Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween! 

First of all, thank you all for your sweet comments, texts and calls about our little "situation" and my month from hell

We're still living in a construction zone, but it's not nearly as worse as we thought it was. Thank goodness for good plumbers and a Home Warranty! 

Anyway, this was my {Halloween} breakfast of champions this morning: 

...and this is my little Halloween gift to myself. Yup, the iPhone 5 {!!!}

I'm praying for a much better {and shorter} November, and am kicking it off by taking a half day tomorrow {and working from home in the morning}, going to Baylor Homecoming this weekend and preparing for a long Thanksgiving holiday. 

So excited for our little Trick-or-Treaters tonight and our annual Baked Potato Soup Halloween supper! 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

At the end of my rope

Alright, God. I thought I was at the end of my rope last week, but really, this time...I really am. 

When I got home from buying new work shoes this afternoon, I walked into our closet to put them up and noticed a wet spot. Immediately I thought that Oliver had an accident on the floor, but, as any pet parent {or human parent for that matter} would do, I bent down to smell it to make sure that's really what it was. It wasn't. So as I got a towel to clean up what I thought was a little spill, I noticed our entire master closet floor was saturated. I stepped further into the closet and water pooled at my feet. I screamed at Brandon, who came running into the bathroom/closet combo.

He and I checked all the possible culprits, I {panicky} called my dad and then called the Home Warranty company. 

They were able to send out a plumber, who, after pulling up the carpet in our closet, cutting two holes in my hallway to find the leak and showing enough plumber's crack to last a lifetime, told us that the plumbing that converges for our master tub, shower, sinks and the washing machine {on the other side of the wall} were leaking. 

When you walk on our wood floors, you hear water squishing. The side is completely off my  bathtub, I have no carpet {or even carpet padding} in my closet, and we Brandon has to go outside and manually turn off the water when we're done taking a shower/brushing our teeth/going to the bathroom...which we do in about five minutes. I feel like I'm in the military with that quick routine. 

So tonight, after two glasses of wine and crying at "Dolphin Tale," I'm at the end of my rope. I just need prayer. I know it could be so, so worse, but this is just so much at once. 

I'm about to get the bathroom remodel I wanted...just a few years sooner.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Romney/Ryan 2012

It's no secret that I am a Republican and am just praying that Mitt Romney will be the 45th President of the United States. 

So, I did my civic duty today and stood in line for 45 minutes in the chilly weather to early vote. 

I'm so thankful that we live in a country where we can vote and our voice can be heard via our vote. 

If you haven't yet voted, please do! Your vote counts!!!


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

God is Funny Sometimes

James is one of my favorite books of the Bible. 

I grew up doing Bible Drill at church, and one of the first verses I memorized was James 1:2-4:

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking in anything. 

And boy, have I faced some trials this week. While I absolutely know that God doesn't give us more than we can handle, sometimes I wonder {oftentimes out loud}, "God, I don't know about this! I think I'm at my wit's end!" 

So obviously Monday was a bad day. I don't really want to get into details, but let's just say that I cried. A lot. I felt defeated, upset, frustrated, angry...the full range of emotions. 

But as I was driving home, I couldn't help but notice the beautiful Texas sky. And all I could think about was Ecclesiastes 3:11: 

He has made all things beautiful in His time.  

All things. And all evening, I kept singing the hymn, "In His Time."

Isn't it funny how He puts something in our heads and on our hearts when He wants them there? I just kept thinking, "Okay, God. This is your time. What happens to me is all in your time. Not mine."

And again, He doesn't give you more than you can handle. 

I've recently had some really bad dizziness spells. The first time, I was turning around to lock the door to our apartment {before we moved} and I had a rush of dizziness so bad that I fell down on the ground. Following that, I was just constantly dizzy, but didn't have one of those black out dizziness episodes -- until last night. 

I was driving on I-35 home and another rush of dizziness came over me. The road got squiggly, my depth perception went away and I didn't know if I was even driving in the correct lane. It went away about 20 seconds later. 

And that is scary, y'all. 

The first time, I brushed it off as a mix of stress and hunger {and even thought, "Oh, gosh. What if I'm pregnant?!" I'm not} but the same thing in two months is scary. So, I called my general practitioner and have an appointment with her next week to run some tests and figure out what in the world is going on. 

I called Brandon after the "spell" and just cried. And cried. And cried. If there's one thing I absolutely hate is not knowing what is going on with my body and why. 

