Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wedded Wednesday: Weird?

Confession: I'm just not feeling the love for these Wedded Wednesday posts anymore, y'all. John and I talked it over and I think we're up for a few more and then we're going to wrap it up. Permanently. I think we only have a few more questions to answer anyway. Thanks for the encouragement you've sent along the way. It's been fun, but all good things must come to and end. 

John is in the midst of a really busy week, so instead of us collaborating on this post, I'm going to give you the 411 on why he wears his wedding ring on his right hand instead of his left which he alluded to in this post.

I know you're on the edge of your seat.

He has two webbed fingers on his left hand, one of which is ring finger. I keep forgetting to take a picture so you'll have to pretend this is his hand. It's not though. I ripped this pic from Google images. John's hands are much more rugged and masculine, and his webbing isn't actually that noticeable. 

Weird, eh?

Before we were married, he asked me if I wanted him to have a procedure to separate those two fingers so he could wear his wedding ring on his left hand. It was sweet that he was willing to do that, but honestly, it didn't matter to me which hand he wore it on. The only time I ever even think about it is when I hold his left hand and try to interlace my fingers with his. We usually just laugh and switch sides so I can hold his right hand!

It's funny how many people have noticed and asked him about it over the years. Some have wondered if he's European, which makes me laugh because John has a very distinct southern accent. Others have speculated that he wore it on his right hand to symbolize his devotion to God. 

None of the above.

Just two weird webbed fingers.

Monday, March 29, 2010


i don't really mind it when monday rolls around because it marks a new week and a fresh start. mondays always make me a tiny bit sad though. usually i've spent the weekend with my peeps, and on mondays we all go our separate ways. mondays are my lonely day.

i expect today to feel lonelier than usual, because it marks the end of spring break. the kids head back to school. john goes back to work. and i'll be at home alone for the first time in 10 days. boo hoo. (ever notice that boo hoo and woo hoo are just one letter off? that one letter makes a big difference.) i love my family, and i'm happiest when we're all together.


today is supposed to be gorgeous, and sunshine does wonders for my mood! the warm sun should start melting the huge piles of snow in our yard. i saw green grass yesterday when we were in downtown Co Springs. THAT gives me hope that spring is on it's way. and all the snow is just free water for my lawn, right?

yesterday was a fabulous day! the kind that you want to never end. 

john accepted an invitation to preach at our former church and he did GREAT! i was so proud of him! he preached from the traditional palm sunday text of Jesus' triumphal entry into jerusalem, and about Jesus' directions to the disciples to go and retrieve the donkey that he was to ride on. it was a good word--especially for me. several of you asked if you could listen online. yes, you can. i checked a little while ago and the link isn't up yet. i suppose you can keep checking. (here.) my guess is that it will be available mid-week. 

we left this church about 18 months ago. not because anything was wrong, but because we really wanted our kids to be a part of a youth program with their peers. we wanted them to go to church with the same kids they went to school with. and a local body appealed to us as well since most sundays found us driving 30+ minutes (one way) to church.

god led us to a wonderful church close to home and we've made many amazing friends in short time. we know it's where we are supposed to be right now. but there are people in our old body that we miss dearly. yesterday was so good for my heart. i got to hug and talk to some of my favorite people in the world! people who know me really well. people who loved and supported us after john stepped away from pastoral ministry. people who've never tried to "fix us", but who've wanted to see god heal the broken places in our lives. that church is made up of people who love me and my family. and they've loved us well. yesterday was a blessing. and honestly, it felt like going home.

after church we grabbed some lunch and ran a few errands with the kids, and then john and i got the kids situated at home and headed out for our afternoon date. we've been doing this for a couple of months and both of us look forward to the time alone. we usually go get coffee. or a newspaper. or run to the grocery store. last week we switched things up and went for a run together. yesterday was nice because we were able to talk about our experience of the morning. 

we came home, took a nap, got up and made pizza for dinner (my neighbor brought me some pizza dough from Trader Joe's last week--so easy, cheap, and good!) and then spent some time getting organized for the week. we love watching The Amazing race with the kids on Sunday nights. 

i tried to stay pretty true to bedtime routines last week during spring break so that this week wouldn't be too difficult to ease back into. but let's face it, sleeping in will spoil you! it was hard to get up this morning at 5:20am! 

but like i said earlier, it's going to be a beautiful day. i plan to hit the trail today and soak up some sunshine!

peace out, peeps!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


I pulled out one of my old Bibles today in an attempt to catch up on my read-thru-the-Bible-in-a-year-plan. I fell way behind this week. I usually read while I'm waiting in the carpool line and since it was spring break and there wasn't a carpool line to sit in, I fell out of my groove.

