Friday, December 28, 2007

Eye Candy Friday

Thank you everyone for your kind words regarding yesterday's post. I thought today we'd do something a little lighter and take a look at a blast from my past:


Here I am in Georgia as a first-grader. I love this picture because everything about it is so early 90's. The light blue jeans. The baggy t-shirt. The pink shoelaces. Too bad I don't have stirrup pants on!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas in Black and White

Yesterday Mike was telling me how he is at a loss for words when asked how his Christmas went. The quintessential “good” or “bad” don’t quite fit, but to explain why would leave the questioner - who in all likelihood was just making polite conversation - with way too much information. Our Christmas was good and bad, glad and sad…black and white.

In part, we had a lot to celebrate over Christmas. It was our first Christmas in our first house, and we enjoyed a quiet Christmas morning before heading over to my mom’s house, where there was good food and even better company. My brother was in town from Kentucky, and my grandfather was looking better than he has in a long time.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Christmas this year, it’s that the holiday is different when you’re an adult. As a kid, you’re usually sheltered from problems anyway, and the excitement of Christmas overshadows anything else. As an adult, the world does not stop turning for Christ’s birthday. Ongoing conflicts keep going. And the evening of Christmas, we learned that a family friend passed away early that morning – another black-and-white situation. On one hand, she had been diagnosed with a progressive, fatal disease several months ago, and while she could have lived for at least another year, what would her life have been like? She would have slowly lost the ability to function, eventually not being able to move at all. Maybe it’s better for her to be free of pain and with Jesus, whom she loved so very much. On the other hand, who am I to say what is better? Both of her children were planning weddings this year, and now they will take place without her there. Her husband is now facing a life without the woman he loves. It’s things like this that make me wonder what the heck God is thinking.

Now you’ll understand if we hesitate when asked how our Christmas was. It was definitely a black-and-white Christmas full of highs and lows.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Christmas Pictures


Sophie shows off her Christmas collar (which she barely tolerates for my sake!)


Morgan has commandeered this present as her new bed. She's the best present under the tree!



Sophie has devised creative ways to stay warm in the sub-seventy temperatures we've been having!!



Santa Paws relaxes after a long day of decorating.



And finally, Mike tries to get a good picture of me and Sophie:
"Be Still, Sophie!"


Mike catches me in a silly moment



THERE we go!!



"Can we be done with picture-taking now, mom?!?"


What a Cool Story!

A pastor in Ohio gave his congregation seven weeks and fifty dollars each to live out the Biblical parable of the talents. What happened next was truly Spirit-filled. Read the story here if you want to be blessed!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more."

~ Dr. Seuss' The Grinch

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I heard "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas" on the radio yesterday, and something funny happened...it was true! I did not have a fit of sarcastic laughter!! It's finally turned cold here in Florida...cold enough that we had a fire going last night, and the space heater when we went to bed. I'm not much for cold weather, but seeing the number 93 on my car's thermometer in December was getting a little ridiculous.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Do you think this...
Could fit in this?!?

The answer is....mmmno. We went to a car show at the Villages yesterday and saw cars ranging from really nice to ultra-quaint.

The General Lee! Not THE General Lee, just a replica by a rabid fan.


I loved this car! I believe it was a Ford Woody.

From the back. Now that's a family car!


This was not from the car show, but we saw it at a gas station the same night. THIS is why I love living in a po-dunk town! You can see how big it is in comparison to the car at the next pump over. I imagine this guy spends a lot of time at gas stations!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

I think I need this cat to come live in my house...



Friday, December 07, 2007

Eye Candy Friday



This picture is from my new favorite site, ICanHasCheezburger? If you ever need a laugh, this is a great place to get it. I can't believe some of the captions they come up with.



Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Something to Decrease Your Work Productivity...

If you're looking for an escape from the monotony of work (who WANTS to be at work this time of year?!?), check out this way cool web site. You can make your own snowflake online!



Check out this beauty I made. Show this site to a kid you know!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Eye Candy Friday - Thanksgiving Edition


Me and my cousin Rachel, who is growing up way too fast.

My dad and Uncle Randy doing what they do best.
For more Thanksgiving pictures, visit my food blog!


Friday, November 16, 2007

Eye Candy Friday


first day of school

I believe this is from first grade, although my mom might correct me. She made the shirts we are wearing. We are proudly wearing our I-don't-want-my-picture-taken faces. I would also like to point out how darn tan I was.

