Saturday, February 28, 2009

It's Beautiful and I'm Pooped

Painting my bedroom has been a bone-tiring, yet gratifying experience. I went to Lowe's yesterday in the middle of a heavy rainstorm to get the paint and the other few supplies that we needed. Picking the color was my first stop. I chose a color called Dockside Haze. The name of the color perfectly describes it. It's a good mixture of blue and gray. And I love it. It's just what I wanted.

Naturally, while I was at Lowe's I had to pick up a few things. Even though generally speaking home improvement stores don't excite me as much as, say, Target or Sephora or something like that. If I'm in the mood, I can waste serious amounts of time there. They had this really neat paintbrush that was slanted for cutting in, but the handle was smaller than most. I thought that would be good for me. And, of course, the latest edition of Southern Living was so colorful that it caught my eye and I had to have it. When I checked out my grand total was :

When I got home from Lowe's, Jeff was already home doing the "grunt work". I.E., taking down the pictures, moving the furniture, removing the switch plates and stuff like that. He was just about ready to get started.

I want y'all to see the paint brush I got. It's just the cutest little thing. Not that my hands are so small, but I do have a touch of carpal tunnel in them and so the small handle made it easier for me to handle. Isn't it adorable? It's called the XL Cub. I think it's perfect for women to use. I also got these cute little buckets and they have a magnet on the inside to hold your brush upright if you need to set your brush down for a minute. It worked great. It also had a handle like a large measuring cup. Man, the things they've come up with to make painting easier.

I did the short person work and Jeff did the stuff that had to be done on the ladder. I did get on the ladder some, but I stayed on the floor most of the time.

After we got done cutting it all in, it was time for the rolling. That's the really fun part where you can feel little splashes of paint hit your hair and your face, but at least you feel like you're finally getting somewhere. To me, it's like after you've outlined the picture in the coloring book, you finally get to color the picture. It's my favorite part. Even if it is a little messy. . .

You may wonder how a girl with a booty that big could ever have the nerve to post it on the worldwide web. Well, I wanted to show you what happened when I bumped into my freshly rolled wall. I got a PERFECT circle on my butt! It was like a giant bullseye! How that could have happened like that I'll never know, but I thought it was hilarious.

But this. . . now, this almost sent me into OCD orbit. Can you believe all the dustbunnies that were behind some of the furniture? That's just gross. No other word for it. Gross.

We worked from about 4 o'clock until about 10 o'clock with a 30-minute break to grab a bite to eat. Fortunately, it only took one coat of paint to cover the walls. Boy, was I glad. We moved the furniture back in place, got the switch plates and everything back together. These are a couple of quick pictures of how it turned out. I just love it. It's so peaceful and airy. I feel like I'm floating in the clouds in there.

Now, I'm off to a very long, very hot bubble bath. My muscles ache. My last name was Howell before it was Kelly, but a painter I'm not. You gotta be tough for that kinda work. Sadly, that's one way I'm not like my dear old dad I guess.
Love to all!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Help! I've Got an Itch!

As all of you well know, I generally don't like the "same" things for very long. I change purses a lot. I change cars every couple of years (bad idea I know, JEFF!). I have a lot of shoes, a lot of makeup, a lot of socks (socks for winter and socks for summer), a lot of fake jewelery, a lot of clothes (although I'd say I have nothing to wear at any given time). To put this in a nutshell, I have a lot of things because I get tired of things. I jokingly say that the only things I've kept longer than a few years are my husband and my kids. But that's not exactly true.

See that very handsome man on the ladder with that adorable curly-topped baby in the picture? Well, that's my dad and Cam almost 15 years ago when daddy was painting our bedroom when we built our house. And it's STILL THAT SAME COLOR!!!! I do believe I've painted or, better said, my dad or Jeff -- or most likely my dad -- has painted every other room in my house since this house was built. But for some reason, the room I spend more time in than any other has gone unchanged. I've just always liked the color so much I never wanted to change it. Till now. And now I'm itching to get it painted. Bad. And y'all know that when a Girl Named Kelly Kelly gets an itch, it must be scratched. And soon.

Now, my dad and his dad and his dad were all painters. They are legendary in these parts. Seriously, you say Howell, people around here think "excellent painters." And being that my last name was Howell before it was Kelly, well, what can I say. . . I think I'm a pretty darned good painter. I find it soothing in a way, sorta like coloring in a coloring book with only the really big pictures. That is after Jeff does all the hard parts, like moving the furniture, taking down all the pictures, hauling up the big, tall ladders, finding all our supplies, puttying the nail holes, stuff like that. Yep, it's very relaxing for me. Kinda like therapy of sorts.

Since we're supposed to be socked in this weekend with a ton of rain and then a big blast of cold air on Sunday and since I've worked my fingers to the bone this week doing court reporting stuff, I think I deserve a little soothing, relaxing painting, don't y'all?

I'm gonna call my dad and get my list of everything I need and make a run to the paint store. I think I can get my bedroom painted in a weekend. My dad is 65 and he could have it painted in a day. I really hope he'll come and help. I'm sure he'll at least come to "offer" his advice. Which I absolutely without a doubt will take. Besides being an excellent painter, he is also very smart. (Which is why when people say I'm like my dad, I just flash my toothiest grin).

After my last trip to Tybee and staying in that gorgeously decorated cottage, I'm really into the beach colors. My office is painted sort of the color I want the bedroom, only I want it a little more blue. I've been looking at some magazines and got some good ideas.

So Sugar, when you read this post today, please don't try and talk me out of painting this weekend. I promise you won't have to do anything. That is after you do all the little things I mentioned a few paragraphs ago.

