18 December 2010


For some reason, I'm often the lone witness to glorious happenings. Like the time in WalMart that I returned a lamp because the knob was broken, and the clerk did the return successfully, but when it came time to record the problem, she wrote: Broken Pfknobe. I guess if the K is silent, then the P, H and E are, too. I felt sure that my response was being recorded on Candid Camera. (Assuming that show still exists.)

Then one day I was in the laundromat cleaning my feather bed in an industrial washer and dryer. When I threw it in the dryer, I tossed in some tennis balls. A lady questioned me, and I explained that throwing in tennis balls or tennis shoes help redistribute the feathers. To which she replies, "Hmm...must be the tena!" Again, I looked for the hidden cameras, trying desperately not to crack.

Fast forward to today. I was able to leave early for Christmas break. I decided to stop by Tuesday Morning because sometimes you can find a good deal. Not that I ever have, but I hear that deals are to be found. As I walked in, a customer was disputing a price with a clerk. Once the customer left, the clerks decided to call another store for confirmation of the discount. The conversation is, as follows:

Clerk A: Why don't you call the store in Paris? I bet they can tell us.

Clerk B: Okay. [Retrieves directory.] Do you spell Paris with a P?

Clerk A: [Sweetly replies.] Yes.

Me: [Thinking to self.] Where in the WORLD are the hidden cameras? And why can't I have a friend with me to hear this? And what other letter sounds like P? [Run through alphabet in my head and discover that no other letter sounds like the phonetic sound P.] [Smiles and attempts not to laugh.]

I'm telling you, I'm the witness to greatness. Aren't you jealous?


If you don't watch The Big Bang Theory, then you are missing out on one of the funniest shows ever. This weeks episode made me scream-laugh harder than any other episode of any other show this year. This YEAR! I just don't know if there's a funnier show on, and I'm all about funny shows. Modern Family, Cougar Town, and How I Met Your Mother are all on our DVR. But this...this is hilarious. (And I'm pretty sure you can watch it on the CBS website.)

(Don't tell my husband that I recommended that. He works for the cable company. They want your money.)

(Actually, scratch that. I want your money, too. Buy the cable so that he might get a raise.)

(Thank you.)

Here's a picture from this week's episode. Even if you don't like superhero's, you'll think it's funny. And if you're have even a smidgen of nerdiness in you, you'll think it's funnier than funny!

(And for those of you who hate the words Big Bang Theory and/or evolution...it's just the name of the show. No need to be offended. You'll still think it's a funny show.)

(If you don't, it's a money back guarantee. Or a box of Milk Duds. [A reference to this episode.])

(From me. Not the cable company. Husby nor the cable company is liable.)

That is all. Have a good weekend!

17 December 2010

Merry & Bright

Christmas decorations at our home went up the Sunday before Thanksgiving. I know it's early, but I do love Christmas. And really, the thing I'm most thankful for is my Savior. So I have no issues with ushering Christmas in a little early, especially if it reminds to be thankful of His great love. Does anyone else feel like Christmas decorations make their home cozier? I've always thought that! Maybe it's the rearranging to fit a tree inside the living room. Whatever it is, I like it. Here are a few of the cozies that make our home fun at Christmas (you'll notice that I'm a lover of bright colors at Christmas--no neutrals for this gal!)...

I feel like I finally got a decent picture of our Christmas tree. I played around with some buttons that I'd never used on my [6 year old] camera. It's amazing what can happen! You can see the ornaments and lights (although there are colored and clear lights), and the super cute red and white ball garland. That's this year's new addition, and I love it!

Our mantle. I should have taken a side view of the mantle. It's about 7 inches wide and slopes down to the front, which causes all sorts of anxiety for me. See the red glittery stuff hanging off the front? I feel like it's only a matter of time before it all falls down. I've collected all types of Christmas trees over the years (mostly on clearance at Pier 1 and Target). I like the look of random trees. This year's addition to the mantle are the fun little stockings all over. Cute, huh?

I found this frame a Target a couple of years ago. I had to have it, but wouldn't spend $7 on it. I just knew it'd go on clearance. The next time I was in, I couldn't resist; I spent the $7. The silver tree is from my great-grandmother's Christmas decorations. I love that I have it!

