Tag Archives | Blogging

Writer’s Block

I love this blog. I’m sure you’ve all figured that out by now. I had a baby and there wasn’t a day that went by without a post. I think of it as my public journal, I can look back and read posts and remember that part of my life. Granted, some portions of my life are dull as dirt, but at least I have full documented proof of it!

This is not boring. My life is exciting right now. I have this precious little baby that I get to spend all day loving and cuddling and staring at. And while it may be the biggest thing that’s ever happened to me, it’s also giving me a serious case of writer’s block. I do have several things to write about but I just can’t seem to actually sit down and write it. That’s my goal today. Today I will, at the very least, start a post about the birth story. Hopefully I’ll get going and be able to finish it, but I’m not going to put money on it.

Baby steps.

While staring at baby chests.

And listening to baby breaths.

Comments { 15 }

Everything I Know, I Learned From Blogging

Yesterday, Lauren from Texas learned that if you have a bee problem, you can call a beekeeper and they’ll come out and take care of it for you. Meanwhile, the rest of her readers learned that if you don’t want to call a beekeeper, another way to rid your yard of bees is by blaring rap music. Apparently the little bugs aren’t too fond of that particular genre. Which may mean that my dad is part bee. The jury is still out.

It made me think about all the things that bloggers teach us. I know that if I ever have a question I can just ask y’all and someone will know the answer. Someone will have advice because they’ve been there or their sister’s boyfriend’s great aunt had that issue last month. It’s amazing, this little blogosphere! You know… they always say that you don’t realize how much you don’t know until you start learning. This is so true. I didn’t realize how much information there is out there until I started reading blogs. You people know a lot of stuff. It makes me think of those posters “Everything I Know, I Learned in Kindergarten” or “…From My Dog” or whatever.

Just think about everything you’ve learned from blogs.

Money Saving Mom taught me that I can get free stuff all the time. It takes a minute every few days and then you’ll start getting a steady stream of samples shipped to your door. At least twice a week I get stuff in the mail. Shampoo, lotion, dish soap, feminine products, etc. It’s like mini-Christmas every time I see a little box!

And then Angela at Craving Cupcakes taught me that it doesn’t have to be an ordeal every time you want to bake something. Just do it. Making homemade cookies and muffins and other delicious goods doesn’t take as long as you might think… and the payoff is high.

And while we’re talking about cooking, there is no way to even tell you how many things Pioneer Woman has taught me. The main thing being: If you roast red potatoes and garlic with butter and white wine, amazing things happen. AMAZING THINGS. This is a life lesson, y’all.

I Am Baker taught me that you can decorate the inside of layered cakes. Crosses and flags and whatever else your little heart dreams up. Then your guests will be amazed by the little surprise on the inside of the cake.

The list could go on and on. Sometimes someone will just say something in passing on their blog and I’ll think, “Wow. Brilliant.” And I can’t even tell you how often I’m in a conversation and have to begin a sentence with, “Well I read on a blog that…” I mean, right? I know it’s not just me.

One of the biggest things I learned happened about two or three months ago. I was reading Big Mama, as I do every morning, and she dropped the bombshell. Apparently Greased Lightening is a pretty dirty song. WHO KNEW?! I started watching Grease in 8th grade with my girlfriends. I think it was some anniversary year of the movie because the media was promoting it pretty heavily. I think they even played a few of the songs on the radio. We’d watch the movie and sing the songs and try the dances. We loved that movie. But let’s face it, at 8th grade, you have no clue what is coming out of your mouth and what it actually means. After Big Mama wrote that post, I immediately looked up the lyrics (as I’m sure many of you will do after reading this) and SURE ENOUGH, dirty.

I felt like a fool! How many times did my parents hear us singing that song at the top of our lungs and cringe at the sound of it. And more importantly, why was I allowed to watch the movie?

It was on television last night. We didn’t get to see the whole thing but we started watching when they were in the diner… about the time of the “a hikey from Kenickie’s like a Hallmark card, we care enough to send the very best” line. My sister, Stephen, and I were watching and we just kept dropping our jaw. Rizzo things she’s pregnant, Danny tries to “grab” Sandy in the drive in and is then heartbroken (and we feel sorry for him) when she walks out on him, the newscaster is hitting on a high school girl, then Sandy changes her lifestyle to make Danny happy… which means that all is right with the world. What. The. Heck?

Regardless, I still love the movie. I was singing along and making my feet dance back and forth while I was relaxing in my recliner. But the point is that, while I knew it wasn’t an entirely wholesome movie, I had no idea that I was singing these dirty lyrics as an 8th grader. And I have a blogger to thank for that awakening.