Oh, and one last thing, if any of you readers are having difficulty sleeping, I've got the perfect remedy.
Yep, that's right. The book that was going to take me out of my "book funk" has been one big letdown. I don't know why I keep picking books that are set in some time period where they talk all strange and use words in sentences that don't make any sense to me. I'm on page 32. It puts me to sleep every night. I think I'm going to go back to my early reading days and start with something young and fresh. Maybe with something like Dick and Jane. See Jane run. See Dick jump. I think I can go with that.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

And a Big, Big, Praise

Jason got the job offer from Emory-Crawford Long yesterday. Yippee!!!!!! Praise the Lord! My sister Suz truly amazed me through this whole ordeal. She was steady as a rock. She's much stronger than she ever gives herself credit for. Congrats to Jason and congrats to Suz! It's so funny how our lives mirror each other. I'm a court reporter. She's a court reporter. Jeff works for Emory. Now Jason works for Emory. Yahoo!!!!!!

Bourbon Chicken to Mighty Meaty

Now, how in the world could that have
happened? How could a nice home cooked
meal turn into dinner at Mellow Mushroom?

Well. . . I can explain. At 6:30 p.m. I was still in my PJs. From the night before. I was in my office all day long working. I didn't get everything checked off my list, didn't even come close, but I did get a lot done. And while I had depos printing, I HELPED Jeff clean the house. Now, I emphasize the word help. He also HELPED. Together we got it done! Yippee!!!! I have a clean house, top to bottom and we kept the money in our pocket. That is except for the money we paid for the
scrumptious pizza we had at the Mellow Mushroom. And BTW, I don't eat the Mighty Meaty, I eat the Kosmic Karma. The meaty is too meaty for me.

I booked our condo in Panama City for Spring Break. If you'd like to see where we're staying go here and check it out. It's not my heaven on earth Tybee, but for two sixteen-year-old boys, I think it will work perfectly.

I've found several more great blogs to follow. Take a look at my sidebar and maybe you'll find a couple you'll like, too. I'm so sick of my template, but it takes literally hours for me to change it. I may tackle it this weekend though. I'm growing impatient. Me, impatient? Never.

How boring is this post? Yeah, I know. But what can a girl say at 6 o'clock in the morning? That is except "y'all have a good day!"


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Home Sweet Home

After driving nearly three hours through the horrible traffic that we live with here in Atlanta, I made it back to my home sweet home. My nerves were so bad while I was driving and I didn't want to start biting my nails, so I chewed up a WHOLE pack of gum. Can you believe that? That's messed up. Oh, well, my nails are still intact. And I can always buy more gum.

We went and grabbed a quick supper at Zaxby's. They have good chicken fingers. I had another salad. That was salad number 2 for me yesterday. I'm trying to eat better since I don't seem to be getting into the exercise program I spent so much money buying all the stuff for. Maybe one day I'll get started. Maybe. One. Day. Talking about it and thinking about it should be good enough, but it just isn't getting the job done.

I slept so good last night. I even woke myself up one time giggling. Now, that's some good sleep. The only complaint I have today is a big fat migraine caused from a muscle ache in my neck that I got trying to sleep in the hotel. I was trying to cover my ears with the pillows to keep from hearing all the traffic that was driving through my room. I guess I got myself in a funky position or something. Now I have the first migraine I've had in several weeks.

Do y'all ever get in a rut when trying to think of things to fix for supper/dinner? I stay in one. I think that's why we eat cereal or sandwiches or go out so much. I just can't think of anything to fix that pleases everyone. What's your favorite thing to fix? And do you have a cookbook that you just absolutely can't live without? I have about 30 cookbooks. Other than my Paula Deen cookbooks, none of them really tickle my fancy that much. I don't like pork chops. Jeff doesn't like meat loaf or salmon croquettes. Cam doesn't like chicken pot pies. Ross isn't crazy about casseroles. Man, it's hard to find anything to fix that the four of us like. Have you ever had Bourbon Chicken at some of the good Chinese restaurants around town? Well, I got online this morning and found a recipe that I think I'm going to try and make tonight. All of us like Bourbon Chicken, if it's made with white meat only. I'm going to double it, if not triple it. My big boys will eat leftovers and Jeff will too. I, myself, will not touch them (yet another way I'm like my dad.) Here's the recipe in case y'all would like to try it. It sounds really good and easy too. Let me know if you try it and how you like it. Plus, they make some pretty good frozen meatless egg rolls that I think would go good with this meal. I'm definitely gonna make a Publix run and go for this one.


2 pounds boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
1/4 teaspoon ginger
3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 cup apple juice
1/3 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup soy sauce

Heat oil in large skillet. Add chicken pieces and cook until lightly browned. Remove chicken. Add remaining ingredients, heating over medium heat until well mixed and dissolved. Add chicken and bring to a hard boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Serve over hot rice and ENJOY.

I've decided not to replace my "What Lady" with a real "Cleaning Lady". After looking around my house this morning while my head was pounding with each beat of my pulse, I seriously wondered why I made that decision. Here's my To Do List for Today. Tell me what y'all think.

1. Proof and print 8 jobs. That should take about 10 hours.
2. Go to Publix and get all the fixins for supper and cleaning supplies to clean the house.
3. Clean the house from top to bottom.
4. Cook the above-mentioned dinner recipe, which will include cutting into bite-size pieces 6 pounds of chicken breasts.
5. Give myself a manicure before I bite my nails off OR pick up another pack of gum at Publix to chew.
6. Continue to search for the best deal on a condo in Panama City Beach to take Cam for Spring Break.

I must do all of the items on this list today with a migraine headache. Do you think it's possible?

