Thursday, December 31, 2009
Friday, December 25, 2009
This is a video of me singing O Holy Night at our Christmas Eve service last night. (Due to camera error, the very first part is cut off.)
Funny story, a little Behind-the-Music, if you will, is that I panicked before I was supposed to sing and forgot the start of the second verse. I grabbed my phone and texted Laura and Ari in the middle of church to ask them because I needed a quick response. Laura, I knew, has an iphone and could look it up quickly, and Ari I thought would know the lyrics offhand. As I stood there full of anxiety as we sang O Little Town on Bethlehem as a congregation, suddenly the words came to me on my own, and I went up when it was my turn and did just fine.
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Yum, mom, this second batch of mint chocolate chip cookies is amazing!
In the time it took for all of our photo ops, Bradley enjoyed most of the cookies and left very little for Santa. The reindeer and Santa Mouse are covered though, because he didn't touch their treats.
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
This win put Kentucky at 12-0 for the season. I read a great quote the other day leading up to the historic 2000thwin that sums it up best: “Anytime Kentucky can beat North Carolina, if they can beat them to the bathroom, it’s a big deal. Our fans feel like if we do it first, we’ve earned the respect.”
Brian accuses me of shutting everything else out when a game is on, and asks if I'm going to be like this for long. We're ranked number 3 in the country right now, so what do you think??
He's already playing fetch. Bradley likes giving him treats, which he gets every time he goes potty outside. So far we've had one slip up in the house, with more to come I'm sure. Thank goodness for hardwood and tile floors!
Yep, he's already made himself at home!
And this morning, I realized just how quickly Bradley and Chandler could become partners in crime. I walked out of the room to go to the bathroom, and upon entering back into the living room, I found Bradley in the cabinet where we keep all the candles, with candles spread out all over the floor around him, and Chandler up on the couch with a tasty candle he was demolishing with his teeth. Oh well. I needed a reason to learn how to use all my vacuum cleaner attachments anyways.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Never did I ever think that I would like Sandra Bullock in a movie, but I saw the Blindside on Friday and thought she was great! Now Tim McGraw on the other hand needs to stick to singing, or at least not opening his mouth when he's on camera.
Never did I ever think that I would be a brunette again.
Never did I ever think that reaching down to pick up a piece of rotten banana would turn out to be mushy poop, and that this would be all in a day's work of being a mom.
Never did I ever think that the curse of oversleeping would follow me into adulthood, and I'd wake up 2 minutes after I was supposed to be at church for a sound check this morning.
Never did I ever imagine seeing Santa Claus ride through my neighborhood on a firetruck.
Never did I ever beam with pride so much as when I saw my little boy sitting on Santa's lap.
Merry Christmas, everyone! Only a few more days to go, and I'm looking forward to the relatively quiet week ahead... that is, until Horace gets to come home! Then, bring on the chaos!!
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Getting a dog is a big decision that one should not rush lightly into, so of course there is a story behind us getting Horace (or whatever his name might ultimately end up being).
Brian and I have been talking about getting a dog for forever... or at least the last two years since we've been married. We wanted to wait til Bradley was old enough (aka not a newborn helpless baby), and decided that a good time frame would be Christmas of this year. We discussed breeds, and agreed on a male yellow (his choice) or black (my choice) lab puppy.
I pictured in my head getting a puppy on Christmas morning. Specifically, a tiny back lab puppy with a red bow on his collar. Yes, I had specific expectations in mind, and perhaps the fairytale part with the bow on Christmas was a tad unreasonable, but I think I'm just a girl who knows what she wants. Brian made me see that getting the dog right at Christmas would be next to impossible to pull off. Someone would have to have the exact puppy we wanted and be willing to hold him until Christmas Eve, and where would the puppy sleep the night before we presented him as a Christmas gift the next morning? Okay, so maybe all that pomp and circumstance wasn't important after all, and so I resigned myself to waiting until after the holidays to look for our newest member of the family, after all our travels were done.
