Monday, February 28, 2011

Day 5

 A picture of your favorite memory

The majority of my pictures are stuck on one of two computers, so I don't have the picture I would like to post here.  But my favorite memory, or the time I was my most happy, was when I found out I was pregnant for the first time.  That was awesome.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Day 4

A picture of something you want to do before you die.

I went through my list of things I would like to do, try, and see, but really, when it comes down to it there is really only ONE thing I want to do before I die.

Nothing else seems to matter.  If I get to experience new things before I die, that would be great.  If I don't, I haven't lost anything.  But I would hate to die before I had the chance to make a difference.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Day 3

 A picture of the cast from your favorite show

I typically watch a lot of reality TV, but Raising Hope trumps everything on Tuesday nights.  It's hilarious.  And the baby is adorable.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Day 2

 A picture of you and the person you have been closest with the longest


Aside from my parents, the obvious answer is John!  Pretty amazing that someone could put up with me for this long!  He's not the person I've known the longest, but he meets the criteria for closest!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Day 1

A picture of myself with ten facts

Your brain uses less power than your refrigerator light

Heart attacks are more likely to happen on monday

We only dream of what we know.  Our dreams are frequently full of strangers who play out certain parts – did you know that your mind is not inventing those faces – they are real faces of real people that you have seen during your life but may not know or remember?

Animals can rain from the sky

Belly button lint comes from your underwear

A kangaroo can't jump unless its tail is touching the ground.

 A pregnant goldfish is called a twit.

In Toy Story, the carpet designs in Sid's hallway is the same as the carpet designs in The Shining.

Rubber bands last longer when refrigerated.

The characters Bert and Ernie on Sesame Street were named after Bert the cop and Ernie the taxi driver in Frank Capra's "It's a Wonderful Life."

you weren't expecting 10 facts about me were you???  :)

30 Day Photo Challenge

Thought I would give one of these blog starter thingies a try.  I think I'm caught up on blogging (except for the Harding trip!) so I decided to switch up the tone a little bit.  Maybe you'll come across something interesting!  I need to post all the days here or I'll forget!  :)

Day 01 - A picture of yourself with ten facts
Day 02 - A picture of you and the person you have been closest with the longest
Day 03 - A picture of the cast from your favorite show
Day 04 - A picture of something you want to do before you die
Day 05 - A picture of your favorite memory
Day 06 - A picture of a person you'd love to trade places with for a day
Day 07 - A picture of your most treasured item
Day 08 - A picture that makes you laugh
Day 09 - A picture of the person who has gotten you through the most
Day 10 - A picture of the person you do the most crazy things with
Day 11 - A picture of something you hate
Day 12 - A picture of something you love
Day 13 - A picture of your favorite band or artist
Day 14 - A picture of someone you could never imagine your life without
Day 15 - A picture of something you want to do before you die
Day 16 - A picture of someone who inspires you
Day 17 - A picture of something that has made a huge impact on your life recently
Day 18 - A picture of your biggest insecurity
Day 19 - A picture and a letter
Day 20 - A picture of somewhere you'd love to travel
Day 21 - A picture of something you wish you could forget
Day 22 - A picture of something you wish you were better at
Day 23 - A picture of your favorite book
Day 24 - A picture of something you wish you could change
Day 25 - A picture of your day
Day 26 - A picture of something that means a lot to you
Day 27 - A picture of yourself and a family member
Day 28 - A picture of something you're afraid of
Day 29 - A picture that can always make you smile
Day 30 - A picture of someone you miss

Video Fun


Is it just me, or does anybody else see a miniature version of "my 16 year old" here?  I honestly feel like I'm looking at a picture of Matthew in the future.

Little man has always been too big for his britches, but he has been showing me some serious attitude lately!  He has learned when it is I want him in the bed and he fights me on it.  Tonight, he was particularly mad at me because I lotioned him from head to toe and he HATES that.  I let him wander out into the living room all teary-eyed where John was, but I followed behind him.  He stopped in his tracks, turned around and pushed me!  Whooooaaa little buddy!  I could hardly believe what I just experienced!  He's not even 2 yet!!  I told him that was a no-no and that just broke his little heart.  This child!

