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Thursday, September 30, 2010

New Fall Wreath

The fall wreath I've been using for years is lame. And sort of grandma-ish.

So I decided to spruce it up a bit this year. I used an old wreath, several yards of black tulle, and 3 wooden letters that I painted orange. Oh and hot glue. Of course, hot glue. And I L-O-V-E it.

Go here or here or here for some more cheap, easy wreath ideas and let me know if you're trying something new this year. I LOVE hearing about all of you who are making the candy corn dispenser. So much fun!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Random Wednesday

1. ) I just got the cutest haircut I've had in a long time. I hope I feel the same way when I try to fix it myself tomorrow. This is unlikely.

2.) Matt was gone for two days and just got home last night. Not that I need reminding, but whenever he's gone I realize how much I love and depend on him. I wonder how many husbands answer their phones, "Hey, Princess," when their wife calls. I. Love. That. Man.

3.) I did not get my laundry done, but I am so relieved to know that I'm not the only one who struggles with the laundry monster. It is my nemesis.

4.) It is very frustrating walking past my new candy corn dispenser and not being able to grab a handful and go. Dang diabetes.

5.) Matt is going to Budapest next month. Where the heck is Budapest?

6.) I found this video Matt took this summer. We took the kids to the park, and Jeb 'thought' he was jump roping like his sisters. I have decided we are cruel parents. Listen to us both laugh when he wipes out. Pitiful.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Laundry 9-1-1

This blog is closed today due to a laundry emergency that requires my full attention throughout the duration of the day. Please come again. Or send help.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Candy Corn 'Gumball' Machine

Yay! Fall is here. I sort of go all out for fall decorating. My kids love it. I love it. Matt tolerates it. More than anything, I love the memory making. When my kids think of fall, they're going to think of the smell of pumpkin spice or apple pie candles burning in the house... pumpkins every which way you turn... scarecrows and hay bales in the yard... and of course, candy corn.

We love candy corn in the Slaughter house. Well... we 'love' the white part of candy corn and 'like' the rest. Remember the white part bandit? And the apprehension a short time later? Well, hopefully that problem has been solved. And now I have a new way to serve it... a candy corn 'gum ball' machine.

I found this on The Idea Room. She is doing a fall idea link up party, and people way more crafty than me are submitting fabulous ideas. I found this one here. Again, this was NOT my original, creative thought. (I have to save all those I can for writing.) But it's super cute and super cheap, and I put it together in less than an hour.

You'll need a small ceramic flower pot, saucer, wooden ball, and glass globe. (I picked all this up at Joann's, but I believe right now the ceramic pot and saucers are 50% off at Hobby Lobby. My total bill was less than $6.) Also, you need a can of black spray paint, less than a yard of ribbon, and a bag of candy corn. (And you're still under $10.)

Paint the pot, saucer, and ball with the black spray paint. Glue the globe to the pot. (I used hot glue because I'm obsessed with it, but I assume there are many other options.) Also glue the wooden ball to the top of the saucer. Add candy corn inside the globe, top with your new lid, and there you have it....

A candy corn 'gum ball' machine. No coins required.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Grandma's Angel Story

Remember in my angel post when I talked about Grandma and her story about the truck almost going over a cliff? Well, I dug around and found her telling the story on video. And let me tell you... she would kill me if she knew I was posting this. She had just undergone heart bypass surgery and wasn't able to go to the 'beauty shop' and get her hair done. I still think she looks beautiful.

I can't watch this without crying. Not because of the story. Not because of the way she told it--she was nervous being on camera. But because I was sitting there... right next to her on her bed. What I wouldn't give to be there again. Don't take it for granted, y'all. Cherish every second of being together. They are so precious.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Chasing my lion.

I am doing a study with Matt on Wednesday nights called, "In the Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day." It's a book by a guy named Mark Batterson, and it's been rocking my world. It's based around 2 Samuel 23: 20.

There was also Benaiah son of Jehoiada, a valiant warrior from Kabzeel. (I can't say those names either.) He did many heroic deeds, which included killing two of Moab's mightiest warriors. Another time he chased a lion down into a pit. Then, despite the snow and slippery ground, he caught the lion and killed it."

