Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It's downright cold!

What happened to Fall? It's so cold here! We had a few weeks of beautiful weather, but now it's freezing...literally! Last night we had a fire in the fireplace, which I would say is one of the few good things about really cold weather. Sweaters and warm soups being the others. :-) I keep hoping that the weather will turn back to Fall, but then I realize that it's almost Novemeber, so we probably won't be having many more "warm" days. I just wish Fall lasted longer!

This past weekend we spent Saturday night at a Halloween Party. It was a blast! Brian dressed up as the Joker from the latest Batman (The Dark Knight). His costume was amazing! I spent so much time helping him plan his costume, that I didn't even think about mine until the night before. Out of desperation I chose a witch costume. Everyone went all out on their costumes...it was hilarious! We had Britney and K-Fed, McCain and Cindy, and a Farmer's Daughter and her hillbilly husband. So funny!

This upcoming weekend we are doing our Trash the Dress photo shoot! I'm so excited about it. Our friends, James and Lindsay are doing the shoot for us. Mainly it's just an excuse to get back into my wedding dress and take some real pictures with Brian. Since we didn't get any shots of us from our wedding 4 years ago, it's time to get them now! (That's a long story, so if you don't know, just ask!) Hopefully we will get some good ones that we can frame. I'm not sure where we are going to take them, but I'm thinking Piedmont Park (those from ATL know what I'm talking about) might be a good choice. I don't think I will be bold enough to jump into any water, but laying in the grass or on "dirty" things will definitely be okay with me. I'm not going to purposefully try to ruin my dress, but I'm certainly not going to worry about messing it up. I hope it's not too freezing though. That would be pretty funny though, considering that when I took my Bridal Portraits I was SO HOT because it was August in FL....it would only make sense that for this shoot we would be FREEZING! haha I can't wait to have the pictures to post on here. :)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Recipe: Taco Salad Bowls

Main Course: Taco Salad Bowls
Total time: 20 minutes
Serves: 3-4
4 eight inch 100% whole wheat tortillas (you can use flour, but 100% whole wheat are better for you!)
1 tbsp. chili powder, divided
3/4 pound extra lean ground beef
1 cup matchstick carrots
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. salsa, divided
2 tbsp. light mayo (optional)
4 cups torn salad greens
1 large tomato, chopped
1/2 cup shredded Mexican style cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or cilantro (whichever you prefer)

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
2. Crumple 4 large sheets of aluminum foil to make 4 3-inch balls; place on baking sheet.
3. Place 1 tortilla on top of each ball; spray tortilla with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with 1/2 tsp. chili powder. Bake for 6 minutes or until tortillas are golden brown. (tortillas will drape over balls as they bake)
4. While the tortillas bake, brown meat with carrots and 2 tsp. chili powder in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Add 1/2 cup salsa; cook 2 minutes or until heated through, stirring occasionally.
5. Now you have the choice to make at topping out of 2 tbsp. mayo mixing with salsa or just using whatever normal taco toppings you like. (We use lettuce, tomato, cheese, chopped parsley, and salsa)

Nutrition information per serving: 370 calories, 14g fat (this can go down depending on the topping you choose)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Back to reality...

We are home from Hawaii and back to reality. It was such an amazing trip! The pictures can't capture the beauty of this island. If you have never been you have to put it on your must-see list! We have been to other tropical locations, but nothing compares to the beauty found here. We spent an entire week on the Big Island of Hawaii. Most people chose to go to one of the other islands (Oahu is very popular) but I would recommend the Big Island! It is less crowded and offers everything the other islands have and so much more! We rented a car (a must) and drove around the entire island over the course of several days. The highlight of our trip was the two nights we spent in the little town of Volcano. We stayed at a Bed and Breakfast called Kilauea Lodge. It was amazing! I was a bit worried before we left about staying in a B&B, and boy was I proven wrong! We liked the B&B more than the 5 star hotels we stayed in the rest of the week. Do not go to the Big Island without stopping for a night or two in Volcano! This is where the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is located, so it's worth the stop. There are so many things I could say about our trip, but it's even better to see the trip through pictures, and boy do we have a TON!! I posted a few on my facebook account, but there are over 500 on my snapfish account. Let me know if you want to see them and I will send you an e-mail with the link to all the pictures. Since there are so many, you will want to have a few extra minutes to look at them all. There are so many pictures that you will feel like you went on our trip with us! :-) You can use the pics to take a "vacation" from your everyday life. Enjoy!! Here are just a few pictures to give you a sampling....

This was on the trail to Akaka Falls

Akaka Falls...SO huge!

This was our favorite stop on the island (beside Volcano)...Lapahoehoe Point...Amazing!!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

I'm a nanny AND we are going to Hawaii!!

It's been a while since I posted! I don't know why, but I just haven't been motivated to write...not that I haven't had anything to say, because I do! A lot has happened since my last post. I am now a nanny! I don't know why, but one night when I was up late (like tonight!) I randomly decided to grab the computer and start looking for jobs online. I searched on various websites and then started looking at nanny jobs available in my area. I found several postings on craigslist and then posted my resume on a few nanny sites. By the next day I had 3 offers and after a few more days I have even more. It all happened so fast! I set up interviews with 3 different families on various days. The first one I met with ended up being a perfect match and I ended up cancelling the other interviews. I just knew this was it! I am working for a family that lives about 3 miles away from us. They have 2 girls (5 and 8 years old). I work for them part time, M-Th 2:30-6pm. I help them with homework and then take them to their after school activities. So far it has been great! It's hard to believe that I am working again, but I think that it's going to prove to exactly what I needed right now.

