Tuesday, October 31, 2006

We Wanna Meet, Part One UPDATED w/ Pictures

I would love to link every time I mention a wonderful blogger I met this weekend, but I'm not feeling well. So, head to Shannon's to see an alphabetical list of attendees. Thanks, Shannon, for letting me cheat! Maybe I'll have extra energy to put in links tomorrow. Don't hold your breath.

I can't possibly put all that happened this weekend in one post, so I thought I'd just start with Friday night. I think everyone who went is still trying to process the whole thing and remember all the details, so I'll start slowly and hopefully remember everything I wanted to write about.

We (hubby, Caleb, and I) first arrived at the hotel around 6pm Friday. We drove through Ft. Worth at 5pm, so traffic was bad. When we got to the room, our keys wouldn't work, so hubby went down to the desk to get them fixed. In the meantime, Caleb and I are standing in the hallway with all of our luggage. The room across from ours has the door open and I hear a little one inside. I figured it must either be Holymama! or Gibee, because they were bringing their boys, too. Holymama came to the door, and I said, "You're Holymama, right?" She looked freaked out. :-) She said, "yeah" reaaaaalllllyyyy slow, still looking freaked out. I said, "I'm Jennifer." "Oh, like, Aggiejenn?" "Yeah." I think I heard a sigh of relief. I guess random people knowing your name in a hotel is pretty scary. Sorry for scaring you, Holymama!

Then, Jeana walked up and started talking to Holymama. She said GiBee was next door. I told her to tell GiBee we were here, and who should appear but Lauren and Faith as well. I've been in the hotel for 5 whole minutes and I've already met all these great ladies!

I think Lauren was just glad to see me because I'm short too. Everyone (Jeana, Holymama, GiBee, Faith) else is TALL, at least according to the standards of Lauren and Jennifer. Lauren is technically 1/4" taller than me, and I think she was pretty proud of that fact. Never mind that neither of us clears 5'4". :-)

(Lauren brought her daughter with her and she is BEAUTIFUL!!! And sweet, too. She bought the most adorable teal cowgirl hat on Saturday and looked so cute in it.)

After everyone changed out of their traveling clothes and primped a little, we headed to the restaurant. Hubby, Caleb, and I arrived first out of the hotel group. Shannon, Chilihead, and Kellygirl were already there. I recognized Shannon and Chili from the Kansas City bloggers lunch pictures. Shannon had no clue who I was. Is anyone really surprised? I mean, all 5 of you who read this blog would probably recognize me from seeing that annoying black and white picture everywhere (Katherine recognized me on Saturday night because of all the comments I leave everywhere.), but not Shannon. I think our introduction went something like this.

Me: Hi.
Shannon: Are you one of the bloggers?
Me: yeah, I'm Jennifer.
Shannon: Hi. (looking confused)

I should have used my code name. Lauren's son thought it was weird we all have code names, but apparently people don't recognize the "real" me!

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Lauren and GiBee

Then I proceeded to help hubby corral a very tired and hungry Caleb. (He took him back to the hotel early so I could enjoy the night...isn't he great?)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Chilihead (and Shannon)

I'm not exactly sure of the order that everyone else arrived, but Shalee, Antique Mommy, the hotel group (see above), Minnie, CMommy, Kep, and Carol all joined in on the fun. (Am I missing someone?? I feel like I am.)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Faith (in PINK!) and her camera (which she doesn't like)

Holymama made us all super cool name tags with her scrapbooking skills. (She didn't use my code name on my name tag, either...maybe that's the problem!)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting Carol and CMommy

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting CMommy and Minnie

Dinner was full of introductions, conversation, and laughter. I learned about Kellygirl and her hubby who are homeschooling their 4 kids. And CMommy and her new teaching job. And Carol's very busy weekend playing in her praise bands. It was a great time.

