Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Friday, August 31, 2007

America, Thank You for Your Time

I just wanted to wish everyone a safe and fun Labor Day weekend. I did a little research as to how and why Labor Day came to be. It is basically to honor the working force sowing what keeps America successfully productive so that we, citizens, may reap the benefits. This force ranges from the humble and meek farmers and "farm hands" who do not work for fame nor fortune to the high profile government officials in Washington. If you ponder every job there is, you realize that it takes the whole working force to keep America going.

“All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.” ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

I have posted a song by Alabama that humbly honors the working force in America. It's oldie but goodie. If you don't feel like reading it, well, it's playing on my "juke box".

Forty Hour Week (for a livin')~Alabama

There are people in this country who work hard every day.
Not for fame or fortune do they strive.
But the fruits of their labor are worth more than their pay.
And it's time a few of them were recognized.
Hello, Detroit, auto workers, let me thank you for your time.
You work a forty hour week for a livin', just to send it on down the line.
Hello Pittsburgh steel mill workers, let me thank you for your time.
You work a forty hour week for a livin', just to send it on down the line.
This is for the one who swings the hammer, driving home the nail.
Or the one behind the counter, ringing up the sale.
Or the one who fights the fires,
the one who brings the mail.
For everyone who works behind the scenes.
You can see them every morning in the factories and the fields.
In the city streets and the quiet country towns.
Working together like spokes inside a wheel.
They keep this country turning around.
Hello, Kansas, wheat field farmer, let me thank you for your time.
You work a forty hour week for a livin', just to send it on down the line.
Hello West Virginia coal miner, let me thank you for your time.
You work a forty hour week for a livin', just to send it on down the line.
This one is for the one who drives the big rig, up and down the road.
Or the one out in the warehouse, bringing in the load.
Or the waitress, the mechanic, the policeman on patrol.
For everyone who works behind the scenes.
With a spirit you can't replace with no machine.
Hello, America,
Let me thank you for your time.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Everyday is a New Challenge

As moms of toddlers know, everyday can bring on new challenges. Some are easily defeated and you find victory in them and then there are those that seem to keep defeating you and your efforts.

The boys have recently learned the "Art of Aggravation". No matter how much BB doesn't want to be tackled by his brother with pillows, CB continues do it as a form of entertainment for himself. And as loud as BB may protest, CB finds no reprieve in his activity. Then mamma has to step in because now it has turned into a war. Although, it can be quite entertaining to myself as I watch how they handle each other.

CB now likes to show what authority he thinks he has by telling BB "no-no", "what did mamma just say", "time-out BB". To which I reply, "CB, mamma can handle it" knowing all along I might be at a loss on how he should be disciplined. In a way, CB reminds me of myself trying to take care of my sister when we were younger.

BB has learned that when he takes something away from CB, he gets a reaction. And usually no amount of hollering and screaming CB does, BB thinks it's a form of entertainment for himself.

They both think that the best way to stay cool during these oppressing days of heat is to stand in front of the fridge with the door wide open. As they stand there absorbing all the cool air as if it were life saving oxygen...I find myself quoting my mother when we would do the same-- "I can't cool this whole house with the fridge, now, shut the door."

In spite of the everyday challenges, I am so blessed to be the one facing them...I am the one who is disciplining, I am the one teaching them right from wrong and I am the one instilling in them the values I believe they should be learning during the day. I know I am not a perfect parent and never will be nor are my children perfect and they never will be. But blessed am I to be able to stay home and do what JB and I think is best for our children.

I have friends who so desperately want to stay home with their children. Some are even doing what it takes to financially get to that point....and to them I say, keep is so worth it.

“I looked on child rearing not only as a work of love and duty but as a profession that was fully as interesting and challenging as any honorable profession in the world and one that demanded the best that I could bring to it.” ~Rose F. Kennedy

Until next time, HB

Monday, August 27, 2007

Moving on Up...To the Top--Priorities and All

Well we have moved up a little in this world. We have upgraded our cable from the lowest tier to one that includes JB's beloved ESPN. He has his priorities and this time of the year, SEC football with a strong following of University of Alabama football is at the top. So as football season has begun so has the season for me to become a temporary football widow. If you see me wearing black, you will now understand.