On the cute side of "attitude", I was walking with him through the grocery store today.  He was hollering and screaming for the fun of it.  I tried desperately to keep him quiet, to no avail.  I finally hugged him close to me and had this conversation:

 Matthew!  I love you......
I yah you.
Thank you.
Ah well-co (You're welcome).

Well then.  I suppose it WAS rather generous of him to love me today!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Picture Time!

I don't know what got into their water, but all 3 boys were desperate to have their pictures taken this particular night.  Enjoy their silliness!

Da Boys

Playing in the pile of leaves at the new house and loving it!

The House!

So....we went to check out the house today and walk around with the inspector.  Here is the house before we get all moved in! 

The front of our 1963 home.

So.  I'm listing these photos and realize I forgot to take a picture of the living room.  It's a nice size.  You'll have to trust me.  Or just come visit and see for yourself.  But here's the hallway going TOWARDS the living room.

Now the bedrooms.  I don't know how we missed it the first go around (yes I do...look!  A shiny kitchen!) but none of the bedrooms have lighting.  Not so happy or crazy about that.  But we will deal.
This is Matthew's room.

And this is Eric's room.  Looks just like Matthew's!  Not really.  They are shaped differently, but you can't tell from the photo.

Master bedroom.  If you can call that.

With a Master Bath to Match!

Annnnnd.....our matching 1963 Master Closet!

Yeaaaahh.  That's a water heater.  Taking up half the space in the closet.  Brilliant design move *insert eye roll*  Ok.  So I'm not crazy about the master bedroom.  But again, not a big deal.  Bigger and more modern would have been great, but this will work just fine.

This is the main bathroom.  Quite possibly the ugliest room in the house.  Any renovators wanna come flip it for us??  :D

I realize it could be MUCH worse.  This is at least workable.  To an extent.  Can we get to the pretty part of my house now? 

Yay!  A Shiny Kitchen!!

Washer/Dryer closet

And..a poorly pasted panorama of the family room.  I was trying to capture its size.  I do love this little room.

And this leads to the great outdoors.  I didn't even bother trying to paste together the backyard.

Prayers Please!

The time has come for me to step up and start contributing financially to our family.  It has been John's dream since we first got married to go to through nursing school.  He put 4 long years in the army to get us into a situation where he would be able to get this degree.  He also fulfilled my dream by giving me two beautiful boys!

It is my turn to sacrifice.  I am in desperate need of a job with extremly free/cheap quality childcare.  It's a hard thing for me to leave my babies with someone else.  I have my dream job now!  But after much thought and many prayers, I feel like it is best that I support my husband.  I have tried hard to work from home through freelance transcription jobs and a small little home business that never took off.  Over the past few months I have searched for open childcare/preschool jobs where I could at least work at the same place my children were at.  Nothing has worked out.

I am asking for prayers that God will open the door for  me to find a job.  I'm also hoping that maybe somebody reading this will have connections or jobs just waiting for me to fill!  I feel most comfortable teaching prechool/daycare or having an office/paperwork job.  But please just pray that I am able to get a job within the next couple of months so that John can start focusing on getting through school.  He sacrificed for us and now it is our turn to do all we can to help his dreams come true. 

Friday, February 18, 2011

Harding Day 1 Part 4

After visiting Mama Cox, we started making our way back across the deserted campus, hoping to run into security for the fun of it.  On our way back across, Kristi pointed out the dark building we were passing.  The old music building.  I hadn't paid much attention to it when I was a student though I had heard the tales.  Standing it front of it and looking at it at 1am was rather creepy.  The tales, you ask?  Harding is haunted.  Or so the legend says.  :)  And we were standing in front of where the ghost haunts.  There are 2 different ghost stories.  They go like this:

