Monday, October 31, 2011

Our Secret Spot

Ralph and I have a secret little spot of heaven tucked away in a wooded area that leads to a Private Beach. It’s so hard to keep our secret spot Hush Hush when I just want to tell everyone to go there! We have been going there for years, it doesn’t matter the weather. We go up every Valentine’s Day for the weekend and throughout the year not just the summer. There is rarely anyone ever there I think we have only seen two people in the 5 years of going there and the area is seemingly remote. We have searched for treasure; have fed wild animals, watched seals on the embankments, had romantic spring picnics, kayaked, baked in the sun, snorkeled, had fires, snowball fights, watched fireworks,  sunsets & sunrises, fished,  flew kites, found crabs & shells, held hands & Kissed in the moonlight. We cherish our secret spot and the best part is we have a beautiful ocean front house to stay at when we go there. As we get close my heart starts to flutter, and the rush of memories consume my body. I Love our Secret Little Spot…..
The Stairs that lead to our Little Oasis.
Picnic's are Always Romantic
This is one of my Favorite pictures...I love it because we didn't know it was being taken. As we were on a wooden Lookout point Laughing Ralph scooped me up and was being silly.....Being in Love captured Forever in a single Picture.
The Only other Two People that know about and have been to our Secret Spot.

*I love all these pictures, they hold a sense of mystery and makes our spot seem a little more secret. Excited that in 10 days Ralph and I will be spending a much needed weekend away at our Special Place..... Until Then. 


Might change the date of "La Sarah Spa Night" to our Weekend Get-a-Way ;) 

Pumpkin Tealights

Make your dinner more festive tonight; with this being the last day of October use your mini pumpkins for “Candles.”  
 Trace the circumference of a tealight on top of a mini-pumpkin and carve it out.  If you will be leaving them out longer than tonight rub some Vaseline on top of the pumpkin to keep it from drying out. Then, insert the tealight inside and use this Super cute displays in the center of your table or even around the house for decorations. 
You can even use pipe cleaners and make cute little Spider Candles

 *IF YOU ARE BAD AT REMEMBERING TO BLOW OUT CANDLES USE BATTERY OPERATED TEA LIGHTS*

Have a Safe and Happy Halloween Everyone 
Sammie the Duck and Joshy the Boston Lobsta
I cant wait to have a Son so I can make this Costume for Him...

                       Inspired by the movie UP

MOM




My Mommy

Joshy

Living with a Disabled Dog, I don’t think I’ve ever said those words until this morning. For those of you new to my little blog world I have two dogs a Puggle named Samuel Preston and a Peakazu named Joshua Aden. Since the day we bought Josh we fell in Love, not just me but everyone that has met him. I wasn’t planning on buying a puppy and was just going to look (never do that) I walked in and poked around and saw joshy sleeping, of course I had to ask about him and the woman told me that he was a clearance puppy and has been at the place for a while, my heart just sank, she then went on to tell me that the staff feel bad for him so they often take him home so he can get a change of scenery, and that no one wanted him nor thought he was cute…. Well if she was sales pitching me it certainly worked because I threw the $500 dollars down quicker than I had a chance to think “what have I gotten myself into.” Within five minutes the papers were signed and I was walking out of the store with a new Puppy. When I drove away reality set in and decided that it was meant to be if he is already in my lap. I went to Petco (because I had nothing, other than Sammies stuff) I put Joshua in the top part of the cart and went around the store and bought everything under the sun.

Then it was the introduction to Sam (which to be 100 percent honest I don’t remember!) I know it went well and within the next few days they were officially brothers. The weeks to follow were strange to say the least, josh was coughing or so I thought and I assumed he had kennel cough, took him to the vet and had his shots and regular first check up and given medicine for kennel cough. The months to follow Josh threw up every day (Literally Everyday!)  and we were always at the vet, long story short the “Kennel Cough” he had was really a “reverse Sneeze” (goggle it) and he was throwing up for 2 months because of the medicine he was taking for something he didn’t have!! I felt horrible but we eventually moved on, 6 months down the road Josh was hit by a suv (an illegal Ecuadorian to be exact who then speed away!) Four days at tufts in an air tank with bruised lungs and scrapes oh and did I mention 3,000 Dollars!! He recovered and we moved on again. 

