Saturday, November 26, 2011

Tired and Uninspired

So, I never promised this blog would be upbeat ALL the time. I did promise it would be REAL. So, if you aren't in the mood for real and probably more than a healthy dose of a little BIG pity party, then click away, my friend.

This morning something 'serious' happened in the Maxman household. Well, 'serious' is all about perspective. I was bummed but really unaffected, the Hubs was devastated. He came out of the bedroom and went straight to the TV (normal daily practice for him) and it wouldn't turn on. {Backstory: It is 8 years old and has outlived its 10k hours of life, I'm sure, and has been temperamental off and on for a few months} So, into tantrum mode he went. {which totally set me off on my own hormone fueled tantrum}

The TV has always been a point of contention between us. I am completely unattached. I could easily live without a big fancy TV. Sure, I like watching movies and cartoons with Adrianne, but I don't NEED a TV. He *NEEDS* a TV. In his perfect world there would be a TV in each room. (Yes, even the loo)  The longer he sat and stewed on how he was going to replace his TV the more irritable he became. {Note: we are a single income family and a $500 plus TV purchase is not in budget} At one point during his silent tirade he stated that he would not be fun to live with if there was no TV in the living room. I turned to him and asked him how it was okay for him to punish Adrianne and I for his TV dying. Of course, that turned into something else entirely with him getting upset and stating that isn't what he was saying.

After a couple hours of this nonsense he had come up with a plan. I put the entire thing on him - taking the path of least resistance. Part of the ensuing discussion was about priorities and establishing a hierarchy of priorities for one's self. I very pointedly stated that I did not want our children to have the same OCD tendencies regarding television or the lack of a TV. I told him that his mother did him a very large injustice when she made the TV his keeper at a very young age. At one point in this conversation he stated he felt guilty about needing to buy a new TV and that he felt that I was judging him and 'giving him the guilt trip' At this juncture I will defend myself - not once did I raise my voice, tell him anything negative or derogatory regarding the TV or himself. I did state that it was time for him to find a hands on hobby and be a better example for our 2 year old. After a bit of silence, he agreed.

This entire thing had gotten me thinking. Having the expectation that you will have the fancy schmancey TV and that it will operate without question boggles my brain. {This is where I get to the tired and uninspired - maybe I should add selfish??} During this entire roller coaster ride this morning all I could think was 'WHAT ABOUT ME!?!??' What about my need to unplug? My need to be creative? My desire to make beautiful things for myself? When do I get to have all that? I can honestly state that I haven't made/sewn something for myself in MONTHS. While I find great joy in creating for others, I am to the point of disgust with myself and the world at the expectation that I will create to give to others with nothing for myself. {I warned you that it was going to be a bit selfish with a pity party}

I sat down today to make a gift for a friend and I have NO inspiration. None. I have shelves full of beautiful fabric but nothing is speaking to me for her. I see things that say 'USE ME' but I want that end product. I don't want to give it away. I like giving to others. I like making things by hand to give them for birthdays, holidays, just becauses. I am just having the feeling of "WHAT ABOUT ME!!!"  Where are my gifts? Where are my just becauses? Where are my nice gifts that have had thought and inspiration and love put into them? {I told you there was selfish in here...}

I will always continue to be happy for others and their accomplishments. I support and brainstorm and give love and inspiration. From those in my 'real' life to those in my 'cyber' life and those brief instances where the two worlds merge and blur. Maybe it is the hormones, maybe it is just a pity party, but I need to be the recipient, I think. The constant no-strings-attached with no judgement and no expectation of reciprocity kind of giving has brought me to the edge of my ledge, figuratively speaking.

I'm tired. Mentally, physically, emotionally. I'm uninspired. This entire thing goes back to the TV {icing on the cake but I don't know that I want to dissect the cake}- You get another new TV and I still don't have a new sewing machine. How ungrateful am I. {I warned you that it was a pity party}


{Note: this does NOT include any of the wonderful swaps I participate in. I know that my creations are cherished and that just as much time and love are put into the things sent to me as the things I send to new homes}

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

We All Do It

You know we do.
We stand in line at the grocery store, 
we look through the magazine racks,
we ALWAYS pick up the magazine with the 'quick' dinner ideas
RARELY do we buy them. 