After dinner, a bunch of us crashed Lauren, Jeana, and Faith's room. Actually, GiBee and I came back early to put Hunter to bed in the adjoining room. The doors between the rooms were open and since Hunter was trying to go to sleep, I went and sat on one of the beds in the adjoining room to wait for GiBee and her sister-in-law. Pretty soon after that, the occupants came back and Lauren was a little freaked to find me sitting in her room all alone. She said something to the effect of, "how did you get in here?"

Yep, that's me. I'm the freak. First Holymama. Then Shannon. Now Lauren.

I think I'll join the circus now. Maybe I'll be normal there.

:-)

We laughed a lot that night! It was fun, and I got to learn Shannon's system for her kids blog names. How does she keep it all straight?

Stay tuned tomorrow for part 2...the Stockyards and dinner at Antique Mommy's house.

Monday, October 30, 2006

I'm Back from We Wanna Meet

...but I'll have to tell you about it tomorrow. Here's how my day has gone so far:

-woke up around 4am with a charlie-horse type cramp in my neck so bad it still hurts
-realized while packing my stuff at my mom's house to come home that I left our hanging clothes in the closet of the hotel in Ft. Worth
-called hotel. They are shipping them to us for $9...well worth not driving back to Ft. Worth
-had mom drive us the 2 1/2 hours home with son sleeping maybe 45 minutes and screaming for attention the rest of the time
-took son to the doctor because his cold has run longer than it should only to find out he has an ear infection and possible sinus infection. He's also running a temperature (101.9 at the doctor) and I couldn't even tell he was warm. (Yes, Mother of the Year judges...Pick me! Pick me!)
-realized my debit card was not in my wallet
-racked my brain to figure out when was the last time I used it. Friday night.
-panicked (a little) that I may have left it at the restaurant and no one bothered to call me and maybe had a fun time with it
-went to Walgreens to fill son's prescription to no avail because their computers had crashed.
-went to another Walgreens to drop off prescription
-took food to a family at church that just had a baby. Couldn't hold baby or get too close because Caleb is sick. Promise to come back when he's well and chat and actually cook them dinner this time (I picked up Boston Market in between the doctor and getting the prescription filled).
-got home, called hubby because I forgot to return to Walgreens to pick up the prescription
-found debit card in purse (whew!)
-tried to feed Caleb dinner, but he threw it on the floor in protest
-realize my throat is hurting really bad. And my ears are hurting really bad.

So, now I'm going to go soak in a hot tub (that's a tub with hot water in it. we don't have a jacuzzi), drink some hot tea, and go to bed early.

I'll tell you all about "We Wanna Meet" tomorrow. Hopefully.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Thursday Thanksgiving

Today I am thankful...

that God hears my prayers.

for His Word.

for the voice of my son I hear on the monitor.

for God reminding me to be present in the moment because they don't last long.

for a husband who does the dishes almost every night of the week.

for awesome mentor moms at my MotherWise class.

for a full night's rest.

that this Sunday I get to meet and worship with the sweet lady who inspired me to do these Thursday Thanksgivings!

that I also get to meet many other wonderful mommy bloggers this weekend.

for His grace and mercy and forgiveness every moment of every day.


"Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song." ~Psalm 95:2

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Green Chile Quiche

Barb wanted this recipe, so I thought I would just post it. It really couldn't be any easier! :-)

Green Chile Quiche

4 eggs, beaten
1 can chopped green chiles
1-2 cups shredded cheese (I used cheddar jack)

Mix together. Pour into pie crust. Bake at 325 for 45-60 minutes.

That's it! :-)

You can pretty much add whatever you like to the eggs for your own special quiche. Last night was my second time making it and before I started making them, I never knew quiche was so simple .

And here's the pie crust recipe I used if anyone wants it. Again, it's called "Super Easy Pie Crust." If I can make it, anyone can! I started making my own because I have all the ingredients on hand (flour, oil, milk) and usually forget to buy them at the store.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Sacrifice (& a Menu)

from my Bible study this morning...

