Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Football Fan's Prayer

As I think everyone knows now, HJ is an avid football fan. Well really any sport will do, but he likes football the best. He talks, watches, and runs around the house "playing" football any chance he gets. He would rather watch Sportscenter than cartoons or anything else. However, the following is a first for him.

Well tonight, HJ was saying his prayer. He went thru his usual thanking God for family, friends, teachers and asking him to watch and protect them (he has to list each person individually). He then went on to say "and thank you God for the football players: Peyton Manning, Tony Romo, and Brett Farve; and please be with Eli Manning and help the Giants beat the Patriots this Sunday." From this he immediately transitioned into thanking God for his house, the moon, the stars, and the trees.

KJ was trying so hard not to crack up during this prayer. As soon as he came downstairs, he burst out laughing and repeated it to me. We can't decide if asking God to help Eli Manning win is a great thing to ask God for but it sure is cute!

Does anybody else have a cute story about their kids and praying?

100 Days

They are celebrating 100 days of school today at HJ's school. To celebrate the kids could wear anything they wanted as long as it had 100 things (or close to it for the preschoolers) on it. (They usually have to wear uniforms and/or follow a very strict dress code). The catch is, the kids had to pick it out themselves with no parental input/help. So yesterday, when he got home from school, Hunter headed up to his room to find his outfit. As you can see above, my kid has absolutely no fashion sense whatsoever! This is him dressed for school this morning. He is wearing pj pants with tons of penguins all over them with a Buzz Lightyear shirt with tons of little pictures from the movie behind the big picture of Buzz. HJ figured with all the penguins and small pictures on his shirt, he had 100 things on! Cute, I know!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Check It Out!

This is such a fun idea and thing, I just had to write a post about it! One of my favorite bloggers Rocks In My Dryer has a blog giveaway pretty frequently where she gives away fun stuff from neat stores and such.

Well this week, she is doing her Bloggy Giveaway Carnival, where tons of bloggers can join in the fun and giveaway stuff on their blogs. You can sign up to win hundreds of fun prizes just by visiting some neat blogs. I am addicted to checking it all out! I thought you might find it fun too. If anybody wins anything, please leave a comment so I know what I missed out on! Good Luck and Have Fun!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Isn't She Lovely

I know it is hard to believe but I purchase the lovely necklace my daughter is wearing today at Old Navy for only $1.00. I went today to try and find HJ some more long sleeve polos for school and was checking out and they had all these super lovely, shiny necklaces next to the checkout. Each were marked down from $16.00 to $1.00. I was shocked that there would be so many of these fine necklaces and that they were so cheap. I knew just who would LOVE it! Miss CJ! This was of course after I let everyone around me know I was buying it for my 2 year old daughter for dress up. I wanted to make sure everyone knew I was not buying it for myself! (I am not sure why I care what complete strangers think of me, but I do, especially when it comes to gaudy, wait I mean beautiful shiny jewelry).
So as you can see from the pictures, CJ is thrilled with her new jewelry. And if you have a little princess at home who loves all things pink and shiny you may want to check out Old Navy and see if they still have any but hurry I am sure they are selling fast!

Fun Saturday

Yesterday we spent a lot of time at the YMCA. I talked KJ into joining me for a spinning class. He actually really liked it (as far as one can like exercise) and will go back with me again next Saturday! I am so happy he is getting exercise. He needs it really bad. While we were exercising we put the kids in the bounce house room and they had a blast jumping and playing.

Later that afternoon, after nap, we went back and the kids and KJ went swimming. I thought I would post some pics from yesterday. I know it has been awhile since I have posted pics of the kids and wanted you to know they are safe and healthy and loving the Y!

