Wednesday, January 28, 2015

NEW Spartan UP Podcast & FREE Race Giveaway

The new year is in full swing!  Have you already lost sight of those New Year's Resolutions?  I didn't make any resolutions, but did try to recommit to my workout schedule and healthier eating.  It is so easy to get out of the loop around the holidays.

If you've already given up or maybe you hadn't even started thinking about your goals, perhaps you just need a new goal to work towards!  The Reebok Spartan Race Schedule is just getting started!  This could be the goal you need to work towards.  Whether just starting out or a serious competitor, Spartan Race has what you are looking for.  There are races all over the US and now on an island!  Check out the Spartan Cruise Bahamas!  There are even Spartan Kid races for the smallest competitors.  One race not enough?  Sign up for a Spartan Annual Pass!  Unlimited racing and travel discounts.  

Check out the new Spartan UP! Podcast!  Meet Joe DeSena, CEO of Spartan Race, as he travels the globe to interview the experts in all aspects of life.  Find the answers to inspire, to make you think, to make you laugh, and to help you succeed.  Check out all of the episodes!

Are you ready to sign up?  What if you could get a free race entry?  Sign up now to win a FREE entry into any open heat Spartan Race in the continental US!  Spread the word and earn more chances to win!  Can't wait to sign up?  Do it now and use code SPARTANBLOGGER and receive 10% off of any race.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck and let's start training!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Beach Condo Family Room Makeover

On New Year's Eve, we finally closed on our beach condo.  This is going to be a place that we can use for family vacations, but also a place we can rent out to help cover the costs of owning it.  Our first day as owners was not as exciting as we thought it would be.  Our New Year was saddened by the loss of our first furry baby.  We had to say good-bye to our beloved Tyke.  We miss him, but remember him as the loving pup he always was.

Despite the cheery yellow color, we were not too enthused by the bright decor of our new beach house.  It will definitely be a work in progress.  The progress will have to halt for a while too since it is booked for the next two and a half months.  However, we did have most of a month to get some work done.  I wanted to share the hard work we have done so far.  Our first task was to tame the bright yellow and to get rid of that mirror above the fireplace.  The mirror was quite easy to remove, but the color was not.

It took quite a few coats of paint to cover the yellow.  The blue plaid couches weren't our favorite either.  The biggest pain was the fact that all the moldings, fireplace, and doors were a dirty color. Painting all those items will probably go unnoticed now that they are done, but had to be freshened up with some white paint.  The little details took a lot of work, but they will be worth it in the end.  It really does make the place look so much cleaner.  So glad we were able to change out those couches!

We can't really afford to do everything at once, but we knew we wanted to make a big impact with what we could change.  Other changes will come in time.  Can't say enough about how much you can change with some paint.  Love the new color!  A few accents to make it our own and it is starting to feel like home.

The wood accent wall above the fireplace was pretty simple, but gave a great beachy touch as well.  We did the same process up the stairway landing, which I will share soon.  

We have been working like crazy and I'll be glad to have a normal weekend again, but I'm sad that we will have to take a break from this place to share it with some renters.  I hope they enjoy the place as much as we have so far!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Framed Puppy Paw

Every morning and every evening I'm filled with a sense of loss. During the day I can stay busy, for the most part. There are times when I walk by his bed or an abandoned bone that it hits me as well.  I still miss my furry baby, but I hope in time it will be easier to see these things and think about him without the pain and only the smiles.  If you missed Tyke's story, you can read it Here.

It's been about a week since we said goodbye, but I've started to do what I do to cope. I craft little mementos to remember my baby by.  I want to remember him in good ways and keep his memory close. I'm a sentimental person that likes to keep little things as reminders. I still have the collar of my first dog, Sugar. I got her as a present for my 10th birthday. Now Tyke's collar hangs next to hers in my closet.

Before Tyke passed, I took his footprints. All you need to do this is some non-toxic ink and a piece of card stock. My hubby held Tyke while I dabbed his paw with ink. Then we simply pressed his paw on the paper. I did a few prints to make sure I got a good one. After it dries, you can also make copies of your print or even scan it into your computer to keep it safe.

There's a saying that "Dogs leave paw prints on our hearts."  I definitely think this is true. Tyke will forever be in my heart. While he may not be here in our house anymore, this will always be his home. I still want to see him when I look around.  Although it is still tough, I know in time that seeing pieces of him will bring back the good memories.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Saying Good-Bye to Tyke

I wish I could say Happy New Year, but this has been the saddest new year of my life. It all started great on New Year's eve morning.  It was raining, but we were closing on our beach condo in New Smyrna Beach. We had been jumping through hoops and doing everything we could to get to closing before the 1st. We even made it to the IRS office minutes before they closed in order to get transcripts that the mortgage company needed and had been unable to get. So we thought the timing was going to be perfect. New year, new condo. After that is when everything turned.

