Friday, February 29, 2008

Strange Indeed

Ok, so I'm standing in line at the grocery store a couple of nights ago, and I see this:Filth at its finest, right? I mean, does anyone believe this stuff?
Anyway, I have a reason for this post. I see this beautiful little girl on the cover, Suri Cruise. Now mind you, Tom and Katie do strike me as somewhat odd. I say that as an observer, as I have obviously never hob-nobbed (sp?) with the Cruises. I try not to believe everything I read or hear on the news, so I won't judge what these reports say goes on behind closed doors. My feelings of strangeness come from their religion of choice...Scientology I saw a special on Scientology one night where they interviewed former followers of the religion...VERY WEIRD. Ok, back to the cover and why I'm posting about it...
The reason this particular cover grabbed my attention was because of the beautiful little girl and the huge wording across the page: "SURI'S STRANGE WORLD!" At that point, I'm expecting to see something like "Her parents make her eat tadpoles." Or "Suri sleeps with aliens." Or maybe even "Suri is the new queen of Scientology." I don't know, I just didn't expect to see what I saw. They described Suri's world as "strange" because (gasp) "No TV or Happy meals!" Can you believe that?! I mean, what kind of parent deprives their child of artery-clogging foods like happy meals filled with french fries and chicken nuggets?! And then I went on to read "No medicines, just herbs!" What?! They don't overload their toddler with useless, yet dangerous cough medicines and Tylenol?! Seriously...what is wrong with those parents?! What is this world coming to when parents choose natural remedies rather than dangerous drugs and chemicals???
Star describes those situations as "strange". If I were the Cruises, I would be proud to be called strange if the judgments were based on those two categories. Strange? In today's world it is strange to be healthy. Strange indeed.

Boys are...well...boys

I absolutely love being the mom of boys. I love that I'm the only "girl" in the house. I love that little boys love their mommies. I love the sports, the tackling, the easiness that comes with boys (don't get me wrong, I know there are girls who do all these things too. I just know if I had a girl, she would probably be a girly-girl). I love that boys don't get caught up in the drama that we girls somehow manage to get in to. I just love my boys. I would love to have another little boy one day (of course, if I had a little girl, I would absolutely love her too!).
That being said, having boys definitely keeps me on my toes. Each day is a new adventure, and I never know what to expect. For instance, today as I was folding clothes in my room, I looked out to see Tristan standing on the toilet seat in our half bath looking at himself in the mirror. I asked him what he was doing, and he told me he was watching himself blow bubbles...spit bubbles. Nice, right?
In the office, we often have little kids come in. Tristan, loving that another child is there to visit, tries his best to engage some play with them. Nearly every time, he does the same thing. He runs beside them and starts growling. Then he runs off. Then he comes back and does it again. It's hilarious to watch because when he does it to another little boy, they often join in, and before I know it, I have two little dinosaurs running around the office. When he does it to little girls, he often gets the "Ugh" look. You know the look...What is he doing? What's wrong with him? Poor kid doesn't have a clue. I've tried to explain to him that some little girls don't play that way and don't understand that he is releasing his inner-dinosaur. It's so funny to watch.
I must say, though, that the most difficult thing about having boys is the pottying. Boys are GROSS! I remember a friend from college telling me that her boyfriend's mother said that she didn't like having rugs in her bathroom because the boys (even the dad) would pee on them or pee would splatter on them in the middle of the night when they went to the bathroom (I guess they had poor aim). I remember thinking...That's disgusting! Now I've witnessed it firsthand.
Tristan has never been one who enjoys sitting down to pee. He's always wanted to stand up...just like daddy. At first, I didn't notice a problem. DISCLAIMER: If you get grossed out, now would be a good time to stop reading! Then I started noticing pee puddles at the bottom of the toilets (you know, down at the base). I was constantly constantly cleaning the toilets. Next, I had a friend tell me her son was spraying the shower curtain when he peed. I thought, Well, Tristan doesn't do that. Thank goodness! lately I've noticed the yellowing of his shower curtain. Say it with me....GROSS!!! He has gotten pee on his shower curtain, the rug, the baseboards. I mean, is he not watching at all?! I told Channing they need to have a tutoring lesson on how to properly handle the hose (I know that sounds bad, but it seems like he's spraying everything; like he's trying to put out a fire or something). It's awful (I have now successfully managed to keep anyone from ever wanting to visit my home!).
Yep, life with boys is just a regular gross-fest. I love it, though. I don't know what I ever did without my little mess-makers.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Interesting Messages

One of the many things I've learned while working with the public is that there are TONS of different ways that people choose to express themselves on their answering machines. Prior to working in Channing's office, I had no idea there were so many unique messages or methods to leaving messages.

