Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christ-Mas!

In Spanish, the word "mas" means ... MORE, and honestly, I rather enjoy having "more" or "mas" in my life ... and I hope you do to!

So, in the spirit of my Spanish roots...

Merry Christ-Mas ...

Or, in other words ...

Merry Christ-more

I pray your Christmas was filled with the presence of the tiny baby ... Christ our Savior, and that the joy that only He can give comes and fills your heart!

Happy Birthday, Jesus!

Friday, December 22, 2006

It Came Upon A Midnight Clear...

For the last week, I have been up until midnight (if not 2:00 a.m., but SHHH -- don't tell anyone!) baking, wrapping, and organizing ... all without and injury or mishap, mind you...

Then, my parents arrived last night. We met them for dinner, and when we got home, I jumped right into baking and wrapping mode ... again.

Around 11:45 pm, I began cleaning up my mess, straightening the family room, and getting ready to go to bed, when lo and behold ... it came ... upon a midnight clear ... I fell.

Yes, indeedy. I did.

Now, many of you may be thinking, "Oh, my goodness ... are you okay?"

My husband, on the other hand, was thinking ... "Good grief! Again?" (there's a reason I'm likened to Calamity Jane!)

Let me assure you ... I'm just fine ... except for a bruised knee, and a possibly broken or badly sprained big toe, some aches and pains in the hip and shoulder areas, and of course, the ol' injured dignity.

You see, I didn't fall because I stepped into a huge crevice, or because I was skating on ice, or because of some incredible force majure (act of nature). No. I fell because the clogs I was wearing (which are, by the way, the bestest shoes for bad arches or bad feet) slipped off one foot, and I got entangled in the heel strap, catapulting me forward about four feet, causing me to trip over my other clog which was now slowly being forced off my other foot due to the force of gravity (um, maybe it was friction) I just aquired, forcing me to twist strangely in order to avoid landing my face on Hunter's little fire engine (that would have caused even more bruising and pain).

Glamorous and dainty, you know. It's called Grace in Motion.

At least I didn't "sprain" anything (which turned out to be torns ligaments in my ankle) as I did in another unfortunate midnight sprawl!

Oh, the dignity.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Christmas Cards are a go! Late! But a go!

Teething. You just NEVER know what it may bring! Plans can be ruined in a blink of an eye when an infant toddler suddenly feels that painful push of a jagged tooth in his tender gums!

Saturday was so wonderful. We went out as a family to run some errands, do some Christmas shopping for mommy, and have a lovely Mexican lunch together. We even got an hour and a half nap in -- YES! The WHOLE family napped! Then, we had a wonderful time at our Pastorman's Christmas open-house -- let me just say -- that man can make a MEAN RED VELVET CAKE! Normally, I have an aversion to Red Velvet Cake, because I'm not a fan (by ANY stretch of the imagination) of cream cheese frosting. I know, I know -- I'm in the minority. But fortunately, so is my pastor, because he made the most.incredibly.indulgently.sinfully.wonderful marshmallow icing for his red velvet cake. I think I could have eaten the entire thing! Mmmmm.

But sadly ... what started out as a delightful weekend ended in fits of crying, bad mood, and gnashing of the teeth -- on my behalf -- because my beautiful, wonderful, well behaved son (WAKE UP MOMMA!) had a painful bout with his teeth on Sunday. The day I set aside to capture that precious, perfect picture (HA!) for our Christmas cards. The only things that seemed to pacify him were a strawberry and cream candy cane that he managed to drool all over his lovely Christmas outfit, and the 32-oz FULL cup of diet soda I had set on the kitchen table, which Hunter, upon standing on his very tippy-toes, discovered he could grab it, and knock it OFF the table ... sending gleeful splashes of diet coke all over mommy's kitchen floor. Weeeeeee! How fun! NOT!

So -- 2 hours and 109 pictures later (yes, that's a true number), I think we may have managed to capture the sweet spirit of Christmas in two shots ... thank you precious Jesus! I can finally order my Christmas cards... if I can decide which one I want. OH the pressure!

So, anyway, if you're anything like me... than you have 1097 pictures that look something like this... (and ... just in case you don't believe that stuff like this really happens ... hop on over to BooMama's and check out HER story!)

I'm thinking my cards should read something like this...

"Whew! Finally! Merry Christmas, y'all! I think ..."

Friday, December 15, 2006

Tis the Season for Christmas Decorations!

Well, as you already know ... I have a 14 month old... so, almost all of my Christmas decorations have stayed in the boxes they were packed away in last year. That's been really tough for me, because I love Christmas so much. In fact, I'm more of a child at Christmas than a child is ... Shannon, was that proper grammar?

Anyway, I've compiled a slide show of some shots of different decorations I have managed to put up in my home -- like on the wall, or mantle, or on a counter or table or dresser ... far, FAR away from inquisitive 14-month-old fingers.

