Sunday, February 28, 2010

I've dug my hole & Sunday Questions

Remember the other day when I said if peanut butter caused acne then I was going to dig a hole and get in? Well I just so happened to be reading about milk (and some seriously gross things about it I wish I hadn't read) when it said "and peanut butter"... this caused me to then google that link... (now I'm fully aware that you can find proof on google for ANYTHING, but still)... and there were several people who said it was peanut butter that causes their acne. ugh. I don't think I'm ever going to figure this out. Its so overwhelming and all I want to eat is chocolate cake glazed donuts from Dunkin Donuts! Yum :)

Anyways... Happy Sunday!

We've had an uneventful weekend around here. I worked Saturday at my parent's store and went to my nephew's last basketball game. He's such a cutie, he made one free throw and it made his weekend even though his team lost. Went to publix today to fill our empty cabinets and spent WAY more than I had planned... I think I may have to up my food budget.

How much do you spend per week on food? For how many people? I'd love to know.

I've read people who easily live on $25/week/person, but I just can't get there on this diet. Meats and veggies are WAY too expensive. Also, we eat every single meal from home, so add that in too.

AANNDD... Getting to know YOU Sunday!

The questions..

1. Would you rather bungee jump or sky dive?

Nope! Neither. I used to REALLY want to sky dive. So much that I almost booked it and was very ready. Then I decided I liked my life too much and didn't really want to die.

2. When using a public restroom to you squat over the seat or sit?

A little of both. I will hover if I think it is necessary, but I'd rather sit. If the bathroom is too gross I will just leave and find another one. (This makes long trips with me A LOT of fun... just ask Ben.)

3. Favorite flower?

Star-gazing lilies or lilacs! Even tulips :)

4. Pedicure or manicure?

Yes please! I love both. Especially when they come along with a mimosa or two.

5. How many siblings do you have?

2 brothers. One older, one younger.

6. Do you pee in the shower? (gasp!)

Hah! NO! And I never peed in pool either. I can't believe people do that. I remember being in college when a bunch of my friends and I went to an apartment pool for the day, coolers and beer in hand. After my 3rd or 4th trip to the restroom that day I realized that NO ONE else was going, and they were all downing beer all day. I asked someone and he was like, 'just pee in the pool.' YUCK.

7. Bikini, tankini, or one piece?

I like a regular bikini top and a skirt bottom, I don't know what that is classified as.
Victoria's Secret is my favorite place to buy bathing suits. Much better prices and they fit better than department store suits.

8. Where do you hate to shop at, but go there anyway?

But go there anyway?.... hmm.... I crossed Walmart off my list a LONG time ago, and don't go there at all anymore. I can't think of any place as bad as Walmart.

Play along! Click Keely's picture above.

Friday, February 26, 2010


My Little Life

1. Do you sing karaoke? If so, what is your go to song?
Why yes, I LOVE some karaoke (even if I will never get used to the correct spelling of that word), however the lone karaoke bar in Birmingham is the smokiest bar in the southeast... maybe the whole US. You open the door and the smoke billows out, your eyes burn and instantly feel like you smoked a whole pack of Reds.

So I once loved karaoke, but am refraining until that county bans smoking. (If that ever happens). My favorite songs to karaoke: Good Bye Earl by the Dixie Chicks and You Say by Lisa Loeb... But I don't sing alone, so take a shot or whatever it is you need to get on stage with me and c'mon.

Apparently it runs in the family, here is my older brother, mother and grandmother singing & dancing... THIS night I did NOT sing karaoke.

2. What is your favorite coffee drink?
No coffee-drink is my favorite coffee-drink. I love the smell but cannot stand the taste.

3. If you could choose your own name, what would it be?
I'm pretty content with the one I have. I have never met another Donora although facebook tells me there are a few more and it is also a town in Pennsylvania.

4. Were you ever bullied?
Not really. I was involved in 4th grade girl drama, but no bullying.

5. How often do you eat fast food?
Maybe once every 2 or 3 months? VERY rarely. I'm a picky eater and on a very tight budget, so fast food just doesn't happen a lot in our household. I do love a Toasted Cheese from Milo's though.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Wherever I will go.

