Archive for August, 2009

Today I Feel Old

Once upon a time, there was this cute little girl that lived in the great state of Texas. She was the youngest of three kids. Everyone loved her. She had the cutest, most squeezable cheeks. She was shy and charming. But the most endearing quality she possessed were these:



(Sorry it’s blurry and shiny. I took a picture of a picture because I’m too lazy to figure out how to work the scanner.)

Look at those curls. Aren’t they precious? Everyone loved these curls. They’d hold them and play with them and every time someone new would meet this little girl, they’d greet her with an “awwwww.” She was darling. If things had continued on along this path, it’s very possible that she could have ruled the world with the power of her curls.


So this little girl went along her merry way, not really knowing how intoxicating her curls were. All she knew was that she’d hear people talking about her. “Oh my goodness. Look how adorable. Those curls are so precious, I could just cut them off and put them in my pocket!” And again. “Oh sweet girl! I wish I could cut those curls off and save them forever.”

I have to believe that these comments influenced this little girl to do the most awful thing she’d ever done in her life.

One day while watching something highly educational like Barney or a recording of her mother’s surgery, she settled into a big brown La-Z-Boy and did the unthinkable. She took a pair of child’s scissors, cut her beautiful curls, and stuffed them into a tin can that was intended to be a pencil cup. Maybe she was tired of being seen for her curls. Maybe she wanted to cut them off and save them like she’d heard so many people talk about. Maybe she just thought it would be fun.

Whatever the case, it proved to be a bad bad move. Those soft ringlets never grew back. And, what’s worse, she angered her hair so much that for the rest of her life, it had a mind of it’s own and did very spastic things.


That little girl in Texas was my sister. She’s now a big girl in Missouri. Today she turns 21. Twenty one. Today my sister is old. (By the way, that photo was not taken today. She was drinking that beer illegally. Just thought yall should know so you don’t think I’m off on another fancy cruise.)

Some of you have the pleasure of knowing my sister. She’s the best. The best of the best. She’s funny and friendly and smart and beautiful and insanely creative and talented. And she doesn’t have a love affair with the word “and” like her sister.

Look what she did.

lindsay portrait

See, I told you she was talented!

Happy birthday Lindsay! I wish I could spend time with you today but you are far away in a weird state. (I know what it’s like to have to be away from everyone on your birthday. It’s not fun.) Just know that we’re all thinking about you today and we love you so much. And we all feel old. I probably ought to go check on mom this afternoon… I’m not sure how well she’s responding to her baby girl being 21.

Since it’s Monday, I wouldn’t recommend a crazy night. Professors don’t care if it’s your birthday. So go buy a bottle of wine or champagne and have a nice dinner with your girls.

To everyone else. Wish my sister a Happy Birthday. Tell her how wonderful and beautiful she is.


I love you, Sister!

August 31, 2009 at 9:16 am 24 comments

Seven Quick Takes (vol.4)


No intro today. I’m too tired for an intro. (You can click the picture above if you want to see more Seven Quick Takes or add your own to the list.) Two nights in a row of very, very little sleep. I have this issue where I can’t sleep if I’m busy, stressed, or have something on my mind. It’s a terrible problem to have. We have an event tonight at church and I’m in charge of games and prizes. Turns out, that’s a lot of work. I love it and enjoy it but it’s hard to work full-time and then pull together the pieces at the end. Thankfully my mom doesn’t work and she’s able to work on my to-do list during the day.

Last night we went up to the church to help set up a bit. Then we went back to her house to decorate cupcakes and brownies for the Cake Walk. They turned out amazing!! Look how cute these little cupcake boxes are!


Yeah, I know. Precious. I was on Box Constructing Duty while my mom was on Cupcake Decorating Duty.


My mom said that under no circumstance did she want to be in any picture that may end up on my blog because she hadn’t done her hair or makeup and she’d been in the kitchen all day. But I’m sneaky. I caught her in the back ground of the brownie lollipops.


Let’s just take a second to talk about how cute my mom is in her trendy pink glasses. And how cute those brownies are!

I saw a woman in traffic yesterday who had those really fluffy, thick seat covers. We are in Houston, lady. Unless you are using that as a sponge to soak up the sweat on your thighs, I don’t see the point.

A few months ago I had full intentions of throwing a Pampered Chef party. A friend of my sister-in-law sells. I know we’re all pretty poor but you can’t be a successful wife without their pizza stone! And maybe their garlic press. And mandoline. So I was going to host a party so that we could get the goods and be well on our way to impressing our husbands. But I scheduled the date in the summer and one by one, my guests emailed me saying they couldn’t come. Then something came up and I couldn’t come. I’m going to give it another shot.

So to any of my Houston girls that read this, let me know if you’re interested. Many of you will be getting Evites regardless. I’d post this on facebook but my status is too occupied with the link to my blog. Anyways, if you’ve never been to one, it’s one of those Bucket List things. Right after “Vacation in Hawaii” and “Go to Europe.” It’s that important.

