Wednesday, February 24, 2021

What's Up Wednesday


Happy Wednesday, friends! I'm linking up with Sheaffer and Shay for this blog post.

I'll jump right in!

What we're eating this week:

Well, I wrote about this yesterday, so scroll past this post and you can read it. 

What I'm reminiscing about:

Staying all bundled up and cozy inside while the snow was outside. Now, I didn't say that I miss this, but that I'm just reminiscing about it—it was INCREDIBLE to see all that snow on the ground. It hasn't snowed that much here since the mid ninetine eighties.

What I'm loving:

ROUTINE! I have a routine each week and I really like when it all goes as normal.

What we've been up to:

Nothing new and exciting, but everyone is back to coming and going lots, as usual.

What I'm dreading:

Well, I was dreading waking up to take care of all the dogs alone this morning, but I did it and it wasn't bad! Crash had surgery on Monday to repair his first torn ACL and for two weeks he has to wear a plush donut thing to keep him from messing with his stitches, and for FIVE WEEKS he has to live in a large kennel with a cozy bed inside. He has to have help going down and up the stairs to go outside, so we have to lift his back end with a towel under his legs, then he has to stay on a leash the whole time as well. He absolutely cannot run and jump, hence the leash. It'll all be worth it when it's all over and done with.

What I'm working on:

I'm still in the process of co-writing our next women's Bible study for church. I need to get back to it this week!

What I'm excited about:

I have a fun day trip coming up in the spring with two of my dearest friends and I'm so excited! I also have a trip to North Carolina coming up with the other ladies on our writing team and I'm looking forward to it just as much. It'll be fun to escape to the mountains together for a retreat.

What I'm watching and reading:

I'm watching all The Pioneer Woman shows I missed over the last year. Who knew I'd missed so many? Also, I'm watching This Is Us, The Good Doctor and The Resident. Todd and I started the latest season of The Amazing Race last week too and we need to finish Cobra Kai.

I'm reading this and am almost finished:

This is my first book by this author and it is GOOD! 

What I'm listening to

I always listen to worship music, but I also love some good and seasonal playlists. I follow a few people on Spotify who are good at making them and they're all a good blend of styles. I also love my eighties love songs playlist. 

What I'm wearing:

Oh, the usual—leggings with a long shirt or poncho, or comfy clothes while I'm at home. I'm ready for spring! Also, I need some pants and need to shop for them soon. I need new jeans and I'd like a couple of pairs of new jeans for spring and summer.

What I'm doing this weekend:

Going out with my mom and sister on Saturday, hopefully! I missed doing that last week and want to see them so bad. Also, I'm sure my hubby will work, so I foresee a lot of movies and reading. I also always look forward to church on Sunday!

What I'm looking forward to in March:

It's the start of birthday season! Jonah and Noah turn EIGHTEEN on the tenth, Graham will be twenty two on the eleventh, Drew turns twenty one on April third and there are a slew of other family birthdays as well. 

I think that just about sums it all up and there's nothing else I didn't already mention. Thanks for reading along! Love to all. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

what's for dinner?


Happy Tuesday, friends! I thought it'd be helpful to do another what's for dinner post this week, especially since I made it to the grocery store this week and found everything I needed. (I wasn't expecting that.)

I'll start with last night. We had nachos! I love anything and everything Mexican themed. Our nachos were simple and I just did the meat, cheese, lettuce, tomato, salsa, sour cream and jalapeno. Sometimes I do this same thing with rice and tostados or with taco shells. On days when I remember to buy the white queso is when the boys like it most. I forgot that Monday, though.

Tonight we're having grilled chicken and grilled veggies with roasted potatoes. This is my FAVORITE! 

There will be leftovers on Wednesday for anyone who wants them, because I'll be at church. On Thursday we're having grilled hot dogs and tater tots. Friday is up in the air still.

I also struggle with having lunch things for the people who are here. While I was at Kroger Monday, I loaded up on fresh veggies and fruit, because sometimes that's what I like to eat. (So does Drew.) I also bought tuna (and celery for it) and I have boiled eggs in the fridge. We eat those either as they are or in egg and olive salad. I keep ramen noodles on hand because Jonah and Noah love them and we always have tons of sandwich makings. My sons have never been sandwich people, so that makes it tricky for me when I'm shopping. I also always have to have something sweet on hand, because who doesn't get a sweet tooth from time to time? Sometimes I'll actually make dessert, but I keep break and bake cookies and packages of cookies on hand as well. 

