The evolution of the far!

7 Weeks

9 Weeks

10 & 1/2 Weeks

12 Weeks

14 Weeks

16 Weeks

Corrected Christmas card!

Simply Joy Christmas
View the entire collection of cards.

Friend Makin' Monday: Top 10 of 2010

Thanks to The Texas Darlings for hosting FMM this week and for allowing me to link up and participate! It's been ages since I really blogged for the sake of blogging, and I figured this was a good way to forge my re-entrance into the bloggy world! So thanks again. :)

You can find other new fun friends' blogs at: THIS LINK

This year has been WONDERFUL, and I am very thankful for my life right now, including my job, my husband, my family, and my friends.

Top Ten Things from 2010:

10. Spending holidays and birthdays with our crazy but sweet families. I am thankful for their support, and it is so fun to be around our TEN nieces and nephews! Even though Scott & Shawn aren't so young anymore...ok, so they're technically adults...*tear* They grow up so fast!

9. Snow for my birthday! Last time that happened, I lived in NYC! Crazy for it to snow in Texas (in MARCH, no less)!

8. Did I mention my husband is awesome? 5 years together and counting, 2 married years and counting, and he still makes me laugh at the most unexpected times.

7. My new job in 2nd grade. I am really loving the 2nd graders, and I LOVE my teammates. Lucky me.

6. Laughs shared with my friends. Makes life better, huh?

5. Pool time in the backyard this summer. Ahhh...spending time with our friends and family out back. Can't beat

4. Performing the title role in Miss Saigon. Never in a million years, would I ever get that chance again, and it was the role of a lifetime. It was the first dramatic role I had ever played, and it was HARD and emotionally difficult. There were nights when I would go home totally depressed because I was so deep into feeling her life and circumstances. But wow, what an amazing show and experience.

3. Surviving the 2009-2010 school year. I love my job, and I love my kids, and sometimes (like last year), you love your kids almost too much because of their special needs. It was a very hard, emotionally and physically draining year, and I felt like I grew a lot as a teacher and person. It was tough, but I made it through!

2. Our trip to St. Thomas, Virgin Islands! WOW. I can't even describe the beauty and serenity of that place. And I REALLY hope we can go back one day and stay in St. John (my favorite)!

1. Finding out that we are going to be parents! Wow. I just can't wait to meet this baby. It's surreal in so many ways and hard to believe that there is an actual HUMAN growing inside of me! We are so blessed.

Happy Monday!

Almost 11 Weeks...

I can do it! I can make it to the 2nd trimester in one piece!

Letters to Baby:

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Dear Baby,

I am 7 weeks pregnant with you today. I can’t believe I still have to wait a whole week to see the doctor and get a sonogram. I am dying to see you and hear your little heartbeat. I just want to make sure you’re doing ok in there all by yourself!

My tummy is quite round for me to be just 7 weeks along. I have decided that something is up! Either you are actually BABIES, not baby, or perhaps I have been pregnant longer than we think. Either way, we are so excited about you, and we can’t wait to visit the doctor next week. I can’t believe when May comes around you will be joining our little family. Things will be so different, but I can’t wait to see all the wonderful things you will bring to our lives and our hearts.

You have definitely already done a number on my body. At first, the only thing that I noticed is that I was exhausted. I mean, so exhausted I didn’t feel like moving. I have spent a LOT of the last 6 weeks taking naps, resting on the couch, or reading in bed.

I’m still feeling pretty darn tired ALL the time, but it’s not QUITE as bad as when I first found out about you.

About a week or so ago, I started feeling pretty sick to my tummy. I feel hungry a lot, but nothing sounds good. I don’t actually want to eat anything. But my tummy hurts like it’s hungry. Very frustrating! I just ate some Cheez-Its, and they were YUMMY. Now Daddy is cooking some stir-fry with chicken, and I think it will be good, too.

Be good in there, love.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Dear Baby,

Wow! Time has flied! I am almost 11 Weeks along now, and I am counting down the days until I enter the 2nd Trimester and (hopefully) start to feel better and more energized. I’m sure your Daddy is tired of waiting on me hand and foot, cooking, and cleaning up for me, but he sure has been sweet about it.

