Sunday, November 29, 2009

100 posts!

For my 100th post I decided to do 50 random things about enjoy! (planned to do 100...but I was having a hard time coming up w/things and didn't want to keep postponing other blog topics)

1. I was born in Johnson City, Tennessee, but I have lived in Bowling Green, Kentucky since I was about 2 years old.

2. I was born with a perforated intestine and had to have multiple surgeries during the first few weeks and months of my life. I became septic and almost died. Even though I had all the surgeries, the doctors were not able to locate the perforation, but it miraculously healed itself! The doctor said it was a "medical miracle"

3. I still have a huge scar across my stomach from the surgeries. It creates an indentation in the middle of my stomach...and in the center of it you can still see the needle holes from where I was stitched up. When I was younger I used to stick earrings through the holes to freak my friends out.

4. I ADORE Christmas :) I am so happy and filled with Christmas spirit this year that I almost cry with joy when I hear the Christmas songs in stores :)

5. When I was little I was VERY bad at naming our pets...I had cats named Blackey, Whitey, and Pretty. original right?

6. I have always wanted to be a mom, but now that I'm in a place where it is a possibility, the thought of having children scares me to death!

7. I have compulsive tendencies which manifest mostly when it comes to shopping...I buy things in multiples when I get interested in them and therefore have stuffed my house to the brim!

8. I love children's books. my favorite authors are Rosemary Wells, and (of course) Beatrix Potter (i recently got all the peter rabbit series for 1.99 per book!)

9. I grew up shopping only at consignment shops and discount stores like TJ Maxx so I don't really know how to shop at retail stores where everything is organized and displayed nicely--it doesn't seem as fun unless I have to dig!

10. Shopping in these types of stores is bad for me b/c since the inventory is always changing, I feel like I have to buy it right then or I might lose it! so I often buy things I don't really need or have use for...

11. I love using my hands and being crafty...I knit, sew, scrapbook, make clay ornaments, and of course, bake. I love trying new hobbies and dabbling in a bit of everything.

12. I adore reading and buying books. I have at least 6 bookshelves in my house with everything from religious studies and philosophy books to cookbooks, craft books and chick lit--not to mention the magazines!

13. I have crazy wild dreams and nightmares. Most of them are located at my childhood home, a big hotel (where we used to go for campus crusade winter conferences), daytona beach, or my church. I regularly have dreams about being chased and running through stairwells and also trying to fly.

14. My husband refuses to listen to my dream stories anymore. He thinks I'm crazy.

15. I love old movies (especially musicals). When I was little we would check them out from the library. One time I cried because we had to give the Ten Commandments (Charlton Heston version of course) back and the librarian extended our check out time.

16. I don't really like current movies, and I pretty much refuse to watch dramas or anything that will stress me out or make me cry.

17. I have very eclectic taste in music, but lately have been gravitating towards more indie bands. In general, I like music that has a sleepy dream-like quality.

18. I still have almost all my childhood toys--I wanted to keep every one for my future children to play with. They are all still in my parent's attic.

19. The only toy I ever got rid of was my "brightly" doll--I little pink bean-shaped plastic thing that would glow when you squeezed it. I gave it away at a children's toy drive, and I wished I had it back for years and years. **i just tried googling it and apparently it was one of the "snugglebums" dolls**

20. My favorite food as a child was my granny's biscuits and gravy and she would make them for me any time we would visit. I liked them so much that my dad called me "biscuit"

21. I went to a very strict Fundamentalist Baptist school called Anchored Christian School. There were only 2 other girls in my class, and I had the same teacher for 1st, & 4th-7th grade.

22. I have worked at my office for 9 years--it is the same pediatric office that I went to as a child (and was still officially a patient until 3 years ago when they made me get a "grown-up" doctor for my chronic health issues). I got my job there b/c I was in the office 2x a week for allergy shots, so I figured it would be a good after school job! I asked if they hired people under 18...persevered through years of filing and copying after school...and now I'm the Office Manager!

23. I started dating my hubs during our senior year of high school. We stayed together all through college and have been happily married for 3 years!

24. The house that hubs and I bought was the home of my childhood pastor and I used to come here and play with his daughter when I was little. We bought the house from a family who was also in ministry and one of my former Bible study girls had her first kiss here when the old owners lived here! lots of fun history...

