Friday, September 26, 2008

Another Favorite Film

I was so fortunate to be exposed to many, many old films as a kid. I have so many movies on VHS recorded from AMC that I have watched countless times over the years. The entertainment value is so high in these movies, often higher than the films of today. I wish the present generation was exposed to more of these, but their era makes them seem automatically boring or uninteresting. children today are missing out on wonderful, enriching entertainment.

Probably my third favorite actor other than Gene Kelly or Fred Astaire, is Danny Kaye. He was an amazing combination of comedic and serious. He was a great actor that could transition from a moment of tension into crazy comedy with an ease unmatched since his time, in my opinion. He was handsome and yet unafraid to contort his features or make himself look rediculous for the sake of entertainment. He could do impressions, voices, accents and was known for singing songs that were basically one big tongue twister. His wife, who understood his talent best, often crafted the words of the songs just to showcase his abilities.
In this clip from The Court Jester, he shows his fantastic grace and poise as well as his fabulous physical comedy skills and his ability to change from suave to silly in an instant. By this point in the film he has been through a series of identities. It's difficult to explain in a nutshell, but he is posing as a Robin Hood-type character called the Black Fox fighting against the evil Ravenhurst in the palace of the king. The princess is convinced that he (although he entered the palace in the guise of a jester) is the one she is meant to marry and she charges her personal seer with his protection. He is really in love with a girl who is also part of the Black Fox's group from the forest. She shows up at the end of the clip.
Please rent the film if you enjoy this at all. I haven't seen a film of his that I didn't like, but this one is truly a gem.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Deal or No Deal

I love a deal! I just get so excited and the adrenaline starts to flow when I can see a deal in the making. I hone in on it and pounce... if I have the funds. I feel a bit like a Geico commercial..."I just saved a bunch of money on fill-in-the-blank." I have to share my latest deals, just because I'm so thrilled.
I found a lady on willing to fill a flat rate box with her gently-used, name-brand maternity clothes for super cheap. I got 12 pieces (3 dresses, 2 skirts, 7 shirts) for $50 (including shipping) and one of the shirts is $25 new (and you can still get it in the store!), not to mention the Gap skirt and the dresses probably weren't cheap either. It's almost like the thrill people must get from stealing, except it's legal. And by the way, I know I'm buying maternity clothes before I'm even pregnant... but they were a deal! and I'll need them eventually! so lay off! :) and I could be pregnant now. It's not impossible.
I also got 10, count 'em, 10 cloth diapers at a consignment sale today for $10. Only one was a name brand and the rest were WAHM made, but that's still a buck a diaper. Not bad at all. I probably saved $90 or more and if I don't like them, I can sell them and make money off them.
There have definitely been times when I had the wonderful rush of knowing I just saved a bunch of money and then find the very same thing somewhere else for less. Or I buy it at the store for half off only to see it in someone's garage that weekend for a couple bucks. That really stinks doesn't it? Man, that's the worst, when you thought you saved so much and then, all of a sudden, you feel like you lost money instead.
That didn't happen this time though, so hooray! I get to feel the thrill all over again next week when my package comes in the mail. yippee!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Baby Brain

I'm back to baby crazy again. My brain swaps everything from words to pictures with baby related stuff. For example: When driving back from Atlanta on Sunday, I saw a couple of signs just off the highway.

The first, a normal gas station logo...

was transformed by my blurry vision and baby brain to a couple of sperm fighting to win the race to the egg.

The second, a typical hotel logo...

that to me, ignoring the wording, looked like the moment of conception... a continuation of the BP sign.

There have been other things too. The word "parental" is turned into "pre-natal" and other such sillyness. Ah well, it just gives me a few more things to laugh about during my day.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Our Week