First off, there are your normal, run-of-the mill messages, "Hi, you've reached the 'Jones', we can't come to the phone right now, but leave us a message, and we'll call you back."

Then, there are the people that don't record a message at all. They take advantage of the automated message that their machine or phone company has pre-set, "" (Easy, yet impersonal)

Next, you have those that think it's adorable to have their kids record the message. "Hi, you've weached the Jones. Weave us a message at the beep. (mom in the background: Say thank you) Tank you vewy much." (Cute, but kind of cheesy. Much like my boys who are three years apart wearing their identical outfits around town. We moms love our kiddos!).

Then you have those who leave you with a Bible verse. "I'm sorry we can't come to the phone right now. Please leave us a message. 'May the Lord smile on you' Numbers 6:25."

Those are kind of run-of-the mill. I kind of expect those messages. But sometimes, I am thrown for a loop at some of the machines I get. I love getting the unusual messages because it provides me with some extra entertainment. Let me give you some examples.

I have reached a couple of machines in the four years I've worked here, where the person who recored the message reads a whole chapter from the Bible. I'm serious...a whole chapter. Then, they asked you to leave a message. Those messages were very interesting and definitely educational (I mean, how can you argue with a message from the Bible?).

When calling patients, I often encounter the cell phones that have songs programmed to play while the caller waits for an answer or an answering machine. I have a friend whose phone plays "What a Wonderful World" while you wait for her to answer. That's nice, relaxing and reminds you that we live in a wonderful world. However, everyone doesn't choose nice, relaxing music. Sometimes I get songs about "dancing at the clubs" and "taking home hos" (um, not sure about that spelling. Should I spell it like a garden instrument?). There are times that I get some nice praise music, sometimes I get heavy metal. I've heard all kinds. Very interesting...

I get machines that have people who sound like someone stole their dog. They sound like having to record a message on their machine is the most awful and pain-staking thing they've ever had to do.

I also get the messages where the person tries to trick you. Oh yeah...I love those.

Message: Hey!
Me: Hi, this is Annie...
Message: How's it goin'?
Me: Good. I'm calling to...
Message: Gotcha! Ha! I'm not home right now. Leave me a message.

Those always get me. Yeah, it was funny to get those when I was in high school. Now the humor is kind of lost on me (I'm so un-fun!).

Occasionally I'll get a message that sounds like there's a dance party going on the in the back. The music's blasting, the person's talking to the caller and to friends in the background.

I like getting the machines where you can tell the person isn't sure when to start, so there's a pause. Then they abruptly start talking but aren't sure what they want to say, so they kind of fumble through the message. Then I guess they figure...What the hay. I'll leave it.

I think my favorite machines or machine messages I get, though, are the ones where the people sing the message. It cracks me up! I never expect it. I got one of those messages last night.
Let me give you the scenario. So I'm sitting on the phone, listening to it ring. All of a sudden, I hear a woman singing...

How are yooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooou??????????????

I am gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooood.
Leave me a messaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaage."

There was more to it, but I can't remember it exactly. It was HILARIOUS, though!!! I told Channing he would have to call this woman just so he could hear her message. She came in the office today, and I told her how much I enjoyed it and that we may be calling her just to listen to her message (she had a great voice, btw). It was just so unusual and unexpectedly hilarious!

Honestly, I never knew there were so many ways to record a message. I guess if I ever get bored with my totally bland message, I can sing it, rap it, or read a book on it. So if you call me and get my machine, and you hear me reading my favorite book, you'll know what's going on!
Have you heard any memorable machine messages?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008 the the middle of the day?

Long before I had kids of my own, I would see "those" parents at the grocery stores and Wal-Mart. I'm sure you know the parents I'm talking about: the parents whose kids had crusted food on their faces, spit up on their footed pajamas, and their hair was in a mess all over their heads. I distinctly remember looking at some of those parents with disgust thinking...Why don't they comb their kids' hair? Why are their babies in pajamas at 3:00 in the afternoon? Can't they wipe their kids' faces before they take them out in public? What is wrong with parents today?! Do they just not care?!

Cut to me with two kids. Ohhhhhh! Now I get it!
The thing I didn't realize, when I was judging all these parents with my vast amount of observational expertise, was that they may have wiped their kids' faces before they went in the store, but they may have given them something else to eat to keep them from crying. Thus, the food spread across the kids' cheeks. What I didn't realize was that some of those babies were in footed pajamas in the middle of the day because it was freezing outside, and that was the only way those parents could keep something on their kiddos' feet that couldn't be pulled off by tiny fingers. What I didn't realize, when I was sizing up those parents whose kids had bird-nest hair, was that their kids may have had perfectly coifed hair but fell asleep in the carseat on the way to the store, causing complete bedhead when removed from the car. I also didn't realize that some kids like to play "ghost" and "superhero" and put blankets and towels all over their heads and destroy the time those moms spent fixing their hair five minutes prior. Back then, I had no idea that the babies at the stores wearing only diapers probably just had a diaper explosion all over their clothes and their parents forgot to slip an extra outfit in. Who knew they weren't just trying to save money?!