25. I have never purchased a new car--I bought "my" car from my parents when hubs and I got married for a few hundred is a 1989 camry, almost as old as I am! We've tossed around the idea of getting a "new" car (aka...something made in the past decade) but I just can't justify it when all I do is drive to and from work!

26. I never have enough clean spatulas, whisks, or mixing bowls.

27. I am a pack rat, as is my husband. Our little house is full to bursting already!

28. I am obsessive about recycling. I keep a box under my desk at work to recycle junk mail, boxes, and cans and bottles and then take it home to recycle. It literally hurts me to throw things away that could be reused! I HATE WASTE!!!

29. I compost food scraps even though I don't garden...(see #28)

30. I like to dress my pets in clothes. I did this when I was a kid too, but thankfully Butch is okay with it. Kitty...not so much.

31. I have too many magazines to read.

32. I love TV on DVD and will watch an entire series over a weekend or two (and will watch them over and over)

33. I hate hand-washing dishes.

34. The sweetest present that hubs ever gave me was 3 months into our relationship, he bought me a new copy of my favorite childhood book "Why Do You Love Me" about a little bear cub and it's momma. In one part of the book the bear sees other naughty bear cubs who have run away from their mothers b/c they didn't want to have the burrs combed out of their fur. One night when I was little I ran away from my mom after bathtime saying "I don't want you to comb the burrs out of my furs!!"

35. I was a Religious Studies major in college, and needed to choose a minor in order to have enough credits to graduate. I was really interested in psycholgy, but my campus was located on a huge hill. The Religious Studies building was at the very top of the hill, and the psychology building was at the very I chose philosophy because it was on the same floor of the same building as Religious studies. No other reason. And I HATED philosophy by the end!

36. I got an "A" in my college Metaphysics and Epistemology class (required for the Philosophy degree)...but I never actually learned what either of those terms mean, and still could not define them for you!

37. I cry when I watch the Little Mermaid when she says bye to her daddy in the end.

38. My dad performed hubs' and my wedding ceremony, and we got married on my parent's front porch. It was lovely and so so sweet. (they have an old plantation-type house built in 1848)

39. We went on our honeymoon to Bar Harbor, Maine, and it was perfect!!

40. I became a Christian at a very young age and was baptized by my daddy. I remember that I wore my new sparkly bathing suit under the baptism robes and I thought that there would be sparkles in the water because of it.

41. I cannot sleep without hearing the sound of a fan. Hubs is the same, and one of the first conversations that we ever had was in English class our senior year--the power had gone off in the middle of the night and our fans had gone off so we both woke up so we were both really tired.

42. Before we started dating we had gone on a trip to Texas for a robot competition for our physics class. During the trip we played a game called "murder in the dark" and we were "secret partners" and anytime that I was supposed to be the "killer" I would squeeze his hand and he would do it instead. We both liked different people during the trip, but it was the start of our friendship.

43. After my sophomore year of college I went on a 6 week mission trip to Russia. We traveled all over and went to Perm, Ekaterinburg, Moscow, and some other city that I can't remember the name of...It was absolutely amazing though. I'm so thankful to have had that experience.

44. My parents are ministers with Campus Crusade for Christ--a college based ministry. Because of this I have been able to travel all over the country, spend summers in the mountains and on the beach, and meet some amazing people, all while learning more about God!

45. I discovered blogging last year through some Bible study girls and have quickly gotten hooked! I love having an outlet for my thoughts, a place to share my baking adventures and general experiences, and connecting and reconnecting with amazing people!

46. When I was little my mom always encouraged us to get in the kitchen. We had mini baking pans and she would let us experiment with recipes. The worst I think was the "coke cake". I know that some really good cake recipes include cola, but we did not do it right!!

47. I used to love getting my mom's kitchen utensils out and playing with the pots & pans and colanders and whisks...One time I was banging on the pots and she came in to tell me to stop b/c she had a headache. I replied with "But I'm making a joyful noise unto the Lord!!"(psalm 100:1) Now how could a mother say no to that??

