Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Here Comes Santa Claus

Well...maybe not, but close!

Christmas is Just Around the Corner

Do You Need a Gift for Yourself or Your Mother?

Candy Canes, Presents and Glitter Galore

A Perfect Decoration for a Wall or a Door

Special Colors, Sizes and Ribbons Too

They are Made With Love and Uniquely for You


The Christmas spirit has hit me and I could not think of a better way to share the season than to paint!

I am selling 8x10 canvas boards.

$10 for one

$25 for three

Customized colors and sayings are included.

Other sizes are available upon request (pricing will vary).

Extra fees may apply to cover shipping costs.

Please contact me for further information, questions and orders! Pass along this blog post to your family and friends!



Monday, September 27, 2010

Time for an Update

Wow! I seem to have failed miserably at a Carter update as it has been close to 2 months since my last post. So, here is a brief recap of August and September!

Throughout the month of August, Christopher enjoyed his time in Kentucky with both his family and his rotation in Louisville. He worked at a nuclear pharmacy and was able to experience some new things in the pharmacy world. He lived like a nomad, staying with friends and family members throughout the state of Kentucky and even Indiana; it seemed he was sleeping in a different bed every night when we called each other. His rotation was easy with short hours, which enabled him to spend a great deal of time with his family. From playing lots of golf, to eating good food, to venturing out to Kentucky sightseeing adventures, Christopher had a great time in his home state. While he worked and played, I did the same in Florida. Although it seemed like a long, and at times a lonely month, it truly did go by fast. I was able to enjoy time with Derby, scrapbooking our wedding albums and visiting with friends throughout the month. From dinner dates with Kimmy, to beach day trips with John Thomas, to "me" days of shopping and spa visits, I took care of myself. Then, on August 21, Christopher and I were finally reunited! It was a great day when he walked through that front door. I do not know who was more excited: me, Christopher or Derby!

The Carter family was all together again. And since, Christopher's return home, we have managed to stay very busy. I think that is what we do best! Here is our month of September in summary. We have bought a king size bed, redecorated almost our entire home, gone to a friend's wedding, gone to the Lady Antebellum concert and enjoyed time with both of our moms as they each ventured to the state of Florida in September. Gayle was in the Orlando area over Labor Day weekend dog-sitting her "granddogs" while Gary and Brandon ventured on a cruise vacation. She brought along some friends with her, so it was great to visit with them, shop with them, and of course, eat with them; we always have a great time together. My mom and Nanny came to Bradenton just a short time ago for a long weekend. It was Nanny's first time to our home and she thoroughly enjoyed herself. We could not have asked for better weather and a better time together.

Now that we are all caught up, pictures and more details will come later. As October approaches, Christopher has begun his 4th rotation in Target at St. Petersburg; only 5 more to go! All is pretty much the same with me; I have begun to tackle many projects at home from repainting a canvas, knitting (thanks to my mom for teaching me) and scrapbooking. I will be venturing to North Carolina for a quick 48-hour trip home at the end of October. We are looking forward to the cooling weather. Florida is still hot, but it is getting better.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Fun in the Sun

Last weekend was absolutely incredible! My family went on vacation in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. It was only a 2 day vacation, but we were able to pack in lots of memories and fun!

Christopher and I were fortunate enough to take a few extra days off and enjoy the drive to North Carolina. Before our road trip, we dropped Derby off in Orlando and Gary and Brandon's house on Wednesday. They graciously agreed to "dog-sit." Derby apparently had a great time running and chasing her 3 cousins while we were gone. Christopher and I drove to Savannah, the half-way point to NC, and stayed the night.

Thursday, we woke up bright and early and made our way to North Carolina. Before heading to the beach, we stopped at Duplin winery for lunch and wine tasting with my mom and dad. The food was delicious and the wine was great! We each stocked up with some of our favorites to take home with us. The 4 of us were then beach bound! My mom just recently got a new car, and it was only natural that she and I drive it...a 2002 BMW convertible! We set out on I-40 with the top down and the beach music playing. It was great! Once we arrived at the Sunspree Resort, mom and I headed to the pool, while the boys napped. For dinner, we ventured to a new restaurant, Kefi. It is bar style food with a Southern and Cajun flare. We enjoyed for the first time fried pickles; they were great! After dinner, we rode in the convertible under the moonlight and then headed back to the resort for a good night's sleep as the rest of the Miller clan would be joining us the following morning.

...Wine Tasting...Yummy...

...Off to the Beach...

