Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Anglican Summer

Tomorrow we are heading off to Middle School Camp Houston, which will be held somewhere around Livingston, TX. Curt is the camp speaker and I am the camp speaker's son's chaperone. Since this camp is for our old church, we will get to be with some dear friends for five days. It should be really fun.

I just went to Target and spent way too much money on everything we needed for camp. I got my spf 50 sunblock, the obligatory camp one piece swimsuit, and a flotation device for The Mister. I was severely tempted by those gradual self tanning lotions by Jergens and Oil of Olay. However, I'm bringing pale back and if I really believe I'm enough without a tan, I have to stay true to my conviction! Plus, Curt was with me and those lotions were $6 as opposed to $3.

Please allow me to share one of my tanning mishaps with you all. Three years ago Curt and I spent five months serving at a church in northeast England. Half way through our time there I was going to fly home and be in my dear college roommate Mel's wedding. When May rolled around, I started getting very anxious about getting a tan. Something about the very real pale-blueness of the majority of people in England frightened me. I was terrified of facing my friends without some brown in my skin. Now in this part of England the summer highs only reached into the 70s. So on a particularly warm and cloudless day in May, I took the opportunity to soak up the rays.

We were living in a vicarage (parsonage) inside an Anglican church. It was just a little flat above the church offices. We had a nice courtyard outside our front door that had a four foot brick wall around it. So I took some blankets and my laptop down into the courtyard to do my work. I was not idiotic enough to wear my bathing suit, but I did wear some athletic shorts and a spaghetti strap tank top. There I was typing away, doing my work, soaking up the sun, minding my own business, when I started hearing some quiet voices. Well, that must just be some people walking by. I bet they didn't even notice me. Fifteen minutes pass. More voices. Hmmmmm. What is going on? It was the middle of a weekday and nothing should have been going on at the church. I stood up - a stupid American girl with pieces of grass stuck to her skin, ponytail awry, big sunglasses on, not wearing a whole lot, pretty much looking homeless. And what did I see on the other side of the wall but a group of about thirty adults in dark suits and dresses waiting to enter the church. Oh wait, it gets better. Then I turned to my side and directly on the other side of the wall, not five steps away from me, was a black hearse.

How long? How long, O Lord, had those people been standing there? Had that hearse been parked there? How loud had poor Aunt Penny screamed when they opened the casket and saw the body of that poor soul in mid roll from idiot girl sunbathing in the church courtyard in front of all the funeral guests?

*Edited to add: Wouldn't you know, for about a minute I accidentally posted this on my other blog, thinking it was THIS blog. I nearly died! It will probably still show up on some people's bloglines or whatever they use. Well, they'll know more about me than they wanted to!

Saturday, May 26, 2007

A Long Story About Sweatpants

Tonight Curtis headed out the front door with a half-filled garbage sack that screamed investigate me! After I asked what is was, he said it was just some clothes he needed to give away. Curt has a habit of getting rid of some of his most stylish clothes, particularly clothes that I have bought for him. I think sometimes he just doesn't have the courage to reach his style potential. For example, two years ago I bought him the sickest Caffeine track jacket in NYC. (Did I pull "sickest" off, y'all? Because I've been hearing it a lot but haven't felt edgy enough to say it.) I had to coerce him into ever wearing it and when it finally debuted at a party, people were blown away by his style. They said things like, "Only Curt could pull that off," and, "Man, where did you get that awesome jacket?" I was very pleased and thought he would learn to trust me. Sometimes I know what I'm talking about! Don't hate me, but I was not about to see that crazy track jacket go in the bin outside Walmart tonight.

Most of the items got my approval for donation. One nice button-down shirt I got him for our first married Christmas didn't make it. I have a hard time saying goodbye to sentimental things. Another item, which should never have been in the bag because no one on earth would want it, was a pair of sweatpants.

These were your run-of-the-mill, black, fluffy cotton, elastic at the ankle, classic sweatpants. There's no telling how old they are, but they were suitable for Curt's softball games. At some point he cut off the elastic at the ankles. Then he cut out the bulky pockets because they were adding about six inches to his hips. Then they acquired major paint stains when we decided to renovate our house when I was in my third trimester of pregnancy. Fun! Even though I should never have been painting, I painted. In fact, Janelle and I sat side by side on the floor and painted my kitchen cabinet doors in what is now the nursery. If our children have behavioral disorders we'll know why. In all the painting I needed some clothes to mess up. Large clothes to mess up.

So Curt gave me these sweatpants for painting in. Mind you, Curt's legs are four inches shorter than mine. He is one inch taller than me, but we obviously have some weird proportional differences. When we were newly married and I would pull his jeans out of the dryer, I would gasp in horror thinking I had shrunken my gloriously long jeans. I know better now. But seriously, don't mess with a woman's jeans.