48. I am extremely close to both my parents. Of course, I went through the rockey phases of adolescence (compounded by bad boyfriends) but now we have wonderful relationships. My dad and I have a special bond and get very emotional about one another (this can lead to lots of crying). My mom and I are less emotional but are wonderful friends. We are so similar--if you go to both of our houses you will see a lot of the same dishes and furniture, our walls are the same's really funny! I think I'm a good mix of both of them.

49. A few years ago I caught mono and then developed Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & Fibromyalgia. It caused me to change a lot of my habits and has definitely been hard, but I have learned the joy of resting!!

50. The most important thing to me is glorifying God through my relationships with other people. Whether that means being a good wife and (eventually) mother, a friend to listen and encourage, a leader, or a follower, I strive for that above all.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thursday Thankfuls

Instead of "Friday Favorites" this week I'm going to do "Thursday Thankfuls" in honor of the often-ignored holiday of Thanksgiving. As much as I ADORE and look forward to Christmas, in my family it was always a rule that we would not skip over Thanksgiving by decorating early or listening to Christmas music or any of that. Hubs still holds me to that even though being a grown up makes me want to rebel and have Christmas all the time! ;)

One of our family traditions is to do a "Thankful Tree" each year. At each place setting my parents put a paper leaf (in autumn colors of red, yellow, orange, or brown of course) and a pen, and each person writes down things that they are thankful for (some times we get more than one leaf, some times we cram it all on one). We go around the table and everyone reads what they have written on the leaf, then we tape the leaves onto a tree branch which is displayed in a flower pot by the table. It's easy to give the "Sunday School" answers in that setting ("i'm thankful for God, my family, and my friends") and so often we still just go through the habit of saying things, but it is so important to really give thanks for all the blessings in our lives.

So here is my digital "thankful tree" for this year:

-My faith in Christ. This has been a hard year for so many people. Personally, I've lost my grandmother, had some difficult times at work, struggled continually with my health and weight, and gone through some hard transitions emotionally; but through it all I still have hope and peace in Christ. I've also moved from my former way of looking at my faith as something to just be studied, and am learning more how to live and apply it.

-Hubs. Honestly, I've been really cranky w/him today (and vice versa) but I am blessed to have him. I have seen some real scum-bags hurt people I love this year, but no matter what we he and I go through, I am able to trust him and know that my trust will not be broken. He is a wonderful man who works incessantly to provide for me, he always trys to make me laugh, and he encourages me through everything.

-My family. It was a very trying year for our family. The sickness and passing of my dad's mom was emotionally draining. I am so grateful that she stayed with them during her sickness b/c I was able to see her much more than I would have if she had still been in Owensboro. I think it also brought out a lot more honesty in my family about how we are all doing. We were able to lean on each other more than we normally do: to reveal our weaknesses and ask for help when we needed it. I also spent more time with my sister and connected with her more than I have since we were really little kids.

-My job. Just having a secure job in this economy is something to be thankful for, but I am especially thankful for the great relationships that I have there. I can honestly say that I love and care for all my coworkers. We have all been through some crazy times this year (personally, and as an office) but I think we've handled it well.

-Butch. :) My little bulldog is nothing but love! I know that no matter what happens one day, when I come home she will be wiggling with joy as soon as she sees me! I spoil her rotten, but she spoils me right back!

-Freedom to pursue my passions. This year I have really appreciated the flexibility of my schedule to allow me to do things like bake and blog and even to start selling some baked goods. We're still in a decent place financially that has allowed me to do this as well.

-Re-kindled friendships. I have struggled some with so many of my friends and former Bible study girls having moved, but have reconnected with some friends that I wasn't as close to previously. Some relationships have been re-formed through the blog world and transitioned into "real life" and I have learned how to pursue some of my long-distance friendships better. I guess in this stage of life I am figuring out how to go from being a "leader" in bible study-type settings as the primary purpose of my relationships, to just having peer relationships. I like it. It's very freeing.

-My home. I just love it. Yes, it is cluttered and mostly messy, and somehow hubs and I have managed to fill it all the way already, but it is a nice comfy little home where people feel welcome.

Well, there are lots more things that I could write, but I need to go make some muffins. :) (i'm also thankful for baked goods) What are you most thankful for this year?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

TWD: Sugar Topped Molasses Spice Cookies

Yay!!! I finally made one of November's recipes!!!!!! I have been super lazy this month when it comes to the baking challenges, but not to the other baking, but it just makes me so happy to be able to try new recipes. I love the favorites that everyone requests, but I like to try new things.