I've been doing my daily readings from The Message translation. It's fresh and different and seems to make some of the tedious chapters in the Old Testament lot easier to plow through.

Today, though, I pulled out one of my older Bibles (my Ryrie NASB, a sentimental favorite). I love looking back through Bibles I haven't used for a while and seeing notes I've made and things I've jotted down. I even found some treasures I'd hidden between the pages; some things that made me smile, and some things that made me miss people I dearly love. On the very last page of this particular Bible, I found a passage that I'd written down. Thought I'd share it with all of you. Because it's really, really good. Read it, and let yourself be loved.

"I have called you by name, from the very beginning. You are mine and I am yours. You are my Beloved, on you my favor rests. I have molded you in the depths of the earth and I knitted you together in your mother's womb. I have carved you in the palms of my hands and hidden you in the shadow of my embrace. I look at you with infinite tenderness and care for you with a care more intimate than that of a mother for her child. I have counted every hair on your head and guided you at every step. Wherever you go, I go with you and wherever you rest, I keep watch. I will give you food that will satisfy all your hunger and drink that will quench all your thirst. I will not hide my face from you. You know me as your own as I know you as my own. You belong to me. Wherever you are I will be. Nothing will ever separate us. We are one."

--Henri Nowen from Life of the Beloved

pea green (with envy)

I Currently Envy:

People with iPhones and iPads.
My sweet friend, Carol, sweetly pointed out that Verizon offers similar phones. Uh huh. I know. But we're Apple people. So I wait (rather impatiently) for Apple to break their exclusive contract with AT&T, and for Verizon to offer an iPhone. And the iPad? Pure lust. Have any of you pre-ordered? 

People who can shop at Trader Joe's regularly.
Two of my neighbors were in AZ last week and both brought me some really great loot. I'm well stocked again. Thank you C and H.

People who are blessed with high metabolism.
Not fair. Just simply not fair.

People who are good at math.

People with amazing handwriting.
Like my friend, Shannan. (If her recipe intrigues you, you can find it in it's entirety here, along with the recipe for John's favorite chocolate cake.)

and another friend, Kathy.

Seriously, their handwriting should be a downloadable font, don't you agree? 

By the way, does anyone know how to convert your writing to a *free* font? I've only found sites that charge a fee. 

People who experience spring in the months you're supposed to experience spring (March/April). And people who don't get THREE big snowstorms during spring break. Sheesh.
But let's be clear. I know you'll all be envying ME when it's 70 degrees here in July and you're sweltering in the heat and humidity. And I'm starting to save now for Spring Break 2011. I'm bound and determined to head somewhere warm next March.

I think green is my color. Peace out, peeps.

Friday, March 26, 2010


Getting breakfast soon. Then a shower. Getting kids ready.

Leaving the house. Going to bank. Probably Starbucks too.

Heading down south. Instead of north. Because of snow. More, stupid snow.

Lunch with John. Chick-Fil-A. It's Sarah's choice. The reason being? Honey-mustard love.

Then the mall. Kids need stuff. Shoes and clothes. They keep growing.

So we'll shop. At the mall. My favorite place. [Insert sarcasm here.]

I won't complain. No, I won't. Today's a gift. I will enjoy. I will laugh. I will shop. Joyfully and generously. With my peeps.

I'll be back. Tomorrow, I think. Telling my tale. Of family day. Of mall survival. Of happy kids. Of finding joy. And a pretzel. 

Peace out, peeps.


Which are you? A mall lover? A mall hater? A middle-grounder? Tell me why! 

Thursday, March 25, 2010

What We've Been Up To...

Wow, I didn't mean to go four days without blogging. It just sorta happened, I guess. We've been enjoying
this week. Though I'm not sure Winter got the memo that it's actually spring now. More on that in a minute.

Here's a little of what we've been doing this week. 

Miss Abbey [our baby] turned EIGHT years old on Monday. She requested an art party and she found this idea for a birthday cake in her American Girl cookbook and asked me to make it for her. I love making my kids' birthday cakes. This one was fun (and super easy) and if you look closely you'll realize that I'm not a perfectionist.

Abbey had some friends come over and they spent the afternoon and evening making crafty stuff: tie-dye shirts/pillowcases, Hama bead creations, peace-sign necklaces, painted flowers/pots, etc. She was in her happy place. 

