Thursday, October 4, 2012

Big Stuff...

I have such guilt over the fact that I haven't written here in so long.  Not that I'm obligated to do so, but more so over the fact that I was so excited about once again documenting our life and then I just .... didn't.

It wasn't so much so that I didn't want to.  I mean after all, I still have about 4 blog posts sitting in my queue. It's more that time once again got away from me and once again, I just can't manage a business and a life.

So here I am.  It's 1:00 am and I find myself tired and restless.  Not sure if my desire for sleep or my desire to talk is more necessary.  And I guess in this instance it would be my desire to type.  Either way... girlfriend has got to get some words out!

I am happy to report that the Lord is at work in my life.  He's at work in my family's life as well, but this post is specific as to His work in my own life.

This is a big deal, y'all.

I can honestly say that I've spent possibly the last 4 years being angry with God.  Not angry enough to walk away from my faith, but angry enough to avoid a meaningful relationship.  Angry enough to not pray. Angry enough to not read His Word. Angry enough to avoid any sort of spiritual encounter.  If Jesus were on Facebook, I would have unfriended Him.

In case you missed it...I was a little angry.

As in all cases with Jesus, it was all a part of His plan. He was getting me to where I needed to be so He could do His thing. Part of that was getting Monk and I into a church where we just heard the Gospel.  Nothing more, nothing less.  His Word. God Breathed. It was through the teaching that my heart began to soften and walls came down.  The fists unclenched and my heart began to heal.  And let me teaching, I mean actual teaching from the Word.  Not topical 'how to live your best life now' sermons.  I'm talking honest to goodness exegesis of the Bible.

During this last year and under that amazing biblical teaching was when the decision came to step away from my business.  We were in the book of Jonah.  And all along I thought Jonah was just about a fish. Who knew?

And that decision was a catalyst.  Jesus became real to me again. Prayer became real to me again. The Word became real to me again. Worship was real again.

And then we missed a month of Sundays because of illness.

And then my husband lost his job.

And then I had to take on twice the business.

And then we have no health insurance.

And then bright orange lights light up in the dashboard on a 'new to us' vehicle.

And just happens.

Oh sly boy.

All of that and here I sit unwavering.  Believing and trusting in the Sovereignty of God. Knowing He has this.  All of it.

This is where the Big Stuff is.  The stuff I can share and the stuff I can't share.  The stuff I want to talk about so desperately, but the stuff I feel needs to be kept between me and Jesus for just a little longer.  The stuff that Jesus is doing in my life.

I realize this is all so very vague and part of me wants to apologize and part of me wants to savor it.  But the time is not right to share all of what the Lord is doing, but I just wanted to share with y'all that there is big stuff going on in my life.

Stuff that terrifies me and excites me all at the same time.  Stuff that just requires a LOT of prayer.  We need your prayers.  For a lot of things.  Some good and some not so good, but we do need them.

If I were on Facebook right now y'all would tell me I'm Vaguebooking.  I know I am. Frankly, I sound a little psychotic. Some of you would say, 'this is different from normal, how?'.  This IS different, I promise.

It's good. It's all good. And it's big stuff. God stuff.

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Age is a funny thing.

We spend our childhood wanting nothing BUT to be older. We usually enjoy our 20's and 30's while not appreciating them and then inevitably, want the clock to slow waaay down once 40 starts showing up on our radar.

Me, personally?  I'm good.

I remember turning 40 and going into an all out panic because I was 40! My life was so over. Where's the cemetery plot.

Phtfffffffff. Whatever.

I turned 43 this year and frankly, I wear it as a badge of honor.  I've managed to raise two kids now who, by the grace of God alone, are pretty decent human beings with an above average (I believe) moral compass.  And they only need occasional therapy.

I still have 4 more under my roof, so the opportunity to completely screw those 4 up is still in the cards, however I don't stress about it near as much as I did 20 years ago when I only had one under my roof.  This is one of the joys of being over 40.

I now have the freedom to not give a rat's patooty what other people think of me.  Especially other mothers. Am I perfect? Why yes. Yes I am. Oh I kid...of course I'm not.  My little girls don't go to bed on time..EVER, my 3 1/2 year old still wets herself on a daily basis and it's not unheard of that I will, on occasion, throw out a bribe to get the girls to do things for me.

Does this make me a bad mother?

