Tall City Blues Fest 2012

Some days, you just need to listen to the blues.  I’ve never been a huge fan of BB King, but completely appreciate his musical art. My heart leans more towards the likings of Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jonny Lang.  I’ll never forget the first time that I heard Jonny Lang on the radio while I was riding in the car with my oldest brother.  Something about the wail of the guitar, the pulse of the song…..it spoke to my heart!

I never expected to find blues music in Midland, Texas BUT I DID!  The Tall City Blues Fest was advertised around town and  caught my attention.  Storms blew through a few hours before hand, bringing about a nice chill and breeze to the opening night.  Tents and tables were set up in the streets and the music filled the downtown area when we got there.

Robby was SUPER excited for the crawfish/shrimp boil.

I have to admit, not nearly as good as our favorite place (The Boiling Pot) but it wasn’t bad.  My sister-in-law, Jenny, has perfected the crawfish boil while in Minnesota (impressive, right?!  I didn’t know they had crawfish up there!).  Her tip, only use half of the seasoning in the boil, then use the other half for tossing with the crawfish after you pull it out of the water.  It adds more of a kick and ensures that the spice is not lost in the drained water!   Thanks, Jenn!

The music was terrific!   More of a zydeco feel and oh so much fun to dance to.  My wonderful husband twirled me around in the street while we listened.

Everything is more fun with friends, and the Tall City Blues Fest was great with this group!

Can’t wait for next year when we can do it again!!

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Workout failure….again.

Let me begin this post by saying that I can be a bit of a clutz, but typically I’m graceful.  Thanks goes out to my parents for the many MANY years of dance lessons!  Also, I have a bit of a tendency to push myself (too far) when it comes to working out.  My pain tolerance, I think, is pretty decent.  I’m not the lady who plans on giving birth naturally (God bless you who had/will!  YOU are my hero!)  But this injury…..it takes the cake on pain in my life so far.

A week ago I decided to go to a small gym and get a good workout before accomplishing a few other things on my weekend To-Do list.  I invited my mother-in-law to meet me at the gym and started on my cardio and weights before she arrived.   I’ve been on the look out for new things to do for my work out, ya know….spice up the mundane and routine.  I’ve been intrigued my the kettlebell and have considered purchasing some.  Just my luck, there was a 10 pound set at the gym.  I did the basic ‘swing’ (as pictured below), and then decided to o a variation of it.

So imagine with me, if you will, and take this same exercise.  Instead of squatting down and swinging the kettle between the legs, turn to the right, swinging the kettle bell to the right of the knee.  As you stand, you swing across the body and extend the arms to the left, above the shoulder.   It’s a great workout for obliques at the same time as working your legs and butt.   You can repeat it to the other side to get both sides worked out.   It is this variation on the above exercise that has changed my life for the past week.  (As I said, BE CAREFUL!)

On my third repetition, my left hip made a click noise, pain shot across my lower back, I lost feeling in my legs and dropped to the floor.   WHAT in the world happened???!!!   Thankful to have long arms, I reached for my cell phone and saw that my mother-in-law had texted that she had just arrived.  I texted, “hurt my back, on the floor”    She came rushing in and found me in the same spot (I couldn’t go far!) and laid beside me for about 30 minutes.  After getting me to stand, she shuttled me back home and got my set up with ice on the couch.

I hear the question in your mind:  Where was your husband?   WELL….he had made it to the championship round of the golf tournament that weekend.  He was in the middle of the game and I didn’t want to throw him off when I didn’t know anything more than the fact that I was hurt.   So I texted him to call me when he won. (hehehe, I always assume he will win.  Gotta think positive!)  He did call, and he did win!  YAY!   He called right as I was being helped out of the car to the doctor’s office my mother-in-law and amazing grandfather-in-law.  The phone call went something like this:

Me:  Hi babe!

Robby:  Hey babe!   I won!

Me:  That’s great.  Can you meet me at the doctor?  Like…now?

Robby:  What did you do?  Where do I go?

Me:  I’ll text you the address and explain when you get here.   I love you!

      My husband got there as soon as possible, and held my hand as the doctor poked around, adjusted, and massaged my back.  Basically, kettlebell exercise is great but not the way I did it.

