Friday, February 27, 2009
Well, it has been a week. Thank goodness it is almost over! Do you hear that? That is me doing the happy dance!!!
Today's Friday Fare is in honor of all of those cooks who don't own measuring cups. I want to be one of those cooks. My mother is that kind of cook. We used to have a lot of dishes that we called "a la Phyllis." She can just go to the pantry and pull stuff out and create an amazing meal. The thought of that makes my head hurt. Do you hear THAT? That is the sound of my head pounding just thinking about trying that tonight! The downside is that there are times she can't remember everything she dumped into the dish. As a result, she may never duplicate your favorite dish EVER AGAIN.
It has also been challenging to learn how to cook from her. I mean, I used to measure the water to boil pasta. Seriously, I MEASURED it out. You'll be happy to hear that I have grown. But, I do still like recipes. I make alterations, but I like to start with a good, solid foundation.
She is also adventurous when it comes to cooking. We can't get too adventurous around here or my kids just might die of starvation (or so they tell me)! She even uses a pressure cooker. Have you ever watched one of those things?! The way it dances around on the stove top? My mother doesn't even wince when the pressure cooker is singing and dancing. And, the meat that comes out of that crazy thing is AMAZINGLY tender. My kids love her cooking. I am pretty sure she could get them to eat squirrel or rabbit. I am lucky if they let meat touch their lips that does not resemble a chicken nugget.
So, today's dish is "a la Mrs. Nurse Boy." Since it has been a little crazy around here lately, I have had to be a little creative with some of our dinner choices. I still haven't made it to the store for my MAJOR grocery shopping. I have had a few nights where I have had to channel the Phyllis in me. She is in there...sometimes.
Today I will share one of my recent successes. No measuring cups necessary!
Zesty Italian Chicken, A La Mrs. Nurse Boy
1/2 bottle of Zesty Italian Dressing (with this stuff, there is no need to marinate!)
parsley (I didn't even bother to use fresh..we are talking simple, people!)
4-5 chicken breasts
mozzarella cheese (optional, but let's be honest, you know it shouldn't be an option)
In a 13x9 pan, cover the chicken with the zesty Italian dressing, making sure both sides are covered in dressing. Sprinkle the chicken with parsley, garlic, and Italian seasoning, to taste. Sprinkle the top of the chicken breasts with bread crumbs. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes. During the last 5 minutes, top with mozzarella cheese.
This stuff is simple and simply delicious! I hope you love it and it inspires you to play around in your own pantry. Maybe you already do... and, if so, I am jealous.
And, since I know Nurse Boy is going to read this, let me clarify what playing around in your pantry means. It does not mean mixing different sugar cereals together to see which concoction can give you the biggest sugar rush. That does not take talent, Nurse Boy!
I just always try to stay a step ahead of everyone else around here...
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
So, in my last post I shared some of the outtakes from our funeral filled weekend. Here I will share some of the funnier moments in pictures.
Here we have my cousin Tony and his "mini-me." That really is my father to the left. And, the picture doesn't really do the whole size difference justice, but it is still funny. I think Tony has about a foot and 100 pounds on my dad.
Here we have Tony and his family. Tony is holding Sweet Pea. Sweet Pea would have gone home with them. And, NEVER LOOKED BACK. She loved Tony. He was always the cousin who tossed my brother and I up in the air until we puked or passed out. We loved it! Well, some things never change. Sweet Pea spent most of the weekend in Tony's arms or soaring through the sky. And, let's face it, having an older sister would be groovy, too!
Here is the fountain of Holy Water that Bruiser and Sweet Pea tried to dive into. Dimples took this picture. All three of my kids were fascinated with the beautiful fountain.
Ah...here is the princess. All snuggled up and SLEEPING. BY HERSELF. I took this picture at 8:00 AM, after a horrible night of she, Nurse Boy, and I sharing a hotel bed. Once Nurse Boy and I got out of bed that morning, she slept like an angel. Doesn't she look innocent? Don't let her fool you!
Here is Bruiser. We are finally home and he is in his very own bed. You can't tell, but the room was dark and I took this picture around 11:00 PM. Do you think we wore him out this weekend?! Yesterday, I had to take him to the doctor only to discover that the ear infection we had been treating him for was untouched due to being prescribed the wrong medication. (Yet ANOTHER urgent care story~ but, this time I will spare you the details. Grrr...) Between the ear infection and all of the activities this weekend, Bruiser has been pretty tired!
