Archive for October, 2008

Eight Things

Copied this from Laura Wolf‘s blog and thought it would be fun to play along . . .

8 Things I am passionate about:
1- Jesus
2- my family
3- photography
4- recycling
5- being frugal
6- decorating
7- all kinds of music
8- my job (most days!)

8 words/phrases I often say:
1- i love you
2- Madalyn do you need to go potty?
3- come on, people
4- whatever
5- girls, stop fighting!
6- buddy, do you need to go out?
7-let’s go 
8-this house is a mess!

8 Things I want to do before I die-
1- see my girls get married
2- travel around the world (again)
3- pursue my photography dreams full time
4- see the Grand Canyon
5-adopt a child
6-make a quilt for each of my children out of their outgrown clothes
7-rock my grandchildren to sleep

8 Things I currently want or need:
1-some new clothes for winter
2- a maid
3-boxes, boxes and more boxes to start packing up the house 
4-my new faucet installed in the bathroom 
5-new washcloths (ours are pitiful)
7-a down blanket for the bed 
8-new carpet in the downstairs bedrooms 

8 favorite T.V. shows:
1-Breaking Bad
2-American Idol
4-anything on HGTV
6-Biggest Loser
7-Law and Order: SVU
8-King of Queens 

8 favorite restaurants:
2-Panera Bread
4-Texas Steakhouse
7-Hog Heaven (yum, barbecue!)
8-Ruby Tuesdays

8 things that happened today:
1-worked (saw 5 patients and had a nursing student go with me)
2-forgot to send lunch money to school with Annagrace
3-called my mom
4-went to the movies and saw “Saw V”
5-drew blood on 3 different patients
6-got stuck in “Obama traffic” in H’Burg
7-saw the first snowflakes of the season

8 things to look forward to:
2-getting the house decluttered and ready to sell
3-the election to be OVER
4-going to Kentucky for Thanksgiving
5-a little bit of snow this winter (just a LITTLE bit though)
6-Daylight Savings Time (I hate getting up in the dark!))
7-my parents coming to visit (maybe next weekend)
8-showing Shelby and Ricky their wedding pictures (hopefully I’ll have time to work on them some tomorrow night!)

Anyone else out there wanna play?  How about Melissa?  Lindsey?  Alison?  Aaron?  Anyone???!!!


JigSaw Pictures, Images and Photos

It’s that time of year again.  Time for the new SAW movie!  We’re heading out in half an hour to the theatre to see it.  I can’t wait!  We recently watched the first four to get all caught up again on the series.  Is it gory?  Heck, yes.  But it honestly does have a plot unlike typical horror movies.  I have heard really good things about this one so I am super excited about it!  

So for you horror fans out there, what was the first scary movie that you ever watched?  For me it was “Nightmare on Elm Street” at my friend, Rachel’s house when I was about 10 years old.  I have been addicted to horror movies ever since.  I love them.  The scary the better!  And the Elm Street series remains some of my favorites–although you can’t beat the first one!

Lopez Wedding

I had the pleasure of photographing a wedding yesterday for my friends Shelby and Ricky.  I just got a few photos posted including this one which is my new favorite photo EVER.  I think I may even print it and hang it on my wall it’s so dang cute!

Go to my photography blog to see more!

GREAT deal! Girls shorts for less than a dollar!

I haven’t posted a good deal in a while but I got the deal of the YEAR yesterday at JC Penney’s.  I found girls shorts on clearance for 97 CENTS!  Yes, 97 CENTS!  Three of these are Unionbay and the other pair is Arizona and they were all around $25 at full price.  I found some online that were marked down but none were marked down that low!  So if you have a little girl you might want take a trip there to check it out and see if you can find some!  I wish I could have found more but these were all they had in what I think will be Annagrace’s size next year.   

Sorry for the crappy picture.  It’s late and I’m tired so this is the best I can do!

Babies, Birthdays and Best Friends

We’re finally back home to Virginia.  We had a great week in NC now we are home for the night then heading to Fredricksburg (a 2 hour drive from here) tomorrow afternoon so Aaron can preach at a church there on Sunday.  I am totally DREADING going back to work on Monday.  Visiting NC got me super excited about moving and I am ready to get on with it!  There is so much to do but I am really excited about finding a new job and a new house and all that jazz.  I am actually EXCITED about it more than I am stressed about it now so that’s good!

