Monday, September 29, 2008

Charm is deceptive, and beauty fleeting...

I've got beautiful friends. There's no two ways about it, I've got knock-your-socks-off gorgeous gal pals. It should be no surprise that I've always felt somewhat, er, homely. At best. Some days less attractive than homely, but altogether average for the most part. My husband said a couple of years ago, when asked point blank "Do you think your wife is beautiful?", "Yeah, she's cute". I know, because I was sitting there. My friend Stef was seriously mad whe I told her about the conversation. "A DOG is cute", she says, "not your WIFE". All things considered I'm pretty ok with this, and the few times anyone has said they think I'm "pretty", I get quite uncomfortable.

I've always been sorta honked off at the notion that "all women are beautiful". It felt like I was being placated in my average-ness, condescended upon (to? who knows). So imagine my surprise when I'm casually reading my Bible one day, and I come upon, "How beautiful you are, my darling, How beautiful you are!" in Song of Songs. By my count, the bride is called beautiful eleven times in eight chapters. It's like she doesn't GET IT. Hmm.

As a gal who believes that this book is BOTH a story of two lovers AND the Lord's relationship with His church, do I have any choice but to believe that He thinks I'm beautiful? Can you tell that I'm squirming, screaming inside, as I type this?

I don't know who to be as someone who is supposed to (but does not, and is not sure how to) believe that she is beautiful.

I am stuck.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

As promised...

Here is the horror...

As a preface, it was late, so I don't have any shoes on. And I'm 5'2", so those dresses look a lot better with shoes on. That is all. On to the disgrace:

First up, my freshman year homecoming dress. OK, this was a horrible night. I made my friend Rachael go b/c I went with a guy who wasn't allowed to date, so we had to have an uneven number of people per his parents. Then the restaurant we went to was tooooootally booked, so we ate at McDonald's. But the worst part was before all that, when I was putting the dress on. We couldn't get it zipped. At all. It fit fine, but the zipper got stuck and I was nearly in tears trying to get the thing on. Rachael still laughs about it. Sigh. How hideous is that thing, anyhow?!

I can't find my sophomore year dress, so we'll move on to junior year. At the time, I didn't see anything inappropriate about it, but even at 28, I wouldn't wear a dress with that sort of cleavage showing! Homecoming that year was on my birthday, yay. Notice the Look Alike pulling herself up behind me.

Here's my senior homecoming dress. Forgive the pulling in the front, the Look Alike was at my feet yanking on it. I bought it at Elder-Beerman for $18, and I was totally excited. I went through my extravagent phase, but apparently I've always been a bargain hunter.

Not homecoming, but I wore this dress to my baccalaureate mass. Hideous. That blue was one of my high school colors, though, so it was marginally OK. See that calf muscle? See it?!

And finally, here's the dress I wore to Laura's wedding. I've lost 22 lbs since the wedding so it's not as fitted as it was, but I really loved that dress.

OK, I think you've seen enough of me for a bit, but we got a new camera so you might be subject to more pictures soon!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Yet Another Giveaway!

ElleBee posted this one too (she's such a good blog reader, I attribute that to Bloglines which I can't seem to figure out). You must go check out this shop, the things are totally adorable!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Homecoming of two sorts

First of all, we leave for a family trip to Disney World on Oct 22. I could not BE more excited, we haven't been since I was 32 weeks pregnant with the Chubby Cheeked Monster. My FIL's birthday is Oct 23, so he'll get a birthday button to wear, we'll have one for the Firecrakcer Princess, and the CCM will get one for his first visit. Music Man, MIL, and myself will be pin-less, and the Look Alike would probably just chew on it.

I'm taking FP to the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique and doing the Castle package, which is the thing I'm most highly anticipating of the whole trip. Music Man is taking the CCM to the Harmony Barber shop to get his first hair cut. They give them special EARS and a certificate, so I guess it's good that my kid is still practically bald at age two! WDW is other described as the "mother ship" for Disney fans, and it definitely feels like going home to me!

I think I mentioned about a month ago that my LA started to crawl. She's now almost 7 mos old and pulling up. Yesterday, we got a new car seat for the FP so we can move LA to a Radian 65(FP got a Graco Nautilus ), and as I was setting it up, LA pulled up to standing then used it as a walker to move about 10' across the living room floor . But my mantra, as it has been known for months, is "the sooner she walks, the sooner I can go to the gym during the day".

