Bayleigh and Kelci

I’ve been missing Charlotte a lot lately. I never knew how much I’d miss that silly little dog. In the past few weeks, though, every time I walk into my parents’ house, I look for her just knowing she’s going to greet me with her usual “Here I am, pet me!” bark. But, of course, she's not there.

But rather than give you a long sappy post that will leave me (and possibly you) in tears, I’ll give you a funny one. Well, at least I think it’s funny.

The day that I brought Kelci home, my little German Shepherd was only 6 lbs. She was the runt, and even though I didn’t know it at the time, she was dangerously sick. I was so excited that I had my new pup, I burst into my apartment, anxious to introduce my dogs to one another, and Bayleigh, my cocker spaniel was less than thrilled.

She took the stance that “If I ignore it, it will just go away.” Sorry Bayleigh.

So, when it was time for bed, I put Bayleigh in her crate at the foot of my bed. (Don’t feel bad for her. She prefers it.) Next to my bed I had a nice new crate stuffed full of stuffed animals and a ticking clock. Just for Kelci. So, I snuggled little Kelci into her crate, turn off the lights and wait.

Two minutes and the whining began. I was sure she would eventually settle down.

An hour later, I wasn’t so sure. What was I going to do? I had to work the next day. I needed to sleep. Ah! Solution: PUT THEM IN A CRATE TOGETHER. Excellent idea! Right?!

So, I got Kelci out, put her in the crate with Bayleigh, turned the lights out and……silence! I waited about 20 minutes, turned on the lamp, peeked over the bed and I see Kelci just as happy as can be sleeping at Bayleigh’s feet. Bayleigh was sitting straight up looking at me as if to say, “I really hate you right now.”

So, the solution? Kelci slept with me.

This is Kelci and Bayleigh today. See the way Bayleigh is looking at me there? Not too much different than that night. Here she is saying, "Will you get her off my porch?"

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You Capture: Family


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This week's You Capture challenge over at Beth's place is Family!

Aaron is my cousin. He was born when I was 13, and for most of his life, we’ve been inseparable when we’re together. He’s my buddy. Even in his teenage years he's still my buddy…well for the most part. When out in public he has to play it cool, you know. (I may or may not have shouted at the top of my lungs how much I loved him while he was hanging out at the pool with his friends once. Okay I did.) In a few weeks he graduates from high school, and all of a sudden, I realize that my buddy is no longer a boy. He’s becoming a man. In this picture he’s holding my nephew. My relationship with my nephew reminds me so much of me and Aaron when he was that age. So, what better capture than my two buds together?


On Sunday, I went hiking with friends to McAfee Knob. This is Jonathan and Jen (and Scout!), they’ve been married for not quite a year. Their family is new, and you can tell they're loving every single second of it.

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Weigh-In Wednesday: An Off Week

This was an off week in more weighs than one (HA HA, get it? Yeah, okay that was lame.) One, we're on an off week over at the Sisterhood! A new challenge starts NEXT WEEK so be sure to stop by and check it out! But this was also an off week because I gained a pound.

I know this is totally water weight. I know I didn't drink water over the weekend like I should have. On work days, I can drink water like it's no body's business, but on weekends, blah. In fact, I don't drink much of anything on weekends...well, sometimes. ;o) So, you give me a three day weekend where I'm not drinking water and the week is pretty much shot.

So, I gained weight. I can either kick myself in the ass over it or I can look at what I DID do this week.

1. I took my nephew to see my grandparents, and we took my dad's mom lunch since it was her birthday. I know that's not weight loss related, but I know you moms know that chasing after an almost 15 month old boy is not easy work! :o)

2. I climbed a mountain! Seriously, I did. It was one of the hardest hikes of my life, but I loved every minute of it.

3. I climbed a harkening hill, which I could swear to you was very much like climbing the mountain.

So, I may have gained a pound, but I'm really fine with it. Because hiking that much in two days was a lot of calories burned, and an accomplishment! Next week, watch out!