Joshua 1:9
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."

My discouragement and faith argue at least 200 times a day.
I am so thankful God keeps pulling me through... it could be worse... I could be at Boot Camp. Wow.


Little brother is doing well over in Georgia (Boot Camp)! He was interviewed for an article that is following his group though Boot Camp. I love it, because I can follow what the heck he's doing over there. I haven't heard from him at all and my parents have only heard from him once. All we know is that he's cold, tired and sick of the younger idiot guys in his group. I'm just praying for his strength and patience to make it through this so he can get to his real medic training. He so needs this. He has been lost for 6 or so years and desperately needs a purpose and a career.

Its only Thursday and this diet is getting old, but I'm doing really good! No milk, carbs OR sugar in atleast 6 days. Two weeks is the minimum and I am just focusing on getting those down. I read something about a man who had some terrible acne that he discovered was from milk and it took a year OFF dairy for his skin to stop flaring up... granted, he was eating a pint of ice cream every single day... I'm shooting for 2 - 4 weeks to see a difference and hopefully be able to start adding one or two things back in! :) The only thing getting me through right now is Smucker's Organic Peanut Butter.... if you tell me this is bad for my diet I may just dig a hole and get in. I have NO idea how people ever did the Atkins (is this even still around?) or South Beach Diets. And a blessing: I also had a chemical peel today! On to looking like a 26 year old!


We're in week 4 of Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University and I'm obsessed. Seriously, while I'm watching it I'm thinking to myself, 'How can I make sure every single person I know takes this class so they can all be debt & stress-free.' If there is one thing about this, I do wish it was a requirement before getting married or graduating college or even better, graduating high school! (I'm not sure I would have understood the grasp of it then, but still... I think it is THAT beneficial) If you do anything to help your future go take his class or borrow the DVDs right now. I'll let you borrow mine.

I do so wish I had interesting or fun things to blog about, but apparently my blogging works better when I'm not in school. Thank the Lord for getting me this close! I do not like to wish my life away, but I can't help this one. 154 days & counting!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

And no-dairy equals 3

Several weeks ago I decided to change my diet and eliminate sugar and most carbs. I have to admit I have made quite a few mistakes, but I have come a LONG way. I had a few melt-downs which included a night of cookies... a day with Dunkin' Donuts (they are my favorite donuts ever and one JUST opened here in Birmingham... which led there to be donuts everywhere I looked for a few days). Anyways, I haven't seen much of a difference in my skin.

As we speak it is as awful as it has ever been.

So I started googling again. I have a friend (who doesn't have PCOS to the best of my knowledge) who has cut wheat (gluten) from her diet because of acne and her skin looks amazing. She started it over 2 months ago and when I saw her yesterday her skin was perfect!

Something I am doing is still making my skin awful. While googling, I came upon some information linking milk, PCOS and acne. Here is a fun quote for you:

"Milk is designed to make things grow. Human beings are the only animal to continue to drink milk beyond infancy, and it is not even the milk of our own species.Young growing humans need milk from pregnant cows just as much as young growing cows need milk from pregnant humans - not at all.”

Hmm.... okay... but anyways, more than one article stated that the hormones in milk (from pregnant cows) cause hormones in those with PCOS to go crazy.

So, not only is a low-carb, no-sugar diet recommended, but also add no-dairy to it. This may make sense since my go-to treat has been this Kashi cereal that is made from wholesome ingredients, but still makes me feel like I'm eating something sweet... I've definitely been drinking milk, eating yogurt and you can't leave out the cheese!

Well, I'm now running pretty low on options, I am not much of a meat eater as you may know. I didn't eat ANY meat until I was 19 or so, but now eat Chicken and some occasional turkey. If I eliminate all dairy, carbs & sugar... that means I will be eating a form of chicken and a veggie/fruit for every meal. Which doesn't sound too bad written out, but in my mind it seems very difficult, since I don't even cook chicken. I have to beg Ben to have a 'cleaning chicken' day and get all the gross fat, tendons, veins, ick.... off of it and then package it up in little baggies so I can just pour it in the pan when ready.

