Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Thanksgiving Day of 2010 was rather uneventful as far as the actual day, November 25, 2010. However, Thanksgiving 2010 is also a Thanksgiving I will NEVER forget. You're gonna have to come back tomorrow to read the details of that story. For today, you just get to look at boring old family photos of our time together.

And, for the first time, I will give you a look of my frozen/paralyzed face. I'm not so excited about that. I just know what it's like to be extremely curious and so for those other souls that are extremely curious... I know you want to see. Plus, this blog, it really serves as a journal for me and my family.
Jackson managed to go the majority of the day without a shirt. He said he was hot never mind that is was very cold and very rainy outside.

The cousins and Emme loving on Taffy.

Post dinner conversation.

Adorable Rylan- check out those dimples!

Olivia- exactly 2 months older than Gracie. She's so sweet!

My brother, chewing on the half a toothpick he asked if he could borrow. He also asked me if Taffy liked salt water. It took me a few minutes, but when I got it, my frozen face cracked up!

Get it yet?

Seriously, what is wrong with the people in my family? How hard is to keep your eyes open. (Click here to see last years Thanksgiving pictures and you will understand.)

JoAnna- I think she looks like a precious moment.

Emme and Papaw reading a book.

Taylor obnoxiously kissing her momma!

I wish Shelby would show some expression and personality every once in awhile.

Emme- being flown in the air by Uncle Brandon.

Reide- trying to squeeze the life out of Emme.

Favorite picture of the day- Reide and Gracie.

Uncle Brandon and Emme.

Jackson and Zayne. I think they look alike. Do you? They were born on the same day- 3 years apart.

Playing Bananagrams.

Shelby was thrilled with me and my camera.

I love my tables and I love having 30 people for Thanksgiving! I wouldn't have it any other way.

When we went to get our
LOVE LOVE LOVE this picture! My brother's family!

I HATE this picture! Me and my paralyzed face. It's a memory, right?

Again, HATE the picture of me, but LOVE Jackson's face!

It was a great Thanksgiving!!!!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thankfulness on Thanksgiving Eve

Wednesday night we had already begun eating dinner when Gracie realized we had not prayed for our meal. She stopped everyone and insisted that she thank the Lord. Never mind everyone already had food in their mouth.

Not a good idea.

After she had thanked the Lord for things... well, things you think she'd thank the Lord for... she proceeded to thank the Lord for William Bradford.

I about choked on whatever it was I had in my mouth. I mean call me un-American but it has never crossed my mind to thank the Lord for the English leader of the Plymouth
Colony. I mean is your family patriotic enough to thank the Lord for William Bradford? That's what I want to know!

On a completely unrelated note, I always feel the need to talk about things I see that bother me. Yes, lots of things bother me. And they're usually really stupid things.

Like the other day, when I had to drive my children to school because I had not misplaced one but two field trip permission slip forms for Gracie, I saw a bus. Now that's not unusual. But, the bus NUMBER was unusual and it made me really mad. It was bus #275. Really!!?? Bus #275. Is that necessary? What happened to like bus #9 or bus #30? I live in a medium sized midwestern city. There is no need to have a bus with that many numbers. How's a kid supposed to remember that? That's what makes me so mad about it.

I know you can't see the number, but that is bus #275.

Then, I was at the grocery store and saw this can of soup.
Really? Beause I don't know that many people anyone who's had a hankering for turtle soup in general. So, I have a hard time believing there's a market for mock turtle soup. But what do I know?

One word: GROSS!
Paul thoroughly managed to get rid of absolutely anything in his system about 4 am on Monday morning. He didn't move much on Monday but on Tuesday, he insisted on taking me out to breakfast. He decided to take a much needed and well-deserved day off. He knows I love breakfast and so we went on a date. I almost asked if they could make me some oatmeal with peanut butter and chocolate, but I was afraid they wouldn't get the amount of water right. I mean just eating the exact same breakfast in a different location would have been a change, right?

Anyway, Paul and I were talking about our illnesses... geesh! Like two old people we were discussing our past 2 weekends. I was sick and then he was sick. I said, "Well, I think they were a little different because I didn't throw up and I was really dizzy!" All of a sudden he gasps and says, "I think I just got Bell's Palsey!" And then he made this face:

He's so mean!! I'm so glad people are having such a great time at my expense.

And, finally, I just want to know.... Does your Zumba instructor take every opportunity to dress up for whatever the occasion?.... because mine does!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Can't Get away... from MYSELF!

About 15 years ago, I had a moment of panic when I realized that I could never get away from myself.

I told Paul about that recently and he said, "I wish I had known that before we got married." Hmmm... guess that would have changed something.