Back to the black sweatpants. We spent so many late nights in this house, priming and painting. It could get very cold in here, so I always wore the sweatpants. Please picture this with me. A 5 foot 8 blond woman with shiny, thick pregnancy hair (I'm sorry, I can't let it go), in some huge grungy t-shirt with a sizable tummy (8 months), in black sweatpants stained with white paint, and four inches of bright white ankles between her tennis shoes and the sweatpants. Oh, and the stubs of the cutout pockets were often sticking out to the side. I had never been more lovely.

These pants should have only one destination - the trash can. But I'm not ready to let them go yet. They remind me of the excitement of moving in to our first house, getting ready for the arrival our first child, and spending countless hours working side by side on a renovation project that nearly sent us into counseling. If you're looking to test yourself in the area of submission, renovation is the way to do it. I thought I did pretty well, but since I can't even submit to my husband's choices for giving away his clothes, maybe I still have some issues.

Feeling Much Better, Thank You

I'm feeling a lot better today. Thank You, Lord! Y'all, I was in my bed the WHOLE day yesterday. Until Jackson went to sleep, I only spent 30 minutes outside my bed. I did not even brush my hair until 6 p.m. I woke up this morning in the same pajamas I'd gone to bed in two nights before. That is so gross. My neck and back are sore from all the laying down. Today I woke up bright and early, actually it was still dark, at 6 a.m. I would have been bitter except I was thankful to have slept all night after my 11 hour nap. I showered and got completely ready before 8, when I went to the donut shop for kolaches. Now that is a sign of wellness.

Tell me this. Why did my son not cry the entire day yesterday until his dad left me with him for 20 minutes? And why this morning can he only whine to me but be so sweet with his dad? I'm very puzzled. However, I am extremely thankful that Jackson and Curtis have a great relationship. I'm grateful to have a husband who will share the responsibility of taking care of our son. He was perfectly happy yesterday. The only mishap was that two nights ago when I was starting to feel weird and didn't have it in me to clean the kitchen, Curtis accidentally unloaded dirty dishes from the dishwasher into the cabinets. And my worst germ nightmare - I know there was raw chicken juice on some of them. Can anyone say SALMONELLA?

Friday, May 25, 2007


It seems there is a stomach virus so powerful that it can infect you through the Internet. It's been going around from what I've been reading on other blogs. Today I came down with it for the second time in three weeks. This morning, when I saw a pan in the kitchen with residue from last night's dinner, I was so overwhelmed with nausea that I threw it out the back door. I'm not sure if the hubby has noticed it or not. I'm guessing not since he's been taking care of the Monkey all day. I kept Dramamine down long enough to pretty much knock myself out for the afternoon. Also, at least five of the blogs I read earlier today discussed food. I didn't stick around long. I'm sure you understand.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Before and After


I'm obsessed with this outfit. The shirt says "Crab Shack" and the shorts are frayed.

He's using my lens cap as a cell phone and he thinks he's talking to Daddy.

Again with the shoe in the mouth.

I just picked up Jackson from MDO, where he got to enjoy CHOCOLATE milk for the first time. He had some intense nasal crustiness going on and very disheveled hair. I was planning on us going to the mall to get him some new tennis shoes, but I thought that his appearance might be a clue that his mood was not mall quality. Either he played really hard or he's in a funk. I mananged not to cry as we said our goodbyes, although Jackson cried when I took a picture of him with his teachers. Once he saw mama, it was time to go, not time to stay and have a photo shoot.



I still can't believe he can get up and down off the couch by himself. Now he knows how good a couch is for napping.

Last Day of School

Jackson's last day of Mother's Day Out is today. Next time he goes, it will be to a different program. He has been in a class with older toddlers - who in fact were already toddlers when Jackson, still a baby, started. He has learned so much over the past few months and I can't help but think he's been challenged in a great way by being with the older kids. I am so attached to the teachers and the program director who have been so kind, encouraging, and loving. Hopefully they won't think I'm weird when I show up with my camera this afternoon and if I get a little teary saying goodbye. I should be getting him ready right now but since his class is having Wendy's for lunch, I don't have to make him yet another grilled cheese sandwich today. Woo hoo! The truth is I've had Jackson enrolled in two programs - it's a long story - and I've just been choosing based on my work needs each week which days/place to take him. I feel like I've been two-timing them. Every "Oh, we missed Jackson last time!" makes me feel like a jerk. So while I'll really miss this place, it will be good to shake that guilty feeling! If and when my dad reads this he'll be sure to lecture me on false guilt. Thanks in advance, Dad!