We are leaving for HAWAII this Saturday (Aug. 23)!!! I can't wait! It's crazy to think that one week from now I will be in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park looking at an active volcano! Crazy! We are spending a full week on the Big Island...renting a car and driving around the entire island. We are spending most of our time on the Kona Coast but will have two nights in the little town of Volcano at a B & B. I'm a little nervous about staying at a B & B...we all know what a clean freak I am! Also, my husband has completely spoiled me with five star hotels! I am such a snob when it comes to hotels! hahaha But there were no other choices in Volcano...no hotels any where! Thankfully the rest of the week we are staying in the most amazing hotels on the island, which will definitely be more my style. :-) I just can't wait to spend an entire week alone with Brian! We have been blessed to be able to travel a fair amount throughout our marriage and our trips always prove to be such a refreshing time for us. We just love being able to get away and enjoy each other and new places! Traveling truly is such a passion for both of us....if only we didn't have to fly!!! I absolutely HATE flying! So PLEASE pray for our flights! It's really just the take off that makes me cringe...once we are up in the air I am usually okay, as long as it's not a bumpy flight. Oh man, I am already starting to get that nervous feeling in my stomach! haha

One last note....you might notice that my post hasn't said anything about us trying to get pregnant....that's because I'm not worried about it anymore! This is the first month in over a year that I haven't thought about it. I can honestly say that I have released it to the Lord and I have finally realized that He is in control! I have said it all along, but I didn't really understand what that meant until this month. There is NOTHING I can do to make this happen...the Lord will open and close the doors that He sees fit. So, it's not that we have given up...because we haven't...we have just given in to the realization that we are not in control! We trust that the Lord will provide (The Lord pressed that into my heart several months ago during prayer....that's another story though...) and know that He works all things for His glory and our good. So, please continue to pray for us...pray that this spirit of trust and reliance on the Lord would continue and pray that the Lord would bless us with a child!

Alright, it's now 2am....I think I really need to go to bed now! I will definitely write a post when we return from Hawaii...I'll make sure to include some pics too!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

I can't stop thinking about it...

I feel like all I ever write about on here is our pursuit of becoming parents. It's been a hard road and continues to be an emotional roller coaster. I could sit here and talk all about how frustrating this past year has been and how much I just want to see that + on a pregnancy test. But I have already said all those things. Now it's time to write about what a blessing this past year has been and how I really do love this baby-free time that we have.

The Lord has used this past year to grow me in so many ways. A year ago my relationship with Him was inconsistent. I wasn't spending much time in the word and my desire was lacking. Now, one year later, everything is completely opposite. I have learned to completely rely on the Lord. I have realized that there is nothing we can do to make this happen sooner. It is not in our control. My desire to spend time in the word has grown tremendously! I can honestly say that I have been consistently in the word for an entire year (not saying I read everyday, but the desire was always there!) That is huge for me!

The Lord has also blessed us with another year to strengthen our marriage. I wouldn't change these past 4 years for anything. I have loved having Brian all to myself. Having a baby would have prohibited our growth as a couple and would have limited what we could do. We have traveled to some amazing places (St. Lucia, Paris, London, Vegas, lots of NYC trips...) and are going to several more places in the next few months (Hawaii, Vegas again!...). If we had a baby, these trips would be nearly impossible. I am so glad that we have had these 4 years to develop a solid foundation in our relationship because once a baby arrives, there won't be nearly as much time to devote to our marriage.

So, would I be devastated if we had to wait another year to have a baby? Yes and no. I want to be a mother with all my heart and look forward to that day with great anticipation. There is nothing I want more! But spending another year growing in my relationship with the Lord and Brian would also not be the end of the world.

Thank you Lord for all your blessings!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Febreze Noticeables

Time for another product review! Today I was noticing how great my kitchen was smelling, so I thought, hey, why not write about these great plug in air fresheners! :) I know there are so many different ones out there, but I really have found that these are one of the best! It has two different scents that automatically alternate back and forth so that the scent is NOTICEABLE! :) haha (hence the name). If you keep it on the low setting (you can change the settings on the back of the plug in) it will last for about a month. There are so many different scents to choose from. Some of my favorites include Morning Walk & Cleansing Rain and Pure Refreshment & Summer Storm. Those are the two that I buy the most. I have one in the kitchen, one in the dining room, one in our bedroom, and one in one of the spare bedrooms. That seems to be enough to make the whole house smell yummy! (And we have a 2,500 sq.ft. house)

The one negative thing about these is that they are fairly expensive. However, make sure to check out www.febreze.com to sign up to receive some coupons! (Remember, my tip is only to buy things when they are on sale AND you have a coupon for them!) Also, Febreze offers a money back guarantee on the plug ins, so you don't have to take my word for it! Try them out for yourself. :)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Recipe: Swiss Chicken Casserole

Main Course: Swiss Chicken Casserole
Total time: 8 hours on low in the crock pot
Serves: 5-6 (recipe can be cut in half to serve 2-3)

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
6 slices of swiss cheese
1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1/4 cup milk
2 cups stuffing mix
1/2 cup melted butter

1. Lightly grease your crockpot or spray with cooking spray.
2. Place chicken breasts in pot. Top with cheese.
3. Combine soup and milk, stirring well. Spoon over cheese; sprinkle with stuffing mix.
4. Drizzle melted butter over the stuffing mix.
5. Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Clorox Disinfecting Wipes

I have decided to start blogging about some products that I love and use all the time. I figure that since I have extra time now, I can use it to help people find great products to use. So, for my first review.....Clorox Disinfecting Wipes. I highly recommend these! I use them every day and every where! I keep them under all my sinks. After each meal preparation I use them to wipe down the counters and appliances. I also use them in all my bathrooms to wipe down the sink, counters, and toilets. They clean and disinfect and are disposable. The only downside is they can't be used on mirrors (they leave streaks) and they aren't exactly earth friendly or cheap. So, try to use them sparingly! :) Also, make sure to only buy them when they are on sale and when you have a coupon for them!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Recipe: Thai Turkey Lettuce Wrap

