Thursday, July 31, 2008

Announcing the Latest Winner!

Well, all good things must come to an end, and this edition of the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival is no exception. Another great turnout, but alas, only one winner. So, drum roll please............

Random Integer Generator says:

Here are your random numbers:


Timestamp: 2008-08-01 01:21:11 UTC

That would be mom2boys! I don't have any contact information for her, so if she hasn't contacted me by Monday I'll select another winner.

Thanks for playing along and paying me a visit. I hope you come back again real soon!!!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Isaiah 26:13

O Lord, our God, other lords besides you have ruled over us, but your name alone do we honor. - Isaiah 26:13

What lord is ruling over you today? Are you a shopaholic, hiding your purchases so your husband won't see? Are you wearing the "I've-got-it-all-together" mask in front of others, when really you struggle each day simply to get dressed? Are you always aware of what new gadgets your neighbors have, so you rush out and get one too to keep up? Do you brag about your child's good grades in an attempt to draw attention away from their rotten behavior?

There are so many things in this world that can rule over us. But we can choose to break free and not let them.

If you are in a place right now where something is taking precedence over God in your life, then I ask you to go to your Heavenly Father and ask forgiveness, and ask Him to help you break free. He doesn't want any of us to live that way, subject to our worries, finances, and situations. He wants each and every one of us to let Him take control. To be our lord.

And precious one, that means you, too.

I don't know who this post was meant for, but I know that when I read this verse this morning I needed to share it with you. Don't let this opportunity slip away. If this post speaks to your heart, please talk to God about it, and don't wait. He wants to be the only Lord in your life.

I'm praying for you, whoever you are!!

What I Did on Vacation: Part Four

Really, the vacation posts are almost over :-)

Jeff and Jane went for a morning walk to the pier, while I was about to get in the shower and the kids watched cartoons. Suddenly I heard a man's voice, and it did not belong to my husband! I walked to the kitchen, in my PJ's, to discover a total stranger standing there. I went toward him and told him to get out!

I always wondered how I'd react in a situation like that. Now I know! If I was in a horror movie, I'd be the girl that gets knocked off for investigating the noise :-)

He stammered something about TV's and air conditioning filters and our Realty, and showed me a door hanger. So, dumb me, I let him in (well, the REST of the way in). He changed those filters faster than I can type "filters!" I think I scared him as much as he scared me!

Needless to say, I think I may be considering a different complex or realty next year: one that doesn't give strangers the code to your apartment and tell them to go right on in!

End of drama.

After frying in the sun for a few days, we decided to take a breather and stay indoors a bit more. So, off we went for our annual trek to the SC Aquarium.

Who should we meet outside of it? Well, Dr. Barker - one of my previous employers! He and his family were also staying on the island, and were hoping to catch a boat to Fort Sumter. Funny how we meet someone we know on vacation every year!

As always, we lined up in front of the green screen for the Souvenir photo. We buy it every year, although it usually stinks. Seriously! This year, for a refreshing change, I actually liked how I looked in it.

So of course we didn't buy it! Everyone else was looking off to the side, or frowning because they NEVER smile for pictures. That would be one of two photos proving that I actually went on vacation this year, and we didn't buy it. Sigh.

Eli got to see the divers, which was his only wish. We almost missed them, so thanks for the Divine Intervention on that one, Lord :-)

Here's a look at all my boys posing, and the rest are from a little exhibit called "Camp Carolina," I think.

Those owls are Lovebirds, which I thought were, well, birds?

I guess not.

Next: the last vacation post - I promise!!!

Monday, July 28, 2008

It's Time for the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival Again!

If you're here from the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival, then welcome to my blog!

Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

I apologize for the screaming pink and floral background you see today. I used it because I thought it would be cute for a Garden Blog Tour last month (which it was), but I have been so busy this summer that I just haven't had time to change it to something a little less BRIGHT.

Lucky me, though! I just recently won a blog header from Tekeme Studios, so whenever I get my questionnaire filled out for them, they can design me something AWESOME! I can't wait!!

So, maybe you can help me outwith ideas for my new look. I have a little poll posted in the top right sidebar about your blog-viewing preferences. Just a "click" and I'll have an idea what you, my sweet readers, would like to see here on my little blog. I promise it won't be hot pink flowers forever.

So why don't I get rid of the hot pink flowers now, you ask? Because reinstalling all my codes and widgets is just too much work for a girl to do in the summer! I'm afraid if I tackled that in this heat, I just might require the smelling salts :-)

I know you're all thinking, "Alright, al-RIGHT already! Where's the prize?!?!"

Oh, yes. The prize. Well, summer is winding down, but it's not gone yet. So I have a little bag in colors that remind me of the ocean that I made myself, and one of you lucky readers will win it! Wanna see?

