Tuesday, January 27, 2009

25 Things About Me

I have been tagged three times on Facebook to write a list of "25 things about me." Rather than reply on Facebook, I thought I would post my list here. I hope you enjoy learning a little more about me.

1. I am currently writing a book. Hopefully, it will be done by the end of 2009.
2. The funniest person I know is my husband, Wesley. We've been together for 10 years and he still makes me laugh every day.
3. My favorite part of the day is getting Jackson out of bed in the morning. He is a such a happy little boy first thing in the morning.
4. I love turning everyday moments into teaching moments with Jackson.
5. I played volleyball all 4 years in High School, and we made it to state my Junior year.
6. I love to organize things.
7. I always have a "To-Do List" going. I write down everything that needs to be done and take joy in crossing things off (I double cross off - first with pen, then with a highlighter)
8. My grandmother, Mimi, taught me how to bowl. She would take us bowling and to Pizza Hut almost every week during the summer.
9. I am obsessed with coupons, sales, and saving money.
10. I love office supplies and can't wait until I can take Jackson to buy school supplies.
11. I have known 6 of my closest girlfriends for 20+ years.
12. I ran/walked a marathon in 2004. I consider it one of my greatest accomplishments.
13. I went to NYC with my dad to ring in 2000 in Times Square. Amazing!
14. The moment I became a mother, I appreciated my mom more than I ever thought possible!
15. I was president of my High School drama club and College Social Club. I love being in charge.
16. I love to cook.
17. I don't like to clean.
18. I made myself like coffee. It took awhile but now I really love a great cup of Starbucks coffee.
19. My dream job is working for a large corporation as the person in charge of distributing the company's charitable donations.
20. I had no idea how much love I had in my heart until the day Jackson was born.
21. I always feel safe when I am with Wesley.
22. I have a dog Flash who I love more than I let on.
23. I love getting the mail. I especially love getting the mail when I get a friendly letter or a great magazine.
24. When we were little, Susan and I pushed 2-year old Emily down our hilly driveway on a bike. Somehow, she made it all the way safely. We still can't figure out that one.
25. I have a life filled with a supportive husband, a sweet and happy child, a loving family, and great friends. I am richly blessed!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Weekend Visitors

I can't wait for June 13, 2009! That's the day my beautiful friend Ashley gets married. Ashley and I have known each other since 1st grade (wow!) and I am so happy that she has found Scott. He is such a great guy. Their wedding is going to be a wonderful celebration of their love, and I am so excited about being a part of it!

Scott and Ashley

This weekend, Scott and Ashley traveled down for a visit. We spent the weekend shopping, eating, and talking wedding. It was so much fun! Saturday night, our friends Shannon and John came over for dinner too. They left their kiddos at home, and we put Jackson down early. It was great to spend some quality adult time together with good friends.

Thanks, Ashley and Scott, for a great weekend. We can't wait to do it again soon!

Wesley is performing the wedding so here is the first brainstorming session of what all needs to be included in the ceremony...

Scott wanted to make sure Wesley didn't forget "you may now kiss the bride"

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Dancing with the Stars

I am a huge fan of Dancing with the Stars. For Christmas, Wesley gave me tickets to Dancing with the Stars - The Tour. YEAH!! My brother-in-law, Ryan, also got tickets for my sister who is a fan as well.

Emily and I went to the show two years ago, and really had a great time. We were both looking forward to tonight's performance, and we weren't disappointed! It was so much fun to be with our husbands (aren't they great for going with us!) and the seats were awesome. We were so close.

It was a great night and as always, got me in the mood for dancing!

Emily and Ryan at dinner

Here we are before the show

All four of us after the performance

Maybe some day they will ask us to come on the tour!
A girl can dream, can't she :)

Chuck E. Cheese

Call us crazy, but today we decided to tackle Chuck E. Cheese with Jackson, Joshua, Caleb, and Rebekah. It was so much fun! Jackson loved it! We couldn't get him to eat because he was in awe of all the action going on.

We bought 100 tokens and let the kids go crazy. Joshua and Caleb are big enough now to go off on their own and they stayed mainly around the Car games. Rebekah and Jackson just ran around the entire restaurant. Every now and then, we would put them on a ride or play a game with them.

I think Wesley, Susan, and I had as much fun as the kids. We each got to play our favorite games as well!

Here are some pictures from the day:

Now, how does this work, Daddy?

Mommy, are you going to shoot that or pose for a picture?

Take that!

Who's having more fun here?

