Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Our Day on the Plains

As you can see we weren' t the only ones in Auburn for game day!!

We had an absolutely delightful time on our day trip to Auburn! Thankfully the Tigers barely pulled off a win. Here are a few highlights from our trip:

  • carrying on adult conversation
  • being with the man I love in the place where I met him and fell in love with him
  • being with some great friends {Susie & Joe}
  • running into handfuls of friends from Auburn days
  • running into a few blog stalkers! :)

As I mentioned in my earlier post, Pop Pop just retired. These tickets were a gift to Pop Pop for his retirement from a colleague {so to speak}. Pop Pop's more of Gator fan so we were the gracious recipients. They weren't just "any" tickets. We had 4 tickets to a suite... aka: BOX seats! Now, this is not how I would prefer to watch every game because it definitely lacks the "stadium" feel... but the prime rib, desserts, and drinks... all at an endless supply, wasn't too bad! We didn't know {or so we thought we didn't know} the other folks in the box. Come to find out I knew one of the guys from my days at Auburn and Justin and Joe knew one of the other guys... unfortunately we didn't come to the realization until the game was over... we spent the first 3 hours staring at the back of their heads.

Here are some pictures from the box to give you an idea of the "feel"....The man in the orange shirt was sitting about 1 inch from Susie... although, they were separated by glass.

Cheering on the team seemed a little silly; I was quite certain they wouldn't be able hear us.

Ok, my next topic of conversation regarding our trip to Auburn would be the COEDs. I graduated from Auburn 7 years ago this December and I don't remember what we wore around campus but I guarantee we didn't wear what some of the girls on campus wear now. I seriously saw some booties hanging out from under dresses. Seriously! There was one young lady in particular who {I wish I had snuck a photo of} who had on an Adidas Tennessee t-shirt with a wide leather belt around her waist and thus created her own little dress. Yes, a t-shirt with a belt and VOILA her game day outfit. I couldn't believe my eyes. At least it was cost effective!

Speaking of COEDs... there were a couple young ladies in our box who decided to take full advantage of the free drinks and polished off the Michelob Ultra in a matter of a couple hours. I got to know them fairly well, as they were quite "friendly". At the end of the game one young lady told me she wished I could stay and hang out with her, although tempting, I politely declined her offer.

Here are a few more pictures:

This is Thomas Sparrow-- a good friend of ours. I'm sure there are a lot of y'all who know him. If you look up entrepreneur in the dictionary... there will more than likely be a picture of him next to it.
War Eagle!

Congrats, Pop Pop!

Last Friday was an action packed day, full of celebrating Pop Pop {Justin's father}! He is retiring and oh what a "to do" it all was! Friday afternoon was a wonderful celebration at his office... the whole theme: BASEBALL! He is pictured above with ALL his grandchildren {& GiGi}. Their shirts said "Pop Pop's Fan Club!". Morgan had cotton candy for the first time... can you tell what color she chose?

Friday night the celebration continued with a wonderful party, food, band, and LOTS and LOTS of people. Pop Pop arrived in high style in a stretch hummer and a complete entourage... police escorts and all!! I'm serious... they even stopped the traffic at every intersection between his house and party! I'm sure there were a few calls to the local news station and police office asking who was in town! :)

Today is his last day at the office and I know it will be bittersweet for him. He started this company 3o years ago and by God's grace it has turned into a very successful business! If my memory serves me correctly, it is the most profitable company in the state of Alabama! Way to go, Pop Pop! His employees love him and it shows!

And... I even had the privilege of meeting a very kind blog stalker at the party... I won't mention any names! We don't want Pop Pop to know she "blog stalks" from work! Well... at least it is his family she's stalking!! :)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Will I...

see any of y'all at the Auburn vs. Tennessee game this weekend?

picture stolen w/o permission from the blog of my friend Jennie-Marie
I've become best friends with this all week. Which is by far the best pump on the market... if you're expecting a baby this is all you need... trust me, I've been doing this for almost 4 years. I have the expensive "big mama" and I'm just not all that impressed and I prefer not to be plugged in and tied down.

