February 27, 2010

Feeling Better

I can't even remember if I mentioned this on the blog or not, but my parents were here in Mississippi visiting Alyssa for her birthday. Since it's just 1.5 hours away from me, they offered to come and pick Evy and I up and take us to Missouri for a visit! Unfortunately, Kurt couldn't come because of work.

So, Evy and I are here in Missouri! It's so good to be "home," although it's just not home without my precious husband. I asked my parents to swing by the hospital on our way out so that we could say goodbye again (he's on call). Kurt is so sweet to be understanding about my need to see my family. Since we live 5.5 hours away, it's rare that I get to see them. This will probably be my last "casual" visit before we move here. SO CRAZY!

Evy did great on the car trip--my mom sat in the back with her and entertained her. They also watched DVD's galore, thanks to "Mia"(Kurt's mom)! It's always so nice to catch up with my parents. I have a list of things that I always do in Cape when I'm here. Places I visit, neighborhoods I drive through....it's just all very soothing to me. Including what I'm doing right now: sitting in a recliner with a laptop, blogging, while watching Kate and Leopold. Heaven!

I have literally been more sick in these last couple of months than ever in my life. I ended up going to the doctor on Friday--which I never do! I had to ask SD to keep Evy for me. Carrie already has one mobile little person (and one on the way--more on that later), so I just couldn't add Evy the Explorer to her mix! Haha! Something I struggle with is asking for help. It's just hard for me! But when I felt like my throat was on fire, I knew I had to get help. Sure enough, I had strep throat, including a fever that got up to 103. Yikes. Thankfully, Kurt had started me on antibiotic, which was the same one my doctor recommended, so I'm feeling better today. I'm so thankful to the Lord! I never appreciate health until I'm sick.

You know how I said I'm never wrong when predicting a baby's gender? I jinxed myself! Carrie is having a BABY BOY!!!!!! I am beyond excited for her, David, and Aubrey. So precious! You can read about it here. They told their families in a really cute way. Congratulations, sweet Carrie!

In the midst of being sick, I haven't posted the pictures of Evy's birthday and Kelly and Jennifer's baby shower in Ripley yet. We have some cute pictures, but it might be awhile before I can get them posted. I don't have my camera cord! :( With Kurt's schedule, he can't meet us halfway to take me and Evy home for awhile. So I'm sorry to have to ask for your patience! :)

Just wanted to check in--thank you so much for the well wishes. I'm feeling better and I'm so grateful.

Happy weekend :)

February 26, 2010

Hello

First of all, I wasn't able to post yesterday, but my sweet sister Alyssa turned 21! Happy Birthday, Lissie! I LOVE YOU!!!!


The reason I wasn't able to post is because I have strep throat. Big time. Including 103 fever, body aches and chills, etc. Oh, and our house is now officially on the market and I'm showing it today. The only way it's possible is because our realtor came a couple of days ago to take pictures, so it's remotely still straight from that.

So please pray for me for a quick recovery and that Evy doesn't get this---that would be beyond horrible. However, I'm thankful that I'm not nauseated with the stomach virus again. Nausea is the worst feeling in the world. At least I'm able to sit up with strep (at least today).

I'll be back when I feel better...

February 23, 2010

Moving on Up

Okay. I've decided to go ahead and re-write the details of our upcoming move, because I've had so many questions about it, and people seem really confused....ha! So, here's the situation:

We currently live in Mississippi, where I've lived for 10 years and where Kurt has been going through anesthesia residency. Kurt has signed a contract to join an anesthesia group in Cape Girardeau, Missouri once he finishes. This is where my family currently lives and it's what I consider my hometown. Kurt did some rotations there during medical school (he went to medical school in Kansas City, Missouri). Even though we didn't live there at the same time, we both knew it was a place we wanted to return to someday (isn't that crazy weird/awesome!?). God was gracious enough to open that door, so off to Cape we go!

Kurt finishes his residency on June 30th (his 30th birthday!). We are putting our house on the market on March 1st. Pray for me--the realtor comes tomorrow for us to sign paperwork and to take pictures. Everything needs to be straightened! Kurt won't move up to Cape until he formally finishes at the end of June, but Evy and I will move depending on when we sell our house here.