I guess that depends on who you're talking to. As for me, I'm not really concerned with what others think.  Here's why: I have enough age and experience under my belt to know that 1. my little girls will eventually start getting more regular in their bedtime routine. 2. Charlie will get completely potty trained at some point. I've yet to have a 4 year old pee pee pants. And 3. There is nothing wrong with kids occasionally making a little money on the side. Especially when mom has had it and needs a break.

I realize that this line of thinking has some people gasping... and that's okay. Take a few deep breaths, put your head between your legs if you have to and then tell yourself "It's going to be okay" about 3 times.

Feel better?

See, here's the thing.  Once upon a time, a long time ago, I let other people steal my joy away from me where my children were concerned, where my house was concerned, where my spiritual level was concerned and even where my marriage was concerned.  I spent so much time comparing myself to this person and that person that I wasn't taking the opportunity to enjoy what the good Lord had put right before me!

Age and experience have given me not only the confidence, but the sense to realize that time is fleeting and we've only got one shot at this life so why spend one more minute comparing ourselves to someone else?  Here's a tip: we don't know what goes on behind closed doors. Or outside of blogs.

mmmhhhmmm...stepped on some toes there.

Really now girls (yes, I'm speaking to the ladies here). STOP. WITH. THE. COMPARING.  Enjoy your babies! Enjoy your little laugh lines! Enjoy the experience that comes with age! I won't say you have to enjoy your gray hair, because I certainly don't enjoy mine and take every opportunity possible to color and highlight it.

Some things are meant to be colored. Hair is one of them.

All of that to say this: 43 doesn't bother me. 44 won't either and neither will 45. Besides, I've got enough on my plate at this very moment without worrying about what 44 will look like. I suspect however, that it will look much like 43 with the exception of the fact that I will finally have a pair of glasses with bifocals built in.

Losing the ability to read things at a normal distance sucks as you get older. This I will not sugar coat nor deny. Never make fun of some one who wears bifocals. It will come back to bit you in the spades.

I'm sorry I ever made fun of you, Mrs. Riffee. Please know that God, does in fact, have a sense of humor.

Anyway, the 43rd birthday was uneventful.  It was spent with my family, which is pretty much the way I like it best.

I did make my own cake because Monk forgot to order one.  I used Trader Joe's chocolate cake mix which was to die for and then I made my own homemade chocolate buttercream, which was to die for as well. No lie.

Monk and the girls bought me a Keurig, but I don't think I like it. The  coffee is SOOO unbelievably strong. Anyone else have one and like it? Don't like it? Any helpful coffee tips?

My day in the pictures is forthcoming...and in case you're birthday is on July 4th which is why everyone is in red, white and blue.

And yes, I love my birthday.  My mom was having a 'blast' when I was born. I was a little 'firecracker'. I'm a Yankee Doodle Dandy.  I've heard them all.  And I still like them.

I might have sort of went a little overboard in cake pictures. You want cake now, don't you?

Sometimes, photography props work great around the house. 

This kid melts my buttah...


The single best reason to children.

Aging isn't a terrible thing.

Well except the whole bifocal thing...that's bad. Really bad.

Age is just the natural progression of life.  And as with most things, one's perception of  it will pretty much determine how much one enjoys it.

Me?  I'll be the old lady with the bright red lipstick and leopard purse the size of a tank. I  won't be growing old quietly.

All that to say this: I'm not old. I don't consider myself old. Frankly, I'm fairy immature for most women in their 40's.  I'm okay with that.  I do consider myself experienced and wiser and for me...that's awesome.

You know that whole hind sight is 20/20 thing?

It's true.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

So Much to Say, So Little Time to Say It...

When I went to type the 'blogger' website, I actually typed in

That is for real truth.  It's been that kind of week.

This week isn't shaping up to be much different. I have a total of 4 (FOUR!) different posts that I've started. One of them involves 25 pictures. And another one is a DIY. I'm not even kidding. I simply have not had the time to post.  I'm only doing it now because I feel like I will lose my ever lovin' mind if don't say something.

We will also be leaving for vacation next Sunday so I am furiously working to be completely caught up on editing before we leave.  I'm also hoping that while I'm gone I can be wonder blogger and dazzle you people with lots of wordy, picture-y posts.

I'm not sure if I will have time to post much, if anything, this week. This bums me out.  But on top of all the editing I have to do, I also have a birth I will need to shoot this week.  And there's this little matter of my 43rd birthday.

I'll be 43 years old on July 4th. Where in the heck did the time go, y'all?

And that's another post I want to do! so make that five posts I have in my head. If y'all know anything at all about being over 40, you know that my brain simply cannot handle all of this information.  Just like my bladder cannot handle excessive laughter.  But that story is for another time.

