Thursday, December 27, 2007

More Info on Christmas...

So, it has been a while since I have posted. I've been busy (along with the rest of the world).
Last Thursday, the boys had their school "holiday" party (to be Politically Correct). On Friday, we hung out as a family and watched the 2007 DVD I made (with pictures from the past year put to music) for Jeffrey. It was fun!
On Saturday, we met Jeffrey's family at Chuck E. Cheese (jealous?...ha ha!) for Ty's birthday. After CEC, we went to Toby & Michele's house for birthday cookie. After that, it was time to open Christmas presents with Papa Jerry. The boys were very excited! That night, they spent the night for a "Cousin Sleepover". Jeffrey and I had a quiet evening together and had breakfast out the next morning.
On Sunday, we went to Ft. Worth to see my grandparents. Jeffrey bought Granddad a t-shirt from A&M (G'dad had forgotten that Jeffrey went to A&M) and he put it on. I'm pretty sure that was the first t-shirt my granddad had ever worn I think!
On Monday, Jeffrey had to work (bummer). My parents got here around 1pm. Papa took the boys to see Alvin and the Chipmunks while mom and I got to get a mani/pedi! Yippee! After that, we went home to make dinner. We had tamales, enchiladas, and all the trimmings. Yummy! We all piled in the car and went to look at Christmas lights, got in our pjs, and then opened the boys presents from my parents. No church this year...don't tell anyone! We had limited time with my parents so we took advantage of it. Jeffrey gave me his "big" present. Guess what it was? He bound all of my blog entries for the past 1 1/2 years! Can you believe that??? So stinkin' thoughtful! I didn't even know he cared about my blog!!! I love having all the entries put together! He took off a day of work to do it. It took him 4 hours at Kinko's!! What a sweetie!!!
Jeffrey put the boys to bed as I frantically went with my dad to find some canned green beans! I had been to the store every day but forgot to pick up the green beans for the green bean casserole I was supposed to take to Mimi's house! Yikes! All grocery stores were closed! I e-mailed a few friends and Jean came through! She had frozen green beans which worked perfectly! Whew!
On Tuesday, the boys woke up at 5:45am (yes, I typed that correctly). They were excited to find their presents (see pictures) and we had a yummy "breakfast buffet" together. It was nice. At 11am, we went to Mimi and Pops house and said goodbye to Nana and Papa (they went to Memaw & G'dad's house). The kids were so excited to show their cousins their new presents and played until about 6pm!
Yesterday, we stayed in our pajamas all day long! Yes, I mean all day long! It was so great and relaxing (poor Jeffrey had to work!)! I even put away all the Christmas decorations!
But...Christmas isn't over yet! We still have Christmas with Mimi & Pops again on Sunday! Stay tuned for more pictures...

Christmas in Review...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

A Couple Pictures from the wedding...

Bridesmaid Tea Party

My friend, Lindsay, is getting married today. She is a teacher at Will & Jake's school, Will's teacher's roommate, and also goes to our church. I mentored her a little last year before she found "her man". She is precious and we share a love for tea. We thought it would be cute to have a Tea instead of a luncheon for her bridesmaids. Here are the pictures (I am very proud of my flower arrangements)....

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Watch This Video For Our Friends!

Our friends have entered a contest to win $25K! Watch this video to help them win!

Monday, December 10, 2007

First Concert

On Friday night, the boys went to their first Concert!! Point of Grace had a Christmas concert in Ft. Worth so we decided to go (along with some of our friends).
After driving in traffic for 1 hour and 45 minutes, we met our friends at Prima's (I think that was the name of it) for dinner.
Here are some pictures (I am not naming their names because they have stalkers)...

The boys are 6 weeks apart and we've been friends with their mom since I was a freshman in college. The kids love being together even when it is just 2 times a year or so! And, of course, Jake likes any pretty girl!!!

The Concert was great and the kids made it through most of it! We also decided to sponsor 2 more kids through Compassion International.

At intermission, we got to go backstage and talk to "the girls". It was so good to see them! They did a great always!!!

If you haven't heard of Point of Grace, you should check out this great! They're new album really is good. "You Are Good" (track #6, I think) is my favorite. Powerful words!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

What is a "Coach"?