We finally got to see you on the ultrasound back at 8 weeks, and there was only ONE of you in there (thank goodness)! You measured EXACTLY 8 weeks, so you are just coming along quite nicely, just like you should. Way to be the best at growing; you are already a baby after your Mommy’s own heart, trying to be the best at everything. ☺

These days, I have been eating a LITTLE better, though my tummy sure still doesn’t want certain things. (A LOT of certain things, actually).

I have been liking salad, yogurt, jello, pudding, chocolate, milk, orange juice, cereal, strawberries, apple sauce, and donuts. I can’t get enough donuts; I am trying to quit going to the donut shop in the mornings on the way to work, LOL! I also have been drinking a Carnation Instant Breakfast (milk chocolate flavor) every single morning. Mommy has NEVER liked to eat breakfast, because her IBS has always made it an unpleasant experience. So I do eat something small, but not until I get to school and after having my Carnation.

I am still sleeping a LOT and taking lots of naps after work and even on weekends. Today I felt extra awful and laid in bed for 6 hours! ☹ Hopefully I have successfully warded off the cold that was trying to attack me.

Aunt Sadie & Uncle Trey have already given us LOTS of goodies for you; you are going to have SO many people loving on you and giving you gifts all the time; that’s pretty obvious already! You have already gotten gifts from both Grandmas, too!

We are all VERY excited to meet you. So keep on growing and getting stronger, and preferably don’t grow MY nose, because it’s not my favorite. ☺

We love you, sweet pea!

I've got LOVE in my tummy.

Yep. So for the few people on earth that don't know, Clint & I are expecting our first baby in May.

We are SO excited and feel very blessed that this pregnancy fit right into our anal retentive time table for me to have the baby at the end of the school year so I could be home with baby all summer before going back to work. :) Hee. Don't you just love it when things work out the way you plan? It's such a rarity, I must say I was really surprised when I saw that "pregnant" on the digital test. I am praying that things go along well and both baby and I stay healthy.

Another reason I'm so excited is because one of my dearest friends, Jennifer (who I also teach with), is due 3 and 1/2 weeks before me! It's so nice to have a good friend to talk to, complain to, and compare stories/pains with!

I am a little over 10 weeks along now, so I am really hoping that some of this nausea and other accompanying pains will start to diminish soon. :( I keep reminding myself that it could be SO much worse, and I am thankful to be where I am, but that doesn't make me feel much better when I'm lying awake at 3 am, feeling awful. :( Here's hoping I get back to my normal self soon!

OK, I'm going to post a few belly shots, and please forgive me for the horrible quality, as I was too lazy to use a real camera/get my husband to take the shots/etc.

I plan to start using a real camera from now on! It's amazing how you can feel so horrible that it doesn't seem like a priority to take a decent picture of yourself that will be used to document an amazing time of your life...hmm. Yeah. Well anyway.

7 Weeks

9 Weeks

So am I the only one who is too lazy to scan the sonogram picture so I can upload it to the internet? I must be. I'm sure I am the only one who's too lazy to do that. See, we don't have a scanner at home. And the scanner at school is like, way far away from my classroom. And like, did I mention I feel awful? Hmm. So anyway. Yeah.


So exciting. And scary.

the worst blogger ever.

Yep, that's me!

Sorry for the hiatus. Things have been quite busy and crazy around here since school started at the end of August. I have accomplished absolutely nothing other than working. I bought the paint to redo my kitchen cabinets, and it's sitting in my garage. I keep telling myself I'm going to call the handyman guy and get a quote, but it never happens!

I have really been enjoying teaching 2nd grade. It's a nice change in several ways--they are VERY sweet and absolutely LOVE Mrs. Cockrell. I'm also enjoying the new curriculum. It's definitely a change, but I'm getting used to it. :) I sure do have some doozies in my class this year, but mostly they are fabulous and super sweet.

Already got what, 7 weeks down? many weeks of school are there? Nevermind, it's too soon to start the countdown; I'll go crazy!

I wish I had something good to write about. No such luck...hopefully soon, though! ;)

Back soon!

You know you're getting older when:

-all the movie stars you're attracted to are now younger than you.

-9 times out of 10 when you meet someone new, they're younger than you.

-bending down to get on the floor and then getting back up is a lot more challenging than you remember.

-you remember when those lame, raunchy teenager movies were what you and your friends went to see on the weekends.

-most of the time you'd rather stay home and watch t.v. or read a book instead of going out to the bar.

-you walk into a room and immediately forget what your purpose was in going there.