On any given day, the campus of Harding University in Searcy bustles with the quick pace of busy students.  Puffs of wind scatter the autumn-painted leaves on crisp fall afternoons.   Only occasionally do the students stop dead in their tracks, chills running up and down their spines at the sight of a young woman, dressed in white lace, sweeping by them, following the path of old bricks leading to the music building.
          According to Arthur Shearin, Harding University music professor, a campus legend is that the young woman, lovingly nicknamed “Gertie Sue” by former students, wanders the campus.
          “Gertie Sue” supposedly was a student attending Galloway Women’s College, which occupied the grounds where Harding University is now.  Apparently one night she wandered out of her room, accidentally fell into an elevator shaft in Godden Hall, and died.
          Galloway merged with Hendrix College in Conway; Harding College, then in Morrilton, bought the Galloway campus and buildings, and the old Godden Hall was torn down.  Bricks from the old building were used in the construction of the new music building, which was built some 300 yards from the old hall’s site.  Some of the bricks were also used to make a brick pathway from the old site to the new one.
          A former student, whom we’ll call “Thomas,” said that people still see her today.  When he was attending Harding, Thomas and some of his audio-engineering friends locked themselves into the recording booth of the music room to “see what would happen.”  He said all was quiet until around 1 a.m.
          “Then some strange things started happening.  We heard footsteps in the room,” he said.  “We recorded the sounds.  Now I’m not one who believes in ghosts, but I can’t say what that was.”  They played the tape for friends, he said; some who heard it said they could’ve made those sounds themselves.
          Thomas says the woman can be seen walking on the path back and forth between the new building and the old site and can also be seen inside the buildings.
          This is one account of ghostly happenings at Harding.  Richard Young, author of the compilation Ghost Stories from the Southwest, tells of another.
          The story, “The Ghost on the Third Floor,” tells of a tradition at Harding University  in which a “ghostly piano player practices by night.”  According to the story, people on the second floor of the music building can hear a piano being played on the floor above them.  But there is no third floor…
          The music’s source, according to the campus legend, is this.  A young woman and man who were in love came from the same town to attend Harding.  Both were majoring in music.  Soon after school began, the story goes, the young man died in a car accident.  The young woman could not be consoled, and many times climbed to the third floor of the old music building to play the piano, sing and grieve.

Apparently, Leigh had made it through her Harding career and never heard this story.  I don't know how that is possible.  Kristi believes in ghosts.  Leigh is extremely logical and claims NOT to believe in ghosts, but she begged us to stop telling the story and to come on.  And I..well I can't say I believe in ghosts.  but I do believe in a spirit world and I have seen odd, unexplainable things (which I will go into in just a minute).  How that manifests itself in the physical world (if it does at all), I just don't know.  Looking up at the dark building did start to creep me out.  The campus is fairly well lit, but this building seemed particularly dark.  Kristi encouraged me to go to the door.  Leigh stayed across the street begging us to go, that we were scaring her.  I decided I was scared too.  Like my mom said, there are demons and you don't want to go chasing them.  I was at Harding to confront some "demons" but not quite so literally.  Kristi persisted.  "This is why you wanted to come!  Ghost hunting!"  She was right.  I did want to explore that side of Harding.  Ghosts aren't there was nothing to be afraid of.  Right?  So hand in hand, we climbed the stairs and looked through the glass into the dark building.  With all the "newness" on campus, this REALLY was particularly creepy.  Why spend so much money on updating the reasonably well kept buildings, and leave this old decrepit building, which I'm not sure they even USE.  There's a totally new music/communications building elsewhere on campus.  We tried the door but it was locked.  I would have wandered around inside, but was secretly thankful that we couldn't get in.  Despite my  trepidation, I teased Kristi as I put my ear to the door.  "Do you hear that?"  I was pretty impressed with her bravery considering how jumpy she was Freshman year.  :)  Meanwhile Leigh, who won't even stand on the same side of the STREET as us, is hollering for us to go.  Once again, I wish I had had my camera with me to capture that building at night.  Maybe we could have even picked up a strange orb on it!  LOL!  I even searched online for a picture, but can't find one.  There was nothing more we could do, unless we just planned on camping out there to look for Gertie, so we joined Leigh again. 

Thankful to be going, we started to explain to her the "encounter" we had years ago.  And that we planned to return to that spot to figure it out once again.  I'm pretty sure Leigh thought we were messing with her to scare her, but we really were being honest and sincere!  There was one more "ghost" we had to check it out.  Here's the back story!

