All posts in the Holidays category

Pinterest, Ugh! or Why I Hate Pinterest!

Published December 1, 2013 by krystal

Yesterday evening, I posted this on my Facebook.  I even tagged my husband because of how furious I was at the concept of Pinterest!  I had an overwhelming ONE like.  That overwhelming one?  It was my husband, Joey, who was sitting right next to me in the car when I made the meme.  Joey said that our friends must all be those lazy copy cats.  That made me laugh a little, and I almost felt a little okay with the situation.

Allow me to walk you through the events.  On October 7, we found out that our baby would be a little girl.  The very next day, we threw together a fun little scavenger hunt where my parents and my brother’s family ran through and around the house searching for clues that would eventually lead them to the final hiding spot, which held a scratch off ticket revealing the gender.  The idea of the scratch off came from this joke between my dad and me.  The idea of having a scavenger hunt stemmed from the fact that bow hunting season had just started.  The clues for the game were also made up by me.  Everyone had an awesome time and loved the hunt!

The final clue, leading the hunters to the two cabinets above the stove.

The final clue for Joey’s family, leading the hunters to the two cabinets above the stove.

We decided to do the same thing for Joey’s family on Thanksgiving, but since I had longer to plan it, the clue cards were much cuter, new clues were added, and there were much more of them.  Several of the clues at our house were specific for us or our house, so we had to make them a little more general to fit in my in laws house.

These were considerably nicer than the plain black and white ones used for the party in Arkansas.  Needless to say, I saved them all for our little girl’s scrapbook.  One day, she’ll love to see them and hear the stories from her gender reveal parties!

It’s not like it took forever, but it did take the better part of an evening to think up the clues and then choose the style for the cards.  Of course, it was also important to make sure the cards had the correct flow, otherwise, the hunters might get stuck in the bathroom and not know where to go next!

The final clues, as they were hidden above the stove.

The scratch off cards, as they were hidden above the stove.


Joey’s mom took pictures of the clues and the final scratch off announcing that we’re having a girl.  She couldn’t contain her excitement and showed the pictures to half the county.  I guess she showed this snobby girl who graduated with Joey.  Her response to my MIL?  “Well, somebody’s been on Pinterest.”  Seriously?  Did I really just spend an entire evening using my own ideas and creativity just to have my originality reduced to a Pin?  I did not click “download” and “print” off Pinterest.  No, each and every clue was well thought out and typed up by ME.

Now, I’m not saying that I’m the first person ever to have a scavenger hunt, nor am I saying that I’m the first to reveal my baby’s gender with a scratch off card.  I might be one of the first to combine the two…  Whatever.  IDC.  Just give me a little credit for my time and hard work!  If I did snatch something off Pinterest, I’d totally admit it, but I certainly could not see myself creating an entire party from a Pin.

Ugh.  Until next time, Happy Pinning!

New Year’s Resolutions

Published January 6, 2013 by krystal

New Year’s Resolutions.  What a strange concept.  You choose to change something about yourself and you must start January 1.  It seems weird to me, or perhaps I’m the odd one.

I randomly quit smoking the second Monday in ImageOctober.  I chose to work toward weight loss one day in November.  What do I know about a New Year’s Resolution reserved solely for the first day of the year?

Ok, I’ll admit, I did make a New Year’s Resolution ONCE.  In 2010 I resolved to wash my face each night before bed.  That was interesting.  Joey and I were staying in Homewood Suites in Anchorage, I went to wash my face before bed.  ImageJoey noticed and said,

“Since when did you start washing your face?”

I responded the only way I knew how:

“Since today!  It’s my New Year’s Resolution.”

That’s right folks, and I’ve been washing my face every night since!  I’d like to say I look younger because of it, but I’m pretty sure this isn’t the case.  I haven’t noticed a decrease in acne either.  😦

Joey and I were discussing New Year’s Resolutions yesterday, and if I had time to keep up with one, I might resolve to try to say what people want to hear rather than what I know to be fact.  I wish that I could just be one of those people who smiles and lets others say whatever.

For instance:  Mason’s boarder in Anchorage is a cat expert. petco That’s cool, but I’m a Mason expert.  One time when we picked him up I told him that we would take him to the store (PetCo) since he was such a good boy.  The boarder flipped out and could not believe we would submit our cat to such torture.  The only thing is that Mason absolutely loves to go to the store.  He plays with toys, climbs on furniture, it is without a doubt one of his favorite pastimes.   My big mouth proceeded to tell her how much he loved it, and described the things he does.  If it were Joey, he would have said, “Oh yeah, maybe he doesn’t like it, good point.”

Joey was raised that way.  I was raised to say what I think.  In turn, Joey’s confrontational conversations are usually painless.  Mine go on forever as I attempt to redirect someone’s thinking.

Obviously Joey is more popular.

The Berry Almond Walnut Whatever & Other Tales From the Road

Published January 6, 2013 by krystal

I think it would be an understatement to say I took a little blog break. Happy-New-Year-2013-HD-Wallpaper-6 It was a long blog break.  I was relaxing in West Virginia and running around like a chicken with my head cut off in Arkansas.  I wouldn’t trade it for the world, though.  Maybe some day I’ll tell you about it.