-you sometimes know exactly what you want to say but cannot for the life of you remember the word that MEANS it.

-you're married.


Job News!

I am very excited to announce that in the coming school year, I'll be moving to 2nd grade! I'm excited to be joining the fabulous 2nd grade team but super sad to be leaving my amazing 3rd grade teammates. :( Thank goodness we will all be on the same hallway this year. At least that way I know I'll still see my lovely ladies every day!

This was a hard decision for me, because I have been very happy in 3rd grade, but I've always known that eventually I'd like to teach 2nd, and I figured it would be easier to make a change NOW than to do so after I've had a baby (no bun in the oven yet, don't get too excited). Just thinking into the future is all. :)

Change: scary, yet exciting. We shall see!


--2 and a half days of teaching left this school year.

--have to have my entire classroom moved by 12:00 on Wednesday.

--psycho people are really exhausting.

--SO ready for summer.

--half my big toenail got ripped off tuesday, and it HURTS.

--need some quiet time.

--in love with True Blood.

--so excited about getting back to blogging on a regular basis.

--still trying to book a vacation officially!


My 29th Birthday Shindig:

What, so I'm posting these 2 months after the fact. Sue me.

I've been busy! LOL. The GOOD news is (knock on wood), I haven't been sick since my birthday! Yeehaw! I'm starting to believe I might make it to the end of the school year (another 2 and 1/2 weeks) without missing anymore days! YAY. I think I can...

Enjoy the pics of me and my crazy friends!

better late than never: family photos.

This is one of the best pictures of the youngest grandkids! I'll have to print some copies of this one for parents & grandpa & grandma! So precious.

the kids with cousin Joel. he came down to visit from Ohio this year.

all the grandkids except for Shawn! how did that booger get out of this one?!

Grandpa gets in on the fun!

Clint with Carl & Boots.

Carter playing in the snow on Christmas Eve!

Grandma & Chloe in the snow:

Trey, Chloe, Grandma & Uncle Clint:

Carter & his Daddy:


Carter with Uncle Clint:

Friend Makin' Monday

I just read on another blog about "Friend Makin' Monday" on aefilkin's blog, and it sounded like fun, so here I am! Here are her questions for this week:

I am.... sick with 9 and counting.

I many people miss out on meeting wonderful people because they are too close-minded.

I in bed, but i'm just not tired.

I dream....almost only nightmares. no fun, but true.

I re-do our kitchen. and to win the lotto. ok, i want a lot of things.

I lucky i am to have my husband in my life. he is truly a good person.

I don't like....people who think everything is about THEM.

I smell...nothing. after a while, your nose gets used to the Scentsy scent. :)

I hear....Frasier...Will & Grace just ended.

I fear....losing my loved ones.

I late.

I search...for meaning in life. :)

I Gran. it's been almost 11 years, but i still think about her a lot.

I always...try to be nice to people, even when they don't deserve it.

I regret....the days when i was younger and self-destructive. luckily, i didn't do too much damage!

I difficult it will be for us to get pregnant (no, we're not trying yet).

I crave....chips & salsa and/or queso almost daily. it's a sickness.

I in new york and thinking every single day for 3 years how magical it was.

I get well in time for my birthday party on saturday. actually, i need to get well by thursday or friday, so i have time to clean the house first. :)

I forget....what it's like to be 8 or 9 years old, like my students. it would make me a better teacher if i could remember.

I feel....a little disappointed in what has been the least fun birthday i can remember.

I can....make people laugh, which i love.

I can' well.

I am happy....most of the time, actually.

I lose.....hmm, i can't think of anything i lose on a regular basis, unless you count losing my mind.

I sing....constantly. i was a vocal performance major, and i teach voice lessons, and i perform in 2 or 3 musicals each year. love it.

I music a lot. i find it hard to ride in the car without music. sometimes i make myself drive in silence with just me and my thoughts, though. ever tried it?

I shop.....too much. i've got to calm it down.

