Wednesday, December 31, 2008

So Long, 2008!

WOW! In approximately 14.5 hours, we'll say goodbye to yet another year -- 2008! I have to admit I am really glad to say goodbye to this year. It's been a rough one; a stressful one; emotional one -- etc., etc., etc. We had some GREAT times -- getting used to the newest "addition" to our family, Zach's puppy, Freedom; our trip to Germany to meet Wes for his 2-week R&R in June/July; Wes' safe return from Afghanistan in October; our quick trip to Disney in December to celebrate said return; and, of course, spending Christmas together and starting our new Christmas tradition of staying home instead of traveling.

We also had some rough times -- dealing with Wes' deployment to Afghanistan for ten months of 2008 (& the last three of 2007); but, of course, the hardest was having to say goodbye to our beloved Beamer on November 21st. (Sending Angel kisses your way, "Fluffer").

I am optimistic that 2009 has nothing but WONDERFUL things planned for us and that we'll "Shine in 2009." I have several goals set out for 2009, and I hope to achieve at least half of them.

Our plans tonight are plain and simple...stay home, grill some chicken kabobs, have some chips/dips and even some bubbly when the clock strikes midnight (assuming we're still awake...LOL).

So, to all of my blog readers...Happy New Year and let's all "Shine in 2009."

What are your plans and thoughts as we say goodbye to 2008 and hello to 2009? I'd LOVE to hear from you!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Marley & Me

So, we went to see Marley & Me on Sunday night. I had no idea what the whole movie/story was about -- except for an owner with a 'rambunctious' yellow lab. It was cute...makes Freedom look like a saint. HOWEVER, the three of us were not prepared for the ending. It was soooo sad, but I'm sure it was mainly because it's only been a little over two months since we had to let Beamer go. I'm not sure how I managed to not "burst out" into tears...somehow I managed to keep as quiet as possible. I'm thinking, though, that it was probably a good thing to go see the movie and get more of my emotions out. After all, I am one that holds my emotions in instead of expressing them.

What do you think?

Friday, December 19, 2008

Finally...we have a DECORATED Christmas Tree

Well, we finally brought our tree in from its bucket of water on the patio and got it decorated. I think it's really pretty. Just don't come look at it from the side because the trunk is crooked and leans to the front. :) Zach picked out the tree, and I think he did good. My mom agrees and hopes he got paid well. I told her he did...he got to go to Disney World. LOL are a couple pics of it.

Here you see Freedom, Zach's Golden Retriever, stretched out. Keeping her away from the tree will be a chore...she LOVES to chew on things...ARRRGGGGH!!!
The red Mickey ornament was from our first trip to Disney in 2005, which we took to celebrate Wes' return from a year in Iraq. HOWEVER, it's not the original one. The original one got broken last year as Zach & I were decorating our tree. I was crushed; broke down. You see, Wes had just left (in October) for Afghanistan; and Zach & I were really having a difficult time with this deployment. I have a WONDERFUL friend, Karen, who frequents Disney "on occasion" ;) and I told her what happened. She, too, was sad. Well, I knew she was going back to Disney that next week. I almost didn't ask, but then I did...I asked if she would mind picking up a replacement for me and I'd pay her back. She said she'd be glad to and that she had actually considered that, but didn't want to butt in (you gotta butt in, Karen...I count on it! LOL).
So, she goes to Days of Disney Christmas to get a replacement. Well, they didn't have any of the red Mickey ornament balls. She starts to get upset and the artist says to her, "tell me what's going on." Karen tells her. Lil, the artist, says, "We'll make this right. Wait here." She went to get the manager, Yvette. Karen tells Yvette the story. Yvette tells her that they're expecting more of the red Mickey ornaments in on such-such day. We'll take care of it. She then asked what my son's name was. Karen told her. Yvette said they would do something special for him. Karen asked how much she owed...Yvette said..."It's on Disney. It's our way of thanking him for his service and the family for their sacrifice." Karen was touched (as was I when she told me the story). So, the blue Mickey below, is Zach's. It has his name on the back of it, too. The green one is the one we got this year for our "Return to Disney" after Wes' return from Afghanistan.
We stopped by Disney's Days of Christmas to express our thanks for such a wonderful gesture; but Yvette was no longer there. I believe she's been transferred, and I was not able to track down Lil; but I did leave a note for all that worked there JUST IN CASE any of them remembered the story and to let them know how much it touched mine & Zach's hearts for what they did. I still get emotional just thinking about it.
Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Whirlwind Weekend at Disney

We returned from Disney last night. We hated to leave such a Magical place! The Wilderness Lodge is GORGEOUS and we will be staying there again in the future. (Doesn't take long to get spoiled! LOL)
I absolutely LOVE this pic I got of Wes & Zach...I must've REALLY had steady arms with the flash off!! LOL

We saw Santa and told him everything we wanted for Christmas -- well, Zach did...LOL. I hope to get more pics uploaded in the next couple of days...or so...for now, I must get back to work.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

T-1 Day to Disney!!