I will also spare you a few pictures that managed to "land" on my camera. You see, my mother's family is Italian, full of some interesting Italian traditions. I always remember coming across pictures of dead family members all laid out in a casket on the day of their funeral. My Grandmother had taken most of those pictures to remember them. It creeped me out, to say the very least. I found it to be a bit disturbing. I instructed Dimples that he was free to use the camera this weekend, but NOT to take pictures of Grandma. I didn't even want to see her in the background of the picture. So, my mom thought it would be fun to snap some photos of Grandma while I wasn't looking. She and Dimples had the giggles when I returned. Yes, I now have pictures of my Grandma in her coffin. Aren't you glad I am not posting those? I know, I've told you too much information already.
On a side note. I should have asked my Grandma what she used on her skin all those years. She died at 95 with less wrinkles than I have NOW! I am not even kidding. Now you want me to post those photos, don't you?! Don't worry, I could never do it. But, her skin was amazing.
Why couldn't I have gotten those genes?!
Monday, February 23, 2009
Yes, I am back. And so very happy to be home. I simply cannot WAIT to crawl into my bed tonight. My brain is tired and my body is moving at a very slow pace. It has been exhausting packing for 5, feeding 5, making sure all 5 of us look presentable at all times, and, well, the list goes on and on.
So, here goes my random thoughts inspired by our family-filled, out-of-town weekend...
(And, I DO mean random...these are NOT in the proper order. I am too tired to think that hard.)
*****Sweet Pea did not disappoint. Well, sort of. She did manage to flash a few relatives. Not too many, and NOT the entire church. You will all be happy to know that she WAS in tights. Black ones to be exact, so no one caught a glimpse of her pink Dora undies. Phew!
*****Sweet Pea DID have a meltdown right before the family was preparing to walk down the aisle behind the casket. So thoughtful of her!
*****Bruiser and Sweet Pea almost took a swim in the beautiful fountain of Holy Water during the visitation on Sunday night. I intervened, only to hear snickers throughout the church. It was funny...if they weren't my own children, mind you.
*****The word of the weekend was LATER... You see, must of my mother's family practices a different religion than we do. During mass there were many questions regarding Who? Why? What? Where? And, how long? My answer, through gritted teeth was, "LATER!" They got the message, eventually. I was sort of hoping just to blend in this weekend. (Note to self, if you want to blend in, leave the three children behind.)
*****Nurse Boy and I had to share a bed with Sweet Pea this weekend. This is the very reason why I can barely keep my eyes open. She was SOOOOO tired that she had a horrible, restless sleep all night long. She kept crying, talking, whimpering, and even kicking in her sleep. At one point, she had Nurse Boy in a headlock while kicking me. In! Her! Sleep! We can laugh now. Mostly because we get to sleep in our own bed (without her) tonight. If only we could sleep in!!!
*****I must also warn you to NEVER go to the hotel gym when you travel. The treadmill will make you hate your own. It will make you have the sudden urge to take all of your tax return to the sporting good store and buy the nicest treadmill in the place. It was glorious! I told Nurse Boy not to get on after me. He didn't listen. I think he left some drool behind. Oh, glorious treadmill at the hotel, you will be missed!!!
All in all, it went well. Grandma's life was celebrated, her family was honored, and we got to spend some precious time catching up with family we seldom get to see. There wasn't any family drama. Just kind words. Encouraging stories. Fun memories. Thoughtful sentiments.
A BIG thank you to all of you who prayed for us! I felt God's presence. It was only by His Grace that everything went so smoothly. Thank you!
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Yep, it's me. Knee deep in real life. No fairy tale going on over here right now. It's Saturday, not Friday. I missed Friday. I didn't even post a Friday Fare. How dare me! Whatever did y'all eat yesterday?!
Us? We ate Stoffer's Chicken Enchiladas. Yep! I said STOFFER'S! They were...uh...etible. Nothing like the recipe that I have posted before that totally rocks. They didn't rock. They simply helped to ward off hunger.
Just touching base with all of my bloggy friends. My grandmother passed away on Wednesday. I believe with all my heart she is sitting up in heaven loving eternity. She was 95 and it was her time.
She forgot who I was years ago. I mourned her loss a long time ago. She wasn't able to celebrate my marriage or the birth of any of my children. Although, I did visit her when I was pregnant with Dimples and she told me I was packing on the pounds. She always had a kind word like that. She WAS always honest. She was never the sweet, comforting person that the word grandma tends to paint. My relationship with her was very different than what you might imagine. That was just who she was. That was my Grandma Mary.
But, we are left with real life down here. Oh, the emotions! The drama! All of the "to dos!" (Which, for me are things as shallow as making sure my family looks groomed and presentable. Who wants to be the cousins that look, well, unkempt? Or, crazy? I know, we have already established that we are the "crazy" ones, but humor me, K?)
So, my bloggy friends, we are in need of some prayer. I could tell you that we need prayer that my 2 year old won't lift up her dress and flash the entire church. Or, scream, "I have to go poopy," during the eulogy. Or, that no one will snap a photo of one of my kids picking their nose. (Then they will have PROOF that we are unkempt and crazy.) I also fear just what my children will say when they see my grandmother laid out in the casket. That always freaks me out, I can only imagine what will be going through their little minds. (Can you tell that I want to be cremated?)