Also, please be in prayer for a very dear family from my church that has lost one of their family members. It's a tragic loss made even worse by the fact that the sweet wife of the sweet man who passed away has had brain surgery in the past week. They truly need lots of prayer. They've been members of my church for as long as I can remember. And she (the wife), when asked to pray, can say the sweetest prayer you've ever heard.

Somehow, we must make this a Happy Humpday my friends!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Sleepless in Dalton

Have you ever had to sleep on the side of the road? Thankfully, I never have. However, after the night that I have just spent, I now feel as though I have. I have heard each and every 18-wheeler that has gone goes up I-75 north through Dalton, Georgia through the night. The fabulous plush bedding on my bed has gone to complete waste as I have hardly slept at all.

After my job yesterday in Cartersville, I drove the additional 50 minutes up here. I went to one hotel, but the only room they had had two double beds. It's my policy when I'm staying away from home to sleep in a bed at least as big as the one I have at home. And they were so unfriendly there. Add to that the fact that their rates were outlandish. I mean, come on people. This is Dalton, a small town in north Georgia. Not New York City. I then crossed over I-75 and went to the Hampton Inn, which is a hotel chain I've stayed in many times. In fact, when I was planning this little trip, I checked the rates here, but they seemed a little high. But not high compared to the unfriendly place I went to first. They had a nice room, gave me a good business rate, let me choose what floor I wanted my room, and they were just very, very nice. I obviously made the wrong choice of room location because of the proximity to the expressway, but, hey, who knew.

I worked for a good four hours when I got here. Got three jobs proofed, and that's pretty dang good. There is an outlet mall right across the street. Although I really wasn't in the mood for shopping (shocker, I know), I wanted to take a break, so I took a stroll in the freezing cold (I forgot my coat at home). The hours posted on the brochures that I had seen said they were open till 9 p.m. daily. It was before 6 and they were all closing. What's up with that? There were several stores that had closed down. For good. Tough times I guess. Outback was in the same area, so I stopped in to get something to eat. I just brought it back to the room. There was hardly anyone in the restaurant. I think this town is really suffering from this down economy. Well, back to Outback. They've changed their menu. So if you had something that you really liked, there's a good chance it's not on the menu anymore. If your luck's like mine anyway. The tilapia I order is not on the new menu, but I asked if I could order it. Evidently, they had a few scraggly pieces left in the freezer. They served it right up. It was not very good.

I come back to my room and work a little more. Then it's time for the highlight of my night. The Bachelor. I really don't think I'm gonna let myself get hooked on that show again. I think ABC just manipulates the viewers of the show too much. I'm just a sucker for a love story. I don't think it's gonna end the way I want it to. And then I'll swear off the show for good. Or at least till the next season starts.

I have a good understanding why business travel is no fun. In fact, it's really quite miserable. I don't think I'll be opting to do this again anytime soon. Give me my bed, my peaceful sleep and my evening at home any day of the week.

I don't have to check out till 12 noon, so maybe I'll take a nap. Think they could have a roadblock or something on the expressway so I could get some sleep?

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Food, Four-Wheelers & Fun

That's what we had this weekend. And tons of it. We started the weekend with supper at Holcomb's Bar-B-Q. It was a neat little Bar-B-Q place in White Plains, Georgia. It had the best Brunswick stew. It really compared to my dad's, my uncle's or my PaPa Howell's. It was really good. The neat thing about this place, though, was the relaxed atmosphere. Check this out, y'all.

The floor was sawdust. Eli was so funny. He said what's up with the bedding? He thought it was like the stuff you use in hamster cages.

After we left the Bar-B-Q place, we headed for the Deer Land. We got there and got everything unloaded and situated. We all brought a lot of food and a whole lot of snacks. Suz brought this really big bag of candy. It was like a mixed bag of goodies from her kids' goodie bags from Valentine's Day, plus lots of other things she had picked up here and there. It had a lot of unique things in it. Not just your average Snickers, Reeses, etc., like mine did.

So the kids sat down at the table and were playing Uno and just talking and having a good time experiencing the delicacies from the candy bag that Suz brought. We knew they were eating a good bit of candy, but heck, it was the Deer Land, and what was the harm in a little extra candy. In our family, Reid is the original Candy Kid. That's what we call him. He'll eat anything sweet. Every tooth in his head is sweet. He'll even eat DARK CHOCOLATE. What kid eats that?
As I mentioned in Friday's post, every year we've ever been we've had a bit of bad luck of some sort of another. At about 4 o'clock a.m. Saturday morning, we assumed the bad luck of 2009 was going to be a stomach virus that would surely strike all 16 of us. The original Candy Kid woke everyone in the cabin up throwing up. As it turned out, though, he had merely OD'd on candy. And happily, I report to you, that was the worst of the luck that we had this year!

Saturday we got up pretty early. The kids were excited to start the day, and they rode four-wheelers from sunup to sundown.

Alayna and her friend, Jennifer, even though they look more like they're ready to hit the slopes in Aspen, rode the four-wheelers with the boys and got down and dirty with them, too!

Jason took the adults on a ride, too. We went back into the swamp. It was really beautiful back in there. It was rough riding through all the muddy water and brush, but it was so much fun. I'm a bit of a daredevil, so I enjoyed it so much.
We got off the four-wheelers for a little while and stopped to check out the Ogeechee River. Which, coincidentally, used to be one of PaPa Kimball's favorite fishing holes. On further south down the river though.