Tomorrow I fly back to the place where I work to start work Monday.  Work.  Ugh.

By the way, Happy New Year from all of us at Me & Mason.

Now, for the reason you came here…  Joey and I travel a great deal.  I feel like I say that phrase a lot.  Arkansas and West Virginia are not very close, so during breaks from school, we travel the familiar path down I-40 to visit both sides of the family.  Occasionally, things happen along that road that will not soon be forgotten.

Summer 2012 we were heading to West Virginia and decided to stop in Dickson, TN for lunch at the Wendy’s in the Pilot Station.  One of those Cheer Moms Dance Moms Soccer Moms Moms who are entirely too obsessed with their children (if you don’t know the type, you might be one!) was in the line next to us ordering food for her entire clan.  The story has changed a little with each time it has been told, so at this point it’s a little out of control.  It would better be portrayed by an SNL skit, but I don’t have Amy Poehler on retainer.  You’re just going to have to imagine it until SNL picks it up.

In one breath, the super involved mom energetically said in her better-than-thou Southern twang,


Ok, so there weren’t walnuts or caesars.. it’s still an awkward name.

“This is my son Jeff, he’s 18, he graduated with a C average and will likely drop out of college before Christmas break, but we still love him because he needs half a berry almond walnut chicken caesar salad and a baked potato.  This is Ashlailee, she’s 16, she’s an All-Star Cheerleading Captain, the Captain of her high school cheer squad, and joined me in womanhood at age eight and a half.  She needs a full size berry almond walnut chicken caesar salad and a bottle of water.  This little guy is Trenton Junior.  He’s 8, sometimes we call him TJ, that stands for Trenton Junior.  He looks more like the UPS man than his father.  Sometimes I worry that his dad might not actually be his dad…so I treat him differently.  I want him to feel like he is just as much a part of the family as Jeff and Ashlailee.  He needs a large Baconator combo with a Mountain Dew.  This is my husband, Trenton, Senior.  He has been going on extended business trips for the past 9+ years but is here now to watch Ashlailee go to her 300th cheer competition.  We just love to support Ashlailee as she cheers for the sake of cheering!  Trenton Senior needs a baked potato and half a berry almond walnut chicken caesar salad.  Finally, I am Ashley.  I’m 36.  I had to give up my senior year of cheerleading to have Jeff.  I just hope Ashlailee gets to cheer through high school and doesn’t have to make the sacrifices I’ve had to make, especially since the entire family has given up so much to watch her cheer!  Oh yeah, I need half a berry almond walnut chicken caesar salad and a Diet Coke… I’m gonna be bad!  Ok, you got that?  This is Jeff, he needs half a berry almond walnut chicken caesar salad and a baked potato…”

(and yes, she went through the family again stating what they all NEEDED.  I’m pretty sure they could have all just wanted these things.)

I wish I could say I made it all up, but the base of the story is 100% true.

Christmas Break 2012 we were heading south.  I always give Joey a hard time because he likes to drive.  He likes to drive to the point of nearly passing out at the wheel before asking to Imageswitch places.  I had not slept the night before, as I was still battling jet lag.  I slept off and on during the ride and told him I would switch at Jackson, Tennessee.  I felt like I was catching a cold for several days before this, but was feeling okay at the swap.  We swapped and despite his need to change, he only slept for few minutes after Memphis.  He woke up during “Home” and said that he fell asleep to that same song.  It was a pretty uneventful trip until we hit the construction area.  I started feeling like crap, and being at a stand still did not help.  I asked Joey if he wanted to switch back, and we got out of the car, ran around, and went in the opposite door.  That was called a Chinese Fire Drill when I was growing up, I’m not sure what the PC crowd calls it.  I was also told never to do it.  Oops!  And I did it on I-40 too.  😉  I’m such a rebel.  When I woke up, I had a fever!  I was so glad Joey took over!

It was Summer 2009, Joey and I were heading to Virginia Beach.  We stopped off for a little vacation in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.  I was very sick.  I think I actually had Swine Flu before ImageSwine Flu got to be the scare of the year and vaccines were on every street corner.

I was miserable and I had to try to enjoy this little Pigeon Forge stop.  I just remember wanting to throw up after eating at Logan’s and Joey trying to be all sweet and stuff.  I wanted to see all that Pigeon Forge had to offer, but I didn’t have the energy to leave my hotel bed.  My sickly self had to get up early the second morning to leave for Virginia Beach.  I remember praying on the way that I would get better so I could enjoy the beach.  I healed, but not before taking a huge detour courtesy of Ms. Garmina herself!

ImageWhen leaving Pigeon Forge, we put Virginia Beach as our destination on the Garmin and took off!  Along the way we took some strange turns.  One turn lead to a single lane paved road.  A few miles later the pavement ran out and we were on a single gravel road that twisted and turned (a really good ride for a chick who was super nauseous hours before).  I was getting upset and told Joey to turn off on to a different road (as if the turn offs looked any better).  We eventually made our way back to a normal road and somehow arrived at Virginia Beach.