House of Blues

Just another public service announcement from someone who cares. David Crowder Band is playing at the House of Blues in Dallas this October. Yours truly and the love of her life will be there singing and bouncing around and worshipping the Love of their lives on that night. Unless something comes up. And if it does I'm gonna be so mad. In case you want to visit the House before then, you can see the B52's, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, or the US Air Guitar Championship. It pays to live in the Big D.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Coming Soon

Because I love my husband, very soon we are all going to experience me live-blogging a playoff basketball game. Apparently this is his new love language and I am all about filling his love tank. He wants me to watch the pregame with him and everything. So look for it, because it IS going to happen. I'm not sure how he came up with this. It might be because our friend Janelle live-blogs her favorite reality shows and he has a competitive spirit. But really, who can understand a man?


Something wonderful is happening right now as I type. Jackson went to Mother's Day Out today, where he took a measly one hour nap. That's good for MDO, but compared to the three hours of sleep he gets by way of naps on a normal day, THAT IS NOT ENOUGH. He has been shaking his afternoon nap a lot lately and it is impossible to get him down in the late afternoon after MDO. Today he was so fussy and nothing would help. Not tater tots. Not strawberry limeade. Not a bottle. Not Beckham licking him. Nothing. So I held him with his head on my shoulder while checking my work email and he fell asleep. Amazing. He's napping in his crib even now. The Lord loves me.

Speaking of the Lord, He is giving me some quiet time victory. I've said this before, but if before having a baby you had told me I would end up struggling with this in my adulthood, I would not have believed it. I thought myself long past that. Ha! I've learned not to put anything beyond myself.

Anyway, I got a new devotional book that is big and pretty with awesome thick paper with rough edges. It has all my favorite elements: a daily Scripture portion to look up, several (PAUSE: NAP IS OVER) questions to journal answers to, a devotional reading, and a prayer journal area. It's called David: 90 Days With a Heart Like His. I am only sharing this in case you're also needing some quiet time victory and you happen to like this format.

Doesn't it look cool? It's huge and it has an old feel to it.

If you have a favorite quiet time book, let me know. Maybe I'll make a list for when my 90 days are over.

Also, I'm taking suggestions for the best Christian fiction novel EVER! I'm planning on catching up on some reading this summer. Possibly even on a Mexican beach in, oh, 20 days. I've already read most of Francine Rivers (please go buy the Mark of the Lion trilogy RIGHT NOW). I'm not feeling very Amish right now, so maybe not that genre.

Baby Boy needs me. See ya.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Weekend Recap

The last few days have been so much fun.
-We had a spontaneous visit from a loved one.
-We took her to the Dallas Arboretum, Snuffer's for lunch, and JD's Chippery for dessert.
-We had pizza at Scalini's. Jackson liked his meatball and he never made a peep.
-We went to White Rock Lake Dog Park and watched our dog swim. Jackson laughed his head off.
-We went back to JD's Chippery. So much for the diet.
-Curt lost his wallet. We had been all over town and had no clue where it was.
-We stopped and prayed, asking God to let someone find it and call us.
-Three minutes later someone called us.
-We went to Irving's Pooch Fest where Beckham enjoyed being ogled by all the ladies.
-We went to church on Saturday night, Sunday morning, and Sunday night. That is a lot of church, folks. But it's all good when you have one as sweet as ours. Tonight was the children's choir progam. Let me first say it was adorable. But I imagine it will be more fun when we have a kid in the choir. It really won't be long. They start when they're three! I can't wait!
-I really missed my family when we went home from church by ourselves to grill burgers. I wished we were all at mom's having a fish fry or something.

Here are some pictures from the last week...

Grandma Dixon, I love my new outfit. And Mommy's lens cap.

My first time to play with the water hose. I wasn't real sure about it.

At the church playground.

Waiting at the airport for our mystery guest.

Jackson's expression when he realized who the mystery guest was.

It's Biggies!

I can't be bothered to take a posed picture.

I'm so cool I need two pairs of shades.

Cooling off.

It took me a few minutes, but now I LOVE the fountain.

Mommy is overwhelmed by my handsomeness.

Peekaboo with Biggies

See ya! I have a squirrel to chase.

Fifteen Months

Dear Jackson,
You are now fifteen months old and I cannot get over how much fun we have together. As you get older, more and more doors are opening for your amusement. For example, when we go to a playground you can play on the toddler equipment instead of just the swing. But you dearly love to swing. It was a sad day for all of us when you outgrew your baby swing many months ago. I wasn't paying close enough attention and you flung yourself forward and nearly tipped out of it. We hated to get rid of it, but it was obviously time! You love to find any kind of steps to climb up and down. The two on our front porch are perfect for you. At Gymboree you figured out how fun it is to shimmy backwards down a slide. I'm finally comfortable with your ability to climb off the couch, although I'm trying hard to discourage you from walking on it.