It looks like the more I research, the more I'm being pushed into this diet that one of my blogging friends, Tiffany, is currently tackling. She explained that it is a 'hunter-gatherer' diet to eliminate processed foods and things that may make your blood sugar & insulin spike.

I am so not a hunter or a gatherer....

So now.... what is the next step? Eliminate dairy? Wheat? Both?

Friday, February 19, 2010

Welcome back life & 5QF

My Little Life

I almost don't have enough brain left to even fill in some blanks on a 5 Question Friday! I miss my blog. Lately, my brain is going 90mph for most of the day that if/when I get home all I want to do (or have time to do) is go to sleep. Well its Friday... and I got home from work early, so Ben and I spent money we do not have to go eat Mexican! I think its necessary to leave your house once in a blue moon so you know that there are other people in the world besides co-workers and classmates. Tonight was that night.

Tomorrow I have our Chi Sigma Iota Honor Society initiation. Yep, who would have ever thought I'd be in an honor society. I actually waited until my 2nd to last semester to join for fear that I'd fall below the grade cut-off and they'd have to kick me out... how embarrassing. So I waited until there was no humanly way possible to kick me out and signed right on up! I will be initiated tomorrow along with a few other people.

On to 5 Question Friday: Wanna play... click the picture above.

Have you ever hit an animal with your vehicle?
I don't hit animals. I'm the idiot that swerves and nearly hits the tree/car/human/sidewalk instead. This does not make Ben very happy.

2. When you see a string on your clothes do you pull it off or cut if off?
Ugh... pull it. Why would you pull it? to make it worse? yep... I pull it and make it worse. Same with hangnails... they get me every time.

3. Did you have your own room or share a room when you were young?
Shared one until I was 5, had my own after that... I was the only girl.

4. Would you rather wear the same thing for the rest of your life or eat the same thing for the rest of your life?
Wear the same thing... I am way too picky with food.

5. What was your favorite TV show as a child?
Saved by the Bell hands down. I actually think I was pretty certain I would marry Mark-Paul Gosselaar one day.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Temporary Home

I love this.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Snow Progress





It is finally snowing here. I keep going outside to take a picture in case its the last of it, but its still coming down pretty strong! This will all be gone tomorrow, so I'm loving it while it covers my yard.

5 Question Friday - Valentine's Edition


5 Question Friday! Valentine's Day Edition

1. What is the one thing your love does for you that you can't live without?
Um... everything? Okay... guiding me spiritually probably. I don't think I could live without his support. The taking the garbage out and mowing the lawn is very nice, but I bet I could figure out how to do both if I really needed to, but his constant support is amazing.

2. When did you know your love was "the one"?
I almost posted that story, but wow, I changed my mind. I tried REALLY hard to not get married. I kicked and screamed and gave him a lot of reasons to not marry me, but like I've mentioned before we changed our lives and God had a bigger plan. I'd say that I didn't actually admit to myself that he was the one until I had hit rock bottom and had to make one phone call asking for help.

3. Does your love have a special ringtone on your cell?
Of course... granted its not a custom ring tone, but his is different so I know its him and am more apt to answer it. Sorry to the rest of you who often wonder why I never answer the phone.

4. What are you attracted to most in your special someone?
That he is a man of God. The fact that he truly believes and speaks with God make me love him more and more every day. Physically, I love his height. I am 5'6, but I can wear heels every day and still not be taller than him... and since he is 6'4, it is not likely that I'll outweigh him either. Woo!

5. Did you know when/where he/she was going to pop the big question?
Yes.... I think I almost posted this story too... it was totally planned and I had been waiting and waiting for my ring to come in.... since I was the one who picked it out after all. I had an awful day at work and was on the phone with him and he asked, "Is there anything I can do to make this day better?" And I said, "(sniffle) ring..." hah! So... that was that....

Happy Valentine's & Mandy's Birthday Weekend!!!

MckLinky Blog Hop

Dave Ramsey Bible Study

For those of you who don't know, Ben and I are participating in the Financial Peace University bible study by Dave Ramsey. This course is 13 weeks long and cost us $93 as a couple. Each week week we watch one of his dvds and then spend about 45 minutes doing small group. The kit also comes with a book, workbook and several other things to start moving in the right direction.

