Monday, December 28, 2009

Our 1st Christmas - Married!

Look how cute this ornament Justin's mom got for us is!

Technically it's our 4th Christmas together, but it's our first married one. This year our tree was red and silver. i bought a ton of new ornaments. Trumpets and snowflakes and music notes mostly. i loved the tree to pieces. Here's a few fave ornaments!

Apparently my "holiday" thing is snowmen. This is in my entryway.

And this was in my living room looking into the kitchen.

And here's our typical - lets take a picture in front of the tree shot - at 9PM Christmas day. lol

 We spent Christmas Eve at my in-law's house, eating finger foods, and watching Four Christmases. I'd seen it a couple times - but Justin hadn't yet and i was so excited for him to finally see it. He laughed the whole way through and now understands why i wanted him to see it so bad :)
We went back to the in-law's house Christmas morning to open presents. They live about a mile away in the same neighborhood. Here we are opening gifts.

I got a huge new curling iron that I wanted, some new hair products, a beautiful black and white diamond necklace, lots of other jewelry and giftcards, a purse, a standup black jewelry chest and other random things. We got some new bath towels and a huge george forman grill to replace the itty bitty one Justin uses so much. Justin got a mustang barstool from me, along with a few mustang shirts and an awesome hat, and his keypad for his box, and other small things. I think we came out well. Immediately after that, we hopped in the truck to drive 3 1/2 hrs to Franklin, TX to spend Christmas lunch at my great grandma's house. It was Justin's first real get together/luncheon with my family. We opened more presents, and had some reallllly good food. We took our annual family holiday photo of whoever is there that year. See:

It's one of the funnest things. We've been doing this as long as i can remember. And Uncle Charlie (far left) always sets up his tripod and uses his timer and ruuuuuns back to the group. Everyone chants for him and we're all lucky to be looking at the camera when the shutter finally clicks. haha!

Also took an individual photo of my immediate family this year at my mom's request :) One of just mom and us and one with mammaw and aunt laura

Liz and I proceed to go outside and snap a few new shots of her and I before we left.

Overall, it truly was a fabulously blessed Christmas. I hope it was for you all too!  Merry Christmas & Happy New Year Everyone!

Monday, December 21, 2009

New Hairstyle

For me anyway - it's probably not new to a single one of you.

I decided to take some fashion inspiration from my 14 yr old sister and part of what i got her for christmas...just not as extreme. She's getting some elaborate feathery headbands from Forever 21. Well, Saturday i went shopping with my bestie for a scarf, and happened to try on a headband myself. Loved it (strange!). Wasn't even considering paying that much. So went back to forever 21. I kid you not - all the cool ones were gone. Gone gone gone. Then bestie remembered there was an icing a couple stores down, so we went there, and i walked out with 4 completely different looks in headbands. I got a black sequined one that can be dressed up or down, a really shiny double row one perfect for a night out, a crazy swirled wire one that was just too cool not to get considering it was buy 1 get 1 half off, and then the one im wearing today, that basically looks like i pinned a metal flower in my hair. I think it's a cute touch for my otherwise plain work hairstyle. Check it out:  (it's actually more on the side than directly on top like this pic kinda looks like)

And if you have any other simple (keyword - SIMPLE) ideas for me...please say so. lol!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

That Time of Year

I'm not sure what the point of working out is right about now.

I'm eating..and eating..and eating...

No thanks to my suppliers from work. I'm bombarded with chocolate covered popcorn, chips and salsa, cookies, cupcakes, cheese and crackers, bacon, sausage, pies, candy coated pretzels, and all sorts of other deliciousness like - daily.

Today - I've had - the granola bar i brought for breakfast, lots of mini snickerdoodle cookies, lots of chips and salsa, 3 choc. chip cookies, and two deeeeeeeeelicious vanilla cupcakes that were all cute and decorated for christmas. complete with a reindeer ring on top of one of em. plus my lunch, and some more salsa.

at least im drinking water.