However... On a whim Friday, Brian calls me from work and asks me about getting a dog now, sends me a website to look at, and tells me he's found one on there he likes- a dog named Horace. I checked the site, a humane society in Ft. Walton, and see none of the specifications about a dog that I want, and so as we discuss our options looking at available dogs at other places in the area, I realize matter-of-factly that no place has small male lab puppies, and so I'm prepared to wait to get exactly what I want. If I can't have him on Christmas with a big red bow, then why settle for just anything? In the end, I ended up putting my foot down and telling Brian that I would wait as long as it took until someplace had the type of dog we were looking for, and that was that.
Only it wasn't. I caved and let Brian go back to the shelter on his own that afternoon and play with two of the puppies we had looked at earlier that day. One was a precious little black lab 8 week old female named Mistletoe. The other... was Horace, a light-eyed, yellow lab 6 month old mutt. I swear to you, out of all the sweet dogs we looked at that day, Horace was the least cute of them all, but for some reason, he struck a chord in Brian's heart, and Brian got a good feeling about him. And then I got a good feeling about him too, so we'll see if our good feeling gamble pays off. Horace will join us in 2-7 days after he gets his man-parts removed so there won't be any other ugly puppies running around.
I know you're just as excited as I am to meet the newest member of our family as I'm sure he will grace the pages of this blog with many horrible and funny tails. Pun intended.
Monday, December 14, 2009
Anyways, Sunday in church the choir sang 3 Christmas anthems we've been working on, and I got a chance to show off a little. There's a high B flat at the end of one of the songs that I got bored with the alto note one night in rehearsal and decided to sing instead since no one else was singing it. From then on I got the go-ahead from my music minister to let loose, and it turned a few heads in church this Sunday. It's very hard to hit a high B flat without blasting it, and I'm good, but I'm not that good, so for me it's loud and proud or not at all. Hardly anyone here even knows I can really sing because I am never given the opportunity to do so. Hopefully 2010 will be a different story there.
The Titans won again on Sunday (Whoop Whoop!) and the Cats won big on Saturday against IU (sorry, mom)! I had Bradley dressed in his cute basketball uniform that Ellen sent him just for the occasion.
Sunday evening was our church's Christmas festival. The idea being that as Christians, we should celebrate Christmas better than anyone, so we did! With pony rides, popcorn, cotton candy, balloons, face painting, bouncy castles, hotdogs, fried oreos and snickers, and tons of food brought by the church members. There was a tiny Shetland pony named Babycakes that Bradley got to ride. You can check out the video on the video bar to the right for the live action footage.
Bradley is not too sure about wearing this helmet!
He also wasn't too sure about the pony ride itself, but he made it around twice on Babycakes at any rate, and posed for photo-ops to document this first wild animal encounter!
Inside the gym, Grandma Anna convinced me that Bradley wanted to go down the big blow up slide, so she took him... again and again... I'm still not sure who had more fun- Bradley or Ann!? This picture is the first time they went down. With each successive trip down the slide, Bradley's grin was wider and wider, but my camera battery was dying, so the apprehensive shot is the only one you're getting!
Bradley and Grandma Anna, posing for a picture in between trips down the slide!
We hung out at the church for several hours that night, meeting new people, and getting better acquainted with others. Bradley ate, and ate, and ate. He mooched food off of friends and strangers alike. This is becoming a trend for him. People are beginning to wonder if I ever feed my child, I'm sure. I finally got to try a fried oreo, after the unfortunate experience at the Wilson County Fair several years ago. They were good, but not what I expected. The oreo was mushy inside. I was expecting some crunch of the cookie under the pure-fried goodness. Maybe they're not always this way and I just had a bad apple? Perhaps someone else who is more knowledgeable about fair food could educate me in the ways of fried oreos. But it was worth the wait, and I can definitely tell you no one in their right mind would want or need the 6 fried cookies those crazy fair vendors were trying to pawn off on me. Highway robbery I tell you!
Saturday, December 12, 2009
- Bradley is "perfect" according to Dr. Bryan, his pediatrician
- Weighing in at 25 pounds and 6 ounces, he's in the 44% for his weight
- 31 3/4 inches long puts Bradley at around the 30% percentile for his height. Yep, we knew he was short for his age!