Once I got home, I went out the front door to check my mail and saw a big gift bag on my front porch. I ran over and peeked inside, and what do you know? My friend Kimmie {who had no idea about the dizziness, only the Monday incident} had left a huge bag full of individually-wrapped homemade brownies and a sweet note for me. 

I broke down in tears again. 

I am so thankful He gives us good friends. 

I skipped the gym last night and just laid on the couch. And this sweet little boy laid right next to me all evening. He never does this, and I swear it's because cats just know. 

But let me back up. 

Once I checked the mail and inhaled two brownies, I was going to sit on the back porch and just relax while I let Oliver run around in the backyard. 

So, I called Oliver, opened the back door...

...and a lizard fell on my arm. 

If you know me, you know that I absolutely hate lizards...or any reptile and/or amphibian for that matter. 

So of course I screamed bloody murder and waved my arm around like a frantic idiot to get the lizard off. The lizard fell off my arm, and what do you know? Oliver comes running up, picks it up with his mouth and runs to our {not-yet-unpacked} study with it. All the while, I'm literally standing {I kid you not} on my sofa going "ohmygoshohmygosh!"

I then walk back to the guest room, and Oliver is PLAYING WITH THE LIZARD. Not eating it, like a normal cat. Playing with it. 

So of course I took this video from a safe distance (AKA: the door). 

After this, I ran into the kitchen and got a Tupperware bowl and got as close as I could to the lizard and threw the bowl on it. And Oliver bats the bowl off and continues to play with the lizard, who at this point is playing dead. Side note: It was not dead. 

I kept thinking, "Okay, I have got to get this thing out of my house. And Brandon won't be home for another 30 minutes. What do I do?!" 

So I ran across the street -- barefoot, I might add -- to the neighbors' house, as I knew they had twin boys who would love to play with a lizard. 

I explained my situation and the mom just laughed, turns around and yells, "Boys! Come here! Our sweet neighbor needs you to get a lizard!" They come running, "Ooooh! A LIZARD!!!" 

Needless to say, they came in my house, picked up the lizard {much to Oliver's chagrin} and threw it out the front door. 

After the proverbial dust settled, I thought, "Hmm. You know, God really has a sense of humor." He knew that I was having a rough day and just needed a little laugh. 

So while I'm carrying my big load this week, I just ask for prayer. Prayer for my "Monday situation" and prayer for my health situation. Of course, I'll update you all as soon as I know something -- and I'm hoping it's just that I'm anemic or have low blood sugar -- not something more serious.

God doesn't give us more than we can handle, but I'm at the end of rope, have tied a knot and am hanging on. 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Basics: Rotten

Today was rotten. Purely, simply, absolutely rotten. 

And because I told you I'd blog through good times and bad, here I am: the good, the bad and the ugly. 

And today? Today I feel ugly. My mood, my appearance, my attitude...all ugly. 

I took a look at my Pinterest board, "Words," and am trying to find a little inspiration for the last few hours of the work day. 


Sunday, October 21, 2012


It's amazing how just taking one day off can totally rejuvenate you. I took Friday off (well, a half day, but I worked from home in the morning), and it was amazing. 

But let me back up. 

I spent Thursday night in bed with a glass of wine and DVR'd Law & Order: SVU

Please ignore my piece of furniture that needs to be painted white. I'll get to it...eventually.

I didn't have to wake up until 8 a.m. on Friday morning {two hours later than normal}! I spent the morning cleaning the house, going to the grocery store and getting somewhat organized. 

I took Oliver to the vet for his annual shots {that were a month behind...oops!}. He was so good and I absolutely adore our new vet. And her prices. Three shots and a physical were $74. In Dallas? That would have been $200+. Love living in the 'burbs sometimes! 

Brandon and Brandon played Top Golf Friday night, so Brandon's fiancĂ© Kimmie came over and we had some wine, went to dinner at Pei Wei and got manicures. 

Coincidentally, we both picked out OPI's "Lincoln Park After Dark." One of my favorite things about fall? Dark nails. 

I spent Saturday lounging around, then ran over to Home Goods to look for a little bench for our vanity. I struck out there, but did find these precious mercury glass lamps for our bedside tables. For only $29.99 each, I'd say that's a pretty good deal! 

Brandon and I then painted/epoxy-ed the garage floor. 

