Friday, May 30, 2008

The Griswald's have nothing on us!

We leave today for our two-week vacation. Yep, two weeks.

And we are not going to Cancun.

Or Europe.

We are going to Texas and Tennessee.

We leave this afternoon, after Matthew gets home from school and mows the yard.

We are headed to Fort Worth to help my sister ring in her 29th birthday with a bang. Actually with a luau...I hear rumors of coconut bras.

I hope they come with underwire.

And a girdle.

Yesterday was supposed to be Matthew's last day of school, but thanks to two questionable snow days in the winter, he is not done yet. (We loved you at the time snow days, now we could do without you.) So, Matthew does not wrap up the school year (although I think most of the teachers AND students consider it already "wrapped up") until next Wednesday. Because of that, Matthew is heading back to AR Sunday after lunch. I know, I know, what a guy. Must really love his sister-in-law to drive all the way to Texas and then back home again.

Yeah, he does love her but not as much as he loves having a sane and happy wife.

I'm not prepared to drive by myself all the way to Texas. Yet. Obviously, I could do it. No question about that. But WANTING to do it and CAN do it are totally different.

AND, tomorrow is our 5 year anniversary. I would like to be in the same state as my husband when we tell each other, "Hey, the past five years...it's been the best ever! Let's do it for another five...or fifty-five...or how about, forever". It loses some of the sweetness when Ma Bell is involved.

While we are in Texas sans Matthew, we are going to the zoo, taking swimming lessons (just for Nora, I know how to swim already and although Elyn is showing strong indications that she will be sprinting by the time she reaches one, I think it's a little too early for swim lessons), and hanging out with Nonna and Aunt Marty and Julie and Bailey. And probably Jill. And Grandmama. And maybe Aunt Terri.

Matthew comes back Wednesday night and we leave Thursday for Tennessee. After a stop over in Little Rock to see Aunt Julia and Uncle Brian and use their house as a motel, we are headed to Nashville.

Shout out to everyone that lives in Nashville! Home of Dallas Henderson (well, Hill at the time) for four glorious years.

No idea how long we will be in Nashville and no idea what we will be doing. Our main purpose is to see Aunt Beth and Uncle Aaron. Other than that, no plans.

We would like to see some old friends and some other family members. We are being pretty laid back about the whole thing.

I'm just hoping that when we enter our driveway, two weeks from now, my eyes are not bloodshot from lack of sleep and I don't want to give away my children.

High expectations people. High.

I'm sure I'll update, on occasion, throughout our travels.

If you know my email address and live in any of the areas we are traveling to and would like to see how quickly Nora can go from happy to tantrum or would like to witness Elyn try and pull up on anything that isn't moving, let me know. We would love to drop our girls off at your house and have the afternoon to ourselves.

Or we could stay and visit with you too.

Either way, let me know!

I'm off to pack our entire house.

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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Up, up and away

Okay, well, maybe not "away", but definitely up! Yesterday morning, Matthew and I looked over and Elyn had pulled herself up into a standing position! I grabbed the camera to take a picture, snapped one, and realized I didn't have my card in the camera. GRRRRRR!

Matthew snapped this one a few hours later. Obviously not the best quality, but it shows off the skill nonetheless. Not even 8 months old yet.

I heard some noise today during her nap and walked in to find this. Oh, Elyn, why do you have to grow so quickly? Downfall to her standing up in her crib...not knowing how to sit back down. Definite downfall!

Yesterday we went over to the Winberry's house for a cookout. Their little boy, Caleb, is just a few weeks younger than Elyn and is as cute as can be. He saw something Elyn had that he wanted. Elyn thinks it's pretty funny.

She doesn't seem to mind that he has her paci. She's content to chew on some other toy. Precious babies!

Today has been full of babies. My friend, Danielle, found out today that she is going to have a little boy in the fall. And tonight we went to the hospital to visit one of Matthew's co-workers who had her little boy today. I love little babies! All swaddled up and barely awake...it's the life.

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Monday, May 26, 2008

20 Things I Will Never Do

Boo Mama posted this on her blog and I thought it was a fun thing to do.

  1. Be a model...according to Tyra, I am way too short!
  2. Volunteer to be on a sports team.
  3. Go shopping and care nothing about how much money I am spending
  4. Buy a brand-new car...well, never again
  5. Go to bed without checking on Nora and Elyn
  6. Choose a salad over a piece of cake
  7. Sit down to watch a baseball game on television-for enjoyment.
  8. Look forward to doing sit ups
  9. Be completely satisfied with something I have sewn
  10. Have a desire to have a firearm
  11. Claim to be a whiz at math
  12. Stop looking for a good book to read
  13. Wear a bikini...again
  14. Own a snake/rat/ferret as a pet
  15. Stop wanting to go on vacations with JUST Matthew
  16. Enjoy cleaning my bathroom
  17. Think I am too organized
  18. Skydive...seriously, NEVER
  19. Think that I have had too much Italian food
  20. Decide that 6 hours of sleep a night is good enough for me.

    Okay, so if you think this is fun, feel free to play along.

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Sunday, May 25, 2008

Solutions not required

Before I begin this post, I want to let you know that I write these things not to get comments of sympathy or concern. I write this for me, to get my feelings out, to vent, to put it to rest.

Okay, now that I have my disclaimer written...here I go:

I have apologized to Matthew today. Because I have been AWFUL to live with. I'm pretty sure I have been NO fun to be around the past 2-3 days. You know, they say you are hardest on those you love the most. I guess that is true. Actually, I have been so disgruntled lately that when I did apologize for my surly ways Matthew says, "I hope you're not pregnant."

