Sunday, January 31, 2010

Photo Contest

This picture is for a photo contest to celebrate Mandy's birthday at I hope you had a great birthday Mandy!

It was Clark's first birthday and he had played around with the cake for awhile, picking at it here and there...then finally he got a chunk of it.

This is the only time he has ever done this, he actually isn't a big cake eater. So I was so happy I got one of him on his first birthday.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Snow, Snow, Beautiful Snow!

I will be the first to admit that I don't always believe the weather men in our area. I mean it is Oklahoma and as the saying goes "if you don't like the weather, stick around for a few minutes". It is constantly changing, never predictable weather. Cold winters could last into March....Hot summers could last into October. You just never know. But man did they predict it this time. Sleet and then snow. I think we have 1/2 an inch of solid ice under the 6 inches of snow. It has been coming down hard since yesterday afternoon. The last time they said this, I didn't believe them and we had the first blizzard in the history of Oklahoma. That is when I learned that to be a blizzard, it has to be 35 mile per hour wind. They did say it could be worse than the Ice Storm of 2007, which was horrible. In the middle of the night our power went out. I woke up for some reason and being a) half asleep and b)a sleep deprived new mother, I thought I was blind because I couldn't see anything. It was seriously the blackest black I have ever seen. I couldn't see my hand in front of my face. The hubs still likes to make fun of me for this. I had a nursing infant and an eleven year old daughter. I had to leave our house when we lost power and take all my stored breast milk with me. I first went to my in-laws, the closest family with power. Then they lost power and I went to my parents. Then they lost power and we all went to their friend Becky's house. We stayed there for a week I think. My hubs stayed home prepared to shoot looters (I think he was hoping for looters). Becky's daughter enjoyed our visit so much that she is continually asking if we have lost our power this time.

Here is a shot from the "07 Ice Storm"

So far we still have power, we have plenty of food, we have a gas oven and range and a gas fireplace...we are prepared to stay home this time. But I really hope we don't lose power. Skylar has a friend spending the night and I am prepared to enjoy a relaxing weekend, with power! Have I mentioned I really hope we don't lose power?

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


The perfect day was finally here. My wedding day to the love of my life.

David and I have known each other since the sixth grade. In my little fantasy in my brain, I actually remember saying "I'm gonna marry that boy someday". But, I don't think I really did. I first saw him jumping off this HUGE cement block in front of the school. He was doing some very impressive karate move. Super cute. I won't say we were friends. We never "went together", or anything like that. Until high school, when a mutual friend of the families set it up for us to both help a family that needed help. I was to watch their son and David was to take care of their horses while they were out of town. It was winter and we were at the Winter Dance at school. He asked me to dance, we talked about the fact that we would probably see each other...

One day at the house he came in for a "drink", very smooth! He kissed me, the nerve of that boy! But, then he asked me out on a date. He picked me up, we went to a movie (Wayne's World). Oops, I just seriously gave away how ancient we are. We shared Starburst...still one of his favorites. And Skittles, still one of mine. He paid. It was great. The rest of the night was mostly uneventful, a girl never kisses and tells!

We were friends after that, we spoke at school, we hung out sometimes...never ever went on another date. We danced at dances, proms, etc...then we graduated. Married other people. I had a daughter...

We each found ourselves single again, years later and we found our way back to each other. The rest, as they say, is history.

I have always loved him. Ever since that first dance. He was an only child, like me. Cocky and very sure of himself. He exudes charm and sucks you into his very being. Well, maybe that last part is just me. He is a great man, a good, decent, well raised man. He protects me and our family. He comforts me, holds my hand, and my very favorite thing about him...he will stop our moving car and get out to help little old ladies with their groceries! I am completely smitten!

Tomorrow will be our four year anniversary. It has been so wonderful to be married to my best friend. To see my daughter have the dad she deserves. To see my son, so much like his dad, grow into a little man with his own amazing personality.

I will take time tomorrow to sit back and appreciate all that I have. To thank God for giving me more than I could have ever imagined. And tell my hubs, Thank You for being the best Husband a woman could ever ask for.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Mars vs. Venus

I don't remember it women that are from Mars or men? I think it is men. Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. Yes, that is it. We had that Epic battle in our house this evening. This is how it played out.