Anyway, we're planning a night out on Friday and a day trip on Saturday so I'm stocking up for the little man! Will any of my blogging friends be there?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Since you asked...

**warning... this post contains inappropriate language... I'm sorry I can't help it sometimes**

As for the pumpkin muffins:
After 12 {yes 12} weeks I decided it was high time we actually all go somewhere besides the park. I fed the baby, changed his diaper and prayed that he would behave. I even allowed Morgan to go put her bathing suit on because she wanted to wear it under her clothes... don't ask me! She's 3. At Erika's recommendation we were on a mission to Sam's for a box containing 3 packages of Krusteaz Pumpkin Bread Mix. {Which wasn't anywhere where I thought I might find it and eventually after calling Erika and asking 2 employees we finally located it.} John Martin looks a little annoyed in this picture. He went from a little annoyed to "you'd think someone was stabbing him" annoyed.

Yes, I took a picture {to share with my mother} because this was what I thought was going to be a monumental accomplishment. Well, my monumental accomplishment turned into a monumental disaster. I tried to carry him. Nope. Can't push a giant Sam's cart with one hand & hold a screamer with another. So I strapped him back in and ran like hell to get out of there. A little old lady thought it would be appropriate to stop me on my run for the cashier to ask me "what is wrong with your baby?" I explained that nothing was wrong. She continued on to tell me that "really something must be wrong with him"... I was in no mood to converse with her about whether something was wrong or not. "Out of my way old hag!" don't worry I thought it but didn't say it. We proceeded to the check-out lane where the cashier lovingly rolled her eyes at me and I wanted to ask her if she thought I was enjoying listening to him. Anyway, we finally made it to the car where he decided he would stop crying. I called Justin on the phone and told him I would not be leaving the house again with all 3 for at least 12 more weeks. And I thought to myself this better be the best damn pumpkin bread I've ever tasted or I may never speak to Erika again!

So, the pumpkin muffins were made from this... and wait the story's not over yet...While preheating the oven to make the muffins my house begins to smell like smoke. What could it be? Morgan continued to say over and over again, "Mommy, something in our house smells nasty!" Well, lo and behold... we left taco shells in the oven from dinner the night before. They shriveled up, turned black and the whole house filled with smoke. I'd photograph them too but I threw the baking sheet on the patio and I see the family dog didn't think they were too bad.

Were they worth it... yes. They were good... for quick bread! You can't beat {no pun intended}: add water, oil, eggs & stir. I sprayed & floured the muffin pan too so they'd fall right now. They were especially good smothered in cream cheese that I creamed with a little sour cream & sweetened with a few tablespoons of sugar! Mmmm!

Last fall when I only had 2 kids my favorite recipe was Granny Kat's Pumpkin Roll I really think I made 6 of them {Shireen, is this what you're making?!}... it's a little more involved than "mix and bake" but definitely worth it! Once I recover from this baking experience I may give it a shot again.

The shoes came from Shoe Carnival last fall and they say Brown's Landing in the sole.

Happy Fall, Y'all!

I must confess I have a slight obsession with Fall. Being raised in Louisville, KY we actually had a "real" Fall there. Today's high is in the mid 80's but that feels cool for south Alabama. So, I'm going for it... fall shoes and pumpkin muffins! Mmm! The muffins taste & smell even better than they look... especially smothered in cream cheese. And the shoes feel even better than they look. I'm a flip flop/Chaco girl and these provide some much needed support after a long summer of no support!

My friend Tami is having a c-section this morning! In fact, sweet Mary Grace may already be here! I know she'd love it if you'd send up a prayer for them!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bed bugs...

Morgan will be 4 years old in November. She's never had her picture made by a professional. Neither has the Raiger. Nor young John Martin for that matter. I'm glad I held out. Erika got a new camera several months ago and has had a few pointers from a pro. The results have been second to none. {For those of you who don't read her blog... she posted a different picture yesterday}. For weeks I've been telling her I want pictures made in our bed. Is that weird? I don't think so. It's one of my most favorite spots in our house. If we'd allow it, all the kids would sleep there with us. Erika wasn't sure she could capture it. The walls are dark and she wasn't sure there was enough light... I'm not an expert but they look pretty good to me.

