Weekly Winners (Oct. 3 – 9)

October 10th, 2010 12 comments

Weekly Winners is a fun little thing bloggers do to showcase some of their favorite photos from the previous week. It is brought to you, me and everyone by the lovely Lotus, aka Sarcastic Mom. Visit her site and find all the participants. See some amazing photos brought to you by bloggers around the world. Leave a little love when you do — its like food for the soul!

Weekly Winners

A very random set of photos again. I was out and about quite a bit this week, and it netted me some photo ops. I had to pick and choose… it was hard to leave a few photos out!


Maroon mums

Truth in Advertising

Confession, my husband actually snapped this shot. But it got used in Nashvillest and it was taken using my phone. So there. ;) I call it truth in advertising.

Boobiethon Submission

I don't do photos like this often, much less share them! But this was my Boobie-thon submission, and I just LIKE it.

Fall colors arrive

Fall is arriving! By next weekend, the colors should be brilliant! They are JUST changing now.

Crescent moon

Gentle, crescent moon.

Wagon wheel

Old wagon wheel with Retro Camera App.

Grand Ole Opry Entryway

Grand Ole Opry's entryway for artists... the renovations to the building are amazing!

Dressing Room 3

The dressing room numbers are now on the floor in a guitar pick image. We were in Room 3. (Whoop!)

Roy Clark & Craig

The best for last... my husband with ROY CLARK!!! :)

♥ ♥ ♥

Photos taken using a Rokinon DZ1000 or my Droid Incredible.
View all of my photos available on my Flickr stream.

Happy Anniversary, Mom & Dad!

October 9th, 2010 3 comments

Today, 39 years ago, my parents got married.

My mom was 18. My dad was 20.

Mom had just graduated high school. My dad was attending Texas A&M.

All in the Family debuted that year. The Ed Sullivan Show aired its last episode. Apollo 14 & 15 landed on the moon. The Vietnam War was in full swing. Southwest Airlines began flying passengers between Dallas, San Antonio and Houston. Walt Disney World opened in Orlando, FL. Top single of the year was “Joy to the World” by Three Dog Night.

So few marriages make it 10 years today. They’ve been married 39 years and are going just as strong as ever. They work together both professionally and personally. They are each others best friend. They not only take those vows they said personally, they live them every single day. They still go on dates. Still hold hands. Still laugh together, cry together, and, yes, even bicker now and then. But its all a part of a strong marriage that I look up to and try to emulate in my own.

My parents are two of my best friends and role models. I couldn’t ask for better parents… I get a huge grin and have to agree when friends go, “You’re parents are SO COOL!” because, hey, they are!

Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad!! I love you!!

My parents with their parents on their wedding day.Yes, Dad's eyes are closed. LOL

30 for 30

October 8th, 2010 2 comments

30 Bound

I am just over a month away from the big three-oh.

It’s a big birthday! No more twenty-something for me. Another decade passed. Another decade begun.

Between me and all of you, I’m actually kind of looking forward to it. I can’t even explain it in a way that makes sense. I’m just optimistic that my 30s will be great… and I am sticking with that optimism.

No big plans as of yet for my birthday. Luckily, so far, it seems my husband will be home for it. It’s a wait and see if that holds or not. You never know with this crazy business. It wouldn’t be the first time he’s missed my birthday due to a gig, and I always understand. But this one is special. This one is 30. More than ever, I want him here to celebrate if at all possible!

I’ve been having a little fun lately. I decided for giggles to make a wish list for my birthday. When I was a kid, I’d make a list for my birthday just like at Christmas. Things I want for my birthday. I’ve not made a list like that in a long time, so I thought it would be fun for this one. As I got started I decided that, to take it to the next level, I’d make it a list of 30 items. 30 for 30.

Believe it or not, it was actually very challenging. I’m not good at asking for stuff. Especially now that I’ve gotten good at tightening the belt. If its not absolutely necessary, then its not really worth looking at getting.

So, this really did take me about three days to put together. I added a little bit of everything in the end. Everything from a little silly to silly expensive. Some of these are specifically what I want. Others are just ideas.

So here it is in fancy widget-form thanks to Amazon.com… my birthday list.

Mostly for my own amusement.

Oh okay, it never hurts to throw it out there, right?


Categories: thirty Tags: , , ,

An impromptu date

October 7th, 2010 3 comments

Last night, my husband and I went out to run a few errands. We hadn’t planned to eat out, but timing of our stops and our grumbling bellies said we should grab a bite.

After a nice dinner of Mexican food (enchiladas for him, a burrito for me), we found ourselves restless. A rare case of boredom struck. We didn’t want to go home, but we didn’t want to go too far. Driving into Nashville just seemed too far, and going to a local sports bar meant thick smoke and money out we didn’t want to spend. We drove around a little while, but in darkness its hard to enjoy your scenery. Then my husband had a flash of genius. He said we were going bowling.

Bowling, you may ask? Why is that genius? Because we never think of doing that until we are driving by our local bowling alley late at night after its closed. The conversation ALWAYS goes something like this:

“Bowling. We should do that some time.”

