Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Dan asked me this morning why I've not been blogging more recently and there is only one reason: I've been busy.  We are headed to the beach next week and I feel certain that all of these thoughts rolling around in my head will be a blog post or two... those of you who read my blog will see them.  Those of you who only read it when it shows up on Facebook will likely miss it, because that new set up is *jacked*.

For now, though, I'll tell you a few things about our life lately... mainly because I need to clean our house.

1. I hate the new Facebook set up.

2. I am cleaning our house because our Foster Care home study is tomorrow night. We finished our classes in August and have had a hard time getting our end of things done. It seems like things tend to explode a lot around here- that's our "normal"- but it's unfortunate when the explosions get in the way of getting the good stuff done.  I made the assumption that DSS would be the ones slowing things down- not us.  Whoops.

3. College Ministry makes me happy. I have had lots of good time/good talks lately with our students and I'm reminded how thankful I am to get to be part of their lives.

4. Monday, I needed someone to keep E so we could get some paperwork done. Laurie swooped in to keep her for a few hours. Yesterday, I returned the favor and kept 3/4 of her kids so she could take the remaining 1/4 to the doctor. (Dan's comment was: "What do people who don't live in community do?") I remember shying away from wanting to live in this neighborhood because it would appear too co-dependent. Yeah, I'm over that now. It's good, y'all...

5. I made pumpkin spice cookie "sandwiches" last night (think: oatmeal creme pie but with pumpkin spice cookies and cream cheese frosting). Oh. My. Word. And, they go well with coffee for breakfast... so I've been told.

6. I hung out with a friend in the preschool parking lot for 20 minutes this morning. We hadn't talked in a while. We talked about the craziness (no pun intended) of Mental Health Care in this state and about how happy we are in our marriages. It made a rainy morning a little more cheery.

7. Back in the day, my 2 BFFs from high school and I would use fake names on our return address labels.  We would always put (when sending mail to each other) our real address but we'd put the name of one of the people we graduated with.  It was a fun game of "remember them?"  Now, most all of them/you are on Facebook... so it's less funny.  But it's still kinda funny.

8. In that same line of funny, I like to pretend to be other people when receptionists answer at work and say "Who may I say is calling?"... Anne gets calls from Michelle Obama on a regular basis.

9. My daughter is one of the funniest people I know.  And the most emotional.  And I love it.

10. Next week we will be staying at the same place at the beach that I stayed with 6 of my friends during Senior Beach Week in 1994.  Now if that doesn't freak you out a bit I don't know what does.  Dan always reminds me I don't have to walk down Memory Lane with him...

That's it for now... expect more "meaningful" posts next week.  For now, the office upstairs needs my attention... I should really stop procrastinating.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Important Things for a Friday

I have so enjoyed my mornings for the last few months... and today I decided to let you all in on a little bit of "why".

I have a thing for coffee cups.

Ridiculous, I know... but I feel like they set the tone for my day.  I try not to be superstitious, or even just a little bit stitious, but it matters to me what mug I use.  And today, dear friends, you can peak into my usual selection. *Please note, a couple of my faves are dirty. Sorry.

Left to Right:
1. Mug from Coffee Tavern. Old coffee shop in North Wilkesboro where I sat one sad day in December writing Christmas Cards while Dan was on a rotation at the medical practice where he currently works.  I had just had a miscarriage and couldn't handle being alone all day, so I set up shop there and he came to spend his lunch break with me. That day was restorative for my soul.

2. Mug from HillSong Church. My church in college, my first job. A body of believers where I grew in more ways than I could ever imagine... and where I found out that I truly could be "Inappropriate Becky" and still love Jesus.

3. Mug from Just As I Am. Former coffee shop/cool venue on Lexington Avenue in Asheville. It was a Christian coffee house with good food and good live music. My friend, Kristen, and I frequented there are clients and later volunteered our services as workers.

4. Mug from Wings. Last summer, the week we spent at Kure Beach was one of my richest times all year of prayer and time with Jesus.  So, in a totally inappropriate move, I redistributed mugs. (I bought a new one to replace this one... because... I'm a little superstitious and wanted to take this one home with me.)  (Weird, right?)

5. Mug from Pier One. Gift from best friend in college. This is the second edition of this mug, because the first one met an untimely death in the dorm. Said-BFF kindly replaced it after I cried big girl crocodile tears when the first one shattered.

6. Polka Dotta Mug. Gift from a family member who bestowed me with it as a way to let me know she loved me as one of her own.

7. Mug from Woolworth Walk in Downtown Asheville. Purchased a month ago on Girls Weekend. Because I have a current obsession with birds... and coffee mugs. When rationalizing whether or not to buy this mug, I was "encouraged" to buy it because our hotel room only had 2 mugs and there were three of us.  Right. Because I needed an excuse.

