Welcome to our adventures. I try as best as I can to document the happenings here in our family - everything from the shenanigans to the spiritual, from the kid to the kitchen, from the cat to the catastrophes. We believe that adventure can be found in everything we do...even in the mundane tasks of the day. When we set our minds on things above in gratitude to God, we find the strength to approach life with a sense of purpose & adventure. The adventure may not always be what we have planned...but isn't that what adventure is all about?

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Merry Christmas Everyone...here's a little something from the stage at Club Amaro. Enjoy!

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing

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Monday, December 22, 2008

I totally made up a new word right now...it's the combination of two words: Score & Loot. Score + Loot = Scoot. To make it an action, you add an -ing to the end. Then, to make it so people know your from the south, you replace the -g with an apostrophe. Scootin' - the act of scoring loot. It's going to catch on like wild fire, just watch and see.

Speaking of Scootin' - I scooted at CVS today major big time. My girl Kimberly G. wants to know more about Scootin' at CVS - she wrote and said, "can ya help a sister out?". I don't know if this helps, but I'm gonna break it down right her for you, sister.

I walked into CVS today with just shy of $20 in Extra Care Bucks (ECB's - are basically equivalent to cash). Where did I get these? Well, I got them a week or two ago on another CVS Scoot similar to the one I'm about to break down for ya.

CVS just happened to be having a really great sale today where a full page of things were free after ECB's (in other words, you pay for the thing but you get the money back in ECB's)

So I got my $20 ECB's and I do 3 transactions.


- 2 Lorel HIP Metalic Duo eye shadow thingies (very cool!!)
$6.99/each = $13.98
- 1 bag of Hall's "Natural" Lemon Cough drops

Subtotal: $16.57
Used 2 Lorel coupons $1 each
Used 10.98 ECB's

Total Out of Pocket: $4.14
ECB's earned on transaction: $16.57



1 Gillette Venus $5.99
1 Gillette Venus Embra $11.99
1 Sally Hansen Nail Polish $5.99

Subtotal: $23.97
Used 2 $4.00 off coupons for the Gillette's
Used $13.98 ECB's

Total Out of Pocket: $2.96
ECB's earned on transaction: $10.99



1 Sally Hansen Nail Polish $5.99

Subtotal: $5.99

Total Out of Pocket = $0.00
ECB's earned on transaction: $5.99

Total Price of Products: $46.53
Total Out of Pocket Expense: $7.10
ECB's Left Over for next Scoot: $27.56

To be honest, my strategy could have been better from the front end...I could have gotten away with less out of pocket expense. But hey...I figure getting $46.53 of product for $7.10 is not too bad. Not to mention I'm walking away from my Scoot with MORE ECB's than I walked in with.

So what in the world does someone who doesn't like nail polish do with 2 bottles of it (blue and green, no less!). STOCKING STUFFERS!! Shhh...don't tell Abby. What 5 (almost 6 year old) doesn't want to paint their nails ANY color? I may regret this later - but after all, it was free.

The Gillette Embra razor is N-I-C-E...I'm rockin' one right now in my shower that I got as a sample from Vocalpoint.com (that's where I got the $4 coupons from). It's a fancy-smancy reusable one. Why do I need another one? I DON'T!! I have enough razors to last me to the grave. But, I got to treat my Mom to a brand new razor while she's here (and when she leaves - it comes with extra blades!)

Speaking of Mom, Club Amaro officially welcome's GMama & GPapa. They arrived via motor home all the way from Fort Worth, Texas. They will be here for a few weeks so there should be a few updates coming your way - just stay tuned.

Well I better ~scoot~ on outta here...I hope you are enjoy this Christmas season.

Many Merry Blessings,
Saturday, December 20, 2008
What holds the attention of a sanctuary full of toddlers, preschoolers and Kindergarteners for a full hour?

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Miss Patty Cake...a grown woman dressed in bright primary colors who sings childrens songs. She came to our church to "perform" and the kids had a blast. Momma was not able to have any coffee, was suffering from sleep deprivation and had a slight dehydration headache...needless to say, I had a blast as well.

SAID IN MY HEARING: Abby was helping me clean house today. While cleaning my bedroom, I had her organize my vanity (she loves to stack and arrange my makeup!) Unfortunately, there were alot of used q-tips laying there on my table. She collected them up and held them together in her precious little hand. Then with a very serious tone she said, "MOM."

"Yes, honey" I replied.

"We really need to make sure these get IN to the trashcan....OK?"