We said "yes" to her request for a sleepover (I was reminded around 10pm why I despise sleepovers) and no one got much sleep. But again, Abbey loved it and I love seeing her happy!

Monday was John's birthday too. We knew Monday would be all about Abbey so we had a family dinner and party on Sunday night. I've said it before, but he really is such a great sport to share his special day with Abbey.

So...what else have we been up to this week? Well...we've been 
So far, we've had two.

We started Spring Break with one last Friday, and we had a doozy of one blow in on Tuesday night and last through most of Wednesday. I think we've had about 18 inches of snow between these two storms. And guess what? More is on the way. [oh joy]. We were planning to go to Denver tomorrow afternoon and do some shopping but I don't think we'll be able to beat the storm so our plans are once again in flux. 

The kids played outside in it yesterday (once the sun came out). They made a fun obstacle course in the front yard, including a sledding run on our front steps. 

This pic of the three of them [above] was taken on the trampoline. Of course you might not be able to tell because it was covered in snow. That makes me laugh because it was beautiful here on Monday and the kids were out jumping in shorts and t-shirts. See?

Sarah has had a cold since before spring break. So have I. We just keep relapsing. UGH. Abbey is sneezing and coughing too, and I'm so ready for everyone to be healthy again. I suppose it's a good thing that they haven't had to miss school, and that we've had plenty of time to rest this week, but who wants to be sick on spring break?

I'm a fan of lazy! And I have no problem admitting it! Snow days are the best lazy days of all. Before the snow blew in, we went to the library and got plenty of books, and we went to Blockbuster and got several movies. All we did yesterday was lay around in our pjs while reading and watching movies. I felt a little bit sorry for my kids, but honestly, they enjoy it. I asked them if they were disappointed that they were getting snow on spring break and all three of them said: NO! We love lazy days! 

We had planned to go to Denver yesterday to meet a blog friend [Becca] but the weather and my concern over my "sickies" made us both decide to wait for health and warmer temps. [Becca was snowed in too!] Becca, I hate it worked out this way, but it will be so much nicer when it's not frigid outside! Right?

Some of our favorite Arkansas friends are trekking down from Winter Park where they've been skiing and tubing and snowmobiling, and later today we're going to hang out with them for a bit. They've never been to FiveGuys, and evidently I talk about that place enough to make them want to try it out so we're going to meet up with them there. I'm looking forward to it very much! 

Alrighty. The sun is shining [though it's still pretty cold today] and we're going to get out and enjoy the day. 

PS: Wedded Wednesday will be back next week. 

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Oops. Sorry I forgot to post yesterday. I'm sure you were all on the edge of your seat waiting to see if you'd won a whopping $10 or a set scripture cards.

Truth is we were enjoying our SNOW DAY! I don't know how many inches we ended up with. Maybe 8-10? But we stayed home all day (in our pjs) and did a bunch of nothing. It was wonderful, especially since it kicked off our spring break a day early!

Anyway, here are the winners:
Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2010-03-20 14:46:40 UTC

$10 gift card (of her choice) goes to:
Melissa@A Familiar Path
It's funny that Melissa won since I won a fun prize on her blog last week!

And I decided to give away two sets of scripture cards. The lucky ladies are:
Renae@Tree Frog Creations

How cool is it that I know both Renae and Angie in real life! Hey Angie, how about I deliver yours in person!?! And soon?

Peace out, peeps. I think that's going to be my new sign off. 

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Peace Out, Peeps

[Random Thoughts on Thursday]

My nose will not quit running.

I have a bit of fluid in my right ear and every time I swallow, my ear makes a crackling sound that is super annoying.

I keep chugging Emergenc-C and telling myself I will NOT be sick.

Because next week is Spring Break and I have things to do, places to go, and people to see.

I think daylight savings time is getting the best of me. I've been so tired lately.

A couple of nights ago I took a "nap" after dinner. Weird.

My kids have adjusted pretty well to the time change. They always seem to adjust more quickly than I do though.

John and I have recently discovered the beauty of weekend afternoon coffee dates.

We have several coffee shops that are close to our house, so we've been trying to get away alone for an hour or so each weekend. It's my favorite hour of the entire week!

We went last Sunday afternoon (it was snowing!) and in addition to our lattes, we bought a bag of Tanzanian peaberry to brew at home. Let me just tell you, THAT is the only thing getting me out of bed with a good attitude this first week of daylight savings time. It is yummy!

The weather here has been absolutely gorgeous the last couple of days.

