Friday, January 30, 2009

Gone Fishin'

AKA "You got the fishin' guide, I got the dock." Back soon.

Update: We're back. I have pictures to post, but it'll have to be tomorrow or so. We're whupped.

Biggs' New Truck

You may or may not know our history of car-buying decisions, but Biggsy and I haven't always done the best job when it came to purchasing new vehicles.

When we met, I drove a big, red, cab-and-a-half Chevy 4x4. The truck of my dreams. I loved that truck. But it had upwards of 150,000 miles on it and thing were starting to go crazy. Like windows that would go down but not back up. And one side of the toolbox had to be welded shut because it kept flopping open.

So I traded my truck for the "cutest" little step-side Ford Ranger. Bad decision #1. I was tremendously short-sighted on this one and didn't forsee the Big Changes that would happen in my life during the next five years.

At that point, Biggsy was driving a big Ford 4x4 -- the truck of his dreams.

Then Abbie came along.

So Biggs was relegated to my little truck with no backseat. And I started driving his truck. (This after about a couple of weeks of driving Amy Depner's Ford Probe because I couldn't climb in the truck post-Abbie.)

Then Grandma Lolly passed away, and I somehow inherited her boat of a car. Red interior. Black exterior. The brackets that held the air conditioner were falling out. But boy's howdy, that was a smoooooth ride.

The week Biggsy graduated from UT MBA, he took my Ranger down and traded it on a Honda Accord. Without me even being there -- and it was in my name! I didn't even know you could do that!

Shortly after moving to Plano, we off-loaded Lolly's boat and got a write-off all at the same time. The Salvation Army even picked it up!!!

Then, and the details are a bit fuzzy here, we somehow ended up with Amber's Chevy truck. We will tell you to this day that that was the worst financial decision we have made in our marriage.

And the worst part?? Biggs sold his big 4x4 (to some guy in a Walgreen's parking lot who paid with cash). He started driving Amber's truck -- no frills with a bench seat that made Biggsy's back hurt. I drove the Honda. And then we added Jake and Kaitlyn to the mix.

Well, THAT wasn't going to work. So we eventually got rid of Amber's truck and bought the first Expedition.

And Biggs took over the Honda.

That brings us to last Spring, when the Aggie Maroon Expedition pretty much fell apart. So right before gas prices sky-rocketed to all-time highs, we traded for my black Expedition.

And Biggs still drives the Honda -- which shakes as it goes down the street and is literally going to fall apart piece by piece -- right in front of Buc-ee's one of these days.

And he envies anyone with a truck.

And he's kind of getting tired of borrowing other guys' trucks when we need to haul something.

So we just bought him a truck on Ebay. It's red -- reminiscent of my much-loved Chevy. The only problem?? It doesn't have AC, so we've had to improvise a bit. Luckily, Dad brought us an air-conditioner to use with the girls' playhouse.

Isn't it pretty???

Pork Butt Friday

Hey! It's Pork Butt Friday. I just like saying that. Pork Butt Friday.

Try saying it really fast three times.

Pork Butt Friday.
Pork Butt Friday.
Pork Butt Friday.

Cool, huh?

I didn't even tell you about my biggest adventure this week. The one that makes me "Da Bomb" as far as wives go.

Remember Spike the Deer? The one Biggsy got at Christmas? Well, he's been ready and waiting in Hamilton for the last couple of weeks, and on Tuesday I decided to go and fetch him.

With an ice storm bearing down on North Texas, no less.

It was pretty much a calculated risk. I was about 90% sure I could get to Hamilton, get Spike and get headed back south before the roads there froze.

But I didn't count on the stop at Buc-ee's for gas and the stop in one of those "C" towns on Hwy. 36 to pee. (My only pee stop in 4 hours, I might add.) When I crossed the bridge over Lake Belton, it was 34 degrees. But as I came through Jonesboro it hit 32. Drizzly rain. Not going according to plan.

It was 29 degrees when I stormed into Wenzel's. I ended up with Spike, some pork fillets, some ground beef, ground bison and bison-bacon burgers. We're gonna have a feast at some point.

I didn't get a pulled-pork sandwich because Tuesday isn't Pork Butt Friday.

What a let-down. I went to Storm's for a burger. It didn't live up to its reputation. Man!

Carla helped plan my route back home -- I cut across to Hwy. 6, so I could avoid the Lake Belton bridge. Bridges and ice are not my favorite combination. Long bridges over big lakes with ice really aren't my thing.

We forgot about the bridge over Lake Waco. But by the time I got there it was back up to 34 degrees, and the drive home was uneventful.

Which brings me to my point.... You knew there was a point in here somewhere, right???

Today is Pork Butt Friday. Simply saying that implies that something special is going to happen, right? I'm thinking I should have a Pork Butt Friday series just like some blogs have Wordless Wednesday or Thankful Thursday. I'm going with Pork Butt Friday.