Loved her usage of "WE"...wonder where she gets that from. At any rate, I totally got served by my 5 year old.

Last but not least...

Regardless of whether you've just jumped on board or you have been with us since our First Post on the 8th of February 2008, I wanted to take a moment and thank you for riding along with us on our Adventures. With this post, we celebrate ONE HUNDRED entries into the Club Amaro blog. I guess for some that's not any big deal, but 100 seems like a fun number to celebrate. So lift a glass, blow a horn or dance around your computer (I'll be doing the same).

I hope you've enjoyed peeking into our little world as much as I've enjoyed writing about it.

love, love, love...

Thursday, December 18, 2008
Well it's that time of year again in case you've been under a rock...you know, ho ho ho and jingle bells and all that. I really love Christmas - it's a time of family, fellowship and celebrating the birth of Jesus. Plus, there's always better food around than usual and time off from school and work. What's not to love about that? I have no problem with gift giving and receiving, but over the years I have been soured at the consumerism of this country - especially around Christmas time. It has made me not want to participate. Every year it gets worse - this year I saw Christmas decor out before Halloween! I hear the message loud on clear - let's completely skip Thanksgiving - a holiday where we STOP and give THANKS for what we HAVE (read between the lines: no buying stuff!) and move right on into the season of buying. I find it funny...no, down right hysterical that the media is telling me day after day that we are in a recession, the economy is tanking. Yet the mall parking lot is packed and there are people coming out of stores with lots of bags looking for their SUV's. There are no bread lines at the mall, people.

See now I've gone and done it...I wanted to do this precious little post about Abby and I doing our sweet handmade Christmas crafts and my soap box found its way out next to my keyboard again. Sorry 'bout that.

On with the show, shall we?

So what I was GOING to say was...it's that time of year again. The time of year when we need to give a gift to the teacher in our life. Although this is Abby's first year of real school, it's her 3rd year of having a teacher at Christmas. We've been around the block a few times. So we like to do little handmade thingies that are inexpensive but show thought and love...this year is no exception.

You can ask my Mom (in fact she could probably produce a picture that tells the same story). I have always been a handmade Christmas gift kind of girl. When I was young, I would use my own money and buy a ton of candy. I would parse the candy out into little baggies and tie them up with ribbon curly cues. Then, I would put little name tags on them and put them in a basket and take them to school to pass out to my friends. The bags were always well received.

This year, Abby and I did "S'mores in a Jar". We filled mason jars with a graham cracker/brown sugar mixture, marshmallows and chocolate chips (Publix had a wonderful sale on Ghirardelli chips - perfect timing!). Then, we kinda "do up" the mason jars with some fun tags and an ornament. For the tag I did a simple piece of white stock paper covered with a fun design from "My Mind's Eye" (one of my faves). I embossed a gold Christmas and added a star brad. Inside we have the directions on how to make the s'mores bars as well as a little message from the kitchen of Club Amaro. Add a little raffia, a mini clothes pin and a fun ornament from the dollar bin at Michael's and WAA LAAAA!

We made 2 for Abby to take to school...one for her main teacher and the other for her class "literacy" teacher. To go along with her S'mores in a jar, Abby made a card to go with each. I just had to share the one for her teacher...it is precious.

The front:

The inside:

I love Abby's use of things laying around...a sticky note pad for the front and an index card for the inside. For some reason, she can't write stuff directly ON the card, it's got to be written on something, then attached. She probably gets that from me...

So there ya go...the craftabulous creations currently happening at Club Amaro. You are in the know. Hope you are all doing well and spending more time out of the mall than inside of it.

love &
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Hey to all my peeps...I need your help. I'm missing something. A man in his prime, 5'10" (or 6', depending on who is measuring), dark hair, goatee, Spaniard. He is not here.

He is not in my bed at night...which means that his side of the electric blanket is off. It's cold over there...occasionally my foot will wander over in search of its foot mate to wrap up with...but all it finds is cold sheet. (Of course I don't have to hear anything about my toenails being too long either)

He's not in our room in the morning, letting his freshly showered cedar-tree man smell waft all around me as I hit the snooze bar, saying, "uuuoooohh" as I do.

He is not in the window pointing at me as I back out of the driveway to go to work...I don't see his smiling face that I know is letting out his little Amaro chuckle while I drive away.

He is not here tackling me to try to get to the mailbox in the afternoon, or standing at the garage door to carry my laptop inside the house.

He is not at the dinner table...chatting with Abby and I about our day...making silly jokes and faces. He is DEFINITELY not in the kitchen doing the after dinner dishes. I had to remind myself how the dishwasher works...