Friday, January 25, 2008


As you may recall from a previous post that one of our goals is to get the garage and bsmt cleaned out and organized. Well I have been spending A LOT of time down there during nap time. I had a huge load for the Salvation Army to pick up. I also got things somewhat organized and moved around so that once the Salvation Army came KJ would be able to park in the garage. (His car is really old and a little temperamental in the cold. He was starting to have some problems with is and it needs to be out of the cold!) Well the Salvation Army came today and took half of what I wanted them to take. Apparently I did not stress enough how much stuff we really had for them to take and they were not prepared for the volume so they could only take half of it!
Well anyway, they took enough stuff for KJ to park in the garage! Yeah, we can see the progress!
Hopefully, they will come next week again and take the rest! Then I can get to more organizing and such and hopefully I will be able to park in the garage soon. (It will help when football season is over and I can get KJ down there with me on the weekends!)
So anyway, you can see the before and after pics! I am so excited!

Spinning and the Y

I have not written a post about how much I am enjoying our membership to the YMCA. (Thanks R & G!) I am going about 5 times a week.
I have never been a big class person as I am somewhat of a klutz. I am never able to keep up and do the moves of the class and just feel pretty stupid. Well I have found a class that I am really enjoying. Spinning! For those that do not know what that is, it is a classroom that is full of stationary bikes with one bike in the front for the instructor. Finally a class that takes no coordination on my part! Another wonderful thing is that there are both male and females in the class as well as people of all ages and levels of fitness!
I have always loved riding my bike. Do you remember when you were a kid how you loved to hop on your bike and ride. I loved the freedom I felt having a somewhat mode of transportation around the neighborhood. Do you remember the feel of the wind in your face as you raced down hills as fast as you could go? It was awesome!
Well the class is nothing like that! Well except for the wind in your face from all the fans they have going in the class. The class is an hour long and it is pure work the whole time! The instructor plays loud, rocking music to keep the motivation and tempo up and bikes along with you, constantly changing the pace, resistance applied to the bike, and position you are pedaling your bike at (sitting, standing, hovering). She is also basically kicking my bottom! I am drenched in sweat when I am done and barely breathing. My legs feel like rubber but you have that feeling like you really accomplished something and that is what I love!

As most of you know, I am a pretty lazy person (in more ways than one). I haven't really exercised in years and am so out of shape. One of the goals I have really felt God putting in my heart is to get my mind, body, and soul into shape. Matthew 19:26 has really been the verse the Lord is playing out in my heart and life right now. It is the verse that repeats itself over and over in my head as I exercise and as I go about my day. I feel his call to me telling me that he is there and wants to change all the aspects of my life so that they reflect him at the center. I have such a long way to go (in all three respects) but with the promise that through him all things are possible, I am giving it a go.

The amazing part is that I really see God changing me. I never would have stuck with exercising this long even a month ago because I have always hated it (With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible. Matthew 19:26) However, now that I am praying and repeating my mantra during exercise I look forward to it because I feel it drawing me closer to the Lord. Does that make sense? I probably sound crazy.
Anyway, I am actually starting to like it and really miss it when I don't get to it. CJ (and HJ too when he is not in school) both enjoy going to the kids room and jumping in the jumpy house and playing on the mats while I exercise. The workers in the kids rooms are so friendly and nice and I have no problems leaving the kids there.
This YMCA is truly amazing as they seem to have thought of everything in terms of it being a family place! It has truly been a blessing to me to have this awesome facility right down the street!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Moving and Bad Parenting

I have a tip for all you bloggers out there and it involves moving and what not to do as a parent! This scenario is all hypothetical of course, because, of course I am way too responsible of a parent to do something like this, of course!
When moving, one should always think of the what ifs of parenting young children and come up with solutions before they happen. One example of this, (a hypothetical example of course!) would be to think about what you would do if your child was to develop a sudden severe ear ache. The responsible parent would of course have a pediatrician in their new city all ready secured so that one responsible parent could call that pediatrician for immediate medicine for the inconsolable child.
However, I do happen to know that this exact scenario happened to someone that did not have a pediatrician lined up because of a million excuses that do not mean much when your 4 year old is crying because his ear hurts so bad and wants YOU to fix it. (Again, I would NEVER do this :)
So what does one do when they do not have anyone to call in the city they live in for medical attention? One tries to call their nurse practitioner from their previous doctor AT THEIR HOME, in order to get medicine. And what does one mother who is about to cry herself do when she can not get ahold of the nurse practitioner at their personal home and DOES NOT want to take her child to the ER on a Saturday night for an ear infection. The wonderfully responsible mother drugs her child with pain medicine so he will sleep and keeps drugging him every 4 hours, praying his ear drum won't rupture during the night. Then the said mother takes her son to the Minute Clinic at CVS and arrives 15 minutes before they open on Sunday, so that her child will be seen first.
Then the mother happily picks up the antibiotics for the ear infection and lets her tired son pick out some cool art supplies at CVS to appease her guilt.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