I need your help. I have been asked by a friend to devote a blog post to “ways to cook fish.” But the problem is that I don’t eat fish. I think it tastes like licking the bottom of the ocean. So can you help?

If you read through yesterday’s comments you’ll see one that says this: “Gosh, I love how you tie things together so intricately. It makes me want to give you two words and see if you can write a post that ties the two of them together. You up for the challenge? Haha!”

I think this challenge is intriguing. I usually have no problem making connections between events that happened to me. I’m not sure if I can write about something that I don’t have experience with. However, Samantha, I’m up for it! If any of you want to participate, leave two words in the comments. I’ll randomly select a set of words next week and attempt to write something. I’m sure that what I’ll come up with will be complete crap, but maybe it’ll have a bit of entertainment value in it.

I’m not setting an alarm tomorrow morning. This thrills me.

I just thought you all might want to see another picture from our cooking day last Saturday. It was a long day. For some reason we thought it would be cute to take a picture of me holding pasta. And then Lauren misspelled “tuna”…




August 28, 2009 at 9:28 am 25 comments

An Emotional Journey I Wasn’t Prepared to Take

Yesterday afternoon I got stuck at this awful light by my house. I normally avoid this light but I had a few errands to run and it was the most logical route home. Sometimes logic makes no sense because I was that terribly unlucky car that was the first one stuck behind a train. I could see it coming from (what seemed like) miles away. I thought I’d get through the light in time. Nope. The bars lowered and the lights started flashing. And then we waited and waited and waited. The train was still so far. Now listen, I’m all about safety but this seemed a bit excessive. I wish I had clocked the lag time but I was too busy screaming at the god’s in charge of the train crossing station about how they jumped the gun by about an hour on this.

The train crossing gods granted me a bit of peace. I relaxed a tad and anxiously awaited the train. As much as I hate getting stuck behind trains, I love watching them go by. They fascinate me. I like thinking about what might be in those train cars. I like trying to read the graffiti and realizing that nobody would ever let me into their gang because I can’t write in fun fonts. Well that, and my name isn’t cool enough to write all over trains. Maybe if my parents had chosen to name me something tougher like “Bonez” or “Crush.” But, alas, I’m stuck here at my day job with my girly handwriting and my name that used to be unique until the Clinton’s became famous and their daughter popularized the name. Stupid Clintons.

I think we were talking about trains, weren’t we? Yeah so I waited and waited and this train finally comes. I notice that it’s going awfully slow. And it’s only the front car. Whatever that thing is called. The Anti-Caboose. The Ying to the caboose’s Yang. It passes the intersection and, get this, it stops. Just stops. The conductor starts walking down his stairs. I was so annoyed that I was STILL stuck at this light that I didn’t even have time to be upset that the conductor wasn’t wearing blue pinstripe overalls and a cool hat. He walked around the front of the train to the other side. Now let me just throw this out there- Why is it safe enough for him to get out and walk IN FRONT of the train but it’s not safe enough for us to drive BEHIND a parked train?

He finally walks back around and gets in the train and starts going again. The train crossing gods deem it a safe area and raise the bars. We’re free.

I tell you this story so that we can have a lesson in emotion. If you were in my head (and praise the Lord that you aren’t, I’m sure that’s not a fun place to be) you would know that this was the emotional journey I went on:

-Oh a train way off in the distance! Exciting!
-Wait, what? It’s too soon. It’s still so far. Don’t force me to stop yet!
-Seriously. This is ridiculous.
-Trains are dumb. Will it just get here already?
-Ohhhh that’s kind of cool. I guess you are never too old to appreciate the wonders of trains!
-Okay but this is overkill.
-We’re done! GO AWAY.

Did you follow? Those were my emotions in chronological order.

Now, if any of you have any connections with Hobby Lobby, I would greatly appreciate it if you’d forward this post to them. (Or click on the words “Hobby Lobby” over and over and over so that they’ll come here and read this.) Tell them to take the above emotional journey and let them know that this is EXACTLY HOW I FEEL ABOUT THEIR CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS.

-Oh Christmas is way off in the distance! Exciting!
-Wait, what? It’s too soon. It’s still so far. Don’t force me to see decorations yet!
-Seriously. This is ridiculous.
-Christmas is dumb. Will it just get here already?
-Ohhhh that’s kind of cool. I guess you are never too old to appreciate the wonders of Christmas!
-Okay but this is overkill.
-We’re done! GO AWAY.

Hobby Lobby, I love you. I do. I think you are an excellent store. You have everything a girl could ever want besides shoes (maybe you should look into that). But closing your doors on Sundays so that “your workers have time to worship and be with their families” is TOTALLY negated by the fact that you are commercializing Christmas more than any other store on the planet. It’s disgusting. It’s painfully ironic. It’s annoying and frustrating and you are taking away the holiday anticipating warm fuzzies I normally like to get in the beginning on November. Hobby Lobby, you’ve done pissed me off.

