Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 Revisited

OK so it seems that every year good things and bad things happen. Every year we learn from our mistakes. It is really amazing to sit back and think about everything that has occurred throughout the year and realize that so much has happened.
  • My SIL welcomed her son into the world.
  • A friend of mine got married.
  • My paternal grandmother passed away.
  • I spent the entire year in school.
  • Jerry had a major job changed that required a huge adjustment.
  • Ethan shaved his head.
  • A friend of mine got divorced.
  • I sprained my ankle and it still hasn't healed.
  • Ethan cut his own hair.
  • My step-sister and I reconnected.
  • We marked a year of a friend being gone.
  • I discovered Facebook, The Pioneer Woman, and TMZ.
  • Ethan shaved a piece of his hair. Again.
  • The Twilight Movie came out!
  • I finally found a hairstyle that I liked.
  • Hurricane Ike wreaked havoc on our lives.
  • I got a new phone...and then promptly dropped the new one in milk.
  • I kicked it into gear with my blogging.
  • I discovered how much I adore Photoshop.
  • I made some new friends, and divorced some others.
While some of the things that happened were light hearted, others were significant but all of them shaped me into to who I am today. All in all, this was a good year. My work thrived, my son i s healthy, and lord knows...I'm almost done with school.

What am I looking forward to in 2009? Lots. Mainly getting a break from school before I enter into the MBA program. I gave up setting new year resolutions years ago. I just never keep them. I'm not going to outline what it is I'm looking forward too, I'll just write about it as it unfolds.

Excuse me while I take a break from my deep thoughts to ask Ethan to quit bouncing his ball off the television.

OK, thank you for your patience. As I was saying, I think it will make the new year more interesting if I just share my experiences as they happen instead of trying to predict them. Of course, when I finish school in May, you will likely hear me singing a chorus from the top of a mountain. And when the second Twilight Movie comes out, I'm likely to start doing the Running Man or Rodger Rabbit to celebrate the occasion.

Excuse me one more time while I ask Ethan to please quit trying to give me a heart attack before I'm 34.

Ahem, sorry about that. It's hard to sink deep into myself to share my thoughts as my four year old tries to shave like his daddy does.

I will also strive to break Ethan's fascination with cutting his hair and shaving his head.

While this next part is not a resolution but more of a self improvement goal, I will give you a glimpse. Once I'm done with school in May, I am going to devote much wanted time to improving my photography skill.

So my five readers, I hope you took something valuable from 2008 and apply it to 2009. For those of you that had a bad year, I hope 2009 shines for you. Kiss your kids and tell them how much you love them. Tell your loved ones how much you value their presence. Forgive someone. Learn something new. Kick one bad habit. Embrace your weird quirks. Dance with your young ones and act silly. Reconnect with an old friend. Hold hands with your spouse. And thank God every day for the extra day you have on this earth.

Here's to the new year and a new beginning.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

High School Memory Book

Let's take a walk down memory lane for a few moments, shall we? I was in our storage room today looking for something when I ran across my high school memory book. Then I thought to myself "Self, you should share this with all of your close and intimate friends on your blog."

It's pretty thick, isn't it?

I knew in Junior High that I was going to have a memory book, so I started saving odd and ends in a box to add to the memory book when I finally got it. We moved around a lot when I was a child, so once we settled in Hitchcock, it became vital that I create memories.

Hitchcock High was a wonderful time in my life. I began friendships that are still intact today.

I heart this picture. It's my dad and sister Angie. Pop was cooking chili. Whoa, he was about my age when this picture was taken.

My house was the neighborhood hang out. I had all kinds of friends. Even Italian exchange student friends as seen in the middle of the pic.

ACK! I often wonder what I was thinking. I used to wear my bangs in a wave with a gallon of Aqua Net. Oh and doesn't that mini pony tail just complete the ensemble?

Growing up, we had the horrible chore of alternating kitchen duty. I had kitchen duty every third night. We had no dishwashers. No, we had to slave on the dishes by hand. We also had to walk a mile, up hill, in a blizzard, with no shoes, to get to to school every day. No lie. I had a hard life.

Lawsy Mercy. Who are these cowgirls? Sigh. Yes, that's me on the left. Tiffany, my best friend, is in the middle. We met the summer of my sophomore year as we participated in the dance squad called the Swingerettes. Man! Look at the eye brows on that girl on the left! Whew! Oh wait, that's me.

See? OK so I only danced for a year, but what a year it was.

I can't even remember where I got this. I think it was something that we got for the Friday pep rally's. Yes, I kept it. It's folded up neatly in my memory book.

I took many random pics through out my tenure in high school. Two of my friends on this page are no longer with us.

Ahhh...remember the Friday game ribbons? I kept them!

I also swapped tons of small sized photos of my friends. Yes, many of the pictures are of the same person as we got older. Oh and I have some Italian money!

These two mature men made the biggest impact on me. The man on the left (Mr. Wright), was probably the biggest influence on me as I went through school. He introduced me to literature that was way ahead of our time as high school students. That mature man on the right (Mr. Parker), was my Government/Economics teacher. That slave driver made us learn every single country in the world. Not that I could recite them today. They were friendly rivals because they knew they were the smartest men in the school.

This is what I did in Spanish class on my book covers.

Oh look, another Friday ribbon.

Some good friends and I went and had our pictures done. Josh was my best male friend. He was not in our circle and detested my other friends but I still dragged him along every where I went.

Yes, that's my brother Barry on the lower right.

Here is another picture of me and Josh. This was senior year at a pep rally. By then I was in cheer leading and he was the drum major for the band.

