Monday, December 31, 2007

Our Year In Review

I have a few things in my annual picture-palooza that didn't quite make the aka-blog-name cut so I decided not to post it here. It's still OK enough for the majority of the world's population to see but to keep the COMPLETE strangers from wandering too far into our biz, I thought I'd require readers to request the URL if you want to view it. It's 5 minutes+ of gratuitous Us but I'm quite proud of the way it turned out.

Most of you should have received an official link to it via email anyway, but if you didn't get one & would like to, just email me using the link in the sidebar & I'll make sure you get it.

(man, this has turned into a great excuse to pull you lurkers out of hiding!!)

Happy New Year!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Warp Speed Of Politics

Do y'all realize the history we are living? We are LIVING the amazing warp-speed change of how politics are done in these United States. It's mind-boggling to think how different life has become because of the Internet. Fascinating.

I'm no history buff (sorry, Steph) but I know that even just a couple of Presidential elections ago, things like this wouldn't have even been imaginable!

I personally LOVE it :)

Monday, December 17, 2007

One Video From The Local News

But not the post-audition video. I'm still looking for it.

This is from ABC 33/40 showing what they aired BEFORE the auditions.

LA Again? Sure Hope So!


How weird is it that ONE DAY after the 1-year anniversary of my Price Is Right Trip that I find out about Wheel Of Fortune coming to Birmingham THE NEXT DAY?

Do y'all remember after my failed attempts to be a contestant on TPIR that I said I wanted to try Wheel of Fortune next? After doing research on it, I soon realized that WOF wouldn't be NEARLY as easy as TPIR but I held onto hope. I signed up for the Wheel Watcher emails and assumed I would get an email about any WheelMobile stops in AL and possibly even neighborhing states.

Imagine my surprise when I clicked on Crystal's blog to do a little catch-up reading and finding THIS post! WHAT!? WM coming to Birmingham and I didn't know about it? Did I miss it? What's the date??? HURRY, little brain, FIND THE DATE! What is today's date? ACK! Panic, panic!

WHAT? It's TOMORROW?

Yep, Friday the 14th I saw Crystal's blog and was STUNNED that I hadn't gotten any emails about this and even MORE stunned to realize the WheelMobile was the NEXT DAY!

So the plans for our weekend started to change right away. (Sorry to those who were a part of our plans changing and THANKS FOR THE ENCOURAGEMENT that we should do this!)

Saturday morning we got up early and Henry & I, along with all the kids, my parents, and my Uncle J went to Bham for the big auditions! It was SO dang crowded at the Galleria but we hoped it was because of Christmas shopping and not because of the WheelMobile. Turns out, our hopes were right and we were fine. We had plenty of time to eat lunch and then get in line approximately 1 hour before doors opened at the vacant anchor store where the auditions would be held. We stood in line, filled out applications, talked to some people around us, took a few pics, and kept a watch out for Crystal so I could tell her THANK YOU in person! Honestly, if it wasn't for her blog, I'd STILL be clueless about the WM! oohh....I shudder to think about how I would have felt finding out about this TOO LATE!

So we were 5 (18 & over) out of 500 (?) who made it into the first round of auditions. I won't re-type all of the process because you can find out all about that HERE but I will tell you that just being there was a step closer to being on the show but there are still tons of other steps that have to happen.

PRAISE GOD that my name was called SECOND! YES, that's #2!!! I was the second person called to the stage!! We were F R E A K I N G out! When I say "we" I know for a fact that me and my kids were freaking! I remember seeing Mom look back at me with a super-excited look and her eyes a little teary, kinda like mine were when I saw Bob Barker! Anyway, it was an AWESOME moment! When Marty (the travelling host) was reading the name he was handed out of the giant gold barrel that held all of our applications, time started to slow down. I heard my name in slow-mo and it was VERY surreal. It was the closest thing to "Come On Down" that I might ever hear!

So I handed Captain to Uncle J (and was so thankful I had already unhooked him from the Maya Tie because of the intense body heat we were producing in that CROWDED room!) I ran to the stage, had a Polaroid snapped and stapled to my application, and was hurried onto the stage. As we were REPEATEDLY told, THE AUDITION HAD BEGUN! (Ladies and gentlemen, your audition starts the second your name is called so make it count! This is YOUR CHANCE! Own the stage!")

Well, I don't know if I OWNED the stage or not but my game-show-prep studying I had done kinda started trickling through my adrenaline-flooded brain. Be happy (check) be enthusiastic (check), be a good sport and encouraging to others (hug fellow contestants -- check) have fun (check check!)

I looked down at the kids, who had made their way to the front of the crowd so they could see me better and they were TOTALLY flippin'! It was the coolest thing! Rocky was red-faced and smiling bigger than I've ever seen him smile. His hands were in the air and he was waving 'em like he just didn't care! Awesome.

The next few minutes were a blur. The 5 of us first contestants were called 1 at a time to the front of the stage to introduce & tell a little bit about ourselves. I was second in line so I was called forward almost immediately after gaining a bit of composure. I told my name and then it went something like this:

Marty : (standing on tip-toes -- ha ha - I'm tall.) "So what do you, Stacy?"

Me : "Well, I have 5 children and I homeschool them so we spend a lot of time together." (it just came out without much thought. the "homeschool" word seemed to get one cheer from one person in the back of the room!)

Marty : "Allright! 5 kids! So what do you like to do in your free time? Your STACY time?"

Me : (mustering courage to attempt humor) "You heard me say I have five children, right?"

LAUGHTER! WHOO HOO!

Me : "Well, I'm a little bit of an internet nerd and I like to blog."

Marty : "You're a blogger, huh? What do you blog about? Having 5 kids?"

Me : (something like) "Yes!"

Marty : "Are you ready to play the Wheel?"

Me : (something like) "Very much so!" (Did I raise my hand in the air??)

Marty : (his arm around me turned me back to my place) "Good job!....Next..."

I was shaking like a leaf! AGH! It was all happening so fast!

When I got back to my spot, I spoke again to Contestant number 1. Niceties. Then I looked for the producers/judges/whatever. Eye contact was made and the lady with the sparkly reading glasses nodded and smiled at me and then wrote some notes! I smiled ever so Southernly but didn't stare. I actually started making even more attempts at being cheerful for the other contestants. And then I noticed the puzzle was being put on the board. Hmmm....see if you can figure it out, Stace.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Something and something.

BRICKS AND MORTAR? Could it be bricks and mortar? Why did that pop in my head? Where's the category? THINGS. Wow, it COULD be bricks and mortar!

Looked over at Miss Sparkly Glasses and wanted her to know "I know how to play this game. I am SERIOUS about playing this game. I am already playing this game."

She noticed me again and smiled AGAIN and made notes AGAIN! Even Heidi, the traveling "Vanna" noticed me already working on the puzzle and smiled at me. YAY FOR SMILES!

The game started. #1 guessed R. 1 R.

Not BRICKS AND MORTAR.

My turn. "S"

2 S's!

Think, think, think.

I know the middle word is AND -- or so I think it is but it's going so fast...and didn't somebody guess N? If they guessed N, it's not AND because there's no N up there. My brain was racing...where's that list of already-guessed letters? MY TURN AGAIN!

I guessed D because I wanted to see if it was AND but didn't want to accidentally say a letter that was already guessed.

2 D's!

Contestant #4 guessed O and there was 1 O and I figured it out! PLEASE don't get it...please don't get it...please let it get back to me...

Contestant #5 guessed something but it wasn't in the puzzle. Back to #1 and she guessed L! I knew there was no L so it was making it back to ME!!!

"H" I said loudly and clearly into the microphone. Heidi signaled for the H and wrote it in. When it came up I clearly said, "HOPES AND DREAMS!"

DING DING DING! I won! The crowd cheered! WHOO HOO!

It was daggum exciting!

Oh, I forgot that the prize wheel was spun before the round started and our prize was a fanny pack so as we walked off-stage, we received our bags with a keychain and blinky lapel pin inside!

