Winter Survival Necessities

So hey hows it going?  I had the day off (yesterday). The state of Kentucky (ok the university) decided to shut down today because the entire state got a bunch of snow. Its pretty rare for me to have a snow day so I took advantage of it and listed 6 new shirts and 13 stadium blankets. One is even blue with a paw print in celebration of my impromptu snow day. Since I spent the entire day and I do mean 12 whole hours, sitting at a computer (in my warm bed). I was in a checking stats kinda mood. So here I am. I just got back from checking stats here and I was shocked people read my last post and even more surprised that I had a highish number of visits. High considering I never share this blog on anything. That's when I noticed people were reading an old post. From the bygone era of me posting semi regularly.

I thought maybe since people were visiting that post that I could do a follow up. Especially since While working on my etsy shop I sat on my bed and watched cars wreck outside my window. We had about 6 in just 1 hour. I live on the most traveled road in my town. So you know its bad.

Winter Travel Necessities

I live in a well populated area and on the main road in town, so as long as I am in my town I could walk home. I do travel a lot for work and in some not so populated areas so I keep my car stocked just in case. At the moment I could probably live a few days in my car. Not because I am that prepared, but because its that messy. This is not a survivalist level list of things you need, but a just the basics. 

1. Non Clumping Kitty Litter- I keep a bag of the super cheap (less than a dollar litter) This is good for sticking under your tires. It helps give them traction. I bought a bag for Hannah's car too and she thought I was crazy, until we had a sheet of ice on our driveway and were able to back her down the hill no trouble, all thanks to the added traction of the cat litter.

2. A flash light- I got mine from Harbor Freight. It has a hanger on it so if you needed to see under your hood you can do it hands free.

3. Extra Gloves, socks, shoes- When one set gets wet you don't want to be stuck with in them all night. You can find these gloves in my etsy shop. Also available is just the gloves.
https://www.etsy.com/listing/571079933/monogram-beanie-and-gloves-gift-set?ref=listings_manager_grid


4. Charger- I have an iphone which means I am charging my phone about 4 times a day. Not really, I actually just got my phone so I am only charge it twice a day. But it still means I have to have a charger available all the time. I actually have a charger just for my car and one just for my house.

5. Throw Blankets- These come in handy if you can't keep your car running because you are conserving gas. I have a few of these in my car. They are like curling up in your favorite sweatshirt. You can find this one in my shop also.
https://www.etsy.com/listing/586985269/monogram-stadium-blanket-sports-blanket?ref=listings_manager_grid


6. Water and snacks- I keep a few bottles of water and some small snacks, granola bars, protein bars, individual bags of chips, or beef jerky are all good items to have handy.

7. I almost always have my work bag in my car which has stuff I could be catching up on, or magazines for reading. Great for occupying you for hours. You could just throw a book or your Kindle in the car. Although don't leave electronics in your car, the cold temps could ruin them.

8. Small tool Kit- Mine really only consists of a knife and some screw drivers. I really need to be better about this.

9. First Aid Kit- I keep a variety of head ache meds, band aids, Allergy meds. This is a result of Emmy once getting too close to something that had been near a horse and she had a head to toe rash and her eyes swelled shut. So from now on Benadryl and Allegra stays with me. Yes she use to be so allergic to horses that she could be near something that was once near a horse and have a reaction. She swears she isn't that allergic now. I am not taking any chances. Dramamine. I get car sick. This is a necessity.

10. Car Care items like jumper cables and a spare tire, windshield scrapper.

11. Lighter- I really don't know why I have this. Once when I had a flat the guy who came to change my  tire asked me if I had one. So now I keep one. I have never used it. 
 
12. When you hear that you are getting snow go ahead and fill your car up with gas. You don't want to be stranded in a ditch and unable to run your car to stay warm because you are afraid you will run out of gas.
 
 Things I should add but haven't yet
 
I mentioned these things two years ago. Wanna know something? I still don't have them in my car. To be fair though we had no snow last year. Or at least none that impacted travel at all. 