We actually have a contract on a house up in Missouri. We were able to work it out with the sellers so that the timeline would match up---huge blessing! We close on that house May 31st, and we'll take possession then. If our house here sells before then and we need to close sooner, Evy and I will most likely move in with my parents until May 31st. So basically, I have no idea when Evy and I are moving! But for sure we will all be together as a family in Cape on June 30th. I wrote about our new house HERE and HERE.


Hopefully that catches everyone up!

Pretty in Pink







By the way, I added a button for my family's church (and the one where we'll be serving soon) in the left sidebar. If you're a member of Lynwood and would like one for your blog, email me at ashley61985@gmail.com. Thanks!

Have a bright and sunny day!

February 22, 2010

Sidenote :)

I don't want to be dramatic and leave people guessing about why we don't do Lent. I guess I'm just gun shy of people leaving argumentative comments about it, or turning it into a debate--NOT what I want! I don't mind sharing our reasons, but please understand that this is just what we've chosen to do---we do NOT think it's wrong to observe Lent! At all!

Basically, we believe that as Christians, we should always be giving things up in our lives that are not healthy or hinder us from knowing the Lord better. It shouldn't just be because of a date on the Catholic calendar. (Note: we aren't Catholic but I know that many other denominations observe Lent.) Also, it's not observed in the Bible. Yes, Jesus was in the desert for 40 days, but it's not like the Lord's Supper where he said, "Do this in remembrance of me." It borderlines ritualistic to us.

To us, fasting, etc. should be done when you feel led of the Lord to do that. If the 40 days of Lent is when you choose to do it, fine. But we don't want to do something just to show how "religious" we are, if that makes sense, or put ashes on our forehead to make a public statement (and yes, I know not everyone chooses to put ashes on their forehead). We base this on Matthew 6:17-18: "But when you fast, comb your hair and wash your face. Then no one will notice that you are fasting, except your Father, who knows what you do in private. And your Father, who sees everything, will reward you." To us, giving something up to grow closer to the Lord or to remember His time in the desert (which I believe is the goal of Lent), should be private and something you're not calling attention to (at least in this setting, when it comes to fasting, etc.).

I do want to add that we think it's extremely important to discuss the story of Christ's life and the end of His ministry on earth during this time of year, because Easter is approaching. We are not ignorant of the fact that we need to spend time focusing on our Lord's ultimate sacrifice for us, which was death on a cross. We just don't use the ritual of Lent to honor and commemorate that. I'll post soon about some Easter traditions I'd like to start with our family!

I'm not making any assumptions or accusations toward people who do observe Lent. We do think it's great to be looking forward to Easter and to take the time to really think about Christ's sacrifices for us. We simply choose to honor this time in different ways. These are just our thoughts, so please don't be argumentative in the comments! I really am not writing this to ruffle feathers. But some are curious, so I decided to share.

I'll be posting pictures soon!

February 21, 2010

Home, Lent, and Baby Names

Well, we're home from our weekend at Kurt's parents'. We had a wonderful time! We hosted a baby shower for Kurt's twin brother Kelly and his wife, Jennifer. Our nephew Josh is due in April. When I was pregnant with Evy, Kurt and I decided that we wanted a couples/family shower instead of the traditional women-punch-pastels-dumb games shower. It has become a family tradition, and we LOVE having these get-togethers! We also had another little family birthday party for Evy Kate. She had just woken up from a nap, so she was in great spirits and ready to open her gifts! I'll have a post up soon with pictures from the weekend.

Totally random: Lent is here. We do not participate (for several reasons), but I've read a lot where this is the time for it. I don't want to offend anyone, so I won't go into why we don't observe this season, but apparently from what I can gather you give up something for 40 days. It's funny, because right around the time Lent started, I began reading the book "So Long, Insecurity" by Beth Moore. It. Is. Incredible. I'm about halfway done, and I can't wait to share with you so many things after I finish. Even though it has nothing to do with Lent, I'm working on giving up insecurity and its hold on me. I will be sharing about that soon.