People ask me all the time about our grocery bill each month, with five grown men living in the house and I always tells them I spend the same amount every single week at Kroger: $150 give or take a few dollars. This doesn't include our many, many Costco trips for other essentials like toilet paper, dog food, coffee and meats. We rarely (never really, thanks to Covid) eat out and we all love good food. I'd much prefer to make it, because I know it'll usually taste better than any restaurant. Except for Mexican! There's nothing like that.

This picture above cracks me up, we weren't really eating like that. Not quite. ;)

Your turn! What's for dinner (or lunch) at your house all week? I'd love to hear from you! Thanks for reading my blog, love to all. 

Monday, February 22, 2021

link-ups and being grateful


Happy Monday, friends! I'm joining in with two linkups today—Hello Monday with Tanya from The Other Side of the Road and Carrie from A Stylish Fit

My weekend was the same as the last week, which is very uneventful. The snow and ice was still on the ground for us, which means I stayed home. I don't love being out when there's ice on the roads, thanks to our notoriously bad drivers here in the Memphis area. I was okay with being home and am a homebody by nature. My first venture out in seven days was yesterday when we went to church. I was thankful to be out and then yesterday I even drove myself and a young friend to choir practice. Our road was slushy, but parts of it were still covered in ice.

I've been dreading today for a while now. Our dog Crash is having his first ACL repair surgery today. I'm not concerned about the surgery, because I know he'll be fine, but I'm dreading the WEEKS of recovery and confinement for him. We borrowed a huge kennel and got him a plush bed for the inside, and that is where he will live for the next five weeks. He'll be able to walk to get his food and water, but will have to be taken outside on a leash so that he doesn't try to take off running. The total recovery time is ten weeks, with five spent in close confinement, which is why we needed a huge kennel.

When I'm dreading something, I like to think of things that I can be thankful for. Doing this helps me to sort it all out in my mind and it helps me to have a better perspective. Have you ever tried this? I do it pretty often, usually in my journal, so I can attest that it really does help with a better mindset. So, here are some things I am grateful for: 

As much as I'm dreading this, I'm glad Crash is having surgery. He's been in tremendous pain for two weeks and has had to be carried upstairs and physically lifted up to lay down on the couch. That is not his best life.

I'm grateful that my husband knew a veterinarian surgeon to do this and to work with us on the surgery. It's very expensive! 

I'm grateful to my friend Jess for letting us borrow the huge kennel. Another friend Vonna had offered us hers as well, but we went with Jess' because it was a few inches bigger than the one Vonna had. We want him to have all the room he can have to stretch out. I am grateful for friends like them—I met both of these ladies through Bible study. Vonna is a friend from our early years of homeschooling and attending a Bible study for the moms while the kids attended classes and Jess is a friend I met last year at church in our women's group on Wednesdays.

I am so grateful I got out of my house yesterday and that I'm getting out again today. I have big plans—I'm going grocery shopping and hopefully to get my nails done. 

I'm thankful that though the snow and ice were inconvenient last week, that's all that it was. We never lost power, we never lost water, we had a warm home to sleep in and we had plenty of food to eat. I know of people who are still suffering the effects today and prayed for the ones who suffered devastating loss in Texas last week.

I am so grateful that I was able to be at church yesterday. Our morning of worship was so very good and the sermon was incredible. I left feeling so encouraged and thankful to have been there in person. I also love my choir family and always enjoy being with them. 

Well, I could go on and on, but I'll wrap up this post with that last one. I need to get up and make lunches and coffees to go and get started on my day. I hope you have a great one! Thanks for reading my blog, friends. Love to all. 

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Tuesday Talk

Happy Tuesday, friends! Today I'm linking up with Erika from A Little Bit of Everything for Tuesday Talk.

I thought I'd be super candid today and talk about perspective. By that word, I mean my own. I have this thing about me that I seemingly have no control over and it has to do with the issue of control. I know in my heart that I am not in control of circumstances around me, like what the weather does or how things may or may not turn out, but when that gets out of hand, it's like I become a different person. (One that is unrecognizable and one I don't like.) 