Last week's weight: 143.6
This week's weight: 144.6

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At the Peaks of Otter

Going to the Peaks was not our first choice of destinations when my parents and I headed to the Blue Ridge Parkway this morning. We first started in the opposite direction heading towards North Carolina. We got to the trail we wanted to hike, and it was pouring rain. So, we needed a Plan B. We knew the sun was shining in Roanoke, so we headed back and kept on driving until we got to the Peaks of Otter. If you're ever in Virginia, this is a must see! We tried a new trail today. The Harkening Hills Trail: 3.3 miles, and while our map said "moderate" as the difficulty level, I can honestly say that the first 1.3 miles was straight up. Here are some things we saw on our hike:

I almost stepped on this little guy!


These were in full bloom. I think they're called Bluets? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.




Do you see the wildlife here?


Our map said this trail had interesting geological formations. Yes, they are interesting, but the look like just really big rocks to me. You?



More wildlife. Do you see him?


Looking back on the trail.


That was my last picture. Not two minutes after, it started to rain. A lot. I got wet. My camera was snug in my backpack. Whew. :o)

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On The Appalachian Trail

Our destination: McAfee Knob. According to Hiking Upward from the parking lot to the top of the mountain is 4.4 miles and a climb of about 1700 ft (note: the elevation at the top is 3197. I was confused in thinking I actually climbed that much, but still 1700 ft is a HELL of a hike. Trust me.) McAfee Knob is also "one of the most photographed spots on the A.T." and the panoramic view is AMAZING!

We set out with Scout as our fearless leader! (Isn't she beautiful?!)


The trail was so GREEN and looked mostly just like this, so I'll spare you 100 photos of this!


And here I am. Notice how I am one sweaty mess, and not even at the top yet. About half a mile to go!


FINALLY! We're at 3197 ft!


And I ate lunch to this view!


McAfee Knob


I'm gonna jump!


It was so foggy, but still so beautiful!


Our group shot! (I did NOT slip on the rock trying to sit down! I SWEAR.)



And we did it. Together. What a proud moment this was for us!

The End.