Nope. All of those thoughts are shallow and about ME. None of this is about ME.
My mother and her sister and brothers need prayer. For peace and comfort. For understanding of what everyone is going through and how they are dealing with their own personal loss. The loss of a parent can divide a family. I pray that does not happen.
My father, my brother, and I need prayer as well. We need to be supportive of mom and her needs. We all need wisdom as to what those needs are. And, we need to not make it about ourselves. We just want to be there for her.
So, we are just living out some real life challenges right now. Good times! Hey, we haven't lost our sense of humor. My grandmother is rejoicing, so I am not going to be all bitter through this. I'm going to be looking for the humor this weekend as we celebrate another saint entering the Gates. I hope to be back on Monday to share some randomness with all of you.
I'll let you know if Sweet Pea flashes everyone. I am almost certain she will. Maybe I SHOULD pray about that...
I'm just saying...
Thursday, February 19, 2009
1. Steak-I like mine medium rare. Marinate in teriakyi, add some mushrooms and some potatoes on the side, and I am in heaven.
2. Songs-My favorite time in church is singing praise and worship. The people around me don't like my singing, but I love to do it. There is no better way for me to feel close to God.
3. Survivor-Yes, that show is still on. It is the reason that I bought a DVR. I love to watch it and analyze it. I tell you what, I could win that thing. It is always the useless people who make it to the end because they are not a threat. If only there wasn't that whole being away for more then 40 days and eating things that are still moving. That's sort of a deal breaker.
4. Sugar cereal-The Mrs. mentioned my affinity for Peanut Butter Captain Crunch. I tell you what, that is ecstasy in a bowl. I once heard that crack addicts eat a lot of sugar cereal. Well, give me a pipe and 3 inch mattress in the corner, because if I get to eat PBCC all day long, I'm in!
5. Snaring polyps-You had to know work would make it's way in here somehow. When doing a Colonoscopy and you find a polyp (An abnormal growth in the colon. Some types if left to grow can turn into a cancer), you take out a snare and lop the sucker off. You get to play with electricity too, what better fun can be had?
6. Soccer-I hate to watch it on TV, but Saturday soccer games that my boys play in are as fun as it gets. I try not to embarrass the kids too much on the side lines screaming, I mean giving instructions. It is fun to see my kids go all out at anything other than hurting one another.
7. Sleep-I hear it's great.
8. Smiles-Seeing and hearing my kids laugh and have a good time is great therapy.
9. Showers-I love hot showers. I love to stand there in a steam induced trance and feel the stress of the world wash off of me and spin down the drain. I love the feeling of being clean. I love that all I can hear and feel is what is inside that shower. Then the hot water runs out and I hate the shower.
10. Spending time with the Mrs. Now, I am not going to get all sappy here like last week. The Mrs. let everyone know on Monday that it ain't always a fairy tale around here. With that said, she is the one person in this world that I enjoy being around the most. We met when we were 18, and with 36 being just around the corner, there is no person that I would rather spend half my life with. I know her more than anyone in the world, and I am still getting to know her.
That is my list. Have a Super day.
Don't you just love Google? I have started using it for everything. I am addicted. Go ahead! Ask me a question! Any question! I will find the answer. I tell my nine year old to bring it on. Oh, wait, he is in the "know it all" stage. He currently thinks he IS Google.
Anyway...I recently checked out our hits from Google. Quite frankly, there are some strange people out there. I also think the title of our blog brings the crazies, but we are keeping it. The GI Nurse won't have it any other way. So, welcome all of you crazy people!
Our latest hits from Google include:
golf ball in the back of my throat~Yeah, that is called strep throat. It is awful! Just don't go to Urgent Care. They are morons. I'm just saying...
birthday cake ideas for a male nurse~Really? I should google this topic myself. I thought a cake was just a cake. I mean, throw in some cocoa and frost the bad boy. What kind of cake does a male nurse want? Oh, who I am kidding? Nurse Boy IS very particular about his birthday cake. You call read all about it here. I should warn you! He prefers his cakes PINK! Oh, yes he does!
coloring page of a boy with a nurse~Really? Why? Is there a market for this type of thing? I can take a picture of your boy with a nurse. For a nominal fee, of course.
does jelly make you poop?~I am sure it does. Why are you looking this up?
pooping jelly substance~Gross! Now I know why you were looking that up. We don't want to know about your poop. Now that I have all of my kids out of diapers, I do not want to look at or discuss any one's poop. EVER again. Some things are meant to be kept to yourself, K?
random facts about poop~Enough with the poop talk. I live with 2 boys and a GI Nurse. Why must I be surrounded by bodily functions everywhere I go? I DO NOT want to know ANY random facts about this topic, nor have we ever blogged about any such thing.
poop is like jelly~Really? You really think so? I am not sure I can ever eat another PB & J sandwich again, thanks to my friend, Google.