What I meant by that was... I can never get my thoughts to turn off and sometimes they drive me crazy!

That being said....

Last week Paul and I were laying in bed watching American's Home Video's when we saw the following clip:

We could not stop laughing!

(You have to go watch it or the rest of the post won't make sense. You won't be sorry you watched it!)

In the morning, I sent it to my friend and said, "Something about this dog reminds me of you."

She wrote back:

think it reminds me of're the one who's worried you can't get away from yourself!

Dang it! I hate when I get bit by my own joke!

Later on in the day, I got another email from her with the subject being heeheehee and the message being: comes your foooooooot!!

She thinks she's so funny!

And, dang it again.... she is sooo funny!!

On a side note, here's what I look like right now:

Oh! I look like that only I am not a black male!

I can't bring myself to put up a real picture of my face. I avoid mirrors like the plague in general, but most especially now. And, when I do look in the mirror, I start growling.

I wonder what that's all about?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I Can't Stop Winking at People

SOOOO, I was sick this past weekend. Fever, body aches, stomach "issues", etc... I think I managed to move around the house about 7 pm Saturday night.... and then I laid back down and watched a movie with the kids.

On Sunday after church, Janae's mom very graciously asked me and ALL my kids to go to lunch with her. Actually, I'm not sure if she is kind or crazy. Either way, it was a huge blessing not to have to go home and fix lunch ... because.... Did I mention Paul was out of town all weekend.

Oh yeah!

I was drinking coffee at lunch thinking a) this coffee is terrible and b) my mouth feels kinda weird.

Later Sunday night, I remember thinking, "I can't really taste anything" and I even googled it because I thought it was a bit odd. People talk about not being able to taste when they have a cold, but, I don't have a cold... so I thought I should make a diagnosis/

Then on Monday morning, I was eating my oatmeal... OF COURSE! (Scroll down for my latest food obsession recipe.) and I thought my mouth felt weird. Then I was reading my Bible and I thought, "I don't think I can wink my right eye". I can usually wink both eyes separately. Then all of a sudden I thought, "Bell's Palsey". Don't ask me where that came from.

I looked it up and concluded my diagnosis was indeed correct.

So, I called my friend Janae and I called my friend Donna and they both said I should go to the doctor. I'm big on multiple opinions and an agreement of those opinions and so..... I went to the doctor.

The doctor confirmed my diagnosis. (Dang it! Should have gone to med school.) (My brother, who is a real doctor, told me I was an internet MD. Translation: I got my degree online in 20 minutes.)

Today, I decided Bell's Palsey is really annoying. I hate the name. I'm super dizzy... I can't tell you how many times I have about wiped out. My eye by the end of the day hurts BECAUSE IT'S WORN OUT from being open all day... plus I think the eye ball itself is paralyzed. It took me forever to focus this morning and see straight.

To top it all off, I got an email from a person who is supposed to be my best friend. I was thanking her for knowing what I needed on Monday and she replied by saying:

"I loved that you wanted to be with me and continued to show it by winking at me all the time!"

Who makes fun of someone who can't blink their eye because it's PARALYZED. And, every time I would look at her at our Bible study today, she would wink at me.

So mean.

Then there's my sweet little Jacskson who's teacher sent me a message letting me know that his class was praying for me today. He clearly requested the prayer.

When he walked in from school this afternoon he said, "Hey MOM! Is your face more paralyzed?"

On a positive note, I am VERY thankful it's mild and even more thankful and appreciate of being healthy.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Cranial Nerve #7

I often make the comment that things are on my last nerve. This time, however, I want to be very specific and tell you that something is on cranial nerve #7.

It's not Taffy or Paul. It's not the kids or even the in-laws. To be perfectly honest, I am not even sure what's on it.

But, because something is on it...I do know what a fish feels like. You know, when it's got that hook in the side of it's mouth and it's being reeled in for the catch.

Yeah, I know because my lip looks a bit like that. And, my right eye... it's not cooperating. When I try to wink it... nope, it won't wink. When I blink, it stays open.

And, finally, I can't decide if this is the worst part of the best part... I can't taste a thing. Honestly, if you told me to close my eyes (and if I could get my right eye closed) I am not sure if I could taste the difference between headcheese (click here for previous post on that very topic) and cheesecake. This whole thing could be a huge blessing if I could forget about eating for as long as my 7th cranial nerve is being attacked.

When something is on your 7th cranial nerve, you have Bell's Palsey. At this point, I am thinking it's a very, very minor case. The doctor also thinks it is minor.

If you could pray for my partially paralyzed face, that'd be fabulous!

