Sunday, November 30, 2008

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

Well, maybe only on my blog....The Christmas tree is up in my apartment, but the ornaments are all in boxes beneath the tree. The nativity scene is back in its spot with the new animals added that I received last year.

Anyway, I hope you like the new look. More updates to come during the week.

Friday, November 28, 2008

My Apologies and Excuses

Sorry I haven't blogged this week. I had a great post being composed in my head about Thanksgiving: The Forgotten Holiday. I also planned to make a list of things I was thankful for, but between shopping, cooking, hanging out with family/friends, begin to decorate for Christmas, and enjoying some down time, I never managed to do it. Oh and I won't lie, there has been some tv/movie watching going on as well.

I do hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sooner Than I Expected

I was very surprised when the photographer from the Gala, Billy, dropped by a disc of all the Gala photos. You can check out his blog for some other pictures from the evening! I hope you all enjoy!

2008 A Woman's Place Staff

For the record, I am working!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Weekend Ramblings

There are pictures from the Gala. However, I did not take them. Which means we will all have to wait to see them. As soon as the photographer sends them, I will post some. (Of course that means I will only post the ones that I think are good!)

Everything went really well at the Gala. A few small issues, but nothing that couldn't be handled. Everyone also seemed to have a wonderful time.

I have spent most of the weekend catching up on sleep and general housework. And because I believe in a little transparency, here are some before pictures that I took on Friday:

I pretty much feel into bed about 2 am on Friday morning.

I pulled out the vacuum earlier in the week...I never got it put back up though.

Notice my dress and shoes from the Gala...along with other assorted things strung about the ironing board.

And some after pictures:

Not only is the bed made, but the sheets are clean.

So many books still to read.

I even dusted my dresser

It is a rare sight to not have the ironing board out. You can also see my dress outside my room which needs to go to the dry cleaners. The bags all need to be dropped at the hospice thrift store.

Ahhh...a clean bathroom too!

Other than that, I had a pretty quiet weekend. I'll also confess that I am looking forward to a short week!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Ready Or Not

It's Thursday, November 20th. It has arrived much sooner than I thought it would. It seems like it was a couple of months away just yesterday. But, it is here. So whether or not we are ready, in 10 hours over 500 people will gather for the Annual Light of Life Gala. The name tags are printed, the programs are complete, the table host packets are assembled, and slide shows are burned on discs.

In a couple of hours I will meet the rest of the staff where I work, and we will set up the ministry displays, cut all those name tags, make last minute trips back to the office, and make sure all the center pieces are perfect. Then we will all dash to our respective homes and exchange our jeans for dresses/suits and return looking our absolute best.

The "nightmares" of forgotten name tags, whole tables of guests showing up that I wasn't expecting, and most recently the keynote speaker's husband singing the Bunny Song (from Veggie Tales) during her speech will be gone.

Ready or not, it's here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Interesting Things I Witnessed Today

1. A woman who made quite a scene over $1 at Michael's. Even after they said they would correct she continued to make everyone else quite uncomfortable as she explained she taught math and she wanted to know how many other people had a mistake on their ticket.

2. A car driving down Dale Mabry without any headlights...oh, and it was 7:15 pm.


Well, that's about it. Anything else that I witnessed occurred within the walls of my office. Thursday night is our Gala so hopefully I will be more interesting and exciting after that.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

For Stuart and Michelle

Stuart and Michelle,

Here is the picture you requested.

Oh and in case the rest of you are wondering...yes, I did get my haircut this past week. It's taken a couple of days to get adjusted to it, but I must admit that I love it!

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Saturday is the one day of the week I can actually sleep in. So why I am up? I have absolutely no idea, but maybe I'll catch up on a few things around the house that have neglected. I'll try to post something more exciting or insightful later in the day!

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Someday I will think (and breathe) before I speak.
Someday I will not let the pressures of life become the main focus.
Someday I will learn to take things in stride.
Someday I will be slow to speak and quick to listen.
Someday the intentions of my heart will be evident to all.
Someday the time I spend reading God's word, praying, and worshiping will carry over to the rest of my day.
Someday I will actually be able to put into practice out all the things God is teaching me.
Someday I will have the rights words.
Someday I will learn to take criticism.
Someday I will not take things personally.
Someday I will not allow the way I am treated affect the way I treat others.
Someday I will not hold a grudge or keep a record of wrongs.
Someday I will not have to keep learning the same things over and over again.
Someday I will have the courage to say the things I should.
Someday I will have the wisdom not to say the things I should.
Someday I hope people will understand me.

