happily ever after: November 2008

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A Day Off

Or rather, four days off. I love it when Sweetie doesn't have to work. Yesterday, we slept in. We did absolutely NO CHORES. Even the dishes were left till today. After breakfast we went on a drive, walk around downtown with our coffees, went to lunch at our favorite italian eatery, played frisbee golf and some football, drooled over the plasma TV's at HH Gregg, had frozen custard at our favorite yummy place, came home to a dinner of leftovers and a Christmas movie. What a perfect day.

Today will be more of the same except more work. :o) Since Sweetie wanted waffles and sausage for breakfast, it meant I had to find the sink amongst all the dirty dishes. ugh. The boys brought down all the Christmas boxes from the attic and boxed up all the Thanksgiving stuff. I think they want to turn the corner into Christmas-hood. I'll work on that today.

It's really cold today, and it's suppose to start raining at some point. So the guys are outside getting as much energy out as they can. And Jay is trying to keep up with them.

Sweetie will take me on a date tonight, which we're REALLY excited about. We haven't been on a date since before he left on his last CA trip. For two people that are used to weekly date nights, that's a long time.

I realized that our little family has a tradition that we started years ago when the boys were MUCH smaller. On Thanksgiving morning we always make out a thankful list. Each person has to write down as many things they can think of that they are thankful for. Then we share. This year, we actually didn't get to it till last night. Calvin came up with 104. Dave had a little less than that. I'd list them here if I didn't think that it would get boring after a while for all my readers. Let me just say, it makes us parents proud that we have boys that know in their hearts what's important. Nevermind that Calvin listed me as number 31 and Indiana Jones as number 11. Dave had adoption as number 4 (isn't that cute?). They both had God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit as number 1. I had my mother-in-law as number 9, right after my parents. We won't say what number my parents were on Sweetie's list.

So I hope on this long weekend. You're getting just that, a long weekend. But also that you're spending time seeing what's important and what you're thankful for. And most of all, to whom you should be thankful to. I send you all warm hugs and yummy coffee in your mugs.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

From Our Family To Yours

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Naughty Mr. Turkey

Dear Family & Friends,

Okay, I went to the fridge this morning to get Mr. Turkey out to put him into the brining solution (where he's suppose to sit for 24 hours)...and he's frozen solid STILL! Argh! Ugh! Cuss Words! What do I do now???? (Mama, Call me AS SOON AS YOU GET UP!!!!!) Emergency panic going on over here.

And please don't state the obvious that perhaps I shouldn't have bought a 23 pound turkey and only allowed 2 days in the fridge to defrost.....I need constructive ideas here people!

Please let me know what to do.... I'll be waiting.


These are my options:

Take a bath with Mr. Turkey

Make a Tofu Turkey.

Go kill one of the Guinea birds in Cathi's front yard (it looks close enough to a turkey).

Get turkey lunch meat and make a nice cold cuts platter.


Cry. (oh, wait, I've already done that)


Did you know that there is a Turkey Hotline. Just for women like me. 1-800-288-8372The lady didn't even laugh. And because I had to wait on hold for 15 minutes tells me that I'm not the only dunderhead in the country that messed up. Though my husband just patted my head as he left for work, and told me I was special (and not in a good way!).

So for the rest of my day I will be giving Tommy a cold water bath in the kitchen sink. Oh the joy!

I'm so thankful.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Another One of Those Annoying Emails

Welcome to the 2008 edition of getting to know your Friends. 'press FORWARD' then change all the answers so they apply to you, and then send this to your friends including the person who sent it to you.

The theory is that you will learn a lot of little things about your friends that you might not have known!

A dear friend sent this to me, I won't mention her name to protect her, but it might be Sara. Since I'm runnin' on empty when it comes to blog posts, thought I'd bloggity it. Your welcome. I added this when I was done, I'm SO sorry for the length and it says it's the 2008 version of this. What were the other 10 versions that got sent to me this year???

1. What time did you get up this morning? 7:32am.

2. Diamonds or pearls? yes, probably diamonds.

3. What was the last film you saw? Alvin & the Chipmunks

4. What is your favorite TV show? The Office and also My Own Worst Enemy

5. What do you usually have for breakfast? plain oatmeal, sliced banana, 1 T. flax seed, skim milk. and COFFEE!

6. What is your middle name? Marie

7. What food do you dislike? rare steak, horseradish, and I can't wrap my brain around sushi yet.

8. What is your favorite CD at the moment? I compilation of new Christian songs I just made off of itunes.

9. What kind of car do you drive? Toyota Camry

10. Favorite sandwich? Avocado, alfalfa sprouts, onion, tomato, lettuce, salt & pepper, some flavorful cheese, maybe cucumbers on soft whole grain bread.

