Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Today is Halloween. It's on a Sunday. I guess Halloween has fallen on a Sunday during my lifetime but I don't remember it. I was hoping Jon would blog a list of possible Sunday sermon topics around Halloween but he disappointingly didn't.

We're not at church today. Chris is working and my upper lip has broken out in a joyous display of blisters. Lovely. I'm curious if anyone dressed up? Adults, probably not. Kids? Possibly.

I grew up in a home that didn't 'celebrate' halloween. We never went trick-or-treating instead getting to go to the movies. A rare treat! I did, however, get to dress up for school. Never as anything scary like a witch or a goblin. Just happy, cute costumes. A valley girl, a California Raisen, an old lady, an Ace of Spades.

Since Halloween wasn't a holiday in our house I was shocked by my Mother's reaction to a statement I made one night in our kitchen.

I was often holier than thou. Not something I'm proud of but I know I had my share of judgemental thoughts and words toward those less spiritual. It was in this spiritual (overly so) attitude that I declared to my Mom and sister the night before Halloween that, "I hate Halloween. It's the devil's day." Instead of my Mom declaring this fact along with me and insisting that we should pray for those celebrating this pagan holiday she totally shocked me.

Pounding the kitchen counter she firmly stated, "I rebuke that in the name of Jesus. THIS is the day the LORD has made. I will rejoice and be GLAD in it."

I was embarrassed. I made my statement knowing she would whole-heartedly agree with me but instead she convicted me. It IS the Lord's day. Everyday is the Lord's day and we shouldn't give any acknowledgement to anything or anyone declaring otherwise.

We don't celebrate Halloween in our home now. We participate. The girls dress-up, we go to carnivals and tonight we're trick-or-treating. We're not celebrating. We're participating.

DISCLAIMER: I know this comes across that my Mom and our home was uber-spiritual. Where my Mom is a Christian and a spiritual mentor in my life she most certainly isn't uber-spiritual in the weird tamborine shaking snake charming kind of way. She never had rebuked anything I said before. This is why, now, we laugh at this event in our life. It was meaningful and a life-lesson based on biblical principals. BUT it is funny! And we laugh about it every year and Mom blushes and laughs too! So today when Mom comes over for a haircut I'll answer the door and proclaim, "This is the day the Lord has made." She'll laugh and roll her eyes and then she'll kill me for posting this on my blog. Love you, Mom.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


Jencee: Is it time to go yet?

Me: No - we aren't leaving 'til 7 and it's only 3. So we have 4 hours before we can go.

Jencee: 3? That's like me!! And I'm almost 4...

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Change of A Dress

I once received a card from a friend that had a clothes-line on the front with a variety of dresses hanging from it. The inside of the card announced her new address. She'd moved.

I just realized that I never told the blog world that we moved, AGAIN! I was just re-reading my New Year's 2010 post. I focused alot on my new home in Levelland. We'd moved in. Painted, carpeted, installed a gas log etc. I was so proud of my home. And proud that it felt like HOME for my little family.

Fast forward to May 2010. We moved again! To Odessa, Texas. Before Levelland we lived in Midland for 8 years but Chris mostly worked in Odessa. We moved to LLand for a great job opportunity with a bank we had been doing business with for a few years. After being there for 9 months Aim Bank decided to open a Loan Production Office in Odessa and asked Chris to run it. Soooo - here we are! We moved May 18. Our house in Levelland is STILL for sale ;( so pray it sells soon!

Our new house is soooo lovely! I L-O-V-E love it! We don't have any major projects - like carpet or knocking down walls. Just paint here and there. I hope to post pics of all the rooms as we improve! And it too feels like HOME. Like it's mine! And it feels permanent. My sister, Jennie, was recently here for a visit and as I was giving her a tour of our new home she said, "This is YOUR house. You realize that, right?" She new that it was a perfect fit for us!

