Monday, January 31, 2011

First Victim

Well, we have finally succombed to the dreaded flu.  Weston is the first victim! Poor guy, but from what I can tell and from what the doctor says, he has a very mild case of it thank goodness.  He will spend the next couple of days home, but since he started his journey to "Fluville" on Saturday, she said he will probably be good to go by Wednesday/Thursday.  So, wonder who's next???  

Sunday, January 30, 2011

House Progression #3

And now to the most recent house progress!  The framing! This part has made the biggest difference in making the whole house building come to life.  This is my first time to build my own home and it's such a fun experience watching all of the progress!

Stage #3.....the framing of the first floor.

This is the first day of framing...huge progress made in just one day! 

A view from the master bedroom looking the right is the master bath.  

Another view of the whole house

Another view....I know it's hard to tell what it is

View from afar

This was Friday's progression--exterior walls going up and the  floor joists for the second floor. This is a view from the back--master bedroom on the right and breakfast area to the far left with the patio in the middle.

Another view from the back--patio in middle, master bedroom on right, breakfast area with big window to left.

Another view from back showing 3rd car to the left

Interior view showing the floor joists on the top! 
So, that's where we stand at this time!  I know progress will be slightly slowed next week due to the weather, but hopefully we will have a few days with pretty weather! Second story here we come!!

House Progression Post #2

Here's the next stage of our house progression! It seems like it is going by so fast, yet it can't be finished soon enough! I have to note on this stage that Richie and I had to do some manual labor.  They poured the foundation a day or so before the last round of snow that we received.  We knew that the standing water/ice/snow was not good on the foundation, so we headed out there and swept off all of the water the day after.  Luckily, it was a very sunny day and the foundation was dry within an hour. Whew!

The next stage:  Footing and Foundation.

The materials for the footing

The Footing--people who saw this picture nicknamed it the "moat"!

Another view of the footing

Here comes the cement truck...and our foundation!

View from the road as the foundation is poured

Smoothing down the foundation

The finished product!

More pics to come of the next stage! :)

House Progression Post #1

So I have said many times that I would post the progress on my house and have yet to do it.  Today, Laura and Pate stopped by to check it out and she told me I had to get some pics up soon or it would be done! :)
So, here goes.  I think the best way to do this is in multiple blog posts because I have waited and waited so long that there are just tons of pics!

So, here is the first stage.  We officially broke ground on December 21st.
Breaking Ground!
A House Pad
Another view of the house pad
The driveway and house pad--check out the view we will have from the back porch!
Another view from the road
I will put some more pictures in another post of the next stage!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

This Is The Stuff!

I heard this song on the radio the other day and I honestly think whoever wrote this song had me in mind.  Let's see, in the last week, I have managed to lock myself out of my car AND house at the same time.  Then, there's the GWD PD that flashed his lights at me for speeding (luckily I didn't get pulled over, but geez where's the family discount??).  Add to it that I NEVER can seem to find my phone and when I lose it it's ALWAYS on vibrate. UGH.  I loved walking outside this morning to find my car windshield frozen over.  There goes 20 minutes of my commute as I wait for it to defrost! And how about the nasty nurse and ugly doctor I dealt with today? Then, there's the class that I am teaching tonight.  They are busy taking a test right now, but 20 minutes ago, it was whining and moaning and begging for a word bank!
My head is killing me! But, thank goodness for this song and the reminder....this may be the stuff that drives me crazy, but it is useful.  Without adversity, what would we overcome?  Without fear, where would we find courage?  Without challenges, where would we learn patience? It all seems so frustrating, head-throbbing, and ridiculous, but it's the stuff we deal with.  I just keep reminding myself that big or small, God has a purpose for every single event.  Now, where are my keys?? :)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Lessons in Leadership

Our church is doing a series on leadership which couldn't have come at a better time since I am teaching a leadership course.  The pastor said something today that I immediately had to write down. "A {good} leader knows the need ALWAYS outweighs the cost." I LOVED this quote...for so many reasons.  First of all, there have been a few situations in my life where I have taken the "unpopular" stand and chose the need before the cost.  And you know what? I would do the same thing again if given the chance.  The biblical reference he gave was 1 Thessalonians 2:4.  He summed up this verse with this--we are NOT here to please man. I am not perfect at all, but at the end of the day, I want to know that the decisions I make are for the right reasons, not necessarily the popular reasons.  Some of my decisions based on need have cost me friendships, money, and success, but they have always left me with a clear conscience.  And the times I put the cost before the need?  I have been left with scars--lessons I have learned from and experiences that have made an impression on my heart.
When we move into our new home, I told Richie, I am going to get a sign made that has that quote on it.  I want it to serve as a reminder when I am faced with that choice of what it could cost me versus what I need to do, that I remember which one I should always choose.

Chicken and Dumplings...Finally!

There's not a lot in this world that I won't try to tackle, but making chicken and dumplings has always scared me! I don't know why but I have been too afraid to ever try it.  So, last night, I mustered up the courage and gave it a shot.  And they were SO yummy! I always make up my own recipes for my dinners--borrowing a few ideas from this one, adding a little from that one, and finally throwing in a few things to give it my own touch.  I didn't write the recipe down as I went (I didn't want to jinx myself), but after it got 5 thumbs up of approval, I knew I had to document my success.
In this house, if Weston will eat, you know it's a winner!