11. What characteristic do you despise? people that are grumpy in general.

12. Favorite item of clothing? Jammies & Jay's socks.

13. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go? Hawaii, but because I would then be oust by my family, I'd first stop in Southern California to see our loved ones.

14. Favorite brand of clothing? I'm not all brand conscious, but Eddie Bauer seems to fit my body like a glove. Thank you Mr. Bauer.

15. Where would you retire to? A little cabin in the woods. Or probably a little mobile home in a senior park.

16. What was your most recent memorable birthday? my 30th when I was throwing a party for Jay for all his family and friends and he went behind my back and turned it into my 30th party. Best surprise, but then he got in trouble, because it pretty much meant that I planned my own party.

17. Favorite sport to watch? Anything my boys are in.

18. Farthest place you are sending this? Since it's going on my blog, I guess around the world. If anybody in China is interested.

19. Person you expect to send it back first? you mean comment first? Sara.

20. When is your birthday? November 15

21. Are you a morning person or a night person? Morning, unless I was forced to be a night person the night before, then I'm a noon person.

22. What is your shoe size? 8, was 7 1/2 until I got pregnant...what is up with THAT???

23. Pets? 2 dogs & 1 cat

24. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share with us? We're thinking and praying about adoption. (again)

25. What did you want to be when you were little? I don't really remember, a flight attendant, a missionary (that didn't last long), Cinderella (I pretty much lived in la-la land most of my growing up years.)

26. How are you today? Excited, I love Thanksgiving.

27. What is your favorite candy? a 1 lb. box milk chocolate assorted See's candy

28. What is your favorite flower? Daisy

(remind me to smack Sara for sending me this...)

29. What is a day on the calendar you are looking forward to? January 23rd, my parents are coming for a visit. Yipee!

30. What is your favorite pastime? Besides napping? Besides watching a movie? Besides hanging with Jay? Besides reading a book? Cooking & Baking.

31. What are you listening to right now? The boys playing some sort of war upstairs.

32. What was the last thing you ate? a piece of toast, have your discovered the Pepperidge Farms Fruit and Nut breads yet? They are scrumptious!

33. Do you wish on stars? No, what kind of crazy do you think I am?

34. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? pink, so obnoxious.

35. How is the weather right now? Pretty nice, not too chilly and starting to get cloudier.

36. The first person you spoke to on the phone today? Josh, he was checking to see if people did indeed move into the house this weekend, or was he going to need to go kick some keester for us. (yes, we took the CA house off the market and decided to rent it out again, sweet family moved in Saturday)

37. Favorite soft drink? Diet Coke (what can I say? I can't help myself!)

38. Favorite restaurant? Pei Wei, (pf changs diner)...I'd go there just for their orange green ice tea, I could drink that stuff by the gallons.

39. Real hair color? Medium brown

40. What was your favorite toy as a child? you mean besides the smashed bottle caps and old bandaids I'd collect? probably little containers of all shapes and sizes (see, I've always been an organized freak) OH MY GOSH I ALMOST FORGOT, my Snoopy doll, LOVED getting outfits for it and dressing it up. Too Fun!

(are you kidding me? this dang thing is LONG!)

41. Summer or winter? Fall & Spring.

42. Hugs or kisses? Both

43. Chocolate or Vanilla? What's vanilla? Chocolate, Amen!

44. Coffee or tea? Coffee, Thank you God for Coffee.

45. Do you want your friends to e-mail you back? yep, and then they have to post it on their blog. Enjoy!

46. When was the last time you cried? Yesterday, at church. After helping in the 2 year old class and then seeing Sweetie up front helping with communion, it blesses me so much that we are serving again in a church.

47. What is under your bed? Probably the cat hiding from Daisy Maiser. My yoga mat. And my traction wedge. Some stray socks. Dryer sheets. Probably a spider or two.

48. What did you do last night? Took Dave to Target to buy our Turkey. (hee-hee, took my turkey to buy a turkey)

49. What are you afraid of? Jay or the boys getting sick.

50. Salty or sweet? Sweetilicious!

51. How many keys on your key ring? 2

52. How many years at your current job? 12 years, 11 months.

53. Favorite day of the week? Sunday.

(enough already!)