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100 Things

1. I am 25 days from being 31 years old.
2. I’m getting older, but not OLD. (This is a Good Times Planning Motto.)
3. Good Times Planning is what my friend, Jessie, and I call our good times together. We love good times and planning them!
4. I love that I’m a Gemini. Very few people know why.
5. I was born in Salem, VA but was raised in Roanoke, VA (Um, they’re in the same valley)
6. I still live in Roanoke. I hate it here a lot of days.
7. I have one sibling, a brother, but I also grew up with my two older boy cousins. So I often will say I have 2 older brothers and one younger brother.
8. As a result of growing up with 3 boys, I know the ins and outs of most sports.
9. I’m also a fan of video games. I have a Wii, Xbox360, and PlayStation2 hooked up and ready to go.
10. One of my great-grandmothers was Cherokee. From her, I got my complexion, and I love it. I’ve heard there is more Native American in my ancestry, but no one seems to know which tribe.
11. I also have English, Irish, and Dutch roots.
12. I have dark brown hair. My brother has blond hair. (Well what hair he has left ;o)
13. I LOVE animals. All of them.
14. Except spiders.
15. My favorite are giraffes.
16. I have a German Shepherd Dog, a Cocker Spaniel, an African Grey parrot, and a cockatiel.
17. The next dog I plan to get (one day) is a Great Dane.
18. I’m left-handed, but I play most sports right-handed.
19. I love to paint and draw.
20. I have never taken an art class outside of what I had to take in school.
21. When I was 14 one of my paintings was displayed in the airport in our state capital.
22. The thing that I remember the most about being 5 was being in the hospital with pneumonia.
23. I was sick a lot as a child.
24. Since we’re on the subject of health, I’ll get it out of the way; I’ve lost a total of 62 lbs.
25. When it comes to exercise and nutrition, I know my shit.
26. Is that bragging? Hope not.
27. I love all things science fiction. Star Trek, Star Wars, Stargate. LOVE them.
28. I love TV way more than I should.
29. But I also love being outdoors.
30. I live 5 minutes from the Blue Ridge Parkway; I have a ton of hiking trails to choose from.
31. When I was 21, my mom, dad, brother, and I hiked to the top of a mountain on the Parkway.
32. It was one of the best days of my life.
33. We didn’t take a lot of vacations when I was a kid. Smith Mountain Lake is about 45 mins away. We had a camper on the lake.
34. I wouldn’t change my childhood summers for anything.
35. Most vacations we did take were to Louisiana. My grandparents used to live there, and I still have an aunt, uncle, and cousins there.
36. I’ve never been to Disney World or traveled outside of the U.S. One day.
37. I love ranch dressing with all things pizza.
38. This one’s cute: My mom and her siblings called her grandmother, “Mom.” (Not sure why). I’m told when I was 3, I marched into my granny’s house and insisted I wanted to see “Granny-mom.” Hence, a nickname was born and all of the great-grandchildren called her this. Even my cousins who are older than me.
39. Also, when I was 3, one day I was swinging on the arms of the couch and chair, slipped, and knocked out my front tooth. I remember that day vividly.
40. My brother was born when I was almost 4. When my dad picked me up to go see my baby brother in the hospital, I told him I’d rather not because I asked for a sister. Not a brother.
41. I’m pretty certain I was a handful as a tot.
42. My brother and I were close until we hit the teenage years. We haven’t been close since.
43. My eyes are green.
44. I have my BS in Mathematics. I’m weird like that.
45. I concentrated in Statistics. I know, right?
46. I also joined a sorority in college. Any other Chi Omegas out there?
47. I played basketball in high school.
48. For the past 5 years I’ve bowled on a league.
49. I took 3rd in a tournament not too long ago, but I’m really not that good.
50. I bowl for the beer. ;o)
51. My favorite author is Nora Roberts. I have almost every book she’s ever written. I think.
52. My favorite book series as a kid was the Annie of Green Gables series, followed closely by the Baby-Sitters Club.
53. I also love the Harry Potter books.
54. My favorite book of all, though, is Marley and Me. I refuse to see the movie. I don’t want the book to be ruined for me, and it hasn’t been long since I lost Charlotte. I think it’s just too soon.
55. I read credits at TV shows and movies. Did you know that the director always gets the last credit in the opening sequence?
56. I have many, many, many random facts in my head.
57. My memory is weird like that.
58. I have a very bad habit of liking bad movies. I think Space Camp is one of the best movies ever!
59. I can tell you almost every actors’ names (and the characters they played) that are/were on all of my favorite shows.
60. I told you my memory is weird like that.
61. I don’t keep ice in my house. I don’t like ice. Instead I freeze my glasses.
62. My favorite food is Mexican food. Followed by Cajun food.
63. 90% of the food in my house is organic.
64. I live about an hour away from the lake where a lot of Dirty Dancing was filmed.
65. I taught myself how to play the mandolin.
66. I have never been in a wedding.
67. Back to being 3-or maybe I was 4-my mom told me to leave the iron alone. What did I do? I decided to “help”. Result: iron fell on my left hand. I still have the scar from this.
68. I have a birthmark on my back that is in the exact place and exact shape of a scar my dad has on his back. It’s one of my favorite things.
69. I sucked my thumb and had a blanket when I was a toddler-okay, I sucked my thumb until I was 5, and I still have a blanket. And yes, it has ribbon and yes I rub the ribbon. Don’t judge. ;o)
70. I didn’t wear glasses or contacts until after college. I have a really bad habit of breaking my glasses, so I wear my contacts most of the time.
71. I can juggle.
72. The year I turned 25, my mom turned 50, and her mom turned 75. I just think that’s cool.
73. I love antiquing.
74. I am a rock star in the shower or car. Outside of these two places, not so much.
75. When I make a sandwich, the deli meat MUST touch the side of the bread with mayo. It just tastes better that way.
76. Chips and salsa are always in my house. I could live off them.
77. When I was 26 I bought my house.
78. I started my blog in May 2008, but didn’t really keep up with it until January 2009.
79. You can blame, I mean, thank Christy for that.
80. The first blog post I ever commented on was this one. Written by Lisa. I was so impressed when she emailed me back and thanked me for my comment.
81. As was I when I got emails from Christy, Melissa, and Crooked Eyebrow the first day I ever contacted Shrinking Jeans.
82. If loving coffee, beer, and carrot cake (not necessarily in that order) is wrong, then I don’t want to be right.
83. One of my dreams is to own a greenhouse.
84. I have done the Skycoaster before. It was THE BEST thrill of my life.
85. I’ve met several country music artists. Some of them that seem like they would be nice are not nice at all. As a result of these experiences, I don’t listen to country music much anymore.
86. I don’t really listen to radio at all anyway. They play songs until you’re sick of them.
87. I got my belly button pierced on a dare.
88. I HATE sarcasm. (Read with sarcasm.)
89. I really miss the TV show Friends.
90. When I was 6 my mom had my hair cut into a Dorothy Hamill. I know.
91. I love my friends with all of my heart. If you are one of these people, you know it.
92. I love falling asleep to an open window when the rain is falling.
93. My middle name is Denise.
94. My mom recently told me that she wanted to name me Brynna Jade. My dad wouldn’t agree.
95. Seriously, Brynna Jade is way cooler than April Denise. What the hell?!
96. My favorite beer is Chimay.
97. I started a book once. I really should finish it.
98. I love my Blackberry way more than I should.
99. I have my very own Jillian Michaels. I love her.
100. I plan to do a lot more traveling here soon. Seriously. I'm gonna. ;o)