"How do I produce godly offspring? I want to do it, but where do I begin? Mother, I have some good news and bad news for you. The good news is that the Holy Spirit is the One who will produce godliness in your children. That is His work. He will use you, if you are available, as His human instrument to bring this about.

The bad news is you cannot live your life doing what you want, when you want to, the way you want to do it and still achieve the goal of producing godly offspring. You will have to sacrifice.

To produce godly offspring, it will require sacrifice. Your living sacrifice is an act of worship to God...You can't do what everyone else is doing. You may need to make some changes in your lifestyle. You may have to give up something you really like. Other people may not understand you. Friends and family may poke fun at you." ~Denise Glenn, Wisdom for Mothers

Ouch.

Convicted.

I have struggled with a lot of selfishness in my mothering lately, wanting to do my things on my schedule and getting frustrated when things don't work out that way because Caleb's schedule encroached on mine.


And now our menu for the week. I didn't post it yesterday out of respect for Canon's family. Here's what we're having this week.

Monday: Spaghetti and corn casserole
Tuesday: Green chile cheese quiche and biscuits
Wednesday: Grilled cheese sandwiches and potato soup
Thursday: Stuffed Bell Peppers (we didn't have them last week)
Friday: dinner in Ft. Worth
Saturday: dinner in Ft. Worth
Sunday: Easy Mexican Casserole

Monday, October 23, 2006

In Memory of Canon

A sweet little 4-year-old boy has gone to be with the Lord. As his mama says, "Canon is now playing baseball, football, basketball, and drinking all the Sprite he wants." You can leave a message for his mother and find Canon's story here.


Please join me in praying for his mother, Carla, as she is a single mom with two other children at home. My heart aches for her.

Lord, I cannot begin to understand what Carla faces right now. You know how to comfort her and lift her up. Please wrap Your arms around her as she is grieving for her little boy, and strengthen her to be the mother that her other children need. May the peace that passes all understanding guard this family in the weeks and months to come. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

So, What Did You Do This Weekend?

This is what happened at our house...



Hubby and his brother put in a drainage pipe since this side of our yard has always had drainage problems. The neighbor's yard is higher than ours and so our yard stays wet all the time. So far, it's working pretty well! I love being married to such a smart guy who's willing to take on projects like this. :-)

You'll notice how green our grass still is. If you live in an area where fall has long since come and winter is very near--we have NO idea what that's like! You see everyone is still in shorts in the afternoons. It was cold going to church this morning--you know, like in the high 50s/low 60s. I have always lived in warm climates, so I don't have memories of shoveling snow or making snowmen (except one Christmas we spent in Colorado). Hubby is from northern New Mexico, where it used to snow, but it hasn't snowed a significant amount since we've been married. Maybe one day Caleb and I will experience are true white Christmas. Not looking good for it to be anytime soon.

(You now see why I put that picture at the top of my blog and try to usher Fall into the house using scented candles. We just don't get much of a fall around here. Our seasons are something like HOT and not so hot.)

Friday, October 20, 2006

Wedding Picture

When I posted about our anniversary, someone wanted to see a wedding picture. Our scanner is not working (because I can't find the power cord!), but I was looking through some pictures on the computer and found one we already had scanned (don't remember doing that). So, here it is...














August 17, 2002

*what you can't see if the HUGE fever blister I was sporting on my wedding day. I woke up with my upper lip swollen about an inch out from my face. You can imagine the panic that set in seeing that my face would be captured in many pictures that day. But, the swelling went down (thanks to a LOT of ice) and you couldn't even tell since it was hidden by my lipstick. :-)

My Name

I found this from Wendy.

It seems no one in the United States has my first and last name. Not all that surprising, I guess, since our last name is pretty rare in the United States. It's one of those names that if you ever meet someone with the same last name, you know they must be related to you somehow. I think there are just over 200 people in the U.S. with my last name (the database on the site below says our last name isn't even registered which means it's very uncommon).

Interestingly, there are 531 people who have my first and maiden last name.

Being a Jennifer (almost 1.4 million of us in the U.S.), it's nice to have a rare last name!


