15 Seconds of Fame and a Blogging Update

I’m sorry I haven’t been blogging lately – actually, I’m not really sorry, if I can be completely honest. One thing this pregnancy weirdness has done has released me from the overwhelming need to do things. To perform. Because basically, I couldn’t do much of anything for so long, and now that I can, well, I’ve settled into a nice little routine of doing what is important to me, and putting off what isn’t until another day.

Not that this blog isn’t important to me. It has documented seven years of my life. It has brought me friends like you. But what isn’t as important to me right now is keeping up with the Blogging Joneses. Monitoring my hits. Worrying about marketing. Right now it just doesn’t seem as important as growing tiny toenails inside my belly. Hanging out with my husband. Going to bed early (I could get used to this).

Besides, I’ve been pretty busy. Last weekend, I volunteered at the Cowtown Marathon all weekend. I’ve been on their board for eight races now (am I getting old?), and I must tell you that I feel like I’m reuniting with family every year when we put on that crazy event for 26,000+ runners (gasp) and all their favorite loved ones. It is one giant spectacle and I love every part of it.

It’s also exhausting – it means working all weekend, waking up at the crack of dawn. Usually there’s manual labor involved (although the sweet folks gave me a sit down job all weekend – I felt so spoiled!). But at the end of the craziness, we have done something huge. We have given folks that once-in-a-lifetime experience. We’ve helped them achieve a life goal. I love everything about it.

This year, the highlight of the weekend was getting to be on TV – I was interviewed by our local news about the race, and it seems everybody I know saw it but me (that’s what happens when you’re fast asleep well before the 10:00 news). It was fun because I knew the reporter, and he very kindly cropped out my growing baby bump (which in the shirt I was wearing looked more like a beer belly gone wrong). As someone who prides herself on always being behind the camera for work, it was a way to step out of my comfort zone and have a little fun at the same time. Plus I was having another pregnancy-induced good hair day (thanks prenatal vitamins!).

So now you know what I’ve been doing when I haven’t been behind my computer. I promise I’m still here, and I’m not going anywhere.

A date, an emergency, and a preacher

Finally… a date night!

I’m not normally a big Valentine’s girl. Mr. Right makes me feel loved all year long (and plans really thoughtful and elaborate dates), so I never thought we’d put much pressure on Valentine’s. But I was too sick to celebrate Christmas, and too sick to celebrate our anniversary, and we’ve postponed our annual anniversary weekend get-away over and over until I felt better (sweet Baby Right, you owe me). We really haven’t had a good date night in 18 weeks – we’ve tried a few times, but they usually end up with me getting sick in the middle and us rushing home so I can go straight to bed. Not exactly romantic.

So this year, we decided to do Valentine’s extra big. Mr. Right got us reservations (two weeks early!) at one of the trendiest new restaurants in Fort Worth, and we both exchanged big (for us) presents. I’ll be making several visits to the spa, thanks to my cute man. What a treat.

The night was filled with romance and deep conversations and lot’s of laughing. My evening was completely nausea free (praise the Lord!), I even ate the food (yea!), and felt totally and completely spoiled.

 And then there was an emergency…

Last night, while lying in bed at 4:00 in the morning we awoke to the sound of our burglar alarm going off. Mr. Right chivalrously jumped out of bed and ran to the front door to see what was wrong, and found that someone had gotten our front door open, setting off our alarm (which is so loud they can hear it from outer space). We think someone tried to break in, heard our alarm go off, and ran away.

Between you and me, the bad guy is lucky he didn’t get a gun-toting “Texas Welcome,” if you know what I mean. The alarm probably did more to save him than us. But it was scary nonetheless, and we spent the rest of the night with racing hearts trying to calm down.

I’m by nature a fearful person, and I refuse to let this bad guy steal my peace. But prayers are welcome, so I feel just as bold tonight when I crawl into bed and the house is dark and quiet.

Speaking of prayers…

Mr. Right is preaching a youth retreat this weekend for a local church. Please say a prayer for him as he gives FOUR sermons – and pray for the teenagers on the receiving end, that they will be blessed and challenged and know Jesus more when they leave than when they arrive. My heart is welling with pride today. And, to be honest, my eyes are a bit droopy from my 4:00 a.m. wake-up call.