I’m healing, slowly.  It will take weeks for me to finally be back to “normal” and back to working out like I want to.  Until then, small tasks are huge for me:  tieing my shoes, picking something up off the ground, even shaving my legs!  My family has been so helpful and encouraging (even telling me to take it easy because I push myself to hard).

I do suggest working out with the kettlebell, though!  Just be careful!  If you are prone to accidents, like I am, please take it easy and listen to your body!

Summer Sweets

While my terrific mother-in-law was helping me clean out cabinets and organize my new kitchen, I decided to whip up an afternoon snack for us.  I’ve learned over the past few years that I like to show my love for others through cooking.  So if I ever cook for you, you know you’ve got a special place in my heart.  Such as my FLA Staff:  My previous co-workers at Forest Lane Academy knew this and would start putting in their requests for certain dishes when our monthly pot-luck-luncheons would happen.  Soapapilla Cheesecake!!!  Legendary!

Anyway……As I began to cook for others, I learned that I had to stretch my recipes to fit the needs of many different people: vegetarians, low carbs, diabetic, allergies, vegans, etc…   The challenges inspire me and give me new goals to work towards.   And this afternoon was no different.  How could I make something in 5 minutes or less, that is healthy, and not heavy/rich during the summer heat?   Done!

Quick Banana Pudding

Berry Chocolate Delight

My favorite thing is how EASY it is to eat healthy things when you keep the right food in the fridge.  I made some sugar-free pudding earlier, and had lots of different types of fruit.   Combined together, it’s a fast snack/desert for all!  Enjoy!

Bathroom Remodel Ideas

CALLING ALL D.I.Y.ers!!!    

I could use some ideas, color schemes, and (the big key) experienced advice about doing a few things to our current bathroom.   First, take a look at the pictures and then we’ll get down to business.

Here are the conditions that we have to work with:

  1. Budget:   There is no budget.   As in, we have no money.   So whatever ideas you have need to be thrifty.
  2. Tagging on to #1, we are keeping a few things: countertops, cabinets, fixtures, sink, toilet, and bathtub.  Don’t get fancy on me, we’re not ripping out the bathtub to put in a state-of-the-art shower with 10 pulsating shower heads and a TV and Bose surround sound!  (one day…..*sigh*)
  3. Shower sliding doors/curtains.   Currently we have an accordion style, plastic door where glass would normally be.   I’m not a fan.  HELP!
  4. Style:    We are people who like simple designs, clean lines, and little clutter.   My husband appreciates that I don’t make everything hot pink with zebra stripes and “all-girlie-froo-froo.”
  5. Floors:  At the moment we have a deep forest green carpet that is in great condition.   I’m not sure our land-lord (Grandfather) would let us rip it out and put tile in there.   We might be able to do that when we get the dream shower.   So until then……the green carpet stays.

I’m curious to hear what you would do to this bathroom.   Ideas?   Suggestions?   Bring it on!

Our 1st home,….sort of.

Everyone looks forward to their first place to live.  I have enjoyed my apartments and moves as a single gal in Dallas.  Each apartment was different and added a new view on life.  And now, it’s time for that 1st place for Robby and me as a married couple.    Which means……..

GOODBYE, Dallas, my city and my home for 10 years!    I will miss you!

AND………

HELLO WEST TEXAS!    

For the moment, there is hardly any housing to be found.  There has been an “oil boom” in the past year and everyone is moving to Midland/Odessa for work.  Though it’s great for the economy, and all the restaraunts that I enjoy from Dallas are building out West, there are NO homes available!  To get into an apartment, we would be on a waiting list for 4-6 months, if not more.  What about renting a home you say?   Nope.  Why would people rent their home when they could sell it for more than they bought it in less than 2 days on the market?    If we were to find one for rent, the rent is outrageous!    Some homes are going for $4,000/month, if not more!  CRAZY times outs here.  Which leads us to…….

Question:  What are we to do as newly with a very tiny budget??

Answer:  We move in with Robby’s grandfather, Daddy Jim!  (We’re so thankful that we have family out here to help us out.  What would we do without family?!)

