Sunday, January 25, 2009

Household Celebrity Encounter!!

We helped host an engagement party for Natalie & Scott last night at none other than Dave Baird's house! For those of you not in Birmingham (or probably from some in B'ham who don't watch the news), Dave Baird & Brenda Ladun are the anchors for the 6 and 10 o'clock weekday news on ABC 33/40, which is without question the top news channel in Birmingham. He even had 2 Emmy awards on display in his house. How cool is that?! Also, his wife Susan is an artist, and Alan & Sandi have like 5 or 6 of her paintings. When we told her that, shw knew exactly who they were and said they were one of her TOP clients. What a prestigious title! Anways, Meredith was dying to get our picture made with him, so i grabbed him and said "Mr. Baird, my wife really wantd to get our picture made with you", but secretly I did too! He was super nice and we talked for a long time. I thought it was funny because someone called him "The Velvet Voice of the South". If only I had a description like that...Most of all I wanted to hear him do Ron Burgundy impressions, but I'm not sure he would have gone for it.


Friday, January 23, 2009

Thanks for the Bath, Daddy!

Catching up on my reading!
Lovey time with Mommy!

Look how long I am!



You put your right foot in...
Chilling in my Bumbo seat. That says "Spoiled" in case you can't read it


The Changes Begin

An article about Obama re-enacting the abortion funding policy caught my attention on Yahoo just a minute ago, and I felt compelled to post some of the quotes from both Democratic supporters and Republican opposers. Abortion is a touchy subject because most people never have to experience the decision themselves, and I'm not sure you can really formulate a strong opinion without "walking a mile in those shoes". I am merely here to present both sides of the argument.

Democratic

"Today's announcement is a very powerful signal to our neighbors around the world that the United States is once again back in the business of good public policy and ideology no longer blunts our ability to save lives around the globe," said Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Republican

"President Obama not long ago told the American people that he would support policies to reduce abortions, but today he is effectively guaranteeing more abortions by funding groups that promote abortion as a method of population control," said Douglas Johnson, legislative director of the National Right to Life Committee.

From the little bit I have read, this program is designed to funnel US taxpayer dollars outside our borders to fund abortion clinics in poor countries. It is also designed to provide dollars for reproductive health care and HIV/AIDS treatment. With the tremendous outcry against genocide from the people of the US, it is quite surprising that this policy can be re-enacted so swiftly, and that this was a high enough priority to be addressed when our own country is in dire need of its own money.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Weekend Update

This has been the most relaxing weekend in recent or even distant memory. WHEW...I didn't realize how much I/we needed one of these. We have really done next to nothing, and it is everything I hoped it would be. Friday night after work we cleaned the house (which is an unusual time to do that for us), but it was nice to have a clean carpet, especially since there were Chloe hairballs all over the place! We dogsat for Alan & Sandi while they were in Vegas doing fun stuff like meeting Jessica Biel at the Bellagio bar(Alan did)! On the weekends I usually get up early (5 am or so) and let Meredith sleep in because that's really the only time she can ever sleep in, and it is so much fun watching MA in the mornings when she is well-rested and energetic. She likes to get in her Jumperoo and watch Baby Einstein while I lay on the couch and pretend like I'm sleeping. I usually wish I was sleeping, but those mornings are great. Oh, also on Friday night we watched Tropic Thunder, which I thought was hysterical! Tom Cruise moved up one notch in my book, which promotes him from creepiest guy in the world to creepiest guy in the world who had a hilarious role in a comedy. Is that an Oscar category? If not, he will never win one. He's just not that good! Anyone agree? Saturday morning we went grocery shopping at Wal-Mart. It amazes me how much cheaper Wal-Mart is even compared to Winn-Dixie. Our groceries were $63. The same stuff would have been pushing $100 at WD! I am all about the deal, so I don't mind buying my groceries from a company that gives their employees crappy benefits. Yesterday we went to church and then went to Macy's to spend Meredith's gift card, which of course was spent on...Margaret Anne! Today I haven't done much more than bathe Daisy and eat a serving of pancakes that was "recommended" for 3 people. Meredith's mom should be here any minute to stay the night. She has a workshop in town tomorrow. I refuse to think about tomorrow, or the rest of the week for that matter. I'll worry about that later!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I don't REALLY even mind the extra 20 lbs...

I had a conversation with someone recently who said “life just keeps getting better” as we get older. That really made me begin to ponder my life and where I thought I would be at this point.

