Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Everything Loved in Decmber

I bought this printed sablesoft oversized throw for two knowing well and good that the last thing I needed was another blanket. But I could not resist while shopping in one of my absolute favorite stores, Bed Bath and Beyond. The print I loved, the softness was incredible and the size was great for cuddling with the hubs, which I might add the hubs uses this throw all the time now and it is great for cuddling ;). These are not new to us but I had to share about them because they are so great; Tervis Tumblers drink ware. The hubs and I use them on a daily bases and think that they are the absolute best drinking glasses ever! They have double insulted walls so they reduce condensation and rings, they keep hot drinks hotter and cold drinks colder, they have glass like clarity, they are microwave, dishwasher and freezer safe, you can customize them, and they are guaranteed for life. You can also buy the great lids and straws that fit with them. Get some or get many, you won't be disappointed.


The hubs still can't believe that I spent money on these, but his opinions, thoughts, concerns or suggestions don't phase me when it come to my winter Nadia Crocs in the Khaki color. I saw them in a Macy's add and just HAD to have these of my own. These are the best winter, wear around the house kind of house shoe/boot. They are so comfortable and cute. I still have a hard time considering them as boots though because they are made of the 'Croc material' and I am not sure if I could see myself tucking a pair of skinny jeans in them..... but I do love them to wear on cold winter days around the house.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Wishes

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you. May your holidays be blessed and your wishes come true. May Peace, Love, Joy and Happiness be in your homes, your hearts and in your lives now and in this next year--2009. God Bless.~~the Jacobs

Monday, December 22, 2008

Decking the House with Christmas Cheer

Christmas is no doubt my absolute favorite holiday of all holidays and from Thanksgiving until the New Year is my favorite time of year. I love and cherish the quality time spent with family and great friends, decorating for Christmas, getting a real tree (Nobel Fir preferable), Stockings hung by the chimney with care, going to fun holiday parties, hosting our Christmas party, eating delicious food and desserts, giving gifts, the white elephant gift game, wishing for snow (which we were lucky enough to get this December...remember it NEVER snows here), celebrating the past year, making wishes for the new year ahead and last but not least...the wonderful 'reason for the season', our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Ahhhhh, the memories made during this time of year are priceless.

This year is our first Christmas to celebrate in our new home so therefore I had a brand new slate to work with! I have had ideas running through my head since fall had arrived and I patiently awaited the day after Thanksgiving to start decorating in Christmas decor'. I also did not want to spend a fortune doing it so I did use some things from years past and anything else I bought was purchased on sale or at discounted prices. I am very happy for how it turned out and plan to add a little more each year but still keeping things pretty and classy. Finally pics are posted.




Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Philosophy of Old Age

There are often times I read things and they really touch my heart. I read them over and over and just love the messages they send out. This is one of those readings that I want to live my life by and be able to look back when I am old and know that I lived my life to it's fullest! Enjoy!

Old Age, I decided is a Gift
I am now probably for the first time in my life the person I have always wanted to be..Oh, not my body! I sometime despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken back by that old person that lives in the mirror, but I don't agonize over those things for long.

I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend.

I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.

I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon?

I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60&70's and if I at the same time wish to weep over a lost love ..... I will just do that!

I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.

Sure over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong.

So I am okay with getting old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day, if I feel like it!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It's Snowing!!!

Yes, you heard me correctly, it is snowing here in Houston, Texas and at our house in Cypress! So this may not be a big deal to most people, who actually have four different seasons, but for us here in the Lone Star State and especially the southern part of the state it is a big deal. It doesn't snow here.....ever. The last time it snowed here in Houston was on Christmas Eve 2004 and the snow actually stuck to the ground, cars and rooftops for almost 14 hours. The snow today at work was falling and quickly melting once it landed but it is so exciting to see. This evening though at our house the snow is falling a lot harder and heavier than earlier in the day and it is sticking to the fence, the roof and our vehicles. It is so beautiful to see! We all know it wont last for long, so we are enjoying every bit of what we can get. Only in Texas will it be snowing at one moment and in 24 hours or less the temperature will be back up to almost 60 or 70 degrees. By midnight tonight what snow did stick will most likely be melted and gone...but it was so nice for the couple of hours that we did have it. Our Dakota even loved playing in it! Ahh...the simple things in life.





Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Things that make me Smile

OK...I am the kind of person that when I find a product or service that I just love, I have to brag about it and tell all I know. I am a true believer in word of mouth; it is the best marketing out there, and yes, I did get my business degree and majored in Marketing. There are a lot of things in my life that make me smile. By all who know me, I am considered as a happy, energetic, and caring person and I always have a smile on my face...almost always. So besides the typical who make me smile all the time (my wonderful hubs, my most generous parents, my sweet brother, my great family, amazing friends and the Lord above...) there are things in my life that just make me grin from hear to hear as well. These are all material things, but I'm in love with them too and feel my life is just better with them in it! So here are just a few of Everything Loved...things that make me smile!