You are learning so much! You say mama, daddy, oh, achoo, and as of today, uh oh. We are working on identifying your body parts, although I should have started that with you a while back. Sorry, son, your mom is new at this! You love for us to read to you and I think you enjoy holding and flipping through your books just as much as playing with your toys.

If our bedroom door is ever accidentally open, you are in there in the middle of all my things in ten seconds. You get so upset when mommy catches you and removes you from the scene. Yesterday I let you play with my Velcro rollers and my toiletry bag instead of confining you to the exersaucer while I dried my hair. The amazement on your face that I was finally letting you do that was priceless.

Until now, you've never had a "lovey." Your brown velvet and satin blanket came close, but the matching pillow is now definitely it. You toss it on the floor, dive onto it face first, and then roll over with it over your face. You do this over and over again. Mommy laughs so hard seeing it.

Your bath is probably the highlight of your day. You love to stand up and then plop down, splashing water all over Mommy! You are mesmerized by the water coming out of the faucet and you like to put your hands underneath it. Sometimes you dip the side of your face into the water like it's a pillow. Yesterday there must have been some shampoo in the bottom of the tub because you ended up with a bubble bath. It was VERY exciting for you. You were not happy when the bubbles went away. Armageddon happens when we take you out of the water and it doesn't end until you're lotioned, diapered, clothed, and coiffed. You make me chase you around while you squeal and squawk and flop your body around like a fish. I once heard a very strange southern saying that I can't help but think of every time we go through this ritual - it is like a goat ropin'!

At bedtime, Mommy rocks you and gives you a bottle. When you're done, you lay your head on my shoulder and we snuggle for a few minutes while I tell you how smart, handsome, strong, fast, and lovable you are. Then Daddy comes in and tucks you in your crib like a burrito. You laugh and kick your legs when you know it's coming. You love being wrapped up like that. You adore your father and I love watching how you two play together.

I will probably think of ten more things to say within an hour of writing this. You have so much life and energy and I could spend hours describing you. Your daddy and I love you so much and we thank God every day for entrusting such a wonderful soul to our care.


Friday, May 18, 2007

Breaking the Fall

On Wednesday after Gymboree, Jackson and I had lunch at Anamia's with Sunni and Ava. We had a cool front earlier in the week and our weather has been spectacular. It was so beautiful that we could not pass up sitting on the patio. Bonus: there was no one else on the patio, so the babies could be babies with little consequence. Right? We ordered a massive bowl of guacamole, made table-side. They had great iced tea. I ignored the salsa because of the guac, so I can't comment on that. We sat at a little metal table under an umbrella. Ava and Jackson split a kids meal. A tex-mex feast shared outside with a friend and two cute babies? What more could you want?

(The patio. No, that's not us.)

(The guacamole. It's huge.)

Well, you could want more room on the table. Things were a little crowded since we had to keep everything out of the babies' reach that we didn't want to tumble to the ground. Jackson began banging the table with his hands. And then. And then the container of ranch dressing that came with Sunni's taco salad, that was forced dangerously close to the edge of the table, took a tumble. Don't feel sorry for the ranch dressing container. It did not smack the concrete with great force and shatter into pieces. No, a certain beloved Coach purse caught it's fall. What is more, it was not even mine. It Sunni's beautiful khaki signature with red leather trim COACH purse. Not one of those small ones like I have either. The mothership of all gorgeous Coach bags it was. When she got it, I believe for her birthday, you should have heard all the carrying on we did. It elicited praises to God from our lips. It is fabulous in every sense of the word.

Help. Me. Lord. Our groans reached into the heavens. The Coach. The ranch was within and without. Every side sustained damage from the mayonnaise-based goop. We wiped it all off and there were some large, sad dark spots that I'm not sure have disappeared or not. Sunni was incredibly gracious about the whole thing. She never for a moment let me blame Jackson, and therefore myself. But still, in my heart I know. Thankfully we were only a mile away from a Coach store and professional cleaning supplies were easily accessible. The purse practically had an ambulance ride to the Coach E.R. It was a good thing because in a couple hours, all that mayo was gonna be lethal.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


I'm going to take a moment and reflect on tonight's season finale of America's Next Top Model, otherwise known as ANTM. When I just happened to be bored at home on the night of the premier a few months ago, I got sucked in. Within minutes I spotted the lovely Renee and thought, Well it's no contest! She's clearly going to win! She was a gorgeous blond from Maui. And then I saw Natasha, a perky Russian-Texan who quickly became my favorite. Natasha was so bubbly that no failure or drama could keep her down. She took her criticism and turned it into gold, improving every week.