We had our annual campfire and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows. Told fun stories about our favorite Christmas gifts we had ever gotten in our whole lives. We heard coyotes in the woods, then when Ross started to call back to them with his coyote call, they stopped. I guess it's a good thing because I'm not sure what we'd have done if they would have come up for a visit. Maybe we could have offered them a hot dog or a marshmallow.
Sunday was basically a repeat of Saturday. We left about 4 o'clock and got home about 6. It's hard to believe that in just two short hours you can get so far away from civilization and be basically in the middle of nowhere and in a Georgia swamp. Good times, folks. Good times.

I've got to be in Cartersville today at 11. I'm staying overnight because I've got to work in Dalton tomorrow. I've never really done that before, that is stay by myself. I'll watch the Bachelor tonight and take my book and just relax from the weekend. I wish I had more time to write, but I've got to get going or I'll be late. It's no fun trying to set up my equipment with all eyes on you.

Y'all have a good day. It is Monday you know.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Roughing It

This is our Annual Deer Land Trip Weekend. Suz and her family, Crystal and her family, and me and my family all go down to Jason's Deer Land. They have hundreds of acres of woods, lots of places to ride four-wheelers and two lakes to fish. It's also a man's hunting camp. Now, don't get me wrong. These are men who are uncharacteristically clean with their hunting camp. I mean, they sweep it out and keep their bedding changed, clean the bathrooms, spray the whole place with Febreeze, keep it exterminated and everything before they leave each time. The fridge is spotless and there are few bugs, except for the cute little ladybugs that come in trying to get warm. But for everyone who knows me, I'm just really not a camping type of girl. I'm really more of the condo/cottage/hotel type. I like super plush towels, special soaps, spa shampoos, and maybe one of those really nice white monogrammed robes to put on after you get out of the shower. It's just not the same kind of accomodations at the Deer Land as you would get at one of those type swanky places.

But let me tell you, we have the BEST time. You put me and my sisters together, and we can have some fun. Now bear in mind, though, we're going to have ten kids in the mix. We're taking a few extras other than our own this year. Ten kids can grate on your nerves just a wee bit, even if you're on ten million acres. All in all, it's a lot of fun, and it's something we all look forward to every year. We play cards and games, eat lots of snacks and do lots of chilling. That is in between breaking up fusses between the ten kids.

Each year we have a few calamaties. Last year, Alayna wrecked Jason's golfcart into an old barn, which barely scratched the barn, but totaled out the golfcart. It was a miracle it didn't hurt Alayna more than it did, it scared her and busted her lip. Then loading the fourwheeler onto Cam's truck, Jeff didn't secure the trailer and the trailer bucked up and scratched and dented the tailgate of Cam's truck, which at the time was still Jeff's brother's truck. Add in a couple of pretty strong fusses between couples and it really is hilarious. In hindsight that is.
We build a campfire on Saturday night and roast hot dogs and marshmallows, which is a lot of fun except for the fact that I don't really like the smell of campfire smoke. But for Deer Land Weekend, I rough it. I take off my princess crown and replace it with a camoflauge hat and go with the flow. As best as I can.

I'll have lots of pictures for y'all on Monday, but you won't be hearing from me over the weekend. There sure ain't no internet connection out there in the boondocks. Heck, you're lucky to get a cell signal. Ed's coming to take care of Smokey and Bandit, so they get to stay home.

I'm off to pack my long-janes, camos, etc. No pretty stuff this weekend. :-(
So till Monday, enjoy your weekend. Do something nice for yourself, and do it with someone you love.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Another Giveaway

I know I should be working, but I keep finding all these cool blogs and some of them have giveaways. And y'all know how much I love makeup. Well, this one here is giving away a Smashbox shadow and brush kit. I can never have too much makeup. Check her blog out. She's a fan of vintage pinup girls. How sexy is that? I think of all the blog pages I've seen, I like hers the best. It's so unique.

A Fab Giveaway! Shh!

Whitney Caroline Designs is having a fablous giveaway. Click her button on my shopping list and check out the cute things she has! I've made a wish list about two pages long. With summer coming up, there's lots of things that would look great around my house. And with a personalized beach towel, I wouldn't have to worry about pool visitors taking my towel, now would I?

Thursday Ramblings

Since I don't have anything in particular in my head, but just a hundred different things I want to post about today, that's what I'm gonna do. If you've been praying for me, thank you so much. The Lord has lifted me from a very dark place and the last two days have been so much better than the past several weeks. I'm sure there will be bumps along the way, but hopefully, with continued prayers from my three F's, and with good care from my sweet doctor, I'll just roll right over them. I've been sleeping so good too. Just days ago, I'd get in bed and couldn't find a comfortable position. Now I get in bed and can't find a position that's not comfortable. Last night I even slept without a pillow. Who does that?

I don't have to go out for work today. Yippee. I think I may stay in my PJs all day. I'm gonna take my laptop in the living room, get cozy with my favorite Snoopy blanket and HOPEFULLY, get lots of work done. Put it this way, I MUST get lots of work done. I've got 12 jobs sitting here staring at me. One thing you don't want as a court reporter is someone calling looking for their transcript. Big no-no.

My big boys, as Suz so cleverly named them, are better. Well, actually Cam is better. Ross's asthma has kicked into full gear. He's stubborn and he needs to go to the doctor, but of course he says he doesn't have time for that "crap". I want to take him by the hand and take him, but that might be a little difficult and I might get hurt in the process, so I guess we'll wait it out. Pray for him folks. He hates to get sick. He hates to be slowed down by anything.

Oh, yeah, I told y'all the wrong potatoes to buy when you're making the Simply Parmesan Potatoes. They make these homestyle slices that are thinner than the red potato wedges. That's the ones that you use. You can use the other ones, too, but I like the thinner ones best. They get crispier.

