I have been tagged for this particular award several times. Sorry to those who have tagged me and I haven't re-posted. I know the one of the bloggers who recently tagged me was Vivienne at The V Spot. Have you guys read her blog? Oh.My.Gosh. She is so funny. Her blog is an easy read. The way she puts things out there and is so real...it's captivating...and funny...did I mention funny? Rhonda at Down Memory Lane is another one who recently gave me this one as well. She's a new blogger buddy who I am looking forward to getting to know better. I know she always has such nice things to say when she comments and her blog is a joy to read!
So, I'm supposed to tell how I've come to have an attitude of gratitude. I can't think of one particular event in my life that made me want to be grateful. That's really just how I was raised. Knowing God and knowing that He was in control, has been my anchor my whole life. I've always been grateful for that. I also think being grateful is something that is often passed down. My mom has always been such a good example. She has never taken anything for granted and she has always been willing to give praise where praise was due. I've learned a lot from watching her.
I have a story I'd like to share. It's a little lengthy, so I'm warning you in advance.
My life took a drastic turn when I was about 8 years old. My mom remarried for starters. I did not want my mom to get married. I just couldn't understand what was wrong with the way things were. Why did we need a man around? What did he have to offer US? He put a kink in our Saturday shopping trips and weekends spent at a hotel. Our weekends turned into "family time"...movies, dinner out, ice skating...it was horrible! Ok, maybe not horrible, but in the eyes of an 8 year old little girl who loved nothing more than her mom and the time she spent with her...it was the worst. He took up space, he took up time, he took up residence, and he took up the comfy recliner in the living room. Not only did my mom marry some strange guy, despite my many protests (which could be another blog in itself), she also started a long battle with illness.
In 1985, my mom got married. The next year she was diagnosed with cervical cancer. So, at the ripe age of 27, my mom had a complete hysterectomy. What she thought was the end of being sick, was only the beginning. During the next year or so, she started losing weight due to an inability to keep her food down after eating. She went through tests until there was nothing left to test and every outpatient procedure you can think of. Results of some of the tests showed an abnormality in her esophagus area and also down through her GI tract. She was referred to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, where they continued to do tests and diagnosed her with colon cancer. Due to the fact that she was so young and had so much life to live. They took every necessary step to make sure that she would beat cancer yet again. Many prayers were prayed and our attention turned to God. He is the author and finisher of our faith. He was the one who had carried us through hard times before. My mom always made a point to focus on the good and make me see that we had things to be grateful for. I remember lots of things from that time in our life, but one thing I don't remember is every forgetting my blessings. My mom would remind me that she was still here, God was not finished with her, and He was still in control. So, that's where I would stand. That was my "happy place". Just a short while later, they removed my mom's colon and did a brand new procedure that rerouted her intestines and reconnected 'things', which meant no colostomy bag...one more thing to be grateful for. Her recovery from this second surgery was long, and the chemo was awful, but eventually she did recover. One more thing to be grateful for.
By this time, I was about 13 years old. I was past my mom's new husband being a nuisance and I had fully embraced him as my dad. He was a rock. He was someone I knew I could always lean on through good times and bad. Again, one more thing to be grateful for. During all of these procedures, my mom's issue with not being able to keep food down never got better. She had been diagnosed with everything from eating disorders to mental disorders. While the doctors tried to decide what she had and who to send her to next, she was withering away to nothing. By the time they decided what exactly was wrong with her and what they were going to do about it, she weighed 87 pounds. The conclusion they came to was that she had a congenital defect in her esophagus, one that stemmed from her being a twin. Basically, the muscle at the end of her esophagus, the sphincter muscle, was paralyzed. It would not do it's job of opening to allow food to pass through and then closing to keep the food down. Hence, the getting sick after eating and extreme weight loss. Soooo, in 1995, when I was a Junior in high school, my mom had another surgery. They did a thoracic surgery (kinda like open heart surgery) and went in and basically cut the sphincter muscle so that it would stay open and allow food to pass through. That wasn't necessarily the end to my mom's battles, but it was the end to the most of it...and we were grateful.