She and Chance were coming back through town to pick up the pups and said, "We'll be there in about 15 minutes... if you still want me to take your pictures take a shower and get ready." Well, needless to say, I went without a shower. One day she'll realize you can't call a mother of three and say "take a shower" because unless the munchkins are sleeping it's merely impossible. This is what she captured upon her arrival...

I've not done a post on our bedroom so I'll incorporate some info in this post and consider it the "bedroom remodel" post.

Our bedroom before {rather atrocious}:

And after {please ignore that my comforter is not in a duvet}:

I believe Erika is doing another post today on my bedroom but here are the facts in case you are wondering...

  • the walls are Java by Eddie Bauer Home for Lowe's
  • the headboard is Pottery Barn {but Erika found it at Goodwill... score!}
  • the sheets are Vera Wang for Kohl's
  • the pillows are by yours truly {the monogramming not the actual assembly}
  • the nightstands came from TJ Maxx
  • the lamps came from Hancocks Fabrics
  • the kleenex box came from Walmart
  • the drapery rods came from Lowes
  • the curtains came from JcPenney {Wendy Thermal-lined pinch pleated}

I think that's it! And now I'm really bothered by the fact that I took these pictures {several months ago} before I realized that I had the wrong lamp shade on one of the lamps... they match now. Not that any of you probably noticed anyway!

Toodles poodles!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Our Weekend {in pictures}

The weekend isn't quite over yet but I thought I'd bring you up to speed. If I wasn't such a verbose woman I'd just leave you with pictures. But I can't... so I'll summarize too!

MommaSis' & Uncle C came Friday in time for a candlelit dinner on the patio. Ribeyes, baked potatoes, steamed broccoli, salad and a little Chardonnay made for a delightful evening... all was good and harmonious until the next morning when...

About 15 minutes after they left me alone with 3 kids and 3 dogs I lost one of their babies. Yes, I am frankly the WORST dogsitter a person could ever get. Justin was gone and I didn't know what to do. Our neighbors and close friends came to my rescue. Like a manic woman I ran around outside in my pajamas yelling at the top of my lungs pleading for her to return home. All the while thinking that Erika would absolutely die if I lost one of her dogs. These dogs are like her children. We found the missing dog... Paisley... under the sofa in the playroom. I thought I'd kill her. At least she wasn't lying in the road. I apologized to our friends and I have deemed myself almost as sensational as my twin sister. To recover from my manic episode ...

I spent an hour in my sweatshop... what's on the lineup? Heirloom dresses for all. I'm working on John Martin's baptism gown and the girls of course have to have some thing to coordinate! Thankfully I've done this before and Paige's dress is already made. That makes for just 2 heirloom projects... a gown for the little man and a dress for Morgan.

A couple hours in and this is all the further I've gotten on the lace & entredeaux. Good thing I have until November! I imagine I will still be up the wee hours before the event trying to finish them up!

We enjoyed dinner on the patio both Friday and Saturday and I have mosquito bites on my ankles to prove it. The humidity has had mercy on us these last few days and the patio has become my favorite room in outside the house once again. The tiki-torch wine corks belong to a friend... now I'm on a mad search to find some of my own!

The girls enjoyed time on the patio yesterday morning too! Seleta, they love their bathing suits and I do too! Thanks!

We cheered the Tigers on in our new t-shirts {& Auburn bows}! I have a handful of t-shirts left in each design. If you're interested please email me Darby613@gmail.com. We were so sad to see them not pull off a win! Maybe next weekend!

I enjoyed coffee on the patio this morning with my husband, children, and 4 legged-nieces...

Their harnesses match my Whirling Butterfly. I cut it back {it was over 5 feet tall} 4 weeks ago and it's doing better than ever! The hummers, bees, and butterflies love it. And I do too!

I rocked the children and Paisley {the runaway} in the rocking chair. And yes, Paige slept in her clothes from last night! :) We choose our battles around here.

MommaSis' brought us this book and we are really excited about it!! Thanks, Annmarie for the rec!

In spite of the Tigers loss, Aubie joined us on the patio this morning too!