Main Course: Thai Turkey Lettuce Wraps
Total time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

1 cup coleslaw lettuce
2 tbsp. miracle whip
2 tsp. teriyaki sauce
4 lettuce leaves
12 slices deli sliced smoked turkey breast
2 slices cheese (you chose the flavor)

1. Toss the coleslaw with the miracle whip and teriyaki sauce. Spoon the mix evenly onto the lettuce leaves.

2. Top with remaining ingredients. Fold in sides of lettuce leaves; roll up to completely enclose filling.

3. Serve immediately or wrap tightly and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Nutrion information per serving: 170 calories, 7g fat

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Let Down

May and June have sure been crazy months! It started out in May with me quitting my job. That was a bit crazy but turned out to be a great blessing! Then the school year ended, which was so bittersweet. I absolutely adored my class and working with Suzanne. It was hard to let all that go. Then came Summer Break! What gets better then that?! We got to spend some time with Brian's family and went to the beach. Great! Now we are planning our trip to New York for next week. (a little last minute decision, but can't wait!) All these big events going on and of course trying to get pregnant all worked into that mix. So, there I was about 2 weeks ago, getting ready to gear up for the monthly let down of finding out that I wasn't pregnant. A day goes by, 2 days, 3 days....hmm?? Am I pregnant? I take a test and nope, it's negative. Wow, that hurts. But I have had several of those negative tests so I am really not as surprised as I once was. Then 4 days, 5 days?? Okay I'm gonna take another test....Negative. 6 days, 7 days, 8 days. Alright, I'm going to the doctor. She asks me a million questions, takes some blood and does a general "check up". She doesn't seem concerned. She doesn't seem worried. That's comforting. She says, we will let you know tomorrow what the results of the blood test are. Okay, well here I am on day 10...still waiting! They call today and it's negative. Shouldn't have been to shocked, but that let down is just tough! Now I have to take a pill to get my cycle started. What's that about? This is all so new to me and leaves me with so many questions.

The doctor also talked to me yesterday about doing an infertility workup. Since it's been almost a year that we have been trying, she thinks it might be a good idea to get that ball rolling. Just to see what's going on. I wasn't at all upset about that idea, because to me it just makes sense to do it. Why not find out what's going on. But now that I have heard today's news I think it has finally hit me. The big step that this infertility workup is. This is not at all where I thought I would be today. A year ago we were just starting to think about trying to get pregnant. I didn't have unreal expectations that we would get pregnant in a month or two, but I definitely didn't think it would be this long. We started out so casual about the whole thing. We weren't scientific. We just wanted it to happen when it was gonna happen. Well, that slowly started to become more serious. After the first 6 months or so it was getting to be a little more serious. So we started timing things more specifically and keeping track of all that stuff. Still not too scientific, but more than before. Well, now here we are at 11 months. If I had known then what I know now, I would have gotten off my pill a lot earlier. Why did I wait as long as I did? I know I can't go back in time and I know that all the things that have happened so far have been completely in the Lord's hands. I know that He has a plan for our lives and that His timing is perfect. I know all those things and I believe them!

I know all about the let down. I know all about the emotions that build up inside of a woman and all the hope. I also know about the tears and the hurt that go along with that negative test result. Today's news was not great and the let down is painful, but I know that being pulled up out of this despair by my Savior will make it all worth it. I know that the Lord will give me the strength to stand back up and start all over again. I know that this is happening for a reason....it will happen! He WILL provide! Though it is so hard to see the good in this situation, I can still see Him! I can feel His arms holding me and loving me.

So, what's the next step? Where do we go from here? Well, first we go to the Cross. I lay down my hurt and pain at His feet and I trust that He will guide me. The let down is tough! And being told to just trust in the Lord is not always what you want to hear in that moment, but what else can someone say? It's the truth and that's all we have.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Recipe of the Day

Now that I'm a stay at home wife, I have a lot more time to post new recipes and blog, so hopefully I will. :) Today's recipe is so easy and healthy, so enjoy!

Main Course: Taco Salad

Total time: approx. 15 minutes

Serves: 3-4


1 lb. ground beef or finely chopped chicken

1 packet of taco seasoning

1 can of black beans

Romaine Lettuce

Shredded Cheese

Fat-free Sour Cream

Tortilla Chips (optional)

Salsa or chopped tomatoes


1. Brown meat as directed on taco seasoning packet.

2. Add seasoning to the meat, as well as the whole can of black beans and simmer for 7-10 minutes.

3. In individual bowls combine desired amount of lettuce, taco meat and bean mixture, cheese, sour cream, and salsa. Eat with a fork or scoop with chips.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Recipe of the Day

Time for a new recipe! Did ya'll try the last recipe I posted? Let me know what you thought...good or bad? I would love to know. Also, let me know if you have any suggestions for any of my recipes. And in 6 days I will have a lot of time to post more recipes, so let me know if you are ever looking for a certain recipe.

Main Course: Cheeseburger Mac Casserole
Total time: 65 minutes (but most of that is in the oven)
Serves: 5

1 bag (16 0z.) frozen veggies (broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower)
1 box (14 oz.) macaroni and cheese
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup Italian dressing
1 lb. extra lean ground beef, cooked and drained
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the frozen veggies in a colander in the sink.
2. Cook the macaroni as directed on the package. Pour the cooked macaroni over the veggies in the colander to drain and thaw the veggies quickly. Return the macaroni and veggies to the same saucepan. Add the cheese sauce, milk, and dressing. Mix well.
3. Add the cooked meat and 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese. Mix well.
4. Spoon into a 2 quart round casserole dish. Cover with foil.
5. Bake 35 minutes or until heated through. Uncover, top with the remaining 1/2 cup cheddar cheese. Bake an additional 3-4 minutes, uncovered, to melt the cheese.