1. Small mini shovel
2. Flare
3. More variety of tools

The bright side is everything that I keep in my car can fit inside a 31 utility tote.
If you live in a cold weather climate. Is there anything you keep in your car that I have left out?

Setting My 2018 Goals

I finished my performance evaluation for my day job  today. Should I even say day job since really podcasting and this blog does not pay? Oh well, I did it anyway. Filling it out got me thinking about my previous employer. Same job just a different employer. I would have to set yearly goals for myself. My supervisor would then walk me through breaking those larger goals down to manageable outcomes. I decided to do something similar to my personal yearly goals. I had never done that before and come November I am usually bummed that I didn't get as much accomplished that I wanted to. I have a lot of exciting things going on this year and hope my goals help me with those things.
Its my goal (haha my goal about my goals) to share an update every three months. I would love to say monthly but I am really trying to be practical. Here are the goals I have set so far.

Increase my Etsy shop views/orders
I am over joyed with how well  this little shop has grown. I admit I was not prepared for the Christmas rush and it got the best of me. I was overwhelmed, stressed, and all around crabby. I'm hoping for a better Christmas 2019.

Purge and Refresh House
Painting my living room inspired me to look at other rooms. I want to paint my room. Its the only room left from us moving in that hasn't been touched. But now the kitchen/hallway is looking worn. I took down a huge hutch that wasn't functional anymore and in its place I made an island/bar type thing that so far I am loving. I will share here soon.

Focus More on Me
I've gotten to the point that I rarely fix my hair or have make up on. I literally spend as much time as possible in sweats. That is not me. I don't know how I let myself get to that point. I had a work appointment last week and met with someone with no make up on and my hair in a pony tail. I did at least have nice clothes on. I want to get away from this level of laziness.

Focus on Health
 I'm drinking more water and tracking my movement and sleep with my fitbit.. When it alerts me to walk I get up grab some hand weights and get to walking. I have to say I do feel more refreshed afterwards. I have been complaining for years about needing to lose 15-20 pounds. This is the year I am going to do it. I haven't decided how yet, but I know going to a gym is not me.

Podcasting HFP
I am over the moon excited with the podcasts growth. We do a Happiness Jar every year and write positive things that happen. One thing I wrote was how many downloads we had. It was early in the year. We have doubled that per episode (if not more) It made me laugh at how excited I was and I had no idea what was in store for us. That being said there are still some areas I want to work on. I updated the etsy shop's banner and logo. HFP will be getting a make over too, I am also going to focus on marketing it better.

Podcasting Football
I am still planning on starting a second podcast this year. I haven't decided the exact launch date though. Either spring training or right when pre season games start. Either way if you like football, you may like that new endeavor.

Start a Youtube Channel
Because I like to stay  busy I am also starting a youTube channel. It was be crafting and general tips. I am shooting for a March 1st launch, I have a list of topics and have been working on branding it with this blog and the Etsy Shop since everything will be under the Cat Hair and Glitter name.

Work on Organization
with all these projects (and kids who do lots of extra curricular activities) I know I will be busy. I need to step up my organization game.

Cat Hair and Glitter the Blog
Last but not least this little blog. I know an editorial calendar would help. I just struggle with balancing topics I want to  talk about and adding in the pinterest worthy pics which be honest doesn't happen.  I will work harder here. That may be batch writing instead of flay by the seat of my pants last minute writing. I do want to improve my blog reading and add some new blogs to the mix. If there are some favorite blogs that you follow drop me their link in the comments. I would love to check them out.

So there you go. Its a tall order, I know. But I am excited about this year and ready to get started. What are some goals you are setting this year?