And believe it or not, something very special is going to happen at my house between 1:00 and 3:00 today. Hang onto your hats -- I'll post pictures!!!

Big Hugs,

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Big, Jiggly Cow's Butt

Some things are just better left unsaid....

Home Sick

Kait's home sick today. She's had this cough coming on for a couple of days -- she always gets a cough when the weather changes. Tuesday night I ran the humidifier in her room. Yesterday morning, she said her throat hurt -- I thought it was all the coughing. No temp. Called the pediatrician and they were booked completely. Sent her to school.

By lunch she'd been to the nurse's office. Still no temp. Throat was red but not Strep-y. I gave her some cough medicine to carry her through the afternoon.

In the middle of all this, we had some major excitement in Fairfield. The story varies with who you talk to, but 2-4 hoodlums were in the restroom of the outlet mall doing some vandalism and supposedly gearing up for a robbery. When they were discovered, supposedly one raised his hands in surrender and his pants fell down!!! The other got away.

So things were on high alert around here. Up all school, it was quite interesting to hear all the different versions of the story that were going around.

Oblivious to all the excitement, Kait was just feeling worse and worse. By the time I picked her up she was crying, so we headed right over to that minor care place over by Target.

That place rocks.

Because her little body was working pretty hard to breathe, they did a chest X-ray then put her on an inhaler for a couple of days. And gave her an antibiotic. But no strep and no flu.

So Kait and I are hanging out today. I was supposed to sub for Kinder this afternoon, so I've already done all the errands I would be doing today. So my girl and I? We're just hanging out....

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Saying Good-bye....

Friday night, Milton called to tell me a dear friend of mine had passed away. While I am sad for me, and sad for his precious wife, I am so thrilled for my friend.

That's the blessing of faith.

Pat Falls was more than just a friend, he was a link to the past. You see, my Grandad died when I was in Jr. High. And while I have memories of him through the years, the last years of his life were plagued with diabetes and heart issues.

I don't remember meeting Pat until Biggsy and I got married. But I definitely remember that first meeting. Here was one of my Grandad's old roping buddies telling me how proud he would be of me. For a girl who grew up with a Grandad who died before I was ready for him to, that meant the world.

After our wedding, one of the disposible cameras turned out the neatest picture. A picture of Pat and I -- he's holding his hat by his side. I love that picture. It's dark -- not a "good" picture at all. But how it looks -- this bride looking up into this old cowboy's eyes -- it's just the neatest picture. AND it's somewhere in this house. I'm searching.

Because that picture didn't come out, we tried to take another one at A'Lise's wedding. But it's not the same. Not at all. Just for starters, I'm not wearing a gorgeous wedding dress. I'm wearing this bridesmaids get-up that Mom made. (We'll discuss bridesmaids' attire in another post.)

Yes, I look like a dork. But think about how far I've come to be able to post such a dorky picture of me on my blog.

Pat and I stayed in touch -- and I learned more about him. He wasn't "just" a cowboy. He was an architect -- and a darn good one. We didn't get to see him all that often, but the girls and I would stop by from time to time to show off their rodeo duds or new boots or whatever.

Pat called himself the girls' surrogate Great-Grandad. He was there to tell us stories about my Grandad and how he used to rope, and how Grandad wore roller skates for a job at Sears & Robuck, and all sorts of stuff.

We last saw Pat at Christmas. At 93 years young, he was as sharp as ever. Still going to the post office with Miss Vera. We had Abbey Marie and Paw-Paw with us. Abbey and Abbie snuggled into a big chair and shared girl talk, while Kait turned cartwheels in the living room. Pat sent us home with an All's Good pie and the story that when he was little and visited his Grandma, he could always count on her having an All's Good pie for him to eat.

I'm going to miss Pat. He loved my Mama. And he loved the girls and I. But I guess it's Mom and Grandad's turn to visit with him.

Pat, we'll keep an eye on Miss Vera for you.

And don't forget we love you.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Fundraiser Tickets Now on Sale!!!

Pink Ribbon Cutting!
Affectionately Referred to as: "A Night at the Boobies."

Team Tiara is thrilled to be kicking off our 2009 Fundraising in partnership with Studio Movie Grill.

This premier event will be held Saturday, Feb. 21 at the new Studio Movie Grill in City Center (Beltway 8 & I-10 in Houston).

We will have two showings of the movie -- 7:00 and 7:30. Due to licensing restrictions we cannot reveal the name of the movie in advance. However, it will be a first-run movie rated PG or PG-13.

Tickets to the event will be $25 each, which includes the movie, dinner, beverages and one raffle ticket.

Additional raffle tickets can be purchased for $5 each or 6 for $25. In addition to our raffle, we will have a few silent auction items. You do not need to be present to win the raffle prizes!

To purchase movie and/or raffle tickets:
1. Go to We have complete instructions on our website.