Things you should never EVER say to a woman

Sometimes I’m amazed at how often people speak without thinking. Maybe it’s because it happens to me regularly. The “Are you pregnant?!” question seems to hit me at least once a month. FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS GOOD, I WILL LET EVERYBODY KNOW WHEN I’M PREGNANT, AND UNTIL THEN STOP ASKING ME.

But you know, it doesn’t really bother me.

Just like constantly running into the sharp corner of my desk doesn’t leave giant bruises on my tushy.

So, as a public service announcement, here’s a list of things you should never say to a woman, broken into different categories. Who knows, maybe we can change the world, one avoided awkward situation at a time. 

1. Oh my gosh! Are you pregnant?
2. Oh, you’re not pregnant? Must be the shirt… (when you’re wearing your favorite shirt)
3. When are you guys going to start your family? Are you trying yet? (none of your business!)
4. Are you sick?
5. You look tired.
6. She’s old. How old is she? I don’t know, about your age I think?
7. You look good for your age.
8. Are you a natural blonde?
9. I’ve got so much to do before I turn… 30! (be sure to say 30 with total disgust)
10. My husband and I plan to start our family by 27, because we don’t want to wait until we’re old to start. (Totally had an intern who said this when I was 28 and single.)

1. Why are you still single? What’s wrong with you? Why haven’t you found a husband yet?
2. When my youngest sister got married first: Wait, you’re telling me the YOUNGEST sister is getting married before the OLDEST sister? How weird!
3. Then, when my middle sister got married before me: So the OLDEST sister is the LAST to get married?!

And last but not least, the following two categories are from my little scientific poll I did on Facebook. I’m not the only one who gets crazy questions.

1. Are you having twins?
2. You look huge!
3. (Early on in her pregnancy:) You’re going to be huge! (Submitted by Jenn)
4. Your hips are like a baby super highway. (Oh Bevin, I can’t believe someone said that to you!)

1. From Adra: I was recently asked if my dad was my husband. Awkward.
2. From Jenn & Stephanie: Referring to a purse, jewelry, sunglasses, and/or body parts with “Is that (are those) real?”
3. From Kelly: “You look hot… when you try.”
4. From Erin: “I’m really attracted to brunettes.” When you’re a blonde…

So, my lovely friends, just think. If each of us taught just one other person to never EVER ask questions like, “Are you expecting?!” when a girl wears a fashionable yet flowy shirt, then through the laws of multiplication (that’s a thing, right?) we could single-handedly save girls like me from having to burn all of her favorite shirts.

It would be life changing, I tell you. Life changing.

PS–Any other things that should be added to our list of never ever statements? Leave it in the comments!


Helene in Between

I’m linking this post up with Tell me about it Tuesday with  EmilyKathleenHelene and Rachel.

Also, just a reminder that Helene’s Texas Lovely give-away ends Tuesday! Be sure to go enter to win a free 8×10 print!


There is a worm farm in my bathtub

I know. I win for best blog title of the week. Thank you very much.

By the way, it’s true.

Don’t be jealous.

Mr. Right found some YouTube video about how worm farms are the next hot thing in sustainable gardening, and the next thing you know, there’s a worm farm in our backyard. On our back porch to be exact. Right under our kitchen window, for us to enjoy ALL THE TIME. You know, because the worm farm is so pretty.


But our particular breed of worms are sensitive. They don’t do well on these cold October nights.  So when I got home from my recent trip to Portland, the worm farm was sitting in the hallway INSIDE our house next to the back door. I very sweetly asked Mr. Right if we could maybe find a new home for his high maintenance worms that wasn’t in the middle of the hallway.

The next day they were gone. I casually asked him where the farm was relocated to, and he looked at me ever so slyly and said…

“I DARE you to find them.”

He is so lucky he’s cute.

And a week later I did. In our guest bathroom. Our house really isn’t so big that it took me a week to find them, but I’m a little A.D.D. and quickly forgot about the worms once they were no longer sitting in the middle of our hallway. Until one night I got curious and started checking all of the places they could possibly be hiding in our house. Meaning, I checked the closet in Mr. Right’s office, the garage, and then I saw the curtain pulled closed in our guest bathroom.

I whipped back the curtain, only to find this.

The worms are living in our guest bathroom. And they are multiplying.