Looks like today will be gorgeous as well before temps drop 40 degrees and some snow piles up. It's springtime in the Rockies. And that means widely varied weather.

I have lots of errands to run today.

Because two of my peeps have a birthday on Monday. John will be 43, and Abbey will be 8.

How can my baby be eight?

She asked to have an art/craft/sleepover party. I love the art/craft part but the sleepover part isn't my favorite. But she gave me the sad, puppy eyes which always makes me cave. She pretty much planned her entire party for me. It's going to be CUTE. I'll share more later.

We didn't exactly plan for them to have the same birthday. It just sorta worked out that way.

Abbey was 4 days past her due date and my doctor, who had a solo practice, was leaving for a Spring Break vacation. I wasn't crazy about the idea of an on call doc I didn't know delivering her, so I let him induce my labor the day before he left town, which also happened to be John's 35th birthday.

I think it's kind of sweet that they share a birthday.

I think it's really sweet that John just smiles when I serve him a piece of cake decorated with Barbie or butterflies.

He's a good sport. And an amazing dad.


Spring Break?

We're not going anywhere exotic.

We have some birthdays to celebrate. And some new and old friends to visit with. And my girls are so very excited about the grand opening of the American Girl store in Denver, so we may go check it out!

Last night, Abbey and Sarah finished dinner then headed out to the trampoline to enjoy the last little bit of our gorgeous day. As Abbey was walking out the door she turned to look at us and said: "Peace out, peeps." Cracked us up.

Peace out, peeps. Have a great day!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wedded Wednesday: Staying Connected

Katrina asked: When you guys are apart (as in not in the same location) how do you still feel connected and together?

(This is Meredith)
You know, Katrina, I don't think we ever really feel connected and together when we're apart no matter what we do. We try, of course, but whenever one of us is away, I feel out of sync and disconnected. And I hate it.

Thankfully, we're not usually separated for very long stretches of time. When we are though, we usually talk and text throughout the day. That helps me feel a little more in touch. So does email. So do little notes tucked away in places that we'll discover later.

I have friends whose husbands travel all the time for work and other friends who have endured their husband's very long deployments. Honestly, I can't imagine how hard that must be. I know they Skype and email and talk a lot, but it's still got to be emotionally tough.

I wish I had more encouragement for you, Katrina. I definitely think we try to make the most of the time before and after we're apart though. If John or I know we're going to be gone, we try to plan a date around that time. I was gone a couple of weekends ago and it was very nice to meet John for lunch a few days later and have time for "just the two of us" to catch up. Because as much as we miss each other when we're apart, our kids miss us too! We usually need to reconnect as a family first, and then as a couple.

Here are a couple ideas for helping kids feel connected when a parent is away. I don't think to do this as much now that my kids are older (and can send their dad a text or a photo right away) as much as I did when they were younger.

1. Set out a small basket and place items in it to show dad/mom when they return. [School papers, artwork, small gifts, coupons for extra hugs/kisses, etc].

2. Make a simple paper chain for the number of days that dad/mom will be gone. Tear one off every day as you count down to their homecoming.

3. Make a "What We Did While You Were Gone" book/journal. My kids did this a couple of summers ago while John was at a conference in Santa Fe. They each wrote a sentence or two, and drew a picture of something fun we did each day, then read through it with their dad when he got back home.

(This is John, the husband)
This is a great question. Most of our times apart are relatively short in duration, so I’ll answer from that perspective. And Meredith is very verbal, so her answer will differ from mine…I’m not so verbal. I don’t know how many of you ladies are Willie Nelson fans; if you’re not, you might consider it. I believe one of Willie’s songs is applicable here – Always On My Mind. Although ‘staying connected’ may seem easier than ever these days via email, skype, text, etc., I don’t always feel that keeps Meredith on my mind. It’s only my opinion, but I wonder sometimes if those technological wonders actually create faux connection…I don’t believe talking is always thinking.

Never underestimate the power of symbols, pictures, drawings, trinkets and notes, little things to focus your thoughts/feelings. Two quick stories, alright?

1. When I hiked the Grand Canyon, I kept a picture of Mer and the kids in my backpack. I pulled that picture out numerous times over the course of that trip, each time reconnecting myself to them, keeping them on my mind. Think about those soldiers in WWII who kept pictures of their best girl in a cameo frame…powerful stuff, sometimes literally keeping a wounded man alive.