We did some fun things this week.  On Wednesday we took an airplane ride with one of my dad’s cousins (well, I guess that would make him my cousin too!).  He flew us around over my parents house and then down over the Sound and over lots of cotton fields!  It is really pretty from up in the sky and I had no idea how many cotton fields there are in my hometown!  The girls went–in fact Annagrace went up twice, once with me and once with her dad. 

On Thursday night we went to my brother and sister-in-law’s house to have a little birthday party for my nephew Brayden.  His “real” birthday party is on Saturday but we were going to miss it so we just had a little party on Thursday.  This is the first time we have been able to spend his birthday with him!  Here’s the birthday boy with some cupcakes: 


And here are all the grandkids:


That’s my Mom, Zachary (who is now 3 months old), Annagrace, Madalyn, my Dad, Brayden and Taylor.  I love this photo.  It’s going to be my mom’s Christmas picture! 

Then today we stopped in Greenville one more time and met up with my best friend from high school, Jennifer.  I got to meet her precious little daughter, Lilley.  I love this little girl already.  She is beautiful!  But don’t take my word for it . . . here she is:

I am hoping that I’ll get to spend lots of time with Jennifer and Lilley next year after we move!  Good times, good times.  We had so much fun this week!  I already can’t wait to go back home for another visit!

On the Road Again

So today we leave from our week long stay in NC.  We spent the week at my parents home and made several trips to Greenville (where we are moving next year) just to look around and get a feel for the area.  We have looked at lots of houses and neighborhoods and have decided that we really like the older neighborhoods better and that we want to be on the hospital side of town!  We have SO MUCH TO DO to get our house on the market.  With the economy and the real estate market like it is I am getting pretty stressed about selling.  All I can do is pray.  I am hoping we sell within the first 2-3 months on the market.

We also have a lot of things to do to prepare to move.  Not counting moving into and out of our college dorms, this will be the SIXTH time Aaron and I have moved in the 10 years that we have been married!  You’d think we’d be pros at this by now.  However, add in two more family members and that adds a lot more to do!  Also factoring in that this is an out of state move (we have done that once when we were first married but we had very little to move that go around!). 

Here are some things I am thinking that we are going to have to do:

  • Apply for a new NC nursing license
  • Get copies of medical, dental and eye records for me and the girls.  Get UVA to fax or mail copies of Aaron’s to a new kidney specialist in Greenville (they offered to do this and they already know a specialist to recommend to him).  Get copies of Buddy’s vet records.
  • Find new doctors and dentists. 
  • Fill out forms for new school system and have transcripts sent for Annagrace.
  • Fill out change of address forms.
  • Open an account at a “chain” bank that has a Greenville branch (we use a local bank now).  Will need to cancel my direct deposit from the hospital about a month before we move and will need to notify our life insurance carrier of the change as well since that is an automatic withdrawal.
  • Arrange for cancellation of cable, water, electricity and phone and set up new services in Greenville before we arrive. 
  • Arrange for Dad to come and move the girls’ clubhouse!
  • Get new driver’s licenses in NC.
  • Find daycare for the girls.  This one is majorly stressing me out.  We have never had to put either child in daycare.  And we may not have to now, depending on our job situation. 
  • FIND JOBS!!!!  That’s a biggie! 
  • Find a new haidresser (ok, so that one isn’t a huge deal but it’s one of those little things that I need to think abou!)
  • Contact our insurance agents and ask about transferring service to NC.
  • Cash in vacation time at my present job (I am hoping this will allow us to get through about 2-3 weeks so that I won’t have to start a new job right away!).

And that’s all I can think of right now.  I think that’s enough!!!   

Anyone out there have any advice about using PODS?  We are not sure exactly HOW we want to move our stuff down to NC.  We are really downsizing and honestly we don’t have a lot of stuff compared to a lot of people that we know.  (I always think we do and I’m amazed at how much stuff other people have!).  So we were thinking about using the POD system depending on the cost.  (One of my possibilities for employment may pay my moving expenses–so I need to definitely look into that.)  Aaron has a business card for someone who manages those PODS but I’d love to hear from someone who has used them and knows the pros and cons.