I’ll step off my soapbox now. But I’m keeping it right here next to me incase I need to get back up there.

August 27, 2009 at 9:24 am 18 comments

Dating for Life

I very rarely get junk email. I don’t know if the marketers know I’m cheap and the triple x website owners know I’m prude but they all stay away from me. So it’s a rare occasion when I sign on to my Hotmail account and see “Junk (1)” on the front page. Every now and then there will be something that isn’t actually junk but somehow got caught by the spam blockers. I thought this might be the case a couple days ago when I signed in. But no. Junk. An email from eHarmony encouraging me to view my matches for free. Um, wrong answer.

Now let me go ahead and get this out there. I don’t think there is anything wrong with eHarmony. I don’t judge anyone for joining. I actually think it could be a really great way to meet people, specifically if you’re new to an area. However, if I were single, I’m not sure that I would join because I am way too afraid of rejection to throw myself out there like that on the internet. (Coming from a blogger, that sentence is quite ironic.) Who knows though, it’s moot. The point is this- why would they send it to me? I’m pretty certain they don’t want me to join.

My message to eHarmony is this: You’re barking up the wrong tree. I’m not interested in your match making. I’ve got a man!

Stephen and I have often wondered aloud if eHarmony would hook us up if we joined. Do they think we are good for each other? Do they think we should meet and date and connect on all 29 levels?

I read a post yesterday from a blog I read. It was about her and her husband going out to dinner and seeing a middle aged couple at the next table. She said that they were both reading their own books and not speaking to each other. Unless this was some game of theirs, this is sad. Occasionally Stephen and I will go out to dinner and not say much. Either because we are tired, we are stuffing our faces with chips and green sauce, or we are both using all of our concentration and energy on eavesdropping on the table next to us so we could talk about it the second we get in the car. But we both have so many thoughts and opinions that we can’t keep quiet for an entire dinner. Most of the time, we’ve been talking so much that Stephen hasn’t even read the menu by the time the waiter comes to take our order.

Reading that post reminded me of some truly invaluable advice that we got from the pastor at our old church in Austin. The advice was to the men.

“Men. You did not date your wife so that you could marry her. You married your wife so that you could date her.”

Reread that and think about it. Stephen often sums it up as, “Marry to date. Not date to marry.” I very rarely come to you with a lesson or a message. We all have our opinions on many subjects and we are all entitled to them. But this! This is important. This is necessary. This will ruin your marriage if you ignore it.

Men, pursue your woman. Flirt with her, flatter her, love on her, consider her feelings the way you did when you were trying so desperately to get her to fall for you. Women, look good for your man. Compliment him, hug on him, take an interest in his interests the way you did when you wanted him to think you were the perfect girl. This. is. important.

I love my husband. I knew I loved him pretty quickly after meeting him. I actually told him I wanted to be “just friends” for at least a month before dating because I knew there was something special about him. I knew that once we were together, we wouldn’t ever break up. I knew he was the one guy that would come into my life and be there forever. And I wasn’t quite sure I was ready for that. I’m not sure why I thought that I would be ready for it in a month, but whatever. We say stupid things when boys are involved.

So anyways, I told him that I wanted to be friends for a while. He laughed. He said okay but we both knew he was just humoring me. We continued to see each other almost daily. He came to my apartment to watch the Astros in the playoffs. He didn’t care much about baseball. If you know me, you should know that should be a deal breaker. But it wasn’t. You want to know why? Because he made an effort. He watched the games anyways and he took an interest in what was important to me. Never, ever underestimate the power in that. And vice versa. There is almost nothing in this world that I hate more than dancing. But he invited me to Mexican themed semi-formal where I feared there would be people I don’t know and lots of dancing. I went. And later that night, as we walked through the streets of downtown Austin, I told him I was ready to make our relationship official.

If Stephen hadn’t pursued me and insisted on seeing me, that may not have happened. (I have no doubt that we’d be together now, God clearly made us for each other… but it may not have been as quick.) Fun things happen when you date. Romantic things happen. You fall in love and get butterflies and feel special.

So my question is this: Why would this end when you’re married? Yes, I know things come up. We’re tired, busy, stressed, poor, bored, annoyed, etc, etc. I get that. I say those things too. And by no means am I tell you that Stephen and I have this dating thing down. We don’t. But we both know how important it is and we both try! And besides, why wouldn’t I want to date him? Just look at him!