Vacation over, back to life.
It's all kind-of a blur now, but I know one thing, I was right about the extra stress created by grandparents asking questions or making comments all the time. I was definitely ready to leave, or go buy a condo or something. Anything to not stay another night in the house with my parents. It might have been much the same staying with anybody, just different things that would have stressed me out. We don't really have any other options anyway. No one else has an extra room for us and another for the baby. Dolce feels the most comfortable there, too, and she's definitely a factor.
I wish I could turn off my annoyance meter and just blink a couple times with a blank look in my eyes when my parents say something that falls in that "annoying" category. I haven't figured out how to do that yet, though. I want to yell, "Don't touch our stuff! I don't know why she's crying right now! I don't know if she actually took a nap because I wasn't in the room with her! I can wash that bottle out myself! She HAS done that before even though you've never seen it! I do not have to play with her the same way you just did even though you got a positive reaction from her! I don't know if she's ever made that particular face before! AAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!"
I also want to tell my mom (whose taste is very different from mine) not to buy Eden any more clothes unless I ask for them and not to make me feel guilty when I do ask for them. My parents have said multiple times that they never know what she needs when they see something they want to buy her, but the last time I mentioned a need to them, I was told to just get it myself, which I did and then when we got to their house, there was the item I'd asked for hanging in the guest closet. So I could've saved myself a few bucks. geez.
My mom went garage saling without me and bought Eden about 12 outfits. I like maybe 4, and the rest I can't even consign because their not in good enough condition or they're just plain out of style. Even if I did like all of them, she didn't realize that the sizes Eden needs do not directly correspond to her age, so many of the outfits will be too small by the time it is cool enough to wear them. I feel so bad that she essentially wasted $15-$20, but if she wants to buy non-returnable items instead of exactly what the baby needs when I tell her, that's the risk she takes, I guess.
There were good times this week too. The trip to Athens was fun. We got to visit with lots of family. We got some killer pictures of Eden in my mom's studio. Eden crawled for the first time. We ate a ton of good food. Chuck celebrated his 27th birthday. We got to go to some of our favorite Atlanta places. We went on a date. Yea for fun and happy things!
We also made a big decision this weekend.... countdown to baby number two starts now! :) Yes we're back in the "trying to conceive" stage once again. I think this will be it, though, really. I'm going for this against all my previous reasoning...all the way down to my determination never to be my most pregnant mid-summer. All out the window. So here we go, creating even more loops and drops in our rollercoaster! I'll keep you all updated as soon as we have a date.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Gooooo Dawgs!

It's not Friday yet, but close enough. I'll blog about our whole vacation later, but I thought I would just do a quick post to say that we're enjoying ourselves. We've been busy, but we've had fun. We're going to Athens tomorrow, which is a favorite place for both of us. Athens is where we met and fell in love. (awwwwww!) We had our engagement photos taken there, I have a Georgia sticker on my car, Eden owns a UGA onsie and sippy cup, we watch the football games whenever we can and we still have several friends that were made in that town. It's special to us and we are taking the time for a day trip tomorrow.

Friday, September 12, 2008


I've always had a special place in my heart for Charles Shultz's Peanuts. When I discovered, as a little girl, the music from the Broadway play "You're A Good Man Charlie Brown" I listened to it over and over and over and memorized every word and acted it out and danced to it and loved it. I had never had the opportunity to see the show until just a couple of years ago. It was just a small community theater production, but I really enjoyed it. One day I'll see the Broadway production. Here's a clip of Sally Brown singing "My New Philosophy" with Schroeder. So innocent and enjoyable!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

So Creamy!

It wasn't my fault! I didn't know A&D was clear. I just saw that it was diaper cream and knew that the pediatritian told me to put it on Eden's head to get rid of her cradle cap. I didn't see why my ointment at home with many of the same ingredients wouldn't work equally well. So... I took a big ol' squeeze of white paste from the Burt's Bee's tube and smeared it on her scalp. I immediately realized that this is probably not what the doctor had in mind. Then my friend tells me today that A&D is clear... and that she has some I could've used.

We made the best of it, though. Here's a pic from yesterday, when the incident occured. I gave her a good scrub on the scalp with soap and water, but that stuff's pretty water resistant. I've been complaining about her not having enough hair, but she sure has enough hair to make it tough to get greasy cream out.
Fortunately, I got the headbands I had ordered in the mail, so we had the perfect cover-up/distraction for when my white-scalped baby had to go out in public today.

No one knew... but now you do. Let's keep it a secret, k?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Having a Moment