I certainly had no idea. I just assumed I knew what was going on. Oh how I've been humbled since I've had two boys of my own. I know I've received those looks from the public and the judgments that go with them. It's in those moments that I'm reminded of all those I judged. A lot of people like to say that the Bible says not to judge. That's innacurate. Actually, according to Matthew 7:2, For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. You can actually judge all you want, just be prepared to have it dished back out to you. That is something I didn't realize back then, but it came back to me...just like a boomerang. It took a while, but it did come. Now, I'll think a little more before I pass judgment. :)

I hope the next time you see a child with dried boogies on his nose (gross, I know!), you'll give that mom the benefit of the doubt. I hope you'll assume she wiped his face five minutes prior and has been wiping his face all day. That may not be the case, but let's all assume it is. I know for me, I've wiped Asher's face all day long today, and every time I look at him, he's got stuff stuck to his face. I mean, where does this stuff keep coming from, and how does it dry so fast?!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Free E-Book

Lylah is having a special on some of the e-books she has written. You can click here to see all the books she has written. I chose "Becoming an On-Purpose Woman" and am so excited to get started! I can't wait to see what is in store for me. I've already received the e-book via email, so now I want to get home and get started. :)

To get your free e-book:
1. Visit here to see the list of books and decide which one you want.

2. Then email Lylah at with your choice.

3. Leave a comment here telling me which one you chose and why!

Hurry, the deadline is Tuesday at 7pm pst

I Still Love Huckabee

I was so excited to see Mike Huckabee on SNL this past weekend. I thought he was hilarious! I love a guy who can poke fun at himself. If you missed it, check it out:

I wish he stood a chance of being our republican nominee. Who knows, maybe he'll end up VP or President in the next four years.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Have You Educated Yourself?

I know a lot of people think Channing and I are crazy for choosing not to vaccinate our boys, but when I see articles like this, it completely reinforces the passion we have for keeping those needles away from our boys.
Check out this article on the Hepatitis B vaccine (which is one vaccine that makes absolutely NO sense to me. It never has).

We would never tell someone not to vaccinate their children; however, we strongly encourage you to do your own research first. Please don't make your choices based on what the crowd is doing or based on what someone with "Dr." in front of their name tells you to do. You are the deciding factor for your child. I challenge you to do some research before you give your baby another shot. If you do your own research first, you can feel confident in the decision you've made.

For instance, can you tell yourself or anyone else exactly why you vaccinate? Do you know what is in the vaccine that is being injected into your child's body? Do you know the last outbreak that occurred for the disease or sickness that you are vaccinating against? Have you done the research about the living conditions that people were experiencing when those outbreaks occurred? Do you know how many children have been harmed by the vaccines that your child is receiving? Do you know about the government fund that is set up for families of those children who are harmed by the vaccines? Can you answer the question 'Who benefits the most by having your child vaccinated?'. Would your doctor sign a document promising the safety of the shots they will administer to your child?

If you can't answer those questions, you have work to do. Educate yourself. If you still decide to vaccinate, good for you. You've done more than most Americans simply by looking into the drugs before they're administered. You can be proud of yourself. Don't leave this important decision up to anyone else. Doctors are human beings just like you and me. They don't formulate these vaccines. In a lot of cases, they don't even study them. They are educated by drug reps, who are educated by drug companies, who are making MILLIONS of dollars.

This post was hard for me to write. I don't want to step on any toes or offend anyone. I have so many people I love who give their kids medication for everything under the sun. I have friends I love who work for drug companies. I love you guys so much and do not judge you for the decisions you make. I just feel the call to tell everyone about the flip side as well. I have to remind myself that if no one ever steps on any toes, things will go unaccomplished. Think if Jesus had come to this world and had not offended anyone. What if He had just gone with the crowd? I think things would look a whole lot differently now. Of course, please don't confuse this. I am, in no way, comparing my post to Jesus and to the amazing work He did. I just want parents to educate themselves before they make decisions regarding their children's healthcare. They can't make the decision for themselves. They depend solely on you. (Ok, I know this last paragraph is all over the place and would get an "F" if it were for a grade in English. I'm just rushed and caught up in my passion. Forgive my poor writing!).

In closing, I encourage you to do some research. As Proverbs 14:12 says, There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Asher Art

I love, love, love this storyboard! It was done for me by Amanda Traywick at Precious Memories back in December. She captured my little Asher and his personality perfectly!