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You Capture: Sweet

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Okay, people. I'm going to be honest. Yesterday, I was almost down a dog. My cocker spaniel, Bayleigh, chewed up my brand new SD card. She is very lucky that I had already uploaded my pictures.

And now, I'm not going to use any of those shots. Beth's challenge this week was Sweet. And I had pictures of cookies and candy and my nephew. But I've been dying to get a picture of this baby morning dove that has been growing on my front porch. I watched his mama sit on the nest, and then I watched her feed him. But I never saw him. Until today.


He's so ugly right now, he's cute, huh? And sweet, right?

But the sweetest thing about this shot is that I took it using this:


And it's mine! No more using my dad's camera! Yeah, I'm excited!



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Weigh-In Wednesday: End of Challenge


We're weighing in over at the Sisterhood. Another challenge is in the books. How did you do? Did you shrink?


My goal at the beginning of this challenge was to lose 10 lb. And that didn't happen. I didn't even get close. But I'm not down or discouraged about it. Sure, there were weeks where I didn't eat as well as I could have. One week I struggled with being sick, so work outs didn't happen. And I probably didn't eat as well as I could have that week either.

So, I know there are weeks where I could have done better. But those weeks are over, today is a new day, and I'm not discouraged. I still lost. And looking at the whole picture, I've lost a total of 62.2 lbs which is insane to me when I think about it. Just hitting the 60 lb alone this challenge was a major success for me, and I'm very happy with that.

I have personal challenges coming up. Summer and fall are when I tend to be most social. (Not that I'm extremely social anyway, but I do tend to go out more in the summer and fall.) So, I know there are going to be more weeks where I don't eat as well as I could and a work out may not get done. But I promise now to do the best that I can, and that's all that I can do. That's all any of us can do.

I'm proud of each and every one of you this challenge. Whether you lost 1 lb or 15 lbs or even if you gained (did I hear a gasp?), you had to have learned something about yourself. And that in itself makes you very successful!