I am told that these worms are turning our leftover food scraps into the most glorious compost and fertilizer you have ever laid your eyes on. Which means, the worms are eating all of our garbage and pooping out liquid gold fertilizer. IN MY BATH TUB.

Pray for me, friends.

And know that soon these worms may be for sale in my little Etsy shop. Because they’re breeding in there.

PS–Mr. Right wants me to let you know that technically it’s not a worm farm. It’s a worm RANCH.

A worm rancher’s wife sounds so much more glamorous. And either way, they’re in my bathtub.

Look at me, I got a makeover!

If you’re reading this in your Google Reader, you’ve just GOT TO click on over to my “real” blog and see my fancy new ‘do! I’m pretty excited about it.

Almost as excited as I was when my fancy, GINORMOUS yellow necklace finally arrived in the mail. I have worn it FOUR TIMES since Thursday night (overdoing it much?) and I’ve only had one measly comment about this super loud accessory.

Which can only mean one thing – I’m just going to have to wear it more often. That settles it.
PS–If anybody knows of a good chiropractor, I may need one after wearing this heavy necklace every day for the next, oh, 20 or so weeks.
Oh, and I know this is the understatement of the year, but it is BRUTALLY hot this week. Like, so hot my husband’s blind spot mirrors melted right off his car. So hot that I don’t even want to go swimming. So hot that all of my summer vegetable plants spontaneously combusted. Okay, so maybe I accidentally killed them, but how are you supposed to keep a tomato plant alive when it’s 107? 
I mean, really? 109 degrees on Wednesday? That’s just not okay. I think it’s time Mr. Right and I start looking for a place in the mountains. Or on a deserted island somewhere. Or maybe I’ll just cope by eating ice cream and sleeping with the fan on.


loving: Statement necklaces and orange tops
reading: I’m usually a total bookworm but this year I’ve been using all my free time to sew or design things. I always make time for my daily bible study, and lately I’ve been reading through the New Testament in chronological order. I made it to  Revelation… so almost done! Next up I’m going to do the Beth Moore James bible study.

waiting for: Speaking of statement necklaces, I ordered this one online two whole weeks ago. They said it would take 1-2 weeks to ship… it was two weeks ago today, which means that I’m about to explode with excitement. I’ll be wearing outfits that accentuate this yellow beauty every day for the next week.
excited about: Going to my first Rangers game of the summer Friday night. Someone very generously gave us some AMAZING tickets. It’ll mean another item crossed off my summer bucket list.
missing: My ESL students. A few have called me over the last week to say hi and to show off their new English skills over the phone. It warms my heart that they miss me just like I miss them.

trying to:  balance healthy eating, lot’s of sleep, and discipline in managing my activities so as to keep my stress load under control. I’m successful some of the time. (I’ve found that bubble baths help tremendously.)
working on: Doing as much sewing as possible to get my etsy shop up and running. I’m also doing a few projects on the side that I can’t talk about, but are exciting and taking a little bit of my spare time.

enjoying: Snuggling with my nephew. Or, as my native-Spanish speaking friend mistakenly said this week, huggling. I kind of prefer huggling now.

using: Our TV, now that we finally have a digital antenna and a fancy-schmancy blue ray player that hooks up to Netflix and Hulu. (Have I mentioned we got rid of our cable months ago? Saved us so much money.)

wearing: My hair like this, thanks to a tutorial from this friend. It’s a combination of a poof, a french braid and a bun. My husband totally digs it, and it’s a great way to keep long hair off my neck on hot summer days.
planning: For a giant event at work in a few weeks – our local radio station will be doing their show live from my hospital and I’ve got 837 projects to complete before that happens, in addition to regular work things. It’s going to be a ton of fun though.
singing: I’m being weird about music too. I’m mostly listening to NPR. What is it with me with not reading and not listening to music? Besides, of course, The Civil Wars. I think it’s because my credit card expired and I haven’t updated the new info on my iTunes account, which means I haven’t bought a new song in about 10 months. Gee, it’s easy to become irrelevant quickly, isn’t it? Someone send me a playlist… quick.
needing: A work skirt that fits. Luckily I bought this with a coupon online – should be here next week. I bet it’ll look great with that yellow necklace, and I’ll finally be able to breathe again.