People have been asking me what I've been doing.  "Well, I'm a 'Coach' for a fitness company", I reply.  As we start talking, I begin to explain that I get paid to workout!  Isn't that nuts?  I get paid to be healthy!  I get paid to be an example to others!  I sounds crazy!  It is true!
I try to live a healthy (albeit not PERFECT because I LOVE food that isn't good for steps) lifestyle and encourage others in their journey ( is a journey, isn't it?) to do the same.
It has been such a blessing to me and my family.  I didn't have to get a "job" because I'm making great money doing something I love!! 
The best part is, unlike any other "home based business" I've heard about, I don't have to sell ANYTHING to my friends OR have a "Home Party".  Yea!!!  My customers all come from the company.
So far, I have 1150 customers.  Only about 1 a week e-mail me with questions about the program so that part isn't difficult or time consuming.  So...I am kept accountable and get paid for doing it!  Yippee!
If you know of someone who would like to get paid for being an example to others...let me know!  If you are already working out...why don't you get paid for doing it?  If you need some accountability to get in shape,  why don't you get paid for doing it?  It is that simple!
Join me for changing our world to become more healthy!  Tons of my friends and family have joined me already!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Deceptively Disgusting

After probably 10+ hours of cooking last week...I've decided that I'm going to throw away the "Deceptively Delicious" cookbook away! Not only did I spend way to much time cooking...the food wasn't that good AND my children still cried about what I served! Ugh!
I'm sure it would be much better if my oldest was 4. There were some helpful suggestions, however, of what children need (fiber, etc.) and how to cook certain things to make them healthier. For now...I just need to make my kids eat veggies and have them get over it!
Here is what my kitchen looked like...

Taking pictures with Eli...

Monday, November 26, 2007

History of Round Top

20 years ago, our family started to go to Round Top. Round Top is a town (population 77) but we call the Round Top Retreat "Round Top". The Retreat started many years ago by Nick & Euphanel Goad. They had a house on some property in Round Top. People would ask if they could come stay at their house to get away from Houston. Maybe they were having marriage problems or stress...they just needed to get away. So, the Goads decided to put another house on the property...and then another...and then finally built the "Big House" (which is approximately 20,000 square feet). They moved to Round Top (from Houston) to run the Retreat full time.
My dad was a Singles' Minister at Houston's First Baptist Church. There were many families who didn't want to go home to family at Thanksgiving or didn't have family to go home to. There were also Single Adults who didn't have options either. So, we began celebrating Thanksgiving at Round Top. There could be up to 150 people for the meal and everyone brought their favorite Thanksgiving "side" to share. We've had so many great memories. Now, the Thanksgivings include the "core" families that started it 20 years ago and there were probably only 50 there this year. We've grown older and still enjoy the nostalgia and peacefulness that Round Top brings. There is always football on the front lawn, football watching in the back room, people enjoying conversations in the dining room or on the front porch in a rocking chair, and relaxation. Oh...and always a movie to go to in Brenham on Thanksgiving night and eating at Royer's on Wednesday night (YUMMY!).
My kids have loved Round Top. Will cried the night before we had to leave. They were the only children there but what fun they had! They couldn't wait to get there this year and are already talking about next year...just like I did 20 years ago!

Deceptively Delicious

My parents sent me a new cookbook called "Deceptively Delicious" to help me with mealtimes around our house. I don't know about your house, but my house doesn't like veggies (including my husband)!! Fruit is great but anything GREEN...YIKES!!!
Jessica Seinfield came out with this smart book which has you puree veggies and fruits into kid friendly meals. Genius!
So, I spent an hour or so baking and pureeing yesterday. I made two different muffins (Applesauce and Peanut butter with Banana) and neither one was a big hit! Ugh! The didn't like the "seeds" on the Applesauce Muffins (which were oats). The peanut butter ones looked "icky". Oh, Lord...please help me!
This morning, I tried again with scrambled eggs with cauliflower. Not good. They even smelled bad to me! I tried them and would concur...yuck!
BUT, I'm not giving up! There are several more recipes I want to try. Tonight will be another test! I'm headed to the grocery store. Wish me luck!