I'll give you a for instance—just yesterday I shared about how full our house currently is and I said that a full house makes for a full heart and that is true. It is absolutely true and I have been like that forever. But when things are messy and my dogs have gotten ON MY LAST NERVE (and when I'm tired), I find myself being VERY grumpy and easily aggravated. (Other things that contribute to me being this way are when I feel anxious or upset by something, being sick, when something is coming up that I am dreading, or when I feel claustrophobic because of bad weather in the forecast.) Yesterday was a good day, though and everything seemed fine, until all of a sudden it wasn't. The fact that my husband is the complete polar opposite of me can be both a great thing and a terrible thing. I was feeling trapped inside the house, I was anxious about needing groceries (I shop on Mondays) and I was also anxious about any of my family members being out on the roads in their icy conditions. All of that just snowballed (See what I did there?) and this morning I was in much need of some time with the Lord. (I have to brag on Todd because he won't grocery shopping at TWO stores for me, though it was his idea to go to Costco.) 

I won't say that I feel back to normal yet, but I am definitely feeling better than I was. I read in my Bible this morning and I will write out Scripture in just a bit, because I went and did a few things upstairs before everyone started waking up. I spent some time in prayer, because I neglected that part of my relationship with the Lord yesterday. (Remember the full house I mentioned? It's hard to get quiet enough to talk to the Lord when my surroundings are loud and everyone is coming and going.) The time wasn't as long as I would have wanted, but it was better than yesterday. I think for the remainder of my day I will just journal out my thoughts and prayers there. These things are definitely helping me keep my head on straight today and the mental pep talks I keep giving myself. Even just this act of writing out this blog post is helping. 

I know it may seem trite to some of you reading this, but I also attribute some of my thinking to being an anxious person. I don't just mean anxious as in worrying, but I mean as one who struggles with anxiety of all different types. I know all the right things to do to help myself out, but this is nothing that I can control. When it comes to worrying over situations like weather or how things turn out, I know that I need to surrender those to God and I do that. I also trust Him with every detail of my life. I have to make myself pray through things and doing that does help. 

All of these things do help me and by now, I pretty much know how to get myself out of some of the debilitating anxious thoughts. It's hard to understand how anxiety can be for someone who doesn't suffer from this, but I started my battle with this as a young girl. It would take a whole other blog post to spell out why I think I have battled with this my whole life, but it's just the way my brain is wired and I sometimes fret over the dumbest of things. This is when my husband is really good for me—he is the breath of fresh air that I need when I'm needing to be talked down. You should witness how he treats me on airplanes, it's very sweet.

Anyway, that's what I wanted to talk about today. Consider yourself fortunate if you don't battle with anxiety. I don't take medicine for this, though I am never against that notion, should the need arise. For now I can cope on my own, but another way in which this rears its ugly head is as severe white coat syndrome when I see doctors. I'm rolling my eyes at myself, because it sounds ridiculous even as I write that out. Needless to say, I don't go to the doctor all that often.

I'd be so interested to hear from some of you, if you battle with this and hearing what this looks like in your life. Sometimes it's good to talk about things to get them off our chests and to encourage one another. The whole reason I mentioned the word perspective is that sometimes I need a good dose of it in my life. In spending quality time with the Lord this morning and reading in His Word and praying, He helped me gain the perspective I needed to face the day. And guess what? I had a much better day today. My house was still full, so like I said, I really do love having extra people here, it's just that my focus changed and as I started thanking God for certain things and praying for other people, I felt as if a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. 

If you're still here, thanks for reading my blog and thanks for always being so encouraging to me. I've had comments lately from people I don't really know who are the sweetest of cheerleaders. You never know what a person walks through and how your words can be so life giving. Love to all. 

P.s. LOOK at all that snow behind me! It's insane. We have about eight more inches supposedly making its way to us tomorrow. Stay warm and cozy, friends.

Monday, February 15, 2021

the weekend & the great snowpocalypse of 2021


Happy snow day! I totally forgot to do this blog post last night and am just now getting around to it, at 4:45 on Monday afternoon. I'm linking up with Tanya from The Other Side of the Road for this blog post...better late than never, right? 

First, I am SO GLAD I got out both Saturday and Sunday, because who knows how long it's going to take until all this snow and ice melt? I started the weekend off by watching movies Friday night. I had leftovers for dinner, then I watched Valentine's Day and New in Town on Hulu that night. I don't know how I missed out on New in Town, but it was so cute! I love both Renee Zellweger and Harry Connick Jr. 

I went out with Mom and Trish on Saturday for lunch, then we went to Marshall's and Target. I got home and Todd was working again, so I watched more movies—I don't remember which ones, though. I was going to watch church online on Sunday, but ended up going when I was asked to come sing in a mic for someone else. I'm glad I did, because like I said, I don't nkow when I'll be out next! Todd worked one last time that night and I watched all of the current season of This Is Us. 

