Thursday, August 30, 2012

Chilly Mornings

Chilly mornings make me happy.

Especially in August.  Even more especially after the hottest summer I can remember in a long time.

 (*sidenote – I am in no way complaining about the heat, sun, wonderfulness that was this summer…yes, I know snow is coming…yes I know I’ll complain about that eventually.  Put your pitchforks away.)

As I walked the three blocks to my office wearing my cute little khaki jacket I recalled some of my favorite summer memories.

Taking Keagan to the beach and urging him to make friends with the little girl next to us that was building sand castle by herself.

Sharing a bottle of wine with Randy overlooking Glenora’s vineyard on our anniversary.

Watching our cousin get married in what may have been one of the most beautiful wedding’s ever.

Seeing our son, covered head to toe in dust, ice cream and happiness at the State Fair with his Grandmother, Uncle and cousins.

Exploring Atlanta with some of the most amazing women I’ve ever had the opportunity to meet.  Along with Bloody Mary’s and an airport wine get together.

We had a pretty great summer and I wouldn’t change a thing.

But even knowing that this summer was probably one of the best …I am still looking forward to all that is in store for us this fall.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Coming Home

This summer has been insanely hot.

Our grass is all brown.

My flowers are all dead.

Even the hosta, that I used to swear would make it through a nuclear attack are on their last leg.

Hot weather in our household generally means air conditioning at night and little to no snuggling for fear of being stifled by the mere touch of each other.  Even Skittles refuses to get on the bed with us, it’s that hot.

Last night though?  Last night we had some relief.  The temperature finally dropped below the 900 degree mark and as we rushed around the house throwing open the windows I had a smile on my face just knowing what a fantastic night of sleep we were going to get.

It didn’t take long for Randy and I to find each other and curl into one another like we haven’t done in so many weeks.  It was like coming home. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Time to Say Hello...

Today I am going to meet my friends.

These aren’t new friends.

These are old friends. 

The kind of friends that you giggle with over a glass of wine.  The kind of friends that you can vent to and celebrate with when it seems like no one else would even get why you are venting and celebrating to begin with.

And I’m meeting them for the first time today.

Today when I land in Atlanta to start four days of Celebrating, Encouraging and Rewarding at the Thirty-One Gifts 2012 National Conference I not only will be starting a journey that just a year ago I didn’t even imagine possible…but I’ll also be meeting one of the most amazing groups of women I have ever had the pleasure of sharing ideas with, pushing to be our very best and encouraging each other on a daily basis.

Today I am going to meet my friends, and I can hardly contain my excitement.

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Today is gone. Today was fun.
Tomorrow is another one.
Every day, from here to there.
funny things are everywhere. ~ Dr. Seuss

So Keagan is three years old.

It’s been an interesting three years.  When people say “your life will change forever,” I don’t think I ever really took that to mean…well anything.  I thought it was one of those things people say like “cherish these moments,” and “wow, great Crocs!”  You know; meaningless and (sometimes) outright lies.

But this?  This wasn’t one of those things.

From the very day that the second pink line shows up your life changes.

And not just in the “darn I can’t have wine for NINE FREAKIN’ MONTHS!!” way either.

No, lots of changes.  They start off small, kind of sneak up on you. 

Like your bed time changing from 11pm to 830pm…earlier on school nights.

Or the fact that while you still carry a huge purse, now it’s filled with Capri Suns and Goldfish instead of a change of clothes for Happy Hour.

And remember those nights after work where you could come home, lounge on the couch and watch 90210 reruns while sipping a glass of wine?

Yeah, about that.  Now it’s more likely that you’re dashing home just in time to grab the midget who is dressed in his karate gear and head right back out the door to make the 545pm class that is waaaaaaaaaaaay across town all while fielding “why?” questions and attempting not to bash your head into the steering wheel should you have to say “because I said so!” one more time.


Not all the changes are bad though.  Especially since the little guy is changing right along with us.  We used to be able to snuggle with him on our lap quite comfortably while we chose a book to read to him before laying him down in his crib.

Now he picks the books.  His current favorite is One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss.  And the chair has gotten quite tight with the two of us in it.  But every night one of us reads to him.  And every night he changes up which page is his favorite page.  And every night he changes which stuffed animals he wants to sleep with. 

And every night I change my best night ever to that night right here, right now.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The First Kiss

Yesterday while driving home I was struck with a memory or something that I hadn't thought of in a very long time.

Randy and I met my sophomore year of college.  I was full out having fun with my girlfriends, not a care in the world other than deciding who was going to be our designated driver for the evening.  When he called me to ask me to a party a friend of his was throwing, I wasn't really expecting it to be more than a fun evening, a couple of laughs and some smooching.

Then it all changed.

I still see it perfectly.  We were sitting at the tall table over in the corner.  He looked me right in the eyes, leaned in and kissed me so gently.  The room around us disappeared, the DJ was gone, there was no one else in the world except for he and I.  To be as cliched as possible, the world stopped and fireworks went off.

The first kiss is something we all look forward to.  It is so highly anticipated that more often than not it falls flat, leaves us wondering what went wrong.  Not ours though.  Our first kiss left me wanting more. 

Sitting in traffic on my way home, reliving this moment, I was once again sitting at that tall table.  I was feeling the rapid fire emotions of happiness, amazement, terror and joy.  I was reminded of one of the many reasons why we are together and why we love each other so very much. 