Oh, I pray SOMEDAY is TODAY!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My Day

4:30 am- Alarm goes off, contemplate not getting up
4:35 am- Pull body from bed and begin to get ready
4:55 am- Out the door for a run
5:35 am- Back from my run and hit the shower
6:15 am- Breakfast
6:30 am- Begin the book of Acts (just finished John)
7:00 am- Make lunch
7:30 am- Realize the skirt I thought I washed last night is still in the hamper
7:55 am- Out the door yet again this time for work
8:15 am- Arrive at work
12:45 pm- Lunch break out of the office
1:40 pm- Back at work
5:55 pm- Leave work

Tomorrow- Do it all again

Monday, November 10, 2008

Too Tired... blog. Maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Busy Weekend

My parents are somewhere between FL and TX. We had a wonderful weekend. There was shopping, lots of shopping and great food. There was laughter and catching up on all my family. There was reminiscing and stories from the past. We also caught up with some various extended family members who all live in the area.

I did not manage to take one photo during the entire trip. I always forget to take the camera or forget to take pictures. This time I always left the camera at my apartment.

On a separate note, I am all ready for the Gala. The black dress is a keeper. On Friday, my jewelry arrived and then Saturday my parents and I went and picked out red shoes. I ended up not getting the pair I put on the blog last week. They are very similar, but a brighter red. (They matched the jewelry a little better.)

Well, I need to get ready for a busy week...10 days until the Gala! Oh, and I am getting my haircut this week...which may not be as exciting to anyone else besides me! :)

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Mine are in town. I have just gotten in from picking them up from the airport and then on to their hotel...which is probably less than a 1/4 of mile from my apartment. We'll be spending the next couple of days together, so maybe I'll actually have some pictures to post.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

What Do You Say?

I could post about a bunch of random things tonight. Like how I learned that the steam of cilantro has a bitter flavor today. Or how I find it ironic to see cars here in FL with Canadian license plates...I wonder how long it took them to drive here? Or how my grandmother once again told me how Nancy Grace had twins at 49. (I think that is supposed to bring me comfort as I approach my 30th birthday.)

But that is not what is on my heart. Today many woke with a heavy heart. Others were excited about the days and years to come. For those that know me at all, know I am in the first group. It's hard to know what to even say. It was discussed at my office. I've read numerous blogs today as well. I don't even begin to think I am as eloquent or knowledgeable as some of the ones that I read, but I must share a tad.

I am grateful to live in a country were I have the right to vote, where leaders are chosen by the people. I am thankful that people are elected despite their race, ethnicity, gender, or any other type of demographic data. I am blessed and I am very aware of that fact.

I am saddened though. I've never seen these last few months based on race, gender, or even a certain political party, though I definitely identify with one more than the other. It always boiled down to issues. Issues of morality, issues of life.


Four letters that no one can quite agree on. I think my friend summed it up best today during a phone call we had. "I can only think of all the babies." I know, Abbey. Trust me, I know.

Of course there are other issues, but this is the one that is heaviest on my heart tonight. The one that makes me all teary-eyed. The one that some of us have to weep over. You see a couple of weeks ago, a woman was sent to one of our offices by the abortion clinic next door. It had been two weeks since her abortion and she needed to talk with someone. Not knowing what to do with her, they sent her to us. We will help her. We will share with her. We will stand with her. Her answers are not far off, just up. We will point her in the right direction. He will do what He always does- love, forgive, love, forgive...offer salvation and abundant life. We will help her learn to walk in the Light.

So, what do we do now?

What is done is done. We prayed. We voted.

What do we do now?

We keep praying. We keep seeking. We keep fighting. We keep standing. We keep on. We press on.

At least that is what I am going to do.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

It's 9:10 pm...

...what are you doing? Most of you are probably watching the election returns, but not me. I turned off the TV at 8:00. I headed to my room were I have done a little cleaning since my parents are coming in town on Thursday.