2. I wear my wedding ring on my right hand (story for another time), but I have a tendency to rub that ring many times in a day. Each time I do, I think about Meredith, no kidding. It functions for me much like a rosary bead, reminding me of her, keeping her on my mind.

(This is Meredith)
Awwww, how sweet is he? John found this pic last night and we both thought it was HILARIOUS!

Monday, March 15, 2010

One Thousand

Good Monday morning!

This is my 1000th blog post.

I wanted to do something fun to celebrate and when Kellie mentioned a couple weeks ago that she was nearing 1000 posts too, we decided to throw a blog party. (Honestly, I have no idea what a blog party is but it sounds fun, doesn't it).

My favorite kind of parties include presents, so in honor of 1000 posts I'm giving away one thousand pennies in the form of a $10 gift card to a store of your choice.

Seriously, if you're the winner of this giveway, then you'll get to choose where you want to shop. You could pick iTunes and download A Thousand Hallelujahs by March Roach, or my personal favorite A Thousand Miles by Vanessa Carlton. Or you could choose Amazon and order A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. Or you could choose something like Five Guys Burgers and Fries and use your gift card to order a fabulous burger|fry combo thousand calories. Really, it's totally up to you.

I'm also giving away a set of custom scripture cards like these (below) that Amber made for me a couple years ago. I've never tried to make them before so they might not turn out as cute as hers did, but I need a good Spring Break project and I love my set. I keep them in my kitchen and flip through them daily.

How do you enter the drawing for these two prizes?

Well, I'm so glad you asked.

1. If you know me in real life, I want you to leave me a comment sharing a fun|funny memory or tidbit about me. The funnier, the better; I want to laugh this week. (And some of y'all have some good dirt on me.)

2. If we've become friends through this blog, then leave a comment telling me how you happened upon Lifeat7000Feet and estimate how many of my 1000 posts you've suffered through read.

3. If you've NEVER commented before, what are you waiting for? De-lurk and say hello. I promise I won't bite!

I'll choose two winners (one for the gift card, and one for the scripture cards) on Thursday night.

Please visit Kellie's blog today and congratulate her on 1000 posts! Her party is going on all week long!!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Weekend Poll: Favorite Day of the Week

Do you have a favorite day of the week?

I think I love Sundays the best because they're super low key for us.

We go to church. We don't turn our computers on. We read the newspaper. And books. We go to the library. We make a yummy dinner. And more.

I love Saturdays too though.

And Friday nights.

Just curious if you have a favorite.

::If you're reading this post in a reader, you'll have to click-through to see the poll::

Friday, March 12, 2010

Happy Stuff.

I'm in my happy place right now. I've been at home cleaning all morning. I love being home and I love to clean. I realize that might make me weird, but it's true, I really do love it. Especially on Fridays. There is nothing like waking up on a Saturday morning with my home in order. It's probably one of my most favorite things!

I have just a few quick things to share....

1. I posted Julie's sugar cookie recipe here. You're welcome.

2. I'm really excited about my choice of film for family movie night tonight. We're watching Troop Beverly Hills. It's so old but I remember it being very funny. I think my girls will love it, but I'm not so sure about the boy. |Update: It was funny (and very 80s) but I'd forgotten that there was quite a bit of language in this movie.|

3. I'm glad I had a morning at home because my afternoon is going to be c-r-a-z-y. Lots of running around to do, and must take the beagle to the vet. That might be my least favorite job ever. |Update: John took the beagle for me! My hero!|

4. John and I are going to Big Sur, California for our anniversary trip. It's on the coast (south of Monterey) but it's mountainous too. It's the best of both worlds, and the pictures I've seen are gorgeous! We've talked about going there for probably fifteen years, so we're pretty excited that it's going to happen! It seems very "us". Anyone been there?

5. This is my 998th post. Crazy! Sometime tomorrow I'm going to post another weekend poll and then I'll be back on Monday with something fun. Here's a not-so-subtle-hint of what's to come...

Kellie and I will be celebrating together because it's her 1000th post too!!! Happy Friday, y'all!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Wedded Wednesday: Time Off

Guys...time is elusive this week and John and I are unable to get a Wedded Wednesday post together. We're taking today off and intend to be back next week. Thanks for understanding!

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

10 on the 10th!

10 Things I Did Today

1. Made my daily to-do list. I have a couple more things to cross off but I've had a productive day!

2. Went to TANG. TANG is the name of my moms' group at church. It is such a fun group of friends and I really, really try not to ever miss TANG. One of our pastors facilitates our time together, and today we worked through Psalm 32. It was great even though my pastor "outed" me as a blogger. Hello TANG friends!!!