I just might have to rethink the whole "keeping the title" thing...
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Boy Mom shared 10 of her favorite things that start with the letter "A" last week. I asked to join in on the fun. I was assigned the letter "F." So, my ten favorite things that begin with the letter "F" are...
1. FAITH...in my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Without him, nothing I have or do would amount to much of anything. He came into my life when I was 22 years old. My life was radically changed. I will never turn back.
2. FAMILY...All of them. Even the crazy ones. Yes, we have some crazies. And, no, we aren't the crazy ones. Or, are we? (Seriously, we both have awesome parents. That always gives you a firm foundation, and for that I am so very grateful.)
3. FRIENDS...We are blessed with some awesome friends. I have so many friends who are willing to listen to me talk. THAT is a skill all in itself, people! Thank you, friends. We are better people with all of you in our lives!
4. FUNNY KIDS...Seriously, people who don't have children must laugh only half as much as we do! Kids are so funny! We are constantly holding back the laughter, even when we are disciplining our children. Don't get me wrong. They are ornery, but they crack me up.
5. FAMILY DEVOTIONALS...I love it each night when we come together as a family to pray, read the BIBLE, and discuss the Word. It really brings us closer and always lets us know what is on our kid's minds. It is a peaceful time (except when I am threatening Sweet Pea who doesn't know what a whisper is and is still trying to define the word "listen"). I plan to post more on this later, but it is quickly becoming one of my favorite times of the day.
6. Our FURRY Cat...OK, so I was a little "creative" with this "F" word. Our cat, Mocha, is creeping up on 17 years. He once was a beautiful Seal Point Himalayan. My father says it stands for, "Him-a-layin" Old age has only made that more true. He has had surgery on both of his ears. They now look like he has been mauled by a dog. And, he is balding. Just like an old man (and, NO, I am not calling you old, Dad). He is no longer that pretty young cat I brought home fresh out of college. He no longer has fleas either, so I guess some changes are for the better. He was our baby for so many years and we know his days with us are numbered. The kids find the old cat to be incredibly boring and are already planning on getting a dog as soon as Mocha's body is lifeless. HOW RUDE! And, NOT GOING TO HAPPEN!
7. FACEBOOK...Yeah, I have to admit I am slightly addicted. It is a glimpse into people's lives. I just can't keep myself from snooping around. And, technically, I'm not snooping. I am invited to browse through people's lives, updates, and photos. I'll admit it is a time waster. Hey, lucky me, I have some time to waste!
8. FRESHLY Laundered Laundry...folded and NEATLY put away by anyone else but me! (A little more creativity on my part.)
9. My FREAKISHLY Hot Chi...My sister in law gave me my Chi (and, no, you cannot have her, she is all mine). It is one of my favorite things I own. I love it! It does get REALLY hot and I am pretty sure I shouldn't be frying my hair like a panini everyday, but I am addicted. It can tame my frizzes and they must be tamed. The world is a better place now.
10. FOTOS...What, you mean I spelled that wrong? Oh, I don't think so. I love taking fotos and reminiscing over old fotos. As a matter of a fact, it is the hobby I always wanted to take up. Someday, I am going to purchase a nicer camera and learn how to play. The passion is there, the skill is not. Not yet, at least.
OK, so does anyone else want to play? Come on! You know you do! Let me know in the comments, and I'll assign you a letter.
No pressure, though.
Monday, February 16, 2009
Today I am going to be transparent. I actually try to be a transparent person most of the time. I often have a tendency to tell people too much about my life, as if they care about every little detail. But, in the bloggy world, it is easy to come across like you have everything "together." After all, we only share a couple paragraphs with you several times a week. It is easy to make it look like we have life all figured out.
But, we don't.
You see, we are human. Our real names aren't "Mr. & Mrs. Nurse Boy." (I Know! Gasp!)
Last week, we dedicated our blog to our relationship. We shared many of our blessings. Truth be told, life isn't always a bowl of cherries. It really IS like a box of chocolates. Don't you just HATE it when you get one of those chewy, fruity chocolates? They are sticky and taste oh-so-gross. Or, one of those hard carmels that will NEVER melt in you mouth? They may even send you running to your dentist. Well, those are the little reminders that sometimes life stinks. Or, that it can be hard, chewy, sticky, or just plain yucky.
