Things I love Thursday

I have a best friend, that I call PODUS.  This nickname comes from High School, in US History, when we decided she'd run for President at some point in her life, and she'd be called... President of DA United States.  'Cause she's cool like that.  ;)

We have dinner every week at Don Juan's ... a Mexican restaurant in the town that I live.  The BEST Mexican restaurant ever.  Period.  But, we don't go there for the food...we go there for each other. 

PODUS and I go way back...back to our sophomore year in HS.  Back to braces and awkwardness.  Back to when people looked at us funny because we were just a taaaaad too loud, and no one got our humor anyway.  Back to when she carried around a stuffed Alf (yes, a stuffed Alf...it was a thing...she grew out of it, I promise.  She's not like, carrying Alf to work or anything.  Although, if I asked her to she probably would.  We're still pretty nerdy like that.)

Randomly during the week, I'll get a text message that simple says 'Dinner?' and I'll simply reply "yes" and we meet up.  Same place, same time.  I love how easy it is; how simple it is.  I love that sometimes we talk a little too loud (and even with children within hearing distance we still sometimes drop the f'bomb) and sometimes we laugh a little too much (about realizing that said child is actually within hearing distance and his/her parents are probably offended by said f'bomb)

I love that we can just appreciate the importance of that hour that we get to see each other out of every week, and that we know that without a doubt ... we'll be doing it again the following week. 

Pic disclaimer: This was like 7 years ago...forgive the tongue ring, OK?

I believe...


I keep telling myself this.  I keep reminding myself that no matter how ordinary or simple I am...that if I follow the dreams that I have that are right before God, my life can be extraordinary.  I have to believe this, or I might just go crazy.
....Ok, more crazy that I already am. ;)

Something I love to do...

This weekend I got to do something I love...

I got to take pictures of a cute little couple, that are IN love.


This is the second time I've gotten to take engagement pictures.... and, while I do enjoy taking pictures of precious babies and children, there is just something I love about taking pictures of people in love.  It is just FUN to interact with people at this time in their lives.  They are excited, they are about to get married, they are young and want to have fun.

This session was a blast anyway.  I started my normal talk track about how it's cliche to say "act like I'm not here, but ... act like I'm not here" and they ran with it.  Brian started right off saying, "here, lets do this...how about this..." some photographers might not like that...but I really enjoyed hearing their thoughts and inputs on what they wanted out of the session.  We laughed and talked and I scolded them for not keeping me in line with keeping up with my equipment (as I had left it laying in the middle of playground while we gallivanted off to another park of the park).   You know, I can't be held responsible for my own things. Sheesh.

I ended up leaving one of my cameras on a picnic table, actually.  And, my adoring hubs helped me be all mission impossible and break into the park after hours so we could retrieve the fallen soldier.  I wanted to drop and roll and be all sneaky sneaky....he merely walked around with the flash light saying "Come ON!"  He's more afraid of jail time than I am apparently. Haha.  The camera was found, and still worked despite sitting in the rain for a few hours.  :: sings :: Thank Heavens!!!

I can't wait to be able to do this again -- sans the losing of the camera. ;)

A New Addition

NAME: Boomer Beauregard.  KNOWN ALIAS': BOOMS, Boomies, Boom Boom, and Fluffy Butt.  AGE: Aprox. 12 weeks.  RACE: Yorkie-Poo, Shitzu Mix.  EYE COLOR: Chocolatey Brown.  HEIGHT: Aprox 9in. WEIGHT: Aprox 6lbs.  WANTED FOR: Being Too Damn Cute.  

This rugrat came to join our clan.  Because I'm weak, and because he's hiding out from the 'Too Cute' Authorities.  He's just a law heart breaker.  He can't be held responsible.  He was born with that face....





Things I Love Thursday

About a year ago on my lunch break, I stumbled into the only bookstore within a 15 mile radius of my office.  It was a Lifeway Christian bookstore, and it had books for, like, 4 bucks.  I did a happy dance right there.  So, sometimes on my lunch break I will venture to the Lifeway Christian bookstore where you can enjoy elevator music, clips of Veggie Tales (what?? it's in the children's section...WHAT?? the children's section is totally behind the clearance section, sheesh)  and pick up a cheap good read.  I have come across three awesome authors that I am now obsessed with.  I have purchased all the books they have released...and am anxiously anticipating the new releases that are coming within the next two months for all three of them. 

1) Deeanne Gist.  If you like romance and history....you'll love her historical romance novels.  I say romance and cringe, but think Nicholas Sparks set in 1865.  It's totally awesome.  She's totally awesome.  We're Facebook friends...that's right, be jealous ;)

2) Julie Lessman.  Again, historical romance but a bit more recent.  Her books have spand the 1920's in the most awesome way.  All of her books center around one Bostonian family and each book is about one member of the family.  LOVE.