It’s not what we ever dreamed of as our first home, but it’s more space than we could ever have imagined!  OH!  AND it’s nice to be in a home, not an apartment.  (I just realized I haven’t lived in a home in 10 years!  WOW!   Sure is nice to have a driveway and not have to search for parking at an apartment.)  One of my favorite things about the house….the closet!  I have so much space for my shoes!  Now that makes me a happy lady.

Here are a few pictures of Daddy Jim’s home.  Not sure how long we will be here, but we’re enjoying it so far!   Each room is a “blast from the past” and makes me giggle when I see the carpet and wall paper each morning.  But it’s fun and makes me feel like I’m living in a time warp.

It was right about this point in taking pictures this morning that I thought to my self, “Self, you should go outside and take some pictures of the back yard.”   So outdoors I went, barefoot, glasses on, in my fuzzy pink bathrobe.  And LOCKED MYSELF OUT OF THE HOUSE!!!!   My cell phone was inside, everyone was at work.  Just me and the dog, Lil’ Bit, in the back yard.   What was I to do?  Climb the fence and introduce myself to my new neighbors in my bathrobe?  Wait in the backyard and hope someone came home for lunch???   Thankfully I remembered the code to the garage and was able to get back inside.   You better believe that I will remember that the back door locks automatically behind you!     After that, I had a few more pictures of our new home.   Thought you might enjoy my lil’ excursion in my bathrobe and glases.

Check out the laundry room cabinets!   That’s right, TONS of color in there!   I like all of the different shapes and sizes to the drawers and doors.  Makes it easy to find a space for everything.  It’s just gotta fit somewhere, right?!?!

Then there’s the “Blue” room and indoor hot tub!   Can’t wait to use that this winter!

For the most part, that’s our new home.  There’s a few other rooms  (formal living/dining room, extra bedrooms, pantry,etc…) but I figured you might be bored by this point.

So thanks for touring our first home with us.  If we get to remodel/update the house one day, these pictures will be great with before and after shots.   Until then, I’ll keep living in my time warp.  I mean….who doesn’t  love bright orange and black in their bathroom!?!?!   That’s what I thought.

July 4th

We spent July 4th with Robby’s family at the beach in Rockport, which was amazing!   Jenny’s blog will let you know more about it.  So fun!  Here are a few of her pictures……

It’s amazing how a family that I just officially became apart of 1 month ago is so near and dear to my heart!  I truly enjoyed my time with each and every one of them.  From cooking with Jenny to laughing at the brothers playing around with fireworks, to listening to stories from Daddy Jim and Mynaynee, to shopping with Greta (my great mother-in-law) to playing with my new nephews, to relaxing at the beach, it was a great vacation.  I hope we can make this a tradition.  It’s one worth keeping!

Happy Birthday, Robby!

This day, 27 years ago, my wonderful husband was born!   I’m so glad that God put us in each other’s lives just at the right moment.  Robby has a wonderful family that loves, supports, and encourages him.   His friends are fun loving and have made many memories with Robby throughout the years.  Here are a few pictures to show you what a great guy he is!

Robby and his mother, Greta.

Our cowboy baseball player.

Robby, Danny, Bill, Greta, Jenny, and Joe

Mr. America

Robby loves to sing karoke!

Gig’ Em, Aggies!

Robby’s such a good dancer! All the ladies love him. All the men are jealous of his moves.

My Texas. My Rangers!

I love my husband!

So here’s to you, the love of my life.  I pray that your 27th year is full of adventure and joy and laughter and that you live it to it’s fullest! Happy Birthday!

  

A Whole New World

I’ve read many of my friends’ blogs for months, following their family, relationships, cooking, thoughts, and more.  I’ve laughed, rejoiced, and even teared up a little when I read through each blog.   Isn’t it wonderful to communicate with others around the world and share the every day life happenings and monumental moments?

So, we decided to start our blog.  Robby and I are moving to Midland/Odessa, Texas to start our life together as a married couple.  (We just got married on June 9th).  Since this will be 8 hours from my family and 6 hours from our friends, we figured it would be a great way to share what God is doing in our lives as we branch out.

So stick around and follow us into this Whole New World of married life, west Texas, and a great adventure together!