If you've been following any other TWD bakers (sadly not me) you know that we have been given the freedom to bake out of order this month. Apparently I need stricter guidelines b/c if I have too much flexibility, I just don't do it!

Well, I'm so happy that I took the time to make these cookies b/c they are AMAZING! I have been wanting a good ginger cookie recipe and these are so wonderful. I baked them for 12 minutes and they came out wonderfully crisp and chewy. The pepper is a great touch as well.

Mine didn't get the crinkly tops that I saw in so many other blogs and the pictures, but they are yum yum yum so I don't even care! I rolled some in regular sugar, and some in raw sugar for a little extra crunch. If you want the recipe for these (and you know you do!) head over this post by Pamela from Cookies with Boys or go BUY THE BOOK!! you won't regret it!

I really wanted to make some of the other recipes for this month, but just don't know if I'll be able to. Head over to the TWD website to see the other assignments and recipes.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

the fat shelf

a peak into my fridge...yes, that is an entire shelf devoted to cream cheese and butter's a cake order i did last week

Saturday, November 21, 2009

my new favorite song

One Day Like This by Elbow

Here's a link f/m Youtube...

I'm a sucker for strings!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday Favorites, and where I"ve been

Sorry I have been MIA for the last week or so! I have been SICK. And not my normal CFS/Fibro stuff...and nasty horrible miserable stomach virus that made me want to DIE!!! okay....maybe i'm being a little melodramatic...but it was bad. So bad that I didn't even blog!! And it lasted for four days...I'm still not totally better...I have a little pain, but I am mostly better. Needless to say, I have not been baking much. I sadly had to cancel two orders for earlier this week, but was able to catch up with two more last night, and another pumpkin roll today.

Last weekend (before I got sick) I went to Louisville and had a WONDERFUL time with some old friends--I stayed with a group of former Bible study girls, went to the baby shower of my former Bible study leader, and saw tons of people that I love and miss. It was weird b/c almost wherever we went, I saw people that I had known from college in the town where I live, but now they've all moved to another town. funny. Tonight I'm headed to Nashvilled to spend the weekend with my best friend and I am so excited!!!

In other health news, I saw my doctor about my foot pain and he says it is plantar fasciitis and put me on some more anti-inflammatories and gave me some stretches to do. He said special orthodics probably won't help me b/c I actually have good foot shape, but to keep wearing tennis shoes and all that other fun stuff. We also talked about my vitamin D levels which the doctor in Franklin had tested, and he said my levels were some of the lowest he'd ever seen so he put me on 50,000 (!) milligrams of vitamin D once a week and I'm actually going to try this for a while and not get a new hormone implant quite yet to see if this helps at all. Money's tight and that will save $500 and then I'll see if I still stay feeling a little better or if I think the hormone stuff is necessary...

And now, for my favorite of this week (which is kinda ironic considering the bad state of my stomach)...Mexican food!!!! YUM!!! I never ever don't want it. Taco Bell is my favorite fast food. Every time I go to a real mexican restuarant I LOVE chimichangas...and you all know my love of "Mexican mush" Even when I was horribly sick, I just wanted to get better so I could eat Mexican food, and I ate it a little too soon...but it was worth it. Do you have a favorite type of food?

Well, that's my update for now--I plan to be more active in the following weeks!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

freudian slip??

so i was just posting a comment on the blog of my online friend and weight-loss inspiration, Erin...she was asking how people planned to beat the holiday weight gain and this is what i typed:

"i desperately want to do butter"

i meant to say "better" and of course i edited it before submitting my post (though i did let her know about my little slip) but i honestly made myself laugh out loud. maybe this is how i really feel deep down...i don't want to be healthy...i want butter!!! hahaha

just had to share


if you haven't noticed...i am not up to par w/the Dorie baking over the past few weeks. between my awful foot pain and the large amount of baked goods that are still sitting on my counter, i'm just going to have to take a little break. hopefully i will be back up and running with it all soon!

ps--i have a doctor appt. on friday morning about my feet--so pray that it will go well!