Here's a little sneaky peeky at one of the sessions I did this past week.  I no longer have a photography blog and sometimes I just wanna share.  I figure most of you can appreciate a little maternity photography, right?

As long as it's not me!

And this?  This is definitely not me. 

We were sweating buckets for this session.  Texas heat is ridiculous sometimes, but this beautiful momma was a trooper. And she brought the cool chair. I wanted to push her down and bring it home with me. But I didn't.

Also, this past week Charlie bit Hopie in the butt. I'll tell more of that story later, but I found this picture tonight from the girl's swim class this last week and I couldn't resist throwing it in Photoshop and adding my little touch to it.

Because I'm so mature and all.

Gotta love my Charlie Bug. She keeps life interesting. And seriously? Would anyone ever want to get bit in the hiney by those teeth?!

(If you're an orthodontist and you're reading this AND you feel sorry for us concerning our 3 year olds teeth....we will totally take an orthodontic donation. Just sayin'...)

Hopefully I'll be back to with a post on getting older, but if I'm not...y'all have a fantastic 4th of July!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Brave - A Review

*There is possible SPOILERS in this post, so be prepared!* Nothing that gives it away, but mostly story line discussion.

Let me just say, the four Littles and I have been very excited about Disney Pixar's new film, Brave.  I am all over a movie about a feisty girl with out of control red, curly hair!  Like I would know anything about that!

For months we've have counted down until this movie came out.  We really had intended on going to opening day and then the unthinkable 19 year old Maddie went to the midnight showing.

She came over the next day and informed me that it was dumb, somewhat boring, scary and inappropriate. WHA?!! I was crushed, to say the least.  More so for the four Littles because we had been so excited and now, I had serious doubts about the movie.

We decided to wait a few days and see what the general buzz was around the Internet.  After some more contemplation & some positive reviews, I decided to go ahead and take the bigger girls to see it and left the two little ones at home with Monk for the evening.

Let me just say this about the movie... I loved it!!

That's what I get for trusting the opinion of a 19 year old.  Not to diss her (okay, maybe a little), BUT...I can see where she wouldn't totally 'get' the theme of the movie.

In the previews, we are led to believe that the movie is about young Merida's quest for freedom.  This is definitely in the story line, but it's most definitely not the main story line of the movie.

The main story line of the movie is mostly about the mother/daughter relationship.  I originally wanted to say mother/child, but now I'm not so sure that's appropriate.  I really think the mother/daughter relationship is very strong and evident in the movie.

As the mother of 5 girls....let me repeat that... As the mother of FIVE girls, I totally GOT this movie!  I could relate in every way!  Well, except for the whole Scottish queen/princess/ride a horse/ marry a man who wears a skirt sort of thing.

And in the end? I cried.  Because I would have done exactly what Merida's mother did...defend my children no matter what the situation and the possible outcome.

Here are my following opinions and observations on the movie in general.  In bullet form, of course.

  • As per usual, the animation was outstanding.  It was hard to believe the scenery was actually animation - just beautiful!  And Merida's hair?  OH. MY. LANTA. I wanted it! I wanted one of my daughter's to have it! Totally in love with her. :)
  • Merida had a strong relationship with her father and a strained relationship with her mother.  Some could interpret this as a weak father role sort of thing, but I would disagree with that. Merida just  had her father's personality and he understood her. 
  • I believe the movie had a great example of a girl who rebelled and then repented.
  • I believe it also showed how parents need to listen to their children and that those relationships can be repaired.
  • There was a lot of humor involving Merida's rambunctious red-headed little brothers. They were all boy and kept my girl's (and ME!) in stitches with their boy antics.
  • The movie has some scary scenes that involve a bear. I was glad that the two smallest Littles weren't there with me. It was pretty intense and even scared Liv a little.
  • There is magic in the movie - as in most Disney movies.
  • There is some nudity involving male rear ends. I didn't find it offensive although I can see where some might. This is what Maddie deemed offensive. It was pertinent to the scene, however.
  • There is also a scene involving a woman's bosoms, but again, it was more funny than it was offensive. There is no nudity.  It is just a scene where it is 'implied' as to what happens.
  • The mother and father loved one another very much, which was nice to see.
  • Merida loves her brothers and got along with them. Also nice to see.
  • I was very glad that this movie didn't involve a prince. Some may see it as a form of some sort of feminism, but it was more about Merida's desire to find love on her own and not be forced into a relationship she was not ready for.
And that's it!  Would I see it again? Absolutely?  Will I buy it when it comes out on DVD? Absolutely! 