Woodwick Candles
My mom gave my my first Woodwick candle in April 2007 for my 24th birthday and I have been hooked ever since. These candles are fabulous!!! They are classy and elegant in appearance and feature a natural wood wick (hence the name) made from organic wood which produces the soothing sound of a crackling fire when burned. The fragrances are wonderful and fill the room quickly but are not over bearing. And when you blow the fire out, you do not get all that yucky black smoke. Combine these attractions and you have the ultimate candle-burning experience, just like their website says! My personal favorite fragrances are Rum Raisin and Vanilla Bean. For the holiday Christmas season, the Evergreen is just like having a real tree in your home. I give these as gifts and gave them to all my bridesmaids at my wedding and all the girls loved them as well! They are a little pricey to some, but to me worth every penny! Check out their website for more info and fragrances and you will never look at another candle the same. http://www.virginiacandle.com













Woodwick Reed Diffusers
I just recently bought the Woodwick brand of reed diffusers and to me they are by far better than any other reed diffuser out on the market. They have the same classy and elegant design as the Woo
dwick candles and feature highly concentrated fragrances infused with essential oils that make any room big or small smell wonderful! And they seem to last a long time as well which makes it worth the paying price.














Wilton Armetale Servingware

For my wedding I discovered Wilton Armetale and was instantly in love. I registered for the 'Flutes and Pearls' set (a classy and timeless design) of almost every piece and was fortunate to receive all that I registered for from my amazing parents! To me this is as great as it gets to serving pieces. Here is a little more about the company and what they make. "Wilton Armetale Company is a family-owned and family-run business founded in 1892 by Ralph P. Wilton, Sr. in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Wilton Armetale® products are still individually cast and meticulously hand-finished so no two pieces are exactly alike. Wilton Armetale® products are sold in department stores and specialty stores throughout the United States and internationally. Armetale® metal is a unique, non-toxic aluminum-based alloy, making it ideal for cooking and entertaining. Hot foods cooked and served in Wilton Armetale® products stay hot longer. Cold foods and drinks served in Wilton Armetale® products stay cold longer.












Our Dyson Vacuum
This is one the greatest gifts the hubs and I have ever received. My father-in-law bought us this for Christmas a couple of years ago and the best part about it is it was the hubs idea to get one! It is the greatest vacuum ever and worth the price in our opinion! You can see all the dirt, dust and dog hair it collects, it helps to clean the air, it is so easy to clean and empty and is easy maneuver. You can not go wrong with any Dyson Vacuum product!












Our GE Profile French Door Refrigerator
This is also one one of the greatest gifts the hubs and I have ever received. My parents bought us this as a house warming present for our new home. We instantly fell in love with the french door refrigerators and were hoping we would be able to get one. All the appliances in our kitchen were GE and black, so we went with the 25.8 Cu. Ft. GE Profile French Door in black model. This refrigerator is awesome!!! It holds so much food, it has shelves that can move up and down, slide back or pull up, it is very easy to clean with no spill shelves, has an integrated dispenser with crushed ice, water and temperature display, led lighting, climate keeper with dual evaporators, two humidity-controlled drawers and 1 full-length adjustable temperature deli drawer, and the freezer is huge with a two-level slide n’ store system. Ahhhhhh, Ok if I haven't sold you by now......I am exhausted. We did have two of our best married couple friends purchase this in the stainless steel version and they love it just as much as we do! I love this device! Thanks so much mom and dad!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Our House, Our Home

So since this blog is also suppose to be about our house, I figured I needed to get some pics up on here to show it to all and share a little bit about our home buying experience.

It was the end of October 2007 when the hubs and I were driving around newer neighborhoods looking at houses and trying to determine what area of the Houston suburbs we wanted to settle down in. We visited the Neighborhood of The Villages of Cypress Lakes because of new houses that I saw were for sale on har.com. I was pretty impressed with the whole 'what you get for the money' aspect of all the homes in this neighborhood and the upgrades that were available really appealed to the hubs and me both. We walked through the model home and loved what we saw, talked to the home sales man who then showed us a couple of inventory homes available and liked what we saw in those too. We then became immediately interested in the possibility of building a house of our own! We got all the information we needed on all the floor plans, the lots available, the upgrade options and the pre-approval application. Two weeks later we put down our earnest money to hold the lot of our choice, the week after that we were pre-approved, the following week we decided on the floor plan and on November 26th we decided on all our upgrade options, had our contract typed up and signed the dotted lines! We had just made the biggest decision in our new married life together and in our young adult lives. We were excited and scared all at the same time! Ninety days later our house would be built and complete! We did our walk through on a Tuesday and we would close on Thursday, February 28th, 2008! It was so exciting to be handed the keys to our new house and to turn the page to this chapter in our life! With the help of my amazing parents, the hubs and I were all moved in by the weekend! Everyday since has been a total blessing and we are so fortunate for all that we have and have been given. Four bedrooms, 2 baths and 2,250SF later, here we are! Click here to view our floorplan.