**Notes: This is not a pretty dish, but is tasty and EASY to prepare! You can also substitute tuna for the ground beef if you'd prefer. You can also prepare this 24 hours in advance. Just follow the directions through step 4. Then refrigerate over night and cook when you are ready. Be sure to add 5-10 extra minutes to the cooking time to make up for the overnight cooling.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


Before & After.....

I just made a big change...a 10 inch change! I got all my hair chopped off!!! I have been growing it out for the past year and a half and finally decided to take the plung. I really wanted to donate my hair to Pantene's Beautiful Lengths program. They use donations to make real hair wigs for women that lose their hair to cancer. This is something that I have been thinking about for some time now and really felt like I needed to do it. Althought I don't personally know anyone that is dealing with cancer right now, I have always had a desire to help those that do. I certainly don't have the money to donate or the knowledge to help find a cure, but I wanted to do something, even if it seems small. I can't imagine losing all my hair. How devastating it would be, as a woman to be bald. Your hair defines you in so many ways. I am blessed with my health and a full head of hair, so why not share it? I know that no matter how short I get it cut, it will grow back! Not everyone is as fortunate. So, I did it! I went this afternoon (kind of on a whim) and got it chopped to my chin (and even shorter in the back). I now have my ponytail sitting on the table, ready to be mailed off. Do I absolutely love my hair this short? Maybe not. But I did it for something so much more important than my looks. Like I said, it will grow back. I mean, I don't hate it, but I did enjoy having long hair too. It's definitely different. I just pray that some woman, somewhere, will be able to have their bare head covered with some of my hair. :-) I strongly encourage any one that is thinking about getting their hair cut to wait until you are ready to donate 10 inches. Sure, it may take a little longer and it may not look exactly like you want it to for a while, but it's totally worth it! I understand that this really just isn't an option for everyone, and that's okay too. Just know that if you can grow it out and then take the big step to cut it all off, you are making a difference. In the long run, will you really miss it? Nah. :-) Check it out: www.beautifullengths.com

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Recipe of the Day

I have decided to start blogging some of my recipes. I used to send out an e-mail of recipes that I had cooked recently and found out that it was too hard to keep up with. So, instead of sending e-mails of several recipes I am just going to try to blog a new recipe on here from time to time. So come back often to check for the latest favorite. If you don't already know, I LOVE to cook and try out all different recipes. So each recipe that I post has been tested by me and has been tweaked to perfection. :-) I hope you enjoy too. If you ever make one of my recipes please feel free to comment about it on here and let me know if you liked it or not. Also, if you have any questions about any of my recipes or any special recipe requests, let me know! :-) I have a MILLION recipes, so just ask. Love you all!

Main Course: Zesty Chicken and Pasta
Total time: 25 minutes
Serves: 6

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, chopped into bite sized pieces
1/2 cup Reduced Fat Italian Dressing, divided
2 cups broccoli florets
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 large red pepper, chopped
1 tbsp. chopped parsley
8 oz. pasta, cooked as directed on package, drained
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Cook and stir chicken in 1/4 cup of the dressing in large skillet on medium-high heat 4 minutes or until no longer pink
2. Add broccoli, onion, red pepper, and parsley; cook until tender, stirring occasionally
3. Toss with cooked pasta and remaining 1/4 cup dressing. Sprinkle with cheese.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


Shingles......Their nasty, aren't they? Well, that's what I have on my side right now. It's just a small patch, about the size of this picture (no, this is not a picture of my shingles!) It not only looks nasty, but it is also very painful!

Some questions you might have....

How do you get it? Well, anyone that has ever had Chicken Pox can get it. The Chicken Pox virus goes dormant in your system and never actually goes away. Then without warning (usually from stress of a weakened immune system), it can pop back up in the form of shingles.

Side effects? Just pain and the nastiness (not a real word, but don't know how else to describe it) of the rash on your body.

How long does it last? It takes at least 1-2 weeks to go away. And the pain can last for weeks after.

Are you contagious? Yes, to anyone that has never had Chicken Pox. But if you've had Chicken Pox, then you are immune. I also can't spread it on my own body, so that is good news!

I really can't believe I have shingles. So random. I guess it's from the stress at work, but now I am completely stress free since I am quitting!! So, this must just be a side effect from the stress last week. I finally broke down and went to the doctor today to get some pain meds and she informed me of how contagious I am and told me that I can't go back to work until she clears me, NEXT week! So crazy! So I am out until at least next Wednesday. I guess I should be excited, but I feel guilty. I don't feel bad, just the pain on the area with the rash, but when I am busy at work, I don't notice it as bad. I just hate to leave Suzanne with all those kids. I mean, she'll have a sub, but that's not the same. I hate that for her! (Sorry girl!)

So, I will probably have a few more posts this week then normal, because I will be sitting around, doing nothing! I guess this is good practice for when I don't work anymore. I am going to try to be productive and not just lay around all day. The only down side is that the meds she put me on can make me really tired and leave me with a "drugged up" feeling. (Straight from the doctor's mouth). We'll see how productive I can be when I'm drugged up. :-)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A whole new life around the corner....