Saturday, January 22, 2011


Awhile back, EB introduced Ebates to the blogger world and I have to say I love it. It's great to know that I can not only shop at home but I get a little cash back in the process. And since I'm all about saving money right now, it's great. Here's a link that you can sign-up if you haven't already done so!
And if you do, I get a special reward! Pretty cool!

Monday, January 17, 2011

New Blog Pics and a Rough Sunday

I am so happy my new pictures are finally up on my blog! Some of my other previous pictures were at least 3 years old! The pictures that are in my header and the ones down the side of the kiddos are courtesy of Shannon Walker. GREAT PICS! Thanks Shannon--I LOVE them. I can't wait to get settled into our new house so I can hang some big prints of the fam!
Yesterday was one of those days--you know, the day were you think, "I got out of bed for this?" The morning started out with us only running a few minutes late to church. Well, some much for that. Richie and Landen had already headed out to the van and I was hot on their trail as I was scooping a last minute breakfast together for me. I locked the door to the house, and trotted out. Richie said, "you got the keys for the van?" I started digging in my purse and then digging some more. Nope. NO. KEYS. And no spare key anywhere either. Great. So, I had no clue what to do. We were locked out of all vehicles AND the house. So, I called the Property Manager. I knew she would be in church, but I thought I would give her a heads up and just hope that she could help us after church. By this point it's 10:15 a.m. Well, she called me right back and had her husband come and unlock the door for us. I was so thankful she was able to help. However, at that point, it was 10:35 and we had missed most of church. So, we decided to head to Lowe's to get some paint color ideas. Well, Richie walks across the yard and steps in dog poop. UGH. And the day continued that way with one little setback after another. We were so tired and cranky by mid-afternoon, I took advantage of a nice nap with Landen after we got home!
I was so disappointed about missing church! We are doing a series on Spiritual Leadership and I really wanted some spiritual guidance for my class Tuesday night. Oh well. For some reason, we were meant to stay home.
But, gosh I could've done without the drama! :)

Sunday, January 16, 2011


I know I just posted recently about Landen and some of the new things he is doing, but I kept thinking of so many more....and he keeps adding to the list.
So, today he put 3 words together and made a sentence! I can't remember now what he said, but he repeated me. I was feeding him "bites" and asked him if he wanted more bites and he repeated me. He has also been putting two words together lately as well. Then, this morning, he learned where his belly button is and said, "button".
Another thing he has been doing for a month or so now is saying "mine" and we went to see Dr. Ashcraft the other day and when Nurse Kathy heard him say it, she was floored. Not because he could verbally say "mine", but because he was using it in the right context. I am in trouble!
But, I have always heard that kids who can communicate well have a little easier time with the "terrible twos" because they aren't frustrated. So, hopefully some of the "two's" will be easy!
He had his first true ear infection this week. Thursday night, he woke up at 1:00 a.m. and fussed and cried and asked for "juice". It was 2:30 a.m. before he finally got comfortable. So, Friday afternoon I decided to take him to see Dr. A. I was worried about bronchitis or a sore throat with the cough he's had lately. But no! He had an ear infection! He is doing much better though thankfully since we caught it early enough to get some antibiotics started.
Little Man is such a joy to be around--I am so thankful God blessed me with another baby. Love him so much (even if he's a little ornery now and then). The smiles I find on my face daily are constant reminder of the joy he has brought to us!

Fun Night with Friends!

Richie and I had such a good time last night! First stop was Fuji's for some great food with Craig and Laura. The food was SO delicious last night! We had a little bit of a wait, but it was well worth it. Then, it was on to hear a hometown band full of friends play! Such a fun night without kids and with good food and friends!

Me and Richie
Me and Laura
Craig and Laura

5k Run Fun

Yesterday morning started off with the Special Olympics Fun Run. I wish they had kept time, but it was nice to get up and get 3 miles or so in first thing in the morning. The weather was so nice, a little chilly, but with the right clothes, you are just fine! After the race, I came back home and worked on some stuff for my class I'm teaching. So far, it's going great. I can't believe that in a week and a half it's mid-term. But, being only 9 weeks long, it flies by! I'm trying to develop a test right now. I don't want it too hard, but I don't want it too easy either!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Christian-themed Police Movies!

My husband came home yesterday and told me about a new movie coming to theaters next month. It's a Christian-themed police movie! Grace Card comes to theaters February 25th and has a great "beginning" story about the man who wrote it if you get a chance to read it. Then, on 9/30/11 (Landen's b-day) the makers of Fireproof have a new movie coming out called Courageous! I loved reading their tagline "Honor starts at home". POWERFUL! I think these are two movies that are police department should take a field trip and go see!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Dave Ramsey, I'm Trying!