Now have you ever once heard that verse? ME EITHER! (Sorry. Irrelevant.)

Batterson says, "[God] is always using past experiences to prepare us for future opportunities. But those God-given opportunities often come disguised as man-eating lions. And how we react when we encounter those lions will determine our destiny. We can cower in fear and run away... or we can chase our God-ordainded destiny by seizing the God-ordained opportunity."

The book talks about becoming a "lion chaser." The lion is whatever fears we have that hold us back from what God wants for us--the fear of rejection or looking stupid or failure, or anything that keeps us frozen where we are.

Benaiah CHASED the lion in the pit. It didn't chase him. He took a risk, and because of it, met his God-given potential. 2 Samuel 23:23 says, "And David put [Benaiah] in charge of his bodyguard." Had Benaiah snuck away in fear from his lion, the opportunity of a lifetime would have passed him by. Batterson says, "The greatest opportunities [are] the scariest lions."

If you know me well at all, you know that the fear of being rejected or failing terrifies me more than anything else. I spent four years working on a book that I poured my heart and soul into and now here I am offering it up to others to judge it. What I want to do is keep it all to myself and not take a risk--or find a corner and vomit... what I HAVE to do is get over it, get tough, and go chase my lion.

I recently read a blog by a literary agent name Rachelle Gardner. She wrote, "Once you're a published author, you're going to have a target on your back. You will offer up your words to strangers. Not everyone will like what you write. You'll be naked and vulnerable in front of the world. You'll make mistakes, you may offend people. And you will not be safe.They will write things publically about you, on their blogs, on your blog, on book review sites, or on Amazon." She ended with, "Regardless of who you are or how kind-hearted your intent, if you're a writer in pursuit of publication, eventually you're going to be judged. Carry a shield."

I have a feeling me and Benaiah are going to get really close before this thing gets published. And I believe it will. It may take a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, but it will. I'm praying for big things, and the big God who gave this to me listens. So, I am chasing this lion. I'm scared, yes, but I'm determined.

And wow... I COVET your prayers. I have been asking Him just to help me get it into the right hands. I think He'll take it from there. Do you have a lion you need to be chasing?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I just found this video on my iPhone. It was taken on our way home from Florida this summer. I think we had been in the car ten hours at this point.

I have a feeling Mrs. Duggar would not approve.

It's ok to admit. You are SO glad you weren't in this car. Aren't you? Poor Matt. He actually was in the car... and still traumatized.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Do you believe?

There is a character in my book, a young girl named Beulah Two, who believes she sees angels. Real live ones. I won't spoil the fun and tell you if she does or not. Here's a quick excerpt:

Beulah Two lay on her back in a patch of dead grass behind her grandmother’s home. She watched two white, fluffy clouds float side by side for a moment, then converge into a heap, forming what Beulah Two thought looked just like a giant ice cream cone. She loved cloud watching, and today was perfect for it. The sky was a brilliant shade of blue, and the clouds were thick like the meringue she helped her grandmother make for pies. They swirled about, coming together, breaking away. They made elephants, clowns, whales, trees, sailboats, teddy bears, and even a castle that split down the middle, its halves forming two dancing birds. Then she saw him. Next to one of the birds. A face, a body, two powerful wings. Finally. She waved to him, satisfied, and fell asleep.

I'm not ashamed to admit it. I believe in angels. I believe they are part of our lives every single day. And at the risk of having anyone read this believe I'm crazy, I have a story to tell.

A few years ago when we were vacationing on the beach in Florida, I went outside to sit on the balcony. It was late at night, and if I remember correctly, I was having myself a little pity party. I sat there looking out at the ocean, crying, feeling alone and missing Grandma--nothing new, especially back then. The door opened behind me, and Belle came out and crawled into my lap. When she asked me why I was crying I just held her and told her I was missing Memaw. Then she asked, "Mama, is Memaw an angel?" I can't remember how I answered that. But she was. Just an absolute angel. Then Belle asked, "Mama, have you ever seen an angel?" I told her, "No, Baby, but I'd really like to."