Don't worry honey, I'm not.

But, his statement was an eye-opener for me. My attitude has been that of a hormonal pregnant woman. The only difference is that I was very aware of how I was acting. While pregnant, I am completely oblivious to my mood changes.

A few months after Elyn was born, I wrote about feeling down in the dumps. I chalked it up to post-partum. And over the next month or so, my mood improved dramatically and I was over the hump.

Honestly, I think one of the reasons that my mood improved is because I wrote out my feelings.

And had long conversations with Matthew.

And God.

So, now I am back in a little funk. And I am back to therapy...writing out my feelings, talking to Matthew, and talking to God.

It has taken me many years to understand that one does not have to be or need to be happy all the time. Oh, sure it would be nice. But would it really be healthy? God has given us emotions for a reason. For goodness sake, His own Son experienced a myriad of emotions and was very vocal at times in expressing them. So why do we feel the need to keep our emotions bottled up? And why do we have trouble sharing with those around us?

I am happy!

I am happy with my life. I love my husband and daughters with my whole being! I can't think of a better place to be than with them. I love the honesty that flows in our home. I am thankful that I am able to go to Matthew, unashamed, and tell him how I am feeling. I love that he accepts me for my feelings. I love that he tries to come up with a solution...although I tell him I don't need a solution, I just need an ear. He tries to come up with a solution because he loves me and he wants to help.

Even though I have all of that, I still get down sometimes. And do you know why?

I AM HUMAN.

Yep, I am and with that comes all of my flaws, insecurities, imperfections, irrational thoughts, hurt feelings, and so many other ugly things.

But, I have God. And He loves me in spite of those things. I am thankful that I have Matthew that I can go to and talk with. But, my relationship with Matthew would be nothing without my relationship with God. BEFORE I go to Matthew, I need to remember to go to God and lay my everything at His feet. He does not promise a solution, but does promise an ear. He knows what I need.

I used to think that if I just surrounded myself with enough friends, with enough activities, with enough...something, that I would never feel blah. Well, that just is never going to happen.

I can guarantee you that the person with the most friends, the most events to attend, the most everything, still has days where they just feel down.

And that is OKAY! We are not asked to be 100% all the time.

So, I am here to tell you, I am feeling down. I am not feeling 100%. But, actually, since I have started writing, I am already feeling better. Crazy how that works.

Don't worry about me. I'm normal. Actually, I am just like you. When is the last time you felt a smidge down? I bet it wasn't that long ago. But, I bet that you have your own therapy. Aren't you glad!

I'm going to watch a movie with my husband now. That sounds like a bit of therapy to me too.

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Friday, May 23, 2008

We now return to our regularly scheduled programming...

Here are some pictures from the past week...in no particular order. It would have taken time to move them around to the appropriate place.

And time is not a luxury today.

Oh, I do have to take time to write this:
Have you ever been at the park or at a McDonald's or even at church and seen the little girl with the hair hanging in her face? You know the one. The girl has long hair, it looks pretty and clean, but she cannot keep it out of her eyes. You think to yourself, "Self, how hard is it for her mom to put her hair in a ponytail? And is it NOT bothering the little girl? Sheesh, does anyone have a rubberband I can borrow so I can show her mother how to use it?"

Well, I have thought those things before. And now God is paying me back.

In fact, the little girl on the playground does have caring mother. Her mother has tried countless times to remove the hair from the eyes with ponytail holders, clips, headbands, hats, etc. The mother is powerless though to the hands of her daughter. Hands that can yank out any attempt to tie her hair back.

I have a little girl who can rip out a bow or ponytail holder in no time at all. Because of that, I have given up trying to get the hair out of her eyes. She does not seem to mind, so why should I. Don't get me wrong, when we go out, I always bring along a bow, thinking today might be the day she doesn't touch it. It never is.

Oh, and I refuse to cut her hair while she is still zero. It just doesn't seem fair. She has to be over one before I will get the scissors anywhere near her head. (Unless Nora beats me to it).

Just thought I would preface that before you see our pictures...you'll understand why.

Elyn found a pretty baby in the trashcan...and she's shiny!

Here Elyn is trying to pull up on the toy basket. She is going to live far, far from home one day...she is my explorer.

This little girl though, she will live with me until she is married, I think. When we announce that we are going home from anywhere. She shouts, "Yea! Home!".

Testing our gigantic pool to see if the water is just right.

Doing her bear crawl through the tunnel.

Nora's attempt to dress herself...sans diaper.

I think Nora looks so old in this picture. I was doing dishes yesterday morning and Nora ran into the kitchen, laughing, and said, "Look Mommy!" I thought it was hilarious. My little alien.

Watering one of the flower gardens

Matthew had been holding Elyn on his chest when she crawled up over his head, trying to grab the babies on the couch. He is looking at me as if to say, "Do you see her? We have a climber on our hands!"

She was quite pleased with herself though.

We are in the trial stages of potty-training. Nora was on her potty the other night (the kind that attaches to the adult toilet) and excited that she had tee-teed (that's what we call it...we all have our own names). She was getting off to come and tell us and fell against the tub. This is her lip the next day. Ouch!

Hey mom, like my hair?

A complete un-posed picture. I think it's sweet.

Nora is loving Elyn these days. She'll come up to her and say, "Elyn, you want to play in my room?" I think that is precious! She asked that today and because Elyn can't crawl at the pace Nora runs, I took Elyn into Nora's room and came back to the kitchen to get the camera. When I got back to her room, this is what I found. I don't guess they quite understand how to play TOGETHER yet.