Well, I bought one. 
I broke the rules. 

But this recipe made the entire purchase worth it. 

As most of you know,
I am expecting baby #2 late in February. 
I don't exactly have a ton of energy to be standing at the stove for hours.

In the Spring issue of the Betty Crocker 
115 Super Simple Recipes 
I found this: 
Looks delish, right?!?

Chicken & Pasta with Creamy Basil Sauce
Start to finish time: 30 minutes 

3 Cups uncooked bowtie (obviously I used Penne) pasta
2 Cups fresh broccoli florets (I actually had this in my fridge!)
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, 
cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon garlic-pepper blend 
(of course I don't own this! I used garlic powder, garlic salt, and black pepper)
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon sugar
1 small red bell pepper, chopped 
3/4 cup Yoplait All Natural Fat Free plain yogurt 
(this is me rolling my eyes because you KNOW this 
is such a staple in my shopping list... I used low fat sour cream)
3 to 4 tablespoons chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
(I used about three teaspoons dried basil)

1. Cook pasta as directed on package, adding broccoli during last 4 minutes of cooking; drain.

2. Meanwhile, in 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. 
Sprinkle chicken with garlic-pepper blend (we discussed this!
Cook chicken in oil about 3 minutes stirring occasionally, until no pink in center
 (I cooked much longer giving the chicken a nice caramelized glaze)

3. In small bowl, mix broth, cornstarch and sugar.
 Add broth mixture and bell pepper to skillet. 
Cook about 3 minutes or until sauce is thickened. 
Stir in pasta, broccoli, yogurt (we discussed this!) and basil. 
Heat over low heat until hot - do not boil! 

Seriously this came out amazing. 
Your picky children (my two year old) will eat it. 


Sunday, November 6, 2011



So many different images float through my head when I say this word.

The ranch in the valley where I learned to ride my bike, ride a horse, shoot a gun
The house on the hill where I found arrow heads and jack rabbits
The  apartment in the college town where I started to figure life out
The house I shared with four phenomenal women
The mountain top in Montana where I felt free and alive
The beach where I can feel my soul pulsating with the waves

The smiling face that met me when I got home from Houston
Ft Bragg, CA 2011

Of course she was accompanied by her Daddy
Oct 15, 2011

Wherever these two faces (soon to be three!) are is where Home really is. 

Make sure you click over to A Prairie Sunrise and see who else is sharing stories of Home. 
I bet they will warm your heart. 


Thursday, October 27, 2011

And The Journey Begins

Well, I've now been up for 24 hours. It is 5:02am and I am sitting next to the gate waiting to board.

Yesterday consisted of work, errands,  work, packing, driving. In roughly that order.

Nate drove me to the airporter and had me there at 10:15pm. (This was Wednesday night AFTER he had class!!)

I got to SFO a little before midnight, right after I got the call that nate made It hone safe.

It is now 5:08am. I am still at SFO. But it is worth it. In a few short hours I will be meeting up with awesome people and experience all the glory of Quilt Market.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

October 20th

Today is my Mom's birthday 
I knew what I wanted to make her,
but I kept having 'something else' pop up.

So, today I came home from work and visiting my Gran 
And sewed by the seat of my pants!! 
And when I say 'by the seat of my pants'
I mean it!
I had pattern pieces to cut out and 
NO directions. 

Resulting in this...
(not too shabby, if I do say so myself!)

Nothing like a little Moda & Michael Miller to make things go smooth!

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Baby Be Blessed

So, I know Ive talked about the good things that are rockin' over at Baby Be Blessed - 
And on the off chance of sounding redundant, 
I really think that anyone with little ones in their lives needs to go check it out. 

Don't tell Adrianne, 
but I'm ordering her a baby for Christmas with 
Hebrews 11:1 on it 
"Now Faith is the substance of things hoped for,
the evidence of things not seen" 

If you know me, even just a little, you know that I'm big on Faith. 

Go check it out. 


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Did I Mention...

That I was a guest blogger?!?!??? 

I didnt?!?? 


Then you should go take a look. 

I was Tuesday's Guest Blogger

And make sure to look around a bit.