We leave in two days for Atlanta. (This isn't going to be a post with any sort of theme, by the way. I just thought it had been a few days, so I should update.) We haven't been back to Atlanta since we moved here in May and that's the longest I think either one of us has gone without seeing our families. Everyone is anxious to see Eden, of course and we'll be celebrating the big 27 for Chuck while we're home. I'm kinda nervous. I'm not sure why. I guess anything can seem a little unfamiliar after a few months. Eden is always a bit of a variable, too. Yes we're with family and it's less concerning if she's fussy, but at the same time, even though I might not be concerned there's the "must you ruin every bright and shining moment?" aspect to worry about. Ok, there's a story that needs telling here.
When I was little, actually, my whole life, I only got to see my mom's parents twice a year: at Christmas and in June. Once, when they were visiting, we went to McDonalds to eat. I must have been going through an "I don't want to eat my food" stage. I'll be extremely surprised if Eden ever hits that stage... anyway, my dad tried to make my cheesburger more tempting by cutting it up into small bites, since I wasn't eating it whole. (Man, I can't believe I wouldn't eat a cheesburger. A CHEESBURGER for goodness sake!... I want one now!) I proceeded to burst into tears at which point my grandma stood up in the middle of McDonald's and said "Must you ruin every bright and shining moment?!" It's been a bit of a joke ever since. But, now that my parents have a grand daughter, they have fully realized the preciousness of every moment they have with her.
All this to say that if Eden's unhappy, there's a lot of hullaballoo about what it is that is making her that way and what can be done to fix it. So, if at home, I might just stick her somewhere with some toys or flip on the TV and hold her until she calmed down or got sleepy, there, it will become more complicated... and stressful.
I'm looking forward to the week as a whole. There should be lots of good food, catching up with old friends, time with family, celebration of another successful year in my husbands life, trips to places we miss and plenty of room for general relaxation and fun.
I'm planning on posting Friday, but then you may not hear from me for a week...we'll see.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Happiness is Having a Dance Class

My calves and neck had it the roughest, apparently. I winced and yelped a bit today when I had to climb steps - a little yelp for each step. The tops of my feet have burns on them from rubbing them across the floor while transitioning from standing to rolling or kneeling to standing or kneeling to jumping. My knee is bruised. I bet there are bruises in other places that I just can't see.

Class was great! :) I haven't worked that hard or felt that alive in a while. It just reconfirmed that God has put dance inside of me. I am fulfilled by it, awakened by it, energized by it. I love to move. I love the challenge of a new movement phrase. I love hearing music, familiar or new, and cutting and swirling through it like it was water. I almost feel like I'm the one making it... that, as my body moves, the sounds emerge.

Here's the apprehensive me, before class. I should've taken an "after" photo of me all red-faced, sweaty and worn-out, but I didn't.

Friday, September 05, 2008

5-6-7-8, Opportunity!

I am blessed (by my husband who will be watching Eden and by the lady who told me about the class) to be able to attend an open master class with dancer and choreographer Steve Rooks tomorow at Belhaven College. Mr. Rooks was a part of the Martha Graham Dance Company (Martha Graham was one of the most influential people in modern dance last century.) and later became a member of the Alvin Ailey company. He has taught and choreographed for many companies including Ad Deum, a professional level Christian dance company based in Texas.

He said in an interview with LeAnne Martin on her blog Christians In The Arts:

"The call to be light and salt (a “witness”) in the dance world is no different from the call to live out one’s faith as a lawyer, a stay-at-home parent, a plumber, or a pastor. So much of our effectiveness as a believer is how we approach and execute our craft. There is a scripture that has been a kind of “blue print” for my walk—Colossians 3:23-24 says: 'Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.' The bottom line is that we need to pursue excellence and integrity in our work not to make us look good, but to give God glory. Once people find out that you are a follower of Christ, your life immediately goes under a microscope (and that is a good thing!). We need to reveal God’s nature in how we approach life in our successes—and in our failures."

I am very excited, but definitely nervous as this will be the first time in a few years that I have taken a class. I'm determined to go easy on myself, accept my current abilities for what they are and just enjoy moving my body and being poured into by another Christian artist.

Here's a video of Alvin Ailey, one of my very favorite dance companies doing an excerpt from arguably their most famous piece, Revelations.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

A House Divided?

It's a good thing we don't have ferrets anymore...

After Class

I definitely worked up a sweat in that class! At first it was pretty light and slow and I was actually cold for the first 15 minutes, but after 45 minutes, I was more than warm. I have to say that I was pretty bored most of the time. It's all based on basic Latin dance steps and there is a whole lot of repetition, great for a non-dancer, boring for someone whose been doing Latin dance for over 8 years. There were three other ladies that were there that come to the class regularly and they were all so nice and so friendly. They all said they were just so happy to have me there and hoped that I would come back again. I probably will at least a few more times. It's nice to get a cardio workout and think it was all easy. Besides, I love Latin music and I get to hear it for 45 minutes straight. Music is just good for the soul, isn't it? I feel energized and my day's hardly started, which is a nice bonus of an early class.
The really neat part about today (we'll have to see where this leads) is that the instructor was very curious about my background in dance. I asked him if there was any place to dance around town and he said no, but that he's been trying to start lessons and parties at his house. He's been looking for someone who could teach ladies styling and he wants me to help him out. He and his wife have a 7 month old, so Eden and their baby could play together while the lesson was going on. I'm so excited to see if this contact can develop into something where I can start expressing myself again.
Yea, Zumba! Now, excuse me while I go research what it takes to become a Zumba teacher...