Look - Miss Rebekah is smiling :)

We can all fit - all four kids and Susan are piled into this ride!

Okay, I have saved the best two pictures for last...Look very closely at both of these pictures. Joshua wants to smile but doesn't want to take his eyes off his games!! TOO FUNNY!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy Birthday, Susan and Emily!

Both of my sisters have birthdays within a month of each other. Susan's birthday was December 22 and because that was the day I came down with Strep, I neglected to post a Happy Birthday to her. I decided to wait and do a combo Happy Birthday when Emily's birthday rolled around. Well, today is Emily's birthday so... Happy Birthday, Susan and Emily!!!

Though I am a little bias, I believe that I have the best two sisters in the world! My relationship with both of them is so different. Susan and I were very close in high school and college since we were only two years apart. We were on the volleyball team together, in the same social club in college, and I even followed her path to the College of Business.

Since Emily is four years behind me, our relationship didn't really develop until she went to college. By the time she entered LU, Wesley and I were married. Wesley was the Youth Minister at West End Church so Emily and all her buddies decided to start attending there as well. It was so much fun to have her and her friends at church, and I loved being with her every Sunday!

Our relationships have continued to grow throughout the years as we now rely on each other in different ways. Not being able to be around Susan and Emily on a regular basis has been the hardest part about moving to Georgia. I miss being able to shop with Emily or do regular play groups with Susan and her crew. They are my best friends, and I do miss them so much!

Happy Birthday, Girls! I love you!

Weekend Trip

This weekend, we decided to travel to Nashville and Knoxville to visit both sets of parents. After a busy day in Cumming, we traveled to Knoxville late Saturday and arrived at the Benders around midnight. Since we had a late night, we decided to sleep in Sunday morning. Once we all woke up, we enjoyed a lazy day of movie watching, eating, and a little shopping.

The highlight of the trip was seeing Jack and Lynne's new home renovations. They started back in November with the transformation, and it looks awesome! They tore out walls; put in all new counter tops, cabinets, and appliances; repainted; and replaced the carpet with hardwood. It really is a whole new place!

Great job, Jack and Lynne!



As we were heading to Nashville on Monday morning, it started snowing. It wasn't a lot, but it sure made for a beautiful drive.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Passy Update

Good New! Operation: No More Passy is complete! Jackson is officially weaned from his nightly companion. Day Two was hard, but Night Three was worse. He woke up screaming around midnight. I was strong though and just rocked him back to sleep. It was tempting to give in, but I knew if I did, we would be fighting this battle another night. I am so proud of him because I know it wasn't easy.

I couldn't post without a picture. Sadly, he came down with a cold/ear infection this week. I bundled him up to take him to the doctor. He felt pretty lousy, but looked so cute in his puppy dog hat and mittens that I had to snap this picture.

He's cute even when he's sick :)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Day Two - Operation: No More Passy!

Today is Day 2 of our quest to end Jackson's affair with his passy. Though he has not been one to have his passy with him 24/7, it has been a constant presence at nap time, bedtime and while traveling. I knew at the beginning of the year, I would need to start weening him off.

I was dreading this day more for me than for him. I hate taking something away from him that he loves and is doing him no harm right now. I just know eventually, it will have to go so yesterday as I put him down for his nap, I decided now was as good of a time as any.

I laid him down and he looked up at me like "Okay, where is it?" I just smiled and left the room. He cried for a few minutes but then proceeded to take a 2.5 hour nap. Last night, as Wesley put him to bed, he searched his crib looking for it. Though he came up empty-handed, he didn't put up a fight and went right to sleep. This morning, when I went in to get him, he was pointing behind his crib - usually if he looses his passy during the night that's where we find it. I tried to ignore his plea for me to get it and distracted him by talking about Flash and Daddy. Worked great!

Now, here we are again at nap time and it's not going as well. He just looked up at me with eyes that begged for me to give him beloved passy! I had been encouraged this morning by Wesley to stay strong and not give in! So I just smiled and left the room. He has been crying for about 10 minutes but I can tell he is slowly settling down. The ladies at the YMCA play center said he probably wore himself out playing today. I am hoping that will work to my advantage and sleep will overcome the desire for the passy.

I will keep you updated on his success. In the meantime, here are some pictures from his passy- past.

Jackson at 6 months. He loved to have one passy in his mouth and one in each hand. That way, he wouldn't be without if he lost one during his nap!
This was taken at Christmas. As you can see, Jackson graduated to a new passy - his "Bling Bling" (seriously, that's what the package said!)