OK, here it is:

It's mostly made with a feathery kind of yarn that is soooo soft. When one of my coworkers looked at it, she couldn't keep her hands out of it: she loved the way it feels!

To enter, just leave me a comment telling me about your worst ever blog background. It will close at 6 pm EST on July 31st. will pick a winning comment number for me. Please make sure to leave me your blog url or email address so I can notify you if you win!!

Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you visit often. Well, you have to. You want to see what the new look turns out to be, right? :-)

Good luck, and Happy Carnivaling!!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Nothing says "I'm cool" like...

an upside-down "Hulk Out!" tattoo smack in the middle of your forehead.

Well, Aaron thinks it's cool!

And for the record: my mother-in-law put that on him, sans eyeglasses. I am completely innocent :-)

I promise it will be scrubbed off before church on Sunday.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Did I tell you guys that I was trying to save our old laptop, and it totally died as soon as I handed it over to be reformatted?

I really wanted a new one, but didn't want to pay for a new one.

A few days ago our "good" laptop started freaking out. Battery refusing to hold ANY charge, suddenly turning off in the middle of use with no warning - all very bad signs. I've been frustrated with it for quite some time. The spacebar and various other keys don't work well, and it takes FOR.E.VER to do anything.

We found a good deal between Dell and Best Buy that apparently no one else in town took advantage of because it took a couple of employees and 2 managers to agree to honor it.

But they did! So I'm TOTALLY EXCITED to tell you that this post was not only written on my new Dell laptop, but it's WIRELESS!!!!

We used our savings on the computer to upgrade to wireless for the house. No more being a contortionist while I try to write while stuck in the far corner of my couch! I'm FREE!!!

Just wanted to share my joy :-)

Do you have any good news???

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

What I Did on Summer Vacation: Part Three

OK, so I got ahead of myself. Whirlin' Waters was before the Aquarium. But we'll get to that.

A few days in the sand and we were ready for our favorite water park, Whirlin' Waters. I still am amazed because this park is part of the SC Park System. We don't have stuff like that here at home!

So, apparently it was summer camp field day or something, because busloads of kids were streaming in here. Translation: long lines. The best ride/slide of all, Riptide Reef, was closed for motor failure. Grrr! Even stick-in-the-mud/Cave Dweller Mommy will ride that one!

Translation: longer lines for everything else.

Oh well. It was still a blast! Check it out:

The Water Guns: One of Eli's favorites

The Wave Pool, complete with personal watercraft (inner tube :-))

Then there's the kiddie slide. Eli wanted buddies, but eventually did it ALL BY HIMSELF!

Side note: this is the very same kiddie pool/slide that permanently scarred my right knee! Looks dangerous, doesn't it? :-)

What water park trip is complete without a corn dog, with lots of ketchup?

Monday, July 21, 2008

What I Did on Summer Vacation: Part Two

When the Charleston Riverdogs are in town, we try to go watch a game. The first year they were against our very own home team, the Asheville Tourists. That was the year our coach Joe Mikulik had a meltdown so bad that it made ESPN (or here on YouTube). The Riverdogs mascot re-enacted it for us at the game.

We didn't let anyone know we were from Asheville :-)

This year it was against the West Virginia Mountaineers (I think.) We thought we remembered how to get to the stadium, but, um, we didn't. We drove through some very scary looking streets on our little adventure. I was starting to get frustrated as the driver. Not fun. The map from the visitor's center was no help, either. We finally gave up and just went to downtown Charleston instead.

Not that that's bad! We got to eat at Hyman's with NO WAITING! Talk about perfect timing! It was sooooo good. Ask Michael about the crab legs!

We braved a dial-up Internet connection to get directions, and this time we found the stadium and took the whole family. Even gramma. (I don't think she was very happy about that.)

The kids did the jumping slide thingy, and the pitching game, and the little ones got balloon animals. Two bunnies that were both popped before the 3rd inning. (It was a bad week for our animals. Later post...)

The clouds and lightening made us nervous, so about the 4th inning we split. I opted for a pit stop before hitting the road. Imagine my surprise when I walked into the Ladies Restroom to find a MAN in a OPEN STALL doing his business!! I just shielded my eyes and ran for a stall. I was pretty sure I hadn't gone into the wrong bathroom, but just in case, I stayed put until the room was deserted.

Guess what? He was wrong. Not me. I'm thinking he had imbibed a few adult beverages too many...

Then we got a ride from the golf cart shuttle guy, just in time to beat the rain. That was fun. I didn't know those little things could go so fast!