I'll tell you more in my next post. Just wanted to quickly get a post up... trying to be better about blogging!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Yesterday Janae and I were out running some errands. We were looking at something that Shelby requested for Christmas when all of a sudden Janae looked over and said, "Why do those boots look like they need to be circumsized?"

I was thinking, "What in THE HECK is she talking about?" as I scanned the boots in the store. I didn't want to ask her as I was sure I would know when I saw them. N O W....... this is all happening within a matter of seconds.

So, I continued to scan and when I saw the boots, I literally doubled over in laughter. I didn't think I was going to recover from that one. Sometimes, when I start laughing, I can not be stopped.

However, I recovered enough to take a picture.

I showed Paul the boots when I got home and he said he didn't get it. He also said we were sick. He ALSO said that I couldn't blog about it because discretion is a lost art. I decided it should remain lost AND blog about it anyway.

I'm in trouble.

Next, we were following this car one day.

A cat sitter? Is there really a market for this? If there is, I missed an income opportunity like no other.....BECAUSE...... what in the heck does a cat sitter do? Sit in the house and read a book while the cats go about their business? I mean SIGN ME UP!! Cats are persnickety. They don't like to be bothered. They certainly don't want you to throw a ball or a frisbee to them. They don't need to go out and do their business... they do it in a pan for crying out loud... in the house!! Whoever came up with that one anyway? That is so gross! AND, the last time I checked, cats don't walk on leashes, so that's not part of the job description. But, then again, birds don't usually get walked around neighborhoods in mesh cages either and I got that going on in my neighborhood.

SO, I might want to further investigate before I venture into a new career.

And, that cat sitter lady... she drives like a bat out of HADES too. It was work to catch up with her to take a picture of her car along with her ridiculous license plate that she paid an extra $50 for. Do you know what I could do with that bucks?

I could at least buy some uncircumsized boots!


One day, our family was driving in an unfamiliar area looking for a park where Jackson was supposed to play a soccer game. I was driving while Paul was studying for a talk he had to give later in the day when Jackson spotted 2 people on a bike and yelled "Look!!! 2 hobos riding their bikes!!"

What does it say about my parenting that he called those people hobos? Why did he call them that anyway? Was it because they were in green army type jackets? I was so perplexed and laughing so hard all while searching for a hidden park AND taking a picture of the hobos that I never got to address the whole topic. I was just looking at the pictures on my phone and I thought the world should know that if you wear a green army type jacket... my son just may call you a hobo. So, beware!

I got these shoes for my birthday from Paul. He knew I liked them because a little birdie told him. Now, the consensus among my children and a few of my friends (not the little birdie friend) is that they don't really match my personality. What I hear my children and others saying is, "You are not cool enough to wear those shoes."

I just thought you should see my shoes and judge for yourselves. I'm still wearing them because I do think I am cool enough to wear them. And, in the book of Proverbs there is a verse that says, "As a man (or woman) thinks, so he is." In other words, whatever you think about yourself is how you are... so I am going to go ahead and think that I am hip and cool enough to pull off some sparkly-type of converse shoe.

I might even start wearing them every single day no matter the outfit.


Just some cute pictures of Emme.

This was after trick or treat. She was grapes. I popped her balloons and Paul called her a raisin.

A couple of Friday nights ago, I was sitting in the car with Gracie and Emme while Jackson was practicing soccer. There were some scissors in the car and I decided right then and there that Emme looked like a long-haired chihuahua and that I should cut her hair.

Gracie said, "You are the weirdest mom EVER! Who cuts their child's hair, IN THE CAR, AT SOCCER PRACTICE?" She was really offended by the whole scene.

I cared not.

Emme before school the other day in her NIKES that I got at a Thrift shop and a mini skirt and leg warmers and shirt... passed down from our neighbor.


Monday, November 8, 2010

You are going to love this breakfast!

One of my best friends in all the world is Gina. She makes me laugh really hard.

Several years ago, she told me this story about her little sister, Andrea. To this day, every time I think about the story it cracks up.

Andrea and Gina were in the car with 2 guys and Andrea said, "I make THE BEST tuna fish sandwich!"

The one guy says, "I hate tuna fish sandwiches!" (Let's call the call Brian... cuz I think he needs a name.)

So Andrea says, "Do you like tuna?"

Brian says, "NO!"

"Do you like mayonnaise?"


"Do you like celery?"


A bit exasperated Andrea says, "Do you like white bread?"


She says, "Well!!........ Then you are going to LOVE this sandwich!"


SOOOOO ....... my question to you is this:

Do you like oatmeal?

Do you like crunchy peanut butter?

