Who needs miracle grow on the grass when I have this...
That's right, Marleigh is my little fertilizer baby. She eats a greenie every night before she goes to bed. And for those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about... here you go.
I'm not sure what all is packed into these little things shaped like a tooth brush but they make my grass grow, grow and grow every where she tee tee's. If you come into my backyard, you will find little bunches of grass that is this thick, lush, green patch of grass. One day I will take a picture of the grass (it was just cut and you can't tell much about it now) so you can see the difference of where she "goes" and the rest of the grass.
Just let me know if you would like to borrow my little fertilizer... I'm sure we can work out a deal.
It never fails that my parents and friends will ask me, "What do you want for your birthday?" And this year, I know EXACTLY what I want. But it can only be given to me by one person. I guess we will see if my birthday wish will come true. And for the rest of the folks that are asking what to give me...
Today, I left my house early to get to work at 6:30 (that's right, a.m.) so I could look over everything with the magazine before it got uploaded to the printer. No one is usually at work at that time so I don't have to worry about being asked a million questions and can focus on my task at hand. However, I came my down my normal route to work this morning and it's usually the same view. Today, I got a different view.
While traveling down 23rd Ave., I passed the same cemetery that I do every week day morning. But something caught my eye this morning. An elderly man was sitting next to a headstone and it was obvious he was crying. Something about that struck a chord with me. Was the person he was crying over his wife, mother or child? How did they die? Was it a sudden death, a long battle of cancer, lost or did they live to be 80 and have live a wonderful life? How long had it been since that person was buried? A month, a year, 10 years or even 25 years?
I haven't lost a parent, sibling or significant other and I hope it's a lifetime before I ever do. I know that no one is ever ready to lose someone close and I dread the day that I have to deal with that. But it did get me thinking. If it was me that was gone, would anyone miss me? What will they remember about me? Will I just be a page in someone's journal or will my life have made an impact on others?
Seeing that today made me stop and realize that this is my life and it's the only one I've got. So I'm going to make it count, make a difference in someone's life and hopefully when it is my time to go - I will be more than just a page in someone's journal... I'll be a part of someone's life.
You know that sound. It's the sound your vehicle makes until you buckle up.
And unless you have an older vehicle, it's gonna ding, ding, ding, ding until you fasten your seat belt.
So my question is... why would you not buckle up? I have known too many people that have been in car wrecks and were not buckled and they lost their life. It takes less than 30 seconds to do it and... it's the law. Remember the law enforcement folks are in the "click it or ticket" campaign right now.
Be safe out there today and always but especially during the holiday weekend!!
As many of you know, there is never a relaxing weekend for me. There is always something going on. Places to be, people to see and so on and so on. When I tell you we haven't had a quiet weekend all year... trust me, I'm telling you the truth.
So, this past weekend we thought we were going to have a free day on Sunday. AAANNN, wrong!!!! We ended up with VIP seats for the Key Brother's Air Show.
Now, I have been to see the Blue Angels and loved every minute of it, both times. This was a little different but still great.
This guy is a doctor at Blair E Batson hospital in Jackson. This is his "hobby." Just let me tell you - there is no way I could ever be in the back seat of that airplane. The loops and turns and twists... seriously - I would be sick, sick, S.I.C.K.
The show was great (or at least the part we stayed for). It was way to hot to be out there all day but we feel like we gave it a good run for it's money for the two hours we were there.
Call it "older age" or whatever you want but I have tested negative for "Bieber Fever."
But some of these kids have really got it bad. Screaming and crying just to see or touch him. I'm not sure I would be that way if were to be near Vince Vaughn or Mark Wahlberg. Yes, they are my two favorite actors.
Growing up I don't think I had Backstreet Boys Fever or NSYNC Fever. But then again, I don't think the media was making such a big deal about them either. Nor could you pull up YouTube and watch them sing for hours. Terry's nieces are of age that they LOVE him. My nieces are still listening to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, thank goodness!!! But I wonder who will come along when they are of age.