Up next: An aquarium surprise

Sunday, July 20, 2008

What I Did on Summer Vacation: Part One

What a week! I'm going to break it down into multiple posts because it would be ridiculously long otherwise and my brain is yet to come out of vacation mode. I need a day or two to come up with anything of substance :-)

We are usually busy beavers on vacation because my husband is, to quote my mom, "like a worm in hot ashes." He simply can't be still! Drives him crazy. So the rest of us are along for the ride!

We started out with a few days in the sun and the sand. We heard on the news the first night that there had been a shark attack (yep - complete with a bitten dude) the day before, on our beach. So I was a little nervous with all the guys out there (and me, occasionally) but we didn't see any vicious sea creatures. Not outside the SC Aquarium, anyway!

Eventually the boogie boards, buckets and shovels came out. Not many sand castles were made, but BOY! There was some serious wave riding going on! Michael was body surfing, Aaron was glued to his boogie board, and Eli pretended to be any assortment of Superheroes (no, not JUST Spiderman!) and battled the waves as they crashed into him.

The sun was on "high," and even the sunscreen was no match. I was pink after a few hours, and my poor Eli was too. But only in the places I missed with sunscreen! Apparently I forgot to do some of his shoulders, and he wound up with a funny shaped tanline! Bad, bad mommy :-Z Everyone else was spared, though.

Up next: baseball misadventures

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I'm Back!

With the slightest hint of a tan :-) It would be more, but Tropical Whatever Cristobal cut my sun-time short :-(

Anyway, I just wanted to pop in before I sort through my 100+ emails that accrued during a week of no internet. There will be posts this week - with pictures! I promise.

I like vacations and all, but it's good to be home!

Friday, July 11, 2008

I should be doing...something else

I'm physically tired. Those early mornings and late nights are catching up with this chickie!

My brain is tired. I can't think. We had one of our surprise inspections at work today and, since I'm so good :-), I got reassigned to the department that was under the gun. This inspector was much easier on me than the last one. HALLELUJAH! But that also means that I got fed really good at work today, so now I'm full and useless.

I should be scrubbing toilets.
I should be packing.
I should be scheduling posts for you to read next week.
I should be asleep. :-)

Instead, I am here, catching up on my email and bloggy goodness that I couldn't get to earlier.

That may be all I do tonight! Whatever I do, I hope the rest of you have more energy than I do and have a great weekend!

OH, I almost forgot: we have a group from our church headed out for a mission trip to Nicaragua tomorrow. Say a prayer or two for them, OK?? Y'all are great! :-)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Oops! I forgot!

You guys remember how I had a little "pick-my-title" contest last week? And the winner got a $25 Barnes and Noble gift card?

Glad you did, because I forgot! (Not your titles. They were great! Just to announce the winner.)

Let me pause here by saying your titles were a lot of fun. Some were very close to what I was thinking. I haven't settled on one yet, but I have to come up with chapter titles, too. You gave me great ideas.

Thank you so much for participating!!

So, without further adieu:

The winner, chosen by, is Comment #5, Becky at Boys Rule My Life!

Get in touch with me, Becky, so I can mail your prize to you!

Ooh! I can't wait!

Monday, July 7, 2008

July 4th Weekend, By the Numbers

3: guests from Tennessee
3: desserts this weekend
3: number photographed

1: fistfight between cousin and kid on playground
1: hamburger given to other kid's dad as a "peace offering"
58 (rough estimate): ducks fed

19: consecutive games of pool by Uncle Kurt and Jeff

234 (rough estimate): fireworks shot off in the driveway
1: teenager home from M-Fuge
2: bags of buns required to cover grill with foil during a downpour

1: great picture of Uncle Kurt and Eli

1: great picture of Kurt and Paula

1: awesome church service
143: approximate rows of knitting completed this weekend
1: good photo of my family

0: days I got to sleep late :-(
1: parting shot of the crew, except little Michael from Tennessee (as opposed to big Michael from here :-))

So what did y'all do???

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th!!

Dang! I totally meant to post before now. (Wait. Don't I begin every post that way these days?)

Well, I'll start with Happy 4th of July!! Nothing beats a paid day off from work, right? While we're enjoying our freedom from work, let's remember the real freedoms that we're celebrating. We're free to say whatever we please, worship our God without fear of persecution, and so many other freedoms I won't even try to list them here. Just take a moment to praise God for all of them!

We have some of Jeff's family on the way here as we speak. Kurt, Paula and Michael will be here for the weekend from Tennessee. There will be good food, probably a trip to an organized fireworks display (as opposed to us trying not to burn our neighborhood down by attempting it ourselves in the back yard), and who knows what else. When Hanno's get together, it's all a surprise! I almost expect a few other family members to show up, but we'll just have to wait and see.

So, our holiday weekend will be pretty tame. I hope yours is great!!

So, I'm curious and feeling pretty un-creative: what are you doing for the 4th?


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