It made me look at my relationships with my daughters and realize that they all aren't going to be like me or do what I want them to all the time.  And I'm okay with that.  It also made me realize that I would go to the ends of the earth to defend them in any way I needed to.

And that, my friends?  Is good stuff!

Now to just figure out how to make them all have giant heads of outrageously red, curly hair...

Friday, June 22, 2012

Summer Fun Fridays...the test run.

I hope this works.  The whole Summer Fun Friday thing.  I'm not one for routine and pretty much consider myself a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kinda girl.  When I get the whim to write about something, I don't usually follow the rules.

Come to think of it, I was a lot like that in college too.

And maybe in high school..


I really wanted to just dedicate Fridays to some of the fun things we do - on. the. cheap.

Yep.  Monk works hard for the money and since I've cut my business way back our summer fun must be affordable. And we're saving every dime we can to go on VACATION in less than 3 weeks!

One the single cheapest things I've done to provide easy entertainment for my girls for the last 3 years is go to Wally World every spring and buy a cheap kiddie pool. Not the cheapest pool, not the most expensive, but the middle of the road plastic pool.

I'm not one for visiting the old WW store as I find it about as enjoyable as shaving my legs with a rusty razor, BUT they do make a very effective, affordable, fairly sturdy kiddie pool.

And my girls LOVE it.

I usually pick up some goggles, bubbles and floaty toys and they're pretty much set.

Then usually around late August, the morbidly hot Texas sun manages to warp the plastic pool beyond repair and it gets retired.  Last year it became a leaf pool in the late fall/early winter and the girls had a ball jumping in leaves.

Not bad for a $16 investment.

Lots of hot summer days are spent in this pool. I throw in some poolside snacks and it becomes a couple hours of fun.

Photographic evidence of poolside fun
(I sure wish I could get these pictures bigger...)

And there you have it.  My first every Summer Fun Friday.  It felt sort of contrived. Was it sort of lame?  Exciting? Boring? Are you mocking me?  

I'm sort of mocking myself so that one wouldn't surprise me.  

And I hate my pictures being so small. 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Feeling Quippy

Okay. So 'quippy' is totally not a word, but look at it this way...I just made a new one!

Ever since I joined bloggy land with the Internets many, many moons ago, I've always wanted to host one of those cute, themed, particular-day-of-the-week posts that everyone looks forward to.  You know, 'Wordless Wednesday' - which never worked for me, by the way because I always have something to say Or how about Works-for- Me Wednesday where everyone shares ... well..what works for them!  I'm not sure why I picked two Wednesday things, but you get my drift.

Anyway, I debated and debated and debated, ate some pistachios and debated some more.

(I've realized that I'm much too immature to come up with something legit.)

I would think of things like:

Moron Monday where we talk about those morons we've encountered over the previous week and weekend.  Not very Christian-like I'm afraid.  Fun, but totally not spiritual. (My friend Anita is saying, "DANG" right now. She would've loved that one.)

Terrific Tuesdays. Much too happy. And what if Tuesday actually sucked a little.

We Cleaned Something Wednesdays. Nah.

Theological Thursdays. Now...before you snort your Cheerios, hear me out.

I kind of liked this one. You know, take a day to tone it down, open up discussion about things, give my thoughts on particular subjects, etc..  The problem was that it seemed very contrived.  If the Spirit leads me to say something, I want to be willing to write about it and say it. But what I don't want is to be sweating over my computer keys like some pimply faced seminary kid trying to finish a term paper on Paedobaptism vs. Credobaptism - To Dunk or Not to Dunk. If it's forced it's just not worth it.

And I bet y'all are totally Googling what paedobaptism and credobaptism are, huh?  HA!

And lastly, I thought about...

Summer Fun Friday. And I liked it.  I realized that I would change it during the the Fall, Winter and Spring, but I liked it.  It would be and easy, laid back post, one on which to head into the weekend. And so I edited some pictures of the girls and arranged them just so and got them all ready to post on Summer Fun Friday... and then...

...realized it was Thursday!

The worst part about the whole thing? The worst part was sitting here really trying to figure out what day of the week it was. For about 10 minutes. No lie.

So now I've changed my mind and think I'll start calling it Stupid Things You Do Over Forty Fridays. Half my readers would totally get it and the other half would probably just say ....'Eww'.

I'll be back Friday with my legitimate Summer Fun Friday post, but for now I need to go look for my glasses.

