And the sound this week is~

a few of my easy listening favorites~

29 January 2008

To you, my dear friend~

I, without a doubt, have some of the best friends in the world, and I want to go on record publicly to just tell you that. There are many different parts of my life, as everyone has!, with career, congregational, high school, college, family oriented, and just people in general that came into your life and stayed. We have such fun sharing, comparing, crying, laughing, eating!!!!, shopping, you name it~we enjoy it. My daughters. Thank you for not only being the best parts of me, but for also being three of my dearest friends. My brother, Nelson, you are a keeper of the bad times, the good times, and the promise of great things to come. Johnny. How would I describe you? Every dream I ever wanted all wrapped up in one man. We've come so far, through so much, and yet I still get that tight feeling in my tummy when you enter a room. I pray our daughters still find that with their men after twenty-five years of marriage. And the list goes on and on. Some of my students have grown to be some of my sweetest friends that remind me of the laughter we shared as they grew up (KristenKracker, Heather, tight hugs!); friends of friends (i.e., Susanne, Kelly, I'm talking to you!) that I can't wait to meet and get to know better!; parents that have taken me under their wing (Lynne, I miss them so, too); friends that have come into my life because of the accident; etc., etc., you get the picture. Maybe dying did intensify the feelings, but I've always so appreciated the fact that no matter what I needed, when I needed it, it would have been impossible to count the ones that would have been there to see me through. This post is for you, for all of you that make my life richer and a happier place to be~may He hold you tight within His arms until we rejoice with Him one day past the Garden that was so beautiful~

28 January 2008

Happy 50th Birthday, LegoLand!

LEGO is a line of building toys manufactured by the LEGO Group, a privately held company based in Denmark. The company's flagship product, commonly referred to as Lego bricks, consists of colorful interlocking plastic bricks and an accompanying array of gears, minifigures and various other parts. There are other Lego pieces which can be assembled and connected in many ways, such as vehicles, buildings and even working robots.The Lego Group had a very humble beginning in the workshop of Ole Christianse, a carpenter from Billund, Denmark. Christiansen began creating wooden toys in 1932; the company began calling itself "Lego" two years later in 1934. The company expanded to producing plastic toys in 1947. In 1949, Lego began producing the now-famous interlocking bricks, calling them "Automatic Binding Bricks". It was not until 1958 that the modern-day brick design was developed, and it took another five years to find exactly the right material for it. The modern Lego brick was patented on January 28, 1958, and bricks from that year are still compatible with bricks today!
I thought this was interesting and that somebody out there might enjoy knowing this slightly important part of history. After all, it has brought joy to millions~Jenny, for one. And now Ian has inherited her love for these little blocks! Now if she can just get him to enjoy coloring as much as she did at his age. Hmmm, maybe not.

26 January 2008

27 Dresses, 3 Best Friends~

I saw the cutest movie this afternoon! 27 Dresses! I am not one of those that just adores chick flicks, preferring instead action movies like Air Force One and Cliffhanger. But I do like The Holiday and You've Got Mail. Two of my best friends and I met this afternoon to go see 27 Dresses and I am so glad we chose this one! It was funny, bittersweet, and brought to mind thoughts, actions, and dreams we've all shared. It wasn't a movie that Johnny would like, but if you have a good girlfriend, do yourself a favor and go see it together. Then browse at Kirkland's, bounce decorating ideas off each other, and wind up at Pablano's for a good meal~like we did!

23 January 2008

a favorite game~

What you will see here is a game that Noah found on his own. It's called, "Let's Throw the Ornaments Out of the Urn" and he has played this from day One! When we realized how much he liked it, Jenny went and bought plastic ornaments in order to safeguard him against the glass ones. After Stacey and Leslie left Monday I began straightening up the house and putting toys away. You would not believe the places I found these red Christmas balls! Several times I chuckled out loud thinking, "there's no way they would've thought to leave one here!" But they did. Thank you, Noah and Alaina, for bringing smiles to my heart and laughter to my day.

22 January 2008

more Christmas~

Jen has posted these on her blog, so go to their site to see more pictures! Thanks, Jenny!!

