Thursday, May 27, 2010

Get to Know...Joy

3rd grade. Poor me. Nice Teeth. Braces were my best friend.

                                                                                    2nd Grade
                                                      Thanks for the perm Mom.

        If you were wondering, I've decided to profile everyone in our family so that you can know us a little better.  And today I've decided to do me, since I am probably the easiest to write about.  You know, considering how highly intelligent, wonderful, charming, and......JUST KIDDING!!!   Boy do I have flaws, and I know it! 
        In 1998, I sensed a calling from God to full-time ministry, so off I went to North Greenville College to obtain a Christian Studies degree.  In 2002, I ended up in New Orleans at seminary.  During my last semester of school, I met Arnold, and we got married in 2005.  Three months later, Hurricane Katrina brought us back to South Carolina, and five months after that, the Lord brought us back to New Orleans.  In March of 2006, I started working at William Carey University, New Orleans, an extension center of WCU in Hattiesburg, MS.  I started out as the secretary and somehow found myself two and a half years later as the Director of Student and Administrative Services.  My job entails a lot of fun stuff-- planning student events, working with a great staff, advising students, meeting lots of new students; a lot of tedious stuff--planning the schedule, placing textbook orders, filling out contracts, keeping up with the budget; and a lot of not so fun stuff-- enforcing the rules and dealing with disciplinary issues.  I try to take advantage of any ministry opportunities that come my way through my job, as I believe that God has called me here right now for a specific purpose and plan.  I want to be found faithful. 
        Like my daughter Peyton(see post below), I have to admit, I am probably 90% of the reason she is like she is.  I too can be demanding, intense, bossy, and independent.  Just ask my husband. ;)  I like to think I'm a good delegator.  He would say I'm bossy.  :)  (It's the oldest child thing....just ask my younger sisters).  I also like to think that I am sort of a fun person?  I was crazy in high school, college, and seminary.  I think I've probably toned it down a bit since having kids and the fact that I'm so incredibly tired all the time!  These days a lot of what I do is just surviving.  I do not have it all together.  Sometimes my relationship with the Lord is inconsistent.  Sometimes my relationship with Arnold is inconsistent.  But I do know that the Lord is walking with me on this journey. ("Your path led through the sea, your way through the mighty waters, though your footprints were not seen. Psalm 77:19)
        I never thought I would be in New Orleans this long, but we know the Lord has me (us) right where he wants me.  And who can totally understand His ways? 
        I absolutely love spending time with my kids and husband.  I do wish we were closer to family so that I could drop the kids off for a few days every now and then, I'll admit!  I love being outside, and if I am inside, I like every window open and door.  I used to run and be semi-athletic, now I get my exercise running up a flight of steps to the second floor of our townhouse 50 million times a day.  I love chick flicks, especially romantic comedies and I enjoy playing the piano at church.  I don't practice like I used to.  One of my favorite things to do with my family, apparently, has been to make up nicknames for them.  All of them have a nickname, some of them may not know they have a nickname (ha!), and I would never tell you their nicknames because it may embarrass them (ahhem, Janna). 
        I can't believe I'm about to hit 30 in four months, but life just keeps getting faster as the days get busier.

Stay tuned for more profiles.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Get to Know...Peyton

My oldest child, Peyton, came out of the womb screaming. Here is a picture of her when she was only a few weeks old.
The first night in the hospital, the nurses were wheeling her back to my room at 2am because they couldn't get her under control. "You're going to have to take her back because she won't calm down." I should have known then what we were up against. For the next three months, she had colic--uncontrollable, unstoppable, unsoothable screaming for hours. But the months that followed the colic became a little easier. After doing a lot of reading and research about colic, I discovered a few interesting things. Colicky babies usually turn into sensitive, high need, demanding, high maintenance individuals. Full of life and fun but also cantankerous, she is the recipient of lots of spankings and time-outs.  Her teachers at school say she does "excellent".  Her today card always says she is a good helper, friendly, and kind.  There have been times when we've scratched our heads, thrown our hands up in the air, and wanted to run.
Most recently she has decided that it's fun to torture Raegan. Peyton knows what annoys her, such as giving Raegan ridiculous bear hugs(no baby wants to be held down), taking toys from her, and closing the door in Raegan's face as she comes crawling towards the room, and so she purposely pushes her buttons. Peyton also loves putting her stuffed animals, about eight of them, in time-out. Sometimes she puts them to sleep and will cover them with washcloths so they don't get cold during their nap.  She can be very sweet and loving, and she is especially attached to her daddy.
We know we have a special little girl, perfect the way God made her. We know he has great plans for her life. Life is never dull with her around. My prayer is that she will use her personality for God's glory and perhaps be a great leader one day wherever He calls her. We love her so much.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

FBI and the Rich and Famous

Today I got to meet with an FBI agent at work.  Was I in trouble?  No, no one was in trouble. Someone was seeking employment at the FBI agency here in New Orleans, and I had to answer a bunch of questions about this individual.  Man are those guys thorough!  I guess they have to be, and I wouldn't want it any other way. 

I know this FBI agent was not famous or anything, but for some reason this got me thinking about famous people I have seen/met. Let's see, I've seen Amy Grant from a huge distance, NSYNC (yes, unfortunately I went with my sister to this concert a LONG time ago), I saw George Bush, who came to my college when he was running for president back in 2000, I got to meet Heath Evans from the New Orleans Saints a month or so ago. And this about sums up my encounters with famous people.  I guess I need to get out more. :)  Maybe I'll see Sandra Bullock in the Garden District one day.  Have you met/seen anyone famous? 