What have you learned from blogs? Something huge like what car to buy or how to plan a vacation? Or something small like the best way to roast asparagus or where to buy the cutest journals? Spill it. We all want to know. If you know where you learned it, let us know! Otherwise, just give us the goods.

Comments { 17 }

Seven Quick Takes – With A Picture of Avery

Was it just me or was this week 18 days long? I think God is messing with us. Hey God, it’s not funny.

Click the logo below to visit the other Quick Takers.

1.
I don’t know how the weather is in your parts, but here in Houston we are experiencing The Great Flood Part Deux. As of this morning, it has settled down a bit but it’s still cold and dreary and spitty. It’s really starting to annoy me. It’s February… which means that we should be expecting a few random warm days here. But no. Instead it’s cold with a few random freezing days. This is not okay.

2.
Every morning when I’m getting ready for work, Rookie lays behind me at my vanity. When I blow dry my hair I point the blow dryer at her to annoy her. She gives me about 3 seconds and then runs away to tell on me to her daddy. Yesterday morning she was a bit feisty. I aimed it at her and she shook her head. I laughed and did it again. She itched her ear and shook her head. I laughed and did it again. Over and over I aimed the blow dryer at her and over and over she shook her head, scratched her ears, and threw herself on the ground to wiggle around upside down. It totally made my morning!

3.
Sometimes I reread blog posts and think, “Hey, that was kind of funny!” But then sometimes I reread them and think, “Why does anyone care? What am I doing?” Blogging is weird.

4.
Side note on yesterday’s post. We’re not rich. Please don’t misread. And the Star Trek doors are just sliding doors, apparently those were cool in the ’60. As were brick floors, wallpaper, and push button stoves.

5.
I’ve been seeing my chiropractor on a regular basis. She’s a friend of mine and lets me come to her house and see her for free. (Praise God!) I have noticed a significant improvement in my headaches and carpal tunnel. If you suffer from either, get yourself a GOOD chiropractor. And if you’re in Houston, let me know because I’ll hook you up with mine. I used to get headaches on a daily basis but I’m down to about once a week now. It’s incredible!

6.
I still haven’t figured out what’s wrong with my Contact Me tab. Every now and then I’ll get a message from it but it’s pretty random. So let me repeat this: if you need the address for the book swap, leave a comment to tell me to send it. Also, if you have a batch of Ten on Tuesday questions for me, you’ll need to email them to me. If I’ve ever responded to one of your comments, you have my email address. If not, just leave a comment that says, “Email me lady!” and I’ll do it. Or you could just email me at chelsea (at) rootsandrings (dot) com… that works too.

7.
I have an exciting weekend ahead of me. Mardi Gras parades begin in Galveston this weekend so my family is going to go to a few. We’ll stay at my parents’ beautiful house down there and celebrate my SIL’s birthday. On Sunday, Stephen and I are going to drive halfway across the state of Texas to watch the game eat good food with Lauren and Michael. Which probably means I’m going to be exhausted on Monday and be dying for another weekend.

I’ll leave you with a picture of my beautiful niece! (Oh and my brother and sister-in-law. They are beautiful too!)

Comments { 25 }

Finding Your Blog Soulmate.

Hello! This isn’t Chelsea! Now, before you freak out & run away, allow me to introduce myself. Many of you already know me. I’m Lauren From Texas. Please don’t click the little red bubble in the upper left corner (that’s if you’re a Mac; “x” in the upper right if you’re a PC). Instead, stick around & read this lengthy & not very cohesive post. It’s what Chelsea would want you to do.

Not too long ago, Chelsea posted about what it means to be a BFF Friend Forever & opened the floor for questions directed towards her, her husband, & her family. Little did I know that I would be included in this round of questions, so when Chelsea asked me to write a guest post for her, I thought, “What better time to answer the question?!” Actually I thought “Oh crap I have nothing interesting to say & her readers are going to be so disappointed & hate me forever.” But after a dinner of brain food (leftover cheesy french bread & chocolate chip cookies with milk), I decided I CAN DO THIS. So here we go. I’m armed with only my thoughts & feelings. And a glass of Pinot Grigio.

The question came from Chelsea’s friend Lyndsey, who I have never met but am dying to, & who is a new blogger. Check her out here. Here’s her question:

“When did you know that you and chelsea would be Best Blog Friends 4 Ever instead of just Blog friends or Best Blog Friends?”

Great question, Lyndsey. I am going to stretch out my answer as long as I possibly can because A) I like to talk, & B) Because Chelsea told me to write a post & it’s 8:25 the night before she needs it & nothing else is coming to me.