She also did my in-law's Christmas cards this year. My mother-in-law wanted a picture of the three grandkids together, and Amanda did a great job. The card turned out beautiful! The fact that she got a beautiful picture out of the three kids was admirable considering each child has his/her own agenda.

Back to the storyboard...I just think storyboards are the coolest things! Prior to seeing one Amanda had done for our niece, I had never seen or heard of them. So, needless to say, when I saw my sweet Asher's pictures, I had to have my very own (now my mom wants one too). They're just so unique! I was able to pick the pictures and whatever I wanted to have the board say. I chose the verse where Asher's name came from. That made the board extra special.

Poor Tristan, when I brought Asher's home, he asked me where his was. Sadly, I didn't have one made of Tristan because he only had one, maybe two good pictures in the bunch (not because of Amanda but because my son totally changes when a camera comes out. He changes from the vibrant, happy child he is to a frowning, hiding, shy person. It completely stresses me out. I just don't know how to fix it/him when it comes to having pictures done. I can't even get him to smile or be happy for me when I take his picture. Now, I will say that some people who saw Tristan's pictures really liked them, but knowing him as well as I do, I know that he wasn't being himself. It's just tough to capture his personality on film. Grethel of Grethel Van Epps Photography is probably the person who has come the closest. She actually caught some great moments of him on film. Thanks, Grethel!). Anyway, I hope to try again with Tristan so that he can have a beautiful storyboard, just like Asher.

I just sit in awe and amazement at the different artistic giftings that people have. People think of things that would never even cross my mind. I must say, I wish I had a little of that. Since I don't, I'll just marvel at the work of those of you who do. You keep the world beautiful (with God's help, of course).
Thanks, Amanda and your wonderful staff, for a beautiful piece of art!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

I'm a 'Lost' Addict

I am a HUGE fan of the show Lost. It is, by far, my most favorite show. I have looked forward to this season for months, and it's finally here. There have been three episodes (I think that's right), and so far, I have not been disappointed. I am totally hooked and am dying to find out exactly what is going on.

I was so proud of myself after tonight's episode because I actually had a couple of correct predictions (which rarely happens for me on that show). I told Channing at the middle of the show that Kate has Claire's son, Aaron, and lo and the end of the show, she hugged him and called him Aaron. Yea, me! I also predicted that the person on the helicopter that took Sayid and Desmond is Ben's spy. I'm not sure of the outcome on that one just yet, but based on the previews, I think I'm right. Woo hoo!

For those of you who don't watch Lost, I have probably completely lost you on this post. SORRY! If you are a fellow Lostie, you totally get where I'm coming from. The show is GRRRREAT!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

More About the Peroxide

You may have read my post a couple of days ago about using peroxide to prevent or to reduce cold symptoms. At the time, I didn't have the "why" behind it, but now I do. Check out this link to read up on it. I'm telling you, when I did it last week, it really worked!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A Bittersweet Milestone

Today, my baby turned 10 months old. I honestly do not know where the time has gone. It seems like I just had him, and now he's two months away from being a year old! It absolutely breaks my heart. I just wish I could freeze time. I love each stage, I just think they go by too quickly.
To capture this special day, I took lots of pictures. Here are a few:
Here he is watching the parking lot at work. Maybe that means he's going to be a people-watcher like his mommy.You can't see his face in this one, but I still think it's super sweet.
I LOVE this baby!!!
My hearts melts for this little brown-eyed boy!
And what else should a boy do to celebrate 10 great months of living? Why...get an adjustment of course! When his spine's in line, his health's fine! ;DThe past 10 months have flown by, but Asher, you are my sweet little pumpkin pie. I never could have imagined just how much I would love you! You are such a blessing. that you're 10 months old, I can go to the gym without making an appointment! You're a big boy now and can go into the nursery without mommy having to call two days ahead! Yippee!!!
I LOVE YOU, LOVE YOU, LOVE YOU little man!!! Happy 10 months!

The Servant Life

A couple of months ago (maybe longer, I can't remember), I did a personality profile at church. I posted about my findings. Anyway, one of the things I learned about myself is that I have a fear of being taken advantage of; it was listed as part of my personality. After reading that, I realized it is completely true. I often have that nagging fear in the back of my head and it drives me nuts. I don't like for anyone to be taken advantage of, and that includes myself. When someone I care about is taken advantage of, I stand up for them. When I feel taken advantage of, my natural instinct is to pull away from the person or situation that I feel is taking advantage. Well, over the past several days, I have been reading Jesus' teachings in Matthew out of The Message Translation (can I just say, I love The Message Translation?!). Every day, I have read the same few chapters because I am really trying to soak them into my head and heart. During these readings, one verse just keeps jumping out at me. It's found in the fifth chapter:

And if someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life.