Beginning weight for challenge: 146. 6
Last week's weight: 144.8
Ending weight for challenge: 143.8
Total loss: 2.8 lbs

Monday Confessions on Tuesday

Lisa over at the Sisterhood has posted her True Confessions on Tuesday instead of Monday. You want to play, too? Just go here!


1. I broke up with the guy I was seeing today.

2. I know I some of the blame is my fault.

3. I own up to it.

4. I’m pretty much feeling like a failure right now.

5. I still don’t want to date him though.

6. I’m thinking about moving to Alaska, though.

7. Okay, maybe not Alaska, but maybe somewhere…hmmm..

8. And it’s not just because of today’s events.

9. I need a Happy Hour. Who’s in?

10. Or maybe pizza…

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Sisters

I am from a family dominated by boys. On my dad’s side, only 2 out of 7 grandchildren and great-grandchildren are girls, and on my mom’s side only 4 out of 18 grandchildren and great-grandchildren are girls.

I have always, always longed for a sister. I can remember when I was 3, and my mom was pregnant with my brother, I would pray at night to be sent a sister.

That sister never came.

In college, I joined a sorority. Partly, because I knew it would piss my dad off, but partly I was still longing to have a sisterly relationship. I wanted to be able to say, I have a sister and she is wonderful.

Living at home during college made making friends hard. But what could I do when my dad wouldn’t pay for me to live on campus? Still, I made some really great friendships in my sorority, and I still keep in touch with a few of them.

But I still couldn’t call any of them my sister.

Then I re-connected with Jessie and Rachael, and I can say that I have sisters now and I love them. But then…

I found this site. A Sisterhood. And I will admit, I was shy at first. But the welcome that these girls gave me was truly amazing. I love talking with each and every one that I can each day. Some of them are my friends for life. They have become my family. And now I have more sisters. Even though we haven’t met (yet), I love them. And I hope they know that.

They are the embodiment of Sisterhood.

The prayers of a 3 year old girl have been answered. I have sisters, and they are wonderful.

My Weekend with My Nephew

My weekend with my little man is over. I'm a little sad, but also, I am TIRED. Let me just say to all of you moms, You.Are.My.Heroes. Seriously.

I'm not used to waking up early on weekends. He wakes up early. And he is the most restless sleeper in the world. I don't think he was still for five minutes either night. Also, he's not a fan of food, sleep, or baths at the moment, but we only had one major meltdown, so I consider the weekend a success! Most importantly, we had fun!


On Saturday my mom and I took him to a small zoo here in our city:

We saw goats. I think he liked the goats...


...and my mom and I loved the snow leopards...



...and the cougar, but Clay....



was just happy to ride in his stroller, and could have cared less about the animals. :o)




This had to be my favorite thing this weekend. He's learning so quickly, and his most recently he's learned "how a doggie goes". This just cracks me up. He did it all weekend, but this was the only time I managed to get it on video:


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You Capture: Color

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Okay, I'm playing late in Beth's challenge this week because honestly I wasn't going to post. I got intimidated by the Color challenge. But after showing my color pic to a friend and being reassured it's a good pic, I'm posting it.

This is a black iris. I know it's purple, but the reason they are called black is because they look sort of black in places!





The color isn't as cool on this one, but I love them. My family and I found these irises at an old homestead on my uncle's land when I was a kid, so we brought a few home!




Can you tell I was on an iris kick this week? :o)

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A Weekend Adventure!

I am so excited for this weekend. I can't even tell you. I probably should be scared. Nah.

A few weeks ago my mom told me that she was going to have my nephew all weekend. My brother is going out of town, and so is my nephew's mama. (No, they're not together. Long story.) I noticed that my mom looked a little worried, I guess is the word.

My mom keeps Clay three days a week, and by the end of that third day, she's exhausted. So I knew that she was thinking having him all weekend, the whole weekend, was going to wear her out. So, I'm dropping everything, and I'm taking care of him. I don't know why they didn't ask me in the first place. Dummies.