Stephen Cruise

August 26, 2009 at 9:05 am 26 comments

Bless My Heart

I hope you enjoyed your little break from me yesterday. It was nerve-racking to post on someone else’s blog but we came out of it alive. I think there may have been a little confusion. Apparently links on my blog appear to be the same color text as the normal text. So many of you went to my Blogroll to find out how to get to Lauren’s blog. My mom and Stephen both asked me how to get there. So incase you didn’t see the link yesterday, CLICK HERE to read my guest post on Lauren’s blog. For those of you who were able to make it over there, thanks! You sure know how to make a girl feel special! 

Enough about me, let’s move on to the point of today’s post.

Here in Texas, we have our own language. I’m not talking about Texican, I’m just talking about plain ‘ol Texan. Words like yall, fixin’, and dadgumit. To us, this sort of talk is normal. We may say thinks like “he didn’t even have a pot to piss in” and we all know what this means.

I learned a new saying a couple months ago. I was in a little city in south Texas called Alice. It’s a stone’s throw from the border and it’s common to go to the local Wally Martinez (that’s Walmart in other parts of the country) and see men in Wranglers and boots. I was there visiting my family back in May when the sky opened up and it started pouring. My Papa let out a big sigh and said, “It sure is nice to get this rain. The other day we had a real turd floater.” My jaw dropped and my Papa got a little chuckle out of his city-girl granddaughter who hasn’t ever heard of the term “turd floater.” I’ve learned my lesson. It’s now a part of my vocabulary and I’ve committed my life to teaching the masses this great phrase. I’m sure you can use your context clues and figure it out. A turd floater is a really heavy rain… so heavy that all the cow and horse poop floats. Consider yourself educated.

We have this other saying here in Texas. “Bless his heart.” It is an unspoken agreement that all Texans have come to that you can say anything about anyone as long as you preface it with “bless his heart.” For example: You see a woman wearing a shirt that’s a bit too tight and a skirt that’s a tad too short. The old ladies may say, “Now bless her heart, but she sure is dressed like a tramp.” And it’s okay. Or you go to dinner at some friends house and the food is burnt. You may say, “Oh bless her heart, but she can’t cook for the life of her.” And, once again, it’s okay.

With that said… my dear husband, bless his heart, tells some bad jokes.

I love him more than life itself, but sometimes he’ll say something and he’ll immediately have to explain himself. I always tell him that it’s not a funny joke if he has to explain it. But he doesn’t believe me because while I’m standing there staring, he’s laughing his heart out.

Last week I had to go to Hobby Lobby on the way home from work so I dragged him with me. We came in and headed over to the section that I thought was the baking section. We ended up in the wedding section. I must’ve remember seeing cakes there or something. Once I go there I said, “Oops. Wrong spot. Let’s go the other way.” Stephen turns to me with a smile and asks, “Why are we in this aisle? Are you trying to reminisce about a time when you were really important?” He laughed and laughed. I didn’t think it was funny.

Most days, Stephen and I carpool to work. I usually call him as I’m pulling onto his street and he comes out to meet me. Yesterday I went into his office so that he could finish up some work and I could use the restroom. I was sitting at his coworker’s desk waiting. When he was finally done, he stood up to gather his stuff. He had a huge grin on his face. “What?” He grinned bigger, “Oh nothing.” I wasn’t convinced. “What are you smiling about??” He chuckled a bit, “Nothing really. It’s just a really bad joke.”

As much as I hate being left out of a joke, I’m certain that this was probably a good joke to be left out of. I’m quite thankful of his developing ability to hold his tongue when he has a dull joke to tell. I only wish he’d learn to hold his tongue when his jokes are only funny to him. Or at least maybe he could learn to bless my heart before he tells jokes about me!

August 25, 2009 at 9:10 am 18 comments

Stage Fright.

Chelsea and I decided Saturday, while we were up to our elbows in chopped onions and spaghetti noodles, that this whole “Blog Swap” thing was going to be rather nerve wracking. I mean, here’s how I look at it. Some of you know me. Some of you don’t. Usually, when I am writing on my own blog, my writing decisions affect only me. (Maybe my husband too.) But here I am, hammering out a blog post on someone else’s blog, and there are all these people reading, with all these expectations. SO MUCH PRESSURE.

To quote a conversation from yesterday:
Me: “I made Sangria. Is it too early to start drinking?” (It was 11am.)
Chelsea: “No! Never!”

So maybe I’ll just have a glass of leftover Sangria and proceed.

I’m not going to bother talking about myself. I do enough of that on my blog. But I do want to tell you that 1) Chelsea is a genius, 2) I now have enough food to last until Christmas, and 3) it’s great to spend the day with a fellow blogger.

Let’s begin.