HowManyOfMe.com
LogoThere are:
0
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Go see how many of you there are!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Weather

I just had to report. It's almost 5pm and the temperature is only 67 degrees.


Everyone now: aaaaaahhhhhhh.


Fall is here. :-)

Thursday Thanksgiving

Today I am thankful for...

*a God who speaks to us

*times to listen to Him

*our Ladies Retreat coming up and what He will accomplish there

*a full night's sleep (yay!)

*His constant presence

*that He knows how much my friend is hurting right now and is with her, comforting her

*sweet Caleb kisses

*seeing Caleb so excited when his Daddy gets home from work

*the opportunity to help plan a baby shower for my sister :-)

*good friends

*hubby's brother who's flying down from Michigan to take Caleb's one-year pictures

*a sweet husband who always puts his family first

"Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name." ~Psalm 100:4

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Entertainment

After screaming at us for most of the first two hours of our road trip this past weekend, I was happy to let Caleb play with this:


One destroyed package of wipes I didn't like in the first place.

15 minutes of peace and quiet.

Price: less than $2.

Totally worth it. Posted by Picasa

Hi Dad!

Apparently my dad reads this blog regularly because he's been telling my mom the most efficient way to load the dishwasher.

I think the conversation went something like this:

Mom, loading dishwasher.
Dad: Don't you read Jennifer's blog?
Mom: Yes, why?
Dad: Because that's not how she said to load the dishwasher. You're supposed to put the silverware each in its own place so it's easier to unload.
Mom: (Probably rolling her eyes and sighing)

Hi, Dad! Thanks for your support. :-)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Menu Plan Monday



Here's our menu for the week:

Monday: Chicken Tetrazini
Tuesday: Sweet and Sour Chicken over rice
Wednesday: Stuffed Bell Peppers (my BIL is making this one!)
Thursday: Chicken & Rice Casserole
Friday: Cheesy Lasagna
Saturday: Marinated Flank Steak
Sunday: Taco Salad (Life Group at our house)

See more Menu Plans at Laura's blog!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Attention Retailers of America

I am 27 years old. I would like to go shopping and buy something for a 27-year-old that is not cut down to there or skin tight. I am not 16. I am not a size 6. I do not want to look like my grandmother in order to find a modest dress.

Thank you.

Singapore Pics

Here are some pictures hubby took on his recent trip to Singapore:


It is a very beautiful place! The average temperatures range from 79-86 degrees during the day and cooler temperatures at night, year-round. If we move there, we definitely won't be trading in the humidity, but at least the highs don't reach that of Texas in the summer.

Speaking of temperature, I went outside this morning in shorts and it was a little chilly--it felt wonderful. :-) Maybe Texas is waking up to the fact that Fall is upon us! Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Thursday Thanksgiving

I'm borrowing this idea from JettyBetty.

Today I am thankful for:

-the rain God has sent to refresh the earth

-His Word that keeps unfolding to me (Psalm 119:130)

-for MotherWise Bible studies and my group of prayer partners there

-for a husband who loves me more than I know (that's what he says!)

-for family we'll get to see this weekend, some who have never met Caleb

-for the privilege of being a wife and a mother, two of my dreams come true

-Christian sisters who love my child and take good care of him while I'm in Bible study

-for His promises to me

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. ~Psalm 106:1

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

WFMW: Organizing Digital Photos


This Works-for-Me Wednesday is inspired by my own mistake. As soon as Caleb was born we started taking tons of pictures of him. I would load them onto the computer and name them cutesy names like "bad hair day," "acting silly," "tackle box 001," etc. This was fine (I thought) until I was catching up his scrapbook and I couldn't tell when those pictures were taken. (You can go into each file and see the date it was taken, but I wanted to be able to glance at a file of pictures and know which month of Caleb's life they were taken to make putting together the scrapbook easier.) Now I name the set of pictures I'm uploading things like "New Mexico Trip 7.06" or "September 22 2006" so the date is right there in front of me and I know how old Caleb was when the pictures were taken. It saves me tons of time and stress!

