Gift Giving

I'm a procrastinator by far when it comes to my Christmas shopping. Every year I have amazing intentions of starting early, crossing off every name on my list by Thanksgiving, smirking at all the nutty people who are having to shop through the madness of after T-giving sales, and having all my gifts wrapped, tagged, and sitting pretty under the tree before the calendar is flipped to December.

Every year....same thing. DOESN'T HAPPEN!

Thanksgiving roles around and I stare at my list realizing that nothing has been crossed off the list and I have a mondo list of gifts to not only buy, but find....

I ventured out Black Friday and actually shocked myself at my lack of impulse shopping and frustration. I was amazingly at peace about the whole thing and not stressed at all.

I think this complete turn-around in Christmas shopping attitude is coming from my new perspective on things. That stuff doesn't matter.

I would like to say that I have always been a minimalist. That I've always strived for the simple way of living. That stuff has never mattered to me. Sadly, it's just not true.

I can't really pinpoint what it is that has helped me move across the line from "keeping up" to "keeping it simple," but I'm okay with it. I give a lot of credit to our church and my good friends. Appearances, pretense, and impressions have been miraculously replaced with being genuine and authentic. It has been an amazing change for me, and I've noticed my outlook shifting. (Thank you -- you know who you are! You make me smile! *grin*)

All that being said....back to Christmas shopping. I'm really going to try to scale down and give gifts that matter this year. Ones that are handcrafted or ones that are really useful and personal. Well thought out gifts, not just ones found on a sale rack.

But what about my kids? Kirk and I have tried to do the three gift thing (taken from the example of Jesus' gifts from the wisemen) and that works well for us. The kids get 1 large gift and then a couple of other gifts that are a little more useful (like PJs or a family game). Then they receive little gifts in their stockings.

I was just thinking the other day about our system and how it works for us, but that there really isn't any rhyme or reason to how we choose their presents from their lists. It really ends up being about what Kirk and I want them to have (or don't want them to have all over the living room *wink*). Since then, I've been thinking about it more and more. Not that everything has to have a formula, but I really was wanting to nail down some guidelines, just in the interest of sparing ourselves the "it's not fair" and "his is better than mine" rigmarole.

And then I came across a good friend's solution. I LOVE IT SO MUCH! You can read her full post here (and you should!) but the short version is that she and her husband follow this poem.

"Something they want, something they need, something to play with, and something to read."

She mentions that the kids have to think really hard about the things in the "need" and "want" categories. WOW! I was so excited after reading it that I ran in to tell Kirk about it, and he thinks that it's "cool." (That is man-talk for "sounds good to me").

I'm really thinking that we may try it out this year. Thanks, Meredith, for the great idea! Are you tired of my copying you yet?!?!

Now I'm excited to sit the kids down and rehash their Santa lists.....then it is off to shop! I'm beginning to get in the Christmas spirit!!!


The Bryant Family Thanksgiving

I did it!!
Actually WE did it. After the enlistment of my mom and sister, our Thanksgiving dinner turned out pretty spectacular, if I do say so myself.

Just look at this Martha Stewart-ish stuff...

Gotta give props to Mich for the lovely table decor.....

Look!! My dad made placecards!

Isn't our table pretty? And that turkey? SOOOOO GOOD! (Stephanie, tell Eric that I stuffed an orange in it, just like he said!!!)

These are my mama's mashed potatoes that are straight from Heaven. Although this year, my sister and I didn't get into a cat fight over them....wonder what's wrong. Must of been too tired from actually cooking something for once....

We had turkey, ham, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, corn, green beans, stuffing, broccoli, rolls (Sister Shuberts' -- just like you guys said!), pumpkin pie, apple pie, Italian cream cake.......and.......

just because it wouldn't be the Goodrum house without it.....

macaroni and cheese (straight out the box!!).

I ate every last stinkin' bit of this.....so yummy!

I'm all about the food, and as worried as I was about the whole hostess gig, everything went off without a hitch! Michele made it look good, and my mom made it taste good! But, my favorite part of all (even better than the taters) is just being with my family! Check out all the fun we've been having....