Look how nasty it was before! The seller {we presume} had never heard of a power washer. 

Oh, and please ignore the furniture that we're taking back to my parents in a few weeks. :)

I made this for supper and we watched the Baylor game. Sad trombone. 

This is basically how Oliver and I spent the entire game:

...and then I bought tickets for Baylor Homecoming. Can't wait for Nov. 3!

I took some Zzz Quill last night {don't judge} and slept like a rock until 10 a.m. 

Brandon made me pumpkin spice waffles and coffee {I love him!} and then replaced the leaky bathroom faucet that I've been complaining about. 

I've got a few "Honey Do" tasks for him this afternoon and I plan to spend it getting organized, doing laundry and preparing for this will-be busy week ahead.

Happy Sunday!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Basics: Happy Birthday, Dad!

Happy 52nd Birthday to my amazing Dad! I love you more than I will ever be able to express and am so beyond thankful for you. Have a wonderful day! 

{Dad and me at the Houston Zoo, circa 1988}


Last night, I was honored to attend the Dallas IABC Gold Quill Awards on behalf of my agency, Weber Shandwick, for the work we did on three programs for my client, American Airlines

{L-R: me; my client, Kent; my colleague, Lauren}

We were so excited to be named Finalists in three categories, and we won two IABC Awards of Excellence for two of the programs, and one IABC Certificate of Merit {AKA: Honorable Mention} for another. 

It was a great night with great company, and I'm proud to work for such a great agency with an equally as great client. 

Happy Thursday! 

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Basics: What I'm Loving

I said to Brandon this morning, "Doesn't it feel like October is really dragging this year?" "Yes, it reallyyyyy is," he responded. 

I finally figured out why: we got married in Oct. 2010, so we were gone half of the month {or what felt like it} getting married and honeymooning. We took a trip to Mexico for our anniversary in the middle of Oct. 2011, so that month just flew by. We haven't gone anywhere {and won't} this year, so I think it's just making it a bit slower than we're used to. 

Anyway, here's what I'm loving this week:

Presidential Debates
It drives me crazy when people say they're apathetic about politics...especially when we're up for a major election in three weeks. 

The beauty of this country is that we do get to vote and we do get to speak our minds about the candidates --even if we disagree -- so apathy is just not something I understand. I get folks that don't post incessant tweets about it {unlike me}, and folks that don't post a Facebook status about it {unlike me}...but don't you dare tell me that you're uneducated about the candidates or that you're not going to vote. 

Educate yourselves about the candidates, make your decision based on the policies that you agree with, and do our country a favor and VOTE. 

PS: I had two {baby} glasses of wine last night. Lord knows I needed it during this debate!

Texas skies
How can you look at a sky like this and not believe that a higher power created it all Himself?

Our friend Kimmie {who is engaged to Brandon's friend Brandon} is from New Jersey. One thing that I just love about her is that she loves Texas and is totally embracing her new state. And one thing she's embracing are the Texas skies. She'll always say, "Gosh, it's a gorgeous sunrise/sunset." 

And call the nerd patrol, because I'm really loving the Yaupon Holly Tree in our backyard. 

When we first moved, it had no red berries and I thought it was just an ugly tree. But one day, it just blossomed with these red berries and my backyard just screams, "fall." 

I'm also loving lifetime friendships, especially the older I get. 

My friend Lindsey and I have been friends since before we can even remember. She's the friend that would just show up at my parents' house and eat supper with us. The friend whose mom I text to ask for recipes. The friend that, through hell and high water, fights, screaming matches and tears, is still my best friend and would come be with me at 2 a.m. in Alaska if she knew I needed her. 

And I feel like these days, that's a rarity. 

Anyway, she sent me this card for our anniversary and it's hanging on our fridge. It just makes me laugh every time I look at it! 

I'm off on Friday, so I'm so loving this short{er} week!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Workin' on My Fitness

So, I finally broke down and joined a gym in our neighborhood yesterday. 

After two years of marriage and eating like my husband, and numerous failed attempts at working out on my own, it was time. 

Brandon joined, too {last week}, so I went with him last night. I ran on the treadmill in the "Cardio Cinema" and did the bike, too. 

Starting Monday, I'll be taking yoga classes on Monday and Wednesday evenings and on Saturday mornings. 

Brandon even bought me a pink yoga mat from Target last night. He's so cute!