Now Dave starts off with talking about budgets and saving an emergency fund, paying off debts and saving 3-6 months of your monthly expenses. Since I took over as financial manager of our household, we have been on a pretty tight budget... I love budgets... and we have our emergency fund in place.

We still have a long way to go to be debt-free though. We need to pay off my student loans and our mortgage (I added this up for our 'quickie budget' and to be 100% debt free we have to pay off about $150,000). Our teacher encouraged us to know where we are starting so in a couple years we can look back and see how far we've come. My short-term goals are to pay off our 2nd mortgage first because it carries the highest interest rate and is on a 15-year balloon, and then the student loans (both are about the same amount), and THEN the 1st mortgage.

Even though we have a few things financially 'in order' (budgeting), I really wanted Ben and I to take this class because he is the spender in our family and I needed us to really get on the same page regarding money and why we can't just go out and buy something just because we have the money.... b/c the money may be better served to put tires on the car in a few months than it would be to buy a bigger tv for our bedroom. (Dave even mentions that after you save for your big purchases up front instead of financing them, you often realize that you may not want the item just as bad as you thought.... ie - my bedroom furniture and our cruise)

Well, anyways, my friend Emily has gotten about 13 calls and emails from me about why she should take this class.... seriously, if you have ever been stressed about money in your life, go here and sign up right now. I see the goal of Dave Ramsey's study as getting a hold on our finances so we can be stress free, and intentional with our purchases to prepare for our future. **If you have already taken this course, please share your thoughts on it and click above to Emily's page and send her more encouragement ;)

Ben and I are in our 2nd week and I truly feel that we've already gotten our $93 worth.

This past week was about couples & money... singles & money.... and kids & money. The kids and money was the part I enjoyed the most because he went over a lot of strategies to get kids in the right direction and teach them saving, giving & spending.

So I encourage you to go to Dave Ramsey's site immediately and see if there is a class in your area. Even if you have 1, 2, 3 in order, he also teaches: bargaining large purchases, retirement, credit, insurance, college, mortgages, etc! I think everyone from the rich to the poor can benefit from his course.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


I have mentioned this a few times before regarding my school and how every door that needed to be opened was opened and as my great friend said tonight, they were also HELD open!

Well I just wanted to share because this has been a very rewarding, but tough journey at times, especially lately.

A few weeks ago my internship supervisor asked if could come 5 days a week soon because testing starts and its a very overwhelming time! I also thought it would be good for me, because I felt like I wasn't getting as much in-school time as I needed due to training and such outside the school too. I want to be able to do both! Well, I came home and was very nervous to bring this up to Ben. Financially I just didn't know how we could do it. Granted, I'd already dropped down to only 2 paid days a week, and we'd managed okay thus far, but losing those 2 days would be pretty hard. It would mean no more internet or cable and no more carb-free diet (that produce is just expensive!)

I brought it up when I got home and Ben wasn't as against it as I thought! He just said that if this was what I needed to do to make sure I had a job in the future than he supported it. So we decided to just pray that God would give us an answer over the next week or so. (Keep in mind I really don't want to leave my current paid job... I've been there for 3.5 wonderful years and really enjoy the people I work with, its the one thing in my life right now that I am sure of and comfortable with.)

The next day (Saturday) I went off to my 3rd job at my parent's store. I am also not being paid for this job, because my parents just bought a paint store and are trying to get it up off the ground. I am blessed enough to understand the books, taxes, insurance, etc. and have volunteered my time to help them get things running. While I was there that following Saturday I had a minor breakdown because things just weren't getting done while I wasn't there and its tough driving an hour and a half up there once a week and doing all that needs to be done. My dad said to me: "Can I please just hire you so you can come up here every weekend and get us really moving in the right direction."

Was this my answer?!
I mean surely it is not this clear cut, right?

I was a little shocked because this was the last place I expected to find money or a part time job to support us. I hadn't even told my dad about my dilemma or prayers.

When I left work that day, I called my long-time best friend and ran this by her to be sure I wasn't just imagining it and she confirmed that she thought this was God really answering my prayer.