Anyway, Odessa has been so good for us! We swam all Summer - when we were home! We've made lots of new friends and been able to catch up with some old ones. We really like being back!

More to come!

Monday, August 23, 2010


I bought some pillows one day last week for my living room. I like them. They're not perfect but they basically with go with my stuff and they're bright and fun.

Since they aren't perfect I decided to go back to Target today to see if there was anything else that would work better.

I found something better alright. My pillows on clearance. At lease $5 off the price I paid.

I know at GAP that if you buy something and it then goes on sale within like 5-7 days then you can take in your receipt and get the credit back. I asked if they would offer me the same service.

Of course not.

But I was told that if I returned the original pillows that I would get full price back and then should just purchase the pillows on clearance.

I had a better idea. I had my original receipt in my purse so I thought I'd purchase the pillows on clearance and then go directly to the service counter and use the clearance pillows with the original receipt to return them.

It didn't work.


So, now I have two sets of pillows and will have to trek back to Target tomorrow to return the original set. Since they are light in color I haven't let the kids touch them so they ARE unused. BUT, I did Scotch Guard them already! Shhhhh. We'll just look at it like I'm doing a service for the next customer! Right?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Summer's Over

I remember always being so sad that Summer was coming to an end and the school year was starting. Of course up until about my Sophomore year in high school I couldn't wait for school to start. But once I was 15ish the end of Summer was depressing.

Especially in my adulthood...there was no more pretending I was a kid. With adulthood comes too much responsibility to waste the Summer days away.

I never felt like I sucked every ounce out of June, July and August. I felt like I needed more time by the pool. More time on fun vacations. More time sleeping late, reading books, playing outside, spending time with family and friends.

How do I feel with this Summer coming to a close? Good, actually. We played at the pool almost every chance we got. We got to go as a family to a friends' ranch for a long weekend and also to Ruidoso without the kids. I've read several good books and Chris has let me sleep late a few times. We've gotten to see both sides of our families at a wedding, an anniversary party and a "photo shoot". And finally, being in a new town we've made new friends and gotten to catch up with some old friends too.

Sounds like a pretty good Summer to me. How was yours?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Sweetest Thing

It's been one of those days. Two days actually. Yesterday Marlee was fussy and clingy and I couldn't pacify her. Today, Jencee threw a dozen fits.

I've typed and re-typed the sequence of events from today and all that happened with my ever fragile firstborn. The fits aren't important. What's important is that I didn't manage her or myself well.

Today, I roared at my kid. "Stoooooop Crying!!!" She was upset about wearing shoes. I'd explained myself over and over and tried to reason with her. "We are going to a birthday party and it's 50 degrees outside. You. must. wear. shoes." I ran out of patience and me yelling over her wailing wasn't working. So, I roared, "Stoooooop Crying!!!". Her fit was eventually over. We went on with our day.

Tonight, after I put the girls to bed I did my nightly routine of loading the dishwasher, picking up toys, checking email. I ran across this blog post and was hit in the gut. I cried. I asked God to forgive me. To grant me discipline in controlling my frustration. To help me be a better Mom. A better person.

I went to see if Jencee was still awake so I could apologize. She was on the floor outside her room waiting for permission to go potty. I brought her to my chair and sat her in my lap and cried. I said, "Mommy's sorry for yelling at you today." She touched a tear running down my face and asked what it was (sounds dramatic but that's really how it happened :)). I explained that it was tears and that I was sad. I told her that it made Mommy's heart hurt that I had yelled at her. I said in a quivering voice, "Mommy loves you very much." She stared at me a moment and then gave me the biggest tightest hug.

It was truly the sweetest thing.

The sweetest act of love that filled my cup to overflowing.

How does a three year old know compassion?

Monday, April 12, 2010

They Say It's Your Birthday!

Why yes. Yes it is!

I'm Or as Jencee says, "firty-one". This morning as she was picking out her clothes she asked what she was going to wear to my party. We were both a little disappointed that there will be no party.