Which will probably be on top of my head.

Taken by my Birdie age 3. :)

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Not-So-Father's Day

Originally, I had planned on doing a big Father's Day post.

I took lots of pictures of the girls making their cards and I took several Father's Day shots and totally planned on putting a post out there to honor the man I love and whom my little girls call daddy.  It was (and will be eventually) a really happy post.

But things took an abrupt turn for me and I needed to write it down.  Get it out. Let it go.

While my amazing husband tells folks he has 6 children, he biologically only has 4. He's a step-father to my two oldest.

Some of you may not know this, many of you do, but I was married once before.

The man I married 23 years ago gave me two beautiful children.  He then left me when they were 3 & 4 years old.  In reality, he left them too.  Once he left, he moved 5 hours away and my children saw him pretty much once a month for the majority of their childhood with  week long visits scattered here and there in between.  By the time they were teenagers they saw him even less.

Monk, my amazing husband of 14 years now, did his very best to be a father to my kids. He loved them like his own, tried to be a part of their lives and in a very real sense, tried to make up for what they had lost. While his efforts were genuine, the reality was that he wasn't their dad.  Conflicts happen in all blended families and ours was no different. When kids get about 11 & 12 years old...they just know it's not the same.

For years I tried to protect their hearts.  When their dad didn't call or visits didn't go well I tried to reassure them and put things in the best light possible. I admit that as they got older I said things I probably shouldn't have.  Not in any way to try and degrade their dad to them, but because I was hurt for them.

And that's what I did for 16 long years.  I hurt for them.

They are now 19 & 20. The don't live with me anymore.  They are adults (for the most part lol!) and they now deal with their dad on their own terms.  Many times in their childhood or teen years if I saw that they were hurting over him I would call him and persuade him to try and right things.

I don't do that anymore since it's not necessary for us to communicate any longer.  And now I watch them hurt.  I watch them, with the expectation that things will be different, and then see the disappointment that happens when it's not.

My heart aches.

Today has been hard for them.  The relationship they want and the relationship they have are worlds apart.  A man that doesn't see the gift  he has in his children that want a relationship with him.

On a day that has been so wonderful for my own husband and my 4 little girls, has been hard for my two oldest children.  There is a hole in their hearts and they don't know how to fill it. And as tears roll hot down my cheeks, I admit I cannot fill that hole either.

And yet again...I hurt for them.

I know they have a Father that can fill that hole.  He can give them peace and comfort and joy and happiness. He can change their heart and show them forgiveness.  He can allow them to forgive. He can show them how to be thankful in the hard stuff.

But tonight, the lump in my throat and the pain in my heart are still very much present.  I hate not being able to make things right.  I grieve because they hurt.

They are strong, those two.  Both in will and in determination. And for that, I am extremely thankful. But as a mother, I know they say they are fine, but I also know there is a sense of loss in their heart.

And what can I do?

I can be there for them. I can love them. And I can pray for them.

But I'm not sure if I'll ever be able to stop hurting for them.

Friday, June 15, 2012


I woke up on the wrong side of the bed.  Which frankly, is a lame excuse for a sinful attitude.

I knew within 15 minutes of waking up that I was going to struggle.  I could sense that my temper, like some pacing, caged animal, was looking for an opportunity to get out.

It didn't take long unfortunately.

I struck again and again, with words that stung and a not so quiet voice.  They were easy prey.  When you're 12 and under what are you going to do?  And so they took it.

Every little thing, all day long.  Another opportunity to come unleashed. Even in public. Which I find completely and utterly reprehensible.  Those are the people at which my eyes hurl fiery darts. The ones I judge.

And then I was one.

All day long, over and over, the Spirit chided me.  I fought back. I ignored.  I was even angry.  I remember at one point wanting to yell, "leave me alone!".

I'm reading a book right now about thankfulness and what it means.  It's changing me. I'll share more on it in a coming post, but today that book kept popping into my head. Truthfully, lots of things were popping into my head.

Specifically, the verse I just said to my little girls yesterday about "doing unto others". (Matt 7:12)

Conviction central.

I'm trusting that it was the Holy Spirit and not the carbs I ate that finally calmed me and I was able to be decent to my children again.

I'm not exactly sure what happened today as that is so out of character for me.  I can be a grump at times, but today I was out of control.  So much so that I came home and checked side effects on a new medicine I had started taking for my foot. Nothing.

Chalk it up to good old fashioned sin.

Ugly, ugly, ugly sin.

