Monday, August 31, 2015

Six Things I Learned in August

I love August! It's the month I was born and the weather here in the PNW is typically fabulous. I'm linking up to Chatting at the Sky, where we share new things we learned during the month. Here are six things I learned in August:

Do not give your dog a bath if you're inviting friends over that evening. That horrible wet-dog smell lingers... Even three candles doesn't mask the odor. 

The second astronaut to walk on the moon took communion and read scripture.  I was just a little girl back in 1969 when I watched the amazing walk on the moon but I don't remember hearing the words of Jesus. I read about this a few weeks ago while reading "For Your Weekend" on Emily P. Freeman's blog. I researched Buzz Aldrin to find out more about this Holy moment on the moon.

Some "45 minute make-overs" take longer... My daughter and I signed up for make-overs at the Bobbi Brown counter a couple weeks ago. We wanted to learn some tips for the upcoming wedding and try out new products. It was really fun and our artist was one of the professionals trained under Bobbi. She goes to Nordstrom's around the country. Should I be concerned?...It took her a LONG time to do me up from start to finish. I do think she made us look "wedding-ready." Hope we can recreate this look ourselves!

New math: 5 years + 10 pounds= 5 dresses. When my oldest son was getting married back in 2010, I saw a dress I liked one day, tried it on, and bought it. Boom. The End.

This time was a tad more complicated. I ended up bringing home five different dresses; one from J.C. Penney's, two from my private appointment at Nordstrom, one from Target (What?! Yes, they have a bridal department online and it was a returned dress I found in the clearance area.)

The winner was found by chance when I went to a different mall with a friend. (I'll share a pic after the big day.) The "rejects" have all been returned. They all had potential, but most of the colors washed my pale Norwegian skin color out. The plum one below was definitely the runner up.

Maroon 5's debut album was named after me! Ok, not really me, but the 2002 album is called "Songs About Jane." I just learned that while listening to Pandora last night. The muse was a former girlfriend of Adam Levine. 

Good grief, I can't even pretend it was me since I was in college the year Adam was born! Which leads me to the last thing I learned this month:

Celebrating my Birthday with family and friends is fun even if it means I'm getting older. On my actual "day" my hubby and youngest spoiled me with a Mexican fiesta on our deck. Margaritas, enchiladas, beautiful roses and perfect weather; what's not to love? 

On Friday night lots of my best girlfriends helped me celebrate at a local spot called Zogs. (It's a hidden gem on Fox Island. You walk through the Shell gas station store to get to it.) 

Each time a friend showed up I felt my heart swell bigger. I am blessed! We had an "after-party" too, with cake and bubbly. I felt totally loved and spoiled and I'm thankful to have been given another year to spend with all the people I love!

"So teach us to number our days, That we may present to You a heart of wisdom." Psalm 90:12

What did you learn during the month of August?

In His Grip, 

Friday, August 28, 2015

5 Favorites This Friday (Vol. 2)

Happy Friday! This is my second installment of my 5 favorites where I share things I'm currently loving. Hope you enjoy!

Organize~ I found the perfect solution for hat storage. It's called the PRESSA and it's found at Ikea. It's meant to be used in the laundry room as a hanging dryer. Well, this little octopus-looking contraption will be hanging from the ceiling in our closet, holding all our sports caps. Handy and cheap! ($4.99)

Watch~"An Affair to Remember." My daughter had never seen this movie so she and one of her girlfriends (who has seen it a billion times) watched it with me. It was made in 1957 and starred Deborah Kerr and Cary Grant. It takes place off the coast of Italy on a cruise ship. If you appreciate sap, romance, good fashion and Cary, you'll enjoy this movie! (You'll also see where "Sleepless in Seattle" got part of it's story-line.) I did a bit of research on the actress and discovered her middle name is Jane, she was born in Scotland so her red hair is legit, and when she starred in "The King and I" someone else sang for her. 

Eat~Nordstom's Crab Bisque. LOVE! SO yummy! I missed this SO much when I moved back to Chicago for a couple years. It's a specialty at the Tacoma Mall Nordstrom and it's my go-to lunch if I'm at the mall. It just so happens I have a few dresses to return and one to be altered. I think a trip to the cafe' might be on today's to-do list!