54. How many towns have you lived in? 3 (La Mesa, CA - Ramona, CA - Here, NC)

55. Do you make friends easily? yah, I think so.

56. How many people will you send this to? didn't I already answer this?

57. How many people will respond? didn't I already answer this too?

Have fun now get to work.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Feeling Thankful on a Friday

1. For my Sweetie's voice on the phone this morning, he was at my Mama & Daddy's house havin' pancakes. He comes home tomorrow and I'm excited.

Wakin' up to snow this morning, there wasn't much. When I was running around the yard taking pictures(in my big fluffy pink robe and slippers, my neighbors love me!) it was sleeting and melting.

3. It was 40 all day with a wind chill factor of at least 10 below (just kidding). This Southern California girl chills easily. So I'm thankful for my heater.

4. Big socks and Long coats. Now I know why they were invented. Our first winter here my ankles and butt were cold. Not no more.

5. Cinnamon pinecones. I just love them. I have baskets of them all over the house.

6. Thanksgiving is finally organized. Everyone knows what to bring and to come in time for the game. I just need to remember to buy the turkey. QUESTION: When do you start defrosting the turkey? (And Mama, I know I call you every year on this, you'd think I'd write it down somewhere, but then you wouldn't feel all needed and stuff.)

7. My Christmas shopping is almost done. Oh except for the boys. Nevermind.

8. I got to organize a closet today. Something that brings me great joy. It totally needed it. I forgot to take before pictures for you. I need the evidence so my friends realize that my house is not perfect, that all the mess is just crammed into drawers and hidden behind doors. Did you read that, Theresa?

9. I finally found the cure for our stinkin' well water makin' our towels smell all mildewey. A capful of Original Concentrated Pine Sol in with the wash. I know, I know, perhaps we should get one of those lovely whole house water filtration systems....but hello??? does the word recession mean anything to you????

10. I've been hearing a lot about missions trips and adoptions lately and as I sit here in my warm house, in my comfy chair and see the wind blowing and realize it's freezing outside...I want to be thankful for what I have, but more than that I want to do something for those that don't. I'm thankful for the burden that weighs on my heart and praying for what will come of it.

Hope y'all have a Thankful day and weekend.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Someone thinks I'm Uberlicious!

(Thanks LORI for giving me something to post about today, I was also feeling a little dry!) :o) (oh, and THANKS! You're too sweet!) :o)

About the award:Uber (synonym to Super) Amazing Blog Award is a blog award given to sites who:
~ inspire you
~ make you smile and laugh
~ give amazing information
~ are a great read
~ have an amazing design
~ and any other reasons you can think of that makes them uber amazing!

The rules of this award are:
* Put the logo on your blog or post.
* Nominate at least 5 blogs (can be more) that for you are Uber Amazing!
* Let them know that they have received this Uber Amazing award by commenting on their blog.
* Share the love and link to this post and to the person you received your award from.

So here are the blogs that I think are UBERLICIOUS!

My Sister's blog, because she's hilarious, makes me laugh more than anyone I know. Oh wait she doesn't have a blog, she just posts long silly comments on mine. Why doesn't she have a blog? Good question. Why do I have a blog to keep her updated on our lives and yet, I'm left in the dark over here in the East about her life. What gives Sister-Boo?

My special friend Sara's blog, because she's style conscious, always says what's on her mind, makes me laugh, and is the best friend I've ever known. Oh, wait, she doesn't have a blog either. ??? Dude, you're not allowed to be 'blog-scared' but then email me when I haven't posted in two days. Hello? And how come you get to see the latest and greatest pics of my kids but I wouldn't even recognize your kids if I ran into them, Sid and Ryan are probably wearing makeup now!

okay, seriously now....

Heidi over at Nothing But Blue Sky, because she's so incredibly honest. Her antics as a mom, SO mirror my own lovely experiences at times, it makes me laugh and miss the days when I could hold my little ones on my lap without getting a leg cramp. She's beautiful inside and out, and I prayed for her to marry Josh before I even knew who she was.

Ginny over at Empty Nest - Full Life, (this would be Lori's mom)...because she cracks me up with the old photos of her husband with a mustache, her kids nerdy clothes and makes me thankful DAILY that my parents don't blog! What WILL you do after the Chronicles of Vacations Past are over??? Please continue to dig out old photos for me to giggle at. (I just went over to her blog to get the linky and found that her daughter already nominated her, too funny, and then she nominated me, oh you sweet thang! SO I WILL stop this maddening circle and recommend some others that aren't in our blogosphere.)