I just looked outside and noticed that it is snowing! The weatherman said we would get some but I never really believe that anymore. Well here it is! It is just a dusting but still it is snow! Hopefully, it will still be here in the morning so the kids can see it!

They Came!

I was very late starting with the Christmas shopping due to a move you may have heard about. This is especially true when it came to picking something out for my two hardest people to shop for! Anyway, I was flipping thru a magazine and this guy that does custom silhouettes was featured as a unique present. I thought what a neat, unique gift to get Robbie and Gina. When I went to his website, I also decided to order myself some.
I got Robbie and Gina a double silhouette of both the kids and I got myself one of each of them. I ordered them 2 weeks before Christmas and they finally arrived today! (See Joy, you aren't the only one behind on your gift giving!) We are going to hang the two silhouettes that are ours in the foyer. I am going to have to go find the perfect frame now.
Anyway, I just love the way they turned out and wanted to share!

I'm ready to announce....

Okay, I am ready to announce somewhat of a secret I have been keeping for the last 2 months! Do I have everyone's attention now???

I have braces now! Yuck! I swear I am one of the oldest people on the planet to get braces. However, my dentist assures me that I am not and that he has a lot of adult patients with braces and that I do not qualify for the Guinesses Book of World Records. I have yet to see any of these other adult patients with braces in the waiting room nor have I seen anybody with them out and about. (It may be that us adult braces wearers don't smile as much as we used to!)
Not only have I had braces for two months now but I had this bar put in the roof of my mouth that I have absolutely loathed. (I don't think many people knew of my braces, since I don't see many people from Ktown anymore and I have been so self conscious about them.) The bar on the top of my mouth has been widening my mouth. (I am not going to get into the very long explanation for the braces, but rest assured I had two opinions done from two dentists and they both said I needed them, whether I wanted them or not.) This bar on the roof of my mouth may have been doing a good thing, however, it has made me miserable for two months. The worst part about it is that it caused me to have a lisp when I spoke. It was horrendous when I first got it put in and I would not talk in public or answer the phone I was so self conscious. It got better over time but never completely disappeared. The other thing about it is that food constantly got stuck up in it and around it (lovely I know).

Before getting this bar put in, I had never really given a lot of thought to the way I talk. I just took that I could talk coherently (most of the time :) for granted. After the bar, I have never been more aware of it in my life. Especially since I have been meeting a ton of new people. It has been a very humbling experience for me and a lesson in pride for me. Two things I definitely needed a good wake up call on.

I had been dreading the look of the braces since before I got them (I even paid extra to get the clear braces.) However, I never dreamed that the effect on my speech would be the worst part. I sounded very slow. However, on Tuesday, I came into Ktown for a whirlwind dentist visit and he surprised me and removed the bar and said it had done its job! I really could have kissed him, I was so happy! This whole speech ordeal (now that it is over) has made me a whole lot less self conscious of the actual braces (not that I love them and want to wear them forever) but having dealt with sounding a little slow for two months, dealing with the way the braces look is a piece of cake.

So now my secret is out but do not expect any pictures!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Diet Motivation:

When your sweet daughter asks to see your stomach and you show her and she says and I quote: " Wow Mommy, You have a big tummy."

Thursday, January 10, 2008

What IS that noise?