She is alive and well today. Something I am VERY grateful for! I know I didn't have to tell you all of this to prove my point, but I just wanted you to see that God has always been in control. Also, when things seem to be at their worst, if we will just remember ALL the things that we have to be grateful for, it allows us to believe things will get better. Going through all of that makes it easy for me to see all the little and big things that I am grateful for.
So there are a few rules to this award:
1. Put the logo on your blog or post...check!
2. Nominate at least 10 blogs that show an attitude of gratitude
3. Link to your nominees within your post...check!
4. Comment on their blogs to let them know they've received this award
5. Share the love and link to this post and the person who nominated you for the award...check!
6. Tell us how you've come to have an attitude of gratitude...check!
I know a lot of you have done this already, so I'm not sure who to tag.
Here are a few people that I find are always grateful and counting their blessings.
1. Katie at Blessed by 3 Miracles
2. Renee at My Glimpse of Life
3. Melissa at The Crazy Daisy (I think you've already done this before, but you could do it again.:)
4. Rebeckah at Life with Kaishon
- I haven't had Starbucks since last Friday. They may revoke my Gold Card.
- I have an abnormal phobia of arachnids. I can't write the 's' word on my blog... *shudders* I seriously want to cry sometimes. You want to see me strip down naked in broad daylight. Put one of the previously mentioned eight-legged creatures down any article of clothing and it's coming off. I'm not even playin'.
- Going without my favorite foods make me cranky.
- Since today is my "cheat day", I may hit Starbucks two times.
- I wore capris to work the other day. While I was leaning down to file something away, I caught a glimpse of my chalky-white unshaven legs. Note to self: shave legs before putting on another pair of pants that comes above the ankle...and get a tan. Geez.
- I downloaded Scramble to my iPhone. Don't do it. I'm addicted. I played that stupid game so long last night that I had toothpicks holding my eyelids open. Then I dreamed about letters and words, and words and letters. I even woke up and was ticked off because I had been dreaming about spelling words. I drifted back to sleep trying to dream about something more pleasant like Twilight or Edward. Not a chance. The next thing I knew I was trying to make a word out of 'a-n-t-o-r-i-d'...it should be a word, people. Perhaps it is in Arabic.
Hope you have a HAPPY FRIDAY!!
Mom of the Year...phsshhh...not even close, but thanks Tanielle for giving me this award!
The rules of this award are....
- Admit one thing you feel awful about involving being a mom. Get it off your shoulders. Once you've written it down, you are No Longer allowed to feel bad. It's over with, it's in the past. Remember, you're a good mom!
Wow, hmmm. I definitely have my fair share of bad mommy moments. There are mornings that I drop Isaiah off at school wondering if he's going to rat me out for being so crazy. I'm afraid he's going to recount the morning's conversations to his teacher or worse his friends...that will later go home and tell their parents. You get my drift.
I have an extremely cranky boss, and when I start thinking about being late to work and enduring a morning of crankiness...well, it makes me cranky. It's a vicious cycle.
It often starts out something like this...
"WHERE are YOUR shoes? You just wore them yesterday, they can't walk out of here on their own!"
"You're making momma late! Do you know what happens when momma's late? Mr. J will fire me. Do you know what happens if mommy gets fired? No money...no money for food, no Disney Channel, no blueberry muffins, especially no Hot Wheels!"
Sometimes, Isaiah likes to give me a hard time about wanting to stay home. He'll say, "MOMM-AH, I could just stay home with Belle Girl! I wouldn't mess anything up. I'll be fine until you get home." I say, "do you know what happens if the police find out that momma let you stay home by yourself?" He reminds me that Belle Girl would be with him, and I remind him that a dog is not a sufficient baby sitter. I continue to explain that the police could throw momma in jail for not taking him to school and for leaving him alone with Belle Girl. He decides that he doesn't want me to go to jail, because I make the best spaghetti-Os.