I eat....things that are not healthy for me. :(

I many people.

results of severe boredom.

you can ask anyone who knows me well: i don't get bored. i just don't. i could sit at home for hours, reading, watching t.v., looking through magazines, reading blogs, surfing the internet; i just don't get bored. ever.

and then i got Mono. good times, right? well, i think it didn't help me that i could barely move, so at times i didn't even feel like holding my book for very long. i've watched plenty of tv, completely read 2 novels, read 4 magazines cover to cover, read probably close to 400 blog entries--all in the last 9 days since i got sick.

finally on friday (the day after my birthday--which was spent in bed--joy), i couldn't take it anymore. i was bored. it was a strange feeling.

i started cleaning out the drawers and cabinets in our wet bar. i rearranged all of the odds and ends, repackaged some of the Christmas china that was still out loose, rearranged the 18,000 margarita and wine glasses we have, and organized my recipes. this is quite comical, you see, as i don't cook. like, ever. :)

please enjoy the photos from my day of severe boredom.

here is my lovely recipe binder, given to me by clint's aunt carol at my bridal shower. look, i'm actually putting it to use!

I took all my loose recipes and labeled, cut and pasted them onto these loose leaf recipe pages. YAY organization!

I decided to keep the original recipe cards from family members and simply dropped them into a sheet protector that sits in the front of my recipe binder. I love the vintage recipe cards and beautiful handwriting! We just don't write in cursive like the older generations did. I call my own handwriting "prinsive," a random combination of print and cursive letters. It seems that's what most people use these days. Oh well, it's unique if nothing else. :)

here's my newly reorganized nook above the wet bar. i'm still not sure i love it, but i like it better than what was there before (margarita glasses with that same fiesta pitcher--too many glasses with the hanging ones).

now that i moved the cookbooks up top, it makes the counter a lot less cluttered, as seen here, with a lovely framed photo from one my musicals and a lovely crystal bowl filled with wine corks. the crystal bowl was a wedding gift, and i figured since i don't have a china cabinet, why leave it hidden in my cabinets? i need to drink some more wine, though...

here is the "new" left side of my mantle. i'm really liking this side. it seems balanced to me. i like the platter, but i'm constantly afraid it's going to come crashing down at some point (most likely in the middle of the night, waking a frightened yours truly to the faux sounds of an intruder).

here's the right side of the mantle, which just doesn't look right to me. i can never figure out what is wrong with my mantle groupings. i rearrange things a thousand times, i've read advice about it on several blogs, i've shopped the house and tried out new things (enter everything on this side now apart from the brown vase). i'm at a loss. oh well. it'll do for now! :)

here is the whole mantle (terrible photo, i know). what can you do? the problem is that i can't get too rustic-vintage in this room, even though i love it, because the living room is done in a new, mod version of the 60's flower power, including a chocolate brown shag rug, and pillows with large flowers in burnt orange, avocado, and red. we have an avocado accent wall to the left of the fireplace. what's a newbie decorator to do? :) just keep trying different things!

crazy reading fool.

thanks for stopping by!

well, considering i've hardly left my house in 8 days due to this probable case of Mono (find out for sure tomorrow from 2nd blood test), i definitely haven't had a very thrilling or productive week.

i thought i'd post a little about the books i'm currently/soon to be reading. :) there is not a day in my life that i don't have a book in progress. as soon as i finish one, i pick out a new one to start the next day.

this week i read and finished Dear John by Nicholas Sparks. i was a little underwhelmed by the love story of the book, but i was completely struck by the relationship between father and son. there was a point where i literally sobbed over it for a good 10 minutes. so much that the husband was worried about me! :) the book is a little slow getting started, but i enjoyed it overall.

i'm currently in the middle of reading The Last Song by Nicholas Sparks. it is definitely a youngsters' love story, but in my opinion, the writing just seems better in this one. ??? i definitely don't read Sparks for his writing genius; it's the stories that are heartfelt and enjoyable. when you're sick, you don't really feel like reading hard core literature. :)

next up on my Kindle is Queen of Babble in the Big City by Meg Cabot. Cabot is the author of all the Princess Diary books and writes chick lit for teens and for adults. i find her voice very fun to read. she has good comic timing. not sure if any of this makes sense, but she really is an enjoyable author to read. i think i must have read the original Queen of Babble book last summer, so hopefully i'll enjoy this one as well. there is a 3rd, also: Queen of Babble Gets Hitched. i love series!

i also ordered Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea by Chelsea Handler on my Kindle. i think people either love or hate Handler, but she cracks me up with her hateful comments. anyway, i've heard her books are funny, so hopefully i will enjoy this one! she just came out with a new book: Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang, if you're interested.

good times with reading! feel free to leave some book recommendations in the comments; i love recommendations from friends!

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