Because they're so cute, here are some baby owls. Are they not the most adorable things you've ever seen? Who knew they looked like this?

There was NOBODY at church yesterday, for good reason! It hasn't snowed like this since my boys were little bitty. We have over five inches on the ground and it's still coming down with more on the way. I do love how it looks, it's so pretty, but I don't love the feeling of being trapped in my house. All my guys have been out, but I am staying put until who knows. Not only are our four here, we currently have five extra as well. I'm making a big pasta dinner tonight and my awesome hubby went to two grocery stores for me. He's the literal best ever. 

I took this picture of our dining room, because they all sat there and ate lunch together today. I have always said a full house makes my heart the happiest and thanks to my husband making sure we had food to feed them all, I can sit back and relax, knowing they're all safe at home. 

Well, I need to get up and make dinner now. Thanks for reading my blog! Love to all. 

Friday, February 12, 2021

Friday Favorites 2.12.21

 Happy Friday, friends! I'm linking up with Andrea from Momfessionals and Erika from A Little Bit of Everything for this Friday linkup. 

How was your week? Mine has been good, there hasn't been anything to make it particularly eventful, but that is never a bad thing. Here are a few of my top favorite moments from the week.

I was sitting at the kitchen table Saturday morning at eight thirty, getting ready to leave for our church for a special choir rehearsal and I took this to check the back of my hair. My hair is never my favorite and because of it being curly, there's not much to do with it other than grow it out or cut it in a bob, so I've been letting it grow. I actually like my hair right now, for the first time in AGES and people always say something to me about it, which makes me think it's flattering for me at this length. My friend Ginger who does my hair is my favorite and she does a killer job on my hair when I go every three to four months for a trim and new highlights and she's the first person I've ever gone to who doesn't discriminate against me because of how much hair I have. Every time I go, she colors it, then puts a toner all over and I sit under a steaming lamp thing while all my makeup melts off, then I sit with my head in the washing bowl as she lets a deep conditioning treatment sit on there for about ten minutes. It's a half day process when I go, but she has my hair healthier than it's ever been.

 And then all the young children said this and all the social media influencers lost their minds. It has made me laugh all week, because who DOESN'T part their hair on the side? A middle part is not flattering for anyone, trust me. I took a picture and tried it and no thank you. Also, I will keep wearing my favorite skinny jeans and I'll keep on using the 🤣 all I want. I don't care who thinks I'm old and who doesn't. Emoticons are my favorite.

I made myself a brownie sundae at my mom's Sunday night and it was my favorite dessert of the week. It had a brownie, ice cream, a banana and chocolate syrup. 

For almost one full year, we have been without a worship pastor at my church. We finally found one and he came to "try out" over the weekend and we got to meet him and his wife on Saturday at a special rehearsal. This was us rehearsing Sunday morning and the worship was so good! It was very refreshing having someone there who is operating within his calling in life and he accepted the position and will be with us permanently before too long. They have to make a big move, so I've been praying for them all week as they told the pastors and staff at the church they're coming from, but I am so excited for them to join us. Choir rehearsing is one of my favorite things.

I've been sitting right here and reading all week long. This book is endearing...dragging a bit, but endearing all the same. I'll try to finish it in the next night or two so I can move on. Reading is my favorite and so is going to pick out new books from my happy place, which I'm thinking of doing tomorrow.

I have had lots of time at home still, so I used one of the afternoons this week to start writing my portion for our next women's Bible study at church. I can't say the name of the book we're writing on yet, but this is one of my favorite processes—to be honest, I always dread starting, but once I start it all starts to click and fall into place. That is just the Holy Spirit, I know, leading me and giving me words to say and things to write.

This was my favorite dinner of the week so far—shrimp fried rice, using a recipe from Mix and Match Mama (Shay Shull). 

My favorite boy is visiting an orthopedic surgeon today. Poor Crash has possibly torn his ACL and has been hobbling around all week, hardly able to walk. I've had to pick him up and put him on the couch and he has to be carried upstairs each night and Graham puts him into his bed. I've cried over this and prayed over him all week. Poor Crashy.

Winter is my current favorite season and so is staying home and staying cozy on the cold and dreary days. This was Thursday and there is more on the way. I'd love some snow instead of ice, but we'll see if that happens.  