Sexiest Weatherman

(You'll have to turn off the music from the slide below to get the full funny!)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

November In A Nutshell... has been over 2 weeks since my last post. I think I'm still recuperating from Fall Festival!
Soccer is over and now we have our Saturdays back. Almost 2 weeks ago Alexy from Penza, Russia was in town and we were able to go to dinner with him. He and his wife stayed with us a few years back and it is always a treat to see him! They are returning at the end of December and may stay with us again. They work with orphans by helping them assimilate to "real life" when they get out on their own (i.e. how to cook, relationships, taking care of children, etc.).
Jake had his Turkey Feast and he looked so cute! The turkey was in the stuffing and he seemed a little confused in the lunch line. He tried it, though.
We headed to Houston last Sunday. We got to see Papa teach in The Woodlands and then have lunch at The Cheesecake Factory (Will's favorite) with the Aulds and my college roommate, Eileen. The Woodlands is so stinkin' cool! We rode on the water taxi and walked around.
On Monday, we got to have lunch with two of my high school friends and their kids. So fun!
On Tuesday, we went ICE SKATING! It was great! After skating, we headed to Round Top, Texas (population 77) where we have spent Thanksgiving for most of the past 20 years.
Wednesday's weather was beautiful and the boys enjoyed playing soccer, football, and riding their bikes.
Thanksgiving was a bit chilly so we didn't get out very much to play. We did, however, go in town (to Brenham) to see Enchanted (which I loved...because I'm cheesy and that is OK!).
Friday, the boys went with Jeffrey to March In at Texas A & M (and I stayed back to shop with my mom in Brenham).
We came home yesterday. The boys were so sad. Will cried and wrote a sweet note to my parents and the owners of the Retreat Center...all on his own! We didn't even tell him too! Amazing!
So...that, my friend, is what we've been a nutshell!

Funny Card from my birthday...


Saturday, November 10, 2007

Apostle Paul

I have a confession to make...
10 years ago I did a bible study called Bible Study Fellowship. We studied Romans and I didn't like it. I like the bible study and the people it in but I didn't like Paul (the writer of the book). I found him to be arrogant and brash. I know...I shouldn't admit that but it is true.
Craziest thing...
I'm studying Romans again. This time, it is an abbreviated version of what Community Bible Study is doing. Basically BSF and CBS are the exact thing.
Can I tell you how much I'm enjoying it? Not once have I thought that Paul is arrogant or brash. I have been humbled and have learned so much! I guess that is what was meant when it is written "God's word will not return void." God is teaching me so much and changing my insides. Not only has he changed the way I view Paul, He has also changed the way I view myself. Whew! I need some work...I'm finding out I'm quite brash and arrogant myself...but not in Paul's loving, Christlike way!

Finding Myself

No...I'm not leaving my family to go "find myself". It is just kind of the stage I am in right now. It has nothing to do with my relationship with Christ, either. I know WHO I AM and WHOSE I AM. It just has to do with Who I Am apart from my children.
As you know, I'm solo most of the day these days. It is a weird feeling! For 7 1/2 years I had someone who was attached to me for almost all of the time. I remember how weird I felt becoming a mom. It was so odd. I didn't have my job any more for my identity. I was now a mom and I didn't know what this new identity would feel like. It was a hard adjustment to say the least.
So, now I am in the same predicament. I have a new identity...Stay-at-home-Elementary-Children- Mom. I now am figuring out that I can do some of the things I haven't been able to do in the past 7 1/2 years. I can take Guitar Lessons (I haven't done that yet but I'm working on finding a teacher). I can play tennis (started that last week...played 3 times this week). I can go have lunch with friends whatever day I want and not have to rush (oops...did that a few too many times last week). I can volunteer at the school (I'm helping with this amazing program the school is doing called Motor Lab and just finished Fall Festival...whew! I'm tired!). I can go to bible study without worrying about how long it takes from my day. I can workout at home without interruption.
So many new experiences! Most days I feel guilty about being able to "Find Myself". I wish Jeffrey had the same opportunity but maybe his identity didn't change as much as mine did. I don't know...
I just know I'm enjoying this time.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Great Article...