For some of you, this is probably a no-brainer. However, for me, it's HUGE. This is something that requires a lot of focus and determination for me. I have to choose not to take offense when taken advantage of. I have to choose to use those situations as times of servanthood. I don't know if any of you out there are like me, but if you are, you know what I'm saying. It's tough. It is part of my personality, but it is not set in stone. Today, I am going to choose to work on this area of myself. I am choosing to turn this area over to God, ask for His help, and I am going to do my part as well. I'm sure I won't always get it right, but I intend to grow in this area.
Do you have an area in your personality or ways that needs work? If not, as my pastor would say, that may be your problem! Ha! I'm kidding~kinda! =D

Monday, February 18, 2008

What a Fun Party!

On Saturday, we had the pleasure of attending a very special party. We celebrated JB's third birthday at the park and with a super fun game of football. JB's mom had the great idea of having an SEC football party, and we all wore our favorite teams' attire. Since Tristan's Bama jersey is peeling off (and I wanted some cute pictures), we decided to be Georgia fans/football players.
Before the game got started, the kids enjoyed some yummy cupcakes and JB opened presents.
Ash wasn't quite big enough to play this time, so he hung back with the good lookin' ladies. Here he is with Mrs. Leisha.Leisha's handsome men were rockin' the Bama gear. ROLL TIDE!!!GAME TIME!!! The teams were getting ready in the huddle. We have Georgia, Alabama, LSU, and Auburn represented.What is a game without cheerleaders? Aren't they precious?! I think they are, even though they're both wearing horrible colors! ;D
LSU was off to a good lead...
but Georgia caught up and got hands on his back (the boys played touch football, rather than tackle. We did have a couple of tackles, though. Boys will be boys).Back to the huddle.
It's Georgia's turn with the ball. GO DAWGS!!! That's one good looking quarterback!I copied this picture off of morningsong's blog. This is Tristan hangin' out after the game. The party was so much fun, and we couldn't have had better weather. It was perfect!!!
After the party, we met Channing for lunch at Willy T's (one of Channing's weaknesses. He loves the place but tries not to eat it much). Here is Asher giving his daddy a recap of the game. That's right, Georgia's #1!

And finally, here are my three favorite men in the whole wide world. I love these guys so so much!All in all, Saturday was a great day filled with fun. Thanks, morningsong, for a great party, and thanks, JB, for having a birthday and giving us a reason to celebrate!

Valentine Cookies

Last week was a busy week, so when it finally came time to make Valentine cookies, Tristan was thrilled! Never mind the fact that Valentine's Day was actually on Thursday, and we didn't make the cookies until Friday. To Tristan, every day has been Valentine's Day lately. He was just glad to finally make them.
I baked the cookies, and Tristan was in charge of the decorating. The first step was the frosting...
Next step, and his favorite, was the sprinkles. There were several sprinkles to choose from, but his favorite were the clear sprinkles. He's such a boy!
Here are the cookies after all his hard work.
Here he is holding his masterpiece!Then came time for the most fun part...the eating!!!Even Asher got the chance to sample the goods. With Tristan, it would have been unheard of for him to come anywhere near anything with sugar in it. We've been a lot more laid back the second time around. Of course, we didn't let him eat much, just a couple of tiny bites. We still want him to be healthy. He enjoyed what he was able to sample.Oh, and I'm sure you noticed the jammies. When we are able to stay at home for a full day, the jammies stay on, and the hair stays a mess. Oh how wonderful is the home life!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

I Don't Know Why It Works...

but it does. I vaguely remember reading last year that, on the onset of a cold, you should put a couple of drops of peroxide in each ear. By doing this, it will help prevent and/or make the duration of your cold much shorter. I know it sounds crazy, but I read it again this week on (GREAT, GREAT website. Check it out). As you probably know, if you've read my blog or if you know me personally, my family and I avoid medication when and if possible. I am proud to say that neither of my boys have ever had any medicine (ok, Tristan has had Orajel and Neosporin; however, if you've read my blog, you already know that). Anyway, it is the belief of my husband and me that medication is for emergency purposes and, for some people, to get "over the hump". We believe medicine is grossly overused and is the reason for so many health problems today. We don't think God ever intended for us to use medicine as a way of life, as a crutch for every day living and with every ailment that comes our way. Ok, sorry to go off on that tangent. It's just kind of a passion of ours. Back to the peroxide...
So I read about the peroxide in the ear again this year and decided to try it. On Thursday, I started getting the sniffles, and with the crazy bouts of flu this year (Aren't you glad you got that flu vaccine?! Ha!), I thought I would try the peroxide (every little bit helps, right?). I did a few drops in each ear on Friday, and guess what? The sniffles are gone! Seriously...I don't have a clue why it works. It just does!
Next time you or your kids start getting a cold, drop some peroxide in the ears and see if it works for you. Studies show cough medicine doesn't work. So why not try something natural? It couldn't hurt.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Another Great Product