 7 months later we ran out of Frontline (which is a flea and tick prevention) and we were in the midst of packing up and heading to the beach house for a week. There were a ton of ticks there and decided that we would get him some flea medicine at the grocery store, well ya bad idea, he was poisoned from it and rushed to Tufts again, $1,000. So here we are three times a charm, we were away on vacation and in a 5 story beach house that had a TON of stairs, Joshy somehow jarred his back, I knew something was wrong and he did not want to go outside or go down to the beach, so we left early. 

I took him to the vet and they said rest and painkillers, an hour later he lost all mobility in his back legs and collapsed in the middle of our living room floor, (One thing I know now for the future I must work on how to handle stressful situations) I was screaming, crying, praying to God not to take my little dog from me, trembling and everything else you could imagine when you little dog collapses before your very eyes. I scooped up his lifeless body called my mom in hysterics, drove 65mph back to the vet, they said he is lethargic form the medicine, but I knew it wasn’t that. I paid another emergency visit of 180 dollars and got right back into my car told Ralph to meet me and we drove straight to Tufts. They did everything imaginable and came back with the news, your dog needs emergency back surgery to live and if it is not performed now he will have to be put to sleep, oh ya and after surgery there is a 60 percent chance he may never walk again!!! Did I mention its 6,000 DOLLARS and must be paid before they can even start the emergency operation. So we pulled out are bank cards without any thought and prayed, cried and worried for our little dog who is so much apart of who we are and our family. 

How could I have EVER said No to Surgery!


Coming home with him was scary to say the least, he was so fragile or so we thought, we decided that the best thing to do would be to take our vacation time and use it now, I had three weeks and Ralph had a week. So we had a whole month to get our little dog better…. After physical therapy (another 1,000) and many doctor visits Josh is One HAPPY Dog!!! He is still unable to go for a walk and we have to take extra precautions so he doesn’t jump but we are all adjusting well. I don’t think Ralph and I ever gave it a second thought, we never said the words “Disabled” we have just adapted to a new life style. Yes it would be easier to throw two leashes on the dogs and go for a walk, and not have to block of certain areas off in the house (he can only be on carpet), and not build a pillow wall on the bed if someone is not in bed or leaves early for work, but we do, we wanted JOSH! So we made sacrifices, it’s hard to put a number on something that is a part of your family, in all the Clearance puppy has cost us around 13,000 Thousand Dollars but worth EVERY penny. Ralph and I are very fortunate that we were financially able to provide our dog the services he needed to stay alive, it’s heart breaking to see families have to put down their beloved animals because of money! How frustrating and sad is it that 6,000 dollars was in the way of Josh living or Dying. I’m not going to lie 6,000 dollars is a lot of money and most do not have that laying around to put toward and animal. Most families are struggling to find work let alone shell out that kind of money for their pet.

So I have found an Organization that helps Families fight for their animal and save their lives even if they don’t have the means to do so. It's so exciting to know that I was able to help save a family pet just by donating, I know if I had been in that situation with Josh and someone helped me I would have been forever Grateful!! So if anyone is looking for a great cause to donate to this Holiday Season check out Angels for Animals And help a family in need!! The most rewarding part is when they send you a picture of the animal you helped SAVE!! 

Click  HERE  to send in your tax deductible donation!!!

 In the ICU the day after Back Surgery. It was so hard to see him, even harder to leave him. I think Ralph may have had to carry me out....My poor little Joshy. Listening to him scream and howl as we left was Torture! He was there for 10 days!
His back with the bandages on. 