When I started my blog in April 2009, I had no expectations. OK, that’s kind of a lie. I had just figured out that people could become famous by BLOGGING & since I am an English major & have always wanted to be a famous writer, one night I was late for my period & thinking way too much (but not very clearly) & thought, “Hey! I should start (another) blog!” I say another blog because I have had at least 4 blogs since the age of 16, 2 of which are still in existence (and no, you may not read them). So I started a blog and plunged myself into the depths of the blogosphere, saying to myself, “Let’s see what happens.” I’ll tell you what hasn’t happened.

  • My blog hasn’t won any awards. (Yes, I’m still sore from my loss in the 20SB Bootlegger Awards. Never mind the fact that I didn’t know I was a finalist until the day the awards were being announced; I’m a perfectionist & it stings to not win, even if you didn’t know about the contest. That makes no sense so I’m moving on. And clearly, I’m joking.)
  • I haven’t made any money blogging. Unless you count that time a restaurant offered us Happy Hour-priced drinks for the duration of our stay, in exchange for good blog publicity. Let’s see, I saved a couple bucks that night, so I guess you could say my blog has made me SEVERAL NOBLE DOLLARS. You get my point.
  • I have not achieved fame from my blog. Well, one time, at the Pioneer Woman book signing, a girl recognized me from my blog & came up to say hi, but I ended up acting like a huge dork because I was shocked someone reads my blog, had recognized me, and STILL WANTED TO APPROACH ME. (Hi other Lauren from Texas!) My point is, I am not famous.

But you know what has happened since I’ve started my blog? I’ve found a place, a little niche where I can put to use that English degree my parents spent so much money on. I can unleash my creativity, tell funny stories, & make people laugh. And when it comes right down to it, that’s all I ever wanted to do anyway. But possibly the best thing that has happened to me since I started my blog are the PEOPLE I have encountered. When you’re a blogger, you can’t really use the word “met,” because chances are, you haven’t met most of the people you’re talking to. You email, you tweet, & before you know it, you’re telling them your deepest darkest secrets and you feel like they’re your BFF Friend Forever… & quite possibly, they are. It’s not up to me to decide what defines a BFF Friend Forever. Rules like “Before someone can be your friend, you must meet her in real life to make sure she’s a girl & not a 60-year-old pervo with a hatchet” seem to fade away when you have a heart-to-heart email conversation.

I should know, it happened to me.

Chelsea emailed me shortly after I started my blog & we started to correspond. We emailed all the time, & found we had so much in common. We took our relationship to the next level & became Facebook friends. Then, after a few weeks of such correspondence, we decided it was time. To meet.

We met for brunch at a charming place & sat outside. Since it was June in Texas, I sweated my guts out & Chelsea remained cool as a cucumber (probably half from her peach bellini & half because she is a freak who doesn’t feel temperature). I thought, “If this girl still likes me after I am drenched in sweat & my makeup has run down the front of my shirt, this must be real.”

After a brunch date that lasted 4-5 hours, I realized, “I could be friends with this girl. No, I could be blog friends. No, I could be BLOG FRIENDS FOREVER.”

And from that, a title was born: Blog Friends 4Ever.

In going through some old emails, I found this conversation we had shortly after our brunch.

Chelsea: “I wonder what I clicked on that day to find you.”

Lauren: “Probably ‘best blog ever’…. Maybe?”

Chelsea: “That could have been it. Or maybe it was from that eBlogery site where they match you up with your blog soul mate based on compatibility and all sorts of meaningful things. You could view your matches for free… that’s all I remember.”

Lauren: “I filled out that questionnaire. They asked my height, age, and ‘on a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you love food?’ – obviously we were meant to be together.”

In conclusion, dear Roots & Ring readers, friendship is a lot like dating. And blogging is the eHarmony of friendship. For just pennies per month, you too can find your Blog Friend 4Ever.

Comments { 25 }

How To Make a Migraine

If you’ve ever wondered how to make a migraine, you are in luck. I’ve got the recipe.

Homemade Migraine

  • Do not go to sleep before 11:00 for at least 5 days in a row.
  • Have a dog explosively crap on your white carpet.
  • Intermittently spend money on the following: groceries, large quantities of Christmas and wedding presents, a mortgage, a car note, student loans, carpet cleaning to clean up crap stains, gas, more groceries and hospital bills from that time your husband almost lost his nose.
  • Take your clunker to the mechanic and spend an unfortunate amount of money.
  • Be reminded that you are no longer in college and don’t get vacation throughout the entire month of December.
  • Be at the tail end of your hormonal “time of the month.”
  • Have your clunker break down less than 2 weeks after you “fixed” it.

Combine all ingredients in a large vat. Pour in some frustration, cold weather, and dog hair. Whisk briskly with your carpal tunnel inflicted wrist. Add a dash of dirty dishes and a heaping hamper-full of laundry. Blend with unpedicured toes. Be sure to allow some cold showers to drizzle into the batter as it comes together.  Dough will form lumps. Place lumps across your shoulders and neck, keep packing them in until you’re feeling stiff and sore. Set time to 3 seconds. When the timer goes off, your migraine should be ready. Enjoy!