We had planned to spend New Year's eve out at the beach. My husband ran home to get everything else we needed as well as our two dogs. However, when he got home he noticed that Tyke was out back staring off into space. He didn't even come when called, which is very unusual for him. When he went out to get him, he realized that he was drooling and definitely not himself. He immediately tried to bring him to the vet, but it was already closed. He decided just to come out to the condo and see if we could find a place open in the morning.  New Year's eve was a rough night. It was hard to see him so sick. You couldn't even see him in his eyes anymore. They were just staring off.  We were up at 4 am with him when we heard him cry. He'd been sick and needed to go out.  We were up again at 7 am to make it to the vet when they opened 45 minutes away. We spent most of the morning at the vet.  His bloodwork did not come back very good.  His liver numbers were off the chart, he was dehydrated and he had an infection. They started him on meds and admitted him overnight.  The vet said that dogs are pack animals and that they don't like to show sickness in fear of being left behind.  It was just so overwhelming to see this sad, pathetic little thing when he had been so full of life just days before.  The change in him was heartbreaking!

Our poor pup went through a number of tests.  None which came back very hopeful.  We picked him up to bring him home the following evening.  We were up until 5 am just cuddling and loving him.  I didn't think I would be this emotional when dealing with this kind of thing, but I've been a total wreck since it started.  I will burst in to tears without notice.  I may have been seen wandering Walmart with tears running down my face.  I guess I just didn't realize how hard this would be.  Tyke was my first baby!  My hubby and I got him before we were even married.  He would be turning 15 this June.  I know he's had a long and full life, it was just so unexpected.

He was a great dog.  As a puppy, he would run crazy circles around our backyard.  He always wanted to play tug of war and he'd rather hang by his teeth from his toy than let go.  He could be hyper, but he knew when someone was sick or upset.  He'd always come and cuddle or kiss you to cheer you up.  He loved to bite at the water spraying out of the sprinkler and swim in the pool.  Although. he had to be pushed in the pool the first time before he would jump in himself.  He was an amazing babysitter.  He would spend hours just laying by any baby in their seat or crib, just to be near them.  He loved Christmas and always wanted to be in the middle of things when everyone was opening gifts.  He was definitely a people pleaser.  You could tell by his face and by the way his ears went back when he had done something wrong.  Definitely not a good liar.  But he was the sweetest dog who just wanted to love and be loved.

After being home for a couple of days, we would see moments of hope and the old Tyke.  His meds were keeping the seizure episodes away and you could tell that he was aware and knew us.  He even gave kisses and love.  Unfortunately, the meds weren't enough to help his liver disease which was too advanced.  He then stopped eating.  I couldn't keep him here any longer for my own selfish reasons.  I had to let him rest.  It is with a heavy heart that I say good-bye for now to my sweet first baby.  I love you with all my heart and you will be so missed.  Our lives were forever changed by you and will be changed again with you gone.  I want you to rest and run happy again my boy.  We love you Tyke!!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Top 12 Tutorials on Love Bug Living for 2014

The end of the year is here.  I thought I'd take this time to look back and share some of our favorite posts for 2014.  We have a wide variety of tutorials from recipes to crafts to sewing projects.  I hope you find a project to inspire you in the new year!

And the Top Post of 2014 is....

Have an inspired New Year!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas 2014!

Wishing you a Wonderful Holiday Season
and a Fabulous New Year!

All the Best from the Hufford Family!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Dollar Store Gold & Silver Nutcrackers

Want a quick and easy way to class up your holiday decor this year?  Add a beautiful silver or gold accent without the golden price.  These nutcrackers were just a dollar apiece plus paint cost.

I found these small wooden nutcrackers at the Dollar Tree.  The fur beards and hair weren't working for me, but they easily peeled off.  Make sure to remove any stickers or loose pieces that won't paint well.

I used metallic gold and metallic silver spray paint to cover all sides of my nutcrackers.  Allow to dry.  Add a second coat if necessary.  These would also look great in white or any solid color to match your holiday decor.  Want a little sparkle?  Use glitter paint!

Your nutcrackers are ready to create a festive look in your house.  The perfect little accent to add a touch of class to any nook in your home.  Small ornament painted nutcrackers would be the perfect gift topper as well.

Happy Decorating!

Shared at:  Tatertots & Jello