Friday, November 28, 2008


We spent the morning at home, as a family, and I did some food prep for our meal that evening. We joined our friends, Sheldon, Renee, and Pierce, at the their home for dinner and it was much fun with good food (Renee even pulled out her fine China!). We dined on turkey, ham, salad, green beans, angel biscuits, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie. And of course, the boys enjoyed the Cowboys game. Thanks, friends, for a wonderful time!

We have so much to be thankful for; in no particular order, here are some of my thoughts:

1. God's provision for our family in selling our home so quickly this summer
2. Getting pregnant this year and awaiting the arrival of our first boy in less than 7 weeks
3. Time spent with family throughout the year on various trips
4. Watching Maggie grow and learn and especially begin to retain some of the heart training we are doing with her
5. Time spent throughout the year with good friends
6. Seeing God's provision in us moving on-campus at seminary and the continued pursuit of Aron's Master's degree
7. The arrival of so many babies this year, espeically my sister and her hubby's first baby, Jacob Steven, born in May
8. The hard, trying times for us and those around us throughout the year (this has not been a stress-free year by any means) and yet, trusting God to prove Himself good.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

the sweetest thing

Tonight, as Aron and I ate dinner, Maggie walked up to me (she was already finished) and said, "Mama, kiss me!" I totally started laughing and tearing up at the same time, and moments later she said, "Mama, I want a kiss!" So, I kissed her, and then she turned and said the same things to Aron.

Melts your heart.

wordless wednesday

Monday, November 24, 2008


It's been a quiet few days for us, with Maggie not feeling well and healing from strep throat. We spent much of the weekend indoors, which was nice, yet also lent itself to some aspects of stir-craziness. I'm sure you can relate. We watched "Meet the Robinsons" one time too many. :)

Aron and I had a date night on Saturday night and I was surprised that he didn't mind seeing "Twilight," so off we went to the theater. I had pretty low expectations for the movie, as typically, a movie that follows a much-loved book pales in comparison. But, I was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed the movie! It was done well; it was entertaining. I wouldn't say it was the best movie of all time, or in my top 10 by any means, but it was worth the money and time spent. It paralled the book and had quite a bit of subtle humor that only one who had read the book would understand. Our theater was comprised of 80% females, so you can imagine all the responses whenever "Edward Cullen" (the lead male character) appeared, talked, or smiled. There was a bunch of loud cheering, laughing, and generally guffawing on our audiences' part. Maybe this made the experience enjoyable, too--seeing it with other fans of the book series.

After we got home Saturday night from the movie, we decided to set up our Christmas decorations. It was wonderful to stay up until 1:30am, decorating, listening to Christmas music, and drinking coffee with my husband. The house was officially cleaned and finished by Sunday morning! And I'm LOVING the holiday feel our place now possess.

Thanksgiving will be spent with our friends Renee and Sheldon and I'm looking foward to our time at their house on Thursday!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

cooking club surprise

I hadn't showered.

It was Friday morning.

Maggie and I hung around the house and did laundry and played and I made a pumpkin gingerbread loaf.

The day was going well, until I decided to call the doctor about her once-again persistent cough

the showered one

I hadn't showered.

It was Friday morning.

Maggie and I hung around the house and did laundry and played and I made a pumpkin gingerbread loaf.

I was looking forward to our last cooking club of the year that night.

The day was going well, until Aron called to say that some things at work weren't going so well. A big project had fallen through the cracks. Uh oh.

The day was going well, until Maggie didn't nap at all (she hadn't napped on Thursday either).
**But, I should add, that despite no nap, she was in rather good spirits all day...must be a touch of God's grace...seriously.

Maggie had another round of a persistent, hacking, cough, that had me worried because we had just gotten over the exact same thing 2 weeks ago. I went back and forth all day, but finally decided to call.

The pediatrician wanted me to bring in Maggie (naturally).

I drove up to her office, near our old house in Plano, about 25-30 minutes away, but it took me 45 with traffic because my last-minute appointment was at 4:10pm.

Did I mention that I hadn't showered yet? Because I hadn't.

The verdict of the appointment: strep throat. Back in the car to head home to fill the perscription, then shower, then leave for cooking club.

Aron called to say he'd be late getting home. How late, he wasn't sure.

But, the traffic was bad and it took me another 45 minutes (maybe more) to get to the pharmacy and drop off the perscription.

We arrived home and I fed Maggie dinner, which she didn't touch. Sigh.

Aron called again to say he wasn't sure what time he'd make it home and cooking club started at 7pm and it was 6pm.

Back in the car to pick up the perscription.

Aron called again to say he was finally on his way, but stuck in horrible traffic.

Back home to put Maggie in her pjs and some reading and snuggling time before bed. I decided to scrap the shower all together. Maybe I would just wear MY pjs to cooking club (if I ever made it).

Aron made it home at 7:30 and I raced to my car and drove to Rachel's house.

When I arrived, near 8pm, the door was locked. Unusal.

I walked in, and noticed Rachel's extremely cheerful disposition and thought how nice of a night this was going to be after all.

I entered their Great Room and was greeted by a chorus of "Surprise! Surprise!"

I looked around and all my friends were grinning at me, standing around the bar, which is filled with presents, and I noticed the food in the background and realize I'd been duped.

I was so overwhelmed with the love, I started to cry!

Did I mention I hadn't showered?

I hadn't even put a drop of makeup on either.

But, these were my friends and they would love me regardless.

We enjoyed an amazing tapas dinner, filled with laughter and stories, I opened some wonderful presents for our baby boy, and we indulged in the yummiest desserts possible: chocolate covered strawberries and Sprinkles dark chocolate and red velvet cupcakes.