Life is, of course, filled with blessings and disappointments. We like to focus on the blessings on our blog. We hope you come here to laugh and maybe even escape the reality that is 5 loads of laundry staring you in the face. (Or is that just me?) Maybe you are avoiding those dishes that pile up oh-so-quickly. (Please say it isn't just me!) But, we do want to be real.
Today, I am going to share my imperfections as a wife. I don't want to come across like we have the perfect relationship. We don't. No one does.
Marriage is work.
And, totally worth working on and fighting for!
So, today, I am going to share some of my own, personal mishaps in our marriage. No, I am not completely baring my soul on the Internet, but I am being real. And, I just might sneak in a little humor. After all, a couple that laughs together, stays together.
At the end of our first year of marriage, we spent our anniversary reflecting on the year. I shared how it had been so much easier than I thought it would be. Nurse Boy was quiet. Smiling, but quiet. I should have left it at that. When I asked him if he felt the same way, he proclaimed that he had spent that year reflecting on our marriage during his daily showers. (Probably the only time of day I let him be alone.) He had wondered what he had gotten himself into. He told me it was one of the most difficult things he had done. I gasped and told him that we most never speak of this again. Now, we laugh. It WAS tough for him. It was what it was. But, we worked on growing together.
One time I was so mad at Nurse Boy, that I couldn't find ANYTHING to be positive about. Nothing. Nada. I don't even remember what it was or why it was such a big deal. But, I was mad and I wanted to be mad. The phone rang. I thought it was one of my family members (this was before caller ID). I decided that I couldn't even be nice to them on the phone. After all, if they heard that I was mad, they just might ask me what happened. Maybe they would side with me and he could realize just how insensitive he was being. So, I quickly picked the phone up in a huff and practically yelled, "Hello!" with some dramatic growls. (Oh, yeah, it was me at my best.) The person on the other end says, "Hello, this is Pastor____ from Church Such-n-Such that you visited today...Is this a good time?" I think he may have been trembling out of fear. I am sure he heard me audibly swallow my pride as I changed my voice to something sing songy and fake. We went to that church for 11 years after that. I have always wondered if he remembers that conversation as clearly as I do. But, I don't REALLY want to know. We'll just leave it as don't ask, don't tell!
And, then there are all the times that Nurse Boy works late. And, the times that I welcome him home with a bark and a growl. I mutter something sassy under my breath as the poor man comes home after a long day of providing for the family. Really. I do it more often than I want to admit. It is the sad, sorry truth. I have myself a husband with an incredible work ethic who provides for our family. He sacrifices a lot for all of us. No, I am not going to be June Cleaver, EVER, and welcome him home with pearls, a fancy dress, and a pot roast with potatoes and gravy every night. Or, any night for that matter. But, why can't I just smile? EVERY. TIME. (I am working on it!)
Just a few weeks ago, we were doing the Love Dare together. It challenges you to bless one another with different actions each and everyday. The problem? I KNEW exactly what his assignment was each day. One day we were suppose to buy each other a gift. That was the assignment. Nothing more than that. Being a woman, I stressed over what to purchase. I combed through the entire Target store to find the PERFECT gift that wasn't expensive, but would speak to him as soon as he received it. Nurse Boy stopped at the local grocery store on his way home and grabbed a bouquet from the bucket at the front of the store. When I saw the flowers, I wanted to throw them in the trash and lecture him on a thoughtful gift. Oh! Yes! I! Did! I didn't actually do that, but I wanted to. How ungrateful can I be? How many women are actually going to feel sorry for me that my husband bought me flowers and presented them to me with a smile on his face?!
So, I know I am not the only one out there who gets a little emotional and has a tendency to over-react. I just wanted to be real, so you will return after reading our posts last week. We are real people, working on a real marriage, and are willing to fight to always keep it real. Really!
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Yesterday's post was sugary sweet to the dismay of the brother in law. It did make me feel loved and cared for though, so thank you Mrs. NB.
Here is why I appreciate Mrs. NB:
On our first date, she made fun of my color blindness. She was ruthless. I loved every minute of it. I can't take myself too seriously, and I love the fact that Mrs. NB can't either. She still loves to make fun of me. We have talked about our new pact to exercise six nights a week on the treadmill. I probably fall off of it twice a week. I don't go all the way to the ground, but it is quite the jolt. Our treadmill is not the widest, but the Mrs. has never fallen off. Here is how it sounds: thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, screech, thud, scramble, hummmmmmmmmmmmmm, thump, thump, thump. Then I hear, "Did you fall off?" When I answer,"Yes," there is no, "Are you OK?" No checking on me. No real concern. Just laughter. That is how I want it. She gets me. I love her for that.