And that was it! We stuck around to see if anyone else in the family's name was drawn but they weren't. The audition lasted about 1 hour and there about 50 people who went across the stage by the end of the "show."

As we left, the waiting room was CROWDED with another set of folks waiting for the 2nd audition. There were 3 total on Saturday and 3 more today. I'm sooooooo thankful I made it through on the first round and we didn't have to stick around for the others!

So now we wait to see if I am one of about 70 from these two days' worth of auditions that get called back for a final audition to be held in a couple of months. From blogs of others who have gone through similar procedures, I should know the answer to this within 1 month. Sigh...the waiting...

We are so pumped at the possibility! I can't believe I'm actually in the long-shot running of contestants! Think about it...there are only 3 contestants per night for maybe 150 shows per year? (note to self - read show FAQs for info like this.) If there were 500 people over 6 sets of auditions, that's me needing to be 70 out of 3000 people they saw this weekend! OK, so I at least made it to the stage for them to see me so I'm actually in the running of about 50 that went on stage per show so that's needing to be in the top 70 of 300. Maybe??

Will keep you posted! In the meantime, read the "About Video" portion of this guy's youtube video. It tells a pretty good synopsis of the process he went through.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Already Up Too Late

We've got another early morning tomorrow and I'm already up WAY too late but I have a SUPER-DUPER exciting post I want to make! I would like to put a handful of links in it (kinda like Steph does) so it's not a post I can just slap together real quick.

But since the suspense might be killing you, I will tell you the topic of my upcoming post.

Drumroll please...

I AUDITIONED FOR THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE SHOW AT THE WHEELMOBILE!!

It was a fantastic experience and I want to share some pictures and the story and what steps we're hoping will come next. But I absolutely CANNOT get it all together tonight. Hopefully tomorrow night.

So in the meantime, here's a hilarious video of He-Man enjoying the Christian metal band Thousand Foot Krutch. The song is "Rawk Fist" which isn't one of their "Christian" songs per se (some of them ARE) but it's a fun one!

Friday, December 14, 2007

December 13th

I know y'all are missing my house posts so I thought I'd update you!

We took ourselves off of house-viewing restriction and started looking at a few more again. I'm beginning to see that God might be answering our prayers for wisdom about our next purchase by giving us PLENTY of time to shop. Seriously, we I have fallen "in love" with a handful of houses already but today is the first time we've actually given 2nd visits to any houses. We've also left numerous houses saying, "yeah...this could be the one" only to have our feelings change over the following days.

What if we had jumped on any of those houses early on because of a quick sale? I shudder...

Although I REALLY DID love that one house...

So today we saw 4 houses and 2 of them were 2nd visits. The first house of today was, by all recollections, the first house we saw in all of this journey. It has been the kids' favorite and it IS REALLY REALLY cool but after checking it out again, we're close to officially crossing it off the list. I'm going to do a quick google search about eliminating mold/mildew in basements to see if any technological advances have been made to remedy this problem in aging houses but am pretty sure that we don't want to tackle this potential health hazard. (But dang, we could probably get them to REALLY drop the price!) Our re-visit today caused almost all of us to have itchy/fuzzy tongues and watery eyes when we were in the basement and afterwards. We are a very sensitive family and feel pretty sure it was something we breathed in that musty basement that caused these problems.

House #2 was also a re-visit and it was one that Henry initially didn't like. He was turned off by the price the first time we looked at it and just didn't see it in a positive light because of it. But THIS time (since they dropped the price a little bit) it has catapaulted to the top of our LOVE list. It is H U G E and we are really leaning towards it. It's still too pricey, especially considering it will need some massive updating (not repair, just cosmetics as far as we can tell pre-inspection) but it has really great space for our family.

Houses #3 & 4 were around the corner from each other in a great neighborhood. Number three was crossed off almost immediately. No side door. Too formal. Bedrooms too small. It was probably the most BEAUTIFUL of all the houses we've seen this whole time but just not a good fit for us. I'm really quite surprised at the square footage it says it has because to us, it just seemed really small. A retired couple needs to get it.

Number 4 is the one I stood in the front of yesterday and prayed for God to take out of my heart if it wasn't meant to be. Today, he might have answered that prayer. The neighborhood is SUPER-awesome and desireable, but the house, not so much. GORGEOUS on the outside, but small-ish (for us) and too needy on the inside. Good enough, though, to be #2 on our list right now. It costs the same as our SUPER-SIZED fave but might have better potential at accepting a lower offer, though. We'd have to decide which is more important...location or size. And the location is good because of stability of neighborhood and closeness to parents and inlaws NOT location of church/work/ballfields. If those were our only criteria, Super-Size house would be tops.

Sigh...so much to think about.

Of course, we can't forget...OUR HOUSE MUST SELL!

******

HAPPY 84th BDAY BOB BARKER!


It was one year ago today that we were in the audience of The Price Is Right. I can't believe how time has flown!

Today is Captain's 10 month bday, too!

Anybody Here...

Because of Alabama Baby magazine? PLEASE comment if so! THANKS!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Playing Wears Me Out!

This is one of the most entertaining things to watch Captain do: He will take a toy or two and bat it across the floor and then go to it to do it again. With these particular toys, he makes me think he might be good at air hockey!



Every day he's a little bit closer to walking on his own!



After a long day of playing & learning how to walk, Captain likes to be rocked to sleep on the glider ottoman. P-Paw started this and Captain can hardly keep his eyes open when he does it!

Henry says he looks like a dwarf tap-dancer in his homemade baby-legs & Robeez!

Friday, December 07, 2007

You Know About News Alerts, RIght?


Might I suggest setting up an alert for Ron Paul? I've been getting some of the most interesting articles that way. Some are for and some are against him but I find that's some of the best ways to do research! It certainly takes more than one website to get the big picture.

How in the world did people decide who to vote for before the Internet?

Monday, November 26, 2007

Email From Our Realtor


Glad I didn't get my hopes up TOO high! The balloon of hope started deflating slowly as the days wore on so it popping at this point doesn't really cause any sort of wild flying across the room in frenzied collapse to the floor. This burst balloon was already settled onto the floor and just bobbing along wherever the drafts shoved it.

I talked with (___Buyer's Agent___) and he said that, unfortunately, the buyers' deal fell through. Looks like it's pretty dead, but I'll keep you posted

Another balloon will come this way again...just not sure when.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Anyone Else Appreciate This?


Or is this just something else to embarrass me because I find it hilarious? Of course, I am far from believing people are useless but the falling down part? THAT is funny!

I know, something is wrong with me but obviously I'm not the only one who thinks it's comical.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Dear Sister - Not An SNL Skit

Dear ol' sis...she's very good at posting the passion we Bama fans have about Iron Bowl game day.

We wanna win!

Roll Tide!

Because I Am Serious When I Say

I don't want this to become a political blog!

So we're back to an old standby...Dancing With The Stars!

Did y'all see this? OHMYGOODNESS!!!! LOVED IT! LOVE LOVE LOVED IT!

Trying To Stay Light On The Politics

That's why I'm only embedding a Jay Leno video instead of a Fox News video. Again, I'm just trying to make sure I know what I'm getting into by saying I'm gonna support this guy but so far, he's saying a LOT of things I agree with and would love to see in the President of the United States!

There's LOTS more online...just google Ron Paul and search him at youtube.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

______ For President!

I'm narrowing down my vote-getter. Since I'm not really political and don't have the brains to debate issues correctly here, I won't yet reveal my leanings. But if any of you would like to use my comments section to voice your opinions, I'd love to hear them.

Honestly, I'd like to hear some of your thoughts because I'm curious if any of you are leaning in the same direction I am! Anyone like to take a guess on which campaign is getting my most research time (and an actual consideration of financial support!? GASP!)

Monday, November 19, 2007

Because I Know Some Pregnant Moms Stumble Their Way To This Blog

After Indie's induced labor & birth, I became very aware that induction is not the safest thing in the world. And for convenience (my case) it's downright stupid. But thankfully, Cytotec wasn't involved with me back in 1998.