Sha is amazingly thoughtful 
very creative. 

Such a pleasant hostess!! 

Thanks, Sha, for having me!!



You read that right. MIA. 
Missing In Action.
 Well, actually, Ive been in Action. 
Hence why Ive been missing from my blog.

In June we went to the NASCAR race at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, CA. 
I LOVE the rush of the cars swooping by!!!
And, yes, Kyle Busch is my favorite. 
He is sassy - kinda like me!

Yes, we all like different drivers. 
Makes it more fun! 

We went to a couple Giants games -
Actually, we went to game two of the opening series in LA against the Dodgers. 
This was Adrianne's first baseball game, 
and she would NOT stop asking for a picture of 
Buster Posey. 
He is her favorite. 
(As any red blooded American Woman can see! 
DAMN! I love baseball!!)

In June Adrianne figured out how to unroll all the TP at once. 
She thought it was the funniest thing EVER. 

We also went to a wedding...
She is wearing her Party Pokie-dottie Dress. 
She asks to wear this dress ALL THE TIME!

And she got herself stuck. 

This brings us through June. 

Be on the lookout for July and August coming soon!


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Wish You Were Here...

Have y'all ever been to Sonoma County? No? Well then you have never experienced *PERFECT* racing weather. Sun is shining, steady breeze, the goofiest people you have EVER seen. Then there are the Cuties like this fella.

Time to get some more pictures! 
GO KYLE! GO!!!!!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Like a Junkie getting a Fix

Hello friends,

Tomorrow I will embark on my yearly voyage to Mecca. Also know in the Redneck world as NASCAR. I will have my phone, however I will be yelling and screaming at men driving over priced toys even though I know as well as you that they wont be able to hear me. I will take photos. And I will be chanting GO KYLE GO! 

Email or text will be the best way to get me, if you need to. 

Happy weekend! =)


To Infineon I go. I will return sun burnt. I will return tired. I will return amused. I will return with TONS of pictures. Watch for a pictures post later this week. I *may* be recovered by Wednesday. But then again, I may not. 

Friday, June 24, 2011

Mommy's Little Dirtbag

Does everyone remember how much fun it is to play in the dirt?? 

If you don't you need to play again. 

What follows is a series of images I was lucky enough to capture. 

Mommy's Little Dirtbag

Isnt she amazing?!?? 

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Breakfast, anyone?

Just an FYI - Ma Nature is having a hot flash. 

That being said, I decided I wanted baked potatoes for dinner. 
{insert head banging against wall here}
I figured, since I need the oven on, why not bake a couple-a loaves?

The Ingredients:
1 box yellow cake mix 
3 eggs
1/3C vegetable oil or applesauce (interchangeable)
4 mashed bananas 
(they don't have to be over-ripe and actually have better flavor if they aren't)

Pre-heat the oven to 350* F

I use my KitchenAid Stand mixer and mash the bananas first. 
Add eggs and oil/applesauce to the bananas and mix well
Add cake mix and mix until completely blended

This is where I toss in more goods...
Drain and rinse (or rinse and drain) one small basket fresh blueberries
{you can use raspberries, blackberries, frozen berries - 
if using frozen you will need to bake longer}
I also sometimes {this time} add chocolate chips
Gently fold in berries and chocolate chips

This makes TWO loaves
Make sure you have your loaf pans ready
Split as evenly as you can between the two pans
Sprinkle 1/4 cup chocolate chips on top 
(if you are using them - completely optional)

Place in the oven and  bake for 30 to 35 minutes 
The toothpick test works for this recipe - I check at 30 minutes then go from there

Finished goods:



Friday, June 3, 2011

Yay! Free Friday!

Every Friday Baby Be Blessed hosts a giveaway. 
Every Friday I look at it. 
Every Friday I think about going to Church.
On Saturday, I think about going to Church again. 
By Sunday I am so full of self-doubt that I chicken out and don't go.
I NEED to go.
I need to take my child to Church. 
I need for her to know the love and faith that I do. 

Okay. Off my soap box. 

