Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

photo credit - Brittney Turner :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

My family Turkey Day

This past Saturday was my family turkey day.  We had it again at my cousin, Peggy's house.  Love her place.  The setting is just gorgeous and it made a great back drop for some family photos.  Of course, we would've taken them without the beautiful backdrop because that is a tradition that we do every year!  This year we had about 42 people total at our feast.  Below is just my Granny's group: (all we are missing is one cousin and my Aunt's husband)
This day made me realize how much has happened and changed in a year.  Last year, I didn't want to go, and I didn't want to talk to anybody.  We were at the ending of our infertility battle and depression had set in on both of us.  Honestly, our faith and our marriage were at an all-time low.  It was just an all around bad time for us.  Fast forward a year through many battles with depression and hormones and mood swings and struggles...I felt waaayyy more like myself than last year for sure!  I think we are slowly getting back to normal.  Thank you for your support and prayers to those that stuck by us during a tough time. :)  Tomorrow marks one year since we found out we couldn't have children of our own.  We needed to grieve and we did.  Now, it's time to pick ourselves up and what life has in store next! 
John 16:33 I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday

I've been on computer too much tonight shopping on Cyber Monday, so tune in tomorrow.  Go shop!  Amazon and Shutterfly were my friends tonight!  Woohoo!  Santa Claus is coming to town!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

5 days off = happy, happy, happy!

What to do with 5 days off?  First off, I brought zero work home to ensure I took 5 days off, because I needed it! :)  I managed to read two books (see post below) and I got some chores done.  A few yard chores since the weather was gorgeous!  As you can see from above, Bubba Bear's barricades have been removed and he immediately wanted in the pond!  But, too big!  heehee!  I win!
We also had a lot of play time in the yard.  The backyard is one of my favorite places to be. And, we never would have thought it based on her personality, but Stella has turned out to be the best big sister and her and Bubba Bear are constant side kicks!  He grabs her where ever he can when she is fetching her ball and she just lets him. 
 We considered Stella most when trying to select our new family member, but we thought Rex would be the one that would be big buddies with him/her.  He plays in spurts, but mainly he leaves that to Stella and saves his Bubba time for napping. ha!
 I also started on the leaves out front.  I got them into 3 huge piles and bagged 3 bags before I realized the job was too big for me alone to tackle and Kevin was busy cooking turkeys, so I let it sit for two days waiting for help.  Then, on Friday, I hear screams and giggles and wrestling in the front yard.  I look out to see this (below).  I got the giggles watching them play and body slam each other into the big piles.  There is a child buried under there that you can't even see!!  I took this from the window.  They didn't even know I was watching!!  And, the best part is we convinced them to bag the leaves for $2 a bag!  I didn't even have to finish the job! ha!
In other big news, you HAVE to watch the 15 second video below to appreciate this one!!  We literally have had to warm up the tv for about a year now. It would flash like in the video for recently up to 2 hours.  It was time for a new tv.  I honestly can't believe we let it go so long except that I don't watch much tv, and Kevin got to where he just left it on 24 hours so it wouldn't have to warm up.  We'd just mute it at night! ha!  Seriously, watch!
So we filled up the entertainment to the Big Bear can watch football in style with his new 47 inch tv!  And he thought he couldn't have a big screen and me be able to keep my entertainment center!  We pulled it off with barely an inch to spare.  It was a good black Friday for the Benson's!
More tomorrow....

James Patterson

#28 & #29

I finished two of James Patterson's books over the Thanksgiving break.  The only series of his that I am continuing to read.  I read The 11th Hour in the Women's Murder Club series and Merry Christmas Alex Cross in the Alex Cross series.  Here are my thoughts...take them for what they are worth.  I have always been a huge James Patterson fan.  However, he pushes out so many books a year that I can't keep up in reading them.  So, how is he writing them???  My husband says he is a book factory.  Once I narrowed the books down by him that I would continue to read and I branched out to more genre's and author's, I have found his books less exciting.  THEN, once I read these two back to back, the Alex Cross was written by him alone and it was predictable and average.  The Women's Murder Club was co-authored by someone and had much more depth to it and kept me engaged.  Hmmmm....just curious how the co-author thing works?  How much of it did he actually write?  In comparison, the co-authored one blew the Alex Cross one away.  Just my opinion.  Of course, if you are like me and have put years into reading these series, you can't stop now!  I did get the feeling that Alex Cross might be wrapping up in the near future.  He left that door wide open.  
Ok...I met my goal I set with my class of reading two books over the break.  Now, I want to read at least one more before the end of the year and reach my all time high of 30 books in one year!  Yippee!!!  I.heart.reading!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful hearts...