Ok...if you've been married for a while you know you CAN NOT change your spouse. If you've been a human being for a while, you know you CAN NOT change other people's actions. This is a great article my friend found to help urge others to change without cramming it down their throats! These are helpful ways to help others change to a healthy lifestyle. I need to do these things more often in my life if I'm to be an example...

Help Your Loved Ones Stay Healthy

Random Acts of Fitness, Nutrition and Health
-- By Mike Kramer, Staff Writer

If you’re not comfortable with talking to loved ones about the touchy subjects of health and weight loss, you can still help them lead healthier lives by practicing “random acts of fitness.” There are dozens of small things you can do every day to make healthy living as easy as possible. Sometimes, you end up helping create good habits without them even realizing it.

And in the true spirit of being a positive force, when you give your time and energy with any of these random acts, you get just as much in return.

Some ideas (in random order of course):
Keep a variety of foods in the kitchen.
Make sure you talk to them about other things besides weight loss and fitness.
Stock kitchen with healthy cookbooks, leaving them where people can find them.
Get the junk food out of the house.
Plan an active activity after dinner.
Make it a habit to play outdoor games together.
Plan a cooking date.
Cook at least three times a week for the household.
If you already cook, cook healthier foods for the family.
Maintain an upbeat attitude.
Invite them to take part in a fundraiser that supports something important to all of you.
Get a physical and urge them to do the same.
Give “active” gifts, like personal training packages, a bicycle, roller blades, etc.
Make a bet.
Use positive language all the time.
Be straight up and let them know you’re concerned about their health.
Start a garden that you can work on together.
Plan a “surprise” hike.
Suggest walking more than driving.
Take everyone on a canoe trip.
Make their exercise a priority. Wash their gym clothes without being asked, do a chore for them so they have time. Make it easy for them.
Sneak healthy snacks and a friendly note (maybe even a love note) into their lunch, briefcase, jacket pocket or purse.
Prepare their favorite dish in a healthier way.
Opt for activities as an excuse to spend time together.
Ask them to help you stay on track.
Turn off the TV and hide the remote.
Give big, positive attention to changes that are made.
If it’s your turn to pick, choose a healthy restaurant or one that’s within walking distance.

Friday, November 02, 2007

"You're Fired"

(To quote Donald Trump)

Yes, I was FIRED! The P.C. (politically correct) term is "Terminated". Yes, I was terminated from my substitute teaching for LISD. I'm not kidding!! I was fired before I even started! They said because I didn't sub the whole month of October (I've been busy...not sure with what...but I really have), they needed to terminate my employment. I've never been fired before. It was pretty funny!
Thank goodness for MDB. At least I didn't need the substitute job...I have enough coming in from MDB to make Jeffrey happy (and pay for Christmas presents...yippee)!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Happy Halloween

We had friends over last night for "Cheap Pizza" and Fun!
Here was me getting ready for the party:(Yes, I am cleaning the toilets. I thought it was appropriate. It really shows who I really am! Hee! Hee!) I am wearing the hat the boys bought me for Mother's Day last year. It is a Disney Princess appropriate. Don't you think?

Here are all the was wild to say the least!!! The boys are dressed as Obi Wan and Luke Skywalker (Jedi from Star Wars...if you didn't know who that was). I made the capes this past summer with my mom. The rest was just put together. Why are they so stinkin' cute?

We were so tired afterwards. I think we went to bed around 9...which felt like 1am! We were out of candy pretty quick this year. Fun times!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Tennis Drills happened! I got sucked into the world of tennis. I fought it...hard...but it won! I finally went to my first "tennis drills" today. I was so mad...I LOVED IT! I really didn't want to like it but I did. Ugh!
Now I can't wait to get back on the court. Darn you, tennis!