Unfortunately, I had to bring our lighted snowman in from outside because he kept getting blown over, and since I paid so much money for it, I REFUSE to let it go back into storage. Sadly, my son is captured by it, and has managed to decapitate it numerous times. Hey -- who says a snowman has to have a good head on his shoulders to be adorable?

Anyway, you'll see some shots of the outside of my home, some shots of my cookie Christmas tree, some closeups of the ornaments, a shot of Joseph and Mary holding baby Jesus (my "good nativity" is packed away, but you'll see a shot of our wooden block nativity on Christmas day), and a gorgeous Wedgewood ornament that a lovely, beautiful, sweet and kind Georgian-southern friend of mine gave me. It matches my dining room PERFECTLY, so I hung it from my chandelier. Again -- out of the reach of 14-month-old fingers.

I hope you enjoy your tour of my home, and hey ... don't forget to hop on over to BooMama's and check out another gazillion bloggers participating! Thanks, BooMama for wrangling this together! Great job, as usual!

p.s.: Please ignore the crumbs on my carpet, dust on my, well -- everything, and fingerprints all over the place! If you ignore mine, I'll ignore yours! hehehehehe!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

It is finished... And yet ... it's NOT.

Yes, friends ... my Christmas shopping is FINISHED. Now, I can concentrate on wrapping, cleaning, baking, arranging, and picture taking. But even though all the Christmas shopping is finished... I STILL don't have a picture for our Christmas cards, because Hunter has just looked icky each weekend that I had planned to take pictures. So, this weekend, whether he looks good or not, whether he feels better (which he does) or not ... pictures will be taken, cards will be ordered, address labels will be printed, and the finished product will be mailed by next week.

I've been getting awesome, beautiful Christmas cards from my friends around the country, and I'm so enjoying hearing all the updates, and staring at all the gorgeous children. Thank you so much for sharing your Christmas blessings with me, and just so you know ... yours will be in the mail next week!

Now ... for some big, exciting news (for me, at least!) ... we have FINALLY begun our last IVF cycle. Tuesday night, we kicked the eventful procedure off with the first of many huge intra-muscular injections (18 gauge needle -- UGH!) in my upper batookus. Joy! Many of my friends have been asking when we will be starting the next cycle, so ... consider this the big announcement! The actual transfer will be either on the 4th or 9th of January. YAY!

So now begins the many weeks of shots, bloating, and coursing hormones as my body is prepared for incubator status and new home to one, two, or more babies! All prayers would be most appreciated!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Works For Me Wednesday -- Earache Relief

Monday afternoon, Hunter was diagnosed with an ear infection and pink eye in BOTH eyes. Joy.
Monday night, at precisely 10:28 p.m., we were awakened by a screaming, crazy-in-pain child. He proceeded to scream, buck his body, slap his head and cry for about another 2 hours. I had one foot out the door, ready to take him to the hospital, but his Pediatrician called back and said there was nothing we or the hospital could or would do for the pain (other than Tylenol and Motrin). That's just great!

Earlier in the day at Hunter's doctor appointment, the Nurse Practitioner mentioned some Homeopathic drops we could try. We couldn't find them when we got his prescription filled, but at this point, I was willing to try ANYTHING. So, I sent my wonderful husband out on a mission. Go to all the 24-hour pharmacies, and DON'T COME BACK WITHOUT THE DROPS.

He found them at the first pharmacy he went to. And let me tell you... my son stopped crying within 20 minutes of getting the drops in his ears. These drops were a LIFE SAVER. Are you wondering what they are?

They are Similasan Earache Relief Ear Drops. This product may be used alone or in conjunction with other OTC pain relievers or prescription antibiotics. Also, it may work for some, and not for others, but it sure was worth the try!

I'm pretty sure that most moms know about this product by now, but for all you new moms out there who haven't had to deal with an ear infection yet, you may want to place this in your medicine cabinet ... just in case.

Monday, December 11, 2006

What A Weekend!

Our weekend was so nice. We had quality time together, talked, laughed, ate junk food, held hands, went shopping, and had a hot, wild, passionate, steamy ... breakfast at Bob Evans on Sunday. [what did you THINK I was going to say? It's a Family Friendly Blog, for heaven's sake!]

We had some problems with our hotel and had to leave (only 5 hours after check-in). They were having mechanical problems that vibrated the entire room. The plumbing in our room was vibrating, and the little lever you pull to turn the shower on was jumping up and down. Y'all ... it was LOUD. So, my husband called the front desk to find out what was going on. They said it was the "bus" parked out front. Uhhh ... yeah. No. I don't think so. My husband's a carpenter. I work for an engineering and construction firm. We know stuff. And I can assure you, it was NOT the bus parked out front making the noise. And, it took them forever to find the maintenance guy, who was in Ohio, and couldn't get to our hotel to fix the problem for an hour and a half.

