Thursday, December 30, 2010

Our big Christmas gift!

Taadaa! We put all our Christmas money together from both our parents and Kevin's sister and got a new couch and ottoman!! The ottoman is our favorite!! It has the couch colors and our wall colors in it. Our old couch had a busted spring and every time you sat down, it made a squeaking noise, plus, it was pretty shot otherwise. We are trying to keep the dogs off all furniture except the ottoman. I'll keep you posted on that....ha...and right now, all furniture is covered in blankets because it is muddy outside and we don't want those paw prints on our the new stuff. THANK YOU MOM, DAD, MOMMA GAYLE, POP, JOHN AND RHONDA!!!!
We LOVE it!!

Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks

*19

A good book and a good break from my regular murder mysteries, but also predictable and very similar to that Julia Roberts movie years ago when she escaped from the abusive husband and he tracked her down later. Basically the same story. But I enjoyed it.

Now, I have officially read the same number of books I did last year. Taking a break from reading to do some scrappin' for a few days! :)

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

All about the pets...

Around here, all the pets have stockings and get Christmas presents. Sadly, Kevin and I had to borrow their stockings for our stocking stuffers! ha! And, this year, the pups got new beds...or at least the pups were supposed to get new beds. But after trying them both out, Simba decided this one would do as HIS new bed! So, Rex claimed this one!
and Stella wondered where hers was!?!
Eventually, Simba was kind enough to share with her...Tomorrow...pics of OUR big Christmas gifts from both of our parents & Rhonda and John!!! Exciting stuff what Christmas money can do! :)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

She's Baaacck!

Meatzilla I has finally been repaired and is back and running. I am overjoyed! (That's sarcasm by the way.) My husband, on the other hand, really is overjoyed. I got to drive her to our parking spot that holds all our toys and he excitedly told me to feel the power while I drove her. Jeez! Anyway...we are keeping her (after $800 in a new transmission) and letting her stay at the parking spot with the concessions trailer. Meatzilla I will be used to haul the concessions trailer. And, Big Bear will drive Meatzilla II around town for caterings. Yep, we are the proud owners of two '89 suburbans and still my Jeep isn't back home. :(

The Confession by John Grisham

*18

I just finished this book a few days ago - only takes breaks for Christmas celebrations with family. It is one of the best books I have read in a long time. Seems like a lot of my favorite authors are becoming hit and miss...but this book held my attention right from the beginning. If you are a Grisham fan, don't skip it! :)

If interested here is the summary from jgrisham.com :

An innocent man is about to be executed.

Only a guilty man can save him.

For every innocent man sent to prison, there is a guilty one left on the outside. He doesn’t understand how the police and prosecutors got the wrong man, and he certainly doesn’t care. He just can’t believe his good luck. Time passes and he realizes that the mistake will not be corrected: the authorities believe in their case and are determined to get a conviction. He may even watch the trial of the person wrongly accused of his crime. He is relieved when the verdict is guilty. He laughs when the police and prosecutors congratulate themselves. He is content to allow an innocent person to go to prison, to serve hard time, even to be executed.

Travis Boyette is such a man. In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, he abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched in amazement as police and prosecutors arrested and convicted Donté Drumm, a local football star, and marched him off to death row.

Now nine years have passed. Travis has just been paroled in Kansas for a different crime; Donté is four days away from his execution. Travis suffers from an inoperable brain tumor. For the first time in his miserable life, he decides to do what’s right and confess.

But how can a guilty man convince lawyers, judges, and politicians that they’re about to execute an innocent man?