Unfortunately, it is still very much used in 2007, even with articles like these being published, warning of the dangers.

Ladies, PLEASE be informed of everything related to a medically-managed labor & birth! Just because you aren't being told everything doesn't mean it's not happening! I remember many things that happened in births (while I doula'ed) that doctors & nurses did without asking...and Cytotec was one of them!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Bear Walk

You know he's named for a pirate but did you know his middle name was after a famous Bear? So it's no wonder he crawls like this! And he ONLY crawls like this!

There's One Nibblin'


PRAISE GOD! When I went up to the house today, there were TWO business cards on the table! TWO! AND, I got a call from the Realtor saying one of the families was very interested and asking questions and might possibly .... OK ... that's all I'm gonna say ... Don't want to get my hopes up ... But I'm so excited! PRAISE GOD AGAIN AND AGAIN!

A couple of new posts over at the house blog so check it out!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A Prayer I Have Begun To Pray

St. Ignatius Loyola prayed, "Teach us, Good Lord, to labor and to ask for no reward save that of knowing that we do Thy will."

Being the "words of affirmation" love language that I am, I struggle with being satisfied that following God's will is enough.

Take this house-selling stuff. I think it should be completed by now because of it being God's leading to do this. If God said to do it, shouldn't it be done by now? Shouldn't we be rewarded with an easy experience since we are being obedient and willing to sacrifice the luxury of our own large home?

"Teach us, Good Lord, to labor and to ask for no reward save that of knowing that we do Thy will."

And homeschooling... Shouldn't the kids joyfully bounce out of bed every day and gratefully get started on it and thank me profusely for being such a wonderful change from "real school?" Shouldn't we be in a groove by now? Shouldn't I feel accomplished at the end of a school day? Shouldn't I be gifted with perfect organizational skills and educational enthusiasm?

"Teach us, Good Lord, to labor and to ask for no reward save that of knowing that we do Thy will."

(NLT) Psalm 128:
1 How joyful are those who fear the Lord—
all who follow his ways!
2 You will enjoy the fruit of your labor.
How joyful and prosperous you will be!
3 Your wife will be like a fruitful grapevine,
flourishing within your home.
Your children will be like vigorous young olive trees
as they sit around your table.


So I will continue to fear the Lord and will continue to seek and desire and earnestly strive to follow His ways. I have faith that my joy will be full. And I pray, "Teach us, Good Lord, to labor and to ask for no reward save that of knowing that we do Thy will."

What Is That Noise?

Thunder? RAIN!?

Praise the LORD!

Now I'm ready to sleep. Love it!

Friday, November 09, 2007

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Yeah I Stink At Daily Posting

Oh well.

And here's another video. I just can't think of anything good to say when I'm watching Conan (yeah, even when it's a rerun.)



Thanks to Amy for letting me know about this! Pretty amazing!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Not A Post With The Most

To continue with my attempt to blog every day this month, I am here.

But if you think I'm going to write about football, you'd be wrong. I'll leave that to Steph.

I could write about the time change, but that'd be terribly dull.

I could embed a favorite of my youtube videos but, that'd be repetitive.

I could whine about house stuff, but that would be unproductive.

So I'll just tell you what I'm wearing...cuz i know some of y'all are kinky that way! LOL

OK - here's what I'm wearing for PJs tonight....ready? A red softball tshirt from 1988 (eighty-eight!!!) and a pair of waaaaaay big/baggy purple shorts.

Nice, huh?

Friday, November 02, 2007

And From The Same Guy

This is pretty darn impressive, too!

Ladies Of The Art World

I know this isn't much of a writing entry for the NaBloPoMo but it's something I found tonight that really needs to be shared. It's not often that I can provide you all with a little bit of culture! Make that 500 years of culture!

I've seen some crazy stuff on youtube but I honestly don't think I've ever seen anything this artistically beautiful! There have been over 6 million views of this video yet none of YOU have ever shared it with me. I must be hanging out with the wrong people! :)

I'm Cheating - Not That There's Anything Wrong With That

I'm not going to enroll in the official NaBloPoMo thing but I will attempt to write a post every day this month.

But I'm not getting off to a very good start considering how it's already after midnight and therefore November 2. Since I'm still awake, can this count as a November 1 post? Yeah? You don't care? Thanks!

Shall I choose a theme for each of my posts to help motivate my writing?
This can be the Seinfeld post...

What is the deal with sweating at the park in November? I mean, who are the ad wizards who came up with a hot November day?

Ray added too much salt to the homemade tomato soup so......NO SOUP FOR YOU!

Captain's all drooly and slobbery again because he's finishing off the cutting of his 6th tooth! It won't be long and he'll be able to have a Junior Mint! Who's gonna turn down a Junior Mint? It's chocolate, it's peppermint, it's delicious.

Sabrina totally got ripped off by being booted from DWTS. I guess now she can pretend to be a marine biologist.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Death Discussion


Most of you know we don't do Halloween but I figured y'all might not appreciate this topic on many other days. Am I right, or am I right?

AND, I don't have to write everything I want to say because Barbara already quotes, notes, links, and says most of the things I'd like to tell you. So, just click over to Barb's post and then come back here!

Go ahead...click over...I'll wait...

.
.
.
.

Read it? OK, you can continue here now.

Many of these thoughts began cropping up in my head after the beautiful experience I had with my Granny when she was called from earth to be with the LORD. I have never fully worked through all of my thoughts but I've had many of these ideas for a while now. I guess I'll have to truly discuss all of this with family some day but if the day for needing these decisions made comes sooner than later, all you blog-readers can attest to my wishes!

In a nutshell, I'd like:
-death at home without over-medication. Keep me aware of my situation!
-family at my side
-pine box, wicker or similar wooden/naturally decomposing coffin
-natural oils & spices in place of chemical embalming
-funeral time spent in praise and pointing people to Jesus with a time of invitation

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 NLT
13 And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died[f] so you will not grieve like people who have no hope. 14 For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died.
15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died.[g] 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died[h] will rise from their graves. 17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. 18 So encourage each other with these words.


***


(p.s. - I still nauseatingly cringe about all the plastic used to bury our dog, Lucy...I honestly can't stand to think about it....purposely thinking of something else now....la la la la...)

Monday, October 29, 2007

"I'm So Glad We're Behind Her!"


That's what the couple said who was standing behind me in the self-checkout line at Wal-mart tonight.

OK, not really. But they were probably THINKING it with my mad scanning & bagging skills. "Beep!" (bag) "Beep!" (bag) (pay) (grab receipt) (see ya!)

Why in the world am I blogging about this? Because I'm desperately trying to quit thinking & worrying & "doing" about house stuff.

Henry & I concluded today that we will no longer arrange with our Realtors to look at houses unless we are ready to make an offer. We gave ourselves the leeway of making a CONTINGENT offer before our house sells but I seriously doubt we'll go that route.

So, no more window-shopping. Online browsing is the only thing allowed at this point.

Thanks again to everyone who has prayed and spread the word about the www.EmeraldMtn.blogspot.com site. (Steph & Jen, you two PARTICULARLY rock!) I know that it's basically just been something to keep me busy and to make me feel like I have done something to help with the house selling but my heart knows that it really doesn't matter what I do.

But...

Proverbs 14:23NLT
Work brings profit,
but mere talk leads to poverty!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Whoever Said Homes Weren't Selling?

No, I'm not posting with the excellent news that our house is sold BUT I AM posting to complain (I need one of those bracelets!) that nearly every house we have been interested in has sold.

Hmph.

Deep breaths...

I set up a new blog to highlight our for-sale house. It's a work in progress but maybe it will help??

www.EmeraldMtn.blogspot.com

By the way, THANK YOU so much to everyone who prayed and is praying for us. I am not forgetting that many of you dear readers are in the same boat of needing/wanting your house to sell, too! I assure you, I am including you in my prayers and look forward to the day we celebrate this milestone!

Even in my complaining, I truly do know God has this planned and I am praising Him for it! What incredible mercy we are shown in this fallen world...