Again with the hair.

And finally, at lunch today, Nora pulled Elyn's highchair up to be right beside her chair. She was talking to Elyn the whole time during lunch. They are going to be best friends! (I hope.)

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Where did you get all those candles Meredith?

Oh Meredith and Derek, how you toy with our heart strings.

Are you coming back after you let Rose down Derek?

Meredith, will you still be waiting in your house made of candles?

George and Meredith's sister, I think you would be a fabulous couple...you're both a little nuts.

Um...Dr. Haan and Callie, seriously? I'm not excited about that pairing.

AND why did McSteamy look on smugly, like he had orchestrated a masterpiece?

Miranda, good for you for letting go and "seeing the big picture". I hope you and your husband are able to find the love again.

Oh, Alex, you let your shell crack some tonight. It was heartbreaking to see the tears.

Izzy, you are a good doctor, even Dr. Bailey thinks so.

Finally, no more sad Christina. Good!

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

FINALLY!

Well, here we are...the end of the list. It's been fun, but my mom is ready for me to start posting pictures of the girls again.

Shepard Family-The Shepards are friends of my sisters. They graduated from high school with her...obviously not married when they graduated, that happened later on. Leah is beautiful and Marshall is hilarious and together, they have a precious baby boy.
Simpson Family-I know two people from this family better than others. Amy and Madison. I was lucky to have Madison in my 2nd grade class. She kept me on my toes and I decided I wanted to have a little girl one day and for her to be like Madison. I have the two girls and am molding them already. Her mom, Amy, was my good friend that I taught with. She knows how to throw a party! And she is BUSY. I think it must be hard for her to sit still for longer than 2 seconds. I enjoyed working with Amy and miss my Tucker School friends. They were fabulous to work with. I truly enjoyed my job because of them. (See that was painless Amy...you know I have nothing but love for you.)
Summer-One time, at Harding, someone paid me the ULTIMATE compliment. They said, "You know who you look like? Summer Allison." Obviously this person was legally blind and probably had the sun glaring in his eyes at the time. Regardless, I was flattered. The entire time we were at Harding I am sure she would have been named (and probably was) the most beautiful female on campus. And her appearance is not even the most beautiful thing about her. Nope. It's her heart. Summer is one of the "original" bloggers. After her second daughter, Macy, was born, she set up a Caringbridge site. It was a great way to update Macy's health and solicit prayers. Summer's journaling during that time was more like an inside look to her spirit. She leaned completely on God and trusted in his plan. I have been amazed, several times, at how sincere she is in her faith. If you haven't ever visited Macy site, you should and start at the beginning. And if you haven't visited Summer's blog, you should do that too. Her world is full of girls and full of fun.
Supa-Never met her but LOVE her. Supabloggasuprememama is the actual title of her blog. Extremely creative. Sometimes she goes private, sometimes she is public. Right now, I believe she is public...so you are in luck! She is hilarious in her writing and so, so honest. Absolutely beautiful with a super handsome husband. You can imagine how good-looking her two kids are. AND I want her to come to my house and decorate. Okay, not really, I would be embarrassed for her to see how I decorate and I'm afraid that she would think I was a bad housekeeper. But, in my dreams, she has transformed my house with her artist touch. I consider her my friend...my friend who I have never met and probably never will. But, I do pray for her and her little boy.
Suzanne -If you have not been to Suzanne's blog...well, you are out of the loop. And I'm sorry that I had to point that out to you. But, really, you are out of the loop...behind the times...living under a rock. She had 4 babies AT ONE TIME last August. And they are all healthy and happy and keeping their parents on their toes. I had the pleasure of visiting a VERY pregnant Suzanne last summer. I was pregnant with Elyn at the time and was teeny bit smaller than Suz. But, she was more beautiful than I. She is married to a great guy and has an awesome support system in her family. So, go, check her out if you haven't yet.
Tesney(private blog)-I knew Tesney at Harding. We were in education classes together. And then, she up and moved, transferring to a much larger school. We missed her and her southern ways. Other than her accent the other memory I have of Tesney is strong. So strong in fact that it is almost impossible for me to eat a certain food. I am pretty sure it was our freshman year, sitting in Dr. Higginbothom's "Intro to Education" class, at 8:00 in the morning. Being the typical freshman that we were, we did not allow enough time to actually go to the cafeteria and eat breakfast BEFORE the ridiculously early 8:00 class, we would just grab a Pop-Tart or something like that on our way out the door. One morning, Tesney, grabbed her usual NutriGrain bar and headed to class. She was almost done eating her breakfast, when she pulled the remaining breakfast bar out of the package and saw BUGS at the bottom of the package. AHHHHHHH! Can you even imagine?!?! Can you even eat breakfast bars now Tesney?
Watson Family-David and Matthew were really good friends from grade school through college. I knew April, briefly, at Harding. I went over to house a lot the year before I went to Africa. I remember that no one knew how to record anything on t.v. without leaving the television on. Soooo, if we were having a meeting and the family was recording something, we would have to drape a blanket over it to focus on the meeting. I wonder if they have figured it out yet. April has two really cute kids and seems to be a great mom and wife.
Whitney-I knew Whitney at Harding, but not well. I remember her being so tiny and, honestly, was a little envious of that. Well, she is still tiny. And I'm still a little envious. She is also a new mommy to a super cute baby boy. And from what I read, enjoying being a mommy and doing a great job at it. Austin is apparently a dream baby...sleeping 11 hours at night already...and he is brand new. Lucky girl.
Williams family-I did not know Amy or Brad at Harding...I don't think I did anyway. But, thankfully, I got to know them through our Searcy small group. They included us, like the Miller's, and made us feel a part instantly. I remember Brad doing a weight-loss contest one time. He won. I also thought Amy was way cooler than anything I could ever hope to become. I'm pretty sure she still is. And, like Sara, I loved her decorating style. They have a little girl that is so funny. I want Nora or Elyn to be funny like Sadie is funny. I guess you can't train that though, it just happens. Anyway, love their blog and their family.
Winberry Family-The Winberry's go to our church and their little boy, Caleb, is Elyn's future boyfriend. We are thrilled that they have started coming to our small group on Sunday evenings. They are a very welcomed addition. I haven't gotten to know them very well over the years, but I am hopeful that I will be able to remedy that soon.
X-box wife-I do not know X-Box wife personally. She is the "founder" of "10 things Tuesday"...okay, probably not the founder, but she has a great link to put on your blog if you do it. I enjoy her blog and her writing style. Maybe one day, I will meet her in real life.