So much has happened in the last few days. On Friday we were given the staff list for next year. It wasn't a huge surprise to see my name listed under third grade. But even though I was fully expecting it, there was a part of me that was hopeful that I would still be placed in second grade. But I was completely shocked when I saw Suzanne moved to fourth grade! That was a real big surprise! Even though I am still hoping to get pregnant within the next few months and not go back to work next year, it was just something I didn't want to have to worry about. If I had been placed in second grade again next year then I woulnd't even have to think about all this right now, but that just wasn't how it worked out. Tomorrow I am going to be speaking with the dreaded chief penguin (that is what our principal calls herself...long story!) and I have a lot of things that I want to say to her. I just have to pray for the right words because I do still have to work for her for another 2 months and she can surely make those 2 months miserable. The bottom line is that if she doesn't keep me in second grade, then I will be leaving. I already know that she won't be able to keep me in second grade because she has already promised my spot to someone else. So Brian and I are completely prepared for me to quit. That is what I have wanted for so long, but now that it is right in front of me, I am a little hesitant. I want more than anything to be a stay at home mom and I can't wait for that to happen, but since I am not pregnant yet it scares me a little to be unemployed and not bringing in any kind of salary. Of course Brian has worked out all the financial stuff and has run all the numbers to make sure that it will work out, and it will! But I am still nervous for this big change. I worked very hard to become a teacher and I truly do love what I do. I love teaching and I love kids! It is just so sad that the reason I am leaving is because of my horrible boss. She has run so many great people out of our school and I don't think she even cares in the least. But I will not just walk away quietly. I will definitely let her know how I feel and will try to speak for some of the other teachers that are not able to speak for themselves because they have to kiss up so as to not lose their jobs. She just needs to know that she is making so many people miserable! If it weren't for her, my job would be great.

Anyway, all that blabbing is just to say that I am truly excited to quit my career to focus on becoming a mom. I can already feel this tremendous amount of pressure that has been lifted off my shoulders. We now have all the time we need to try to get pregnant and we are not under any sort of time crunch. This is exactly what I have been praying for. So even though my leaving my teaching career is bittersweet, I know that this is exactly how the Lord planned it. He wanted me to stop working and this is how he chose to make that happen. The most amazing blessing is that Brian is the one that told me to quit. I never thought he would be the one to encourage me to stop working. He is always so concerned about the financial aspect of living on one salary, but now he is completely on board. That is how I know that this is the Lord's plan for my life right now. I know that the Lord placed this on Brian's heart because I know that he would have never told me to quit on his own.

Please pray for me as this new chapter of my life will begin at the end of May. It is so exciting to take this leap of faith but it is also a bit scary.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

A day off

I am home today, which is great! I took the day off for a dentist appointment. I have to go for a cleaning at 1:30, so that kinda stinks, but at least I got to sleep in. Unfortunately I am feeling a bit sick today too. It was worse yesterday, but still not 100%. So I could be using this day off to get some things done around here, but instead I am trying to rest so I can get better. But maybe I will try to do something before I go to the dentist so I don't feel like I've wasted my whole day off.

My parents were here the last few days while Brian was out of town. It was really nice to have them here and not have to be all alone. (We all know how much I HATE to stay in this house all alone!) My mom came to work with me on Monday and Tuesday and my dad stayed here and did work around the house. He amazed me with all that he did! We now have new closet shelves in two of our extra bedrooms, he painted, he sanded walls, he hung our mirror in the dining room, he patched holes, he fixed light switches...the list goes on and on. He is a superstar dad! :) It's always sad to see them go, but also was good because that meant Brian was coming home! He got in last night and unfortunately I was too sick to show how happy I was to have him home. I wasn't too much fun, but I am really looking forward to seeing him tonight. Hopefully I won't be such a bum tonight.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Another month...

My heart is a bit crushed right now. I had waited as long as I could to take a pregnancy test this month and just couldn't wait any longer. Well, I just took one this afternoon and it was negative. I really didn't think I was pregnant this month because I just didn't "feel" like I was. But I was so hopeful! Right before I tested I spent a long time in prayer just asking the Lord to give me peace no matter what the results were. Then once I saw that negative sign I broke down. But not for long. I was quickly reminded of my prayers. I know that the Lord will provide, in His timing.

So, now we start again. We wait on the Lord and remain confident in His plan for our lives.

Thank you all so much for your prayers and please keep praying! :)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Friday is here! Well, almost...

Everytime I hear myself, or someone else, say "Yeah, it's Friday" I have this little voice inside that reminds me that looking forward to the weekends really isn't right. Why do we just want to rush through the weeks to get to the weekends? Aren't the week days just as important? Our lives are so short already. I mean, do the math...our lives consist of many more week days then weekends. I am so guilty of this! And the worst part is that I am teaching another generation, every day, to feel the same way as me. We make Friday a "fun" day and make the weekends seem like such a great thing. Of course, the weekends are wonderful and I am a HUGE fan...but I just need to take a step back and try to enjoy everyday!

So, here's to Friday....and Monday and Tuesday and...... :-)

Monday, February 18, 2008

3 day weekend = PERFECT!

I think that every weekend should be a 3 day one! Having Monday off is HUGE! These past 3 days have been so good. I got to spend all 3 days with Brian and we didn't have anything that we had to do. 3 whole days of rest and relaxation! Amazing! I really don't want to go back to work tomorrow. But, the good news is, it's only a 4 day week. Only one thing that I am not looking forward to is one more parent-teacher conference tomorrow morning. :-( Then the rest of the week should be pretty good.