I am SO EXCITED to find out what the gender of my sweet friend Carrie's baby is this week! Oh my gosh I can hardly stand it. I'm guessing a girl. This is crazy, but I've ALWAYS been right about predicting what someone is carrying! I don't want to jinx myself, but we'll see! One of my favorite things in the world is talking about baby names. I love to see what a couple decides to name their child--it's so personal and special. YOU are deciding the name that will be attached to a human being their entire life! Isn't that incredible!? Note: I AM NOT PREGNANT. Also, Kurt and I already have a pretty good list together of ones we like. However, just for fun:

What are your favorite baby names for boys and girls? I'm dying to know!


I'll post pictures of our weekend soon!

February 19, 2010

I Need a Hero

Okay. You know how every so often you have those experiences where it was like a movie? That happened to me yesterday.

I had made an appointment for Evy's one year checkup. I decided to go alone because I thought I remembered that there wouldn't be any shots at this appointment. We usually try to go when Kurt is post-call, especially if there's shots involved, just for another pair of hands to help. But I figured I was in the clear, so I went alone.

I was pretty much rocking out to my Glee soundtrack and arrived at the doctor's office. I turned off my car. All of the following happened without me even thinking: I threw my car keys in my purse next to me, PUSHED THE LOCK BUTTON on the car door, and got out of the car to go around and get Evy. Well guess what happens when you do all of those things? The doors lock and your baby is STUCK INSIDE. Wow.

I actually didn't panic. I was so super calm. I didn't feel like waiting in the parking lot for any rando person to walk by so I could use their cell phone, so I jogged into the building (by far the most hilarious sight of the entire episode), and walked into our ped's office. I approached the desk and explained what happened. I called 911 and CALMLY explained the situation again. Quote from the operator: "Oh good Lord---we're on our way. We'll have someone right there. Don't worry. Oh good Lord." Ummm...aren't the roles supposed to be reversed? Shouldn't the operator be the one consoling the idiot mother who locked her one year old in a vehicle? Hilarious.

I jogged (hahahahaha) back to my SUV and entertained Evy through the window. I was thanking the Lord SO MUCH that the weather was beautiful. It was not hot and not cold, so I wasn't worried about her temperature. She also looked pleasant and totally unphased. Probably thinking she has the most ridic mom in the whole world.

Next thing I know, I hear a FIRE ENGINE using its SIRENS AND HORNS. I was thinking to myself...what would it be like if those sirens were coming toward me because my child was in severe danger or even dying? I thanked the Lord profusely again for a healthy child, and it was only an act of my absent-mindedness that merited a 911 call.

So, now that the entire county heard the sirens, they parked next to me and SIX FIREMEN came out and surrounded my car! I felt so unworthy of the cool firemen's attention--haha! They were so super nice, and then a policeman even came onto the scene. Evy was smiling at them through the window when they would each take a turn waving a her---too cute.

Since the weather was nice, they didn't bust my window (I was thinking of the Glee song "Bust the Windows Out Ya Car" the whole time). They just jacked open my door (kind of?) and stuck a metal thing in to unlock the door. It took about 15 minutes. Good grief.

So after the crisis was averted, I arrived in the office and was told that Evy would be getting THREE shots. Are you serious? However, she was an ANGEL baby and did such a great job. I was so proud of her. Of course this was the appointment I attempted by myself. I really do consider myself a capable person, but wow.

Thank you to our heroes yesterday!

A Tribute to the Chipmunks

I totally saved the Chipmunks for a post all their own. I watched Alvin and the Chipmunks EVERY SINGLE DAY after school for so long. My favorite were the songs. Oh, the songs. It was actually my first introduction to lots of popular hits.

So, here are some tributes to Alvin and the Chipmunks!

+








Here are some songs from The Chipmunk Adventure (the movie):







And my personal favorite Chipmunk song EVER:



I love to reminisce!

February 18, 2010

Snow!

In case you're not aware, the south doesn't know what to do when a rare case of snow occurs. It's so hilarious. So, like any person who has assimilated into a culture not their own (ha!), I took pictures just like everyone else. You know, in case we never see snow again (which we WILL, because we're moving a bit north). Hee hee!

But first, pause my playlist and let's get in the mood, shall we?