So, as you noticed on my end of the year post, one of my resolutions is to become debt-free. And what led me to that epiphany was two of Dave Ramsey's books I read over Christmas break. I loved the idea of not having any debt and being able to retire comfortably one day! So, I made a budget, bought some envelopes, and waited for January 1 to come. And it did....and so far, two weeks into my resolution, I am still going! It's tough some days!
I think when I first approached Richie with my idea, he thought I was nuts. I know he felt like he was getting an "allowance" when I told him about it, but hopefully now he realizes that we are going to be so much farther down the road one day!
Dave always says, "Live like no one else, so one day you can live like no one else!"
My kids cracked me up at the grocery store last weekend. I pulled out my "grocery" envelope and got ready to pay the lady my cash and Kylie said, "WHOA MOM! Where did you get all that money?" They are not used to seeing me pay with cash for anything and she though we were just rich because we had cash. What's funny, it wasn't hardly any money at all!
There are times it's hard, but I keep thinking about how much further ahead we are and will be one day and it doesn't seem like a big deal after that.
I love looking at the debt snowball worksheet and playing around with ways to pay off the debt faster!
So, thanks Dave! I'm trying! And if you see me out, don't laugh at my tattered envelope, because one day, I'm gonna be debt free!

Desperate Housewives Religion

So, I watched my DVR'd episode of last week's Desperate Housewives and I got a little dose of religion at the same time...stop laughing. :)
But Bree and her Pastor got in a bible verse war and I learned one that hit me right square between the eyes. OUCH!

14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Matthew 6:14-15

When I heard that verse, I just sank in my chair. UGH. I knew what I had to do. You've heard me hint at an issue that has weighed very heavily on my heart for about a year or so. And I keep telling myself I forgive these people. But, I find myself forgiving them 20 times a day. Why? Because 5 minutes after I "forgive" them the bitterness and resentment just comes pouring over me. But, when I heard that verse it really hit me. I HAVE to truly, truly forgive them. And not for them, but for me. I have to get rid of my bitterness and resentment because it's bothering me, not them. So, after hearing that verse, I realized that if God forgave me like I forgive others (saying it, but still bringing it up 5 minutes later), then I would be miserable. I guess part of me wanted them to apologize, but that's not gonna happen. And honestly, that's not what forgiveness is about anyway.
So, I asked God for an opportunity to show them my, here goes.
And it wasn't just DH episode that made the difference. I had a talk with a sweet friend the other day that really touched my heart. I appreciate her strong grounding in her faith. Thanks T!

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Landen's 15 Month Checkup

I am SO behind about Landen's growth. I honestly don't think I have posted since his first birthday. The kid is growing though and is saying a TON of words. In fact, he went to his 15 month checkup today and Dr. A said that he has the vocabulary of at least a 2 year old! I don't doubt it one bit. Some of his favorite words are "cracker, apple, pizza....." Do you see the connection? :)
He weighed 22 lbs and 15 oz and is 30 inches tall. He is only in the 25th percentile for both of those categories, but his head is still in the 95th percentile!
He loves riding his new 4-wheeler and his rocking horse. He is walking and even running at times! He loves to put things in the trash and shut any door that's open! You can give him something, tell him to put it in the trash and he will take it there, throw it away, and shut the pantry door. Oh yeah, and when he finishes, he wants to give you a fist bump! That's his new "trick"!
He loves my Papaw, but won't hardly have anything to do with my Mom. I think that has a lot to do with the fact that he hasn't gotten to see her much since she's been sick. And a little bit of it is ornery too! When would ask him to say "Grammy", he wouldn't even try! And when we would ask her where she is at in the room, he would look everywhere but in her direction....I think he was just trying to bug her!
He is such a fun kid, but he is definitely ornery....just like his Daddy!

The Cruel Things Kids Say

Weston has come home the last few days telling me about some things a couple of kids on the bus have been saying to him. The other day a kid was calling him "short stuff", etc. I feel so sorry for him because I know he is a small guy for his age. But, he is such an amazing kid and I wish the other kids could look past his height! I think the part of the conversation that touched my heart. When I asked him what he said back, he said, "I just told them please don't talk that way in front of my sister." He wasn't even worried about himself.
Then today, another kid was picking on him about where he lived. The kid told him, "at least I don't live in an apartment!" Weston just told him he was moving soon and went on. I hate that he is having to endure ridicule for where we live! These duplexes are so nice! But, kids don't see that. They see an opportunity to hurt, a way to get somebody upset.
I am so thankful for my kids--that they are good ones and that they have a great attitude when faced with ridicule. AND, if you ever see my kids acting any differently, PLEASE let me know!! :)

Monday, January 03, 2011

Twenty Eleven!

It's a new year! And it's definitely going to be a busy one for sure. But, if you know me, you know I like to stay busy!
Tomorrow night I start teaching a Master's class at Webster and I am so excited! Nervous, but excited! I am ready for the challenge! Too funny though, I have already had a student email me and ask me if we can leave early for the Sugar Bowl game!! :) I'll do my best--but we do have work to do!
The house is coming along wonderfully....I know it's going to go by fast once the framing starts. I have pictures from Day 1 to upload, but I want Richie to help me put them in order before I post them.
So, I am ready for the new year, the new opportunities, and the new challenges! Here's to 2011! May everyone find blessings and wonderful memories!