Weekend with Friends and Family

This weekend was fun! We had dinner Friday night with Jeffrey's dad, sister, & brother-in-law at a hole in the wall called Chilito's. It wasn't bad food...pretty good!
On Saturday, I had the Super Saturday Event. I had to leave early because of Jake's soccer game.
Here is a picture of me and Melissa (we had spent all of Thursday together...which was so much fun!).
My brother and Laura (his wife) met us at the game (along with Mimi & Pops). You should have seen Jake's face when we cheered for him. He would just stand there and look at us with a huge grin on his face! He didn't know what to do with all the attention!! We then went to Snuffer's (OK...I worked out 11 days straight...I needed an reward!) and walked around Southlake. Will had a game at 4:45pm which was a lot of fun, too! He played super hard (I think to show off for his Uncle John Mark). That night, we had smoothies from Jamba Juice (to counter act the Snuffer's cheese fries).
On Sunday, I got to sing at Kids' Village and we went for a LONG walk to the park (I think we walked for 1 1/2 hours...yikes!). We went to dinner last night at Applebee's (a first for us) was OK...not sure I'll go back, though.
That was our weekend in a nut shell! Monday came way too soon!

Pumpkin Patch...Revisited

Ok...I saw all the cute pictures of my friends' kids at the Pumpkin Patch so I decided to try it one more year. Let me just kids are officially too old. So sad!
Here are some cute pictures, though.
Can you tell they didn't want to take pictures?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Find out what it means to me!"
Obviously, music is on the brain and I've now officially done way too many posts in one day! Sorry!
I had to "brag" real quick!
This month's Core Value at school is Respect. Guess who got the award for his class? WILL!!! We are so proud of him! He even got a free kids' meal to chick-fil-a which was used very quickly (CFA is a staple food in our home).
Will also got the Hawkeye Award which is awarded to one person from each class who shows kindness, is a good student, etc. each six weeks. Way to go, Will!
If that wasn't enough...he also got the Honor Roll (this is the first year they get that) for this 6 weeks! (He obviously gets that from his dad since his lowest grade was a 97)
AND...Perfect Attendance (which was an even bigger deal to him than all the rest...pretty funny, huh?)!!

Jake did super for his first 6 weeks in school, too! His grades were great, he got all greens for the month (didn't have a color change...a BIG deal to kindergarteners), and also got perfect attendance! Way to go, Jake!

Field Day

Here are some cute pictures from Field Day/Jog-a-thon last Friday. You can tell that Will is just like his mom...BOSSY! They both had a great time...of course! They could leave early (at 2pm) and go home with me. They didn't want to...they wanted to stay at school and ride the bus home. What? Who wants to stay at school? Obviously, they are doing great in school...just like their dad....SMART!


"First Class, Up In the Sky, Drinking Champagne, Living the Life..."
Well, not doing any of these things but I had to tell you a cute story!
For my birthday, the boys wanted to get me a Fergie purse (because they know how I like Fergie and do they!)! Yes, she has her own line of purses. Jeffrey couldn't find them in time but brought home one for me two days ago.
Here is what it looks like: Is that not the ugliest thing you have ever seen? Jeffrey said it was the cutest of them all. Guess how much it cost? $148!!! I am not kidding!!! Fergie can sing great but her taste is not so "GLAMOROUS". The material is like something you would expect from JC Penney's (no offense JP) in the junior's department. It will be going back to Dillard's....

10 Day Slim Down

Melissa and I started a 10 Day Slim down last Tuesday. I can already see results! We're doing Turbo Jam and it is really fun! Two nights ago I couldn't sleep because the music kept playing in my head! Ugh! Can't wait to see what happens at the end of 10 days (well, it might be closer to 12 Days)! Here is what I am talking about:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Super Saturday Event

Want to find out more about what I am up to these days? Join me for some fun!!! It's FREE!!! Who can pass up FREE lunch?

My Own Money

It has been almost 8 years since I've had "my own money". I know...Jeffrey's money is my money and vice-versa BUT I haven't contributed monetarily to the "pot" since Will was born. Thankfully, that has changed!
With helping people through Million Dollar Body, I have been able to make "my own money". I now have my own business account which is SO MUCH FUN! I enjoyed getting my hair done (which costs $120...did you know that? crazy!), buying some new clothes (I love Forever 21!), going to visit my friend Melissa in Iowa, and taking my friends to lunch.
My goal now is to save money to purchase all the Christmas presents this year (Jeffrey has a BIG family so it gets expensive)! Isn't that cool? I am so grateful! I get to do something I love AND help my family out while doing it! It is nice to see work pay off. I now have over 1000 customers that I can help achieve their weight loss goals while they help me do the same (I was able to cancel my $100/month gym membership because I love doing the MDB workout videos at home). Pretty fun, huh?