Bubba Bear is grateful for his family, grass to roll in, and momma being home all day!
 Stella is grateful for tennis balls, a game of fetch, and her new brother!
 Rex is grateful for sunshine, dirt piles and naps!
Nala is grateful for her mommy and all things NOT boxer! ha!

Big Bear and I are grateful for all our friends and family who continue to support us!!  We were seriously contemplating closing the business, and Kevin trying to find work at something else.  But, we have both been praying about it for a few months and with the support of our church, family, and loyal customers, he is going to stay open, and we are going to give it one more year.  Next step is setting the concessions trailer somewhere and selling food daily.  THANK you to all those who have helped us try to make a dream of Kevin's come true!!  This economy doesn't make it an easy choice at times, but I think the sacrifices we make around here are worth it to be able to do what we both love to do.  That alone brings a peace to the day.  
Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Prepare Yourself for CUTENESS!

I got my disc of pictures today from the photo shoot that Rex won for the photo contest I entered him in August.  There are more than this, but I limited myself for your sakes! ha!  Bonus was that Rex won the contest, but Brittney (who is amazing by the way) took pics of all the dogs and a few of Nala girl.  A guaranteed way to make sure I bought the disc! ha!  We won the free photo session and a free 8x10, but how could I pick just ONE?  :)  I'll link Brittney's site at the bottom if you are interested in kid or pet photos.  Enjoy!!

 Can you believe how much Bubba Bear has grown in such a short time? :(

I never think Rex looks anything like Jax...except in this picture! wow!

Love! :) if you are interested in pictures for your family.  She is local and in Georgia. :)

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Let the Holiday's begin!!

 This weekend was Kevin's family's Thanksgiving.  We are super blessed that our family traditions just happen to fall on different weekend's, so we don't have to argue or figure out which family to visit.  Kevin sure ends up doing a lot of cooking at both too! haha!  This year for his family gathering, we had brisket, pulled pork and smoked turkey.  Usually his family has a fish fry.  This was much easier!  Last year was like working a catering all day!  
Now, I don't have many pictures (3 to be exact) from this weekend!  This is family that we only see once a year, and not my family, so I'm not comfortable walking around snapping pictures.  But it would be nice to get some family photos of everyone one year.  Then, I could quiz myself on names before the next year! ha!
Kevin's mom has two stray cats she is feeding and loving and I may have "snuck" them an extra meal.  It is Thanksgiving after all!  Aren't they pretty?

This one reminds me of first cat I ever loved, Speedy.
Kevin before company arrived - trying to cook with both his sister and Mom telling him what to do.  It was funny to watch all the chiefs in the kitchen!! :)  (And, stay OUT! ha!)
 Of course, I had to give you a shot of the cutest puppy ever!  He was glad we were back home from our quick trip, but I think he loves our house sitter as much as the other two!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wordless Wednesday (sort of)

As you can hear, Big Bear takes the pre-game festivities very seriously! ha!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Divergent by Veronica Roth


Just finished it last night and am pretty sure I am going to go for it and read the trilogy.  The second is already out, but I'll have to wait on the third.  I really liked the book.  I only hesitate because my luck with trilogies has been that the first book is always the best of the 3!!!  If you have a teenager that loves to read or you don't care if you read teenage, young adult or adult books, this is worth the time.  If you liked The Hunger Games or The Giver, you would probably enjoy it.  If you go for realistic fiction only, not the book for you.

Here's a brief summary from amazon:
In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.
Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series—dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance.

Monday, November 12, 2012


Finding something to be thankful for each day has really helped boost my mood!  Just makes me appreciate the little things that really are most important anyway.
I'm thankful that Big Bear has friends from high school that he still goes camping with twice a year.  (and that fell this past weekend! whoop!)  Score a weekend to myself!!  I'm thankful I was able to take the afternoon off on Thursday (meetings) and clean house.  I mean, SCRUB!!  My house hasn't been this clean in forever!!!  And, I got a whole weekend to enjoy it! It was awesome!!  Of course, I missed my Big Bear by Sunday afternoon.  :)  But, I do love piling all the furkids in the bed at night and sleeping.  Even Nala girl slept with us all! Bliss for me!  
I'm thankful for a reimbursement check that I've been waiting on coming in on Friday and allowing me to have a little fun and start Christmas shopping!!!  
I'm thankful that I have an opportunity to earn extra money after school by doing something I love - working with kids!!  I get to tutor my own students two days a week and earn some extra money.  That takes the stress off of Christmas AND I get to save for some new carpet this summer!  We won't talk about how badly we need new carpet.  Might as well wait until Bubba Bear is a year old is my answer anyway!!
I'm thankful for the smell of homemade chili that is coming from the kitchen...oh yum!  Food is calling...