Anyway, on the agenda for this weekend is a trip to Mill Mountain Zoo. It's a tiny little zoo on top of a mountain here in my city. It may be small, but I love it. Forecast: chance of rain. UGH. Let's hope not!

I plan on posting our adventures this weekend. I'm sure you moms will love it when I post something like, "OMG, is this NORMAL?!" And he's shown quite the temper in the past few weeks, so stay tuned....this could get interesting....

;o)

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Weigh-In Wednesday : Late

Whoa. I am way late posting today. I usually get up early to weigh in and post about it before work. Today, I felt like sleeping a bit later, so I'm sorry for the late post!

The past few days have been nothing but stressful. I'm not going into all the crazy details. Monday was insane and well, that's pretty much how the week has gone. SUCK. So when I stepped on the scales I wasn't surprised to see a gain.

Last week's weight: 144.6
This week's weight: 144.8

Okay, I KNOW this is a very small gain, but still. I'm not disappointed. I'm not upset. This was one of those weeks when life happens. Life happened, and I'm dealing with it, and I'm managing to basically maintain. So, I'ma pat myself on the back just a bit. :o)

One week left of the Sisterhood's challenge, and I'm no where near goal, but I am shrinking, so I'm fine with it. How are you doing?

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A SERIOUS Case of the Mondays

Wanna talk about a "Case of the Mondays"?

Alarm goes off. It's dreary out. I want to stay in bed. I should have stayed in bed. But I didn't. I roll out of bed (yes, sometimes I literally roll out of bed), let the dogs out, get into the shower, get out of the shower, and decide I'm going to lie back down for just 10 minutes.

Ha. Thirty minutes later, I roll out of bed for a second time, this time my ass is in gear because I am pushing it on being late for work. I decide to wear one of my favorites, a 3/4 sleeve white dress shirt. (I love white dress shirts; I look damn good in them.) I head to the bathroom to slap some make-up on because, let's face it, I'm not not going to work with no make-up on, I don't care how late I am. I squeeze the tube of foundation and the tube of foundation decides to fart all over my white dress shirt.

I should have gotten back into bed. But I didn't.

I go to work. It's your typical work day at my company. My favorite part of the day is lunch when I can escape for an hour and laugh with friends. I don't have to think about my job or the limbo that is my dating life right now. (Don't ask.)

After work, I head to the grocery store. All is well. The day is looking better. I'm going to get to be home soon and starting round two of the Shred with my Sisters. I decide to get snarky with a Sister and remind her to Shred on my Blackberry. Then I get an email on my Blackberry, am reading the email, and Grace enters.

Grace is my alter ego also known as Klutz. Grace gets butterfingers, lets my Blackberry slip from her hands. In slow motion I watch my beloved Blackberry flip, flip, flip and fall. It lands on its touchscreen face. When I pick it up, the lovely screen is black.

I try rebooting. Three times. Nothing. It's dead.

I run home, throw the cold stuff in the fridge, run back out to my friendly neighborhood Verizon store. I wait forever. Finally, when it's my turn, I show the rep my phone after explaining I tried rebooting 3 times. What does she do? Tries rebooting. Seriously? Did she not hear me?

Then she takes it in the back and whatever magic those people perform in the back doesn't work. They need to ask for new wands. But I knew it wouldn't work. I'm enough of a gadget girl to know the thing is beyond help. She comes back clicks away on the keyboard and tells me she's going to have to order me a new phone and it'll be here Wednesday. And I should have someone at home to sign for it. She smiles. I frown. I ask if another store in my city has one. Nope. I ask if I could have a loaner. Nope. I ask her if she realizes that this is my only means of communication with most of the people I know. She's sorry. Is she freaking kidding?

I have lost all of my phone numbers, all of my texts messages, all of my videos, and all of my pictures. SUCK.

