Saturday, September 29, 2012

A Week Recap

So, it's been a while since I've checked in with you. Last week I had to go to the beach for vacation. I'll blog with pictures later this week.
We got back from vacay last Saturday night and hit the ground running. We had a non-stop week. Besides school, basketball practice and church we had See You At The Pole pre rally Tuesday night. It was a great time for the kids to get together prior to meeting at the pole Wednesday morning.
The above picture is at a birthday lunch for my friend Stephanie (not pictured). This is my friend Nomi. The lady that seated us wanted to know if we were sisters. What??? We decided that it had to be because we were both on the chubby side, other than that we look nothing alike. Nomi is such a sweet friend, God has truly blessed me with Nomi and Stephanie. I couldn't have asked for better friends for this season (and hopefully all the rest of the seasons) of my life.

Thursday was Senior adult and student day at the fair. Some of our homeschool friends met us there. They gave out free hotdogs and sad, watery Cokes. We wanted to extend our fun, so we drove across the street to Sonic and enjoyed some happy, delicious Cokes! Yay Sonic! Stephanie is the second one on the right(the youngest looking one of the group.) It was a beautiful day and we had a great time together.
I treasure these ladies and the friendship we have and the friendships our children have. God has answered so many prayers.
It's been a busy week with appointments, emotions, and everything else but it has been full of fun. I hope your week was too.

Julie

Hey St. Jude!




I started my career at this hospital. It has a special place in my heart.  This is where I learned to do public relations and fundraising outside of a text book. This is also where I fell in love with helping others who cannot help themselves.

Our beautiful cousin, Hollye Ann, has worked here FOREVER-EVER in nurse management and sent me this video and said "blog it, baby!". I know some people see Danny's kids and get sad, yet you must know it is not really a sad place at all. It is one of the happiest places I have ever worked.  If you don't have a "cause" you should look into all the opportunities in making sure that no more children die in the dawn of life. (I still have the St.Jude/ALSAC elevator speech memorized, 11 years later!).

Abby

Friday, September 28, 2012

A Birthday Beauty

 
 Somebody is a year older today!

 
Youth fades; love droops; the leaves of friendship fall; 
A mother's secret hope outlives them all.
-Oliver Wendell Holmes

We love you for all you are, all you do and all you have 
shaped and molded us to be.
Celebrate yourself today, Mother!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Right To Life

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Yep, that's me. Congressman Crawford is in our Sunday School class. Our pastor asked me to attend this news conference this week (he is standing behind me in green). As you know, I am vice-chairman of our area pregnancy center and as our pastor like's to tell people a "HUGE pro-lifer". It makes me giggle to hear him say it but if I am going to be known as "huge" anything...this would be it.

It is an honor to have Rick as our congressman and our friend. I was proud to watch him receive the endorsement of the National Right to Life PAC. He is standing strong to protect life and maintain our conservative values. Knowing he is protecting life and standing on the promises of God in the decisions he makes is comforting as he represents our district. I am not real political and do not share my views openly very much. This is one thing I wanted to share though. Protecting those who cannot protect themselves gets me on my soapbox!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

It's Underwear Time!

 We have been enjoying cooler days here lately. Henry has gotten a lot of play time on Fort Henry. He tells me every time we are swinging together that his daddy built it for him. It is so cute. I tell him his daddy loves him a lot and he smiles. He knows!

 Henry has finally learned how to steer his truck. Randall put a new battery in it and it goes 5 mph now. Randall has an app on his phone that will detect the speed. Henry takes his daddy's phone for rides and we can see how fast he is going. It is funny. He decided to take his daddy for a ride instead of the phone. They went at a snail's pace but Henry didn't mind. He loved hauling his load of daddy! Henry has learned how to turn real fast on the driveway and spin out. It is hysterical. He laughs so hard when he does it. It literally makes me smile to type it. I need to video it. He also tries to run over mama, and that is not so funny.

 I could not find H Sunday morning before church. We were in the back of the house preparing and it was quiet. I always get worried when it is quiet. This is where I found him. He looked like a teenager just vegging watching his Ernie DVD. He looked up and said "Hey, Mama!". Oh me...what a big boy.