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More Google Fun For Blog Nerds!

Find 5 Google searches where your blog comes up with the number 1 hit! If you need help, browse your blog for key words and try searching with quotation marks around specific phrases that you know can be found in your writings.

Thanks to Dennis for intro'ing me to this silliness :)

Leave your searches in my comments section...

Here's mine!

1. rocky & he-man (but not he-man & rocky)

2. cheese ball naughty cows

3. captain flintstone co-sleeper

4. garth brooks hooter hiders

5. bama loves bob leningrad cowboys

Monday, October 22, 2007

Such A Shame


I saw a house today that had such HUGE potential for being one amazing house (especially for youth group functions we would like to host next year) but it is absolutely totalled from water damage.

The famous "Flintstone" house must have been totally awesome back in its day because the design is incredible. It's a Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired home and it's built of Alabama rock and Phillipine mahogany. Unfortunately, the flat roof and complete non-mainttained strutcture is rotting and growing some scary, puffy mold. Its only hope is to be ripped down to the rocks and re-built. It could easily be a million dollar home but the work would be HUGE. An historical society should pay to have it re-done and should charge for tours.

At least its one more off our 'to-see' list.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Induldgent Morning

Ahhh, it's been a long time since having such a wonderfully lazy Saturday morning! I need to write about it quickly because it's coming to an end.

There was a cool nip in the air that was perfected with the breeze of the low-setting ceiling fan. The Gardeners were on their way to the Bama game early this morning and Henry had taken Rocky to a pancake breakfast and "Boxcar Derby." That means there were no adults in the house to make me feel guilty for sleeping in. The girls had spent the night at the Trippes so there was no sibling rivalry to deal with because the only big kid in the house was He-Man and he was more than content to play Nintendo allllllll by his little self.

And Captain is such a doll to be a lazy, loving co-sleeper. As long as I am in the bed with him, he will cozy up and snooze all day long. Or almost.

You better believe I milked it for all it was worth (pun intended!)

It's 10:30 now, though and the quiet is over. He-Man is realizing a quiet house isn't nearly as fun and he's complaining of being bored. He's asking when Rocky will be back. Captain is tired of playing around on the floor, too (which he did splendidly for a little while) and needs my attention again.

Thankfully, it's almost game-time so we'll pack it up and head over to the Trippes. THe girls will be there and Henry & Rocky will meet us there soon.

Hope you all have a lovely football day! I'll even be pulling for the Tigers today!

Roll Tide!

P.S. There's a new poll on the sidebar. Vote, why don't ya? It's even easier than commenting!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Remember Angie?

Yeah, 20/20 said it wasn't working, remember?

Her blog says otherwise. Read older entries, too.

Yay God!!

How Not To Obsess?

I don't know how Henry does it but he has no problem watching TV & letting his mind focus on the fictional & non-fictional sagas portrayed there. I, on the other hand, can't sit still for more than a minute or two without hitting the online MLS sites. I've tried detaching from the house I want by continuing to search online for potentials in our parameters. And when I get tired of looking at the same old houses over and over again, I start searching for any new houses in similar description to our for-sale house. In my obsessed little head, I think that continuing to look for houses will keep me from being so absorbed in the one that we really want.

But I'm SO not emotionally detached.

The evidence of that came today when Henry called to say "our" house had the for-sale sign out of the yard and a couple of cars under the carport. Online, the house is listed as "contingent."

Crap.

This past Tuesday, I prayer walked around and throughout our for-sale house. I'm being reminded over and over that it doesn't matter how much advertisement is done for our house. When it's time, it will happen. I am confident God has a plan to send the right person at the right time. I just wanna know when that will be. And I wanna know what house is for us after it does happen.

Waiting is so hard.

6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Philippians 4:6 NLT

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Sesame Street

An online friend posted this gem today...

Friday, October 12, 2007

Long-Sleeves & Leaves


All of the big kids were dressed and ready for the day when I stumbled quietly out of my parents' guest room this morning. They were all smiling and telling me it was cold outside! They each had on long pants and long-sleeved shirts. He-Man was the most excited and said, "When can we go jump in the leaves at Uma's house?"

Ahhh! THIS is the kind of temp that would make a weather-bottler a millionaire!

*****


The girls had a slow school morning and had to skip the treat of outdoor-playground-day at (gasp) Mickey-D's. I hated they had to be cooped up in the house but also glad that my Mom was home so that I could use this as a learning experience. It's only day 29 of school and they're already trying to get behind in their work. Grr.

The boys really enjoyed playing outside at McD's and I enjoyed chatting with some ladies I knew. We didn't stay long but enjoyed every second of fresh air!

On our way back to the van, I got a call on my cell from Indie. She cracked me up.

"I'm sorry to disturb you, Mom..."

I laughed. Was she buttering me up?

"Can we have a Capri Sun?'

Bless her heart...

After lunch, I took the boys to the for-sale house. We needed to do our fairly-frequent gerbil check (yes, we still have Junie. She's pushing 5 years old!) and I wanted to just see that everything was OK for Sunday's Open House. I didn't allow the boys inside at all so they played on the trampoline with the teaching money they found in a drawer. Play money and breezy days can make for a long clean-up time.

I took Captain out to the baby swing for a little while, too. He thought it was fun but nearly toppled out because of his desperate need to see what his big brothers were doing at all times. He enjoyed the motion but would not be content to face away from the trampoline.

After leaving the FS house, and while the two youngest were sleeping in their carseats, Rocky and I enjoyed driving through a new neighborhood on the outskirts of Butterville. It was one of the neatest neighborhoods I have ever seen...but I was kinda nauseated at it, too. The prices are obscene and I just felt like there was a lot of snobbiness. Of course, it could be some jealousy causing me to feel that way but I think most of my readers would agree that it is a little excessive. Ultra-neato but gagging at the same time.

*****


Captain has 4 teeth now. Teething is no fun.

*****


My brain is tired and mushy. I don't feel like proofing this post. Y'all just have to deal. Sorry.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

No More House-Hunting

Hopefully, that is.

We found a house. We're trying not to be emotionally attached. It's a fixer-upper but mostly in the sense of needing MAJOR updating and not repair. It's old and big and we love it!

But we gotta sell our house, first.

We've never done any sort of project like this and I might be an idiot for thinking that it will be fun BUT, that's what I'm thinking. Honestly, if we get it all together like we have in our little heads, it will be the coolest house we've ever known! But it might/will be a long road. Of course, we won't be DIYers like my sis & bil so it should be at least a little less stressful than their experience (and more expensive) but I know it will be hard work. Budgeting and all things money will be stressful just because they are but, MAN I hope all this works out!

The excitement grew when our friend, an interior designer, came over and confirmed that it was indeed a cool house for us and proceeded to toss out AMAZING ideas on how to make the house perfect. Sigh...now I'm totally in love with it and all the HGTV makeover-ness that will go along with it!

So now I have to work hard at emotionaly detaching myself from this inanimate object while still praying passionately for God to please sell our house. Once it does, we plan to move forward. That's why we must also continue praying for God to let us know if we're heading the right direction or not. I'm willing to walk away from this house without a second guess if God doesn't have it in His plans for us (so please let us know, Lord!)

Since I Haven't Added Her To My Sidebar Yet

Here's another link to my sister's blog. She's on a roll so check it out and SHOW HER SOME BLOGGIN' LUV by leaving a comment, how about it?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

It's That Time Of Year!

Call me pitiful but I only get my hair cut once a year and THIS is that time of year! I don't intentionally wait this length of time, it's just that I will be fine with this cut until 12 months pass and then I'll be sick of it! And I certainly don't have the time to go get a cut just because.

The girls got theirs cut today too so we're gonna share with you our little modeling session we had after our visit to the salon!



The Story of Sam



You might remember that my last post about Sam was all pitiful and teary-eyed. Well, I got a little wet in the blinkers this morning, too but for a GOOD reason!

