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Who Does That?

In honor of my Husband…reblog of one of my favorite stories. 🙂

Seriously, I Didn't Know

In April, I went to NJ/NY to celebrate my Fabulous Friend’s birthday. Man, traveling alone has it’s perks. I sailed through the airport with just my pre-Mommy purse with no Cheerios, diapers or food pouches in sight! I felt light as a feather and slightly guilty for being away during such a busy weekend for The Coach…but, that subsided once I got on the plane and took a nap. Sweet joy in the morning! 🙂

It was great to relive the old days of 9 p.m. dinner reservations, cab rides, subways and city shopping! I love Savannah but, a shopping hub…it is not.

On the morning of my flight home, I realized that during our day of shopping, I neglected to pick up a little something for The Coach. Probably wouldn’t have been a problem if I hadn’t made a point to tell him, “don’t worry, I’ll pick up something for…

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What Is That, Red Velvet?

This year, I decided to celebrate my Mother’s birthday by doing something to honor her memory! My Cousin Unfiltered (she has this name for obvious reasons) pointed out to me on our beloved Grandma’s birthday this year, “Birthdays are to be celebrated.” And with that simple yet, poignant statement a fresh perspective and new tradition was born. On my Grandma’s birthday this September, I did a little something in honor of her and I thought on my Mom’s birthday (December 2) it would be cool if I learned how to make a cake from scratch. 🙂

346846Here’s why…

  • My Mom made some things from scratch + she was a great Mother = I will instantly become a great Mother upon making this cake. 😉

  • Baking is not a bad skill to have, right?

  • I will be able to teach Georgia Peach (GP) how to bake from scratch too!

All good reasons in my book so, I set out to make it happen.

First, I looked through the cookbooks and recipes my Mom and Uncle gave me to see if I could find a simple white cake recipe. Couldn’t find one. So, I took to the internet and came across a recipe. Red Velvet Cake. Yes! I thought, ‘if I can make this cake, my baking status in the family would most definitely elevate PLUS it requires fancy red food coloring…sweet!’

Now, I’m excited! I printed off my list for the grocery store and headed out to gather my ingredients. Since I am known to glance over recipe instructions when I should be paying attention to the details this time I actually noticed that I needed to sift the flour. Umm excuse me, sift you say? I don’t have a sifter, maybe I should have registered for one of those when we got married? Looks like I am getting one of those as well. Vamonos!

While at the store with GP, we weaved in and out of the 3 aisles dedicated to baking, like we are braiding hair. First the aisle with flour, then the aisle with the baking tins and next the one with the cocoa then back to the flour aisle…mainly because I was obsessed with getting the exact ingredients, I am not ready nor equipped to substitute things yet. We paid for the groceries and headed back home…without a sifter.

Now, I’m not sure who occupied my body earlier in the day but, I had dinner ready for The Coach (with two options) by the time he hit the door at 5 p.m. This allowed me to dedicate the majority of my evening to my cake project so, I was able to run to another store solely to locate and purchase a sifter. After feeding, bathing and putting GP to bed I began to prepare my work space for my latest masterpiece. I pulled all of my ingredients out and placed them on the counter. When I reached for the vegetable oil, I discovered we didn’t have enough for the recipe.

Focused and determined…I headed back to the store!

I returned home and jumped in, only to realize the eggs needed to be room temperature! I took 2 eggs out and laid them on the stove that had been pre-heating for about an hour now to help speed up the process. In the meantime, I decided to start measuring out my dry ingredients. I packed them ALL at once into the sifter measuring cup and tried to sift it. This was my first time using a sifter aka the devil’s kitchen instrument, I had no clue what I was doing outside of making a mess! Finally, I figured it out and saw why it was needed, those dry ingredients combined were as smooth as box cake mix. Nice!

Now, we are getting somewhere or so I thought.

As I moved to the wet ingredients, the recipe as clear as day, said the buttermilk should be at room temperature too! SERIOUSLY? I took it out of the refrigerator and put it in a warm bowl of water when my phone rang. It was my sweet Aunt J, checking on my progress and reassuring me that the cake would turn out fine. 🙂 I gave up on the room temperature buttermilk, the eggs were the appropriate temperature now, so in my mind it would all balance out. Ha! I combined the wet and dry ingredients with my mixer and poured the batter into 2 round tins and put them in the oven.

