Friday, December 28, 2007

Here's to 2008!

Ok, it's the end of the year and it's time to look back on the year and examine signs of our time! I did this quiz in 2006 and I thought it would be kind of neat to start a tradition of answering the same questions. It is enlightening to look back at myself one year ago--to see what was important to me, to see what my goals were, my feelings. Then, to be able to paint the same picture now for myself next year.....

2007--What kind of year was it???

1. What did you do in 2007 that you’d never done before?

This was a year of many beginnings and changes in my life....where do I start? Let's see I started a new job in a completely different field--pharmaceutical sales. I FINALLY moved out of the metal building and into a modular. I went to Guatemala....the list goes on and on!!

2. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

Last year's resolutions were to exercise on a consistent basis and to finish my Master's degree. I can proudly say I am a 2007 graduate! As for the exercising....well, I did great at a the beginning of the year (I even won the pool at work for the most body fat lost in 3 months! However, as the year passed, it just became hard to find time.
For next year--exercise is a MUST! I am going to Cancun in April and I don't want to hide behind icky clothes! I also want to get organized. And I want the 5th bedroom cleaned out--mega yard sale baby! I would like to convert that room into a game room for the family (because I want a Wii for my birthday...hint. hint.)

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Well, "close" is a loose term. None of my immediate friends had babies, but several acquaintances did such as Kyle's sister and her best friend. However, I don't even know the babies, so I guess the answer would technically be no.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

No, not this year.

5. What countries did you visit?

I went to Guatemala--it was such a blast, yet such an eye-opening experience. I truly felt blessed to serve those people for a week. I definitely want to find time in my life for more mission trips. The experience and life lessons are immeasurable.

6. What would you like to have in 2008 that you lacked in 2007?

Last year I said a house--and I got it (sort of)! I also said a toned body and confidence and I would have to say those two things again! I would also like to have peace and some free time. Hey, and a little more patience wouldn't hurt.

7. What date from 2007 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

Definitely September 16th...that's when Richie proposed to me. That was the first day of the rest of my life.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Graduating with my Master's....putting myself in an elite group that few ever achieve.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

No major injuries, just learning to adjust with dealing with my jacked-up back now that I have a more active job that requires long drives and lifting.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

I can't think of one specific thing, but I love my new curtains, bedspread, and other decor in my new house. And that PS3 is really entertaining the boys! I also love this new Mac's awesome!

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

This one belongs to Kylie. She started kindergarten this year and I was SO nervous. She is quite the challenger and I was so afraid that she would have a tough time adjusting to big school. However, she has only gotten a handful of blue notes this year-mostly green! And she had a nearly two week straight green note stretch when Richie challenged her with money! Green for green! :)

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

Gonna have to give this one to the parents. No more deals.

14. Where did most of your money go?

Debt. Clothes. New house decorations. Kiddos.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

My life with Richie--trying to relax and enjoying that period between engagement and the wedding....

16. What song will always remind you of 2007?

Hey There Delilah...even though I HATE it! Any Daughtry songs were good song memories for 2007 though!

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
happier or sadder? thinner or fatter? richer or poorer?

I am much thinner first of all--nearly 13 pounds thinner! I feel richer--I have started a savings account and I am kicking some rear!! I am also happier!

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Relaxed. Read books. Cleaned my house (I know I sound weird).

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Less worrying.

20. How will you be spending New Year’s?

Gonna go visit Karla and Billy in Tulsa.

22. Did you fall in love in 2007?

Yes, I did. I love you Richie.

23. What was your favorite TV program?

Desperate Housewives. Big Bang Theory. Rules of Engagement.

25. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

I don't "hate" anyone--but there are people I don't care for.

26. What was the best book you read?

The Golden Rule. My Karen Kingbury books--always good ones!

27. What was your greatest musical (re)discovery?

Daughtry--love them!