My niece, Kayla, chowing on the drumstick.

My mom and dad

Me and Kirk

Tickle Fest....my bro-in-law, Kevin, and Tate

Crazy boys....Sawyer, Keaton, Tate, and my nephew, Jordan

Me and my sister, Michele (a.k.a. Martha)

My lazy, incredibly stuffed dog, Ozzie.....he got all the scraps plus the turkey carcass...I don't think he's moving anytime soon!
So...it's over. After all my weeks of fretting, slaving, scurrying, scrubbing, and planning....it's over. But, it was so fun...and so good!! I can't say that I want to keep having it at my house though. I still like being at my mama's, so I'll be anxious for Thanksgiving to move back to her house next year.
Oh, yah...one last picture to document the Bryant Family Thanksgiving. My sister always takes a picture at every one of our holiday get-togethers, and it is always of the same subject doing the exact same thing in the exact same position.....it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without my dad doing this.......

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!



Here is my "WHAT I'M THANKFUL FOR" list.....

The love of my precious husband.

Happy days filled with laughter and love.

All the minutes that I've been mother (even the ones that included dirty diapers and throw-up).

Neverending support and encouragement from my friends and family.

Kisses from my fellas (love that they love their mama).

Stuff (we have so much of it...we are so blessed).

Good friends (can't imagine life without you).

Inspiration given by my church, friends, and family.

Very amazing parents (my heroes, for sure).

Independence...so blessed to have my freedom.

Never having to doubt God's love for me or my security in Him.


So blessed. So thankful. So amazed.


Now I Just Have To Put It Away....Might Pose a Small Spacial Problem

I totally need to be cleaning my house right now, but I had to stop and put this on now....I have a feeling that I'm going to be falling in the bed tonight....probably no blogging time.

Look what I just bought......

(and you can't even see .75 of it in my picture!)

Grand total.....$287.73 *choke*cough*sputter*sputter*

This is what comes with having 11 *of my favorite* people nesting in the same house for the good part of a week.

Now....before my dad and sister start panicking and feeling bad about the mondo grocery bill...no problem. I spend a good $200 on my family, when it is just the 5 of us, so to only add $87 for 6 more people...not too shabby!! I actually had expected it to be much higher.

Thanks again for all the comments that you left me here. I took a lot of your suggestions to heart and added them to my menu. Others, I decided that I was way too immature at this whole hospitality thing to even attempt!!! But, I'm still so impressed with all of you!!!

Hope your Thanksgivings are amazing...

The Low-Down

Here's the low-down...


Somehow or another I have managed to turn out about 200 pieces this weekend. WHEW! I have crafted, created, and handiworked myself just about over the edge. Thanks to the new-found entrepreneurial talents of my sister, my inventory was taken down to the zilch category, leaving me with NOTHING for my craft shows that are coming up oh-so-shortly. So, somehow or another I was needing to get on the ball and restock....MISSION COMPLETE. This is what my kitchen table looked like at one point during my spree of pendant mania.....

I did come up with some super-cute new monograms....

And some super-cute picture pendants (could just be the kids....hmmmmmmm....)....


My kids have totally destroyed my couch. We have this nifty window in our living room wall that peers into the hall, and my couch is centered under the window. All this creates is a fantastic climbing course. Apparently that is the best (and most fun) way to get from the living room to the rest of the house...who knew? Anyway, with all the climbing, they have managed to completely rip apart the top of my couch....grrrrrrrrrrr.

Maybe it was the company coming, but I decided that I was going to sew it up and fix it. HA! What a joke. I just went and bought a slip cover, and I really like it. I'm going to show you a picture, but you are going to have to excuse the wrinkles....haven't dragged out the steamer yet!