Yes. I'm one of THOSE people who want to celebrate everything. Including myself. :) I always want an excuse to get together with anyone I love and eat and play!

If I were going to have a party for myself it would be Greek themed. I'd fly all my friends and family to Greece where we'd all wear togas and skinny dip off the island of Santorini. (You think I'm kidding. I'm not. You had no idea what being a friend of mine required. Don't worry - a Greek trip paid for by me is never gonna happen. And I won't ask you to skinny dip anywhere other than Santorini.)

If ever you are invited to a party for me you won't see 'No Gifts Please' printed delicately at the bottom of the invitation. I say "Bring 'Em!"

If you are wondering what gift you should get me for my birthday here are a few suggestions.

-Flying me and all my family and friends to Greece
-a makeover and all new makeup from Sephora
-a new camera that downloads itself onto my computer
-a $13,000 dental workover
-Long, thick, wavy hair
-a maid
-a personal trainer
-Reese Witherspoon to be my BFF
-new outdoor furniture
-a double oven
-a kitchen-aid mixer in a saucy color
-Ree Drummond to live in my house and cook for me and take pics of my kids
-a new wardrobe (but I'll keep my shoes thank you very much)
-a fully loaded Suburban with two tvs and a driver
-a winning lottery ticket

Just a few simple suggestions. That's all.

In all seriousness, I have everything I need and most of what I want. My beautiful family is gift enough this birthday!

BUT if you feel you must send a gift, email me and I'll forward you my address.

Friday, April 9, 2010


I haven't posted in awhile. Why? There's so much that I want to blog about but then I don't. And then I feel like I can't blog about the next thing because I didn't post about the last thing. Make Sense? Perfect.

I really wanted to do cute blogs all about my girls birthday January. My friend, Georgia blogged about Jencee's and Marlee's parties and posted tons of pics...because she was my photographer for the day. Thanks G-rock. You, well, Rock!

I would've really liked to have posted about the life and death of my Uncle Bob. But my sister Jennie wrote about it on her blog and she's a much more eloquent writer than I.

I never posted all of our Christmas stuff, my brother's homecoming or more about our trip to New Orleans. Do I go back??? I feel like I shouldn't move forward without covering what's behind.

But alas! I shall. I'll move forward forgetting about the past. Well, not forgetting altogether just in this blog world. At least so I can blog again!

A friend recently posted, "Why do we blog, anyway?"

Yes. Why, indeed?

Friday, March 5, 2010


Lent - in Christian tradition, is the period of the liturgical year leading up to Easter. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer - through prayer, penitence, alms giving and self-denial - for the annual commemoration during Holy Week of the Death and Resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the events linked to the Passion of Christ and culminates in Easter, the celebration for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

It was a few weeks ago but did you give anything up for lent? This is the first year that I've given something up. A friend had told me what she gave up last year and it struck a chord in me. So there I went and gave something up for lent for the first time.

I love to read. It lets me enter into a different world for a little while! I enjoy most genres of fiction with the exception of sci-fi. I mostly enjoy general Christian fiction or romance novels. I do not read novellas but a good romance is always nice to pass the time.

Chris is an avid reader as well but he chooses more educational and challenging books. He reads alot of biographies, histories, economic type books while I sit reading my breezy romances. I just don't enjoy non-fiction or self-help books. I've invested in many non-fiction books but if I have a moment to read I want to be entertained rather than challenged. Yes - I realize that I'm missing out on inspiration and education but so be it.

So for lent I gave up fiction. It hasn't been ridiculously hard but there have been lazy moments here and there that I wish I had a lazy book. Not only did I give up fiction but I challenged myself to read some of the "investments" that have been stacking up.