29. What did you want and not get?

To sell my car. My house cleaned. And I didn't get the Girls Next Door Seasons on DVD... :(

30. What was your favorite film of this year?

Alvin and the Chipmunks!! :)

31. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

Gosh, I can't remember exactly what I did. That really means I am getting old! Oh yeah, I remember--Reno 911. Ok, next year I pick the movie!! But it was definitely my last birthday. I am NOT turning 30 next year!!

32. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Getting a house, being debt free. Being organized!!!

33. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2007?

Teal/Chocolate. Learning to buy/wear flashy shoes instead of my staple black/brown heels!

34. What kept you sane?

This blog--the ability to write! :)

35. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

Katie Holmes--watching her morph into Mrs. Cruise right before our eyes. She sure doesn't look like she did a few years ago.

36. What political issue stirred you the most?

The death of Bhutto a couple of days ago--tragic, unfortunate, unnecessary. She was a great woman with such a big heart and a desire to serve her people. Her country will greatly miss her.

37. Who did you miss?

No one really--I have everyone I need.

38. Who was the best new person you met?

Besides Richie, I have developed a great friendship with Amy. We didn't actually just meet, but we have become great friends.

39. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2007:

Life has no guarantees--you can plan and dream, but in the end, you never know the outcome.

40. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:

I don't know about you but I was put here to live and love
So, what if I don't do it like everybody else does
I'm out on the edge, I'm too willing to risk
Every bone, every breath, they say, all I am is a crazy dream
Like it's a bad thing.

--Gary Alan's "Like It's a Bad Thing"

Happy 2008 everybody! May 2008 find you achieving your goals, living your dreams, and loving life!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Muddy Christmas to You!

First of all, yesterday was the two year birthday of my blog--Happy Birthday, Blog! Before we talk about today, let's talk about yesterday's excitement.
The kids spent the weekend with Kyle and when he brought them home last night, we were using the front door instead of the back door (for reference, the back door broke the night before when it was so windy, therefore it's out of order until we can get it fixed), so he proceeded to pull up to that door to let the kids out and bring in their stuff. Well, he had turned around and was talking to them and wasn't paying attention and pulled onto the water line ditch...that's not quite set yet. That big 'ole diesel truck is front heavy and as soon as it hit the ditch, the front two tires sank about halfway. Well, we got the kids out and situated and he when he got ready to leave, he tried to back out and quickly found out the tires were just going to spin. My Papaw pulled up about this time in his new fancy, smancy Avalanche. But those slick street tires that are for looks, not heavy duty pulling weren't going to get that big truck out of the ditch. He tried for a minute or so, then quickly realized it was useless. Well, we thought Richie's truck might do it since he has after market tires, however it just wasn't quite heavy enough to pull it out either. Instead, one side of Kyle's truck buried even deeper-down to the frame! At this point, we realized Eric was probably going to have to come to try. He has one of those "play" trucks with big tires and no worries. But the only problem, he couldn't get a hold of him at first. So, I told Kyle he could use my Honda for the time-being if needed. However, Eric called about that time and was able to head over and help us out. It seemed like Eric's truck wasn't going to do the trick either...until he decided to leave some slack and just yank as hard as he could! And one loud POP later, the big diesel came flying out of the hole. The whole time, the other concern was whether or not the water line had burst or would burst with the truck on it and all of the spinning, and pulling, and tugging going on. And the bad part about that would've been that it's the holidays so no one is working!! But luckily, there was no damage to the water line. We estimate he was probably within 6 inches of it though!
Now, to Christmas's that time of year again. The most anticipated evening. The night of the most awaited visitor! The kids are still stoked about Christmas and ready for Santa to's Mom who can't sleep! :) I am afraid this could be the last year that they both believe. I am afraid the magic will start to dwindle from here. So, I plan to cherish every moment of tomorrow. Earlier we opened our Christmas PJ's. The kids got "footies" and were bouncing off of the walls with excitement. They thought they were SO cute!! And I have to admit, they look adorable in them!
We went to the annual Me-Me Christmas and Kylie again stole the show with her reaction to one of her presents. Actually it was the first thing she opened. She got a Hannah Montana wig and microphone and she started jumping up and down and cheering with excitement. She immediately had to put the wig on and begin to show off. She looked so funny and so cute!
Tomorrow will be my first year ever to cook Christmas breakfast for my family! I hope to make it a tradition. I am so excited about having my grandparents, parents, and my kiddos here Christmas morning. The menu is endless--eggs, bacon, biscuits, gravy, waffles, tomatoes (gotta have 'em with the gravy)....the list goes on! It'll be great.
It's the first Christmas out of the barn--I can't say I miss the barn. I have my big tree, decorations I haven't seen in 3 years, and plenty of room to have family over, so I have to say it's been a great holiday season.
But I am most thankful this year for just having the life that I have. Being happy. I don't need much--just love and a quaint place to lay my head. I am so thankful for 2 wonderful children that are full of life...and that are my life. And a fiance that is just sitting back and relishing his first Christmas in a family. I think he is truly enjoying the magic of the season.
Richie and I were talking earlier about the Christmas season and how it changes. He was remembering 15 years ago when he would open presents at his grandparents house. They have passed away now and their house is now the one he lives in. I remember my Auntie Karen being at Christmas. I remember Christmas at my Grandma Decker's house. They are all gone too, but it's like I told him--the season changes and our roles change too. Soon, Christmas will be at our house with our children and their children. But the meaning never changes and the magic is always there if you let it be.
It doesn't get much better than this.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Operation Clean House