I have needed a haircut something fierce. I have crazy hair that does a whacky flip thing. That might work out for me, if it wasn't only on one side of my head. I also have a HUGE amount of hair, so it gets insanely heavy and, well, there is just too much to do anything with. So, long story short, it was definitely time to get something done about the moppage. I picked up the phone to call my beautician and then remembered that she had moved. Oh yah! So, thus began the mad search for the new one who will tame the mane. FOUND ONE! She did a really good job, I think. Of course, she just did it today and I haven't tried to fix it myself....that is always the true test. So, ask me again tomorrow!! This is a pretty scary self-photo (notice the bags under my eyes, smudgy mascara, and worn-off makeup....oh well...).


The mother ship is landing at my house the day after tomorrow, and I'm trying to get everything all spiffed up (hence the slipcover). So when I haven't been knee deep in neck attire creativity and slip-covering my couch, I've been trying to do the clean-up routine. Happy to say that I'm all done except for one bathroom and some laundry....not too shabby.


This one makes me giddy!

One of my besties, R, has been blessed with huge amounts of testosterone like me. Only she received an extra helping. She has 4 boys and just found out recently that she is pregnant. WHOA NELLY!!! She called today to tell me that it is a little girly!! Oh so excited!! I tend to live vicariously through my friends' hairbows and tea parties......


I just mentioned that I've been spending a lot of time watching my favorite show....tonight I did it. I finished them off. Season 10 was just placed delicately back in its case to await my next marathon of madness. Did I mention that I love that show? I cried just as hard through this go-round of the finale as I did the first time I saw it.....so good.


I love those guys. :(


Yah...you read right. I walked in the house tonight to find my mantle laying in the floor. It had fallen off of the fireplace. So weird. Kirk had just built me this new one (so beautiful) and hung it up maybe a month ago. Not sure what happened....I'm guessing he didn't hang it up right or something, but I am so not going to blame him. I'm going to blame it on wild chipmunks...that's safer. (Love you, honey!!)

I was told today that I'm too old to be on FaceBook. I was informed of this by a teenager who has over 1,000 FB friends, but chooses them by typing in a name that she likes in the search box and then looks through the pictures. If she thinks that they are "cute" or "cool" then she adds them as her friend.... If that is what FaceBook is about, then maybe I am too old. Personally, I think that girl is C-R-A-Z-Y! Us old people got our own thing going on over there...I'll keep our way.


Me and My Friends

Let me introduce you to 6 of my very best Friends.

There they are: Rachel, Ross, Joey, Chandler, Monica, and Phoebe.

There is not much that makes me laugh like Friends. I started watching it when it first came out way back in the day and watched it religiously (it was tough when Survivor started, though, and I had to choose which channel to watch Thursdays at 7:00....hard decision) right through its 10th season.

I was one of the ones that rooted for Ross and Rachel through the entire show and cried when they had their baby and ended up together (FINALLY!) in the last episode. I know every word of "Smelly Cat" and think the episode with the Holiday Armadillo is simply hysterical! I was giddy when Monica proposed to Chandler and laughed 'till my stomach hurt when Ross had to climb down Joey on the fire escape. I know what it means to "be somebody's lobster" and I started drinking coffee in college because that is what they did. I always thought it would be cool to paint my living room purple (key word "thought") and had my hair cut in "the Rachel" back in 1996.

My sweet darling husband bought all 10 seasons for me on DVD awhile back, and I love to curl up and hang out with my Friends. They just make me so darn happy!! Today I was in Central Perk heaven because I was able to watch 2 full complete seasons with zero interruption.....talk about a great day!

I love my Friends so much......

**Here's a question for you......
Although it bumfuzzles me that not everyone is as head-over-heels in love with Friends as I am, I am curious as to what the rest of you love to watch. Is there a series on TV that is your all-time favorite show? Tell me, tell me....I wanna know!! And if it is Friends....then you will know what I mean when I say, "U-Nagi!"


One of My Favorite Things

No cute story. No funny anecdote. No gripey complaint. Not even a good random here's-what-we're-up-to post. Nothing. Nada. Zip.

I can't think of anything to write about, but it feels so strange for me to not post anything. But, I really think that we are living the most boring lives right now. My post yesterday was about my messy house....if that doesn't spell out BORING, I don't know what would.

