Saturday, October 27, 2007


Max! Thursday night we went to look at some puppies and decided to get one. We picked him then but didn't pick him up until today. That gave us time to go get everything we would need. I was nervous about picking him up today. I felt like overnight we were becoming "parents." It has been a good day so far. Max is VERY mellow. He has been laying around and napping all day. I hope he'll sleep tonight. He has done very good at using the bathroom in the yard so far. I think we're off to a great start!

Isn't he cute? He's really dark so it has been hard to get a good picture of him. These are the best I have so far.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

World Series Tickets

We did not score World Series tickets! We didn't try very hard. We decided we would rather save the money for a good vacation next year. I ended up trying to get some anyway, but I wasn't supposed to. We decided to have the Sunday School class over Saturday night for a World Series party. I'm not sure if anyone will come yet...I hope so! I will be frantically cleaning and cooking on Saturday if people rsvp to make sure we have enough food and a good variety of food.

I do have a friend that I worked with in Dallas that is coming this weekend for one of the games. She has a friend in Boulder, and they bought tickets on eBay. It would be REALLY fun if I got to see her over the weekend.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Country Music

I really get a kick out of listening to music and singing along (even though I don’t want anyone to hear me singing). I like many kinds of music…Christian, country, instrumental, 80s love songs, etc. Thursday night we went to an event that was put on by a local country station to hear music from “the future stars of country.” For $9.69 (for the location of the radio station on the air) we got a dinner from Texas Land & Cattle and the concert where Jypsy, Rissi Palmer, and James Otto performed. It was definitely worth the $20 we paid. The food was not excellent nor was it bad. And the entertainment was good. The first band Jypsy had an unusual sound. The group is 3 sisters and their brother. Their sound is different and the lead singer Lilly May had an incredible voice. Her voice almost sounded like it belonged in Irish music. We both really liked them. It was difficult to hear the words of Rissi Palmer’s songs. I am not sure if it was the venue or what. I had heard a blurb from one of her songs on the radio and completely understood that. We didn’t stay for James Otto although I really wanted to hear him. I have learned over the years that M is not really one for staying until the end of much. I will give him a bit of credit here. He sustained a muscle injury early this summer when he got a concussion that has not completely healed yet. I think he aggravated the injury when he was playing football last Sunday with the community group guys. And then when we did a little bit of dancing Thursday night, it just was not pretty for that injury. So we left early because he was in pain. I certainly can’t blame him for that, can I? It was a fun date night!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

First Snow!

We woke up this morning to the first snow of this winter. There is not much on the ground, and I don't expect it to last long. In fact, it is supposed to be in the 70s again by Wednesday. Even though I am now 30, there is still something magical about the snow. I am glad I can see it as I look out the window from the warm house.

Sushi Last Night

Last night we had a birthday dinner with M's aunt and uncle that live about an hour from us. We met at a sushi place in their city. It is seriously an amazing restaurant. It may be the best sushi I've ever had. It has become a favorite place for us to go when we get together. M's aunt took this picture of us. You will see more pictures of us on this blog because I am starting to take my camera wherever we go. It was a fun night!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

I want one of these!

M and I have talked about getting a dog for a really long time. This is really the first place we have lived where we could have one since we were renting before we bought our house. I am tired of talking about it and now want to get one. I am currently reading some books about training and having a puppy. There are a few things we need to take care of before we get a dog run in the yard, put in a doggy door, get rid of some extra furniture that is in the garage, etc. These things are not happening soon enough for me. One of the neighbors we met today has an 11 week old yellow lab. He was PRECIOUS! I wanted to puppy-nap him, but it would be hard to hide since this is one of our neighbors. The kids at this particular house were so cute...they brought out their puppy, then a cat, and then a second cat. Aren't kids just friendly?

I want a puppy!!!

