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Showing posts from November, 2007

New Compound Miter Saw

Daniel is ecstatic. Today the new compound miter saw arrived via UPS. I would say our new saw, but that would be like saying our new china hutch. While technically that is true and both of us will in some way use both of these items, in reality, the hutch is mine and the saw is Daniel's.

Daniel is like a kid who just received a favorite new toy. He could not wait to take it out of its packaging and put it together in order to start "playing" with it. But first things first, we had to spend several hours cleaning and organizing the garage so that we would have a place for the gargantuan saw and stand (the stand is about 6 feet long).

Anyways Daniel is very happy with the new purchase and cannot wait to be able to start using it on house projects! For those who are concerned... this saw is a very safe saw (unlike chain saws and table saws).

Speaking of Breakfast...

Daniel took the day off of work today because 1) he has a dentist appointment at 10:30 this morning and 2) he only works half days on Friday so it didn't seem worth it to get up and drive downtown for only a couple hours of work.

Instead we enjoyed staying up late last night and sleeping in this morning and then he woke me up to see if I wanted to go to my favorite pancake house for breakfast - which I could not turn down.

I am thrilled that we get to enjoy a three-day weekend together and to top it off, we kicked it off with the pancake house this morning! I am full from country ham, eggs over easy, pecan pancakes and my coffee.
Breakfast is my all time favorite meal to eat out. There is something wonderful about sitting down over a country breakfast with someone you love or with close friends. I can never turn down coffee or a country breakfast or pancakes! This is a list of some of my favorite places to eat breakfast.

Searcy, AR: Bobby's
Nothing can beat squeezing into a booth with friends or family. Many talks have been had at Bobby's over a country breakfast of ham, eggs, toast and coffee - all for about $5. I once convinced Daniel to skip class and chapel to go to Bobby's with me!!!

Gatlinburg, TN: Log Cabin Pancake House
First of all, I don't particularly like going to Gburg, but if we are in the vicinity I want to make a stop here. I love their Caribbean Pancakes with coffee.

Charlotte, NC: The Original Pancake House in SouthPark
I was a little disappointed to learn this was a chain - we ate at one in Birmingham, AL. Regardless, I love the one in SouthPark - the people know us a…

Fun Assembling A Hutch

Last night Daniel and I spent over two hours attempting to assemble a hutch we purchased to hold our china.

Unfortunately the directions were wrong and we were almost finished assembling it before we realized the mistake. We had to undo most of our work in order to rotate the two wrong pieces into the right direction. I have no idea how a manual that has written and drawn directions could be wrong. We actually noticed that a couple of things had been whited-out and then rewritten by hand!

Tonight neither of us felt like messing with the project, so it is still not finished. I will post a pic as soon as we finish.

Special Time

Special time is a tradition that started a long time ago in my family. I used to think it originated when I was little and my Nana would always take us out for one-on-one time to talk and get coffee/hot chocolate at Tim Hortons...

This is definitely a part of special time for us, but it also has a variation. Whenever my mom and sister and I are together, for as long as I can remember, we always get into a bed together to talk.

I remember when I was little that my mom would do this with her sisters and she says that she remembers nana doing it with her sisters - so this tradition is probably the longer standing one.

When I still lived at home, these talks in bed were generally done behind closed doors and I am pretty sure my dad and brother felt somewhat left out. Over the years, we have developed an open door policy and ANYONE that wants to come into the room and try and cram on the bed (or stand/sit in the room) is always welcome.

An interesting thing happened this Thanksg…

Things I Am Thankful For:

1) Daniel

2) Family

3) Old friends

4) New friends

5) Nearly 5 wonderful years of marriage

6) Taking the time to slow down

7) Learning how to mountain bike this year

8) Books

9) My front yard full of colorful leaves

10) My house finally being close(r) to being done

11) Starbucks/Caribou Coffee/Dean&Deluca

12) Finding a new restaurant to love

13) Having a mentor

14) Daniel having a good job

15) My freelance clients

16) My Computer/The Internet

17) The ability to learn new things

18) Completed projects

19) Getting to see my family over the holidays

20) People that drive long distances to visit us

21) Home church

22) Good health

23) Friendships that stay intact even though we live far away

24) Being able to take a moment everyday to appreciate the beauty that is all around me - whether it is mountains, the ocean, or just looking up at the clouds in the sky and listening to the birds in my yard.

25) God providing for all of my needs on a daily basis

Being Thankful

Last night at our life group we took the opportunity for everyone to share two things: 1) What is something you are thankful for this year and 2) What is something you are committed to doing in the future.

Thankfulness answers included being thankful for good marriages, family, children, healthy babies (we had a premi born into our group this year), relationships - old and new, jobs, health, life, thankfulness that God is not done with us yet (regardless of age), one person related how their family had gone through Hurricane Katrina and were going to be able to move back to their house soon (out of a FEMA trailer).