Casey over at Little Baby Asher, I have yet to meet her, we have some mutual friends. I learned of her journey through them. Her heart is laid bare on her blog and it's beautiful. Her story is a sad one, but such an inspiring one. She blesses me. Go be blessed.

Big Mama, this lady is HILARIOUS! Never fails to make me laugh. And then she went on this mission trip with Compassion and made me think. Her Fashion Friday's keep me updated (which makes Sara much more happier, since she lost her job when I moved). I could be friends with this lady if I actually knew her and we lived in the same neighborhood.

Lisa, over at It's the Little Things, her blog is full of pictures (which I love) and she's a great photographer. She makes beautiful jewelry. Her little boys are too uberlicious. My best friend in High School had her hair. Her posts are short and sweet. Go, buy yourself a necklace.

Okay that's 5 with some extra fun-ness added in there.

I'm off to get my coffee and bible, it's early here, the house is quiet and the fire is callin' my name.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A High School Reunion

I'm having a bit of anxiety this morning over a couple of emails I got this morning. How do people find you? Two friends from school emailed me. It was to join facebook AND to join my High School Class Reunion webpage. EEEEEeeeeeek!

Let me just say for those that didn't know me back then, that was NOT the best time in my life. THIS is the best time in my life. I'm VERY embarrassed to remember how I was back then. Very shy, very judgemental and it all came off a whole lot snobbish. Still to this day if I run into someone from school, I get very shy and intimidated. Why is that?

So I took a bold move and filled out the questionaire and joined the group. It was fun to go back and see all the old photos and the new updated ones. When did we all get so old? Dang.

I thought it was such great timing as I've really been convicted lately of the 'fakeness' that we seem to put on ourselves. The worry that we take on, if someone is judging us or just thinks poorly of us. Why do we care? When we are all so different anyway. We are loved by the only ONE that matters, we have family and friends that love and care for us. Why would it matter if someone thinks we're not intelligent, too chubby for her jeans, not thoughtful enough or just an overall goober. What 'cool' club are we actually trying to get into.

Do you like how I started this out to be about me and then quickly changed into it being about us all? It makes me feel better to think that all of us struggle with the same thing.

Do we have idols in our life? I know I have plenty and I'm working on beating them down. Or at least putting such a huge separation between God and the 'things' that I like in this world.

One of the struggles I've had in doing this blog is that I'm being myself here. There is just NO WAY I can be fake. And at times I get scared that I've been too transparent. What if someone thinks I'm not spiritual enough, not a good enough Christian, that I'm not a good mom or wife. What if they see me for who I am and they don't like me?

Jay has been my number one encourager to continue with this blog. What a lesson it can be in teaching me to just be me all the time, with everyone.

What's funny is that my whole life I think I'm so NOT worthy, that I'm not trying to put on 'airs'. But what it really came across as was that I did think I was 'all that' or 'not nice'. And it really was the furthest thing from my heart or mind.

Wouldn't it be cool to go to a reunion, like a High School reunion and wear a sign that said. "Hi, I'm Dena, remember me? I'm sorry if I was every rude or unfriendly to you, all I really wanted was to be your friend." What would happen then?

I have some regrets in my life. None would be earth shattering in the 'world's view', but they are devastating to me. I wish I had lived my life more on purpose back then, hadn't been so intimidated by everyone, wish I had been a better friend. But then I wouldn't be me now, probably. I guess we all have our regrets and memories and choices that we've made.

I, for one, am thankful for my life. For the family I was raised in. For the God that I have had my whole life. For the things I have learned. For the many blessings that God has blessed me with along the way. I may have those regrets and they make me sad, but what motivation to change things now.

So for all my six readers :o) thanks for reading and then coming back to read some more. :o) I enjoy reading things like this about others and hope it blesses you as much as it does me.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Before & After

This part of the yard is done.

This part and lots more, still to be done.
(see that blanket of yellow-orange-ness, that would be our lawn, covered, COVERED in pine needles)

I think the boys need ice cream for lunch today. The poor things.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Pictures of My Day

I leave the room to take a phone call, and find that Calvin is NOT at the table doing school, but laying here on the couch instead. Just before I clicked he took the lego block out of his nose. Lovely.