It has been storming pretty hard here for the last hour and a half. About 30 minutes ago, I hear this siren going off. At first I thought it was a rescue vehicle or something. However, after a few minutes it is still going off and not getting louder or softer. And then it clicks in my head what is sounds like: A tornado siren. Now I have never heard a tornado siren in real life, only in TV and movies. It sounded just like that. My heart starts to beat a little faster. So I go to the computer and look up the news and sure enough Williamson County is under a sever weather warning and a tornado warning. I am now about in tears. My baby boy is in school and I can't get to him because I know better than to drive in a tornado. I saw the movie Twister with Helen Hunt. I know what a tornado can do. So I call KJ in tears to tell him what is going on. All the time thinking that a tornado is coming or could be coming. He is in disbelief because it is not happening where he is. He calls in someone he works with and tells them about the tornado siren. They were very nonchalant about it and said "Oh yeah those go off all the time there is a warning" KJ was like well do they get louder if there is one, I mean when are we supposed to know to go to the bsmt (Thank goodness we have a bsmt, if I have to deal with this!), we don't have these in Knoxville? She said we would know when we heard it because they sound like a freight train. She was surprised and thought everyone had them b/c she grew up here and with them.

Well my panic attack has receded a little. So now I know when I hear the siren to listen for a freight train, grab the kids and head for the bsmt! Good to know! I will also be turning on the TV or radio during any thunderstorms!

As a side note, no one ever mentioned tornado sirens or the need for them to me when we decided to move here!

Favorite Cookbook

For the 5 of you I think read this, I just have to share about this cookbook! I got this cookbook before we moved after having an appetizer from it at a friend's house. Which KJ and I both loved. My friend told me how much she liked the cookbook. I went out and bought it and there it sat until we moved. I pulled it out shortly after we moved. Since I am trying to eat organic and less processed food, I decided to make the Marinara sauce, since it is used in a lot of the recipes I want to try (there are a ton I want to make that does not call for it too). Now it calls for crushed tomatoes, carrots, onions, and celery in the sauce. Things KJ hates! So after the sauce was done I got my handy handheld blender out and blended it all up to be super smooth. Now no one knows what is in there but me! Both KJ and I think it is the best sauce ever! Thankfully, I had doubled the recipe and froze the extra in portion bags so it lasts all month or about 5 different meals! I think the secret to the sauce being so good is to use the organic Muir Glen fire roasted crushed tomatoes. They are sooooo good I could eat a whole can right out of the can. Literally amazing! I have already had to make a second double batch of the sauce because we have used up the first. I am also happy because I can sneak some veggies into my son and husband.

So anyway, I have made a ton of things from this cookbook and everything comes out amazing. Most of it is very healthy. Some of the stuff we have had include: Chicken Parmesan (no breading on the chicken!), Spaghetti with turkey meatballs (absolutely divine, they are so good, and I even used whole wheat noodles, and the meatballs are a cinch to make!), lasagna (again with whole wheat), manicotti, and last night roast balsamic chicken. The balsamic chicken was so good and I love it because there is enough left over to make white chicken chili today! KJ thought the balsamic chicken was store bought because it was so good and I had gone to whole foods yesterday :)

I have a bunch more earmarked to try. Anyway, I thought I would share a new favorite of mine that I am so tickled with. If you have a bookstore gift card this would be a great way to spend it and not be disappointed! Everything is super easy to make.

So there is my two cents and first book review.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Absolutely gorgeous

The past two days have been gorgeous here. The weather has been mild and 70 degrees. To celebrate and because we are sick of being stuck indoors due to weather in the teens, we headed to the park yesterday and today. We are so blessed to have 5 (that I know of) incredible parks within 3 miles of our house. Yesterday we did the closest one (I forgot my camera). The kids really liked it but it was very crowded. So today, we went to the park next to the library. It was not crowded and the kids had a ball playing. It is not as big as the first park but because it was not crowded, I think the kids had a better time. After awhile, I got to talking to a nanny who was there with her 2 charges and told me it was story time at the library. So we headed over there. I have to say that the library is absolutely incredible! I have never seen a library like that. It was built to look very lodge like on the inside (or at least that is what it felt like to me) with lots of hardwood and exposed beams. The children's wing (yes wing!) was decorated like a forest, it was incredible. My two were looking around with their mouths open trying to take it all in. Story time was so well done and included a craft. The kids had a ball. We will definitely be going back. The nanny was telling me that Curious George will be at story time in 2 weeks! HJ and CJ can't wait to go to that story time. I can tell we will be regular library visitors from now on!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Trying out a church