And I AM DONE! I hope you enjoyed it. I actually visit more blogs than I have listed on my favorites. So, if you didn't make the list but you KNOW that I visit your blog, I think you are great too. I just haven't taken the time to link you up. Sorry. Maybe next time around.post signature

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Hopefully I only have two more installments of:getting to know my blog friends

This is taking WAY longer than I ever expected it to take. That said, I am enjoying writing about each person/family. Matthew asked me last night, "WHO is reading this?" I told him the person I am typing about, they read it. For those of you at the end of the alphabet, thank you for waiting.

Marshall-When Matthew and I moved up here we didn't know anyone but the Browns. Just like the Millers took pity on us in Searcy, the Browns took pity on us in Rogers (I guess we have that "lost, sad-puppy dog-eyed look about us that makes people want to help). Marshall has proven to be a very good friend. Not only is he our friend, but he is also our preacher. And a very fine one. My mom still remembers his sermons from the times she has visited...and she doesn't even have to look at her notes. Marshall has an amazing ability to remember information. Some helpful, a lot random. Quoting entire sections from certain 80's movies is as easy for him as quoting scripture. I am happy to have Marshall as my friend and think he is a terrific man-despite the warnings I was given from former TNT members that had to pledge under him.
Melissa-I knew Melissa at Harding, but knew her fun-loving husband better because we were in the same "grade". I wish I had known Melissa better when we were there. She seems pretty fantastic. She is a mommy to adorable twins. Although, I am sure that she wishes Ryan would have become an ENT doctor instead of working at his current job. Melissa is also an unbelievable photographer! She is a rookie but amazing! Hey, Melissa, if you are reading this, please let me know if you are using your talent for pay yet. I would love to set up a time for you to photograph my girls. I can't promise we will be happy and on good behavior, but it should provide for some good entertainment. My contact is under my profile.
Michael Ann-Mikey was a friend at Harding and a fellow 1995 pledge. Michael Ann kept everyone laughing. It seems she was constantly dressing up in a Bison cheer leading outfit and performing. Although Michael Ann now lives near me, we haven't seen each other. Shame on us! I am sure that her boys love their easy going, fun mommy. I enjoyed my daily dose of laughter in Sears One South, thanks to Michael Ann.
Nicola-Ahhh, my Canadian friend. Nicola is such a dear friend and she lives miles and miles away. I would love to see her and her precious baby Maggie one day. Nicola is fellow Jeopardy lover. I loved that she loved Jeopardy with me and thought Alex T. was kind of annoying. I could tell so many stories, but I'll limit myself. Once, when Nicola was traveling back to the "States" after Christmas, she made it, but her luggage didn't. I was so sad for her. She had a lot of her Christmas presents in her bags. I vowed never to go to the unclaimed luggage store in Atlanta in support of her. This story isn't about Nicola, but her brother. I always thought Jordan was the cutest thing EVER (any other former Harding girls that want to second that...I know you're out there!). Well, one night, he asked me out on a date and I thought I was in heaven. The date went well, I thought we had a nice time. Driving back, we ran out of gas. Yes we did! And it was raining. I eventually made it back to the dorm, a little wet and a little past curfew. He never asked me out again. But, hey, there's a happy ending. We are both married and have kids. It all worked out. Anyway, back to Nicola. Such a true, unassuming, real friend.
Parks family-I will forever refer to David as "David Lee". Because that is how he introduced himself to me. I got to know David one summer at camp and loved him right away. As in, older brother that I never had kind of love. And he sure could make me laugh!!!!! I will never forget the summer that we went to Africa. He was happy to be there, glad to experience the culture, but thought only of one thing...Amy. Seriously, he loved that girl so much that he gave up traveling in Europe to go and see her. I mean, they're married now and have two ADORABLE girls...but, come on, EUROPE. I think he got the better deal though.
Price family-Mary Jo was our hospitality committee (along with Connie) when we moved here. She brought over cookies in a basket with her phone number attached, in case we needed anything. That meant so much to me and I want to do that for people. Mary Jo is an extremely talented seamstress who puts me to SHAME. We also had surprise pregnancies together...only she lived in Ohio and I lived in Arkansas. AND she is the one that inspired me to make my own baby food for Nora, which I did for about 6 months. But because she lives in Ohio now, I only buy store-bought baby food for Elyn...I no longer have my inspiration.
Rickard family-A new name to my blogroll. The Rickards go to church with us and we love them! Sherry is truly a woman after God's heart. I have never heard her complain over her situation. Each time I see her, she has a smile on her face. Now, granted I am not around her that often, but the times that I am, she is joyful. Thank you for that! Her husband is a true servant as well and they are raising 3 great kids.
Sandi-I have known Sandi many years. I first knew her at Camp T and we used to write letters to each other during the school year. Sandi is HILARIOUS! That girl could make me laugh so hard with her dry sense of humor. I later got to know Sandi when I was at Harding. She has a pretty amazing singing voice and an incredible heart. I love her blog. She is so transparently honest. I also love to steal menu ideas from her each Monday. I look forward to seeing her take on the role of mommy to three...because I know when she writes about her feelings and fears and joy, I will, one day, probably experience that same things. Sandi, without realizing it, is a strong voice and encourager for all mommies.
Sara-Sara is "the lovely wife" that I referred to when talking about Jim. Sara and I were in Zeta Rho together but did not really get to know one another until our move into their home Bible study. She always made me feel so welcome by her comments. She would say something like, "The Henderson's will be there too" and I would think, "That's us! She is including us...we are a part!". I was (and sure I would still be) a little envious of her decorating style. She made it look effortless and classy all at the same time. But, one thing I will forever remember Sara for, is that she cleaned my shower the day we moved from Searcy. She was 9 months pregnant and cleaned my GROSS shower for the new owners. That was a true friend. I wish I could be there to clean her shower when she moves back to Searcy later this summer.
Segadi family-I knew April at Harding and pledged with her in '95. Like Chandra, I don't feel like I really got to know April while we were at Harding together. I knew her husband, Jay, a little better. We went on a campaign to New York together on Spring Break. I remember their wedding though. It was beautiful and April was stunning. I will forever remember the look on Jay's face whenever he saw her day. It was one of pure love and a little bit stunned. Like, "can you believe I married her? She is AWESOME!" I enjoy her blog and reading about her kids.
Shannon-Shannon and Matthew went to Harding Academy together. I never really knew her at Harding. Probably because I was super-intimidated by her. Yes, Shannon, you were scary to me. Not scary like "She's going to be beat me up", but scary like, "She is pretty cool and really confident and has a ton of friends and most likely thinks I am in the way and have no clue". That kind of scary. HOWEVER, I am no longer scared by her, but in awe of her. She is absolutely one of the most amazing women I have ever known. Her faith, her family, her story...I am about to cry just typing about it. If you have never visited Shannon's blog, I encourage you to do so. You will leave it encouraged and amazed. And you will probably laugh a few dozen times too. She is quite hilarious.