Two Days before his accident 

Physical Therapy in the Aqua Tank learning how to walk again! This was the very first time we saw any movement in Joshua's Legs, Such a Happy moment for Ralph and I.
My Handsome Lil' Guy


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Staring

Sunday's Over

As I look at the clock it is starting to hit me that the weekend is already over...Our Sunday ritual was disrupted by plows, power loss and scrambling around to get to our Hotel (in time for the Pats Game). Now most of the snow is melted away, we regained power, headed home and watched an Awful game of football. Even though our day was not desirable we did get to spend a portion of the day together...But I miss waking up and not having to "get up" Staying in the warm blankets and cuddling up to Ralph until our little one (Joshy) forces us out of bed with his Crazy licking and army crawl on our faces (not kidding he will crawl on our face and just lay there)! I miss our Sunday Morning.


Oh and did I mention Ralph was Sick and Slept the Entire Weekend :( Although the weekend wasn't a complete wash...I did go to My Cousins Baby Shower, You can check it out HERE

No Power

So here we are checked in at The Holiday Inn Express AGAIN!! It’s almost starting to feel like our second home…. We have lost Power yet again….The first was during Hurricane Irene and we ended up moving into our lovely suite for 5 days. We have been here for 10 minutes and we got the Call that the Power is back ON!! Time to pack up the Dogs and our entire Luggage (I am not a light packer) and head back home. 
                                                     Don't get to Comfy Boys..... we are Headed HOME!

So there you have it, our Sunday! Stay Warm Everyone.

Click me :o)

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Our Home

Turn your Home into a Cozy Oasis… As I sit in my house with the First “Snow Storm” of the Season (Yes in OCTOBER, but that’s New England for ya) and a Sick Ralph I realized how much I enjoy our Home during these Cozy Nights, even if Ralph is sleeping in the Chair. I look out the window and I see the snow falling over the lake, the news is on the tv playing softly in the background, and I can hear the wind making the trees rustle loudly.  Our house is filled with rich colors that really showcase the beauty of the season. We always have Candles going, I like to do smells of the season, I am now burning a pumpkin butter-cream and a Macintosh Yankee Candle amongst other Tea lights (unscented) too many scents can ruin the feel. There are soft layers (blankets) available on the chairs and sofas in the house making it feel cozy, I always feel calm and comforted when I can curl up with a super soft blanket! I also never buy lamps or bulbs that have high light volume; I love low lighting…So Romantic. Another thing you will always find in our home is “Nature” I always bring the nature inside, we have fall leaves inside decorative bowls and I try to keep fresh flowers in the house. 
 We were supposed to be at a wedding Today but around 10AM as I headed out to get a spa pedicure and a manicure I looked at Ralph and realized that there may be a chance that we weren't going to go.... At that I threw a Beef Stew in the Crock Pot and let it cook all day.... After a Little pampering and some hair/makeup I came home to find Ralph still sick and feverish and oh so Thankful that I had made that beef stew and it couldn't have been a better night to do it, freezing temperatures, snow and violent winds.....
                                                                                             ~Sarah with an H

Baby Shower

Can’t believe it's Almost here…My Baby Cousin (or so I still call her) is going to be a MOMMY!!! I can’t even contain myself, I’m So Excited!! Last night we had her Baby shower and it was so unbelievably adorable…My Aunt had her house set up so Cute and not a step was missed, we had games, food, wine, lots and lots of gifts and Laughed the Night away…. Here are some pictures from our Family Night to Celebrate the Arrival of Baby Carlie Alexis 
Baby Vincenzo
Desserts
Congratulations Hil'
COMING SOON ....Carlie!! Of course I had to Make Cupcakes ;)
Every Baby Needs a NorthFace
One of my Favorites from Nic'

My Very First Diaper Cake

Warrior Dash

Watch the Video of The Event, Super Exciting....Cant wait for Next Year!! 