One night, Kristi and I were out late after a campus coffee-shop concert.  It must have been around 10pm at the time because we had curfew at ELEVEN!  (Sorry, just had to emphasize that again)  :)  We were trying to get "Queened" into a particular club (fraternity), so we went to the information kiosk where the baseball games and times were listed so we could go support the guys.  The kiosk is located in the central  main part of campus in between the student center and Benson.  That is a VERY well lit area.  The kiosk is 4-sided and glassed in - similar to this:

I mean...the kiosk looks nothing like that on campus, but I want you to take from it that there are 4 sides and the information lies behind glass.  Not only are there lights surrounding the kiosk, there were lights that shone down on the information from above.  Now, you have to go try this little experiment for yourself to fully understand, but if you are looking into through glass you see what's on the inside, but if you adjust your eyes to look at the glass, you will see your reflection.  This is important to understand.

While we were reading the information in the kiosk, Kristi grabbed my arm and froze.  I was chatting away and asked her what was wrong.  She told me to be quiet.  Uhh...ok.  She had a pretty crazy look in her eyes and next thing I know she whips her head around to look behind us.  I turn to look.  "Did you see that?"  "See what?"  Obviously not.  "In the glass!"  Ummm, no.  "There was a shadow!"  I look in the glass.  There are no shadows.  There's Kristi and me and I can see the Benson and the trees and everything behind us.  At this point I'm highly amused.  I spent the first half of the school year getting a big kick out of how jumpy Kristi was.  She was convinced we had a ghost in our room (named Janie!) and she would attribute the "odd happenings" to Janie.  I laughed and thoroughly explained EVERY occurrence away.  She would crack me up and it was fun to scare her.  I tell her I don't see anything in the glass and she tells me to wait.  *sigh*  So I watch.  And within a few seconds, the shadow of a tall man with a hat passes from right to left on the kiosk.  We both whip around.  There's nobody there.  And it makes no sense.  I turn back to look at the glass.  What could make that shadow?  How do you MAKE a shadow in the glass.  The shadow was proportionate to our reflections meaning...the shadow maker would HAVE to be right up under the light as we were or at least close enough for us to feel or spot him.  I look back at the glass and try to figure it out.  As I stare at the glass, the shadow passes again.  Only this time it goes from left to right, the opposite direction it "walked" the first time.  Kristi explained that she had been watching this shadow do this over and over again.  Go from one side to the other.  She is freaking out.  She wants to go.  I want to figure it out.  But her rising panic starts to freak me out a bit and she insists that we go.  I relent, and decide to  go with her even though I am thoroughly intrigued and want to figure it out.  We start to walk away, my mind is racing.  Several yards away, I change my mind.  We are on another side of the kiosk now..the side facing our path back to the dorms..not the Benson.  I tell Kristi she can go on, but I want to go look again.  I head back towards the kiosk and before I am even able to get up to the glass on the other side of this kiosk, I saw the shadow pass by in the glass again.  THAT freaked me out.  Somebody would have had to have been IN FRONT of me to cause that.  To this day I can't explain what we saw.  And more than anything, I wanted to go back and "search" the glass again.

We explained all this to Leigh, but she didn't want to hear anything about it.  We found the kiosk.  I wanted Leigh with her brilliant scientific mind to explain to me how to make a shadow in the glass.  I want ANYBODY that can explain it and recreate it to PLEASE do it!  But she was freaked out and didn't want to stay long.  We didn't stay long enough to see any shadow men this time, but I will always wonder what we saw that night. 

We decided to go to the new places where ghosts hadn't inhabited yet.  :)  We went across into the new student center.  We were really blown away with how gorgeous it all was.  Very posh.  We were particularly impressed with the Internet cafe, complete with a flat screen television and fireplace.  The giant bison head really topped it all off.  :)  We kept waiting for security to find us and shoo us away, but I guess it's not as tight as it use to be!  We figured you would have to have a password to log onto the Internet, as it IS for Harding students, but we were able to get on just fine - no password required.  So we hung out and checked all our social networks quickly.  Leigh enjoyed pointing out all the ramps on campus now.  I was known as "the girl in the wheelchair" freshman year because I broke my ankle just weeks after getting to campus.  I couldn't put any weight on my foot and the campus was too big to get around on crutches with books.  So wheelchair it was.  And the campus was NOT wheelchair accessible.  That was a pretty significant change that really opened up that campus to many other students, I'm sure.  We decided we had better head home for the night.  Only so much cane you can raise after curfew on campus.  And ...we were tired.  Pulling all-nighters wasn't feeling as easy as it used to.  We decided to meet back in the morning.  We couldn't agree on a time, because Kristi and I knew we needed sleep! 