 Speaking of big boy...look what we have acquired this week. Underwear. It is time. He is beginning to wear it this week. The first day we were accident free. The second was not as successful. We are hoping today is a drier day. We lost a pair of buzz light year to poop. I threw it away because I refused to clean it and I wanted him to see it go in the trash in hopes he would be sad. He was. He cried. So, here's to hopes he tells me next time he feels the urge to muddy up a pair of his undies. Toddler undies are expensive....Call me cheap, but my word! Our school is so good about doing most of the training for us. They are all so supportive and his biggest cheerleaders.


It is a good thing he is cute...but he is beginning to know it. I wish I could show you his personality through words, but it would do it no justice. You have to see it in person to get the full picture. This child is hilarious. His imagination, his memory, his charm, his love for life are ridiculously wonderful! I can be so mad at him but laugh at the same time. He has a way about him. He is a charmer for sure. He has his mama's ticket and that is not always a good thing! He is my child and I adore it.

 He asks me often where Jesus is and that is the best question ever. He will pat his chest and ask me if Jesus is in his heart. I struggle saying yes to him because I don't want to confuse him, but with the Lord's help I figure out the answers each time. His retention of Bible truths and songs are amazing. It is his age. This is the perfect age to drill it into them. God gives us these children and it is our duty to teach them about Him. I cannot imagine not teaching  my child about Jesus. He is 2 and knows all about the Bible. It is so easy to teach them and so rewarding. It is not rocket science and it is so basic...or maybe it is basic for us because it is who we are. I don't know, but I  do know  I have people in my life who have children who have no clue about Jesus and nothing makes me sadder than that. What a pity. I hope Henry can be a witness to them.

Henry is watching a Barney Christmas VHS from 1993 in this photo. He watches it in our bedroom when I am home alone in the mornings and have to shower and dress for work. He loves it and we all hate it. My mother is to thank or blame for this VHS never dying. All 5 kids have been obsessed with it. We cringe and Mama just laughs. Oh, to be a Marmie and get away with stuff like this! I am sort of thankful it sucks him in and allows me to shower though. It is a love-hate relationship with that VHS Tape. 

Abby

Saturday, September 22, 2012

It's Fall Y'all



In honor of the first day of fall, I am sharing a yummy pumpkin dump cake recipe...and a picture of my little pumpkin! I made the candy corn swag on my den mantle out of burlap and it was super easy and it looks very festive. I encourage you to make a fall dish and do a fall craft this weekend!


So, here is the recipe:

Pumpkin Dump Cake


1 (29oz) can Pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can Evaporated Milk
1-1/2 cup sugar
4 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ginger
1 box yellow cake mix
2 sticks of butter
1 cup pecans


Beat together pumpkin, evaporated milk, sugar and eggs. Add salt, cloves, cinnamon and ginger. Mix well. Pour into 9x13 pan. Sprinkle evenly with dry cake mix over top of pumpkin mixture. Melt butter, drizzle over the top. Sprinkle with nuts and Bake at 350 for 1 hour. It is good with vanilla ice cream or all by itself,

Happy Fall Y'all!
Abby

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Fair Fun


We took Henry to the Craighead County Fair this week. We ran into our friends as soon as we got there. It was great fun. Quinn and Henry climbed on a tractor because they both love some farm equipment and are smart enough to know red and blue are just as good as green. Well rounded boys! I thought this photo was so precious. I may have to put it on my memo board. It is a keeper.


 Randall and I were both representing our state pride at the fair. It was unintentional and fun. Randall was saying "cheese" in this picture. it makes me laugh.


All Henry was concerned about was finding a red car to ride. So, that we did. He was such a big boy to ride all by himself. He was a little hesitant at first but once the ride started he was all grins.


The Jeep ride required him to ride with another little boy. His facial expression in this picture is priceless. He is looking at that boy like "why you in my Jeep, punk?!"


He then found a red flying boat and it was on! He was all grins and giggles.


Henry waved his hands in the air and just laughed when it would fly. Randall and I were so smitten with it. Our little baby is turning into a big boy. It is so fun to watch him discover life even in the simple things like a kiddie ride at the fair.


Randall's fair highlight was his red velvet funnel cake. Oh my word, it was so fine! It had cream cheese drizzled on it with the powdered sugar. I ate a few bites of it and he was not real kind about sharing it with me. I love to see the fair food. It is always fun to see what crazy stuff they come up with and it is usually always good eats!