Wear~I've been borrowing my daughter's running arm band cell phone case when I take walks. Now I can listen to Podcasts and have my hands free to handle my doggie. I just ordered one of my own from Amazon for $6.99. Happy Birthday to me!

Make~ One of my favorite go-to things to make is a Southwest Salad. I brought dinner to one of my dear friends last week who was under the weather and decided to take her a little "fiesta." It's basically a layered salad which just requires a bit of washing and chopping... Here's the easy-peasy recipe:

Ingredients: lettuce (I used a blend of Romaine, baby greens and iceberg)
                    drained corn
                    drained black beans
                    green pepper
                    red onion
                    chopped rotisserie chicken (don't you love using these?!)
                    deli Pico de Galo
                    Mexican shredded cheese
                    Southwest Chipotle salad dressing

In addition to the main course salad, I baked corn bread, made fruit salad, took chips and salsa and baked a little apple crisp using apples from the tree in my backyard!! The interesting thing we discovered about our tree, is that it has several different varieties growing on it; Gala, Fuji, etc. Sounds like somebody manipulated nature... but quite handy for baking!

What are you loving lately?

In His Grip, 
Jane                 Thanks for reading "See Jane Learn." I always appreciate your feedback.

Friday, August 21, 2015

There is Only One Me!

I haven’t even seen the movie, but I might be starring in the sequel. My phone keeps ringing...

No, it’s not a Hollywood agent wanting me to play the part of the empty-nester wife and Mom. The calls all have to do with Fraud departments. 

Someone who I have named creepy thief,” keeps trying to open up new credit card accounts using MY private information. Conversations I've had this week include “No, I did not order $3000 worth of Nordstrom gift cards.” “No, I did NOT want to open up a new Capital One credit card.”

Whoever this person is lives in Atlanta, Georgia and they are persistent. (My brother-in-law lives there. “Is this you, Mark, playing a joke?”) This person knows just enough of my private information to sound legit. 

My hubby has notified all the correct people and departments so we are protected. That’s why I keep getting called; every action is checked and reported. It still makes me uneasy though, and frustrated. Why are they picking on me? If they’ve done any research at all then they’d know we’re scraping by trying to have our fourth child graduate from a private university. We also took the Dave Ramsey Financial Peace class so we're trying not to be in debt!

It is NOT fun having my identity stolen!

I know there is really only one me. Psalm 139:16 reminds me, "You saw me before I was bornEvery day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed." Depending on who you are, I am known as: Mike's wife, mom of four, youngest daughter, little sister, Aunt Jane, girlfriend, Mops mentor, member of Chapel Hill, Hoosier girl, Chi Omega sister or employee at Charlie Barnes. 

I love being known by those titles. The identity that I am MOST proud of though, is “the daughter of the King.”

“But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.” 
John 1:12

"Hey you creepy Atlanta thief person~you might continue trying to borrow or steal my identity but you will never take away my true identity!"

Have you ever dealt with fraud? Do you know your true identity?

In His Grip, 
Jane                            Thanks for reading See Jane Learn!

Friday, August 14, 2015

5 Favorites This Friday (Vol. 1)

Happy Friday! Sometimes a girl needs to share what she loves with her friends. Here are 5 favorites for this week:

Read~All you mommies of school-age kids, how’s it going? Only one more month until school starts again in the PNW. You can do this!  Enjoy this Mom’s description of her summer called “The One Mantra You Need to Survive Summer.” I laughed out loud while I read this on the plane.

Listen~Do you ever listen to Podcasts? Usually I download sermons from churches I attended in other states, but I've also started listening to "The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey." Each week this writer interviews someone over the phone and it’s so fun to listen in. It’s probably more geared to women who aren’t yet Empty-Nesters, but I always learn fun new things (like books to check out, meal planning, people making a difference, etc.) I’ve been listening to them while I walk Sydney and the time and distance seem to fly by. Subscribe on I-Tunes...