Although we were both exhausted, sleep didn't come as easy as I would have liked.  Too much excitement.  We fell asleep sometime after 3am, anxious to start new adventures the next day!

Harding Day 1 Part 3

Back to the Harding saga.  Where were we?  Ah, yes.  We are crossing campus to the boys' dorms to see Mama Cox.  For those of you who are non-Hardingites, Mama Cox was the most feared, most intimidating, and most disliked house mother on all of campus.  She was in Sears dorm with the girls for the longest of time.  I think the year after we left she was switched over to work with the boys.

I was with her for 3 years - once as a freshman, and the following 2 years I worked for her as an RA.  The last year was particularly challenging for me as a student and Mama Cox isn't exactly someone I felt I could confide in or go to for help.  So I carried the weight of the year - and my freshmen - alone.  At the end of the year, I needed out of the freshmen dorm, and decided to apply for an RA position at the apartment dorm for Senior year.  I was disappointed not to get the job.  Mama Cox came and talked to me while I was working the front desk and asked how the interview had gone and if I had gotten the job.  I told her no and was surprised that she cared so much.  But that wasn't it at all.  She sat down and told me she had "been meaning to talk to me".  She had been unhappy with my performance as an RA and had given that report to the dorm mother before I ever made it to the interview.  I had lost the job before I had even interviewed.  I was hurt and upset and rather angry, since I had put FAR more effort into being an RA than I had the previous year.  I had worked FAR harder for those girls than she would ever know.  As angry as I was, I let it go.  I applied at the only dorm left I could think to go - Kendall, a Sophomore/Junior dorm.  I was scheduled for an interview after  I finished working the desk one morning, so I was dressed up.  Mama Cox walked into the lobby MINUTES before I was to leave for the interview.  She told me I looked nice and asked why I was dressed up.  I told her that I had an interview.  Mistake.  She asked where at and I gave her the honest answer.  I will never forget her response. "Hm.  Stephanie didn't call and tell me that."  All I could think was "GOOD!"  Maybe I had a fighting chance.  I walk over to the dorm and meet Stephanie, who was a young, wonderfully pleasant woman.  Nice change.   First thing out of her mouth in the interview was, "Mama Cox called me with her concerns......."  I nearly broke down in  tears.  There was nothing I could do.  This woman set out to sabotage me and without this job, I had no hope of returning to Harding.  However, being the amazing, awesome woman she is, Stephanie told me what was said and asked for my side of the story.  Something that neither Mama Cox or the first lady I had interviewed  before had done.  I had the job before I left that interview.  And as a follow-up note...Stephanie was very pleased with my work as an RA the following semester.

All that to say, I left Harding with very strong negative feelings towards Mama Cox.  I am not an angry person and I don't hold grudges, but this was one thing that stuck with me for years and years.  I don't know why it was the one thing I couldn't let go of.  In hindsight, I think it was just all bad timing.  I was in the depths of major depression (and nobody knew it - not even me).  I was running in circles trying to make everything perfect and the harder I tried, the worse I failed.  I just couldn't make things right.  Not in my relationships, not academically, not emotionally.  But I was trying so hard.  I had been unravelling all year, and that was probably the straw that broke the camel's back.  I suppose she ended up being my emotional dumping ground for the entire year's issues.  So all of my animosity was concentrated on her.  So I had to see Mama Cox.  I HAD to see her again and forgive her and really just get past everything that afflicted me that last year.  I couldn't have done it alone.  I'm so glad I had friends with me.

