Monday, November 30, 2009


You know, I don't normally get all up in arms about separation of church and state (my views differ from most of my more conservative friends anyway) or forward on things that are religious or political in nature. It's just not my thing. I have strong opinions on the subjects, and I'll be more than happy to share them at any time--as I'm sure most of you know--but I just don't feel the need to blast out these things to everyone on my email list. Ya know?

However, I received an email the other day that made me pause a bit. I haven't been able to put my finger on why the "keep Christ in Christmas" campaign rubs me the wrong way...after all, it IS Christmas. I guess I've just chosen to go with the knowledge that I'll be honoring my traditions and faith in the way I celebrate, and that everyone has that choice. Furthermore, I feel that those who want to honor Christ (as I do) in their celebration of the holiday could do more for that "cause" in simply celebrating His love with their family and friends than organizing a big rally or campaign about keeping Christ in Christmas. Does that make sense at all?'s the email. I will be the first to state that it's a bit cheesy and that I don't wholeheartedly agree with every point it makes...but it does reflect more the "stance" I'm taking on this than anything else I've read.

Letter from Jesus about Christmas --

It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. Maybe you've forgotten that I wasn't actually born during this time of the year and that it was some of your predecessors who decided to celebrate My birthday on what was actually a
time of pagan festival. Although I do appreciate being remembered anytime.

How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don't care what you call the day. If you want to celebrate My birth, just GET ALONG AND LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

Now, having said that let Me go on. If it bothers you that the town in which you live doesn't allow a scene depicting My birth, then just get ridof a couple of Santas and snowmen and put in a small Nativity scene on your own front lawn. If all My followers did that there wouldn't be any need for such a scene on the town square because there would be many of them all
around town.

Stop worrying about the fact that people are calling the tree a holiday tree, instead of a Christmas tree. It was I who made all trees. You can remember Me anytime you see any tree. Decorate a grape vine if you wish: I actually spoke of that one in a teaching, explaining who I am in relation to you and what each of our tasks were. If you have forgotten that one, look up
John 15: 1 - 8.

If you want to give Me a present in remembrance of My birth here is my wish list. Choose something from it:

1. Instead of writing protest letters objecting to the way My birthday is being celebrated, write letters of love and hope to soldiers away from home. They are terribly afraid and lonely this time of year. I know, they tell Me all the time.

2. Visit someone in a nursing home. You don't have to know them personally. They just need to know that someone cares about them.

3. Instead of writing the President complaining about the wording on the cards his staff sent out this year, why don't you write and tell him that you'll be praying for him and his family this year. Then follow up. It will be nice hearing from you again.

4. Instead of giving your children a lot of gifts you can't afford and they don't need, spend time with them. Tell them the story of My birth, and why I came to live with you down here. Hold them in your arms and remind them that I love them.

5 Pick someone that has hurt you in the past and forgive him or her.

6. Did you know that someone in your town will attempt to take their own life this season because they feel so alone and hopeless? Since you don't know who that person is, try giving everyone you meet a warm smile; it could make the difference.

7. Instead of nit picking about what the retailer in your town calls the holiday, be patient with the people who work there. Give them a warm smile and a kind word. Even if they aren't allowed to wish you a "Merry Christmas" that doesn't keep you from wishing them one. Then stop shopping there on Sunday. If the store didn't make so much money on that day they'd close and
let their employees spend the day at home with their families

8. If you really want to make a difference, support a missionary--especially one who takes My love and Good News to those who have never heard My name.

9. Here's a good one. There are individuals and whole families in your town who not only will have no "Christmas" tree, but neither will they have any presents to give or receive. If you don't know them, buy some food and a few gifts and give them to the Salvation Army or some other charity which believes in Me and they will make the delivery for you.

10. Finally, if you want to make a statement about your belief in and loyalty to Me, then behave like a Christian. Don't do things in secret that you wouldn't do in My presence. Let people know by your actions that you are one of mine.

Don't forget; I am God and can take care of Myself. Just love Me and do what I have told you to do. I'll take care of all the rest. Check out the list above and get to work; time is short. I'll help you, but the ball is now in your court. And do have a most blessed Christmas with all those whom you love and remember :



Saturday, November 28, 2009


Anthony's aunt is a professional photographer, and snapped this the other night when we were hanging out at his parents house. I love it!


Weekends are Wonderful, and I am Lazy!

LAZY day over here...just now posting this!
(visit Shannon to join in the fun!)

(join Cate to join in on THIS fun)

Lazy Day...but now decorating begins!

It's a day late because last night we went to the pub...after crazy shopping...and a good nap. I usually put up my tree after shopping and that nap, but the pub was AWESOME last night and totally worth the day late-ness on the home decor part!

