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I LOVE cooking from recipes, and making up meals, I LOVE spending time with my boys (all three) and entertaining my family and friends, I LOVE bargain shopping (vintage stores included), I LOVE flipping through fashion and design mags, I LOVE the smell of libraries and how often I could get lost there, I LOVE scanning realty websites, I LOVE Trader Joes and LUSH, I LOVE fresh flowers and all four seasons, I LOVE Cincinnati and am always ready to travel, I LOVE stationary and stamps, I LOVE diamonds and pearls, tulle and lace, I LOVE smelling coffee and drinking tea, I love marshmallows and chocolate, I LOVE cozy sheets and morning sunshine, I LOVE me and I love GOD!

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Friday, July 31, 2009

Financial Peace……do you have it?!


Ok…so there is all this talk about a recession. Everyday in the news I hear about people loosing their jobs, having trouble keeping their homes, and defaulting on debt payments. A major concern I have in the midst of the “recession” is maintaining solid credit. How do you measure up? I think it is really important for people not only to be physically, spiritually, and mentally healthy but also financially!!

In these hard economic times and even when the economy is healthy it is very important to know your credit score and what things are showing up on your credit report. Knowing what is on your credit report also allows you to detect any identity thief or unnecessary accounts you have open and may have forgotten about! You can dispute discrepancies and cancel out accounts.

When you go to buy a house, open up a credit card, or to buy a car the first thing they do is pull your credit!
I came across the following secure site www.annualcreditreport.com which allows you to download one free credit report a year. It only takes a couple minutes and it’s free!

Below are some steps you can take to help ease the burden of the recession and put some extra money in your purse:
• Negotiate lower interest rates on your credit cards and other accounts
• Transfer all funds to a lower interest fixed card and cancel out the outrageous ones
• Sell unwanted/unneeded items on sites like www.craigslist.org
• Don’t be too proud to shop the sale rack at your favorite stores and use coupons!
• Budget: if you don’t already make a budget and stick to it. Any extra money stash in your rainy day fund, you never know when you will need it!

Make sure you are in the best place for you and your family! Be smart, be empowered!

xoxo
Ronita

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I Can't Understand You!!...You are Not Speaking My Language

So while Scott and I were preparing for our (past) impending nuptials we were required to take a six week marriage class at our church. I was very excited about the class and thought I would love to learn anything I could to make our marriage the best it would be. Each week of the class had a different theme, keeping it very interesting for all the couples and it required us to do homework! One week was communication strategies (pot holder technique), another was historical family relationship examples and how that will play into your marriage, and yet another was sex and its importance to God in your marriage. My favorite I would have to say was our class on LOVE LANGUAGES!!!

We were given a book to take home, Gary Chapman’s Five Love Languages, and asked to browse and take the quiz to see what our love languages were. I recommend getting and reading this book if you are in any kind of relationship! The way your partner feels love channels through one of these five languages.

The 5 Love Languages:
Words of Affirmation
Quality Time
Receiving Gifts
Acts of Service
Physical Touch

Ronita:
My two love languages are Physical Touch (go figure) and Words of Affirmation.

Scott:
Scott’s two love languages are Quality Time and Acts of Service.

Knowing our love language has completely allowed us to communicate our love for each other in the appropriate way. I know that it is important for me to make time for just the two of us, maybe just watching (and that’s BIG with two little ones;) Scott understands that little caresses and him telling me I’m GREAT!!! …lol is enough to send me…well…I’ll kept that to myself…but figuring your significant other’s love language(s) is totally beneficial for the health of your relationship. If you buy gifts and expect they love it and jump for joy and all they can say is oh…thanks then you are not speaking their language!!! If not for anyone else, know what you like and how you like to receive love!!


Visit the link below for more info and a quick quiz:
http://www.fivelovelanguages.com/30sec.html


Be Love,
Ronita

Monday, July 27, 2009

Suga Pie Honey Bunch...What's Your Fav Summer Dessert?


I would say mine would have to be banana pudding...my mom's to be exact...It's the creaminess of the pudding mixed with the sweet bananas and cake like vanilla wafers!! I just love her banana pudding. What I think makes it so special is that fact that she only makes it on special occasions...I have included a recipe for banana pudding. Please feel free to share your favorite summer treat!! It's simply fab!!


Ingredients:
•1 large pkg instant vanilla pudding, (6 ounces)
•2 1/2 cups cold milk
•1 can sweetened condensed milk, (14 ounces)
•1 container whipped topping, (16 ounces)
•sliced bananas
•vanilla wafer cookies
Preparation:
Mix pudding and milk; add condensed milk. Blend well; fold in half the whipped topping.
Alternate layers of pudding, bananas and vanilla wafers; top with remaining whipped topping and a few banana slices.

Refrigerate overnight before serving.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

My Mommy Survival Kit.....




So after 3 1/2 almost 4 years (wow) of being a mom there are some handy items that I have decided not to live with out! Take a look at my ever growing list and chime in on some of your mommy survival kit items:
  • Resolve Carpet Cleaner (enough said..)
  • Baby Wipes- any brand with ridges to remove even the messiest residue

  • Shot Spot Remover

  • Vaseline Petroleum Jelly

  • Neosporin Antibiotic Cream

  • Calamine Lotion

  • Witch Hazel

  • those fun and attention averting magnetic letters on the fridge

  • humidifier/vaporizer

Summa Summa Summer Time.....Oh Summertime


When I think back to summer as a kid I can think of tons of fun and super exciting times!!! My mom always had us in some sort of camp or group and I always looked forward to those only for summer fun adventures! One of my fondest memories is going to the drive in in Oakley (which by the way no longer exists) to see a triple feature with my dad and brothers in our ASTRO van!!

