Monday, February 29, 2016

Get Your Paint On

I went to my first paint party yesterday and it was so much fun!  My friend Amye Jo has invited me to paint parties before but I was never able to go.  I almost didn't make this one because I have had a nagging cough for two weeks.  I finally found some tough meds to knock it out but dang it makes me woozy. I was bound and determined to go this time!

I have to tell y'all, I was a little nervous about it when I saw what we would be painting.  I love Texas, was born, raised and proud of it but I have never been able to draw our state.  I was panicking.  Luckily I found out when I arrived that we would be tracing the state.  Whew, biig sigh of relief.  I was still nervous about painting though. This gal that Amye had teach us was great.  She was fun, energetic and was really patience with all of us.  I can't tell you how many times we asked her the same questions over and over.  She was awesome and so encouraging.  

I really took my time.  This showed in the end because while everyone else was done, I was still painting.  LOL!!  

Getting help from Amye Jo's hubby, Paul Marcus. 
I was putting the finishing touches on it and didn't like the way it looked.  Diana came to the rescue along with Paul.  He was very encouraging as well. ;) 

All the ladies with their prized paintings....

My painting....

And my painting's new home...
My starting piece for this wall. 
I'm going to surround it with some of my favorite family pictures.

Yesterday was a lot of fun and very much needed.  I can't remember the last time I saw Amye & Paul.  So glad it worked out this time.  We are definitely planning to do this again, and you should too!  

Y'all have a great week! 

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Garden Prep

We have slowly been prepping for our Spring garden.  I didn't put in a Fall garden this year.  The first year we had the garden I tried one and failed miserably.  Maybe I'll try again one day.  We tilled up the dirt back in November or December, I can't remember now, so it wouldn't be all grass come Spring.  We broke it up again this past Saturday and added 22 bags of manure/compost to the mix.

We were planning to head to Shady's later in the day to get our crawfish fix so Levi graciously offered to help us out to our work done a little faster, or should I say, Kristian offered Levi's help, ha!  Crawfish at Shady's goes quickly so we didn't want to miss out.  After we got the bags emptied, we went to work spreading it.  Even baby girl helped out.  She loves getting the garden ready for planting.  

The guys made a few more passes with the tiller to get all the manure worked in and we are set until March for planting.  Good thing because I haven't decided what all I'm planting this year. 

While at Lowes Saturday getting the "poop" as Bella says....I scored this African Daisy beauty in the clearance section for $8!!  I was super excited about that.  

I also picked up a new toy that we put to good use while tilling the garden up.  You would have thought that we had pulled out all the roots from the trees by now, but we still came across a few Saturday.  See those red beauties below for $29....I'm the proud owner of a set now.  They came handy for cutting the tree roots we found.

They also came in handy when cutting back my rose bushes. I have a rose bush that I transplanted from a friend's house. She was digging it up & throwing it out because she didn't like it.  I know, I know. I cut it back quite a bit when I transplanted it but left a couple thick dead limbs on it.  I was already shocking it enough so we left those for pruning off this year.  My new toy took them right off so easy. 

That was our Saturday and we did make it to Shady's for crawfish.  We didn't stay long though.  We ate, had a couple beers and were all ready to head home to sleep.  

Sunday I worked out in the yard some 3 hours more and man I felt it!  I dug up some roots in my side flower bed that I'm fairly certain was ginger root.  That stuff had taken over the bed and being right up against the house, I didn't like it.  I cleaned out all the leaves and weeds and trimmed back the Indian Hawthorn bushes that are on both ends of the flower bed.  I also cleaned up the bed around the pecan tree up front but I left the flower bed against the front of the house.  I was exhausted and sore so I opted to wait on that one because its in the worst shape.  I have a lot of digging up to do in that one as well.  That one is full of airplane or spider plants.  Its choking up everything else in there so I need to dig it out.  Maybe this weekend, we'll see how I feel. 

Friday night I started with a little cough in the evening. I didn't think anything of it because I felt fine Saturday morning.  Worked in the yard Saturday and Sunday and bam, it was back Sunday evening.  Monday morning I woke up feeling yucky with a gosh awful sore throat, and have felt that way all week, cough and all.  No fever, just yucky cough and my head feeling cloudy, for lack of a better description.  Needless to say I am looking forward to the weekend so I can sleep in a bit.  The kids will be at their dad's this weekend but home early Sunday.  

Y'all have a good one!

Monday, February 15, 2016

Number 44

So you may or may not know that I celebrated a birthday last week.  I have to say, it was a really good day. I had to go by daycare on my way to work to drop off ice cream for Bella's Valentine's party later in the day.  Ms. Marilyn, the daycare owner, was having a rough morning.  February 11th is the day her momma went to heaven.  Although it had been 16 years, its still very hard on her.  I understand that.  We talked for a little bit about how hard this week is on both of us and I shared my story with her about the message Jace sent me at the first of the year.  Y'all, this made her day.  She was so grateful for me that morning, and my story. She said, "God sent you to me this morning because you never come here in the morning.  He knew you were what I needed"  And once again, Jace reminded me and someone else that its okay to laugh.  Later in the day, I received these from Ms. Marilyn...