Luke, this is for you!
I found another wonderful product...
This stuff tastes GREAT! I tried it at Sams yesterday and liked it so much, I bought some. Not only does it taste great, but it has a whole serving of fruit and serving of vegetables in it. I got the blueberry pomegranate. Try it. I don't think you'll be disappointed!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Tristan's Valentines

I love holidays during the school year because Tristan always comes home with lots of sweet things he has been making at school. As you can see in the picture above, today was no exception. Not only did he come home with a box full of valentines, but he also came with a gift for Channing and me. How exciting! As soon as we walked into the office, he was ready to tear into his valentines! Of course, I didn't make it easy on him. I insisted on taking lots of pictures first!
Here is the heart made from his sweet handprints. It sealed our present.
Here is the super sweet Valentine's card for Channing and me.The inside...
I LOVED this! His teacher asked him what he loves about Channing and me (or ways that his mommy and daddy show him love, can show him love...I'm not sure which), and she wrote his answers on the numbers. #1 says "Read me stories", #2 says "Brush my teeth", #3 says "Give me hugs and kisses", #4 "Make dinner for me" and #5 says "Play football with me".Here are some roses he made.And here is a "surprise" box he painted and decorated (he called it a "surprise" box because it has a hidden surprise inside.
SURPRISE (Rachael, you know how much I love Hershey kisses)!!!My sweet sweet boy! I LOVE YOU, TRISTAN!!! You are such a wonderful blessing! I love to watch you smile. I love to watch you sleep. I love to watch you play. I wish I could cuddle you forever. You're just growing up too fast!!! Happy Valentine's Day everyone!!!


From our family to yours, we hope your Valentine's Day is EXTRA special!!!
This is Asher's very first Valentine's Day!!! I love you little man! I hope your first Valentine's Day delights your heart! You and your brother are such wonderful blessings to your daddy and me. We love you both with every ounce of our hearts!!!
Just another quick shot of my baby! I want to post more of Tristan (especially since it's impossible to get a good shot of the two boys together), but he's at school celebrating Valentine's Day with his friends. He could hardly wait to get there. He was so excited about taking Valentines for all his classmates and about the V Day party. I'm sure he'll be bouncing off the walls when we pick him up.
And to all of you, give your loved ones an extra special hug and kiss today. Take time to remember your many blessings and how much your loved ones mean to you. AND make sure you take time to reflect on God's love for you. There is no greater love.
In Isaiah 44:2, God says, "I am your Creator. You were in My care before you were born." He goes on to say in 46:3-4, "I have carried you since you were born; I have taken care of you from your birth. Even when you are old, I will be the same. Even when your hair has turned gray, I will take care of you. I made you and will take care of you." And according to 1 Corinthians 2:9, No mere man has ever seen, heard or even imagined what wonderful things God has ready for those who love the Lord.
I hope you feel God's love today. Make sure you don't forget to love on Him today too!

Wet Kisses

Last weekend, we were in Ozark visiting NaNa, PaPa, and Aunt Tay (aka Tori). While there, someone took a special liking to Asher...This is Abby, my parents' and sister's dog. The whole time we were there, she was dying to get a hold of Asher. When she saw an opening, she seized the opportunity. Asher loved playing with her, but he didn't particularly like the French kisses!Gross, right? I assure you, I didn't just stand there and let the dog lick my innocent little baby on the mouth. When I was taking the picture, she wasn't doing that. It happened as my camera clicked. She's quick with the tongue!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Great Quote for the Day

I found this great quote today and thought I would share:

My mother drew a distinction between achievement and success. She said that achievement is the knowledge that you have studied and worked hard and done the best that is in you. Success is being praised by others, and that's nice, too, but not as important or satisfying. Always aim for achievement and forget about success.
~Helen Hayes

Beautiful Day...Even Though It's CCCCCOLD!

I am lovin' this day! We have snow flurries, and I am currently delighting in the wisps of snow being blown across the parking lot. It's so beautiful!!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Love This Stuff!

I have to share with you my new favorite product.
These things are FANTASTIC! I have used Cascade Complete dishwasher detergent for the past few years, and recently I was visiting a friend who uses Electrasol tabs. I noticed she was sticking her dishes into her dishwasher without getting every little speck of food off. I was amazed and complimented her on having such a great dishwasher that would get all the food off. She then told me it's not the dishwasher, it's the Electrasol tabs. So, I thought I would give them a try. The verdict...they are AMAZING! I have always had to get every single thing off my dishes before putting them in the dishwasher, but I no longer have to. They get my dishes SO clean! I researched them online (as I do so many things I use) and found that they are the consumers #1 pick for dishwasher detergent. I have to say, I whole-heartedly agree. If you're looking for a great detergent, you can't go wrong with Electrasol.
Electrasol, you can put my check in the mail now. ;D

Mom's Night Out

Last night was our monthly Mom's Night Out. I can't tell you how nice it was to get away from work, the kids, and the mess of my home to hang out with other women who can relate to my life. And as an added bonus, we had some delicious Dairy Queen ice cream favorite! Thanks for a great night, ladies!!!

