Monday, June 30, 2008

Scuba Diving, Four Wheeling, and No Pictures

McDreamy has recently had the opportunity (along with his brother and dad) to take courses to become certified to scuba dive. Their final diving sessions were this past weekend, WAY up north. And when I say WAY up north, I mean so far north, that gas station parking lots are filled with four wheelers instead of cars. I believe the statement was made: "You know you are really in the boonies when there are more four wheelers than cars at the gas station." Despite the incredibly long car trip in a small car, stuffed to the brim with breathing tanks, scuba gear, and luggage, the trip was a success. The guys did their final diving in an old coal mine that is now completely submerged underwater. An entire forest was underwater, surrounded by croppies and sunnies and all other possible lake fish you can think of. Unfortunately, no pictures were taken during this time!!! It's an outrage, I know, and very sad. Pictures of my husband, brother-in-law and father-in-law in scuba gear would have come in handy in the future, if ever I had the need for blackmail. So sadly, there are ZERO pictures to go along with the scuba diving stories.

Did I mention already that this all took place WAY up north? Oh.'s an important piece of the story-so don't forget it! My brother-in-law's wife's parents (AKA-my sister-in-law's parents) are retired and live for 9 out of the 12 months in their cabin on the lake. (The other 3 months, they are hot rodding around the country in their JUMBO motor home. You know, the kind where you could fit an entire football team WITH their gear in it, it's so big? Yeah...that kind.) Anyway, we stayed with my sister-in-law's parents at their cabin, which sits on 90 acres of land. 90 acres of beautiful, big, open spaces, perfect for four wheeling. Now, I have to say this: I do not care if you have grown up in the city, that you are so "city" that you don't even know what a cow looks like. I don't care! Deep down inside everyone, there is a desire to be a "little bit country." And my desire for that taste of "country" comes to the forefront every time I get near a four wheeler. There is just something about it. Being out in literally, the middle of nowhere, with a machine that drives through mud, rocks, tree limbs, meadows, etc, It all just seems so...NOT smack dab in the middle of the city. It's just you and nature. Period. There's something just very basic and refreshing about the whole experience. Going so fast the wind whips your hair and takes your breath away. The subtle smell of exhaust and mud and grass and wild flowers. The idea that you can seemingly go on forever and never encounter another human. Even having to spit the occasional bug or piece of grass from your mouth. These are things that really cannot be experienced anywhere but out in the middle of absolutely nowhere. And I love it. And unfortunately, my words are going to have to be enough to paint you a picture, because I have none to show. But just know, that up north, way north, at a cabin by a lake, on miles and miles of beautiful "uncivilized land", I visited that part of myself that is just a little bit country.
Sorry about the no pictures thing...we'll get some up next time!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Cowboys, Horses, Love Stories, Recipes & More!

You would think, from the above title, that I will be writing about each individual item. However...I'm not. I will say, these items DO happen to be some of my favorite things. Oh yes. But what excites me even that I have fallen in love with a website that has all these things! And it's called The Pioneer Woman. I have Jessica to thank for telling me about it. Didn't I tell you? She's the one that always introduces me to the great things in life! But anyway, if you're looking for a place to read about rugged cowboys, their horses, etc. Please visit this site. If you're looking for a place to read an incredibly "tingle your toes, goose bumps all over your arms, warm you through and through" good 'ole love story, PLEASE visit this site. If you're looking for FULL FAT, stick on the ribs, comfort food that touches your very soul recipes, visit this site!
I suppose I should back up a tad. This website was created by a woman named Ree, who was a big L.A. city girl, who fell in love with and married, a rugged, backwoodsman cattle rancher. Yep. No kidding. And moved all the way far far FAR out into the country in Oklahoma. Yep. Hundreds of cattle, horses, and miles and miles and miles of gorgeous green land. Needless to say, this woman has SO many stories to tell. She writes daily blog postings about the happenings on their ranch, their children, her rugged hubby, etc. She also posts many many yummy recipes...step by step-with pictures! (I love that part!) In addition to those things, she also is a photographer (where does she get the free time while home schooling 4 children? where?!) and posts tips. She ALSO has a section for Home and Garden. I'm not kidding...this woman knows about so many things! And to top it all off...she is HYS-TER-I-CAL! So so so funny. Oh! I almost forgot the best part. She is writing the story of how she met her hubby (whom she calls "Marlboro Man"), and fell in love with him. It's called "Black Heels to Tractor Wheels" and it is soooooo good. Being the romantic that I am...I fell in love with Ree, Marlboro Man, the ranch...and every little thing about them! Read it! Please! It will make your day. I guarantee. Now, this all may seem like one giant commercial for this website, but I am telling you, you will never be the same. I feel like Ree is my friend. And if you're having a rough day...this will get you through it. Sometimes, the only way to make it through my day, is to read a bit from Ree (
AKA Pioneer Woman) and all my troubles seem to fade away. and OH! did I mention yet the rugged cowboys. Yeah...they're everywhere on this site! ;) I'm serious...check it out: it will change your life!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Black As The Night

Thunderstorms can sometimes seem too big to handle. It sometimes is eerily interesting to watch the storm form over a few hours. It starts as a gloomy day, and then blackness slowly creeps over the horizon. You hear the rumble of the thunder in the distance start to become the BOOMS that crash and rumble your home. The distant lightning becomes the huge bolts that jet down right outside your window. The pitter patter of softly falling rain is now the rude pounding of raindrops the size of quarters. And the gloomy skies have now completely transformed into skies as black as the night. It's in those moments sometimes, where the storm finally hits, and I sit here watching, that I am taken back in time. I am 8 years old all over again, excitedly dreading the storm that is certain to come. I'm anxious and excited and terrified all in the same moment. The booms seem to rumble all the way through me, and the lightning bolts seem to strike so close I can feel a slight charge shoot from my feet up to my head. But being 8, I get to crawl deep under my blankets and shield myself from it when it becomes too much. Sadly, now - I have no blankets to shield me, and I am sitting here, dreading having to battle this storm that is as black as the night.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Dates, The Beach, and Green Bottles

The weekend of Memorial Day, McDreamy and I spent the weekend with my brother, his beautiful wife, The Bean, mom, dad, and my sister. We had SUCH a fun time. The Bean is simply hysterical...and SO SO SO smart. For his 2nd birthday, he got a Lightning McQueen car that he actually drives. So at dinner, he looks at me and says, "Aunt Bea , who made my McQueen car?" And I sort of laughed and said, "Oh, probably somebody over in Asia." To this The Bean replied: "Who's Asia? Is she one of my neighbors?" One of many times where he proves he can be WAY more interesting to converse with than some adults...we love him!! We also went down to the beach that weekend, and we wanted to post some pictures from that too.
Moving night. Date night is something that we have recently re-established in our marriage. It's not that we didn't go out on dates's just that they were random and scattered, and life always seems to get too busy to have date night. So, a couple weeks ago, we decided it was necessary, and boy oh boy am I glad! Wednesday nights are our official date night, and they have been SO MUCH fun!!! It just really gives us an opportunity to connect with each other totally uninterrupted by the rest of our lives. So hooray for date night!
Finally...I have come across a company over in the UK by the name of Bottle Green Drink Co. Check out their website: It looks really fantastic, and I've been trying to get in touch with them to see how to get their products here, but so far have had no such luck. If you have any ideas...please let me know!