What am I reading?
I have also caught up on the magazines I've been stockpiling for months am reading a few gossip rags that I pick up at the Wal-Marts ;) or the grocery store. Don't count on full book reports but so far I'm enjoying myself and learning a thing or two. Go figure!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Six Degrees of Seperation

A few weeks ago when I attended the Lisa Whelchel conference in Littlefield I rode the church bus along with several other women. I sat with my good friend Aimee who had been the one to invite me to the "Young Mom's Bible Study" and whose daughter ,Sophie, is in Jencee's class at school.

Along the way I think I mentioned to her that Chris was from Littlefield and that my in-laws still lived there. She mentioned that her Dad had grown up in Littlefield. I thought I might know the name since I've come to know alot of people from there and certainly heard alot of names.

Turns out her maiden name is Reese. I asked if they were related to Peyton Reese. Yes! Peyton Reese was her grandfather's brother. She asked how I knew Peyton and I explained that Peyton was married to my grandfather's sister! My Papa had a sister named Chloie that died when my mother was just a baby but for whom my mom, Chloie Jan, is named after!

I excitedly explained this to Aimee and she informed me that her daughter's name is Sophie Chlo also after my great aunt!!! We were excited to learn that we are cousins by marriage and that someone as wonderful as my great Aunt Chloie has two namesakes!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


I got an email a few weeks ago discussing the benefits of fruit. It encouraged a three day Fruit Fast to cleanse your body. The benefits would be better digestion and radiant skin. (I thought it was good for water retention but I can't find that info now.) I like fruit and thought it would be a good kickstart to healthier eating. We all need more fruit in our diet right? So I decided to eat fruit and only fruit for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.

I'm a loser.

By Tuesday at 2pm I decided I must have more sustenance and ate some cheese and crackers. For dinner Tuesday I ate a single piece of stuffed pasta and pineapple. Wednesday morning? I at all things related to food.

In retrospect I probably should've skipped my workout Monday night and maybe I would've had more energy yesterday. And once I'd crossed the boundary last night I decided today shouldn't be any different. Like I said, I'm a loser.

Do you fast ever or often? I fasted from food and prayed every Monday from the middle of March 2009 until the end of December on behalf of my brother. He was in Iraq sacrificing for me and my country so I sacrificed food on Monday's for him. It became a good way to start the week spiritually and dietically (I like to make up words!).

But after he got home in December I began eating again on Mondays. I've truly missed the focus it brought to my prayer life and have been thinking about what I could do to bring that focus back. Even though I failed at this 3-day Fruit Fast I've decided to do fruit fasts more regularly. I plan to fruit fast most Mondays. I'd like to say all Mondays but every now and then there is a reason to eat something more than fruit on Monday. Like in April - my birthday is on a Monday and I KNOW I can't turn down all the goodies that will come my way!

Also, to bring focus to my fast I've decided to eat specific fruits on behalf of others who need prayer. This week I texted some dear and near to my heart and asked their favorite fruits. So Monday I ate green apples, strawberries, raspberries, pineapple and mango praying specifically for their needs.

I'm excited. I'd love to go before the Lord in supplecation for you...just tell me your fruit preferences!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Told Ya

So I sneeze loud. Sometimes it's ridiculous but it feels so very good and even when I try to hold it back where it isn't quite as raucous it still comes out loud and violent. Ohhh nothing feels like a good sneeze. I don't have allergies but I think when I'm overly tired I tend to sneeze more. Probably just my imagination...I haven't done a thorough scientific study.

People, namely my sisters and spouse, give me a hard time about my sneeze. After years of ridicule I truly try to tame the beast but it almost hurts not to let it out. I also think holding back a sneeze isn't natural. I needed proof for my theory.

I went as far as drafting a question/letter to Dr. Oz who now has his own show but used to appear almost weekly on Oprah. Yes, I wanted answers to my sneezing questions but mostly I wanted to be on Oprah. I enlisted my sis, Jennie, who is a much more eloquent writer than me to compose the question so it would come across smart and funny. She too wanted to be on Oprah. I, however, was embarrassed by her wording and never submitted the question. Regrettably. Now Oz is never on Oprah and I don't really care to go on the Dr. Oz show. Does anyone watch it? I never have...