Monday, May 24, 2010

Five Years

I have a lot I could blog about, since it's been a week since the last post, but I will start with this: Arnold and I celebrated five long short years of marriage this past Friday.  ;)  We decided to get out of the city and visit Houmas House, a plantation home and gardens, near Baton Rouge.  We had a wonderful time learning about the history and strolling around the beautiful grounds.  Then we ate lunch at their restaurant located on site.  After our tour, we went to the mall and Arnold let me pick out a new outfit....a great day for me!  I absolutely cannot believe it's been five years since our wedding. Whenever I get to experience a "perfect" day--the sun shining bright, not a cloud in the sky, a nice temperature, I am always reminded of our wedding day.  We had an outdoor reception, and I could not have planned the weather any better.  This past Friday, the weather was gorgeous, and I believe it was a sign from God.  My own personal sign that God blessed our union on that day five years ago. 
PS-No, I am not pregnant.  The shirt just makes me look like I am, according to Arnold.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Grammy Comes to Town

Well, my Mom came to town this past weekend, we had fun, and now I'm back at work. We toured Longue Vue House and Gardens, ate at Cheescake Bistro, went to the park, and did a lot of laundry and mopping. I, of course, was on my hands and knees scrubbing and cleaning my house. HAHA! My mom was the one doing that, by choice. That's what she loves doing. Below are some pictures from Longue Vue.

Other updates...

Peyton is finally starting to use the potty. Raegan has been the fussiest child...when are those teeth ever going to come in? And I keep finding hairs in all my food, which is the absolute worst thing in the world to me. The problem is, they're my hairs! I'm still shedding from after childbirth. I think I'm going to have to wear a hair net when I cook from now on.
Tomorrow Arnold and I celebrate five years of marriage!!! Click on the link to see a picture and read the article from the newspaper.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Snowballs-New Orleans Style

New Orleans is known for many things such as Mardi Gras, the French Quarter, and Cajun cuisine. But did you also know that New Orleans is known for Snowballs? I'm not talking about a snowcone, it's a SNOWBALL! Here is the defintion of a snowball according to Wikipedia, "A snowball is soft shaved ice mixed with flavored syrup contained in a styrofoam cup or Chinese takeout container. The quality of the ice is important.It should be like soft fresh snow. If it is the right consistency, it will mix with the flavoring and be like an icy drink rather than a crunchy sweet." You will never want a snowcone again if you taste a New Orleans snowball. We have snowball stands all over this city. A lot of New Orleanians will add icecream, whipped cream, or condensed milk to their snowballs. Most stands have flavors like tigers' blood, wedding cake, strawberry shortcake, praline, and of course all the traditional flavors like strawberry, grape, and cherry. If you ever visit New Orleans in the summer, you will want a snowball to cool you off.

This post is dedicated to our 'ol beloved, brown ridiculously obese mutt Snowball who passed away last year after about 15 or so years of laying around the yard.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Bump in the Night

Last night Arnold and I about had a heart attack as something came crashing to the floor about midnight. It's so scary to be woken up like this in the middle of the night like this. Arnold ran into Peyton's room because I think we both assumed that she had fallen out of bed. Then I looked under her bed to see if her books had fallen onto the floor. Nope. Raegan was sound asleep in her crib. What could it be? Well, Arnold discovered the shower basket, the kind with the ineffective suction cups, had crashed to its shower floor death. A relief, but it still took me another thirty minutes to go back to sleep.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Suckers and Stickers

I am so thankful for a country where we have access to such great medical care and doctors. I really like the girls' pediatricians. It is a very small office with two doctors. Very homey, nice staff, and they have plenty of suckers and stickers......the perfect items to bribe a two year old to pee in a cup. I also love the innocence of a two year old who is so excited and desperate for a cheap, sugar-free sucker, that she will hold her tears in when the doctor checks her ears, something she has never done. I am trying to savor this period of innocence. "Mommy!! A POPSICLE!!!!!" (said as she jumps up and down) Who else would get so excited about a popsicle? "Mommy, black kool-aid!?" (she thought the tea I was making was black kool-aid) I love it!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Out of the Mouth of Babes

I'm constantly amazed these days at the things that are coming out of Peyton's mouth. You really never know what kids are going to say! Here are a few of my favorites most recently.

Peyton: "Mommy, Whatcha doin?"
Me: "Fixing supper. We're having roast, rice, and carrots."
Peyton: "Woast, Wice, and Cawwots! Woast, Wice, and Cawwots! Woast, Wice, and Cawwots!"
Category #1 She repeats everything we say.

Me: "Peyton, let me wipe your eye." (She had a little bit of sleep in her eye.)
Peyton: "Is there a bug in it?
Category #2 Where do kids come up with this stuff?

The other morning, we had a roach in our kitchen. I also found some roach poop on the counter. (I know, absolutely disgusting!!!) But I never mentioned it to Peyton. A few days later, Peyton randomly, out of the blue says this....
"Mommy, roach on the counter?"
Category #3 You don't think they're listening, but they are and they remember.

Coming home from church on Sunday, she made up her own song about peeing on the potty. She entertained herself with this song the whole way home.
Category #4 Funny songs coming out of kids' mouths.

Monday, May 3, 2010


Below are a few pictures of the kiddos...