My dad is coming over for lunch today and this weekend will most likely look the same as my week has been—low key and staying close to home. My husband may work some over the course of the weekend, but that'll be about it. What are your plans this weekend? I'd love to hear from you! Thanks for reading my blog, love to all. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

10 on the tenth, let's look and a blog hop


Happy Wednesday, friends! These days I am all about blog link-ups and today is no exception. I'm linking up with Leslie from a blog I have recently found called Once Upon a Time & Happily Ever After. I've never participated in this link-up before, so I thought it'd be fun to do this month. Because of Sunday being Valentine's day, all the questions this month are about love. I'm also linking up with Erika from A Little Bit of Everything and Shay from Mix and Match Mama, as they discuss love languages today. I am also participating in a Wednesday blog hop that I found through Penny over at Penny's Passion. I'll jump right in!

How romantic am I? Based upon my love of a good rom-com or Hallmark movie, I'd say that I am more romantic than I originally thought. The problem is that I've changed over the years and though I used to not be this way, I am now. I swoon over undivided attention, compliments, an arm around me or my husband playing with my hair. Insert emoji with heart eyes here.

What's the best relationship advice? I have two things I tell people—the first and most important is for married couples to keep Jesus at the very center of your marriage. If you both have your eyes fixed on Him, everything else will always fall into place. If you don't do this, it will all slowly fall apart. I have proof of this and I know it to be true.

The second piece of advice I give is don't go to bed angry. But sometimes, acknowledge that you're tired and instead of keeping on at it, kiss and say goodnight and resume the talk the next day. Everything is always better in the morning light. 

One last one—kiss often as a greeting and when you're leaving.

At what age did I begin dating? I was sixteen when I had my first real date and it was a boy from school. (I don't remember how old I was when I had my first kiss and don't remember how I felt about it...maybe that says something?)

What makes a relationship healthy? COMMUNICATION, COMMUNICATION, communication. Did I mention communication? I will also say the physical side of a marriage is also VERY important and can either make your marriage stronger or the lack of it can destroy your marriage altogether. (The grass is NEVER greener on the other side.)

I asked Todd this same question and he said two things as well—intimacy in a marriage and also the knowledge that he can be comfortable being who he is and not having to worry about what I think of him.

What is my love language? What is Todd's? My love languages are tied with two—physical touch and quality time and Todd's are the EXACT same. I think it's good that we get each other. Here is an online quiz you can take to find yours! I encourage everyone to do this and get your kids to do it as well! I think this is good information to know. 

What is one couple I know that I admire in terms of love? Um....this is a hard one, because NOBODY is perfect. We're all flawed human beings and all of us can be dumb from time to time. One couple that does stick out in my mind is a couple that I didn't personally know, but saw and witnessed. It was an older couple who used to go to our town square every weekend in the summer when live music was playing, and they would just dance and dance and dance. I want to be like that. I think it's the sweetest thing I ever saw, but I do know that the husband passed away a couple of years ago. I think they went to our church. They just always seemed so in love and I want to be like that.

Who is your favorite celebrity or fictional couple? I don't know of a single celebrity couple alive that I admire, but I loved the relationship that George Bush and his beloved Barbara had. Favorite fictional couple would be Allie and Noah from The Notebook. 

Name a flavor of food I love. (And a scent and activity.) I love Mexican food! I could eat it almost every day of my life. I also love coconut. My favorite scent is anything really clean and fresh smelling or minty. An activity I enjoy is driving around with Todd and looking at houses. We've loved doing that since we were teenagers. 

Do I believe in love at first sight and do I believe that people are made for each other and soul mates? I don't really believe in love at first sight. I believe the more you know someone, the more you love them. I do believe that the Lord does have that person who is perfect for someone. I have always told my sons this and believe it years later. I say all the time that we are nowhere near being perfect, but we are perfect for each other.

In a covid free world, what would I like to do for Valentine's weekend? I don't really think highly of Valentine's day, but for fun I'd love to go to NYC again someday. We went there four years ago for our anniversary and birthdays, but we missed some things and I want to do it all over again. (I cannot believe I never once ate a bagel and cream cheese while I was there and that we missed out on going to Serendipity.)  

I'll leave you with this picture of my lobster and me on the night before our 24th wedding anniversary. 

Thanks for reading my blog! Love to all. 

What's Up Wednesday

  Happy Wednesday, friends! I'm linking up with Sheaffer and Shay for this blog post. I'll jump right in! What we're eating th...