Sick Boy and a Toddler

Jake is sick! He started complaining yesterday (on our way to Will's soccer practice) that he had a sore throat. He said it had started hurting the day before (why didn't he tell me?) I immediately thought, "Strep". Will was the exact same age when he started getting strep throat (and he has had it several times). October is the month when my kids ALWAYS get sick (March is another month). It must be something in the air. Most Halloweens my kids have had fever so we've spent them inside...watching the kids come and go while we sat inside.
We took Jake to the doctor last night and sure enough...he had "strep". Jeffrey said the nurse and the doctor said, "Eew" when they looked in his throat. Poor thing! He inherited getting strep from his mom (I finally had my tonsils out when I was almost 24). So, he is home today and very sad. He wanted to go to "Computer" today (which is the "specials" class for the day). No fever today yet but we'll keep you posted.

I have a toddler in the house. Did you know that? He is 13 months old and is into everything. I can't keep my eyes off of him because he will get into everything! He has to be occupied every second. The object is to wear him out so he sleeps well at night so we spend time going on walks 2+ times a day. He does nap pretty well so that is good. He still tries to wake up around 5:30am but we've managed to keep him in bed until around 6:30am. He can't go past that time because he is ready for his day to begin. Unfortunately, my "toddler" is my dog Eli. I do not have the patience I would if he was another child but lately it feels like we have another child. I wish I would have just had another child...

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Happy Birthday to Me!

Yesterday was my 34th birthday! Can you believe it? I woke up with my children and husband in my face with presents and cards!! What a great way to start your day!! After I opened the presents to find some cutie pie shoes (black pumps) picked out by my eldest son and a cute dress (brown banana republic dress) picked out by my husband, we were off to CB (our code for Corner Bakery which just opened on Monday) to have some breakfast. Yummy!
I dropped off the boys and headed home to go for a run with Eli! I thought about how I wanted to have some time with God outside enjoying His beauty. When I got home, I found a "surprise" left by Eli in his cage! Ugh! Not on my birthday!!! I put his leash on and headed for the "hills" to run. He threw up twice on my run but I kept running (I know...I'm mean...but he has a weak stomach and just ate something bad). When it started to get a little watery from the other end...I decided it was time to take him to the vet! So, that put me late for my birthday events! I bathed him, bathed myself, and took him to the vet. They let me drop him off (thank goodness) and I was hopeful I would never see him again (just kidding...kind of).
My sweet friend Julie picked me up after I finished getting dressed and we ran to the Nike store to return some things and I got my first tennis skirt! I'm going to drills on Monday...wish me luck!
Then, we were off to Brio in Southlake for lunch. I organized my own birthday lunch. I know that is so way dorky BUT I wanted an excuse to hang out with my friends...all of them. Sharon (my cousin), Julie, Shelly, Jean, and Sara were able to come (others sent their best wishes but couldn't make it) and we had so much fun! Thank you, girls!
Can I tell you how many calls and e-mails I got from my sweet friends (and family) all over the country (even my high school friends)? I am so blessed! Thank you so much for making me feel special on "my day"!!
Last night, we went to Uncle Julio's for dinner after picking up Eli at the vet (who was fine but had just eaten something that made his stomach upset...but who has a double ear infection). Yummy again! Did I say I ran that morning?
Anyway, it was a great birthday! Thank you again for making it so special!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

I've Been Tagged...but I can't play the game!!!

I've been tagged by my sweet friend Kim. Unfortunately, I am unable to play the game. When Jeffrey set up my blog, he said I wasn't allowed to write about him. So, the questions from the game are all about him. Sorry! I will ask him again if I can so stay tuned!