I don't know what sparked that memory...but I'm so glad I have it.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Many of you that know me are aware that Randy and I have always said we were a "one and done" family.  When we found out I was pregnant with Keagan we staunchly reported that this was it, unless there are twins in there, this is the only child we will have.

As several of my friends can attest, my resolve weakens every now and then.  Like when a bottle (or 3) of pinot grigio is involved.  Or we meet a new little bundle that our friends have blessed the world with.  Or on a Tuesday.

My most recent weakening occurred last week when a dear friend of mine announced she was pregnant with her second child.  Miranda and I were pregnant together the first time.  We compared notes on our exhaustion, our ridiculous hunger pains and of course our long-lost love of wine.  We welcomed our sons just a few weeks apart from one another (both giving birth to toddlers nonetheless).  We've gone through the infant stages, the "OMGWTFAMISUPPOSEDTODOHEWON'TSLEEP" stages, the toddler stages.  Together.

Seeing that my friend, a woman that I've never "met" but that I've shared so much with was pregnant brought tears to my eyes and gave me goosebumps.  I was so happy, so elated for her.  Enter the resolve weakening, stage left.

I started thinking about another child in our lives.  A little brother or sister for our little man.  Another little son or daughter in our family.  It was a nice picture...a really nice picture.

I know that we will probably never have another child.  Not because we don't have enough love for another child.  Not because we couldn't afford another child (though to convince Randy of that may be another story).  And most days I'm ok with that.  But that picture in my head?  It's a good one.

Then my son comes around the corner, just looking to give me a hug.  Or runs up to me before dropping him off at day care demanding "one more kiss."  Or says in his little man voice "I lub you."  It makes me realize, yes, another child in our life would be nice...but the one I have now?  He's pretty darn perfect.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Lasagna Soup

Yes, I realize that it is still officially Summer. But what you have to realize that since my new found love of Pinterest, Fall is all I have been able to think about {and boots, and beautiful orange trench coats, and caramel frappucino cupcakes...}

Wait, where was I?

Oh yeah, soup.

So I'm perusing my new all-time favorite site In.The.World. when I stumble across this yummy deliciousness.

Dude. Cheesy yumminess? Fire roasted tomatoes? Yes please.

Imagine my happiness when our Sunday forecast was pretty close to perfection for giving this recipe a try.

I did modify it a bit from the original but it was an all around WOW at our table. I hope you enjoy it too!

Lasagna Soup

2 tsp. olive oil
1-1/2 lbs. Italian sausage
3 c. chopped onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 T. tomato paste
1 14-oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 14-oz. can garlic and onion dice tomatoes
2 bay leaves
6 c. chicken stock (I used bouillon)
8 oz. bowtie pasta (or Keagan was calling them - the butterflies)
1/2 c. finely chopped fresh basil leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Cheesy yumminess:
8 oz. ricotta
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp. salt
pinch of freshly ground pepper

2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and let simmer for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add onion and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Add sausage, and brown for about 5 minutes. Add oregano and red pepper flakes, cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.

In your crockpot add chicken stock, diced tomatoes, bay leaves, stir to combine. Stir in basil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Once sausage is done, drain and add to crockpot.

Cook on high for 3 hours.

In the meantime, prepare the cheesy yumminess. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, Parmesan, salt, and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to eat.

About 10 minutes before dinner time, boil water and cook your pasta to al dente.

To serve, place a dollop of the cheesy yum in each soup bowl, sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top, add your pasta and ladle the hot soup over the cheese.

Serve with crusty Italian bread.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A World With More Birthdays

A few weeks ago I had a scare.  A scare that every woman fears, a scare that every woman prays never happens to her.

Luckily for me this scare was benign.

But for many women, this fear is real, this threat is real.  It is because of my experience, and the experience of those women that are living with Breast Cancer that I am joining forces with the American Cancer Society and Making Strides Against Breast Cancer on October 2nd.

Every day, the Society is helping people stay well by helping them take steps to reduce their risk of breast cancer or find it early, when it is easiest to treat; helping people get well with information, day-to-day help, and emotional support to guide them through every step of a breast cancer experience; by finding cures and promising new treatments through funding and conducting research; and by fighting back by working with lawmakers to help all women get access to screenings and care. (The American Cancer Society, 2011)

I urge you all to find a Making Strides Event near you.  A world with less breast cancer and more birthdays.  What a wonderful world.

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Like to sponsor me?  Click on the above badge for a link to our team page.  Every little bit helps.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Where You At?

I'm over at my soul sister Miranda's from Not Super...Just Mom guest blogging while she's kicking up her Sparklecorn heels at Blogher!


Check it out, leave some love!

Also, don't forget to enter the giveaway closing tonight!

Friday, August 5, 2011

If Only He'd Asked For Directions

Early, early, EARLY this morning my super-sonic mommy hearing was activated.  I could hear my little man whimpering.  Then calling for me.  Then starting to cry.

So I went into his room, prepared for a VERY long morning to find my little man curled into a ball at the bottom of his bed.

He looks at me and says "Mommy, where's my blankie?"

I ask him if he wants to lay down...but it soon becomes apparent why he's at the bottom of the bed.

He's lost and can't find the pillow.

Kid totally has my sense of direction.