2. Contact me at if you want to order by check. However, we do prefer that you order tickets via the website.

This is a Pre-Opening Fundraising event with Studio Movie Grill. Studio Movie Grill ROCKS!!!

Friday, January 23, 2009

This is Not an Anti-Obama Post.


I promise.

But someone should tell the media that dressing your kids out of the J. Crew Kids' catalog, Crewcuts, is not representative of the working class. It's time to stop praising the Obamas for dressing their kids affordably. In clothes that are "accessible."

Regular, everyday people do not spend that kind of money on clothes for their kids.

At least these people don't.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bring on the Botox!

No, this is not me. And these are not my own, personal frown lines. Yet.

But I made a significant, and scary, observation today.

Subbing is giving me frown lines.

I have never in my life had "bad" wrinkles. All my wrinkles to this point have been ones that I've considered good. Those little crinkles that show I smile and laugh a lot.

But subbing (and giving the "Mean Mommy Look") have totally corrupted my forehead.

Add this to the "smokers' mouth" wrinkles that I started getting from drinking out of those sport water bottles to much.

I'm in trouble.

Weighed Down

First of all, I don't know what I was thinking when I decided to hand quilt The Moose. This jumble of fabric and batting is so unwieldy that it really takes effort to move it this way and that -- manipulating it in the directions I need to. What a mess.

I've quilted two blocks so far. Yep. Two. That's it. At this rate, it would take me 47 more days to just quilt all the blocks. But things never go "at this rate" for long around here.

I've done a lot of thinking as I've worked on this quilt. You see, when I made my Mom's, I made it with a dear friend. My sewing machine was on the fritz, the girls weren't in school yet, and I spent many afternoons working on it at her house. The kids would play, she would scrap, and I would sew. And sew. And sew. And eat Little Debbie Oatmeal Cookie Creams.

Once I was ready to quilt it, I drug it all over. To her house and back again. She stitched the holly leaves into the little green squares for me. It was synergy. It was friendship at its finest, because as I stitched we shared. We shared everything. Talking about this or that. I loved that time.

But this Big Thing happened a few months before my Mom passed away. And Poof!! There went the friendship. All of it. Zip. Flip. Gone.

It was too much. And in many ways it was really too much. I moved away from the home we had built, away from my friends, lost my Mom and lost that friendship in a span of just a few months. And I grieved. And in many ways I think I've mourned the loss of that friendship more than the loss of Mom. By the time Mom passed away, I was grown and gone. And while there was a connection there, of course there was, things were different. We didn't see her that much. And while she was only a phone call away.... Things were different.

But in this other relationship, I lost someone who was more sister to me than friend. Someone who knew almost everything there was to know about me -- my thoughts, my fears, my hopes. She knew my challenges, my struggles, my successes. The only person who knew me better at the time was Biggsy.

Forgiveness was a long road, but we've reached the destination. But the friendship is gone. And as I stitch I wonder why I had to lose something so very dear. I wonder what part that loss has in God's great plan. I answer the "Will we ever see them again?" questions from the girls. And I still mourn that loss.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Aggie Football Rant

Todd Perry just posted this on Facebook.

I would say close your eyes and pretend it's not Hitler, because I can't stand any image of Hitler. But if you close your eyes you can't read the subtitles.

I Heard Him Swear!

It's no secret that Barack Obama wasn't my first choice for President, so it'll come as no surprise that I haven't watched much TV today. Watching W get on the helicopter with his lovely wife brought tears to my eyes.

(M'Lys, the lucky dog, is in Midland as I type, ticket in hand, waiting for the Bushes to land at their Texas Celebration. I'm more than a bit jealous!!)

Abbie, my formerly anti-Obama 2nd grader, came in from school with exciting news.

"Mom! At lunch we got to eat in our classroom so we could watch the Inauguration thing and I saw Obama take the oath thingy and heard him swear!"

In Her Own Words....

Last week, Kait wrote about falling in the Creek during Writing Time. Mrs. Windle was so proud of her story, that she sent her to the office to read it to everyone up there. AND Kait got a ribbon!!!

Here's her version of what happened:

one time I fel into my creck! It wus riley cold! I fel in at niht. I onost got pincht biye a crab. But then my dad got me out it wus fresing in the crec I ran upsars an tok a wom dath. I crid. I was luckey that I didn't get pincht diye a crab. it is the nunder one thage that me an my mimi has dun. ubawt an galin of creck water got into my mawth. Abbie evin laft at me. it wusit fun. I was so cold

Watch out UIL Journalism!!! She's coming your way! (In about 10 years or so.)

Looking for Suggestions....

Hey gang!
We need you to put your thinking caps on!!!

We're doing this Studio Movie Grill fundraiser and need a catchy name for it. All I can come up with is "Boobie Bash."


Something that combines tiaras, boobies, pink ribbons, movies, lots of food, etc.....

Monday, January 19, 2009

Boobie Couture

My sweet friend and fellow 3-Dayer, Michelle McMillan, sent this link.