Well, I was pretty pleased and thankful that God has been providing no matter what I needed and I was really focusing on having faith that he is guiding us on his path. But then attitudes started to change a bit. That next week I started hearing from more than one person that I was not going to be qualified to be a school counselor. That I wouldn't be able to handle testing material, that I wasn't going to be certified. On and on. Now, this went on for several days and truly exhausted me. It was discouraging and stressed me out, but I continued to pray. I prayed for God to give me guidance and calm me down because I know that he has gotten me this far for a reason.

Well a few days after that Ben comes home from work and tells me that he met with a principal of one of the local school systems and how the principal told Ben that he didn't understand why I was going through with school counseling when I wouldn't be able to be certified without having a teaching certificate, I would probably not find a job, etc.

Ben (no offense to him) ate this up. He came home that night and was a wreck, panicked about what this man told him. He caught me off guard because he was the last person I expected to have to defend my job/career/education to (Trust me, he's heard all the ins and outs of my educational trials, I thought he would be pretty educated on the topic!)

This was when I realized something. I realized this was the devil pulling at me and when he tried for 2 weeks to bring me down off my confident cloud of trust and faith, he went after Ben. He found Ben's one fear, his weakest spot (that I will not have a job after graduation) and dove right in.

Amidst all of this I was still praying and really crying out about what I needed to do regarding all of this school and interning, if that was really my answer, why then was it so hard and was this all what I really needed to do?

I went back and forth, back and forth. Was this my answer?? So I went to my real job that Tuesday and was quite upset about all of it. I brought it to one of my bosses with a lot of tears and he was as kind as could be assuring me that if this was where God was guiding me, we'll make it work. At the end of the day I put in my 6-week notice. (VERY sad...) Then, this past Tuesday, I told my other boss (who had been briefed by my 1st boss... his brother) and I was back in tears again, but he promised we'd get through this and things were okay.


Well today I went to my internship and not only got to sit in on some very important meetings but was also able to visit with some kids too! And then I see I have a missed call and a text from Ben that says, "Call me as soon as you are possibly able to." I'm thinking... Oh great, who died? I call and call and call and he doesn't answer. Great... back to meetings. Then he called back, so I slipped out quickly to see what the heck was going on and guess what....

BEN GOT A PROMOTION!!!! I mean if that is not God saying, 'Yes you are working in the right direction', I don't know what is! Since we have turned our lives, finances, jobs and everything over to God, we have been truly truly blessed. I never imagined that we'd get this far and be so taken care of, but I think God is honoring our faithfulness right now and saying keep up the great work.

I know there are days on top of the mountain and days in the valley, where I'm sure I'll be back to shortly, but its those days trudging through the valley I learn and grow and become stronger... so I look forward to those as much as I look forward to moments like this, when God assures me that He is in control. He will provide. He has a better plan for me than I could ever imagine.

So currently, I'm working out the remainder of my 1st job and praying that God will just continue to guide me and I'm trusting that he has a place for me after graduation, wherever that may be!!

*And lastly - snow day tomorrow! :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Movie: Letters to God

Need a reason to cry today? I absolutely love the movies Fireproof & Facing the Giants so this one has to be good also.

This movie is about to release very soon. I encourage you to see if there are special showings in your area or church.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Cardboard Testimonies

I came across this video on a blog today and wouldn't be doing you justice if I did not share.

"At birth, we begin wearing labels that identify us... And as we grow older, whether written by the cruelty of others, or our own poor choices, those labels can become more personal, hurtful, and even outright devastating. The promise Jesus Christ makes is that His mercy will restore our hurt and shame, and give us a new label...a label that identifies us as made complete, whole, forgiven, and restored through being adopted into His family." - West Ridge Church

If you watched the first and were in awe as much as I was... here is another:

Do you have a cardboard testimony? I read one of the comments under these videos on youtube and it said, 'These dark secrets have been forgiven so there is no shame." Wow... these are very emotional videos and I just don't know that I would have the courage to show the world MY cardboard testimony. Would you?

How we met.


Mama M is hosting a Valentine's Extravaganza! I figured I'd give in to all the cheese of Valentine's Day and let in you in on an embarrassing way to meet your husband (or RE-meet your husband).