- Iron levels are back up to the normal range. 10.5-11 is normal for kids his age- this summer Bradley hovered around 10.2, and now it's up to a 10.9! Yay!
- Bradley has 14 teeth, with his top 2 incissors having just come in, and not counting the bottom 2 about to break through.
- He is obsessed with throwing objects into bigger objects, or emptying containers.
- He's also way into climbing into things- like his bottom dresser drawer, the laundry basket, or his book containers.
- Can now throw and catch a ball
I haven't blogged much about Bradley's speech development, but it's begun to take off finally. For a while it was just dada and mama, then hot. Now he says about 10 words clearly. It's exciting to be able to understand what he's saying, and such an amazing thing to be able to watch him connect what he sees with the word for it. Airplane, or plane, is the best example. Planes fly over our house all the time, and whenever Bradley hears one he looks up to the sky and points as he says plane- even if we're inside the house and he can't see the airplane. Since I'm behind on Bradley's scrapbook, here's a list of the words he is currently saying:
I'm not sure which words I am missing at the moment, but it's late and I'm itching to go watch an episode or two of Glee online that I've missed in the past few weeks, so that'll have to do for the moment!
Friday, December 11, 2009
In other news of the weird, the fall season that I missed so much this year has finally come to Florida... in December! While most of the landscape here consists of palm and pine trees, there is a smattering of Oak, Birch, and Bradford Pears that are Just Now revealing their orange and red colors... you know, now that it's December and the Christmas season and all... very strange. Also, the other night me Jess and Kim went running through our neighborhood, and I was in short sleeves, and looking at people's Christmas lights as I ran. Sometimes I still can't get used to living in Florida! I just keep thinking how weird it is to myself!
Friday, December 04, 2009
Truth be told, I am 100% guilty of getting caught up in the "holidays" and letting all the little projects like decorating and baking and wrapping presents, and errands, on top of my usual busy-ness, really get to me. Yesterday I was wound so tight that I skipped my run with Kim and Jess and took a relaxing trip to Walmart by myself. Yes that's right, I reveled in my solo trip to the store, got what I needed, and left Walmart feeling more relaxed than I was before I went in. Has that ever happened before in mankind?!
Anyways, I haven't blogged since Thanksgiving, hence another reason I am stressed out. Writing relaxes me, so even though there's nothing new to report here- except that "brrr, it's cold in here!" but I figured an update was overdue for my loyal readers.
The Christmas cards will get mailed. The house will get clean. But in the meantime I'm taking a big breath, and crossing one thing off my list at a time. Jesus is what's important. Not just during the Christmas season, but every day, and every day if I can keep my focus on him, then everything else will fall into place.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
The Tennessee Titans have won 4 in a row now, after starting the season 0-6. Though it's not likely, we even still have a shot at getting a wild card spot and playing in the playoffs! All it took was for Kooky McCrazerson, Vince Young, to decided that he wanted to be an NFL quarterback again, and all was right in the Titans' world. That coupled with the fact that we have this awesome running back Chris Johnson who has come alive once again, and you've got yourself a ballgame folks. No longer are people talking about what draft pick we're going to get, they're talking about the post-season- unbelievable!
I was privileged to watch my Kentucky Wildcats stun the Georgia Bulldogs this past Saturday night on national TV, and had a difficult time not screaming at the tv while I watched it. Bradley was in bed though, so I had to reign in my fandom, and cheer in whispers. We are now bowl-eligible for the 4th straight year, and it looks like we may finally break into one of the big bowl games this year instead of the crappy Liberty Bowl, or the Been-there-done-that Music City bowl. This weekend we play Tennessee, and I am calling it: UK will beat UT finally this year, and I'm gonna be in Tennessee to watch it happen.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
A few weekends ago we had a yard sale. With the profits, we purchased the materials for a sprinkler system for the yard, and grass seed (yes people, I am a homeowner living in domestic bliss, I tell you). Already look what is popping up in our front yard!