Works for Me!

Go check out Shannon's blog for more great ideas!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Another Movie Recommendation

The movie, One Night with the King, comes out this Friday, the 13th. It is based on the book entitled Hadassah: One Night with the King (a fictional retelling of the book of Esther). To view the trailer, go here. It looks incredible.

Memes!

Shalee has tagged me for two memes, so maybe you'll learn something about me you didn't know.

Memories Meme

1. Favorite memory of your mother: I have so many wonderful memories of my mother (and father) it's hard to choose just one. I'll go with a fairly recent one. When I was 8 months pregnant with Caleb (August 2005), hubby was living/working out of town, so my mom came to live with me in case anything should happen. She didn't want me going into labor when I was alone in the house. She gave up a lot to spend the last two months with me: time with my dad, numerous trips back and forth to her house (she would go home on the days hubby was home), oodles in gas money, time with her own mother who lives with them, time with my sister, and the list could go on (plus she recently said she gained several pounds when she was living with me because I was eating all the time that last month!). I can never repay her for being there with me during that time.

2. Favorite memory of your father: Again, I have so many! One of my favorites, though, happened on my wedding day. My dad is a pretty tough guy on the outside, but those of us who know him well know he is a big softy! I really thought he would be a mess on my wedding day, seeing as how his first daughter was getting married and all. When we were standing in the back waiting for our time to walk down the aisle, I realized that they were playing the wrong song when hubby-to-be was walking down the aisle. I freaked a little (!) because that was the song I was supposed to walk down to and it was supposed to be very dramatic with the doors opening and everything. Dad hurried out, they fixed it, and no one was any wiser. As the doors opened for us to walk down the aisle, I started walking really fast. Dad said, "Slow down, enjoy it." I couldn't believe he was so calm! Now that I'm a mom I love to see my Dad with Caleb. He loves to spend time with Caleb and can't wait until Caleb is old enough to go fishing with him. :-)

3. Favorite memory of your sibling(s): I have one sister and we are 2 1/2 years apart (I'm older). Just in the last few years have we really become good friends without all the stupid sibling stuff going on (now that we live in two separate houses!). One of my favorite childhood memories of my sister is when I convinced her, at about age 2, to climb out her window and run across the street to touch the neighbor's decorative windmill in their front yard. Recently, my favorite memory is how she cried when I was in labor because she didn't want me to hurt. I'm sure I'll feel the same way when she gives birth in February!

4. What is one skill you wish you could wake up tomorrow and be able to do? Graphic design. I'd fix this blog up in a jiffy!

5. Which one of your dreams has come true? Being a wife and a mother. Since I was little I have wanted to be a teacher, wife, and mother. I've been privileged to do all three and have been immensely blessed by each challenging role.

Five for Five Meme

1. Five minutes to yourself, what would you do? Take a nap.

2. Five dollars to spend, how would you spend it? Starbucks--Pumpkin Spice Latte. mmmm.

3. Five items in your house you could part with right now: I could list 5 things on my desk I could part with right now:
-used scratch paper
-old newspaper Sports section (wonder who left that there???)
-old/used batteries from the wireless mouse
-junk mail
-bills

4. Five items in your house you could never part with. (It says "items", so I'll go with that, even though I could part with any of my stuff and still be fine. Now hubby and Caleb must stay!)
Five items I would cry over if they left:
-handmade quilts my grandmother gave me that her mother made
-my Bible with all the notes I've written in it over the years
-my wedding rings
-cards my husband has given me on special occasions
-handstitched poem hanging in Caleb's room that my MIL gave me (her mother and aunt made it and it hung in her nursery when hubby and the other boys were small)

5. Five words you love:
-"babe" (what hubby calls me)
-momma
-grace
-prayer
-forgiveness

There you go, Shalee!

I'm tagging Lisa, my sister, Victoria, and anyone else who wants to play along.

