Most of the time, like three weeks out of the month, I'm one of those "giving" people. I cook, I make gifts, I buy little gifts. You know the drill.
But the other week of the month, the Witch moves into my body, and I morph into someone else entirely. That Witch is so strong she needs a name.
I'm thinking Helga.
I've been awake since about 5:30 -- see? She disturbs more than my character. Right now she's disturbing my sleep. It wouldn't be such a big deal if I didn't have to drive the 7 hours to the Motherland this afternoon.
But no.... I can't sleep. Helga and I are warring.
Here's the deal.
We haven't seen Amber and the kids since Christmas. Christmas!!! Do you have any idea how long that is?? Our kids absolutely LOVE spending time with their kids. And they got to do that yesterday. They ate it up. More about that in another post.
But as fate would have it, the only weekend Amber's been able to get down here is the very weekend I'm headed to Lubbock for Micah's wedding. Why our schedules couldn't have worked better, I have no idea. Next weekend would have been so much better!
But they're here this weekend.
So the kids had only a very limited time to play yesterday afternoon.
To further complicate matters, Biggsy needs to take the new WaveRunner down to the Creek this week to air it out and see what's what.
The kids and I aren't going to be there.
But the rest of the Biggses are.
AND here is where Helga comes in.
Do you have any idea the jealousy that has taken over my body? That is coursing through every cell?? On so many different levels?
This is like building a house, only to have someone else Christen your toilet. Your one chance to pee in a virgin pot.
It's like the time in Jr. High when I saved up my own money to buy this little pair of pink tennies. They were really dorky, in hindsight. But at the time, I LOVED them. When I went to put them on for the FIRST TIME, they had this black stuff all over them. A'Lise had worn them out to the burn barrel to throw away the trash and had gotten soot all over them. Before I had ever worn them!!! Dude, I was pissed.
AND YES. I know this is absolutely irrational.
I need to go up there this weekend. We haven't been up there since Christmas!! (Are you seeing a trend here??) I've got things that need to be taken care of, and I can't wait to see everyone.
But at the same time, I want to be at the Creek. I want to have fun on my new ride. I want to be the one who gets to share it for the first time. I want to see the joy on Kodie & Kamy's faces. I want to try to throw Amber off the back end.
Do I think they should just sit on the pier and look at it? Heck, no. Helga hasn't completely won out. They should ride and enjoy and have a great time. But it doesn't stop me from being jealous. I love those kids so much -- and just wish I could have a part of it all.
I desperately need Creek Pix of the kids to add to my gallery. But I'm not going to be there to get them.
My OCD has taken over.
Would someone just clone me already? Or develop some kind of quick transport device??
I've wanted one of THESE for at least half my life. Since I first saw one on a Double Mint commercial or something like that. Very few things have had the staying power to remain at the top of my wish list.
I can't tell you how many times I've asked for one. Christmas lists. Birthday lists. The lists go on and on and on.
For the last two years, with our being so very close to the Creek, my wishing has become incessant. Hinting no longer was a part of it. I out-and-out told anyone and everyone who would listen that I wanted a Jet-ski. WaveRunner. Sea-Doo. Not picky.
I've wanted that independence that the girls and I would get -- the ability to run up and down the Creek without taking the big boat out. I can't take that boat out by myself. I just can't. Except maybe to drive it down to the launch whenever we leave. It makes me nervous.
After listening to me talking incessantly about this dream, Biggsy finally said we could start seriously looking a couple of weeks ago. We looked and we looked.
He looked more than I did.
A lot more.
We saw a lot of skis. Most hadn't been cared for in the same manner we wanted. Some were rusty. Others had mildew or cuts on the seats. Superficial stuff we could handle. But not that rust on the impellers or whatever.
Yesterday Biggsy went to look at a ski up by Tomball. And he came home with it. Only 20 hours. No mildew. No rust. And PRETTY!!! While PRETTY wasn't at the top of his list, it was definitely at the top of mine.
I love it that he takes care of me like that.
I won't get to use it until next weekend, but I can wait.
Abbie has been wanting to learn to sew. Today we made a couple of pillowcases for a couple of friends. Abs did pretty good. I'm not sure she enjoyed the vocabulary lesson on all the sewing machine parts. And I'm certain the seam ripper is not going to be her favorite tool. But she was a good sport about all that and worked hard to make her stitches straight!
Doesn't this look too cute when we roll it up and finish it off with a hair pretty??
With record-breaking temperatures beating down all summer, I've really been drawn into making quilts for Fall.
I started this one for "someone special." Can't tell you who it's for until I give it to her, but you can check it out all the same! It's machine-pieced but hand-quilted. I try to have one going by hand at all times. I love to sit and stitch while watching TV in the evenings.
This next one is for ME!!! I've really done very little work for myself over the years. I've done a few things that are around here, but I can always use more -- right??
It's the same pattern, but machine-quilted on my new machine. Not perfect, but I'm still working on it!!! One of these days I'll graduate to some "real" designs in my quilting.