                                                                    My Little Warrior



Snowboard

As I’m getting out all the Winter Bins and preparing for another New England Winter I have a certain regimen I follow every year. All the hats, gloves, mittens, scarf and all those kind of things go through the washing machine ( I only use Tide, my favorite) All Snowboarding gear such as pants and jackets go to the dry cleaners and all activity stuff gets dropped off at the local sports store to get Sharpened, this includes my snowboard!! 

Every year I contemplate on getting a new snowboard and every year I can’t part with it. This is my Very First snowboard Ever and I’ve had it for almost a Decade!!   It has seen good days and bad days on the slopes, tree’s, drop offs that weren't intended, almost jumps haha and has even sent someone to the hospital, not me, 8 years ago my boyfriend at the time bumped into it and caught it with his bare foot and sliced his foot wide open, stitches and all! This snowboard has been pulled behind cars attached to a rope (yes not to safe but we were teenagers) It has been pathetic and taken to the hills of MHS to “Practice”, it has rode in school buses when I was in “Ski Club” in High School, bunny hills to black diamonds, late night spur of the moment trips with Ralph to Wachusett….So you see the History behind it. Actually as I reflect I can’t imagine parting with it…Just yet. SO I will drop off my infamous Pink Flowered Snowboard to get Sharpened today and hope to make one more New England Winter Memory with it……


Happy Early Winter Everyone

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fall To Do

Picture I took while pumpkin picking at Hanson's Farm.

Apple Cupcakes

It was Time to Finish up the rest of those Apples!! We’ve had apple pies, apple crisp, Carmel apples, apples (plain) packed for work, apple cinnamon pork chops, apple fritters, apple turnovers and well you get the picture…. With half a bowl of apples left from the Orchard I decided to make....
                 Apple Cupcakes w/ Cinnamon-Marshmallow Frosting


Ingredients
Cupcakes
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded peeled apples
  • 1/2 cup diced dried apples
  • 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar, plus 3/4 cup, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup nonfat buttermilk
Frosting
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 teaspoons dried egg whites (see Note), reconstituted according to package directions (equivalent to 2 egg whites)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for garnish
Preparation
  1. To prepare cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 12 (1/2-cup) muffin cups with cupcake liners or coat with cooking spray.
  2. Combine shredded and dried apples in a bowl with 3 tablespoons brown sugar and 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon. Set aside. Beat oil and the remaining 3/4 cup brown sugar in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until well combined. Beat in eggs one at a time until combined. Add vanilla, increase speed to high and beat for 1 minute.
  3. Whisk whole-wheat flour, cake flour, baking soda, salt and the remaining 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon in a medium bowl.
  4. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and buttermilk to the batter, starting and ending with dry ingredients and scraping the sides of the bowl as needed, until just combined. Stir in the reserved apple mixture until just combined. Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups. (The cups will be full.)
  5. Bake the cupcakes until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out clean, 20 to 22 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 1 hour before frosting.
  6. To prepare frosting: Bring 2 inches of water to a simmer in the bottom of a double boiler (see Tip). Combine 1 cup brown sugar and 1/4 cup water in the top of the double boiler. Heat over the simmering water, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved, 2 to 3 minutes. Add reconstituted egg whites, cream of tartar and pinch of salt. Beat with an electric mixer on high speed until the mixture is glossy and thick, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the top pan from the heat and continue beating for 1 minute more to cool. Add vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and beat on low just to combine. Spread or pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes and sprinkle cinnamon on top, if desired.
Happy Baking!

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

At Home Pedicure

Just because it is Getting Cold out doesn’t mean you should neglect your Toes… Give yourself an at Home Pedicure!! Lets Get Started..................