Moral of this post:
Go check out Baby Be Blessed
They have somethin rockin goin on over there... 
Its more than just a giveaway. 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

In The Post

I have made some of the most amazing friends via twitter and blog hoppin'. 
One of these wondrous friends is the owner of Little Creatable 
and is known by the handle @littlecreatable on twitter. 
She is one of the most sincere women and I have come to adore her.
 She was FLOORED that I had never learned to cross stitch, 
let alone know what I was supposed to have in order to learn. 
The following photos are evidence of her generosity and creative abilities. 

This is what was in the post...

{YES that says AUSTRALIA post}

{Dont mind the mess...}

{it has my name!}


{the goods}

{the cutest little book!}

{in the beginning...}

{NOT the end}

{isn't this the most gorgeous thread EVER!!!}

{even the inside is gorgeous}

I am so very blessed to have found a friend that can read me like a book from so very far away. 
Love you, Brie!

Monday, May 30, 2011

In the Summer

is when I miss it the most. I miss the salty fog rolling through the redwoods. I miss the sparkling sunshine breaking through the boughs. in the cove on Trinidad Head. I miss sitting I miss the warm walks around the Plaza. I miss the length of the day being literally on the coastline of the continent. I miss walking to the ball park for some AAA ball. I miss throwing darts at photos of crazy people at Sidelines. I miss Rugby house parties. I miss Cafe Tomo. I miss the simplicity of walking from one end of town to the other - just because you can.

While I miss it, I love my husband. I love my daughter. I love my smurf blue house with its white-ish eyebrows. I dont love the humidity of living so close to the lake. I dont love the stifiling heat of July and August. In those months, I miss it even more.

Maybe I will add some photos. Or maybe I will let you use your imagination. Either way, It is beautiful.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Stuck in the Mud

A few weeks ago we went out to the hunting camp belonging to a family friend. SO MUCH FUN! Well, that is until his dad came mosey-ing down into camp to let us know he got the CAT stuck in the mud. It was seriously amusing.


Bob's Cat Service

Mikey's Backhoe Service

Still stuck...

Cute little mosnter -
 the bathwater was BROWN!

Walkin with Dad

Something pretty -
Mountian Lupine

Sunday, April 24, 2011

You should check it out - QUICKLY!

Shawna has three giveaways going - that end today!! Holy moly! Go check em out!!! HURRRY!!

CLICK HERE or HERE. Or you can click HERE. But, they all go to the same place. So, HAPPY CLICKING! =)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A Muggy Ruggy Swap? #1

There were a few of us talkin bout doin a mug rug swap on #talknt - any takers leave a comment and we will get organized over the next week!

Now onto the good stuff!

A BIG Thank you to Chelsie of Sweet Baby Hiccups for thinking this up! YOU ROCK, sista!

As you all can see by the comments (THANK YOU!) there is real interest! WOOHOO for #talknt!

Details... Yes, unfortunately there are some details we need to attend to.

First off - this is an INTERNATIONAL swap. It is super exciting to get something in the mail from another country. I dont know bout the rest of you, but my mail man thinks Im crazy when I dance away from the mailbox. =) Maybe he is a little bit right...

Next - the deadline to enter the swap will be midnight Pacific Daylight Time on Friday April 29th.

This is a blind (HAHA! you cant see!) swap.

Lets keep the mug rugs to about a six by ten inch rectangle.

Please email me at muggyruggyswap at gmail dot com (I will send an email to those who have already commented!)

In the email please include the following:

  • Your name
  • Your mailing address
  • One (yes you have to choose one) thing that you HATE on your fabric
  • And please let me know if you really aren't okay with shipping internationally.
Your mug rugs will need to be in the mail on the way to thier new homes by Saturday May 14th. (It was going to be Friday the 13th, but I didnt want to scare you!)

Please feel free to include a little note about yourself, the address to your blog (if you have one), and your email address. Goodies are always welcome but are NOT mandatory.

Now. Here are a couple of links to tutorials that may help those who have never made a Mug Rug before:

Ryan Walsh of Im Just A Guy Who Quilts has two tutorials that will help for ideas. You can find them here and here.

Terri from Sew Fantastic has a cute idea here.

Florence over at Flossie Teacakes has a FANTASTIC binding tutorial that can easily be translated into mug rug size. You can find it here.

