Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 Checklist...

So, to recap... Here is last year's official resolution list:

1. Lose 30 lbs by June 1st. (*see previous post for Mary's Ella's thoughts on this*)
HAHAHAHAHAHA. But I do have an excuse. Well, 3 excuses. Every time I EVER try to lose weight, I either:
a) get pregnant
b) realize that Thanksgiving is 2 weeks away
c) randomly receive a gift card to the most fattening restaurant on the planet. And you KNOW I ain't ordering no salad! Not on a gift card! No sir.

2. Grow my hair out long again so I can wear it curly and not have a fro.
CHECK. It is long now. And fro-free. Thank you, Pantene Beautiful Lengths.

3. Keep the house clean, keep the laundry from piling up.
I probably should have worded this one "Keep the house cleaner than I've kept it during my first 6 months with a newborn." Because then it could officially be checked off the list. I will give myself credit and go ahead and say CHECK to this, though. On a technicality that my wording was a bit off.

4. Be more organized.
Judging by a few piles of miscellaneous junk and mail that are staring me in the face as I type, I'd have to say a big fat NO to this one. I'm trying.

5. Continue saving money so I don't have to go back to work.
Well, we continued to save so that I wouldn't have to go back FULL TIME... does that count? I am working PRN, meaning whenever I want. It averages out to 1 or 2 days every 2 weeks. So CHECK, maybe. Half CHECK?

6. Give more.
Check, although there is always room to improve in this area.

7. Get my garage cleaned out.
YES! YES! YES! My Dad and I spent one looonng Saturday cleaning out my garage. It took about 8 hours total. And that was about 8 months ago. And now it looks hideous AGAIN! So #7 will be added to the new list, I'm afraid.

8. Finish the downstairs playroom and make it a functional space to live, entertain and play.

9. Run a 5K.
YEA! I'M LAZY. (Actually I was signed up to do the UCP 5K on October 31st of this year. Same excuse. Pregnant.)

10. Learn to sew.
CHECKMATE. Still need to learn a LOT. But CHECK nonetheless.

Now stay tuned for my new list!

Resolutions 101

Before we go making our lists, let's start by reminding ourselves that New Years resolutions are supposed to be at least somewhat attainable.

For example, last year, one of my resolutions was to lose 30 pounds in 6 short months.

The word "attainable" does not apply to this resolution whatsoever. Not for me, at least.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Christmas Snapshots

Despite the sickness, we had a wonderful Christmas.
We are blessed in so many ways.
Here are a few of my favorite memories from this year...

Our tree, with its HUGE vintage colored lights and our favorite ornaments...

The stockings...

Some of my favorite ornaments...

Mary Ella getting her first Alabama shakers from her MeMama...
and practicing her "Roll Tide" in anticipation of the championship coming up in a couple weeks!

Seeing the joy on my nephews' faces when they opened their gifts!

Supporting the trends of 2009...
(My nephew Brooks, sporting about 87 Silly Bandz)

New blessings
(Baby Jack, 2 months old)

Seeing my nephew Case enjoy Christmas
(At this time last year, Case was fighting for his life in ICU @ Children's Hospital due to asthma... so thankful that God allowed him to stay here with us. He is a wild little monkey - our family wouldn't be the same without him.)

Mary Ella enjoying her Santa loot. She's been cooking since we got back home.

Our little elf passing out presents to everyone

Being goofy with this little goofball... who looks more like her Daddy, but acts more like her Momma. Go figure!

Thanks to a friend of a friend, getting a sneak peak at this little nugget (in 3-D, I should add!)
And finding out (finally!) what to buy. Pink or blue? Hmmmm....
**I should add that you can't tell the gender by this picture... sorry :)

Gifts from Grandmother

They never disappoint. Each year, my grandmother (on mom's side) always comes up with the best ideas for Christmas gifts. They almost always include a fun, thoughtful poem. One of our favorite gifts from her this year was this big basket full of goodies, which included popcorn, 2 coffee mugs, a bag of her famous peanut brittle, home made mocha mix, a pair of warm pajamas for both Chad and me, a cozy blanket, a gingerbread-scented candle, the new Casting Crowns CD, and these words...

Put the kids to bed
The dogs and cats too.
Plan a real comfy night
That's just for you!

Put on your warm PJ's
Turn the lights low
Enjoy your new candle
With its cozy glow.

Get out your mugs
Ready for a toasty treat
Hot chocolate on your tray
With candy to eat!

Snuggle up in your new blanket
Pull it up tight
Put on your CD
And enjoy your night!


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

It found me...

... the bug, that is.

This morning around 2am (just hours after we'd returned from Florence), I was hit hard with chills, aches, and fever. I've thrown up more than I ever have in my life. Chad stayed home (again) and is currently playing with Mary Ella. They've been cooking up all kinds of stuff in her kitchen this morning. Every now and then I'll get a special delivery from my little chef... usually a plastic brussel sprout or cookie. She'll stand by the bed and wait for me to take a pretend bite and tell her how yummy it is. She's so proud of her kitchen skills. Hope everyone is staying well!