Well, who needs Oz anyway. I found this snippet in the "Better Homes and Gardens" issue from October 2009

Is it bad for you to hold back your sneezes?
Easy one. Yes. Sneezing is to the nose what coughing is to the lungs. It's your body's way of clearing out things that shouldn't be there, such as allergens and viruses. Holding a sneeze in can also cause a rapid, intense buildup of pressure in your head and can propel germs deep into the sinuses or ear canals, causing infections. That same pressure can damage delicate ear membranes.

See, I told you. Big sneezes ARE good for you. I'm rarely sick. With the exceptions of giving birth and having my wisdom teeth pulled I have only been sick in bed for an entire day only ONCE since Chris and I got married. And even then I was 8 months pregnant. Like I said, I don't have allergies-which admittedly contributes to most peoples sneezes-but I don't get colds all that often either.

So sneeze BIG and let it all out. But cover your mouth por favor.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Geaux Saints

Chris and I got to go to New Orleans for the Saints NFC Championship game against the Vikings. We'd never been to New Orleans so were excited to get to go to the game to see my cousin, David Thomas, play and also just to vacation and see the city.

It was only my second NFL game to attend. I had seen the Seahawks play in Seattle several years ago and it seemed there were only 500 people in attendance in comparison to the 73 thousand that were at the Saints game.

The Saints fans are a blast! When the Saints score they play a song (I'm sure it's a well known song) that says "We're gon-na get you! - Here we come to get you!" Everybody is dancing and singing. My favorite kind of environment!

When their team is on defense they yell/scream. I don't mean that they yell, "Defense" or "Geaux Saints". They just yell. And then take a deep breath and yell again! It's so loud. You can't yell at the person next to you to tell them their hair is on fire. It's nuts. The Superdome is enclosed so the noise just bounces off the ceiling right back at you. Did I mention it's loud? Okay, good.

I was so interested in seeing the Superdome after seeing it in the news during Katrina coverage. It's a very nice facility. Of course we were on the club level so our concessions were in a club atmosphere.

Overall, it's probably not as fancy as Jerryville but considering how it looked post Katrina it was a palace!

We sat with David's wife, Kassidy and my Aunt Leasa and Uncle John. We cheered and yelled and jumped around the whole game but when David had a catch we went nuts! Everyone around us was high-fiving us and giving their congratulations.

If you didn't watch the game it was a nail-biter. Overtime. Interceptions. Ka-Ray-Zee-Ness. And then we won! Of course we were so excited for David and his team. Our row was hugging and crying. The fans around us were excited for their team and their city. Winning the NFC Championship and going to the Superbowl is a first for the Saints. It's such a boost for the city that's still rebuilding and recovering from Katrina. When the Saints coach spoke after receiving the trophy there were men behind me crying! It was a sweet moment. For the city and for Team David!

This is us with David in the parking garage after the Player/Family reception. Don't ask me why I didn't get a photo with David on the field.

So, the Superbowl is this Sunday when the Saints face the Colts. Be sure you watch AND CHEER for David. #85 Tight End/Full Back. Geaux Saints!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Facts of Life

The fact of my life is that we have been busy. Thus, no blogging. However, there is much to be blogged ABOUT! Where to start??? I guess I'll start with the most recent.

Sunday night I went to hear Lisa Whelchel speak at FBC Littlefield. Lisa Who? Blair from "Facts of Life". She was fab! We had a lot of fun and I got a few really good ideas on disciplining and rewarding my kids! She's really funny and cute. In fact I'd really like her haircut and color but I think it'd make me look older.

SIDENOTE: While purchasing a bottle of wine at Market Street in Lubbock I was asked to show my ID. The cashier took a second look and exclaimed, "There's no way you're this old!" Sigh. I'll take that compliment anytime!