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26 minutes later…my first cakes from scratch were finished! Once the cakes were cool, I flipped, frosted and presented my masterpiece to my Husband who at this point had been asleep for nearly 2.5 hours. It was now midnight. The only way to determine if it was all worth it was to get Mikey er the Coach to “try it”.

The Coach: This is good. Can I get a glass of water?

Me: I thought you said it was good and moist, why do you need something to drink?

The Coach: Because you just woke me up to eat cake, I’m thirsty.

Me: Hmmm…20131203_003957

I tried it for myself and it was pretty decent for the first go around. For a project that had a targeted total (prep and bake) time of 1 hour, I finished in about 4. Whaaatttt?

There is definitely room for improvement. 🙂

What have you done or do to celebrate/honor the memory of your loved ones?

Photo Credit

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A Little Something For The Road…

The Coach is a pretty funny guy. Early in our relationship, we had the following conversation about funerals…

The Coach: I’ve been thinking about the type of funeral service I want to have when the time comes.

Me: What do you mean? Why are you telling me this? Is there something I should know?

The Coach: First of all I’m not dying and I’m telling you because you will plan it. I want my funeral to reflect me.

Me: Okay, but don’t most funerals reflect the deceased?

The Coach: Well, I haven’t been to many funerals but, the one that sticks out to me involved a terrible singer. The good thing about this guy was that his singing was so bad, he made us laugh. So, I decided that I wanted to do something a little different for mine. Let’s be honest, I’m a fun guy so why not put the ‘fun’ back in funeral. Most importantly, I want us to put together a cd of songs for our guests to experience. You know something they can play whenever they are thinking about me.

Me (laughing pretty hard): Wait, time out. The ‘fun in funeral’? And you want funeral favors to be handed out?? Since when are you an ‘experience’ guy? This is beyond crazy. Are you kidding me?

The Coach: I am serious! I would like people to have a little something to take home to remember me on the ride home or whenever. I was thinking a 2 disc cd set.

Me (still laughing): Where will this epic funeral take place? You know some of your favorite songs are not appropriate for a church.

The Coach: At church of course but, the cd wouldn’t be played during the service, it would be debuted at the wake/visitation. It will be a gift for coming to the funeral.

Now, I am laughing so hard tears are streaming down my face. A funeral cd? I am unable to speak. Finally, when I am able to collect myself, we continue the conversation.

Me: So, to be clear you want those attending your funeral to get some sort of party favor at the end? And you want that to be a cd?

The Coach: Exactly! And I want the liner of the cd to be a copy of the obituary.

I guess I need to look into something like this...
I guess I need to look into something like this…

Me:  This keeps getting better. I’m not doing that, you are outrageous.

The Coach: But isn’t the funeral suppose to be about me? I’m telling you this is what I want, isn’t it a great idea?

Me: Maybe we could do A cd, 2 is a bit much.

The Coach: You know I love for people to have a good time especially if we are hosting something, shouldn’t my funeral be the same?

Me:  I agree, funerals are a celebration of life. But you my friend, can go a little overboard. We will have to work on the details a little on this one.  Can we table this conversation for say 100 years? 😉

The Coach: Yes, but you have to do it for me!

So, naturally I did a little research on the subject and as I should have known, memorial or funeral favors exist. Just not to the extent of what The Coach would like to do.

Seriously, what have I gotten myself into here? 🙂

Photo Credits

Where’s My Check?

The Coach was an amazing athlete in high school and college (according to him he STILL is, he’s cute). 🙂 While he was in college, he was blessed to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated.  Obviously, this was an AMAZING accomplishment and a framed copy of the cover hangs in our daughter’s bedroom. Recently, he went to pick up my Mother-in-Law, GG, from her house, a few hours away, to bring her up to our house for a visit.