We made our way across campus, contemplating why nobody knew who she was.  EVERYBODY knew Mama Cox "back in the day".  Leigh suggested maybe she had "mellowed out".  We all laughed.  We went into the boys' lobby (A change!  Girls were not allowed in the boys' lobby 10 years ago).  We glanced around a quick second and then headed to the front desk, to torment yet ANOTHER poor college student.

"Is Mama Cox in?"
"Yes.  Would you like me to call her for you?"
"Yes please!  She's not sleeping is she?"

*picks up the phone*

"Can I get your names?"
Me:  "NO."  (I must admit, I was feeling the urge to be terribly sassy with Mama Cox at this point, with the imminent reunion about to take place)
Kristi and Leigh:  *Laughter*
Kristi:  Tell her it's a "blast from her past".
Leigh:  "Former RA's".

Poor confused college boy on phone:  "Uh, yes.  Mrs. Cox?  There are some ladies out here to see you.  *pause*  Yes, there is a lot of giggling.  *pause*  No, they won't tell me their names.  Former RA's, I think?  *pause*  Ok.  Thank you."

"She'll be out in a minute."
"Did you wake her up?"
"Are you in trouble?"
"We asked all over campus, trying to find her.  Nobody has heard of her!  Has she mellowed out?"
At this point the college boy shakes his head And mouths "nooooooo", which made us just erupt in laughter, right before Mama Cox's apartment door opened.

And there we were.  Face to face.  She looked exactly the same, with a bit more gray.  Good, even.  She scanned our smiling faces, trying to place us. 

Leigh finally burst out with "Do you remember us?"

She definitely recognized us, but couldn't remember names or years at that point.  She eyed me hard and I wondered what she remembered.  "Susan, right?"  Nope.  Maybe she didn't remember as much as I thought.  I couldn't tell.  We put her out of her misery and told her our names and how we were all connected.  Leigh had worked for Mama Cox as well.  Kristi was just one of the troublemakers in the dorm with me for 2 years!  :)

She continued to try to place us and asked us what we were up to these days.  We all laughed as we explained we were all Harding drop-outs who became full-time mothers. 

We watched her start to relax and we went over and hugged her one by one.  She invited us into her apartment, a place where students were never invited.  Huge honor. It was 11pm at this point and I was hoping to not stay too long.  I wasn't sure how all my feelings about the past would resurface, and I feared things that might be brought up or mentioned. I just needed to face all my failures at Harding and this was a HUGE part of that. 

But we were lead to the living room to sit.  I knew we would be there a while.  I was tense and trying not to show it.  Leigh was most excited to see Mama Cox.  She relates well to her style of "parenting" and appreciated the toughness that others despised so much.  Kristi was there along for the ride.  Leigh led most of the conversation, which I was thankful for.   Leigh poked fun that she's "lost her edge" since we couldn't find her.  I mean, if students didn't know who she was, she most have lost her meanness!  She assured us she was as mean and feisty as ever and recounted a recent story of making a sassy-mouthed boy repent.  We listened as she told us some of the shenanigans of the boys, but she was MUCH happier working in a boys' dorm than in the girls'.  We covered some of our memories of living in the dorm with Mama Cox.  I watched her very carefully to see what she remembered.  She told Leigh she was a big troublemaker.  Leigh is a major rule-follower.  If she thought Leigh was a troublemaker, what did that make me?  The girl she was so unhappy with?  She looked at me and said, 'And could always tell when she was up to something because of that little laugh"  What?  Not entirely sure.  I professed my innocence and insisted I was an angel, which made everyone laugh and roll their eyes.  *smirk*  Jogging Mama Cox's memory was not high on my list of things to do, but Kristi and Leigh continued to bring up event after event.  And Mama Cox did remember some of them.  I chimed in occasionally to be social, but never with a new memory, unless I was asked.  So after laughing about all of OUR shenanigans, Mama Cox had one question.  What was your favorite memory of Harding?  Without a beat I said, 'Leaving'.  The shock on everyone's faces and the nervous laughter told me that may not have been the best thing to say.  I KNEW I couldn't make it through the night without saying something smart!  I laughed and quickly followed up with "Just kidding."  And I really was.  I did have good memories of Harding.  But the 3 of us had spent a lot of time recalling that LAST year which nearly killed us all.  The proposed question had Leigh saying "Hmmm..." and rubbing her chin and Kristi stunned in silence at the same time I answered.  After everything quieted down from my initial answer, I turned to the girls and said, "So?  What IS your favorite memory?"  And the truth is and nobody could come up with anything.  We were all recalling people we had loved and conversation quickly turned to updates on everyone we had loved and where they were now.  We were sad to hear of deaths and dementia, and joyous to hear of continued work, and re-marriages.  I had my eye on the clock.  I knew we were going to be there until curfew, but I was slowly starting to relax.  It wasn't so bad after all. 

