Monday, November 30, 2009

Awesome time with family...and it didn't even make me wanna chew the inside of my jaw

To say that I thoroughly enjoyed my week off would be an understatement. On Monday, Kate and I headed to Chick-fil-A for lunch and to play on the playground there. I've found that if I do the Chick-fil-A playground time, I can squeeze in a completely unneeded Target run.

I love the dollar spot at Target. I wanna date it, get engaged, and marry it. I can find so many awesome things there that I never knew I needed (and essentially still don't actually 'need'). I can stroll down the first little aisle and "Bam"! The dollar spot has now turned into the twenty buck spot. But seriously, Christmas hand towels for a buck? Essential, wouldn't ya say? Little cardboard Christmas books with squeaky Santa's that don't quite squeak properly? Throw 'em in the buggy already!

We had a great day, but I really can't quite get past how awkward it is to sit in that little play area at Chick-fil-A and share a bench with someone you've never met, all the while just kind of smiling and laughing and asking how old every one's children are. What's really awkward is when it's just you and a random dad. Sometimes small talk is difficult, especially when I haven't had caffeine that day. This whole cutting back on caffeine thing, although totally worth it for my precious lil' baby, is really killin' me....and my personality! Dang, I never realized what a sleepy, somewhat quiet (ok maybe not quiet, but quieter) little person I was without my Diet Coke and other precious caffeinated nectars. I'll never forget that right after giving birth to Kate, the nurse came in and asked if she could get me some water, juice, or ice cubes and I just looked at her and said, "No thank you. But I'd love a big, fat Diet Coke in a Styrofoam cup with lots of ice, please."

After our little playdate, we came home and got everything ready to decorate our tree...but not before Kate and M to the Izz-A did a little fishing.

This is the earliest I've decorated for Christmas, but I figured I'd better get it done when I was off work or we'd be trying to throw it together the week before...and then I'd want to leave it up 'til February because I hate to put so much effort into something only to see it torn down shortly after.
This year we all helped decorate. Kate even hung a few of her paci's on the limbs for extra decoration. Cutest ornament I've ever seen.

Our favorite part

Our Thanksgiving was great. We spent the actual holiday with Matt's family, but also got to visit with family, who were down from South Carolina, the days following.

Kate and Kennedy love Grammy's farm

And because I was too lazy to move this picture after it was so randomly placed here, I left it. It's my mom and dad sharing a big hug with Kate and me....right after the Gators stuck it to the Seminoles. That's one reason we're smiling so big. Oh, and if my eyes look a little red in the pic, it's because I cried during on of the dadblame holiday commercials that aired during the game. Gotta love those hormones.
Now, where were we...

And of course my sisters and I headed out bright and early for Black Frizzy. It turned out to be a successful venture, but more than that, the time we shared together was what made the day so great. These gals make me smile and laugh 'til I get the hiccups.

In other news, M to the Izz-A is remodeling our laundry room. Well, I say remodeling, but really, I'm thinking that maybe I should leave off the re- and just say 'modeling'? Because technically the room was never finished from about three years ago. And for some reason, which I will be forever grateful for, he has decided to finish it. Maybe I'll post pics when it's finished. But a laundry room is pretty much a laundry room...not sure you'll be too interested in all that.
And before I go, I just wanna briefly share how completely in awe I am of my Lord and Savior. He's been talking and dealing with me on several things lately, and I've really seen Him at work in my life, and the life of my family. And on this Thanksgiving, I'm feeling particularly thankful for Him and what he's doing in my heart. It's not about me. It's about Him and others. Things I thought mattered, simply don't. I'm thankful that He's opening my eyes to what really matters in this life. It's not about me, Lord. It's all of about You. Thank you for turning my 'I already know everything heart' into a 'teachable heart'. But most importantly, thank you, Lord, for your grace and mercy.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Playin' catch up

Talk about being gone for a while....

You know it's been a while when your last post was about Halloween and your next one is about Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The good news is that I'm finally getting my energy back. When I was pregnant with Kate, I came home everyday after work and took a good two-hour nap before M to the Izz-A got home. The commonly asked question of, "What did we do with ourselves before we had kids?!" can easily be answered with one word: sleep. Now with a two-year old, the word nap is unheard of... so I've had to suck it up and take the first trimester exhaustion like a champ. Well, I wouldn't say I've taken it like a champ, but I've taken it.
Like a big cry baby.