The final four consisted of Natasha, Jaslene, Dionne, and Renee. It made me supremely proud that three of the four of them are mamas. Dionne got the boot and tonight Renee, Natasha, and Jaslene battled it out. I was horrified when, for the first time the ENTIRE season, the judges began saying that Renee looked old. Mature. They even pointed out possibly non-existent lines and wrinkles that were from the Hawaiian sun! Can you believe it!?!? I really didn't think this was fair or justified. She and her pictures are absolutely gorgeous and they only praised her every week. When she was eliminated, she held Natasha's face in her hands and whispered, "Win this thing for the mamas." Y'all, I cried. Then Natasha and Jaslene had a Zoolander-worthy fashion show walk off. Natasha's skirt fell down (luckily she had on a bodysuit) but she played it off like it was supposed to happen. She started off strong on the runway but Jaslene blew the judges away with her stomping.

Two final contestants, both with heavy accents and dramatic stories. One, a child bride from Russia with a little baby at home. The other, a contestant who had been in a previous cycle and was eliminated earlier on. Both had overcome so much, grown so much, yada yada yada.

In the end, Jaslene walked away with the title of America's Next Top Model. I was really disappointed that Natasha didn't win, but when she enthusiastically congratulated Jaslene and said she couldn't wait to get home to her family, I liked her even more. And this totally increases my chances of running into her and becoming bffs and meeting for playdates at the Galleria because, y'all, she's from Dallas!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Perfectly Pale

I need to do a little mentoring today. If you are younger than me, this post is for you. Let's talk about why I'm bringing pale back. Ladies, one day you will look in the mirror and notice that the landscape of your skin is different. Older. Drier. And what are those lines? There is no way to know when that day will come, but it will come. It could be sooner than later, especially if you fool around with your skin. When that moment comes you will kick your own butt for not taking better care of it. Unless you have tons of money to throw away at the dermatologist, once it's done, it's done.

The best way to preserve the beauty of your face for the future is to wear sunscreen now. And don't forget your neck. According to an Oprah show I once saw, we will all feel bad about our necks one day. But we don't want to be feeling bad before all of our friends are, right? It's a no-brainer to wear sunscreen when you're swimming. But don't forget to choose moisturizers and foundations with sunscreen in them. We expose our faces to the sun when we're simply driving our cars or shopping at an outdoor mall, neither of which are things I have ever thought to put on sunscreen for.

I was so bummed (horrified, really) last summer when post-pregnancy hormones caused my skin to tan in weird blotches on my face that took almost a year to fade. My doctor says my skin will probably act that way for the rest of my life. So my motivation to wear sunscreen is two-fold. I can already see areas on my face that are showing damage from all the years I tanned and didn't worry about it. Since I tanned easily and didn't burn much, I thought it was okay. Apparently it's not.

So if anyone wants to join me, I'm bringing pale back. Wait, was pale ever in?

Monday, May 14, 2007

He Wants More Praise

Give Him some praise, y'all. The project that has been in the back of my mind at all times since Christmas is d-o-n-e. My deadline is tomorrow and my documents have all been sent in. It is out of my hands. My computer is not going to explode, causing me to lose everything. I'm not going to get appendicitis at the last minute and miss my deadline. Satan tried a few tricks, but God squashed him. God is good. God is faithful. God equips. God is the only reason I can accomplish anything at all because honestly, in my own flesh I am lazy, obsessive over minute details that leave me frozen, and a chronic procrastinator. All I want to think about now is going here in 28 days. Now I'm off to the gym because if I'm going pale, I'm at least going fit.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day

Because you're my mom, I grew up knowing Jesus.
Because you're my mom, I always felt loved.
Because you're my mom, way before you name appeared on a book or on an arena marquis, I was proud to be your daughter.
Because you're my mom, I have big hair. Big blond hair.
Because you're my mom, the mall is my natural habitat.
Because you're my mom, I love words.
Because you're my mom, I love mercy.
Because you're my mom, I believe God.
Because you're my mom, I know that no pit is so deep that we can't be pulled out and set free. I know that no life is in such disarray that He can't fix it and use it.
Because you're my mom, I like carbs.
Because you're my mom, I root for the underdog.
Because you're my mom, my favorite vacation is to your house.
Because you're my mom, I am blessed beyond measure.

