Friday, January 25, 2008

Miscellaneous Happenings 'Round Here!

It's a big day here on the ranch! My mom called me Wednesday night and wanted to know what I was doing this weekend! My heart skipped a beat... because I knew that meant she might be coming. We haven't seen my parents since July... yep, that's right, July! It's been a long time and I have been so excited about seeing them and them seeing the girls that I could hardly contain myself. Anyway, Mom's en route from IL with 2 big dogs, Dad (who's been on business in Bham) is flying in tonight and Erika and Chance (& 2 small dogs) should be here early evening. And I absolutely cannot wait! I'll have to report back with lots of pictures.

Ok, now for the pictures above. If you click on the one of Raiger you'll see some tears in her eyes. The child lives for that Pub Mix she's carrying around, and if you don't open it soon enough the tears will start pouring forth. We're getting low and I can't imagine what she'll do when it's all gone. Last night we had a rough night with her and when we woke up she just so happened to be in the bed with us.... oops. Anyway, I let her out of the bed and she made her way to the kitchen. Justin and I weren't quite ready to get up so we just let her wander about the house on her own. A few minutes later she walked in our bedroom carrying that giant tub of Pub Mix... where do these kids come from? I know before we had kids we didn't laugh as often as we do now... we certainly slept more though! The child had to open a pocket door and the pantry door to get to it... how could I say no to that?
The second picture is Morgan eating her boiled egg yesterday morning. There's no funny story behind it... well, there might have been but I've since forgotten if there was. I just figured if I put one of Paiger I better put one of Morgan too.
Stay tuned for details from our action packed weekend!
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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Way to go Sister!

I just have to brag on my sister, Erika, who has an amazing blog that has had some recent "big time" publicity! She's an amazing designer who started her own design company several years ago and has done FABULOUS! You can tell by her blog what an incredible talent she has. Anyway, here's the link to the Washington Post where it mentions her blog and here's a link to her blog:

Washington Post

Erika's Blog: Urban Grace Interiors

Proud of you sister and can't wait to see you this weekend!!

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Friday, January 18, 2008

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

I'll keep reading...

Ok, so I didn't know my post on the Redemption series would cause such a stir! I guess when I put my opinion on the internet I should be prepared for some feedback!! Perhaps I was a little strong with my words (definitely not seasoned with salt & full of grace!) and I hope I didn't offend those of you who love it. I will continue to read on, maybe not right now but again soon... I already have the whole series so I don't have to worry about how or where to get it.

While I didn't care for the book as a whole I will agree that there were messages of hope for people who are in a failing marriage (or for those who aren't)... to hold tight to the Truth and trust that God will pull you through. And it definitely held my attention because I didn't put it down. I guess when I watched Tim and Kari work hard on their marriage and come through successfully in restoring their marriage and then to have him shot and killed (b/c the mistress lied about being pregnant) right before their baby was born just left me a little frustrated. After them restoring their marriage I was hopeful for a "happy ending"... maybe that's why it's a series... maybe this is just chapter 1 into the Baxter's lives... hopefully the happy ending comes with book 5!

Thank you all for your comments and book recommendations. By no means have I written off Christian fiction... I was just a little irritated with this one! But I've got 4 more in the series and I'll report back when I read them! And I'll try not to be such a tough critic on the next ones!

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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

prayers for a family in need of prayers!

Do you ever just go from blog to blog and find yourself fully engrossed in someone else's life that you've never met? Well, happens to me fairly frequently. Yesterday, or the day before, I came across (actually, I'd like to say that God led me to) a blog from a young couple from NC.

In a nutshell, here's what they are facing:
Nate (husband) and wife (Tricia) just had their first child (Gwyneth) at just 24 weeks of gestation. Tricia has Cystic Fibrosis and as a result her lungs are in bad shape and she is in need of a double lung transplant. The drs did a c-section last week to relieve her body of Gwyneth.... who by the grace of God is surviving. Tricia didn't do too well during the surgery (which was actually to put her on a vent but resulted in an emergency c-section) and continues to be under sedation. Please pray for this family; both Tricia and Gwyneth's physical health and Nate as he juggles two precious people both in fragile states.