Monday, December 28, 2009

The Bug

Hope you are all enjoying your gifts and staying WELL... because after our Christmas celebrations with Chad's family and seeing Mary Ella enjoy her Santa toys, a little bug crept into our lives... and it's still HERE... and NO FUN.

We left Birmingham Friday afternoon to go to Huntsville, where we always celebrate Christmas with my mom's side of the family; better known as The Compound clan. There were about 30 of us, I think. Friday night we played games and enjoyed our traditional meal of finger foods and appetizers, then headed to bed. Around 4am Mary Ella started crying. She was in her pack-n-play at the foot of our bed. I thought maybe she'd just woken up due to being in a new place. But she couldn't settle herself down, so I put her in the bed with us; as soon as I laid her down between Chad and me, she started throwing up. And let me tell you, it was NOT fun. If you've never experienced a stomach bug with a toddler, I hope you never do. They don't know what to do, because they are so little! I literally had to turn her over and upside down so that she wouldn't choke. She just cried and cried because she didn't know what was going on; it was just pitiful. This lasted until about 6am, when we finally got her back to sleep. The next morning Chad went to Publix and got some Pedialyte and I tried to get her to drink as much as possible (and have you tasted that stuff? It's gross; basically a Flintstone Vitamin in liquid form - ugh.) She seemed to feel better and so I let her eat breakfast. She was back to her normal self by 11am or so, in spite of going through about 20 diapers in 2 hours (yes, the ugly bug started manifesting itself in other ways, or at the other end, I should say - but that's better than vomiting!)
By the time we left to go home, everything was back to normal. We came back to my parents' house here in Florence and Saturday night opened gifts with them. Sunday morning we went to church and then came home and got ready to open gifts with my Dad's parents. They brought soup and sandwiches. Right before they got here, Chad wasn't feeling so hot, so he headed upstairs to lay down. Well, he ended up staying there all. day. long. Throwing up, fever, chills, aches. Yuck. We stayed away for the most part except to bring him blankets and Sprite. After presents, (around 5pm yesterday), Mom also felt weak; she's been in the bed ever since. Same stuff. My cousins Annsley, Ann Marie, Brooks, Charlie and my aunt Amanda also have the bug. Charlie is currently in the hospital because of it; he got really dehydrated.

SOOooooOO.... I say all that to say THIS:
1. Please pray for my family! This is no fun!
2. Please pray I don't get this bug! (Because there would literally be NO ONE to take care of my child right now!)
3. Wash your hands and/or carry some GermX if you are out in public!
4. Thank God for your HEALTH!

Sunday, December 27, 2009



Friday, December 25, 2009


Last weekend we went to my Uncle Jimmy's house for lunch to celebrate Christmas with my Grandaddy's side of the family. He lives on a farm, right across the pasture from the Compound. This is his barn...

And these are his horses.

Yesterday we went to Chad's parents' house to celebrate with everyone. Mary Ella loves her grandparents - this is Chad's mom, aka "MeMama."

... and Chad's Daddy, whom Mary Ella has lovingly nicknamed "Gran-Gran" (short for Grandaddy.)

Mary Ella got all kinds of goodies from MeMama, Gran-Gran, and her Uncle Jason and aunt Keri Lynn. Dishes, books, Alabama shakers, a Donald Duck, and a baby doll playset, complete with high chair, stroller and crib! She was in heaven.

We got home around 11pm last night and tucked our little girl into bed... just in time for Santa Claus to drop off his goodies.

More to come, including videos...
We are off to Huntsville and then Florence for more Christmas fun!

We wish you a very Merry Christmas! And remember, it's not about the gifts, but about the GIVER of ALL GOOD THINGS...

"Thanks be to GOD for His INDESCRIBABLE GIFT!"
2 Corinthians 9:15

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Remember this?

Well, only days later, the flurries turned into a downright blizzard. Lucy needed a scarf.

And then George Washington showed up to play.

And so did Jenny. And we made snow angels.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Just in case she fooled you...

... here is a video of my precious child in TIME OUT, throwing a rather horrendous temper tantrum. You should know that our TIME OUTS are the last resort, not the first. Before this, Mary Ella had already received 2 spankings... from her Daddy. Which says a lot, because Daddy does NOT like to spank his little girl. But she knows not to disobey and tonight she decided that her way was best. So to TIME OUT she went, for about 15 minutes. (Our TIME OUT dungeon is located in the guest room in her Pack n Play.) Notice the attitude as we try to get her to say "I'm sorry." I think she was a little perturbed at the video camera too, so I'll cut her some slack.

And bless her, when she finally did say "I sorry! I sorry!" at the end, it melted my heart a little.

Friday, December 11, 2009


So far Mary Ella has completed her third course in Helping-Mommy-With-the-New-Baby Boot Camp.
Today she mastered burping her doll and eating her lunch at the same time. Way to go, Mary Ella.

Stay tuned for course #4: Changing a diaper while texting.


I am blessed to have some of the most wonderful neighbors. This morning my friend Jennifer invited us over for a playdate and Mary Ella had the best time! I was able to take a few pictures of Jennifer's youngest, William, who is an absolute DOLL and didn't seem to mind the camera too much.

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