Tracye, here's lots of inspiration for those T-shirts we talked about!!!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Moose is On the Loose

Some of you will remember the Christmas tree quilt I made for my Mom a few years ago. Well.... I love that quilt. It was a total surprise for Mom, and I put a lot of love in it. And I hope she knew just how much.

And I have that quilt here, but our bed is a King instead of a Queen, and I need one that will fit.

Being a creature of habit and knowing that quilt makes up well, I've been working on one for Biggsy and I. This is by far the biggest quilt I have ever made. I started it last spring on that retreat in Round Top and worked on it off and on through the summer and fall. It's been a process, but my goal for this weekend was to get it ready to start quilting.

Where my Mom's quilt had a few duplicate squares, this one doesn't have any. I pieced a total of 75 unique squares and then chose 49 for the quilt. It took me about three years to find all those different Christmas fabrics -- that was a lot of the fun!

And of course, I took the lead from the Amish and my Granny Lloyd. The Amish people always say the only perfect one is God, and they intentionally make a few "mistakes" in their quilts. My Granny Lloyd was the master of "making do" and could make something out of nothing -- or very little.

So when I totally screwed up how I was cutting the fabric, and when I got about a yard too little of the backing, I didn't let it get to me -- too much!! I just pieced it and "made do." And I'm hoping no one notices!! (Of course, now that I've told you, you'll be looking for it -- right??)

I laid it out in the playroom to put it together and it took up every available inch of floor space. Several hours and one achy back later, I have it basted together. I'm anxious to start working on it!!! At least it will keep me warm in the evenings while I work. I've nicknamed it the Moose. And believe me, it is indeed a moose!!

I'll put up pix when it's done -- in about 2020!!

If you've seen the church pew in our playroom, you can get a good idea of the size of this thing!

The New "Happy Street"

I used to say that Katie Marie Court was "Happy Street." Over there, they are always up to something. Kids playing all over the place. Awesome fireworks displays. That kind of thing.

Well, move over Katie Marie Court. There's a new "Happy Street" in town. First, Hannah moved in. Then, over Christmas we gained two new friends. The girls have spent the last two days riding bikes and playing. Today they had a picnic in the middle of the Cul-de-Sac.

We are so blessed!

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle


Is that really a word?

Abbie has this wonderful project that she's been working on for school. She was challenged to take four things that would probably end up in the trash if she didn't act quickly -- and turn them into something with a new purpose.

Little did she know just how quickly she needed to act. You see, Abbie had no idea I would spend the entire day Wednesday cleaning the upstairs. And she had NO idea that four trash bags full of paper, plastic and whatever else, were going to head downstairs.

Before I went on my cleaning binge, though, she was already set. Last weekend, she and her Daddy dug out of the trash:
  • One box

  • One water bottle

  • One old dish towel

  • One piece of styrofoam

And here is what she came up with. It's a Webkinz cage. You see, she thought everyone else would pretty much use a flower pot to make whatever they were going to make. And if there's one thing my Abbie excels at, it's being different.

When it comes to repurposing, our girls are masters of the game. As I was cleaning upstairs, I found a Born shoebox that had been turned into a zoo, the Polly Pocket cruise ship that had been turned into a Lil Pet Shop house, and the Loving Family house that had been turned into.... Well, I'm still not sure about that one -- but there was no Loving Family to be found.

And this is why we are overrun with toys. We can't get rid of them.

Most people get rid of their kids' toys when they stop playing with them -- but that's never going to happen at our house. Our kids still play with EVERYTHING. It just all has a new purpose.

The funny thing is.... As I listen to my "new mommy" friends complain about how baby toys get bigger and bigger the first couple of years, I always kind of chuckle. They don't realize that the real trouble is when those toys start getting smaller and smaller. When there are 5,000 Polly Pocket and Lil' Pet Shop pieces all over the house. Wednesday I found toothbrushes and hair dryers and water bottles and hats -- and none of them was over an inch long. AND not one of them was being used for its original intended purpose.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Elise is Dancing with the Angels....

That's what her Mommy's email said this morning. Dancing with the Angels. What a beautiful thought -- and a wonderful picture. God has miraculously healed Elise -- just not in the way we all wished and prayed for. But even so, now she is dancing with angels, with a huge smile on her face.

Please keep this family in your prayers in the months to come.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Great New Blog!!!

Hey guys...
Usually I just add new blogs I've "found" to my blogroll and let you discover them like little treats. But not today.

Today I'm adding my friend Nichole's new blog.
There's kind of a back-story to this.
When we were building that house in McKinney, our fourth move (out of five in about four months) was into an apartment in McKinney. Shortly after we got there, Nichole, Adam, Bryce and Kaelyn moved in across the hall. Kaelyn was just a bitty baby -- Bryce and Kaitlyn were born about a week apart.
We all became fast friends very quickly. Eventually, our house was finished and they bought a house, and we all moved out of the apartments.
But the story doesn't end there. In 2007, Nichole walked with us in the Dallas 3-Day. And last year, she started her own team in San Diego. "Fight back for your rack!" What a name!!!
Nichole is one of the most kind-hearted, killer-competitive at Nertz, fun, easy-going, amazing people I know.
Check out her blog -- you'll love it.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

More Prayers for Elise....