So, there are a few things that I feel the worst about:
1. Crazy mornings. I try to make the mornings as pleasant as possible, but some circumstances are beyond my control.
2. Crazy mommy. Those moments when I have an "out-of-body-experience" and feel like my head is about to pop off of my shoulders.
3. Not being able to stay at home with Isaiah. I know that me working is best for our family, but at the same time I wish I could be home with him more.
- Remind yourself you are a good mom, list seven things you love about your kids, you love doing with your kids, or that your kids love about you.These are the things to remind yourself everyday that you Rock!
- Send this to five other Mom's of the year that deserve credit for being great moms and remind them that they are the best moms they can be!! Remember to send them a note to let them know you've selected them, and add a link to the person who nominated you.
- Melissa at The Crazy Daisy
- Renee at My Glimpse of Life
- Rebekah at Life with Kaishon
- Katie at Blessed By 3 Miracles
- Shilo at My Place of Peace
Tanielle over at The Polka Dot Daisy gave me this award. How sweet is she?! Go check out her FANTABULOUS blog!
Have a great Wednesday!!
You know this spot has to go to Edward. Fictional to some. I realize that. You can't ignore the fact that he's handsome, chivalrous, and thoughtful. Not to mention, indestructible. That's gotta count for something. I'm not going to lie. He makes me swoon.
Come on, Ladies. Props have got to be given to Matthew McConnoughey. He's HOTT and he has southern charm oozing from his pores. That smile. Those dimples. Have you seen him without a shirt? Hello! (My only qualm with Mr. McConnoughey is that he is a Texas Longhorns fan. I'm an OU Sooner fan, so that poses a problem.)Number Three Joey....ahhh, just saying his name brings a smile to my face. This crush is long term. I've loved Joey since 1990. He has the cutest smile and his eyes twinkle. Oh, and he's always had great hair.
He has the 'right stuff, baby'!
Maksim from Dancing with the Stars is such a hottie on the dance floor. He's so passionate about dancing. When his partner is eliminated, my interest goes down about 10 notches. I would learn to polka if Maksim was my teacher.
Nice way to get distracted from the fact that it's Monday.
Hope everyone has a great day!
Proverbs 17:22 "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones. "
Thanks to Tanielle, I stumbled upon Mamarazzi's Favorite Things Swap this morning and I am stoked! (I like using that word to annoy my husband. It's the little things that let him know I love him). If you've been reading my blog for a while, you know that I did my first swap with Julie back around Valentine's Day and had the MOST fun!! Besides, the title of the swap makes me think of Oprah and her famous giveaway to her fans...so, only good things can come from this. I can't wait to participate in Mamarrazi's Favorite Things Swap. If you want to join in the fun, HURRY! She only accepts 100 participants and Mr. Linky is filling up!! Speaking of, I better run.
Hope everyone is have a wonderful weekend!
JennyKate out! (channeling Ryan Seacrest)
First let me start off by saying that I'm a very passionate person. This is not a confession, it's just a factual statement about me, but sometimes my passions can lead to obsessions and confessions. I'm not one to do things half-heartedly or half-way. I'm usually a full-steam ahead, gung ho kind of person. This week instead of just telling you my confessions, I would like to show you my confessions.
- I'm passionate about books, which is not bad. However, my passion often turns to obsession. For example...these books I purchased THIS week. I'm also a little
obsessedpassionate about vampire books. I have no idea why.
- I'm passionate about chocolate, which is not bad...what? It's not. However, once again my passion turns to obsession...as seen below.
- I'm also very
obsessedpassionate about all things Twilight.
(Please note that I purchased this chocolate from a child of a co-worker. So, I'm pretty sure that counts as a good deed.)
Here is where my little game comes into play. I would like you to compare my pictures from this weeks confessions to my pictures of the same things from a couple of weeks ago. See if you can tell me the newly acquired Twilight paraphernalia. The first person to tell me the exact newly acquired items wins a small Twilight something and a Starbucks gift card! (You can click on the pictures to enlarge them and make it easier to find the new items.)
I read a great quote this week that said, "Gratefulness is the key to a happy life that we hold in our hands, because if we are not grateful, then no matter how much we have we will not be happy -- because we will always want to have something else or something more." - Brother David Steindl-Rast
I, for one, want to be both grateful and happy.