It was an amazing, amazing night.

And it didn't even matter that I hadn't showered for 3 days (well, I hadn't).

The friends
The food

Because Sprinkles cupcakes deserve a close-up shot

The dessert

The showered one (in one sense)

The gifts

The all-things-breastfeeding gift basket from Allison (because she knows how much I want to make it work this time around!)

The friends again, from R-L: Renee, Erin, Allison, Patti, Thea, me, Nicole, and Rachel
THANK YOU, girls, for everything! It meant the world to me.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

what a difference a year makes

November 2007 at the Arboretum...

And November 2008...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

make this soup

I found this recipe off the "Crockpotting for a Year" website, which I've talked about before. I've been pleased with most of the dishes I have tried and this one is no exception. It makes a TON and it's super flavorful. We just loved the spice combinations. Maggie even enjoyed it!

Tell me what you think: Morrocan Lentil Soup.

Friday, November 14, 2008

how i found maggie this morning...

...she had placed one sock on her right hand, like a glove, so I helped her put one on her left arm, and we had a good, long laugh. She is so funny!

christmas traditions

Christmas is right around the corner! Like most people, I LOVE this time of year and so look foward to all the decorations going up in our home and in public places, the holiday smells, the electric feeling that is in the air. I especially LOVE Christmas traditions.

Here is where I would love some feedback. Shoot me an email or leave me a comment and tell me what are some of your family traditions. I plan to do a post soon, highlighting everything I receive. Maybe you'll be inspired to adopt a new one!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

wordless wednesday

We acquired a piano last night from some neighbors upstairs who are moving and won't be taking it with them. Our entire family is thrilled (I played for 8 years as a kid, though have forgotten so much and of course, Aron and Maggie want to learn). Maggie has played her little heart out already!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

birthday love

Thanks to all my friends and family who helped make the big 3-0 memorable, with cards, calls, gifts,

birthday love

Thanks to all my friends and family who helped make the big 3-0 memorable, with cards, calls, blog and Facebook messages, and gifts. I must share that my hubby pulled out all the stops to make this memorable, too, and I was totally surprised. On the morning of (Friday) he gave me some wonderful new shirts, and left me some cards, hidden throughout the house, with loving messages on them. He came home early from work that day and we just hung out, then went to Barnes and Noble, something I wanted to do. He was not feeling well, and told me he had planned dinner for that night, but we might have to postpone. I said no big deal, I'd rather sit at home and watch a movie anyway (which was true). Then, last night, he took me out to dinner and had me close my eyes on the drive and I eventually had no idea where we were. Once we pulled up, we were at BJs, one of my all-time favorite places to eat (it reminds me so much of SoCal, so I guess it reminds me of "home;" plus, the food is amazing). I was thrilled! When we walked up, there was a long wait, so a bunch of people were outside and it took me a minute to realize that one group was made up of a bunch of my good friends! I was totally surprised! Aron planned it all about a week ago, so he was totally on top of it. What an enjoyable evening with good food and friends to celebrate with--and, I even ate an entire pizzokie (a warm-cookie-with-ice-cream-on-top dessert) All.By.Myself. I'm not sure I've ever done that before! Thanks to all of you who turned up to help me celebrate in style. When we arrived home, a Kitchen Aid mixer was sitting on the dining room table, something I've been wanting for a quite some time now. Another surprise! My husband amazes me. Thank you, Love!

And I just used my mixer to make the best-ever cheesecake, courtesy of Tina: chocolate chunk cheesecake. It's to-die-for.

Thanks again for all the love and warm wishes.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


Fresh... New...Redeemed.

Simply put... 30 is inspired; life is mine for the taking! I can't wait to see what this next year brings.

Here's my first foray into the world of risk at 30 (courtesy of Claires Boutique).

Watch out world...

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrhhhhhh!!! Here I come!!!

Friday, November 7, 2008

The big 3-0

Today, I enter another decade of life. In some ways it is hard to believe I will be telling people that I'm "30" when they ask or writing in that new number combination on forms where I am asked for my age. But, in many ways I'm EXCITED about being in this new era of my life, the thirties. I love that I can look back and see personal life growth from the moment I turned 20, until now, so think how much possibility this new decade holds for me!? I'm unsure why turning 30 cripples so many, mentally, it just seems like another season of life to me (for now). I was actually looking forward to this birthday, is that odd? And if you know me well, you know I love my birthday anyway, perhaps that is more odd? So, in shameless self-promotion, I say "happy-birthday-to- me" and look the 30s squarely in the face and say, "Bring it."

Besides, as my friend Tina once told me (when she crested this peak several years ago), "The 30s are the new 20s." I just love that.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Father-Daughter Date Day

Maggie and I like to go on dates every now and again. I think it's really important for girls/young women to grow up with a good perspective of what healthy male affection looks like; hence the date.

I am a proto-typical male, as such the following phrases have been used in the sentence with my name on more than one occasion... usually by Suz:

1) lack of fashion sense
2) really, you think that matches
3) Don't act like you know what an empire waste is...

While on a date with my daughter I was impressed with the overwhelming urge to prove the naysayers wrong... Little Mags and I decided to stop at Claires Boutique for a quick Maggie makeover so we could show mom what's in:

Nailed it! Needless to say, mom was speachless.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Vote tomorrow (and free Starbucks)!

It's an important year, no?! I hope everyone turns out to vote tomorrow (or perhaps you already have...go, you!). And after you vote, head over to Starbucks for a free tall drip coffee:

daylight savings is only fun if you don't have kids

am i right?!