Bethany's email tonight says Elise hasn't been awake much today. Please continue to pray for them.

While I struggle with understanding why Mom died as young as she did, that doesn't even compare to my struggle with this. I do not get it. Why Elise, who is so young and sweet, has had to suffer so much.

And please pray for the Wingo family as well. Clayton is the student from Abbie's class who also has leukemia. His bone marrow transplant was successful, but he hasn't been able to return to school. In light of what's happening with Elise, I'd be a basketcase if I were his mother's place. Please pray for peace and strength for that family as well.

Pool Season Isn't That Far Away....

Have you covered the drains in your pool and hot tub??

Wanna Walk???


Are you inspired by all the 3-Day "stuff" on my blog?

If you want to walk with us, just sign up at: Click on "Join Team."
If you sign up by midnight tonight, and enter "NEWYEAR" as the discount code, you'll save $25 on your registration!

Get to it!

- d.

And I Thought the Life Jackets Were a Formality....

Dude... Did you see this? Or this? The US Airways plane that landed in the river today??

How amazing was that?? Everyone was rescued. And while the reports aren't in from all those who were taken to hospitals, by all accounts this was a miracle.

And I always thought the life jackets on planes were kind of a formality -- that if you hit the water there was no chance you'd ever get to use them.

That could be because the first umpteen flights I ever took were into / out of Lubbock. Not a lot of water to be found up there.

I have changed my mind. Next time, I'll pay more attention to my seat cushion / flotation device!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

No Longer a Stay-at-Home Mom

I've been a stay-at-home Mom since right about the time I found out we were going to have Abbie. And while I've never been one to really stay at home that much, I've enjoyed it.

But now that I'm subbing quite a bit, I'm hardly ever here. Today is my self-proclaimed "day off" and guess what I'm doing??

Cleaning the upstairs....

I'll come back and update you in a while, but here's what I've found so far:

  • Kait's James Avery Bee charm -- no necklace in sight. Yet.
  • Two shriveled pumpkins from Halloween.
  • A pair of pajamas Abbie got for birthday, still in the gift bag. (And she's complained every night this week that she doesn't have any clean pajamas!)
  • About 15,000 homemade "passports" for American Girl Dolls, Webkinz, etc. Where do they think we're going????
  • My stapler.
  • The chain from Kait's necklace, tied in a knot -- makes me think I'm the only one who has been missing it!
  • About a bajillion dirty socks. (Abbie's also been short on clean socks in the mornings.)
  • Enough books to run a Scholastic resale location.

And the number-one, oh-my-goodness thing?

A peed-in toilet that hadn't been flushed in a few days. YIKES!!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Kaitlyn On American Idol's "Bikini Girl"

"That number was probably taped to her.

Because if it was stapled, that would HURT."

If You Call, Prepare to Leave a Message!!!

Idol starts tonight.

'Nuff said.

Monday, January 12, 2009

180 in 0 Seconds

I've been reading a lot of new blogs lately, and I've been going down a lot of rabbit trails.

One thing that has really struck me -- how some of these blogs have a couple of years or so of regular entries and then BOOM!!! A father dies, a child gets sick -- and it all changes.

Love your children. Live in the "now." It can all change so very, very fast.

Pray for Elise

My heart is so heavy this morning.

My cell phone rang with a sub call just as we were headed out the door this morning -- it put me about a minute behind in an already-behind morning, but I'm good with that. It's a Kinder class I love, and I'm looking forward to spending the afternoon with them.

Then Kait tripped & fell on the way to the bus stop this morning and hit her head on the concrete. So we missed the bus, and I brought her home and put ice on it. This wasn't a good morning for Kait to have an incident. She is testing for the GT program today, and we want her to do well. I'm hoping she can shake it off.

I took her up to the school, and was writing a note to her teacher when another mom came in -- Elise Goertz' across-the-street neighbor. Elise is in the hospital. Probably for the last time. They took her in last night and couldn't find any blood in her blood type. They finally got some this morning, but they've told the people who she loves dearly that they need to come see her.

Here I am, worried about a GT test and whether Kait will be in the GT program, and Bethany is saying goodbye to her baby girl. Long before it's time. It kind of puts everything in perspective, doesn't it???

Please pray for Elise and her family. A prayer of praise that they did get their trip to Disney World and the great memories that came from that. And a prayer for peace and strength and abounding love.

And please pray for the Kinder teacher I mentioned earlier. Lisa Sudtelgte was Elise's teacher last year, and once I heard the news about Elise that call really fell into place. Lisa is very close to Elise's family. It's going to be a tough week for her as well.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Friday, January 9, 2009

One Teacher Who Had a Lasting Impact on My Life....