I would be foolish not to realize that my heart, while it is changing, being softened and molded, is very realistically under attack.  The devil knows and he sees and it makes him seriously unhappy.  So he wreaked havoc with it today.  He won. At least for a little while.

He picked the wrong thing to use against me though.

You see, while my children may get on my nerves at times, they are also one of the things in my life that make me happiest.  I love them almost more than I love oxygen.  The only reason I love oxygen more is because it allows me to keep breathing long enough so I can keep seeing my children. (Actually that's God that gave me the oxygen to breath, but you know what I mean. I hope.)

Using my children against me only gives God the advantage because my children are also one of the things that God uses to draw me closer to Him.

I may have allowed the devil to use me to verbally batter my children for a large portion of the day, but in the end, the Holy Spirit finally allowed me to see the how unholy I was being. And He changed my heart.

He did that!  Right in the middle of the mall!  Right before I consumed a large portion of carbs!  I'm sure my girls didn't care if it was the Holy Spirit or the pretzel, they were just glad to have their momma back!

And so was I.

Now the hard, unfinished business I have left to do is to apologize to them, individually. One of the hardest parts of parenting is apologizing to my children.  I admit, it doesn't always happen enough. Admitting my sin and asking forgiveness, that is.

I was wrong today.

I was SO wrong.

I was sinful.

If I expect my children to not yell at others and if I expect my children to apologize to others and if I expect my children to be Jesus to others, than it is my responsibility to be Jesus to them.


Gosh that's hard. But man, am I thankful that God keeps chiseling away at me and my almost 43 year old self.  Because I know that he began a good work in me and He will finish that work.  And hopefully, one day, I get to look at my children as adults and watch God use their children to teach them.  That would be so cool.

So take that, devil.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Confessions From a Country Concert.

I seriously had one of the most rad weekends I've had in a long time.  I'm not even kidding.  And I'm not afraid nor ashamed to use the word "rad".  That's one of the best parts about being over 40 - you can just say crap and not care if it's cool or not.

First paragraph and I'm already off track. Also one of the worst things about being over 40.


In short, my best friend Anita ended up having an extra ticket to the Tim McGraw/Kenny Chesney Brothers of the Sun concert.  

Tim McGraw, y'all.  Enough said I do believe.

Anyhoo, I've compiled a list of a few confessions I have about Saturday's concert.

Confession #1. I've never really been to a concert.

It's true. ::insert snickering here: I've been to gospel concerts. ::insert more snickering here:: and I've been to...

...a Hilary Duff concert. ::insert raucous laughter here:: Oh I wish I were kidding, but alas, I am not. I took my Madgirl when she was but a mere 11 or 12 years old.  It was fun and all, but not exactly what I'd call a concert for adults.

To say I  WE were excited about this little adventure was a complete and total understatement.

I couldn't imagine any other person I'd rather spend my first concert with.  We did our fair share of mischief making in college so I felt it was only appropriate to share this rite of passage with my partner in crime.  Well as much 'crime' as you can get into in a small Baptist college. We managed though.

Confession #2. We tailgated.

Anita is a concert attending veteran so I was able to feel like one of the cool kids on my first time out with some of her friends that were tailgating. Let me just say this - tailgating is great fun, y'all and frankly, had it not been 156 degrees outside I could've stayed out there all day!

Yellow and purple Solo cups! Aren't they cute!

Tailgaters are an interesting breed. They are happy and fun and willing to share anything and everything.  Maybe a little too much.

Confession #3.  Concerts are loud.  

I'm sorry, let me rephrase that... Concerts are LOUD!! And apparently I am old in regards to that.  It bothered me at first and then as the night wore on I became more and more used to it.  And THEN, at some point in the night everyone began to sound like the Munchkins from The Wizard of Oz. 

I'm not kidding! I truly thought I had permanently damaged my hearing at one point. I suppose it could quite humorous to spend the rest of your life hearing Munchkin voices all the time. But then I realized at some point I'd probably have to kill someone and that sort of thing is usually frowned upon.

By the time the concert was over, mine and Anita's conversations were going something like this:

Anita: Man, Kenny Chesney was so awesome! (Anita is a Kenny lover)
Me: HUH?
Anita: I loved Kenny Chesney!
Me: Yea, the boy certainly knows how to put on a show!
Anita: What?

Then we laughed hysterically at how old and dumb we were.

Confession #4.  I prayed to not get the stinky stall.

This particular confession holds true for all people in all situations, but I'm gonna go ahead and put it out there for this particular instance because somebody just needs to say it.