I must say that I slept like a rock last night, so I think there are some benefits to this working out thing, aside from actually looking and feeling better! :)


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Back-to-Basics: Weekend

I know I say it every week, but how is it already Sunday evening?!

Yet another "incident," so I had to work Friday evening. But, I chose to check out a laptop from work and just work from home. Thankfully, I left around 4 p.m. and beat all the traffic on I-35, which was a true blessing. 

However, my work laptop wasn't cooperating, so I ended up using my Mac and the PC from my office to complete a report. I looked like a complete idiot. #whitegirlproblems

Anyway, after I turned in my report, I grabbed Pei Wei for supper {Brandon was playing golf with a friend} and popped open a bottle of wine while watching my DVR'd shows. 

Sweet Oliver was completely tuckered out from the week, too, and passed out on our little chaise lounge. 

We stayed there until Brandon came home, and then we all crawled into bed at 9 p.m. Lame, I know. 

I woke up at 7:45 a.m. Blah. I guess when you wake up at 6 a.m. every weekday, waking up at 7:45 a.m. on a Saturday isn't so bad. 

Oliver and I let Brandon sleep in and enjoyed coffee while watching DVR'd Dateline. Again, lame, I know. 

I Instagrammed this picture, so sorry if you're seeing it twice, but I absolutely love morning light, especially in our house. The dining room, kitchen and part of the living room face east, so morning light is prevalent. 

Brandon and I spent all morning cleaning the house while watching Texas/OU, and when our vacuum cleaner crapped out, he bought me a new {nice} one! I may or may not have vacuumed the house twice already. {You know you're getting old when...}

I went to the grocery store, and then my mother-in-law came over to see the progress we've made on the house. 

Then, our friends Brandon and Kimmie came over to watch the Baylor/TCU game {I'm still so sad...}. Kimmie and I made this dip and my Aunt Katherine's Hot Hammies. We enjoyed wine and each other's company. 

We laid low today since everyone left around midnight...and the ginormous storms rolled through DFW and kept us awake half the night. 

I went to Target, got a car wash, popped into Pier 1 for a new pillow for the bed and just picked up from last night. 

Oliver and I enjoyed the late afternoon outside in the backyard; it was a perfect fall afternoon that just begged for some outside time. 

And can you pray for something for me?

Friday night, a 16-year old boy in my hometown was shot in the back of the head. He was picking up a friend at his house for a party, and was likely doing doughnuts or something {as a joke} in the kid's front yard. The kid's mother -- his friend's mother --came outside with a .22 and shot Rhett in the back of the head. He was life-flighted to Houston and was put on life support. On Saturday night, his family made the heart-wrenching decision to remove him from life support, and he passed away. 

The woman who shot him is in police custody. 

Please pray for Rhett's family, his friends, the woman who shot him and for Rhett's friend -- whose mother shot Rhett. That boy will have to go to school on Monday, and I can only imagine how difficult that will be. Please also pray for my hometown. Events like these rock a small community. 

If you can get past the grammatical, punctuation and overall awfulness of my hometown's "news" site, here's some information about Rhett. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Back-to-Basics: I'm a Bad Mama

I should probably get the "Crappiest Cat Mom of the Year" Award. 

And I'd deserve it, too. 

Yesterday as I was sitting in traffic on I-35, I called my bestie Lindsey to catch up. Of course, with us, our conversation lasted well past traffic, into me cleaning my bathrooms, unloading the dishwasher, checking my mail and heating up leftovers. 

Brandon had a soccer game, I didn't cook and we're frankly still getting adjusted to our new schedules in the house. I knew something was off, but I couldn't quite figure it out.

We let Oliver sleep not in his bed in the laundry room last night, and I think that threw me off a bit, too. 

{Are you noticing a trend here? I am a Type-A creature of habit.}

Anyway, when he meowed at my bedroom door around 5 a.m., I couldn't really go back to sleep. He only did it once, but I was still awake because our Tempurpedic bed -- while amazing -- makes me freaking hot

So I got up, showered and went into the kitchen to feed him. 

And that's when I realized: I didn't feed Oliver when I got home yesterday. 

What a mean, mean cat mama I am!

I've never forgotten to feed him...ever...and I knew I didn't because A) I was distracted and B) My "typical" schedule was off. 

Poor baby, he scarfed down his food this morning and because I felt so bad, I gave him just a little extra. 

Lord help me when we have actual human children of our own.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Back-to-Basics: Two Years

Two years ago, I said "I Do" to the absolute love of my life. 