Chelsea arrived at my house around 10:30. I had previously (like, the night before) had full intentions of getting up early(ish), getting in a work-out, showering, and being 100% prepared for her arrival. But sometime between the time I woke up and 10am, I ended up doing nothing of the sort and instead stuffed mine and my husband’s faces with cinnamon rolls and watched “Iron Chef” on the Food Network (which, come to think of it, was probably a good choice of program considering the activities lined up for that day). When she got here, I was brushing my teeth and apologizing for my dirty kitchen floor. As you well know, Chelsea lives in a house she calls “Hurst Castle.” That’s a little intimidating, given the fact that my whole house is probably the same size as her living room, from the way it sounds. Oh well, my kitchen is painted the cheeriest shade of apple green, that should cover a multitude of smallness, right?! Anyway, we rolled up our sleeves, donned our super cute aprons, strands of pearls (provided by me, so we could be “just like Julia!”) and started cooking. We cooked and cooked and cooked and cooked. 5 recipes, doubled, ended up making 26-1/2 8×8 foil panfuls of food. That’s 13 for me, and since I am a nice person (and Chelsea beat me at arm wrestling), 13.5 for her.

Let me just say: this was Chelsea’s idea, and it was a GREAT ONE. Now, whenever I get done with a hard day of work and have a hungry husband on my hands, all I have to do is pop one of these gleaming silver packages in the oven and… VOILA! Instant dinner! It’s like having a maid. (Probably not, but since I’ve never had a maid, I can pretend.)

I think the best part of the day (besides the Sangria, which I can’t take credit for either – credit goes to Emeril – click herefor the recipe) was spending all day with a fellow blogger. Our conversation never veered from these 3 topics: husbands, food, and blogs. The only thing I can liken it to is dudes (or girls, I ain’t no sexist) talking about sports. They can talk about it for hours, and if you’re not into all that, it can sound kind of boring (not to mention confusing). The same goes for blog-talk. My husband was in the other room periodically and I’m sure he was thinking, “Who is Bon Bon Rose? What is SITS? WHAT ARE THEY TALKING ABOUT?” But we couldn’t stop talking about blogging. When she left that evening, after a second batch of Sangria, some really bad television, a delicious pizza that was NOT homemade, and The Mexican on DVD, I had a big grin on my face. Michael asked me, “Did y’all have fun? Do you think you’re becoming better friends?” To which I answered, “I think we’re already pretty good friends.” True, maybe this was only the 4th time we’ve seen each other in real life, but when you have such a huge part of your lives in common, and when you can email and comment and read and write and blog and facebook each other all the live-long day, what’s to stop you from being friends? Really, really good friends? BF4EV, even?

Suddenly, I’m not scared to post on Roots & Rings. We’re all family, right? Or at the very least, blog friends?

For kicks, here are the recipes I brought to the table. I doubled them both.

Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas (I got this recipe from my mom)


3-5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 medium onion
1 can green chilis (or 3/4 c. salsa)
3 T. butter
12 corn tortillas
1 lb. grated Cheddar/Jack cheese
1/2 saved chicken broth


Boil chicken, cool, and shred (save broth). Preheat oven to 325. Saute onion in butter. Combine onion, soups, broth, chilis, and stir. Cut 6 tortillas into small pieces and cover bottom of 9×13 pan. Spread 1/2 chicken over tortillas, then 1/2 sauce and 1/2 cheese. Repeat layers. Bake 30-40 minutes until bubbly and brown.

I would just like to say that when you double 3 tablespoons of butter, you end up with almost an entire stick of butter. Chelsea never batted an eyelash when I dumped that much butter into my cast iron skillet. It was then I knew we’d be friends forever.

Next recipe.

Mediterranean Tuna Casserole (I ripped this recipe out of some food magazine – I am not trying to say I made it up. There now, no one can sue me.)


1/3 c. olive oil, plus more for baking dishes
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 lb. wide egg noodles
2 red bell peppers (ribs and seeds removed), thinly sliced lengthwise
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
5 cups whole milk
4 cans (6 oz. each) tuna in olive oil, drained
1 can (14 oz.) artichoke hearts, drained and thickly sliced
5 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 c. finely grated Parmesan


Step 1: Preheat oven to 400. Lightly oil 2 8″ square (or other shallow 2 quart) baking dishes. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook noodles until 2 minutes short of al dente according to package instructions; drain, and return to pot.

Step 2: Meanwhile, in a 5-quart Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium. Add bell peppers; season with salt and pepper. Cook until crisp-tender, 4-6 minutes. Add flour, and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Gradually add milk, stirring until smooth. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture comes to a simmer.

Step 3: Remove from heat, add mixture to noodles in pot, along with tuna, artichoke hearts, and scallions. Season with salt and pepper, and toss. Divide between prepared baking dishes, and sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake until golden and bubbling, about 20 minutes.

So there you have it. Chelsea should be posting her recipes over on my blog; if she doesn’t, let’s all agree to annoy her until she does.

And the moral of the story is: go grab a friend, a bunch of ingredients, and a kitchen. Cook for a few hours, drink some wine, and laugh a lot. Then guest blog for each other.

And get over your blog fright.