There :) This wasn't the first snow since Evy has been born, but it's been the first where we were home and she was old enough to even get out in it. We didn't play or put her down in the yard (total lack of snow clothes at this house), but we did get some cute pictures!
















I know there are people who are pining for hot, sticky summer, but not me. I'm a winter girl, and I am loving every minute of the briskness!

"I'd like to stay up with you, but I recommend a little shut eye; go to sleep. . .and dream. . .of Snow."

February 17, 2010

Won't You Read to Me Wednesday: Classics



One of my BFF's, Sarah Denley, hosts this every week, and I always forget when Wednesday rolls around. Well now I'm remembering! This week I decided to show off the classic books that my mom read to me when I was little. I will ALWAYS remember rocking with her in our living room while she read to me. I just can't wait to read these books to Evy!

They're all ones that you've heard of, but they deserve to be featured!


The Little House Series by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Illustrated by Garth Williams
These books are so dear to my heart. It was my first experience with really getting to know "characters" (even though they were real people), and getting attached to them. I was dying to know how their stories would end! Of course they just aren't complete with Garth Williams' wonderful illustrations! When I was in 4th grade and we lived in Missouri, we had to do a "Missouri Project." I chose Laura Ingalls Wilder, because her home is in Mansfield, Missouri. My family took a trip there so I could learn all about it.

I put together such a wonderful display board. I built a model log cabin out of Lincoln Logs and my best friend Taylor's mom helped me make vegetables and other things out of clay (she was an incredible artist). I used a wooden model of a covered wagon (it belonged to my great-grandparents), and hung quilts over the top of the display board. I was so proud of that project! It made the books, which I already loved, become so much more real to me.


Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
This is such a beautiful story, and it still makes me so happy! I love the story of how much this family loves each other, and how the lives of your family members can take different turns at any moment. When my family goes to Boston in April, Kurt and I are going to take a side trip to see Orchard House, Louisa May Alcott's home:
Of course I always romanticize things and will think of it as I saw it in the movie (I honestly prefer the newest version from 1994). I can't wait to see it in person, and I know I'll be starstruck :)


The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
Illustrated by Tasha Tudor
I dreamed and dreamed of having a secret garden like Mary in this book! This was the first "classic" that my mom read to me. I had this visual world in my head as she would read this to me. I just KNEW what that garden looked like! Tasha Tudor is one of my very favorite illustrators. My other favorite book that she illustrated:

A is for Annabelle

I'm going to do another post about her, because I love her work!

That about sums up my Read to Me Wednesday. Happy reading!

February 16, 2010

A Little Bit of Everything

-I loved doing the flashback post! So much fun! However, I can't believe I forgot one of our all-time favortes: Psalty the Singing Songbook!!

This is from the Campout video:



We also loved the "Singsational Servants" video!

-My friend from high school, Michael, has a diamond ring that he's trying to sell. Here's the info:

It is a 1 carat princess cut diamond, never been worn, 6.5 ring. Color: H Clarity: VS1 There are six round diamonds inlaid in the 14k white gold band. It has certification papers from the jeweler. I'm asking $3000 or best offer.
Email Michael if you're interested or know someone who would be! : mikejayray(at)mac(dot)com

-I bought some happies on ebay for myself! Here they are:

I have always been interested in Vera Bradley, but I get irritated with the brand because they introduce a collection, and then retire it so it's really difficult to get pieces collected over time. You are in this rush to complete your collection. I know there are ways to go about getting pieces, but that's why I never wanted to really get going with it. However, I knew I wanted maybe one or two pieces because they're well made. Here's what I picked out on ebay in the Peacock pattern (which is one that I determined I liked!). I think it's a good average size and can be used for just about anything!

I was also wanting a garment bag, because I've started packing a lot of hanging clothes instead of folding in a suitcase when we go on trips--less wrinkles! I have recently become obsessed with giraffe print (my planner is that pattern), and so I wanted something fun. I got this on ebay too!

Aren't they cute?!

-Because of my recent, new-found love of all things giraffe, here's a boy nursery that I've designed in my head (no, I'm not pregnant!). I think the blue giraffe is unexpected!


I love designing rooms in my head!