Please keep in mind that these are just ideas to be helpful. They are by no means directives to make your mug rug the same. If you 'google' mug rug tutorials you will find LOTS of great ideas and ways to make mug rugs.

Have fun and be creative!!

Jacqueline & Chelsie

Sunday, April 17, 2011

If you havent used it in six months...

You know the drill.
If you haven't seen it, used it, thought about it in six months it needs to go buh-bye.
{And let me tell you! Its been more than six months in this household}
I posted on facebook for all the local crafty friends -
 if you want to come by and look through it before it gets put in a yardsale,
 leave me a comment on this post with a way to get ahold of you.


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

One Day Without Shoes

Yesterday I pirated (with permission, Arg!) Hannah's post - Blogging Barefoot Something Bigger Than Me.
Today I went the entire day without shoes.
I went to work.
I walked in the parkinglot (yes the very same one that has seen many a bar fight and much bar vomit)
I walked through my office.
I walked to the local bakery to meet a girlfriend for coffee - along the way a man asked me why I was barefoot.
He sat on a bench and took off his shoes and wished me a good day.
At the bakery, one of the owners asked why I was barefoot -
She, too, took off her shoes.
I walked back to my office
My path took me in front of two bars -
You and I both know how gross drunk people can be...
I used the restroom at work.
I drove to my old high school to pick up a sister.
I went to Safeway.
I came home.

I have shoes waiting for me to put on tomorrow.
I have disgusting feet that will be washed before putting them in my bed.

I have a profound respect and severe heartache for each person that walks every day without shoes.

Something so simple, so incredibly taken for granted.

I will never look at a pair of shoes the same way again.
I promise.

{For more information on One Day Without Shoes please visit the link here}
{For more information on Tom's Shoes please visit the link here}

Monday, April 4, 2011

Blogging Barefoot

My dear friend Hannah, over at Peggy Ann Design pleaded with the world to join the movement- the One Day Without Shoes movement. I have asked her permission and she has granted it - the following is from Hannah's blog, but honeslty, friends, I couldn't say it better.

Blogging Barefoot: Something Bigger Than Me

Today I will be barefoot. 
I will go through my workday without shoes, including trips to my office's bathroom and kitchen. 
I will get gas this afternoon and probably cringe as I carefully step around the spilled gasoline on the ground.
I will take packages to the post office and hopefully not get kicked out. 
I will spend One Day Without Shoes

But then tonight, I will take a hot shower and wash my dirty feet. 
I will eat a full, satisfying dinner. 
I will get a good night's rest in my own queen size bed. 
And tomorrow? I will put on my shoes and go about my day. 

I am lucky. WE are lucky. 
Children all over the world don't get the luxury of a pair of shoes. 
They deal with pain, injury, and disease as a result of the barefoot life they have to endure.
They are often excluded from school when they don't have shoes. 
This leads to a never-ending cycle of poverty and pain. 

My One Day Without Shoes may not mean much to many people. 
My two bare feet may not make a huge impact. 
But if I convince one person to try going barefoot, that makes four bare feet, and possibly a new TOMS Shoes owner. 

For every pair purchased, another pair is given to a child in need. 
A child that spends EVERY DAY Without Shoes. 
One For One. 

This movement is so much bigger than me, bigger than you.
It's bigger than any small thing we can contribute. 
It's bigger than 24 hours of bare feet. 

I am called to serve. To do for others. To give my time and my voice. 
And today?
Today I will give my feet. 

"They embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment -- a moment that will define a generation -- it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all."  

-President Barack Obama

I encourage you to go barefoot all day if you are able to do so. 
If you are blogging barefoot today, please link up your post below. 
Help me spread the word about the impact that a single pair of shoes can have on a child's life. 

Link up your blog post showing your bare feet! {click here to find the link up button}

I will be going barefoot. And I will be showing a photo of my nasty disgusting feet at the end of the day. Will you?

Thank you again, Hannah, for allowing me to use your words (and your feet!).


Blogger Shame? Guilt?

I have been shamed into blogging.
Or maybe guilted into it.