I will try and wrap this up tomorrow. Halleluah!

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Monday, May 19, 2008

Part three

Karie-Another Harding friend. She actually was suitemates with two of my best friends from Harding. When I would go and visit them, Karie was either studying for a test, going to or coming from a clinical, or drinking coffee. She is now a mommy to three, so I'm sure she is still drinking coffee.
Kim-I met Kim at Camp T. She started the summer as a student about to start her senior year at ACU and ended the summer as a transfer student to Harding. I'm sure the decision was based on the time she spent with me :). I will never forget that Kim brought her iron and starch with her to camp. She probably used them...very prepared, that Kim. I also remember that she never made green beans with out putting bacon in them and never made spaghetti with out ground beef. I am sure it is a treat each night to eat at her table.
Kim H.-Although I didn't know Kim very well at Harding, I LOVE, LOVE her blog. Each time I read the story of how God blessed her with her beautiful children, I tear up. And that says something! I did sit next to her husband in Jimmy Allen's Romans (I know it was a Harr and am 99% sure it was Jordan). Dr. Allen made us sit in alphabetical order...Harr, Hill. I didn't get to know Jordan very well either, we were both bogged down in trying to make it through the class.
Krista-I go to church with Krista. Her blog is pretty funny and her daughter, Kennedy, provides many interesting stories for her to tell. I will say that Krista is one sharply dressed woman and is always sporting some wonderful shoes!
Kristen-The reason that I started blogging. I didn't know what blogging was until a friend of mine (who is a blog stalker, but I won't out her) told me about it. And the first blog I came upon was Kristen's. And I was hooked! I knew Kristen from Harding/Camp T. I will always remember Kristen for her dotted letters. I'm sure she is still a pro at them. Thanks for getting me started in this Kristen!
Lane Brown-I go to church with Lane. Her little boy is one of Nora's most favorite friends. She loves him! When Sterling was born, he weighed over 9 pounds and was NOT a c-section baby. I remember Heath telling everyone that Lane was the most amazing woman ever. That is a high compliment to pay.
Laura-Laura only knew me pregnant. Laura taught next door to me the year I was pregnant with Nora. It was her first year to teach and had a class most veterans would have had a hard time with. But, she did great. And, I keep waiting to see her and her husband on tv, in a commercial, promoting love. She is also quite a skilled knitter. She sells her goods on Etsy and she is talented!
Lisa-I go to church with Lisa. She is Nora's teacher one day a week, for one hour, along with Lane. Lisa tells me she is hoping to run a 1/2 marathon in December. I have told her that I hope to run it too. One of us needs to get on the ball...and it's not Lisa.

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Blogging friends part two

I got my swimsuit in the mail this morning. I don't look like the model, but I don't look horrible. So, I won't send it back. It did make me realize that a few (hundred) sit ups wouldn't hurt before the swimsuit makes its debut.

Now, what you came back for. The second part of my list.