Back to the topic at hand...

The best thing about her is her transparency. She seems very down to earth and real. I already had "Creative Correction" but I didn't realize she'd written it until I saw it on her display!

I bought "taking care of the me in mommy". (The official title is in all lower case so I'm assuming that's how I should reference it...correct me if I'm wrong.)
And, she signed it! I was the first in line like a big dork. I wanted her to sign the book "to Jencee and Marlee's Mommy - The Best on the Planet." but was too embarrassed to ask. So it's just signed "Abby - Lisa Whelchel." Although you can't really decipher her signature. Maybe she should've been a doctor.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Happy 3rd Birthday

My sweet girl turned 3 today. I can't believe how the time has flown! One minute she's a newborn snuggled in my arms and the next she's telling me to put her down so she can run!

I really can't express my love for this child. She brings such joy and life into our home. What was this earth like before Jencee? What was my life before Jencee?

She loves gymnastics and "school". She loves to draw and do "homeworks". She loves her baby sister and is good at sharing...most of the time! She is silly and sweet and all girl!

Happy Birthday, Jencee Sloan. You are my heart.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Sunday evening Chris agreed to keep the girls so I could go to Lubbock. I went to see "It's Complicated" and ate dinner at Carino's. By My Self.

Do you enjoy going out alone as much as I do? I would always prefer for Chris or a friend to go along with me but I don't mind going it alone. At all.

I'm a people person. I like to be with people all the time. I'm social. I'm outgoing. Why do I like a date night with myself so much? Really, people. I need answers.

When is the last or the first time you've gone out alone?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Peach and Mustard-Glazed Pork Tenderloin

1/2 cup peach preserves
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 pork tenderloin (about 3/4 pound each)

1. Mix all ingredients except pork. Place pork in resealable plastic food-storage bag or shallow glass or plastic dish. Pour preserves mixture over pork; turn pork to coat with preserves mixture. Seal bag or cover dish and refrigerate at least 1 hour but no longer than 8 hours, turning pork occasionally.

2. Heat oven to 450 degrees.
3. Remove pork from marinade; reserve marinade in 1-quart saucepan. Place pork in shallow roasting pan. Insert meat thermometer so tip is in thickest part of pork.
4. Bake uncovered 25 to 30 minutes or until thermometer reads 155 degrees. Cover pork with aluminum foil and let stand 10 to 15 minutes, brushing once with reserved marinade, until thermometer reads 160 degrees. (Temperature will continue to rise about 5 degrees, and pork will be easier to carve.)

5. Heat marinade to boiling. Boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Cut pork into slices. Serve with marinade.

Chris and I really want to start entertaining more often in our home. I'm good with appetizers, salads, bread and side dishes for the most part. Meat intimidates me a bit. If it's ground beef or sausage I'm good. But actually cooking a piece of meat for someone other than myself or Chris makes me nervous. I found this recipe for pork and thought it sounded really easy and I think pork is usually pretty forgiving.

We were having my parents and brother over for dinner because Matthew hasn't seen our house and we wanted to spend time with him before he reports back. I thought this was as good a time as any to try the new dish and impress with my culinary skills!

Chris assures me that the pork tenderloin was tasty. I didn't try it. Why? you ask. Note in step 3 that it instructs you to insert meat thermometer. I followed the step. I always follow the steps.

To my detriment.

My mom could smell something burning but I didn't notice. Chris made a joke about my Mom recognizing the smell of burn. The pork was almost done so I went ahead and checked the oven. This is what I found.

The thermometer exploded. We didn't know if it contained mercury or not and after much discussion decided not to risk it. So we tossed the dish and Chris and my brother went to get a bucket at KFC. The chicken was fine and my salad and the bread were exactly like they were supposed to be. But the pork. Ohhh, the pork.