So I think I'm going to take Cam and a friend to Panama City Beach for Spring Break. Maybe. He wants to go, but I'm not sure HE wants ME to go. I think he would rather go with a friend. Why is it that after about the fourth or fifth grade your kids act like you have two heads and don't want you around? Kids. Can't live with them, can't live without them.

I started a reading new book last night. I think it's gonna be "the one" for me. I can't wait to get back into it. I haven't been much into reading lately, even after I got my glasses. This book, I do believe, is going to bring me out of my reading funk. I just finished a book called Emma and Me. It was a good book, but somewhat confusing and left me feeling a little blue. I'm excited about this new book. Oh, and it's bigger than the little paperbacks, so the words are bigger. I think I'm going to start treating myself to only hardbacks or the bigger paperbacks. I figure that's the least I can do, because hey, I deserve it.
The weeds in my yard are starting to green up. The real grass is still dormant. Man, do we have a lot of weeds! The next warm weekend we have, we are going to have a Kelly Family Workday and get this place tidied up. I want to do a lot of pressure washing, you know, the sidewalk, around the pool and the driveway. Spring's almost here, so we've got to be looking pretty. I think I'm (or maybe Jeff and me) are going to start cleaning the house and put the money we'd be paying the cleaning lady in an envelope and use it for plants and flowers.
How boring was this post? I told y'all I would ramble. These are the thoughts in my head this morning, so that's what I wanted to share.
Thanks again for your prayers. Keep 'em up. I don't want to go back to that dark place ever again!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Road Trippin'

Don't have too long this morning, gotta make a long road trip for a job. But I'm not gonna complain -- well, at least not too much. It's just this darn traffic around here. There are just TOO many drivers on the road. I've got to make an hour-and-a-half drive that'll probably take me two-and-a-half. UGH! And on top of that, it's raining and I just had my car washed for the first time since November. Double UGH!

Ross and Cam are both sick with this creeping crud that's going around. Cam's got it pretty bad. He's got a fever, sore throat, runny nose/stuffy nose, cough and stomach ache. And oh, yeah, a headache too. Ross is just coughing, which makes his asthma start up. It really brings out the mommy in me when they get sick. I love to pamper really more than I like to be pampered. And believe you me, that's a heap of pampering! Knock on wood, Jeff and I have so far managed to escape the nasty germ. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. That's the last thing I need.

Jeff and I went to Georgia Pool Supply to pick out our pool liner. This is the one I picked out. I thought it would look so nice with the brick on the house and I just love the colors. It's even prettier in person. I can't imagine how gorgeous it's going to be when it's in the pool and full of water. I can't wait. Summer is so calling my name. I don't know what to plant around the pool though. I'm thinking natural-looking things will look best with this liner since it's more rustic than tropical looking. What do y'all think? I could just go with the weed look that grows so well in our yard, but I think I'd like something a little nicer. I've got a couple of months to think about it, but it makes me happy when I think about sunny things, so sunny things are what I'm thinking about. I may start using Coppertone suntan lotion just because I enjoy the summertime smell. Does that make me a little over the top?

Didn't get to make my soup last night. Jeff and I ate a late lunch. I didn't eat all of my sandwich, so he ate all of his and the other half of mine. He wasn't hungry when it was time for supper. He did make the most delicious cinnamon strudel muffins though. They were from a box mix and man, they were tasty. That was my supper. His too. Cam had some clam chowder and not sure what Ross had. They need some homemade chicken noodle soup. Do I have any volunteers? Just kidding. Knowing my sweet family, they'll be trucking it over by the bucketful. Cam doesn't even like chicken noodle soup. I offered to open him a can. See how much I like to pamper.
Suz sent me this tasty recipe last night. We're really into cherry limeade lately. We get them at Sonic and with tons of cherries on top. That's how we order them. A diet cherry limeade with tons of cherries on top. They charge 20 cents extra for tons of cherries.
Here ya go, courtesy of Suz:
Fill your glass with crushed ice. Then pour in some Diet Sprite. Squirt or squeeze some fresh lime juice, then add some maraschino cherry juice to that. Top with tons of cherries. Throw a couple of lime slices in for flavor and because they look so pretty floating in your glass. Save your 20 cents.
Good job, Suz! Can't wait to try that one.

Okay, y'all, that's my post for now. Hope you have a Happy Humpday!

Just Tuesday

Yesterday we celebrated the birthday of my sweet Aunt Brenda. I don't remember how old she said she was going to be on Wednesday, but to me she'll always be my Aunt "Benda". It's kind of a funny thing that as I get older, my aunts and uncles and even my parents just seem to stay the same age as they were when I was a little girl. They just don't seem to age in my mind. It's really weird. She and I are quite alike. We both love the beach, the sun, she even used to drag race her hubby's car at one point, so I've heard. That's sort of a little secret dream of mine. Ross is restoring a '73 Nova and I'd love to race it one day. She's a good Christian woman and I'm glad she's my aunt and I'm glad she's my friend.

There were probably about 15 of us at the Chinese restaurant we usually go to for the aunts' birthday lunches. The owners usually put us in our own little part of the restaurant with a big dining table. I think they seclude us from the rest of the people because sometimes it can get a little loud with laughter coming from either children or adults. Yesterday, it seemed to be mostly the kids. Alex, Theresa's granddaughter, was feeling much better and was in a playful mood, which was good to see. Eli ate mostly rice. But when you're at a Chinese restaurant, that's not a bad choice.
It was kind of a subdued adult crowd. My great-aunt Mattie Lou has just found out that her daughter, Marie, has liver cancer. Of course, we all know the Great Physician has his own doctor book, but the books we have access to don't give a very good prognosis for that kind of cancer. I'm sure she's getting good doctor care and we'll just pray for her and sweet Mattie Lou and hope for the best. We all left with full bellys and smiles on our faces!