Mrs. NB does not like uncertainty. I know, all that really means is she has ovaries. I can understand it. Right now she is staying at home with the kids. I am the only real source of income. She has to trust that I will not screw up and come home without a job or something. There have been a couple times in the last six years that I have told her I want to explore a change. Once I tried medical supply sales. A second time I wanted to work at a hospital 40 minutes away that is smaller than our high school was. Both times I switched back to the place where I currently work. Both times I was taken out of my comfort zone and grew in my career. She did not know that was going to happen before hand, though. She got behind me, encouraged me, and supported me the whole way. She ignored her little voice telling her that I was crazy. Her support and trust in me makes me a more confident man. I love her for that.
I am not organized or disciplined. I like to go through the day doing what feels the best. I don't like to plan. Mrs. NB does like all of those things. I can't say she likes it, she just can't stand not doing it. If I ran the house, nothing would get done. The kids would be brats. We would eat only stuff that can warmed up quickly or we would go out. We would only clean when stuff looked dirty. No preventative cleaning. We would not change our sheets, just put them on for a year and buy a new set when they got to brown. We would launder our towels twice a year. The reality is, I am proud to bring someone to my house. I am proud to show off my well disciplined kids who are well kept. My towels and sheets don't need to be quarantined by the CDC. I love her for that.
Mrs. NB is not only my wife, but she is my friend, my business partner, my helper, my boss, my barber, my editor, my lover, and my accountability partner. She is the only person I would have trusted enough to lead me to church where my relationship with Jesus became dynamic. I love her for that.
(Check out more sugary sweetness over at We are THAT family!)
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Kristen, over at We are THAT family, is having a little carnival for you to honor your spouse. I encourage you to check it out. Take time this week to do just that. It will actually bless you both when you take time to think about all the things you appreciate about your spouse. No one is perfect, but everyone has traits that make them remarkable. Today, I will share some of the things that make my husband remarkable...
I met my husband when we were both just kids. Oh, don't get me wrong. We thought we knew everything. But, at 18, you know nothing about real life. (Sometimes I realize we still don't.)
We started dating at the end of our senior year in high school. I never felt so close to someone before. Many of the things that attracted me to him then, still attract me to him now.
Nurse Boy was, and still is, very honest. (Yes, sometimes a little too honest. Which is why I will never ask him if my butt looks big in these jeans.) He also knew how to have fun. He knew how to enjoy life, yet be responsible. He always made me feel relaxed. And, he made me laugh. Honestly, laughter can make almost anything seem better. I should know, he makes me laugh all the time.
We have grown up together. We met when all we had were dreams and ideas. We didn't know what life had in store, but we were excited to find out.
In some ways, we are still those 18 year old kids. (Which is part of the reason I am always surprise by those laugh lines in the mirror. When did those creep up on me? Where, oh where did that youthful face go?) We really enjoy spending time together. We find a lot of comfort in one another. We are still somewhat unaware of what life has in store for us. We are still dreaming. Our dreams are more simple, more refined. They are actually based in reality, now. But, they are still our dreams. I hope we never stop dreaming together.
Thank you, Nurse Boy, for not only putting up with my imperfections, but embracing them. Thank you for loving me just the way I am. You are such an awesome example to me and our children. You, in so many ways, love me just how Christ loved the church. For that, I am truly blessed.
I am so thankful you are the person I get to sleep next to at night, wake up next to in the morning, and share my dreams, passions, and my heart's desires with each and every day. I am so excited that God put us together and I get to spend my days dreaming with you!
You make me more complete and compliment me in ways that no one else can. You make me a better woman, mother, and wife. For that, I am eternally grateful. You are definitely a gift from above. You will always be my Valentine.
Now, let's keep dreaming...
Don't forget to love on your spouse this week!
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
A list of random facts about us, as a couple, in honor of Valentine's Day.
**We hate buying cars. We once bought a used van (2 years old) that ran for only 7 out of the 30 days we owned it. It shall never be forgotten. Neither will the dealership.
**We have purchased 2 homes thus far. Both times we feared we had made a horrible mistake. Somehow we survived. Plus, we may have gained a little wisdom. Check back with us when we purchase our next house in 2080.
**Neither one of us likes to kill spiders/bugs. We both do it when we have to. Nurse Boy has to do it whenever he is around. He almost never kills the insect on the first try and he can never find it once he "thinks" it is dead. This includes spiders crawling on the ceiling directly over our bed. There have been several arguments over spiders. Especially the ones over our bed. I am totally serious.
**We are both crazy about our kids. We honestly believe they couldn't be more beautiful on the inside or the outside. If you don't agree, we don't like you. It is that simple! ;0)
**We both hate to clean the kitchen and do the laundry~~two jobs that have to be done ALL THE TIME at our house. Thankfully, we help each other out a lot in these two areas.