Grass!!! Not weeds, and not an eye sore of dirt and dead weeds, but real, live, verdant, green grass!
It's a little sad how excited I am about something growing in our yard that most people in the rest of the country takes for granted, but here in Florida, with the scorching heat comes a great price to pay when it comes to maintaining a lawn. It's impossible to have a nice yard full of grass without watering regularly, and expensive and a pain in the you know what to water unless you have a sprinkler system and can hook into the reclaim water. With the reclaim water, you pay a flat $5 rate a month, whether you use the water or not, and it's not safe for drinking, but okay for watering your yard. This saves you an arm and a leg from an exorbitant water bill, but the sprinkler system is key. Our neighbor across the street did his own, so he helped Brian install ours, even working on it when Brian wasn't able to help him, and they knocked it out in a few days.
(Have I mentioned lately how much I LOVE my neighbors, and the street where we live?? It's awesome. It's like Cheers. Everyone knows your name. Everyone knows your business. But everyone is more than willing to lend a hand with your child, your yard sale, borrowing tools, or sharing a last minute cup of milk or sugar. But I digress.
This afternoon Bradley and I went to Brian's squadron's Thanksgiving lunch on base, and then when we got home we enjoyed the lovely 70 degree and sunny weather in our sprouting front yard.
Friday, November 20, 2009
One of these items was my combo bamboo cutting board with colapsable rubber strainer. Bradley immediately decided this was a fantastic new toy, and grabbing the collapsable strainer, he decided to Whip It, Devo style!
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Last week when I took Bradley to the doctor and got his first-ever antibiotic, I couldn't help but laugh upon reading the label... what does the pharmacist think I'm going to do? Take my kid to the doctor and scam them so I can take the antibiotic myself???
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Monday, November 09, 2009
We have enjoyed our time together and it's weird already not having him home this morning... especially when there's a hurricane headed directly my way! Stay tuned to your favorite blog for weather updates and pictures!
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Here's the thing though... yard sales have never been my thing. I hate watching people go through my stuff and debating over whether it's worth a piddly dollar. The items are worth so much more to me, that I can't bear to watch them be rifled through, or worse, sold to someone else! Dislike is not a strong enough word for my feelings towards yard sales... abhor is much more fitting. So I stand outside to be supportive (because hey, we're getting rid of stuff we no longer need and are making a little extra cash to buy grass seed, and a sprinkler system for our yard) but as soon as a customer walks up, in I go to take care of some "important" need. I warned Brian about my strong feelings of disdain for these things, so he was under no false pretenses before we began this shindig. He on the other hand does great talking to people and wheeling and deealing, so have at it sweetie. I'll be in here blogging if you need me!
Apparently once the yard sale is over, we have someone on Craig's List who's offered to come haul away what we don't sell, making one man's treasure, another man's trash!
Friday, November 06, 2009
Mark was a year younger than me, and had been diagnosed with brain cancer the fall of my freshman year. If I remember correctly, the doctors gave him 6 weeks to live when he got the diagnosis. Mark proved them wrong and lived for more than a year afterwards. His illness brought our family together in a way nothing else has since, or will ever do. My entire mom's side of the family dropped what they were doing in the fall of 1995 when Mark was fist diagnosed with cancer, and we all made the trip up to Wisconsin to visit with Mark, my aunt and uncle, and the rest of my cousins. The weekend was bittersweet because we were all together, but no one knew how much time Mark would have with us.
Summer of 1996 came, and we began a legacy of annual 4th of July parties. All of mom's side of the family made the trek down to Tennessee, Mark and his family included, and we swam in the pool, ate way too much food, and set off fireworks. The parties have happened every summer since then, with the exception of one, I believe the first summer mom and dad moved into the Franklin house. Now the parties are held in Cannelton at my aunt Lisa's house, but it's still a lot of a fun, and a great excuse for everyone to get together. Had Mark never gotten sick, we probably never would have began this tradition. Something greater came of this tragedy for me personally though.