I am famous

That's right, folks, yours truly is currently being featured on the Florida Conference United Methodist Church Summer Camps home page. Click here and see if you can find the 17-year old version of me.


Friday, November 09, 2007

Where's a Camera When You Need it?

Mike and I were at Sonic catching up with some old friends tonight. We were enjoying sitting at the picnic tables when Colette's mouth drops open, and points at something over my shoulder. I turn around, and what do I see but an OTTER waltzing up to the ABC liquor like he's in need of a cold one. Where's that darn camera?!? But the clincher was the reaction of the lady next to us, who yelled at her son...

..."Honey, look at that bear!"

Sunday, November 04, 2007

What's Wrong With This Picture?

The answer is...nothing!! Sophie and I are both wearing sweaters!! Yesterday was the first day it was cool enough for winter wear, and boy were we excited! It's amazing how moving 2 hours South can push winter back by several weeks.



Yesterday was a good day. We went to the Farmer's Market, and we found out about a Chili-Cookoff that was being held that night. Of course Mike wanted to go, so after watching the Gators FINALLY win a game, we headed back downtown to taste over 20 different chili samplings. We picked the chili made by the Firefighters as the best.


They had a mariachi band! They were really good!


Even Sophie enjoyed a little bit of chili!


This booth didn't get our vote for the best chili, but it was by far the most creative!


Friday, November 02, 2007

My Baby is Growing Up...

I can't believe how much Morgan has grown! She and Brooklyn were looking out the window today, and I noticed that Morgan is taller than her big sister! Morgan is much more lanky. I love the above picture, because you can see her markings well. Such a pretty kitty...

Thursday, November 01, 2007

It's the Most Wonderful Time...

Today I is a very exciting day. Today is November 1st...my self-appointed first day of the year to listen to Christmas music. If I had no such day, I'd listen to it year-round :) My first selection? "All I Want for Christmas is a Real Good Tan" by Kenny Chesney. Great stuff.

Other than that, it's been a busy week. I substituted Wednesday and Thursday - today in Kindergarten and yesterday in the Deaf and Hard of Hearing class, as an assistant. I really like the school I've been working at lately - it's a smaller charter school. Here's to hoping they'll have an opening for next year!!



And lastly, Sophie in her Halloween costume:

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sunday Cross-Stitch Update


I haven't done this in awhile, but I've been hard at work on the Noah's Ark piece, not including a brief encounter with tendinitis. The end is in sight!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Eye Candy...Saturday.

New Father Ken with baby Lydia

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Bedroom is Done!





Paint from Ace Hardware
-Walls: Algonquin
-Focal Wall: Neah Bay underneath, Patch of Blue on top.
-Sink Area: Parkwater
-Bathroom: Neah Bay and Patch of Blue
-Closet: Neah Bay

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Today we dressed up in our Gator gear and headed to the Leesburg Downtown Farmer's Market. Yes, we did. We're fans even when they lose. Problem is, it's hard to lose when you're so used to winning!


There were crowds of people making a mural out of green tape. I had never seen this done before, but it looked really neat.


"How's that hot dog workin' out for you, mom? Save me some?!?"


Sophie did not enjoy being that close to the water!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Eye Candy Friday

Mike brought home a surprise for me from the trade show he went to last weekend: a new orchid! I believe this is a dendrobium, although hopefully Dee can supply us with more information. He did a wonderful job picking one with pretty blossoms.
Carl (on the left) was happy to get another friend in addition to his short new buddy from Dee.



I am loving my greenhouse window! I've discovered that I have to water a lot more than I thought, so my herbs are coming in well.Some parsley. At least I think it's parsley. I have no recollection of planting parsley seeds, and if I did I didn't keep the seed packet. It smells like parsley.

A tomato seedling. Almost ready to transfer!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Too funny not to share...

Quote of the day:

"Some people are like a Slinky ... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs."

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Faster than a speeding spitball! Able to scale desks in a single bound!
It's a bird! It's a plane!
No! It's...SUPER SUBSTITUTE!


I had my first job as a substitute teacher today at Tavares Elementary School. It's a little further than I would have liked, but it was that or start doing middle and high school...and I'd much rather drive a little farther than deal with teenage angst.