Thanks guys... I know they would appreciate it! Here's his blog:

Monday, January 14, 2008

Tell me it gets better than this...

I enjoy reading but don't do it as much as I wish I did. So, last week I picked up the first book in a series I bought a year or two ago. It's the Redemption series by Karen Kingsbury. She's a Christian author and by the reviews I read on Amazon I was thinking I was in for a real treat. But boy this book may have been the most pathetic excuse for a "Christian" novel I have ever read. Perhaps my expectations were set too high. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading Francine Rivers (who primarily writes historical/Biblical fiction) and I thought maybe (or hopefully) these would be equally as intriguing... unfortunately not the case.

Anyone read it? Anyone continued on and read the rest? Does it get better from here? Honestly, I was so upset with this book I considered throwing the rest in the fire. The only word I can think of to explain this book is CONTRIVED. It's so pathetic. Here's a brief summary of how it goes, and if you are interested in reading it let me know and I'll give it to you.

The main character, Kari, is married to Tim. Tim, a college professor, has an affair with Angela, a student. Kari goes home to her family to recover from the blow, all while remaining determined to forgive Tim and work on their marriage. And she finds out she's pregnant. But, she runs into her high school boyfriend, Ryan, and rekindles an old flame. Tim starts to drink. But eventually decides to leave Angela and come back to Kari. So, Kari and Tim are working on their marriage and things are going great. They are 2 months from the birth of their child and Angela (the student mistress) calls Tim and tells him that she's also pregnant with his child. So, Tim leaves one night to take Angela a letter explaining that while he is terribly sorry that she is pregnant, he is going to remain faithful to his wife, Kari. While delivering the letter he is shot and killed by Angela's deranged ex-boyfriend. Kari is left alone pregnant and for a short time at the hospital was left thinking that he was still involved with Angela because he was shot at her apartment. Then they bring her the letter which states he wants to remain faithful to her, but she learns Angela is pregnant. Then Angela comes in and tells Kari that she's not really pregnant she just told Tim that to get him back. Then life moves on, she buries her husband and has her baby. And guess who shows up in the hospital room after the baby is born, the high school boyfriend, Ryan. The end!

Sounds like a trashy soap opera if you ask me. It's supposed to be a series on relationships; building them, growing them, redeeming them, all while focusing on Christ. I couldn't get past the plot to actually take something from the book and apply it to my life, much less my marriage.

Anyone else read it??

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A Great Weekend and Our Visitors!

Justin & Morgan

This is the best we can get for a "posed" picture these days!

The girls on a wagon ride!

We had a great weekend and started off by having a couple friends over Friday night for a cookout. Friday I reported the horror of seeing a child with blood dripping from her face and Friday night we saw it again. This time it was Morgan. She got her shirt wet and went to her room to get a clean one. Apparently she pulled out the drawers to her dresser and climbed up. It's a tall chest of drawers and weighs about 200 lbs... well, you guessed it, it fell over on her. By the grace of God it landed on her bed and didn't completely squash her underneath. By the screaming you would have thought it had. Her face took the worst of it and her back had a big scratch and bruise. We are now anchoring all our dressers to the walls and I do believe that if anyone decides to climb one.... it won't be her!

Saturday morning we met Justin at the farm for a little "exploring" and we had a great time. The weather was perfect and gets me so excited for Spring! We walked down to the creek, checked out the pond and the girls enjoyed exploring in the wagon. It was a great time and it was so refreshing to spend the entire morning outside.

Now for our visitors... if you don't know me well, I will share with you one of my favorite things since my childhood... birdwatching. It sounds very "grandmotherly" but I can't help it! Thankfully my husband equally enjoys watching! This morning from my bed I listened closely to all the birds outside my window. It energized me to get up and see "who" was here. I knew it was something big by the sound of it! I was so enthralled when I saw who it was. I sat at the family room windows and watched and watched and watched. First, I saw the robins. My mother-in-law always warns when the robins come watch out for their purple poop. In fact she says she needs an umbrella to walk out of her house! :) Anyway, the robins were here in full force. They are beautiful birds, not the most graceful but they are fun to watch as they plummet their beaks into the ground dig for any signs of life they can scrounge up!
Next I saw one of my most favorite birds, Cedar Waxwings! These birds are amazing, beautiful, graceful, and only come through once a year. They love berries and the only berries that I am aware of in our yard are the little blue berries on our Cedar trees. I thoroughly enjoyed both of my morning visitors and they unfortunately didn't stick around when I let Eufaby out. Nonetheless, I was thrilled to have a little time with them this morning!