MUST WORK OUT TONIGHT. like. have to. Hubs made a deal with me. i know i posted it before...i gotta get him under 190 lbs by christmas. and i get a new camera. he didnt say anything about my weight. thank goodness. i stay happy as long as im under 150. let's just work out tonight - and NOT get on the scale.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Houston Snow 2009

It snowed in Houston again y'all. Like, the earliest recorded ever. And it snowed for a good 4-6 hrs 'round here. Weather's been crazy since. hot cold moist foggy cold warm rain. it changes daily. just like that. But snow is fun, even when it's short lived, because we rarely see it here. I know if you're in Colorado or something, you're probably as sick of it, as we are the sun. But it's exciting, and about an hr into it, we had to take pictures.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Essie Ray at 90 years young

That's what her cakes said! My great grandma just turned 90! How awesome is that? To have lived for so long and seen so much...change. That's gotta be amazing. She's seen the first flight of airplanes. The first movie with sound. The invention of the car radio. The invention of the copier and the ballpoint pen! The microwave. Then all the cool video games and electronics we have today. And look at the evolution of cars. and tv. and 8-tracks to blu-ray! Her son got her a computer once. she never turned it on. She does have a dvd player. And a cd player, but her record player still works fine. She outlived her husband, all of his sisters, and all of her brothers except 1. She's been through world war 2...and granddad fought in it. They got married so so very young, and were married their entire lives. To be with someone that long, and not know any other way, i cant imagine yet. Grandad passed away in February 2003. I remember being at UIL competition for poetry & prose. I had already halfway finished competition and was sitting at the table rehearsing. I was talking to my coach/teacher about possibly changing my last poem at the last minute, because one of my classmates from our school was doing the same one. And then my phone rang. Grandad had passed away. I still had to finish competition, and i kept my original poem. I ended up placing. My teacher tried her best to get a bus to go home as soon as possible so i could get on the road and head out of town. Mammaw Ray is the strongest lady i know. She holds our family together. I dont even want to think about what's going to happen when she's no longer here. She was rushed to the ER for low low low blood pressure the night before last and now has to give herself insulin shots. The medicine for her diabetes is effecting her kidneys. She attends a super small church called White Rock Baptist Church. It's outside of Bremond, TX. It's pretty much all elderly folks, with an occasional kid or two. I think the membership count is about 12. But they're the best. Justin bought some trumpet music for us - some Christmas duets - and im hoping to go play at Mammaw Ray's church for the holidays. We always talk about it, and ive done it once before. We're also having Christmas lunch at Mammaw Ray's house this year. I think she thinks it's going to be her last one. But i dont want to think about that. Right now i want to celebrate her life. Her wonderful life. I hadnt seen alot of the pictures of her younger years on display at her party...she's a beautiful woman inside and out. Here's some pics of her 90th birthday party - which was a complete surprise to her! :)

Entrance with her oldest daughter:

Hugging her only living brother after walking in - my favorite picture of the night.

This is one of those pictures id never seen before. That's Mammaw Ray and Grandad.

That picture at the bottom right - that's Mammaw Ray's parents!

Everyone told stories :) This lady was married to one of Mammaw Ray's brothers. They call her Tiny.

That's her brother (Uncle Pete), Her daughter (Aunt Jan), and her only son and youngest, Uncle Randy

She LOVES Uncle Pete to play and sing for her

And here's all her kiddos :) Aunt Betty, Uncle Randy, My Mammaw, and Aunt Jan

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Give Thanks & Count Your Blessings

We all know it's Thanksgiving this week... but as you're celebrating over food and delicious desserts and laughing and thinking about Christmas a few weeks from now...just remember that this isnt a joyous time for everyone. Life doesnt stop it's circle just because a holiday arrives. The most glorious day of the year for you, could be the most devastating for someone else. This week's going to be a little rough for my family. Both sides of it.