I had a 9 o'clock depo this morning, so my workday is done. I may get some proofing done later on. Maybe. Maybe not. Since Jeff's working from home, we're going out to price pool liners. Might even slip a nap in later on. Didn't go to sleep last night until after 2 o'clock. I don't know about you, but that's way past my bedtime. I require much more beauty rest than that.

After Mike died, we had so many friends and family bring food to Ed & Jean's. This was a chicken chili that Carol brought. The ingredients might make you say hmmm, I'm not so sure about this, but trust me. It's really, really good. I think that we just might have this for supper tonight with some good ol' cornbread.

1 medium zucchini, coarsely chopped
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
1 can tomato sauce
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cans chicken broth
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 jar thick and chunky mild salsa
3 cups shredded cooked chicken (I'll probably buy a rotisserie one)
1 1/2 or 2 tablesppons chili powder
Optional toppings: shredded lettuce, sour cream, crushed tortilla chips, sliced green onions, fresh cilantro leaves.

Chop zucchini. Drain and rinse beans in colander. Drain corn. Combine chicken broth, salsa and tomato sauce in 4 qt pot. Add zucchini, beans, corn, chicken, garlic, chili powder and cumin. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Top with desired toppings.
Sounds yummy, doesn't it? Hope y'all have a Happy Tuesday. What did you think about the Bachelor last night? Go Melissa!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Hormone H-e-double hockey sticks

The doctor visit was status quo. He has put me on a new medication and wants me to come back in two weeks, regardless if I'm feeling better or not. I think he wants to chat with me and decide for himself if I really am feeling better. I'll be glad to go because just seeing him and knowing that he cares about me and how I'm doing makes me happy. I wish I had known of him when I delivered Ross and Cam. He's one heck of a great doctor! And if he takes care of this problem for me, he'll be my new best friend!!!!!

Please keep me in your prayers. This is a rocky road.

Shoe Shopping

Yesterday was a total good time. I spent the afternoon with my bestest friend Suz. She and I went shoe shoppin'. I had been online looking for shoes for women with small feet. I found some really good websites with some fabulous shoes, some of them pretty reasonable, some not so much so. By the end of my busy workweek last week, I was willing to pay almost anything for a good-fitting pair of shoes. Life in a parking garage with ill-fitting shoes, for lack of a more ladylike word, sucks.

She and Eli came down early in the afternoon, so we had plenty of time. We had no particular place to go, but some good ideas of things we wanted to do, which always include our favorite pastime, shopping. Suz, ever the bargain shopper, suggested we check out Payless Shoestore. They're having their BOGO sale, which means if you buy one of something, you get the other for half price. Not a bad deal. They usually stock lots of small size shoes, too, which is a good thing. Sometimes I can wear their shoes, sometimes not. But yesterday, OMGosh. They had their shelves fully stocked with the latest spring fashions for work and play. And Suz and A Girl Named Kelly Kelly had themselves one heck of a good time.

Rather than bore you with words, here are some pictures to show you how much fun we had. Suz put on her Price Is Right model face and showed me these lovely shoes! They weren't for me though.

Then we both decided that a pair of nice, white Mary Janes would be worth a try and with Easter right around the corner, hey, what the heck. Surely they would fit. Voila! They fit. I think you can tell by the size of my cankles that a 43-year-old woman isn't meant to wear a size 3 Mary Janes! HA! Not for me either.
After searching and searching and trying on this pair and that pair, we were ready to check out. Payless Shoe Store was happy to see us go. This was the mess that we made while looking for the perfect shoes.
Which happily we did find four perfect pair for me. And for the price of one pair I was going to order online, I bought four! Now that's some shoe shopping! And I can walk and walk and walk without my shoes falling off! Yippee!!!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

My Perfect Valentine's Day

So what did I do for Valentine's Day? My hubby and I stayed in and watched one of my, if not my very favorite movies, Sweet Home Alabama. And here is my favorite line of the movie. That is one good movie. I think it's my very favorite.

For our romantic V'Day dinner, here's what we had. A delicious frozen pizza. And I must say, after not eating anything else all day, this pizza could have been steak and lobster as far as I was concerned. It was divine.

Add a few of these delicious, melt in your mouth chocolate caramels for dessert, and bam, a Valentine's Day every girl dreams of. Good looking man, (well, two, if you count your hubby), frozen pizza and Milk Duds. I ask you, could it have been better than this?

Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Best Valentine's Day Ever

Nothing could have made my Valentine's Day better than getting this card this morning from my 20-year-old son. I mean, I'm seriously all choked up with tears. And even though it doesn't take much these days to do that, this really touched me in a way maybe only a mother of sons could understand. Most times, he says oh, I couldn't find a card or oh, I just ran out of time, or oh, any other excuse he could come up with at the time. But this time, this day, 2/14/2009, my son Ross, got me a Valentine's Card.

I think the last time he got me a card was in 2006. That one was very special too. It was handmade and written in German, which he was taking in high school. I think it was a class assignment or something. But anyway, he never translated it for me, so for all I know it could say to go make him a sandwich or something. But to me it said I was the best mom in the world and that he loved me very much. I have it in my office and I'll cherish it forever.