Monday, December 27, 2010

Rewind...Christmas Day

Christmas morning was stocking stuffers here at the house...love filling Kevin's stocking every year and love seeing what treasures he found me! :) This year, I got him a vintage Razorback license plate for his vintage vehicles! And, I found him a vintage Razorback patch. Gotta love ebay! I think his otter box for his iphone was his favorite among all the goodies. I got some Razorback earrings (see a theme here?), a cool new T-shirt, notepads, two AWESOME CD's (Chris Tomlin and Mercy Me), and then...TaMolly's gift cards!! Big Bear ROCKS! Then, it was off to Mom & Dad's... Yep, a country Christmas complete with rifles and pistols after opening gifts!
My Mom and Carly after presents were all opened...she is so lucky I didn't sneak Carly home. That pup is precious!
I had a blanket made for Autumn, mom & Dad, & Bubby & Valerie for Christmas of Autumn bareback on her horse. :)For us, Christmas revolves around my gorgeous niece and has since she was a baby. She is the absolute center of my parents and my Bubby's world. She's pretty special!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Rewind...Christmas Eve

We spend Christmas Eve with Kevin's family, Christmas morning at home with the furkids, and Christmas afternoon with my family. So, let's start with Christmas Eve...only bummer was Ethan (the oldest nephew) was sick. :( We had some really good food with John cooking us all yummy steaks and followed up with some yummy dessert!
I was impressed that John let Strut inside - the cat that used to be a stray but has clearly found his home! ha!
The pumpkin cheesecake was the BEST! oh wow - yummy! I love that the Benson's love their desserts!
Pretty sure from the reaction they liked their scrapbooks I made them of our family Florida trip this summer. Yay! :)
Trying to get family photos! Any cooperation?
A good Christmas Eve...then we got home and our pups had ended their good streak of being good while out unattended. They tore up one of their new dog beds they had gotten for Christmas. Shame! Shame! So sad to get spankings on Christmas Eve! ha

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Again?!?

So...today was more organizing and cleaning out before my doctor appointment. And, of course he removed yet another suspicious spot. We are up to 16 now!!! CrAzY! Stay out of the sun people! Use your sunscreen! Every freckle, sun spot and mole I have are from the stinkin' sun and my younger stupid days of lathering up in baby oil and baking. Luckily, I didn't lay in tanning beds a lot, but I did some in college. I know that didn't help either. I will get the results on this one next week, but I am not worried. This doctor makes me see him almost every 3 months and keeps a close eye on everything. Of course, he also says I am skin cancer waiting to happen...that isn't exactly comforting.
And, tomorrow, I have my follow-up appointment from my surgery.
This post makes me feel old. LOL! Too many doctor appointments!

Monday, December 20, 2010

First official day of vacation...

...and it was well spent! I started at the eye doctor and have fresh contacts and have gone a little blinder. Wow! Then, it was off to lunch with some friends/coworkers. I love days when "lunch dates" last 4 or 5 hours. Good girl talk days!
Somehow, I came home wired and got productive. I have decided each day of break, I am taking a different room and cleaning and organizing AND cleaning out. Tonight was the master bedroom. I have another box for Goodwill and have moved the two huge dog crates out of the bedroom! Finally!! Those crates take up alot of room and are an eye sore! Our pups are now moving to "big dog beds" and sleeping in the floor in dog beds. We are on day 3 of not sleeping in crates. Yay!
Now, tomorrow, I must wrap presents!!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

First Christmas Gathering of 2010

My Bubby's family My mom, me and Valerie

This weekend was Christmas at Granny's...to NE Arkansas we went. After a crazy busy week, we rushed to get out the door on Friday. Rushed to the point that Kevin even forgot to pack any pants! ha! But, we loaded up the pups and stayed with Kevin's parents all weekend. Then, we had Christmas at my Granny's on Saturday. I really love that our families are from the same area and have known each other their whole lives. I mean, Kevin's granny and my great-grandma used to pick cotton together when they were young. How cool is that? :)
Anyway, here are the kids waiting on their presents...the "kids" are growing up FAST! Maybe someone in the family will have a little one soon and bring some youth back! ha! :) Now, to smoke turkeys and hams for folks for Christmas...then more celebrating with family.
Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Where have I been?

Maybe this will help explain this week:

To the tune of “Walkin’ in a Winter Wonderland”…

Children scream, they won’t listen
When they go, we won’t miss ‘em
In all of this pain, we try to stay sane,
Workin’ in an elementary school.