Now that we have moved and the holidays are over, it is time to find a church home. Before now, we have either been out of town or had guests in town every weekend since we moved.
This morning we went to a church that everyone has told us wonderful things about. It is located in Franklin. Both KJ and I really liked it. However, it was odd for me because I have gotten so used to and attatched to the worship style at CSPC. (Please keep in mind that I do not like change of any kind!) KJ thought it felt very young life like.
This church is a PCA Presbyterian church and I guess I was expecting it to be just like CSPC. However, the first thing I noticed is that it was extremely casual. Almost everyone was in jeans or very casual clothes. We were dressed a little more dressy as that is what we are used to. The second thing that struck both of us immediately was how young everyone we saw was. There were very very few people over the age of 50.
HJ and CJ had no problems going into their classes and jumped right in so that was nice. The service was very nice. The sanctuary is about the size of the lower level of CSPC (no balcony). It is all individual seats with backs (no pews). The music was very upbeat and modern. We both really liked the pastor as he was very passionate about the Lord and the message. He is very different that Pastor Wood. However, thru this whole move, God is showing me that different does not have to be bad!
We felt very welcomed to the church and even ran into the guy from Hunter's school that leads chapel. He is about our age but has two kids that are younger than ours. He recognized us and came right up and ended up inviting us over to dinner. That felt really good! Everyone else we met was very friendly.
I think we are going to try a few more churches before we decide which one to make our home but our first visit was very positive.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Boys Night Out **UPDATED**

HJ got tickets to the Nashville Predators for Christmas and he has been so eagerly awaiting to go( the Nashville Predators are a hockey team)! Well tonight was the night! HJ is so into sports right now that I know they will have a blast!

The tickets were a gift from Santa and were in his stocking. KJ won them at his company Christmas party and we knew who would love them the most. KJ and HJ have been watching some hockey on TV so this will be such a treat for him to go in real life! He has been to 3 or 4 UT football games (I can't remember exactly how many it may be more) but this is his first proteam game to go too! HJ has been going around announcing to everyone that he was going to a hockey game, just Daddy and me. It is so cute. He was so happy to be having a Boys Night Out!

I will update this post with how it went!


The boys got home last night around 10:00. They were both smiling and talking about how much fun it was. KJ said it was very exciting almost more than a football game. HJ had a blast. They got there early enough to watch the Predators warm up. KJ was told if he did that, the players would drop pucks to the kids and touch them with their hockey sticks. HJ got a hockey puck and got to touch a bunch of the hockey sticks. They even put him on the jumbo-tron! Both boys thought that was pretty cool. The game was a lot of fun and the Predators won. KJ is already talking about going to another game it was so much fun.

The first swim at the YMCA!

Today we took the kids swimming at the indoor pool at the YMCA! (Actually KJ went swimming with them, I took pictures). The kids had a blast. HJ loved the big slide and did it over and over. He also has not forgotten how to swim!!!

CJ was a little more hesitant with it all but did well as long as Daddy was in reach. She decided she would go down the slide and climbed to the top but got scared and an older girl helped her get back down without going down the slide. The slide is pretty big and dark since it is a tunnel (you also land in 10 feet of water!). I don't think it will be long before she gets her courage up to go down though!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Goals for the New Year

KJ and I have been having many long talks and chats about things we would like to accomplish/ goals we would like to set for 2008. I thought maybe if I shared a few of them some of you might be able to help keep us on task/accountable.

1. This is a big year for KJ and I as we will celebrate 10 years of marriage in August! Where has the time gone???? We were talking as we drove home from Charleston as to what we would like to do to celebrate. A big vacation is out for us as we did that in 2006 with a dream trip to Hawaii. I don't think the grandparents have recovered from that trip yet and we do not have the funds allocated for a trip nor does KJ have enough vacation for such a trip. Sooo we had to think of some alternatives. I think that we decided that we would like to take a small weekend trip somewhere but would really like to make a goal of being within 10% of the weight we were when we were married. That is quite a bit of weight for both of us to lose by August!!!! So the diet has begun and we joined the local YMCA. Joining the YMCA is really for the whole family as they have soccer/basketball leagues, incredible outdoor and indoor pools, swim lessons, plus a great exercise facility!!! There is no commitment to join so we are now joined and Hunter is signed up for spring soccer and KJ will be the assistant coach for his team! Hopefully with such a great facility we can get inspired to get in shape!