Tuesday, November 25, 2008

House Browsing, Floor Plans and Paint

I absolutely love to look online at Har.com (Houston Association of Realtors) and spend countless hours browsing at houses for sale...especially the houses that are way out of my price range and are just gorgeous to dream about. I know, this is silly, I do live in a brand new house, but there is just something about seeing others peoples homes that is fun and intriguing, the way they decorate or lack of decorating, the 'what you get for the money' aspect and all the different types of floor plans...my mind just wonders off into real estate la-la land. I also very much enjoy going to new neighborhoods and walking through the model homes, taking pictures of all the beautiful rooms inside. It is just such a passion of mine to decorate, help others decorate, see others home decore' and get great ideas to try in my own home. I will soon be posting pictures of our home and they are going to be considered the before pictures. Because we do live in a new house, the walls are all the same color, an off white cream color with white base boards and white crown molding, way too bland/blah for my taste. I can not wait to put color on my walls and give my house the 'warmth' it deserves. In the next couple of weeks, my hopes are to be painting warm Tuscan colors throughout our home. I am attaching a drawing of our floor plan, so that it will be easier to interpret our house layout when I do post pictures of our home in the future...and floor plans are just fun to look at as well! Our house is 2,250SF for reference.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Clean and Cozy Home makes for Happy Guest

You will soon come to notice and realize (once I post pictures--coming soon) that I am a complete neat freak, very clean and organized; everything has a place where it belongs kind of gal, it’s my OCD, I was born like that. So for me, it is very easy to keep a clean, organized and cozy home. There are just certain things that I do everyday in my home to keep it that way. For instance the bed is always made, the living room is always picked up and the kitchen is clean and clutter free. It really only takes a few minutes, fifteen minutes at most, each day do these easy task. I always want my home to be open and cozy to any and all family and friends that come to stay on a planned visit or just drop by un-announced. Here are some things that I do to make it a non-stressful time when company does comes over.

1. Don’t just clean your home for company
The title says it all. Don't wait to clean your home until you have company coming over. Come on now, you live there and you should be proud of your home, the way it looks and the way it feels. You are worth living in a clean environment; just do a room at a time if that is what works best for you. Then when your guest does come over, you are not running around mad crazy trying to clean the entire house at one time.

2. Leave a room picked up and clutter free
Pretty much put things back where they belong and leave a room as if it were a room in a model home. Don’t get me wrong, the hubs and I do get comfy in our home and ‘veg’ out on the couches with blankets, couch pillows, food and drinks scattered around the living room. We too want to enjoy our home as much as any guest. But I make it a priority to fold back blankets, pick up couch pillows and return all drink and dinnerware items to the kitchen before I go to bed at night. It makes me feel good to walk into a picked up room in my home and enjoy the way it looks. If we take just a few minutes to put everything back where it goes when we leave, we are not only ready for company but we should also be less stressed out.

3. Leave unused rooms "ready"
Most people have rooms in their home that aren't used daily also known as guest rooms. It seems that a lot of people use these rooms as extra storage space or ‘catch alls’. Designate a closet in the house for all ‘catch all’ items and keep your guest room, a Guest Room. This is actually one of the simplest things you can do to keep these rooms guest ready. Make sure the beds are made, have extra clean sheets, towels on the dresser or in guest bathroom, clear closet for guests hanging items, and have a place to lay luggage down on. When this is all done, you can be sure your guest rooms are ready with confidence!

4. Make a cleaning schedule
Now, I will admit, I am not as good at this as others are, but I do try. I do clean all living parts of my house every week, but I do not necessarily clean them on the same day every week. Try and make some type of schedule that is going to work for you. For instance, have a schedule Monday-Friday or even Saturday and do one room each day, or do certain tasks in each room on certain days and laundry on certain days. By doing this you are making cleaning not so much of a hassle and a drawn out process but instead a small daily task which ensures that your home does stay clean day end and day out.

5. Keep a stock of ‘Inventory’ items
There are just certain items that I make sure that I have on hand at all times. The most common stuff that comes to mind for me in our home are, toilet paper, paper towels, napkins, straws, bottled water, wine, guest toiletrie items in bathroom, extra candles, tea lights and the certain foods that I cook with all the time or easy meals. By having these inventory items, you never have to worry about having to rush to the store at the last minute or make your guest feel uncomfortable, non the less yourself.