So. I'm headed out RIGHT NOW to drop off my recycling in the daylight (stupid DST), pick up a couple of jewelry making things, and look at Target for just one or two more things...and then I'll be coming home, turning on the Christmas music, and putting up the trees. Ahhh...I love today.


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Would you Wear It? Part 2

Thanks for your overwhelming response on this post! My friend also liked it, and I was able to make her a necklace that's very similar to the original one she liked! Here's a few pics for you:

It will be available in my store very soon, but if you're a reader of this blog there will be a discount for you! :0) Just email me or leave a comment that you're interested and I'll get back to you with details.

I'm really loving this design and will be making several color combos for Christmas gifts! If you have a suggestion of a color combination that you would like to see, let me know that too!


Thursday's Ten: Thankfulness

As promised, we're doing this early so that everyone can do their Thanksgiving thing on Thursday!

Today's topic is simple. List ten things that you're thankful for.

If you're like me and trying to narrow it down...I'm going to skip all the normal "big stuff" like my health, my amazing boyfriend, God's grace, chosen family, music, and all that...and focus on some of the little things that I don't normally focus on. So, here's my list of little things I'm thankful for.

1. sweet tea, especially when I'm sick and nothing else in the world tastes good.
2. scarves
3. cuddling
4. tank tops and yoga pants
5. date nights
6. pretty food and beverages
7. the occasional bubble bath
8. beads and beading
9. calendars because I get to organize
10. pictures

There's so much to be thankful for--and so many "big things" on that list. But if I'm to be faithful in small things I should be thankful for those small things too, right?

Happy Thanksgiving all!
(grab the button and sign MckLinky to join up!)


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Titus 2 Tuesday: Dotty

I've already told you about her here
And I'm not completely sure why she's on my mind so much today.
Perhaps because I'll see her next weekend.
Perhaps because I'm always reminded of her around the holidays.

Dotty has taught me courage
and reminds me that God was wrapping His arms around me, even during some very dark days.

And perhaps more than that, that He still is.

Not very wordy tonight...
but that's all that needs to be said.


Would you Wear It?

Below is a prototype of a necklace a friend asked me to make.

She wanted it like this one, from Ann Taylor Loft. We found one with navy ribbon and clear beads in a magazine, and those were the easiest beads/ribbon to find, so I tried it first.

I think before putting it in my etsy store or giving it to her, I'll experiment more with beads of varying well as making it longer...but the general idea is there. What do you think?


Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday's Memory: The One With My First Sassy Look

Grandma's House, 1982(ish)

See that tilt of the head and mischief in eyes? And the beginnings of a smile?

Not a whole lot has changed...

Peace Out!


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Weekend Wordle, etc

Click and join at Shannon's!

Ahhhhhh--I'm lazing the day away!

You would think that I've had enough of that over the last week...but no. I'm enjoying this lazy Saturday. In my defense, in 2 hours I'll be babysitting 4 boys under the age of 5...the youngest being 3 months! So lazy is necessary to prepare for all that :)


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thursday's Ten: Notable Quotes (but NOT about the Piggy Flu)

So...welcome to this week's edition of Thursday's Ten. Pardon my sniffles!
(actually I'm doing much better...just really really really tired)

I thought about doing ten awful times you've been sick (mine would have been topped by the Christmas Eve/Day illness when I was a senior in high school...the ER visit and all), or ten things about pigs...but instead decided to do something a little more relevant to all of us!

SO, ten favorite quotes. I've already done this once here, but I'm always finding or rediscovering new quotes!

"I believe in pink. I believe laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing; kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles."
- Audrey Hepburn

“I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead and some come from behind.
But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see.
Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!”
- Dr Seuss

"a person gets to have her whole life"
(Private Practice)

"Being aware of your crap and actually overcoming your crap are two very different things"
(Grey's Anatomy)

"The fact that children can make beautiful music is less significant than the fact that music can make children beautiful"
- Cheryl Lavender

"Everything has beauty. Not everyone sees it."

"The feeling remains that God is on the journey too."
-Teresa of Avila

"Use what talents you possess. The woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best."
- William Blake

"There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it."
-Edith Wharton

And a bonus because it always makes me think

"I do not reject your Christ, I love your Christ.It is just that so many of you Christians are so unlike your Christ."

You're familiar--grab the button and sign mcklinky and then share some of your favorite quotes!

ALSO--next week's will be 10 things you're thankful for (and we'll do it on Wednesday so everyone can do their Thanksgiving thing). Plus, if you have any suggestions for future lists I'd love to hear them! I've been doing Thursday's Ten for years, but somehow doing lists that are relevant to more people are a little harder than just coming up with my own :)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

THAT'S what I did wrong!

Avoiding the Swine Flu

Eat right! Make sure you get your daily dose of fruits and veggies.

Take your vitamins and bump up your vitamin c.

Get plenty of exercise because exercise helps build your immune system. Walk for at least hour a day, go for a swim, take the stairs instead of the elevator, etc.