3. Worked out. On our lonely-but-trusty-and-very-much-in-need-of-a-good-cleaning- treadmill.

My treadmill says I burned 368 calories which I'm sure I promptly regained when I ate one of Julie's cookies at TANG. They were iced sugar cookies (in the shape of shamrocks) and she gave me the recipe which I'm thinking about sharing with y'all since they were the BEST sugar cookies I've ever tasted in my life.

4. Met John for lunch. At Panera. It was nice to spend some time catching up after being gone all weekend.

John brought his laptop and after we ate we did a little surfing, made some final decisions, and...............................................

5. WE BOOKED OUR ANNIVERSARY TRIP!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am super excited about it (as if the exclamation points didn't tell you that).

6. I ran by REI after lunch because Abbey has one of these water bottles and she bit a hole in the valve. I bought the replacement kit because the sales guy assured me it was the right one and that it would fit. It doesn't. I checked the manufacturer website and they don't even make the piece we need to fix the problem. Grrrrrrrr.

7. Called my friend, Debbie. We usually hike (with two other friends) on Wednesdays but the weather looks crummy tomorrow so we made a contingency plan. The contingency plan is that if it's snowing (or cold, or windy, or precipitating at all) we're not hiking. I'm praying for sunshine because I love and need my Wednesday afternoon hikes.

8. I contemplated driving my van through the carwash. It is beyond filthy but we're supposed to get more snow so I'm going to just let it stay dirty for a while longer. Sigh.

9. Imported two new cds into my computer. This one was in my "treat bag" from last weekend's scrapbooking retreat. I had a few of her songs already on my iPod, but the rest of the cd is fantastic. John's boss (who passes on some great music! Thank you, Mr. P!) sent this cd home with J yesterday. I haven't had a ton of time to listen to it, but so far I'm enjoying it.

10. Watched American Idol for the first time in a really long time. When did Paula leave? Is Ellen her replacement? Wow. Am I out of the loop or what?


Okay, now it's your turn. If you want to join the fun, post a list of ten things (anything you choose) on your blog and then link up here.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Taking the Pressure Off

I had a fabulous weekend in the Sangre de Cristo mountains with my church peeps.

Twice a year the ladies from my church get away for a scrapbook weekend. Scrapbooking is one of my favorite things, but lately I just haven't been feeling the love for it. I've been trying to get into digital scrapbooking and while I find it fascinating, I don't find it intuitive. Anyway, I was on the fence about joining my church friends this time around.

John talked me into it...and I'm SO glad he did! I had SO MUCH FUN!

I've been on countless scrapbooking retreats over the years. I usually spend lots of time before I leave organizing my photos and supplies and gearing up for maximum productivity because I don't want to feel like I've wasted my time and money.

Wanna guess how many pages I completed this weekend?

Zero. Goose egg. None. Nada. Zip.

Wanna know how I feel about that?


I took the pressure off of myself to "do" and let myself just "be".

I went on a hike. I went snow-shoeing for the first time (so much stinkin' fun!) I laughed. I laughed a LOT. I spent time talking with friends. I slept. I rested. I worshiped. I did pretty much whatever I felt like doing. I let myself have fun. And I feel SO refreshed.

The weekend was a gift to me, and I realize that while I didn't walk away with something tangible to show for my time (scrapbook pages), I walked away with lots of intangible things--like a full heart, deeper relationships, and a buoyed spirit. And those are the things that really matter anyway!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

We can be bored together...

I saw this meme on Amber's blog and decided to "borrow" it this morning. Mostly because I'm bored with my blog and am really not feeling inspired to write much these days. I figured if I'm going to be bored, you might as well be too. So read at your own risk, and don't say I didn't warn you.

1. What is your name spelled backwards? H-T-I-D-E-R-E-M. Nice, huh?

2. What did you do last night? Sorted a million bajillion digital pics and went to bed with a blinding headache.

3. What was the last thing you downloaded onto your computer? Free digital fonts from
4. Have you ever licked a 9 volt battery? Why would anyone do that?

5. When was the last time you swam in a pool? Last summer.

6. What are you wearing? Arkansas Razorbacks sweatshirt and red/black plaid pajama pants.

7. How many cars have you owned? In almost 20 years of marriage we've owned 8 cars. And we've named every single one of them.
8. What is the type of music you dislike most? Old school country music. Much to the dismay of my husband.