On Friday we were told that we need to sign our contracts for next year. This was something I knew was coming, but didn't expect this soon. I wanted to be able to have a little more time to find out if we were going to get pregnant. I don't want to sign my contract and then possibly have to break it before the next school year starts. For those of you that don't know, I do not want to start a school year and then have to leave mid year if we have a baby. I would not just take a normal maternity leave because I wouldn't put my baby in daycare. So, if I get pregnant before the next school year begins, I will not be going back. So, that is the waiting game we are playing right now. We were really thinking that we would have had a positive pregnancy test by now, so this is all a little unexpected for us. We have learned more and more to rely on the Lord and to trust Him. He has this all planned out. So, we have to sign our contracts no later than the end of next week. I should also know by then if I am pregnant this month. My biggest prayer right now is for the Lord to bless us with a positive pregnancy test this month. I know that this might seem selfish and I question that myself, often. But I know that the Lord hears my prayers and will answer them in His time. If I am not pregnant this month, I will sign my contract and will continue to wait on the Lord. We will keep trying and if we are successful, I will have to break my contract. It's all in the Lord's hands!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

The Fight....

We just got home from church (we often go to the Saturday Night service) and I thought I would share what the Lord taught me tonight through His Word. Tonight's sermon was called, "The Fight" and I really think that the message is vital for our generation!

First is the fight for a slower pace. This is not simply referring to our hectic calendars but more so to our disordered hearts. In our lives we are so often seeking to find our self worth in what we do, instead of who we are. Who we are is found in Christ, which should be more than enough! We need to stop striving! We have the Lord's approval and that should be our highest delight. I know that I so often forget that I am special! Psalm 8:5 says, "Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor." I am important! Psalm 8:6-8 says, "You have given him dominion over the works of your hands; you have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the seas." The Lord gave us so much responsibility, which means that He thinks we are important, so why don't we agree? But the thing that I most often forget is that the Lord sees me as perfect! The blood of Christ makes me perfect. Even in spite of my sin, His blood makes me clean!

Next is the fight for simplicity. Simplicity does not necessarily mean shaving away possessions and responsibilies (though it often might), but it means putting those things into proper focus. Simplicity is the by-product of seeking the right things (God's kingdom and His righteousness) in order to be freed from dangerous things (personal possessions) so as to enjoy the best things (peace and contentment). We can't get caught up in the battle for more things! We need to get back to the basics and place our focus on what is truly important.

Finally, there is the fight for a single day's rest (the Sabbath). God designed us to spend one day a week resting, remembering the past, reevaluating the present, and planning the future. On the seventh day, the Lord rested from His work and spent the day reflecting on His work. We were created in His image, so we too should rest on the seventh day. Leviticus 23:3 says, "Six days shall work be done, but on the seventh day is a Sabbath of solemn rest, a holy convocation. You shall do no work. It is a Sabbath to the LORD in all your dwelling place."

This message was a great reminder for me that we all need to slow down and reevaluate our lives. Life is but a breath.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

I am so happy to be home right now. After a long week of parent-teacher conferences, leaving early today was a well deserved break! I just really wish that we didn't have to go to work tomorrow. But we do have a 3 day weekend!

So, it's Valentine's Day. A day full of heart shaped boxes of chocolates, red roses, little Valentine's Cards, and hugs and kisses. Being an elementary school teacher on a day like today is so much fun! Watching the kids pass out their little Valentine's cards is so precious! They are so innocent and adorable. I remember Valentine's Day being so much fun when I was in elementary school. The best part was reading the valentine's from the boys that I "liked". But now that I'm all grown up, Valentine's Day isn't nearly as exciting. I mean, every day is Valentine's with Brian! :-) haha (That was so cheesy!) If I see one more heart shaped box of chocolates I might scream! I can't even tell you how much candy I got today. Wow, so much! But the best part of the day was getting all those hugs from my little kiddies. They are so sweet on Valentine's Day.

I hope everyone has a great Valentine's Day, even if it is the same as every other. :-)

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

What's in a name?

So, I just did this on a website called blogthings.com. I thought it was pretty interesting and thought it would make an interesting post. What you do is type in your full name and it will tell you what your name means. Not sure where this information comes from exactly, but thought it was fun anyway. Read all this and see what you think. I have added my two cents in too (that's the writing that's in red). So, here goes:

What Sabrina Arlene Vaccaro Means

You are the total package - suave, sexy, smart, and strong. You have the whole world under your spell, and you can influence almost everyone you know. (I seriously doubt that!) You don't always resist your urges to crush the weak. (That sounds mean!) Just remember, they don't have as much going for them as you do. You are usually the best at everything ... you strive for perfection. (I am definitely a perfectionist, but to a fault) You are confident, authoritative, and aggressive. (I don't think I am any of those things) You have the classic "Type A" personality. You are full of energy. You are spirited and boisterous. You are bold and daring. (YEA RIGHT!) You are willing to do some pretty outrageous things. Your high energy sometimes gets you in trouble. You can have a pretty bad temper at times. (That's really funny too!) You are wild, crazy, and a huge rebel. (Oh yes, little Miss Never been drunk and didn't have sex before marriage! Such a rebel!) You're always up to something. You have a ton of energy, and most people can't handle you. (Can you handle me?) You're very intense. You definitely are a handful, and you're likely to get in trouble. But your kind of trouble is a lot of fun. You tend to be pretty tightly wound. (Highly doubt it...I am so laid back!) It's easy to get you excited... which can be a good or bad thing. You have a lot of enthusiasm, but it fades rather quickly. You don't stick with any one thing for very long. You have the drive to accomplish a lot in a short amount of time. Your biggest problem is making sure you finish the projects you start. (Boy, that is definitely true!) You are very intuitive and wise. You understand the world better than most people. You also have a very active imagination. You often get carried away with your thoughts. You are prone to a little paranoia and jealousy. You sometimes go overboard in interpreting signals. You are relaxed, chill, and very likely to go with the flow. (Well, I definitely agree with that, but doesn't that contradict what this just said about me being tightly wound????) You are light hearted and accepting. You don't get worked up easily. (Definitely agree) Well adjusted and incredibly happy, many people wonder what your secret to life is. (It's Jesus!) :-) You are friendly, charming, and warm. You get along with almost everyone. You work hard not to rock the boat. Your easy going attitude brings people together. At times, you can be a little flaky and irresponsible. But for the important things, you pull it together. You are very hyper. You never slow down, even when it's killing you. (WOW, this thing keeps contradicting itself!) You're the type of person who can be a workaholic during the day... and still have the energy to party all night. (Haha, isn't that funny!) Your energy is definitely a magnet for those around you. People are addicted to your vibe. You are very open. You communicate well, and you connect with other people easily. You are a naturally creative person. Ideas just flow from your mind. A true chameleon, you are many things at different points in your life. You are very adaptable. You are well rounded, with a complete perspective on life. You are solid and dependable. You are loyal, and people can count on you. (I hope that one is true!) At times, you can be a bit too serious. You tend to put too much pressure on yourself.
Well, let me know what you think?