Beautiful flowers and a heart brooch with the message...
"Its Okay To Laugh, Happy Birthday"  

I can't explain how great it felt to be able to help someone else with my story. Pretty awesome.

I also received these from my sweet brother Tony....

I've never had an arrangement like this.  Very cool & pretty!

The plan was to have birthday dinner for Christopher and I at Giovanni's later that evening with the family.  My sister and her crew weren't able to make it because they had too many activities going on so it was Daddy, Lena, Tony, me and my children.  We couldn't get a table until 7:00 but Tony told me he was going early to have a beer at the bar.  "Come early and I'll buy you a birthday beer", he said. While I was changing and freshening myself up, I had Chris text him to find out how early he was going, etc.  Chris told me he was already there (it was 6:00) and he had made a friend.  Not surprising.  We both joked that it was probably someone he already knew.  We head up there, walk in and make our way back to the bar since our table wasn't ready and find my brother Bryan sitting there with Tony.  Surprise!!!  I was soooooo happy to see him.  He came down to have dinner with us.  While we were at the bar, I snapped this picture....

Even after we were seated at our table, the gifts kept coming.  I mean gosh, I'm so lucky to have family give me their lemons and straws from their  drinks.  I'm such a lucky girl.  :)

I must also show you what my sweet niece & Goddaughter Makenna, aka Kenna Bug, made for me...
Isn't this awesome?  I absolutely love it.  Some of my most favorite pictures of us together.  

I will end this post telling you that my daughter LOVES to tell people how old her mommy is, especially since I finally hit the number forty-four mark because she gets to imitate the Geico commercial with Ickey Woods.  Have y'all seen it?  If not, I've uploaded it below for your enjoyment....

Any and every time my child hears or gets the number forty-four, she will hollar, "Woo Hoo, forty-four ladies, that's me!  Get your cold cuts, get your cold cuts..." And so she was especially happy mommy's number is now 44. I am happy as well because its another year, another birthday.  I am healthy, I am happy and I am one blessed gal.  

Y'all have a good one!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


Christopher Michael,

You are seventeen today.  How did that happen?  I'm taken aback again and again every hour that I have a seventeen year old kid in my house.  That just sounds, I don't know....old.  Its weird and very hard thing for me to swallow.  You are a great kid.  A good kid.  I hear that all the time from parents, teachers, acquaintances..."he's such a good kid".  You are quiet like your momma but once you get to know someone, you show your funny and crazy side.  Like your debut to the world all those years ago, you still take your sweet time about everything.  You come around on your own time and no one else's.  Some days that drives me absolutely crazy, others I admire it and wish I could be more like you.  Up until Christmas, you were all about your truck and fixing it up however, since you bought your new kayak you're all about fixing it up and going fishing as much as possible.  I love that.  Seeing you find something you love makes your momma happy which is what I love watching you run in cross country and track.  I think that's what also keeps you hungry all the time because you continue to eat everything all the time.  You will have a full meal at supper time and within the hour, I hear your rummaging through the frig or pantry looking for something to eat. I don't know where you put it.  I'm going to sound like you are a baby highlighting your favorites but this is my blog so I'm going hit on them here anyway....beef jerky, honey buns, Whataburger, beef tips, chicken crescent rolls, cinnamon crescent rolls, Reese's, pizza, mac n cheese, cheeseburger hamburger helper, tacos and the list goes on but those are the most requested. For drinks you a variety kind of will try just about anything and get on kicks with certain things but you never deviate from yellow Gatorade, period.  Neither does your momma. Strawberry Lemonade, tea, DP, Coke, Sprite, Orange Fanta, IBC Root Beer and occasionally orange juice if I have it handy.  I've also seen you sneak a Capri Sun from your sister's lunch stash a few times as well.  As far as fashion, you are easy. You are a jeans and t-shirt kind of guy.  You do have your tastes of shirts....American Fighter, Salt Life or American Eagle.  If I deviate from that, its a Johnny Cash tee I've found or something with fish on it. Jeans are from Buckle now but thankfully I've talked you into the less expensive ones.  You are a non-Sperry's brand shoe wearing guy.  You have found a Margaritaville brand from Rack Room that suit you just fine.  If you're not wearing those, its Crocs or boots.  You do own flip flips but you would rather walk barefoot in the summer.  That is MY kid!!  You have my love of old country music but still listen to the new stuff too.  You have a lot of Berger in you but I see a lot of your dad come out in certain things.  Its a good mix.  I'm so very proud to call you my son and as I said in my FB post earlier today..."In a week that is full of so many emotions, this day is the best day.  This day is the day you made me a momma".  Oh...and you STILL call me MOMMY, and not just between us but in front of friends and family.  That is something I absolutely love and will never get tired of hearing. I love you too much Christopher Michael!  Happy 17th Birthday son...may this be an awesome year!!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

My Love

I'm trying to remember the message you sent me at the first of the year, "Its Okay to Laugh" but I'm having a hard time. This was the day our world was turned upside down. The horrible dream that was unfolding was becoming reality. There were no miracles, no script that could be rewritten to keep you with us. You were destined for Heaven, and there was nothing anyone could do. 