Asher Update

As of today, Asher is still sleeping like a champ! Praise the Lord for a full night's rest every night!!! Every night (morning, technically), he stirs around 1 am, but instead of insisting on a nightcap, he goes back to sleep. He doesn't cry out, he just goes back to sleep. I am amazed. Tristan was a terrible sleeper, so to have one that seems to finally enjoy it has me kind of elated. Now if I could just make myself go to bed earlier, I would be in great shape!

Monday, February 11, 2008

A Season for Everything

The past few weeks have been kind of hard for me. I'm really not sure why. For some reason, I have allowed myself to get down, to see the negative side of most things, and to feel sorry for myself. It doesn't make much sense. I am blessed beyond measure. I have a wonderful family...a husband who loves God, me and our boys, two beautiful boys who are healthy and happy and lots of fun to be around. I have fantastic friends, I'm healthy, I have a roof over my head, and food in my tummy (probably too much!). I have a God who loves me despite my many faults. I mean, the list goes on. I just had a birthday and have celebrated it with a few different groups of very special people. Yet, I still don't feel like myself. We have a lot going on with work, now that I'm back in the office...with both boys. I'm sure that, combined with not getting enough sleep, is wearing me out. It makes the words of Shawn McDonald's song "Free" really come to life for me:

I feel like the weight of the world is all - crashing down on me
And some how I just don’t believe this how - it is suppose to be
And all this expectation on - the way I’m suppose to live
Becomes my minds distraction - with nothing left to give

You said your burden is light and your load - is no more
You said your ways are right and in you I would soar

I want to be free - free to dance and free to sing
Free to live and love and free
Oh, free to be me

I feel like my heart is being beat - down into the ground
In you I’m longing for some peace - to be found
I know the heaviness that’s - making me cold
Is stealing my youthful soul and - making me old

You said your burden is light and your load - is no more
You said your ways are right and in you I would soar

I want to be free - free to dance and free to sing
Free to live and love and free
Oh, free to be me

I know this is just a season for me. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, "Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." This is what I intend to do.
I know tomorrow will be a better day. :) However, while I am still in today's day, I will rejoice! "Today is the day the Lord has made, and I will rejoice and be glad in it." I am so thankful for every moment I'm given. I'm doing my best not to take any single day for granted. Some days, I am able to do better than others.
I am normally a happy person, so ignore this little bump in the road. Sunny days are ahead!
Jesus warned us that in this world we would have troubles. However, He also reassures us with His victory from the grave. He has overcome the world!!!
Ok, enough rambling. I'm going to bed! Maybe if I went to bed a little earlier every night, I would feel a little more cheery every day. You think? ;D

What a Sting!

I guess I always knew this day was coming; however, I definitely under-estimated the sting it would bring. Today Tristan told me he didn't love me. I had just relieved him from timeout, told him that we would have a "talk" when we got home, and sent him to clean up the Cheerios he had stomped into the carpet. That's when he dropped the bomb..."Mommy...I don't love you." My heart stopped. It hurt so much. I know, I know...he's three years old, and he's just upset because he got in trouble. Nevertheless, it hurt so much. I think I handled it well. I talked to him about the importance of his words and how they hurt. I told him that I love him no matter what and that I know he still loves me. Then, I told him to finish picking up his Cheerios. A couple of minutes later, he said, "Mommy, I love you. I'm sorry I said I didn't." My heart still hurts, I still want to cry, but I was glad to hear those words from him. I never doubted his love, but the words cut like a knife.
It makes me think of how our Heavenly Father must feel to hear His children say they don't love Him; they don't believe in Him. I cannot imagine how it must grieve Him to be ignored by those He loves; to be picked last in so many people's lives. Yet, despite all these things...He still loves all of us. He is always there waiting for us. My heart hurts, but oh how His heart must grieve!
I pray that you know God's love. He is always there, always loving matter where you have been or what you you have done. He loves you in spite of your faults. Just as a mother loves her child, He loves you...actually WAY more. What a blessing. What a miracle! He doesn't treat us as our sin deserves. Amazing.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

WE'RE #1, BABY!!!

It's official...the University of Alabama has the #1 recruiting class for 2008 (according to and!!! Not only that, but we've signed three five-star recruits, one of whom is none other than JULIO JONES!!! Way to go, Bama!!! ROLLLLLLLLLLLL TIDE ROLL!!!