Miss Marley is Leslie's baby, but I know she wishes she lived in Alabama! We get to keep her each summer when Leslie goes on mission trips and she has to be the absolute best little schnauzer in the world!

21 January 2008

Family Fun

The best place to play, I guess, is right under the tree where no one else is and can't bother you. Stacey's son, Austin, found just the place when they were here this weekend. We celebrated Christmas with our daughters and their families, and it even snowed for us! What more could one ask for?! Well, okay, maybe celebrating in our own large cabin in the Smokies would be nice, but hey, one day maybe~here are some pictures of our girls.

I'm hoping I can get some pictures from Jenny of the grandbabies. I seem to have more pictures of the girls than the babies! Hint, hint Jen~do you have any on your flicker site or in a Kodak album you can send me? I have to ask here because I'm very likely to forget to ask her~

I hope your week has begun with laughter and moments of love. Have a blessed one~

19 January 2008

It's snowing in Prattville!

"It is, it is, it really really is". I remember how excited Jenny always got when snow began falling. We always had it when we lived in Georgia, but there were some 'snow days' after we moved to central Alabama. It seems, though, the older I get the less snow we have. The Montgomery Advertiser said today that the last snowfall we got was in 2001. Sad, Jenny's son Ian is four and he's never seen snow until this morning! They went to Target before the snow began falling to pick up a pair of water proof shoes so the boys could get out in the snow! Well, apparently Ian didn't like it falling on them when they left the store nor did he like walking in it.

The girls just called and they are coming through Selma and report that it is really falling there with accumulations upwards of four inches! Roads are clear for now, though, and they've had no trouble. I'm sure once Austin gets here and he and Ian get their heads together they both will be outside in no time. The joy of childhood.

Here are a few pictures I took during the first hour. You can bet you'll see more on here as our weekend progresses. We're celebrating Christmas with out daughters today~and it's a white Christmas!!!

18 January 2008

Oops! I've been tagged!

I was tagged by Jenny~

Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
Share 5 random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog
Share the 5 top places on your “want to see or want to see again” list
Share 5 things you never pictured being in your future when your were 25 years old!

Tag a minimum of 5, maximum of 10 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog. The tagees have a choice of which they want to do.

***I chose to do all three***

5 random/weird facts about me~
1~ When we are out at night, and I'm a passenger, I absolutely love to ride by homes and try to look in their large windows! ha ha Then I quickly concoct a story about the people that live there!
2~I have to have my car thermostat AND radio volume on an odd number, but when asked to pick a number I always choose even ones.
3~If my eyes are open when an overhead light is turned off, I have to go to the switch plate, turn the light back on, close my eyes, and turn it off again.

4~Can't stand for any item in our pantry to have the label facing any way but front!! I've tried and tried, even to the point of just putting up groceries and closing my eyes so I won't see where the label is. Then I always open the pantry door again and fix it all to face the front. aarrgghh
5~My family knows how much I love Santa Claus figures. But what they don't know is that I will stand in front of the sales display in the store until I feel one pulling me towards him. I have to feel a connection to every Santa I have ever bought and love looking in their eyes and straightening the beards, coats, etc. Fortunately for me, the Santas I've been given by family members have quickly won my heart. However, there have been some given by others that I have sneaked into the trash!

5 top places on my “want to see or want to see again” list~
1~Paris in springtime
2~The Alps of Switzerland
3~a view of the Smokies from our own deck
4~the nursery in Memphis and Jenny in her crib
5~the view of Glacier Bay in Alaska from a cruise ship

5 things I never pictured being in my future when I was 25 years old~
1~a second husband; but I'm blessed to have him
2~a home in Alabama
3~a teaching career
4~only having the joy of giving birth once
5~a President like Bill Clinton not once, but TWICE!

I tag Kristen, Susanne, Keith, and I guess that's all. Jenny has already tagged Leah, and Kelly. Alright guys, it's YOUR turn NOW!!