I gave the 4th graders a quiz this morning. As I was getting them started, I immediately thought of, "I want to know what you know and not what your neighbor knows. If you are caught cheating or looking on someone else's paper, you will receive a Zero."

Coach May.

And then my next thought: Wanting to throw up while running lines and jump-roping to that Van Halen "Jump!" song. Still can't stand that song after all these years.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Our 15 Minutes of Fame Aren't Up....

I've been a bit sad this week because our pictures were "replaced" on the 3-Day website. Our 15 minutes of fame were up. But I just saw the new Inspiration video and commercials.

Team Talent's legacy continues.

Check it out:

If you are planning to crew in the DFW 2009 3-Day, please sign up ASAP. Crew is filling up fast.

Love ya!
- d.

T-Shirts Needed for Quilt

Michelle Olson, one of the Rockin' Tiaras, has a friend who is making a T-shirt quilt like this for us to include in our Silent Auction / Raffle. The tricky part? We need 12 T-shirts within the next week for her to have time to get it done. Can you help??

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

I Love You the Purplest

I bought this sweet little book for Jacquie for Christmas. We always laugh about how I'm Pete's second-favorite daughter-in-law -- quite the achievement, considering there are two of us!!! But seriously, this book was great for Jacquie -- and almost seemed like it was written about her. Two sons. Fishing. A cabin. A really neat book.

Next on the Girls' Wish List

Those American Girl dolls have really taken over our house, and now Chrissa is next on the girls' wish list. If you're not familiar with the marketing prowess surrounding these dolls, you should check it out. It definitely works on Abbie & Kait.

Monday night, we went over to some friends' to watch Chrissa's movie on HBO. It was the premier, and I'd seen enough about it on the website to know I really wanted the girls to see it.

The movie directly addresses bullying in schools -- an age-old practice that never seems to end. I really think it's a perfect movie for young girls to see. In fact, there is a school-based program built around the movie. And if you didn't know there was a doll attached, you wouldn't learn that from the movie.

On the way home, the girls and I had a very frank discussion about bullying. This was a hard conversation for me, because I had to admit to having been on both ends of the bullying spectrum.

When I was in school, I remember being referred to as "Dorky D'Lyn" more than a few times. And when we had our 10th year reunion, some of my classmates enjoyed the walk down memory lane that included a "newsletter" that had been produced, making fun of me, when we were in high school.

I had never known about the newsletter, but even as an adult, it hurt me to know about it -- so much so that I spent the bulk of the evening visiting with my brother-in-law and vowed not to go back for my 20th reunion. It's not so much that it hurt then -- when I was an adult. But it broke my heart to think of how that would have hurt me had I known about it way back when. And it really did hurt to see how much they enjoyed the memory of making it.

The successful part of me that has a wonderful husband and two beautiful children still remembers those awkward years where I couldn't score a basketball goal if my life depended on it and could have never made the cheerleading squad.

But don't think I was the only one that faced bullying. It's kind of ironic that both the 4th and 5th graders studied the food chain today. Bullying takes place at all levels in the pecking order. If there was a way I could find Billy and Betty Welch and apologize to them for any pain I caused, I'd do it in a heartbeat. Those two children needed friendship and kindness and they got anything but that.

If you have young girls, I really recommend they watch this movie. It'll be on HBO again this Saturday at 1:30 Eastern. It's also available at They not only need to know that bullying is wrong. They also need to know that if they are the ones being bullied, they can do something about it.

It Takes a Village....

Today was a rather crazy day. I subbed in 5th grade this morning and 4th grade this afternoon -- not my comfort zone by any stretch of the imagination. By the time the day was over, I was more than a bit frazzled. The buses were late; things weren't going as they were supposed to.

My class was one of the last to walk out to the buses, and then I lingered in the cafeteria in case they needed help with the last two busloads. I was later than usual getting over to where the girls sit in the "staff" section of the cafeteria.

When I got there, Abbie immediately got my attention with a, "Mom, where's Kaitlyn?"

She wasn't there. The girls in the office said we needed to ask Mrs. Windle if she'd accidentally gotten on the bus. There was a flurry of trying to find Kaitlyn that's honestly quite the blur at this point. I was trying to fight that panic that comes when you don't quite know where your child is -- even though you know she's okay.

About that time, Kait was on the bus, realizing she wasn't supposed to be there. Our bus driver reassured Kait that she would bring her back to school -- and then radioed the school to let us know. Thank goodness Miss Julia is so on top of things.

In the middle of this, I got paged because one of my students ended up on the bus when he was supposed to stay after. What a mess!

They brought Kait to school, and of course she had a good cry. She was a bit scared, but I told her that situations like this are exactly why we live where we do and have her in the school that we have her in. I can't imagine a more supportive place. Everyone there truly cares about the students and goes the extra mile -- every time. There are so many people watching out for Kaitlyn. And that means the world to me.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Supermom Needs Help

Or maybe cloning is a better possibility??