Terry The Turtle

Terry the Turtle spent the weekend with us this past weekend. Terry gets to go home with a lucky student each week from Jake's class. You take him with you all weekend and then do a scrapbook at the end to tell about your adventures. Here are some pictures (I can't begin to tell you how hard it was to get these on this computer!)

Help! I have a new computer!!

Have you missed me? Well, I am now back and somewhat running. Why somewhat, you ask? I have a new computer and it doesn't like me!
Background...2 Sundays ago my sweet husband decided to add memory to my computer. He was dying to get a new one but the sensible side in him said, "Just put in more memory and it will be fine." I'm not sure if it was the "putting in the new memory" or the "vaccuuming out the inside" that did it fried the mother board (I don't really even know what a mother board is but that is what the guy from the Geek Squad said it was). Bless Jeffrey's heart! I really don't think he did it on purpose (although he has been drooling over the new Apple computers for some time now).
So, we bought a refurbished Apple from the Apple site. I have not used an Apple since college and it is giving me fits! Crazy! I don't like change and this is a BIG ONE!
I have pictures to post but I don't know how to get them on the computer...sorry! Maybe I'll learn soon.
I don't have a calendar (because it was on my last computer) so if I miss a scheduled event...sorry!!
I am sort of out of sorts!!
Please be patient...I have a new computer!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

We've Got Spirit...Yes We Do...We've Got Spirit...How about YOU?

Friday was a big day! Jake had his first play date with his whole class at our house! He was so excited! To count down the days, he made a list of all the kids in his class who were coming to the party. He said he would mark them off the list when they arrived. That morning, he asked me if I would have on a purple dress for the party. I don't have a purple dress but he went to the closet to pick out the perfect dress for me to wear (the boys are really into me wearing is really quite funny...I think it is the novelty of it since I am the only girl in the house).

10 kids came to the party and Jake was in heaven. They waited outside for each child to arrive. He would announce to me, "We have a new customer" as each one came inside. It was pretty cute! Mrs. Williams (their teacher) came to the party, too! You would have thought she was a rock star!!! It was so crazy that I forgot to take pictures...but I'm not sure I could have gotten them together long enough to take pictures...they were too busy playing!

That night we went to the new Shops at Highland Village. We were quite disappointed! None of the yummy restaurants were open yet and the "fun activiites" they promoted weren't that great either. So, we went to dinner at Village Grill with our friends the Lasaters. The funny thing was that Will got dressed up (he has this one shirt he thinks is "fancy" is a soccer jersey) because we were going to be with his friend who is very "special" to him...his BEST friend...who is NOT his "girlfriend" but a girl that is his friend. Hmmm? Why doesn't he dress up for the other people? Pretty cute!

We frantically tried to finish Will's project. He was to replicate a store in HV, Lewisville, or Flower Mound. He picked the new Corner Bakery (although it still isn't open yet...ugh!). We tried to make a gingerbread house ourselves but it fell apart. We went to Plan the kit! Here is how it turned out:

After that, we had to paint their faces (since we wouldn't do it the night before b/c there was a long line). Don't they have team spirit?

Will's team is Chaos & Jake's team is the Jaguars. They had fun at their games...neither one won but they looked cute (and they both played hard) so that is all that matters!

This weekend, I sang in Kids' Village (which is so fun). After this morning's services, we went to Southlake to eat at Snuffer's since our new Snuffer's isn't open yet. It is probably a good thing...I still need to lose a few pounds in order to get to my 2007 goals before 2008 begins...I only have 3 months! Yikes! Cheese Fries w/Bacon doesn't really help!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Somewhere In Middle America