What a Wonderful World

A dear friend sent me this video on YouTube and as much as I never thought I'd be doing this on a blog! you have to see this. It touched me so much so that I have also posted in on Heartstrings, but with a different picture and phrases. There are other Terry Fator videos depicting all of his characters and songs. This, however, is my favorite. It grabbed at my heart and I hope it does the same for you. So, enjoy and may your weekend be even more joyful than you are expecting~
If you'd like to visit his website, I've Googled and found it at Terry Fator, The Million Dollar Voice. Here is Terry Fator, friends~Terry Fator~What a Wonderful World

15 January 2008

Sleepy dayz~wake up, Night!

John's shift is about to change again and our sleeping patterns will change as well! Since I do not have to clock in anywhere, I've found myself sleeping when he sleeps and up when he's at work. At least we are in sync! Just doesn't do much for getting things accomplished when he is on that midnight shift!

The week began with still more appointments, getting forms filled out and signed for retirement. It's not a complicated process, just time consuming. Along with trying to run errands and be ready for Saturday has only added to my calendar. {smile, smile} I'm staying on target, though, and am so pleased! Even when Jen called to see if we could snuggle on Noah while she subs tomorrow was worked in easily with the errands I'd penned in for Wednesday. Since the accident and the massive doses of meds I was given, I have to write lists so I don't forget something! BUT, I've always always been a list person. Ask my two youngest girls, I'm sure I drove them crazy when they lived at home with my OCD's. Sound familiar? It's tough on the children when it takes leaving home for the parent to realize, 'hey, I wish I'd relaxed more and we slept in later on Saturdays!'. God bless them, they are awesome young adult women and they take the time to relax. {Hint~keep doing it, girls!!!}

On another note, I'm interested in how many of you also visit Heartstrings? That's another blog of mine that's strictly when I feel the need to speak of heart stirrings. The last one I posted was a picture I got from a site I found on Susanne's blog. It shook me, and I'm wondering how it affected you. Leave me a comment and let me know. Oh, and you'll find Heartstrings over on the right under Favorite Faces~

12 January 2008

An ending is only a beginning~

It's been a week filled with closures and new beginnings. Monday, I went to check on the procedure for disability retirement. There were tears, but a decision had been reached. Wednesday, Johnny and I drove out to Holtville, and I turned in my letter of resignation to my principal, Mary Lucy Crapps, an awesome administrator. While there, I was able to see several that I worked with over my 19 year career and it was good to not only hug them, but to tell them how very much I've appreciated their prayers. The school has changed with a new kindergarten wing and high school gym being added, different paint schemes in the halls, and many new faces on the staff. I had no idea two years could make such a difference. As we were leaving, I looked back at the front door I walked through so many times. It's green now, not the blue that it was the day before the accident. Somehow, being a different color, made accepting it easier. Strange that a coat of paint would make it all less real.
We came back into Prattville and got a bite to eat at Logan's. Yum, it's my new favorite place! If you haven't eaten there yet, you need to! The prices are good, the food is better, AND you get to throw peanut shells on the floor!!! Can't do that at home!

Friday, Johnny took me back up to the school to give me some time with some bestest friends and I went with one to celebrate her birthday! Happy Birthday, Kayro! It was a different visit Friday, as I was able to relax and just enjoy catching up and making plans for getting together in the near future.

But today?! We have been so totally lazy!!! And when I say lazy, I mean the kind of lazy where you don't get out of bed until way after noon and you're ready for another nap before dark. I guess the energy expended getting through the week just wore us out. Whatever~it still felt good to get the rest.

Tomorrow begins a new week. It's already filling up with appoinments, plans, and great things to look forward to~I think I may just adjust to this new life. Oh, and have I mentioned that our Mississippi babies are coming in this weekend?! And do I need to tell you how excited we are?! It's still Christmas around here!!

07 January 2008

Thanks, Jen~

Jen took snapped this of Noah and me during the Christmas season. I had no idea she was taking it, so it was a pleasant surprise when I found it posted on their family blog.

There are several reasons I like this shot. One is the joy on my face and the memories of that evening. The next is that Noah is crouched in front of me studying the toy. I love the way he crouches on chubby little legs and looks so intently at whatever it is that has captured his attention. Need I remind you how in love I am with our grandchildren? They are each so different, but each so in love with life and everything it holds.