Ben and I went to high school together, but I don't think either of us spoke a single word to each other during the 2 years we were there together. (He is 2 years older than me). I even went to a party at his house once and still didn't say a word to him. (I didn't like all the uppity girls he dated and thought he was rather full of himself for a scrawny upperclassman.)

Fast-forward to the night we met: I was 3 weeks shy of 21 and had just gotten back from spring break in Key West with a very large group of great friends. That trip was exhausting and fun and something I will never forget...
(3 days before I met Ben)
We came back on a Friday and there were still very few people in our quiet college town, so two of my friends, Jenna and Rudy, and I decided to head up to a very classy bar: Fat Daddy's... Seriously... CLAAAAASSSY. Complete with redneck karaoke, out-of-order toilets and $2 32oz LITs.

So my two friends are playing pool while I'm sitting out on the edge of the room enjoying my very 'delicious' LIT. I was probably minding my own business, when a creepo thirty-something sits down next to me and tells me, 'I sure do like college girls with pretty feet.'

Wow... great compliment goon.

Still makes me shiver.

Anyways, the guy won't shut up, won't leave and seems to show up no matter where I go. My friend Jenna comes over and I tell her about my new friend: Pervy thirty-something. All of the sudden a guy I went to high school with walks across the room.

Me: "BRANDON!!!"
Jenna: (Looking at me like I'm an idiot) "I think his name is Ben."
Me: "Ohhh yeah...." 32oz kicking in. "Wow! Ben has really grown up!" (Seriously, the boy looked all of 13 the day he graduated. Thankfully college did a body good and he gained about 50lbs on his 6'4" frame).

So I try again...."BEN!!!!!!!"
Ben comes over and apparently has indulged in quite a few of the tasty $2 treats also. He says, "I know you two.... Uh....." He then tells us our last names and apologizes but cannot for the life of himself remember our first names. Ben quickly leaves to go back to his pool game.

Shoot.... I must have made a great impression on him in high school.... oh wait... I thought his name was Brandon.

A lightbulb goes off in Ben's head a short-time later as he remembers our first names and he rushes over obviously quite proud of himself that in such an inebriated state he was able to recall such crucial information.

Now, remember PTS (pervy thirty-something) from earlier? Well he is still following me around telling me really gross things and hoping to buy me a drink if I'd ever finish the first half-gallon.

When Ben came back over, PTS was off to the bathroom or something and I begged Ben to sit down next to me and pretend he was my long lost best friend and we had SO much catching up to do so this creep would leave me alone.

Ben (probably spotting my half-empty carafe) took the challenge and came to my rescue... PTS got mad and tried to get my attention once or twice more but I blew him off to catch up with Ben.

Minutes or maybe hours went by.... and Ben stayed by my side... and of course bought me a refill! He even made his friend sit by me for the few minutes he had to leave to go to the restroom... What a gentleman!

When it was last call, Ben and I quite possibly exchanged what I imagine to be a very romantic, not in the least bit sloppy-public 'kiss' and I tell him that we just are not done partying and we're going back to my friend's house to play cards. Ben of course wants to come (remember he is such a gentleman) and hops in the car with our sober driver.

So, the drive is a little hazy and the next part I remember is getting to Rudy's house very sick and immediately rushing to the bathroom. I then proceeded to spend the next hour or so throwing up the cheapest liquor you could ever imagine. Jenna is of course in the bathroom with me, b/c throwing up your entire night wouldn't be complete without your best friend telling you a bunch of nonsense at the same time, right?

All this time Rudy and my new friend Ben.... who do not know each other AT ALL... are in the living room together. Rudy comes to check on us (tired of the awkwardness, I'm sure) and I was so humiliated over my inability to handle my liquor that I tell him to do whatever he needs to do to get Ben out of there! Poor Rudy then drove Ben all the way home...

So the next day I wake up probably feeling like a basket of sunshine and am so embarrassed, but convinced and possibly relieved that I will never see Ben again. Not my finest night by far.