Abby

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Celebrate Good Times



 Randall told me to take off work on Friday because Emily had an "Abby and Emily fun day" planned for my birthday. I got up without an alarm clock and went for a run in the park. Randall got Henry dressed and off to school. It was perfect. She picked me up mid-morning and our first stop was for our joy juice...Sonic Diet Coke.



Our next stop was at Darling's in Newport. She told me where we were headed and I was stoked because I was about to order some t-shirts from there and have them shipped. It saved me money! We had fun taking in all the fine things at Darling's.



Our next stop was Doc's Grille in Searcy. It was possibly the best lunch I have had in a long time. The company and the food were both divine. I had fish tacos and broccoli. An odd combination but so yummy.


We then hit up some fun boutiques in Searcy and then headed to Hay's. We drove up and realized they were having a tent sale. Leave it up to us to run into a tent sale! We ended up buying nothing at the sale, believe it or not. We were in shock at our restraint!


 I found a bull in the middle of the store and had to take a ride. The best part of this picture is not my sassy 34 year old self on a 50 cent bull in the middle of a department store, but it is the the ladies in the background. The look on the mom's face and then the back tattoo on the daughter are priceless. I made up their conversation in my head and I am sure it was spot on.


We camped out in Bath & Body spending my gift card from Randall. We sprayed every smell. I sounded like my daddy when I looked at Emily and said "We smell like a French whore house up in here!" because well....we did. It was fun though and we smelled good on our trip back to J'Town.

Emily is so pretty. Did you know she was a beauty queen back in her prime. She was Miss Craighead County Rice. Yep. She gave me a laminated recipe card from her "glory days". All rice queens have a signature rice recipe. I am learning so much living in the delta, I tell ya.  I call her "Miss Rice" and we laugh about it, but it is for real. She really has the sash and crown to prove it. Royalty!


We got back to town and Emily had a little surprise party waiting on me at her house. She was in awe that I had never had a surprise party in all my 34 years and had to have one for me. She is so fun. (she made the door hanger out of burlap. She actually sells them as a side business when she is not being a nurse 8 to 5. She is pretty crafty.)


Having sweet friends to celebrate with me was fun. I knew we were going to Emily's house for a cookout but not a party. It was so thoughtful for my newest friends. God has surely blessed us this year with their companionship.


Eli and Henry were so funny trying to blow their horns. Henry sang the birthday song to me a lot on my birthday and on Friday. When he would say "Happy Birthday to MAMA...." I would melt.


Emily's mother-in-law made my cake. I have never met the woman but Emily had told me about the cakes she makes. I told Emily I needed one for my birthday. She remembered and Linda made me one. James drove to his parents after a long day at work to get my cake. What sweeties! It was delicious.


My boys made my birthday and my day after so much fun. I love having another year to celebrate life with these two munchkins. If I knew we were going to Emily's for a picture taking event, I would have cleaned Henry up from his Friday Monkeynastix school day. So cute, dirty or not!


34 is going to be a good year. I can just feel it. Thank God for another year!

Abby

Monday, September 17, 2012

Happy Birthday To Me!

I thought I would share some highlights of my birthday. My boys were sweet to give me some fun gifts and a super cute card. My extended family was  kind to send me gifts and cards. It was a fun morning opening all of them before work.




My work day started with a sheet cake waiting on me. My coworker remembered me telling her my favorite birthday cake of all time is a sheet cake. She had never eaten nor made one so her doing this was an act of love. I walked into the break room to find this and a table of fruit. I felt celebrated!


After work my boys and I headed to the White County Fair. Randall treated me to a turkey leg. He knows I cannot attend a fair, carnival or festival without a turkey leg. It was divine. I could only eat half of it. He ate the rest of if. That is true love.


Henry and I love reading all the Llama Llama books. We spotted Llama Llama wishing Henry's mama Happy Birthday! Randall said he swore that thing was about to spit on me. I am so glad it refrained.


The main reason we went to the fair was so Henry could see the monster truck show. He loved it and we loved watching him enjoy it. He would giggle, point, yell and get so excited.

His favorite truck was the Ice Cream Man. So don't you know that Randall gave me a $20 bill and said "go buy him an Ice Cream Man shirt"... and I did. The things we do for our babies, I tell ya. I have made them both swear to me that it will only be worn in the house as a night shirt! It is pretty redneck looking.

My birthday was so much fun this year. I will have another post about it tomorrow. 34 was truly a celebration!