Well, Operation Clean House is underway.....and my bathroom is sparkling! I just finished HAND MOPPING the floor--it was filthy! Now, on to my closet and room. I am gonna get this house under control! Kylie walked through the living room a minute ago and said, "Wow, it smells good in here." Not sure if that's good or not. Makes me think she's not used to the smell! But, I guess overall it's a good thing that someone noticed, huh?
We are SO ready for Christmas around here! But I do like the ability to get my kids motivated with the "I will start taking presents away" threat too!
Last night we went to the local park for a train ride through a lights display. It was a little short, but the kids liked it never the less. It's just fun to get out and enjoy the Christmas season and all of its displays!
Well, back to work--gotta get the house ready for Santa's visit! :)

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Love and Sacrifice

I love reading as everyone knows and now that I am done with my Master's degree, I actually have time! I have been reading Karen Kingsbury's book, "Ever After" and a part of it really stuck out to me. There is a wedding that takes place in the story and the bride and groom exchanged vows that they had written. I loved the part in the vows that talked about love and sacrifice from 1 Corinthians 13. From there, my mind started racing with a ton of questions...

1) What is love? (Here's my favorite definition and it's from 1 Corinthians 13)

The Greek word that is used in 1 Corinthians 13 for love (agape), is a word that simply means "the ultimate act of self- sacrifice." It is a word which refers to the ultimate act of sacrificing oneself for the good of someone else. In fact, 1 Corinthians 13:1 could easily be translated the following way: "If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not a spirit of self-sacrifice, I am nothing."

2) Does love require sacrifice?

To me, absolutely. We can say we love something, but I think at that point the word "love" means something completely different if it doesn't involve the ability or desire to sacrifice oneself. I think that when someone can truly say they would be willing to sacrifice himself for the good or betterment of someone they love, then you know the love is agape love--unconditional, neverending, exceeding all limits.

Sacrificial love. It goes beyond beauty. Beyond brains or status. Beyond age.

Monday, December 17, 2007

The Countdown to Christmas

Well, just 2 more days of work this week and then I am officially off of work until 2008! I am ready for Christmas!
We went to see Alvin and the Chipmunks this weekend and it was SO cute! I loved it! It brought back tons of memories of when I was a kid. It was a little surreal to see my 7 year old and 5 year old sitting next to me enjoying the Chipmunks!