This wreath hangs on the door between the kitchen and living room. It's courtesy of my mother-in-law, who happens to supply many of my Christmas decorations.

Here's the kitchen. We have windows along the wall of the kitchen, which doesn't allow for much storage space, but I like that it's so open. I decorated each set of windows with various wreaths and serving platters, many of which I've had since college. The little angel in this picture was made by my great-grandmother; it's around 50 years old. Again, love it!

This platter is one of my favorites. Isn't the reindeer so cute?! I also love the gumdrop tree.

16 December 2010

A Christmas Break To Do List

Oh, y'all. I just love being lazy. Unfortunately, sometimes a good thing crosses the line into sit-on-the-couch-for-eight-hours-and-do-absolutely-nothing-and-hope-that-Husby-doesn't-notice-that-there-are-still-4-loads-of-laundry-to-be-done. In order to avoid the above scenario, I decided that I need a list to tackle during my Christmas break. Two weeks off at Christmas is an excellent time for rest, family and just getting things done.

I wasn't successful at purging 100 items before Thanksgiving. I gathered about twenty and had others in mind for removal from our home, but wasn't able to complete the project. So that will stay on my to do list, along with several other things I hope to will accomplish during the break, which begins this coming Monday:
  • Purge our home of 100 items (donate to Goodwill, sell on Craigslist, throw in the trash)
  • Take my wedding dress to be preserved finally
  • Print wedding portraits finally and have framed
  • Organize closets (Husby's, mine, and one other)
  • Clean, clean, clean (also read: vacuum, dust, mop)
  • Organize the cabinets off of the kitchen
  • Complete recipe binder reorganization
  • Research making a king-sized upholstered headboard (find navy velvet fabric)
  • Search for end tables to silver leaf
  • Research how to silver leaf
  • Decide on new bedding (but wait until January White Sales to buy)
  • Organize my iTunes account
  • Hang the huge clock we received for a wedding present
  • Undecorate after Christmas :(
I'll keep you posted on my progress--mainly because I need to know that others will know what I've done and haven't.

15 December 2010

Wide Wide World of Web

  • Catalog Living is a HILARIOUS website! You know the Sonic commercials with the husband and wife in the car? Well, this website was started by the wife character. Each of these pictures is from a catalog (Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, etc). The captions are between the husband and wife of the house, Elaine and Gary (who are not the husband and wife of the Sonic commercials). Again, HILARIOUS!
  • I love Anthropologie. I can spend hours in that store, especially in the home section--mostly because it's a tad more affordable than the clothes. After perusing their website, I found these adorable clothbound books for children, and then these clothbound classics for adults. Oh, how I'd love to have all of these, but I'd settle for Anne of Green Gables and Sense and Sensibility.
  • I found an inspiration room for our master bedroom. I really enjoy ideas from Little Green Notebook (see the link to the right). I've found that I love white/neutral bedding, but don't want to sacrifice color in a bedroom. This allows for both. What do you think? (Yes, I plan to do the silver leaf nightstands. But no couches. Our room isn't quite that big.) Click the link above for more pictures.

 via Little Green Notebook
  • I found these Brownie-Covered Oreos last week at Picky Palate, and totally plan on making them for Christmas Eve at the in-laws. Aren't they SO cute?!

14 December 2010

Top 2: Favorite Games

First, of all: I LOVE GAMES. Seriously love them. I love having friends over for dinner and games. I can't think of a better time. [And, yes, I have crossed over to boring adulthood. If the dinner/game nights are wrapped up by 9:30 so that I can scoot to bed, it's just fabulous for me. Although I never mind staying up till 11:00 with good friends; maybe even midnight on special occasions.]
My top two games are:
I grew up playing LIFE quite often; it was a favorite. It doesn't require just a whole lot of strategy, and it's just fun! This will forever hold a dear place in my heart since Husby proposed to me while we played LIFE. It's a really great story. You can read about it here.

I also love card games: Spades, Canasta, Pinochle, Hearts, Speed, War. I'll play just about anything. I even act like I know how to play poker, but I mainly bluff. It makes those who actually TRY so mad when I win. And it makes me so happy that it gets under their skin that much. I've recommended that they play by bluffing.