Abby

Thursday, September 13, 2012

34 Acts of Kindness

I decided to celebrate my birthday this year with 34 (random"ish") acts of kindness. Proverbs 11:17 says "A kind man benefits himself" and after taking on this fun task, I can honestly say that it is so true.They are listed in no particular order and were done in no particular order. I had some planned out and the others just came to me as I went about it. It has been so much fun. Here is a recap of all 34 of them.



1. I sent cupcakes to school for Henry's class to have a birthday party in my honor.
2. I let traffic go ahead of me during the lunch hour in a busy intersection with construction.


3 -5. I gave the mail man and Henry's teachers a Fast Break and a thank you note.
6. I spoke kindly to someone who grates my nerves. It was seriously tough and very random!



7. I left coupons on the break room table at work.
8. I held the door open for a busy construction worker who had a load of plywood in his arms. He wasn't expecting it and his out of breath "thank you" was worth the few seconds it took me to do it.


9. I gave my stack of Parents magazines to an expecting co-worker.
10. I gave the Sonic carhop a tip during my happy hour Diet Coke run.
11. I tipped the coffee shop girl. I never tip her. I think she almost fell out of the drive thru window in awe.


12. I gave a friend polish remover and cotton balls for always painting my toes.
13. I sent a birthday card to an old college friend who shares the same b'day as me.
14. I sent a thank you card to my precious friend and church preschool director.
 15. I gave a friend who teaches pre-k some foot soak. I thought she deserved it.


16. I took my teal toes up to First Security Bank in honor of those battling ovarian cancer. The bank donated $5 for my teal toes and gave me a new bottle of teal polish.


17. I let my little reader pick some "big boy" books off the shelf in his room for me to read to him.
18. I treated a precious friend to a cup of coffee.

 19. I took my friend at the food bank some orange(ish) daisies to celebrate all the work she is doing this month...and every other month of the year. September is Hunger Awareness month.


 20. I took my sweet boy to the fire station with homemade cookies for the firemen. He was treated like royalty and they were most appreciative of the cookies.

 21.I reserved a parking space in the driveway for my busy bean cutting Answerplot man.

 22. I worked on the Parade of Pumpkins contest for the Miracle League and smiled pretty for a photo going in our local  magazine. This little cutie goes to church with me. He loves baseball and thinks his arm is a built in bat. I just love this child and this cause.


23. I gifted a co-worker with a pack of gum because I always bum gum from him. (do y'all remember Shaun from the singles hook up I did last winter? He is now dating his dental hygienist. Score!)
24. I made the lady at the DMV smile and then she laughed...a most random event! I think maybe the fact that the photo she took for my license makes me look like I am wearing a large helmet on my head made her laugh and not me just being me. Whichever it was, it was a fabulous and rare moment at the DMV!
25. I took food to our church's food pantry. Our pantry served over 70 hungry families last month.



26-27. I let my Awana Puggles paint. I don't do paint and a table of toddlers. It was a huge act of kindness getting out the ole paints for my excited little loves. The painted masterpieces were sent to some of our church's shut-ins to help brighten their day and spread the love of Jesus.
28. I Gave a sassy co-worker the teal nail polish I received from the teal toes event at the bank.
29. I Took Henry for tater tots on a weeknight. That is a biggie for my little junk food junkie.


30-31. I Gave an on the go co-worker a magnetic to do list and I gave my ray of sunshine at work a fun "good morning" bright yellow toast stamp.
32. I bought my favorite foursome cool new pencils. I love being their aunt.
33. I did some helpful research for someone I love a whole bunch without them asking me to do it. It was an encouragement to them and it made my heart smile to hear the gratitude in their voice.


34. I got my 34 year old sleepy booty out of the bed at 5:00 am on my birthday to celebrate with crossfit Carl.  I ran a 1/2 mile, did 300 jump ropes and rowed 2000 meters. I was kind to my body straight out the 34 chute! I think being kind to myself is list worthy because a kind man does benefit himself in more ways than one!

This has been such a fun and rewarding birthday celebration.I have spent the whole week performing these acts of kindness. This birthday has been extra sweet because of it.  It has made me more aware of my actions as I go throughout a normal day. Some of the things on the list came easy for me and some required extra effort in the kindness department. God has rewarded me with a new year to serve him and what a better way to celebrate that gift than sharing it with others!
Abby