To Encourage and Bless

My friend, Lisa, has written a beautiful post entitled To Encourage and Bless, and it does.. It's beautiful...go check it out.

Monday, October 09, 2006

More Pics of the Trip

Here are some more pictures of our trip to see my sister. Here's sis, me, and Caleb. As I always told my students when they would comment on her picture in my classroom...she's the tall, pretty, skinny sister! :-) She looks even more beautiful now that she is expecting a baby girl in February. I'm gonna be an aunt. Exciting stuff!


Here is a picture of the "prego belly." She doesn't look very pregnant in this picture, though (and I am standing very awkwardly!). Miss Ava Grace (baby) got my message to her on her mommy's blog and the first time I put my hand on her belly, Ava kicked me. :-) Hard to believe my little sister is going to be a mommy! I can't wait to get that little one in my arms and spoil her rotten!

Love ya, sis!! Posted by Picasa

Visiting My Sister

Caleb and I returned Saturday afternoon from spending two days with my sister. We had so much fun! Sis was able to take off of work on Friday to spend the day with us! Here's some photos of our trip.

We went to this scrapbook store near her house. All of the different papers and stickers and ribbons was quite overwhelming! I managed to leave having only spent $6! :-)


We went to a Greek restaurant for dinner. This is a picture of what we ordered, the Mediterranean Diet Plate (Greek salad with meat on it...yes, that's meat even though hubby doesn't think it looks like meat!).

The mural on the wall of the restaurant:



We also went here and here. I had loads of fun helping sis to register for baby items! And I did spend more than $6 in the Yankee Candle Store...I just love the Spiced Pumpkin candle. I am willing fall into this part of Texas with my decorations and incredible candles!

We enjoyed our short stay so much! Thanks Aunt Kiki and Uncle Kurt!! Posted by Picasa

Happy Fall!

I got this by email today and thought I would share. Texas hasn't exactly figured out that it's fall yet, but we are slowly changing seasons (which means we now have temps that are only in the 80s during the day, not 90s and 100s! Nights are getting cooler, too.) Goodbye stifling heat and humidity!!

















Being a Christian is like being a pumpkin. God lifts you up, takes you in, and washes all the dirt off of you. He opens you up, touches you deep inside and scoops out all the yucky stuff--including the seeds of doubt, hate, greed, etc. Then He carves you a new smiling face and puts His lights inside you to shine for all the world to see. Happy Fall!


"There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven."
~Ecclesiastes 3:1

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Stuff

Caleb and I are going to visit my sister tomorrow and stay a couple of nights. We haven't been to her house in a long time, so I'm excited to spend time with her! We'll be heading to BabiesRUs so I can give her advice on what to register for (since I'm an expert now and everything!), and we'll also go to a new scrapbook store close to her house.

My sister lives about 3 1/2 hours from us and Caleb will sleep about 1 1/2 hours of that, so hopefully for the remaining 2 hours he won't be screaming. He doesn't like to be confined to the car seat for very long...he's much too active for that! If you're driving down the Interstate in the middle of Texas and you see a crazy woman belting out Veggie Tales Sunday Morning Songs at the top of her lungs with the windows rolled down and a child crying in the back seat, that's me. Say a prayer for us as you pass.

Hubby and I didn't get to go see the movie this weekend. We were lacking a babysitter and I know the people in the theater didn't want my 1yo running around and screaming (you're welcome). I hope it is still playing this weekend near us; several friends have seen it and said it is definitely worth the time. Interestingly, one of my friends commented that it seemed cheesy at first because of the way they talk about living their lives for God. She said she finally realized that it's because Hollywood has made us think that's cheesy. We talk that way in normal life, but to see it on the big screen seems weird.

I'm off to do laundry and pack all the necessary toys/pack'n'play/diapers/wipes/feeding seat/books/clothes/videos/younameitit'sgoinginthecar for our trip tomorrow. Sis doesn't have a child (YET!!!), so we have to bring all the stuff with us. I can't wait to get there! :-)

Have a blessed rest of the week!


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