Close-up of the stitching. I did this with a variegated thread in Fall colors. I love the way it looks!
Both of these little quilts have this farm scene for the background.
I've spent the vast majority of my "free time" stitching up a storm. Remember this quilt??
Well... I just wasn't that happy with it. I thought it needed a little something.
The flowers looked kinda dreary.
So I added a little "punch" and beaded the centers of the flowers. I like it much, much better now!
Here's a pink ribbon quilt I've been working on this week. I started it on Retreat in the spring and have just gotten around to quilting it this week. My quilting is far from perfect, but I'm learning!!!
Just wait till you hear what all we've done this week. It's about enough for 10 posts!
Last week Biggsy whisked me off to Sargent for a day of fishing. No Kids. Woah. AND he hired a guide. I'd never gotten to fish with Captain Gene, but Biggsy and Abbie had fished with him earlier this year.
Wow. What a difference that made!!! Captain Gene runs Living Waters Guide Service out of Sargent. It doesn't take long to realize that Captain Gene strives to be the hands and feet of Jesus to everyone he meets. We had a great time sharing God Stories and all the ways God has worked in our lives.
Beyond that, Gene is GREAT at putting you on the fish. We boated a lot of redfsh and trout. For once, I out-fished Biggsy and brought home five trout. He brought home a redfish and a trout that were both bigger than any of mine. But I prefer to talk about the sheer numbers of fish I caught.
THIS is the best part of fishing with Captain Gene. He cleans all your fish! Yippee!!!
Tomorrow (Tuesday) marks two years since my Momma went to be with Jesus. That's two years of her dancing in His kitchen and eating off everyone else's plates at His dinner table.
Last year, our first "anniversary" was spent on a grand adventure. We were with Kelly and the Owen Kiddos, bottle-feeding fawns and and an angora kid. The tribe did a rain dance with Miss Kay out at Paint Rock and had a grand old time. I was determined to make a happy memory to mark that day.
This year, Biggsy had planned to whisk me away this evening for a little surprise trip. That all fell through Saturday morning at 2:00 a.m. when Kait made it all the way downstairs before she threw up on the floor of our bedroom. The next 41 hours brought more of the same. I called the pediatrician's office late yesterday, and they said she needed to be in an ER or an after-hours clinic within the next four hours.
We made it to Excel up by Target about 20 minutes before they closed. The staff there was second-to-none. They decided very quickly that she needed an IV. She was dehydrated enough that it took three tries to get it to work. Not as bad as the stitches after the tree incident, but no walk in the park, either. After about an hour, I brought her home -- along with two different formulas of anti-nausea.
She basically slept until 12:30 today. I had to wake her up to go get Abbie. But when I woke her up, she was completely back to normal. She didn't stop talking all afternoon -- it was like she had been storing it up. Even turned a few cartwheels in the playroom this evening.
Unfortunately all the drama put Biggsy's surprise on hold.
I really don't want to wallow. And I really don't want to sit around and think of what we're missing out on not having Mom here -- and what she's missing out on in return.
So.... I have this idea.
If you knew my Momma, would you take a moment to post a memory or two about her in the comments section? I'd love to hear what you have to share.
I can get you started....
When I had to stay home in the first grade because I had pink-eye, and she taught me to ride a bike without training wheels.
Strawberry cake. 'Nuf said.
Dancing in the kitchen.
Mom driving us ALL over for stock shows and everything else 4-H had to offer.
She bought the girls' Easter dresses.
She made all our Easter dresses.
The straight pin she sewed into my formal for Sr. Prom. OUCH!
It was always Feast or Famine.
FHB -- Family Hold Back.
P.G. -- And not the movie kind.
Staying up LATE to type 4-H and Commercial Steer record books.
Cutting out dresses on the conference table at work.
Rice, cream of chicken soup and cut-up chicken.
Pasta salad. Pasta salad. Pasta salad.
She who has the most fabric wins.
Borrowing a serger, so I could make that pink formal.
"Anderson and West."
Killing 2-3 water hoses every time she needed to kill a snake.
Alcohol (Not a sacrifice, but still a good thing to elminate from my diet.) Caffeine (Not a huge sacrifice, but it's good to have around when you're sleeeeepy.) Sugar (Can't even begin to tell you how addicted to sweets I am.) Anything from any place with a drive-through. (This is the biggie. It's summer. Do you have any idea how much my kids beg for Chick fil A, Sonic, Taco Bell and Buc -ee's Icees in the summer??)
So. 10 Days. I've lost about 5 lbs. And no, I haven't "cheated." Not half bad, if you ask me. That was all what I consider "bump up" vacation weight, leaving me right about where I was when we left for the Creek in June.
It's good progress, but I need to give up something else. It needs to be The Big Five. I thought about peanut butter, but there's no way. So.... I'm giving up unhealthy restuarant food. Like pizza and the queso from Chili's. Now we're talking willpower!
In what some on Wall Street are calling the biggest blockbuster deal in the history of the financial sector, Goldman Sachs confirmed today that it was in talks to acquire the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
According to Goldman spokesperson Jonathan Hestron, the merger between Goldman and the Treasury Department is "a good fit" because "they're in the business of printing money and so are we.