Friday morning, mom and I woke up bright and early to enjoy the ocean before it got too crowded. But, boy was it already hot at 8:00am. We drank coffee poolside and then took a walk on the beach to the Johnny Mercer pier. After sweating in the sunshine, we knew it was time to put on our bathing suits and grab some chairs and umbrellas by the pool. The only way to enjoy the summer heat was to stay in the pool. Around lunchtime, Russell's family arrived and then Gary's family arrived not too long after that. After lunch and an application or two of sunscreen, the entire Miller family, all 14 of us, were in the pool! We played games, threw the kids, got in trouble by doing triple deckers and laughed a lot. Before heading out to our favorite restaurant in the Wrightsville Beach area, we dressed our best in khaki and white and took pictures on the beach. They turned out great! After pictures, we were off to Freddie's at Kure Beach. This restaurant is amazing! Although it is deemed to be an Italian restaurant, they are known for their porkchops and homemade salad dressing. Wow! This place gets better every year that we visit it. It was only natural to enjoy dessert after eating dinner at Freddie's. We made our way to Carolina Beach to taste Britt's donuts. This one fryer donut shop had a line wrapped around the block at the Boardwalk at 10:00pm. It was unreal. These donuts are unlike any that we have ever tasted. Double glazed is the way to go! The kids enjoyed playing in the arcade before heading back to the resort.

...The Gang's All Here...

Saturday was a bittersweet day. Christopher had to leave that afternoon for Kentucky as he was beginning a pharmacy rotation in Louisville. I wanted to soak up all the time I could with him. Before heading to the beach with the family, Christopher, Russell, mom and I enjoyed coffee poolside. Then, it was time to ride waves, make drip sandcastles and soak up the sun with everyone. For lunch, we enjoyed wraps and daiquiris poolside. The younger ones napped and the older ones continued to play throughout the afternoon. It was then time for Christopher to begin his next roadtrip. Before leaving, he gave me a going away gift and surprised me with Lady Antebellum tickets. We are going to their concert in Tampa in September. The good-bye was like reliving our long-distance relationship days, a few tears and a few laughs. But all-in-all, we know it is temporary and it is only for the betterment of our future. After Christopher's departure, my family and I continued to enjoy the sunshine. Before we knew it, it was 7:00pm and dinnertime. We knew there would be no way 13 people could get ready, be seated at a restaurant and return back to the resort at a decent hour. So, we ordered pizza and enjoyed a private pool party as no one but us was there. It was so fun and great! Overall, we stayed in the sun for 13 hours on Friday. Now, that is crazy!

Sunday, we enjoyed brunch buffet before we all headed in our own directions. After saying our goodbyes, Russell and his family enjoyed some more beach time, Gary and his family took a daytrip to Myrtle Beach and mom and I hit up some shopping before she and dad took me to the airport. A great surprise to our trip was that Brady happened to be enjoying a beach weekend getaway too. It was great to see her for a hot minute. It was not too long after that, it was time for me to get to the airport. I flew from Wilmington to Sanford, where Gary and Brandon picked me up. After a quick pit-stop at their home, Derby and I made our way back home where it is just the two of us until the end of August.

Ultimately, our family vacation was great. We certainly know how to pack some fun in a short period of time. It is what the Miller's do best!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Welcome to Our Home!

In the words of Elvis Presley, "Welcome to my home. Won't you come on in." The past 6 weeks or so have been incredibly busy filled with visits from family and friends. Here is a recap of who came to Florida and what fun in the sun we had.

First, Brady, my best friend from high school, came for a 4 day visit during the middle of June. Unlike her visit from the previous year, we had great weather and took full advantage of the sunshine. Brady arrived on a Thursday evening. We enjoyed sushi and wine once she got into Bradenton. On Friday, after Christopher and I finished our day at work, the three of us ventured to Plant City to enjoy an evening outside at a winery, called Keel & Curley, listening to live music. The drinks were delicious and the music was great. We even brought our own picnic basket filled with yummy food to accompany the fruit-based wine. On Saturday, we enjoyed the morning at the beach and lunch at a local pizzeria. For dinner, Brady and I enjoyed a girls' evening and spent the night at St. Armand's Circle. We enjoyed dinner and mojitos at Columbia Restaurant and managed to find great finds at the local and unique shops. Sunday, before I took Brady to the airport, the three of us searched for a great cheeseburger for lunch. After driving around Bradenton for one hour, we finally ate lunch at a new local restaurant in downtown Bradenton. It was then time to take Brady to the airport and to prepare for another set of visitors.