Wash your hands often. If you can’t wash them, keep a bottle of antibacterial stuff around. Wear a mask when out in public places and avoid going out in public as much as possible while the swine flu is spreading. Get lots of fresh air. Open windows whenever possible. Get plenty of rest. Try to eliminate as much stress from your life as you can.

OR …. You can take the doctor’s office approach. Think about it, when you go for a shot, what do they do first? Clean your arm with alcohol.. Why? Because alcohol kills germs. So…… I put on my mask, walk to the liquor store (exercise), I put lime in my Corona (fruit), celery in my Bloody Mary (veggies), drink on the bar patio (fresh air), get drunk, tell jokes, and laugh (eliminate stress) and then pass out (rest). The way I see it, if you keep your alcohol levels up flu germs can’t get you!!!!

So there you have it. I just haven't been keeping my alcohol level up enough!


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Oink, Oink (maybe)

It began Sunday morning.

I was scheduled for praise team at church and woke up stuffy and sneezy. Somehow I still made it through rehearsal and two services. Then I led a 2-hour rehearsal with the youth choir.

Then I went home and took a nap. I took my temperature upon entering my house and it was 99.7, so no big deal. 2 degrees is nothing to worry about. (my normal temp is 97, not 98 like most people)

I went BACK to church a mere 3 hours after leaving, and helped the teens sort grocery bags full of Thanksgiving meals for families in this city who wouldn't have Thanksgiving any other way. It's a wonderful thing our church does each year.

I sneezed approximately 135 times during the 3 hours we were there. (I truly don't think that's an exaggeration...believe me, there are witnesses). At some point, one of our 7th graders started turning around and giving me a high-five after particularly impressive explosions.

We went from there to A's parents house to watch the Colts and Patriots play...ohmygosh what an amazing game...and I continued sniffling and sneezing. Not quite as much though, because I had stopped at Walgreens to get some meds to help. Unfortunately, the meth users have made it impossible to get the good stuff at 8:30 pm on a Sunday night...because the pharmacist is gone and it's unlawful for anyone but the pharmacist to give me my one box of hope. So I got the not-quite-as-good stuff and made my way.

When I got home I took more drugs and waited awhile to go to bed. I hate not being able to sleep because I can't breathe, so I thought if I got tired enough I'd be able to sleep.

So I went to bed around 1, and woke up at 5.

I was FREEZING. (and the heat was on full blast)

I was thirsty.

So I stumbled downstairs and poured a glass of sweet tea that I had made the night before.

It was at this point that I realized I was burning up (even though I was freezing) and that I was awfully I decided to take my temperature before taking a drink of the tea.



And you KNOW that with all the hype about swine flu I *knew* that's what it was.

I was too weak to do anything except text A and my friend Mattie (who works in the office I'm temporarily at) and tell them that I was running a fever and wouldn't be leaving the house today. Mattie's response was "I hope it's not the swine flu!"

(well, that wasn't her only response. she also brought me chicken soup and throat coat tea, both of which I am VERY grateful for!)

For the next 4-6 hours my fever fluctuated between 101 and 102 and I fluctuated between sleep and delirious texting. Finally around 9 or 10 am I googled "swine flu symptoms" and thankfully landed on a pretty informative site.

Note that it's a site from the UK. They apparently are a little less stressed out about piggy flu than we are around here. I'm glad. I scrolled down to the symptoms part and read them.

It said:

If you or a member of your family has a fever or high temperature (over 38°C/100.4°F) and two or more of the following symptoms, you may have swine flu:

  • unusual tiredness,
  • headache,
  • runny nose,
  • sore throat,
  • shortness of breath or cough,
  • loss of appetite,
  • aching muscles,
  • diarrhoea or vomiting.
unusual tiredness? check
headache? my head felt like it could roll off my body from the weight. check.
runny nose? do the 30 tissues in bed with me give a clue to this? check
sore throat? hell yes. check
shortness of breath or cough? eh, not more than usual
loss of appetite? check
aching muscles? oh my word yes. check
diarrhea or vomiting? thank goodness no.

Yeah, according to that list I might have the swine flu.

Thankfully the site also said that it's pretty mild for most people and gave this checklist of reasons to go to the doctor:

Call your GP directly if:

  • you have a serious existing illness that weakens your immune system, such as cancer,
  • you are pregnant,
  • you have a sick child under one,
  • your condition suddenly gets much worse, or
  • your condition is still getting worse after seven days (five for a child).
So as long as I haven't gotten progressively worse by Saturday-ish, I'm good. None of that other stuff applies to me at all.

Thankfully my fever broke mid-afternoon and there have been no signs of it going sky-high again. I'm playing it safe and staying in again today, but it looks like this piggy flu (if that was indeed what it was) is not going to keep me down!