Dave trying to look like the brown noser he is, sitting nicely AT the table, doing his work. Doesn't he look like a Beatle with that turtle neck and harido?

After, sweetly talking to the boys and loving them into submission, here's the next photo I got.

Daisy, was looking cute and poses just nicely for her portrait. Thank you. (sorry for the blurry photo, I think I'm all jittery this morning, all the pics were coming out fuzzy.)

Just so you know, this is the state of my laundry room for the past week. I DID NOT conquer it yesterday, like I said I would. But at least you can see the floor now. And then Daisy slept in here last night, I found she'd chewed the button off Jay's favorite dress shirt. Shhhh, don't tell him. I still can't find the button, where'd it go?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thankfulness Thursday

1. It's cozy inside the house today. Looks like rain is comin'. We don't have to go anywhere today and that makes me happy.

2. Sent the boys out to rake and blow leaves. They came in 12 times to complain that they rake and then the wind just blows more leaves down. I kept sending them back out and telling them to get every last one of them. They love me.

3. Two hours later, they are done (only because I took pity on them and they need to do SOME schoolwork today). I look out at the yard and it doesn't look like they raked at all. But there is a WALL of leaves leading out to the forest. Too funny!

4. Went to Sam's Club yesterday and got lots of BIG food. I love Sam's Club. I also found these little treasures. So yummy and fun.

5. Got to have a sweet date with my Sweetie last night. Walkin' the mall sippin' on my coffee. I love it when the coffee shops come out with their Christmas cups and Reindeer blend coffee. Too yummy.

6. It's my birthday in two days. I love my birthday. I pretty much want to wear a tiara on my head all day long and announce to everyone that it is MY day.

my sister and I wearing our matching tiaras at Disneyland a few years ago, I think she still wears hers.

7. I dropped out of choir last night. Yep. I love our music at our church, the worship is always stellar and so worshipful. I love to sing, seriously, LOVE to sing. But me singing in a mediocre crowd is fine and dandy. But me singing with a group of people that took music in college, can sight read the music, have a range bigger than one note, could totally sing a solo if they needed too....well, I'm just not up to par. Many assured me that it was all fine, but I was done being humiliated and trying to screech out those songs. I kept flitting from soprano to alto, not really knowing what I sing. Finally realizing that I really sounded better with the Tenor's in the back row. I WAS NOT GOING TO STAND IN THE BACK ROW WITH THE GUYS!!!! So I quit. :o)

I'm having flash backs to ballet lessons and either being thrown out of the class (I was 8) or my parents gently suggesting I should give it up. Whatever! The same with dance class in High School. The teacher was so excited about getting me, because she'd had my sister for the 2 years before. After a few months in class she asked my sister, "What's up with Dena?" As if I was adopted and of NO blood relation to her. Whatever!

But looking forward to this season of no singing stress. So I don't care, and now Sweetie and I can have a little date night on Wednesday's when the boys are at their youth activities.

this little cedar tree in our forest, I just love it, look at it's skinny little trunk and big chubby body, too cute

8. I have a renewed sense to loose weight. Really, this time for real. I'm serious, I'm gonna do it. Don't try to stop me. And seriously, don't try to tempt me. Don't be sending me any box of See's Candy, SARA!!!! I'd say I'd post a before photo, but who are we kidding. Don't you know I go through all our photos and DELETE most of the ones of me, unless, of course, I'm standing behind someone. :o)

9. My Daisy Maiser snuggled and napped with me on the couch the other night. She loves me most out of everyone in the house. She's learning to walk on the leash EVEN better. Thanks to Miss Lynne training her this morning on our walk, thanks Miss Lynne, you're the best! She's such a sweetie puppy, even if she did pee on Calvin yesterday in the car AND peed under the dining room table this morning. I still love her, and I'm thankful for the no carpets.

10. The guys are going hunting today. First time this season for the two of them. That would be Calvin and Sweetie. It was Calvin's Christmas present last year to get his gear, safety classes, license & gun. Of course, Sweetie swiftly figured out that that would mean he'd have to go as well. :o) He's a happy-happy man. I'll post pictures tomorrow of them all suited up and please join me in prayer today that they won't actually kill anything, because I like getting my meat from the grocery store, where God intended us to get it. Thank you very much.