The following weekend, Christopher, Derby and I traveled to Orlando as Gayle was in town with her best friend, Carol. Carol surprised her daughter, Alissa, by planning a trip to Disney World and Sea World. While they enjoyed the theme parks, we were able to enjoy the resort. The Grand Cypress Resort and Villas were wonderful; the hotel offered all-inclusive activities. We played par-3 golf, went bike riding, swimming and more. It was a great getaway even if it were only 24 hours.

Over July 4th weekend, Cayla and Chris were able to join us to celebrate the holiday weekend. We welcomed the happy couple with a shrimp boil. On Sunday, the weather was not great. We were worried we would not be able to enjoy the festivities of celebrating America. We showed Cayla and Chris the town of Bradenton, ventured to the outlets in Ellenton and prepared for a great evening in Sarasota. Like with Brady, we too ate dinner at Colombia Restaurant. It has become one of our favorite places to take our friends. After dinner, we made our way to downtown Sarasota, and enjoyed the block party before the fireworks festivities. They were a great show. Monday the rain continued so we thought it would only be best to enjoy the bad weather with a movie marathon. We went to Walmart, purchased ice cream, popcorn, frozen pizza and more junk food, and then hopped into our pajamas and laid on the sofas watching movies for the rest of the evening. Cayla and Chris left Tuesday morning only to welcome another couple later that evening.

Alicia, Christopher's best friend from high school, and her fiance, Matt, were able to enjoy south Florida for an entire week. They were able to experience Thai Wasabi, Siesta Key and the outlets in Ellenton. Over the weekend, we took them to Universal Studios so they could experience The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. While they played at Universal, Christopher and I were able to play at camp. It was nice to catch up with old friends and campers.

As July comes to a quick end, we have even more things to look forward to. Derby is getting spayed tomorrow. We are traveling to North Carolina next week for the Miller family vacation. at Wrightsville Beach. After vacation, Christopher will head to Kentucky for a rotation in a nuclear pharmacy and I will fly back to Florida to continue to work and be with Derby. It is hard to believe that we recently just celebrated our sixth month wedding anniversary. We could not be happier and more in love. Life is good!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Whirlwind Vacation

We went on our first "family" vacation about 2 weeks ago to spend some quality time with our families in North Carolina. We spent just as much time in our parents' homes as we did in the car! The 6 day trip went by so quickly; we managed to see everyone, get lots of love and hugs and introduce everyone to Derby!

We set out on our adventure Thursday, May 20. Christopher finished his last final EVER and we hit the road. Derby did great in the car (both coming, in between and going); we were a little hesitant of the way she would travel as she had been timid and nervous in previous car ride experiences. She loved to play with her toys on the floorboard and loved to take naps in her crate. She is easy to travel with, which makes Christopher and I excited for future trips! We stopped half-way to North Carolina for the evening.

Friday morning, we set out for Rocky Mount. We arrived home around lunchtime where Mom and Dad greeted us. Soon after a quick bite to eat, we set out for family visiting. We first saw Russell, Robin, Halie and Gracie. It was great to see Halie as she had been recently discharged from a scary time in the hospital with a urinary tract infection, strep infection and pneumonia. We were so glad to see a recuperating, young girl. Gracie, as always, was quite entertaining with her funny antics. After a short visit there, we, along with other family members went to the wonderful K&W Cafeteria to eat dinner for my grandmother's 85th birthday. It is where she wanted to go as they had her favorite meal for dinner, chicken livers. Although I do not care for chicken livers and sometimes the "old folk" scenery at the cafeteria, it made for an entertaining dinner with our friends (Get it, Russell?), I mean family.

Saturday, was the day to celebrate Nanny! All of our nieces and nephews came over early to play outside. We played with sidewalk chalk and on the playground, ate popsicles and prepared for Nanny's birthday party. Our family was able to enjoy the warm weather all day. We ate hamburgers and hot dogs for dinner, danced on the porch and so much more! There is never a dull moment of laughter and entertainment with the Miller family!

Sunday, soon came and it was time for us to hit the road and head to Kentucky. After lunch with my mom and dad, we endured the long 8 hour drive to Christopher's mom's house. We made it there around 9pm and were greeted by Gayle and Aunt Susan. We spent the evening on the patio drinking coffee and eating banana pudding!

Monday was a day of visiting family! We spent the morning running outside with Derby at Gary's home. Derby loved the grass and open fields! We ate lunch with Granny; she always has great stories to tell and normally a "honey do list" for Christopher. For dinner, we spent the evening with Christopher's dad's family celebrating Christopher's recent 24th birthday. We ate steaks, fresh vegetables and more. As always, Gee cooks a fabulous dinner! After dinner, we found ourselves on the patio again with Gayle and Susan enjoying coffee and conversation.