Austin and Alaina will be here in a couple of weeks to celebrate and I am so looking forward to that time. It's been too long since I've had some snuggles and giggles with them. And yes, you'll be seeing pictures during our family time. But to get back to this shot of Noah and me ~

this past weekend, Johnny and I made a difficult decision. We literally hibernated both days. Tomorrow morning I will be turning in my letter of resignation to the Elmore County Board of Education. Due to several disabilities stemming from the accident, I cannot be the teacher I need to be. The teacher I want to be. After nineteen years of serving as a second grade teacher at Holtville Elementary, I shall turn my classroom over permanently to someone else. It hurts. And it's been a tough three days.

But just like Noah opening his present, I am looking forward to seeing what God has in store for me. A wonderful part of my life came to a close that April day in 2006 and this past year has been a time of recovery and rediscovery. The new year began with revelations and decisions, but oh the joy in being able to rest in His hands and know that everything has been with His help and guidance. This snapshot will always remind me of not only the fun of the day, but of the promise for a different, but really neat, future. Thanks, Jen~at the time, you had no idea.

06 January 2008

My dream cottage~

My dream house~the house I've always pictured in my heart. A cozy cottage with tiny nooks and a breakfast area just large enough for two; with bedrooms upstairs that have old wallpaper and sloped ceilings; and a winding staircase that opens from the living area near an old fireplace. Definitely not what I live in now, but that's okay. It is dreams that have brought me to where I am today. And it is dreams that will take me to where I am going.
PS~a word of advice? Don't dream little. He doesn't want us to do that. Why would He have blessed us so if He didn't believe in big dreams? After all, He didn't dream small.

04 January 2008

Faith, and faith alone~

This morning was great, the afternoon wasn't quite that way. Have you ever gotten good news just to find that your world still continues to be turned upside down? Ours did. We got the news we were praying for, but learning the facts that got us to that point brought me to tears and Johnny, who had been pacing, had to sit down. Saying we were devastated is mild. Although we knew some of what happened during the accident, learning what we didn't know caught us both without words. Once we got home, it brought us to our knees in a sincere prayer of thanksgiving.

Tonight, I'm trying to digest what we learned and just how serious all of this has been. I lived, and I am recovering. I'll never be who I was, but I'm hoping I'll be different in good ways. In ways that matter.

Mine was an accident. His wasn't. My Lord died, and He arose. He did this so that I could live. Not here, but with Him. In Heaven. God always has a way of humbling us so that we never lose sight of just who is really in charge.

We're going to be okay. And in time, it will all work out in a beautiful fashion. The devil may run amok on Earth and create challenges, but my Lord is still in control. And He will prevail. He always has, and He always will. He will work within His timeframe, and that's a good thing. My daddy used to say, "Christians are never lucky. Christians are blessed." I'll always remember those words. My dad was so right.

02 January 2008

I was tagged~

Now for the Game of Tag~2007! What was our year like?

An unexpected blessing ~ having the doctors keep me home one more schoolyear, it's given me more time to be with my family and close friends

Feeling important ~ I don't know about feeling important but I can see where I'm improving with the therapy for PTSD!! Yea, me!! and thanks, Gregg!!

Craziest thing I did ~ during this recovery period, there have been many crazy moments of forgetfulness and still a hallucination a time or two! but I'm told time may heal that :)

Smartest thing I did ~ having more time to spend with some really close friends

Sentimental moment ~ watching Noah's eyes light up when he saw me one Sunday and I knew then he recognized me and was happy to see me

Most enjoyable gift ~ my cute little car that Johnny found and bought for me so I wouldn't be housebound after we had to sell my beloved Nissan Murano

Craziest purchase turnabout ~ don't really have one, but the new refrigerator we had to buy is really nice! It's only the second one we've ever had!

Moments of maturity ~ realizing that things aren't always what they seem, and that no matter how much you love someone sometimes you just have to let go and let God

Huge answers to prayer ~ we are all healthy, safe, and living to praise our Creator!

Consider yourself tagged! Please tell me about your 2007 or let me know you are doing so on your blog. Happy New Year!