Bama also signed 18 four-star recruits. I am so excited to see the future of our Tide. I can now definitely say...the tide is turning!!!

Going for Five

I have big news. Are you sitting down??? My Asher has slept through the night FOUR NIGHTS IN A ROW!!! I know what you're thinking...big deal, the kid's nine months old! For me, it's a HUGE deal. For the past several months, he has woken up once a night (several times when we were away from home) for a quick snack. While my nights with him haven't been nearly as tough as my nights with Tristan were (at nine months, he was waking up more than once a night), waking up night after night after night gets tough after several months (a year and a half if you count the lack of sleep when I was pregnant).
The funny thing is, the first night he slept all night (Saturday night), we had been at a friend's house, and she asked me if I was going to stick to my plan of not feeding him during the night anymore now that it's February. I kind of hem hawed (sp?), "Well...I mean...yeah, I think...we'll just see how it goes." That very night, he slept ALL NIGHT! Amazing! Asher saved me from having to eat my own words. Thanks, Ash!
Tonight, I'm going for five. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


I am so excited! I just voted!!! Sure I've voted plenty other times, but this time, I just feel such an accomplishment. I love that our country gives us the chance to choose the leaders of our land. I love that I was able to cast my ballot for the person I feel could best serve as leader and chief of our wonderful (but in much need of work) country.
God bless America!!!

Perfect Quote for Me

I found this quote last week, and it describes how I feel to a T!

Keeping house is like threading beads on a string with no knot at the end.

I feel like my house is always a mess, no matter how many hours I spend working on it. A goal of mine for 2008 is to be more organized. I'm working on it. It's definitely a slow go!

Super Tuesday

american flag
Today is a really important day in our country. It's Super Tuesday. Today is the day that we each have a choice to put our two cents in on who should be the chosen delegate for our party; who we think should run our country for the next four years. A couple of weeks ago, I felt pretty comfortable in my decision. I was going to vote for John McCain. I have since changed my mind. Although I like his stand on many issues, I disagree when it comes to his definition of marriage and on abortion rights. So now I face a dilemma. Do I vote for Mike Huckabee, who proclaims his Christianity and seems to have high morals, or do I vote for Mitt Romney, who is conservative but a non-Christian? The thing is, all the experts are saying that Huckabee doesn't stand a chance, and that by giving him my vote, I am giving a vote to McCain. However, if I give my vote to Romney, he has a greater chance of winning and is way more conservative than John McCain. I would most like to have Huckabee as my delegate, but I would least like it to be McCain. Whoever is elected as the Republican delegate has to be able to beat Clinton or Obama (I feel pretty sure it's going to be Obama). What's a girl to do? I guess I'll be doing lots of praying between now and my vote.
I strongly encourage YOU to VOTE today (if your state is voting). I don't think you have the right to complain about the state of our country if you don't vote. Make your voice heard...VOTE!
Today is also an important day in the world of college football. Today is SIGNING DAY!!! I can hardly wait to see how Alabama fares. As the standings are currently, most recruiting websites have us ranked like 2nd and 3rd in the country. The only one who has us ranked lower is Oh, what do they know? (CORRECTION!!! Signing day is TOMORROW! I guess in all my excitement, I got the dates wrong. I hate to wait another day!)
I have one question...Julio...where you signing, man?!
It will be interesting to say how today plays out!!!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Super Bowl Sunday

WHAT A GAME!!! Last night's Super Bowl did not disappoint (unless you're a Patriot). It kept us on the edge of our seats until the last second. I must admit, going into the game I wanted to see Tom Brady lead his Patriots into a record breaking perfect season. However, I couldn't be happier for Eli Manning and his Giants. HOW COOL that Eli Manning and his team won the Super Bowl a year after his brother Peyton did the same thing?! And...not only did Eli lead his team to victory, but he also secured the top honor...MVP (Peyton had the same honor last year)! No doubt, that honor came as a result of great plays like this one:

Way to go, Eli!!! You're no longer in Peyton's shadow. You are your own person, and you're great too! You're an MVP!!!

Although the game was exciting, I must say, the commercials were too. There were so many that were brilliant, however, my favorite had to be the e trade commercials. The first one was my absolute favorite, but the second one was great too!

Bud Light had several hilarious commercials, and Pepsi had a great one too. I wish we got Super Bowl commercials every day!
Aside from the game and commercials, Tristan, Asher, and their friends also provided entertainment. We had our very own football game going on in person!
Post-tackle.Asher was attacked by a man-eating shark!All in all Superbowl Sunday was a GREAT day! Way to go, Giants! Way to go, Eli! And way to go, E trade!!!