This was Senior Night (also Homecoming); one or both of our parents escorted all of us that were participating in either sports, cheer leading, dance, or band. Pop was escorting me down the field before the game. I love my dad.

Don't you dare say a word. Yes, this is one of my senior pictures. I made the mistake of going to some country salon to get my hair done before pictures and this is what the lady came up with. Do you know that my hair did not move in 30 mile-an-hour wind? This was also during my country cowgirl phase. Oh to do this year over again. That's called Country Helmet Hair.

So now you have had a glimpse at my memory book. It was fun looking back at how horrible my hair was...and seeing how much my friends and I have changed over the years. It's hard to believe that I graduated so long ago. It seems like just yesterday. Well, maybe the day before but I can't believe it has been so long.

Boats and Imagination

Ethan has always had a fascination with my dad's boats. Well, not even so much my dad's boats, but boats in general. Ever since he was a toddler, he would bug my dad to take him out to his boat so that he could drive it. Have you ever driven a parked boat? Me either, but Ethan is quite the pro at it.

Now that he's older, Ethan doesn't need my dad to put him on the boat. He can climb into it all by his 4-year old self. You can turn your head for 30 seconds, and there he is. Sitting on the boat in pure bliss. The funny thing is, he's never been on a boat that is actually in water. I wonder how he would react to the bobbing of the boat over waves.

But my dad has a rule. He won't take either boy fishing on the boat until they can swim. I agree. Even though they have life jackets, anything can happen and I will feel much more secure knowing he can swim. Of course, right now Ethan doesn't know what he's missing. Because in his imagination, he's navigating his boat to his hearts content.

Watch out world. This is one boy that is part fish at heart. Here's to the day the day that he can actually see what it's like when the boat is on water. Of course, fishing with my dad is going to be a different matter all together. Do you think he'll be able to sit still and talk quietly as to not scare the fish away? I kind of doubt that, but we won't tell my dad just yet. Let him find out the hard way!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Photos by Angie

My sister Angie got her camera out today to take some shots. She's been doing photography since we were in high school. This is my nephew Boo. He's a star wars fighter in his heart.

This picture cracks me up. It's Jaiden, my niece. She wasn't thrilled having her picture taken.

This is my Gram's new puppy, Jack. Jack is tiny.

How sweet is this? Angie can snap a picture with no cropping needed. Ethan loved holding Jack. Jack and Ethan were fast friends.

Sigh. I love him.

I thought I would throw a black and white in there for those of you that love black and white.

Or if you like color, here you go.

This is not a great picture of me, but it was the best of the day. I need a haircut, I know.

Isn't this a neat process of the picture? I love Photoshop.

I wonder how come he never smiles like this at me when I'm behind the camera.

I just adore his blue eyes.
You can click to enlarge any of them.

Thanks Angie, you rock!

Christmas Trees and Chickens

I love this tree....the lights look like ribbons, don't they?
It has sort of a dreamy look, I think.
Of course, when you turn on the lights, it changes the entire mood. Santa decided to leave Ethan's presents on the couch this year. That actually confused him, because in the movies, Santa does not leave presents anywhere but under the tree.
See that Batman "laptop"? That was one of his favorite presents this year. He asked Santa for this for about three months. Actually, every time we went to Target he mentioned it. Every time...

You know a gift is popular when the child forgets to finish opening presents so that they can play.

The PJ's that he's wearing are his Christmas Eve present from Mommy and Daddy.

Hello Star Wars man. Have you seen my son? He's about your height.

The theme at Mom and Pops this year was Star Wars. Boo (my nephew) was a lot more animated than Ethan was. Ethan was a little overwhelmed I think. They both got a load of Star Wars loot. Ethan got his first digital camera too!

Boo was ripping into his presents while Ethan lagged behind a little bit. I'm not sure what was up with that.

Doesn't Boo look just like Barry? For those of you that don't know Barry...he's my brother. He looks like this little man.

Ethan of course got my round head. We have no shape to our heads except round. It's both a blessing and a curse.

This is Jaiden, my niece. She is my brother Josh's daughter. She's sassy and can hold her own against two little unnamed boys.

Now this was the surprise of the day. My sister Angie sashayed into the room with.....a chicken! In the house....a chicken in the house. No, I swear we are not redneck. She was on her way out of town yesterday when this pet chicken of hers got attacked by something, so she had no choice but to bring it. It's hanging out in the spare bathroom. I still have a hard time putting this together. Chickens. House. There was a German Sheppard in the next room. It was all so surreal.

The poor chicken had part of his wing missing and only one tail feather left. Ethan wasn't so sure about her. Or him. How can you tell? I couldn't. Anyway, it was a new experience for Ethan. Experience is good. He petted a chicken. At my parents house. I'm still getting used to that.

Now this is the epitome of redneck. I have been trying to get a picture of this house for weeks, but every time I pass it by, I realize I don't have my camera. Today, on the way to my parents, I had Jerry slow down so I could hang out of the window to capture the moment. Unfortunately, people were, we had to speed up and act like we weren't up to anything weird. Well, I wonder though...what do they define as weird?

Don't you love the fleece and head gear these mannequins are wearing? In almost 80 degree weather.... Also, please note the "snow" on the ground and all the festive miscellaneous holiday decorations. My sister has vowed to sneak over there tonight when it's all lit up. OK, I have a confession. This yard makes me giggle. Actually, it made my whole family giggle today just talking about it.

Ahhhh....Merry Christmas everyone! PS- you can click any of the pictures to enlarge.