The pork was beautiful. And like I said, Chris said it tasted good. I'll try it again next week sans the thermometer.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Chris and I got a babysitter yesterday and made our way to Lubbock. We had many an errand to run and needed, truly needed, to eat at one of our favorite haunts. One of our stops? Sears. We found they had a much better selection of workout equipment and a more knowledgeable staff than Academy. Anyway, Chris bought me (us) a treadmill!

It was too long to fit in our vehicle so we drove home with the back door half open and tied to the bumper. It was cold and long. Really it wasn't so bad but don't tell Chris I said that ;)

This afternoon whilst both girls were sleeping Chris began the chore of putting it together. He's handy like that. It fell on his toe. I heard a few grunts. But it was worth it! Wasn't it Chris?

After putting it together he ran.
Doesn't he look athletic?

After the girls were put to bed, I ran.

Don't I look awesome?

Actually, no pictures were taken because the THUD THUD THUD of the treadmill was causing not only me and my thighs to jiggle to high heaven, but also everything in the house. If a picture had been attempted I'm sure it would be blurry as there is no possible way that a photographer could keep a steady hand with all the jiggling going on.

I digress.
I'm very excited about my new piece of equipment and was pleased with the outcome of my first workout. We've placed the machine in our enclosed sun porch. We have a TV and DVD player and will soon have cable connected so I can watch my shows and workout at the same time. It only makes sense.

I think I lost at least 5 pounds today. Surely. I mean, I sweat out at least 5 pounds of water weight! Good Lord. I need some water.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Welcome 2010

2009 was a crazy year. Marlee was born in 2008 but the adjustments started in 2009! What a way to start a year! My brother graduated from basic training, shipped to Iraq and came home in time for Christmas. I learned to sew! I lost 11 pounds and have since gained 12. Chris changed jobs and we moved to a new community. I travelled to Seattle, Louisville, Dallas, Killeen and Ruidoso.

The better part of 2009 was devoted to my kids and our new home! I'm so proud of the little lady Jencee is becoming and am constantly amazed by the changes in Marlee's day-to-day development! I can't wait to see the leaps and bounds my girls will make in 2010.

I love our new home and am pleased with the progress we've made. We still have a few projects but this house feels like a home. It feels permanent. We've begun to plant roots in this house and I'm imagining the years to come in THIS house!

I didn't do much for myself in 2009. Don't get me wrong. I saw plenty of movies, slept in plenty a Saturday morning, had plenty of pedicures. But I didn't challenge myself in new ways. Yes, the move was a challenge. Leaving friends and attempting to make new was and is challenging. Adding a baby to the family in a 2 bedroom house and sharing your bedroom with an infant was a challenge. All these "challenges" are just part of life. Am I better for them? Absolutely! But they aren't goals or resolutions. They're just "dealing with life" challenges. Am I making sense at all?

Anyway, for 2010 I'm choosing to challenge myself with goals and resolutions. I usually shy away from New Year's resolutions because I feel like I'm setting myself up to fail. But this year, I don't really care if I fail. I want to attempt! I want to succeed! And I want accountability. Even if no one is holding me accountable I'll feel like it because I shared the goals here!

So without further ado:

My goals for 2010

1. Lose 15-20 Pounds/Eat Healthier

2. Workout at Least 3 Times a Week

3. Train for and Run a Half-Marathon

4. BLOG More Consistently

5. Join a Ladies Bible Study

6. Join a Sunday School Class

7. Make New Friends

7a. Have a Party with my House Full to Overflowing with Friends and Family

8. Continue Learning to Sew

9. Learn a New Craft/Hobby

10. Learn to Bake Bread

Of course I have more goals and resolutions for my house and family like, keep a neater house and cook kid friendlier vegetables. The list could go on. BUT the ten goals I listed are for ME. They're to make me a better Mommy, a better Wife, a better Woman, a better follower of Christ.

I'm really excited about 2010. It will be challenging. But that's the point, right?