Harsh family-Jeff is the only contributor to this blogsite. Even though he is great, I mainly click on to see pictures of his children. His sweet wife, Erin, was a great friend of mine at Harding who, if I'm lucky, get to see at our yearly girl get-togethers.
Heather-I only know Heather through the world of blogging. She is a friend of a friend. Heather has some adorable nieces and nephews that she showcases frequently. Oh, and a huge Alabama fan.
Horner family-I know the Horners from Camp Tahkodah. They have very recently added an adorable little boy to their duo. I am excited about adding them to my blogroll and learning all about them and their precious boy.
Jamie(private blog)-I knew Jamie at Harding and lived across the complex from her in Nashville. Jamie lives a "Sex in the City" life right now, except she lives it in New York and London! Stuff dreams are made of. When I was at Harding I was on the IRT, which basically means I went to clubs during pledging to make sure they weren't torturing Freshman. Mostly it was a boring task, but occasionally, I got assigned to something worth my time. The night that I got assigned to "Kojies" was definitely worth my time! Jamie, along with 2 of her friends and their pledges did the most amazing dance routine. I still think about them when I hear the soundtrack to FlashDance.
Jana-Jana is the first teacher-friend I met when I moved to NW Ark. She has proven to be a true friend. She recently moved to Boston with her husband and two children and is loving the New England life.
Jennifer-Matthew and Jennifer went to Harding Academy together. She has 3 adorable children who she so obviously enjoys spending time with. Her family has a super love of Six Flags and seem to be the ideal tour guide through Looney Toones land. A memory I have of Jennifer is from their 10 year class reunion. She was overdue with her second baby, or maybe she was due the next day. Either way, she was VERY pregnant and VERY energetic. I was absolutely amazed at her energy. She was one of the last to leave the party. She still shows off that same energy in her blog. Wherever she gets her energy, I need some of it!
Jim-Jim is a Searcy friend of mine. I knew him at Harding, mainly through Zeta Rho. Thankfully, I was able to get to know him (and his lovely wife) better when Matthew and I joined their Sunday School class. Being the caring people they are, they felt sorry for us and invited us to their Home Bible Study. sidebar: Most of my friends got a diploma and a wedding ring within a span of 5 to 6 months. I did not marry until (gasp!) the ripe old age of 26 (which seems like a baby to me now). While Matthew and I were newlyweds, we did not fit in with the other College Church of Christ newlyweds...they were 12 years old. Okay, not really, but it felt like that. God blessed us with a class at church that had several other married couples in it without children. Although they were out of the "newlywed" stage, they still welcomed us into their group with open arms. And the Millers were the ringleaders. We are thankful for that!
Julie-My cousin. So, I've known her a while. She is a stay-at-home mommy to Bailey, who is 11 weeks younger than Nora. I am so glad they are close in age and wish they could see each other more often. I have many, many memories of Julie from when we were little. I always thought that she (along with her twin sister) had the best toys when they were little. Isn't that always the case, you think what you don't have is better than your own toys. Anyway, I remember they had a Sit-n-Spin and I loved it. And wanted it. I remember that so vividly that I picked up Nora one for $1.00 at a garage sale on Friday. Now, I'm just on the lookout for the red Flintstones car that Julie had, that I never did, that I want for Nora. Thanks for always having the best toys Julie!
Julie N.(private blog)-I got to know Julie while she was student teaching. I DID NOT enjoy teaching that year and she was a ray of sunshine in my life. She was about to get married (and graduate) and was looking forward to her new life. Well, little Julie now has two girls. One named Norah and one a week older than Elyn. And she is just as beautiful as back then.
Julie W.-I have written about Julie several times on my blog. She was my best friend from 7th grade on. I don't have many memories from Weatherford that don't include Julie. I have one story that I think is pretty funny. When we were probably juniors, maybe seniors, we were at Julie's house with two other friends. One of these other friends hurt herself somehow, maybe cut her finger or had a splinter. She looked at Julie and asked if she had any alcohol she could use. Julie and I BOTH assumed she was going to self-medicate and use some of the liquid to take the edge off. Julie said, "Um...I think we have some wine in the house." And I'm thinking, "I cannot believe she just asked Julie for something to drink! That is really putting her in an awkward position." The friend looks at us and says, "Rubbing alcohol." Ha, ha, ha, ha. Julie has an amazing memory, but I wonder is she remembers that.

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Saturday, May 17, 2008

Who are all these people?

We landscaped (as Matthew said earlier) today. Landscaping in our world means planting flowers and laying down mulch. The flowers are pretty and I hope we don't kill them. We are notorious for killing anything that is potted, but in the flowerbeds, we are champions. It was a good day.

Now, I am exhausted and sitting on the couch with my feet up. I have the laptop in my lap and thought I would talk about the people on the left side of my blog page. Several people have done this in the past and I always enjoy reading what people say about me. If your name is on the left side, well here's to you:

