"Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart." -Winnie the Pooh

Monday, November 29, 2010

30 Years

One day when David and I have been married for 30 years, I hope we look like this:

Or like this:

Those are my wonderful parents who have been married for 30 years today.  30 years ago they walked down the aisle and said "I do."  And the best part was that they meant it when they said "for better or worse."  Most of you reading know that David and I got married June 19th.  And we meant it too!  I hope that David still looks at me this way after 30 years....

I have the most incredible parents!  I will forever cherish this picture of my mom and I.

And this picture of my dad and I.  This was right before we walked down the aisle. We were peering around the corner to watch as people went in.  Dad was thrilled to be holding the bouquet  (not really).

I'm so thankful for my parents who have modeled so well for me what a marriage should look like.  In a day and age where marriage isn't cherished, I'm so blessed to be able to say my parents celebrated 30 years!

And I'm also thankful for incredible in-laws who have modeled marriage so well for David. They'll celebrate 28 years in March (according to David).  So blessed that we both have such wonderful families!

PS...can you tell that I got my wedding pictures today!?  YAY! :)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Duck Hunting Mornings

Whew! What a fun first married Thanksgiving we've had!

Although, by the time we got home Friday night, David and I decided we didn't want to drive anywhere for a llllloooonnnngggg time! Three different places in three days will do that to you!

We kicked off our Thanksgiving break on Monday when we arrived in Collierville just in time to see David's younger sister, Danielle, play in her basketball game. She is so good and very fun to watch! The Dragons went into overtime to beat Brighton, and Danielle had a lot to do with the win. I think she said she scored 12 points, but y'all know me...I'm not very good when it comes to basketball knowledge or attention! But even I know that she is really good!  Mrs. Patti bought us season passes, so we'll be coming to a bunch of her games next year.

Tuesday morning began with David waking up extra early! That's right, I had my first experience with a husband and duck hunting season. He suggested a couple of weeks ago that I try going. I quickly informed him that if I went I would yell at the top of my lungs, "FLY AWAY LITTLE DUCKIES! FLY AWAY! DID YOU GET THAT? FFFFLLLLLYYYYY AWWWWWAAAAYYYYY! FAR, FAR, FAR AWAY!!!" I wish you could have heard David say, "yeah, I don't think that will fly with John Adams." So needless to say, I was not included on this early morning drive to Arkansas. Don't get me wrong. I have no problem with you or your loved ones (or my loved ones for that matter) going into the woods to shoot at animals--as long as they aren't dogs or cats. In fact, I'd prefer every American man who so desires move to Mississippi and kill at least 2 deer per day. I know, I know there's a hunting limit. But WHO CARES!! You kill it or it jumps through my windshield. Thanks, but I'll take the first! Annyyyway. My husband awoke on the dot at 2:45am. TWO FORTY FIVE AM!!! I rolled over and groaned. He turned the bathroom light on. I rolled over again and groaned louder. He shut the door to brush his teeth. I decided against groaning since it would be futile because the water running was louder than I could be. He opened the door to put on hunting clothes. He went down stairs. He came back upstairs. He went down stairs. He came back upstairs. He went down stairs AGAIN. He came back upstairs AGAIN. He went down stairs AGAIN!!! He came back upstairs AGAIN!!!

I informed him when he got home that he could sleep with his brother Jesse that night. His mom informed Mr. John that he could sleep with Jesse as well.

I relented. But here comes the worst part. At approximately 3:00am, my loving husband attempted to tell me goodbye. Clearly, I am not coherent in the wee hours of the morning and I groaned, moaned, and waved him to go away. Not like a "goodbye honey wave." More of a, "if you don't go away, I'm going to get the gun after you instead of you getting it after ducks." I am not a morning person!

THEN...he leaned in to kiss me! I rolled over.

I don't think I'm a good duck hunter's wife.

However, the next morning when he awoke at TWO FORTY FIVE AM, I heard him get out of bed.  I rolled over, and then I slept till 8am. GLORIOUS! My sweet hubby and I are learning how to adjust to duck hunting mornings!

Oh yeah, and what did I do while he was in "the pit," calling ducks, getting stuck, and tearing a hole in his waders? I, of course, was shopping. my. heart. out!

I realized after he'd been home from hunting an hour that I should ask if they shot anything. You have to understand, my dad and brother don't hunt. My grandfather hunts squirrels and that doesn't count as hunting to me. No one was ever there to tell me about hunting in the wee hours of the morning or to ask your handsome beau how many ducks he killed--all while batting your eyes of course! Luckily, he forgave me and took the opportunity to name the types of ducks he shot. (???) I nodded. And smiled.