Please note that this recipe is for the ugh-my-head-is-pounding-and-I’d-like-to-go-to-sleep-even-though-its-7:00-at-night. If you’re looking for the oh-my-gosh-I’d-rather-die-than- live-with-this-*#!&*in’-migraine-for-one-more-second recipe, make the following changes.

Add: rain, a fight with your husband, criticism at work, house guests with a dirty house, a burnt recipe, and a bad internet connection. For best results, replace the slightly hormonal day with the most hormonal day of the month.

That is a coveted recipe, my friends. You’re welcome.

That’s precisely where I was yesterday evening as I was standing in Walmart on the phone with my mom. I was whining about the fact the my husband was on the other side of Houston because his car wouldn’t start. I was approximately 4.7 miliseconds away from bursting into tears. This may be the only time in my life that I think the massive Walmart crowds have helped me. I was too scared to cry in a crowd. That’s just embarrassing. Especially because I knew I’d have to come here and tell y’all about it.

You know what made me calm down enough to release the tension and let go of some of that migraine?

A good cuddle with this one:

(Rookie wouldn’t pose for a picture. She was bored with me last night.)

And this. In it’s entirety.

(I don’t know why the pictures are green. I don’t want to try to figure it out because that’s exactly the sort of thing that causes migraine flair-ups.)

(Also, I know my kitchen is ugly. You’re more than welcome to come fix it up, without any financial help from me, of course.)

Want to know what else eases my migraine?? Knowing that I get to have lunch with my best friend Lyndsey today! She lives in Kansas City. She’s brought it to my attention that we live 49 states apart, if you’re traveling the long way. It sucks. A lot. But she’s flying in to Houston and I get tp pick her up and take her to lunch. That makes me happy.

Do you want to be friends with Lyndsey? Of course you do! Well lucky for you, she’s just started a blog. (It must be contagious!) She’s still feeling it all out and figuring out what she wants from the blog, so be patient with her if she changes things up on you. I’m excited about it though. Lyndsey is the funniest person I know in real life, so I’m excited to see her learn how to transfer that to a blog.

Click here to visit her little corner of the internet. Say a proper hello to her. I mentioned that she’s traveling today. It would be cool if she was overwhelmed with comments when she checks her blog. Don’t let me down, y’all!

Stay tuned, I’m posting the winner of the GlamourDamaged giveaway later today.bAnd then the next giveaway starts tomorrow morning. Are you excited? You should be!

Comments { 23 }

Ten on Tuesday (8)

This week’s list comes from Stephany at Stephany Writes. Stephany and I are fairly new blog friends. I’m not sure what it is about her blog that I like so much, I can’t pinpoint one thing… I just read it an liked it. You know how that goes?? Sometimes you just stumble upon a blog and think to yourself, “Self, I think I could really enjoy this blog!” And the rest is history. I don’t know if she found me or if I found her, but that’s not important. What’s important is that we found each other!

1. What was the last concert you’ve been to?
Ironically, I touched on this yesterday. The last concert I went to was The David Crowder Band. It was great but I would have loved for it to have been a tad bit louder. DCB needs to be loud.

2. Is it easy to make you cry?
Yes and no. I get a lump in my throat pretty easily but I rarely cry. I think it’s because I look like death when I cry. I get a splotchy red face and my nose looks like Rudolph and my eyes turn this amazing shade of green. I like the eyes part but the rest is just not good. So I try to avoid it. Plus, it’s much more fun to cry alone than it is with a husband. Husbands don’t know how to handle tears… especially irrational ones.

3. Do you ever feel like people underestimate you?
No. I feel like people overestimate me.

4. Name 7 completely random things that you like:
    1. Man Vs. Food on the Travel Channel.
    2. Using my Notary stamp. I love the sound.
    3. My tiny NASB Bible that I keep in my purse.
    4. The smell and sound of dry erase markers.
    5. Reading Sunday ads.
    6. Spiral notebooks that have been written in with ballpoint pen on both sides of the pages.
    7. My A Store (<– that’s a link). It’s my latest obsession. It’s like Oprah’s Favorite Things… only they are my favorite things, and I’m not giving them to you. I’m just telling you to buy them.

5. What’s your favorite reality TV show and why?
Uhhh duh! The Biggest Loser! Why? Because it’s fun and shocking and family friendly and inspiring and addictive and I can’t help but watch it and it makes me write run-on sentences. Speaking of, season finale TONIGHT!!