2. De-clutter the house!!! We started over New Year's eve to de-clutter and organize the house, starting in the disaster of a bsmt! We have made a ton of progress down there (no one would be able to tell but KJ and I) but we now have a huge pile for the dump and a huge pile for the Salvation Army to pick up. I am kind of stuck without room to continue until we get the piles that need to go to the dump to the dump!!! Hopefully, in a couple weeks we will be able to get the cars in the garage and have lots of room to walk around. We are doing a serious clean out here! I am posting pictures of our bsmt so you can understand just how bad the problem is. KJ and I were shocked and overwhelmed that we had accumulated that much "stuff" in the 10 years we have been married. This is the year we stop! The secondary goal to this is to just not buy anything unless it will really add value to our life. No more junk!!! No more junky toys!!! Hopefully it stops here and we can really make a difference in our lives by really thinking about each and every item we buy. I hope to post some new pics of the bsmt soon showing the difference!

3. Start eating healthier in two ways. Try to limit the junk food we consume and eat better foods that will aid in goal number one! The second part of this goal is to start incorporating more organic foods into our diet. With all the cancer in my family and all the stuff that is coming out about chemicals and hormones in our foods and cleaning products and even plastics, we are going to start making the change to more organic alternatives. It should tell you how concerned we are about this because KJ is actually totally on board for this change. He is usually against anything that will actually cost more money. I have found that in Nashville it is a lot easier to find organic meats and fruits and veggies. The Publix I shop at has a huge selection of organic meats and foods. I had started CJ on organic milk when she started drinking cows milk at age one but now we are going a little more hard core than that. I am even switching to cleaning products that do not have harmful chemicals and shampoo and stuff for the kids that do not have harsh chemicals in them. I really want to try and protect my kids as much as I can against all the pollutants out there in what we consume and around the house. I am not going to be nuts about it but really try to make an effort when I can.

Well those are our 3 main family oriented goals for 2008 and hopefully beyond! Feel free to ask us how we are doing b/c we need all the accountability we can get (especially for goal 1)!!!!!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Well it has been a super busy but fun holiday season!
Christmas was celebrated over 3 super fun days! We celebrated in Nashville on the 23rd and my Mom came down. Santa came the night of the 22nd and we had Christmas morning on the 23rd. That was a lot of fun!
We headed to Ktown on the 24th for a day of celebrating with R & G and Robbie's family. Then on Christmas we headed to Grammy and Grampys for a yummy lunch and then over to my Moms for nap and dinner. All of it was crazy but fun and I wouldn't miss a moment of any of it!

On the 26th Robbie and Gina took us to Charleston for 4 days! It was wonderful! I had never been to the beach in the winter (by winter I mean it was high 60s low 70s the whole time we were there) and we had a blast. The weather was great, the condo was great, the food was great! What more could you ask for. The kids loved running and playing on the beach. HJ would have had no problems swimming in the ocean happily until he died of hypothermia but we would not let him. We all waded a few feet into the water and all the adults and CJ thought our feet were going to fall off it was so cold! I mean take your breath away cold!!! HJ happily ran thru the water until we told him to stop. Does the boy not feel cold like the rest of us??? ( We did let him swim in the outdoor heated pool!)

The boys had fun throwing the football on the beach while the girls went hunting for seashells. We also had a lot of fun playing on the playground at the resort and the local park. The condo we were in overlooked a pond where there were signs warning of alligators. The kids enjoyed going on the deck and looking for them but we never saw one!

We got to eat at some great restaurants and now we are ready for our new year's diet!

Thanks Oma and Opa for a great trip and fun memories.
I wish I had pics but silly me left both my cameras in Nashville for Christmas and the beach trip. I am still mad at myself for that! The pics posted were taken from our Nashville Christmas!