No one made him get me the card he gave me this morning. He didn't get a grade (at least from a teacher), it wasn't an assignment. But it showed me that after 20 years of bone-tiring work, all the sacrifices I had made, all the patience I had had, all the stories I had read, all the fun we had had together doing the silly little things that were so much fun to him had really paid off. I've raised a darn good boy who has slowly turned into a fine young man! And I'm proud of him and I, must say, I'm dang proud of myself, too. The girl who wins his heart in life will be all the luckier for it. I do hope she has the patience of Job and can yell like Tarzan, 'cause she will surely need it.

Yesterday was a busy Friday. I had to work two depos again in two different parts of town. My last job was in Newnan and it was at 3 o'clock. I had to hurry home and get to go out. Yep, it was Friday, so it was LaParilla night for a Girl Named Kelly Kelly. LaParilla is so crowded on the weekends that if you don't get there by at least 5 o'clock, you cannot get a seat for a long while. And we like to sit at the bar, which has been impossible lately because we've been getting there after 7. So it's like we're trying to get an early-bird special or something having to get there so early. But we're there for a couple of hours, just eating and having ourselves a drink and doing some very serious people watching. Believe me, the people watching there is not for the faint either. It's more entertaining than going to the movies sometimes. Jeff and I had fish and shrimp with asparagus and mashed potatoes, of course with a Mexican twist. OMGosh, it was so yummy.
Here's me and Nan having a good time. We both needed it. She's an echo tech. She does heart echos and it's a stressful job. She also has Meniere's Disease, which means she has a constant 24/7 ringing in her ears. How awful does that sound? She likes to go out and have a good time and we always do when we go to LaParilla.

Today may actually be the day we start our workout program. After eating all that food, don't you think we need it?

I hope each and every one of you has a good Valentine's Day.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Oscar and Me

This is my new "favorite book". It's on my bookcase, and I love it. I encourage anyone who is feeling on the grouchy side to read it. From cover to cover. Over and over. It's great. If anyone can define grouchiness and how to be a grouch, it's Oscar the Grouch. In case your local library doesn't have a copy of this great book, let me give you a few highlights: First you must learn to frown. Check. Second, you must look like a grouchy person. Check. Oscar says that grouches can live in trash cans, old cars, crummy old houses or even in yucky beautiful houses. Check. He also tells you that to be a good grouch, it helps to be tired and grumpy, so you should get a bad night's sleep. He tells you to put rocks under your sheet. Well, I didn't do that, but I don't sleep worth a crap a lot of nights. And I did sleep on the sofa last night. To get the day off to a grouchy start, you should set your clock to go off too early. Check. Do that every day thinking I'll get up a little earlier and do some work or something, which I never-ever do. Tell yourself how awful you look this morning. Triple check on that one. Then Oscar has a few pages of some things that make him grouchy. For example, bubble gum machines that take his money but give him no gumball, grouchy hornets, someone who thinks he's funny but isn't makes Oscar grouchy. Oscar thinks coat hangers can be the world's grouchiest things. Obviously, Oscar lives on Sesame Street and not on my street. It is true, though, that coat hangers can be quite obnoxious at times, don't you think? Then the book takes you through several pages of funny stuff about how grouches relax and how to take a grouch vacation and how beneficial it is for grouches to be together, like in grouch clubs and such. There are other famous storybook grouches that Oscar wants us to know about besides himself. Such as the Giant at the top of Jack's Beanstalk, Cinderella's Family, Witches, and storybook dragons.

How can someone like me who likes all things sunny and happy and warm be grouchy like Oscar the Grouch who hates the above-mentioned? Can you say H-O-R-M-O-N-E-S????

I had my surgery in October and now it is February. I think my body is beginning to realize that something is a little different and it's beginning to wonder WTHeck. I'm making a joke of something that's pretty serious business here. I'm snapping my family up like a pan of fresh green beans and all the while looking for something to throw. I have a doctor visit Monday afternoon, so please pray that he'll have a magic cure for me. Soon. Very soon. Because if not, my poor, sweet husband may just leave me. Which I would probably deserve.

Here's Oscar's best advice which comes on the last page of this great book.
But pray for me, please. I really do need it.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Chicken & Potatoes

Hey y'all, Sound familiar? Well, if you watch Paula Deen it does. That's her catch-phrase greeting. But it's also the way most all us sweet southern girls greet other folks. Tonight for supper, we're having BBQ chicken from the Deen Family Recipe Book. I make this all the time (well, all the time is a relative term since I don't cook that often). It's yummy and easy. It can be cooked on the grill or in the oven. We'll probably do it in the oven since it's supposed to
rain :-( I know, I know, we need the rain, we need the rain, blah, blah, blah. Alongside the delicious, flavorful chicken we're having one of my favorite kitchen staples, Simply Potatoes. Tonight I'm making the Parmeasan Potatoes made from the wedges. A lovely green salad, and hey, there's dinner.

I've got to go back downtown shortly for work again. They don't even expect the witness to show up. That's so responsible don't you think, get sued by someone, and then just don't even respond to anything at all. The attorneys don't even know where the person is. Not sure why I'm going to there to take his deposition when HE'S NOT EVEN GONNA BE THERE! Oh, well, the things we do to make a buck.

Afterwards, I think I may go do a little Valentine's shopping. I just stick some $$ in a card for the boys. Ends up saving me in the long run anyway. Well, it saves me with Cam. Ross is self-sufficient for the most part. Except for food, shelter, car insurance, you know, just a few small things like that. Plus what do you get a 16-year-old and a 20-year-old boy for Valentine's Day when you're their mom? Unless I could get them a date with this nice young lady.
And since I've got some cards that need to be mailed further than across the street, I need to get them in the mail today.

Here are the recipes for the chicken and potatoes I'm making for supper tonight. Y'all try it sometime. Hope you're tried the roast beef au jus by now. We had it again last night. Super yummy.