Because I'm Your Mom

Dear Jackson,
Because I'm your mom, I've seen the Wonder Pets help Baby Joey find Mama Kangaroo three times. And all three times I've cried.
Because I'm your mom, I would be as fierce as a mama bear if anyone tried to hurt you.
Because I'm your mom, I've become a morning person.
Because I'm your mom, I laugh more than ever.
Because I'm your mom, a great day of shopping means a bag full of little man clothes.
Because I'm your mom, I would go down a waterfall in a canoe, chase a tornado, bungee jump, and then eat liver just to hold you if that's what it took.
Because I'm your mom, people around me always seem to be smiling. They're smiling at you!
Because I'm your mom, I pray that you will love God and love His people with all your heart.
Because I'm your mom, I have strong arms.
Because I'm your mom, I have an excuse for not wearing earrings.
Because I'm your mom, I can't wait to show you the world.
I love you!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Pickles, Please

As I mentioned before, one of my best friends is expecting a baby. Actually, three of my closest friends from growing up are all expecting. So naturally part of me is feeling sentimental about pregnancy. However, I already have a time line planned out in my mind for when I want it to happen again. (God may be laughing right now.) And it's not really soon.

Yesterday we had lunch with some friends at a Mexican restaurant. I went nuts and had a burrito. It was wonderful. But a few hours after we got home I started feeling weird. That same weird feeling I always try to ignore and deny. I knew I was in trouble when I started thinking about pickles, which was the only thing that helped my nausea during pregnancy.

One night in my first trimester Curtis took me to the movies. Suddenly the pungent smell of vinegar pierced the air as a boy behind us began eating his treat. Curtis and I made simultaneous comments.
HIS: Do you smell that nasty pickle? That's so disgusting!
MINE: Oh my gosh, that smells AMAZING! Honey, can you please go get me a pickle?
Thus began a long dependence on dill pickles to keep the nausea at bay.

Last night my weird feeling progressed into full-on sick. And y'all, Mexican food is not the thing to be sick on. Sadly, our refrigerator held nary a pickle. I hardly slept last night for feeling bad. My sweet hubby tended to The Monkey while I laid in bed until 9:40 this morning. At that time I looked at the clock and realized my child would be going down for his nap in twenty minutes and he might want to see his mom's face at some point in the day. I made an appearance in the living room, and what an appearance it was. My hair looked like the bride of Frankenstein. Bless my heart. I don't think I'm going to get sick again, but my body feels like it was hit by something large and in charge.

Needless to say, I am no longer feeling even the teensiest bit sentimental about pregnancy. Eleven weeks of bonding with the porcelain throne? I think I can wait.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thursday Afternoon Randomness

One of my best friends, who is expecting a little one, sent me an email saying that she had taken a day trip to visit Sprinkles in Dallas. She told me that tears came to her eyes when she bit into the peanut butter chocolate one. And because she knew eating all that sugar would make her sick on an empty stomach, she drove through Keller's on the way there. Oh my gosh, I love this friend so much and it made my whole day that she admitted to crying over a cupcake. That right there is a reason to love being pregnant and to love those who are pregnant.

Usually Jackson's daddy takes him to mother's day out, but this morning I took him because they were having "Muffins with Mommy." I tried to look cute because I know how proud of my mom's cuteness I always was when she came to my school. We sat at his little table in little chairs and shared some little muffins. Jackson was in a great mood and very into the muffins, so it was fun. They showed a video they had taken of the kids on the playground. Seriously, I almost asked if I could have a copy. It was that cute.

At lunchtime Curt and I took my car to get inspected and then we went to eat lunch together. When he suggested Chick-fil-a, a part of me died. Really? A fast food place when we are all alone? We ended up at Cheddar's and to celebrate I left the bacon and cheese on my World Class Chicken Sandwich.

I'm very thankful to have that car inspection over with. Historically, I am one who goes months past the expiration date. But last year I got pulled over when a policeman saw that my sticker was bad. And it just so happened that my license, registration, and inspection were ALL expired. Dang, Gina. I had to take myself and my three-month-old down to the courthouse and fork over some major cash flow. And that was the end of that. I now deal very promptly with those wicked expired stickers.

Jackson is getting three molars right now. Poor thing. This week he has become proficient in crawling up on the couch and on the big green chair where I do my work. This is going to get interesting. He thinks it's amusing to bang on the keyboard. He has started doing some major body flailing during his fits. Honestly, it's the funniest thing I've ever seen and I cannot keep from giggling. Now when it starts happening in public I will not be so quick to laugh. The sweetest thing he's doing right now is saying a long, drawn out "Oh." He's in fact done it four times in the last 30 seconds.

I'll leave you with this. Jackson's Mother's Day Out note said that the activities he enjoyed today were (A) Making a mother's day surprise AND (B) Looking at himself in the mirror.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


I have many flaws, not the least of which is self-protectiveness. It manifests in a militant dedication to wearing seat belts, following rules, and always being aware of my nearest emergency exit. These aren't really the things that get me in trouble though. It's the compulsion to defend myself when I've been criticized, make excuses when I've failed at something, or explain myself when I've been misunderstood.