All in all, we had a great time in Memphis. Duck hunting gave me an excuse to Christmas shop. Although I mostly just found things I wanted for our house.

Oh yeah, if you missed it, you should read this post: Put On My Blue Suede Shoes

I also attempted to find our house with David's GPS and was successful!  I don't know HOW I'm going to find my way around Memphis if Santa doesn't bring me one of those.  I will not wind up in the bad part of town. I will not wind up in the bad part of town.  I will not! 
After a wonderful feast with David's family, grandparents, aunts, and cousins on Thursday, we traveled back to Starkville so that I could help my mom cook for our family feast on Friday in Quitman with all of my uncles, cousins, aunt, and grandparents.  On the way home from Memphis though, I was thinking about everything that I'm thankful for.  A new husband, a home, hubby's new job, etc.  Too many blessings to name.  We had agreed that I would drive so David could nap.   While driving, I have a bad habit of plugging in my cell phone and listening to Pandora riding down the road.  Bad habit because when the cell bill comes at the end of the month, mom likes to inform me of how many data minutes I had just in case I neglected to look at the bill when I paid my half.  Upwards of 1,000,000.  Of course my brother Daniel laughed at her when she said, "I don't think there are 1,000,000 minutes in a month" because it's not calculated by minute. It's calculated by MB, KB, one of those bites or bytes....I don't know!  Did I mention the fact that we have an unlimited data plan?  I'll listen to Pandora on my phone when I'm driving whenever I want, thank you!  This song came on that I had never heard.  And prepare yourself it's from last year. I'm behind, I know.  And it didn't click who sang it until I looked it up on YouTube just a second ago.

The song is called "Live Like We're Dying" by Kris Allen.  Yes, the American Idol. From Conway, AR.  Where I used to live.  I know. I really should have heard of it by now!  If you haven't heard it, take a minute to play the video.  Hopefully I didn't goof up on how you put it on a blog, and it will work.

How very true is that song?  David was awake, so I paused it and made him listen to it too.  We both agreed that it was a great song.  Especially for Thanksgiving!  We've only been given so long to live.  We should be living like we're dying.  So to all of you reading, I just want you to know that David and I are thankful for you.  I'm not sure why you keep coming back to read, but obviously if you are, you have a vested interest in us.  I hope that means that you're taking what you read on the blog and joining with us in prayer for what God intends to do with our lives.  We may have more direction since we first started this blog on where we're headed, but we still are constantly seeking His will--and will be forever.  So keep praying for us. 

Hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving!  Thank you to all of the people who sent messages on Facebook about the new job and move to Memphis.  We'll be watching for all of the people you've suggested we meet!

And now that it's officially Christmastime, I'm kicking it off with a cup of hot cocoa and Christmas tunes.  My CD of choice right now is Chris Tomlin's Christmas CD. It's amazing if you haven't heard it!  This is my favorite song on it (and it's not even Chris Tomlin--it's Christy Nockels of Watermark...who wrote three of the songs that we played in our wedding...that lasted an hour and three minutes....no I'm not kidding...but of course I still don't have a video of it to prove it to you).  Anyway, listen here:

Also, David and I are enjoying peppermint ice cream since it's a Christmasy food.  I hope you've heard of that.  I never had until two Christmases ago.  David's Grandmother introduced it to me. (I wish she could read the blog).  Apparently Kroger has it in Kroger brand ice cream right after Thanksgiving as a limited edition.  Go to Kroger and buy some now! It's worth not having any coupons for.  

On second thought, scratch that last paragraph!  David and I are almost out and I need to go buy about four more cartons of it before you go to the Starkville Kroger to buy any.

But seriously, it's 2 for $5 right now. 

No wait, go buy yours on Wednesday.  That will give me plenty of time to buy enough for us! 

Hope you have a wonderful start to your Christmas season without peppermint ice cream. Don't worry, I'll eat enough for us both as my bowl is almost empty!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Put On My Blue Suede Shoes

Note: Make sure you read this blog to the end. This is not one for you to give up on reading!