Three days go by and I get an email in my school email box. It said:

Date: Mon, 05 Apr 2004
Subject: hey
i was just going to say high because i did not get your number the other
night and had a good time hanging out

well anyways give me a call sometime and we will do it again


Notice the 'high'....
I was thinking, oh great... I've got a smoker on my hands who thinks that is funny. I found out later, he didn't even know he did this... so I didn't have a smoker, but rather someone who obviously doesn't proofread or use ANY punctuation. But Ben did have to go through the trouble of looking me up on the college directory... two points for Ben!

Well, I called him a few days after the email and 1 week after we 'met', we went on our first real (sober) date. The rest between then and now was wonderful and rocky and I'm so thankful God changed both our lives or we never would have made it through.

Movie Review: Crazy Heart - I'll try to not spoil it for you

Have you even heard of this one? It looks like it came out last year, but is just now in theaters?

Anyways, I went to the movies today with my mother hoping to see Leap Year, but it was not playing so we chose the only other option, Crazy Heart. Well this one is a weird one guys. It has apparently won 13 awards and been nominated for 13 or so more... and wow. I'm a little shocked at that, but then again its always the weird ones that win. Maggie Gyllenhaal is in it so you know its a little different. I think she only does indie films or something doesn't she?

Well this movie is pretty much about a washed-up, alcoholic, country-singer (Jeff Bridges) and has a decent ending, but all the in between is a little strange and a little slow. The music is really good though... if you like country music.... and there is a surprise visit from a very good-looking Collin Farrell... probably the best part of the movie. That or the hot air balloon (Do you know about my love of hot air balloons?)

My take on the movie: its a little sad, a little creepy, some great music, and in the end it ended like it should. I'll give it 2.5 out of 5 stars. I'd definitely watch it again, but I didn't leave thinking it was the best thing I'd ever seen.

Have you seen this one? What'd you think??

Superbowl Sunday - Getting to know you.

*So I just saw the Superbowl ad with Tim Tebow... and really? THAT was what they were all freaking out about?! Did they actually change the ad or was that the original one?

Keely over at MannLand5 is hosting her usual Getting to know you sunday and this is quite a quick way for me to keep my blog updated as well as give you some very important information about me :) I want you to play too though so post your answers to the questions in my comments or on your own blog.

1. How many piercing's do you have?

2. I love the sound of.....?
The ocean.

3. Favorite city?
Flagler Beach, Florida

4. Colts, Saints, or could care less?
Couldn't care less.

5. Frozen yogurt or ice cream?
All of the above, but because I am usually watching my diet... frozen yogurt.

6. Favorite appetizer?
That I make: chicken wing dip
At a restaurant: Village Tavern's homemade potato chips (I get these on Saturday for Valentine's Day!!!! No its not on my diet, but it's a holiday.

7. What item in your closet currently makes you the happiest?
Um... happiest? a fun pink dress that I have no where to wear.

8.Favorite facial moisturizer? None thank you, the skin can't handle moisturizer.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

I'm avoiding you.

Hi, I'm still here and avoiding writing about my real life.

I have started and not finished many blogs this week, but felt like they all said the same thing not very well, so they haven't been published.

But, I'll tell you what DOES get published. You all know my LOVE for all things dog right? If not, just search 'dog' in the bar in the top right. Well this is one of my favorite commercials.

Wondering what my FAVORITE one is? I know you can barely stand it...

I think even 4 or maybe 5 years later it is still this one:

I love the song, the colors, the little boy hiding waiting for them to bounce down the street... I love the dog, the old truck, the frog... I LOVE this commercial.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Second-guess Thursday

This was posted by my friend Mandy and just made my day, so I wanted to share. Go read her blog here!

Hoops & Yoyo second-guess Thursday.

THANKS Mandy! :)

**Speaking of second-guessing.... my WORST moments are with names. In fact, what reminded me of this was I stared at 'Mandy' written above for so long that for a brief second I started second-guessing if Mandy's name was really Mandy. Seriously, I do this to EVERYONE in my life (except Ben, thank goodness...what an awkward marriage that would be!). If I think too long about someone's name, even people I have know my whole life, I start convincing myself that I have their name wrong. This is awful and awkward because it usually happens about the time I should introduce two people. I get nervous and think so much about it that suddenly I realize I can't introduce them because I probably have their name wrong!!!! This second-guessing has even led me to question my own relatives names!