Anyway, if you have this "Bieber Fever" I will be praying for you that you get over it soon. =)
who always gets something on my shirt while eating.
that sings the wrong words to a song on the radio.
who knows a good thing when I've got it.
that thinks bananas are best when brown spots are on the outside pill.
who can admit to watching Glee, The Hills and The City.
that will cry if someone sings "happy birthday" to me at a restaurant. who would rather take a beating than go to Walmart. that makes time for a professional pedicure. who loves dogs and dislikes cats. that knows what I want my future home to look like. who holds the ones I love close to my heart. that can't remember to put mail in the mailbox to be picked up. who stops talking when I'm upset. that believes in something so bad that I'll cry if you don't. who hates to have someone tell something about me that's a lie. that secretly wants to be on Broadway. who will play the piano for 4 hours straight and not again for months. that wants to be a size 2 and knows that will never ever happen. who has come to realize that I love to blog.
After all the baby dolls I took care of growing up, and even giving them hair cuts myself, I couldn't wait to grow up to be a mommy.
That day hasn't come yet but I'm the next best thing... Auntie Joy. And they aren't my blood nieces. They are my one of my best friends, Paula's, kids. Paula didn't think she could have kids after trying for 19 years. And on that 19th year of trying she decided to get a hysterectomy. Only when she went in for the normal blood work to set up everything for the surgery... she found out she was 4 1/2 months prego.
Shocker? I didn't believe it when she called me that Monday. I was living in Jackson at the time. And then that same week on Wednesday, she came to Jackson for a sonogram and I got to see the first pictures of the little baby girl growing inside of her. That's right... found out she was prego on Monday and found out it was a girl two days later.
Anniston was born in Aug almost 4 years ago and I have been a part of her life since before she was born, even conceived. We may not share blood but we do share the same middle name, Leigh. I was the third person to hold her when she was born (right after her mommy and daddy) and they kept the name a surprise to everyone but me. Do you know how hard that was for me to keep it from everyone?? I loved her name so much and keeping it hush, hush for 5 months - geez it was hard... but I did it.
Since the day she was born, I have not gone over a week without seeing her. And when her little sister Ava was being born, it was Auntie Joy that took care of her and took her to the hospital to meet her baby sister for the first time. I changed her diaper more times than I want to remember, I bought most of her clothes the first two years of her life, I painted her toes for the first time, I took her to the rodeo for the first time and we have gone to every one in Lauderdale ever since and I don't miss a chance to pick her up from preschool. I have been there for a lot of her firsts and I have missed a few but one thing for sure... I love her like she is my own.
Being an aunt is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I'm not their mom but they are training me to be the best mommy one day. My children will have Anniston and Ava to thank for their childhood. One day.
Last night was another first, I taught Anniston how to swing by herself. All I could hear was, "look Auntie Joy, I'm doing it!" To say it warmed my heart is an understatement. And an hour before that first, she asked me to draw with her. While being wanna be Pisacos, she said to me, "you are my best friend." I hope she still feels this way when she is fifteen and I'm telling her no to something.
That is Anniston's portrait on the left and Terry's portrait on the right.
A friend of mine sent me a link to a blog and said she thought I should read it. This was what she was blogging on... "what brings you real joy?" She talked about the things that bring her real joy and challenged everyone to share what brings you real joy and how to live a more joyful life.
Being named Joy, you might think I'm full of joy. But I'm human just like the rest of you and I have down days... take for instance my blog on frustration yesterday. So, I got to thinking after I read her blog, what does bring me real joy? Because I love making sure everyone has joy in their life.
And this is what I came up with: (they are in no particular order)
music, laughter, butterflies in my stomach, being loved, waking up to my love, red roses, the smell of a black currant candle, friends that turn into sisters, me in my recliner with the remote and a night of my favorite TV shows, singing in the car, 80s music, Marleigh bringing her toys to bed even though she knows better, the love of my dad, someone playing with my hair, an answered prayer, hearing Auntie Joy coming from Anniston's mouth, having hymns come in my head right when I need them to, cooking, a good surprise, sunbathing in the backyard with a fan blowing directly on me, red velvet cheesecake, being praised for a job well done, road trips, new make up, the thought of one day being a wife and mommy, still having my papaw and granny alive even though I don't get to spend much time with them, being held close, having money to pay the bills and see there is a bit left to buy something I have been wanting, ordering take out, sharing a dessert after a wonderful meal even when we don't need it, birthdays, gerber daisies, a clean house, a phone call from the person who can make it all better, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, peas, cornbread and sweet tea, a pj wearing rainy day, feeling like I look good, daydreaming about the what if's and what could be's, holding a newborn baby, vacation, sleeping in, knowing that nothing else matters but he and I, relaxing on a porch or balcony having breakfast, the smell of grilling, holidays, family time..... the list keeps going and going.