Amy (private blog)- I went to Harding with Amy. While we were not close friends at Harding, I have enjoyed getting to know her through her blog. She is BEAUTIFUL and a great mom to FOUR. And the girl looks like amazing!
Amy Bowman- I met Amy while I lived in Nashville. One of my most vivid memories of her is when she lost her engagement ring. It slipped right off her finger! And she is married to a pretty laid back guy, thank goodness! I'm happy to report it was replaced and just as pretty as the original. She has a great blog about her adorable little boy and his triumphs/struggles in the world of autism.
Ashley-Ashley and I pledged Zeta Rho together in 1995. And we have been friends since then. She has two adorable children, Ranger and Lucy (who was born a mere 10 days after Elyn). On top of being a great mom/wife, she is a marathon runner and triathlete. She is my inspiration! I love Ashley and her personality. She is one-of-a-kind and a beautiful friend!
Baker family-Although I have "Baker family" as the link, Amy B. is the main contributor. I knew Amy at Harding and was in Sunday School with her and Andrew the year Matthew and I lived in Searcy (the first year we were married). She is a dorm mom to 180 and a mommy to 3. Recently, she has "stepped it up" in the blogging department and I really enjoy her writing and honesty.
Brittney-A friend of my sister's while they were at Harding together and sister to my friend, Summer. A mommy to two little girls and another lover of hairbows.
Brooke-Brooke and I were at Harding at the same time. I love Brooke's blog! Hers is a blog I stalked before starting my own. Last year, Brooke and her husband adopted a precious little girl from Ethiopia. Brooke always springs to my mind when I wear platform sandals (and I don't very often). She slipped off of the platform one time resulting in a cast.
Brooke H.-Brooke and I were at Harding at the same time and in the Education department together. We had a mutual dislike for a teacher who I will not name because too many people from Harding read my blog and I don't want hurt feelings. If you are a teacher in the ed. department and read my blog, don't worry, it's not you. Brooke and I also worked at Colton's together and we both called our boss by the incorrect name. Geeez. Brooke and Ashley were also my instructors during my first (and last) scrapbooking adventure.
Byrd family (private blog)-I got to know the Byrds the first year Matthew and I were married and we were in the same Sunday School class. Wes was actually the ice cream delivery man at Camp Tahkodah while I worked there...the best delivery guy of them all.
Carol FHB-aka-Simone. I have known Carol since I was in the 7th grade, thanks to her sister, Julie. So many memories of Carol...watching her iron her hair in her bedroom, carpooling with her every single morning, passing out cherry sours to everyone after the communion at church, and many, many more. She just found out she is having a baby girl and is a little excited. Fabulous writer, but she always has been.
Chandra-Pledged with Chandra in 1995. I am so sad that Chandra and I did not become closer friends while we were at Harding. It is absolutely ridiculous that we did not. I'm sure it was my fault. Oh, well, I am completely enjoying her blog and getting to know her better through that. She is a tip-top mommy to a little boy. And she lives a fantasy life. In a picturesque house right next to New York City. But, she is a Texas girl at heart.
Dallas Heasley-Yep, another Dallas. We go to church together and when we write our names on cups at get-togethers, we can't write "Dallas" and we can't write "Dallas H." so she writes "Dallas-the one with boys" and I write "Dallas-the one with girls". We also have the same birthday. And Nora loves her youngest boy.
Danielle (private blog)-My newest friend in NW Arkansas. We are soooo glad the Balentines moved here! Danielle is about to find out what her second child will be. And she is a great mom to precious Ellie. I think we have potential to be great friends...I hope so.
Danna- I went to Harding with Danna. I recently found a picture of her dancing during Spring Sing for a show I helped with. She looked like she knew exactly what she was doing. Like Chandra, I wish I had known her better because I'm pretty sure she would have made me laugh all the time. She does on her blog. She has three girls and probably dreams in pink. When our third child turns out to be a girl (in a few years), I will look to her for all kinds of drama-reducing techniques.
Deborah-I knew Deborah at Harding. I once helped her husband, Pat, with some Spring Sing choreography. He was obviously raised CofC. But, I do remember Deborah being able to dance with the best of them...she had quite the moves. Now, she is a mommy to two boys and has a heart for God...well, she always had that.
Elizabeth-I was in Zeta Rho with Elizabeth. She has two precious children and an embroidery machine that I hear is incredible. I'm a little jealous about that.
Floyd family-Jennifer went to school with Matthew for a long time, since 2nd or 3rd grade? I just made that up, I don't really know. What I do know is that she is the ultimate keeper of memories. At their 10 year class reunion, I was amazed at the amount of stuff that Jennifer had. She was way before her time in scrapbooking. I'm sure her new little girl, Emma, will benefit from that.
Garrett family-Pledged Zeta Rho with Michelle. The only person I have ever met that plays the accordion. Michelle always knows how to have fun...I want to be more like her.
Goode family(private blog)-We got to know the Goode's our first married year in Searcy. Sadly, we didn't get to know them too well. They had a new baby girl and were pretty focused on her (understandably). That little girl is now five and has a brother or sister joining her at the end of the year. I have enjoyed getting to know Cassie better through her blog.
Hale family-The Hales used to live in NW Arkansas before moving to Texas. We were in the same small group with them and miss them so much! Thankfully, we get to visit them when we are in Texas for extended visits.


Okay, I'm tired! Stay tuned for more bios.

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Sleeping baby

I just went into Elyn's room to check on her during her nap.

This is how I found her.

If you paid me a million dollars, I would not be able to get my body into this position.
I also took a video.

video

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Is size 10 really "plus" sized? And some other thoughts.

Well, apparently if you are America's Next Top Model, then being size 10 is being plus-sized. As I've admitted before, I enjoy watching ANTM. I'm happy for Whitney and her big win (pun intended). Although, I still don't see her as "plus-sized", I see her as normal.
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I am reading a book right now and came across a part of it that I really liked:
"I wish I knew what was going to happen."
Ingeborg nodded. "We all wish that, but God in His mercy opens that door only far enough so we can see the next step. That way we don't get frightened and run and hide."
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I ordered a swimsuit online yesterday. It's a halter tankini and comes with a cover-up skirt. I am officially a mom...I have a swimsuit with a skirt. Hopefully I will look just like the model that is wearing it. I used the virtual body that the site offers and the swimsuit looked great on "Virtual Dallas". We'll see.
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Weight Watcher's online is going great! I have lost weight, almost 7 pounds. I have quite a few more to go before I get to my personal goal. I am happy with the progress I have made. I am a big fan of WW, so if you are looking for a way to lose some weight try it out (it's only $5 a week if you do it online).
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Elyn slept from 8:30pm to 6:30am last night!
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Matthew had to go get some fungus removal for our lawn the other day and took Nora with him. This is what she chose to wear-she picked it out all on her own. She had heard it was supposed to rain that night.

