Friday, September 30, 2011

School picture outfits... (Oh and new haircuts too!!)

Rob's Birthday Dinner

For Rob's birthday this year, we went to a local concert on the greens at our town center. Super nice area with lots of room to roam, dance, or just lounge back in your chairs. The kids chose to do the roaming and dancing and Rob and I sat back and relaxed. Since his birthday was on a Thursday and we went to that concert, we celebrated his birthday dinner on Saturday instead. (Friday nights are dedicated soccer nights in our house.) One of Rob's favorite meals is Italian sausage with bell peppers and sauteed onions. Doesn't that look good?! One of his favorite desserts is banana pudding which I had never made. Seriously, the recipe calls for me to make my own meringue and pudding!! WHAT?!?!? Who does that anymore? Well... I do for my husband's birthday. It turned out looking amazing and the taste was great too.
We also got Rob a Big Green Egg for his birthday which he got a bit early so we could use it for a Labor Day cookout with friends from church. We sure do LOVE that guy!!! (And his yummy BBQ!)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Just another reason....

Doesn't this look AMAZING? We will be seeing this firsthand after soccer this Saturday. We'll get in around 4pm after two soccer games that morning. We are staying at the Hilton (right ON the beach!!!). My kids are going to DIE of excitement. Just another reason to LOVE living 4 1/2 hours from the coast...Hilton Sandestin Beach, Golf Resort & Spa: Beach 1

Hilton Sandestin Beach, Golf Resort & Spa: Pristine Sands

Monday, September 12, 2011

I remember...

To commemorate the passing of ten years since the tragic incident at the World Trade Center, I would like to share my experience. It was nothing compared to what others went through. It is merely what I remember. I would like to document this experience so I will NEVER forget.

I was at my best friend, Alanna's sister's house. Her name is Leila. She had a little boy under two years old and she was pregnant with her daughter Nora at the time. She was busy. I was willing to help out. I would go over every Tuesday morning for about a month or so and watch her son, Ari while she went to work out. I was giving Ari his morning bath when the door flew open. It was too early for Leila to come home. I was sure something was wrong. What I didn't know was that what she was about to tell me would change my life forever. She said, "It's bad. I was working out and I just saw the World Trade Center on fire. It is really bad. Help me find my television." We scrambled around and found an old TV in the back of her closet. (They didn't have a TV out in the open. They never really watched it.) We plugged the TV in and adjusted the rabbit ears. All of a sudden I saw the pictures. Within seconds we watched as the second plane crashed into the second tower.

I was 21 years old. I was newly married and pregnant with our first daughter. I knew what I was watching was bad, but didn't understand just how many people would die within minutes of the time I began to watch. The first building went down. I watched people fleeing away from the building... Going north as fast as they could. I watched people becoming engulfed in the debris. The smoke clouds billowing over their bodies as they ran... trying to escape. I watched as people jumped to their death from the second building. I watched the raw emotion of fear on bystanders' faces.

Leila and I sat there and cried. We hugged. Our immediate thoughts were with the people. Then we realized that her dad, the man I have always labeled as "my second father," was flying. He was on his way to fact he might have already been there. All we knew was that we couldn't get a hold of him.

The rest is foggy. I am not sure when we finally got word that he was safe. He was unable to come back into the United States for quite some time. It was eerie to see the sky without planes flying. I lived near a major hub for Delta and there were always planes overhead. Not anymore. That was probably the strangest way my little town was hit.

I worked at an apartment complex as a leasing agent. I would sit on the couch and watch TV until someone showed up to inquire about renting an apartment. On September 12, 2001, I watched for 8 hours. I watched the coverage. I couldn't take my eyes off of it. I cried. I felt depressed. I wasn't sure I wanted to bring my sweet baby into a world that was this unstable. I was anxious.

When I first saw a plane in the sky after 9/11, I would cringe. Was it flying too low? Where was it headed? Was it on the right path? Who in their right mind would ever fly again? These feelings began to go away slowly. I have since boarded a plane with only mild anxiety. I have flown over the Pacific Ocean with my two babies and my whole family in tow.

As I watched some documentaries about the horrific events from 9/11 last night, I remembered the feelings that I felt. I remember how angry I was at the people who did these things to us. I remember feeling unsafe. I am eternally grateful for the people who sacrificed their lives for my safety and freedom. I am thankful for all those who serve in the military. I am proud to be an American and I am thankful for the opportunity to teach my three young children about what happened ten years ago. I teach them that you cannot take life for granted. I teach them that we are safe only because of what the military has done for us. I teach them to always say "I love you" before leaving each other.

As I said earlier... my experience is not anything grandiose. I did not know anyone who died in the towers or on the airplanes. I was, however, personally affected. My way of thinking was changed that day. My attitude towards war changed. My gratitude increased towards our military and our national leaders. I will never forget where I was or how I felt that warm September day.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

What's Wrong with Georgia Water???

Seriously, what's in the water here, folks? We moved into a ward where at least 10 people were pregnant. Half of those women have had their babies in the past two months since moving in. We have at least 5 others who are pregnant now. I just found out that another woman who moved in the same time as we did is pregnant now. What is going on???? I am staying away from the drinking fountains though.

It is a rather strange phenomenon though. There are several women who are young and have young kids. There are several women who are in their 40's with pre-teens. And then there are the ladies in their 50's and 60's with grown children. Where are all the 30 year old women? They are there at church. The thing is... they don't have kids. They are married without children. I am seriously the only one with all kids at school everyday and under 40. IT IS SO WEIRD!!

I hope to find my niche soon. I've met a couple of girls that I could see myself becoming friends with. One is married with no children but stays at home. That is a good match since I stay at home as well. Another is a bit younger, but she has two little kids. Hmmmm... Since our ward is so great at having people moving in- maybe someone like me will move in soon. And if she does, WATCH OUT!! I am snagging her. I am in serious need of some girl hang time.

Tomorrow is Rob's birthday. Better get going.... I need to pick up his presents still. :)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Frilly Friday!!

For our ward this year, our Super Saturday is going to be a Frilly Friday. Here are some of the projects that we are going to be doing. I am excited to head this up this year. I have made some cute friends while planning for this activity and expect it to be a huge success. Because it is on Friday night, we are having a full-on pajama party with popcorn, pizza, root beer, and candy. I am adding a tutorial this year for all those who want to come, but don't sign up for the crafts ahead of time. We will be learning how to make old objects have a new purpose. I made cake stands out of candlesticks and plates, and candy jars using candlestick holders and glass jars with lids. Super cute and fun to change out the candy with each holiday. I am also going to be showing them how to take an old picture frame and turn it into a memo board. It is sure to be a fun night for all!!