If you know me well, you know I LOVE music!  I'd use it to write a theme song for my life any day!  I should note that my love of music comes from my dad (who doesn't read the blog).  Maybe I'll send him the link today.  When I was little, my dad used to play many songs for us.  He still does!  It's a well known fact that if you want to go to a concert, just tell Dad.  He'll arrange it!  From Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, Journey, Kenny Chesney, John Mayer, and Nsync, Dad's taken us to a lot of concerts.  He's even been to the Eagles, U2, Rolling Stones just to name a few more.  I can't even keep up with all that he's seen.  He taught me some of the greatest music of all time.  Today, I have a few on my mind though.  Perhaps you've heard a few of these:

Put on my blue suede shoes
And I boarded the plane
Touched down in the land of the Delta Blues
In the middle of the pouring rain
W.C. Handy--won't you look down over me
Cause I got a first class ticket
But I'm as blue as a boy can be

Walking in Memphis
Walking with my feet ten feet off of Beale
Walking in Memphis
Do I really feel the way I feel

Saw the ghost of Elvis
On Union Avenue
Followed him up to the gates of Graceland
Then I watched him walk right through
Now security they did not see him
They just hovered around his tomb
But there's a pretty little thing
Waiting on the King
Down in the Jungle Room

-Marc Cohen

For those of you like David who have never been to Graceland, the Jungle Room is one of the COOLEST rooms at Graceland!  And if you've never been to Graceland, go NOW!  Christmastime is the best time to go!  All of Elvis' decorations are up!

Maybe this one:

Cleaned a lot of plates in Memphis
Pumped a lot of 'tane down in New Orleans
But I never saw the good side of the city
Till I hitched a ride on the Riverboat Queen

Big wheels keep on turning
Proud Mary keep on burning
And we're rolling, rolling, rolling on a river

-Creedence Clearwater Revival

And then this one:

I met a gin soaked bar-room queen in Memphis

It's the honky tonk, honky tonky woman
Gimme, gimme, gimme the honky tonk blues
It's the honky tonk, honky tonky woman
Gimme, gimme, gimme the honky tonk blues

-Rolling Stones

What about this one?

Up in Memphis the music's like a heatwave
White lightening, bound to drive you wild
Mama's baby's in the heart of every school girl
"Love me tender" leaves 'em cryin' in the aisle
The way he moved, it was a sin, so sweet and true
Always wanting more, he'd leave you longing for

Black velvet and that little boy's smile
Black velvet with that slow southern style
A new religion that'll bring ya to your knees
Black velvet if you please

Can't forget this one:

Well I went to bed in Memphis
And I woke up in Hollywood
I got a quarter
in my pocket
And I'd call you if I could
But I don't know why
I gotta fly
I wanna rock and roll this party
I still wanna have some fun
I wanna leave you feeling breathless
Show you how the west was won
But I gotta fly, I gotta fly

Like Steve McQueen
All I need's a fast machine
I'm gonna make it all right
Like Steve McQueen
Underneath your radar screen
You'll never catch me tonight

-Sheryl Crow

And I'd never heard this one, but it sounded good!

Well, Shakespeare, he's in the alley
With his pointed shoes and his bells,
Speaking to some French girl,
Who says she knows me well.
And I would send a message
To find out if she's talked,
But the post office has been stolen
And the mailbox is locked.

Oh, Mama, can this really be the end,
To be stuck inside of Mobile with the Memphis blues again

-Bob Dylan

Did you hear that?  That groan all the way from Starkville?  It was my mom saying "Ugh...enough already! Get on with it!"  (she doesn't like it when I blog too long).  Sorry mom. Just wanted everyone to know what that huge noise was from so far away!

Enough with the song lyrics.  Can you tell what's on my mind? Ding, ding, ding. Memphis.

When I was a little kid, I grew up traveling through Memphis with my family on the way from Arkansas to Mississippi to see grandparents and other family members.  My parents would take us to Memphis for fun weekends, and as I got older, since our voice teacher was based in Germantown, we'd come to Memphis frequently.  The ducks at the Peabody, Rendevouz ribs, the Memphis Zoo, two Mississippi State Liberty Bowls, two Bob Westbrook Liberty Bowl pre-game performances, Bob Westbrook practices, voice lessons, & workshops, and singing walking in Memphis with Dad as we walked down Beale Street are all fond memories.  August 2009, Dad took me to see Journey on Mud Island two days AFTER David asked him if he could marry me and two days BEFORE David asked me to marry him.  Memphis has always held many special memories for my family.