Madonna and Guy, Tea` and David

It seems like everywhere you turn couples are breaking up.  And not just celebrity couples either but couples that you thought at one time would be together forever.  Infidelity is majorly on the rise.  As a pastor’s wife you would think that it wouldn’t be something that I would worry about.  Right? 

Well just like in the “real” world, affairs and infidelity and adultery is just as prevalant in the Church.  Divorce is on the rise everywhere–including among Christian couples. 

Recently there was a really good discussion on one of the Facebook groups that I belong to.  It was about boundaries in your marriage.  Aaron and I have always had certain boundaries in our marriage.  In fact, when we were in our marriage counseling the minister that married us advised us on some of these boundaries.  Sadly, that same minister himself is now divorced.  (That was a complete shocker to Aaron and I but was a reality check that marriage is not to be taken for granted and is something you have to work on continually.)

So in this facebook group (Church Planting Wives) we had a pretty vivid discussion about this.  Some of us were all for boundaries, some of us agreed to some of them and others thought that some of them were ridiculous. 

So I’d like to know what you all think.  Whether you are a believer or not, whether you’ve been married 40 years or 6 months. 

Here are some of the things that Aaron and I do to protect our marriage.

1)  We never ride in a vehicle or go out in public alone with a member of the opposite sex.  Never.  Now someone brought up the situation of a woman being stranded on the roadside in the rain and would my husband just drive past her and not pick her up because of our ‘rule’.  Of course Aaron would not do that.  He’d pick her up and then he would promptly tell me when he got home. 

2)  I have access to all of his online accounts.  E-Mail, MySpace, Facebook, etc.  And he can have access to mine at any time.  Some of the ladies in the group thought this showed that we have no trust in each other.  I think it’s the exact opposite.  For one, this holds him totally accountable.  He knows that anything he writes may potentially be viewed by me and vice versa.  A couple weeks ago, someone from church (a man) sent him a very private e-mail.  Aaron told him and told me that he was going to delete it because he didn’t want me to see it.  And I’m cool with that.  Normally he keeps his e-mail up all the time anyway so when I sit down at the computer it pops right up.  He often will carbon copy e-mails to me that he sends to women in the church, or other female friends just so that I am on the up and up. 

3)  Aaron does not counsel women in the church alone, or even out in public, one on one.  Again, some of the women on the site had a problem with this.  Being involved in ministry as long as we have we have seen many times when emotionally fragile women get very attached to their ministers.  Hello?  You are just ASKING for trouble when you put a woman like that alone in a room with a stable, caring man!  Aaron will talk with women from church on the phone or after church in full view of anyone, including me.  If he has a phone conversation with them he will tell me.  Sometimes he will ask another woman to take on that role of counseling or helping out a woman in need.  (This hasn’t happened too often). 

4)  Nothing is kept a secret from one another.  (At least, you better not have any secrets you’re hiding, punk!).  Aaron has literally seen me inside and out (I’ve had two c-sections!) so there really isn’t anything that I hide from him.  And hopefully that goes both ways!  I trust him to tell me when there is something that he is struggling with–even when it’s hard for him to do so.  Now granted, our communication hasn’t always been perfect but it’s been better in the last year or so than I think it has been ever in our 10 years together. 

5)  We tell each other where we are going.  If Aaron has a meeting, he tells me where, with who and for how long he will be gone.  If he’s going to be later than expected he calls me.  And not that we have caller ID for this purpose, but I can see where he is calling from.  I think this just shows respect for one another.   

6)  Aaron has a program on his computer that allows two other men from our church to see what has been viewed on it.  If anything questionable comes up then they can ask each other about it.  I guess in a way it keeps me accountable too since we use the same computer.

Is our marriage perfect?  No–of course not.  I’d never claim that it is.  I admit that I have taken our marriage for granted.  That I have fallen into that trap of believing that “he’ll always be here.”  And I can’t think like that.  I have to actively “work” on my marriage every day.   I know there are things that we need to work on.  Our ‘date nights’ are way too few and way too far in between.  We rarely go anywhere without the kids (I can think of only one time when we spent a night away without them since Annagrace was born!).  We don’t spend enough time just talking (although we’re getting better at that). 