I anxiously waited in the bridal suite, just itching to see my soon-to-be husband. 

When I finally walked down the aisle toward him, I remember him saying to me, "You look beautiful." 

I remember thinking that he looked more handsome to me than he ever had.

I just couldn't believe that that day -- the one I'd waited for since I was a little girl, playing dress up with a towel "veil" on my head -- was finally here. It didn't feel real. 

I remember telling myself, "Just enjoy this day. You only get one." 

And what a delight that day was. 

We pledged, in front of God, our family and friends, to love, honor, protect, cherish, respect and obey {yes, obey} each other through sickness and health, for richer or for poorer. We vowed to let no man put asunder what God has joined together.

And I can honestly say that in the past two years, we've already experienced a lot of those things that you vow and pledge to each other on that altar.

Marriage certainly isn't easy, but man, is it worth it. 

At the risk of sounding cheesy, I will say that Brandon has become my very best friend, and that I honestly love him more today than I did on Oct. 9, 2010. 

...and I know that love will only grow and multiply. I can't imagine my life without him in it, and I can't wait to see what's in store for us in the years to come.

Happy Second Anniversary, Brandon. Here's to 50+ more.

I love you. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Back-to-Basics: Shameless Plug

A short one tonight. 

I'm getting a shameless plug in here: check out what my client is doing on Pinterest in honor of #BCAM. 

This is what yours truly has been working on for a while, minus a few crises here and there. 

Happy October!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

31 Days of Back-to-Basics Blogging: Weekend

Happy Sunday! I can't believe it's already Sunday afternoon. Where did the weekend go?!

After a long week, it was nice to come home and just relax. We had supper, then went over to our friends' Brandon and Kimmie's house to watch the Rangers lose game. 

We visited, had a few glasses of wine and didn't get home until 1 a.m.! 

We slept in, I worked some, and we went to Home Depot and Wal-Mart {I hate Wal-Mart} to run a few house-related errands. Then, I went to Kroger {can I please say how obsessed with the Kroger near us I am?!} and came home with a car full of groceries. 

Of course, these pretty little guys were screaming my name at the store. Nothing says "fall" to me more than a house with a pumpkin candle burning and a stash of gala apples. 

We spent the day {finally} hanging curtains and curtain rods in our bedroom and the guest bedroom, organizing the garage and just generally getting a few things in order in the house. 

Our ceilings are 14 feet throughout the house, and while that looks high normally, I'm still shocked at how much higher they look with window treatments. Your eye just draws up and I kept telling Brandon that we "need bigger furniture in here!" 

We slept in today and have been doing more curtain-hanging, organizing and getting cozy on this cold day. I couldn't get warm for the life of me earlier, so I drew a hot bath and just soaked. It was so nice to just relax. 

Hope your weekend has been fabulous! 

Friday, October 5, 2012

31 Days of Back-to-Basics Blogging: Day 4

I'm not going to lie to you: yesterday was hard. It's been a major crisis week in client-land, and I'm completely, absolutely worn the heck out. 

Work was rough, and I still worked more when I came home. Brandon and I fought...over the Internet speed in our house. Like, we're talking full-blown, me ugly crying, no-sleep-because-I-was-so-upset-and-stressed kind of fight. Over Internet speed. Really?!

But here we are. And Brandon and I are 100 percent fine now. {I'm sure it helps that I sent Tiff's Treats to his office, too. Ha!}

But this is 31 days of honest, Back-t0-Basics blogging, and I said I'd share my heart and our day-to-day lives, so I am. And sometimes our lives {and marriage} aren't very pretty. 


When I got home from work yesterday, I found an awesome salon near our house that sells my Aveda products: Volumizing Tonic and Pure Abundance Hair Potion. They even gave me a coupon for $10 off my next haircut. Score! 

Brandon replaced our nasty disposal that wasn't working when we bought the house {stupid seller}, and I chose to sit on the couch with a glass of wine. Sometimes you just need to do that. 

I made this chili recipe for supper, which was actually very good. I was kind of skeptical at first, but it really was yummy. And it made a ton

I've got this in the Crock Pot for supper tonight, and after we eat, we're going over to our friends' Brandon and Kimmie's house to watch the Rangers game. Our plans are to lay low for the entire weekend and just enjoy our first full, non-working weekend at the house.

Happy Weekending!
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