All grown up!

It is hard to believe that we have lived in our house for 6 1/2 months now. Time has flown by! Life is so much different now that we are home owners. There is still a part of me that misses the apartment life! We had so much more time on the weekends and if anything ever needed to be fixed, we just called the office and they came right down. Now we are stuck fixing everything. We are responsible for the whole house! That's a lot! We were so naive going into the whole thing. A few days before we closed on our house, I remember Brian saying, "Well, we should be able to knock out all the painting in the first weekend!" Are you kidding me? We are STILL painting! We were lucky to get the first room done in the first weekend. And the only reason we accomplished that was because we stayed up until 3 am several nights. We actually thought that we could tear down all this wallpaper and paint every wall in 2-3 days! WOW! Our painting total 6 1/2 months later is 2 bedrooms, the kitchen, the dining room, the laundry room, and 2 bathrooms. Only 5 rooms to go, plus the garage! Haha, so much for 2-3 days!

Growing up is hard to do! When we first moved into our house, I had a really hard time with it. I was very emotional for the first few weeks. I had moments where I truly thought that I would never feel comfortable in this house. I didn't want to grow up and be an "adult". I had to do some major soul searching and truly rely on the Lord for strength through the whole transition. I remember the first day in our house that I was home alone. My parents had just left and Brian had to go to work. I was in tears! I didn't want to be alone in this unfamiliar place. This wasn't my home. I was in a strangers house, but with all my stuff. That was very scary to me! I sat on the couch and spent more than an hour journaling and praying. I was desperate for the Lord to comfort me in such a scary time. I went through so many emotions during that afternoon. But after spending that time with the Lord, I had so much peace. That day was a turning point for me. Even though I still felt a little out of place in this big house, the Lord continued to give me peace and in many different ways he showed me that everything would be "okay". That experience taught me so much. I'm sure most people think that I'm crazy to be so upset about moving into a new house. Most people would be thrilled. But I think that being the "baby" of my family played a role too. I have always been the "baby" and really wasn't ready to give that up. (I'm still not willing to give that up!) Moving into a house made me finally feel like a grown up. Getting married wasn't even as big of a shock for me, for some reason. Don't get me wrong, I was so thankful that the Lord had provided us with a home, but I just wasn't prepared for the shock of it all.

Through this whole experience I have grown so much. My dependence on the Lord has grown so much. My relationship with Him has grown drastically and I can honestly say that moving into this house is the reason for this growth. For once in my life I can actually say that I am being consistent with my quiet times. Since moving into this house, I have actually spent time in the Word (almost) daily. But even if I miss a day here of there, I still think about it and get right back on track the next day. Before I would have just missed a day or two and then it would all go down hill from there.

Now I look back on that time in my life with a giggle. I love our house now and couldn't imagine living anywhere else. The Lord used this transition in my life to grow me in so many ways. For that, I am so thankful!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Parent-Teacher Conferences....

This week is every teacher's nightmare....parent/teacher conferences. Don't get me wrong, I think that some parent/teacher conferences are a good thing and necessary, however many are not. I just don't understand some parents. Why do the ones that have children that are exceeding have to ask SO many questions and be SO concerned, while the ones that have children who are failing rarely even show up. It is just so backwards! We really don't need to meet with you if your child is making excellent progress and is an overall great kid, so can you please just not come! Why do we need to waste your time and ours? You have a smart kid, so stop being so over concerned and being such a pain! haha

So, this week is going to be a crazy one, so I probably won't have very much extra time for writing. But if I come across any great stories or funny moments during our conferences, I will be sure to make a post. Today's conference were a big bore, so nothing to report. :-) But if you think about it, please pray for me and Suzanne this week. We really hate meeting with the parents...I mean that's why we got into teaching - to work with kids, not adults! We don't do well with adults! They scare us! haha

Love you all! Have a great week! (Hopefully a little better then mine)

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Saturday's are so sweet!

Why can't every day be Saturday? It truly is the perfect day. You get to sleep in, eat a real breakfast (not just a banana while running out the door for work), catch up on your chores, lay around and relax, and spend time with the most important people in your life. What could be better? The only negative thing about this Saturday would be all the basketball that's on tv. Brian is currently watching the Gators kick some Georgia butt, which is a GREAT thing, of course, but he is also dozing off in the chair. I just keep chuckling as I watch his little head bob side to side as he struggles to remian awake enough to claim that he is "watching the game". If I try to snatch the remote from his hand, he will wake up and say, "Hey, I was watching that, go back!" Then we will discuss how he was actually NOT watching, but was sleeping. He will then get offended that I won't just let him "watch". Is it really worth the discussion? Nah, I'll just keep the game on to make him happy.