Anyway, I was glancing around my living room and one of my most favorite things caught my eye. It is one of those things that I see a bazillion times a day and love it every time I see it, but don't really think about it too hard. When it caught my eye this time, I had a chance to remember why I love it so much.

Isn't it beautiful? I actually received this as a gift one Christmas from a student in a class of mine. His mom is an incredible artist (some of you Arkadelphia folks may recognize HJ's handiwork....she is amazing!) and she blessed me with this one-of-a-kind present.

I love it so much not only because it is of my precious children, but because it was handmade by her. I know that she spent time on it....just for me. There isn't anything more sincere than that kind of gift-giving. Thanks again, H! I love it!

While I'm here on this topic of handmade gift-giving, I've decided to try really hard to make that a priority of my Christmas giving this year. No big shocker, but most (if not all) of the ladies in my life will be receiving a piece of my jewelry, but I've also got a couple of other things up my sleeve made by some of my most crafty friends.

Here's a shout-out to my bestest buddies.....check out Stephanie's stuff here and Lisa's here and here. Aren't they amazing? I think so, too.


Shout Out To All the Other Messy Mamas Out There

If you get squeamish about unkempt houses....read no further.

This post is dedicated to the messiness of my house. The thought behind this psychotic airing of dirty laundry *wink* is that somehow it will inspire me to do something about it.....we'll see if that works out for me.

Let me start by saying that the house isn't nasty, filthy, disgusting, or gross. It is just....let's see....in disarray. The only thing that is really gross is my kitchen floor. I'd advise wearing shoes if you come over in the next few days. There has been a mass tromping-through of muddy hunting boots, soggy tennis shoes, and concretey work boots. All this shoe dirt is mixed with crumbs that find their way to the floor (because my children REFUSE to eat over their plates), little tiny pieces of paper leftover from a snowflake cutting session (because Tate missed a few dozen when he was on sweep-patrol), and a few sticky spots of dried kool-aide and milk (because my kids think that they're big, but they are really not....especially when "big" involves a completely full pitcher). The broom has found its way over the floor a few times this week, but somehow the dirt and sticky spots continue to multiply -- leaving me with nothing but a gross floor. Remember....wear shoes.....it's for your own health!

Now that the grossness has been addressed, let me move on to the clutter. I HATE CLUTTER...but, I am overrun with it right now. There is a pile of papers that have been unloaded from school folders on the edge of the table. Really need to sort through those. There is a stack of magazines and newsletters that need to be sorted....let alone read.....all piled on my bar. Next to the magazines are a pile of tools that are left from a little fix-it project of Kirk's....he really needs to take those to his shop. On the gross floor are two suitcases that have yet to be unpacked from our trip this past weekend....not planning on moving those, since I just have to repack them in 2 days. I've got basketball forms, doctors' bills, and school reminders about the food drive all littering my cabinet.

My Nola Mae stuff is piled in a corner.....got to find a place for all of that. Hmmmmm....wonder if Kirk will build me a cabinet?!?! A girl can dream! The boys' baseball bags are piled in another corner fresh in from a trip out to the batting cage. There are a couple zillion coats and jackets that didn't quite make it to the hooks dotting the floor by the door. Huh....wonder what is so hard about hanging a coat on a hook?

My laundry room is overflowing with camo, our clothes from our trip, towels, and sheets. Being sick the 2 days before we left to go out-of-town did nothing for my "staying-on-top-of-the-laundry" routine. I think I could do a load of laundry every hour for the next 13 days and still not be caught up! Seriously....

The boys' rooms look like a tornado hit them. I think most of that is due to the earlier incidents of Tate not being able to find his "boochs" ("boots") and the rousing game of closet door basketball that went on earlier this evening.

So....what am I going to do about it?


I'm just waiting 'till the weekend!! The fellas will be out-and-about huntin' and such, and I am planning on cleaning in peace. I've got the big Thanksgiving hoopla coming up, so I'm going to be doing the whole scrubbin' baseboards/defuzzing ceiling fans kind of cleaning anyway....might as well save all of it for then and just have an all-out love affair with Mr. Clean weekend.