3) Jenny B. Jones.  Her stories are current, in the now, and with the times.  She keeps her stories fun, funny, and all around good.  I laugh out loud reading her books...my husband looks at me funny.  I don't even try to explain.

Mountain Folk

A few weeks ago, Derin and I escaped to the mountains for a mini-vacay to recharge and just spend some quality time together.  We threw around a ton of ideas on where to go and what to do, but in the end it came down to the time we could take and what we could afford.  I, personally, like vacations like my honeymoon, where relaxing and laying by the beach is my number one priority.  Derin, on the other hand, likes vacations where you can go and do and see.  I enjoy that too, but my feet don't thank me at the end of those types of vacations.  In fact, they scream at me...curse me...call me names.  I don't know where they learned that kind of  language...
Anyway...we drove into Tennessee on Sunday.  And, it welcomed us.


That evening our dear friends Tami and Bryan drove over from their little town of Morristown to come visit.  We grabbed a bite to eat, played around of putt-putt, ate some frozen yogurt until the employee gave us enough dirty looks to run us off, and ... in true "Rockstar" fashion...we laughed...and laughed...and laughed. 
I miss her. 

Monday we started at the aquarium...



Then we just moved on to walking the main strip in Gatlinburg and going into the little shops here and there when we decided we wanted to stop and browse. 










And then on Tuesday we went for a Helicopter ride and toured the Titanic.... no, not the one on the bottom of the Atlantic.  They created a museum with artifacts and pictures about the Titanic and about the people on the Titanic.  They recreated the Grand Staircase to scale...with all the specs of the original one.  Very pretty.  No cameras were allowed or I'd have a "Jack coming down the stairs..." picture of my husband..hehe.  When you entered they gave you a "boarding pass" with a name of an actual passenger and their story.  At the end, you learned if you survived...I did. 






It was too short, of course...but I'm glad we got to get away for a little while. 

She Dreams...

Of taking it on back to the tropics...


Have I said before my honeymoon was ah-maz-ing?  I have?  Oh, well let me say it again.  AH-MAZ-ING.  Right down to the fruity little drink they wrestled from my hand as I cried to my husband "I don't wanna go home!!"  Of course, we did go home, but I always daydream of going back.  Who wouldn't?

Top Five Reasons to go back:

1) Relaxation.  OMG.  You can lay by the beach, you can lay by the pool, you can lay on a raft in the pool, you can read, you can people watch.  What you don't have to do...is anything.  The most work I did on my honeymoon was stressing over the remote control that we dropped in the jacuzzi tub and how much THAT was going to cost us before we left.  It cost us nothing, by the way, they replaced it with a smile.

2) Unlimited food and drink.  Um, How do you say "Bring me another Pina Colada" in spanish?

3) A beach to die for. We live in North Carolina and in North Carolina the sand from the walkway to the compacted sand towards the water is hot. Like 3rd degree burns on your feet hot.  Ok, not that hot, but still...
On the first day when we got there we wanted to take a peek at the beach, so we head down there and are about to walk onto the sand from the walkway and I pause and look at Derin.  "I might have to bolt down to the water" I tell him, fearing for my precious little toes and their negative reaction to that hot sand.  But no, the sand was cool.  Beautifully white, and cool.  You could walk on it forever.



4) A bed from heaven.  King Tempurpedic.  I haven't slept that good since.

5)  Pure and unwavering attention from this guy.

    ignore the nerdy 'thumbs up'... he's cool, really ;)

No phones, no jobs, no dogs, no house to clean... just him and me.  Pure bliss. :)

I can't wait to spend another week with him in paradise. 

Things I Love Thursday

In all of my blog stalking...I read somewhere that you should have a little segment on your blog that happens, weekly, monthly, whatever.  So, I decided I would do 'Things I Love Thursday', and since I'm the only one reading this blog yet.... yay me!

I'm a little, almost slightly...ok, more than a lot, obsessed with my Van Morrison Pandora channel.  On every other Pandora channel I've ever created, even my Adele channel (sorry, Adele, I love you but it's true...) I've had to jump through several songs, exhausting my 3 skips in an hour within the first like 30 minutes.  But, with my Van Morrison channel - mmmm, maybe once in a few hour period.  Ah-Dore.  I listen to it at work, all day long.
What else is fun about the channel? I get to hear Van Morrison songs I never knew existed.  That, in itself, is reason enough.

Happy Thursday Everyone. :)