Just some New Years Updates

Hi...I almost couldn't remember my password to log in here. That's how long its been. I was seriously surprised to see I have actually had readers in my absence. I am going to chalk it up to Heather mentioning this blog on our podcast which has a crazy amount of listeners. Anyway a lot has changed since I've been gone. In no particular order:

My work gave me a fitbit. I've been so excited, you know, to track my non existent steps. Actually I use it to track my nonexistent sleep 3 hours one night and 4 the next, followed by 11 the night after that. I love the heart rate feature. Now I understand why my dad use to wear his O2 monitor 24/7. Its strangely satisfying to see your body at work. If you have a Fitbit and want to be a part of my community let me know. I definitely think I need a competitive motivation.

I am no longer house hunting. After finding my literal dream house (pool and a doggy door. I am apparently not that hard to please) My relationship went down the toilet so no engagement or house. I am heart broken to say the least. I will be happy to talk about it, just not publicly on the blog.

I had an entire week off work between Christmas and New Years. It was amazing. I used that time to not think about this neglected blog. Instead I used it to paint my livingroom (which you can see in the upcoming Haunted Family Podcast YouTube videos)

Which reminds me, HFP recorded two videos for their just as neglected (as this blog) YouTube Channel. If it wasn't for Podbean uploading recording of our episodes for us there would be nothing there.

Which also reminds me. I believe I am hooked on YouTube. Emmy has been wanting to start her own channel for awhile and for Christmas she got equipment to get her on her way (which I used to make the HFP videos) But I am 99.9% sure that I will be starting my own channel there doing crafts. so if your interested in the crafty side of Cat Hair and Glitter you can check me out over there.....at some point. I'm thinking February or March.

Further proof I did nothing on my week off I downloaded a game I use to play years and years ago, Tiny Tower. I am sucked in again and waste more time than I want to admit on it.

I also want to jump on the Instant Pot bandwagon. I haven't bought one yet but seeing everyone on my FB feed with theirs is making me jealous. Do you have one? Would you recommend it?

I think that's it for updates. I am hoping to stop in and visit everyone this week (virtually on your blog, not in real life because I am an introvert and its too damn cold to get out)

House Hunting

I'm house hunting again. I swore when I bought my house 3 years ago that I wasn't moving again. I'm gaining a new husband in 197 days (but whose counting) that means I need space. When I bought my house it was me and my two girls. The size was fine for us. Then Hannah moved in and that girl brought a lot of stuff with her (and two cute dogs) I had to find room for guitars, amps and so many clothes that their room looks like it is going to burst.

Those were also the days before I started my etsy shop. My supplies have taken over my room and part of the living room. Basically unless I do a massive decluttering there just isn't room for another person in this house. Not to mention one that will have 3 kiddos visiting during breaks and holidays.

I never stopped looking at Zillow even after I bought my house so I had an idea what was available before we officially started looking. At first I had my heart set on a fixer upper. 5 bedrooms, a partially finished basement. I had visions of fixing it up and chronicling it on the blog. Then I came to my senses. Even without a large home renovation I don't have time to come here and write. Also it needed a lot of work. The basement stairs are a nightmare and would need to be replaced, flooring is needed in the family room, and it has no garage door. The kitchen is lacking upper cabinets and only has two usable bottom cabinets. The hard wood floors are original but are in rough shape so it would need to be refinished. That's not even talking about the holes in the walls and atrocious paint colors. Plus we'd need to fence in an area for the dogs. But that is the easiest project since I've already done that before.

Since then, we have looked at a 4 bedroom completely move in ready. I wouldn't even need to paint unless I just really wanted to.  It also needs a space for the dogs but it has a gorgeous deck and a huge picture window. It sits far enough off the road that the view is great. The downside to this is it has an RECC for electric. I swore I would never buy another house that has a Rural Electric Co-Op Corporation. That sounds like it would be a good thing doesn't it? A Rural Co-Co? In my experience the electric is way more, and they aren't as good about service. Power goes out and doesn't get back on quickly.  The last time I had it, the power went off every single time we had a heavy storm. It is also at the top of what I want to pay, and has carpet downstairs. Its a split level so really the dogs don't need to be downstairs but try telling a cat what they can and can't do lol. It just means lots of vacuuming. But it has tons of storage space and a work shop. Its basically perfect.