learning: How to sew a few things. And how to start a small business – this is pretty foreign. But I love it.
listening: After writing about my lack of music lately, I just turned on Pandora and Matt White’s Love started playing.
wishing: That I was less of a worrier. I’m a planner, and I’m prepared, which is good. But worrying over things I have no control about? It’s not healthy, and it makes me tired. And so I continue to pray that God will fill me with faith and joy, and I continue to be reminded of how desperately I need Him, because I’m hard-wired to do the opposite.
doing: I just finished hosting 7 parties in the past 4 weeks, including 5 that were at our house (not work events – personal events). It was the the most fun month ever. And I’m worn out. So for the next few weeks I’m doing NO party planning at home. Just relaxing. And of course, planning lot’s of parties at work, since that’s what I do for a living.
praying for: Oh how I wish I could share my list of prayer requests, but not at this point, in this venue. The good news is that I know God can totally, 100% handle my needs. So I’m praying with confidence, and feel free to join along with me. 🙂 
dreaming of: Getting to reveal my new online store with my fancy new logo and a few things that people might actually want to have for themselves. Soon, my friend. Very soon.

Want to play along? What are you currently up to?
PS–I got this idea from one of my favorite blogs, Jones Design Company

Chocolate wisdom and leopard ruffles

Isn’t that just one of the greatest quotes ever? What a treat when I opened my beloved little chocolate from a secret stash bequeathed to me by a coworker. That stash is only for the most special of occasions… like when I try to cut back on caffeine. Which I’m trying to do – not an easy task when you average about six cups of coffee a day… on a good day.
My goal is two cups a day. Today I made it to two cups of coffee and a Diet Coke because I met a dear friend at Chick-fil-a, and I just couldn’t bring myself to order water. I was so strong on Paleo and so weak now that I’m off of it. I think I’m a total all-or-nothing kind of girl. Dang it.
This past weekend I threw a classy bachelorette party for one of my dearest friends who is getting married next week. I absolutely can’t wait, it’s going to be one of those weddings of the year, helped by the fact that it also happens to be a dear, dear friend. And there will be good food. And my dress is somewhat forgiving. And I’m wearing nude pumps that would make Kate Middleton swoon. It’s a win-win.
I promise to post new pictures soon, but wanted to show off my fancy new ruffled tablecloth. I learned how to make this on YouTube — ahh, YouTube, you have changed my life so. Mr. Right wasn’t a fan of the leopard print and pink ruffles, somehow he doesn’t find it as neutral (and awesome) as I do. When I assured him that I could re-use some of the fabric I purchased for the party in our house – he wasn’t so game. So I may have to make some leopard ruffle pillows for my new etsy shop.
Speaking of etsy shops – I promise you I’m working hard on creating inventory so I actually have something to post. Because as beautiful as an empty shop is… well, it really isn’t very beautiful. In the meantime, I have a few friends who have inquired about special items… if you have something you want, I am happy to create something ahead of time before I launch the store. Just leave me a comment and we can discuss. 
And to the sweet person who stopped Mr. Right yesterday at church and told him that she can’t wait to buy something from my little shop – you are officially my very favorite person. You know who you are (ahem, Michelle–BLESS YOU)
Speaking of Mr. Right – I got to help him out at church yesterday. He’s usually busy running all over the place and we never actually see each other at church, and I’ve busied myself by volunteering behind the scenes with the production staff – mostly because I get to wear a cool ear piece and headset and look official and stuff.  Kind of like a member of the FBI, but in a dress. But now, one week out of the month I’m officially Mr. Right’s right-hand-gal helping him with a new member class he teaches. I do very important things like sign people in, hand out books and pick up response cards. Basically the class couldn’t run without me. Okay, it could. But I like to be helpful and it’s nice to serve Mr. Right and my church at the same time. Besides, I love to hear him teach and love on people. 

And since my sweet nephew Luke has been hogging all the pictures on the blog lately (my goodness, isn’t he adorable?) I thought I’d include a picture of our beloved niece Ella. We got to hang out at the pool yesterday, swam with our favorite girl, I watched Mr. Right do flips off the high dive, and then we ate a huge dinner on the patio overlooking the pool. It was a pretty great outing.

Ella will be a big sister in October and we will gain another adorable nephew who will probably hog the blog with all his cuteness. And of course I’m about to start his baby quilt, which may also delay my pillows. Thanks for your patience, I can’t tell you how much fun I’m having getting geared up.

