Friday, August 31, 2012

University of Michigan Survey of Consumers August 2012 (Final)

Today's final release of the Reuters/University of Michigan Survey of Consumers for August indicated an increase in consumer sentiment from the prior month with a reading of 74.3 and improvement on an annual basis with the level increasing a notable 33.15% above a year ago while one year inflation expectations rose to 3.6%.

The Index of Consumer Expectations (a component of the Conference Board's Index of Leading Economic Indicators) declined to 65.1, and the Current Economic Conditions Index rose to 88.7.

It's important to recognize that consumer sentiment has seriously eroded over the past few months with the current results remaining near levels not seen since 1980, a major indication that consumers are in the process of tightening even further on spending.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Extended Unemployment: Initial, Continued and Extended Unemployment Claims August 30 2012

Today’s jobless claims report indicated that initial unemployment claims went flat and continued unemployment claims declined slightly while seasonally adjusted initial claims remained below the closely watched 400K level.

Seasonally adjusted “initial” wen flat at 374,000 claims while seasonally adjusted “continued” claims declined by 5,000 resulting in an “insured” unemployment rate of 2.6%.

Since the middle of 2008 though, two federal government sponsored “extended” unemployment benefit programs (the “extended benefits” and “EUC 2008” from recent legislation) have been picking up claimants that have fallen off of the traditional unemployment benefits rolls.

Currently there are some 2.27 million people receiving federal “extended” unemployment benefits.

Taken together with the latest 3.16 million people that are currently counted as receiving traditional continued unemployment benefits, there are 5.44 million people on state and federal unemployment rolls.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wednesday Randoms

I know what you're thinking ...

3 days in a row of new blog posts ...? Yes that's correct ... I am totally back on track :)

First things first ...

If you have NOT watched Pretty Little Liars from last night 
I don't want to spoil it for anyone haha!


I am still in shock!

Are you kidding me? Whoa! Never saw that one coming! I am still telling myself someone made Toby put that black hoodie on at the end. Surely he can't be A .. surely he didn't take Spencer's V-card and then be a psycho path A!? I knew Nate was a crazy the whole time ... called it from the get-go. But Toby? No way. He was one of my favorites! :( So sad.
I feel so betrAyed ... hahaahha 
sorry couldn't help myself lol 

Ok let's do a little wedding update ... 
Last night we had a tasting at our caterer for the wedding and let me tell you what, I almost had to have Chris pull over on the way home so I could vom on the side of the road because I ate SOO much! The food was amazzzing! It was everything we wanted and I was so excited. We got to taste every single thing! :)

From the best southern sides you've ever tasted like sweet potato casserole with marshmellows on it, to green beans and mac n cheese ... to country ham biscuits, chicken, three salads, 4 cheese dips and veggies, ... I mean literally it was way more than I expected! We were blown away. I can not wait for everyone to get to eat all the yummies at the wedding!! :) No one will go home hungry that is for sure. 

That was my biggest fear about the food .. I have been to many a weddings where Chris and I have left at midnight and driven through the good ol' White Castle because we were starving ha. I do not want ANYONE driving through Whitey's after our wedding ;) Everyone will be full and stuffed ha. 

The best part of the tasting ... we got to take the left overs home ... take a peak at this ... 

Yea .. ha .. that is in my fridge right now!
So much for the diet this week. It was long gone yesterday!!

Next on the wedding train ... 
How do you feel about "RESTROOM TRAILORS?"

The beautiful farm we are having our wedding and reception at does not have bathrooms. GASP! I know.
However, I have found little things called restroom trailers .. and they seem to be nicer than my own bathrooms at home ha.

Check out these bad boys from PortaKleen

Don't they look nice??

I feel like they will be ok .. they use them at Derby parties for pete sake.
How do yall feel about them? Be Honest.
Oh and let me mention they are air conditioned! Which makes a huge difference. I do not like to be hot in a small area while trying to pee lol

Ok, who else knew about Very Jane and didn't share?

This sweet girl, Kristin,
Keeping up with Kristen
over at Keep up with Kristin blogged about this website and I am so glad I saw it! 
It is awesome! 
There are so many good deals ... and all the stuff is super cute! 
Go check out her post to see the good deals and cute jewelry she has already gotten! 
I can't wait to see what I can find on there ... this could be bad ha! ;) 

Well that's it for today ... I've gotta run to an appointment and then to church tonight. 
Happy Hump Day!
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Pending Home Sales: July 2012

Today, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released their Pending Home Sales Report for July showing that pending home sales improved with the seasonally adjusted national index climbing 2.4% since June while increasing 12.4% above the level seen in July 2011.

Meanwhile, the NARs chief economist Lawrence Yun points out that there has been no 15 consecutive months of annual gains suggesting that buying activity is on the mend:

"While the month-to-month movement has been uneven, more importantly we now have 15 consecutive months of year-over-year gains in contract activity ... All regions saw monthly increases in home-buying activity except for the West, which is now experiencing an acute inventory shortage,"

The following chart shows the seasonally adjusted national pending home sales index along with the percent change on a year-over-year basis as well as the percent change from the peak set in 2005 (click for larger version).

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Party Central! WoopWoop!

Hello Friends!

Thanks for all the sweet comments and emails from yesterdays post :) I am so happy to be back!!

Now I am in the process of catching up on everyone else's blogs too!!

Before we get to the recent parties I have announcements:

Today is a BIG day for two reasons ...

#1 We have a tasting for our wedding food this afternoon! 
I have been starving myself all day and am SO ready to go eat some yummy food :) Will update how that went tomorrow! I am little nervous about it, picking food for several people to like is kind of a lot of pressure?!?!

#2 Tonight is the season finale of PRETTY LITTLE LIARS .. who will betrAy them?