6. What is your favorite hair care product?
Does the Chi count? It’s technically a product. And I love it because it makes sure my bangs aren’t psycho. And it flattens out my weird half curl cowlick on the side of my head.

7. What’s your favorite song at the moment?
Stephen and I really love Need You Now by Lady Antebellum. He always wants me to sing a duet with him but I’m too scared that his ears will melt or that he’ll divorce me.

8. What’s the number one thing on your Christmas wishlist?
Dining room chairs. We are saving to buy them though because I don’t anticipate Santa bringing 8 wooden cafe height dining room chairs down the chimney. He’s magical but I don’t think that even he could do that!

9. Have you ever lost your cell phone?
Nope. Knock on wood. I’ve lost it in the oh-crap-where-is-my-phone?-Oh-there-it-is way. But never in the oh-crap-where-is-my-cell-phone?-(crickets)-Crap!-It’s-gone way.

10. Did you attack the hordes of shoppers for Black Friday?
Nope. There weren’t any stores in the part of the country I was hanging out in. But my husband attacked a few things… More on that later in the week.

You know the drill. Do your ToT and make sure to link back to my blog. Add my button if you’re fancy like that. Be sure to visit other ToTers.

As of 10:30 on Monday night, the Mr Linky site isn’t working. I’ll check it again in the morning but if it doesn’t work, leave your link in the comments.

*Edited: Mr Linky is working now. Add your link there.

Comments { 25 }

Seven Quick Takes (vol.11)

What a glorious Friday it is, my friends! Almost every minute of my weekend is planned, but I’m okay with that. Anyone else doing Seven Quick Takes? Make sure to add your name to Mr. Linky over at Conversion Diary.

7_quick_takes

1.
Bloggers, be prepared to be jealous. Last night I had dinner with Kathleen from Kapachino and Lauren from, well, Lauren from Texas. Long story short, they went to the same conference and made plans to have dinner afterwards. Luckily they asked if I wanted to meet up too. Of course I do! So we had a great dinner. We talked about our lives, our blogs, how the non-bloggers in our lives think we are weird, and we talked about y’all.

Let me just say that I was quite naive when I began blogging. I thought I’d just write and maybe my mom and husband would read. I had no idea that strangers read blogs. Or that you get to know other bloggers via their blogs. Or that sometimes you actually meet them in real life. I didn’t know this. But its a nice surprise!

2.
So… that balloon boy… yeah…

3.
Stephen and I are having dinner with Lauren and her husband on Saturday. Of course we are thrilled because we just love them to pieces…. not literally, you know, like Lennie. Just metaphorically… We like them a lot. Anyways, if you don’t follow Lauren (you should), she recently got her wisdom teeth taken out. She’s still in a lot of pain so we aren’t quite sure what she’ll be able to eat. I’m bringing dessert and a side. I’m bringing PW’s roasted garlic potatoes. This is the third time I’ll be making them in ONE WEEK. I can’t help it, they are just that good. And easy. But the question is this: Is it cheating if I take dump cake and vanilla ice cream?

4.

m/

For those of you who don’t know what that is, I’m not talking to you. For the rest of you, what time is it?

5.
I’ve only had two pumpkin spice lattes this season… both were the first week they came out. This is a travesty, I tell you! I think I’ll get another one sometime this weekend. I think I’d feel better about myself if I got one. It’s really a disservice to Autumn if I don’t, right?

6.
When you have some spare minutes on a computer with speakers, visit this site: http://www.iamsecond.com/ You won’t regret it. I haven’t watched them all but I’ve watched the one with Colt, Colt and Sam, and Michelle Aguilar (from Biggest Loser) and I’ve been thoroughly impressed!

7.
Congratulations to the winners of the giveaways!! I wrote up all the entries, put them in a bowl, and Stephen drew two names. We took our jobs very seriously.

DSC01369

draw1

molly

DSC01378

southerngal

molly won the custom onesie! (Which is perfect since she’s pregnant!)
Southern Gal won the jewelry tote! (Which is perfect because she probably has some jewelry to tote!)

Email me to claim your prize!! chelsea.hurst (at) hotmail (dot) com

Visit these two Etsy sites when you’re looking for Christmas gifts. Apparently we had another issue with the text of the link being too close to the regular text. I’ll help you out: CLICK HERE to look at EdieCastle’s shop and CLICK HERE to look at Taryn’s shop. I hope you enjoyed the giveaway. That’s just a little preview of what’s to come in the next couple months! So stick around!!

Have a good weekend, y’all! It’s 9:18 and OU still sucks.

Comments { 25 }

Second Thoughts on That Lottery Thing

I’ve really enjoyed reading your comments the past few days. I love when some of yall come out of the wood-work to leave a little message here. I know you’re coming, I can see the numbers. But it’s always nice when you say a little something. So thank you for sharing with me! You guys are great. We have a few things to address though.