Commitment answers included committing to slow down and enjoy life, committing to choose to be content no matter what your circumstance, committing to be good husband's and wives and parents, committing to continue to develop relationships, etc.

It was a great time to be able to connect with each other and share in a more intimate way. The funniest moment cam…

Weekend Update

We have managed to accomplish quite a bit this weekend. I am happy to report that door casings for our coat closet and pantry have FINALLY been installed and doors hung. We also managed to install all of the baseboard in the great room/dining area - this is a major accomplishment and it looks fantastic. It is truly beginning to feel like a home instead of this insane, never-ending renovation project.

We also went out and purchased a china cabinet for me with my birthday money. I am really excited to finally be able to put away my china (which has been stored in 2 rubbermaid containers for the past 5 years).

I am really looking forward to seeing family for Thanksgiving - we will be headed to Searcy on Tuesday and I can't wait to see my family!!!

High Cholesterol

I went to the doctor on the Friday before my birthday and found out I had high cholesterol. They told me to come back the next week after I had fasted and they would check one more time to be sure.

It turns out that my cholesterol is really high. The most frustrating part is that they told me to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly - I cook almost all of our meals from scratch (from healthy foods that are low in cholesterol) and exercise almost every day! So I am not sure how I am going to combat this.

I believe it is genetic, so if you are in my family and don't know about your cholesterol, you might want to get it checked out, just to be sure.

I suppose Daniel and I are going to have to crack down, even more, on what types of food we eat. I just pray that I will be able to get the levels down. Normal is less than 200 and high is anything above 240. After fasting, mine is 243...

Hair Cutting Woes

A few years ago, we were in Searcy for Thanksgiving and I went to get my haircut. It turned out to be the worst haircut of my life! I rarely cry, especially not over piddly things, and I ended up crying over this haircut - it was so bad it was practically a mullet.

Anyways, I have had a really hard time getting my hair cut ever since. I think it freaks Daniel out that I have such a hard time. Also, I generally try to get Angela to go with me when possible for moral support.

After today I think that I am finally over my hair cutting woes. There is a girl in my life group who cuts hair from her home. So last Sunday, I bravely asked her if I could schedule an appointment. She cuts a lot of different people's hair that I know and that gave me confidence in her.

Anyways I went this afternoon and it turned out to be a really great experience. We visited the whole time and I left we a really cute, short haircut. Best of all there was no crying involved... I will definitely go…

This blog is the story of a couple who got married, quit their jobs, and bicycled around the world.

Someday Daniel and I would like to do something similar but maybe not on this scale. It is very intriguing to see their pictures and read their daily progress.

About one year ago they started their journey with time spent in the USA, New Zealand, SouthEast Asia and now in Europe. They will be coming back to the USA in a couple of weeks. We have found their story to be interesting and inspiring...

Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons

Daniel was given free tickets to the Carolina Panthers vs. The Atlanta Falcons game for Sunday. This was our first time to get to go to the Bank of America stadium. Unfortunately the Panthers lost 20 to 13, but at least we were able to enjoy the experience.

The game was okay, we left at the beginning of the 4th quarter when it was tied 13 to 13. Even though it was tied, it was a boring game so we didn't feel too bad about leaving early.

Highlights of the game:
The crowd got the wave going through the entire stadium in both the upper and lower sections - this was much more impressive than seeing the wave done at a basketball or hockey game which is in a much smaller venue. The Atlanta Falcons kicker was 47 years old and he scored a field goal! The view from inside the stadium was impressive - from where we were sitting you could see the skyline of Charlotte.

PowerPoint 2007 Complete Makeover Kit

This is exciting: A project that I was a part of working on has been referenced in the newly released book, Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007 Complete Makeover Kit by Geetesh Bajaj. As some of you may remember, I collaborated on the PowerPoint presentation, Meet Henry, that placed 2nd in the World's Best Presentation Contest by Slideshare. Click here to read an excerpt from the book regarding the Meet Henry presentation.

Grundy Lake

The other day I was thinking about family vacations from when I was a kid. We didn't have a whole lot when I was growing up, but my parents always made sure that we all went to Canada in the summers to visit our extended family. Looking back, I am so thankful that my parents made the effort for us to spend that time together as a family.

I don't really remember that much about the 18 hour car rides from Arkansas to Canada... I know they were probably awful for everyone - cramped up in a car, no entertainment to soothe us... just ourselves, the radio and books.

I know we must have fought like cats and dogs, but that is not what stands out in my mind. I remember mom reading to us, specifically "The Princess Bride." I do remember watching for license plates and getting close to all 50 states and many of the provinces. I remember playing the alphabet game. I remember getting to sit in the front with Dad to help keep him awake - we would talk and sing and I w…

For Women Only

For my birthday, a good friend gave me the book For Women Only by Shaunti Feldhahn. What an amazing book about relationships with great incite into men. I liked it so much that I went out and bought For Men Only to read and to give to Daniel.