I leave in mad tears. Get home way past my work out time. Still in tears over my poor, poor Blackberry and the hectic day that was Monday. I'm hungry, and I'm just plain pissed off. I seriously think I need a vacation. Some place where the clock always says five. (Who's in?)

Then I Shred anyway. Because I said I would.

I still want to go on vacation where it's five o'clock all the time. And I want my Blackberry back.

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A Mother's Day Post

I am not a mother. If you were to spend time with me while around children, though, you would wonder why I'm not a mother. I have been given the gift of being good with kids. It just comes naturally to me. It always has.

Let me give you an example. I have a friend who lives in Pittsburgh. The last time I visited her and her family, one night when dinner was almost ready, without thinking about it, I asked the kids what they would like to drink, got glasses down, and poured. Her husband looked at me and said, "Can you move in?"

Had you asked me just 5 years ago, I would tell you the thing I wanted most in the world was to be a mother. Now, I'm not so sure. I think that part of this is because I've just rediscovered myself and am still getting to know me. (If that makes sense.) There are days that I will tell you I'm perfectly happy being just me and being the "cool aunt" to my nephew, younger cousins, and friends' kids.

Then there are days that I absolutely long for that child that I may never get the privilege of meeting . I want to see her and hold her and kiss her so badly. (Yes, she's a girl, and she has a name. ;o) I want to watch her grow and laugh with her and cry with her. Yes, there are some days that my heart literally aches to know that kind of love.

I went shopping today, and all around me I either saw people shopping for their mothers or mothers and children together. And you could just see the love between these people. It was so nice, and my heart ached.

To all of my beautiful friends who are mothers (that would be most of you, no?):

I can't tell you how lucky I feel to know you. Honestly, when I first found you all, I was afraid. I was worried that you may think that because I'm not a mom, you may would think that we have nothing in common. But you didn't think that and you have accepted me and I love you for it. I love reading about and seeing pictures of your kids. I can just "see" the love that you have for your children that makes me so happy. Thank you for sharing that part of your lives with me.

I love you all, and I hope you have a Happy Mother's Day!

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You Capture: Expression

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When I saw Beth's challenge for this week, I knew what I wanted to get. My nephew makes THE BEST mean face. So, I followed him around for hours on Sunday trying to capture this expression. And he would wait until I would set the camera down for a few seconds to make the face. Plan: fail.

Onto Plan B. My African Grey parrot LOVES the camera. In fall of 2007, I took this picture:


Of course parrots express themselves with words, but I think they have great physical expressions as well. Cagney is a nervous bird. (You'll see she's a feather picker. The bald spot on her chest is a nervous habit. When I first got her, she looked a lot worse.) But she is completely at home with having her picture taken. So, without further adieu I present: Expressions of Cagney.

Hi, camera.


Cagney kisses.


Waving "hello".


Best Buds. Sorta. (She can be mean!)

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Weigh-In Wednesday: Goals

Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans


Wow! Week 6 of the Sisterhood’s Shrink Into Summer challenge has gotten here fast! How are you doing? We only have two weeks left!

I had a decent week as far as food and exercise goes. I’m not bowling for the summer, so I did work out extra on Thursday. I do expect some sort of loss this week. I have had a few stresses this week though, so if I do gain, it could be related to that. Let’s find out:

Last week’s weight: 145.6
This week’s weight: 144.6

A pound! That’s freaking awesome for me! Gone are the days of losing 4 lbs a week because I just don’t have it to lose, so anything a lb and over is just great! With two weeks left in the challenge, I know I’m no where near my 10 lb goal for the challenge, but you know what? I’m just fine with it because our ultimate goal in all of this is to lose, so as long as I’m doing that, I feel great.

It reminds me a bit of my original goal. You know, way back when? When I first decided to get healthy I set my goal weight at 140. I chose this number because I knew it was a number I could get to because I had been close to this number before. It was the safe goal. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I was selling myself short. If I stuck with 140 as my goal, then I would get there and never know IF I could get to the 130’s, which was actually better for someone my height.