“Yeah, we should. We’ve never done that together.”

“We haven’t… that would be a fun date night.”

So, here we were, bored and bowling seemed the thing to do. Suddenly, it was date night! Apparently, everyone else in town had the same idea, though. We ended up on a waiting list similar to one you would find at a fancy restaurant on a Saturday night. About a half-hour until we could get a lane.

We both got something to drink and sat to watch others bowl. I quickly got intimidated! Everyone was so good! There were guys doing trick shots (and getting strikes with them!). There were people playing with as much effort as I give to go to bed. Yikes!

My husband asked me when was the last time I went bowling, and I had to think. Hard. I eventually had to tell him it was probably close to 15 years since I’d last went bowling!

As we sat, I told him about going bowling with my aunt when I was kid. Every summer for several years, my aunt would pick me and my brother up to go out for an afternoon. Pizza for lunch, then bowling the afternoon away! My brother and I went a few times just us once he had a car and could drive. Then I remember going with my church youth group at least once. Those tales were the extent of my bowling experience.

Finally, our turn came around, and we were sent off to lane 34 with rented shoes and hopes we didn’t end up throwing the ball behind us instead of down the lane! (Okay, maybe that was just me with that worry and visions of disaster that would rival the Stooges.) We planned to bowl one set. That would save money, and we figured we’d probably be ready to give up after one set anyway.

We picked out balls, got set up to play and away we went.

I don't bowl with any kind of decent form...

Our first game, neither of us broke 100.

Yes I said, first game. I wanted to keep playing, so my husband went and paid for a second game before the first one was through. He spoils me. I admit it. And I am grateful.

I threw more gutter balls than I care to admit to throwing. I was a little envious of the little kids beside us who had bumpers!

My husband used to play regularly with a group of musicians. I happened to have flown in to visit him when we were dating on a bowling day… it was a “no girls allowed” kind of thing, so I sat away from the group in amusement of it. As such, I didn’t pay much attention at that time, but I found my husband to have a smooth form while bowling. I told him watching him was fun, and he made it look easy. Unfortunately, he’d gotten rusty over time and pretty form didn’t help him get strikes.

Oh we both did get strikes and spares… just not enough of them to talk about.

Our second game went better than the first for me. I picked a different ball and that made all the difference in the world. A lighter ball gave me more control, and I did finally break 100.

I’m not going to win any tournaments and I won’t be joining any leagues, but I have to admit I had a TON of fun. There’s something fun about laughing at yourself when you stutter step instead of slide. When your ball heads straight for the gutter, and the pins laugh at you on screen. And for the record, I did NOT throw the ball behind me at any point.

There’s something romantic about  a bowling date with your husband of almost 4 years. You discover new things about each other, you laugh, and you are reminded some of the most fun things in life are the most simple.

I hope we go bowling again soon! It was fun. It was cheap. It was something different.

I might have won the second game, but my husband won overall for both. I'll get him next time!

Categories: general-post, husband Tags: ,

A story within a story…

October 6th, 2010 2 comments

Retro Camera :: SecretariatGrowing up, I loved horses. They were my favorite animal, and I dreamed of some day owning one of my own.

We lived on over an acre of land, and my young self couldn’t understand why I couldn’t feasibly have one. That was, until my parents very logically explained to me about the cost of having a horse, and I realized it wouldn’t happen. I was “okay” with that, but I never stopped loving horses.

I read books about horses. I had bookmarks with horses on them. I had figurines of horses. I had shirts with horses.

I loved horses.

One Christmas, I received as a gift a “statue” (it was plastic and probably meant to be more of a toy than a statue) of Secretariat, a famous race horse. I heard the horse’s story, but it really went in one ear and out the other. I just thought it was a pretty horse to put on my shelf.

Oh okay, I played with it. I still have that plastic statue, one ear broken, some of the red/blown coloring faded off its back. However, I won’t let my husband toss it (along with other horses statues) no matter how much he looks at me like I am crazy for still having them.

I still love horses.

Now, I’m not the most observant person at times. Especially when it comes to movies coming out in theater. Movie tickets are just too expensive (in my opinion) and I’ve never been a huge movie fanatic. If I go to the movies once a year, I’m doing good. Twice in a year, someone call CNN, this is news.

All that being said, I not once noticed any movie trailers for the new Disney movie “Secretariat” until an offer came in my Inbox from BlogHer for an early screening of the movie from Disney. I didn’t hesitate. I didn’t ask my husband. I didn’t think twice. When I saw a movie screen on a date we were both free in Nashville, I requested two passes. I think I squealed out loud with the confirmation email came to my Inbox. Not only were we going to the movies, we were going to see a horse movie!!

So, last night, my husband and I got dressed and headed out for movie night/date night. We arrived and I really had no idea how it would all go. The theater was mostly dead, save for a long line waiting to go into one of the theaters. I needed to use the restroom, so my husband took my email and went in search of the Disney representative as we’d been instructed to do.