So anyone out there who has actually taken the time to read this–what do YOU do to protect your marriage?  Is this something you have thought about?  Where you given any advice before marrying that you found helpful?

99 Ways to Prepare for Winter

I am really not ready for all this:

You gotta admit that’s pretty funny though!  We were blessed last year with only a couple “light” snows here in the lovely Shenandoah Valley.  In 2002 we got over a foot of snow and for the first time in MY life I saw the temperature in the single digits (keep in mind that I’m from North Carolina!).  Anyway, I got an e-mail in my inbox from Homemaker Barbi and she is featuring “99 Ways to Prepare for Winter” on her blog.  Yes, Fall has only just begun.  But that means Winter’s ugly little self is just around the corner!  Here’s to being prepared!

Cardboard Testimonies

This is totally worth your time to watch.  Totally.  If at least one of these people don’t make you tear up then, well–I guess you didn’t cry watching “Old Yeller” either!

Say Hello to my Blogging Friends

I have some new friends out in bloggy land!  Visit and bookmark their blogs! 

Heather C. is over at Welcome to my Cribb.  In case you didn’t guess it, her last name is Cribb!  Here’s how she describes her blog:

A blog about my passion for people, the earth, cooking, saving my pennies, and other random stuff I want to share with the world.

Heather is an awesome friend.  She’s my deal finding, CVS shopping, coupon clipping, recycling buddy!  She has a way of putting things that will make you laugh and I’m sure you’ll find deals, recipes (come on and post the brownie recipe already!  The world needs the stellar brownie recipe!), and all kinds of stuff posted on her blog.  Heather and her hubby are going to be taking over our network of house churches once Aaron and I move next year so I am looking forward to reading about that on there as well!  (And Heather you say that when life hands you lemons, you make beef stew.  Well when life hands me lemons I throw them back and ask for chocolate!!!) 

Heather B.–yes, another Heather!–has a new blog called His Best For Me.  I met this Heather back in 2002 when I found her on the Creative Memories website.  She is an awesome consultant and can crank out scrapbook pages like you wouldn’t believe.  (Check out a recent post of hers and see the shelf full of scrapbooks!)

Heather is also a deal finder, a mom of three (including a set of twins), a singer (she has a beautiful voice!) and a very Godly woman.  When I see her (which isn’t nearly often enough!) she is always uplifting and encouraging and I love sitting and talking with her!  You’ll find posts on her blog about homeschooling her youngins, saving money and serving God.     

Alison is the wife of Dean who is a college friend of mine.  Alison and I are both from eastern North Carolina.  She and Dean have two precious daughters.  I told Alison recently that she needed to start a blog.  She is a great writer and often blogs on her myspace page so I was happy to see that she listened to me and started a blog!  Alison and Dean are really buckling down with their spending this month so she’s blogging about that.  I hope she’ll also share some stories about her daughters!  Alison is also a deal finder/bargain shopper.  I told her when we move to North Carolina she’ll have to fill me in on where all the good bargains are!  (They live about an hour or so away from where we will be living!) 

Melissa is a friend of mine from college.  She and her hubby Jason live in South Carolina.  Melissa loves to read.  I mean really loves to read!  I am very proud of her because she has been exercising and eating better since being diagnosed with diabetes.  She is now training for a half marathon!  Go Lissa!!!!  You are really inspiring me.  I have been so slack on my 5K training.  I should be already there by now and I haven’t run in ages.  It’s embarassing really–it’s been months since I’ve been out on the trail.  So I’ll be checking in on Melissa’s blog frequently for doses of inspiration.  (Melissa is a really good writer as well and I also had told her in the past that she needed a blog after reading her myspace blog entries!  I’m slowly converting all my friends to bloggers!  Come on . . . join the darkside!  We have cookies!  Sugar free cookies!)  

Pay these gals a visit and leave them some comments!  I love seeing comments on my blog!  (Heidi you rock because you are always leaving me comments!)  I am really slack at commenting on other peoples blogs so tonight I am going to go out and read some blogs and comment on at least five people’s blogs.  I encourage you all to do it too!  It’s fun getting to know people that we’d never know were it not for the internet.  Thanks Al Gore!  Woo Hoo!

October 2008