Then we saw one in downtown. I am in downtown and I love it. Its not for everyone, but I love being able to walk places. The downside to my house is Its on a super busy road and I'm beside Penn Station so there are many days I get out of the car and then NEED a Philly Cheese Steak. The downtown house is up a side road. I'd be closer to campus. Not that it matters because Abbey has decided on her college and it is not the one here. The road is pretty narrow there is a sign at the entrance of the road that says no big trucks. You cross a bridge to get to the driveway. A bridge that has no barriers on the side. Its also a shared driveway. I've never had one of those but I worry about how that would work. Inside though the house is great. It has a completely fenced in backyard with two storage buildings and is private. It also has a climate controlled sun room. It doesn't seem to have any major issues but according to zillow it is on the market for less than it sold for last. Who sales a house for less than they paid?

Then we saw a house that belonged to the cutest older couple. They have moved to Versailles (Kentucky not France) Also pronounced Ver-sales and not Ver-sigh. Our agent thought they were completely out but when we showed up they were there packing the last of their things. OMG they were precious. They let us look around. It would need some work mostly painting and a fence for the dogs. It has a small library complete with built in book shelves and a fire place. I want to turn that into the etsy workshop and studio for recording the current podcast (true crime, paranormal, and unsolved mysteries) and the new podcast Ernie and I are starting next year. Its about college football, I'll probably throw in some NFL too. This house had the smallest yard and pulling out onto the main road is sometimes a problem here. But the street is really quiet. It also has a sun room but I am not sure if it has heat or air going to it. It also has RECC electric. Its also the cheapest of all the houses.

All of the houses are within a mile of where I am now. I've made a pro-con list for each. I just really can't decide. We are all in agreement that the one at the top of our budget is the best, but I just can't get past the price tag. After that we are at a loss. I don't know if we should keep considering the fixer upper.

Endings and Beginings

You may have already heard the news if you follow my podcast on instagram, but my dad passed away two weeks ago. Its been hard to get back into the swing of things. Heather (my sister) helped me clear out his place and arrange for his cremation. I couldn't imagine trying to get everything done in the 3 days of bereavement if his estate was bigger.

I can't brag enough on how sweet Ernie was during all of this. He had just gone to bed when I called to tell him. He stayed up with me all night and then drove straight to my house after work so he could be with me when I visited the funeral home. The lady we dealt with at the funeral home reminded me of Emily Gilmore (Gilmore Girls) Mother In Law. When he went home a few days later, Abbey had stuck a note inside his suitcase telling him if he was wondering how he could ask permission to marry me with dad gone, that they (Abbey and Emmy) give it to him.

Well that set in motion a surprise engagement. He came back later that week and conspired with the kids to get me on Lockegee. I have mentioned this rock before that you hike to the rock and then climb straight up. It was right at sunset and absolutely gorgeous. He got down on one knee and told me that he has loved me since we were 16 and would love it if I would marry him.

 

It was the sweetest thing I have ever experienced. We are thinking memorial day weekend for the wedding.

A Quick Update

Hi. Did you guys miss me these last three months? I pretty much just fell off the face of the earth social media wise. I haven't read a blog in ages. I haven't even kept up with GOMI. I have randomly posted on instagram. So you at least know I bought Cat Shoes. Other than that, Its been a crazy summer.

I traveled to the North East and fell in love. I always felt like I was in the wrong state. How can I be the only person here that loves anything and everything over basketball? Not to mention horses scare me. But the east coast called me like no other place has. I really need to find a way to move there ASAP. Especially Connecticut. I can't explain it but that place feels like home. Salem Mass was awesome and I need to go back soon.

If you follow me on instagram (hollysgrass for personal and cathairandglitter for the very neglected blog) You may have noticed I am still with the guy I dated in high school. I was really thinking this blog was a curse because every time I share a relationship we break up soon after. This nearly happened. But we worked through the issue and all is well. We have watched a lot of football. the first weekend we went to a football game at his old high school. It was fun if not a little weird. The last time I had been at that school, I was at a band competition and  returning his jersey and other stuff I had of his. We can't remember who it was that I gave the stuff to, but he must have gotten it back.