Thursday, November 8, 2012

It's Bubba Bear!

It's that time again...growth chart time!  Above is right now...he will be 20 weeks old on Saturday.  Growing like a weed!!  Look at that face!!
Below is just one month ago! (October)
 And a month before that: (September)
 And August when we brought him home!!  Oh MY the CuTeNeSs!!!!
Tonight we started a new obedience school because the one we were going to was outside and it is getting cold and dark too early.  So, we are back at the school where Rex and Stella went (inside and half the cost).  But, with a different instructor.  I didn't have a good first impression.  I'm going to have Kevin go thru the next class next week with him and get his opinion.  (He had a catering tonight. yay!)  Hoping I was just having a hormonal night and I will end up liking the trainer.  Stay tuned....LOL!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

In a nutshell...

What's happening around here?
*We had record sales in the month of September followed by a record low in October.  So goes the story of owning your own business.  Basically, here at the holidays, it will take a really, really good month to recover or we will spend the next few months recovering.  Good times!  But as my BFF pointed out this weekend, we can be grumpy about it everyday or we can just not think about it.  Being grumpy about it doesn't suddenly produce money, so I am going to TRY to follow in the BFF's footsteps and just let it go.  God always provides what we need and takes care of us. :)
*(This may be TMI - especially if you aren't female!!)  But, I think I finally got somewhere with my doctor and they have called me in a different birth control.  The hormones out of whack, severe mood swings, depression and migraines are all side effects of the pill they put me on.  Of course, I have to wait two weeks to start the new ones, but hopefully, they will be better and I will feel like a normal human being again sometime soon.  Who knew that the journey of trying to have kids could throw so many things off balance and for so long???  I'm just ready for normal...whatever that is!  I feel like I've lost myself a little in all this and need to figure out what the new "normal" even is!
*The two above are pretty much our life for the past month and even more.  That and puppy dog wiggles and adjusting to a new school/job. 
*Bubba Bear is getting HUGE and starts a new obedience school on Thursday night for the next 8 weeks.  FUN!
*Big Bear is gearing up to cook turkeys!!  Hopefully lots of them!!
*We do ask for prayers as we both seek guidance in what our path should be...

Sunday, November 4, 2012


We splurged and spent money we certainly don't have to take an overnight trip to Fayetteville and see a Hog game and get some fresh perspective and alone time together.  It was worth it!!  We got up early Saturday and left the furkids with our most awesome house sitter (our first time to leave Bubba Bear and he did good! yay Bubba!).  The game was at 11:15 am, so we went straight to the stadium.  A friend in our Sunday School class has these AWESOME seats AND a parking pass.  We practically parked at the stadium and then had seats on the 45 yard line behind the players only 6 rows up.  AMAZING experience!!  Kevin went last year and said you could hear Patrino yelling at the players and exactly what he was saying.  Needless to say, this year, there wasn't much coaching going on...but yay for the win!!!
I may have a crush on Tyler Wilson...maybe! ha!  I mean, our seats were so close, he was just right there all day! 

 Love us some Hogs!  The game was great!!  Even better that we won, but I love a game that is close.  My throat hurt from yelling and screaming so much.  I was even giving high-fives to strangers. ha!
 After the game, we went to one of Kevin's Kappa Sigma brother's restaurants in town for a snack and then hit the road sightseeing around Fayetteville and revisiting old college memories.  So, we had some new (Foghorn's Wings) and I can recommend it.  And, some kind of new, Catfish Hole...only the BEST hushpuppies EVER.  And, some old, with Jose's for lunch today with my BFF and her family.  I mean, we do love to eat!
 Sightseeing on Mt. Sequoyah in Fayetteville...looking over the city.
 Taking the scenic route home with the Pig Trail in fall...gorgeous views today.  Pictures can't possibly do it justice.
All in all, successful quality time with the Big Bear.  Now, we are refreshed and ready for the Holiday season.