Sources:
-Green Fabric
-White Minky Fabric
-Circus vinyl wall art
-Circus toile fabric
-Blue Giraffe fabric

-I have started using Wishlist! It's a great way to make wishlists that you can send to family, etc. if they ask what you'd like for Christmas or your birthday. I like this site a lot because you can add a little icon to your toolbar, and anytime you're browsing the internet and find something you like, you can add it to your wishlist really easily. I've even made one for things we'd like for Evy (books, etc.). It's just a fun site that can make it easier for gift-giving (plus you're still surprised because you don't know what was bought off the list)!

-Bailey left a comment on my last post and shared about this blog: Children of the Nineties! If you're anywhere around my age (and maybe even if you're not), this will take you WAY back! Puppy Surprise, Lisa Frank, Yak Bak, Mall Madness.....the list goes on and on. The topics are at the bottom of the blog page and I recommend looking at the toys--it will remind you so much of our childhood days! Thanks for the comment, Bailey!

-I have a big Evy picture post coming up, but here's a preview:


I'm off to watch the new 19 Kids and Counting episode! Duggars, I love you.

February 15, 2010

Memory Lane: TV and Movies

So, someone left a comment asking me about a certain childhood video since I mentioned Steve Green. It prompted me to really remember what I used to watch as a kid!

Warning: This is a long post with lots of videos, etc. But they're worth it, and they're sentimental to me, so I wanted to put them up for the memories! Also, be sure and pause my regular playlist on the right if you'd like to watch the videos (they're worth watching!).

In no particular order (and this isn't even a comprehensive list!):

My sisters and I were OBSESSED with Mary Kate and Ashley. I mean, we thought they were, like, totally the coolest people EVERRRR. We lived vicariously through them as they traveled to Rome, Paris, and London:



In their younger days, we watched them solve REALLY HARD mysteries.


I watched this with my little sister a lot when she was little:


I watched reruns of Punky Brewster everyday after school in Kindergarten through 2nd grade (when we lived in Oklahoma).




My siblings and I all watched Barney. I was too old for it (technically), but I really liked it. I'm talking about the old school 1992 cast: Michael, Luci, Min, Tina (even though she whined a lot). You know which cast I'm talking about, right?


Little-known but cute as a button: Prayer Bear with Steve Green:


The DONUT MAN and the Donut Repair Club!





Here's a cartoon that we watched over and over when we were little:



I watched "A Disney Christmas Gift" when I was LITTLE:



Okay, this is from when I was tiny. As in, we lived in Orlando and I was under 4 years old: KIDS SING PRAISE!! I was SO EXCITED to find this video! The kids introduce themselves in this video, and I had a MAJOR big time crush on Neal. At 4 years old.



My mom introduced us very early to Rodgers and Hammerstein. Cinderella was at the top of the list!




This is a little-known but WONDERFUL movie, Mrs. 'Arris Goes to Paris! Angela Lansbury is just brilliant in it, and it's all about fashion in Paris in the 1950's (especially Christian Dior at his prime--DREAMY!).




Some of the first live-action movies I remember watching were Disney movies (big surprise). My two favorites: The One and Only Genuine Original Family Band and The Happiest Millionaire!
This is mine and my mom's FAVORITE SONG in this movie (and John Davidson is amazing!):



And this is our favorite song from Happiest Millionaire (it's also my Poppy's favorite):



I know that's a lot, but they're all so special to me. I'm glad I recorded these favorites! I'll have to showcase more at some point. Enjoy these little highlights from my memories!

Hide 'Em In Your Heart

When I was growing up, my mom had the Hide 'Em In Your Heart videos and tapes, made by Steve Green:

We watched them OVER AND OVER. We knew every word. I especially associate the songs with traveling to Texas every summer when I was about 6-7 years old. I remember that burgundy Chrysler van, and Steve Green's voice just singing away!

I knew I wanted to get them for Evy, and just hadn't gotten around to ordering them online (they're now in DVD format). I was in Lifeway the other day, and happened to see both of the DVDs! I had never seen them there before, and I've looked every time. I was so excited! I brought them home and watched them with Evy.

Note: Please excuse my appearance. I was still getting over the stomach flu!


It brought back such sweet memories, and I can't wait to help Evy memorize Scripture with these precious songs!
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