Because I love games so much, I can't limit it to two. Here are a few others that I enjoy:

What about you? Do you like to play games (board, video, Wii)? What are your favorites?

13 December 2010

Weekend Update: Birthday Edition

It's Monday, and it's so cold! When we woke up, the weatherman informed us that it was 26 degrees. That's chilly for Texas folk! I do enjoy the cold weather because I love wearing dresses and tights and boots. I just feel so cozy in this winter "uniform." Ha! I'll feel even cozier next week when I don't have to get up before dawn. Oh, the joys of the education field.

We had a semi-relaxing weekend. Saturday was Husby's birthday; we'd planned to do absolutely nothing, but he surprised me last week with tickets to a Willie Nelson concert for that night. He's just so sweet. Husby loathes country music, but still bought tickets for me to do something that I've always wanted to do. And that he went on his birthday--well, that's just even sweeter. We were successful in doing nothing during the day.

We took Crickett on a walk late in the afternoon and happened upon an estate sale. I'd like to preface this by saying that I love a deal. I scour Cragslist. I try to visit garage sales and estate sales, but only find junk or over-priced items. I never find anything fun or cute or cheap. But it all changed on Saturday. Even if I never find another good piece via Craiglist or garage/estate sales, I hit the jackpot with this purchase. (And I don't have a picture now, but I'll post one soon.)

I've always loved this home in the Azalea district:

I mainly went into the estate sale to see the inside of the home. (When else would I have the chance to peek inside? Without being a creeper?) I left Husby and Crickett outside while I made my rounds through both stories of the house. When I walked into the house, the homeowner shared that everything was 1/2 off. I saw pieces that I would love to have, but Husby doesn't share the feeling that 1/2 off of $1800 is a good deal. Ha! It was everything I dreamed of. I even went into the closets, which rival the size of our dining room. That's when I found our new chest of drawers. This piece was almost 5 feet tall and 4 feet wide. And it was 1/2 off $250. What?! I ran downstairs and grabbed Husby; the owners told us that Crickett could go inside the house. I showed him this piece of furniture, and he agreed that we should buy it. We don't need it now, but as our family grows (not prego), we will. And you can't find a piece that cheap! When we hauled it downstairs--with the help of Jeremy's brother and SIL, we discovered it is SOLID wood. I can't wait to refinish or paint it! It'll be perfect in some room, someday.

On Sunday, we went to church, and then right back home. We lounged, did a bit of Christmas shopping in the afternoon, and then I made dinner for my sweet husband. His choice of dinner: filet mignon with blackberries, roasted asparagus and baked potatoes. It was so yummy! I'll post the recipe for those steaks this week. I also made a chocolate cake that was SO rich I couldn't finish the last two bites. And I don't typically give in while eating chocolate. It super easy, so I'll post that recipe, too.

I hope you had a great weekend, too! Be a blessing this week.

11 December 2010

Happy Birthday, Husby

P.S. It's also the three year anniversary of him first calling me to ask me on our first date. Eek! I was so excited that I didn't answer his call. Ha! I immediately called him back and made up some excuse. :)

P.P.S. (or P.S.S., whatever) I have the best husband ever!

P.P.S.S. He's also the cutest.

10 December 2010

Friday Fives: Favorite Gifts

Just Me and My Life

Y'all know I love a list, and I haven't done a Friday Fives in a while. (You can see others here, here and here.) Today's topic is favorite gifts you've given or received. Let's get to it!

Probably my all-time favorite gift, which I still have today is...

...Crickett Marie! Isn't she so cute?! I received a 2-lb. dog as my "big" gift six years ago. Until then I wasn't a dog person; I casually mentioned to my parents that IF I ever got a dog, I'd want a miniature dachshund. My mom's best friend was at WalMart just before Christmas and saw mini dachshunds for sale. Somehow, she thought that I really wanted a dog and chose Crickett out of the litter. I was shocked when I received her, but I'm so glad that she's mine. Well, now she's ours. It took her about a year of dating to warm up to Husby, but now she's crazy about him.

I've already received a gift this year, and I'm so excited to use it. Husby came on Monday night and announced he needed to give me an early Christmas present. Since I'm not one to squelch the enthusiasm of others, I agreed to receive the present early. And do you know what it was? Tickets to a concert to see...