Have a Thankful Day.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Cookin' (UPDATED)

I enjoy cooking. But I don't really like cookbooks. I have lots of them, and I will look through them, and sometimes make something precisely from a cookbook, but for the most part, I make things up. I've been doing it for a long time and my family loves it. I don't really make gross things, and they are pretty sweet about just indulging me, plus they were trained early on by my Sweetie and his Mom (their Granny, my mom-in-law), that they can eat what I make or have some dirt. Seriously, that's what we would tell them, dirt...cracks me up.

Today, take for instance, I wanted to make some sort of chicken and butternut squash thingy that would go into the crockpot. My crockpot sitting on the counter cooking my dinner while I clean the house makes me happy. And having squash during the fall is just WHAT YOU'RE SUPPOSE TO DO.

I finally realize how I come to make up pretty good recipes on my own. I first read lots of recipes from other people, whether it be from the internet or my cookbooks. Then in my mind I start making a list and formulating a plan.

Then I go to my kitchen and start throwing that plan into action. What results is probably just a compilation of different recipes that I just read about. Through reading tried & true recipes I get a feel for what foods go good together and what spices and condiments compliment them.

This is what I came up with today:


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, slightly thawed so they are really easy to cut, cube them (don't we just LOVE boneless, skinless chicken breasts?)
1 whole butternut squash, peeled and cubed (this was my muscle workout for the day)
1 onion, coarsely chopped

Turn your crockpot on low and spray with non-stick spray, then drizzle the inside with olive oil (I don't know why but it seemed like a good idea and we need some fat in our foods). Then sprinkle the sides and bottom of pot with salt & pepper (again, I'm not sure why, it just made me feel like a chef, and I love it when I feel like a chef).

Place chicken and veggies into crockpot and stir together with hands (because that's what the chefs do on TV). They should be big chunks, slightly bigger than you'd put into your mouth in front of your grandmother.

Next I poured in 1/2 c. dry white wine (I don't even know if my wine was dry, but it sounds good, doesn't it?), 1/2 c. chicken broth, and 1/2 c. water.

Then sprinkle over the top, 1 1/2 tsp. rubbed sage, 1 tsp. thyme and lots more pepper & some salt; also, a spoonful of minced garlic. These measurements are not exact as I really don't use measuring spoons, I just grab with my fingers and start sprinklin' till it feels good in my soul.

Then I add 1 handful of barley (again, I'm not sure why, except that I love barley and I add it to anything I put into the crockpot most of the time; it's fiber, it's good for you, and I like adding 'just one more thing'.)

I stir all this together (yes, with a big wooden spoon this time, otherwise my hands smell like garlic the rest of the day and that just isn't good) and then put the lid on it and let it go for about 6 - 8 hours on low.

I'll have to let you know tomorrow if it's any good. :o)

It was SCRUMPTIOUS! Except that I should have browned the chicken in a little oil in the skillet before putting it into the crockpot. But GREAT flavor!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Makin' Me Laugh

So for Sweetie's birthday last weekend, he got several cards. Some he had on his desk in the office, and these two ended up on the mantle. EVERY TIME I walk by I just laugh. We have some very sweet friends that got him a nice Christian card that said such sweet things and was a real blessing. Then there's the card my sister and her family sent him....Yep, you guessed it, the butt one. Isn't that just so nice??? It's just hilarious and the contrast of the two makes me giggle everytime I walk through the living room.


On a different note, it's been a couple of days since I've posted a picture of The Daisy Maiser (that's her new name). She's been learning to walk with me on her leash and she's doing SO good. She went on the WHOLE walk yesterday and pretty much took up residence on the couch the rest of the day. A little tuckered out I think. Isn't she just precious???


This little birdie has moved to my house. He came on a long journey from the kitchen counter in my Mama's house on the West Coast all the way to my kitchen counter. I've always loved this little bird in my Mama's house, and told her that I really should have it since the red Cardinal is our state bird and because I like it so much. Well, on Sweetie's last trip to CA, she slipped it into his suitcase. Thanks Mama. The Little Birdie is very happy. I think he misses your better cookin' but he does like teasing the cat. Question though: What should I put in his back side? (And by backside I mean 'back' not '...' well, you know.) There is a little cut-out for a tea-light, but since I'm all anti-candles, what should I put in it??? Any ideas?

I'm off to brave the Grocery Stores on a Saturday, Sweetie is swamped at his desk with work, the boys are workin' on their schoolwork. It's a little chilly outside, the leaves are fallin', and the rain seems to be clearing a little. Hope y'all are having a good Saturday whatever you might be doing.