Could the world possibly handle more than one of me??

I have 5 days of subbing lined up between now and next Friday.

I have a wedding ring that desperately needs to be fixed. Not a single prong on it is pointed in the right direction. Twelve years of constant wear can be tough on a ring.

I also have a house full of Christmas decorations that haven't been put up yet. Some have been "packed" up, but not put up. It seriously looks like we're the ones that just moved here -- not our new neighbors across the street.

AND we have a huge fundraiser for the 3-Day coming up next month. I had a post on here about that for a short time, but there's still some fluctuation in the details, so I took it down until things became more concrete. But here's the scoop....

Studio Movie Grill is launching an incredible ground-up location at City Center in Houston. They're going to give us two theaters' worth of tickets to sell to raise money for the Breast Cancer 3-Day. Exact details on the date are pending, but if we wait until it's all nailed down, I'm really going to be in panic mode. So we're running with it.

To help increase attendance and our profits, we're going to have a raffle / silent auction. And what do people want?? Electronics. So I've spent the last couple of days trying to get someone to donate a Wii, TomTom, iPod.... Something.... And while we don't have that Golden Ticket Item yet, we have gotten a ton of support from the community.

Here is the list of what we have so far. All of these businesses are off of 290, between Beltway 8 & Mason Road. If you're in the area, please support these businesses. We have several other donations "pending" but I wanted to give you a "sneak peek" at what we will be raffling / auctioning at our event.

Starbucks -- 1 lb. coffee -- $14 value
Firestone -- Free alignment ($75 value) plus five discount cards offering up to $250 worth of discounts on each card.
LA Fitness -- Two months free membership and goodies.
Academy -- $25 Gift Card
Carl's BBQ -- $25 Gift Card
Newks -- $25 Gift Card
EJ's -- Five "Family Packs" for a Free Large Pizza & 4 Soft Drinks
Randall's -- $25 Gift Card
Cypress Academy of Gymnastics -- Two months of free lessons ($65/month value)
Charlotte Byrne -- 15 1-hour sessions of personal training and a gym bag with goodies ($640 value)
Sharon Vaughn, Pristine Memories Photography -- Free Sitting and 11x14 portrait ($220 value)
Kristin Duncan -- Tastefully Simple Gift Basket
Cissa Newberry -- $150 Mary Kay Gift Certificate

Many of these will be "packaged" together but we'll leave that till the end.

(Note: I won't mention that I was turned down by a local grocery store where I spend way too much money. A grocery store that I prefer over any other because of their oh-so-fresh produce and yummy samples and the fact that they have introduced me to some of my favorite cheeses -- and Honeycrisp apples. And it wasn't so much that the manager said "no" to a donation to the 3-Day. It was that the conversation went something like this....

Her: Our donations are handled from Corporate, but I can tell you we already support your organization.
Me: The 3-Day? Really? (Blank look.) Komen?? (Blank look.) Breast Cancer in General??? (Blank look.) Ummm.... Okay.

What is it with me and salespeople, anyway??)

So, going back to my title.... Supermom Needs Help.

If you own a business, know someone who owns a business, work at a business, promote a business or simply utilize a business and can help us collect silent auction items, that would be great.

Some ideas:
Gift baskets from Arbonne, Homemade Gourmet, Southern Living, etc.
Sessions with a photographer
Spa certificates
Home Depot / Lowe's Gift Certificates
Restaurant Gift Certificates
Hotel Stays
Sports Tickets -- Stros, Rockets, etc.
A golf outing somewhere.
Tennis lessons
Personal Trainer
Houston Rodeo Tickets
Florist Gift Certificates or Free Roses for Mother's Day or something creative

I'm always seeing where blogs give away great prizes. The other day, one blog gave away a ton of computer equipment from HP. And I'm always seeing that one charity or another has a hugely successful silent auction with an autographed Craig Biggio jersey or whatever.

I'm just not sure how you pull that kind of thing off.

Supermom Needs Help.

What I Did on Christmas Vacation....

Hat-tip to Biggsy for this one!

Note: You probably don't want to have to explain this link to small children. You'll be too busy laughing so hard you pee in your pants, anyway!!!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Our Cable is Out Tonight!!!

Good thing I'm anything but a t.u. fan!!!

Scientists Find Gene that Makes Breast Cancer Spread

Check it out.

Now they just need to figure out how to block it!!!

Getting Real -- Sort of....

Okay. I'm not really into New Year's resolutions -- who wouldn't want to lose weight, travel more, etc?

But I am into positive change, and I'm really into prayer -- and I could use your help with both. I have got to change my spending habits this year. As in, have GOT to. But I can't do it alone. I've tried.

Will you please pray for me this year? That I will stay "on-budget" for 12 whole months? And I mean, continue to pray for that all year? I'll put a little reminder for you on my sidebar.