That's right! Willie Nelson! Don't judge me. I've liked him for years. And I'm super excited to see him in concert. I would have put this concert on my Bucket List, but considering he could be more likely to kick the bucket first, I didn't think it was a good idea. It'd just be setting myself up for disappointment.

Okay, now one of my favorite gifts I've given was to Husby a couple of years ago. We had a ski trip planned, and I wanted to do something a little out of the ordinary. Husby loves experiences more than things, so I knew that I could hit it big in the mountains of Colorado. We went dog sledding!

It was so much fun! The picture above is Husby driving the sled with me in the passenger seat. These dogs were so amazing! We both had so much fun. I'd highly recommend it!

Okay, this wasn't a Christmas present, but I just checked the rules (that don't really exist), and so I feel fine posting it. The first birthday present Husby gifted me with was a hot air balloon ride. (He really is all about fun experiences!)

Although I'm terrified of heights, this was so much fun. The balloon doesn't move very fast; it doesn't have jerky movements. It's very serene. Just a side note: don't wear a dress or skirt when hot air ballooning. There is no way to modestly climb into the basket wearing such an outfit. But I looked cute. Which is important.

Oh, my goodness. I have the best husband ever! He's such a good gift giver. (I'm breaking the non-existent rules again.) Last year for my birthday, he gifted me with tickets to see:

This is my all-time favorite musical. (Sorry, Les Miserables.) It was playing in San Antonio, which is quite a drive for us. He found a wonderful bed & breakfast and booked two rooms since we were still engaged. We walked the Riverwalk, toured the San Antonio missions--including the Alamo, ate amazing food, drank fantastic margaritas, bought way to much chocolate to eat in one night, and saw Wicked. It was such a good weekend, and most importantly, he liked Wicked, too.

Okay, I could go on and on with the boom box/CD player I received in 7th grade, my American Girl doll, Kirsten, the super cute wool hat Husby gave me last Christmas. I think I should stop. And as much as I love telling you about the gifts I've received, I do love giving gifts even more!

What about you? What's a favorite gift? Do you hand-pick presents for people?

09 December 2010

Not a Wordless Wednesday

My original plan for posting today was "Wordless Wednesday." But then I somehow figured out that it's not Wednesday, so this post won't be wordless. If I had done a Wordless Wednesday (which I probably won't ever do because I keep typing worldless and having to correct it), I would have simply posted a picture of my Christmas tree. Let's go ahead and take a look...

I think that I should take a class on taking a picture of my Christmas tree. I just can't get it right. It really is covered in ornaments and has clear and colored lights and it's flocked, and the bow on top looks a lot better in real life. But you can't tell this from the picture. You'll just have to trust me (or give me tips on taking a good Christmas tree picture.) Oh, and I love my Christmas tree skirt. It has grosgrain ribbon, rick rack AND buttons. That's like the trinity of cute--you don't know how they all fit together, but they do.

Happy Wednesday Thursday!

08 December 2010

Wide Wide World of Web

Because it's Wednesday.

And I can't really function well because all I can think about is Christmas break.

And I still have 8 days to go. (Actually, I think it's 7.5, but since I have to wake up on at dark on these days, I'm counting all 8 days.)

I've decided to share a few links.


1. This video is hilarious. Who knew that ducklings would do this in the wind?!

2. One of my students wore some oh-so-cute earrings yesterday. I hadn't seen anything like them. She shared with me the gloriousness of What's In Store, a cute boutique in Franklin, Tennessee. Since I live about ten hours away, it's a good thing they have an online store. Visit What's In Store here.

3. My BFF-west-of-DFW, Patti, hounded me for WEEKS to listen to Mark Driscoll's Peasant Princess sermon series. I finally caved and downloaded four podcasts for my trip last week. Oh. My. Word. They are so good. I've heard approximately 128 sermons on Song of Songs, but this is so different. I can't wait to listen to more in this series, and I can't wait for Husby to hear these. I'm thinking of taking a road trip just so we can listen to them. Yeah. They're that good. You can find them here. Mars Hill has an iPhone app, so you can always pull up a sermon to listen. So nice!

4. And while you're at it, ladies, I highly recommend his Marriage and Women sermon; listen to it here. As I looked for that, I found others about women: Women and Femininity, Women as Homebuilders, Women as Wives. I think I know what I'm doing over Christmas break.