We're so excited to report (and finally be able to put it on the blog) that David was offered a job last week with International Paper in Memphis, TN.  We're so excited!  Did I mention, we're so excited!?  David is truly elated about the opportunity with IP.  I keep asking him if he's sure it's the job he wants!  And he reassures me over and over that it is.  So as of around Christmas, we're moving to Memphis. His potential start date is January 4th.  We'll be renting a house in Memphis (ask David for specifics), and your welcome to facebook or email me to get the new address.  The fact that my stats say someone is reading from Canada, India, and Slovenia kind of creep me out. If you read from there and know me, a comment would be much appreciated since I don't THINK I know anyone in any of those three countries.  And for that reason, among others, I won't be putting the address of the house on the blog! Haha!  I don't need any creepy people showing up on my doorstep, but you are different. We'd love for you (if you are in fact someone that would message me on facebook and I would give our address to) to come visit!  We'll eventually have a spare bedroom, though I feel obligated to let you know we'll only have one bathroom.

As for me, I'll be living in Memphis and working on writing my thesis full time. I'll probably be back to Starkville once a week for meetings and face to face conversations.  However, we are blessed to live in a technological age with email and cell phones!

David and I have been overwhelmed this week by God's incredible plan.  I meet with two incredible girls once a week and we've been working on memorizing scripture together. This week, our verses are:

"God's way is perfect
All the LORD's promises prove true
He is a shield for all who look to Him for protection
For who is our God expcet the LORD
Who but our God is a solid rock
God is my strong fortress and He makes my path perfect."
-2 Samuel 22:31-33


"I raise my eyes towards the moutains
where will my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD
The maker of heaven and earth.
He will not allow your foot to slip
Your protector will not slumber
Indeed the protector of Israel
Will not slumber or sleep.
The LORD protects you
The LORD is a shelter right by your side
The sun will not strike you by day
Or the moon by night
The LORD will protect you from all things
He will protect your life
The LORD will protect your coming and going both now and forever."
-Psalm 121

We've been studying Genesis together and we've made it to the life of Abraham.  Talk about a dude that had to live by faith.  In fact, he's "counted as righteous" because of it in Genesis 15 and Hebrews 11.  It is incredible to me that with all of the stupid stuff Abraham did (see telling Sarai to say she was his sister not once, but TWICE, having Ishmael with Sarai's servant, etc.), God still counted him as righteous because of his faith.  Hebrews 11, aka the faith chapter, is full of people that followed God and believed him.  That's so powerful to me. Even in his messups and pitfalls, God didn't give up on him and still counted him as righteous.  I want God to say that about me.  I DESIRE to have faith like that!  I feel like that's what David and I have been trying to do since June 19th when it was so unclear of which way we should go.  When David, king David--not David Adams, says in 2 Samuel 22: "God's way is PERFECT, all the LORD's promises prove true," I can't help but think of us right now.  God has been faithful to us because we believed he'd be faithful.  And don't get me wrong, there have been bumps along the way and we in no way have mastered it.  He's just taught us a lot through a time when we had to fully rely on his faithfulness and that he did have a perfect path in mind.  God doesn't say 'my path will be perfect, easy, and fun if you have faith.'  No! He's definitely had to teach us some things along the way. And I only feel like I've grown closer in my walk with him and my relationship with my husband.

I told one of the girls that I meet with that the day after we got the call, I thought would be freeing, life changing, and like a weight had been lifted off of our shoulders.  But it really wasn't. It was like, "wow God...you were just as faithful last month as you are today."  I thought on several occasions during the day after the call that if He had given us this in August, I would have been elated about "stuff." About having money for stuff and unpacking stuff, and stuff, and stuff, and stuff would be all I'd have to think about.  And you know what I thought about the next day?  It can be summed up in a song.  This is what I thought.  And I'll leave you with it to think about since it seems appropriate to end with song lyrics.  God's faithfulness day after day.  New mercies no matter what He brings that day.  We don't need a "job" to see his faithfulness.  He's been showing it all along. 

"Great is thy faithfulness, oh God my Father.
There is no shadow of turning with thee.
Thou changest not, thy compassions they fail not.
As thou has been, thou forever will be.

Great is thy faithfulness,
Great is thy faithfulness.
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed, thy hand hath provided.
 Great is thy faithfulness Lord unto me.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide.
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Great is thy faithfulnees,
Great is thy faithfulness.
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed, thy hand hath provided.
Great is thy faithfulness,
Great is thy faithfulness
Great is thy faithfulness
Lord unto me.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wedding Photos!