The second homecoming might get a laugh. Homecoming in Ohio, at least where I went to school, tends to fall around my birthday. In fact, my junior year the homecoming dance was ON my birthday. The other day, just for fun, I decided to try on my junior and senior year dresses. Wouldn't you know it, they fit. I was talking to ElleBee about it, and she had an ingenious idea. Why not take pictures and post them? I'll try to get THAT post up this weekend, and please feel free to laugh, I will be!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Giveaway (get your attention?)

So Kat is giving away a Hoover self-propelled vacuum. Uh huh. For real. If you'd like to enter to win the sucker (my, I'm hilarious), go check her out.

Those of you who have seen my housekeeping know that my Roomba doesn't so much make carpet lines. Er, well, it does, just on the 6 square feet of carpet it gets to before it dies, gets stuck with no one to save it, or waits at the top of the steps to be redirected. So much for a robot, eh?

You're probably a better housekeeper than I am (because which one of you finds her 6 month old happily munching on a banana peel left by the 2 year old?), so you'll be doubly blessed by this machine. Go on, you know you want to.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


There's a cause that's becoming more and more disturbing to me, and that's the child sex trade. It's rampant in this country, in my city, and the world over. My friends saw Branded the documentary last week, and say it's not as graphic as I had feared. If you'd like to know more about Branded, check out this link.

As a mother, I'd hope we'd all care enough about children to put a stop to this heinous, disturbing, scarring, hideous practice. These children are branded or tattooed as property. How can we continue to look the other way?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


I just got a lengthy (and I mean LENGHTY) comment from a Muslim about how Islam is the one true religion and Christianity and Judaism is false. So let me say here and now:

I'd rather die for my Jesus than live for any false god, knowing that I failed my Creator, He who has proved Himself faithful to me time and time again, after I spurned, spit on, and cursed His name.

I will say this, Isa al Masih is real. To the commenter, I am praying for you, and all Muslims, during Ramadan. I am on my knees before the Lord for your souls and spirits.

To my Christian brothers and sisters, remember, "They will know we are Christians by our love"

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. This is my command: Love each other” (John 15:12-17).

Monday, September 22, 2008

Habits and exercise

This isn't going to be what you thought it was going to be, but I'm tired and those are the two broad topics, so there.

First, I have strange habits. I realized this today after getting out of the shower, how the first thing I do is reach for a Q-tip. I'm a little weird about the ear cleaning thing, it drives the Music Man crazy. And then I shave my big toes. Which would be ok, except I don't have hair there. I shave them preemptively, just in case I ever DO get hairy toes. Because that weirds me out. I also have to resist the urge to put yellow mustard on sweet corn. People also think it's weird that I eat mustard on my eggs. *Shrug* That's how I like them.

As for exercise, sigh. I've been taking these classes at a church on Monday and Friday mornings. It's amazing, $2 per class, and childcare is free. The women in there are great, my kids have a good time, and they get snacks and sometimes play on the playgorund. What more could a mom ask for? But remember my post about how the music at the gym gets into my head, and it isn't particularly pure?

Well today, the instructor had "The roof is on fire". With the swear words. Did I MENTION that we were in a sanctuary? Now, I'm all about being who you are inside church and outside of church, but seriously? BAD swear words? I was pretty offended, and I don't offend easily. Sigh.

So that's all for today, unless something totally miraculous happens, or I take a nap. One or the other.

Friday, September 19, 2008


"Sometimes I wish you were never born"
is the same as "I wish you were dead"
I roll this around in my head,
Words spoken calmly, like drops of water toppling into a bath without splashing
It was a cold, weary October night, and I will not let it go
It rattles and collects dust and lint and hatred
Years of scorching memories flash in my eyes

The son wasn't the prodigal, it was the father
The father is carelessly extravagant
With his home
With his heart
With his love

And my heart isn't open enough to give her back
My cloak
My ring
My fatted calf

I don't stand on a hill, looking for her to come back to me
Because on the day she told me she wished I was never born
I reckoned her dead
I just didn't realize it until today.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

I Hate Elijah House

There I said it, and now can hopefully move on.

So Elijah House, for those of you who don't know, is a prayer ministry designed to help you work through your stuff so you can effectively minister to others. Sounds fun, right?