This process brought me to a few questions:
  • Why do I not blog regularly?
  • What is the thought process that goes into a blog post?
  • Have I been avoiding this out of fear of 'will they like it'?
Then I thought about it.
I really dont give a flying eff if you like my blog or not.
Key words: MY BLOG.

So. Here it is.
I dont blog regularly because I don't.
I will try to get better about it. For myself.
I think this is called 'guilt free blogging'

The thought process - well, frankly, I do think I have  been OVER thinking it.
So, no more thinking.
{well, minimal thinking, anyway!}

Prepare yourself for more rambling -
which will therefore lead to -
You've guessed it!
More posting.

I wont always have something witty or smart to say.
I wont always be cheery and bright.
But I will try my darndest to be present
And it will always be honest
And heartfelt.


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Think CopaCabana....

Her name is Shawna
She is a horse gal
From the country
The country in Michigan
She has a mommy
Her mommy is goofy
Goofy like some chickens
Some chickens with Diego

{Kinda catchy, right?? Check out her post with a treat!
Click HERE - you know you wanna!
Chickens, Diego, mommies... What more could you ask for!??}

Friday, March 18, 2011


is in progress.

Look for it later this evening.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

And the winner is...

Comment number TWO!
(I havent figured out how to get the little picture thingiemadoo yet, sorry!)
This is where everyone says COME HOME SOON, TARA!

My Photo
Little Creatable: I am a quilter and a crafter ^_^

Check your email...

Monday, February 21, 2011

Better Late Than Never - and a giveaway!

{Tomorrow} WHOOPS!
Tomorrow is a week late! Better late than never!
  • The recent blog move
Recently I have been spending much time with Tara Jones

Tara and I have been friends since we were four.
Yes. Four years old. Kindergarden.
Somewhere, Tara's mom has a photo of Tara, myself, Sarah, and Lisa in Kindergarden
She has another photo of Tara, myself and Lisa at our graduation ceremony from College.
As I said, we have been friends a LONGGG time.
She is now our family photographer.
She take AH-MAZZ-ING photos

These are from our shoot in August.
As I said, AH-MAZZ-ING photos.
[These are protected by Tara's copyright - Please be respectful.]

So, with spending time with Tara, we get to the
  • Recent projects
One of them is a custom photographer's camera bag.
It came out REALLY cute - and she has all the pictures.
When she gets back from showing it off in Vegas, I will post them.

Another project is part of the Style Stitches Monthly Bag Challenge 2011
(You should check it out. Really. EASY instructions to follow)

February's bag{s}
(yes I made two!)
  • A new photo or two

Adrianne The Ham
Adrianne & Auntie Louisa with Diego the Snow cat
Adrianne and paint dots - sure am glad I took her WHITE sleved shirt off her first!

Did I mention that my kid is a HAM??
  • A fundraiser
On December 1, 2010 2 year old Malyia Jeffers, daughter of Kelseyville High School Graduate, Ryan Jeffers, contracted a serious bacterial infection that invaded her blood stream and caused all of her major organs to shut down. She has been on life support and dialysis while the medical team works relentlessly to save her life. She has undergone amputations of both feet and her left hand and some fingers on her right, from the effects of the virus, and has more surgeries scheduled.

On March 12, 2011 we will be holding a fundraiser for Malyia.
 All you can eat Pizza for TEN BUCKS. Thats it.
If you are five and under, Five bucks.
Pizza, salad, and soda.
I am also collecting raffle prizes.
Every penny made will be turned over to the Jeffers family
who have lost thier home as well as Leah and Ryan both being out of work.
Malyias Road to Recovery has a great gallery of photos
that really show what the family is going through daily
The family has set up an emergency fund to help pay living expenses
and outstanding bills that are not covered by insurance.
 Donations can be made at any branch of Wells Fargo Bank.
The account number is 760 6768 435

A humanitarian project
{this will be in the next posting}


Leave me a comment telling me what you have directly to your right -
and if you are a scrapper, quilter, or crafter
Lets have a giveaway.
For another entry tweet about this, tag me @jmmaxman, and leave me a comment here.
How does some yardage from my stash sound?
So, that is two entries per person.
Lets throw in a third - are you a follower?
Tell me so!
{UPDATE! Winner will be drawn via on Monday February 28th}