Is tomorrow seriously November 19th?  I cannot believe it!  It feels like it was June just yesterday!  Tomorrow marks five months of marriage! WOW!  Why does it seem like the waiting took FOREVER.  Five months before our wedding was January 19th.  It feels like January to June was an eternity and June to November was a blink of an eye.

We still don't have all of our photos for some strange reason.  Nor do we have our wedding video.  But for those of you who didn't feel like sorting through all of our wedding pictures on the photographer's website, I wanted to let you see a few sneak peeks.  I got these for choosing which to put in the Mississippi Magazine.  Hopefully, we'll have all of our photos soon. However, since it's been 5 months of wedded bliss, AND because I got this back last week: 

Yay for preserved wedding gowns! (thanks mom!) I thought I'd go ahead and put these up in honor.  Enjoy!

Warning: Heavy on  the photos in this post!  Sorry if it takes a little bit to load.  Click on the pictures if you want to make them bigger!  For some reason, these uploaded in a strange order.  Trying to reorder them is a big headache. Hope you don't mind. 

We danced into our wedding reception. Complete with sunglasses!

The sanctuary flowers (thank you Tracy Proctor)

Seeing each other for the first time in the sanctuary.

 Thanks to my friend Katherine who clearly babysat my cousin Sydney, our flowergirl, all day June 19th!
 All of the girls waiting to go in the sanctuary. Bethany babysitting now! :)
 Peeking around the corner with dad.

 Drill field!

 Love these girls!
 Shades! (and I don't mean the sunglasses!)
 I might have aimed at her. BUT I was right! She was the next engaged! :)
 Dawg Pound Rock into the reception:

Yummy cake! Thanks to Steve Stockton! (and Mrs. Beverly Lowry!)

 Ring them bells! :)

I've had the most fun of my life these past 5 months! So glad I'm married to my best friend....even if he refuses to write blog posts! Maybe one day he'll grace you with his humor and whit! Sorry this one wasn't very funny. I'll be sure we make up for it next time!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Easy as Key Lime Pie

Since I'm always asking for recipes, I thought I'd share one with y'all.  The other night we had dinner with Alex and Chelsea McIntosh.  We usually alternate houses and making the meal.  Although it's been awhile since they've been to ours since we've housesat most of last month.  Because of that, they've been to other people's houses to hang out with us.  When Chelsea told me we were having Mexican, I decided to make a dessert that sort of went along with dinner.  Mom told me the other weekend when I wanted to make pumpkin dessert with the enchiladas she was making that she thought only chocolate and citrus desserts went with Mexican.  So, for tonight, I decided on Key Lime Pie. 

My mom has the best recipe, and if you know my mom, the recipe has to be easy and quick.  Can't be hard unless it's reeeeaaaalllllllly worth it!  Here's the recipe for the quick, easy, and delish key lime pie.

Key Lime Pie
1 graham cracker pie crust
1 6 oz. Limeade juice concentrate (frozen, not thawed)
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup whipping cream
lime zest
Mix limeade, cream, and condensed milk with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Pour in graham cracker crust. Chill for at least 4 hours or overnight.  Garnish with zest of lime.
Now for my notes....

*Make sure, double sure, triple sure that you only use 6 oz. of juice concentrate. It usually comes in the 12 oz cans in the frozen food section.  So either double the recipe, find the smaller can, or save the extra for later.  Whatever you do, DON'T put 12 oz in your mix.  My mom did this once, and David and my Dad termed it "Key Lime soup."
*Mine never makes soft peaks. I beat it for at least five minutes.  Just go ahead and whip for a long time. Then just pour it in the pie crust. If you refrigerate it for awhile, it should get stiff enough to slice and not run.
*I serve with whip cream because everything is better with whipped cream! :)

This seriously takes like 10 minutes to throw together.  Easy as Key Lime Pie!  Enjoy!

I also went shopping yesterday and since I enjoy couponing so very much, I thought I'd share my finds with you!  I usually take all of my coupons and just do a coupon run. In other words, I didn't buy your staples like milk, eggs, meat, veggies, fruits when I do my big savings run.  When you look at these, don't think we don't eat healthy or live on cereal.  I cook, and David would be fine living on cereal! Haha...kidding!  Mostly.  Just needed to use some coupons before they expired.  Also, there is salad and some apples. And three Cliff bars that weren't pictured.  Probably because my husband and I split one right when I got home. Don't know why the other two didn't make it in.

Not that all of you care, but I wanted you to SEE what we got for our pantry. Any guesses on how much I spent? Guess away!  See this way you HAVE to comment! :)