Yeah. Except that I have a lot of stuff. And it hurts to dig up all that drama. I've written some here about my abortion, my eating disorder, some about my marriage, but the stuff I'm doing here is stuff that I like to keep hidden. Like my mom telling me she wished I was never born. Like not knowing what it feels like to really experience God. Like only identifying with songs that talks about my sin and brokenness, not the joy of the Lord.

So things are feeling a little dark and morose around here these days. I still rejoice over my children, and I'm working hard at eating right and working out in healthy ways, but otherwise, emotionally, I'm just trying to achieve homeostasis. It's going to be a long five months.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wednesday: I Wonder As I Wander

Does anyone else remember that hymn? I don't know all the words anymore, but the older people in my church loved it when I was a child. So Mrs. B does this on Fridays over at See the Blue Sky, but I'm borrowing it today.

Five ways God loved me today:
* He let me rise without drama, leaving a sleeping infant in my bed in the cool, quiet dark
* He allowed me to feel victorious in dropping some weight (down to 148.4)
* He motivated me to get in a quick work out first thing this morning
* He has me in peace about Elijah House tonight
* He helped me choose the cereal I wanted instead of the one I choose out of habit, as a way of honoring my hunger.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

NOT Tuesday poetry!

At least not of that sort. You know the movie 28 Days with Sandra Bullock? I heart that movie, and there's a scene when Andrea is leaving that Gwen (Bullock's character) says, "Don't be someone else's slogan because you are poetry".

Poetry, eh? How could I be poetry? But in that spirit, I've started a new blog. It's a big leap for me, but if you care to check it out, follow me on over to Honoring Hunger. It's gonna be an amazing year-long adventure!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Monday Laziness

It's one of those days where I'd like to just respond to a topic, so I'll answer one of those surveys I got from a friend for the whole blog world to see. Nice, eh? Forgive the abominable grammar, I didn't write the thing and I'm pretty beat from kickboxing, else I'd change it myself.

As a side note, I finally posted an updated profile picture with my princess. Doesn't she look so happy? The kid gives great hugs.

1. Song that always makes you sad?
"Held", by Natalie Grant

2.Last thing you bought?
Gym pants that fit, since all but two of my others fall off with strenuous activity.

3. Last person you argued with?
Music man.

4.Do you put butter before putting the peanut butter on?
Uh, no...that's just foul.

5.One of your stuffed animals' names as a kid?
Coony, my stuffed raccoon. Who has a stuffed raccoon?!

6. Did you ever own at one time a Barenaked Ladies Cd?

7.Favorite day of the week?
Thursday, because that means I got through Elijah House the night before, get to go to Pilates, AND have small group!

8.Favorite Sundae topping?
Pineapple, no question.

9.Did you take Piano lessons?
nope, can't play anything at all on the 88s

10. Most frequent song played?
For myself, it's probably Misty Edwards' "You Won't Relent", but we plan "Cinderella" for the FP tooooooo often.

11 T.V. show you secretly enjoy?
I've started going to bed at 9, so I don't see much TV. But the new season of The Biggest Loser starts tomorrow at 8!

12.Worst sport to watch on tv?
Golf, duh.

13.Date someone older or younger?
MM is 20 mos older than me, I've never dated anyone younger

14.One place you could travel right now?
WDW, where my Mitzi is!

15.Do you use umbrellas?
Yes, but mostly because the Music Man is practically allergic to getting wet. It drives him NUTS; I could care less.

16. Do you know all the words to the Canadian national anthem?
Just the first two

17.Favorite Cheese?
I'm a sucker for a good fresh buffalo mozzarella

18.The Smith's or the Cure?

19.Do you prefer Blondes or Brunettes?

20.Best job you ever had?
Being a mom!

21.Did you go to your high school prom?
Yes, I went to senior prom

22. perfect time to wake up?
Nine works for me, but I get up at 6

23.perfect time to go to bed?
Eleven thirty, but I go to bed at 9

24. do you use your queen right away in chess? ..
If I could find the time and mental energy to plan, then no, I wouldn't.

25.Ever been in a car accident?
Just a couple of fender benders, thank God

26. Are you closer to mom or dad...or neither?

27. What age is this exciting life over for you?
Only God knows that!

28.What decade during the 20th century would you have chosen to be a teenager?
The 70's

29. Favorite shoes you have EVER owned?
My J. Crew high heeled boots, both the brown and the black.

30.Do you have an article of clothing you have had since you were in high school?
A softball t-shirt, sweatshirt, and, brace yourself, a DQ sweatshirt

31.Were you in track and field?
Nope, softball and band

32. Were you ever in a school talent show?
We didn't do that. And even if we had, I surely wouldn't have participated.

33.Have you ever written in a library book?
I can barely bring myself to write in books that I own, much less books I don't.