When I came out, my husband pointed to the line and said, “We’re to get in that line.” I have no idea why I was surprised to see so many people there for the movie, but I was. I jumped in line while my husband went to get us something to drink. The line started to proceed into the theater, and I noticed everyone around me had special Disney passes. When I got to the front of the line, I handed the lady my email I’d received and a young man beside her asked for my name. I gave it to him, he glanced at his iPhone and went, “Okay! You’re good!”

Waiting for the movie to start...

So, we went in and found ourselves a pair of seats and settled in to people watch. I found myself wondering if anyone else was there via BlogHer. One young man came in carrying a spiral notebook, and I guessed he was there from a local newspaper or something. There were kids and elderly alike there, but I’d guess the median age to be around 30-35.

Finally, 7:00 rolled around and the movie started. I didn’t know what to expect of the movie other than the story of this famous race horse… what I got, though, was a movie I want on DVD right NOW. I found a movie that will most definitely be in my top 10 for a long time.

The movie, for me, is one every woman in this world needs to see. Every woman who has dreams. Every woman who has ever been told they can’t do something. Every woman who says, “It can be done.”

The movie is billed at the story of Secretariat, but for me is was more the story of Penny Chenery (played by Diane Lane). Penny Chenery is the owner of Secretariat, trying to garner respect for herself and her horse in what was in the 1970s very much a men’s club.

At one point I whispered to my husband, “Back then, she didn’t have much of a voice.” Women were still too new to business in general to be taken seriously — much less horse racing — but she fought every nay-sayer that came her way. Everyone from her husband to the press to other horse owners.

This movie made me laugh countless times. John Malkovich as trainer Lucien Laurin adds a wonderful comedic quality to the movie while also bringing a touching dramatic story of his own. This movie most definitely made me cry. It made me hold my breath. It made the audience applaud — during the movie and as the credits rolled. I’ve never gone to a movie in which the whole crowd applauded at the end.

As my husband said as we left, this movie is going to be huge… Coming from someone who literally goes to the movies once a year, THIS movie is one to go see. Heck, I might even sneak off sometime and go see it again myself!

I’ve now brought my Secretariat statue in from storage to put on my desk. After this movie, that statue no longer only means, “I love horses.”  It means, “I can beat the odds. I can do anything I set my heart on doing. I can do the impossible.”

*Thank you Disney and BlogHer for this wonderful opportunity and movie!

Starting my day

October 5th, 2010 3 comments

Breakfast. They say its the most important meal of the day.

I have gone through phases in life, though, in which I just skipped that important meal. In high school, I went through a carb-breakfast phase. I found popcorn or potato chips or Frito’s to be perfectly acceptable forms of breakfast. In college, I would be a good two to three hours into my day before I would stop at a snack shop for a bagel or something.

Today, though, I can’t have a good day without getting up and having breakfast. I’ve embraced that important meal.

Every day (except days when I have to go pick up my husband from the bus — those are usually get up, throw on a baseball cap and run out of the door still rubbing sleep out of my eyes), I get up and head straight to the kitchen.

Coffee is hit or miss. Some days I can’t imagine not brewing a pot of coffee. Sometimes, though, that depends on if I get up way earlier than I know my husband wants to get up. We have a coffee grinder, and I hate to wake him by using it on those mornings. Other days, I wrinkle my nose at the coffee pot and reach for either a glass of milk or juice. Sometimes I’m feeling especially rebellious and I’ll reach for a Dr. Pepper.

Then, its generally one of three breakfast options:

– eggs. I grew up hating eggs, but in the last year I’ve started going through a dozen eggs every couple of weeks. Fried or scrambled or sometimes boiled. I’ve found a pleasure in this breakfast item. Scrambled is usually combined with ham or cheese and some salsa. You have to put a splash of milk in your scrambled eggs to really fluff them up.  Fried is over easy. However, I’ve definitely found the quality of egg to be key in this. I hate when the yolk breaks while I’m frying it. The whole point of fried eggs is the buttery, gooey yolk! Fried eggs must always be accompanied by toast with jelly.

– cereal. Who doesn’t love a big bowl of cereal in the morning? What takes you back to childhood faster!? Special K, Cheerios or Total are usually the three brands in our pantry. Occasionally I’ll sneak in some Cinnamon Toast Crunch, though. I always put in way too much milk, but I don’t care. I don’t want dry cereal! I want to be able to drink the milk after, or perhaps use it in my freshly brewed cup of coffee. Seriously, the milk that was used over cinnamon cereal is the best thing ever in a cup of coffee.

–PB&J.  I blame my parents for this one. They’ve been on a peanut butter and jelly for breakfast kick for awhile now, and I totally understand why. Its a wonderful comfort food as you start your day! I alternate between toasting my bread or leaving it soft and squishy. My husband hates my other addition I make to PB&J at times: breakfast meat. He says its gross. I ignore him and do it any way. It’s my one thing I eat that most people probably do find gross, but I say, “Don’t knock it until you try it!”

Oh, sure, some days I sway from these breakfast choices. Pop Tarts find their way into my pantry sometimes. Oatmeal as well. But most of the time, you’ll find me devouring any of these three items within fifteen minutes of rolling out of bed.

So I ask: What’s your favorite breakfast choices?

*Topic idea from NaBloPoMo today.