Monday, November 9, 2009

breaking news...i just found out that my former pastor (who also used to live in the house that hubs and i bought) was the officiating pastor at khloe kardasian's wedding on E!--weird...


I am feeling very discouraged tonight. for the past few weeks I have been having very severe foot pain. My massage therapist had suggested that I may have plantar fasciitis last year, and I have always assumed that that is what it is b/c my mom has been diagnosed with it. Tonight I was trying to get in some cardio b/c I really want to lose weight and get in shape, and by the end of ten minutes I was in so much pain that I had to stop--I was almost in tears! I got on the internet to see if there is anything to do to help it, and in the side bar I saw something that said "fibromyalgia foot pain." It made my heart sink. I know about all the tender points and all that fun stuff, but I didn't realize that this could be a symptom of my fibro. It just made me feel hopeless. I looked at some FM websites and they all described exactly how I feel--severe shooting pain over the entire bottom of the foot, it hurts in the morning, and it is bad even if you haven't been on your feet much, but being on your feet is excruciating. bah. I am still going to make an appt. w/my PCP to talk about getting a referral to a podiatrist--maybe there are at least some "special shoes" or inserts or SOMETHING that will help the pain a little. I already wear tennis shoes most days and have 3 sets of inserts in them! But the reality is that if it's my fibro, there isn't much to do about it.

I guess I had gotten kinda cocky. I have definitely had a decrease in my symptoms and pain levels since starting the hormone replacement therapy, and I just thought this was something unrelated. I thought that I may have some type of flare-up with my symptoms after such a busy weekend, but I didn't expect this. And I am super discouraged about this kind of pain b/c I had just started really getting into exercising again, but how the crap am I supposed to do cardio if it kills me to be on my feet? ARGHHH!!!

Well, sorry for such a bummer post, but I just needed to share. Pray for me as I deal with yet another symptom. It makes me discouraged about the future and worried that I am taking on too much.

I am in bed super early once again and have taken some extra meds, but I just want to feel better!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

some days i accomplish nothing--and today was one of those days. i have been totally exhausted after my (very successful) open house, and slept late and then spent the day doing...i really don't know what...but i ate too many cookies. that is for sure. i have been cuddling w/butchy, i did manage to do two loads of laundry so i guess that's something, but otherwise i'm just feeling outlandishly lazy. i'm actually contemplating getting in's just 8:30 and i took a nap f/m 3:30-5....but it sounds lovely. okay. it is decided. i'm getting in bed!! yay!

**i'm realizing this post is completely pointless, but sometimes it's nice to throw your pointlessness out for the world to see, right?

Friday, November 6, 2009

Last night (after baking and cleaning from 9 am to 1:30 am for my Open House) I had a dream that we were in possession of a bag of evil/cursed Cheddar Sun Chips. There was some type of disclaimer on the back of the bag about not trusting any strange impulses you may have while the chips were in your house, and somehow, the chips managed to turn on any lights that I turned off. We ate them and the curse went away...

I think I'm going crazy!

Friday Favorites and a Giveaway!

If you've been following my blog for a while you know that I have a problem with buying things in multiples, especially magazines...

The magazines have been accumulating over the past year since my subscription mania event, though I am starting to let many of my subscriptions lapse, but I absolutely ADORE the special Holiday baking editions. And by adore, I mean, well...

I have purchased 18 this holiday season...(that's just Christmas themed, there are also fall & halloween issues that I did not count)
**i'm whispering this so that hopefully hubs won't read it...shhh--don't tell on me!**

Well, as I have unfortunately not kept up with the reading of the magazines as I come in, to my shock and horror I saw that I had purchased two copies of the same issue!! boo!

Better Homes & Gardens Ultimate Cookies edition
**I think I was confused by the fact that the title to one is in shiny letters and the other isn't**

So I figured that I would use my confusion to benefit someone else, so I'm doing my first giveaway!!

If you want to be entered to win a free copy of this, just leave a comment and let me know if you have any favorite Christmas cookies to bake or eat! (if you are reading this on facebook but want to be entered into the drawing, head over to my actual blog and enter a comment here)

Sorry that I haven't been very active lately--I missed TWD this week, but I have been doing a ton of baking and work for my Open House this weekend so I am beat! Hopefully I will be able to catch up on everything soon!