First of all, the lottery question. I asked “If you won the lottery, what would be your one random, off-the-wall purchase?” Two issues here. The first being this- I didn’t mean that you won a scratch off. You didn’t just win some measly $10,000 prize. You won THE lottery. You are a multi-millionaire so it’s not acceptable to say “Put money aside for a house/education/future/etc.” You have money coming out of your ears, you don’t need to put any aside.

Also, “random, off the wall purchase.” Something totally random. When you’re being interviewed and they ask you what you’ve bought and you say, “Back surgery and an on-call chiropractor. And a closet full of designer shoes since I will finally be able to wear them.” They say, “Huh… back surgery. That’s random.” My mother-in-law got this. Her answer was a horse. That is random. And I like it. Furniture and houses are not random. Every lottery winner buys those. Would any of you like to change your answers?

The second item on the table. I thoroughly enjoyed hearing what some of your favorite posts are. TiffanyB said this, “I’ve only been reading your blog for about 3 and a half months now, but I still remember one of the first posts I ever read… Ignorance is Bliss. I love it when you feel like you make a fool of yourself, and still tell us about it! It really does brighten my day.” Here is the link to Ignorance is Bliss if you want to revisit that. I went back and reread it. Cliff’s Notes: I ran a bunch of errands while looking like an idiot. Tiffany, this one’s for you…

On Wednesdays, Stephen and I don’t carpool. He has breakfast with some men from church so we drive separately. I usually use Wednesday afternoons to run errands since I’m alone. I planned to stop by Target on the way home because I wanted to look for a cheap dress that I could wear to some weddings. I had looked online and they had quite a few cute ones. But towards the end of the day I wasn’t feeling well and didn’t really want to stop. I decided I would just go straight home and save the dress shopping for another day.

Then I realized I needed a few toiletry items. I could either stop at CVS, Kroger, or go a little out of my way and stop at Target. Well, I’m no idiot. I toughed it out and went to Target. I had a goal: look at a few dresses and buy one if I find one I like, and buy my few items. But let’s get real here for a second- This is Target. I would like to meet the woman who is able to walk into Target and get only a few items. Puh-lease!

Once in there I remembered that Target sells groceries. I knew I needed to get a few items for this weekend so I gathered those items. Then, on my way to the dresses I saw a few clearance racks. I swear they whispered my name. It would have been rude to just ignore them so I changed my path. Summery cotton dresses for $12? Yes please. I’ll take two! I got back on my path and gathered a few more things in my arms while I walked. Let me just pause this story for a second to say this: Why oh why does Target have a 6 garment rule?? Six items in the dressing room? Really? If you are going to have that rule, don’t have 72 items in my pathway that I want to try on. I ended up having 8 items in my arms but was only allowed to take in 6. The other two are still waiting for me at the fitting room desk. I can’t be bothered to take my clothes off AGAIN for two more items. Come on Target! End rant.

So as I was making my way through the racks I found a few dresses that could work. (FYI, none worked.) I wanted black or gray so I could change accessories and not feel like I was wearing the same dress over and over even though I was wearing the same dress over and over. Then I saw one a few racks away. It was cute. I walked over to it and started petting it. Soft. I held it up and it seemed like it could fit. It was flowy but had a tie so it would still give me a waist. I looked up at the sign above the rack to find the price. I looked around me and noticed the other women. One of these things not like the other. I immediately put the dress back and made a beeline for the dressing room to hide. The sign said: “Jersey Maternity Dress….. $29.99″

So I take it back. If I won the lottery I’d like massive amounts of Target gift cards so that when I walk in to get “a few things” and walk out spending $82, it’s not a big deal. I’d also maybe like to buy some dignity… and maybe a class that will teach me about the difference between maternity clothes and clothes I should be wearing.

Or maybe I should just learn to stop reading the signs because, you know, ignorance is bliss!

(If you haven’t entered my 200 post giveaway, click here!! It’s open until tonight at 10:00. Winners will be announced tomorrow!)

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Ten on Tuesday

Here’s the deal. I’ve been battling a headache for three days. It’s been rainy here in Houston and for some reason when it rains, a hammer sneaks into my head (I assume by way of my ears) and knocks around my brain a bit. This leaves me grumpy and with a severe case of writer’s block. But you know me and you know that I’m not going to just NOT post. I’ve made this deal with myself to post everyday and I don’t think I could let myself down.

So I’ve come up with a cop-out idea. Ten on Tuesday. It’ll somehow involve ten. Ten questions, ten things, ten thoughts, etc. Today, ten questions. I will answer them but I’m much more interested in your answers. So answer in the comments or copy this list and put it in your blog and then leave the link in the comments.