But I do feel like I'm back, for the most part. And every time I say that, whether it be just in my head or to someone else, I always end up singing that part of an old Eminem song...'guess who's back? Back a-gain.' Then I get a lil' embarrassed with myself, even though no one could hear me singing it in my head. How do you get embarrassed in front of yourself?!
One part about being pregnant that I love is that I can finally grow fingernails. I've never had good fingernails. They've always been thin and broke before getting even decent looking. And my cuticles? Well, they've got a rougher history than my poor nails. But thanks to the prenatal vitamins, my nails and cuticles are seeing better days. I actually have to trim my nails now to keep them at a workable length. I don't really like myself with long nails, just long enough to reach the end of my finger. I prefer short and neat, especially when I wear dark nail polish...and speaking of nail polish, my three favorite nail polishes of the moment are pretty dark: Pat on the Black, Chocolate Truffle, and No Shrinking Violet. I'd love to have the job of naming polishes and lipsticks. Sometimes just the name of a polish will make me wanna buy it. I'm a tough sale, huh?

Speaking of dark, I've decided against going dark with my hair this winter. I usually do, but over the past couple of years, I've skipped that mistake in my life. Plus, everyone always says not to do anything drastic with your hair while you're pregnant, your hormones will somehow make you hate it. Not that this has to do with color, but I remember getting my hair cut to my shoulders right after having Kate and someone at church greeted me with, "Aw, your hair looks went ahead and got yourself a mom haircut huh?" Never again.

Can you tell that I'm not even really sure what to write about in this post?? It's pretty random...and pretty lame if you ask me. I apologize for that. I'm just trying to catch up...
We put up our Christmas lights last night on the outside of our house and tonight we're supposed to decorate our tree. I'm hoping everyone will help to the very end. Last year, M to the Izz-A and Kate went to bed and I did most of it myself, which was just as well, because Matt would hang every ornament on one limb if he could.
I made a new holiday treat yesterday that I wanted to share with you all. It's super easy and there's no 'real' baking involved. It's just putting together a few things.
1 box of Ritz crackers
1 package of white almond bark (vanilla - but it tastes like white chocolate to me)
peanut butter
1 large bag of Reeses Pieces
wax paper
-Spread peanut butter in between Ritz crackers (like sandwiches) and make as many as you'd like. I used two sleeves of crackers. Set aside on wax paper.
- Crush a large bag of Reeses Pieces and set aside. This part was the most tedious...because I used one of my drinking glasses and just started banging away. I'm thinking there's a better way. Food processor?? Hello!
-Melt the almond bark (Candi-Quik)
-Dip your Ritz cracker peanut butter 'cookies' into the melted almond bark and make sure they're completely coated on all sides. Return to wax paper.
-Now, you can either pour the Reeses Pieces into the melted almond bark before dipping the crackers in or wait to sprinkle them on at the end. I think it's better to wait and sprinkle them on the top. But make sure you do it as you go, so that the almond bark doesn't dry before you add the Reeses. You want them to stick! And I say 'sprinkle', but it's more like I dump a fat handful on top.... the more the better. And the colors of the Reeses Pieces are perfect for the Thanksgiving holiday!
They turn out delicious. I took them to our weekly Sunday gathering at my cousin Ben's last night and left with an empty tray. But I also ate a few before leaving for church....

I'm off work all this week and couldn't be happier about it. I love being able to stay at home with Kate.
It just feels so right.

I love it when she smiles that big smile.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Who knew that Captain Jack Sparrow rides a pink beach cruiser?

Halloween was so much fun this year. Even though it was way too hot, Kate was old enough to enjoy all of the festivities and say, "Trick or treat!" And on top of it all, we got some really good candy, none of that 'made just for Halloween and doesn't even have a name' candy. Score!

She thought the pumpkin needed some hair.

A lil' left over Ranch dressing from dinner on the finger...because we decided to pick up some fried chicken and eat outside while we carved. Multi-tasking at its best.

On Saturday night we joined our family and friends for a hayride and trick or treating. M to the Izz-A, my cousin Ben, and our friend Clay decided to ride bikes behind us as we drove to my aunt's subdivision nearby. Why? Who knows?! They can never do anything normal. It turned out to be a great idea however, because they were able to ride the kids around a little so that they didn't get worn out too quickly. Turn in early? Never! Mama's on a mission for some Shock Tarts and Butterfingers!

Cousin Kennedy and Kate

My aunt's dog, Rocky, was a horse for Halloween. See the cowboy saddled up on his back?

Grandma and her granddog, Rocky

Thanks for this pic Mrs. Peg!! It's my favorite!

One of the greatest highlights of our weekend was Saturday's FL/GA game. The Gators showed the Dawgs what was up, as predicted! I love my Orange and Blue. Winning against a big rival feels good...and tends to make those monthly grad school loan payments a little less painful. Anyone feel me on that one?!
Unfortunately Georgia's black helmets didn't help them out as much as they had hoped.
Maybe next year they should try pink?!