That's it for today. Be a blessing!

07 December 2010

Top 2: Ornaments

You should know that I LOVE Christmas ornaments. (So I linked up with The Undomestic Momma to share!) Our tree is covered in ornaments--probably 20 dozen, and I secretly wanted to use more. When I married, Husby came with about 14 dozen beautiful glass ornaments. (He wasn't using these; they were stored by his mom for his future wife. Score!)

We really don't have a specific theme for our Christmas tree unless "Super Cute" can be a theme. I love any ornament with red on it. Polka dots, glitter and ribbon are also big drawing points for ornaments. But I'm not picky...We have cute little angels and giraffes and homemade felt ornaments and dainty ornaments from Prague made out of blown-out egg shells. Please don't sense that the theme is "Tacky." I promise; it isn't. Somehow, it all works. Perhaps it's that the enormity of the ornaments.

I scored this ornament as a gift exchange last night. Being uber-competitive, I hated that I was the last to choose. But since I was new to the group, I quitely sat, waiting my turn. I was so excited when I opened this cute give. It's meets the criteria for the cutest of the cute: big, red and green, with ribbons. And since I was last in the gift exchange, no one could steal it from me. Yea!

I bought this ornament last year and thought it very fitting to adorn our first Christmas tree. Again, it meets the cute criteria: big, colorful, and a green ribbon.

What about you? Do you have favorites? Are all your ornaments part of a theme? I'd love to know (and steal ideas!). You can see a few other of our ornaments here.

06 December 2010


Hi, friends! I can't believe it's December. And Christmas-y. And cold. Mostly, I can't believe that this semester is almost over. (For the record, my brain has always worked in semester/summer increments. Even when I had a non-school job.) If my calculations are correct--and I'm pretty sure they are--45 of my sweet students have completed about 225 college applications, and we only have about 12 more to submit. Whew! That's a feat!

Last week I spent three days on a trip with my juniors. We toured five different schools. It was a great trip, but exhausting. I think there's also an age where chartered buses are no longer comfortable. In fact, most modes of transportation have lost any comfort I once thought they had. And for some reason, this girl who could sleep ANYWHERE just a few years ago, cannot sleep in a car/bus/plane any longer. I blame it on my turning 30. It's been a good year, but things sure do change.

Oh, another change is my eyesight! Evidently, I'm not supposed to drive at night without glasses. I didn't think it was super important that I get a pair of spectacles, but Husby had an eye exam two days after mine, and our doctor/family friend asked if I'd driven at night without glasses and shared that I'm not "legal" to drive at night without glasses. Now, Husby is a little concerned and won't let me drive at night until the prescription is filled. And did you know that glasses are EXPENSIVE?! After 30 minutes of trying on an average of six frames per minute, I found a pair. But I had to have her hold them for me because this frugal lady doesn't rake over a wad of cash that easily. I'm trying to decide if I need the cutest/more expensive pair since they're primarily for night driving. I mean, I will be wearing them at work when my eyes get tired, too. And I don't want to look like a MawMaw.


I'm sitting in our oh-so-cute-Christmas-y living room. I just love our Christmas tree. It's a flocked tree with that pre-lit with both colored and white lights. I love it! I just wish I could take a decent picture of it. Does anyone else have trouble getting a good picture of their tree? I think it must be a lighting issue. Our stockings are stuffed for each other. Although I have a feeling that they'll get a little more full in the days before Christmas.

I had an urge of creativity tonight. I started by making Chocolate-Butterscotch Haystacks, which are easy-peasy. I got the recipe from friend, and former roommate, Sarah. They're great for a Christmas party.

Chocolate Butterscotch Haystacks
from the kitchen of Sarah

2 C chocolate chips
2 C butterscotch chips
10 oz (2 cans) chow mein noodles

Melt butterscotch and chocolate chips. Stir in noodles. Drop onto waxed paper and chill until firm.

And when I was still in a creative mood, I made a little something to frame in honor of Elf:
If you'd like to print it, but it doesn't print well, leave a comment with your email, and I'll send it your way.

I hope you have a great week. Nine days left until Christmas vacation. Hallelu!