We are SOOOOO excited that TOMORROW we FINALLY leave for Disney World to see THE MOUSE!!!! It will be such a FUN-FILLED weekend! I have so much to do to get ready for our long weekend, too. The best part -- we get to go to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party on Friday night after Magic Kingdom closes. I hear it's AWESOME!!!! We'll have breakfast w/Mickey and Friends at Chef Mickey's; and then Saturday night we'll have dinner at The Brown Derby and go see Fantasmic afterwards.

I probably won't get to check in tomorrow before we leave. So, I'll catch up with everyone when we return!!!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


So, most of you know that for Christmas last year, we got Zach a puppy -- Golden Retriever -- to help him cope with Wes' deployment to Afghanistan last year. She is SUCH a beautiful pup -- and a bit more WILD than what Beamer was when he was her age. So, I'm attaching a picture of her that was taken on Turkey Day. She LOVES to pose. Don't let her sweet, innocent face fool you...she can be very sneaky. :)

She was born on October 26, 2007 and is one year old. Zach adores her, and she definitely helped Zach with the deployment. I may have gone a bit more insane, but she was worth it.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Time to Decorate!

Well, another month has come and gone. Can you believe that Christmas is just a few weeks away?! YIKES!

Do you have your Christmas tree & decorations up yet? We don't. We're planning on going to cut our tree down this Saturday and hopefully start decorating soon. I'm not sure when we'll decorate the tree. We leave for DISNEY on the 11th and won't be back until the 14th.

We are so looking forward to going to Disney. We're staying at The Wilderness Lodge. Looks WONDERFUL. We'll be attending Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party on Friday night. On Saturday morning, we'll be having breakfast w/Mickey & Friends at Chef Mickey's (the BEST place for character meal); and then on Saturday evening, we're having dinner at The Brown Derby and then after that we get to go see Fantasmic -- which is AWESOME!!!! In between those events, we'll play it by "ear". ;)

So, how are you doing w/your Christmas preparations?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Faithful Companion

On Thursday, November 20th at approximately 5:15 p.m., Wes, Zach & I said goodbye to our faithful companion, Boyer's Copper Shadow (call name, "Beamer"). Beamer was the best dog we could ever ask for. He got Zach & me through two of Wes' deployments to the Middle East. When you were sad, he'd come over to you and nudge you and look up at you as if to say, "I'm'll be okay." Beamer was 13.5 years old -- older than the average Golden Retriever.

Beamer had slowly deteriorated. He lost weight, couldn't see and couldn't hear. I honestly believe he held on until his "dad" returned home. We made the decision to not be selfish and let him go to sleep one last time and head to his new Home -- Rainbow Bridge. We know now that he's up there romping around like a young pup again -- eyesight and hearing restored. It doesn't make us miss him any less, but he was ready. It was the hardest thing we've ever had to do, but he was ready; and it was time.

I am thankful to have had such a WONDERFUL four-legged companion in my life. He'll never be forgotten.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


WOW! Can you believe that it's already NOVEMBER?!? Where has this year gone? Although, I am glad that it's flown by because Wes has returned from his tour in Afghanistan. It was a lonnnngggg year. He left October 24, 2007 and returned on October 24, 2008. Both Zach & I are so glad to have him home.

This past weekend I attended CTMH Regional Celebration in San Antonio. I had SOOOO much fun! We received one of the new paper packs and stamp set from the upcoming Spring 2009 Catalog and made a layout and some other items with it. I met a lot of really nice consultants. I can't wait until I can attend another event like this. I'm hoping maybe Minneapolis next October. :)

Thanksgiving is JUST around the corner. We'll be hosting at our house with LOTS of family. I'm looking forward to it. Then, after that is CHRISTMAS!!! We'll be having a quiet one with just the three of us. We're really looking forward to that, too. Before that, though, we get to go spend a long weekend with -- MICKEY!!!!! That's going to be SOOOO much fun!!!!

What are your plans for the holidays?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Getting Back To Normal

I think some things are starting to get back to normal around here -- especially my commute to/from work to downtown Houston. There are now only THREE traffic lights that are flashing red. However, it's still a little messed up in trying to get into our parking garage.

Fall is in the air -- could you feel it? smell it? taste it? I LOVE this time of year. I only wish we had the GORGEOUS fall foliage to go along with it. One of my [many] dream vacations is to tour the New England states during the fall season to take in all its beauty. Someday.

What is YOUR favorite time of year??

Friday, September 26, 2008


Well, after a 10-day hiatus, compliments of Hurricane Ike, Pearland ISD is back in school today. They got power restored to the last schools yesterday. I have heard that they will apply for the waiver to not have to make up the days lost and that it should be granted considering we're in a "Disaster Area" zone. So, we'll see.

This has been the looonnngest week. Traffic is horrible; traffic lights are either not lit or just flashing red. Have heard that it could be as late as November before all of them are back online, again, compliments of Hurricane Ike.

Weekend plans? Zach has first soccer practice/game tomorrow; and then I am hoping to do some scrappin' & relaxin'. What are your plans for the weekend? It's supposed to be gorgeous, too.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

It's Official -- I'm Bloggin'!!

With the help of a friend -- thanks, Christa -- I've taken the plunge and have created my own blog! Be patient and bear with me as this is all new to me. :)

I'm not sure how good I'll be at posting in the beginning as I'm sure I'll still be playing with it some more -- and probably bugging Christa w/more questions. :)