**Neither one of us likes to handle the finances. Don't get me wrong, we are BLESSED not to be in credit card debt. (Mortgage, well, that's another story.) We aren't careless, just not interested in handling all of the little details that can go along with running a household and a family. Usually there is one person who enjoys budgeting, crunching numbers, and analyzing their 401K. All we like to crunch around here are carrots. It is the sad, sorry truth. The upside? We never fight about finances. I honestly can't think of one fight about finances. Spiders, on the other hand...
**Peanut butter is a staple in our home. If you don't like it...leave.
**Our dream car is a brand new Town-N-Country with leather seats and everything on it. We will never have this dream car. As practical as that sounds, it still isn't practical enough for our reality. We just can't bring ourselves to buy a NEW car.
**We complete one another. We compliment each other's strengths and weaknesses. We are both better people because of our marriage and our relationship.
**We spend endless hours every month talking about each one of our children. We discuss any needs, wants, achievements, goals, problems, or concerns. We are always reflecting as parents. It is the toughest job we have. Just when we think we have something figured out, we discover we have NO IDEA what we are doing.
**We have a passion for marriage ministry. We feel that God has plans to use us in this area, but we don't know how or when. If it is licking stamps for Gary Smalley's ministry, we will do it. We want to be a vessel and are excited to see what is in store.**We really enjoy this blog together. We have always cracked each other up and enjoyed playing off of each other's strengths. We also enjoy the community of bloggers that we cross paths with each day. Thank you for stopping by.
Monday, February 9, 2009
In honor of Valentine's Day, I am dedicating today's post to our relationship. I personally think that marriage is one of the most wonderful things that God created. Oh, don't get me wrong. It is work. Sometimes it is a lot of work. Most of the time it is what keeps me grounded, sane, and feeling loved and supported. I am so thankful for a loving husband who puts up with all of my imperfections!
Today I will share some random facts about our relationship. Some facts might be interesting, some not so much. It is our life. Sometimes we sit in front of the TV in our PJ's just like everyone else. Sometimes we go out on the town.
OK, we almost never go out on the town. I'll just be honest and stick to the facts.
**We met our senior year in high school. We both took "Interpersonal Relationships," for an easy "A." Who knew we would find love?
**I was attracted to Nurse Boy because he was one of the most open, honest, and fun people I had ever met. With Nurse Boy, what you see is truly what you get. I admire that about him. Always have. (It can also be embarrassing, but that is another post for another day.)
**We dated for 3 years, then we were engaged for 2 years, and have been married for 12 years.
**One summer night in 1996, we almost broke off our engagement. It was a few months before we were married. (A story most people don't know.) Reflecting back on that night, we both believe that was when God intervened and took over. We believe that His plan was to put us together, but we were to submit to Him. This was something we had not been doing. We actually treasure that memory now. It is a reminder that there are 3 of us in this marriage.
**We were married at a local country club in the "Pub Room." I know! How romantic, right?There were only 45 people present, including us. The ceremony and reception were in the same room. Nurse Boy was the sound man. He actually held a remote to the CD player during the ceremony. (Yes, we are some classy people.) It was very small, but exactly what we wanted at that time in our life.
**We lived with my parents for the first 6 months after we were married. Nurse Boy had moved here to join me and was looking for a job while I was teaching third grade in the inner city. It made sense at the time. (But, I wouldn't recommend it.)
**Nurse Boy would have lived there forever. My parents always took his side, pampered him, and made only meals he liked.
**Some of our favorite memories were from our first apartment. Back when we had money, but didn't know it. Not to mention, very few responsibilities. Dinner and a movie were a weekly occurrence. (It now takes an act of congress.)
**It was in that apartment we found out we were pregnant with our first child. It was about 2 years into our marriage and we were very surprised. Who knew that unprotected "relations", just once, would change your life forever? Oh, I guess God did. We had planned on waiting for a few more years. We are both grateful for the timing, now. If we had waited, we don't think we would have 3 children.
Tomorrow we will post another random list. This list will include everything you never wanted to know about us and more.
Oh, you thought you already read that, huh?
Friday, February 6, 2009
We are almost a week away from Valentine's Day. I know it is really just a day for the greeting card industry, but it is always nice to be thankful for the special people in your life. Next week, we are going to focus on our marriage and share some funny facts about what brought us together, what keeps us together, and our journey along the way. Just for fun. We hope it helps you stay focused on all of the blessings in your life. Come back next week to read, laugh, cry (just kidding!), and maybe even share some of your story!
Today I will share another family favorite. I have adapted this recipe from hungry-girl.com. If you haven't checked her out, you should! She takes many of our favorite recipes and makes them healthier. So, I took one of her recipes and added more fat. It's OK, I'll own it. This is still healthy and my whole family loves this recipe~including my extended family.
About 1 lb. cooked boneless skinless lean chicken breast, chopped or shredded
10 small low-fat flour tortillas
About 3 cups raw coleslaw (Or you can buy prepared coleslaw and drain or rinse all excess dressing. If you do this, you do not need the Marzetti's Dressing.)