I broke down in the shower Saturday. Just hit me like wave and I was crying uncontrollably. I pulled myself together and no one knew. 

Yesterday, I took out the packet that the hospital gave us after you passed. It has a letter from the hospital, condolences from the staff, literature about grieving & coping with the death of a child, a locket of your hair that I cut and prints of your little hands and feet that I also helped with. I ran my hand across your little prints, closed my eyes and there you were. Every part of you that I spent memorizing in the hospital was there. It made me smile because in that same moment of seeing you, I remembered your sweet baby Jace smell. 

I will no doubt be a little quieter today as I remember the events that unfolded this day 13 years ago. They stay with me. As a momma you want to protect your children and do everything possible to keep them safe. I feel as though I failed you all those years ago and that is something I'm not sure I'll ever be able to let go of. I'm so sorry son. I'm probably more overprotective of your brother and sister because of it. I guess in a small way, this is your way of torturing your siblings. Ha! Even gone, you are finding ways into our lives. Keep it coming son. 

I love you & miss you so very much Jace Andrew. My heart will never be the same. 


Wednesday, February 3, 2016


Do certain smells bring back memories for you? Take you back to a much simpler time?  Or cause you to miss someone even more than you were already missing them?

Last night I was making spaghetti for supper.  I make the meat sauce just like momma made it.
Brown your hamburger meat (drain if needed), add Worcestershire, then chili powder and then sprinkle in flour before adding tomato sauce and water.  Let that simmer for a bit and you're done.  Sometimes I add in a little bit of jar spaghetti sauce but last night I did not.  The smell of the Worcestershire alone took me back to momma cooking supper in the kitchen growing up.  I smiled, and then I smiled again when I took a small spoon to taste the sauce.  It was very close to momma's.  Success.

When I make homemade donuts, I have the same reaction except this smell takes me back to Grandma Berger's house when we were little.  I should tell you now that the homemade donuts are not some fancy made from scratch family recipe.  They are canned biscuits, but they are fried up with tons of love and that's what makes them special and better than any bought donut anywhere.  Every single time I make these, a wave of memories come flooding back as soon as that first donut hits the oil.  I love memories like that.

When I close my eyes, I can still smell Jace.  Today it makes me smile.  Some days, the tears just fall from my eyes without warning.  Same when I can smell momma.  Both scents I love to get a whiff of every now and then.

A funny scent memory is not one I remember but one that I've heard my brother Tony describe. When they were little, apparently they went to Grandma & Grandpa's house quite a bit for supper or maybe lunch.  I may have gone too but I don't really have memories of doing that specifically.  Maybe we did and I just automatically associate those visits with the holidays.  Who knows.  Anyway, pulling into Grandma's, there is a long drive up to the house.  Not really that long but its a skip. ha!  You have to understand, going to Grandma's was awesome.  I always loved going, always. So imagine the excitement of going to Grandma's, pulling up and jumping out of the car to go greet them only to met by a wave of the most awful smell coming from the house and realizing you're not getting chicken noodle soup for supper but sausage and sauerkraut!!  "Noooooooooooooo!!!!!!!" Tony tells it so much better and still to this day hates sauerkraut, Bryan as well.  Cindy and I hate it just as much.  Ugh....nasty stuff.  And Daddy always loves to tell us when he's had some really good sauerkraut because he knows of our disdain for the stuff.  I just don't think I will every acquire a taste for it. No thank you.

Of course there are other smells that I just love that don't really bring back memories but make me smile.  Fresh cut grass, babies after a bath, caking baking in the oven, BBQ, coffee, a good-smelling rose, good-smelling cologne on a handsome guy, rain and a rainstorm coming.  I could keep going but those are a few smells that pull a grin out of me every time.

What are your favorite smells?

Monday, February 1, 2016

Keep Shining

I'm sitting at home this Monday morning anxiously waiting for 9:00. I get my eyes examined then and will finally get back into contacts. I may have mentioned my excitement about this before.  I am also sitting thinking about my total and utter disdain for lice. Words cannot adequately describe how I feel about it. We've had another round of these little monsters in our house and let me tell you, I was not a happy camper yesterday afternoon. One again I stripped everything, separated what I couldn't wash and did another treatment on Miss Bella. I feel for anyone who has to deal with this nuisance.

I'm also trying to get my head straight, and if I'm being honest, my heart. Without giving you the long story, something happened at work Friday afternoon and left me crushed. Something that was petty. I'm trying to look past it and move forward but it has been weighing on me over the weekend and I've been replaying events and thinking about how I could have handled things differently. I'm not sure I would have. I'm going to keep smiling  and keep shining. It's a new day and a new week.