Who is your pick?
The last episode showed two black hoodie people .. hmmm... ??

I really am feeling like its Paige, I've never liked her ... but my friend Cory thinks differently ... see below, he is a PLL expert to by the way ha!

So if not Paige... who could it be?? We shall see tonight!!!!

Ok next order of business ... PARTY TIME!

I have pics from a few of the parties I have been able to partake in these last few months.

Let's start with a "Construction Party" for Chris's nephew Jack :)

How cute is he? His hair is adorable and cracks me up! This cake she MADE and it looked awesome!!
(PS. Yes she has painted her laundry door with chalkboard paint!)

She had the table decorated with black cloths and then yellow duct tape for the "road" effect ... the silverwear were the "tool" and then she did orange plates and yellow napkins!
With little construction toys sitting around also :) It was so cute!

He was most excited about that cake I think lol

And it's safe to say our present was a hit ... I got a text from her a few days later with a pictures of a million balls all over her house that said "Thanks for the bday present!" hahaha. At least Jack loved it though ;) That's what Aunt's and Uncles are for right? The fun toys your parents won't buy!

Next up ... "Thomas the Train" Birthday party for my Godson, Connor

I did get a few ideas from Pinterest ... and wouldn't you know it that at the party I barely took any pictures the whole time! :(

I did make some train theme things ... like these wooden signs ... SO easy, got the really thin pieces of wood from Hobby Lobby for like .99cents each! Then painted them white ...

Then painted black stencil letters on the signs, hot glued them together and then used red and black cardstock paper to make the lights for underneath!

How cute did these look hanging up at the shelter the party was at?

She did a cupcake cake and it turned out so cute, he loved it! And the cupcakes were amazing!!

How cute is that sweet boy? Love him to pieces, he had such a good party! Can't believe he is 3 years old! And he will have a baby brother in about 3 weeks ... ahh!! ... which leads me to my next party ...

Chrissy's Baby "Sprinkle"
This past weekend I had a "Sprinkle" for Chrissy at our house ... now before you ask ... let me give you my definitions:
Baby Shower: A party thrown for someone when they are about to have their FIRST child where you go crazy and celebrate with a million friends and family!
Baby Sprinkle: A party thrown for someone when they are about to have their SECOND child where you invite close friends and family, don't register, just kind of get some necessities, and celebrate :)

I had so many people ask me what the H a sprinkle was hahaha it was hysterical!
While setting up the night before I had all the decor out and Ella and Ava (the party planning assistants!) were helping put everything together, Ella said "Umm I don't think this is a sprinkle, this is more like a hurricane!" LOL I died laughing.

Chris got so sick of me saying the word "sprinkle" that about three weeks ago he banned me from saying it around him hahaha
And then Chrissy's dad had to throw in a few jokes as well ... calling and telling her next week he was having her a "drip" and the week after that they might have a "mist" lol ... nice one Steve. ;)

Anywho ... the important thing is, it turned out awesome! :)

I printed this cute free printable and put on the polka dot paper and framed it :)
(Email me if you want the free printable I can't find the link anymore but I have it saved, it only came in red though :(

I'll just be honest, the cups were my favorite thing about the entire Sprinkle!

I ordered the pdf for the stickers for the cups from this Etsy seller ... then had them printed on label paper at Kinkos for really cheap, then cut out and put on clear cups!

The straws and flags I ordered from Etsy HERE ... they came on time and were the talk of the party! Adorable!

These cute water bottle labels came in PDF from HERE then I printed on label paper also!

After food and presents we did ice cream last and I had a variety of "sprinkles" and little blue plastic ice cream cups and spoons from Walmart (yes Walmart ha!) .99cents each ... were absolutely perfect too!

The mom to be with myself and her sis!

My second favorite part of the party ... the Party Favors!!
I went to Bath and Body Works and got the little mini hand sanitizers that were blue in color ... then printed out a cute little saying and hole punched then tied on the bottles with some jute. They were presh!
And I thought of the saying all on my own ... which I was quite proud of ;)

Now everyone will be ready to hold the baby when he gets here!! ;)

I also did the Hershey Bars for the kids to all take home ... with a paint pen just colored blue the HE and they were perfect! 

I bought the book "On the Night You Were Born" and had everyone write a little note in it for Chrissy and the baby as a guest book, then gave it to her to take home and read on the night he arrives :) 

Chrissy's sister made amazing and super cute cake pops! They were awesome! Thanks Steph! 

We played my favorite Baby Shower game I've ever played!
Here are the rules:
Buy balloons and size 2 diapers for however many guests you are having ... (we had about 30 so one pack of diapers was all I needed)... 
You give everyone a balloon and a diaper and then at the same time .. everyone starts to blow up their balloon. once blown up they have to fit the diaper on the balloon without it falling off and hold it up. The first 5 people to do this move on to the next round .. 
Our top 5 are pictured above ha! :) 

The next step is to give those 5 people a marker and they have to draw their best "baby face" on the balloon.
The Mom to Be then chooses her best baby :)

This was our winner! :) So cute! And we had a second place winner as well ... their prizes...

Blue Essie Nail Polish ... some nail goodies, and some blue Extra gum :) A fun little goodie for a boy shower!

Whitney and Kim .. having fun with the game :) 
PS. These two pretty ladies are two of my bridesmaids <3

Opening her presents!

Baby Boy Cookies brought by one of Chrissy's friends :) They were so good and looked perfect!

Chrissy enjoying some sprinkled ice cream :) 

Last Picture. Love this! So cute!! :) Would be perfect to frame with a thank you card or something :)

How cute was that? It was a great day!
Love you Chrissy! Can't wait to meet baby boy #2 <3

Ok I gotta run, tasty food is calling my name!
Have a great day!
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