6. Follow the 15min rule
I love this rule. Never have anything in your house that has to be done, cleaned or organized that is going to take more than fifteen minutes. Fifteen minutes is just enough time to vacuum or wipe counter tops down or dust certain areas or make the bed, etc. Hopefully you will also have at least fifteen minutes notice before any guest arrives and if not, just simply say, “I was just finishing up tidying up this room…”

7. The Extras!
Fresh flowers, light candles, homemade goods or cooking are always a plus for any guest that comes to visit. If you get a chance, do any or all of them and your guest will be sure to feel very welcomed and happy!

8. Enjoy your guest
Be a happy hostess and enjoy the time you do have with your family and friends and be thankful that you have a home that people want to come to. And always make sure your guest are happy as well!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Reality TV

OK, so I have this thing, not really an obsession, just a thing for reality TV. I really enjoy reality television; not all reality tv shows but a good handful of shows. I am not sure what it is about them that I like, but I do. It may be because these are real people (not actors) broadcasting their real life and real situations to millions of people, or because of the horrible strike that happened in the beginning of this year that caused there to be slim to none shows to watch on tv, or because I just find it very entertaining to be caught up in these peoples lives to make me seem more normal! My favorite reality shows to watch are:

-The Bachelor/Bachelorette
-Jon and Kate plus Eight (LOVE!!!)
-The Housewives of...(in which ever city they are in; although Orange Country is my favorite)
-17 Kids and Counting (WOW, that's about all I can say)
-House Hunters (I consider this reality, they are not actors)
-What's My House Worth (same as above)
-Deal or No Deal
-Wipeout (the hubs and I laugh our asses off)
-Nanny 911 (watch this sometimes and find it amusing)
-The Hills (oh my, to have that life.....not really)
-Iron Chef (occasionally watch)

I probably missed a few, but see, I do like me some reality TV. I am sure I am not the only one out there that does but just felt the need to blog about it and it gives you an idea of how random my brain works, LOL.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Fabulous Friday

Ahhh...I love Fridays; they truly are Fabulous for plenty of reasons! Fridays for me are the end of the work week, payday, trying to remember what happened on Grey's Anatomy the night before because I most likely drank too much wine, the weekend is here, happy hour is calling my name (I can taste a cold Budlight already), dinner with friends or family and knowing that I get to sleep in the next morning! I do love Fridays!

On this particular Friday, I am especially excited because tomorrow I am going to the Nutcracker Market with 2 of my very good girlfriends for a Saturday filled with shopping, shopping and more shopping and laughing and eating good food! Below explains what the Nutcracker Market is all about.

Over 65,000 attendees with a strong passion to shop visited more than 300 national and international merchants, offering unique items for the entire family, including home d├ęcor, gourmet food, apparel, accessories, toys, garden items, and much more just in time for holiday shopping! Houston Ballet 's Nutcracker Market has become an annual tradition that kicks off the holiday season in Houston. Since 1981, the Nutcracker Market has contributed over $26 million to Houston Ballet Foundation to support its academy and scholarship programs, which nurture and develop young, promising dancers who have and will become the backbone of Houston Ballet. Currently more than 50% of the dancers in the company have received at least part of their training at Houston Ballet's Ben Stevenson Academy.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

So is this what jumping from a plane feels like…?

So is this what jumping from a plane feels like…? Well, I mean, not so much that exhilarating, but…I guess what I am try to say is jumping into ‘The Blog World’! Letting it all out there; your personal life, your thoughts, your opinions, your comments and suggestions. If so, I am jumping! Here I am!

“It’s about time!” That is what I am thinking to myself. I have had this blog for some time now, over a year to be exact and am just now publishing my first post. To tell you the truth, I was not quit sure how to go about this whole blog thing. I love reading other peoples blogs and find it very, very entertaining. I wasn’t sure if MY blog would be entertaining in the least and if what I wanted to write about really mattered to other people. But what the hell, here goes nothing. I do feel myself personally connected to some of my favorite blogs and can’t wait to see what they post next. And of course I have not dared to comment on their pages… yet…well because I haven’t even posted until now, how boring, I know!

So, “Hi”, my name is Amber (the Mrs.) and I have a wonderfully, handsome hubby named Scott (the hubs) and we have a 5 year old blue heeler girl dog named Dakota. We live in the great state of TEXAS! This blog is going to be about us…OUR LIFE (our house, decorating, organizing, cleaning, shopping, cooking, entertaining and renovating). And although we are a team, I will be doing all of the posting. The hubs isn’t so much into the blogging world, yet. So welcome to OUR LIFE! I have officially jumped! J