MommaSis' & Chance just rolled through to get the dogs. We did an impromptu photo shoot in an unconventional location and I can't wait to see what she captured. We have a church picnic this afternoon, Justin is providing the "live" music and I'm excited about

sitting on a quilt in the grass,
listening to my husband sing and strum,
watching my children run and play,
all while visiting with friends!

Should be fun! Now, before the kiddos wake, I'm back to the lace & entredeaux...

Thursday, September 18, 2008

I'm back...

I hope you are ready for a wild post that will more than likely be ALL over the place. I figured since this post will more than likely be very random that I would accompany it with a random photograph. Seemingly you'd think my child was the one behind the camera, but no, I'm the photographer of the above. It's been several weeks since I snapped it but I came across it tonight and simply couldn't resist. I think naked Ken on a love seat, next to a grill, with a cup of tea made me snicker so I thought I better snap a picture. I might should have grabbed the clippers and cut his hair or at least styled it. Honestly, clothing him didn’t even occur to me.

It has been a wonderful week. I feel like there were a few weeks there where I was struggling to find joy in the routine and He has been faithful {like He always is} to answer my prayers! Y'all have been instrumental in encouraging me and I am so grateful for all my fun and crazy “blogging” friends! I haven't told y'all about my new friend in Rome. Her name is Erin. Let me tell you that Erin has some crazy-nice generosity genes and lately I've been finding these in boxes left at my house...

At first I emailed her and told her there must have been a mistake {although I was secretly hoping there wasn't}. She told me she wanted to send me a baby book. These books are not baby books. These are absolutely beautiful design books that are oozing with design goodness. I look at them everyday {drooling over what's inside} and still can't believe a girl my friend in Rome sent them to me. These are the type books you look at in a store {or on someone else’s coffee table} and think, "I would love to have this book, I really “want” it but I don't really "need" it." And since lately we can't buy anything we don't "need" they actually brought tears to my eyes when I opened them. She tells me there was no mistake. She wanted me to have them. I am floored at her kindness and generosity. And I'm grateful for her friendship. I hope to one day meet her and thank her for her kindness. Until then, "Thank you, Erin!"

In other news this week... I have a new jefe {for you non-Spanish people that is pronounced "hef- ay"} and translates "boss". My sister is now my boss. I haven't been fired yet and so far things are going great. I just expensed a 5 day, 4 night trip to Charleston for "design inspiration" and when she sees it on the American Express she might give me the boot! All joking aside, she has allowed me to take on some local work with her for a few hours a week and it's been an absolute delight. She's unbelievably fast and talented and I'm thankful that she trusts me enough to allow me to sign my name under the Urban Grace logo! :) Thanks, sister!

I enjoyed my time this morning out of the house. Annie is a great sitter and was able to keep all the children at bay. We have a relaxing weekend ahead with very few plans and that excites me. Erika and Chance are coming to spend the night tonight and I'm thrilled. We haven't seen them since our weekend getaway to the farm! It's been 8+ weeks and that is far too long. We're babysitting their dogs so I'm sure I will have stories to share by the weekend's end.

Do y'all know this song? Have you heard the story behind it? I heard this song today while driving around town running my errands. I put the windows down and reminded myself that my Savior, He can move the mountains and He's mighty to save! Have a great weekend! And WAR EAGLE!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

oh spit!

On both shoulders.

I want to blog. Really I do.

But my son, he likes to cry {and spit up} and well right now he's crying and I'm not good at typing with 2 hands, much less 1.

And I really need to clean my house.

I have so much I want to share with you!

But it will just HAVE to wait.

Perhaps tomorrow or Friday will be good! I have a sitter Friday. Her name is Annie, I really like her and I've only met her once for about 8 minutes. She needs me and I need her! Don't you just love arrangements like that? I do. She has children of her own. There's something comforting about leaving your children with someone who's actually had children.

Ok, I wasn't going to blog. I was going to clean my house and here I go!

Good night, friends!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Friday, September 12, 2008

White Queso, anyone?

Justin and I are hardcore Mexican {food} fans. We became close friends with our favorite waiter at San Miguel's Mexican Restaurant several years ago and he so graciously offered me the recipe for that delicious "White Queso dip" that is offered at most fine Mexican establishments! So, without further adieu...