The hubs:
"I love and adore you. You are the most beautiful wife ever. I am so lucky to have you, other men weep at the thought you are taken" (okay some of this might have been in my imagination). But he really did say this "I love you, how was your day?"

"Blah" "Really blah" "I hate my day" "I hate all days".

Yikes that is a lot of hates. Am I really that hateful? No I am not. I am however really miserable at work. So miserable that I detest going to the place. I detest the drive, pulling up in the parking lot, opening the door, all that stuff. Do I like my job? Why Yes, Yes I do. I just am so tired of the fact that my job which is to train, mentor, teach and help people has turned in to me babysitting people. Telling them simple things they should already "come to work on time everyday". Really people? Please tell me if you have children that you are raising them to know the value of punctuality and a job well done. I can tell you it is completely lacking. And not just from the "younger" generation either...some of these people are well older than me.

So then, like the great hubs that he is...he asked me what was wrong. And I told him, everything, and then more...I got it all out. A note to all husbands...this is where this conversation SHOULD end. Just listen, nod your head, pat my back, say you love me. Don't try to solve the problem. You can't. See I know you are from Mars and you feel like you really must solve the problem. But you don't have really just need to listen. And love. And support.

But man do I love you for trying. And I really love you for coming back later to make me laugh!

My high for the day was the thirty minutes that I sat at my desk and took a lunch break. I hate a delicious Marie Calendars Creamy Mushroom Chicken Pot Pie. Dreamily delectable! And I read a book while I ate it. A real lunch break, in the midst of my hateful was good.

And then I made really great home cooked chicken. Simple, floured, tasty, pan fried chicken. My kids loved it...the hubs hasn't even tried it yet. I have leftovers for work tomorrow....another day at my desk with a book perhaps?

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Time to Confess....

Ok, Ok, I know. It's been forever. I haven't blogged in forever! I am a horrible blogger! I apologize to you, my devoted fans. Things have been really great at home lately. And I started back to school tonight. I go three nights a week this semester and then I have a weekend course that is three weekends long. So, I think I was just soaking up all my family time. Hunting season is over....YAY! That means the hubs is home. We went to dinner (no kids) on Saturday night. We got to finally go see his Grandma on Sunday...we never made it to her house for the holidays because of all the snow in our area. And then yesterday since I had the day off and the kids were out of school, we went with my step-mom to see my great grandma! It was so great to get to see her and to have my kids get to see her. I told Skylar to make sure she cherished the few minutes we got to spend with her, there aren't many kids now that can say they know their great-great-grandma's. I am very thankful that I have a relationship with her and that I knew all of my great grandparents on that side. My biological grandparents all passed before I was born, old enough to remember them, or when I was in my teens. I happen to think that children having relationships with the elders in their family is CRUCIAL. And I think that if there are no elderly people in the family, you should seek them out. In one of my after school programs I actually started a pen pal project for my students to write and visit with the elderly in a nearby nursing home. They learned so much, and they both got a sense of having someone care about them. In this day and age, that is so very important.

Things on the job front are so tiring right now. Another reason that I spaced out last week. Perhaps it is lack of vitamin D, but some of my workers really seem to have lost their minds. It is so stressful, today when I got to work an hour early, I actually set my alarm and took a nap in my car...just because I did not want to go in the building. I had to mentally prepare myself for the day I knew I was going to have. I can't wait to get home everyday and see my babies and my hubs. I am currently listening to Clark lay in his bed and talk and sing to himself. I should note that I put him to bed an hour and a half ago....silly little boy!

I have been making more stuff from scratch...a wonderful flat apple pie last week made the hubs very happy! It took forever to peel the five apples, but it was funny because Clark stood at my feet the entire time eating all the chunks I would get on the peels. I also enjoy seeing how I could change the recipes up a little. I really love to cook! My hope is that one weekend soon I can make a bunch of dough for pies and pizza and such so that I can freeze them. That way I can be ahead of the game since that really takes up time!