And today's winner for morning coffee:
8. This beautiful pottery mug I bought this summer at the Farmer's Market in Wilmington. Our summer was, as Fran put it yesterday at MOMS, a stormy mess... this mug was a reminder to me that God was clearly our port in that storm.

I'm a gift person... yes, even gifts to myself.  When I pick up one of these mugs, I'm reminded either who gave it to me or the reason that the place from where it came is so special to me. It sets the stage for my day- and allows my mind to think back on what God has done for me as I look forward to what's next.  "Here I raise mine Ebenezer" and all that jazz... all I know is that my day looks more promising before me after I enjoy thinking back on what has been before.

The best part of waking up... is picking out a coffee cup.

Sidenote: Y'all know I'm a fan of Triad Moms on Main, right?  Remember when I blogged for them about my adventures in Africa?  Well, they are in a competition for NATIONAL recognition from Parent's Magazine for being the best local blog.  (Now, I know y'all think this one is, but mine is part of theirs, right? :) ) Can you take a few minutes to vote for them?  You'll be registered to win a $100 savings bond... and as of now your odds are pretty good. (Some people aren't patient enough to go through the registration process.)  Here's what they said this morning: 
You can WIN a $100 SAVINGS BOND simply by voting for Triad Moms on Main in a Best Local Blog Contest! Right now, only 30 people have registered to win, so your chances are GREAT! It only takes a few minutes to vote. Then you just comment on the TMoM website to tell them you voted and you are registered to win!  Click on the link below for more info and please vote for TMoM!!!
And if you win, I'll let you buy me a coffee mug.  Good luck!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Why I love this kid...

 first day of school sass...
 look at Jack trying to get away...
 and her confusion of his "getting away"...
 clearly, he's not impressed with my stealth photo taking.
 but she loves him enough to make him a picture that says "I love Jack"
 and write in her journal all about her good day...
  and she loves to play frisbee with her dogs
 ...this one has never been happier...
and neither has she.
Holy cow, I love this kid.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


In the months of August and September, I was fortunate enough to take 3 trips with my family.

Weekend One: Girls Weekend
Anyone who spends anytime with me gets to hear about "My best friends from preschool on... the twins... Misty and Christy."  We met at Hominy Baptist Preschool when we were 3-ish and have been friends ever since.  Seriously- a 32-ish year friendship is nothing to joke about!  Having best friends who are twins teaches you a lot about how friendships ebb and flow.  One year I would be "closer" to Misty, the next I would be "closer" to Christy.  In school it typically depended who I had more classes with, or- more importantly- who I had lunch with (and could share a baked potato with, right Christy?)  We've been through just about everything together- Girl Scouts (and camp!), break-ups, divorces, Senior Week, death, weddings, arm amputations (well, really only one... I don't need to make that plural), miscarriages, babies, and lots of chocolate chip cookie dough in the middle.

When Mary died, the girls gave me a gift certificate to a spa to get a much needed massage.  The beauty of redeeming this gift was that I convinced them to go with me... so the three of us went to Asheville (our hometown!) together.. something we'd never done before.  Our weekend was filled with laughter, food, wine, a bus tour, amazing spa treatments, laughter, and some more laughter.  It's a beautiful thing to have people who love you like family.

Weekend Two: Roadtrip to Tennessee
My brother and his wife moved to Tennessee over a year ago when Katherine became a professor at Sewanee.  They recently bought a beautiful house there- so at the end of August my Dad, Elizabeth, and I went to visit them.  Seeing them was wonderful, but the trip itself was just as good.  I hadn't realized how little E knew of Daddy- in her nearly 5 years of life he's been dealing with 5 of his hardest years with his own cancer and Mary's.  Friday night when we checked in our hotel, E said "Mommy, I really like Dadaw... I mean I really like him!"  My heart stayed full that weekend with both of them enjoying each other.

Weekend Three: Rwanda Reunion
I had planned to sum up our camping trip for you with loads of words about what an amazing reunion this past weekend was... but Elizabeth Rutledge beat me to it on her blog.  The two families who traveled together, lived life together, adopted together, and were changed together got to see each other for the first time since we returned back in June.  It was a perfect reunion- no pressure to do anything but enjoy each other.  The kids played and played- and we laughed about things that didn't feel as funny 3 months ago.  I still feel so incredibly honored to have been a part of this experience- and loved being with this part of my family this weekend.

Family... they know you best and love you most.  I am blessed to be part of an amazing family- both related by blood and by tears.  You make me who I am and are walking beside me as that person is growing.  You walk beside me when I need company and give me space when I don't.  You surround me with your love and help me process life.  My space in this world is rich and full and happy because of my family... thanks be to God.