So, we just got back from Sam's, which really is a great store! We don't go very often, but it just happens that we were there last weekend too. Everytime before we go, we make a list of some things that we might want to pick up there and the list is so short. But some how we manage to rack up a bill for at least $100 every time we go. Buying in bulk is definitely the way to go for most things, but it sure hurts to pay the price all up front. But now I have enough bathroom cups to last a life time and enough toothpaste to brush my teeth 5 million times. :-) And if you need any cottonelle wet wipes, come on over to my house. hehe (Gotta keep it clean, you know!) So, today when we were in Sam's we were walking down an aisle and this random guy came up behind us and said to Brian "Hey, your wife would be pretty good looking if she weren't wearing that awful shirt." I am wearing a GATOR shirt to show my Florida pride! He is a Bulldog fan and didn't appreciate my love of the best team around! He proceeded to tell us a story about a time that he was in Gainesville and he went into a Gator store. He asked the lady that worked there if they had any Georgia things for sale. She said, "Oh yea, come back here." She took him into a back room and handed him a roll of Bulldog toilet paper. They wipe themselves with the bulldogs! I thought that was pretty good and really am considering trying to find some of that toilet paper for my house! I would just love to invite over all my Georgia friends on the night of the FL/GA game and have them using the GA toilet paper. How great would that be! :-) I don't know where my deep hatred for the Bulldogs comes from, but it only started when I moved to ATL. I never even knew anything about the Bulldogs when I lived in FL. I used to despise the Seminoles and now I don't ever think about them. I guess my hatred has changed based on my location.

Alright, well now that I have surely offended half of the people that read this blog, I better go find something else to do. But I still love you girls even if you are GA or FL State fans. Some day the Lord will show you your sin. haha (Just kidding!)

Love you all!

Don't see "Firewall"

Okay, so it is 12:03am and I just had to make a post. We just finished watching the movie Firewall with Harrison Ford. DO NOT see this movie. It is awful. I mean, the premise of the movie is okay, but the acting is bad and it is so slow and unrealistic. We only spent $1 on it, so I guess that is good, but just don't waste the 2 hours of your life to watch it. These types of movies just make Brian and I mad because we really feel like they take hours of our lives that we can never get back. :-) Oh well, it's over now and I had to share it with you all. Goodnight!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Someone is actually reading this!!!!

I am so excited to see that several of my friends are reading my blog! That makes me want to write even more. Thanks girls!

So, here is a funny story from today at work (most of my funny stories happen in my classroom-I mean I work with 36 seven and eight year olds, what do you expect) So, today we were watching a movie (Arctic Tale) and this was a real treat for the kids because we rarely watch movies in school. But we have so much work to do for parent-teacher conferences, so we really needed them to be busy so we could work in peace. :-) Anyway, so the movie was on and I was out in the hallway reading one on one with one of my students. When we came back in, there was a walrus on the screen and it was making some very strange noises! The students were all giggling and once I realized what was happening, I blurted out, "Eww, is that walrus farting?" Oh my word, you would not believe the laughter that comment brought. To hear their teacher say the word "farting" was SO hilarious to them! And to top it off, the walrus was definitely farting for the next minute or so. It was truly disgusting! :-) (If you haven't seen that movie, you must now see it just for the laughs you will get from the farting walrus scene)

It is really so funny to work with young kids. They get the biggest kick out of the smallest things. Their ability to laugh at the most random things should be a lesson for us. Why can't we laugh, even at the most inappropriate times? Why are we all so serious? At what point in our lives do we lose our sense of humor? We just all need to let lose sometimes and laugh! Life is too short to take it SO seriously. I mean, I'm not saying that life isn't a serious thing or that there aren't very serious moments we must face as adults, but our lives would be so much more enjoyable if we would take some time to relax! So, the moral of this story is do something fun tonight! It's Friday! Have some fun! :-)

Thursday, February 7, 2008

My first try at blogging...

So, here goes. I have never blogged before, but found a friend's blog and thought it was a fun way to get my thoughts down. I highly doubt that anyone will ever spend their time reading my blog, but that's okay with me. My blog may completely stink or I may not keep up with it like I would like, but it's worth a try. My plans for this blog are to just write. Not necessarily a daily update, but just my thoughts at the moment. Maybe some funny stories or good pics, things that the Lord teaches me, my random thoughts on various topics, or basically whatever my mind is pondering at the moment.

So, where do I begin? I won't bore anyone with my life story. You can read my "about me" section if you want to know the basics. I feel like my first blog should be really something great, but I don't know what that would be right now. My life is fairly boring at the moment. Working and trying to start a family. There is nothing more that I want right now than to be a mother. So many people keep telling me that I am SO young to be thinking about babies. 25 isn't that young to me. I know, I know, anyone that is older than me just laughs when they hear me say that, but that's just how I feel. I feel that the Lord has been preparing me for motherhood for so long. I have wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember. I just feel like I am putting off my "life calling" the longer I wait. So, now we don't want to wait anymore, but we are learning that babies don't just happen. This is completely out of our control and for one of the first times in my life I am truly forced to rely wholly on the Lord. That is really hard! But I know that He is using this experience to teach me so much. I just feel like everyone around me is popping out babies. After trying for so many months, I truly just don't understand these women that manage to get pregnant by accident. It seems to be such a small chance that everything will line up just right in order for a baby to be conceived. So how come there are so many "whoops" experiences out there? Even more then ever I am shown that the Lord has all of my life in His control. I truly have no say in when this will happen. I just need to let it go!