Here's the rest of the story:

A couple of days after posting that story and montage, I got an email/PM from an online friend from a crunchy Mom forum that I LOVE & frequent daily. Turns out my Sam post made her cry! She has just moved here (AL) from NY and had to leave her cats behind. She KNOWS my pain and wrote me to say she'd like to adopt Sam!

So we talked over the weekend and arranged for a Thursday pickup. I emailed (because the office was closed) the rescue office to let them know about the pending adoption! I was so excited! And so was my friend! This was working out so wonderfully!

Monday, I received a call from the rescuer/new-friend who helped receive Sam for adoption. She said, "I hope your friend isn't upset because Sam is already adopted!!!"

Turns out that one of the vets at the Animal Hospital where the adoption center resides, fell in love with Sam and adopted him as her very own! AND AND AND, this vet is a woman that I have met and is friends with many of my friends at church and is an inspirational Christian who has led a Mom's group Bible study I've attended! She is a super-cool lady! And I have to say again...SHE FELL IN LOVE WITH SAM! How perfect is that?

But the story doesn't end there! Monday morning, before anyone read my weekend email, Sam was taken by a DIFFERENT vet at the same hospital and was on TV on the local early morning show during their "pet vet" segment! Take a look and you'll see that he's beautiful and sweet! Awwww...I'm SO glad he's being spoiled and loved on! I wonder what's going on in that little cat brain of his. He has had THE most bizaare of weeks this month.

Of course, the vet who has adopted him got a little upset that Sam went on the air as an animal needing adoption because SHE already "called" him. I'm so glad she was willing to fight for him and not just let him go to anyone who requested him, which she EASILY could have done. I'm sure cats are a dime-a-dozen at the rescue center and if she didn't REALLY want him and just wanted A cat, she could have let someone else get him and she could have gotten another one from the center.

(Oh Sam...you DESERVE the royal treatment! I hope you are happy forever and ever!)

I did have the unfortunate job of calling my friend (who lives a couple of hours away) to tell her the story but she was super-understanding and genuinely happy for our sweet kitty.

I know MOST cats are just average and run-of-the-mill (at least, that's what this dog-lover thinks!) but Sam is special and we'll miss him very much.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Higher Than Average Expectations


Our house has been on the market a little over a week and we are trying really hard not to be bummed by the fact that there hasn't even been a nibble!

Are we expecting too much to think that the house should be getting offers by now?

Here's a little history:
Henry & I had our first for-sale house on the market about a week before it sold. It was a really fast process.

Our second for-sale house sold before we had it on the market and we got exactly what we asked.

My parents, the Gardeners, sold my childhood home within a couple of weeks. They sold their second home (just a couple of years ago) before putting it on the market. Not only that, they were able to close on their house and rent it from the buyer for the amount they had been paying for a house payment while they waited for their new house to be built!

Henry's parents, the Trippes, sold their home a few years ago, the day it went on the market. They had two offers with one of them being $1000 over the asking price.

Do you see now why we have high hopes for this house of ours?

We're optimistic that the reason things haven't moved yet is because the pictures of the house only went online yesterday. SURELY that's why no one has bitten yet, right? I mean this IS the age of online house-searching, isn't it?

(btw, our MLS# is 246624 if you know how to do searches. Send us a buyer!)

OH, we'll be having an Open House the weekend after this one. If you're in the area, PLEASE stop by!

On the house-hunt search, we have seen a handful of very interesting prospects. The price range of these potentiels is HUGE. There are some seriously in-the-running houses in the way-below-our-budget range and some that are in the way-above-our-budget range. I like the variety because at first we thought we'd never find anything we liked but now we're much more excited.

But we gotta sell our house first.

***


I hope to tell you a really great Sam story before the end of the week. I could tell you now but I'm waiting for a couple of details to be clarified before I write it out. Let me just say that it is a GOOD NEWS STORY!

Lastly, I will let you know that Ray has started a blog. I'm not ready to share the link with all of you yet (no offense) but I will probably do so soon.

Time to doze off. The wonderful movie "Stranger Than Fiction" is on (DVR) so I probably won't go to sleep immediately but zzzs aren't too far away.

Goodnight!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Good, The Bad, and The Beautiful

Good : Looks like an online friend of mine is going to adopt Sam this Thursday! WHOO HOO!!

Bad : Today's football game outcomes. Pfft.

Beautiful : Pics from earlier this week...






Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Kitty Cat Roller Coaster

What an emotional day it has been. Soon after the previously posted video was recorded & put online, I received a phone call from the family who had graciously agreed to keep Sam for us, until we settled into a new home. Turns out our "perfect" situation was actually imperfect. Sam was entirely too dominant in a house with other cats and had to come back to us after two nights away.

So our roller coaster ride was something like this...
Sad after realization that we'd need to find a new home for Sam when we started making plans to move in with parents.
Happy because the family that had helped take care of Sam when we vacationed was willing to take him to live with them.
Sad because Daddy of said family didn't know about this arrangement when it was agreed upon and nixed the plans.
Relieved that we were able to keep Sam at the 'for sale' house while we kept trying to find a new situation for him.
Happy because Henry agreed that finding a temp home for Sam would be OK (which we thought would be easier than finding a permanent home.)
Sad because finding a temp home was VERY difficult.
Happy because a sweet friend agreed to keep Sam temporarily.
And that's where we came back to the 'sad' because it didn't work out.
Then, the kids were "happy" because they were able to play with Sam again when he was returned to us.

Then my big heartache... I realized we needed to find a permanent arrangement for Sam because the poor kitty was struggling with all the craziness of the last month. Bless his heart...he felt abandoned at the 'for sale' house, then traumatized by the new location with the other cats, then traumatized again by being returned to us but in a strange location. You can see in the pictures from today that he was sad.

Then the biggest tear-jerker of the whole thing ocurred. A local animal-rescue friend made arrangements with an animal hospital to have him boarded and put up for adoption (about 10 steps up from humane society.) So poor Sam had to be re-crated and driven again to a strange location. Once at the animal hospital, his cat carrier got attacked by a small terrier. When we tried taking him from his carrier, he totally flipped out. So the rescuer closed him back up and took him away.

I cried.

So if you are local, and know someone interested in a super-awesome 2-year-old cat, please contact me and I'll tell you where he is. He really needs a happy, safe, forever home.

Pics from today...(**WARNING** Very Sappy! Henry can't believe I made a montage!)

Captain's Crawl

View this slideshow created at One True Media
Captain's Crawl 9/18/07


A video for you, chock full of ooey-gooey-cutie-patootie-ness!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Whew!


Another great day of football!

************************************


After a few very difficult, "if-you-put-me-down-I-will-scream-out-in-pain" days with Captain, we had a WONDERFUL day today. I was even able to leave him with Henry for a couple of hours to do a Walmart trip, and he didn't throw even the tiniest of fits! YAY! And when I was cleaning the kitchen, he just crawled around on the floor watching me circle the island over and over. We played a little bit of peek-a-boo around the corners and he was happy as could be! And (get this!) when I was loading the dishwasher, that little stinker pulled himself up to standing!!!!! ACK! If he was the first baby, I'd be proud as a peacock but seeing as he's numero cinqo I kinda cringe at the idea of having a toddling tornado whirling through the house so soon. I'll be glad to have the grandparents' eyes & hands in these upcoming months, for sure!

************************************


There's a For Sale sign in our yard now! (biting fingernails...)

Still worrying about the cat. He needs a long-term sitter or a new adoptive family very soon...

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Steph's Other Space

I guess I can tell you all now that my sister's real name isn't, Uma! Her name is Stephanie and she finally has a blog of her very own! YAY!

She's lots of fun to read.

I'll be curious to see if any of you recognize how very different we are in so many ways and how oddly the same we are in others.

Go give her some commentin' luv!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

More Random Tidbits

When Captain learned how to "gimme five" we all decided he needed to learn more tricks! Would you believe that today he learned how to "show me your tongue" (razzes), "say hey" (waves and says 'haaaaaayy'), "clap yay!" (attempts to put hands together but they're still fisted and he hits top hand on the back of bottom hand, but he says "yay" which is adorable!)