I told her to smile for me and she pulled out these poses. The second picture looks like she is about to do a high-step. Obviously, we are raising a future fashion designer.
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And this is how she was dressed this morning. Her Dora/Bono glasses are her favorites right now. It amazes me that the hair inside the glasses is not bothering her. She was telling me "bye". You can't see it, but she also had her purse with her. She's ready to go, glasses, purse, and mode of transportation.

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I was folding clothes two nights ago and looked over at Elyn. She was crawling over to the toy basket and trying to PULL UP ON IT and see what was inside. I almost ran over and knocked her down because it is too early to be doing things like that! Thankfully she didn't have a good enough hold and tumbled over on her head. She cried but I was just happy she wasn't successful in pulling up. Yep, I am a caring mom.
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And that is all of the random thoughts I have for today.

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Bye bye swaddling blanket...I miss you!

*****UPDATED: Little Miss Elyn slept like a champ last night! After a horrendous day of napping, I finally thought, hey, I should pull out the mini wedge and let her sleep in that. She's not swaddled but still feels a little bit of the security of being "tucked in". I put her down at 7:30pm and she only cried out once last night (Matthew went in to her BTW). She was ready to eat at 5am and went back to sleep until 7am. So, I guess I will be making sure the mini wedge is in her crib. Oh, and now that she is not swaddled, she is sleeping on her tummy with her bottom straight in the air...I LOVE IT!*****

Another milestone has happened in our house.

Last night, we decided it was time to get rid of the swaddling blanket. The main reason is because I went in to nurse Elyn Sunday a.m. and she was sitting up in her crib waiting for me, half-swaddled.

When your kid can successfully sit up on her own, that's a good sign it's time to do away with the INFANT swaddling.

Another good reason to give it up is because we are entering the scorching days of summer and I didn't want to have to rehydrate each morning from the amount of sweat that would have poured out of her, well, pores, each night.

Let me tell you, I miss the swaddling blanket.

Last night, she went to bed at 8pm and fell right to sleep. I thought, "Hey, this is great! Didn't we luck out with a super-adaptable kid who has no problem at all with change." Boy was she fooling me!

Around 11pm the crying started. Sticking to my "Baby Wise/Healthy Sleeping Habits for a Happy Child/Happiest Baby on the Block" training, I let her cry for 10 minutes before going in and "soothing" her.

As soon as I was out of her eyesight, the screaming began again.

I waited 15 minutes and repeated my parental duties.

Again, the crying.

I waited 20 minutes and went in to help the kid out. (All I can say is I am incredible grateful that we live on one level. She would probably still be crying if I was called upon to actually climb stairs.)

If you are counting then you know it is now 11:45pm. When I got back to our room, Matthew, in a semi-awake state, said, "Why don't you just swaddle her."

WHAT!?!?!?

He must have not read the same books I did. Of course he didn't, he counted on me to give him the "Cliff Notes" version.

I was not giving up that easily.

If he hadn't of already fallen back asleep, I might have launched into a lengthy discussion of how when she is 4 and begging to ride a bike with no training wheels are we going to let her fall twice and then say, "Forget it, let's put the training wheels back on."

Or when she is learning her times tables and can't quite get the 3's, are we going to say, "That's okay, just learn the 2's and the 4's. Those 3's aren't very important."

Or when she is 15 and learning to drive a stick shift and stalls each time she shifts from 1st to 2nd, are we going to say, "That's okay honey. I know the car you will have to share with your sister is a stick shift, but you can't get it. Let's just go buy you a car that is an automatic."

Of course not. We will never be those parents! Why should we start giving into her now?

But, he was asleep so we didn't get to have that fabulous conversation. I know he will be very sad that he missed it.

Imagine my surprise when she stopped crying at midnight. I carefully tiptoed into her room and she was sound asleep.

I ran back to my bed and jumped in to get a few precious moments of sleep.

She didn't wake up again until 5am! Yea Elyn. AND she went right back to sleep after I fed her and didn't wake up again until 7:15.

Her naps today have been miserable though. Her morning nap consisted of 20 minutes of sleep after playing in her crib for an hour. The girl needs way more than 20 minutes in the morning.

And now, she has been crying in her crib for 30 minutes refusing her afternoon nap.

Oh, I miss you swaddling blanket. You made my life full of sleep and peace. I miss you like I will miss training wheels, the two times tables, and the Driver's Ed automatic car.

But, it's time for my little girl to grow up. Not the last time I will lose sleep because of that.

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Monday, May 12, 2008

A wonderful day

Mother's Day was a great day! I was happy to spend it with my two wonderful gifts. We went to church and then went to spend the rest of the day with Grampa and Gram (Matthew's mom and stepdad). I am so blessed to have Nora and Elyn and to be called their mom.





And here is a video of Elyn crawling. I captured it first thing this morning. I'd say she is doing pretty good for just figuring it out two days ago! Not to be left out (because she never is!) I have added a video of Nora singing...such a beautiful voice at the early morning hour. You can also see how we use our bottles in the Henderson house. Since both of my girls have refused to ever take a bottle, we use them for other purposes.

video

video

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

(in alphabetical order)
Happy Mother's Day:
Gigi, Gram, Grandma Henderson, Grandmama, LeeLee, Mommee, and Nonna

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

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