Meeting the Neighbors

We have now lived in our house for almost 9 months. Up until today, we have really only met the neighbors very briefly in 3 houses around ours. I don't want to continue to be one of those people who does not know my neighbors. I really hate that about Americans. We can be so closed off from everyone. So I spent last night making homemade chocolate chip cookies and putting these little containers together so we could entice our neighbors to like us. Most people like food, so I thought if we took them food, they would in turn like us. (That is seriously my thinking...there has got to be something wrong with me, right?) I spent most of the evening coloring the silly little houses on these things. I should have known better, but it was a bit of fun for me. Today we went to the 12 closest houses around ours to meet our neighbors. People were only home at 4 of the houses. I was so disappointed...I almost wanted to cry (I know I am really sensitive - and that I use parenthesis too much as well). We left the boxes on everyone's door step, but that doesn't really help us to meet them. I put our names, address, and phone number on the back side of the paper with the houses on them so that people can reach us if they ever need anything. I guess I can be happy that I did my part to meet people. I have to say it is frustrating though when I, the shy and awkward person, makes the effort and some people just don't care to know their neighbors. Maybe we will be able to develop some relationships here. It will definitely be a long and slow process.

Just after I wrote this, the doorbell rang. Someone who was not home when we dropped off our package earlier stopped by to say hello. M is actually over there right now helping the guy with some of his landscaping. Isn't that cool? So now we have met another neighbor.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Hubby's Birthday

Yesterday was M's birthday. I hope it was a good one. Birthdays are very special to me, so I try to make it a fun day on his birthday. I took a birthday cake and cupcakes to M's office yesterday around lunch time. He was surprised to see me there. He didn't want a cake this year, but I told him that just wasn't an option. He likes a 3 layer red velvet cake so that's what I made. I ended up making 2 from scratch Monday night because I left out 2 key ingredients in the first one. I realized it as soon as I took it out of the oven. Oops! But the 2nd cake was actually the best I have made so far (this is the 3rd year I've made this for his birthday). It definitely turned out the prettiest of the ones I've made although you can tell from the picture that it is far from perfect.

We went to MacKenzie's Chop House for dinner - which we hadn't been to before. I would definitely recommend it (but none of you reading this live around here). We started with calamari. Then M had a yummy Caesar salad. For the main entree, I had a filet with gorgonzola mashed potatoes and some kind of mushroom and asparagus ragout. It was delicious! M had ostrich with some cucumber strips and a mystery sauce. He liked it but not as much as he liked my steak. Then we finished our meal with cheesecake (which was on the house for his birthday). The service was excellent and the atmosphere was relaxing and romantic. We were going to get all dressed up but decided not to at the last minute. Before M got home, I started trying on dresses to figure out what to wear. I was able to fit very snuggly into a dress I wore on our honeymoon! Even though it didn't look good (because it was so snug), I was ecstatic. I am getting closer to my weight goal each week! I will be able to wear that dress and a few others really soon! When we first started dating, we had our picture taken all the time. We have stopped doing that over the years so my goal is to start doing it again. This is a picture of us last night at dinner. It was a fun evening!

The First Snow on Pikes Peak

There is definitely a chill in the air now. Monday we woke up to snow at the top of Pikes Peak. It was the first day there has been snow at the top. It is beautiful so I had M take a picture of it for you. Isn't it breathtaking with the sunrise?

Monday, October 15, 2007

Great Weekend

M and I had a great weekend. This is the beginning of his birthday week. Tuesday is his birthday. So we found a breakfast buffet in town for breakfast on Saturday. He LOVES buffets! He really enjoys a plethera of flavors in one meal. He doesn't get that much at home so he enjoys findinga really good breakfast buffet. One of the best places we have been to is Mondo's in Dallas. If you are ever in Dallas, you should check this place out. Their regular meals are good, but their Sunday morning brunch is excellent...even after going to church they still have lots of good food out all day.