Friday, November 7, 2008


We ended up not doing any school yesterday. But the yard got cleaned up pretty good from all the leaves and Dave perfected his car washin' skills on my Camry. The weather was just PERFECT and the trees are just so beautiful. I know it won't last, we'll have cold dreary days soon upon us, so we decided to be out in nature yesterday. Skipped school, went on a long drive to take pictures and got lunch. It was a fun day, just me and my boys.

Here's my lame attempt at capturing the beauty. Either I need photography lessons or a better camera. Either way, enjoy.

viewin' off the back deck

the friendly neighbor fence

seeing the forest through the trees

out for a country drive

Hope you're seein' a little bit of color where ever you are today.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Today is my Daddy's birthday. Isn't he handsome? I miss him. Love you, Daddy! Hope you have a great day!

He sent me this photo when Calvin was in town with them. All it said was, "See ya, we're on our way to Mexico!"....yeah, he's a funny-funny man!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

It's a Birthday Bash

It was Sweetie's birthday this past weekend. We took him away. He needed to get a break from work for a couple of days. We had the best time.

Took the boys and left early Friday. Drove up to Blowing Rock. Dave can't sleep in the car, so he was pretty much miserable and bored.

What you can't hear is the snoring and we had just wiped the drool from his chin, didn't want to embarrass the kid.

The cheapest place I could find was this place. Yeah, we scored. It was in the heart of downtown, so we could just walk everywhere. Too cute and quaint.

Lots of family time, lots of laying around, lots of "wait, get together, I wanna take your picture."

Drive to Valle Cruces, so beautiful and found an old general store, while I was shopping inside, the boys were out back doing stick races in the creek. One of Jay's favorite past times, a sport not given enough recognition, he thinks.

At first I'm taking pictures of the races, then I start to get a little distracted.

I love this man.

I love his strength and that he leads our family so well.

I also think his butt is cute.

We also had a pull-up contest at the local park. Jay was totally killin' it. Dave was no slacker either. Calvin did one. And that's all you really need to know about the contest. Really.

Drove to Grandfather Mountain. Stopped off at the Museum so Calvin could see a bear. Yeah, okay, whatever. I indulged him. There you go, boy, there's your bear. Can we go now?

Then we saw this...

Yeah, that would be the real LIVE bear. They had four of them. Right there. I'm used to the bears at the San Diego Zoo (remember Daddy?), yeah, those were at a nice safe distance. These were 'reach out and touch me' bears. The boys were just mesmerized and I now have 30 pictures of the bears in all sorts of poses.

The museum had a little zoo thing in the back. With a Golden Eagle, Cougars, Otters, Bears and of course Deer. Really, deer? I get those in my yard everyday. I don't need to take pictures of your deer. But the rest of the wildlife was VERY cool.

Mr. Eagle, he was HUGE!

The Cougars that wanted to snack on all the little kids.

Mr. Cutie Patootie Otter

And of course, Mr. Teddy Bear

Next we drove to the hiking trail that leads to the top of the mountain. Our goal for this weekend was to do as much walking and HIKING as we could. The hike was 1/2 a mile. Wow, we really set our sights high, don't we. At the top, there was the swinging bridge. I LOVED it, Dave was fine with it, Jay was VERY quiet, and Calvin was crying like a little girl. (just kidding, he's too old to cry, but there were some very girlie squeals comin' from him)

On the last day we went out to the Blowing Rock. I was trying to tell the boys the legend about it, and they interrupted me, and told ME the story, as it was taught to them last year in their history book. Don't tell me they aren't learning anything in school!

We missed the peak of the fall colors by about 2 weeks we think, but when we went out to the blowing rock, it was GORGEOUS. The pictures don't even do it justice. It was WAY more vibrant.

Yes, this is my guy. Hanging off the Blowing Rock. He's trying to re-create a pose he did, way back when he was young. But the cliff back then was WAY up high and MUCH scarrier. If I knew how to use our scanner I'd show you. But he wanted me to show you that after 25 years, he's still got it! :o)

It was one of those perfect trips. Where when I was driving down the mountain to come home, I was just in awe. Not just of the amazing beauty that God put on this earth. But for blessing us with such a special weekend together, we are so very thankful.

Back home, Sweetie got his Birthday Cake. Too yummy. Red Velvet Cake with butter cream frosting drizzled over the top.

Lighting the bonfire. 45, it's a good year.