Thanks for loving me enough to help with this!!!


Sunday, January 4, 2009

We're Home!!!

We're Home!!! I wish I could say we'd had the best fishing weekend ever, but well.... I'd be lying. The weekend really started with such promise! We headed to the Creek about noon on Friday -- getting down there with plenty of time for fishing.

Friday was such a bright, sunny day. And we knew we needed to get some serious fishing in because storms were forecast for Saturday.

One minor problem. There wasn't a bait shrimp to be found at any of the four bait shops we frequent. Not a single one. No shrimp means we have to fish with plastics, like "Gulp."

Now... as cute as these things are, I just don't like fishing with them. I mean, I'm kind of a "foodie" and there isn't a part of me can fathom why a fish would take a big, old chomp of plastic. And stink!!! Oh my goodness, these things stink. This spring I accidentally spilled Gulp juice in the hallway of the Fishin' Hut. I was afraid I might get disowned over that one. (If you ever spill Gulp juice on your indoor/outdoor carpet, don't panic -- just pour a bottle of vinegar on it and then spray with Lysol. Worked for me!)

Oops. I digress. Nothing new, right?

With no shrimp for bait, we headed out into the Bay to fish with the stinky plastic stuff. Now.... this stuff comes in just about every size, shape and color you could ever imagine. So it's kind of a crapshoot as to just which plastic thingy the fish are going to like -- assuming they like one.

I switch off every so often and pretty much tried every color we had.

None worked.

Biggs caught a little red on Friday and that was it. Nothing else. We fished several spots in the Bay. No luck. Headed back to the Creek to our favorite fishing spots. No luck.

Friday night A'Lise drove in. She'd never been to the Creek before, so it was time to get her indoctrinated. Biggs did catch a couple of sand trout off the pier.

Kaitlyn's cough was still quite worrisome. She's been coughing since December 17. That's a loooooong time. We had a humidifier running in her bedroom here, but forgot to take it with us. In fact, about the time we cruised through Lake Jackson, I realized I'd forgotten to unplug the freaking thing.

My OCD set in immediately.

I stewed and stewed and finally called Mary and Greg and asked them to shut off the breaker switch to Kait's room. Note to self: I've got to get them a key to our house!!!

A'Lise got to the Fishin' Hut about 12:15, and I crashed as soon as she hit the door safely!

Saturday morning, bright and early, we got up to search for shrimp. None to be had. So we cruised the Bay with bouts of fishing -- Biggsy got a good-sized trout, but it got off the hook before we could get it in the net. Luck was not with us.

Where the water had been beautiful on Friday, yesterday was a mess!! Really rough in spots. But even though the Weather Channel said we were dealing with strong storms, we had an abundance of sunshine. In fact, I'm the only one without a sunburn!!!

The kids aren't up for spending entire days on the Bay, so we headed in about lunchtime. A'Lise and I ran the girls to Lake Jackson then came back for fajitas.

But the evening was JUST getting started.

For one, I've discovered the perfect thing for Kait's cough. Humidity was not a problem this weekend. No humidifier could have produced the 125% humidity we experienced -- especially since the AC is broken and we left all the windows open. But she still needed that extra boost the VapoRub gives her. And I found this:

It's perfect!!! You get the vapors without having a bulky humidifier spitting water everywhere. And you can't trip over it since it plugs into the wall!!! And it's SO easy to use!!! AND it has a nightlight!!!
Before we could put the girls down for the night, though, they had to do a little fishing under the lights with Aunt A'Lise. And look what she caught!!!

This nice little sand trout wasn't her first keeper. I seem to recall a trip to Red River where she was the only one of us that caught any fish. (That was the "camping" trip where she threw up all over the tent AND our sleeping bags, and we got to spend the rest of the trip in a HOTEL!!!)
We did throw this one back -- so he's waiting for you the next time you come to the Creek!!!
Not one to let Aunt A'Lise steal all the thunder, Kait chose about that moment to fall in the Creek. In the dark. I wasn't on the pier -- I was back upstairs. But it was cold, and she was drenched, and she swallowed some water, and I just knew she was going to end up with pneaumonia. But it actually seems to have helped her cough because it isn't as bad today.... Hmmmm.... Was it the salt water??
Oh! And for those who have been bewildered by the lack of TV at the Creek, that's no longer a problem. We have a truly Redneck solution that gives us the best reception we've ever had. Yes, it looks as bad in real life as it does in this picture. But we were able to watch the game clearly last night!!!

The girls go back to school tomorrow. I'm sure Kait will be writing about falling in the Creek and will try to milk it for all it's worth.
Oh, but the coolest gift this Christmas!!! New Neighbors!!! Who are nice!! And "Regular People!" They have a 5th grader and a 5-year-old. So Kait finally has a playmate right on the street who's her age! We're so glad!!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy 2009!!!

Don't forget to eat your Black Eyed Peas!!!