Both M and I have a hard time waking up on Sunday morning. We definitely want to go to church, especially now that we have found one we look forward to attending. But the warm bed and darkness outside make us want to continue sleeping. After winning the battle with the bed yesterday, we had a great Sunday. We went to church and actually got to visit with some folks in our Sunday school class, or "community" as they call it. Then yesterday afternoon, the community got together at the park so the guys could play football. We were supposed to have a picnic after the football game. The girls wimped out because it was pretty cold so we went to one of the couple's houses until the guys were finished playing. We had an opportunity to visit with several couples and really had a good time. We are desperate for good, deep relationships with other believers. We have been without this (at least locally) for almost 2 1/2 years now. I hope this was the beginning of several of those relationships. I also made a few connections with people who have family in Amarillo. What a small world!

Apparently, my nephews also had a good weekend. They play just about every sport that is available where they live. The oldest who is 10 has been playing in tennis tournaments for probably the last year and has played in a lot over the last summer. His brother who is 6 decided he wanted to play in a tennis tournament as well. They have both been taking tennis lessons since they were 4 or so. (My brother and his wife have played tennis most of their lives. They played on their college team and were both ranked number 1 in their division. They are really good.) Anyway, the 6 year old played in a local tennis tournament this weekend. He played doubles, and his partner was a 4th grader who is just learning tennis. My brother said it was hilarious and that the 6 year old had a blast. I can't wait to see pictures. I won't see the not-so-little guys until Christmas. I can't wait to ask the youngest about the tennis tournament. He has great expressions so I definitely want to ask him about it in person rather than over the phone. I can't wait to see them!!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Ramblings about Simpler Times

I am really thankful for many of the technological advances I enjoy...central heat and air in my home, heat and air in my car, my car, microwave ovens, washers and dryers, toilets that flush, a timed system to water my yard, etc. I could go on and on.

However, sometimes I wish we could go back a bit to simpler times. Wouldn't it be great if Sunday was a day to rest and spend time with family...and that everyone could and would do so? I understand the interest for stores and restaurants to be open to make an extra buck that day. But I still wish people sat on their front porch and really knew their neighbors...didn't that used to be the "norm"?

Right now, I drive be hundreds if not thousands of acres of land on my way to work. On one side of the road, there is a herd or two of antelope. They are beautiful, and so far I haven't seen that any have been hit on the road. On the other side of the road are a bunch of horses...I would say 50 to 75 in all. Each day when I drive "into town", I get so much joy seeing these animals. They always bring a smile to my face (even after living here for about 9 months). But I know one day, most of that land will be developed for either homes or retail shops or maybe both. And when that happens, I will miss my antelope and horse friends.

When my mom was a kid, they were very poor as were most of the people they knew. My mom said the 6 kids weren't really aware they had it so bad (in more than just monetary ways). Their mom made things fun for them. They played games, they made candy, and they just spent time together. Listening to their stories, they were very imaginative kids. They didn't have tv, an Xbox, or a Nintendo, or maybe even a bicycle. Yet they definitely were not missing out on anything those toys can provide. They had a home full of love and joy.

If there are ever kids in my home, I wonder what kind of parent I will be. How will I teach them about what really matters in life? How do you make sure they have what they need without giving in to everything they want? How do you teach them to have a thankful heart and to appreciate more than just things?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

It burned!!

I was so disappointed when I got home from work on Tuesday. I planned very well and started dinner in my crock pot so we could have a nice, warm, yummy dinner when we got home. Well, that didn't happen. My dinner burned. I completely followed the directions. Now I am left wondering if my crock pot is too hot or if there is some other problem. I am going to have to use it over the weekend while I am home so I can keep an eye on it. It would be a wonderful solution to busy nights after work. Please let my crock pot work!!!


You gotta love baseball playoff time. It has already been cut a bit short this year because 3 series ended in sweeps and the 4th series only went to 4 games (it was the best out of 3 games). Even though my team is not in the playoffs, again, I really enjoy watching the playoffs. And it is a bit sweeter since our local team is in the playoffs. They are playing the Diamondbacks right now and are ahead 5 to 1. I would LOVE to go to the World Series, but I bet you just about have to donate a kidney to get tickets. If the Rockies beat Arizona, you can bet I will either be online or in a line outside trying to buy tickets.