(This is REALLY long but I just wanted to put down for myself all that I did and don't have to read it...but feel free)
There is a song sung by Counting Crows called Omaha. It talks about it being "Somewhere In Middle America" and that song (or at least that part) rang through my mind this weekend while I ventured to "Middle America". I flew from DFW to Minneapolis to Rochester and then drove 1 1/2 hours to Decorah, Iowa. Melissa picked me up at the airport and we headed south to Decorah (which is about 15 minutes from the Minnesota border). We made a stop at the "Kwik Mart" and got some refreshments. Melissa showed me the "Cheese Curds" which are famous there (from Wisconsin). I realized I was no longer in Texas (however, they did have Diet Dr. Pepper in the fountain drink selection)!
The country side was beautiful. The leaves were changing and the smell of cattle would waft through the car every once in a while. The corn had already been harvested and dried stalks remained. The rolling hills, barns, silos, and John Deere tractors were something out of a picture book...but the picture book was just starting to unfold. We drove into the valley where Decorah was. The rolling hills with trees of red, green, orange, and gold surrounded. It was breath taking.
I am from Texas and small towns that I drive through on my way to Dallas, Austin, or Colorado are...OLD. Time has forgotten them and they seem like ghost towns of yesterday. It is really sad. So, that is what in my mind I picture a small town...especially one with the population of 8,000 (10,500 if you count the students at Luther College).
Decorah is much different. A river runs through the town and the downtown is a strip of cute, well-maintained store fronts. (Yes...I felt like I was in Mayberry and Andy Griffith was going to pop up at any time!!!)
We went to Melissa's house first and stopped by to say "hi" to Robert & Ty. Then, we headed downtown to visit "Trendz" (her store which I've been dying to shop at for 3 1/2 years!). It was so cute. I couldn't get over it! After that, we headed back to their house to play baseball with Ty before the storm rolled in.
For dinner, we went to Melissa's parents' house. It was amazing! Full of all the bells and whistles with a gorgeous bird's eye view of the town. We ate pizza and fried cheese curds before heading to the high school homecoming football game. Mind you...I was not in Texas. The school has 120 in each graduating class so the stadium was as small as junior high field in Texas. There was a band and cheerleaders but no drill team (Melissa and I were both in drill team in high school). After half time, we headed back to Melissa's house.
The next morning, Melissa and I took a long walk around the town which included the campus, the river, and cool homes. After the walk, we went to the Farmer's Market to buy some bread, fresh whole wheat pasta, cookies, etc. These were the farmers who grew them! So neat! There was no fresh herbs because of the freeze they had had a few weeks prior. After the Farmer's Market, we walked next door to Bryson's tag football game. After the game, we showered and headed downtown for lunch (Delicious coffee shop with the best herb pasta and sandwich I had ever had!), shopping, and helping at the Parent's Weekend reception that Melissa's store had a booth.
We then went for a bike ride with Melissa's mom (Jolene). What a beautiful ride! It was so relaxing! Then, we got dressed to go to dinner at La Rana. Can I tell you how YUMMY that dinner was? We shared Hummus (Ok...that was my first time to eat it and it was delish), Bruchetta, and Fennel Salad w/Candied Walnuts. The flavor was incredible. Then, we split a pasta dish and the "special" which was Pork Loin with Brie cheese and chutney & brussel sprouts over couscous. Oh, my!!! The flavor! I've never had a meal that flavorful...and I live in Dallas and used to live in Houston! You can't get better cuisine than that! (Or maybe it has been a long time since I've gone to a really good restaurant...the chain restaurants around me have seen my family too much lately). We had a great meal!
The next day, we went to the store to get some goodies for our canoe ride. Before the canoe ride, we had brunch at the college. Beautiful campus! Then, got dressed and headed out for the canoe ride. So fun! I'll have pictures soon...those were taken with a disposable camera. That night, we had hamburgers and (of course) CORN! You can't be in Iowa w/o experiencing it!
On Monday, we went for a walk and then got dressed for an early lunch and then shopping at Trendz where I bought such cute things!!! After that, it was time for our drive to the airport. My flight was delayed in Rochester and in Minneapolis so it took longer to get home than expected. The kids were sad that I didn't make it home in time but we've spent quality time together today (I took them both out for lunch today).
So...what can I say? I understand why my friends live in Decorah (although there was no snow at the time). It is a great town...full of art, beauty, and peaceful living. I now understand why people rent RVs to drive around this country...there really are some amazing parts and I hope to one day see more of this great country (and less of the drive from Dallas to Raton, NM).


This is the slide show from my trip to Decorah, Iowa. I left on Friday morning and got home around 10:15pm last night (due to the delay at the airport). I have so much to write as I process what Decorah, Iowa is...

For now...enjoy the pics!