I've been working on the etsy shop. It keeps improving which is awesome to see it grow. I listed a bunch of new things last week, and have more to list soon. If there is something you want but don't see let me know. I can probably make it.

Marching Band Season has begun which means no life until November. We are currently trying to get all the props painted and ready. I really don't know what I will do with myself when its over and I have free time.


Oh wait yes I do. I finally applied to get my Masters degree. I had been on the fence for so long about what to get it in. I finally decided on communication. Which most of my day job has switched to anyway, and it will also (hopefully) help with this space and the podcast. I'm excited and nervous. I should be starting in January.

I'm sorry I got your hopes up about the adult slushies and then quit blogging altogether. I will hopefully have a cool recipe for adult fruit roll ups on Friday.

One of my kittens escaped and got herself pregnant. Epic fail on my part. I so know better, but was holding off because she still seemed so small and all my other cats were fixed so I didn't think she'd get pregnant. I didn't count on her sneaking outside like the rebellious teenager she is. The babies are adorable and I have most given away as soon as they are weaned.

I would love to say I will be blogging more frequently, but I really just don't know. I think this time I have bitten off more than I can chew and need to finish projects and get things settled here. 

Let's Try This Again

Sorry I've been MIA this week and sorry there is no boozy popsicle today. I've had a pretty intense week.

Today I am going to tell you a story.

Picture it Kentucky 1993. I was 16. My next door neighbor who was a few years younger than me visited a friends 2-2/12 hours away. While there she met a boy who was walking home from the ball field with some friends. They hung out that evening and she came home with a picture and an address.

She showed me when she got back. I told her he was really cute so she gave me the picture. So I did  the most logical thing and sent him a swim suit picture. In my defense I was a swimmer so I was in a swim suit 6 days a week all year long. Also in my defense I wanted him to write back. He did, and we wrote back and forth for several months. Gotta love life before technology. So about April something I asked if he wanted to go to my prom. He said yes and was bringing a friend for my friend Chrystal. I met him at a mall an hour and a half from my house so we could meet face to face and work out the details. I thought he was so cute, and had the prettiest eyes I had ever seen.

This is us, at 16.

We dated a few more months and then the logistics of being over 2 hours away from each other at a time that there was no email, unlimited text and call ect...took its toll and he broke up with me. I was crushed. Fast forward two years.

I was a sophomore at Morehead and he was an incoming Freshmen. The first day we were back at school, I ran into a guy I had gone to high school with lets call him Heath (cause that's his name) we started talking, then went on a date two days later. That was kinda it, we were joined at the hip from then on (At least for the next two years) Meanwhile guy I had gone to prom with was now a student at Morehead also. He looked me up about a week after I started dating Heath. I went to his room and sat on his bed and told him I had a boyfriend. I got up and left and didn't see him again.

So in January my job changed. The job duties are the same but my region is now different. Now my region includes the town I knew he had lived in. Several weeks ago Abbey went with me to visit some places for work (Her school Career Pathway is my Career) while we were driving we passed the sign for his town. I mentioned that he lived there.  Around the same time, his son was going to prom and he mentioned me to his son.

About 2 weeks ago I got a friend request from him. I accepted and we just quickly caught up with what we have been doing. He has a son 12 days younger than Abbey and a daughter 3 months older than Emmy and another daughter a couple years younger than Em. We've both been divorced a couple of times. He joined the Air Force a year or so after I told him I had a boyfriend which partially explains why I never saw him again. I can't help but find it so funny that we got together because of a letter and he now works for the post office.
We met for lunch when I was in his area this week. He was the same guy I remembered. Its going well and I am cautiously optimistic. But writing about it on this blog always seems to be a curse so fingers crossed that it ends well.

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