When we graduate high school, we have all of these dreams and ideas in our head of what we will be and how we will achieve our goal. Some of us have a good idea what we want to be when we grow up and start to major in something that will allow us to get there, while some of us have no idea and think we will just figure it out on the ride. For both types of people, it is never really that easy. Life just doesn’t ever turn out exactly like you think it will. For me, I thought I would go to college, make straight A’s, have my pick of medical schools and be one of the best doctors in my field. I had no idea how difficult that would be and that it was not what God had planned for me. I discovered it just a few months into my college career, and while my family may have thought it was laziness, I just didn’t have the desire in my heart to pursue medicine. I loved science, and stayed with my Pre-med Zoology major just waiting to see what would happen. That is when I met George, who became my major professor in grad school, which ultimately led me to teaching, which is where my heart and my talents lie. I get so disgusted with my job some days, but I realize how blessed I am to work with the children and people that I do.

During my practice teaching, I had a wonderful mentor teacher, Mr. Scott. He helped me learn SO many things about being an educator and gave me confidence that I could handle a classroom on my own and do it well. Turns out he had George as a teacher at Auburn as well.
During all of my college years (all 7 including grad school), my personal life spent a large chunk of time in turmoil. My boyfriend during the last few years of college was not a positive influence on my life, and yet somehow I managed to ignore that and think that if I just held on to that relationship a little longer things would change. They didn’t, and no matter what I did or what advice I got from my dearest and truest of friends, I hung on to that part of my life so tightly, and it wasn’t until I met my good friend Corrie that I learned I could let it go. When I did, I was a new person. I felt lighter than air, ready for any new challenge that may come my way. About a month after that, I met Hays. I thought Hays was too good to be true. It is amazing what the power of prayer will do, and how your previous life experiences can make you so appreciative of what you have. I was amazed that Hays actually called when he SAID he would, and that his actions actually matched his words. I love the book “The Last Lecture,” by Randy Pausch, and one part that I remember is when he talks about advice he would give to his daughter about dating. He says that when it comes to boys, ignore everything they SAY and only pay attention to what they DO. Hays is one of the greatest examples of this that I think I could ever find. He and I will both give that advice to Margaret Anne some day. I can honestly say that I look at Hays through totally different eyes since she was born. In the hospital, he rarely left my side, only leaving the room to get coffee or find some food. He was my strength during her delivery, and I was comforted by the fact that he was there and he was so supportive and reassuring. And let’s not even forget that he watched the WHOLE surgery from the time she was born until I was all closed up and he still loves me even more today!

When I was in college and I thought about where I would be when I am 30, I always thought that I would be married and have kids. It is funny though, that looking back I had no idea what that actually MEANT. When I found out I was pregnant, I have to admit that I did not think that I was ready to be a mother. Hays and I were both terrified, but excited. The pregnancy was wonderful. Yes I had some sickness, yes I gained too much weight, my blood pressure went up at the end and I had a C-section instead of a perfect delivery, but I had my beautiful baby girl in my arms. If I had known what I was carrying inside me during that 9 months, I never would have complained. Not once. I would have cried when she was born instead of just being completely overwhelmed. It takes a little while for some of us to realize how beautiful and special that little creature is. The first time she smiled at me, I thought my heart would explode. Every day while I am at work, I cannot wait to get to that little girl, and smell her stinky clothes and kiss her sweet little head. When we get home we have our own little routine, she plays while I change and straighten the house, then she has her dinner, bath, more playtime, a bottle, and then bed. Every morning she wakes up babbling, and I love to get up with her and feed her that first bottle, smell her head and think about how bad I am going to miss her during the day. Weekends are sacred, and any time I have to spend away from her feels like it is stolen from me. However, I do cherish and time that I get to be completely by myself, and sometimes my sweet husband even lets me sleep in for a few extra hours so he can have some of the alone time with her that he misses during the week.