I don't normally sit down and read books about relationships or about the differences in men and women, but if you want some solid information about how the opposite sex thinks and ideas on how you can improve your relationship and understand your partner better, I would definitely recommend both of these books.


I was in the process of doing laundry and getting some things done around the house and it hit me. I keep trying to figure out what kind of job would best suit me, which has been a real challenge for me. Then it dawned on me: I have never really thought in terms of: I would like to be a doctor or an architect or a pilot; my thinking is and always has been broader than this.

Several weeks ago at home church, Sally asked me what my dream job would be. I had a hard time telling her. I rattled off something about wanting to be a mountain guide. She gave me an odd look so I said, “Oh, you mean something realistic, I guess a freelance graphic designer that actually made money…” What a lame statement. I am 27, so you would think I would have some kind of direction as to what I want to be doing!

But the thing is, I do know. I just think differently. I have always wanted to own a coffee shop or run an outfitter service in conjunction with an outdoors store or own a bed & break…

27 Random Things You Might Not Know About Me...

1) I have lived in 3 countries.

2) I met my husband in a cave.

3) I LOVE coffee houses.

4) I rarely cook the same recipe twice... Daniel sometimes has to beg me to cook "normal" things like spaghetti.

5) I am the oldest of 3 kids.

6) When I was 13 I decided that I wanted to climb to the top of the highest mountains in all 50 states, so far I have done CO, AR, TN, NC & VA.

7) The furthest I have driven was from Cookeville, Tennessee to Durango, Mexico for a wedding... think 3 days of driving in a car (one way).

8) I try not to visit the same places more than twice - there are too many places to see in the world.

9) I am an idealist.

10) I like lilies.

11) Fall is my favorite season.

12) Spring is a close second.

13) I spent my first wedding anniversary with Daniel and a group of Eagle Scouts in a shelter on the Appalachian Trail.

14) I was hit by a car when I was 10.

15) I have never broken a bone or had to have stitches.

16) I have a B.S. in Fine Art.

17) I love to re…

My Surprise Birthday Weekend In Asheville, NC

Daniel and I are home after a very relaxing birthday weekend. Friday morning Daniel left flowers for me on the counter - lilies, my favorite. 

His only clues as to where we were headed for the weekend were as follows: 1) I could expect the weather to be in the 60's F during the day and 30's at night; 2) We would not be sleeping in sleeping bags, and 3) We would be driving between 5 and 200 miles to our destination...
I had a pretty good idea that we would be going to the mountains and that Asheville was a good possibility. We stayed at this fantastic cottage called The Rosewood outside of Asheville. We had actually tried to book this place earlier this summer, but found out that you generally need to book 3 months ahead of time. When we could not get reservations in June, Daniel went ahead and booked the cottage for the weekend of my birthday.

Friday night we ate dinner at a local Italian pizzeria called Iannucci's - their breadsticks were fantastic. After dinner…

Lessons from Junior Prom

This is my story of what I learned from my Junior Prom. Actually it is about my experience of convincing my parents that I should be allowed to go to this special dance.

My story actually goes back further than Junior Prom. Growing up, I was not allowed to attend dances. When I was in the 5th grade, my friends were pressuring me to go to a school dance, so I asked my mom and she said I could go (notice that I did not ask my dad). Anyways, I walked with my friends to the school and while we were still in the parking log, my dad showed up to take me home.

Move forward about 5 years to my Junior Prom. I was 16 and really wanted to go. I wanted the experience of this special night. I wanted to share in the event with my friends and I wanted my parents to trust me enough to go to this dance.

I sat down and did some serious thinking. I actually wrote out every possible scenario of what might "go wrong" in the mind of my parents and I wrote out arguments for all of those scenario…


I have come to a place where I am looking for a full-time job and doing so because that is what I am supposed to be doing. I am a graphic designer because my culture ordains that I fit a certain mold. Graphic design is what I do, but not who I am. I have forgotten this.

The other day, while reading John Eldridge’s book, The Ransomed Heart, I came to page 145 and the excerpt entitled On Mozart and Martha Stewart. What an eye opener this passage is to me. This is precisely what happens when God shares with mankind his own artistic capacity and then sets us down in a paradise of unlimited potential. It is an act of creative invitation, like providing Monet with a studio for the summer, stocked full of brushes and oils and empty canvases. Or like setting Martha Stewart loose in a gourmet kitchen on a snowy winter weekend, just before the holidays. You needn’t provide instructions or motivation; all you have to do is release them to be who they are, and remarkable things will …