1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1/3 teaspoon cayenne pepper (gives the sauce a noticeable kick)
1 (3 1/2 pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces (yeah, right, I just use chicken breasts already cut, thank you)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees or prepare a grill (brush the grill grate lightly with oil).
In a large bowl, stir together all ingredients except the chicken. Reserve 1/3 cup of the BBQ sauce; set aside. Add the chicken to the remaining sauce in the bowl, turning to coat.

Arrange the coated chicken in a roasing pan or on the grill. Cook (covered, if grilling) for 40 to 45 minutes or until cooked through, basting with the reserved 1/3 cup sauce after 20 minutes.
As my dad says about my mom's cooking, "It'll make your tongue slap your grandmaw." I'd like to ponder that thought sometime when I have more time.


1 package Simply Potatoes Potatoe Wedges
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Spray cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray. In medium bowl, coat Simply Potatoes with olive oil. Spread potatoes in single layer in pan. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and salt over potatoes; turn to coat potatoes with seasonings. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, turning once, until potatoes are golden brown and slightly crisp.

OMGosh, these are sooo good. I double the recipe. I've got some big boys at my house. And I use more Parmesan than the recipe calls for. When they get crispy, they are really, really good. Try them, you'll like them.

Happy Humpday!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Makeup Blues

I've posted before how much I love makeup. I'm a bit of a makeup guru. Now, that's not to be mistaken to mean that I'm good with makeup, just that I like to spend money BUYING makeup. And I've got a ton of it. More true, I've given a ton of it away.

So why, oh, why have I got the makeup blues? This morning I'm trying my darndest to make myself somewhat "unsickly" pale. My eyes are bloodshot, my face is wrinkled and dry. My eyelashes have all but disappeared and I have at least 500 tubes of lipstick/lipgloss and I don't like any of them. The MAC foundation I normally use and always love is sticking in my wrinkles and making me look way older than I actually am. HELP!!!! I'm as ghostly looking as can be. So I try to use some "bronzer". You know, that's the stuff that everyone says will give you that "sun-kissed" look you so desire. Well, it gave me the "butternut squash-kissed" look I soooooo didn't desire.

And to make the matter even worse, my feet are still shrunk so my shoes still don't fit and I got turned around in a parking garage yesterday and had to walk 2.5 miles (joking) in high heels that were two sizes too big and my calves are killing me. I'm trying to cut some old hose to stuff in the toes of my shoes. Have you ever noticed that hose don't tear or cut well, unless you're NOT trying to cut or tear them?? If anyone out there in blog world has any advice for my shrinking feet dilemma, I'm all feet -- I mean, ears!

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Workin' 9 to 5 and I'm Not Complaining

Blogging late today. I had TWO depos in two different parts of town today. Man, that's rough on a girl after living the good life for three-and-a-half days. I've got to drive down to Macon in the morning for a depo, I think my car just might go on and make the extra three-hour trip and take me back to the beach!

I'm happy tonight and bummed at the same time. I'm excited because Jason got the call he's been waiting for from Emory-Crawford Long!!!! Yippee!!!! He's going back for another interview with the Medical Director of the hospital. Wooo. I'm sure he'll knock his/her socks off. I think he's probably got the job and this is just a formality. But I'm bummed because my fellow blogger and one of my favorites, Mam in Washington state got laid off from her job today. That STINKS. Y'all keep her in your prayers. Jobs out there are just as hard to come by as they are here. She's just the sweetest thing in the world and I really want her to find a job she loves and S-O-O-N! I've come to love her and I've never even met her. If you read this, Mam, hang in there.

My To-Do List is about as tall as I am, and even though that's not very tall, it's pretty long for a To-Do List. I did check a few things off of it today in between my depos. I got my oil changed and that was a big load off my mind. The dashboard control panel had nicely warned us that we needed to get the oil changed "soon". It's been telling us this for quite some time. Then over the weekend, it changed its tone and harshly advised us that an oil change was "required". I was scared to put it off for another mile. I had no idea what the next message might be.

Jeff made supper tonight. I must say that this is probably about the tenth time since we've been married that he's cooked, other than on the grill, which he does all the time. He made spaghetti. He did such a good job, I think I'll let him do it more often. HA! He's even cleaning up. Karma.

Guess that's it for another Monday. Think I'll be able to check a few more things off my To-Do List before the Bachelor comes on. They're going to the girls' hometowns tonight. Wonder who's gonna get the ax . . .

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Happy Feet

I do believe I shall cry. A long weekend here is simply not long enough. The sun's shining and it's gonna be another beautiful day. We took that long walk yesterday and it was wonderful. The beach looks so good. A beach chair, a good book, an ice cold diet coke or other cold beverage, some good music and the temps about 20 degrees warmer would have made a great day perfect. Here are a few pictures of some of the sights we saw while we were out.

Judy and Ronnie Martin's condo at Lighthouse Point. This is where we take the Ross and Cam and a friend apiece for vacation every year. Memories amillion have been made here.

She sells seashells by the seashore!
We found these shells while we were walking the

Just thought this was a pretty picture.

This isn't so pretty. It's a dead jellyfish. We saw at least 15 of them. No wonder those things hurt so much when they sting you. Look how ugly they are!

Don't you just love flying kites when there are no trees around to tangle them up?

Someone's just a little behind undecorating! But remember, they're living on Tybee Time.

The Tybee Pier where Ross and Cam spend almost their whole vacation fishing! It can get up to 10,000 degrees on that pier during the summer.

My new shirt! I love it.

Last but not least, here is a photo of two very small, but very, very happy feet!