So, I promise to get back on track with the blog and keep you all up to date on my happenings....I know how you anticipate it :)And if you are in my area and you wanna help make dough sometime...just come on over!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

i ♥ faces Photo Challenge

This is Birthday Week at and the challenge was a recent photograph of a face. I snapped this one just this afternoon of Clark getting to really experience snow for the first time. He is watching his sister pick up big chunks and throw them. Hope you like, and Happy Birthday...I ♥ Faces!!!!

I am submitting this [these] photo[s] into the I Heart Faces logo photo contest. By entering, I am granting I Heart Faces LLC permission to consider my photo for use in the marketing and promotion of their website.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Cast of Characters....

This is it. These are them. The people I spend my life with. Well, three of them anyway. I figure it is time to really introduce you to the people I talk so much about!

The Hubs...

If he sees this, which he won't, he will tell me I should have used a different picture. And I will tell him no, because this picture, this one little innocent picture...makes me love him over and over again. He is playing basketball with our daughter, while on vacation, with my parents, staying at my aunt and uncles house. I love that, that even though he is stubborn and likes to have his way...each summer he goes on vacation with me, our children, and my parents. Not a lot of men would do that. Plus, because of his work schedule, he doesn't get to play with our children as much as he would like. (P.S. if you need tips on how to talk your hubs into doing this...well, actually, I got nothing!)

The Girl....(Please do not let your teenage sons look at this)

Ah, the Girl, 12 years old and already so old. What can I say about this beautiful creature except that every day I am amazed. Amazed by her smartness, her beauty, her humor, and most of all the fact that I have raised her. What else in the world can make you feel so accomplished and proud? This picture and others from that same "session" we did are some of my favorites. Just two weeks later, she was so sick, just hanging on by a thread, and I almost lost her. Nothing can compare to that feeling. It isn't grief, it isn't sadness, it's impossible to explain. Is it possible from that moment on I will always feel vulnerable? That is the word. Every minute of my life now I realize that my whole world could crumble in a matter of minutes. I had never had a real grasp on that before. Now go hug your babies! No matter how old they are!

The Boy....

You have no idea how much I would love to have a picture of a sweet little boy posing for the camera here. Unfortunately, I don't have a little boy that likes to pose. I have a little boy that sees a camera and immediately thinks it is time to jump off the couch. Oh, I have a few posed pictures...but these are my favorites anyway. From the day he was conceived, he has never stopped moving. In the womb, it was constant. I begged the doctor to take him out...he was bruising my insides. Then even as an infant....he moved when he slept. Always a finger, or a foot, something has to be moving. One thing is for sure...he keeps us all on our toes. (On a side note, if you have some energy you need to get out....please call me, I will drop him off to you anytime) Just kidding, I don't give up my babies easily, actually.

So there ya' go. My happy family. Oh, yes we have our rough times...Christmas Break and the Mom vs. Clark Nap Time Battle for instance. But mostly, things here are grand. The Love Dare is going well. Some of the days are very hard for me, because it is telling me to do things and ask things that we just don't have problems with. So, I am doing them and asking the hubs questions as I go, to make sure we are on the same page. For instance, I had to write a list of rules I would follow while fighting with him. We don't fight. So, I made my list and tucked it away...of things I wouldn't do if we did fight.

The simple life thing is going well. I made dinner rolls from scratch tonight. It was after 9 when I finally got them in the oven but the recipe didn't say you actually had to have them for dinner. Boy, were they good....the kids were asleep, so I could've eaten the whole pan. (I didn't). Also, if the recipe says you should have 3 dozen...go ahead and make 'em small...don't think, "well if I just make 12, they will be really big rolls". After eating one...I can see why you might want them smaller. Plus, then you can trick yourself and eat three instead of just one. See I'm a genius!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Death in the House....

There has been a tragic death in my house. Now, hold on, everything is ok. I said in my house, not in my family.

I went on a cleaning spree this afternoon. I am not sure what exactly started my "need for clean", but it occurred. And I will be honest that me feeling the need to clean is a VERY rare occasion. So, there I was cleaning the house. Since we had a "too cold" for school day in my town, I was stuck at home and had nothing better to do I guess. My daughter Skylar was home also, but I must say the main reason I got so much done is because I was able to take Clark to the sitter! YAY!