A little of this, a lot of random

Oh, my dear friends, we have so much to catch up on.

First and most important – I am officially opening a little Etsy shop. Emphasis on little. I feel like such a big girl, sitting down with a CPA and going over all of the steps to make my little business legit. And to protect me from being hauled away from the IRS, which the rule follower in me is just a tiny bit worried about. But lucky for me my husband believes in hiring professionals to do important things like file taxes, so I’m all set. So in the meantime I have a logo to design, shipping information to research, and fabric to buy. I can’t wait to debut my little shop to you, my dear friends, first. Who knows, maybe you’ll buy a little ruffled pillow and think of me?

Speaking of husbands, can I just brag on mine a moment? My sweet husband has been so supportive of my entrepreneurial endeavors, even though it means a little time and seed money to get started. I married a man who wants me to dream big dreams, and he works hard to help me to fulfill them.

Speaking of big dreams… I’ve been praying that God will make me a visionary. Because I am not – I am great at doing things. Implementing other peoples’ visions. When someone comes up with a big plan, I’m the one with the notepad making to-do lists, figuring out how much it will cost, weighing the risks and benefits, the return on investment, mentally calculating how much time and energy it will take to make someone else’s dream a reality and mapping out a schedule on my calendar. And so often I find myself thinking, “That will never work.”

I don’t want to be that girl. I am realistic, but I serve a God who’s bigger than my to-do list. Bigger than the budget. Bigger than the resources available. I love people who dream big dreams and then God blesses them.

And so I’m praying that God will give me vision. Vision to see further than what I know to be safe and doable. Vision that requires miracles. Vision so I can support my husband’s vision and not sink into the quicksand of the “how will we ever do that?” questions. I want vision so that God can use me to do big things for him.

Is it a coincidence that after I started praying this prayer, a few very unexpected opportunities fell in my lap? Maybe. Or maybe not.

But enough of the deep talk. Tomorrow night we’re hosting 25-30 people for dinner at our house to celebrate July 4th, and I need to prop up my feet and dive into Netflix and turn off my brain so that tomorrow I’m ready to throw my party. Did I mention the party includes fireworks? Our city puts on a great show and there’s a great viewing area just down the street. One of my summer bucket list items involves kissing while watching fireworks. I’m pretty sure I’ll be crossing that item off tomorrow’s list.

I promise to post pictures of my party decorations later. I couldn’t help myself, I just had to whip up a few red, white, and blue goodies on my sewing machine so my guests feel special.

Best Christmas Ever

I figured out why I have so thoroughly enjoyed Christmas this year… it’s because it’s been the first Christmas in ages that hasn’t been overshadowed by life events.
Christmas 2010 – Got married exactly two weeks after Christmas… so I was drowning in wedding to-do lists.
Christmas 2009 – Graduated from Grad School (and threw myself a giant party)
Christmas 2006-2008 – Grad School Finals
Christmas 2003 and 2004 – Moved
So that leaves Christmas 2005 as my only quiet, normal Christmas since college. And that was ages ago! But this year we are making up for lost time…
Mostly by baking and attending parties.
From last Friday to today I will have had gone to six parties. And since Mr. Right and I express love through food (and crafts), here’s what we did:
Chocolate-dipped marshmallows for a dinner we hosted at our house last weekend. They had kids… and kids love marshmallows. And let’s face it, I love marshmallows too… so it worked perfectly. (Mr. Right claims to not like marshmallows, but let the record show that he ate enough to convince me otherwise.)

For a Christmas dinner Friday night I made chocolate-dipped strawberries and pretzel sticks. Chocolate + sweet + salty = love.

For a surprise birthday party Sunday night we made SIX DOZEN cupcakes – half iced in vanilla cream cheese icing, and the other half with Mr. Right’s super secret banana chocolate frosting recipe. It’s so good it’ll change your life.

We were smart and only left ourselves a few at the house, and left the rest of the leftovers at the party, except for a handful which we dropped off at Andrea’s house because (a) she has become like an extended member of our family and (b) she loves Mr. Right’s cooking as much as I do, so we always try to swing her some goodies whenever possible.
Now that we’re just a few days away from the big day, I’m trying hard to stay laid-back and stress-free about my long to-do list, which includes wrapping presents (we haven’t wrapped a single one yet) and finishing a quilt (I see some hand-binding while watching Christmas movies in my plans for this week). The unimportant things, like vacuuming, will just have to wait until next week when I’m off of work for one whole glorious week.
Or maybe I’ll save it for my New Year’s resolutions… I’ve got to leave something for 2012.

