.  It's, somehow, been planted in my head that if I'm the one who spends most of the time at home that I should be the only one to keep it tidy and maintained.  But we both live in this house together, and we both make messes in this house together (and separately).  Why was it so hard for me to accept that I couldn't dedicate time to work each day and keep everything neat and tidy on my own for the first couple of years of marriage?  Oh yeah, that fault I mentioned a couple of sentences ago:  pride.  My hat is off to any woman who's able to work and maintain a neat and tidy home completely on her own (with no spousal support)--especially once children come into the picture.  I mean, my hat is completely off to you.  I'm very thankful to have a husband who helps around the house and demonstrates that to our son.  

Today, I'd like to share an awesome resource that will help you stay on top of your domestic maintenance.  It's actually something I've known about for years  but only just started seriously  implementing the past few months--minus my laundry-folding laziness (as seen in the photo above).  I actually told my mom about it a few months ago and when she started using it and telling me how great it was, I decided to finally take it seriously (go figure).  From the 'fail' picture above, I realize I may not appear to be a very good ambassador for the resource I'm about to share, but I promise you it's AWESOME and has helped me change my cleaning habits.

Before I go on, I will remind you that I'm not getting paid or compensated for anything I mention on "Take it or Leave it" Thursdays.

Take it or Leave it:  FlyLady

FlyLady
FlyLady is a FREE resource that gives you baby steps and daily missions to help you develop better habits to maintain your home.  The daily missions will help you de-clutter and deep clean without feeling overwhelmed doing it.  Oh, and there's a little shop on the site that sells some great and durable cleaning products. 

Here is a blurb from the FlyLady website:  "FLYing means Finally Loving Yourself. I want you to have what I have: peace of mind, pride in my home, and a passion for living. FLYing works for everyone. It doesn’t matter if you work outside of your home, stay home with children, are retired, work from home, or a combination of any of these. You can FLY. We are here to help you establish routines and build a basic weekly plan."

So, the choice is yours:  you can take it or leave it.  I'm going to take it!  Back to remembering one of FlyLady's very catchy and accurate reminders "a load [of laundry] a day keeps CHAOS away!"

Click HERE to check out FlyLady

Monday, May 19, 2014

He Has Made Everything Beautiful In Its Time


Hello Everyone!

I hope your week is off to a great start.  It was a busy weekend for our family.  Here's a rundown of what we were up to...

I had a booth at a local flea market selling items from the Hope For Uganda store.  Scott & Trey joined me in the fun for a little bit.  I count the day a huge success!


We enjoyed a lots of laughter at the Nashville Comedy Festival for a date night:
Source
We attended a beautiful wedding and celebrated with friends: 

Scott did some initial DIY [and much needed] landscaping. Before on the left...after on the right: 

And there's a lot more going on this week!

Would you like to stay in touch throughout the week?  You can follow my activities in a few places:  

and, of course, HERE :)...or The Foreign Domestic on Facebook

What are you up to this week??

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Take it or Leave it: Free Custom Military Banners

Hey Everyone!

It's really hard for me to keep a good thing to myself...I mean really hard!  I'm sure some of you are like that too.  I thought it would be fun to have a day on the blog dedicated to sharing good things I hear about or try.  I am declaring Thursday my "Take it or Leave it" day.  Here's how it will work...I'll share something that I think is a good deal or just down right cool, and you can either 'take it' (try it out for yourself) or 'leave it' (go on with your day and forget I even mentioned it).  Sound good?  Cool!  Well, the first "Take it or Leave it" post is today...woo hoo!  Before I go on, I should mention that I'm not getting paid or compensated for anything I mention on "Take it or Leave it" Thursdays.


Take it or Leave it:  Free Custom Military Banners

Source
This one is for all of you military spouses, family members, or friends who have loved ones redeploying.  Did you know that BuildASign.com makes FREE Welcome Home banners for military friends and families for their loved ones redeploying?  Yes, they do!  My good friend, Emily, told me about this sweet deal last year and I took advantage of it for a special redeployment.  It was awesome.  The banner is free, you just have to pay for shipping & handling.  Oh, and the banner quality is great!

Here's a blurb from the BuildASign.com website:

"Since 2008, BuildASign.com® has given away more than 275,000 Welcome Home banners to military friends and families for their loved ones returning home from a deployment. It’s our way to say thanks for their service and sacrifice, and to make all homecomings a little more special."

Thanks, Emily!

Click HERE to get your FREE Banner!





 


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Roasted Asparagus

Do you like asparagus?  We love it!  When it comes to finding a super healthy & super easy side dish for a meal, roasted asparagus is the best thing going--at least for me and my family.  So tasty.

My pre-roasted asparagus


Here's how I do it:

Ingredients:

  • Asparagus--a bundle (or two) 
  • Sea Salt (to taste)
  • Fresh Ground Pepper (to taste)
  • Olive Oil

Steps: 

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Wash asparagus and cut about an inch off of the bottom & pat asparagus dry
  3. Spread asparagus in a single layer on a baking sheet
  4. Drizzle olive oil over asparagus, sprinkle salt & pepper on asparagus
  5. Roast asparagus for about 10 minutes
  6. Enjoy!


What's your favorite quick/easy & healthy side dish?

Monday, May 12, 2014

Hello Everyone!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  Mother's Day was a wonderfully relaxing; I couldn't have asked for anything more than spending it with my guys.  This week is gearing up to be a very active one!  I'm looking forward to keeping you all updated as best I can throughout.  You can follow my activities in a few places:  

and, of course, HERE :)...or The Foreign Domestic on Facebook


Hope For 365 Days

Monday, May 5, 2014

To Nap or Not To Nap

Hey Everyone!

I hope your week is off to a great start.  So far so good here!  

Over the past couple of weeks, I've come to the conclusion that Trey just doesn't like taking two naps anymore.  I was once able to get 4 hours of work done during his nap times but when he decided to go on strike against his second nap, I found myself struggling to keep up on work.  After discussing things with Scott, he recommended that I get Trey into hourly care every now and then so I could have a break during the day and so Trey could spend time with some other little ones.  

So, I signed Trey up for his first day of hourly care today.  He took his morning nap and then we got ready to head out.  I dropped him off and went on my way to run errands.  When I returned two hours later, he was sleeping.  The caretakers told me he had been sleeping almost the entire time I was gone!  They went on to tell me that he's one of the few children to actually sleep in there because it can get so loud. Go figure hahaha.  Maybe next time he'll be awake to make some friends...maybe.  Either way, I'm glad he got two naps in today. 

Here's an image and message of hope to help you start your week:
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