We just finished celebrating my great grandma's 90th's birthday. That was a great time, and ill feature her on a blog post all of her own. But just a couple days after, my wonderful Aunt Jan (great grandma's 2nd daughter) went into surgery to have a cyst on her ovaries removed. It turned out to be a cancerous tumor. I haven't been updated to the status of tests run on it yet, but she was in bad shape, having to eat and use the restroom through tubes. On top of that, her husband (Uncle Charlie, who walked me down the aisle at my wedding), isnt having the grandest time with his body either.

Thanksgiving day is my cousin Jeremy's birthday (great grandma's only son's youngest son). He was killed in Iraq in December of 2007. I'd like to write him his own blog post too. He was a handsome young man, and I am so very proud to be related to him. He always made a point to talk to me at family functions too. It was so much fun to catch up. And when i got older, we could talk about cars, and music, and school, and the future. He left for Iraq on his dad's birthday. His casket returned home on his mom's birthday. He was only gone for a month. I dont think this time of year has gotten much easier yet, as this will be year 2 without him. But i was at Aunt Debbie's house a few weeks ago and saw her hallway devoted to Jeremy. It was beautiful. It was overwelming. And while i was there celebrating a joyous occasion (a bridal shower for my cousin's soon to be wife), I wanted to cry. I have no bad memories of Jeremy. My husband never got to meet him tho. He went to his funeral just the same. I know they'd have gotten along so well. We are blessed to have Jeremy in our family. Anyone that knew him would say the same.

Those folks are on my mom's mom's side of the family, but let me tell you about her dad's side.

My pappaw passed away this past Saturday. I think the funeral is today. I wouldnt really know for sure, as i havent seen him since '95. My grandma says she and mom and aunt laura are having a private graveside ceremony tomorrow. They want me and my sister to go. My pappaw left mammaw in '95 for my youth choir director from church. Classy huh? I think the lady is nuts. Like psycho ward nuts. Pappaw's had a few strokes and had a limb amputated and got 2 forms of cancer I believe - and i'm pretty sure she brainwashed him. After he passed away, she wouldn't even give the pastor the names of his children (mom and aunt laura) or grandchildren (me and my sisters and aunt lauras daughter) to be read at the funeral. The pastor got them anyway. I imagine from Pappaw's sister - his own family wasnt even that close to him in recent years because of his wife. But i guess the hurt is all the same after his passing. Everyone says to remember the good times. I was young when he left, but i was raised by him and my mammaw. I dont even remember that much. I remember being mad and sad, because mammaw was mad and sad. And I remember being scared when his wife tried to throw my mom in jail on fake assault charges, and mom was out on the town and mammaw was at the house, and the cops showed up to take her in (the same cops that used to work with and for him - he was chief of police of our little town!), and we called mom and said dont come home! -and pappaw did nothing to stop it. Like he'd lost all sense of being a man, and let her run his life. I kinda feel sorry for him. Kinda. But he did it to himself. The whole town saw him change and pretty much ran him out and laughed at him. He showed up to the city pool one day while my sister and i were swimming - and we wouldnt even get out and hug him. That's what i remember. He was dead to me a long time ago. I forgive him for leaving - my life wouldnt be what it is now if he hadnt left - but I grieved THEN. I got over it THEN. I moved on THEN. I'm not sure mammaw ever did.

And id like to shoutout to my friends Amy and Brandy - they both lost their mom's this year. Brandy's from cancer - and Amy's from a horrible car accident. I didnt get to talk to Amy about it much, and facebook was being funny, so im not sure if i caught everything or not, but it was a reckless careless idiot driver, and he didnt get anywhere near the punishment he deserved. This is their first holiday season without their parents, and it's going to be a tough one. I think they're spending Thanksgiving together so they can lean on each other, and be there for each other, like only they can do, because they are feeling the same things.