It's now a ten after nine, and I am ready for bed. Maybe it is because I have been up since 4:30 this morning. Maybe it has to do with my 2 mile run this morning. Or perhaps it was a long day at work. Or the trip to the gym after work. I don't know but I'm going to check the headlines to see how the election returns is going and I am calling it a day!

Monday, November 3, 2008

What Can You Get For Your Vote?

  1. At Starbucks, a free cup of coffee.
  2. At Ben and Jerry's, a free scoop of ice cream.
  3. At Krispy Kreme, a free donut.
  4. At some Chick-fil-a's, a free sandwich or 3 piece chicken strips
  5. At The Melting Pot, $9 chocolate fondue.
  6. And apparently if you live in Pittsburgh a free car was at Haddad's on Curry Hollow Rd.
What's your motivation?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

You Can't Take Texas Out of the Girl!

I am approaching my third anniversary of living in Florida. I have come to love living here. I love the fact that I a two minute walk to the bay and about an hour from the "nice beach." Mickey is also about an hour away. The weather is great (well maybe not the summers) and people like to visit Florida which means people are always visiting me (or at least talking about it). Florida has become home.

You can take the girl out of Texas, but you just can't take Texas out of the girl!

I love Mexican food. Tampa lacks Mexican restaurants. I know two have actually shut down in the last year or so. Now, you can get some great Cuban food, but it just isn't the same. I have had to resort to cooking my own.

Tonight I tried two new Mexican dishes...both that are considered staples: homemade refried beans and homemade tortillas. Okay, so the tortillas were just something to try my hand at.

Refried Beans

2 cups of dried pinto beans
Lots of water
Seasonings: Seasoned salt, cumin, garlic powder or fresh minced, cayenne pepper, onion powder
I was suppose to add some butter, but I forgot

I also forgot to take pictures until about halfway through. :)

Rinse the pintos well. Place in a crock pot and fill with water. Cook on high for 8 to 10 hours. I only cooked mine about 8. About halfway through the cooking process I gave it a little taste. They smelled good, but were very bland tasting. I went ahead and gave a quick shake of all the different seasonings into the crock pot. I gave it a quick stir and put the lid back on and let it cook about 4 more hours.

Remove all the beans with a slotted spoon and placed them in a bowl. Don't discard the liquid in the crock pot just yet.

With a potato masher, give the beans a good mash. Then season to taste. I did throw in fresh minced garlic at this point, but did not add any onion powder.

Mainly because I had some fresh green onions and cilantro to garnish with at the very end.

Once I got it seasoned the way I liked, I added the liquid from the crock-pot until the beans were the consistency that I wanted. Discard the remainder of the liquid and place the beans back in the crock pot on low.

Meanwhile, I cooked some fajita seasoned chicken and prepared my tortillas.

Flour Tortillas

2 cups flour
4 tbs butter (note it should be softened a little)
1 tsp salt
1/2 c water

Combine the ingredients, adding the water slowly until you get a slightly stickier version of bread dough. Knead, knead, knead...well about 30 times or so...until it looks like this.

Cover with a wet towel and let sit for 30 minutes.

This is actually when I mashed my beans and seasoned them. I also cooked my chicken and cleaned up the kitchen.

Divide the dough into approximately 8 balls, keeping the dough covered while you roll out the dough on a floored surface.

Place the rolled out tortillas into a skillet that has been heated to medium high. Turn when puffs begin to form on the top side. This means the underside is brown. Place in an airtight container to keep warm.

Now, I made one mistake...I didn't get my skillet hot enough to begin with. This is my first tortilla.

In case you are wondering tortillas aren't supposed to stay parallel to the ground when you hold it! :)

Once everything was finished this is what I had accomplished.

Note: The fresh green onion and cilantro "made" the beans. Of course the cheese didn't hurt. :)

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Quiet Saturday

It's been a quiet day for me. I'm not complaining...I was ready for it. I slept close to 12 hours and then tackled some laundry. I then went back to the mall because I was having second thoughts about the dress I bought last weekend. After my trip to Nordstrom's I went to a shoe store thinking that maybe a different pair of shoes with the black dress might make the dress. I tried these on.

Any opinions?

Then it was on to Target and Publix. With all my errands completed, I made dinner and have settled in for the evening. Right now I am watching Texas Tech try to upset Texas.

As I said, I've had a quiet Saturday. I love it!