I had my nose, shoulders, and midsection stuck in my closet. I am sure from behind it was a beautiful picture. When I heard, "mom, mom, MOM"! So, I said "What"?

Skylar said, "please come here".

To impersonate Clark, I said "ok, fine, whatever" and walked into the living room.

This is what I saw in my kitchen.

Oh, not so scary, you say! Here is a closer look...

Ok, here I will admit to be so not a country, simple kind of girl. I called the closest man I knew (my father-in-law) to promptly come get the dead mouse off my floor. Thankfully, he only ribbed me a little bit!

On other notes for the day, I cooked a dinner that was so gross I won't even talk about it. My kids and I managed to scarf it down and the hubs ate something else when he got home.

Today is the Anniversary of the day I had Gastric Bypass. I used to weigh 315 pounds and my Body Mass Index was 54! I lost 170 pounds after surgery and two years later had all my extra skin removed, a full body lift, and a Ta-Ta lift. I have always been grateful that I was able to do it. And I have always encouraged others to as well. If you want more info on it...please comment or email me! I will try to dig out some "before" pics and scan them.

To put things in perspective though...I was feeling proud of myself and mentioned to Skylar that it was the Anniversary of my Gastric Bypass. She said, "well, it's also the day a mouse died in our kitchen".

I'm gonna take that as a "good job, Mom"!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

i ♥ faces Photo Challenge

One of my newly found and adored websites is having a photo contest this week to celebrate their first birthday! The photo's must have faces and their logo in them. Here are my submitted photos.

I am submitting this [these] photo[s] into the I Heart Faces logo photo contest. By entering, I am granting I Heart Faces LLC permission to consider my photo for use in the marketing and promotion of their website.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Lessons Learned....

I read something today at that reminded me of a time when Skylar was little. She was four and she had a goldfish! God love Goldfish! Do you think they were created just for us to torture and kill? I mean, has anyone ever had a goldfish that lived???

Like more than a month?

Well, Skylar's goldfish was a total slob. So, we had to clean the bowl. I scooped out the little fishy, named Goldilocks, of course. I put it in a bowl and I washed out her home. Nice and clean, no streaks. Then I filled it up with water and put her back in. She swam around and all was well.

Until an hour later....

When she was floating upside down...

Ugh, what happened? I have to tell Skylar I killed her fish! Okay, this happens, she'll learn. What a wonderful life lesson! Things die! We'll have a funeral, we'll flush her...

And we did, we gathered around and threw, I mean gently placed Goldilocks into the toilet.

Apparently the water was cold...Goldilocks was miraculously shocked back to life and started swimming around in my toilet.

Wow! In one instance I went from Killer to Reviver, Saver, Healer!

Onto, some lessons I actually learned today...

Whole milk is not low-fat milk, pay attention when you are shopping!

When you get new Christmas Tree Ornaments....look closely at all the things they do. It is sad when you notice two years later that your sons First Christmas Ornament actually winds up and plays music.

Don't be surprised when you are taking down your Christmas Tree if you find a tennis ball in it...two year olds think very differently than we do.

There is a radio station in my area that recently "changed it's format"....GenX is awesome. Who knew listening to Nelson again on the radio would make me so happy?

Listening to said radio station with 12 year old daughter in the car....priceless!!!

I made pizza dough last night...from SCRATCH! Is it crazy to say that next to marriage and beautiful, healthy might be one of my proudest moments? I felt so powerful, accomplished...and dare I say it, WOMANLY! I might have actually run through the house screaming "I am woman" if my hubs hadn't been home!

My final thought....try something new today-see if you can get that feeling too!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

What? Christmas is over...