I need a GOOD babysitter to go with me to the "for sale" house tomorrow so I can get something done while Captain is well looked after. The kids can distract him some but he really needs an adult who can REALLY walk him and talk to him and distract him with walks out to the porch and stuff like that. It won't happen, though. Pfft. If only I could have a few hours without kids to finish up the last few little things at the house, I would be soooo happy. Things that should take only a couple of hours are taking DAYS!

Did anyone see this crazy picture of the 9 being knocked off the helmet of a Vandy player?? It's true! Cameras caught the oddity of a decal being busted loose and falling to the ground! See?

Monday, September 10, 2007

Quick Jots

Captain learned how to "gimme five" today and it thrills the kids to no end!

Our "for sale" house now has new BROWN vinyl shutters and I love the way it looks SO MUCH that I'm a teeny bit sad the house won't be ours much longer. We also got the front door refreshed & shiny and it looks so purty!! Next on the to-do list...new pine straw for the front beds!

We need a temporary home for our cat, Sam. He can't live with us at the Gardeners and our previous arrangement for him to be adopted by another family, fell through. We're now thinking we'd like to find a temp home for him while we're showing the house and get him back after we're settled into a new place. Do you think we can get so lucky as to find an arrangement like this?

Indie's homeschool computer went kaput so she and Ray have to share the laptop. SIgh.

Age 4 is the "learn-how-to-lie" stage and it frustrates me!

I'm starting a Zumba class on the 20th. Any locals wanna try it with me? It's at 7:30 pm. Email me if interested.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

7 Month Milestone


We haven't quite hit it yet but since I'll be busy doing moving stuff during the week, I thought I'd go ahead and make reference to it.

Here's the development chart at BabyCenter.com

Captain has definitely done the "mastered" skills. He's crawling quite easily (and fast and not caring if objects are in the way...he just crawls right over them!) He's close to waving bye-bye (waves "hey" and says "hey" when he sees one of the kids or grandparents or Henry) is enjoying his new grasp of object permanence which makes peek-a-boo and hiding things more fun (unless it's the remote or phone or something he doesn't need to have.) My biggest concern is that when he's crawling over things, he is already standing up on his feet and leaning forward on his hands. I'm afraid he's going to start pulling up on stuff soon! ACK! TOO SOON!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

All Is Right With The World!


Today was a GOOD day (and late night) of football!

Roll Tide & WAY TO GO BULLS!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

My Brain Hurts

There's just so much flying through the gray matter these days that it almost hurts. Wanna hear about it?

Of course, there's the minor issue of getting a house ready to sell. We're making daily trips to the house to pack & clean & to check on the cat (needs new home by the way!) and the progress is just sooo slow. Thankfully we are seeing good progress but it seems to have taken forever. We also have lots of little fixer-type projects and "the guy" we use for those type things is coming over tomorrow night. I'm truly scared of the cost that might be involved. That fear puts lots of thoughts in my head...

Thankfully, our realtors (we have 2 -- we're cool that way, ya know!) are super-encouraging about the house. Maybe they're just being sales-people?? It really doesn't matter because I need to hear their encouraging comments. Their pricing ideas meshed perfectly with our pricing ideas and that was a big blessing. They also complimented our "space" and this words-of-affirmation love language gal just soaked it up! OH, and they are so excited that we're not living there and have offered to "stage" the house for us! That gives me a nice HGTV-styled, warm, fuzzy feeling! I can't wait to see what they can do!

They also told us of a recent house-selling within a block or so of us and that the new neighborhood school being built being was a major draw. We're hoping to play on that school thing, too! Our house is just perfect for a family with lots of kids! We're hoping that little school (to open in 2009) will keep our house a little safer than most other houses in this "buyers' market."

In other news, we started our own school Tuesday. Day 1 was great. Things went very well. I will admit that I might have been a little too optimistic in thinking that this school year would be easier than last, though. I thought my pregnancy & post-partum months of teaching would be the more difficult of my homeschool experiences but these 2nd-year-pro months are proving that teaching with a teething 6-month-old and chatty 4 year-old might be the biggest of challenges.

Add to that a broken computer with a computer-based curriculum (busted on 2nd day!!) and you can safely deduce that I'm a little whipped. Tomorrow we will limp through another day of no computer but we have to have a better resolution to this problem by Monday. PRAISE GOD for my best friend's hubby being a computer guy! (J -- YOU TOTALLY ROCK! Thank you for all your help!!!) I will say, though, that the computer issue isn't 100% bad because it's giving me an opportunity to do more multi-aged teaching, which is cool. It's amazing how we've been able to incorporate things to make them jive but if I had to do this EVERY day, I don't know if I'd swing it all that well.

In the big picture, everything is going quite well, but the smaller picture shows the kids being a little wonky. The weirdness and activity of all these abnormal situations has started to affect the kids' behaviors. They're getting on each others' nerves a little easier than the norm and they're turning into tattle-telling, whiners that need more parental guidance. They're tired and maybe a little sub-conciously homesick and not really their happiest selves. I think the 'new' of all this is wearing off and they're feeling a little dizzy from the irregularities of each day. I'm hoping things will soon stabilize & we can all get some more rest and into some sort of pattern. When we can get the house completely show-ready, things will be MUCH better. The living arrangement we have is very good so my biggest desire right now is to just get done with the house and get it sold!

I'll share more soon.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

An Uma Sample - Being Bama

This was written on my sister's myspace blog. She's Bama through and through!

I love that she wrote this a couple of days before Bama's season opener...


Uma's words:
This SI guy pretty much said it all (that's why he gets paid the big bucks!) But since most of you don't have enough spare time and/or stomach to read 8 pages dedicated to why Bama fans are so pumped at this point, I'll state my case using a forward that made the rounds a while back. Just to prove that this tradition stuff is still relevant to us younger folk and not just the geezers, I'll try to make a point-by-point remark on how this applies to even a 29-year-old like me...



ALABAMA FOOTBALL IS:

1. It is Wallace Wade, It is Bear Bryant. It is Gene Stallings. It is NOT Bill Curry. (Okay, so Bill Curry was a LITTLE before my time but I loved Gene about like he was my own flesh and blood. I cried when he coached his last game because even then I knew he was a dying breed. Other than JoPa, there really aren't any still around quite like him. And his son Johnny embodies everything I love about Alabama football. I remember seeing him working at the Bryant Museum while I was a student at UA. If you make some kind of inappropriate comment about Johnny on this blog, I will hunt you down…)


2. It is definitely NOT Dennis Franchione. (Wow, does anybody remember how we rallied around this idiot? He was a good coach for sure but like it's been said before, I think he's learning that UA makes the coach and not vice versa. And one reason I'm proud to be a Bama fan? We took turns smashing the Fran bobbleheads and gave the proceeds to charity. Hook 'em Horns!)


3. It is the Sugar Bowl. (So we haven't been in a while but our memories there are sweeter than anybody's. And yes, I WAS THERE when we beat Miami in '93!)


4. It is the Rose Bowl. (How many other SEC schools can say that? Um, none. Check your facts folks… Bama was ridin' the rails to Pasadena back with most folks were just starting to field teams. And for any of you with Southern pride, you should take a peek at how the national media covered those games. In all honesty, I'll retire my shaker once I see Bama win a ring in the Rose Bowl because it won't ever get any better than that.)


5. It is hearing Keith Jackson call an Alabama game. (It's knowing who Keith Jackson is from something other than those catchy Gatorade commercials. I can sit here at this computer and almost hear him calling a game… just FYI, he came out of semi-retirement just to call the Bama-UCLA game in Pasadena in 2000)


6. It is watching George Teague run down Lamar Thomas in the 1993 Sugar Bowl then rewinding it and watching it again. (Man, George Teague was/is my all-time favorite player. Not only was he from da gump, I got to meet him back when he was a freshman and I followed him ever since. He did NOT disappoint. My favorite Teague play from that Sugar Bowl was the pick he returned for a TD. Man, I swear he did that just for me! And to boot, it was Teague that took out TO on the Dallas star!)