While waiting in line to use the bathroom at the concert, I was secretly praying not to get the smelly stall.  You know everybody can smell it and I'm pretty sure heaven's gates were being inundated with prayers for deliverance from that particular stall.  We all knew it was there because we could smell it, but everybody stood there all cool like while refraining from plugging their noses and saying, "sheeeeewwweee".

If you're prone to that sort of explosive bathroom behavior then I think I'm pretty safe in saying you probably need to stay away from the Ultimate Nachos at popular concert venues.

Confession #5. I judged way too many people's apparel choices at this concert.

People watching is a favorite of mine and this particular night happened to be a goldmine liken to that of the People of Walmart.  Minus the pajama bottoms.

Let me say this. Just because you have a cute pair of shorts and an even cuter pair of cowboy boots does not necessarily mean that it is entirely appropriate for you to wear them together.

In other words, if your thighs are dented, please refrain from the public wearing of bootie shorts. You may end up as blog fodder.

Confession #6. I sang my guts out.  

Even when I didn't know all the words and sang a large portion of them wrong, I still sang my guts out.  So not only did I  go home deaf, but hoarse as well.

It was well worth it.

Confession #7. I enjoy laughing at drunk people.  

And to tell you the truth, there were a lot of them that night.  

Never having been to a concert like that (obviously there was no alcohol at Hilary Duff - although it might have made it more bearable), I really didn't realize just how much people consumed! Holy Moses! 

I don't have a problem with a casual drink.  I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love Jesus, but I drink a little.  But what I don't understand is paying big bucks for tickets to the THEE concert of the summer and then getting so drunk you probably don't remember it. That makes no sense to me.  

However, watching you be drunk was great entertainment and anytime you want to make a fool of yourself publicly, I'll be happy to watch and then blog about it.

Confession #8.  The old gray mare ain't what she used to be.

We went to bed a 1 am and I was wiped out.  For the entirety of the next day as well.  And maybe even into Monday.  I'm realizing more and more that the girl who could stay up all night in college, take an exam the next day and then go work a 5 hour shift is...GONE!  Somebody give me some coffee and Advil because I just can't cut it anymore. HA!

We danced, we sang, we laughed hard and had way too good of time, if there even is such a thing. 

But the biggest thing I received from this weekend was friendship.  It's good to know that true friends stand the test of time.  True friends can pick up where they've left off.  And true friends will shush you when you're talking smack about someone walking in front of you a little too loudly.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

These Six.

These six right here?

They are enough for me to thank God every moment of every day.

Children, while hard, are a blessing y'all. When you look at them that way, the hard times are a whole lot easier to get through.

Spend time with them. They deserve your time. And they grow up much too quickly.

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Cleanse...

So I'm starting a cleanse today.  To be more specific, it's the Advocare 24-day Challenge.  I did it a 3 months ago and lost 21 lbs. It was great for me! (I promise, this is not a paid advertisement.)   I never really felt hungry and more importantly...

I didn't even exercise.

There's a part of that wants to totally brag on that and then there's another part of me that is a little ashamed and wants to crawl under a rock.  I'm going with bragging though.  It really was great to watch the pounds melt away ONLY by changing what I put in my mouth and taking the supplements.  This is how I broke my Coke addiction. ::insert happy dance here::

I was eating healthy, feeling UH-mazeballs!! All of my heartburn went away, my joint pay ceased to exist and pretty much every other physical ailment I was having went away.  It was fantastico.

But I'm an emotional eater.  Very. Much. So.

While I won't go into any details in this post (trust me, you will hear about this eventually), my beloved cat and buddy, Fat Otis disappeared.  I went into a tailspin. I cried for 3 days straight and actually prayed he would come home. I was eating crap coming and going.  I'm not even kidding when I tell you I went to Sonic three nights in a row for a milkshake.  I ate licorice, chips, cereal, drank COKE...and the list goes on.  Knowing this food would make me feel terrible, I ate it anyway. I pretty much ate my weight in Jack in the Box tacos.  Don't judge...I love them.  Deep seeded psychological issues?

Most likely. That's for another time though.

Annnyway...I think that counts as falling off the bandwagon. I have heartburn again, I'm sluggish, my knees are achy and worst of all...I've gained 5 lbs back. It bites. I knew I had to pull myself together to do this again, but it has taken me 3 weeks to do it.  And here we are.