Remove. Strip old color with acetone polish remover on a cotton ball. (Note: Don’t use a tissue, it will fall apart and doesn’t absorb the remover well.) 
Soak. Add Epsom salt and your favorite scented oil  to warm water and soak your feet for 10 minutes. Although the bath tub might be easier, I use a pedi Tub but you could always use a large glass bowl, That way it feels more glamorous and luxurious. Place it in your living or bedroom and relax with a book while you soak. For a more deluxe option, invest in a Homedics Bubble Bliss Plus Luxury Foot Bubbler, $25. It gives you more of a spa experience at home,I like to Add Flowers to the Bowl to make it seem Elegant!! ;) 
Buff. Dry your feet with a clean towel. Then, exfoliate feet and heels with Tweezerman’s Pedro Callus Stone, $20 or a biodegradable pumice pad, which can be purchased at any drug store. Rub in any direction you want, but don’t scrub too hard and never rub the top of your foot. Make sure to get your heel, the ball of your foot and your big toe. Thoroughly rinse the pad after each use, let it dry and keep it in a plastic bag. 
Exfoliate. Remove dry skin from legs and feet with a homemade mixture of olive oil and kosher salt or raw sugar. Or, choose a scrub I like Cocoa butter from The Body Shop, $16. Rub in an upward motion for two to three minutes. Then, rinse them in your foot bath. 
Trim. Cut nails with a toenail clipper  then file them to your length of choice. Make sure not to go too short though, as nothing looks worse than a space between the polish and the top of your nail bed. Run your finger across the top of your toe. If your nail barely grazes your finger, you’ve got the right length. 
Moisturize. Massage feet and legs with a rich cream. Nivea’s Renewal Night Creme, 10 oz $10. It smells great and helps to smooth and soften skin. 
Soften. Apply cuticle oil to nails to soften and revitalize rough areas. Try Sally Hansen’s Vitamin E Moisturizing Nail & Cuticle Oil, 0.45 oz, $5. 
Push. Use a cuticle or Popsicle stick to press cuticles back so they don’t get in the way of the polish. Some people prefer to cut their cuticles for aesthetic purposes but if you have never done it before it could be disastrous, looks easier than done. I have mastered it after giving myself pedicures for many many years.  
Polish. Apply a base coat first, or use Sally Hansen’s Double Duty base and top coat. Then, apply two thin coats of polish. I love You Rock-apulco Red by OPI, $8. Finish with a top coat.

Helpful Hints:
When soaking your feet, add a few drops of tea tree oil to the water to fight athlete’s foot and reduce itchiness.
  • Ask your partner to do the massaging for total relaxation.
  • If you don’t have cuticle oil, olive oil works just as well.
  • Keep nail polish in a cool, dry place, like the fridge. It’ll last longer.
Finger and toe nail polish don’t have to match. Sometimes it’s fun to do different shades of the same color, If you’re opting for varying shades, go lighter on your hands and darker on feet. 
Check out how to make you very own Pumpkin Mask  HERE 

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Ralph is Sick

Ralph. Is. Sick. This is definitely a rarity in our House! He NEVER gets sick. Last night he had a Fever and was Coughing…and I mean kept me up until 1:30 in the morning coughing….At around 1:45AM in a half sleep state I went downstairs in my Homemade “Doctor Kit” (pictures to follow) and grabbed the first bottled medicine my hands could touch…It’s hard to know what it even was, I don’t think I even looked?! Along with the Vick's vapor Rub and a Bottle of Water…. Went upstairs turned the light on…Had two very confused dogs looking at me and Ralph out cold but coughing in his sleep…. I sat down next to him filled the medicine cap to the brim and shook him awake, with one eye open Ralph downed the medicine without any question, took a sip of water and his head crashed back down to his pillow fast asleep. I rubbed some Vick's vapor rub on his chest and shut the light off. 20 minutes later…… No more Coughing and I could Finally get some sleep whatever the medicine was certainly worked….Lets Pray for a Restful Sleep tonight but not hopeful he’s not looking any better :/ Getting prepared early tonight and making Ralph some Theraflu Tea, G’Night

If he is still sick this Weekend he may just get Breakfast in Bed 


Click Here to see my Homemade Version of a First Aid Kit


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