August 24, 2009 at 8:58 am 23 comments

Seven Quick Takes (vol.3)

I am really loving these random Fridays! I feel like I have so many things to tell you but can’t possible devote an entire post to each of them. So here again, for your reading displeasure…


Remember when I told you what bands I can’t stand? (Coldplay, Nickleback, Shania Twain, and Beyonce 90% of the time) Well the other day, Stephen wanted to test out the CD and DVD player on my new laptop. He found his CD case and started flipping through. He ran into the kitchen laughing and showed me that he has a Coldplay, Nickleback, and Shania Twain CD. Not kidding.

I really wish I had about 4 free days in a row (or some spare cash) so I could paint my living room. It’s covered in wood paneling and I’m thinking there will be some time consuming prep work. I’d really love to hire someone so that the wall could be retextured. But I fear that they’ll charge me an amount that will interfere with my need to eat.

A couple of my girlfriends and I are planning a bridal shower for one of our friends. Do you have any fun game ideas? They are going to be playing the quiz/what-do-you-know-about-your-fiance game at another shower. Any unique ideas?

Sara Lee Everything Bagels are fabulous. Toasted and slathered with cream cheese. Seriously. Awesome.

Stephen has plans this evening which means I have the house to myself. I’m going to do my best to get caught up on laundry and somehow stimulate my creativity enough to attempt writing again. I guess I should stop and restock my M&M supply. Either that, or I’m going to go to my parent’s house and watch last week’s Design Star on their DVR. We’ll see how the work day goes today and what sort of mood I’m in!

It’s quite possible that Meryl Streep is the greatest actress that has ever walked the planet. If you disagree, I’d love to hear who you think is better. You’ll be wrong, but I’ll gladly listen to your reasoning. And if anyone mentions Angelina Jolie, you will be banned from this blog. Until forever.

When I was a little girl, the highlight of my summer was to ride my bike to Eckerd Drug and spend every penny of my allowance (minus 10% for tithing and 10% for savings, yeah yeah) on random crap. My favorites were always nail polish (which I then took home and poured little bits of random colors into an empty nail polish bottle to create my very own color), Laffy Taffy, fake nails, candy that oozed from tubes, and candy necklaces. I also owned 90% of the collection of imitation perfumes. You know those tiny aerosol cans that say “If You Like Elizabeth Arden’s Sunflowers, You’ll Love This!”

Kind of a round-about way of getting to the point. That’s what I’m all about. I am no friend of brevity.

I told you that there was a surprise in store for Monday. Tomorrow my Blog Friend 4 Ever and I are spending the entire day cooking and freezing meals. Monday we will guest post on each other’s blogs. Surprise! If You Like Chelsea, You’ll Love Lauren. This is, of course, not to imply that she is some sort of cheap knock off that is bad for the environment. It’s to say that you may think you like me, but that’s only because you haven’t experienced her. You’ll love her.

I hope you enjoy whatever she has to offer. You can head on over to her blog to read whatever I have to offer. Is it inappropriate to ask someone to guest blog for my guest blog post? Yeah probably. It hurts my brain to force creativity…
Have a great weekend!

August 21, 2009 at 9:21 am 18 comments

Do You Have Any Thoughts or Feelings?

My friend Kelly sucks at making decisions. I say this in the most endearing way. I love her to death, but she couldn’t make a decision if her life depended on it. I may or may not mean that in a literal way. I don’t think she’s ever been in a situation where her life depended on her making a decision. But I imagine that if a masked man came up to her in the street and told her that he wanted to know her absolute favorite restaurant, or he’d kill her… she may prefer a quick death over the stressful deliberation of coming up with an answer. She knows this about herself. She’ll say, “Oh no. Please don’t ask me. I can’t decide! Oh please no!” It causes her some emotional turmoil. So she either avoids the issue altogether or she asks someone to decide for her. We all do this to some degree.

We consult people who we think would know better, whether it be your mom, your spouse, your best friend, or Cosmo. My friends Jim and Sarah needed to figure out why their washing machine stopped working. They consulted Roots & Rings and got their answer! Last night I needed to cook a very large amount of chicken breasts. I’ve poached chicken many times before, but never in this quantity. I wasn’t quite sure how it would work. I consulted Google. Google came to my rescue.

Lyndsey always says that she hates it when men don’t have thoughts and feelings. You don’t have to have a thought or feeling about everything, but you must have them about something. As a woman, there is nothing more frustrating than talking to a man and his only reply being “Oh.” But since the majority of you are women, I know you have thoughts and feelings. Look at this picture.

 CG Girls

See that tall girl? The one with the ponytail and the terrible flyaways and the shiny face and demon eyes? Yeah, that’s me. I had eaten a burger, chips, had a beer, and played a couple hours of Catch Phrase. That takes a toll on a girl!

Lay off.