34. Allergic to?
Mangoes, poison ivy

35.Favorite fruit?
Sadly, it would be mangoes. But since I can't have them, it's raspberries.

36.Have you watched sex and the city?
A couple of seasons.

37.Baseball hat or toque?
baseball hat

38.Do you shampoo first in the shower or soap?
Usually shampoo.

39.Wet the toothbrush or brush dry with the toothpaste?
Wet it.

40.Pen or pencil?

41.Have you ever gambled at a casino?
Oh, why yes. On our honeymoon in Las Vegas, the Music Man and I each did $5 on the nickel slots. Took about an hour to run out of money.

42.Have you thrown up on a plane?

43. Have you thrown up in a car?
Yeah, I have some nasty motion sickness. Do not ever try to make me sit in the back seat, it's not pretty.

44. Have you thrown up at work?
I was bulemic, what do you think? :)

45. Do you scream on roller coasters?
I can't suck in enough breath to scream!

46.Who was your first date?
You know, I'm not sure I ever went on dates much. I guess you could say Kevin, we went to see Titanic because we like the last people in the world to see it.

47.Who was your first roommate?

48. What alcoholic beverage did you drink when you got drunk for the first time?
I don't believe I've ever been drunk. I've gotten a little, shall we say, jovial off of several glasses of champagne. There's a reason I don't drink.

49.What was your first job?
Dairy Queen

50. what was your first car?
A Geo Storm. Didn't last long, but it was my first car.

51.When did you go to your first funeral?
Still haven't been. Can you believe it, I'm almost 29!

52.How old were you when you first moved away from your hometown?

53.Who was your first grade teacher?
Mrs. Staker

54.Where did you go on your first airplane ride?
Orlando, to Disney World

55.When you snuck out of your house for the first time, who was it with?
I didn't have to sneak out, never have.

56. Who was your first Best Friend and are you still friends with them?

57. Where did you live the first time you moved out of your parent's house?

58. Who is the first person you call when you have a bad day?
Usually the Music Man

59. Who's wedding were you in the first time you were a bridesmaid or a groomsmen?
My aunt Jill. We all see how that went...

60.What is the first thing you do in the morning?

61.What was the first concert you attended?
Mary Chapin Carpenter. I'm sure Rachael remembers that...

62. First tattoo or piercing?
besides ears, it was a tattoo I got at 18

63.First celebrity crush?
Kirk Cameron, with whom I share my birthday.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Love Is Faithful

God teaches us things in amazing ways, doesn't He? Today, He taught me two lessons, one at sunrise and one in darkness.

This morning, my little son got up. He was not ready to be up, his body exhausted from too little rest, but he was awake nonetheless. I picked him up, admonished him to be quiet since the girls were still sleeping, and my boy slung his delicate 2 year old arm around my neck, clutching his stuffed dog tightly in the other arm. I brought him downstairs and we settled into the sofa to snuggle.

And what did my monster do? He fell asleep. I didn't realize it right away, but I heard him snore softly, and felt him turn his torso so he was snuggled in the warm space between my waist and my arm. I kept thinking about all the work I needed to be doing, but my son quieted all of that in me with his sweet little boyness and his sweeter smell. Ten minutes passed, and I just couldn't sit there unmoving any longer. He was somewhat incensed (still asleep) that I needed to move, but he decided to roll over onto his tummy and lay across my legs, using hos doggy as a pillow. And so for half an hour, until I absolutely HAD to get the girls up, my boy and I rested.

I delighted in him, in his sweetness, in his insistence that he needed me, and that no one else would do. I love that my son showed me exactly what my Father God wants ME to do more; come to Him first, and simply rest. Just rest. Take a siesta in His lap, let Him scratch my back and stroke my hair while I cling tightly to my mangy old dog (baggage? Who said I have mangy, flea-ridden baggage?).

Tonight I needed to run over to a friend's house to drop off a stroller for their trip to Disney World tomorrow, and while I was out, I realized that it's starting to get dark so much sooner (I left the house at 8:45). I drove by a h.u.g.e Baptist church, one that I've only been to once for an Easter egg hunt, whose steeple was brightly lit from the road.