I was going to give you proof of the City-O-Clutter, but decided to spare you from the pics. Not sure the gross chocolate milk spot is really what you are wanting to take a gander at.....

Now....all you perfect Keep-My-House-Lookin'-Like-A-Magazine mamas, go ahead and shudder, click over to a different blog, and don't give my sticky floor and Mt. Everest size pile of dirty jeans and smelly socks a second thought. All you mamas just like me......hope this makes you feel better about your own little messes.....we're all in this together!! *smile*


Fall Wonders

Look at my Fall babies....aren't they somethin'?

I wanted to join in, but someone had to hold the camera! And Kirk was being a party-pooper and wouldn't come play with us.....


What a Weekend...

My in-laws are internet-less. Grrrr......

What that means is that I just spent an entire weekend without my new favorite sidekick...my computer. I resorted to checking my facebook and a few blogs on Kirk's blackberry, but that just isn't the same. Besides, he kept hijacking his phone into the woods with him to hunt each day, so I didn't have 24/7 access......so frustrating.

We just got home from Missouri an hour ago, and I wasted no time in trying to catch up on all my connectivity. I've missed you all......

(Yes, I realize that I live in a sad little world where all my friends live in my computer....)


On a totally different note....our little community has experienced a lot of tragedy this weekend. Kirk and I were contacted about 3 terrible happenings; all leaving us in a crazy swirl of thankfulness for God's grace and provision and of wondering how things can get so bad for some people so fast. People's lives were spared miraculously this weekend and others' lives are hanging in the balance. You just never know....


I'm off to bed. I'm tired after a weekend of doing nothing (how is that?), but more tired after a long car ride complete with a Bug Juice catastrophe (that's a brand of kool-aide, for all you non-preschool-parents), a nasty McDonalds' experience, and an incident in the back seat that left Keaton with a black eye thanks to Sawyer. Whoever said road trips were good family bonding time were C-R-A-Z-Y!!!! They just leave the Goodrums agitated and grouchy.

I've got some cute pictures from the weekend...but I'm too sleepy to post them....I'll get them on tomorrow!


I'm Still Wiping Tears....Wanna Join Me?

I am home sick....yet again. Don't know what is up, but my immune system is having some serious issues adjusting to public school life. My kids are doing relatively well....it's just me. Go figure.

I'm about to settle in for a little snooze, but I wanted to pass this link on to you. This blog is one of my favorite ones to read. If you follow the Christian group Selah at all, then you may know the story of Todd, one of the singers. He has an incredible family, but they experienced an incredible tragedy this year when they lost their precious baby girl. His wife, Angie, records all her ups and downs in dealing with their loss and also expresses her incredible reliance on God. There are few things that I have read lately that draw me to my knees like Angie's blog. Her post from yesterday (click here) had me weeping. I'm still drying tears.

If you get a chance, check it out. It is such a beautiful image of love, grace, and what it means to walk this crazy road called life.....it is all to eventually get to this amazing place that we can only dream of right now.....an eternity with our Beloved Bridegroom.


Mighty Impressive

Let me just say how dern impressed I am at all my friends' culinary skills! You people know how to cook...or at least pretend that you do!!!

All the comments and recipes you left me are IMPRESSIVE! Whoa.

Thanks for all the help...I'm going to be making my menu/shopping list with my comment page in front of me!

Although, I think we all just need to pack up and come over to your houses....you guys have got some good stuff going on in your kitchens!!! :)


16 Days

16 days.

That's all I got. 16 days to learn to cook a turkey.....and clean my house.

Thanksgiving is at my house this year. What? I've never ever had a holiday at my house before. Come to think of it, I've never had ANYTHING at my house before. My house was full right after my kids were born, but I hardly call that entertaining. That is more just sleep deprivation mixed with people to wait on you hand-and-foot for a couple of days. I am not blessed with the gift of hospitality at all. God blessed me with lots of things, I know, but I am 100% sure that hospitality is not one of them. So, even though this is for MY family...this is still taking about all I got to hold it together!!

With my parents in the middle of their move, their house is off the docket for holiday hosting this year, so my sister and I are splitting up the get-togethers. She has Christmas; I got Thanksgiving.