I had the weirdest dream last night. A storm was starting to form outside. It was rainy, windy, and dark. I walked outside to see the dust in front of the house swirling in the air. Then I looked out and saw a bunch of tiny tornadoes. I ran back into the house and told everyone there was a bad storm outside. Then I remember looking back outside again and saw a huge tornado forming and headed straight for the house. I was so scared! I called Richie (not sure where he was) and told him how scared I was. I was screaming into the phone. Then I went back into the house and found the kids and we grabbed the mattresses off the beds and ran down to the basement. No, we weren't at my house. We were in some huge mansion and there was a ton of my family there together. Then I woke up. So, I don't know if the tornado hit or not....but it was headed our way.
I tried to thinking of what the meaning of that dream could be--I felt like it meant that I was some place safe from harm and that my family and friends were there to support me through the storm. I think it's probably one of those dreams that is supposed to reassure me that I am in God's will and though there will be hard times and struggles in life, I always have those who love me nearby or just a phone call away.

Thursday, December 13, 2007


My house is a horribly embarrassing disgusting wreck. Problem is I never have time to clean! I literally can't get the necessary items done before I find myself doing them all over again. Then, I never get to move on to the next level of cleaning. It's driving me nuts, but what do you do? Plus I really want to get organized. My office has turned into one big storage room of marketing supplies. Therefore, I know what I'll be doing on vacation next week....yep, you guessed it. Cleaning. Organizing.
I am ready for Christmas. I am ready for good food, presents, and a little down time! And I am ready to know what all of these surprises that Richie has bought me are....I am not good at waiting for surprises!!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Graduation Anticipation!

Next Saturday is my graduation! YIPPEE! The countdown begins--I am ready! But before I can graduate, I have such a busy and stressful week ahead....lots of work and typical week stuff to do! But that will make next weekend all the sweeter. My kids have a different countdown going--they are excited about next Friday because the Alvin and the Chipmunks movie comes out! (OK, I have to admit I am a little stoked too--I loved the Chipmunks as a kid!)
Kylie is also on a parade kick...we went to the local parade in town last week and then she went to the big parade in a nearby city. She loved it! It's awesome to see the magic in her eyes--what a wonderful age! She was so excited and would peek around the people next to us to see the parade coming down the road. It was the cutest thing. And don't worry, she worked the parade people with her charm and smile and got tons of candy! Her highlight was when Santa waved at HER! She thought that was just the greatest thing!
Well, I am done Christmas shopping, so if you didn't get a present from me yet, then you aren't getting one! And I am SO glad to be done this early. We ventured out Saturday to finish up and it was already a mad house at there! So, I am glad to know I don't have to fight the crowds.
Some friends of mine threw me a graduation party last weekend--it wasn't as a big of a hype as I would have liked though. It seemed like everyone was out of town or had plans. Such is December. Oh well. I did get to see an old friend from my last job and my good friend Amy made it as well. So, that was nice. However, gotta love when you mix water and wine. My new friends and my old friends just didn't seem to click. Guess it was the difference in "culture"! So, it was an opportunity to see how some people act when out of their element. Note taken.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

3rd Time is a Charm

Well, we are State Champs once again--for the 3rd time be exact! The game wasn't nearly as nail-biting as last year's game, but it was definitely a good one. And it was much warmer than last year!
I am on a mission to get this house cleaned up--and I hope to accomplish it this weekend. I had a couple of picture taking requests, but to a lot of people's amazement, I said no! I am known for my ability to over extend myself, but I decided this weekend, that I wanted to rest and get some things done around my house.
A little holiday trivia for ya...learned this after a one-sided bet! :)

In the song, "Winter Wonderland", there is a phrase about Parson Brown...who (or what) is it referring to?

Answer: One can assume that "Parson" is used as a title, instead of a first name. In the period when this song was written, parsons (now known as a Protestant minister) often travelled among small rural towns to perform wedding ceremonies for denominational followers who did not have a local minister of their faith. Therefore, the children are most likely pretending that their snowman is a Parson with the surname "Brown," which would be visiting the town again in the future.

Love ya Richie!! :)