Basically, I am blessed. I may not have all the money in the world, the perfect body, the ideal life my mother thinks I should have but what I have is joy. And if I can just remember to take a moment to enjoy my joys, I have everything I need to be happy and content. I challenge you to share what brings you real joy and embrace it, everyday.
The below is an abbreviated list her blog gave of ways to find even more joy in your life and I hope to apply these daily...
Develop a short term memory. In other words, forgive and forget. Nobody goes to their deathbed praying for justice, "Dear God, give me what i deserve..." Rather, we pray for mercy, "Dear God, forgive me..." Be forgiving of others.
Be a good friend
Count your blessings - it reminds you of what you do have instead of what you don't.
Look for the humor in daily life - this will give you perspective...don't take yourself so seriously.
Deepen your faith - this will help you to see your place in this world more clearly.
Overlook a flaw in another person and ourselves- nobody is perfect. "See everything, overlook a great deal, then correct a little".
Thank someone who has enriched your life - don't wait until it is too late.
Make peace with your life - when you think to yourself "this is it? this is my life?" - embrace it.
I'll try not to get all sappy on y'all but I have to say that this year with Terry has been a great year. I don't remember life without him and can't imagine my future without him. No, we aren't engaged to be married. No, we don't live in the same house. No, we don't have the perfect relationship (because there is no such thing). But what we do have is love and companionship. We truly care about what each other thinks and feels. We truly want each other to be happy. And, we truly love each other.
I look forward to a lifetime of happiness with this man.
Yesterday was Marleigh's 7th birthday. I was still sick and had little voice left but I did try to sing happy birthday to her. Only this is they way she felt about it...
After a long day of photo shoots (which I had no energy to be at) I came home and took her to Petco to get a couple of toys and some Greenies. She loves to pick her own toys out and squeak them non stop all the way home. I picked up some loaded potato soup from O'Charleys and she got some of the bacon bits off the top for an extra treat.
All in all - I think she had a great birthday. And I'm sure she will be spoiled even more this weekend when she goes to spend time with her granny and papa.
Today is Mother's Day and most of the day will be spent with mom. We will go to church with her, my grandmother and my aunt and then head to my parents house to enjoy an afternoon of food, fun and laughter.
Mom's don't always get the credit they need or deserve from bringing us into this world to making sure we were fed and clothed growing up. We learn to depend a lot on our moms growing up but after they see they need us during our younger years... they can't seem to let us go as we get older.
Thirty is getting closer to me everyday and that means I'm not a little girl anymore. Sometimes I don't think my mom understands that. I realize that I will always be "their little girl" and there will always be a part of me that needs her. However, I hope this Mother's day she sees that I'm not the little girl that I once was and that one day I hope to become a mother. I hope to one day be a great mother like she has been and continues to be to me.
I love being a girl. I do, I do, I love being a girl.
I love the shoes: high heels, flats, boots, sandals, flip flops, tennis shoes. I love the makeup:
lipsticks, eye shadows, eye liners, mascara, bronzers. I love the clothes:
dresses, pjs, jeans, t-shirts, baby doll tops. I love the jewelry: rings, necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and did I mention BLING?
I love the smells: home cooking, flirty perfumes, warm yummy candles. I love the hair products: shampoos, conditioners, hairsprays, flat irons. And I love the love:
slow sweet kisses, playful fighting, hugs, cuddling, the silence, the passion, the love.
As much as I enjoy being a girl, there are a few things that can make our life a bit stressful. As "girls" we deal with a lot. Most of us are born with a motherly instinct and want to save the world. And as we grow up, we realize this is not realistic. It's in our nature to take care of things. Somethings more than others. I love to cook and yes, even clean. And I like things done a certain way. I guess I learned that from my mother. Little things like, the way towels are folded and the cleaning products she used... I had a mental note of these things when I moved out of their house in to my own. I still do some of the things the way mom use to but, now I have my own way of doing things, too. I guess it's true what they say... "like mother, like daughter."