Since GG is downsizing and moving back to her hometown, each time we go to her house she sends us home with some of the Coach’s things. Often times, pictures and childhood keepsakes of him and his beloved brother as kids.  This time, once GG was settled and the Coach had unloaded the truck, he walked into the kitchen and handed me this oddly familiar looking photo/picture/poster.

The Coach: Do you recognize that photo?

Me: It’s you but, it is weird.

The Coach: How do you know it’s me?

20131105_231300-1Me: Because I look at that image every day.  It looks like some generic version of the SI cover. Did you make that?

The Coach (laughing): It is me and no, I didn’t make it.

Me: Well, who did?

The Coach: Some sports marketing company.  Every once in a while this picture would pop up in grocery stores, gas stations, etc for football themed promotions or giveaways.  Once one of my friends saw it and told me about it.  After that, I would see them from time to time.  I got one and kept it.

Me: What?  Can they do that without your permission? Are they still using it? Where’s your check??

The Coach: There is no check.  I was in college when the original photo was taken so SI would be getting a check if anyone.

Me:  That is crazy! So, they have this picture of you popping up all around the Southeast and there is nothing you can do? I am going to track down this company and see what’s going on.

The Coach: You are funny.

Me: I’m serious!  I mean, you should at least be able to make sure the weird poster shows up at grocery store and gas station chains we like!  I’m just saying.

I did a little digging and that company doesn’t currently produce the weird poster anymore.  But I guess I can understand how it can happen…

Once while working as a Consultant in 2001, a woman in my group would often tell me that she had seen me somewhere before.  After a few months of us trying to figure it out, I thought I probably reminded her of someone else she knew. Until one day, she asked me to come into her office.

Work Lady: You know that my family and I are headed to Disney for our vacation this year.

Me: Great place.  I was there a few years ago for a conference, I had a great time.

Work Lady (smiling): I know!

Me: Huh?  How would you know about my conference in Orlando? Did we meet there??

Work Lady: Not exactly. You probably don’t know this but, Disney sends out promotional videos when you ask for more information about the parks and attractions.  Have you seen one before? I brought in the one they sent us.

Me: No, I haven’t seen one before.

Work Lady pops the video into the machine she has in her office and hits play.  We watched the intro of attractive families describe their dreamy Disney vacation filled with beloved characters, theme park attractions, and lifelong memories of ‘the best vacation ever’. I almost booked a trip for myself right then and there!  After a minute or two of these vacation testimonials, Work Lady fast forwards the video and pauses it…on the screen a still of me.

And then it all started to come back to me. While attending a conference at Disney, my co-worker and I were asked to do an interview describing our experience in Downtown Disney one night.  We did the interview, signed a release, and continued to have a good time, never giving it a second thought until now.

Work Lady pressed play and there I was on the screen raving about what a great time you can have as an adult at Disney.  The entire time, I watched (and laughed at) the video I thought:

  • Did I really think that outfit was cute?
  • How many other people have seen this?
  • I definitely had a couple of drinks that night!

Clearly, the Coach and I should have some endorsement deals.  I mean seriously, just think of all the grocery store and gas station football related items that reversible (that’s right it has two sides!) poster influenced folks to buy. And let’s not forget all the families that decided to choose another destination for their family vacation after watching the Disney video.

All I can say is…America, you’re welcome. 🙂

Do It Now!

Sometimes the encouragement you need comes from an unexpected source. 🙂

Thanks to the amazing staff at Lululemon  (slightly obsessed with the brand by the way) in Jacksonville, FL for their hospitality.  Here’s hoping I am able to post actual content earlier than 11:59p tomorrow. National Blog Posting Month aka NaBloPoMo is proving to be a little more challenging than I hoped, but tomorrow is another day!

A little encouragement from my baby courtesy of Lululemon-Jacksonville, FL.
A little encouragement from my baby courtesy of Lululemon-Jacksonville, FL.

Talk Baby To Me

If you are a parent, I guarantee this has happened to you (or is happening to you now it just depends on the age of your child). Shortly after Georgia Peach was born, the Coach and I started to notice how some people would speak to us THROUGH our baby in an effort to tell us what they thought about our parenting.