I know what you did last summer: summer bucket list update

Summer 2011 is officially over. Not only was it the hottest summer of my lifetime (68 days of 100 degree temperatures… holy cow!) but it was my first summer as a newlywed, and it was full of adventures.

Remember our summer bucket list? Here’s how we did…

1. Swim

2. Watch fireworks

3. Take a picnic

This may have been our most romantic date yet – Mr. Right packed us the most amazing picnic (with homemade potato salad and chocolate chip cookies… swoon), and we rode our bikes down to Trinity Trail in Fort Worth. We sat on our picnic blanket for hours and watched the sun go down and talked about life, our first eight months of marriage, and what we want to do this fall. It was maybe my favorite date ever.

4. Go on a bike ride

5. Watch a sunset

6. Go to the lake

7. Eat a leisurely dinner on a restaurant patio (too darn hot)

8. Host our cousins for a visit (we went and visited them in OKC instead)

9. Go to Will’s mall (We didn’t make it there, but Will’s grad school is doing a cover story in their school newspaper about his evangelism efforts at this particular mall which has an international flair… I’m so proud of my man, and can’t wait to go with him there soon).

10. Ride the train to Dallas

We decided to switch out the train ride for a day in Dallas at the Dallas World Aquarium and dinner at Iron Cactus… I highly recommend both! It’s not on the train route… so we drove.

11. Eat dinner on our back porch  We substituted breakfast, and Labor Day morning was the first cool opportunity ALL SUMMER to do this… but we snuck it in just under the wire. I had waffles. It was glorious.

12. Discover a new restaurant – My favorites were Cafe Medi and Twisted Root and Lili’s Bistro. We were also treated to a very nice dinner at Del Frisco’s, which counts since it was Mr. Right’s first time to eat there.

13. Cook a brisket – Mr. Right rocked this in our crock pot. He was so cute… I bet he checked it 87 times because he was brimming with excitement. I happily ate the product of his laborious toil.

14. Watch the newest Harry Potter

15. Lose 15 pounds – FAIL. I lost 4…

16. Eat at Cowboy Chow – just never made it over there… but this rolls over to our Fall Bucket List.

17. Cheer on the Rangers – twice… I’d post a picture but I was having a terrible hair day. Both times. I’m growing out my bangs… so this is a frequent occurrence.

18. Compete in a triathlon (Will) – I watched. And cheered. And drank coffee while my cute man swam in spandex shorts.

19. Date night on Trinity Trail (see #3)

20. Spontaneous ice cream date – there were spontaneous ice cream dates, spontaneous snow cone dates, and spontaneous fro-yo dates, which is why I failed at #15.

21. Use our crock pot – there’s a brisket somewhere under all those goodies… Mr. Right has been on a kick with the briskets. I don’t mind.

22. Eat Argentine food – My own personal chef (husband) made us homemade empanadas inspired by his summer living in Argentina. He used pizza dough… super easy. You should try it.

23. Eat Colombian food – This is rolling over to our Fall Bucket List

24. Eat Indian food

We completed 18 of 24 items… not bad for a crazy summer! We did much more than what this list covers… we took a trip to Florida, two trips to Oklahoma (Mr. Right made three), two trips to Midland, two weekends hosting an out-of-town guest, one week of house sitting… and we flipped and sold a house. I discovered spin class (and even – gasp – wore spandex), finished a quilt, sewed hundreds of yo-yo’s, went through ESL training, assured a dozen people that I am NOT pregnant, and had many fun dinners with friends. And only had two pedicures (look at me roughing it… I’m such a girl scout).

It was a very good summer indeed.

The cold front that hit over the weekend (thank you Jesus!) has inspired me to start brainstorming ideas for fall, which will definitely include a lot of quilting, finishing a Pinterest-inspired wreath, and lot’s of snuggling with Mr. Right in front of the fire. 

Ciao summer… bring on the fall and its tall boots, colorful scarves, fire logs and hot chocolate.