Tuesday came and the road was again calling us! We spent the morning and afternoon visiting and saying our goodbyes. Before heading out of town, we got to meet Christopher's second cousins. Hadley and Hudson, twins, were born on the day of our wedding. We were so excited to meet them as well as congratulate their parents, Street and Erica. Those babies are adorable! After dinner with Gayle, we hit the road to head to Chattanooga for the night.

Wednesday morning, we hit the road again and made the lengthy and boring trip on I-75 back to Bradenton. It was nice to be able to break up the trip in Gainesville; we stopped to see John Thomas for about 20 minutes. After saying goodbye to him, I was able to introduce Christopher to Pita Pit. We also discovered Mochi frozen yogurt. I felt like I was back on Franklin Street in college enjoying Pita Pit and The Yogurt Pump; it was AMAZING! We finally made it to our home, sweet home!

Our whirlwind trip was fun and exciting! We love being able to spend time with our families, even if it is a short amount of time. We are now back in our same routine, except Christopher is not in school! He began rotations for pharmacy school today. It is hard to believe that this time next year he will be graduating from pharmacy school and will be a Doctorate of Pharmacy! Time flies by! Hopefully, as his rotations progress, I will be able to get him on here to blog about his experiences! Summer is in full force here; temperatures reach 90 degrees and with humidity, it is close to 95-100 already! If anyone needs a vacation or getaway, we are just a phone call, e-mail or text message away! :)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

It's A...


We are proud owners of a brand new AKC miniature schnauzer! Here is the little story about how our new baby came to be a part of our family.

This past Monday Christopher spoke with our landlord in regards to staying at our condo for another year. He gladly said yes to our request. Christopher asked if we could get a puppy as it was not in our contract from the previous year. He also said yes to that only if we would send him a picture once we brought her home. With that in our heads, we knew we were on a mission. And, as my mom said when we told her we were looking for a puppy, "When you two are on a mission, you succeed quickly."

Originally, we set out to find a puppy from a rescue center or the humane society. We looked online and on Craig's List. We found a few puppies that we were interested in, but nothing that we seriously fell in love with.

Friday afternoon after work and school, we began the search for our puppy. We visited adoption centers and the human societies , but all the dogs were either too big for condo living or too old for us to truly enjoy. We also visited a pet store and fell in love with the puppies, all of them. Of course, they were too far out of our price range. We went home Friday night without a puppy, but had a clearer mind of what exactly we wanted, a schnauzer.

While I was at work Saturday morning, Christopher continued the search. He found that the sister pet store had a miniature schnauzer on sale. He told them we were very interested and would be in later that afternoon to meet her. We arrived to the store and saw her in the window and thought she was adorable. We also played with a yorkie poo and thought she was adorable too. Although they both were very cute, playful and sweet, we knew the schnauzer was for us. It was not much longer that she was in my lap driving home to our house!

We brought her home and she immediately began sniffing her surroundings and becoming acquainted with her new home. We then gave her some food and water and put her in our bathroom while we went to Target and Walmart to get some puppy supplies. We bought her toys, food and water bowls, a crate, puppy treats, a collar and a leash. The majority of everything was pink; I am not sure how much Christopher enjoys the fact that everything is pink. Oh well, she is a girl.

When we came home we began the quest for her name. We had a few in mind, but wanted to spend some time with her before we named her. She loves to fetch her toys and play tug of war. At first, she was not crazy about going outside or climbing up and down the stairs, but by the last time we took her out Saturday night, she was going up the stairs. Saturday night, she spent most of the late evening sleeping on me on the sofa. We placed her in her crate, "her home," for the night and only heard a small whimper from her for about 10-15 seconds. She did so great.

This morning we woke up to see that she had not had any accidents in her crate. We also had a name for her when we woke up...Derby! We named her Derby because we brought her home on the day of the Kentucky Derby.

She has been great all day long. Derby has not had any accidents in the house today. She loves to chase Christopher around the house. She also watches TV throughout the day. If she in near the computer, she has discovered the mouse and tries to get that as well. She is a very quiet dog as she has only barked twice in the past two days.

Here is just a bit more information about Derby. She was born January 11, 2010, the day we left for our honeymoon. She is currently 8-9 pounds and is expected to only be 10-12 pounds. We are so excited to have Derby and cannot wait for everyone to meet her!Enjoy the pictures below!