So, I'm really excited about everyone coming, but I'm beginning to get a little nervous. Not sure why I'm nervous, since it is just my mom, dad, sister, and her family, but still a little anxious. I think it is my crazy need for perfectionism. It is never going to happen with this crew, but still. It's Thanksgiving....I want it to be just great.

So, in order for Thanksgiving to be all fine and dandy, I need to figure out this whole food situation. Here's the deal....I don't cook. At least not like that. My idea of meal planning is what one vegetable (which comes in a can) goes best with the mac-n-cheese (which comes in a box). Seriously. So, the thought of endless pots and bowls and platters is a little daunting to me.

I also have to figure out sleeping arrangements, entertainment options, and, oh no, menus for all the other meals. I think everyone is going to be here for at least 3 nights, possibly 4, so things are going to get really interesting around here really fast!

If you have have any suggestions or tips for holiday hosting or any super great recipes, please send them to me....I need all the help I can get! If you just want to send me your condolences...I'll take those, too!!


"I Willy Wuv You Doh"

My baby is growing up.

Hold on....let me find my Kleenex box before I go on.

There is something about having all your kids all so close together. I feel like I haven't stepped out of the baby stage for 9 years.... Today I realized that it is over.

God blessed me with Tate. Kirk and I were "finished" after Sawyer was born, but God thought it might be fun to throw us a curve ball. Boy, did he! What we got was this amazing little person that has so much personality and the ability to completely control a room just by one sly wink or flash of his mighty dimples. Although his personality is huge....his body is tiny (his shorts from the summer were 18 months....no kidding!!). It has been easy for me to not totally fall victim to the whole "my baby is growing up" thing because he is still so babyish in so many ways. He can't speak clearly......baby. He's teeny.....baby. He cries for his mama......baby.

Until today.

I had the wind almost completely knocked out of me when my teeny tiny angel face handed me this:

I was sitting at the table working on my jewelry and he came and handed me this piece of paper. I was expecting a scribble or doodle; not at all what I saw. I turned and looked at him and he was grinning from ear to ear; dimples just a shining. He said, "I wote you a wetta. It say I wuv my famuhwe. I willy wuv you doh." [Kleenex break]

I don't know where he learned to spell our names. I'm guessing he learned at school, but what gets me is that he knew enough to write them in a "letter" for me......Oh my heart.

Love letters from your child is not a baby thing. I am lucky enough to get love letters from Keaton and Sawyer all the time.....but from Tate? Oh my....

I will go to sleep tonight the mother of three very big boys.....oh, but how sweetly I will sleep!


Looking For My Black Mourning Suit

Tomorrow I become a widow. Around 4:30 in the morning to be exact. I have around 7 more hours of wedded bliss and then it will be over...for about a month.

I am getting ready to lose my husband to the deer woods.

Tomorrow is Opening Day of deer season here in Arkansas, and there is not much else that gets Kirk as excited as this particular day does. To him it is better than Christmas and birthdays. If our children would have held Fall due dates, I'm not sure that he would have shown up to the hospital for their births had it been deer season...or at least he would have shown up in full camo, smelling like the woods.

Around here....this is big stuff.

I guess he is ready for tomorrow. He engaged me in thrilling conversation over dinner tonight about which gun he has decided to hunt with first time out. He placed his new deer stand a week ago, and he is super excited about the "bungee seat" -- don't ask...I don't know. He has invested in deer urine and has his hunter's orange ready by the door. I offered to set the coffee pot, so that he would have some piping hot joe in the morning, but he declined....saying then he would just have to go to the bathroom and get off his stand. This is super serious business.

From now until the end of season, Kirk will be MIA. He will be in the woods every chance he gets. He'll go in the woods before work and he will be cleaning his gun and I'll be washing camo after work. Every day and weekend will be full of nothing but "I saw one," "His horns weren't big enough," "I missed him," or (hopefully) "I got a big one!"

Tomorrow......and so it begins!