7. It is hearing the first notes of Sweet Home Alabama. (Well, I can't say that I love this song and I'm not real sure why a team predominantly consisting of African-Americans has this as one of their "theme" songs but it seems less annoying/cheesy than Eye of the Tiger. [Oops, did I type that?!?!] I love to hear this song though when we're on the road! But you're a true Bama fan if Dixieland Delight has become music to your ears!)


8. It is the desire to beat Auburn at any competitive event that exists. (It's true… we've gone to watch the girls soccer team play Auburn)


9. It is the houndstooth hat. (Let's face it, it's the houndtooth ANYTHING. The marketing guys really missed out when Steve Spurrier didn't take the job. Those houndstooth visors would still be on backorder.)


10. It is having enough pride to fight for your school but having enough class not to. (Ask my family, I've come close to blows a few times but I've always decided it was *ahem* not the classiest or, more importantly, the most Christian thing to do!)


11. It is cheering the same amount for a first down as a second and 6 or on fourth and 1. (Seriously, nothing feels better than cheering your lungs out and feeling like you were a part of causing that other team's false start or delay of game. It makes me feel like the 12th man. And you can ask anyone at our church, I'm ALWAYS hoarse on Sunday mornings in the fall, no matter the opponent or outcome.)


12. It is watching Cornelius Bennett give Notre Dame quarterback Steve Beuerlein a concussion on that October day in Birmingham in 1986. (Okay, so again this was before my time but I DO know exactly what play this is and I even know how to pronounce that dude's last name. I also know that the original Daniel Moore painting of this play hangs in the Bryant Museum and every true Bama fan dreams about hanging it in THEIR house someday!)


13. It is determining who you are going to date and marry by which team they swear allegiance to. (Not only that, but you also plan your wedding and/or pregnancies around football! We had just enough time to squeeze in a wedding and honeymoon before we made it back home to see Bama kick off the season against Vanderbilt. I don't have enough time to write the whole story but basically my oldest son was born just a few hours after a UA game that I was at! We never made that "mistake" again… our next kid was born in May!)


14. It is watching the Bear on the jumbotron before a game in Bryant-Denny Stadium and almost seeing him lean against the goalpost in the end zone. (It's also knowing most, if not all, of what the Bear says in those clips because you've memorized it… not because it's audible!)


15. It is spending a day at The Bryant Museum and still not seeing everything. (I love this place… I even got to spend some time in the research library once and decided that working there would be one of the coolest history-related jobs ever!)


16. It is watching The Bear get number 315 against Auburn. (Again, a little before my time but I know the scene well as it is commemorated in a Daniel Moore print hanging in my parent's house. And I swear, my oldest boy used to stare at that thing and raise his fist in a little Roll Tide fashion when he was only about a year old!)


17. It is watching The Bear get number 323 against Illinois. (And it's feeling really sad when a guy like Bobby Bowden surpasses that milestone.)


18. It is hearing Paul Kennedy do the play by play when Van Tiffin kicked the 52 yard field goal against Auburn in 1985. (Wow, this one actually isn't before my time… which makes me old! I remember this play and the Paul Kennedy call. I most vividly remember my dad breaking our ceiling fan when he jumped out of his chair celebrate that kick! And I also remember my MALE cousin crying because he had just "switched" over to Auburn that year… GOOD STUFF!)


19. It is knowing how many days until the start of a season year round. (Since I had kids, the offseason seems a lot shorter than it used to!)


20. It is driving down Colonial Drive to see Bryant-Denny Stadium, not the sorority girls. (Well, I'm not at all interested in the sorority girls obviously! And we usually walk up from the south endzone so we miss the pretty new promenade off of Colonial that pays homage to all the greats. Still, BDS looks good from any direction… it looks like HOME!)


21. It is getting chills up and down your entire body when ever you hear anything about the 1993 Sugar Bowl and the pride you feel because that night tradition ruled. (I can't explain how awesome it was to be there. That Miami team represented all I hate about college football nowadays. They were pompous punks and thugs who ran their mouth up and down Bourbon Street all week long. Then we ran the ball up and down them in the Superdome. I love the David Palmer quote before that game 'Everybody says Miami can beat anybody. But we're not just anybody… we're Alabama.' If you love and respect the game [and you're not an Auburn fan], you felt like all was right in the world after that game.)


22. It is hearing the Bear's voice and having all the hair on the back of your neck stand up because you know no matter what he said, it was something special. (It's being able to admit you usually couldn't tell WHAT the heck he just said but loving it just the same!)< SPAN>


23. It is hearing the Million Dollar Band play "Yea Alabama"and knowing it does just not get any better. (It's having your 3-year-old know the words to Yea Alabama. It's also knowing that it's 'Yea Alabama, Drown 'Em Tide', not 'Yea Alabama, Crimson Tide')



24. It is imagining hearing Penn State Quaterback Chuck Fusina ask Alabama linebacker Barry Krauss "How close is it"? and hearing Krauss say "About an inch, you'd better pass", right before fourth down during The Goal Line Stand in the 1979 Sugar Bowl. (It is being born in 1978 and still knowing exactly what The Goal Line Stand is!)


25. It is almost coming to tears whenever Alabama loses to Tennessee or Auburn. (It IS crying at the games, sometimes even when we win, and it being okay because I'm a girl! It's even better when you look around and see others crying, too!)


26. It is "The Kick". It is "The Goal Line Stand". It is "The Desperation Block". (It is watching an amazing play and knowing someday it will probably be a Daniel Moore painting referred to simply as "The _____"…)


27. It is Joe 'Willie' Namath. (It is him being so good that you're not even embarrassed the dude used to wear pantyhose and once appeared drunk on national TV while trying to kiss a sideline reporter!)


28. It is purposely not wearing any clothes with the colors orange and blue. (Seriously, I have to rearrange the shampoo bottles in my shower so that their orange packaging is not next to my blue Noxema pump… talk about neurotic!)


29. It is the third Saturday in October. (And knowing that we're SUPPOSED to play and beat UT on that day!)


30. It is not needing an alarm clock on game days, you sit bolt upright in the bed long before the alarm goes off because you know that it is gameday, you can sleep after the bowl game. (It's knowing you don't have to set an alarm clock because Bama almost always plays at night because we're primetime, baby!)


31. It is walking into a stadium and knowing Alabama will win the game no matter who they are playing just because that's the way it is supposed to be. (It's also knowing that no matter the odds, you feel like you're a national championship contender at the beginning of every season until you lose that first game… then crying if you do lose that first game!)


32. It is saying "Offense wins games, Defense wins national titles. (1993 Sugar Bowl is all I have to say about that.)


33. It is getting to the stadium hours before the game just to be there. (My hubby used to complain that I wanted to be in the stadium when it opened a whole TWO HOURS before kick-off but I think he's come around. It's such a serene time before the game and it beats sitting in a lawn chair!)


34. It is walking into another team's stadium and having those fans hate you because you are from Alabama. (I LOVE road games… and our hometown is like living at an away game!)


35. It is the pride that a father has when he brings his children to a game so they may cherish the tradition. (Man, probably the reason I love Bama football so much is because years ago I went with my dad and it was usually just the two of us. Now I'm on the other side of that equation and I LOVE taking my kid(s) with us.L/J)


36. It is beating LSU in Baton Rouge. (I have never been to Baton Rouge. Jeff and I talked about going back in 1998 and I KICK MYSELF for not going. That was one of the most awesome Bama games ever… The Tide don't lose in Baton Rouge!)


37. It is the pride you take in being every team's rival. (You know it's true… who doesn't seem to live to hate Alabama except us Bama fans?)


38. It is pulling for any team that is playing Auburn. (I plead the 5th)


39. It is pulling for any team that is playing Tennessee. (That was tough when they played A&M a few years back! I couldn't watch!)


40. It is hoping for the stadium to blow up when Auburn plays Tennessee. (Okay, not really blows up. I just tell everyone I'm cheering for the refs… that seems less violent!)