This all may be something I shouldn't admit.... But, if I'm ever NOT introducing you... its probably because I'm second-guessing myself. Rest assured I do know you (probably for many years and really well), love you (usually), am so thankful and appreciative of you... but I will always be afraid of getting your name wrong.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Breaking the Silence

I would like to share with you guys this story of healing. I know many of you are wishing to be healed of many things whether it is a physical, mental, emotional pain, ailment or addiction. Please take the time to listen and let me know what you think. Its not terribly long.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Its 11pm, do you know where your kids are?

I am rarely up this late, but this is the ONLY time I can get on blogger lately!

I'm stressed, I'm overwhelmed and pulled to my limit. And I tell you what, God knows this.

Today I went to a conference where I heard MANY speakers and politicians... some talked about kids and a lot talked about themselves. One speaker went over the top though and I wanted to share a little bit about him and how God knew I was nearing my limit.

His name is John Croyle. All you Alabamians out there of course know of him b/c he has a very famous son, Brodie Croyle, former quarterback for the Crimson Tide, and now quarterback for a Pro Team... (seriously I should know which one). Anywho... John Croyle also played for the University of Alabama back in the 70s under Coach Bear Bryant. From what I heard today he almost went pro, but had a heart for underprivileged, neglected and abused children. Well, you can read all the details if you click his name above, but fast forward to today where he owns a Ranch to raise these children. He and his wife have raised over something like 1600 kids without ANY government funding.

Well, he is an amazing speaker and talked about how God placed him where he is and he has a very strong faith. What I loved about today were his rules or promises he tells the children when they come to live at the Ranch. He said if you follow through on these promises to your children, you will raise a successful child of God.

He tells them all:
1. I love you.
2. I will NEVER lie to you.
3. I will take care of you until you are grown.
4. There are boundaries, do not cross them.

He says by these 4 things you will prove to these children that you care, are dependable, are trustworthy and there is discipline. He said every single child wakes up every day wanting to know if you still love them, no matter if they are adopted, biological, foster, etc. They all want to know if you will still love them if they screw up. Will you still be there if they stumble and fall....?

Seriously, this man and his speech was amazing. He went on to talk about our purposes in life and how God calls us to bear fruit with the purpose he gave us & how to do just that. This is what I needed to hear today of all days. I needed to hear that I am doing all this for a reason beyond myself, beyond my colleagues & professors... I am doing this for the children that need me, for the children that God will place in my life to serve. I have been stressed, intimidated, nervous, worried.... all for what? If I trust God has placed me where I am today, what is there to fear? I need to take a few deep breaths and keep moving forward because I would surely disappoint if I turned my back this far in.

So I am still tired, but I'm ready and eager. I know God still has his plan. I pray that he continues to shine a light on it so I can follow. I pray that he will use me to further his plan.

I took a lot of notes today along with a few sermons this past week that I would love to share. If I could ever end up with all the notes, computer, computer cords and be awake at the same time... I'll get them up here.

The little brother

The little brother leaves Tuesday for Basic Training with the Army. He will be heading to Fort Benning, GA (pretty close to home) to get beaten to a pulp. He needs to be whipped into shape after this past year for sure, but I have faith that he will do great and God will be watching over him. If you remember or not, he tried to sign with the Marines over a year ago, they jerked his chain around about leaving 3 times and he finally asked to be released from his contract so he could sign with the Army and get this process finally moving forward. I'm super proud and a little worried, but send your prayers his way!

So we had another going away party (really just dinner with the family) Saturday night. Chris is convinced Basic Training will be a breeze (probably b/c he looks like a skin-head and b/c of his accident back in December, has HUGE scars on his face and head....which he has decided to tell people was from a knife fight.... Um...?) because he is a bigger guy. I think he's going to be quite shocked when he gets there. We'll see!

Amber Alert: Skinhead kidnaps frightened child.

Ava warmed up to her Uncle.

Ava, Austin & Chris

The Family (with a pug in the corner).

The family to date.

A Ben, a beer & a baby.
He thinks babies are contagious...
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