And here comes the crazy part.... At that very moment, a bright, glowing ball appeared from my left, about the size of a basketball, and moved slowly across the sky in front of us before disappearing seconds later. It wasn't a firework. It wasn't a flare. It wasn't anything I had ever seen before. What I do know is that after I caught my breath, I sat there and cried, holding my child, and telling God how awesome He is.

Grandma used to tell a story about how she and her family were driving in an old car in the mountains of Texas when the driver lost all control. Just as they came to the edge of a steep cliff, the car stopped all by itself. She believed an angel of God saved them that day.

Do you have an angel story that you're brave enough to share? Or do you even believe in angels? I'd love to hear.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Boy Barbie, Football Shots, Nap Mat

When the girls told me they needed a "boy Barbie" to be the "prince", I had no problem with it.

I am currently rethinking that decision

On another note...

At Friday night's football game, Coach Kelley Waters who takes pictures on the field, shot a few of Jeb when he was visiting daddy on the sideline.

He just has 'Stinker' written all over him.

And on still another note...

I finally finished Jeb's nap mat. It's not my best work. Or even close. But it's better than the plastic one. Poor guy. His sisters certainly never took an uncovered nap mat to school. Maybe he won't remember.... or read this blog.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Check out this giveaway!

My friend, Kate, over at Southern Belle Simple is having a Diana Warner giveaway. GASP! Go here to check it out, but I'm just tellin' ya', I've been praying hard that I'll win. So only enter if you think you can out-pray me. I want that necklace!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Let's rodeo!!

Today is Estella Dru's kindergarten stick horse rodeo. (Yes, I'm sure.) She looked so cute this morning going out the door.

My girls are only fifteen months apart, but are separated my two grades in school. Since E Dru has an August birthday, we opted to let her do two years of K-4 instead of going into kindergarten as the youngest in her class. That decision was brutal to make. Did you hear me? BRUTAL! I cried and prayed and cried and prayed. In my heart, I knew she wasn't ready for kindergarten, but the thought of separating her from friends that were moving on just broke me. The thought that she would be one of the oldest in her class to graduate was hard. The thought that she would see her old classmates eating at the big kid tables in the cafeteria and moving over to the big kid playground crushed me. The thought that she and Belle would be separated by another year was excruciating. But in the end, our hearts (the Lord) led us to put all that aside and hold out for kindergarten just one more year.

It hurt. I second guessed myself a thousand times. I probably drove Matt crazy asking, "Are you SURE we're doing the right thing?" Even if I had wanted to change my mind, he wasn't budging. And I'm glad he made us hold solid to our choice.

Drusy started kindergarten this year with confidence and is tackling it like a champ. The little girl I used to see as a follower, unsure of herself with her school work and her 'place' in the class, now takes charge and is rocking kindergarten.

It still makes me feel a little sad when I see her wanting to do the 'big' things her old classmates do now, but she doesn't complain. I think it pains me more than it does her... I'm her mama like that.

I know lots of families are faced with this decision for children who have later birthdays. And let me warn you, when that time comes, EVERYONE you know will have an opinion. And I mean EVERYONE. It will be sort of like, when you're pregnant, every woman you meet wants to give you a run down of their birth story. Politely listen and FILTER! For us, the key to making the right decision for our child was first, drowning out all the noise, talking with teachers and other educators, and prayer. Lots and lots of prayer. I think the key thing to realize is that there is not one blanket decision for everyone.

So maybe you can understand why finally making it to kindergarten stick rodeo day is a big deal for us. She's been waiting for this for a long time, and I am so happy for that sweet girl. You go get em', Cowgirl!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Randomness on a Thursday

1.) I still have not finished Jeb's nap mat. He has taken an ugly, plastic mat to school with him every day for 3 weeks now with the words, "Belle Slaughter" written in sharpie in the corner. I am ashamed. When he finds out it's not ready again tomorrow, he's gonna be TICKED!

2.) Today in the Chic-fil-a drive thru, I was tempted to ask for a large drink for the price of a medium. I mean... if I was IN the restaurant, I would drink my drink, then go back for a refill. But since I am in the drive thru, and clearly won't be there to get refilled for free, it makes total sense. Right? Right?