  • 1 package {24 slices} of white American {not the Swiss American-- white American}
  • a couple spoonfuls of chopped jalapenos {the pickled ones in the pickle aisle, they come sliced you have to do the chopping}
  • milk to thin

Unwrap the cheese and break/cut into small pieces and place in microwave safe bowl. Add a few spoonfuls of finely chopped jalapenos. I like to chop mine in the mini-food processor. I throw a little jalapeno juice in too. Microwave on high for 1 min. Stir and add some milk to thin. Continue to microwave, stir and add milk until you've reached your desired consistency. I prefer mine a little runny. I keep it in the crock pot to keep it warm while serving! Enjoy!

After you devour your cheese, I suggest you devour this:

Chocolate Eclair Dessert

I won't be surprised if y'all already know about this one... but I am surprised as to why none of you have told me about it!?! It's DELICIOUS!

My SIL brought it to our Taco Night on Sunday and I pretty much ate 2/3 of it by myself.

For the filling:

  • 1 large and 1 small box instant vanilla pudding
  • 1- 8 oz. container cool whip.
  • 1 box of Graham crackers

Mix pudding with 3 cups of cold milk and fold in Cool Whip. Layer graham crackers, filling, graham crackers, filling, graham crackers and finally top with the chocolate topping in a 9x13 pan and let refrigerate for 8 hours before serving.

For the chocolate topping:

{Thanks to informative readers, I've learned you can just use chocolate frosting from the store... nuke it to soften and spread it over top! 1 tub covered a 9x13 perfect}

  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 c. butter
  • 1/3 c. cocoa
  • 1/4 c. milk
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp. salt

Bring to a boil, cook for 1 minute. Cool.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

They are HERE & They are CUTE!

Ok, they're here and they might can even be to you by GAME TIME ON SATURDAY... unless you live in Singapore! :)

Here's the plan of attack. If you preordered I will email you an invoice through PayPal. You can pay me through PayPal and if you don't use PayPal you should I can wait for a personal check and once it's cleared I'll mail the shirts. If you prefer not to use PayPal it's really ok... just email me and let me know you'd rather send a check... or bring a check if you live around here!

Because so many of you ordered I am able to sell them for a little less {$15 each}... not a ton less but every little dollar counts, right!? I will only ship Priority Mail because it's reliable and free packaging... which makes my life as a mother easier.

I, of course, ordered a few extras {but really just a few} in case anyone asks you where you got that super cute t-shirt!

Check your email box for your invoice! If you ordered a t-shirt and don't get an invoice by the end of the day tomorrow {Thursday} your original order must be floating in cyberspace.... so email me again.

The winner of a free t-shirt is: Lindsey @ Where the Wild Things Are !! My very kind husband was willing to interrupt his book reading tonight to draw your name from a hat!

ps- Thanks for ordering these!! I thought they were going to be cute and I'm glad y'all trusted me!

1, 2, and 3

This is the look he gave when I mentioned 4, 5, & 6. I had the same look on my face. No, not pregnant... just joking around.
I told him to not look quiet so frightened so Morgan helped him smile, he was thrilled.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

My Mom

So my post on Monday was about "My Husband" and was laced with a little humor at his expense. Now I'll share a little humor at Mom's expense.

Here's how the conversation between Erika {my twin sister} and my mother went earlier today...

Mom: Erika do you have something you need to tell me?
Erika: Like what?
Mom: Like what I read on Darby's blog about you being pregnant. Are you pregnant?
Erika: No! What are you talking about?
Mom: Yes you are!
Erika: No. Really I am not. What are you talking about?
Mom: Well I read on Darby's blog this morning that you are "big time" and "you're going to be even BIGGER soon" Doesn't that mean you are pregnant?
Erika: No mom. That's about _____. {which can be publicized later}

1st- Mom, I promise if Erika ever decides to have a baby I won't post it on my blog before she tells you. And she better tell you first.

2nd- Erika isn't pregnant just in case anyone else thought she was because I said she was "big time". I was referring to her occupation not her uterus.

I hope you all are smiling because this has made me laugh on numerous occasions today!

Loving you all,