Organize~I finally simplified my Pinterest Boards. My organized daughter convinced me to combine a bunch of my boards. I’m still working on this project. This has forced me to decide what is still relevant to me and rather than taking pleasure in quantity, my pins are more about what I really love. I’m using the philosophy of the book, The Magic Art of Tidying Up. (If it doesn’t spark joy, it’s bye bye.)

Go~If you live anywhere near Gig Harbor, WA, there is a special event happening at Sehmel Park Amphitheater. Overflow is community worship and it's tomorrow (Saturday) from 5:00-9:00. Admission is food donations for our local Food Bank. Bring chairs, a blanket and expect a fun night. Isn't it great that we can praise Jesus in Public?!

Eat~Hungry and running errands? Starbucks has a new little lunch item that is yummy! It's called the Thai-Style Peanut Chicken Wrap. The three wraps plus green grapes are 430 calories and even though the dip says it contains coconut and I'm not usually a fan, it was SO good! I need to learn to re-create these at home...

It's the first Preseason game for the Seahawks tonight, so I'll be joining all the other 12th man fans and wearing my blue and green today. Go Hawks! Tomorrow is a big day; going dress shopping for my "mother of the groom" dress. Wish me luck! Have a great weekend friends.

In His Grip,
Jane                            Thanks for reading See Jane Learn!

5 photo source:

Saturday, August 1, 2015

What I Learned in July

It’s time to share what I learned during the sunny, hot PNW month of July. I wrote this list on my flight to Nashville. I always love the view of the mountain from the window.

Our Northwest summer has trumped my family’s weather back in Indiana. BIG time! We experienced gorgeous days and amazing sunsets, while my former Hoosier state set a record for the wettest month on record. EVER! Due to our sunny month our blackberry bushes all over the Harbor have bloomed early. I made blackberry crumble for dessert last week. Yum!

Nordstrom’s reputation for great customer service continues... Not only do they put on quite an Anniversary sale each year, but they are on top of fraud. Our family has been dealing with some identity theft (boo!) and when I tried to use my credit card I had to speak with a financial person on the phone. Our card had been compromised and they quickly stopped it and issued me a new card. Just in time to start hunting for a Mother-of-the-groom dress...

There are times when it's OK not to be nice to spiders. Last week our fire alarm went off at 6:30 in the morning for no reason. Well, there might have been a reason; spiders. Apparently, if they get near a smoke detector or webs are inside it, the alarm might go off or not work efficiently in case of a real fire. Lesson: change batteries AND dust off any webs. 

Be careful storing any birdseed if it’s not in a can. We've been invaded by uninvited guests; first spiders, then mice!! The reason our sweet convertible is in the shop is apparently mice. I have the heebie-jeebies just thinking about mice being in our garage. Besides, we have a cat! TIGGER! Why haven’t you solved this problem? Oh, because you’re 15 and overweight and lazy?...  

My favorite new app is my alarm and devotion! Check out the new free app that was designed by Lysa TerKeurst at Proverbs 31 Ministries. It’s called First 5 and it guarantees that you begin your day with God before you tackle the world. 

Nashville is a great place to visit! I knew this already but if you haven't visited here, plan a trip! I'm having a glorious time with my hubby spending time with our daughter Allie who moved here back in January of 2014. I'm wishing we didn't have to leave Tennessee in the morning after church, but excited to head up to Indiana to see my Mom and sisters! Sure hope their rainy season is over!

What did you learn in July? I’m linking up with Emily P. Freeman at Chatting at the Sky.

In His Grip, 


Tuesday, July 28, 2015


Why would she wander? This puppy knows she is loved and this is where she belongs, and yet... Sydney decided to have herself a bit of an adventure last week and take off! We'd already been on a long morning walk and I brought her out front with me while I did some gardening. As I became engrossed in trimming dead fern leaves,  Sydney snuck away. My hubby looked for her at the park and around the corner, but she was nowhere to be found...

With leash in hand, I set off. I introduced myself to our new back-door neighbor who was out in his driveway and described our adorable, naughty, runaway:

As I continued up the street I realized I hadn't done the first, most important thing: to pray

A couple minutes after I talked with God and asked him to help me find Sydney, I heard someone calling my name. I turned around and there was my doggie walking up to the new neighbor I'd just met. Why didn't I think to pray right away?

Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear.” Isaiah 65:25

After taking our tired girl home and scolding her, I put her in the backyard. It wasn't long before I heard her barking so I called her indoors. That's when I spotted an adorable yellow dog on the other side of the fence.

As my hubby called the number on "Carmella's" tag, her owner appeared. His doggie was afraid of the loud machine he was using in his garage. It felt good to be able to help another pet owner since I'd just found my runaway girl...

Dogs aren't the only ones who sometimes feel the need to wander. There are times when people run from more than just their location. Frustration, fear and desire to try new things are just a few of the motivations that cause people to stray from home, their marriages or their faith in Jesus. The bible tells the story of the Prodigal son;  a run-away son who comes home and was welcomed back by his father. Check out Luke 15:11-32 to read about it.

Lessons Learned:
1. Jesus cares about every little detail, including runaway pets.
2. Doing things God's way instead of our  way is for our own good.
3. God always welcomes us back whether we've strayed for moments or years...

My hubby and I are leaving home tomorrow. We're off to Nashville to see our child #2.
Y'all, I can't wait!!

Have you had a run-away lately? Or have you been the wandering one?...

In His Grip,
xo                                             Thanks for stopping by See Jane Learn.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time...

July has not been the best month for our family finances... We've been the target of fraud, medical bills are arriving, plus I'm still legally blond and gullible. 

I've been putting off going to the Mall partly because of the expensive bridge toll, and mostly so I won't get too excited at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale when all I really need are two things at the cosmetics counter. Some of my favorite beauty products are pretty inexpensive and found at drugstores or Target, but a couple items I love are made by Bobbie Brown and Clinique which is only found at department stores. I'll have to share my personal favorites in a future post.

So...I'm almost out of eye cream and serum and I was scanning Facebook when BAM! Christie Brinkley and Diane Sawyer (two faces a bit older and a lot prettier than mine) were attached to some products. The deal was a trial for just the cost of shipping. I was excited to get eye cream and serum for under $12 and it would keep me from heading to Nordstrom!


My bank notified me I'd overdrawn due to an unexpected charge of over  $175 from the Lumare Skin company. What??? I immediately called and had a little "chat" with the company's customer service. I had been enrolled in an ongoing deal... (Did any of you ever order Proactive for your teens and thought that was annoying?)

I never saw prices or membership mentioned. I'd unknowingly opened one of the products so I can't return it but I am getting half my $$ back and I'm NOT EVER GETTING MORE OF THEIR PRODUCT. I will use it up and I'd better start to look TV and magazine ready!!

It's been awhile since I've made such an idiotic choice that sounded like a good idea at the time.

My hubby has also been guilty of falling for "the deal." There was a vacation weekend when we lived in upper Illinois and had four littles under the age of eight. that we will never forget. My hubby found a "great deal" for a family "resort" on Elkhart Lake in Wisconsin. The photos and description were just what we were looking for and the price was right! It was a two hour drive and we couldn't wait to have fun beach time.

Perhaps their marketing was not completely honest?? Or brilliant, depending on how you look at it...

Here's what we found upon arrival at the "resort": a room so small we couldn't open the door all the way without crashing it into one of the saggy beds (where would our port-a-crib go?), a dirty room without air-conditioning, and no sunny beach area (just a rocky, shady, high-bank dirt area.) Needless to say we were discouraged. We tried to make the best of it the first night and went for a boat ride the next day.

While out on the lake saw something in the distance... Cue the choir singing.

The most beautiful resort was right next door. Even though money was tight, my hubby made the wise decision to move us over to the Osthoff Resort for our second night. It was amazing. The kids played at a sandy beach, we swam in the pool, and the big kids got to see 4th of July fireworks over the lake. It was worth it to spend a bit lot more. 

The place we stayed our first night back in the mid-90's is no longer in operation. It's been completely remodeled, changed owners and is probably fun for young families. Hopefully the brochures are truthful.

Lesson Learned: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is... RESEARCH!

Have you ever made a decision that sounded like a good idea at the time but you later came to regret?

In His Grip,
Thanks for stopping by See Jane Learn!