3.) I stood up from the bathtub this morning and felt something stuck to my bootie. (That's what we say in this house, ok? Bootie.) It was gum. A big ol' wad of chewed up Hubba Bubba. We are now under a gum ban.

4.) On Friday, Estella Dru has her stick horse rodeo at school. I am checking and double-checking to make SURE it is, indeed, Friday. See here for why I might be a tad paranoid.

5.) Yesterday my husband won Employee of the Quarter at his quarterly luncheon. Just a few of the things that were said of him:

· makes everyone they meet feel welcome and valued.
· is the definition of “relational” and they use these relationships to minister to others.
· has an outstanding attitude about their job, their co-workers, their Church, & our people.
· You can trust this employee – to do the right thing – to do what they say they will do – and to tell the truth.
· is Christ-like in their behavior and attitudes.
· has helped lead our school to achieve its highest enrollment in 9 years.
· Everyone wants this employee on their team - especially during a golf event.
· He is a very talented individual that again serves others and does so with a great heart.
· He teaches a small group and sometimes leads chapel service – all with great confidence and in Truth.
· He represents us all very well and he represents our Savior well.

I'm shocked they didn't list incredibly handsome and smokin' hot, but oh well. I am BEYOND proud of him. I am well aware of his crazy awesomeness and SO happy for him. Have I mentioned he is the love of my life lately? Wow. He so is.

6.) Y'all, getting a book published is HARD! So I haven't actually sent anything out yet, but I've been reading information like a maniac and putting together proposals. But wow. It's nearly impossible to get your foot in the door. I am praying for a miracle--that is, if that's what God has for me. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed the other day. I reached for my Bible and prayed for Him to talk to me. When I opened it, this verse was staring me down. Hold on to your hats. This one might just blow you away. So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, He who is coming will come and will not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith and if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him. Hebrews 10 35-38.

7.) I made muffins today. Lots of muffins. If you like pecan pie, you need to stop what you're doing and make these right now. They are SO yummy. I swiped the recipe from a Pioneer Woman site. Five ingredients, y'all: flour, brown sugar, eggs, butter, pecans. Five ingredients to heaven. SUCH an awesome, easy treat for the fall. Go here for the recipe. (FYI: I used a mini muffin pan for little bite-sized jewels.)

8.) I never say anything about comments left by my readers, but let me say now... I SO appreciate every single person who takes a second out of their day to read this blog. I love to write. I love to share my family. I love to share my faith. I love to share my life. And so, this blog is an awesome way for me to do all that. Please know I am overwhelmed when just one person tells me they visit this site. Honestly. Overwhelmed. Thank you so so much.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

If I were a...

I have been tagged with a list of fun questions by the gorgeous Ms. Kate over at Southern Belle Simple. If you haven't already... GO VISIT HER! Her blog is adorable and always, always fun, especially for us southern gals. I don't have many everyday staples, but Southern Belle Simple is definitely one of them.

Ok, here goes...

If I were a month, I would be October. The beauty of October always surprises me. Every single year I forget how bright and brilliant the leaves get on the tree in my front yard, not to mention, in everyone else's. I love the cool air and getting ready for Halloween and knowing that the winter is coming, but for a little longer, we can play and enjoy ourselves before everything turns brown or gets covered in white.

If I were a day of the week, I would be TACO TUESDAY! Every Tuesday is Taco Tuesday in the Slaughter house. And if I forget, well, let's just say, things get ugly.

If I were a time of day, I would be the moment I go check on the kids just before I go to bed. I can't describe how it feels to look down at those sleeping little babies, chests rising up and down. They're so still. They're faces are so peaceful. And they're mine.

If I were sea animal, I would be a jellyfish. Why? Ummm... not sure. For starters, they're pink. And also, have you ever looked at a tank full of jelly fish? I could stand there forever just watching them move. It's mesmerizing. Well, to me anyway.

If I were a direction, it would be north. SO KIDDING! I am southern through and through. I would be south. So very south.

