Friday, July 20, 2012

Life without Facebook

I recently "gave up" Facebook for Lent and now that we're about half-way in, I thought I'd blog an update. This was a fairly large sacrifice for me, more so than when I gave up in 2007(which I never went back to) and eating out in 2011. I use Facebook for work, I'm an 'early adopter', and I just really like my social networking.

I was finding, though, that Facebook distracted me from my family - my husband and son, and even my extended family. Sometimes it distracted me from work or from my commitments to others. I often found myself checking the news feed while out to dinner with Jon on a rare date night out without Mack.

I was ruled by other people's lives. And if we're honest, the majority of what people post on Facebook is their 'best of' album. The best things their children say, the best things they are doing, their best jokes. What they most want people to see - not even the real them.

I do it, too. And then constantly refresh my news feed to see if I have any new 'Likes' or comments or shares. I monitor closely to see who agrees with my political or religious views, seek affirmation that my son is adorable, and wait to receive praise for my witty postings.

My attempt to be validated by others had become all consuming. And tiring. And addicting.

So what have I been doing without Facebook?

I have been stressing A LOT less.
This post was originally written March 14, 2012 and never posted. I like to follow through and complete all projects.

I've been thinking

I've been thinking that I need to start blogging again before life passes me by and I only have iPhone pictures to capture the memories.

Somewhere in the last year and half my baby became a little boy!

Other major things that happened:
Mack was baptized (April 2011)
My mom completed 17 chemo treatments, had surgery and had 30+ radiation treatments (March 2011 - Oct 2011)
I went to work at a pediatric hospital (Aug 2011)
Jon went to work at the school he attended (Aug 2011)
Bon-Bon, our beloved Bon-Bon, retired (March 2012)
I gave up Facebook for Lent (Lent 2012)
Sadly, my sister's marriage ended (2012)
My brother and his wife had their third child, a girl! (July 16, 2012)
Just one day later, my beautiful grandmother passed away (July 17, 2012)

So, what will I be blogging about? Most likely life as a working mom. Why? Because I like to imagine that my body is as thin as I am stretched.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Hair or lack there of.

Close your eyes and think of someone close to you.  Your spouse, your best friend, your mom.  Do you see them as you last saw them in person?

For me, I always picture people in my head as they were during my fondest memories of them.  Sometimes it changes, but for a few, this image stays constant.  For instance, although my paternal grandmother is in her 80s, living in an assisted home and her mind is wavering, I will always picture her in her room at her home in Ft. Worth.  She would watch TV in bed late into the night, read and study her bible and often times have the classic music radio station on.  I can still picture the giant green plastic cup she drank water out of which was always next to her bed and the scattering of flat toothpicks on her night stand (she was also a big popcorn fan).

This is how I usually picture my family:

This is from the 1988 First Baptist Euless Church Directory.  Do churches still have directories or do people just get on Facebook?  I'm not sure.  I am pretty sure this directory is still by the home phone at my parent's house, too.  Growing up, my parents would reference it to remember who our friend's parents were, find a phone number or address and check what the Fellowship Hall was serving on Wednesdays for dinner.  Although I don't remember the exact details, I imagine that my dad is home from traveling & that is why my brother looks well behaved.

My mom has breast cancer and today, after 3 days of hair falling in clumps, we shaved her head.  My sisters & I had wanted to make a 'party' of it for tomorrow afternoon but it was coming out so fast we didn't think there'd be time. Although her official diagnosis was over a month ago and she just completed her second round of chemo, her appearance hasn't changed.

Until today.  

After giving Jon is bi-weekly buzz, my mom sat on her patio holding a trash bag and I shaved her head with the clippers.  First her right side.  Then the left.  A few pictures with the mohawk & then I shaved it all off.  She does look different.  Like maybe she has cancer.

To me, though, I will always see my mom with this hair - a look only achieved with hot rollers.  In that dress my dad brought back from a trip to Korea (which I later accidentally vacuumed over), the necklace, also from Korea.  The blush from Clinique.  And I know she was probably wearing Sung by Alfred Sung perfume.

The great thing about hair loss from chemo is that it grows back and hopefully the cancer doesn't.  So, Mom's Hair, we'll see you in a few months - she would prefer that you grow back in Auburn & not gray.  Straight & not curly.  Fast & not slow.