We placed our blankets on top of the van and peered at the BIG screen playing Batman. At break we would go to the concession for fresh popcorn!!

What are some of your favorite summer memories?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

My Cinco de Mayo Baby: Roman's First Year Photos


Our "GREEN "story was a part of an article in the Cincinnati Enquirer. Take a look...

Parents moved to go green
Monday, June 16th, 2008

Mom and Dad can choose from an array of eco-friendly food, diapers, cleaning products and clothes

BY LAUREN BISHOP | LBISHOP@ENQUIRER.COM

Forget Al Gore. The people responsible for getting many people to “go green” are much younger – about 60 years younger.
Babies are prompting parents who never considered themselves especially eco-conscious to start stocking up on green baby products, from cloth diapers to organic baby food and clothing to all-natural lotions and ointments.
One of those parents is Jena Richter, 22, of Sharonville. After she became pregnant, she decided to use cloth diapers after she read about the chemicals that some disposable diapers contain and how they may take hundreds of years to break down in landfills.
Then she started eating organic food to avoid pesticides. Now she spends about two hours once a week making baby food, often with vegetables from her garden, for 6-month-old Eden.
She dresses Eden only in 100 percent cotton clothing, preferably organic. And the whole family uses personal care and cleaning products that contain as few ingredients as possible, preferably natural ones.
“Before all this,” Richter says, “we didn’t even recycle.”
Babies “R” Us has increased its stores’ inventory of natural and organic items over the past two years to more than 300 separate products. It carried just a few dozen items only a few years ago.
The retailer reports an increase in baby registries that include organic food, organic cotton clothing, natural bedding and environmentally friendly cleaners.
“I wouldn’t call this a trend. This is definitely a lifestyle change,” says Babies “R” Us spokeswoman Jamie Beal.
At Park + Vine, a “green” general store in Over-the-Rhine, green baby and parent products make up 20 percent of the inventory, up from 10 percent when the store opened a year ago, says owner Dan Korman.
Cincinnati also has a new cloth diaper service, Good Natured Baby, which has 16 customers, says Amy Hruschak of Liberty Township, who started the business with her husband, P.J., after their son Rory, 16 months, was born.
“Six years ago (when her oldest was born), it was kind of unheard of to use cloth diapers, and people thought you were a weirdo,” says 30-year-old Donyé Cortese of Mount Auburn. “Then it kind of seemed like the whole green thing became easier to do.”
The dizzying array of green products at specialty stores, major retailers and online prompted 25-year-old Suzanne Istvan of Oakley to start www.greenmommyguide.com, which contains articles about and reviews of various green products.
Istvan never thought she’d be a mom who cared about organic baby food, sustainable materials and cloth diapers, until she found out how easy it was to integrate eco-friendly options into her life.
“I really wanted to spread the word to other moms that you don’t have to be ‘crunchy’ to be green,” Istvan says.

For many parents, little changes do lead to entire lifestyle overhauls.
Ronita Farria of Kenwood, a 24-year-old mother of a 2½-year-old and a 6-week-old, says her older son’s asthma and allergies prompted her to start using nontoxic, more earth- and people-friendly medicines and products.
Now, Farria and partner Scott Dean buy food at farmers’ markets, get baby and household items through Craigslist and Freecycle, combine car trips, use energy-efficient light bulbs and are trying to get their condo association to start a recycling program.


Megan Seaman-Kossmeyer, a 33-year-old mother of two from Bridgetown, also says parenthood turned her into an “accidental environmentalist.”
When Seaman-Kossmeyer’s 8-month-old daughter began fighting every diaper change, she learned how to calm her down and reduce diaper waste by practicing “elimination communication” – reading infants’ signs and signals to know when to put them on the toilet.
Her family also tries to reduce waste by using cloth grocery bags and acquiring clothes and toys secondhand. And they shop at farmers markets and have started a garden.
“Once you make the leap and you try to change, you realize it isn’t that hard, and it starts to become second nature,” says Seaman-Kossmeyer, who helps run local Diaper-Free Baby and Attachment Parenting International groups.
But doesn’t going green cost more? Sometimes yes, sometimes no.
Farria says natural products can be more expensive, but they tend to last, and she’s mindful of how much she uses.
Eastgate resident Kimberly Duffy, 28, estimates she spends $150 a week on mostly organic and natural food and other products in an effort to minimize the chemicals and preservatives to which her daughters, ages 1 and 3, are exposed.
But she saves money on cleaning products by making her own, using water, vinegar, baking soda, lemon juice and tea tree oil.
Parents who use cloth diapers say it’ll save them money in the long run. Istvan paid $300 for diapers that she hopes will last until her son is potty-trained. She would have spent the same amount for just six months’ worth of disposable diapers, she says.
Whether parents’ motivation is saving money or the planet, it doesn’t matter, Istvan says. “The end result is good for everyone.”

Celeb Moms I Adore!!
















"I'll Stay With You" The Wedding: July 2, 2009
















Scott and I were married on Thursday (yes Thursday) July 2, 2009 at Crossroads Community Church. We had our beautiful ceremony, warm and glam! Our reception was held at The Madison's Grande Ballroom in Covington, KY...It is a night I dreamed of and will always remember!

How many times can they call me mommie?...what's in a name?..

I hear this name so many times during the day I often wonder is this what should be on my Ohio drivers license. I can remember when Tre' was just beginning to talk and all I wanted to hear him say was momma...now I can't even count the number of times I hear it in a day. When he is happy, when he is sad, when he is hurt, when he wants something, when he is excited, when he just wants to cuddle......

Knowing that Roman is not too far away from repeating this same name...it makes my heart flutter just as when I saw their first sonogram pictures...the realization of motherhood.