If I were a piece of furniture, it would be a chiffarobe. Ha. Gotcha on that one, huh? I love that word, chiffarobe, because the first few times I saw it, I had no idea what it meant. In To Kill a Mockingbird, it was the piece of furniture Mayella Ewell asked Tom Robinson to come over and chop up for her. I think it's just a chest of drawers... which will work, too.

If I were a gemstone, I would be a pink pearl. I like pearls. I like pink. Pink pearl.

If I were a tree, I would be a magnolia. Oh how I love magnolia trees. The blossoms, the smells, the way you can hide underneath the really big ones without anyone seeing you.... In fact, I have a great book idea about magnolias brewing in my head right now.

If I were a flower, I would be a magnolia blossom. (Please see above explanation.) Plus, they smell like fresh lemonade.

If I were a kind of weather, I would be the cool of the evening. That has to be the best part of the day. Genesis 3 talks about God walking through the Garden of Eden in the cool of the day. If that's when God decided to take a stroll, that's what I want to be.

If I were a car, I would be a mint condition 1970-something Range Rover. I saw a 70 model once in the parking lot of the Donut Hole in Destin and almost cried. Maybe someday....

If I were a place, I would be the bank of my Grandpa's pond. When I was little it was the spot I would go and talk to God. When I was a teenager, it was the spot I would go and talk to God. When I was in college, it was the spot I would go and talk to God. When I lost Grandma, it was the spot I went and talked to God, then hurled rocks at Him. We're cool now. Today, I still go there to feel close to Him... and also to throw rocks at turtles. Why does that never get old?

If I were a fabric, I would be linen. It's my favorite. No explanation I guess. Dang you, Labor Day!

If I were a scent, I would be Riviera Sun by Victoria's Secret. It's been discontinued for far too long. I still dream that they will bring it back. I have found nothing since that I love they way I loved that scent. Curse you, Victoria's Secret!

If I were a song, I would be Nichole Nordeman's Take Me As I Am. And you know I gotta share some of my favorite lyrics. Oh, for a heart that does not ache, For a backbone that won't break, For some steady feet or sturdy ground, A road that isn't gonna let me turn around and run. Oh, to feel hope in hopeless times, Never mind the silver lining 'cause the clouds are fine, To breathe prayers that move the heavens, Or save hundreds from the flames, To know my place, to know my name. But the gap grows wider, Between who I am and all I aspire to be. Wow. If only I could have written that myself.

If I were a pair of shoes, I'd be these.

Are they not absolutely hideous? I know. But every time I see someone walking in them, I get a little lump in my throat. They were my Grandma's favorite. She wore them everywhere. If I can walk in the same paths as her... I'll be ok in this world.

Alright, now it's my turn to tag someone. And I pick my friend, Lori, at Everything Edgin.

Do You Think I'm Weird?

Last night while brushing Belle's hair, she turned and looked at me and asked, "Mama? Do you think I'm weird?" My heart sank. I knew there had to be a reason for such a question. When I asked where it came from, she told me some kids at school have been calling her 'weird'.

After the initial surge of anger and desire to knock out a couple 7 year olds passed, I took her in the kitchen and sat her on the bar so we could be face to face. And I told her... "Baby, if weird means different, then yes. I think you are."

She looked at me like... "HUH?" And I told her I could not be prouder that people see a difference in her... that she doesn't feel the need to act, speak, imitate everyone else. I told her the confidence she has in who she is and her ability to see the good in everyone and every situation could not make me and her daddy more happy. I told her for the rest of her life, people are going to follow after things of the world, and because of that, they will eventually all look the same... and the only time she needs to be worried is if she ever stops standing out as 'different' or even 'weird'.

I told her, "You're not supposed to be the same."

She smiled at me and said, "So when they say I'm weird, I should just say 'thank you?'" I gave her a big hug and told her, "Yes. That is exactly what you should say."

I won't lie. My heart is still a little sick over it. The thought that my precious, beautiful child is already struggling with a situation like this in 2nd grade.... (Well... I don't think 'struggling' is the word. She never really seemed upset, just curious. She is the most optimistic person I've ever met.) But at the same time, I can't put into words how proud I am of that child. She lives every day with her whole heart. She is sincere and real and loving and unconcerned with things I see other little girls already concerned with.