41. It is knowing that the SEC Championship is a birthright. (Call us Esau cause it feels like we sold that one to Jacob!)


42. It is being respected and feared at the same time. (I believe at the heart of it all, it's fear that drives the anti-Saban movement)


43. It is knowing what "Mama Called" means. (And knowing who said it… that would be Bear Bryant for all you Aubs)


44. It is beating the Gators twice a year. (1999 was a GOOD year, wasn't it?. It's even whoopin' Florida under one of the worst college coaches ever!)


45. It is the most bowl appearances and victories in NCAA history. (It's true… check your facts. But we need to stop letting other teams gain ground!)


46. It is having 21 Southeastern Conference Titles. (Truth is, this is Alabama and we don't even care about SEC championships! I'm surprised we've even kept count.)


47. It is having 12 National Titles. (It is knowing that in all honesty, it should be more like 13 or 14.)


48. It is class. (Nothing gets under folks' skin more than saying we have class. Truth is, I don't know that anyone in college football has much class now.)


49. It is tradition. (You can't argue with tradition… we have it and I can back that up with stats if you'd like. We're Dixie's football pride, Crimson Tide.)


50. It is Alabama Football. (It is getting chillbumps when you hear 'THIS IS ALABAMA FOOTBALL!' over the PA system at BDS, even if 100+ degrees!)


Believe me, if I had more time, I'd expound upon all the reasons I think Bama deserves to be back but I'm just too exhausted to be eloquent at this point. And let's face it, I'm not going to convert anyone anyway so why try? We're the few, the proud and I'm cool with that. Let it begin… ROLL TIDE!

Back In Butterville - Scattered Thoughts

We've moved in with the folks! It's going VERY well and we are sooo grateful.

In case you were wondering, it takes LOTS of boxes even to move just a few things.

There is no way we'd be able to put our house up for sale if the Gardeners weren't willing to let us live here. We started school today and I just can't imagine doing school in the house back up in Bridgeport while trying to get/keep it show-ready.

If you are a pray-er, would you please pray for a quick sell for us? A sign will probably be in our yard by the weekend!

Thoughts are a little scattered right now but I wanted to make a little post so you'd know I was still alive.

OOh....my sis, Uma told me that she started a blog today! She didn't give me the URL (cuz I had to cut her off -- sorry, sis!) but I'm hoping to see it soon. Maybe she'll let me share it! She's hilarious and I know you guys would love reading her.

Captain's crawling (even more today than yesterday!) He's so doggone cute. Can't wait to take some new pictures and show y'all.

Lastly, look at this Harvard article discussing the latest "babies need touch" research.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Things A Mom Says

I tried getting this video code for embedding in the blog but I couldn't find the original on youtube. So you'll have to go to this site to see this HILARIOUS Mom Song!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Coughs, Knobs, & A Faux-Hawk

Before we went to the beach, Henry was trimming the bushes. That night and the next day (beach day) he had a pretty rough cough. He said it came from the dusty mess found in our previously neglected shrubs. Made sense to me. He struggled with feeling icky off and on at the beach but we kept thinking it was just his outdoor work causing the problems.

Then a couple of the kids started coughing after we got back home. Not sick, just a nagging cough. Hmmm.

This past Wednesday, Captain and I got it. Blech. We needed some major naps and lots of kleenex. Henry stayed home with us that one day because I really needed to rest enough to make it to church that night (which I did.) Poor Captain was dealing with teething on TOP of whatever we had (btw, teething saps a baby of their calcium reserves which DOES make them more susceptible to germs -- even though peds usually say that sickly, teething babies are just coincidental...whatever.) Thankfully/unfortunately, the tooth he was cutting broke through on that same Wednesday. He had a rough day.

But we're better, THANK YOU GOD, and hopefully its the last of sickness for a lonnng while. Teething, however, is only just beginning.

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We're packing things up to move in with the Gardeners next weekend! The boxing process is not going as fast as I'd like.

We're also making official, gotta-cross-these-off, lists of things we will be doing before sticking a sign in the yard. The house should be on the official market in just a couple of weeks!

Tonight we bought some new kitchen cabinet knobs on ebay. They were an incredible price compared to retail stores like Home Depot or even Walmart (whose options were crappy anyway) so we're just hoping they're good quality. They look to be nice and should be a simple way to spruce up the kitchen just a bit.

Watching "sell this house" -type shows is my way of doing research in this apparent "buyer's market." Our agent will meet with us after Labor Day to help further.

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He-Man is awesome. I'm just sayin'. Since watching the HORRIBLY (horribly) lame kid movie "Shark-Boy & Lava Girl" he has desired "spikey hair." It used to be that he was pleased enough with letting the girls play hair-do with him during bathtime but in the last couple of weeks, he's seriously wanted to carry the look with him throughout the day. So I've let him wear it up some but without using hair products, it wouldn't last very long. But the look has grown on me so today I used hairspray and gave him an adorable little faux-hawk.

He was beaming with pride, looking at himself in the mirror over and over and smiling.

Then he cracked us up by saying, "I look like Zac Efron!"

As we were standing in the hall outside of He-Man's class after church this morning, two cutesy, blonde, teenage girls walked by and said, "Awww! There's He-Man! HEY He-Man!!" As they walked off they said, "He's so cute!"

Yeah. I'm proud. Sorry :)

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Have You Missed My "What's Up With Us" Posts?

DSCF1771editI know I've slapped a few posts around here lately but none of them have been the personal, what's-going-on-with-the-fam type posts. Tonight I figured I'd try to hit the highlights and share a few pics to get you all caught up!

DSCF1755In Captain news, he has his first tooth and is scooting around all over the place. He's not technically crawling but he's definitely covering some major square-footage. He makes the big kids crack up when he bounces back and forth on his hands and knees. The 13th marked his 6 month birthday. How'd that happen so fast!?

In family stuff, we went to the beach last weekend and returned Tuesday but because of our busted camera, didn't get any good pics to share. Pa Trippe took a couple but they were either fogged up by the humidity or showed my too-bouyant and scantily-clad (not really) body from a top-looking-down-into-pool-angle and I just didn't want to show you. The weather was great...hot at the right times, cool-ish breezes when needed, and a torrential downpour late in the afternoon when we needed a break from the sun. We had a great time.

In crunchy-Mommy love, I am working very hard, and starting to see success, with getting Ricki Lake to town, along with her Director Abby Feinstein for a pre-release showing of "The Business of Being Born." It hopes to be the "Unfortunate Truth" of the childbirth industry (childbirth & industry don't even deserve to go together but that's what's become of everything...) Anyway, I can't believe I'm actually getting so close to rubbing some major elbows with some real-life celebrities! More info on this soon, I'm sure!

In the "Make-A-Reservation-For-Me-In-The-Looney-Bin" category, I will share a crazy little development. Ready? We are preparing to sell our house and move back to Butterville! And if you think that's crazy, get this ... We're going to move in with my parents during the transition! I'll try to get a longer post on here about the 'hows' and 'whys' but just know that if I'm a little quiet, it's cuz we're pretty busy.

And BECAUSE of all of this, and one of the several reasons we are moving in with Ma & Pa Gardener is because of homeschooling. We haven't started yet but will start immediately after moving in with Mom & Dad. Ya see, as crazy as this might sound to non-ball-playing families...we'd REALLY like to be in a house CLOSER to the ballfields this year when we have 4 (yes, FOUR) playing. And I know that if we start school in our house NOW, I'll never get the house ready and we'll push back the selling. SO if we get OUT of the house and school elsewhere, we can have this house on the market very soon.

We're SO thankful my parents are cool enough for us to be able to hang with them for a little while. It will really be nice to be back "in town" and close to everything again. And I believe that being out of our house will prevent me from having too much more gray hair through the process.

In closing, I'll share a couple of pics from the week. Of course the first is Captain but then there's a couple showing the kids playing outside with their race track pieces dumping cars off the roller coaster into the water table. It's child abuse to send the kids outside without at least a little water to play with!

Hope you're all staying cool!
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