1. If you won the lottery, what would be your one random, off-the-wall purchase?
Lots and lots of designer shoes. And full access to a chiropractor. And back surgery.

2. What is popular now that you just don’t get?
Glee, American Idol, Twitter, Barack Obama, Farmville

3. What would your last meal, you know, if you were ever about to be executed and you got to choose that sort of thing?
Chips and queso, sour cream chicken enchiladas, refried black beans. And then a big hunk of chocolate cheesecake. And I’d prefer to die before the bloating and stomach aches set it.

4. When is it okay to start listening to Christmas music?
After Thanksgiving, on days when it’s below 75 outside. Never before.

5. How do you feel about facial hair on men?
I’m not a fan of beards or mustaches. Goatees are okay, but not on my man. I don’t like to kiss sandpaper.

6. McDonald’s or Burger King? Those are the only two options.
McDonald’s burgers and fries, Burger King’s onion rings.

7. What kind of soap do you use?
Some tropical Dial bar soap. And Niven Morgan Gold body wash. It’s amazing. I smelled it once in a boutique in Austin and I’m hooked. The lotion is a bit strong for my sensitive nose, but the body wash is perfect.

8. What movie can you watch over and over and never get tired of?
You’ve Got Mail, Never Been Kissed, For Love of the Game, and come December 8 Julie & Julia. Underlying theme- writing and baseball.

9. Favorite beverage?
Non-alcoholic: water with lemon or Diet Coke with lime
Alcoholic: Raspberry mojitos or Blue River Riesling

10. What do you want for Christmas?
Realistically: a Le Creuset dutch oven and a massage. In my dreams: wood floors, dining room chairs, blinds, a very expensive pair of black heels that don’t hurt my feet, a sewing machine and sewing classes, a very very long nap.

Your turn.

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Ask the Hubby – Round 2

Sit back, grab a beverage, and enjoy round two of “Ask the Hubby.”

From Chelsea’s Mom: What kind of job would you want if salary wasn’t an issue?

Answer: Ok, ok… I’ll admit that this question is above all, the one that really got me thinking and anxious about answering. 

Frankly, Chelsea and I are at a point in our lives where we could technically change careers and it would be the best thing that ever happened to us.  Why?  Because we could then pursue a career of our choice and grow it from now rather than 2, 5, or 10 years from now.  To answer this question honestly, I would have to answer, I would do everything.  I would become an expert guitarist.  I would train for the olympics, I would get an engineering degree in every field imaginable so I could test, figure out, and invent new and exciting things that would help in unimagined and too great ways to realize now.  I would go to seminary and learn everything possible that people have thought about faith, living life, and acting upon instinct and reason.  I would learn how to examine the human psyche and train myself to be the best person I could be to everyone that I know; in the end knowing how to bring them all together.  I would work to help all those people who exist now and who will exist in the future, whether through innovation or through my simple act of going to see the same poor old lady once a week and talking with her family about what promise there is in an education and in Christ and in how wonderful life could be growing in relationships and truly showing others what it is to care.

I would essentially do everything there is, because the only limits to the possibilities that my heart and mind could go after are those that God has created physically for us. 

Right now, the only two certainties that exist within my life are this: money is essential for functioning within society and I have no idea what role I would provide to society if money were not an issue.  Because there is no job where I could do everything, and that is what keeps me up at night.

From John at Sojo Life: Stephen, do you frequently get belly button lint? I have a severe problem with this. It happens constantly. Every time I dig up in there out comes a big bunch of fuzz. How do you suggest I deal with this? Should I make a quilt out of all the fuzz and give it as a christmas present to my little sister?

Answer: There is an epidemic in this country!  Too many people are getting lint in their belly buttons and it’s just showing how much we don’t care for our clothes as they are deteriorating into little lint balls in our stomach hole! 

Answer to this problem!  Wear belly button piercings!  Chelsea swears she never gets belly lint because the lint doesn’t have a place to go since it’s blocked by the stud already there.  Since the hair on our bellies tend to rub the clothing we wear and hence causes the fibers to deteriorate, the natural place for it to go is in the crevasse in our abdomen. 

What a dilemma, John, what a dilemma!  I would say, since you are a guy and probably are adverse to wearing a belly button piercing of some sort (also the army wouldn’t allow it for you), that you should shave your belly of all it’s hair, buy clothing made from non-cotton products, and then put a flesh-colored plug in your belly button to prevent the hole from eating up everything that comes in its path!   …good luck, John, and God speed!

From Gabby at Sweetest P: What is the hardest part about being married for a man? How do you cope? What is the BEST part about being married to Chelsea?