Let me introduce you to the others. Go all the way to the right. See the teeny tiny beautiful girl in the gray? That’s Christine. Next is Sarah. She’s the one that was visiting from Germany. She apparently has something she needs to tell me. I think it’s that they decided that they don’t want to buy property in San Antonio since we don’t live there. And let’s face it, life without the Hursts is no life at all. So she wants to tell me that she and her husband have made an offer on a house in our neighborhood. Fantastic news Sarah! Okay, next is me. Then Veronica. Look how cute that shirt is!

Look at Veronica’s hair. Ignore that little piece going across her forehead. That’s not meant to be there. Thank you to the men taking the photo for telling her about it… Come on guys! But look at the rest of her hair. Cute huh? Should I do that? And yes, I know Christine’s hair is super cute too, but I’m not doing that. Her bangs are way too complicated for someone who likes to sleep in. They look amazing on her but she’s not lazy. And Sarah and I have the same ponytailed hair. Only hers is much better because she doesn’t look like she’s just been electrocuted.  

I’m getting tired of my plain ponytail. But I don’t know what to do. I’m thinking I want some side swoopy bangs. But do I keep my hair long? Or do I cut it?

I’m a bit nervous when it comes to hair. I used to be of the mentality that “Oh! It grows back!” but then I had a traumatic experience. I grew up going to the same woman. When I was a little girl, I’d go with my mom to the salon. I’d get a trim and then as my mom was getting her hair cut, I’d sweep the floors. I continued going to this woman throughout my life. Even when I was off at college, I’d wait until I was coming home to get my hair cut. But then my world came crashing down. I went in for a trim. I had semi-long hair with a few long layers. Just a trim. Maybe two or three inches please. I came out with bangs. Disgusting bangs that a 5 year old would do to herself while she was going through a curious stage. It was horrible. Awful. Disgusting. I cried. And I never went back to that woman again. That was about 4 years ago. I haven’t found a new person since.

So that’s why I’m coming to you for help. I can’t just go in to my lady and say “You know my hair. You know my style. I trust you.” like I used to. Because, quite honestly, I don’t trust anyone anymore. Well that’s not entirely true. I trust you. So please please please help me. I’m not normally bad at decisions but I just can’t do this by myself.

Share your thoughts and feelings. Puh-lease! And if you live in Houston and have a lady that you SWEAR won’t give me five year old bangs, give me her name. Be careful with your recommendations though because if I come out with something bad, you will be held responsible.

August 20, 2009 at 9:17 am 29 comments

Are You Cooler Than a High Schooler?

My old junior high and high school started school today. It’s weird having a job like this. Summer comes and goes and I don’t notice a single difference around here. I don’t like that very much. I especially hate it during the holidays. While all of the younguns get a week or two of vacation, I work up until noon on Christmas Eve. It’s not right.

It’s this time of the year that I get nostalgic. I wander down the school supplies aisle and dream about pink spirals, sharpened crayons, college-ruled notebook paper, and (when I feel like going way back) Lisa Frank Trapper Keepers. I got new school supplies each year. It was a like a new, fresh start. I loved it.

I wonder what it would be like if I went back to high school. I don’t mean if I rewind and do it again. I mean if I woke up today and instead up putting on my jeans and pink top, I put on khakis and a kelly green polo and headed back to my high school. If I sat it the class with the students, did the same work, listened to the same lessons, kept the same schedule. What would it be like?

I definitely wouldn’t have any friends. I’m sure they’d all get excited at first since I’m well over the legal drinking age. They’d invite me to the cool kids’ parties and ask me to buy them some Boone’s Farm. I wouldn’t, of course, because that’s illegal and the only time I break the law is when I don’t fully stop at stop signs in my neighborhood. And I remember high school. Nothing good happens when Boone’s Farm is involved. So they’d start to realize that I’m not very cool. Then we’d go to class and I’d get annoyed that they were all texting under their desks while we were trying to discuss chapter one of Les Miserables – which, of course, they didn’t read and, of course, I did and took notes and highlighted my book. They’d be texting about how much of a suck up I am even though I have no interest in sucking up, I just have an interest in learning.

They’d complain about their homework and how they have no life and can’t wait until they are grown ups so they don’t have to deal with algebra, tucking in their shirts, and hall passes. And then I’d laugh in their faces because they have NO IDEA what’s in store. They go to a school where the teachers genuinely care about them and care about their lives. They have the opportunity to get involved in anything they want to try. They have vacation. The teachers walk around with trashcans at the end of lunch to collect trash. Their lives are easy. But they have no clue.

So they’ll think I’m lame. And I’ll think they are dramatic and whiny.

I remember one time in college, I went to play Laser Tag with a few friends. I’m not quite sure why we decided to do this. I’m not one to enjoy running around in the dark in a germ infested room that smells like recess. But we did. I had only done laser tag once before, many years before. I don’t really like running around in the dark, shooting at spots on vests. Probably has something to do with only using one eye, not having any depth perception or aim, and my tendency to get headaches from heightened heart rate and anticipation. But as with most things you do in college, it sounded like a good idea at the time.