Most of you reading this, probably arent going through this right now. You might know someone who is. You might know someone who's got it even worse, as im sure many people do. I dont ever forget that. It can always be worse. Please keep them and us in your prayers this week. Please count your blessings and be thankful for what you've been given. It can be taken away any second. Tell your friends and family you love them. Don't sweat the small stuff. You've heard it all before - but life is truly wonderful - and precious. If it wasnt, we wouldnt grieve so much when life was taken away from us. Smile y'all!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I'm 24 and my eyes suck.

For the last few months my eyes have been really red. like worse than drunk bloodshot red. all the time. morning to night. Everyone noticed. Weird thing was - my eyes werent bothering me. I wouldn't even know they were red unless i looked in the mirror. Occasionally when the pollen in the air was really bad, i might have some problems...I would blink and then my contact would move and my vision would go blurry for a view seconds. Repeat. Every time i blinked. for a good hour. I just thought i had bad allergies... I was wrong.

But my eyes being red were only partially the reason for my eye dr. visit yesterday... I also needed a new pair of glasses. Badly. Note to self - don't lose glasses case. If you do, go buy a new one. Do not put glasses in makeup bag with tweezers in your suitcase. They get scratched, bad. Plus, i wanted a new style anyway... I got a new pair. Will post when they come in. Back to my eyes looking creepy..

I'll warn you now - don't google what im about to tell you. It's gross. Unless you like gross things...but i did...and i just lost my appetite for lunch... the link below isnt horrible...but the google images are sick.

Dr. didnt find anything wrong with eyes...at first. So that's when she suspected what IS wrong with them... She lifted up my eyelids and BAM! I've got giant papillary conjunctivitis aka GPC. I've been wearing contact lenses since 7th grade y'all... (glasses since 3rd grade - im seriously almost blind, it's awful). I'm sure this was just boooooooound to happen. Add to it that I sit in front of the computer from sun up to sun down daily, and im plain screwed. But what threw my dr off is that other than that blinking tidbit i mentioned earlier (which reading that article again - i see it mentioned...cool..) - my eyes didnt really bother me. All those symptoms... i aint got. just red eyes. which isnt even listed. and it should be. or perhaps it should just be added on to irritation, cause that's gotta be what cause it. so i guess i do have one symptom... So - the dr. gave me some eye drops and ive got a follow-up appt in a month to check progress, tho she said it could take 3-4 months to completely go away. She didnt tell me i had to stop wearing my contacts tho. But she gave me a thinner one and im wearing them today. I think it does in fact help. But with my new glasses, i do plan on wearing them more, so hopefully it'll help the healing process for my eyes. And then im switching contacts again. I cant imagine my contact lens solution being the problem as ive been using it for yeeeeeeeears, so im going to blame it on the lenses i was wearing and the horrible pollen in the air this year. But here's to my eyes not being red too much longer! whew!

Wanna know where the age thing comes into my blog title? ha...

I was sitting in front of the lady ordering my glasses and she flipped the monitor around to have me review my personal information. My street was spelled wrong, so i fixed that, and also changed Ms. to Mrs. (she even complimented me in that i even noticed that! lol!)...and then i saw my age, and i actually started to argue that the computer was wrong. that ya, my birthday is 8/13/85 just like it says but i was not 24! The screen said 24 (3) so i thought oh im 23, hence the parenthesis and it just round it up! um...computers arent wrong. I'm 24. I guess i forgot my little sister turned 22. Cause i thought she was 21...and im always like, well im 2 yrs older than her... my bad. This also means that Justin is not 27 (as i always think he is 4 yrs older than me) - he's 28. Which also means my whole having a kid timeline just got completely rethought. Dang.

Monday, November 16, 2009

6 Months of Wedded Bliss

Just like the title says - Justin and I have been married for 6 months today! I'm nowhere near the mushy type - so im just going to leave you with some photos from the wedding. Pics by the awesomely talented Leslie Spurlock.

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