Here's a few things I'm thankful for:
- I'm thankful for God and His amazing love for me (and you).
- I'm thankful for the real meaning of Easter.
- I'm thankful for my husband. He works hard and doesn't always get appreciated for it. Love you, babe. (He's a lurker on my blog and likes to bring it to my attention that I "hardly EVER talk about him".)
- I'm thankful for Melissa coming back to the land of blogging! ☺ I missed you!
- I'm thankful for tomorrow being Friday! April 15th and the days around it are not a fun time in an accounting department. Thank you Lord for bringing us through another tax season. It was a little touch and go there for a while, but we made it!
- I'm also thankful for my Starbucks Gold Card and for the good people at the Starbucks Gold Lab for feeling generous and bestowing upon me 5 extra dollars which was loaded to my Gold Card for me to use at my earliest convenience...which will be today. (Was that a run-on sentence? If so, I apologize.) I'm sure this show of appreciation has nothing to do with the amount of times I frequent their establishment(s).
- One last token of gratitude, I am thankful for a couple of good friends who have so graciously agreed to have a Twilight "gathering" with me, which includes, but is not limited to playing the Twilight board game and talking about all things Twilight. I was in desperate need of a Twilight "outlet". I have a couple things to show you...come back tomorrow for some Friday Confessions.
Hope you're having a great week!
What are you thankful for?
The e-mail was very nice and it read:
I came across your spring cleaning tips post – good stuff! I wanted to reach out and share some spring cleaning checklists with you. I thought you and your readers might find them handy:
I thought I would share the links. I checked them out myself and already printed out some of the checklist (because I'm a list freak). There were some really good tips in the articles. If you missed the post he was talking about, you can find it here: Spring Cleaning Tips From Blogland
Hope everyone is having a wonderful Wednesday!!
Today's FMM challenge: What is the Best Advice someone has ever given you?
I've received a plethora of notable pieces of advice during my 31 years. They come from a variety of sources...parents, pastors, friends, professionals (I keep my therapist on speed dial. I kid.), and strangers. I remember when I was pregnant with Isaiah, I was SO tired of all the little pieces of nuggets people would freely give..."don't do this, be sure to do that, whatever you do never..." I swore I would never do that to anybody. I try to only give solicited advice. (Really. I swear.) My cousin Lindsay calls me prior to calling her OB or pediatrician. Poor girl. For whatever reason, she thinks I'm a reliable source.
I think the best piece of advice anybody has ever given me came from my old Pastor. He said, if we take care of the big things, the small things will take care of themselves. This one sentence is what helps me to keep things into perspective and prioritize my life. I'm not saying that I'm perfect or that I've got it all together (by any means). However, when things get really crazy, if I just remember that one simple thing, everything seems to fall into place.
I also like this little piece of advice that my mom and I like to remember, just because it's on sale does NOT mean you have to buy it!
Sometimes I refer to Maxine for a little advice (and a good laugh). Enjoy.
A couple of my IRL friends have said they would like to join in on Friday Confessions. I thought it would be fun to have a central place where everyone can add their Friday Confessions link, so we can all see what it is that you needed to confess. This is a great way to start the weekend...a fresh clean slate! If you would like to join in the Friday Confession fun, just add your link into Mr. Linky (*a button will be available soon) and be sure to direct people back here so they can read more Friday Confessions! Make sure that the link you add into Mr. Linky is the perma-link for your post. (Tip: After writing your FC post, view your blog and click on the FC post title, the address that comes up in the browser will be the perma-link.) Have fun...and don't do anything I wouldn't do...or maybe you shouldn't do things that I would do...or...well...never mind all that, just have fun! ☺
(*For now, you can use my FCs pic for your posts if you want.)
♥ A little update from last week's FC's. I did purchase some tickets for the Dallas NKOTB concert in July! Woot! Renee and I will be seated in section 102, row s (from my calculations that's 19 rows back...not too shabby). Our DH's (darling husbands☺) won't agree to an extended trip to Houston. They like to rain on our parade like that.