He's not here loving on his daughter, who is constantly reminding me in that sweet little voice of hers, "I wish Daddy was here so we could ___________".

He is not sitting on the couch with Abby and I in the evening while we read the Advent story of the night - or for family prayer - or for the nightly piggy back ride to Abby's room.

He is not sitting in his chair (behind mine) in our office while I blog...where I would normally hear him make little one-liner remarks about world politics, bible verse or someones lack of rushing yardage. It's awfully quiet up in here...

He is not in the car, He is not in the bathroom, He is not watering the tree, He is not in my arms, He is not on my case, He is not making man noises, He is not eating the family-pak of pork chops I made last night, He is not watching over the house. He is not here!

I miss my man...but I love that he is visiting his family in California for a week. Catching up on hugs, Wii bowling, waffles and dessert. I know he's enjoying himself and being enjoyed - but he is missed.

If you see him, please let him know that...

love & cedar-tree man smell,

Friday, December 12, 2008
As Dwight Schrute would say: "Question."

What happens to rain when the temperature falls below 32 degrees?

Oh yeah peeps...it's snow. Sometime after the 5 o'clock hour the rain that had been falling for what seemed like days transformed into this beautiful white powdery substance people round these parts call snow.

Of course, the Amaro's put to rest any curiosity the neighbors may have had about our sanity. As the snow fell, the 3 of us were out jumping around in the front yard like a bunch of nuts taking pictures, throwing snowballs against the tree trunks and yelling, "it's snowing!" (just in case anyone was unaware).

As the evening progressed, you could have found any one of us with our nose pressed against the storm door like a dog waiting anxiously for his master to come take him for a walk. We'd carry on with our business, but stop every 5 minutes to make sure it was still snowing. "Yep - it's still snowin'"

Who knew that "hose on concrete with snow" would be worthy of a spot on TACA?

I can't speak for the others in my family, but for me...with snow comes fear and questions. Can I walk on it? Do I need special shoes with traction or can I just roll with my current kicks? Can I drive on it? What happens if I am out making money at CVS and it begins to snow? Should I stay at CVS? Should I use my ECB's to buy chains? What will happen to my suede jacket? Will Elaine's dad let me wear it inside out even though I would look like a candy striper?

I need some snow therapy.

On another, completely unrelated note. Are you familiar with the animals of Mexico? Because if you are not, you really need to be...

Yes, every time I turn around I'm breaking ground in a new venture...as if snow wasn't enough, I'm also dabbling in kindergarten project development. Yes dear friends...my kindergartner had a PROJECT. I'm not talking about a play dough project. I'm talking about a 'go buy a poster board and glue some research on it' project. HELLO. KINDERGARTEN.

Anyway - Abby's current semester enrichment cluster is on "Mexico". The teacher gave an assignment for the child to pick something about Mexico to do a project on. Abby picked "Animals" (or, animales for my Mexican readers). So we looked up 6 animals that live in Mexico and printed out pictures, cut them out, matted them and wrote some facts about them. IN ADDITION...she is asked to give a PRESENTATION to her cluster and then next week she will give that same presentation to students K-2nd grade.

Did I mention this was Kindergarten? I'm not so smart - fortunately I'm married to a smart man...I may have to turn project development over to his department.

And I thought acne, boyfriends, makeup and 2 hour phone conversations were going to be my biggest problem.

What a blessing children are...and no, there is not one iota of feciciousness in that comment.

Well that's about it from the Club...I hope whatever temperature you find yourself in that you can make the best of it.

love & snowflakes,
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Some of you may know what I mean when I say...I'm takin' 50/50 to a whole nuthah level here...


Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Feedburner subscribers may not be able to see the embedded video...and believe me, you'll want to see it. Please visit The Adventures of Club Amaro for access.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Greeting from Middle Tennessee where we are currently boasting a clear, calm evening with a temp of 20.5 °F. My question is, if you spit on the ground will it freeze? I'll find out and report back to you on that.

I won't bore you with trivial Club Amaro health details - I'll give you the readers digest version lest you confuse this site with the CDC or something. I'll just say that I'm going on day 9 of my sore throat/cough and now Mike is losing his voice. Abby seems to be fine. Don't email me and tell me to go to the doctor. I know this. I didn't just come in off the mid-watch you know.

Now to the really important stuff...the material that Grandparents can't get enough of. Videos from tonight's Christmas performance! The 5 & 6 year olds performed 2 songs before the big Christmas play at church. Yes, hold onto your seats folks 'cuz I've got 7 minutes and 39 seconds of pure, unadulterated kindergarten/1st grade performance goodness.

