A slight stall in plans

Hello, friends.

I hope this blog post finds you well. No, my new design isn't quite finished yet. It's a longer process than what I would have ever imagined - really! I'll be doing a post on the process so you can share in TMB's pain joy in making his wife a blog template.

In the meantime, would you like to see my blog posts in a picture? Check this bad boy out:

Adjust shapes, colors, and layout; all with the touch of a button!

This was made with Tagxedo and you can use any of your words: blog posts, homework assignments (such as the one I'm supposed to be working on right now), Tweets...anything! You can even make totes and t-shirts and the like. Pretty neat, huh?

Okay, so it's not Piccasso...but it is a great time waster! Enjoy...

Until next time...

This post may contain affiliate links.

Soon, very soon

My blog is in the middle of a transition. A few more tweaks, but I want to give you a preview. Would you like to see?

This is my button that will be up for grabs as soon as my new blog template goes live. Don't you just love it? I am completely in love with it!

Until next time...


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Book Review: The Chocolate Diaries

Sometimes, life is less than sweet; sometimes, it down right bitter. Bad things happen to good people. Bad things happen to bad people. Bad things happen. Sometimes, horrible things happen and we wonder how can this be if we have a Creator who loves us? Have we done something to anger God? How can we possibly have a relationship with Someone who seems absent during the times when we need Him most?

These questions plague us all at one time or another. Perhaps you are questioning God right now because of things going on with your life. I know I am. I have spent the better part of this year questioning Him. I'm not worried that God can't take it; He's much bigger than anything we can throw at Him. Believe me, He can take it. But what do you in the meantime - when you're trying to figure it all out?

Karen Scalf Linamen addresses these questions in her book The Chocolate Diaries: Secrets for a Sweeter Journey on the Rocky Road of Life. Don't let the title fool you - this is anything but spiritual chick-lit filled with regurgitated pablum. Instead, Linamen equates life as a messy recipe with paradoxical ingredients. Her prescription for all that ails is chocolate. Of course, after reading a few pages, one realizes that Linamen is using chocolate as a tongue-in-cheek metaphor for fixing the bigger problems in life. (She does however, offer scientific proof that chocolate is good for us. Good to know since most of partake in it on at least a weekly basis!)

Linamen tackles a list of bitter sweet recipes that plague many women today. She offers solutions without being syrupy sweet or brow-beating. Intermingled between chapters are poignant discussion questions and chocolatey recipes. The chocolate theme used throughout the book is meant to bring common ground to women who are tackling tough situations in their lives.

The book offers up plenty of scripture on which the reader can study on her own time. Linamen does not attempt to regurgitate scripture which is something that most readers can really appreciate. After all, Scripture is meant to be digested on an individual basis, not consumed second-handed.

If you are looking for a small-group Bible study or just a personal Bible study, I would suggest The Chocolate Diaries. Don't let the chocolatey exterior fool you; there are some great nuggets of wisdom in Linamen's book.

This post may contain affiliate links. I received a hard copy of this book from Water Brook Press, however, my views are my own.

I have a secret weapon

I'm going to share something with you. This information is privy to only a select few. Even my closest friends and family don't know this little tidbit of juicy gossip. Are you ready?

My husband, The Man Beast himself, is a genius!

Okay, so I'm sure every woman says that about her husband, but in my case, it happens to be true. I'm not making grandiose claims simply because I love my man. What I say happens to be true and there is proof!

Proof #1 - He is a fabulous cook. Remember the birthday dinner he cooked for me?

Proof #2 - He is a fabulous husband. (See Proof #1)

Proof #3 - He is an excellent father. Oh the stories I could tell! The pictures I can post! (Perhaps I should create a series?)

Proof #4 - He is artistic. Very artistic. When we were dating, he drew  a picture of a rose with an inscription. The inscription is private (sorry), but the meaning of the rose was to represent a love for me that would never die. (Awww)

TMB has recently taken his artistic abilities to a new level. Doing research on his own and playing around with very expensive impressive computer programs, he has put his talent into a digital realm.

Furthermore, he has agreed to develop a design for my blog! I gave him very little to go on and because he knows me so well, he has pounded out detail after detail of what this little blog means to me and what I want it to mean to the world. (Talk about grandiose!)

There is some tweaking to be done, but I'm very excited about the new design. Suffice it to say, it is well on it's way to being...perfect.

I cannot wait for you to see it.

Until next time...

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Sensational Haiku Wednesday: July 6, 2011

Join the fun!