Plus, A brought and prepared dinner and then kept me company for awhile. TBS had a Family Guy marathon on, so between that and our two Macbooks we were set :)

However if I'm not back in the swing of things around the blog for awhile, you'll know there's a pig to blame.

Maybe when I get my appetite back I'll put some REAL sausage in one of my recipes. :P


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Wordle, etc

(visit Shannon to join in the fun)

Enjoying a beautiful Tennessee fall day!

(visit Cate to join in the fun)


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thursday's Ten: I Truly Believe

Hi all! Welcome to this week's edition of Thursday's Ten. Today's list is called "I Truly Believe"

you can be serious
or do a combination of the two (which is what I did)
and please include pictures if you can!

1. That all coffee should be this pretty
2. That I should not see the moon on my way home from work at 4:30
3. That rain is for dancing in...and kissing in.
4. That there is healing power in cuddling a baby
5. That freshly grated cheese is MUCH better than that store packaged shredded crap
6. That men are just as attractive when they show their nurturing side...and that they ARE born with it.
7. That the Colts may just go to another Superbowl this year
8. That hearing children sing may be one of the most beautiful sounds on earth.
9. That a person (especially this person) should see the ocean at least once a year.
10. That I am blessed beyond measure.

You know the drill! Grab the button, sign MckLinky and share your list with us!


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Recipe of the Week: Almond Frost Jack

Thank goodness for facebook! I became a "fan" of Jack Daniels a few months ago. (ok, I was already a fan, but facebook makes it official, right? ;)

Anyway, they posted a recipe on facebook a couple of weeks ago, and I just HAPPENED to have a friend over a few nights later (right before our 5K!) We decided to try the recipe and I think we were both pleasantly surprised by how much we liked the Jack in it's alternate form!

Now, straight up Jack and Jack and (diet) Coke are going to be the staples...but this one will be a good "go-to" for fall especially!

Almond Frost Jack

1½ oz. Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey (I use Gentleman Jack)
½ oz. amaretto
2 oz. cream
1 teaspoon super fine sugar

Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake vigorously. Strain into a cocktail glass or serve over ice in a rocks glass. Sprinkle with nutmeg.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

If all goes well...

My friend Sam (more about him and his wife) gets to go home tomorrow!

His counts are going up, and although he will continue to be closely monitored, his immune system has developed enough to return to his own home!


You know, all day long I've wanted to post a blog and couldn't figure out *what* to write about. I guess I was just waiting for the good news!

Here's a song he posted on his blog the other day. Perhaps you've heard it before; I grew up singing it in church as did he:

Whatever It Takes

There’s a voice calling me, from an old rugged tree
And it whispers draw closer to me
Leave this world far behind,
There are new heights to climb
And a new place in Me you will find

For whatever it takes, to draw closer to You Lord
That’s what I’d be wiling to do
And whatever it takes, to be more like you
That’s what I’d be willing to do

Take my houses and lands,
Change my dreams and my plans.
For I’m placing my whole life in Your hands.
And if you call me someday,
To a land far away,
Lord, I’ll go and Your will obey.

For whatever it takes to draw closer to You, Lord,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.
And whatever it takes for my will to break,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.

Take the dearest things to me, if that’s how it must be
To draw me closer to Thee
Let the disappointments come, lonely days without the sun
If through sorrow more like You I’ll become.

For whatever it takes to draw closer to You, Lord,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.
And whatever it takes for my will to break,
That’s what I’ll be willing to do.

I’ll trade sunshine for rain, comfort for pain, that’s what I’d be willing to do.
For whatever it takes to be more like you, That’s what I’d be willing to do.

Um, so if you want to hear a rough version of it, turn off the music player and click the video. It's me, rough chords because I don't have sheet music and had to play it by ear, a couple of big boo-boos, and distracting moving as I sing (can you promise not to WATCH the video and just listen? lol) and I can't promise that at 12:30 am I was completely "on" for the whole song. But, it's there. Gentle, dear readers :0) (there are more of you now than the last time I posted myself singing!)

Anyway, I'm so grateful for this miracle. No, his journey with cancer isn't over...not even close...but this chapter is coming to a close.


Monday, November 9, 2009

LaLaLa (HaHaHa)

I am NOT a Taylor Swift fan...but this literally had me laughing out loud!


Monday's Memory: The One With North vs South

(ps, according to the numbers on the side there? this is my 300th blog post! Woo!)

Once upon a time 2 years ago Bethany came to Nashville to spend the weekend with me. While she was here we both played tourist, which is one of my favorite things to do when I have out of town guests!

We walked around Bicentennial Mall for awhile and came upon this little memorial of the Civil War. Since Beth lives in Ohio and I now reside south of the Mason-Dixon line we asked a passer-by to take a picture of us here:


quick, I'm cracking up!
(we do have our more normal moments...)