So they offered to move us to another side of the hotel. Fine. My husband went to check it out first before we moved, and found that while you could still hear the noise, it was much quieter. EXCEPT FOR THE DYING BATTERY IN THE FIRE ALARM! It was beeping every minute! Is there some law about that? Any way, he went back down and said he wanted his money back and wanted to check out. They only gave us HALF of our money, because we didn't change our mind within the ... get this ... first fifteen minutes of our stay. How do you like that? Oh, there's more, but I won't bore you with all the details. Suffice it to say that I will be hound-dogging them to give me back the rest of my money.

And that leads me to my dutiful announcement for anyone who may be considering a stay in Wheeling, WV (not sure why you would ... but ...) for the love of everything that is good and holy ... Never, and I do mean NEVER stay at the WHEELING INN in Wheeling, WV -- NEVER, NEVER, NEVER. EVER. Poor customer service. Lack of respect. Owner lies to customer. The customer is NEVER right at the Wheeling Inn, which is, ironically, a customer-service industry. Huh. Go figure. End of discussion.

But on the other hand, the concert was FABULOUS! John Berry performed new songs, old songs, and Christmas songs. He is a country singer who, by the way, is saved by grace! The first half of the concert, he shared old and new country songs (man ... can he sing!). Then, they had a 10 minute intermission, and came back to share their Christmas songs, and y'all ... they read scripture! Yes they did!!! AND ... part of the way through, he stopped to share how much his faith meant to him, and ... are you sitting down? He DELIVERED THE MESSAGE OF SALVATION. Oh, YES HE DID! In a SECULAR concert!

I was so impressed with him. He is what is known as a secular Christian artist. He currently lives around Athens, GA, and he has a gorgeous voice. His wife tours with him and sings backup, and she also has a beautiful voice! If you ever have the chance to get one of his CDs, might I suggest you purchase his Christmas Live cd that has My Heart Is Bethlehem and O Holy Night on it. No one sings O Holy Night like John Berry! WOWZA! Standing ovation! Although, I promise, you won't be disappointed with any of his cds. (Here are some of his popular songs: She's Taken A Shine; Your Love Amazes Me; Kiss Me In The Car) You can go to Amazon (here) and scroll half way down to hear a sample of some of his Christmas music... make sure you listen to My Heart is Bethlehem and go here (scroll half way down) to hear O Holy Night.

Finally -- I have been so far out of the loop with regards to all of you ... my friends ... my pals ... my readers ... my fellow bloggahs ... I need to take a bit of time to "right" that, and pour over your blogs ... so ... since I have a small break in my work load at work, I'm going to spend some time catching up with you today!

Have a glorious day!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

So ... Where have I been? Well, if you MUST know...

Okay --- here's the deal --- I haven't been hiding from all of my dear and loving blog friends. Actually, Hunter has had a bronchial pneumosomethingorother viral infection since 2:00 a.m., Sunday morning, when he woke up with a fever of 104.7 and nearly scared his mommy and daddy to death! Not a good thing! Thank the good Lord for luke warm baths, cold nights, and a doctor who really DOES call you back in the middle of the night -- no mater what the time (even though she may sound somewhat incoherent).

So, I've been busy nursing a sick, cranky, whinny, irritable baby, and today is my first day back to work...Glory to God! So basically, I am THANKFUL to be back at work. I can get a wee bit of blogging done. I can socialize with adults. I can use my brain. And ... (this is a bonus) ... I don't have to wipe buggers out of anyone's nose but mine.

But sadly, all this worky-kind-of-fun must come to an end as the day closes, and I'm now off to go wipe buggers, pat backs, medicate coughs that sound like a barking seal, fill humidifiers, rub vicks vaporub, and generally love a pitiful child. He is doing much, MUCH better now, and while mommy is currently fighting this virus, daddy is strong and healthy (bugger!).

Lesson learned: never share food or drink with a sick baby, no matter HOW LOUD he cries or pitches an all-out temper tantrum.

Don't say I didn't warn you.

Hoping to get back to normal blogging tomorrow. Well, lookie there -- tomorrow is Friday, and I don't blog on the weekends! AND ... we're going away for an ADULT weekend ... wooo hooo ... to a concert in Wheeling WV -- yehaw! Can't wait!

Say it with me: "Adult time. Adult time. Adult time."

Friday, December 01, 2006

Devotional help...

I am looking for a really good new devotional for myself -- any ideas? (I'm also looking for a swift kick in the butt to get me going and to keep me on track with my daily devotions ... but I'm pretty sure I can handle that on my own.)

So, let's recap:

Solicited advice: Devotional for me (a mom, wife, and busy woman)
Unsolicited request: Kick in the butt

That about covers it. Now -- I've got to get back to the very glamorous and exciting assignment I've recently been given -- data entry of 500 pages -- THAT'S A REAM OF PAPER,people!! I'll be typing for an eternity.

If you need me, I'll be at the key board.

Ehem ... cough, sputter ... anyone have a pair of reading glasses I can borrow?