This week's haiku is free style. I only wish the following haiku was a work of fiction.

Summer is passing
Only four weeks left, really?
Where did the days go?

Quick! Get in the car
Pack your swim suit, towel, sunscreen
It’s time for the beach

In the car for hours
No beach in sight. Mercy me!
Mom, did you get lost?

It is getting dark
Time to head home now, children
But mom, where’s the beach?

Sigh. I can’t find it
GPS I do not have
Let’s try next summer.

Until next time...

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Did you notice?

Look up on your browser bar and notice the URL. If you look, you'll notice that my blog no longer has the .blogspot.com extention. That's right! I am officially a domain owner! I have some ideas for my blog for the future and wanted to make sure that my perfect name isn't taken, so I decided to take the plunge! I also added a Feedburner button so you can follow myb blog in your reader. I will be adding a way to follow my blog via email as well. This way, my readers are kept abreast of new blog posts.

Until next time...

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Order a schadenfreude movie on DVD now! .

It was a good day

Today was a good day. TMB had an extra day off from work and we chose to grill out for the third night in a row. To me, it was the epitome of Summer Vacation. I haven't really felt like the kids and I have been on Summer Break because we haven't really done anything as a family. TMB still has to work during the summer which means Sundays are the only Family Days. Here lately, I've been entirely unmotivated and have waited until the very last minute to get my homework done, which pretty much kills family time on Sunday.

But today was different. Today was lovely.

Left over newspaper from the chimney starter

TBM learned real quick that the Turtle household needed not one, but two chimney starters!

Char-Broil Smoker/Grill Combo - a Father's Day gift for TMB

After doing some research, TMB realized that natural charcoal was better than briquets - and cheaper, too!

A man and his knife: a deadly combination (Okay, not really...but it sounded good)

Wicket, the purebred Shitzhu and NuNu, the husky/lab/beagle mut. Notice who is begging.

Oh the deliciousness of it all

Not a homemade BBQ sauce, but tasty nonetheless

Coming along oh so nicely

I might be This Side of Perfect, but TMB is spot on!
 Until next time...

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Home of the Free

As I sit here listening to The Boy and Baby Gurl wash dishes in the kitchen and TMB play his latest  video game, I realize that I am blessed and it is today, in which we celebrate our nation's independence, that I understand that freedom is not free.

I have family in the military and a brother who came back to the states not too long ago. He hasn't talked a lot of about his tour in Afghanistan, but Jillian Micheals wrote a first-hand account of what she saw. The next time you complain that it is too hot (which let's face it, down here in the south, it is a daily topic of conversation), please keep in mind that our brothers and sisters in the military are dealing with 120+ degree temperatures. Whether you support the war efforts or not, it cannot be denied that we should support our troops in their efforts. Their tour of duties are anything but glamorous and pleasant and every part heroic despite being in the pits of hell.

Those same freedoms that you express every day: freedom of religion, freedom of press (thank you, bloggers), and freedom of speech, are thanks largely in part to the men and women who are fighting in the war that you may/may not oppose.

I urge you to take a moment to send a prayer/word of thanks for people who make our lives what it is today; especially if you're a woman, a person of color, or follow any faith. Our county has it's faults, but I wouldn't want to live anywhere else and be what I am today.

Happy 4th of July, everyone!

Until next time...


Staying together, no matter what

So The Man Beast rolls over to face me the other morning and says, "Do you know that otters hold hands when they sleep to keep from floating away?"

"Really?", I said, "How do you know?"

TMB shrugs. "I read it online, somewhere."

I did some research and TMB is indeed correct. Otters are some pretty cool creatures. Not only do they have the thickest fur of all mammals (1 million hairs per square inch compared to our 100,000 follicles on our whole head) but they are also the only other mammals beside primates to use tools. They will lie on their backs and beat a clam against a rock until it breaks open. Industrious little creatures, no?

I think it's amazing that they are wise enough to know that they need to "band together" while they sleep lest they float away and fall prey to other animals. 

After having this morning conversation with TMB, I have started thinking about my own relationship with my husband.

The Man Beast and I have been living like otters for the past 14 years. Every night,  I will wrap my foot around TMB's. I do not remember a time in our marriage that I have not done this. This is our way of connecting to one another regardless of anything that might be keeping us apart (fatigue, sickness, etc). It is our way of holding hands so that we don't float away.

Life gets hectic. If you're not careful, you will drift away from those you care about unless you consciously make the effort to connect. The connection doesn't have to be extravagant; it just has to be meaningful to you.

Until next time...

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