Went a little something like this…

Passive Aggressive Person (talking to your baby): “You don’t need this pacifier you are almost 12 weeks old! Let me have it” (as they try to remove your boob saver aka pacifier from your infant’s mouth).

Listen Lady, Georgia Peach is a very enthusiastic breastfeeder if you would like to take a go at it being her food source every couple of hours, please be my guest. I could so use a nap.

The worst part about this form of ‘Baby Talk’ is that it turned out to be contagious…I caught myself doing the same thing to our Nanny!  Boo. 😉

Ever happen to you?

Marriage Advice From Your Single Friend?

This might be a bit of a rant so, I will try to keep it together…as much as possible. 🙂 I understand that some of you will not agree with this post, which is cool.  😉

Not too long ago, I was scrolling through my twitter feed and came across a tweet with a link to an article which I found rather ridiculous, entitled, “Why Single People Should Give Married People Relationship  Advice”.  Ummmm, say what?

I have always subscribed to the philosophy that single (and never been married) people should not give married people advice.  Period.  So, when I saw this link I decided to read it and check out the Author’s perspective.  Maybe I am missing something? In the article, the Author shares four reasons, why she is equipped to pass out her pearls of wisdom to her married girlfriends.  The Author is a single, never been married woman and feels her relationship experience has given her the knowledge to provide guidance, when asked. She understands that often times her friends reach out to her to just vent but, really?

Stating, “No, I have never been married, but I have been someone’s significant other and know the difference between right and wrong”.

That’s sweet.

I have only been married a short time and I can honestly say my marriage is completely different from any previous long-term relationship.  Granted, I married a pretty awesome guy who I like, love, and adore. But first and foremost we trust and believe in God which is immensely helpful just in our day-to-day interactions. Yet some of the issues/decisions we face, I could have never imagined nor did I encounter as a single woman in a long-term relationship.  So, I find it difficult to seek advice from someone who hasn’t experienced something similar within the confines of marriage.

I do not believe that just because someone is married they are equipped to offer advice to other married people. I’m not! 🙂  I think you should consider the source in all matters. There are some people who shouldn’t be or just don’t want to be married so soliciting advice from them about marriage should come with a yellow flag attached to it. 🙂 That’s not to say they don’t have something valuable to share.  It is likely they do.

If you needed a life saving surgery, who would you rather have performing your surgery? An expert in that procedure or someone who has watched the surgery performed but knows right from wrong?

What do you think?

Please Stop Talking, Please?

Dealing with the death of a loved one is an extremely personal experience, everyone has a unique journey through it. As you encounter every emotion under the sun, people say the stupidest things to you most, in an effort to comfort you or fill the silence with idiotic notions. Here are a couple of my favorites…

“It’s been a few months now since your Mom passed, are things getting back to normal?”

Umm Cray Cray, as old as you are you should know better than to say this to anyone a couple of months after losing their Mother.  My response, “Huh? I don’t know what normal is anymore.”

“…well, you didn’t need her anymore.”

Honestly, if I hadn’t been in church when this comment was made to me, I would have punched this idiot in the mouth. Seriously? This one STILL fires me up! You always need your Mother, obviously not in the same way you did earlier in your life but, you still need her. I have no words for you…that are nice. 😉

Please stop talking, please!

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So, here is my advice (yes, this post comes with unsolicited advice…you’re welcome!) when you are at a loss of words, try one of these two phrases.

 “How are you doing?”

or

“I’m sorry for your loss.”

Actually, some of the best sources of comfort for me came without a word being said, a hug, a gentle squeeze of my hand in passing, or someone just being present, there.

Of course, you should do what is best for you. But when all else fails and you aren’t sure what to do or say, a Hallmark card will work nicely too. 🙂

photo credits

Blogger Idol…It’s Real and I Auditioned!

Okay, I decided to enter a Blogger contest, Blogger Idol!  Think American Idol meets Project Runway for the writing world. Of course this is my description of the contest so, I should probably stop changing the concept if I want to be selected. 🙂  But I mean wouldn’t it be great to have a contest like that though?  They could have challenges like ‘Update and Perform a Classic Motown Song and Create Three Original Designs for the video’.  I’m kinda loving that concept.  Although, it might make for a super long show.  Obviously, unauthorized “imitation” in the writing world is called plagiarism so, CLEARLY not what this contest is trying to promote.