I thought the day went pretty well. The class was small, but noisy. I had an intern with me, which was very helpful with the classroom procedures. My biggest problem was dealing with kids when they freaked out over the routine not being exactly the same. I was glad to get a job, because the teachers in Lake County are too darn healthy right now and there haven't been many positions available. I even got another job there for next week! Yee-haw!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Eye Candy Friday

The Many Moods of Sophie


Tuesday, October 02, 2007

The Closet is Done!

Well, it's been done for a few days, but I've been really pooped lately. It was an absolute pain, but I'm really pleased with the results. I'm so pleased every time I walk into my blue closet!





We did have one casualty, though: Sophie decided to take a nap on the dropcloth and came away with some blue streaks:
Morgan seems to have lost interest in painting, thankfully:
She even had a rare moment of sweetness!
Once I finish the bathroom, the bedroom will be DONE! Mike had to remove a grab bar and towel rod in the bathroom, leaving holes in the wall, which had to be patched, so needless to say it's taken a few days to fix. Next project: the living room!
Next 100 facts.

Even thought Stuart one-upped me and decided to do 201 facts, I decided to keep it to the original goal of 200 facts. Here are the last 100. Enjoy!



101. My middle name is Marie.
102. I had strep throat and tonsillitis at the same time when I was in the 6th grade.
103. The most amount of school I have ever missed (by a long shot) is one week – due to #2
104. I love college football
105. I don’t love professional football. Too much showboating and too many whiners.
106. I’m beginning to realize that basketball is an interesting sport.
107. My favorite song when I was in preschool was “Proud to be an American” by Lee Greenwood.
108. I’m pretty cheap.
109. I love thrift stores.
110. There are no good thrift stores where I live.
111. I’ve read through the Bible in its entirety twice.
112. I’m in the process of reading it again.
113. I just finished Proverbs and enjoyed it for the first time.
114. I also really liked Psalms this time around.
115. I love to eat breakfast at any time of day.
116. I really hate getting shots. More than most people.
117. I do not enjoy the Simpsons.
118. People think it’s weird that I like Family Guy but not the Simpsons.
119. I never learned to play an instrument.
120. I wish I had listened to my mom when she said I would regret that.
121. I blog sporadically.
122. I check other people’s blogs compulsively.
123. I don’t have enough patience to watch movies with subtitles.
124. I’m not a phone talker.
125. But I don’t mind if you call me.
126. It’s just I don’t like calling other people because I’m afraid they’re too busy to talk but don’t want to say so, etc.
127. The only time I’ve ever been on crutches was when a camper fell onto my foot and used his elbow to break the fall.
128. I was a camp counselor for three summers at Warren Willis United Methodist Youth Camp for three summers.
129. I now live in the same town as the camp.
130. I never thought I would wind up living here.
131. Given the chance to live somewhere else, I don’t know what I’d decide.
132. I love the Smoky Mountains.
133. I never understood why people who live on the East Coast would travel all the way to the West Coast to see mountains until I saw the West Coast for myself.
134. Lake Tahoe is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen.
135. I would visit there again in a second.
136. I have been out of the USA twice: once to Canada, once to Costa Rica.
137. I want to visit all 50 states before I die.
138. I think that most of the time, Christians act in a way that Jesus would not.
139. I include myself in that last statement.
140. I pray that my actions don’t put someone else off to the faith.
141. I try to be interested in politics, but I have a hard time making myself care.
142. I HATE bureaucracy.
143. I HATE inefficiency.
144. I hate #142 because of #143.
145. I hate when restaurants don’t know how to give good service.
146. I understand the cyclical frustration surrounding this issue. Restaurants can’t afford to pay people enough to care.
147. I get overwhelmed easily.
148. I’ve had my wisdom teeth removed.
149. I was awake for the procedure.
150. I was given laughing gas and allowed to listen to my cd player.
151. I found the procedure to be very interesting.
152.I find lots of things to be interesting when I’m under the influence of laughing gas.
153. I didn’t want to get put under because you never know when something could go wrong when you’re under anesthesia, and if you’re not in a hospital, that could be really bad.
154. I gave a testimony in church two days after I got my wisdom teeth out, when I was seriously under the influence of Percocet.
155. I have no idea what I said.
156. I’m told I did a really good job.
157. I look a lot like my mom.
158. My mom used to get asked whether or not she was my mom out of the blue just because I look so much like her.
159. I like pizza. A lot.
160.I am a pizza purist.
161. If you put anything non-meat on my pizza, it will get thrown in your face.
162. The only exception to this rule is pineapple.
163. The previous exception must be paired with ham.
164. I hate it when people make white pizzas, barbecue pizzas, etc.
165. The only exception to #164 is dessert pizzas.
166. Even then, you’re on shaky ground.
167. The first concert I ever went to was dcTalk.
168. I used to be crazy about that group. A Talkie, if you will.
169. I love cream cheese.
170. I love just about any kind of cheese.
171. Except stinky ones. No thanks.
172. I don’t like tomatoes.
173. I’ve really tried to learn to like tomatoes, but unless they’re cooked down into a sauce or ketchup, I just can’t stomach them.
174.I miss all the really great restaurants we had in Gainesville.
175. I love country music from the 1990’s.
176. I think modern country has gone way too far in the direction of pop.
177. Before we got Sophie, I really wanted a schnauzer.
178. Sophie is definitely not a schnauzer.
179. But I wouldn’t trade her for the world.
180. I can’t imagine ever not having a pet.
181. I am very good at predicting whether or not a romantic relationship will work out.
182. I have a permanent retainer on my bottom teeth.
183. I have a low tolerance for pain.
184. My husband and I use movie and television quotes so much it sounds like another language.
185. I have been in physical therapy twice.
186. The first time was when I injured my back jet-skiing.
187. The second time was when I exacerbated my back playing racquetball.
188. I don’t understand why some people have such an intense fear of the dentist.
189. I genuinely want to know what’s up with Notre Dame this football season.
190. I come from a family of water-skiers.
191. I never liked to water ski.
192. We finally figured out that it was because I would get motion sickness in the boat…even on a lake!
193. I used to get sick EVERY Thanksgiving and Christmas, like clockwork.
194. My husband figured out that it was the sweet potatoes, which I only eat during those times.
195. Since then, I have never gotten sick on Thanksgiving or Christmas.
196. I get easily annoyed by immaturity.
197. When I was in elementary school, my family raised our own beef.
198. The steers were named Sir Loin, Supper, and Penny.
199. I was responsible for naming the last one.
200. I can’t believe I actually came up with 200 facts about myself! Hope you enjoyed reading them!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Right now...