I was so grateful to see that huge cross. It was half-hidden by trees for a time, but I caught a glimpse of it full on, in all its (earthly, broken) glory. I came to realize that in a world as scary as this, with every abomination and fear and injustice, that there is still the Cross, and that's where I find my home, my true North.

Jesus, You are my true North.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Give Me Your Eyes

Last night I started Elijah House, and an hour in, I knew this was going to be a crazy experience. Last night wasn't bad, but I can see God's hand and how He's knitting hearts together already. Did I also mention that I'm probably almost a decade younger than anyone else in my EH course? Yeah, that's me. Always the baby in any given situation. Fun. Our facilitator seems to have taken a particular interest in me, which is strange since I don't know her from Adam.

I'm not sure what He's up to these days; I've had no less than four people tell me in either these or similar words in the last three weeks that God "put me on their hearts", how strange is that? One person I know through her in-laws, one is the EH facilitator, one is the missions director at AVC, and the senior pastor (with whom I have issues) is the fourth.

Do you ever feel that you're on the cusp? I feel like I've been waiting for this for a long time, and that God's positioning me to move into my area of service for this season.

The title of this post refers to this song, which I find to be amazing (sorry, it won't let me embed today).

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Tuesday Poetry

Yes folks, it's that time of the week again. The time where I attempt to squeeze unwilling words from my fingertips trying to make something resembling bad poetry spring forth. This week, I had to really think. What do I want to say? What story do I have to tell? I'm not sure I have a story to tell, not anything riveting, not anything amusing, not anything revelatory.

I've been thinking a lot lately about how we visited this homeless shelter when I was in high school, and how we served them lunch. For whatever reason, I went and sat with the people while I ate lunch (apparently I was the only one who did), and it was a big deal to everyone but me, because I knew how uncomfortable I was, not willing just to be there with them. But heck, here it is anyhow:

"What's the difference between ignorance and apathy?"
asked the filthy, haggard man sitting across from me
"I don't know, and I don't care."
Peals of screeching, cigarette-riddled laughter echo off of the walls
The cracked linoleum floor
The water-stained ceiling

The table under my fingers is sticky,
as though it holds unto itself all of the need in this place
I force my eyes to meet his
Thinking about how fidgety I am
How they must be able to smell my insecurity

I know filthy streets, vagrants in my path
A miserable allegory of a life
Begging, more with the eyes than the lips
But charity is not a gift I possess
So I walk on
"But for the grace of God, there go I."
So, what is the difference between ignorance and apathy?

I don't know enough to care

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Happy Birthday, Chubby Cheeked Monster!

My boy, my little son, he's two today. Isn't he just scrummy? Happy birthday, my little monster. Momma loves you to bits.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Can you feel it?

The sun's rays are changing, gone from white-hot to sidelong golden. When you're in the car (with the AC on, this IS still Atlanta), you can SEE autumn. It's coming, it's coming!

Autumn is my very favorite time of year, and we really get cheated out of it here. There's nothing like fall in Ohio. It's cool, and the air smells like burning laves and cinnamon. You are positively giddy over the thought of crisp apples, their juice dripping down your chin. You love spending Friday nights at high school football games, where it's twilight by kickoff and you need a blanket for your lap by halftime. You go pick pumpkins at the beginning of October because they'll last. Days are in the 70s, then the 60s, and finally the 50s, and not only do you get to buy sweaters, but also jackets. There are few things as beautiful as the orange-gold carpet of leaves that crunch beneath your feet, except those same leaves en masse where your kids are jumping and jubilant.

That is autumn. This is a poor imitation that I will accept because, well, I must. By the time I get to Ohio, autumn will be over and it will be close to Christmas. I miss those days, that light, those smells. Everything felt so special.

I have to say, we have an amazing life here. A nice house, good jobs, good friends and family and church. I can't complain much. But I still miss it. So when you think of it, stomp through some leaves for me. Go see a marching band. Eat a caramel apple. Celebrate autumn, would you?

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Tuesday poetry

Yes, it's that day again! Bad poetry again, sigh. I didn't have a story this week, so the Music Man challenged me to write about the baby. The baby? Who can't write about a beautiful baby? Yeah, I couldn't. So I wrote a little about her birth. Not grisly, don't worry! Did I mention that my baby is six months old today? Already!