At that moment, I decided not to sell myself short and decided to shoot for the stars. My goal became 130. (My doctor confirmed that this is a good weight for me.) And all of that time ago, it seemed a little overwhelming, but I never have doubted that I will get there. And I will. I only have 14.6 lbs to go!

I may not reach my 10lb goal for the challenge, but you will always see me set a high goal for myself. I will always shoot for those stars!

So, don’t sell yourself short! Reach for the stars because you CAN do it! It’ll be a struggle and a pain in the ass sometimes, but it can be done! If the laziest person in the world can do it (that = me), then you can do it!

So tell me, what is your goal? Have you reached for the stars?

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Confused

I feel like I’ve hit a wall and don’t know what to do.
I admit that, in this area, I’m feeling a little blue.
What do you do when your heart is so unsure
Of what is play and of what is pure?

I thought things were going in one direction strong,
And now I’m almost quite sure I was maybe wrong.
And that’s fine if that’s the way it is to be
But right now I kind of want to crawl under a tree.

I was really fine and happy being on my own,
So I know I will be again, should I be once more alone.
And I don’t really know what’s going on yet
But I know that I’m kind of starting to fret.

I’ve tried not to think on it, tried to put it all away
In the back of my mind, and save it for another day.
But we all know that my mind I cannot block,
When I’m really onto something, I think a lot like Spock.

Except when the heart is concerned, logic is no more,
And right now my logic is shaken. Shaken to the core.
What the heck do I do? Try to just go with the flow?
Is that what he wants? To go really, really slow?

I wish he would just tell me, rather than make things feel weird.
Or at least I feel weird, and maybe just a little scared.
I honestly wished that I didn’t give a care
That I could just say "whatever" with quite a snarky flare.

I guess for now I’m just going to see what he does next.
And hope that I’m not failing some sort of dating test.
There is only so much I will take though, and I’m not the type for fits.
I’m more the type to say, “you can really kiss my ass”.



Note: The last line was originally "kiss my grits". And as much as I love the old TV show "Alice" and that line from that show, I know that's not me. I'd say "kiss my ass." But I thought the "kiss my grits part was funny, so read it as you'd like. ;o)

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A Ghost Story - In May.

Flashback 11 years ago. I was fast asleep in my nice, warm water bed and was having the most unusual dream ever. I only remember one of the details of the dream. This detail is so disturbing that I do not wish to discuss it, but know that as soon as it scared me, I woke up.

Something was very wrong about how I woke up. First, I was on my back. I never sleep on my back. And my arms were in a position so that my fists were at my chest. I couldn’t move. I was literally paralyzed from the neck down. It was as if a ton of weight was just sitting on my body.

I started to panic.

Then I realized I wasn’t alone in the room. I looked over and I see a pair of sheer white legs. I looked up and there by my bed stood a foggy mass in the shape of a man. His clothes looked like he was from the late 1800’s or early 1900’s. He was very tall, and you could tell that when he was alive he had very, very blue eyes. And he was staring down at me.

Now, being a girl that loved the show Unsolved Mysteries, you would think that I would have been thrilled, but the truth was I was scared out of my mind. How I didn’t pee all over myself, I’ll never know. I remembered watching a show once and the person on it said that if you ask spirits to go away, they will.

So, I turned my head and closed my eyes and repeated, “please go away, please go away,” until the weight lifted and he was gone.

A few weeks later my mom and I were visiting my grandparents. We were all at the dining room table and my granddaddy said that he had come across some old pictures that he wanted to show us. He passed one to me and said, “this is my grandfather, Lee.”

My stomach jumped to my heart. There was the very tall man with white blue eyes staring back at me just like that night by my bed.

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I'm a walking contradiction. While I love to draw, paint and read, I also love all things gadgets, science and even science fiction (I know). My animals (two dogs and two birds) are my heart, and if I could figure out how to legally own a giraffe, I would. That all said, I have my BS in Mathematics. :o)

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