Oh, and just because I think it is weird...here is a picture of the deer urine....can you see the picture on the bottle? Feels very strange that we purchased something that would involve that kind of thing!! :)


My Favorite 2.3 Miles

This is what I have the amazing privilege of driving through every day for a week or so each year. Our fall foliage season around here only lasts about that long, so we have to look really FAST at our beautiful leaves before they are replaced with bare branches.

I've been admiring my little piece of paradise for a couple of days now, and today, I was so lucky to have my camera with me. I whipped over on the side of the road, totally confused the man in the red pick-up behind me, and started snapping.

What you can't see is just around this corner lies a beat-up old trailer and some cars up on blocks...gotta love living in Arkansas! We take the beauty with the reality around here!!

I LOVE FALL.....so much!


I Voted, I Got Shot, and I Shoveled Some Zebra Poop

I have started this blog 3 different times.

Each time, I was trying to put a political spin on things, and then I just gave up. I have decided that I don't know enough about what I'm talking about so, then, I just end up looking dumb and extremely skeptical. Basically...I voted. I know enough to know what I believe in and I know which candidate (although he is FAR from my first choice) will most closely achieve that for our country. At least that is what I'm choosing to believe. Do I think the world is going to self-destruct if the "other" guy gets it? No. Because I believe in a God that is bigger than Obama and McCain and all their grand plans for this country. I believe in a God that is bigger than campaign finances, television air-time, and Joe-the-Plumber. It's all good...because my God is good. I would just like things to go my way!! :)

Now enough of all that....back to the important things going on around these-here-parts...

I had to get a shot in my rear-end yesterday. Oh yes. I have had this nasty, nasty infection thing going on. I think it started as allergies, but then quickly moved into a sinus thing. It is gross and I have felt like crud for a week. I went to the doctor yesterday and walked out with an armful of meds and a sore booty. When that nurse walked in with the shot, I started pulling up my sleeve. She said, "Oh, no...bend over." The only thing I knew to do was laugh.

The hottest thing around our house right now is Zoo Tycoon.

Have you ever played that game? Oh my gosh. So fun. Since I got this new computer, we cleaned off the hard drive of my old one and gave it to Keaton to play games on. He had fallen in love with Zoo Tycoon over at one of our friend's houses and has asked relentlessly for it. So, when he got the computer, we decided to let him buy the game. I didn't really think anything about it....until yesterday. I was home sick from work (and with a sore rear-end that was preventing any kind of household chores *wink*) and had checked FaceBook and all my blogs a gazillion times. So, I popped in his new game...just for something to do. TOTALLY HOOKED! It is this nifty little treat of designing the layout of your personalized zoo--buying exhibit items like fencing, trees, terrain, etc; animals; customer items like drink machines and restrooms; and hiring workers. If that wasn't enough, you are also required to "keep your animals happy." Oh My Stars.....ridiculously fun!! Kirk and I spent most of the night building a zoo together, and I can hardly wait till he gets home so that we can check on our animals. I did let one of my rhinoceroses escape by accident...not so good.

So....here is the summary...

  1. Go Vote! But, know God is bigger than all this stuff...
  2. Stay well, so that you don't have to hear the nurse with the Lee Press-On Nails say, "Bend over."
  3. Go build a zoo....so refreshing to just have to worry about what the chimps are eating and if there is too much poop in the zebra cage...


Around the World and Back Again...

My parents are getting ready to move....again. This time, supposedly, it is for keeps. My dad is retiring in December and they are going "home." Home to them is where they both grew up and where my grandparents have always lived. So, despite my great efforts to have them move near us (i.e. HELP ME WITH THEIR ROWDY GRANDKIDS), they are moving there in just a few short months. They've already found a house and are in that whole process of signing papers, boxing up their house, and trying to sell the house they are in now.

My parents moving isn't weird for me. Moving is just what they do. It is what we have ever done. What is weird for me about their whole transition is that this really probably is the last house they will live in. That never happens with our family.... The thought that my parents are going to be "settled" -- completely foreign concept.

My dad blogged a few days back about this whole transition period for them. Then, my sister went and did the same thing. Now I guess it is my turn....