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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Where to start....

It's 9:15 pm and I have a feeling I won't last long enough to finish this blog entry! As I fluttered around the house today I questioned whether I had it in me to blog when it's been so long... but here goes anyway.

The "gay"ble guys (who are also "partners") temporarily hooked us up to the rest of the world yesterday. I honestly could do without tv as long as I live but the internet I've come to rely on fairly frequently. It's nice to have it back.

December was a good month for us... it was a challenging month with trying to get moved in and the holidays are always hectic. But I have so very much to be thankful for that I really can't think of anything other than the bountiful blessings He's provided. We did have a time of grief when our good friends Abby and Jeremiah lost her precious mother to a long battle of cancer. We grieve her earthly loss but remind ourselves that she's whole and complete and best of all with Jesus!

I've added a bunch of pictures to sum up the month and these don't really even sum it up. I would have loved to have been with my family for Christmas but greatly enjoyed the "simplicity" of being home and having our little family in our own home (a first for us)! The girls are growing up so fast and have become "best friends" as Morgan would say. Tonight she asked Justin if we would have to get rid of Paiger when the other baby is born. When Justin explained of course we wouldn't, she replied, "You mean we're going to have 2 babies!?" I love the way their little minds work. Paiger took a pretty mean spill tonight and there's not much worse than running to a child who is looking at you with blood spilling out of their mouth and already dripping all over their jammies. She seems to be ok and I never did get a "good" look in there to see exactly what part of her mouth took the brunt of the fall but I'm hoping it wasn't those little teeth!

Ok, so it's 9:26 now and I'm going to explain these pics and call it a night!! Love to all my long lost blogging friends! I hope you haven't given up on me!!

This was at Chris and Kara's wedding in early Dec. and a very fun Chi O reunion for some Alpha Betas! (Ann Buster Payne, me, Jenny Webb Watkins, Blair Dagostin McCurry & Tami Tolleson Stanford (a KD but we let her in the pic anyway!))

My 2 little princesses!!

A serious Raiger in her daddy's arms on Christmas morning!

A happy Raiger (& a few crumbs in her reflection)

My 2 little ballerinas... you'll see Paiger has a little curl on the back of her head!

My 2 little artists!

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008

bopsy twins

Darby requested some Brown-McPherson twin photos. Of course Darby got married before the age of digital cameras, so I'd have to "dig and scan". But here are a few...
The extra set of twins above are my parents neighbors' daughters... identical too.

For some reason we didn't take a group shot (at least on my camera) at Allyson's wedding.
And here is a message from Darby (she left it in the comments on the last post):
Hello!!! It's me the long lost blogger... posting a comment on my own blog! I'm at J's office for a quick "fix" of the www. The "gay"ble guys are supposed to come Wednesday to hook us up and I'm hoping they will actually do it this time... it's been 5 weeks and I'm starting to feel really out of touch with the world. No internet, no tv! Thankfully I have a house to keep me really really really busy!! Thank you, Sister, for your "guest blog" and all the nice things you said. I could say "ditto" to all of them and if you will allow me to be a "guest blogger" on your blog I'll prove it to you!! I miss all my blogging friends so much and if anyone has made any major announcements on their blogs please email me and tell me! Because I feel as though I'll never ever catch up with my reader. E, I laughed so hard at the first picture. I didn't even see myself curled up on the sofa. I did notice the huge mess in the house though... perhaps I'll clean up and take a few pictures. I am feeling better (praise the Lord) and hope that now that I'm in the second trimester I'll have that sudden burst of energy I've heard about (yet not yet experienced... maybe 3rd times the charm).... should know what the baby is in 6 to 8 weeks... or maybe sooner! I've had 2 dreams that it's a boy.. so we'll see! :) Love to all my friends and a super big hug and thanks to my sister for the sweet post... there was only one picture missing... one of us and the Browns. Dig around and see if you can find one!!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