Go here and try this free online radio station that Stuart introduced me to. They create playlists for you based on your favorite artists, and you can rate each song and they'll adjust what they play for you. They'll even let you try it before they make you sign up. This is seriously the coolest thing I've seen in a long time.

Nothing to download.

Free.

GO!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Eye Candy Friday

The View from My Lap:

A Milestone.

I just discovered that my last post was my 200th, and I didn’t even realize it! In celebration, I’m going to try to come up with 200 facts about myself, but I’ll give them to you in installments so I don’t overwhelm you with everything Jacki.

1. I had a college reading level in the 4th grade.

2. I am numerically challenged.

3. I thought Michael Jackson was a girl until I was 15.

4. I have never been a patient in a hospital.

5. I was born in a birthing center, and no, a birthing center is not a hospital

6. I have the same birthmark on my stomach as my maternal grandfather had.

7. No I will not show it to you.

8. I love dirt.

9. I grew up around dirt.

10. My dad sells dirt for a living.

11. Now my husband does, too.

12. The combination of peanut butter and chocolate has always made me nauseous.

13. I decided to spell Jacki with no “e” on the end in the 6th grade

14. I did it to be different

15. My mom put up with it because my full name is Jacqueline.

16. It actually made things simpler when my maiden name also had no “e” on the end

17. My maiden name is Cook.

18. Now that my married name is Wolfe (with and “e”), everyone spells my name wrong.

19. There are approximately one million different ways to spell Jacki.

20. I met my husband at a summer camp.

21. He dated my friend before he dated me.

22. No, I did not steal him from her!

23. We were good friends for a year before we started dating

24. I swore we would never date.

25. My mom called our relationship first.

26. I started out going to college at the University of South Florida.

27. The summer before I went to college, I started dating Mike.

28. Mike went to the University of Florida

29. Suddenly, USF didn’t look so appealing.

30. I moved to Gainesville after one semester at USF.

31. One and a half years later, we got married.

32. I worked at pet stores during college.

33. I loved working with animals, even though it was sometimes a disgusting job.

34. I got tired of doing retail and babysat during my senior year.

35. I missed working with animals

36. I did NOT miss working with people.

37. Up until I added on my little cousin, I was the shortest person in my wedding party.

38. I am five-foot eight inches tall.

39. My husband is six-foot five.

40. Our wedding party wore flip-flops.

41. I got my wedding dress from a consignment shop.

42. My mom made my bridesmaid’s dresses.

43. When I was in high school I donated my hair to Locks of Love

44. My first trip out of the country was to Canada

45. I was four years old.

46. The only thing I remember about Canada was they don’t use ice.

47. I am very ticklish.

48. I have never bought a lottery ticket

49. I love Family Guy.

50. I used to be obsessed over the Matrix.

51. As in, I could quote the entire movie.

52. The last two Matrix movies ruined the series for me.

52. I get motion sickness very easily.

53. I HATE cockroaches.

54. When Mike “takes care” of a cockroach, he has to wash his hands in scalding hot water before he can touch me.

55. I grew up watching Star Trek.

56. I still love Star Trek.

57. I love anything involving mint and chocolate.

58. I was born in 1985.

59. I have one older brother.

60. I studied psychology in college.

61. I decided halfway through college that I wanted to teach

62. The college of education at UF told me I would have to start college over if I wanted to go through their program.

63. I said, “uh, no thanks.”

64. I’m starting a program in November so I can be certified to teach.