In an effort to leave things on a positive note, I reminded my friends once again that we never gave Mama Cox an answer to her question.  My honest answer?  The girls sitting next to me.  Harding is nothing without the friends you make.  It was a mutual feeling.  And while we couldn't pinpoint a "favorite memory", we could list many things that made us smile or that were significant to us, like the various annual chapels.  "Muffin Chapel"  "Camaraderie Chapel"  "Dr. Burk's accent"  "Singing Just As I Am with Jimmy Allen for all eternity"  "The Grumpy Old Men"  All the things that made Harding, Harding. 

By that time, it was curfew time.  Time for us to head out.  It was a difficult and uncomfortable 2 hours for me, but it was well worth it.  Was I able to get past everything?  Yes.  The whole Harding experience/reunion was already exactly what I needed.  Our only regret?  We didn't bring the camera with us because it was dark and we didn't anticipate taking any pictures and we didn't want to carry around a camera all over the place if we weren't going to use it.  So I don't have a picture of us with Mama Cox, though I wish I did.  I suppose we could have headed over to get one the next day, but it just wouldn't have been the same.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Zakar Life

I've been wanting to post this blog for quite a while now.  As you all know by now, I love to promote products that I think are fantastic.  I'm privileged to promote Zakar Life, a video scrapbooking company (can I call it a "company"?)  The videos are put together by my father and his business partner.  I desperately wanted to put up the slide show he did for me of the boys, but I can't get it to load on here (hence the delay in the posting).  Fortunately, you can go to their website HERE and see several different videos, including the one of my sweet little boys!

They do a marvelous job and I highly recommend them to anyone who is looking to gather all those loose photos into an amazing piece!

So Far Behind!

Wow!  Life without my own laptop was hard!  I didn't realize how much I rely on it until it was gone.  And being without it, put me way behind on blogging.  I know you guys are waiting on the rest of the Harding trip story, the gourmet recipes I promised, and any new material that I might have - which I do!

While I was MIA, we were very busy here.  Highlights of my time away include:

*Eric busting his mouth to pieces (not really a highlight, but big news around here)
*Trip to WV to visit the college I actually graduated from.


*We bought a house!!  Waiting to sign all the final paperwork (so it could technically still fall through), but I think we can definitely consider it ours.  So I need to get caught up on blogging before I disappear again for the move.  There will be a separate blog about the process of buying and moving in complete with pictures.  But I'll post my favorite part of the house here:

Anyone want to join us for dinner??  :)  LOVE this kitchen. 

I'll try to get caught up blogging in the next few days!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Harding Day 1 Part 2

After dinner, we needed a place to go and talk.  Where better than our old hangout, Midnight Oil?!  I love that place.  It's a little coffee shop on the edge of campus.  It was packed with students wall to wall with some students entertaining the crowd, which just added to my excitement.  Just like the old days!  We squeezed our way to the front of the store to get in line.  I was praying they still had my favorite drink, a Creamsicle.  Mmmmm.  I didn't see it on the menu, but I did see a Clockwork Orange.  Must be the same drink, different name.  I've always wanted to know how to make one, because I think it's one of the best drinks ever, so I decided to ask while I had my chance.

"How much to get the recipe from you?"
'How much?  $100. can just go online and look up an Orange Julius.  It's basically the same thing."
"No it's not.  An Orange Julius has crushed ice.  This gets poured OVER the ice."
"No.  We crush the ice here too."
"No!!  I don't want my ice crushed!  I want it poured OVER the ice!  That's how you make it!"
"We've always made it that way."
"I've been here for 5 years.  It's always been done that way."
"5 years?  WELL I......."