Breaking Point

The pool is warm, almost hot
The steam dances off of the high walls and
Leaps from my arms

I fade in and out from the pain
Riding the waves
I fall over them backwards
trying not to drown inside my own body

The time is short
and moments sputter, stall, and stay

Suddenly the moment is crystalline
and I yell

I bellow, and I feel the women before me
and my Jesus in me
and the angels singing over me

Eyes clamped shut and mouth wide open,
I sing my baby down
A monotone crescendo
It flows and falls and comes under control

And there she is,
Floating from the watery deep
Into my arms

My joy is here,
My Jubilee
I exult in you.

Monthly Check-In

Ok, so three months into a serious exercise/diet program, and here are my stats:

June 2, 2008:
181 lbs
39.3% body fat

July 2, 2008:
170.8 lbs.
35.3% body fat

August 2, 2008
160.0 lbs
32.0% body fat

September 2, 2008
151.4 lbs
30.0% body fat

So as you can see, I didn't do super well this month. I know it was going to get harder the closer I got to my goal, and I'm moderately happy with the progress I've made until now. Also, we had guests when ElleBee came, and I didn't count a single calories for an entire week, so it's really not terrible, all things considered.

Have I shared with you the bra incident? The one where I put one on and it fell down my ribs and I couldn't figure out why I hadn't noticed before? And then how ElleBee laughed her head off when my aha! moment came? Yeah, I wore sports bras all summer, that's how come I didn't notice that I'd gone from a 40" to a 34" band size. Sigh.

16.4 lbs to go, and it's feeling like a tough proposition, but I will not quit! I'm greatly looking forward to the day when I'm below 150, since that's my high school weight. And on a slightly more frivolous note, that also means that I go down a block on the doctor's scale (you know, you move the bottom one, then the top one). Yeah, that. It's the little things for me, I tell ya.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Labor Day Labor Stories

A bit late in the day, but a Labor Day meme! I found this one through Michelle who found it through Shannon.

How long were your labors?

Firecracker Princess: 21 hours
Chubby Cheeked Monster: 18 hours
The Look Alike: 16 hours

How did you know you were in labor?

FP: It was induced, shudder
CCM: I thought, "Hey, I'm a week overdue and these suckers are getting strong"
LA: I thought, "Hey, I'm 8 days overdue, and these contractions woke me from my sleep".

Where did you deliver?

At the hospital with all three, though LA was born at a different hospital (blessedly)


Narcotic and epidural with the FP, epidural only with CCM, drug-free with the LA, and will plan to go drug-free from now on.


No, thank the Lord. That thought frightens me.

Who delivered?

The same midwife delivered my first two. Then we had a falling out in this last pregnancy where she told me I endangered the life of my child by not taking a "standard" test. It was ugly, and she actually told me I could've killed my baby. Sigh.

SO anyhow, to make an ugly story shorter, I found a wonderful midwife at a different hospital and had a water birth. It was pretty delightful, as labors go. I got to walk. I got to eat. I got in the tub AND birthed in there. No IV. No "baby stuff" done to my newborn. I will hope to do it exactly the same way next time.

If you want to play along with this meme, just cut and paste the questions into your own blog and go visit Shannon!

The I Heart Your Blog Award

Wowza, this is tough. There are some great blogs out there which I read every single day. Here are my top 7 picks:

Tara at Feels Like Home: I really love that Tara just gets out there are does life. Sometimes I let stuff get in my way, and she just doesn't seem to have those sorts of hangups. And you MUST read about their beach trip, I rolled.

Laura at A Great Many Things: Laura is a brand new blogger who could use some love. She's also the wedding I was just at (if we'll all remember the dress drama), and a precious, wonderful, amazing Christ follower and friend.

My ElleBee has a new blog about her journey in Christ, and it's just fun to watch. Of course, you can always visit her other blog, but for official purposes, this one gets my vote.

Gwyn is an old friend. Her sister is the friend I had who is now a nun and, well, notsomuch a friend anymore since she's cloistered. But whatever. Gwyn is funny, and you should check out her baking. Drool.

See the Blue Sky just makes me happy. She does some wonderful homekeeping stuff but she's still modern and chic and all those things I wish I were.

Smockity Frocks makes me smile every day. MaddieLynn has seven precious children, and I just love to read about her life. So I do. Often. :)

Oh, the Sassy sisters. They're freaking hi-larious. And we have things in common. They love food. I love food. They love God. I love God. And that's just good enough for me.

So there you have it, my picks for the "I heart your blog" award. Go check them out!