Do you like chocolate chips?

Then you are going to LOVE this breakfast!!!

Because I am obsessive (Yes, I need help, but at least I can admit it!), I have eaten this every single day for weeks. Truth be told, I will probably be eating this for weeks and weeks and weeks to come.

1/2 c oatmeal (Old Fashioned), 2 teaspoons of peanut butter, 1 tsp chocolate chips, and 2 packets of sweetener. (I use Truvia.) (I hate that name by the way.... it seriously makes me consider not even buying it.) Cover with water and microwave for 2 minutes.

After you nuke it, put in a tad of milk and stir thoroughly.

You can thank me later for giving you the best breakfast ever.

It's later.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Big Changes for Emme

Emme's little world has expanded. She now wears big girl underwear and sleeps in a big girl bed. She rides a bus and goes to school. And, she's another year older and wiser.

And with everyone of these things, has come an adventure.

First of all, she's a whopping 18 pounds. Have you ever tried to find underwear to fit someone who is 18 pounds? It's impossible. My friend Janae and I... we searched the world over to find some that would stay over her little biscuits. There were none to be found. Thankfully, Janae's got skillz. We bought some underwear and she set to work altering every single pair. I am now the proud owner of 25 of the smallest pairs of underwear in the world. (Um... why do we say underwear comes in pairs? Pairs of what? I almost feel stupid saying pairs of underwear all of a sudden.) Anyway, they have to be the cutest pairs of underwear in all the world.

For the most part, Emme uses the big potty. I am afraid we are going to flush her back to China when I see her sitting up there, but so far she's managed to stay here with us. She does have an issue with the whole #2 thing. She will only perform that in the diaper. Why any 3 year old intelligent enough to know the ins and outs of the iphone would want to sit around in her own fecal matter is beyond me, but hey, everyone has their issues, right?

We had a little tiny party for Emme's 3rd birthday. I was convinced we were having a Dora party because she's all about Dora, but every time I asked her what kind of party she was going to have... she would insist she was having an Elmo party. It matters not that I don't think she's ever seen the first Elmo tv show. But, nonetheless, she had it in her little mind that she was having an Elmo party. So, Janae set to work and displayed some more of her skillz and made Emme's cake. I think it was about the cutest cake I have ever seen.

Emme's also going to school. And, bless her little heart, she's riding the short bus there. It's true. She qualified for speech services through our awesome school district and I'm proudly sending her to one of the best schools I know. The bus picks her up. It only has little preschoolers on it. Plus, there is an aide on the bus who straps her into her little car seat. I LOVE the principal at Emme's school and we decided that at the end of her time there, a plaque may have to be purchased and displayed in her name. See, the building is really just a K/1 building, but the preschool outgrew itself and so 2 of the classes have had to move to this building. So, if Emme attends next year again as a preschooler, and then again the following year as what they call a Young 5, and then the next year as a Kindergardener, and then lastly as a 1st grader, she will have spent 5 years in the K/1 building. Maybe by that time she will be able to walk up the steps to the bus instead of climbing them.

Finally, little Em moved to a big girl bed. She's actually sleeping in a trundle that comes out of the girls bunk bed. Tuesday night was her first night in the bed. About an hour after she fell asleep, I went into check on her and found her plastered face down on the hardwood floor. I called Paul in so we could crack up together. I mean, poor thing, she looked like she'd been shot... so we put her back in bed. About 1 am, she waltzed into our room, woke up Paul and spent the rest of the night nestled between the two of us. I woke her up at 8:50 so I could make it to my 9 am haircut. I am glad someone slept well.

Speaking of sleeping, that little thing has been interrupting my sleep for exactly 2 years now. On September 8, 2008, in a dingy, government building room in Nanning (Guangxi Province), China, someone handed me one of the tiniest, most precious gifts in all the world. Toothless and wide-eyed, she came right to us. I LOVE LOVE LOVE thinking about our trip to get her and amazed all the time at the huge blessing she is to our family.

Yes, she almost burnt her lips off trying to blow out her candles.

Since I wrote this on September 8 and it's taken me two months to publish the post, there are some other things you should know about Emme.

Emme now goes poopy in the potty. When she needs to go, she announces that her butt is full... which I think makes perfect sense. I may actually start making that announcement myself. I don't know how that will go over with my friends and family, but I like the statement that much.

One day I found Emme sitting on the potty doing #2 and eating a piece of garlic bread. I don't want to know where she put the garlic bread while she was in transition. I try not to think about those things.

One last thing about #2 and I'll be on my way. Whenever she poops, she looks into the potty and tells me what she pooped... so far today we've had an alligator and a little snake.