65. I was at UF when we won three National Championships in a row.

66. I love Oreos.

67. I was on the flag corp in high school

68. I talk to my animals like they can talk back.

69. They talk back.

70. Just not verbally.

71.I had very dark hair when I was born.

72. My hair turned blonde when my baby hair fell out.

73. it’s gotten progressively darker as I’ve gotten older

74. I started highlighting it last year.

75. I love growing things.

76. I’m trying to grow my own vegetables.

77. I hated living in an apartment.

78. Mostly because of the, er, “newlyweds” in the apartment above us.

79. I always change my mind about what my favorite season is depending on what season it is.

80. I love to read for fun.

81. I feel sad for people that hate to read.

82. I feel mad when they teach their kids that reading is no fun.

83. I always have a stack of books to be read.

84. I check more books out at the library than I can actually read.

85. My mom taught me how to cross-stitch.

86. I wish I had paid more attention when she tried to teach me how to use the sewing machine.

87. My mom fostered my love for reading.

88. My dad fostered my love for nature.

89. One of my favorite things to do as a kid was go to the hardware store with my dad.

90. I love the smell of baking bread,

91. I grew up Methodist.

92. I love collecting recipes.

93. I love my big kitchen.

94. I can be very gullible.

95. I hate fake people.

96. I drive a Malibu Maxx.

97. I love a good salad, with lots of stuff on it.

98. My first car was a Ford Ranger

99. I got a 100 on the test I took to get my driver’s permit.

100. I failed my driving test. Twice.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

How My Week Went

My week was consumed with painting the master bedroom, which has taken much longer than I expected it to, and also is a lot more of a pain than I ever thought it would be. I have learned one thing about faux painting:


My mom came over on Tuesday to help me do the "dragging" method on the focal wall. We'd never tried this particular method before, but we've done other finishes successfully, so I didn't think there would be any problem. Boy, was I wrong!! It looked awful. Just awful. We couldn't get it to look consistent, or even inconsistent enough to look artistic. So for now the wall is just plain blue:

(do not notice the unmade bed.)

It may or may not stay that way, depending on whether or not I come up with any ideas. In addition I have renamed the "Buyer's Beige" that was on our walls to "Torturous Tan." On my first go-around, I had to paint over it twice to cover it completely. By the end of that day, I was so frustrated I was just about ready to live with a half-painted room. But I kept on keepin' on, and on the second wall I painted the first coat on really thick and was able to avoid putting on a second coat. Yes!!

Morgan has been an absolute pain this week. I think she's going through the equivalent of the terrible twos. When she's in the bedroom while I'm painting, this is what she does:




Yes, that is a dab of paint on her nose. She also got one on top of her head later. However, when I kick her out, she bumps against the pocket door so that all I hear in BANG...BANG...BANGBANGBANG!!! I can't figure out which is worse. She's also figured out that the kitchen counters are a great place to hang out, because she can knock everything onto the floor.



Sophie and Brooklyn know how to behave when mommy is painting: shed hair all over the new couch!




Other than that, not much has been going on around here, besides Sophie working on her tan:


Yesterday we went to a friends' house to watch the Gators beat Tennessee and play with their baby. Great times all around! Then this morning I got to watch the baby during church because her mom was playing in the praise band and her dad was working. It was great practice! It makes me want to have kids...in a few years. Sorry, mom!