There is a softer side to us girls. We usually wear our hearts on our sleeve and secretly love to receive. I'm not talking about tangible things, although they are nice. Receiving a "thank you" or a hug can make our day. We don't do things to get praise but we also like them to be noticed every once in a while. And ever so often I think we deserve mental health day which includes a day in our pjs with our hair in a ponytail, under a blanket on the couch watching chick flicks and eating chocolate. This one simple day can change our attitudes and make us see things in a different light.
Men say they don't understand women and I agree, we can be complicated. But ask any man and they will tell you more times than not, they couldn't handle being a girl. God knew what he was doing when he chose who would be male and female. We put up with a lot being a girl, but we also have great rewards that comes with it. Most of us are daddy's girls and then grow up to marry the man of their dreams. And some will experience what all mothers have gone through, the birth of their first child. With that gift from God, it is the gift that keeps on giving.
I love being a girl. In my lifetime, I have experienced a lot of things that only girls get to go through and I look forward to all the others.
We all know her and love her. She is with us during Thanksgiving, Christmas and pretty much every Sunday. She is the one and only...
Her late grandmother's recipe has helped make many meals complete with the yummy yeast rolls she now sells in your local grocery store freezer.
And now - you have the chance to meet her, ask her when she is coming out with the fat free version of the rolls (ok that's my question), get baking tips and have her sign your copy of her latest cookbook on the best seller list,
which is exclusively available at The Potting Shed in Philadelphia.
I know this is a busy weekend. Relay for Life Friday night into Saturday morning and Mother's day is Sunday. Well, this is my suggestion: enjoy Relay, go to bed and get a few hours of shut eye, wake up hungry, go pick your mom up and take the short 30 minute drive to Philadelphia, MS to meet Sister Schubert at The Potting Shed. It's a free event and they will have just about all her recipes from her cookbook for you to try (the recipes are easy and are to die for). Not only will they have her cookbook to purchase for you to have her sign but, the store has so many things that other stores in this area do not. I would love to have an all expense paid card to buy everything I want in there.
Call Jenny, Nancy or Lisa to find out more details. And if you can't make it during the time she is there, ask them to get her to personalize her signing of the cookbook for you and pick it up next week.
If you know me, you know I'm not short on words. But put me in front of a group in a small room and I just about pass out. Not sure what it is about it but I can't remember silly things like, my name, where I work, even the day. My throat gets really dry and I start to sweat. Boy that's sexy, right? I DON'T think so!
Why would anyone ask me to come speak to a group in the first place... much less for a second time. Well, it happened and I will get to experience all of the above in a month. When I first moved back to Meridian, I was asked to speak to the Downtown Optimist Club about the new magazine I was starting and today they have asked me to return. I plan to discuss the new magazine, LOCALS... Today's Women (which you all were the first to see the cover) and plug our wonderful "blogging babes." But if you hear about someone passing out in Western Sizzlin on the news in a few weeks - don't worry, it will be me.
You have to love the independent women we have become, but when holidays like Mother's Day comes around... can I just ask all of the moms out there to do this for me next year? STOP buying the things you want and see TWO months before Mother's Day. Seriously, we know you have money and can buy the things you want but did you ever think that we need something to buy you that you want?!?!
Every year we seem to go through this. "Mom, what would you like us to get you for Mother's Day?" Her answer... "I don't want or need anything!" Give me a break!!! You know your gonna be mad if we don't give you something. And wouldn't you rather get something you want or need than something that you might never use??
Seems I'm too late for this request this year - but next year... do a daughter a favor and wait to let us buy it for you!!
Salad, steak, loaded mashed potatoes, baked beans and cheesecake... add 5 great friends and you know it's gonna be a great evening. And that is just what we had last night. After a crazy week with work for myself and my man... we decided a quiet evening at home would be perfect - and steak would make it even better. But when you don't get to spend any time with your friends due to a crazy work week... we decided to spice up the night with friends.
And that is exactly what we had, a fun filled night with my man and friends. The food, it was delicious. The laughter, it was contagious. (Note: no alcohol was involved in the making of this evening of fun.) The memories that were made, made it worth staying up late. I don't think I have seen the clock strike midnight on a Friday night in a very long time. It was great.
And after a great evening with friends and laughing so hard it hurt... sleeping in til 10 am and having breakfast for lunch!! Forget the honey bun... cheesy browns, bacon, sausage, biscuits - that's what I call a real breakfast. The only thing that could have made it better... someone else cooking it and cleaning it up. Oh and the addition of pancakes would have been nice, too!!