I was supposed to have started it yesterday, but I had a session yesterday morning and well....sometimes after drinking the herbal cleanse you just need to stay close to the bathroom.  And that's all I'm going to say about that.

I'd like to note my progress on here. What food I'm eating, how much I'm losing, etc... If y'all think you're going to get a weight out of me though, forget it.  I just want some accountability and I figure here is just as good as anywhere else.  As long as you don't ask my weight. Deal.

So last night was my last opportunity to eat carbs in the form of the devil ...white bread. It was also my last time for red meat for 11 days. ::whimper:: I grilled burgers and corn on the cob on my new wonderful grill that my hubby bought for me. :) It's rad.

 (hmmm...not happy about this picture size. Not at all. Anyone know how to make these bad boys bigger? Bueller? Bueller?)

Are you drooling yet? You should be, it was delicious. :) Monk kept grunting in between mouthfuls about loving me.  This man's love language is food. Hands down.

So that's it.  Let the journey begin. Anyone else want to join me?

This Name and Why...

Call Me Mumsy.

I know some of you are thinking "why on EARTH would she pick this name?'. Am I right?  I toyed with this particular name for a good long time, rolling it around on my tongue like a good fine wine, making sure it was well balanced and other wine analogies I can't seem think of at the moment. Full bodied comes to mind, but that's more about my size than my blog name. Good to know my advanced ability to rabbit trail has done nothing but improve over the last few years!

Bottom line: A good name is important. (There's a life lesson in that last line somewhere, but I'm not going there right now.)

Another name I considered was Adventures in Stretch Pants.  I really liked this name, but there is still a good portion of me (no pun intended) that has a great desire to not buy stretchy waist band pants. In other words, momma doesn't want to be a plus size for the rest of her life.  I also thought that as I aged I could transition into Adventures in Depends: It's No Laughing Matter.  But again, I really don't want to be known for my lack of bladder control either. Come on people, six kids came out of this body ..... I'm one good laugh away from a natural disaster every single day of my life.  I am not ashamed to admit this. Okay...maybe a little, but I want this blog to be honest, so there it is.

I just admitted to incontinence in my second post.

Keepin' it classy, y'all.

Needless to say, this name was not the name that summed me up, so it didn't make the cut.

The last name I considered was Momma Said...  I thought I could have fun with this one.  Kitschy little tag lines, great blog titles and something that specifically identified ME.  Plus, I really enjoy the song.  It's even in my iTunes. :) I liked it so much that I actually snagged it in Blogger and it sits there safely awaiting me if I ever need it.  So why didn't I pick it this time?  It just didn't feel right.  At least not right now and that was enough for me.

So now the question begs, why this Mumsy thing?

Well, it's not anything mind boggling or anything, but I sort of have a fascination with British people. As in, I adore them.  Their accents, their country, their cities, their countryside, their sayings (dodgy! bloke!), all of it. And every Mother's Day for the last several years or more, I tell my children that for that day they need to call me Mumsy. With... the British accent.

Most of the time this involves a lot of begging and pleading on my part, but generally I can get a few Mumsy's out of them before the day is over.  And let me tell children can do a sick British accent!  This makes me exceedingly happy and all is well.

So that is the very simple reason behind why I chose the name Call Me Mumsy.  It's endearing to me.

And quite frankly, it probably says a lot about what kind of complete and total nut job I am.

Until next time...

Saturday, June 2, 2012


...because it's my first post here.  That's pretty amazing to me considering I've wanted to start blogging again for 3 very long years.  I find it pretty surreal actually.  My life has come full circle over the last three years. One of these days I might even tell you that particular story.  What matters now is that I'm here.  And hopefully there is a few people someone who just might want to read a bit of my drivel, but if not then I'm completely content to talk to myself. That's what I do most days anyway.

Once I figure out where to find and fill out the 'About Me' page then I can let you know a little more...well...about me. Unfortunately, I'm still the technological boob that I've always been so it may take me a while.  Or a year. Give or take a few months.

Some of you are new here and some of you aren't.  Some of you read THIS blog .... the one that I left when I started my photography business.  I really loved that blog and frankly, it gives a lot of information about who I am.  It also gives a little insight into the crazy that I love to call my family. If you've never read it, then go look around.  Blog stalking is alright by me.

Well, that's as crazy as it gets for my first post, y'all. Independence Day is on the TV and I'm a little distracted by all the alien dissection going on at the moment.  That and there's a sink full of dirty dishes that are just aching to be clean.  Oh wait, that's me. I need a shower really bad.  The dishes just need to be washed.

Until next time...