Answer: Isn’t the answer always sex? To all three questions? Ha. I would honestly have to say the hardest part about being married is a combination of two things: respecting each others opinions when they differ and deciding which answer to ultimately stand by.  We cope by talking it out.  And the best thing about being married to Chelsea is that I get to talk and be with the person that is Chelsea and all the wonderful things she is and does!

From Lisa D. at Lisa’s Yarns: (Her questions are three-fold.) 
1. What do you really think about your wife blogging? Do you love it or hate or are you indifferent?
2. When did you know you wanted to marry Chelsea?
3. They always say that men marry women that remind them of their mom. Does Chelsea have mannerisms similar to your mom?

Answer 1: I’m indifferent, but only in that indifferent = the addition of negatives and positives that come from a wife blogger.  I DO enjoy being talked about in a great way!  I DON’T enjoy being talked about in a negative way! (Thanksgiving post!)

Answer 2:I knew I wanted to marry Chelsea when I was forced to think about it because our friend Anneke decided to ask me (the first time I hung out with her btw) “so are you and Chelsea going to get married?”  Honestly, I was too happy to be with Chelsea to even fathom this question at the time.  However, when presented with the question that makes you think about such things, it makes you actually think.  I found that it was an easy answer, in that I was able to say “yes” to almost immediately due to logic, choice, and heart-felt emotion right when Anneke asked it.  I didn’t say that to her though, I merely stuttered at the blatancy (I made this word up) of the question and decided it was time to go play some volleyball to avoid the awkwardness of the moment, since I hardly knew her :)

 Answer 3: I would have to plead the 5th on this one.  I refuse to compare and contrast the two.  Since knowing the answer to this question could either (1) disgust me in the similarities of my wife and mother or (2) question how much of my mother I am looking to get away from in my wife, I refuse to even think of them together in the same thought.  What a weird question for any man to answer, please refrain from doing so for any other men, since I’m sure it would put them in the same state of bewildered confusion and repentance of their sins for thinking against their mothers and wives!!!  j/k, but yeah that’s weird.

From Lindsay (Chelsea’s sister): What movie scarred you for life as a child and WHY??

Answer: Movies don’t scar me, my dreams do…

From Molly at Considering Campbells: What is your most embarrassing moment? OOOOOR if that’s not PG, I’ll do the easy question: there’s a fire and you have to get out of the house. What 3 things (not people/pets) would you take with you?

Answer: Since my MOST embarrassing moment includes public nudity, I’ll go with the second answer: painting of Chelsea and I by the China-man, the journal Chelsea made for me everyday in 2006 of the things she loved about me, and the jewelry box I made as a wedding gift for Chelsea.

From Jim at Life on Dayton: Has it been harder for you to find close friends since leaving Austin or harder for Chelsea?

Answer: It’s been equally hard for both of us to find friends since leaving Austin.  I however have grown into a great relationship with two men from our church here, while Chelsea has the misfortune to not have that many new friends close by.  This is both due to Chelsea’s maturity as a person and the lack of said maturity level of the people at the Church her age that she could connect to.

HOWEVER, because Lauren is such a hoss and can be a close friend even from far away; (semi-colons are my favorite punctuation by the way) she is duly counted as a good friend that Chelsea is able to connect with regularly.  Just as my friends and I were able to initially connect through our interest in the Church to grow a close relationship, Chelsea has been able to connect with Lauren (and all you ladies, and some guys) through the blogging world! :^)

Jim, also I miss you.  You are a good friend who I wish could live down the street and could come over for shish-kabobs, because we had those tonight and they would have been great with you and Sarah!

 

A few notes from the wife (also known as The Owner of This Blog):

-Just as I have a love affair with the comma, Stephen has a love affair with the run-on sentence.

-I’m not sure if “China-man” is an acceptable term. Stephen assured me that it was PC and if anyone has a problem with it, they can yell at him and NOT me.

-Lauren, I told Stephen he wasn’t allowed to call you a “hoss”… that it meant a big, tough man. He disagreed. After a debate we decided to let urbandictionary.com settle the argument. (You can click that link to go straight to the “hoss” page.) He’d like you to see definitions #1, #3, #5, and #6 – specifically #3. And you are to ignore #2 and #4. And also, we have much more in common than just blogging. But I was not allowed to contribute to his answers…

-Stephen may or may not have had a few glasses of wine before writing this. That’s all I’ll say on that subject.

-I see that I missed Wes’ question – something about are there any games left in the UT schedule that he is particularly worried about. I’ll answer for him. No. His reasons are two-fold. 1) Stephen doesn’t worry about football. 2) UT dominates, we have full confidence and do not worry about them. Heard of Colt McCoy?

-This was the last installment of Ask the Hubby. If there are more questions out there, ask away. We’ll save them for a rainy day. Feel free to add them on future posts as well.

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