NOTE: For safety purposes, I've split the performance into two parts. You would be well advised to take some time in between viewings to let your senses rest. After viewing video one, look at something ugly or mediocre to neutralize the feelings of preciousness and talent that will no doubt wash over you as you view the performance. After you have recovered from the first viewing, go ahead and start the 2nd one...if you feel that it could be too much, try resting your mouse cursor over the video pause feature to be ready to stop the video in case that overwhelming feeling comes over you. Don't say I didn't warn you. If you are disgusted with this paragraph, pretend that I didn't write it.

Please note: Feedburner subscribers may not be able to see the following 2 embedded videos...please visit The Adventures of Club Amaro for access.

Ok - here's video #1...

Here's video #2:

Abby had a blast performing...I on the other hand now have a cramp in my left arm muscle from trying to hold the video camera still for 10 minutes straight (which by the way, I did not do so good at). Yes, the tripod would have been handy. Yes, I thought about bringing it. I then had a vision of me and my t-pod trying to jockey for position in the sanctuary along with all the other camera crazy moms. No thanks.

After the performance, the star and her entourage were treated to a fab-u-louso dinner at Nick-n-Jim's courtesy of Lopes who was a guest at Club Amaro for the weekend. Lopes flew in Saturday morning and then took Mike to the Titan's game Sunday. We will bid him farewell early Monday morning. A side note: Lopes had the opportunity to see Carrie Underwood and chose instead to see Abby's performance. In this single act of sacrifice, he has positioned himself to be knighted and highly favored by the Queen herself (the Queen of of Club Amaro, that is). Nice job, Lopes.

I hope you enjoy the videos and weren't too put off by my crazy exaggerated commentary.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

If I didn't have such a bad sore throat and cough, I would totally rock your answering machine with my Happy Birthday rendition...but, this will have to do.


Who loves ya?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008
After two "Thought Provo-K-tions" in a row, I figure I'd better keep this one light. I know it's been a few days and I'm sure my peeps are chompin' at the bit to know T.A.C.A. haps.

Not only will this be light, it will also be short...and maybe boring. Due to the fact that I am S-I-C-K...when I swallow, I feel like I have a ball of nails in the back of my throat, my neck is swollen and I have a nagging cough (which is not at all helped by the ball of nails).

Here is a picture of my girl...no, that is not dandruff on her head - it's SNOW.

The first day back from Thanksgiving break, it started to snow...so they let the kids outside to play. This is the first official "snow" of the season...how exciting! Abby could not stop talking about it.

As I have been highly anticipating the first snow, this should have been a momentousness occasion for me...complete with 1,243 snaps of my playskool digital camera. But alas, I was in the hospital when this snow happened. Yes, I made a little trip to the ER Monday morning.

First of all - I'm fine - NOTHING is wrong with me (well, except I have a ball of nails in my throat).

This last weekend, I ate only fruits and veggies (long story). In order to ease back into my regular eating pattern, I opted to indulge in some delish 2-yr-old-birthday-party-frankenfood, followed up later by a batch of my famous popcorn with a generous sprinklin' of spicy chipotle seasoning. This is a recipe for disaster, people.

The readers digest version of the rest of this story is I woke up at 1 in the morning convinced that I was having a heart attack. I sat up in the living room all night pondering my condition. Mike woke up, got wind of the situation...we got Abby off for school then headed over to the ER. To be quite honest, it was a wonderful experience that boosted my somewhat low expectations of Middle Tennessee medical services. They rushed me right in, got me all hooked up and started running blood tests. The ER doc came in and told me that the chance was pretty slim that I was having a heart attack - being the young'un that I am. But, just in case, she's running all the tests. While she was running the tests, she was going to treat me for acid reflux. I was a little embarrassed that I didn't know the difference between a heart attack and heart burn...but, apparently some of the symptoms are similar. So there you go. Too bad they could not do anything about the nail ball in my throat.

On the holiday front, we put up our Christmas decor over the last few days - this included our first Tennessee Christmas tree...a nice 6 foot douglas fir. Smells good. NO TINSEL! I have tinsel issues. I have alot more to write about this, but I'm sick and tired. I really should have gone to bed some time ago, but I go the extra mile for my peeps. Who loves you more than me? Come on...

If you beg me, I will post a picture of the ginormous bruise on my arm from where the nurse messed my IV thing up.


SECRET MESSAGE: Does anyone even read these?