♥After a few people's response yesterday on my lists, I realized that apparently I've never confessed my affection for body art. Last May, on a girl's weekend in Branson, I got my first tattoo. I've had a lifelong fear of needles and I thought it would be terribly painful, but it wasn't. Here's a pic of my first one...
(Please excuse the bad quality and blue carpet. I just snapped this w/ my phone in my office.)
Every since then I've wanted more. I'm hooked. I don't plan on getting a full sleeve or a whole back piece or anything like that, I'm not that rockstar, but I would like another one on my shoulder. Then I would also like one on my hip. Those are the only two I have in mind...for now. I was thinkin' something kinda gangsta...that's how I roll. I kid. I know for sure I'm getting a heart on my shoulder. I already have it picked out. It's like an open heart, kinda scrolled...like this:
I think it symbolizes an open heart. I like that. I want to have an open heart. I'm trying to think of some words to put with it, but haven't decided yet. It has to be perfect. It is permanent after all, thanks for pointing that out Vivienne! ☺
Anybody else have tattoos? Care to share what you have and why you have it...or post some pics for us to see??
Hope everyone has a happy Good Friday!
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (jennykate translation)
- Melissa and Michelle coming to visit in June! Melissa is my blogger/cafemom "friend" turned bff! I went to visit her in January for her birthday as a surprise (in cahoots with her sister, who I also only knew through blog-land and Myspace). We had THE best time. I love this girl. Don't know what I did without her. Can't wait until her and Michelle get to Oklahoma!
- Going to the NKOTB concert with Renee in July!!! Here I come Joey! We went to their concert last month here in Tulsa and I CAN NOT wait for Dallas!
- My cousin Lindsay coming in this weekend for Easter. I love holidays, they bring family home. It's good. She has a new baby, 5 month-old Emma, who I can't wait to get my hands on!
- Our family reunion on July 4th. I LOVE my family...and I especially LOVE when we're all together.
- Getting my next tattoo!!! YAY! When Melissa and Michelle are here in June, we're all going to get tattoos.
- Adding-on/Expanding my WAY too small house.
- New Moon being in theaters in November. :)
- The sequel of a few of my favorite books being released. (especially one by Suzanne Collins - Catching Fire)...I'm a nerd.
8 Things I Did Yesterday
- Took Isaiah in to get FOUR shots. No fun.
- Enrolled my baby into kindergarten.
- Paid my property taxes three months late. Oops.
- Bought Easter stuff for Isaiah's school. 30 Reese's Eggs...the parents are going to love me.
- Visited with my granny.
- Skipped church. I don't know why.
- Made some yummy pork chops and baked sweet potatoes.
- Avoided laundry like the plague.
8 Things I Wish I Could Do
- I wish I could sing. Don't get me wrong, I sing...I sing A LOT...just not well. I sing in the car (LOUDLY). I sing in the shower. I randomly break out in song. Someone can say something and I'll bust out some lyrics b/c what they said made me think of a song. I just wish people actually wanted to hear me sing.
- I wish I could lose weight. Why does it have to be so dang hard?
- I wish I could eat what I want and not gain weight. Why is it that things that taste good are bad for you?
- I wish I could use the term 'mo-fo' without any negative connotations.
- I wish I could win a shopping spree at Coach.
- I wish I could meet my girls for coffee everyday.
- I wish I could speak another language fluently.
- I wish I could go to NY or Paris. Oh, and while I'm there I would like to stay in a fancy-shmancy hotel.
8 Shows I Watch
- Dancing With The Stars
- American Idol (My Top 4 favs are Danny, Adam, Kris, and Allison)
- Grey's Anatomy
- Private Practice
- Ugly Betty (Um, excuse me...Mr. CBS executive...where is my show?)
- Keeping Up With The Kardashians
- Axe Men (my hubby thinks I don't like this, but secretly I really do.)
- Clean House
8 People I Tag
- Liz at Tidbits from Liz
- Christy at Confessions of an Impulsive Addict (OK, Christy...you have to do this one!)