I don’t know how Garmina ever knew about that single lane dirt road, but I kinda wished she didn’t!  Surely there was a normal paved road between Pigeon Forge and Virginia Beach… idk.  It was 2009 after all!


Happy trails to you, until you read again!

3D Paper Snowflakes

Published December 20, 2012 by krystal

I live in Alaska.  It’s no secret that I came up here five years ago so that I could see some serious snow.  Snow is such a curious topic when growing up in the south.  Needless to say, I love snowflakes!  I have already posted once about making paper snowflakes.  Those were just the regular kind, though.  These are fabulously 3D!  I like making them in different colors.  The directions say they are stars because they have 8 points, but whatever.



This is my most favorite!

This post is short and sweet, I just had to share my creation!

Tie Dying for 20+

Published December 18, 2012 by krystal

Joey and I gave our students classroom made tie dye shirts as their Christmas present this year.  The students all had a blast getting to make their shirts and were eager to wear them in the Christmas program this evening.  Here is a run down of the process:

1. A couple of weeks ago, my students came in the classroom and were welcomed by this:

ImageI told the students to be sure to be on time that day and that there would be a surprise.  I did not tell them what was going on.  Imagine their faces when there were 4 mysterious tubs in the room that morning!  I’m usually not for surprises, as kids need stability, but sometimes surprises are FUN!

2.  All of the students who were there got to choose a design and the colors they wanted.  Here is their finished shirts while still in rubber bands.  The bottom two show mine and Joey’s star mandala designs:


3.  Next, we put each shirt in its own ziplock.  After a few days, I started taking the shirts out of the bags a couple at a time to air dry.  After 5-6 days I noticed they started smelling funny (lol) so every shirt came out immediately.  Our kitchen looked something like this (there were more elsewhere, too):


4.  Once they air dried, we washed them so they would not turn the students into little rainbows.  Below are some of my favorites:



The next picture shows mine and Joey’s.  Not too shabby for a first try at folded stars!  He really liked my sleeves, so I included them in the pic.

I think they’re just tie dye for!

Santa Hats & Christmas Tree Nails

Published December 17, 2012 by krystal

I finished all of my final exams on Wednesday Tuesday someday last week.  It was such a relief to be done!  I didn’t have as many large, spread out assignments this semester, like in the past.  This semester I had a lot of little assignments due each week.  I thought this would be easier to deal with, but as it turns out, I just ended up constantly worrying if I turned EVERYTHING in or not!  Needless to say, I’m glad it is over!  So glad, in fact, that I eventually got around to doing my nails fabulously at 10:00 Sunday night.  🙂  I got some nail art stickers in Anchorage a few weeks ago, but decided to stick to paint this time.  I got inspiration for the trees here.  And for the Santa hats here.  I just love Christmas!


I used:
Red- Milani Rapid Cherry
Dark Green- OPI Jade Is The New Black
Light Green- essence Lime Up!
Silver- OPI DS Silver Shimmer
White- Milani White On The Spot
Yellow- essence Little Miss Sunrise
Top coat- CND Super Shiney & Seche Vite

I really like how they turned out, but next time I probably won’t put white on silver.
Thanks for looking!
Merry (early) Christmas!

Paper Snowflakes!

Published December 10, 2012 by krystal

CAUTION:  Dangerously awesome paper snowflake pics!!! (Keep scrolling to the end)

Last week, within two minutes, two teachers asked me how to make snowflakes.  About an hour later, another asked.  After the third time, I got suspicious.  I asked her what was going on and if they had a meeting talking about my snowflakes.  She laughed and said they hadn’t, but that they all must have gotten curious at the same time, and wanted some classroom decoration.

I looked online for a tutorial to help them, but the only one I found showed making a 6-sided snowflake.  That’s cool, but I’ve always made 8-sided.  I know that really it’s supposed to be 6, but I do things my own way… I march to the beat of a very off rhythm drum…

So, here is my tutorial.  The end has a showcase of some of my all time faves!


Step 1:  You will need a perfect square.  To do this, make a 90* angle and remove the bottom portion.

Step 1

Step 1

Step 2:  Once you have cut the bottom off, this is what you will have left.

Step 2

Step 3:  Fold the paper in half.

Step 3

Step 3

Step 4:  Fold it in half again.  Now you have a tail.

Step 4

Step 4

Step 5:  Cut the tail off.  If you cut it straight across you end up with an octagon.  I recommend doing something more fun with the end.  This not only cut off the bottom tail, it also cut into the edge.

Step 5

Step 5

Step 6:  Cut into the sides.  Make sure not to cut it all the way apart.  Get creative!  You can make circles, half circles, triangles, hearts, and really any shape imaginable here!  The more detailed the shape, the more awesome your snowflake will be at the end!

Step 6

Step 6

Step 7:  Unfold your snowflake and uncover your master piece!  I usually try to stick with one kind of design- either mostly triangle-like cuts or mostly circle-like cuts.  This one used both.
Step 7

Wow!  You made it this far!  Are you ready for some totally awesome snowflakes???  The top two are my favorites!

Screen Shot 2012-12-10 at 11.36.11 AM

So…  What do you think?  Which is your favorite?


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