guest blogger- Mommasissy

The Stickler family (pictured above + my husband) is alive and well. This is Erika (aka "Mommasissy") posting on Darby's behalf because she has fallen out of this millennium and is STILL without internet in the new house. Check out her new kitchen! Still gotta get that microwave on a shelf, but it sure is coming along! As you can see in the photo above (that's her on the sofa- bottom right of the screen) she is very tired. The house is not finished and with two precious rugrats, plus no strength or energy from being pregnant, it's hard to get anything done! Baby Stickler #3 is healthy and a jumping little bean (she had another ultrasound this week).

I am thrilled about posting on this blog... it is definitely my favorite to read! I'm probably not as witty or cute or as experienced in the child-rearing department as my precious sister, but I'll stand to the challenge.

Do you know what an amazing sister I have? Of course I am partial, but I know that not many have relationships like ours. She is the most thoughtful, compassionate, dynamic, giving person I know. I can't imagine what life would have been like growing up without her at my side every single step of the way. She and I talk about 3 or 4 times a day - and I wish that we could spend every weekend together.

We had a great Christmas (McPherson fam) but of course it wasn't the same without Darby. It also wasn't the same without seeing these ladies above. This is our group of closest high school friends, and now that mom and dad are officially out of Louisville we unfortunately don't get to see them as often {maybe this summer!?}. From the left: me, Leslie, Darby, Hannah, Becky, Shellie, Laura. We are scattered from Florida to California, most of us are married, and 4 of those girls have children (Laura has 3 and another on the way)! Geez, makes me tired just thinking about all that. Anyway, just wanted to give a shout out to my high school girls.

And here is a picture from when Raiger was born (I've searched my computer front to back for a picture of Morgan's birth day and can't find any). July 14th, 2006... at a hospital in Tallahassee that I don't know the name of. I sure am a proud aunt! Darby, fo' real how do you look that good after just having a baby? I know it wasn't easy, but you look good, so it looks easy. HA. Okay, more randomness... since I know people are probably really sick of looking at Justin's burning pine trees in the last post.

Okay, so no one but mom and mimi will probably get too kicked about these next few, but anyway... I don't remember what year this photo was taken... but it is cute. Your pink shoes really don't match your LSU get up but I'm sure you (like your precious daughter Morgan does now) had picked that out all by yourself. I do believe we still have that ragged dog and red-headed cabbage patch doll somewhere.

This was the recital that we didn't get to participate in because we moved back to Chicago right after that photo was taken. I was probably a little more graceful given the "cupped" hand formation AND the feet pressed together tightly you are displaying. We can have a dance-off next time we are together and see if that still holds true.

Halloween in Atlanta. You pointing at Mittens. The only cat (other than your rental cat Squash) that has ever been in the McPherson family. I think our outfits are stellar, especially my bone necklace.
Only thing that could have made this better is if your side pony was off the other side of your head. I still roll my feet out like that. Easter when we lived in Atlanta? I think so.
Morgan in the womb, this will have to suffice for not having a birth day picture.

Did you know that Darby was a War Eagle Girl at Auburn? If you aren't in the loop on what that means, it pretty much means she's a total rockstar. Next to the title of Miss Auburn, the War Eagle Girls (and their counterpart The Plainsmen) are a very select group of men and women (12 men, 12 women) selected to represent Auburn University. She wore that navy suit (and the not so attractive navy hose and navy heels that were also required) with honor (to every football game too might I add). I was (and still am) so proud of her! {she also played Lacrosse at Auburn, random, but true}
She's the cutest pregnant person I've ever seen! She was 8 months pregnant in that photo!

She's also a Ventriloquist. {the sign in my parent's kitchen does not say FAT, it says EAT, it's the angle}

McPherson girls on Morgan's 1st Birthday!
She also creates precious offspring...


I think Darby would agree with me that being twins is super fun. Just wish we were next door neighbors! And I'm 100% positive that Darby would trade me for her current neighbors. :)