"The Goldman spokesman said that the merger would create efficiencies for both entities: "We already have so many employees and so much money flowing back and forth, this would just streamline things."
Mr. Hestron said the only challenge facing Goldman in completing the merger "is trying to figure out which parts of the Treasury Dept. we don't already own."
Goldman recently celebrated record earnings by roasting a suckling pig over a bonfire of hundred-dollar bills.
Elsewhere, conspiracy theorists celebrated the 40th anniversary of NASA faking the moon landing. And in South Carolina, Gov. Mark Sanford gave his wife a new diamond ring, while his wife gave him an electronic ankle bracelet
"I want her to succeed, and I'm delighted to see her continuing to use her voice because I do think that she rallies people," he said. "She brought electricity to the Republican ticket last year, when, frankly, there was about as much excitement as you would see, you know, at a — at a Baptist dance, which means there wasn't any, until she showed up for the ticket. And then there was fire going forth."
With the exception of the year my Dad chose Independence Day to declare his Independence Day, July 4th has always been one of my very favorite holidays.
Growing up, we spent every Independence Day going through the craft show at the National Guard Armory, enjoying the carnival rides and parade, and then either watching the fireworks in the Park in Snyder or shooting off fireworks in a Fluvanna field.
The summer after my Big Wreck, I spent July 4th in Stephenville with the Norris family. I remember we shot fireworks in a big field. I was glad to be alive!
The summer after my Junior year in college, I had the opportunity to spend July 4th at the Iwo Jima Memorial in Washington, D.C. I was with three former National FFA officers. What an incredible experience!
The summer before Biggsy started his MBA, we spent the 4th in Austin and watched the fireworks from a parking garage with another soon-to-be MBA and his wife. We were embarking on an adventure and that excitement really made the trip memorable!
Biggsy spent Abbie's first 4th on the couch with a severely sprained ankle. My Dad came in that weekend and went with Abbie and I to our first July 4th parade. That was the year we found "The Tree." The Tree would become our parade-watching spot for the rest of our time in Plano. We met the Scotts, Matthews and Depners there every year.
One year we met Alan, Amber and Kodie at the park for the fireworks. I have the cutest pictures of Abbie & Kait on Kodie's first 4-wheeler.
Once Biggsy started working for Dresser, the parking garage of his building became our fave spot for watching Addison's Kaboom Town Fireworks. We'd park a car at the top of the garage in the early morning, blocking off a couple of spots. We'd move that car to open up party space right before the show started. The key was to park your getaway car on the first floor of the garage, so you didn't have to fight the traffic.
I have the BEST memories from the top of that garage! We'd be eye-level with the fireworks. It was so cool!!!
This trip down memory lane makes me miss our friends!!!
Poor Kam. That was the year she had stitches in her chin.
This is my favorite picture of Linds. Ever.
And I miss those curls!!!
Our first summer back in Houston was a time of uncertainty. Mom was back home in Snyder, but we had no idea what was going to happen. But we knew we needed to bloom where we were planted. So we decorated the girls' bikes and let them ride in the parade. We met up with the Bruins there and spent the evening on Happy Street, eating make-your-own sundae's and getting some idea of what Baghdad must have been like!
Look at those cheeks! That was the summer of Abbie's "Africa Necklace" that she made in Sunday School on Missions Sunday. She wore it until Biggsy made her take it off for safety reasons. I still have it, though.
Those are some cool bikes!
Last year, we watched the parade with the Jean family. And spent the evening shooting off fireworks with the Hensleys and Venettes.
And... That brings us to this year!!! The girls have figured out how to do the parade by now. We get a seat along the route, so they can watch the parade and get CANDY. Then, we fall in with the rest of the bike riders after the parade goes by.
Here they are with some neighborhood cuties.
And here they are with Will & Brooke.
We had a huge crowd over for hamburgers and hot dogs on the 4th.
Brooke was our social coordinator and arranged lots of games for the kids. They had a great time! Afterwards, we had a pinata and fireworks. And only one kid got hurt (minor injury!) I consider that a success!!!
All these great photos and stories and all that jazz are under copyright. Do not use these photos, anecdotes, stories and other assorted "stuff" without permission of yours truly. I mean it. Don't make me give you the mean mommy look. It gives me wrinkles.
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I'm the wife of a really great guy and stay-at-home mom to two beautiful girls. I'm a princess because I'm a daughter of The King. These days, much of my time is spent shuffling kids from point A to point B, training/fundraising for the Breast Cancer 3-Day (60 miles in 3 Days!), and juggling the Family Circus that is my life. I'm a transplanted farm girl trying to blend what I know with life in the big city. I'm addicted to Mamma Mia -- the best musical I've ever seen. I love to wear jackets. I miss my Mom. A lot. I love Karen Kingsbury's books -- anxiously awaiting the publication of each. My IPod is my most-used accessory. I love to paint -- not art, but rooms! When the going gets tough, I start baking.