My life has been nothing but one huge transition period. As a kid, we were always moving. Always experiencing something new. In fact, in the time that I've been married to Kirk, I've experienced more stability (as far as location) than I have in my whole life. I have lived longer in my house now, than I ever lived in a house as a kid. So bizarre. I have no idea what it is like to be one of those people that never moved out of their childhood home until it was time to go to college. My family never had door posts marked with the growing heights of me and my sister. And although my parents have TONS of stuff, it is all packed in boxes (ready for the next move), not stuffed in the corners of attics or the depths of a storage building.

I'm sure my math is going to be off by some, but I'm going to give it a shot....

In my lifetime:

  • I have lived in 3 different countries.
  • I have lived in 3 different states.
  • I have lived in 8 different cities (overseas and here in the US).
  • I have lived in 15 different houses (some weren't technically houses...one was a motel, one a guest house, one a dorm room, and one my grandma's house!).
  • I have been to 24 states (including Hawaii) and Washington D.C.
  • I have been to 14 countries (more if you can count only landing in the airport).
  • I have been to 3 continents (more if you count the airports!)
  • I have been to villages where the floors of the huts are made of mud, cow dung is used as firewood, and we ate our dinner (with our hands) off of banana leafs.
  • I have seen the Eiffel Tower, the Taj Mahal, and Mt. Everest.
  • I have learned 3 different languages (4 if you count Spanish in highschool...I really don't)
  • I have ridden elephants, seen cock fights (legal overseas!!), and had snake charmers charm their cobras in my driveways.
  • I have ridden in taxis, rickshaws, mini-buses, tuk-tuks, vans, cars, buses, trucks, small one engine planes, and huge jumbo jets.
  • I have been homeschooled, attended 2 International schools, 2 U.S. public schools, and 1 Baptist University.
  • I've had friends from every country imaginable.

My list could go on and on.

Looking over the list and thinking over what all my life has held...I'm extremely thankful for all my life experiences. They are just a part of me...nothing that I think about on a daily basis, because to me they are not that exotic. Other people are fascinated by the things I've been able to do and see. Me? Not really. Just grateful. Just grateful that in my parents answering a call to be obedient to the Lord, they were able to provide my sister and I with an incredible gift.

(Now here is my disclaimer...I totally stole this list thing from my sister's blog....Thanks, Mich!)


A Few of My Love/Hate Relationships (and these are just from today!)

I am hating that I am sick right now. I have this nasty sinus infection thing going on, and I feel rotten. I'm so ready to breathe again....
I am loving Day Light Savings Time. I don't really know why we have it, and really don't care, but I really love the whole Falling Back thing. That extra hour of sleep is SO nice, especially since I'm sick. Talk to me again in the Spring, and I will hate it.

I am hating that my dryer is out. I was just at the laundromat, but thanks to my family's compulsive need to change clothes a gazillion times a day, we are already piled back up... BUT...
I am loving that I have had no laundry to do this weekend. That is usually what dominates my Saturdays, so it was kind of nice to not have any to do.

I am hating that my kids didn't kill a deer this weekend. It was the Youth Hunt, and both of the bigger boys were dead set on killing one. (Tate is too little to hunt, but even if he was old enough, he is scared of the woods and won't go in them!) Both Sawyer and Keaton hunted yesterday, but came up empty. Sawyer went back out this morning, but still nothing. They were pretty disappointed.....
I am loving that my kids didn't kill a deer this weekend. It would have meant that I would have had to cut up the meat, and I'm really not in the mood.

I am hating that I need to go to WalMart and do my grocery shopping. We are out of EVERYTHING! I happened across a can of chicken noodle soup to eat for lunch, and you would have thought I struck gold. If it wasn't for all the Halloween candy, my family would starve....
I am loving....uh, can't think of anything that I love about grocery shopping. Nope. Just hating.

To make up for not having a "loving" on that last note, I'll insert this one:

I am loving my husband for giving me this computer! I know that I have said that a million times, but I'm still just so excited about ti!!! Love it, love it, love it!