4-6 tablespoons of Marzetti's Light Coleslaw Dressing
1/2- 1 cup of BBQ sauce (Our favorite for this recipe is Cookies brand. Something sweet and tangy is perfect. Use whatever you prefer.)
Shredded Cheese is optional~~~This is where you can pack on the fat. I prefer these without the cheese, but most of my family chooses to add some cheese.
1. Mix the cooked chicken with the proper amount of BBQ sauce. You don't want this to be too messy, yet you want it to have some flavor.
2. For the coleslaw, I prefer to mix my own. I add small amounts of dressing to the raw coleslaw. Maybe 4 tablespoons or so. You want it to have a little bit of a sweet flavor, but not a messy, drippy mixture. The coleslaw is more about its crisp texture in this recipe.
3. Warm the tortillas. Next, add the chicken, coleslaw, and cheese! Easy and delicious!
I already made these this week and I remembered to take a picture! I know! Amazing! I like to serve these with corn and a salad.
Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Have I mentioned that it is time to move south? I would say Florida, but I spent a few days there in the month of April a couple of years back and I looked like I had stuck my finger in an electrical socket the entire trip. Not a pretty sight. My hair had a mind all of its own. It was so bad that Nurse Boy kept asking me if I had already styled my hair before we would leave the hotel room. I had indeed. Nurse Boy kept introducing me as his poodle, err, I mean wife. So, I need to move south, just not sure how far south.
My family, however, LOVES the winter and all of the surprises that it always has in store. Nurse Boy wants to move NORTH. Let's just say that is NOT happening. So, I guess we will just stay planted.
While we don't have snow on the ground today, we do have some cold temps. I am tired of them! Today I will share some pictures from a few weeks ago. My children believe that if it is going to be cold, we should at least have snow on the ground...
Just don't eat the yellow snow ;0)
Making a snow angel.
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
I don't know about you, but we are fighting the winter blahs. January is such a let down after a busy, crazy, blessed December. Now, we have moved into February.
At a mommy group the other week, they shared a tried and true recipe for homemade playdoh. I know I already have this recipe...somewhere. At least I put it in a safe place so I would know where it was... of course, I have NO IDEA where that is.
The story of my life.
Since I now have the recipe back in my not-so-safe-hands, I decided Sweet Pea and I needed to pound out some fun.
I thought I would share the recipe and some pictures of those chubby hands at work. And, no, I am not refering to my own hands.
SHE is the master of design.
Monday, February 2, 2009
I know you have been waiting all weekend for some random thoughts. You are in luck! It is Monday, so that's all I am able to muster up.
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I am obsessed with my bed linens. I love fresh, new, clean linens and comforters. Not to mention pillows. Every year I get the itch to replace our bedding. Just last week I bought a new comforter set. Nurse Boy hasn't noticed that this obsession is somewhat abnormal. Until this year. He is on to me. I just MIGHT have to make my bedding last longer. Sigh...
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Nurse Boy is going on a missions trip to New Orleans in the very near future. I am so excited for him. He has always had a strong interest in missions, but I never felt the timing or finances were right. Well, I realized (with a little prodding from above) that they never are. So, he is going. He will be missed. He is going to be building houses and I am going to be holding down the fort by myself. I am praying that I can be super supportive. Not jealous. Not that I want to build houses, mind you. I just want to go to the bathroom alone. For once. Sometime in the near future. And, maybe, squeeze in a long, hot shower. Shaving my legs would be heavenly. Oh, wait. This isn't suppose to be about me, is it? THAT is what I need to work on. I think in some ways this missions trip is more for me than Nurse Boy.
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Nurse Boy has tightened up our budget in preparation for the missions trip. How come it makes me want to spend money even more? Those clearance racks are calling out my name...
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Nurse Boy and I are still doing our daily workouts on the treadmill. We still hate those 30 minutes of our day. Yeah, yeah...we know it's good for us. That is the only reason why we are keeping it up.
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After my workout, I can have a cookie or 5...right? I know, I know. I'll grab an apple. Just a thought...
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I just found out that they pump oxygen into the casinos in Vegas. That is apparently what keeps people awake, refreshed, and excited enough to lose lots of their own hard earned money. This gave me an idea. What if I invented an alarm clock that shot out oxygen at the same time the alarm sounded? Would I be able to jump out of bed, ready to take on the day...and my three grumpy children. Is there enough oxygen for that? I sure hope so... Not to mention, this idea could just make us millions. Then I could hire a nanny. Just for the morning routine, of course ;0)
Thanks for reading. I am off to the dreaded treadmill. Maybe I just need an oxygen mask to make the workout more refreshing...