I'm finally getting to try Zumba at the Y this morning. I'm excited!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

A Plate to Pass Around

I thought this was such a very nice idea and something I've added to my list of things I'll buy one day. I can share it this way for now... for free. Maybe someone else will take the idea for themselves.
"Sometimes you need to jazz up a plate of store-bought cookies. Forget about finding your inner Martha and instead grab the Giving Plate, which will elicit oohs and aahs ... even from refrigerator dough! The hand-painted ceramic plate is perfect for any occasion - new neighbor, new baby, new nose! Around the side of the plate reads: 'This special plate comes to you because you are so great. Now pass it on and say the same to friends you celebrate.' "
It can be found at, a site worth visiting whether you like the plate or not.

A Heart for the Lost

I could not believe what a woman in my group exercise class shared today with the whole group. Granted, I think these people mostly know each other because they come to these classes all the time together, but just wait until you hear what she told everyone about her life in the course of the class. This was all said in "normal" conversation. I can't recall her exact words, but I can summerize the information that was shared.
She has no time or desire to care for her father-in-law and his family who are stuck in southern Mississppi without power near a river about to flood their home. They could come stay with her, but she really doesn't want them to. All she could talk about was his incontinence and constant needs because he is bedridden. He's 81 years old.
She has two young children that dominate her home. She complained about how they never listen to her and won't do anything she says. She said a usual day involves them spiraling out of control until she yells at them to "shut up."
She claims their misbehaving drives her to drink starting at about 4pm every day and has caused her to have to take perscription "crazy pills."
All of this was said almost like a stand-up comedy routine and brought laughter from most in the class. My mouth almost dropped open. I'm still so naive. Is this the world's normal? Sounds miserable, not funny. She ended it with "Well, you gotta do whatever you gotta do to make it through another day. I'll try anything at this point."
I wonder if she's tried Jesus? I wonder if anyone's told her that He's the answer. He could give her compassion for her extended family, change the hearts of her children, show her how to establish discipline in her home, fill her void, and give peace to her mind.
So, was I supposed to tell her that? I don't know. It's so... so personal, isn't it? I felt like I was supposed to pretend I really didn't know all those things about her. They were private things. I didn't want to invade her personal space. But Jesus wants to. She's probably already heard. She probably goes to church somewhere. It's the Bible belt, for goodness sake, not Africa!
My heart's breaking now... the tears are coming. His love is so great, but if no one will boldly share, how can the lost be reached?

Monday, September 01, 2008

What's in a Name?

Eden and I went to the mall the other day to get some excercise. We tried to go to the Y, but I got confused about the child care hours, so we headed on to the mall since it was ninety-something degrees and therefore too hot to walk outside.
After a brisk walk through the whole mall once, I decided to stop at the perfume counter at Dillard's. I'm forever looking for that "signature scent" that I love, my husband loves and I can be known by. I don't think it's ever going to happen because, first of all, Chuck and I have very different preferences in smells and secondly, I get bored of the same perfume all the time.
So, I was sniffing away and the associate at the counter came over and offered to help me. I told her what kind of scent I was looking for, but every one she sprayed onto a card for me, I disliked. She finally gave up and came out from behind the counter to talk with Eden. She smiled and waved at her for a minute and said how pretty she was. She then told me she would be a few steps away if I needed help and introduced herself. I, in turn, told her my name and Eden's. A few minutes later, when we came around the corner of the counter, she and another associate were there ready to coo and smile at the baby some more. She must not have heard me say Eden's name the first time because she asked me at that point, what my baby's name was, but then comes the weird part... She decided to guess her name. She said "What's your little girl's name?... Jessica?" I just thought that was so wierd and a bit rude, somehow, too. Has that ever happened to you before?
I just smiled and said "No, it's Eden." "Oh, Edith," the first sales associate said as she turned to the second associate. "Her name's Edith," she told her. "Oh, um, that's a nice name," said the second associate. "No, no, her name is E-DEN," I said slowly. "E-DITH," she repeated slowly. "E-D-I-T-H," she spelled, now louder. "No. E-DEN. E-D-E-N," I spelled back. "Oh!" exclaimed the first associate, "Eden, what a pretty name!"
Yes ma'am. Thank you. Now you've given me the response I expected. :) I decided I'd spent enough time looking at perfume.