I think about all the mean things I dealt with when I was in school and wish I could shield her from all the yuck in her future. I know I can't do that. But I can keep encouraging her right now to be the little girl God made her to be... the little girl that makes Him proud.

Last night I told her, "Sweetie, other people's opinions don't matter." And she said, "I know, Mama. I just care about what you and Daddy think. Oh, and my teachers. Oh, and for sure God." That's my girl.

Friends, this world is not your home, so don't make yourselves cozy in it. Don't indulge your ego at the expense of your soul. Live an exemplary life among the natives so that your actions will refute their prejudices. Then they'll be won over to God's side and be there to join in the celebration when he arrives. 1 Peter 2:11-12 (The Message)

Monday, September 13, 2010


Boys are funny.

And a bit weird.

This is my first go at a boy child, and almost every day brings about something new that makes me either laugh, sigh, or wonder how in the world I'm going to make it until he's eighteen.

One thing he does that always makes us laugh is... whenever he finds a stick or bat or anything that can be used as a weapon of some sort, he raises it high into the air and yells, "POWER!"

No one taught him that. As far as I know, he doesn't see it anywhere. He just does it. Every time.

Today I am needing a power boost. I'm starting with some scripture, then moving on to a little Starbucks. A winning combination, I think.

I am a tried and true White Chocolate Mocha or White Hot Chocolate fan. Is there anything else out there I should try? I just know there is a crazy awesome Starbucks drink I need to experience. Please share. I need a change--something new and exciting. Something that will make me raise my cup in the air and yell, "POWER"! (Or something close.) Lay it on me. What's your favorite?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Oh my goodness

Jeb has a new phrase. He says it all the time, and it makes us laugh without fail.

Yesterday, I finally got him to say it on video. Quite the task.

Oh. My. Goodness.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Biggest Loser Moment

There aren't many shows I'm addicted to. But The Biggest Loser is one of them. Love. It. I schedule my time so I will be sure to be watching from the elliptical at the gym while the contestants are working out at the ranch. It is so motivating, even if Jillian isn't there screaming in my ear.

Last season, I had a favorite team. The Pink Team.... how fitting. I rooted on Sherry and Ashley Johnson every step of the way. Remember them? Mother and daughter? Knoxville, TN? Let me refresh your memory.

A few weeks ago, I was privileged to hear and meet Sherry Johnson in person when she came to speak at an event at our church. She was incredible--a solid woman of God who talked about how she drew on her faith throughout the show. I mean, when Jillian is yelling in your face, you better have something solid to draw from, right?

Sherry was genuine, honest, and completely unashamed to talk about Jesus and His role in her life. She was so refreshing, and I was so starry eyed. I was not leaving there without a picture... even a bad one. Here is a shot of me, Sherry, and my sweet friend, Kate.

Does that woman not look A-MAZ-ING!? I believe she went from 218 pounds to 135. Isn't it insane when you do something you never thought possible? That's what she did. And from that, she is reaching and blessing life after life after life. If we hand over what we have with all our heart, God. Can. Do. Anything.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Chillin' at Cowboys Stadium

After we left Grandpa's on Sunday, we headed to Dallas to watch our Shiloh Saints play in the Kirk Herbstreit Classic. I had never been to Cowboys Stadium, so I was in awe from the get-go. It's a pretty insane facility--impressive to say the very least.

My kids were in awe, too... for about the first thirty minutes. Then it was all old news.
Jeb fell asleep standing up and hung out in my arms for the next 45 minutes or so. I mean, his surroundings were so booooring... what else is a boy to do?

And here's Estella Dru, playing her iPod from her suite. You know... nothin' else to do but play your iPod in Cowboys Stadium.

Sadly, Shiloh lost. But seriously? Who gets invited to play in Cowboys Stadium in high school? We are SO proud of those boys and their coaches. Oh... And wanna see who we played? I'm just going to warn you.... this isn't normal. Not even a little. They performed this little number on the field before the game. I'll just tell ya'... it was just as freaky in person.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


My Grandma and Grandpa were married in April 1941. In August of the next year, WWII was on, and Grandpa was drafted into the army.