Peace out, cancer.  Don't let the door hit you on your way out!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Still Stuck Inside

We're all losing it, the house is a mess and our dogs are babies who won't pee in the snow.

- Posted from my iPhone

Snow Day 4 - Fri., Feb. 4

We woke up to about 6 inches of snow. Yes, this is Dallas!

- Posted from my iPhone

Snow Day 3- Thurs., Feb.3

Seriously?!?!! Still sick, still tons of ice. Mack went to Bon Bon's again. I slept until 5:11.

The weather forecasters predicted 1-2" of snow Thurs. night.
my nurse team - Jon, Libby, and Kimber

- Posted from my iPhone

Sick on Snow Days!

Tues. night, I got a massive wave of the stomach flu. I'll spare you the details but it was bad & nasty.

So bad, in fact, that Tues. Night around 10:30pm I called for Jon, crying, and begged him to take me to the Dr.

At a night at the ER with an IV & I was much better but still sick.

Thank goodness our nanny lives two doors down from us. Tues. Mack stayed home but on Weds., with me sick, Jon walked him down to Bonnie's.

I think he was happy to go, too.

- Posted from my iPhone

Snow Day 1-Tues., Feb.1

Dallas got a slick layer of ice. So thick, people were ice skating in the streets and in parking lots.

We spent Tues. lounging around, having tickle fights, eating out of boredom, and not bathing.

- Posted from my iPhone

Pre-Snow Days

We had dinner at the Preston's, where Mack & Lily & Annabelle all took a bath. I didn't have PJs for Mack so we got a glimpse into what our lives would be like if we had an Elizabeth or a Ruth or insert some other cute, biblical girl name.

- Posted from my iPhone

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Great Outdoors

MBB loves being outdoors so much.  He cries when we come inside the house in the evenings.  He doesn't care if it is cold, dark or windy. I think I will enjoy this more in the Spring. :)

New Year's Goals 2011

A lot of my friends blogged about New Year's Goals on Jan. 1 - show offs.

Here are mine -

1. Blog more - blog more for myself, Genesis & start my freelance blog.  This includes a blog redesign, too.  What's that saying, "the landscaper always has the worst yard?".  Yeah.

2. Master the manual settings on my camera.

3. Try Indian food.  I have only had Indian food once at the hot bar at Whole Foods.  It tasted like stale leftovers.  Someone teach me the ways of curry!

4. Declutter house - CHECK!  Did this while prepping our house to sell.  There is nothing in our closets that we don't need & I have rid our house of tons of paperwork that needed to be shredded.

5. Go to 3 concerts and (re)discover music.  Before Mack, we used to listen to a LOT of music and go to plenty of concerts.  I miss that.  I loved being a fan of bands BEFORE they became popular.  I will fix that in 2011.

6. Become addicted to some form of exercise.  I think I could become a runner but it is just so boring.  Leaning towards yoga but I just need to try something new.

7. Not eat out as much.  Cook more and cook with Mack.  If this house sells, we will definitely need one of these at the next house.

8. Decide on when/how/if we will expand our family.  Infertility is a tricky thing so maybe towards the end of 2011 we will have a 'plan' or some idea of what we would like to do.  For now, though, Mack is so much fun, I can't imagine sharing my love and attention with someone else.

Elmore Christmas

My brother & his family couldn't make it to Christmas this year in Grapevine.  We missed them so badly.  I'm planning on seeing them in March & can't wait.

 Mack & Aunt Beth
 Mack & his new chair (it has a gansta lean).
 My mother was born & raised in Dayton, OH and each Christmas her sisters send her some Esther Price chocolates.  When we were little I remember us kids eating most of the chocolates.  Gosh, moms sure are self-less.  For the record, I did not have a single chocolate this year.  I hope my mom got to enjoy all of them.
Mack being silly with Beth.  He is still such a cuddle bug.

After this my camera died & the battery wouldn't charge.  I don't even have Burns Christmas pics!  I have since replaced my batter charger & we are back in business.