It's my right to defend myself. But Jesus is not that interested in my rights. In fact, He gave up a lot of His own rights when He left the glory of heaven and came to earth to be our Redeemer. My rights just aren't that important. And as a Christian I joyfully offer them to my Lord because of what He's done for me. But it's still hard for me to keep my mouth shut in certain situations. I fail a lot of the time.

God has shown me that this whole thing is a deeply rooted pride issue. And you know, I don't really want to be a prideful person. God has been allowing some thorns and thistles to come my way and test me in this area. I'm not gonna lie - it's been HARD. I've wanted to state my case loudly. And forcefully. And publicly. My mom, knowing I needed some encouragement, shared something that she had heard recently: Shall I defend the flesh or be a demonstration of the Spirit? Isn't that good? She had to repeat it twice so I could drink it down. What I love about the Lord is that when He corrects you it's sharp like a double-edged sword that penetrates, even dividing the bone and marrow. But in the same pill you get peace and the grace to change.

Monday, May 07, 2007

56 Hours Come and Gone

I did a lot better than I thought I would. The 56 hours were not so bad. We had a really, really great time and most of the enjoyable things we did would not have been possible with a toddler in tow. That five course meal? Two courses. The graduation ceremony? Yeah right. Sleeping until 9:30? Funny stuff. Watching season three of The O.C. with my sister until all hours of the night? Well, maybe.

I did miss my little boy though. My eyes scouted every room for a baby to admire. I'm sure a lot of moms thought I was staring. And I was. I imagined myself helping the moms on the airplane who had their babies with them. And then I asked myself why I would want to take on that burden when that is the number one reason why I didn't bring The Monkey. To help the other babies would mean betraying The Monkey. So I enjoyed my Newsweek and People Magazines. Yes, I fell off the wagon and got a People. But please remember that after it ate holes in my brain I filled them back in with Newsweek.

We went to my sister's graduation dinner with all 6 of the girls in her program and their families. There was one young man there who leaned over the table and began to ask my mom some questions. I unfortunately misunderstood them to be confrontational questions. (FYI, if you ever have a confrontational question about my mom, please don't ask me or ask it in front of me. Thanks!) So I started looking for the exits and wondering how I could escape this very uncomfortable situation. Rather than make a scene, I flipped open my camera phone and scrolled through pictures of my baby. And I may have kissed the screen a couple of times.

We had a great reunion in the airport. Jackson came in his pajamas and there is just nothing sweeter to me. On the way home he and Curtis demonstrated his new ability to mimic a sneeze. He even does the head motion! It's so funny. We put him to bed and he woke up at about 11:00 p.m. crying his eyes out. I think he just wanted to know if I was really home or if he'd dreamed it. Mommy is home, my love! Mommy is home.

The Graduate

(I just posted this on the LPM Blog but I wanted to share it here too.)

This weekend my little sister graduated from Wheaton College with her Master's Degree in Biblical Exegesis. She worked unbelievably hard for the past two years to accomplish this goal. We are so proud!

Mom, Dad and I flew up to Wheaton to be with her for the big weekend. It was the Original Four Moores for the first time in quite a while. Dad treated us to a celebratory dinner at a French restaurant called Suzette's where we enjoyed a five course meal and live jazz music. We were in food heaven with every kind of crepe you can think of. I don't have any pictures because I was too busy with my fondue, salad, vegetable chowder, chicken crepes, and bananas foster to bother with it!

It was my first time to visit Melissa in Wheaton and I had so much fun seeing her campus, staying in her cute apartment, meeting her friends, and seeing the professors she loved so much. A few of her professors even wrote commentaries that our mom uses when she researches for her conferences and Bible studies. Melissa has had the privilege of studying under some of the world's most incredible Bible scholars while at Wheaton.

When Melissa came walking down the aisle with all the other graduates, our hearts overflowed with joy. She flashed us a sassy smile and we said to each other, "That's our girl!" When she took her seat next to her classmates all I could do was cry. My sister had earned a Master's Degree. From an incredibly hard program. And what a spectacular person she is. She's beautiful, brilliant, hilarious, outgoing, godly, and a friend to anyone - especially the friendless. Daughter, sister, prom queen, varsity athlete, sorority girl, fasionista, and now scholar. Melissa, I don't even have the words to describe how proud I am of you. You might be the most unique person God ever made. I can't wait to see how God will use everything you've learned during your time at Wheaton. I know He has great things in store!