I wish someone would have warned me that today would be coming. The very last day of my two week Christmas break. The day I should be taking down my Christmas decorations. The day I should be catching up on laundry and dishes and maybe cook a few extra meals to get ready for the week to come. UGH, why didn't anyone tell me. Oh and I mainly wish that someone would tell little man that it is Sunday and Mommy stayed up until 3 am playing on the computer. And maybe, just maybe he should be considerate and take a nap. But, I am slowly coming to terms with the fact that the day is pretty much over and now it is time to think about dinner. We are once again trapped inside by snow. The snow isn't that bad, but I have a car with bad tires and two children. Why would I go to the hassle of dragging them, in we are for the night. Our very last night of vacation and freedom. BLAH! And to add to the matter, I am officially counting down to the new semester of school. My semester starts on January 18th, so I have 15 days until insanity reigns upon my house again. Please, if you know anyone who is college age and thinking of not going...grab them by the armpits and shake the living crud out of them. You have to make them understand how hard it is to wait to go to college. Until you have no choice but to work full time and go full time, because you have mouths to feed. Until, you can't go out with all your little college friends after class, because you have a hubs and little mouths at home. Until, when you have to think about skipping class (even though it is gut wrenching because you are paying for it yourself now) it isn't because you overslept or have a hangover, but because one of your little mouths is sick. Oh for the love of pete, please make them understand they have to go to college when they are young!!!!
So back to my last day of vacation. I did manage to start one load of laundry so far, and the little man has discovered that we have more DVD's than the Toy Story and Cars ones. Maybe I have a short window of opportunity to do something else productive. I am thinking of making homemade pizza for dinner, with actual homemade crust. Another recipe from my new cookbook. So, I will let you know how that goes a little later....for now, I will relish my last few hours of freedom.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Focus....No, Really Focus!

Take a moment to focus on what it is you really want out of life. Can you do it? Can you make a list? How many of the things on your list do you already have? How many things are you close to having? And how many are really far out far, that people would think you were crazy? I would like to tell you that I am going to share my list with you. But I can't. I haven't been able to focus long enough to make one. I will tell you that I am working on focusing long enough to make a list. Maybe you could say that is my New Years Resolution. To make a list of all the things I really want out of life. I didn't throw that out in the air at it too late to claim that as my resolution? What were your resolutions? I would love to know.
I will update you on the progress of my two "pet" projects. And I will tell you that one of the reasons I decided to blog about them is because my husband doubts my ability to "follow through" with them. He seems to be living in some sort of denial by thinking that just because a person has a great idea, they have to do it forever. I don't believe that. I happen to think that sometimes people (me especially) have great ideas that just aren't practical for the long haul. If this has happened to you, I forgive you, I won't hold it against you! Maybe I should start a 12 step program for it.
So as for my "simple times" project. I had to have a deep discussion with the hubs about this project after he mistakenly thought I meant I was going to clean and organize the house so that things would be "simpler". Ugh, how did I go wrong? No, it is about doing things the old fashioned from scratch, planting a garden, making gifts, he is on board. Well, kinda. He still doesn't think I will follow through! So far, I have set out to learn how to garden and preserve, and I have made some big decisions. For instance, this year my garden will be constructed of raised beds. This means I am currently taken donations of wood. I learned from my neighbor who successfully gardens every year, that we have bad soil in our neighborhood--good to know! And I have made 5 recipes from my Pioneer Woman cookbook. You can find her link in my first blog post. The food has been wonderful and I have only had a few setbacks. I have made Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Chili, Potato Skins, Sour Cream Pancakes and Eggs In The Hole (which were so good, I am thinking about making one right now). This side of my path is the side that will make me fatter for sure! YUM I love to eat!
Next, is my Love Dare project. This project has been interesting. The Day Four challenge was to contact the hubs and ask him how he was, how his day was going, was there anything I could do for him....he was at home with me all day. So, I asked him throughout the day those questions and he would usually smirk at me. The Day Five challenge was to focus on my rudeness. To ask him if there is anything he finds rude or unbecoming of me when we are alone or around others. He wisely said "no". Just kidding, I was prepared to hear something...but he might come up with something later. Today is Day Six and the challenge is to react to challenges in my marriage with loving ways instead of irritation. Okay, this was easy because the hubs woke me up by saying he was going to Walmart to purchase diapers for the tot for me....just because he knew I needed them and he wouldn't be home to help for a few days. What a great hubs I have!!!! Is it possible that my attitude is rubbing off on him?
Well, as it goes life is tumbling into the New Year fast and furiously...I am braced and ready to tackle everything head on! I hope that you are enjoying my adventures and welcome hearing from you. Now onto making that Egg In The Hole.....