When Mark passed away 13 years ago today, I was already a Christian, but like anyone I struggled with the difficult questions about life and death. Why are we here? Why do good things happen to bad people, and how could God could be in something so sad? I reasoned then as a teenager that God must have really needed Mark for some other special purpose, a purpose that could not be fulfilled on earth.
Some people lose their faith in times of crisis, but my faith in Jesus is what got me through that experience, and facing that crisis strengthened and shaped my faith more so than any event has in my life. I could not fathom a world where life or death does not matter, and there is no afterlife, or purpose for living, and so the pain led me to Christ, and solidified my belief that He is in everything, even if we don't understand it. As I have matured in my faith, I understand that while God does have his hand in everything, He doesn't necessarily cause something to happen, but we can't know His mind or His purpose. Instead we must trust that He is in control, and that we do have a purpose. God created us to glorify Him, and by following His example set by Christ, that others may know Him, and know their purpose in life as well.
Every year on this day I think about Mark, and think about how old he would have been. But I also cling to Jesus and remember that I am not in control, and surrender my life to the one who is.
Thursday, November 05, 2009
Remember, remember the fifth of November,
The gunpowder, treason, and plot.
I know of no reason why the gunpowder treason should ever be forgot.
It's based on a graphic novel, and I don't usually gravitate towards those kind of movies, but this one was incredible I thought. Natalie Portman and Hugo Weaving were great in their roles, cinematically it was a very beautiful film, and I loved all the symbolism and the use of the letter V and number 5 (a V in Roman numerals).
So there's my short blog for the day in honor of National Blog Posting Month, and my plug for this film! Happy Thursday!
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
This is me in my birthday tiara, opening my present from Wes, Jess, and Wesley. The card was one of those musical ones, and it occupied Bradley the next morning while we were waiting for Chef Brian to finish our french toast. I loved that everyone gave me pink gifts in pink gift bags with pink cards. Good thing I wore my signature color that night!
Saturday, October 31, 2009
- I never knew how much more fun Halloween could be when you have kids and get to watch them dress up and get candy.
- It never occurred to me as being weird before to knock on strangers' doors, take free candy from them, and leave, until tonight.
Here's all of us in our costumes. Brian and I are zookeepers/elephant hunters- Take your pick.
Bradley with Grandma Anna. She stayed at our house and passed out candy to all the trick or treaters.So easy, it's like giving candy to a baby... at least, I think that's the way the phrase goes...
Here's Daddy and Bradley walking up to a house to get candy. Bradley has learned how to knock, so he helped us out there. A couple of times he tried to go in the house once the door opened. I suppose he hasn't really gotten the concept of trick or treating yet! One older man answered the door and thought Bradley was a bunny. I promptly showed him Bradley's trunk and explained that he was clearly an elephant.
See our appropos tropical setting? Gotta love Florida. It was cool tonight- in the 50s- so it felt like fall, but it wasn't bitterly cold the way I remember some TN Halloweens being.
The whole time we were trick or treating it never occured to Bradley that the loot he was gathering was actually edible. He picked out the candy and dropped it in his bucket never bothering to pay attention to what it was, so I opened up a package of mini m&ms for him once we got home. Here's Bradley with all his candy, and his pumpkin with his name on it, thanks to Grandma & Grandpa B. After the m&ms, he had a whole Reeces cup, a dum dum sucker, and some Smarties. Ann and I both heard Bradley say "smartie" clear as day after I gave him the first one, but he wouldn't say it again. It was so plain that our mouths dropped as we looked at each other!
We Skyped with mom and dad so they could see Bradley in his costume, and I know that made their night. At that point he was eating the Reece cup and "sharing" his sucker with Grandma, holding the dum dum up to the computer screen.
Finally, the Halloween aftermath- with chocolate smeared all over his face, trunk, and sleeve! As soon as he dropped that sucker on the floor and wasn't paying attention, into the trashcan it went! That didn't stop B from peering into the trashcan every now and then though. He's no dum dum! We had so much fun going through the neighborhood that I can't wait til next year when he can go even longer!