I say all of this because when I look back to when I was a little younger and a lot more na├»ve, I thought that I would need to have an “exciting” life to feel fulfilled and happy. My life is definitely not exciting to those who are on the outside, but I cherish it. I love going home to my sweet, not very well decorated, small little townhome, and just being near my husband and my daughter every day. I know I am blessed, and that it is by God’s grace that I have what I have. Life does get better as we get older. To all of you who think that your life is boring, as I find myself doing sometimes, just remember that this is your earthly life and you are living it, right now, in the present. It is short, and even if my life is never more “exciting” than it is today, I will always be a happy woman, because to me the ordinary is extraordinary!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Randomness

I thought I should update you all a little bit on what has been going on with the Latimers. Truth is, its not much! This past weekend was really fun and busy, and right now we are keeping our dogniece Chloe. Oh how I love her. The only thing about Chloe is that she is SO needy. As a Springer spaniel, you would think that she would be the type of dog that would love to go exploring, hop in the creek behind our house, and be very independent. Chloe is the opposite of that. She doesn't like to be out of sight range, can't stand water, and even panics when she thinks you may remove her "jingles" (a.k.a. collar). She stares at the door until everyone is at home and then she stares at the stairs wondering when someone may come down, and she gets VERY nervous when one of us is upstairs and one is downstairs. When we do happen to come downstairs, she barks as if she has never seen us before. When she is ready to go to bed, she sits and stares at you until you go get in the bed, because she can't go by herself.
She is so sweet and when we get home, she puts her paws around your waist to hug you and buries her head into your stomach. If for some reason I may have to go back out to the car and come in again, she does it again like she hasn't even seen me! Since Alan and Sandi haven't called to check on her, I think we may just keep her. FOREVER.
Margaret Anne has been so fun lately! Hays' previous post was right... dinner time is the best time! She loves to eat and gets really antsy waiting on the spoon to get to her mouth, she often tries to grab it and the bowl. She smiles so much, but unfortunately it is hard to get pictures of her smiling because as soon as she sees the camera she stares at it like she has never seen it before, and the smile is lost. This morning she got up with Hays and played in her jumperoo while he snoozed on the couch, and when he woke up she was fast asleep in there, head slumped over to one side. I guess she just played herself out!
I hope everyone is doing well keeping up with their New Year's resolutions. I have only one, and that is to lose this baby weight by swimsuit season. We'll see how it goes. I tried the South Beach diet a couple of years ago, and it worked really well but I HATED Phase 1. I am going to see how I can do on my own, and if it doesn't start coming off, it will be South Beach again for me! Do any of you have resolutions this year?

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Dinner Time is the Best Time

Here are pictures of MA's latest skill. Enjoy!


Spare Time is at a Premium

I've spent the last few weeks occasionally checking the blog in an attempt to motivate me to write something, but it just hasn't been there. Is there a computer program that can just blog your thoughts without any real effort going into it? I hope not, because I would probably scare everyone away within the first few sentences. I also hope I'm not the only person who thinks that about themselves! Do you ever stop and say to yourself, "If anyone knew that I just thought that, I would need to leave the country", or something to that effect? I'm glad that just has to be between me and God, and usually Meredith if she is an unfortunate bystander. But I digress... We have had an action-packed life beginning somewhere around the week of Christmas. I never thought I would use the adjective "action-packed" when i am in pajamas by 7:00 at night :). I worked Monday and Tuesday of Christmas week, and Wednesday morning we jetted up to Gadsden to do Christmas with Meredith's family. There is something about Meredith's parents house that makes me chronically sleepy. Maybe that is one of the few places I can REALLY unwind, or maybe there is just an undetected gas leak that leads to low oxygen, which leads to me falling asleep. We had a wonderful Christmas, and ate alot, which is no surprise. On Friday I left Gadsden for Mobile/Biloxi for Ladd's bachelor party at the Beau Rivage. It was pretty cool, because he had no idea we were taking him, and when he showed up at his camphouse, we were all standing around waiting for him! Also, Eudy and I went fishing out there and had an awesome time...lots of fish. Biloxi was awesome; that's all you need to know about it. It is poor bachelor party ettiquette to give too many details. When I returned from Biloxi, it seemed that MA had discovered that she could make noise ON PURPOSE, so while she was playing, she would just scream at the top of her lungs, which was hilarious for about 7 minutes, then got a little excessive. One of the best things about having a child is watching them discover that they can do something that they couldn't do yesterday. Truly amazing. NYE was spent in Dothan at Alan & Sandi's, and we had a terrific dinner at the DCC with them and my parents. We rang in the New Year in the "hospital bed" position on Alan & Sandi's couch, which is not a sitting position or a laying position; more that in-between slouch where you are too lazy to sit up, but if you lay down you can't see the TV. Once again, I hope I'm not the only person who does this. The weekend following New Years was spent mostly doing laundry and deep cleaning our house. Where does this stuff come from? After that, things get kind of hazy because work began. Well, I have now over-blogged and we are leaving for dinner. I have to equip the diaper bag. Bye!