Mom and Dad waiting to see their graduate

That sassy smile

Melissa getting her diploma

Melissa with Prayer Warrior #1

Thursday, May 03, 2007

56 Hours

I've had a pit in my stomach all day. Tomorrow I'm getting on a plane and going to my sister's graduation from Wheaton College. She has been working very hard on her Master's for the past two years and by golly I am gonna be there to applaud her incredible achievement. Her degree is in biblical exegesis (I don't know) and there are only about 9 girls in her program. Yeah, my sister kicks butt. So the pit in my stomach... Well, I had to choose one of two pits - the pit from knowing I was going to fly on an airplane with my toddler, or the pit from knowing I would be leaving my toddler behind. So I chose the second pit because I really do want to witness the graduation ceremony.

Tomorrow night will be my first night away from Jackson. I will be gone from him for 56 hours, barring any travel chaos. I'm not going to worry about him, but oh my goodness I'm going to MISS HIM! Curt's parents were sweet enough to time a visit to coincide with this weekend. There will be no shortage of love or attention. I fully trust my husband's ability to care for his son for a full weekend, but I reasoned with Curt that even I - Jackson's very mother - wouldn't want to be the only parent for 56 hours.

I'm looking forward to seeing my sister's cute apartment and campus, meeting her friends and professors, and hanging out in her favorite places. We will make some great memories. My two goals are to eat some Chicago-style pizza and sleep late at least once.

Tonight we had dinner with Steve and Cozy at Babe's Chicken Dinner House. It is an experience. Y'all, I can put away some food but I didn't even come close to finishing my chicken fried steak. And I was a little sad about it because I didn't want to stop tasting it! Then we ended up with coconut cream pie (made from scratch) on the table and I had to have a moment of silence to observe the party going on in my mouth.

As we were leaving I nestled my face against Jackson's cheek and kissed him on the ear. And it was sweet. Not just because my son is sweet, but because he had some sweet creamed corn in his ear. As well as mashed potatoes in his hair. And in his sandals. And then there was the dollop drying on my purse. Remind me to wipe that off before I head to the airport.

Praying for Heather

Remember when BooMama hosted a love offering for Heather from Swank Web Style? Heather's brain surgery is today. As the Lord brings her to mind, please pray for her and her family.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


It's that time of year when everyone in Texas and all over the South gets to deal with bugs. Lots of them. So yesterday I had to call the Orkin Man. He was supposed to arrive between 10 and 12 today and what time did he get here? 2:45. It would not have been that big of a deal except they told me I needed to leave my house, along with my pets, for 3 or 4 hours after the treatment. Beckham went to work with Curtis and it was his happiest day. Bill roamed around and hissed at the neighbor's cat. I planned for Jackson to be at mother's day out while I found somewhere to plug in my laptop and work. Not so much. He was home from mother's day out, having rejected his nap due to an undetected dirty diaper, before the Orkin Man arrived. Great. So now I have a tired and cranky baby to entertain for 3 or 4 hours outside the home. I AM SO NOT PAYING FOR THIS! After proclaiming that very statement to the Orkin man when he called me for the second time saying he'd be late, I managed to get $30 off our treatment. Go me! Mr. Orkin arrived wearing a Texas A&M ball cap, so I couldn't stay mad at him.

Another reason I couldn't stay in a bad mood? My precious, adorable son flirted with me all day long. He started making eyes at me in his highchair this morning and continued to sweet talk me until I put him in his crib tonight. It certainly wasn't because I was looking like a cute young mom. It was an air-dried hair day gone bad. If he smiled at me once with big blinking eyes, he did it five thousand times. It was possibly my favorite day of motherhood. I need to remember that tomorrow when he is making a scene at Gymboree.

We spent our pest control exile at the mall. Get this...my son slept in his stroller. HE SLEPT IN HIS STROLLER! For an hour! People, that has not happened in a year. God was having mercy on me. After he woke up we shared some pretzel sticks and bought Daddy a new hat from American Eagle that he looks really good in. Too bad he will not be caught dead in it outside this house.

Later we picked up Curtis and headed to a park. This park had sand instead of pebbles and we let Jackson go nuts in it. Curt buried Jackson's legs and made them look two feet long. I absolutely hate that I didn't have my camera. Jacks must have gotten a little sand in his mouth because he ralphed on his dad on the way to the car. I'm sure all the other parents were dying laughing at our naivete. They knew exactly what was coming when that fist inevitably made its way into the mouth.

Here's my little man in his new Nick and Nora sock monkey pajamas from Super Target. I went there for the first time last night and let me just say, it IS super. In my memories of that great, indeed super, experience, I am choosing to exclude the moment the cashier asked me to sign up for a Target card. When I said no, she replied, "Well if you do I get a $5 gift card." Really? Does my Crown financial peace mean that little to you? I'll stop now. Here's the boy.

He asked for the mohawk! I swear!