9. Are you registered to vote? Absolutely. Have been for 20+ years.

10. Do you have cable? A very, very basic package for which we pay $10/month. And can I just tell you how NICE it was to watch the Olympic coverage this year without having to adjust the rabbit ears!

11. What kind of computer do you use? MacBook

12. Have you ever made a prank phone call? Guilty.

13. Would you go bungee jumping or sky diving? Neither. I'm very afraid of heights.

14. What is the furthest place you ever traveled? I don't know. I've been to every corner of the US but I've never been outside of it.
15. What's your favorite comic strip? I can't tell you the last time I read the comics. I used to love Family Circus though. Is that still around???

16. Do you know all of the words to the national anthem? Yes!

17. Do you shower in the morning or at night? In the morning, but if I work out in the afternoon then I'll shower again at night.

18. What is your favorite pizza topping? Goat cheese!

19. Chips or popcorn? Hmmmmm...I love popcorn, but I also love Nacho Cheese Doritos. [Here's a joke for you: What do you call cheese that doesn't belong to you? Nacho cheese.] My kids think that is so funny.

20. What cell phone provider do you use? Verizon. And still waiting for Apple and AT&T to break up so we can get iPhones. We will NOT switch to AT&T.

21. Have you ever smoked peanut shells? People smoke peanut shells? I've never smoked anything in my life.

22. Have you ever been in a beauty pageant? Um, no.

23. Orange juice or apple juice? Orange juice. Either freshly squeezed or Simply Orange.

24. Who were the last people you sat at lunch with? Myself. I hardly ever go out for lunch anymore. I'm too cheap.

25. Favorite chocolate bar? Don't like chocolate.

26. Who is your oldest friend and how long have you known eachother? I keep up with lots of long time friends, but I guess my oldest would be my sister. I've known her since I was 15 months old! ;)

27. When was the last time you ate a homegrown tomato? Last Arkansas. I LOVE tomatoes!

28. Have you ever won a trophy? Yes! I won a couple for placing in my age division in some road races I did back in my running days. One of them was the Chicken and Egg Festival 5K in Prescott, AR. Impressive, eh?
29. Favorite arcade game? Centipede.

30. Ever ordered from an infomercial? It's probably a good thing that I can say no to this, right?
31. Sprite or 7-UP? Neither. I prefer my carbonated beverages to have caffeine.

32. Have you ever had to wear a uniform to school/work? I don't think so. Not even in my Catholic school days.
33. Last thing you bought at Walgreens? Photo prints. And candy to sneak in the movie theater.

34. Ever thrown up in public? Uh huh. And it wasn't pretty. I'll spare you the list.

35. Would you prefer being a millionaire or finding true love? Hmmmm.... I'd choose love.

36. Do you believe in love at first sight? I don't think so. Attraction? Yes. But I don't think you "fall" in love, you have to "grow" in love.

37. Spongebob or Jimmy Neutron? Spongebob. I've only recently let my kids watch this show and I've gotta tell you that it's pretty funny sometimes.

38. Did you have long hair as a young kid? Yes, very long hair! Until I begged my mom to let me get a Dorothy Hamill cut. She relented, and I'd like to burn the pics of myself from age 1975-76. Thankfully my locks grew out and I kept them long for many years.

39. What message is on your voicemail machine? I don't ever call myself so I don't know! I think it's just the standard message where I inserted my name when the nice lady told me to.

40. Where would you like to go right now? To Hawaii. My friend is going for Spring Break and I'd like to stow away in her suitcase.

41. What's the name of your pet? Jack-the-fat-lazy-disobedient-Beagle.

42. What kind of back pack do you have, and what's in it? REI brand and right now it's empty. I wear it when I hike and fill it with water, snacks, lip balm, and tissue.

43. What kind of tennis shoes do you have? Brooks Glycerin. I used to buy Nike (because I liked the colors/styles) but the guy at the running store put me on the treadmill, watched me run, and suggested Brooks. I've never bought another brand since. They fit my very-narrow feet perfectly and have the cushion/stability I need!

44. Who was the last person you talked to on the phone? John.

45. Mickey Mouse or Bugs Bunny? Mickey.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Wedded Wednesday: In Front of the Kids?

Charlow Family asked: Do you discuss your disagreements in front of your kids? Right now we have a 1-year old and we are trying to find a healthy boundary line for discussing things in front of her as they arise, and waiting for when we are behind closed doors. I'm not talking about major issues here, just little things that crop up during the day. I don't want our daughter growing up thinking that having a happy marriage means you never disagree, but I don't want her to see her parents bickering all the time either.