We suited up in these vests that have been continuously sneezed and sweated on. They filed us all into this room to go over instructions and rules. Everyone there was male and under the age of 15. Besides the 4 of us. Apparently this mob of boys come here often. They don’t need to hear the rules. The dude at the front says, “Now do we need to go over the rules?” All the boys act so cool and say, “No man!” He asks again, “Is there anyone here that hasn’t done this?” I raise my hand. I’m the only one. Even my friends had done this. (Feel free to judge them. I did.) In complete synchronization and with utmost frustration, all the boys let out a huge sigh. They rolled their eyes and groaned.

I can’t say it didn’t hurt. The guy went through the rules. I didn’t pay much attention. I was too busy eavesdropping. Half of the boys were getting excited because I wasn’t on their team so they knew they had an advantage. The other half were royally pissed off that I’ve decided to come to Blazer Tag and ruin their Friday night. I wanted to scream “It’s just a game. Shut your face!” at them but decided that stooping to their level was not the solution. Either that or I’m scared of confrontation and even more scared of being cornered in a dark room and being shot at by my own team.

Anyways, it was scarring. I’m not good with bullying.

So while I may be nostalgic about all the students going back to school today, I’m not jealous. I know what it’s like to have all the younger folk turn on you. I think it would be much worse the second time around. I’m not confident enough to deal with catty girls, even if I do weigh 50 pounds more than them and could surely win in a meeting by the bleachers. And I’m not strong enough to deal with the tough guys who would probably call me “mom” after I tell them to slow down when they pull into the parking lot and pull up their pants because they look like punks.

It would take a lot to make me go back there. Lisa Frank doesn’t even have that much power.

August 19, 2009 at 9:56 am 19 comments

Oh, The Anticipation

Last Friday I told you to come back on Monday so we could all talk about our weekends. Then I went and saw Julie & Julia and couldn’t think straight. So I had to get yesterday’s post out of my system and now I”m back to my normal self. Back to the uninspiring posts about Rookie’s seasonal allergies and my frozen Double Stuf Oreo addiction. I apologize. You probably read yesterday’s post and thought, “Wow. She’s really growing. She’s becoming a much more serious writer. This is fabulous.” Nope. I’m not. It was a fluke.

I almost peed my pants on Saturday night.

See. Back to normal.

Really though. Stephen and I went to Austin on Saturday morning. Our friends were in town from Germany. They had limited time in Austin so we made sure to force them to see us as much as possible. We think that if we force ourselves upon people and do our best to be funny and charming, we’ll convince them all to move to Houston. I don’t know if it’s working or not, but we’re not going to let up any time soon.

Some of our old community group met up for lunch at Trudy’s. We ate food that was too spicy for me and I reapplied my Chaptick about 428,9347 times. We caught up and went through the required questions. How are you? How’s your job? How’s your church? How’s your dog? Are you pregnant? etc. etc. etc. So Saturday night when we all met up again, we could just go straight to where we all left off before we all married each other and moved off to random places.

We had a blast. We sat around and talked for a while. Made the boys go outside and talk about us so that we could stay inside and talk about them. Then we gathered again over burgers and beer. We decided to play Catch Phrase. There is almost nothing more fun than playing Catch Phrase with a group of people who share many of the same inside jokes. It was probably the best ab workout I’ve had since I started ignoring Jillian in my DVD player.

Throughout the evening we pumped ourselves up about our upcoming vacation. Ten of us are heading down to Galveston at an undisclosed date to hang out for the weekend. (It’s only undisclosed to you since you aren’t invited. They all know the date.) The more we talked about it, the more excited we got. Cooking, laying out, sitting on the porch at night, playing games, drinking beer. That’s the life. We are counting down the days and can’t wait until it’s finally here.

I love that group of friends. When we get together we laugh until we cry and almost pee our pants. We have history. We knew each other when we were single. Before we had jobs and houses and responsibilities. We’d hang out until all hours of the night because we could.

I’m in the process of developing a friend like that here. Lauren. Remember her? My blog soul mate? My friend date? We live about an hour and a half apart but we are doing everything in our power to pretend that we are actually neighbors. This Saturday we have great plans to hang out all the live long day. We’ll be cooking! This week, Stephen and I are eating our very last meal from our freezer stock. Time to replenish. I’ll tell you more about it later and we have a surprise in store for you on Monday. If you read her blog, you’ll see what the surprise is. If you don’t, you’ll just have to wait and see!!

I know, the anticipation is killing you. Me too.

What did you do this weekend? Anything exciting that would make me jealous? Anything totally boring that will make me appreciate my weekend even more?

August 18, 2009 at 9:37 am 11 comments

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