After basic training, he was sent to Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands as part of the 25th Division. From there, the 25th was to be deployed to Vella Lavella, another island in the Solomans, occupied by the Japanese. They were to be part of the Allied invasion.

The night before, a sergeant stood before the division members and called out ten names. Grandpa's name was among them. He, along with the others, were told they would not be participating in the invasion. Instead, they had been selected to stay behind on Guadalcanal to help form an island command.

Grandpa remained on the island for 28 months until he was injured in a motorcycle accident and sent home in 1945.

This past Friday, September 3rd, my family gathered at Grandpa's for a birthday celebration. He turned 89.

The 25th Division returned to Guadalcanal after the invasion of Vella Lavella. Grandpa said some of the men who left, some of the men he had trained with, didn't come back. After their stop on Guadalcanal, the division was sent elsewhere and encountered more fierce combat and even more casualties, or so Grandpa heard. In his words, "They were hit hard. I don't know why things happened like they did. I guess God was just with me."

I don't have to guess. I believe God knew that man had a lot left to do.... A lot of lives left to bless, especially mine. Whether he saw heavy battle or not, in my eyes, there's never been a braver, more honorable hero. For five years now, he has lived alone in that house without Grandma. He washes his own clothes, makes his own bed, cooks his own meals, mops his own floors. Grandma would be so proud of him. I know I am.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Texting with Matt on a Friday

We haven't had a TEXTING WITH MATT post in quite a while. I believe it's time.

I need to give you a bit of background on this one. One of my husband's favorite things to do is cause me to "waste my breath." He will ask a question he already knows the answer to, then play dumb when I try to explain it to him. For example, he will say, "What girl are you talking about?" (Knowing EXACTLY who I am talking about.) I explain, and then he proceeds to pretend like he can't place here. After a five minute conversation when my frustration level is off the charts, he'll start laughing. And I know... I've been had.

Enough background. Here we go. Texting with Matt on a Friday, presented in its original, terrifying grammar.

MATT: Already forgot what you wanted. Can you text it to me

ANG: Half and half, oil, and a hammer to smash jeb's train that he won't let me stop

MATT: What type of oil

ANG: Veg

MATT: What kind

ANG: Veg

MATT: What


MATT: I just got you to waste a text. (Insert evil laughter that I didn't witness personally but I KNOW was there.)

ANG: I want a divorce.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Oh, Belle....

Yesterday, Belle's teacher (whom we ADORE) found Matt at school and told him a little story. She said that the kids were given a little time to work on a project with just a sheet of paper and some supplies (colors and such) before they got to 'serious' time--classroom work.

When the time came to put the colors away, Mrs. Y. said she never noticed anything unusual about Belle. Then she began teaching at the board, and when she turned around, Belle was sitting at her chair, listening quietly, wearing this....

Yes, my child had made a mask with her sheet of paper, and you know... why not wear it? Isn't that normal? Wearing a mask in class? Oh, my sweet Belle. (Big sigh.) Mrs. Y. told Matt she just had to stop and laugh. And after seeing the mask this morning, I totally understand. Just imagine turning around and seeing this...

Quite the sight, isn't it? We are so thankful for teachers who can love on our super sweet, creative, happy-go-lucky, head in the clouds little girl.

Oh, Belle...

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Look what E Dru found.

Look what Estella Dru found at Grandpa's house.

I had her tucked away in a cedar chest. Now she is a staple around here. (By the way, she is dressed in one of my old baby dresses.) When I got this doll it was A BIG DEAL. I think it was 1982, and Grandma could NOT find any where we lived. She and my mom and step dad collaborated, and another family member finally came up with this one for me in Wisconsin. I was a happy little girl.

Well, of course I had to make sure she was legit. And she was....

In case you're wondering, her name is Marlena Cecily. Doesn't she look like a Marlena Cecily?

I carried that baby around for YEARS as you can tell by her dirty little face. I absolutely love seeing Estella Dru with her today. I think she loves her as much as I did way back when.

Did you have a Cabbage Patch Kid? Do you still have it? Even better... can you remember their name? Please do tell.