Here’s how it actually works…if you are selected as one of the Top 13, you will be assigned a weekly writing assignment on a variety of subjects.  Of course, no competition is complete without eliminations so, those will happen weekly too.  The contest will run for the next 3-4 months.

In my mind, the contest would have highlights a little like this…

  • Judges commenting on posts that are “wordy” vs  the overused “pitchy” on American Idol.
  • Some type of “Mentor” giving your work a once over and saying the writing world’s version of Tim Gunn‘s infamous, “Make it work.
  • An eliminated blogger returns in some sort of ‘Judges Wild Card Save Scenario’. 🙂

I am pretty excited about it! I would love the opportunity to expand my writing skills and continuously improve my craft.  This platform would give me an enormous amount of exposure for my blog and invaluable advice aka constructive criticism on my writing. Not to mention, I could win a ton of amazing prizes!  I mean who doesn’t like to win stuff?  I do, I do!  Not a bad deal for an unemployed chick. 🙂

Honestly, I’m likely auditioning with the least amount of blog followers, blog posts, Twitter followers, Fan Page likes (umm, I don’t even have one of those yet!)… so I recognize this is a complete long shot. Here’s the thing… I HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE.  So, if you like my blog, please vote for me!  I will keep you all posted on how it goes and if I am chosen as one of the Top 13.  Vote on Facebook or on Twitter!

Thanks.

XO

Oh Shirt!

For the past three months, I have been living in a semi state of fear…of my two-year old.

Here’s the long and short of it…

One day while Georgia Peach (GP) was playing she accidentally knocked over her tower of Lego’s and I thought I heard her say something when they fell.  I brushed it off and kept it moving. A few days past and while drinking her water GP spilled some on the floor and as clear as day…I heard what I thought I heard her say the other day.

“Oh, sh*&!!”

What???  No no no no no no no! The room started spinning! I freaked out and said to GP, “DON’T SAY THAT!!”.

I started to panic.

She started to cry. 😦

I immediately start apologizing, hugging, and consoling my sweet girl. I knew she heard someone say it and I was determined to get to the bottom of who had turned my Southern Belle into a two-year old trucker.  I knew it wasn’t her fault.

The reality of the situation started to settle into my brain. Did we just become THOSE parents? You know what I’m talking about.  We have all witnessed a little one saying something a tad bit naughty and perhaps thinking (I’m just saying, I have) ‘What is that kid’s parents teaching him/her? Terrible.’  Now, the problem is in my house.  I can hear our neighbors now, “Georgia Peach has always been such a sweet girl.  We can’t believe it. Things like this never happen in our neighborhood…” 😉

To add to my angst one tiny additional detail…she was scheduled to start preschool at a Christian school in a few weeks.  She is going to get kicked out the first week! We will be on the local news.

I started with the Coach.  After I explained to him what happened, he told me that I probably heard her incorrectly and she was likely saying, ‘shirt’. After all she is only two and still working on speaking to us fluently in English (we are pretty sure her current language is a mix between French and Chinese). Nope. I know what I heard and it wasn’t ‘shirt’. Besides, she used it in the right context. Who says, “Oh, shirt!”?

At this point,  I am living in fear.  I’m worried that something will trigger the phrase and I will be outed as a terrible Mommy.

A few days past and I dropped something on the floor and without thinking, I said, “Oh sh*&!”.

Nooooooo. Aww man, it was me! I am the bad influence on my precious angel.  I like how I didn’t think to consider myself as the culprit in this entire situation.  Seriously, I’m an idiot.

I tried a number of ways to correct the problem when finally the Coach came up with a solution that stuck.  Anytime we heard her say well you know, we corrected her and replaced it with…

‘Oh, shu shu!’

It worked!  For us both. 😉 And just in time to start preschool.

Now, even though we have moved past it, I still have “Mommy Shame” about the entire situation.   I am just relieved GP only shared her new words with us. Whew!

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