(this is John, the husband)
I think I've swerved beyond the original question a little. For better or worse, we have a tendency to do what our parents did. Now I didn't say always, but sometimes, a tendency. I didn't see my parents disagree/argue much during my years under their roof. Meredith witnessed the opposite. So, as you might imagine, we're mutts on this one - a mix of yes and no, not always but sometimes.

We polled our kids tonight at dinner time on this one. They said we argue often and always in front of them. That's just great; last time we'll poll the kids. Yet note to self and others: perceived reality to a child is the reality. As we asked a little deeper we learned it wasn't so much our arguing that bothered them as our going to separate corners in the heat of the moment. Sometimes Meredith and I need to do that, give each other space, take a time-out. But in the eyes of our kids, they experience the conflict dividing us. It is no longer dadandmom, but dad and mom. If they should go to bed without witnessing us coming back together, then they've seen the sun set on their parents' anger.

So, just as when you discipline a child there has to be a moment of welcoming that child back to your embrace, so too there needs to be a visible re-union of husband and wife should the argument they decided to make public drive them apart. I'm not talking about some forced kiss-and-make-up for appearance sake, but an honest confession that we're still disagree, we still love you, and we'll be here when you wake in the morning. I believe there are times for fighting and times for ceasing. But I believe at all times we must remember the children

(this is Meredith, the wife)
Yes, we disagree in front of our kids. And according to them, we disagree often. Ha!

I think we're fairly cognizant of the need to table discussions, um, disagreements that pertain to the kids until after they're in bed. Or if it's something else we know needs to be discussed in private, we'll retreat. But little things? Yeah, I think it pretty much happens in the moment. Remember, I'm "mercurial".

I don't know if this is good, or if this is bad. I just know it's honest. Our kids know that we love each other. They see the mushy-gushy-lovey-dovey stuff as well as the we're-just-not-seeing-eye-to-eye-right-now stuff. And like John said, if they never saw us come back together and make up and forgive and move on, I'd start to worry.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010


My sweet friend, Gretchen, posts a list every Tuesday of things that make her glad. I finally remembered in time to join in! So, here is a list of a few things that putting the glad in my attitude.

1. I'm glad it is March. And yes, I did flip my calendar over last Friday while wishing February good riddance. Lots and lots of good things happen this month. Yay!

2. I'm glad that my kids all love to read. Two of my kids had their noses buried in a book last night. One (nameless) child was walking around the house while reading. It just makes me smile so big to see that! They love their "screens" too (computer, television, video games) but reading isn't a forced thing for them. Seriously thankful!

3. Glad for dinner-time laughter. I've worked myself into a funk the last several evenings while getting dinner on the table. I've sat down to eat with a grumpy, grumpy attitude. BUT, our family conversations at dinner have been a combination of sweet and hilarious and they've pulled me out of my funkiness. So thankful for the peeps God has given me!

4. Glad to have clean sheets! Is there anything better than crawling into a freshly made bed at night? Bliss.

5. Glad I got to talk to Kellie yesterday. She's a kindred spirit and one of my most favorite people I've never met. We're planning something FUN in a couple of weeks, but you'll have to wait until our big reveal to find out what. Oooh. Suspense. (Did I generate any?)

6. Glad I'm getting away for a fun weekend. I leave for the mountains on Friday for a scrapbooking weekend with my church friends. I wasn't going to go this time and gave John a list of a gazillion reasons why I didn't need to go. He gave me a list of a gazillion reasons why I should. So I'm going...and I'm glad. I know it will be good for me!

7. Glad to have finished reading Leviticus. I'm still on track with my read-thru-the-Bible-in-a-year plan, and SO very glad to have started reading Numbers yesterday. Leviticus? It's bloody and "unclean" and so tedious to read!

8. Glad it's Tuesday, and today is a fun day for me! Actually, today will be a mix of fun and productive--my favorite kind of days. On that note, I'm going to sign off and get moving! I have lots to do this morning.

Happy Tuesday!
I'm back to quickly direct all of you who love The Bachelor to CarpoolQueen's song about the finale last night. Hilarious.

Shortly after I professed my love/addiction to The Bachelor (the show, not the actual bachelor) I quit watching. There are a couple of reasons really, but the biggest one is that it airs when my kids are awake and we don't have a dvr and I don't want them watching it, so I tuned out instead of in and haven't missed it one bit. And besides, if one *really* needs to know what is happening, all one must do is log into Twitter on a Monday night.