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Doesn't anyone take pride in their work anymore?

Our builder made the first mistake, but our landscaper did not do anything to help the situation.

Our house was built too low. How does this happen, you might be asking (at least, I have asked that question multiple times)? I don't know how to answer that. Our home builder does not employ the fellows who do the actual building of houses. They hire contractors. Our floor plan is one of the most popular floor plans for this builder so it is likely that the same folks who built our house have built at least dozens just like it. However, somehow this time the house was built too low. What does this mean? Well...when you stand across the street from our house, it is obvious that the house is lower than the sidewalk next to it...resulting in drainage issues. Water stands in areas of our yard. The landscaper did not help the problem when he put in our grass, but the builder admitted fault and paid the landscaper to correct the problem(s). This was done almost 2 weeks ago. We are not sure the problem is fixed yet, but I certainly hope it is.

What has happened to our work ethic (and I say "our" because I know I am not the perfect employee either)? Do you realize that at the time the Statue of Liberty was built, there were no airplanes? That means that the people who worked on the Statue of Liberty did not know that one day we would be able to see the very top of the Statue. Even though they did not know that, they completed the and all on top. That to me is the epitemy (did I spell that right?) of good work ethic. I don't see that much today. Everything is about getting things done the quickest way so there is as much profit as possible. It doesn't matter if we cut corners or do less than we are capable of.

Every time I think of work ethic, I think of Joseph in the Old Testament. Joseph went through countless trials but always seemed to be put in charge of this or that. The Bible says that Joseph worked as unto the Lord in all he did. That challenges me, inspires me, and really makes me think about my own work and work ethic. Am I living up to that standard? Is God pleased in the effort I give to my job? I am an accountant. The work I do does not amount to much in the big picture. But can I glorify God working as an accountant? I have to believe that I can...but I am not sure that I do. I used to have that scripture posted in my office. I think I need to do that again so I am constantly reminded of my place on this earth. The purpose of my own life on this earth is to glorify God. God, help me to remember this and to make this my aim.

Friday, October 5, 2007

My Newest Journal

I generally carry at least 3 notebooks/journals/day planners around with me to keep track of appointments, my to-do list, etc. I have no idea why I do that, but I am definitely a list maker. I used to remember EVERYTHING. These days, I am lucky if I can remember something long enough to write it down as a reminder. I have no idea what happened to me in that area. Anyway, I recently purchased a new notebook/journal. I decided that I would try to combine all my notebooks into one. I thought it would help if I made it cute and fun to use. This is what I came up with. I'll have to see how it works out. It may be too fru-fru for me.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Things are changing...and it's not just the leaves

I know things are always changing, but there are going to be some big changes on my team at work in the next weeks and probably over the next two years. Until a couple of weeks ago, my immediate team at work had 5 people on it. It has been good to be a small team and we have worked through some issues over the past year. Being a small team helped that process. We have made so much progress since March. It has been unbelievable really. In the past two weeks we have hired an additional 7 people and will be hiring at least 1 more person. I think we have made good hiring decisions with these folks, but I guess only time will tell. We recently merged with another company and my region will be going from 10 stores to 31 stores. It is a lot of growth overnight. It is an exciting time period, but it has also been stressful. I am not completely resistant to change, but I think this has impacted me more than I anticipated. I am questioning all kinds of things now. I currently work in a different location than the rest of my team. I have been doing so since January. I am VERY thankful that I can work close to home. The office is 100+ miles from my house. That is not a feasible drive to make each day. However, I had no idea how hard it would be to be separated from my team. Some days are lonely...and I expect it will be hard to get to know my new teammates over the distance. I am hopeful that things will go well though. The situation has caused me to really think about my position, what I like about it, what I really think about it, etc.