- Renee at My Glimpse of Life
- Leanna at The Rambler
- Julia at Brainella
- Dawn at Dawn's Diversions
- Miti at Pieces of Me
Have fun girls! Happy Thursday!!
Here are the rules:
Take a picture of yourself right now.
No primping or preparing.
Just snap a picture.
Load the picture onto your blog.
Tag some people to play.
Will this work? At least in this pic you can't see the zit factory that just took up residency on my chin...but you can see the Cullen Crest in my window at work. ☺
Ok, how about this one? I have a huge forehead. Maybe I should try some bangs. Makeup and hair done in 10 minutes this morning, so don't judge me.
Today's Task: 10 things that just really get you fuzzed up (that means makes you mad)☺
...just on the fly, off the top of my head in no particular order.
2. When people are disrespectful to our country or our soldiers.
3. People who are fake...or a flake. I just want people to be real all the time.
4. People who are judgemental. Don't judge, it's not your job...you're not God.
5. People who say cheerleading is not a sport. Whatever! ☺
6. People telling me what to do.
7. Bad coffee. I think the reason why I am so loyal to Starbucks is because I know that every time I go in and order a drink it is consistently good...especially "my Starbucks" (71st and Garnett for any local T-Town people...they have THE best baristas!).
8. People who don't pick up after themselves. (Michael I know you read my blog, so don't pretend you don't see this one.)
9. When people say that the Twilight books aren't good books. Hello! Stephenie Meyer is a literary genius! Everything she writes is amazing.
10. Bad drivers...slow drivers. I think it's my number one complaint on my commute in the mornings. If you're going to drive in the "fast lane", then drive FAST! If not, get out of the way!!
What really gets under your skin?
Hope everyone has a marvelous Monday!
This weeks theme at I ♥ Faces is My Friend & I. Here is a picture of Isaiah and his friend from t-ball last year. I'm saving this one for their senior year. Don't you think this would make a cute one for a senior slide show? ☺ Go check out more friends at I ♥ Faces.
It's kinda funny, but I actually think about Friday Confessions all week. If I slip up or do something "bad" or embarrassing...or just anything blog worthy...it always pops into my mind, "that'll be on Friday Confessions". When I have weeks with not much going on or when I've been extra "good", I start getting nervous..."what will I write on Friday Confessions". About Wednesday night, I was thinking, "man, there hasn't been anything really Friday Confession-ish to write about." I get a little bummed. I start thinking irrationally..."maybe I should you know...create a Friday Confession...no no too risky". It never fails though, I always manage to slip up. So, here's a few things I'd like to confess:
*Wednesday night I ate half a sleeve of Thin Mints. Note to self: Just because they have the word "thin" on the box, does not make them "diet".
*This is like a pre-confession. Tomorrow NKOTB tickets go on sale!!! Me and Renee...NKOTB...Dallas...July 17th! WOOHOO!! We've contemplated squeezing in the Houston concert as well. It's the very next night! Can we truly call ourselves Donnie and Joey's biggest fans if we don't at least try to go? I think not. My husband is going to read this and I'm going to get a text. He's not thrilled on the idea of us going to Dallas to a concert...WHAT? Um. Last time I checked me and Renee are 31 years old and perfectly capable of driving 4 hours to Dallas to a concert (and then another 5 to Houston, but it's not even a sure thing). I can't imagine what kind of trouble he would think WE could get into. Like we have any history of that. *rolling eyes* WHATEVER! (I know Michael, I didn't say anything about the Houston concert. I was waiting for you to calm down about the Dallas concert. THEN I was going to tell you. I figured Friday Confessions was a good place to break the news to you. Love you, babe! Oh, and just for the record, if you said you wanted to drive to Dallas to a concert, I would be TOTALLY cool with that. I'm just sayin'.)
*My next topic of conversation isn't really a "confession", it's more of a question...Is this overboard?
(Left: above my filing cabinet in my office @ work / Right: beside my filing cabinet in my office @ work)
I didn't think so.