Christmas Decorations 2010

 Half of the Mantle
 Stocking - Jon, Mack, Sarah.  My sister, Beth, made Mack's stocking.  I was supposed to get around to making two that matched it for me & Jon this year but I didn't.  Maybe I should do that in the summer when work is slower.
 Minimally decorated tree.  Mack REALLY liked the ornaments.  The tree is completely uneven and instead of star, there are deer antlers.  I need to fix that problem.  Every morning when we would walk into the living room, Mack would point and say, "Tree!".  He was so cute with lights, too.  He would say, "ooOOOOOooo" each time he saw tree or house lights.
 My grandmother's nativity scene.  She got this when she got married in 1947 or 1948ish.  It's obviously missing a few pieces (I later found the baby Jesus in the toe of one of the stockings) but it's very sentimental.
 Vintage ornaments on the white tree.  I began collecting vintage Christmas ornaments the first year of our marriage.  I keep an eye out for them at Estate Sales, Canton & Garage Sales.  They can be quite pricey but I try to keep it cheap.  I have about 45 ornaments & they look great on this white tree in my turquoise, black & white dining room.
 Soap Stone Nativity Scene acquired in Kenya in 1996.  My first trip to Kenya and I fell in love with this soap stone carved nativity scene.  I originally bought it for my grandmother (same one as above) but once I got married she gave it back to me.  I love it.  I can still remember the face of the man who was carving and selling these.
I designed these to give out to our friends and donors at our Holiday Gala.  Using our Holiday branding & regular logo, these ornaments are nothing too special design wise but for sure this ornament will ALWAYS be on my tree.  I love this place and the work our amazing counselors and case managers do.  I love that I get to help make Christmas happen for hundreds of women & children who think that Santa will never find them in a Shelter.  Trust me, he not only finds them but he DELIVERS.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Decade Three

On Dec. 2nd, I turned 30.  Thirty!

I can't believe I'm so old.  Okay, it's not really that old but thirty!  I've already done all the 'major' things in life - college, traveled parts of the world, marriage, buy a house, birth a child.  It feels like I've done it all yet also that I haven't done anything.

I am finally starting to feel more like myself and for that I am grateful because the ages of about 17-22 were very weird for me.  I'm so glad I never have to be that age again.

Here's the thing about a Dec. 2 bday.  It gets lost in the Holidaze.  People are still sitting with their pants undone after Thanksgiving or are already knee-deep in tinsel that birthdays (including mine) are the last thing they want to celebrate.

I mean, I share the birthday month with Jesus.  Even though Christ was probably born sometime in the Spring, some ad wizard who needed to bring up sales in the 4th quarter decided to make Dec. 25th the day we celebrate the birth of our Lord & Savior.  Which is fine, I guess.

So Jon (along with his mom) planned a surprise party for me.  And I was super surprised.  For one, I was looking forward to spending that evening in my PJs, in my bed, watching TV or farting around on the internet.  He encouraged me to go with him to his parent's to drop Mack off and put on a real shirt (rather than a t-shirt), saying that he'd take me to dinner & coat shopping.  I reluctantly put on clothes.

We got to his parents and I came in from the garage towards the kitchen & was stunned to see my entire family (Elmores and Burns) plus dear friends there.  It was really great and I still haven't even sent Thank You notes (or all of our Christmas Cards).

It was a great night so if you came, Thank You!  I was very surprised to start Decade Three by peeing my pants (just kidding).

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

mack is...




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Everyone Gather Around the (Sand) Table

Scott, Mack & James

Mack was a BIG fan of the sand table

Even after the cold front came in & the temp dropped 25 degrees!
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Happy Birthday, Joe!

The day before Thanksgiving was Jon's younger brother, Joe's, birthday. We were so glad to enjoy an adults only night out with the family (thank you Mimi for babysitting!). Bob, Kay, Zach & Julie, Scott & Nonnie, Jon & me, and Joe & his girlfriend, Erminia (who was in from Italy) celebrated at East Side Cafe in ATX. These pictures make me want to master the manual settings on my camera!

Joe is truly one-of-a-kind. Not only is he extremely smart (Fullbright Scholarship Finalist!) but he is an amazing cook with a passion for Italian food (and of course he is fluent in Italian). He's also the 3rd of 4 and so Joey & I can really connect. :) Joey is always himself no matter what and we really admire that. We're so glad that Joe is Mack's Godfather!
Bob, Zach, Jon, someone's purse, Joe
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