Christmas comes, they’re excited
Though our nerves, they’ve ignited
They’re off of the walls, they run in the halls
Workin’ in an elementary school

In the lunchroom we can hear them yellin’
And we know that they are really wound
Someone hits, the other says “I’m tellin’”
And that is when our heads begin to pound

Pretty soon we’ll be restin’, cause our nerves they’ve been testin’
We’re happy it’s clear
It comes once a year
Christmas in an elementary school!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Dear Santa,

They say for all who believe, Santa still comes. Well, Santa, I believe! And, just so you know what I really, really want for Christmas, I'll include a picture for you. I know it won't fit on the sleigh, but I'm sure one of your elves wouldn't mind delivering. You can even pick the color. My only request is heated seats. I loooovvvee heated seats and even use them in summer, so they won't go to waste. I've been really good this year Santa and if you bring me a Yukon, I promise to take good care of it. :) Or, you could just bring me my Jeep back all fixed, because I really miss it! :(

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Easy as 1,2,3

Tree going up made easy...leave everything on it the year before, wrap it in heavy plastic and store in the garage. Someday, I hope to have one of those big attic spaces that I can just walk it into. :) Our tree is small and perfect for our living room. I used to have a big tree but it swallowed the room.It's easy. 1) Bring tree in from garage 2) uncover 3) Fluff it up and plug in
Tree is ready in less than 15 minutes. Unfortunately, our tree isn't photogenic. It is really much prettier in person. Guess you'll just have to come see it to appreciate it! :)
Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Here is what I know:

Short version - minus all the medical jargon:
*Doctor took more than she originally thought she would, so she was able to get it all.
*She even went ahead and got a few more areas before they could turn into anything.
*Getting my blood drawn was NO fun.
*The IV wasn't as bad as I anticipated.
*Apparently, I am a comedian on "happy juice".
*Everything was caught early, so NO CANCER!
*I can't thank everyone enough for the prayers, the goodies, the food, and the help!!
*I am home, resting lots and just a little uncomfortable, but full of praise for Jesus! :)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Prayers

It's here...tomorrow is surgery day. I've been a little nervous today - not going to lie. I had to send a "pray for me" email out to my prayer groups so I could pull it together to get through the day. You know, it takes A LOT of work for a teacher to be out for 2 days...boy howdy! It's so much easier to just go to work!
The support has just been overwhelming...I feel loved to say the least! People bringing us food, bringing me get well baskets with Dr. Pepper :-), praying for us, sitting with us, and helping me get all my stuff done. I love you all!
I'll be back soon...Kevin should update facebook or through some emails. I am hoping to sleep tomorrow and be back in the race Friday...wishful thinking or answered prayer? :)
Pray for our peace of mind, for me not to be scared, and for the doctor to get all of it this first time. It goes without saying to ask that it not be cancer.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Some good news!

My Monday morning started off a little rough...another broken down car on the way to work (my Mom's Envoy that I'm driving til the Jeep is fixed)...turned out to be just a dead battery and Wal-Mart had me back up and going in under 20 minutes. And the battery was free! Bonus! I almost let it get me down when I first pulled over...like really, this is happening again? But, a little prayer and a phone call to my brother and I had my chin back up.
Now, after that start, I ended the day on a high note! You know, the Benson's were in need of some good news...so, what is it? I was voted teacher of the year for my school!! What an honor!! I mean, if I could explain the level of teachers I work with everyday, you would know that I feel incredibly humbled to be honored at this school! The women I work with are all top-notch teachers, so for them to vote for me makes me feel really, really good! I am pretty sure my mouth dropped open when my principal announced it! I love my job! What a blessing in itself to be able to say that! :) Oh, and I asked if this honor came with a new car, but no such luck! ha!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Christmas is in the air...

My Christmas cards are ready to mail! yay! Christmas cards and driving around looking at Christmas lights are two of my favorite things this time of year.


I'm almost done shopping and now I've just got to get my tree up. I doubt I get everything up this year. Too much to do before Thursday's surgery.
Got to get off here and get busy..."Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree..."

Wonder what Santa is bringing me this year? :)