At this point my lovely friends pulled me away and explained that I was crazy before I could  tell that little whippersnapper just how wrong he was and how 5 years was NOTHING.  I regretfully and hesitantly took my butchered CREAMSICLE (oh yeah, buddy!  They weren't ALWAYS called Clockwork Oranges either!)

On the up side, this was a LOT more drink than you used to get for the money.  One sip reassured me that I still got the same taste, just a slightly different  texture.  It still goes OVER the ice.....

We went out on the porch where we had more room and found a corner to sit and talk.  Thankfully the weather was mild and we got to spend a lot of time outdoors that weekend.  I had the BEST time just sitting and talking - mostly about our kids!  It was so great just to compare stories, and personalities, and parenting styles.  I realized this is something that I am missing BIG time in my own life.  I loved having the support.  I would do anything to have those girls live close to me!  Once we realized that we had been spending all our time talking about our kids, we changed the subject back to Harding.  I told everyone we HAD to go see Mama Cox.  Leigh went and attacked some students to see if she was still there.  They had no idea who she was.  Kristi and Leigh came to the conclusion that she must not be there anymore if they hadn't heard of her.  Either that or she has mellowed out.  There was a brief pause before we all bust into laughter.  But I didn't care what they said, I KNEW she was still there.  There was no way she had left.  And of course, no way she had mellowed out!

We laughed as watched Midnight Oil empty out all at once.  Must be close to curfew time!  How nice that we don't have to run off!  We savored the moment of not being bound by the clock and then decided we should go walk around campus for a bit - you know....since we didn't have to be in the dorm!  We were looking forward to being chased off by security.

It was 10:30pm and I wanted to go see one of the students there before curfew at 11pm so I didn't have to track her down on a Saturday.  We got to Cathcart and walked in to see the most unbelievable transformation.  Brand new carpeting, furniture, flat screen TV, new desk, new tiling.  It was really ritzy looking.  I didn't take pictures because I never lived in Cathcart, but I knew this was a major change.  We were blown away.  I asked for the dorm number of the girl I was going to see and they were able to give it to me so we headed off to find her.

She opens the door and the three of us can't believe what we're seeing in the room.  New beds, new desks, new walls, new flooring.  The place looks spectacular.  We gawk for a little while.  I then ask her if Mama Cox is still there.  She looks at her roommate and they look confused.  They have no idea who I am talking about.  Kristi and Leigh say, "See?  I bet she's not here anymore.  If she was, they would know who she is."  I was NOT convinced.  I tell the student that we better get going before they kick us out for curfew and again she looks confused.  "Curfew is at 1am."  WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT??  ONE AM?  The 3 of us start freaking out.  Are you kidding me?  So we're sitting there looking like idiots and they explain that curfew is 12 during the week and 1 on the weekends.  After we explained how oppressed we were by having to come in at ELEVEN on the weekends, we decided to quit terrorizing them and leave - shaking our heads the whole way.

We get back to the front desk and Kristi asks for a number, only to find out the rooms don't have phones, because apparently EVERYBODY has a cell phone.  We just kept getting one shock after another.  Seriously?  NO phones?  Not even at the front desk.  I mean really people.  Can EVERY student afford a cell phone bill?  Are you REALLY just stuck without a phone if you don't have a cell?  We couldn't hide our disbelief.  So what exactly do you DO up here all day??  Keep in mind, we ALL worked the front desk in college and ALL we did was answer the phone and give people phone numbers.  It was exhausting.  Again, we got the "these-people-are-weird" look and they stammered out, "Well...basically enforce dress code....and ummm....make sure the boys don't go back there...."  Wow.  Just wow.  Before leaving, I had to ask where Mama Cox was.  We finally got an answer!  She WAS still there, but was in one of the boys dorms.  We decided to make our way over there - since, ya know...we had until ONE!  We thanked the girls at the desk, who no doubt were glad that we were leaving.  Apparently, this trip was really just going to consist of us "showing our age" and scaring all the current students. 

I have to go get my little boy up now.  But I'll be back later with tales of visiting Mama Cox!!!