Here's to the men who eat, breathe and live football:
"Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I assure you, it's much more serious than that". ~Scott Shankly

Here's to the women who have to live with them:
"If a man watches three football games in a row, he should be declared legally dead" ~ Erma Bombeck

Until next time, speaking for JB..."Roll Tide", HB

Garlic Shrimp Pasta

Bow tie pasta (16 oz)
2 T. butter
1 lb. peeled and clean shrimp
1 T. minced garlic
Tony's seasoning
1 T. dried parsley
fresh Parmesan cheese

Prepare and drain bow tie pasta; set aside. In a skillet, melt the butter. Add shrimp; saute until almost done. Near the end of the cooking time add minced garlic, a liberal sprinkling of Tony's seasoning and dried parsley. Add pasta to skillet and toss. Sprinkle with fresh Parmesan cheese, if desired. If after cooking the shrimp, there is a liquid in the skillet, drain before adding the last ingredients. If the mixture is too dry, add a little olive oil when tossing the pasta and shrimp.

Note: I use pre-shredded Parmesan cheese. I also use frozen shrimp that can be found in the freezers with other frozen seafood. And remember, the more Tony's you add, the spicier the dish.

Rate:* * * * * (5 stars)

Until next time, yum-yum, HB

Friday, August 24, 2007

When I Say I am a Christian...

When I say..."I am a Christian" I'm not shouting, I'm saved by my own deeds-- I'm whispering, I get lost! That is why I chose this way.

When I say ... "I am a Christian" I don't speak of this with pride. I'm confessing that I stumble and need someone to be my guide.

When I say ... "I am a Christian" I'm not trying to be strong. I'm professing that I'm weak and pray for strength to carry on.

When I say ... "I am a Christian" I'm not bragging of success. I'm admitting that I've failed and cannot ever pay the debt.

When I say ... "I am a Christian" I'm not claiming to be perfect. My flaws are way too visible but God believes I'm worth it.

When I say ... "I am a Christian" I still feel the sting of pain. I have my share of heartaches which is why I seek His Name.

When I say ... "I am a Christian" I do not wish to judge. I have no authority-- I only know I'm loved!

I think this gives a very humble and simple description of how Christians too suffer the pains, hardships, and consequences of this world. Only, we find hope in Christ and not from the temporary pleasures this world advertises as an eternal answer.

Until next time, we are in the world but not of it...HB

Thursday, August 23, 2007

It's all about the Eyes

“It's the eyes that make me fall deeper for him. The more I look into them, the deeper I fall.” ~author unknown

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

All in the Family

I have been meaning to blog this incident for awhile. It will give you a glimpse into the humor we find in our family.

Earlier this summer, my dad and his brother, Uncle Mickey, went to an aunt and uncle's 50th wedding anniversary.

Now to know my dad and his brother, you know they do not like to dress up in suit and ties but they did feel the need to dress a little more dressier than the casual khaki pants or jeans with a polo shirt.

After being there for a while, they began to visit and reminisce with family they had not seen for quite some time. While visiting with one particular cousin, this cousin noticed and mentioned that he should have dressed a little more appropriate other than his blue jeans and polo shirt. As he told them, he didn't realize that this was a dressy occasion. My uncle then replied, "Don't worry...that lady and little girl over there isn't dressed up." To which the cousin replied, "I know...that's my wife and daughter."

I asked my dad what did he do. He said that he just turned around and laughed, thankful that it wasn't he that stuck his foot in his mouth this time.

Until next time, we keep a bucket of water handy just in case, HB

PS. there are 2 more posting after this one

Broccoli Crowns with Cheese Sauce

1-1 1/2 lbs. of broccoli crowns, trimmed and washed
1 roll of Kraft garlic cheese (cut into small pieces)
1 can low fat cream of mushroom soup
1/2 stick of butter

Steam cook the broccoli crowns. Meanwhile, melt and mix together butter, cheese and soup over low heat. When broccoli is done cooking, pour cheese sauce over it and serve.

Note: I use frozen broccoli. I also use regular velveeta cheese and add garlic powder to my taste. I have also substituted cream of chicken soup instead of mushroom.

Rate: * * * * * 5 stars

Until next time, yum-yum, HB

Few Changes

FYI, I have moved my monogramming slide shows down to the bottom of the page. Also, I had someone ask me about my machine. If you would, email me at I certainly don't mind giving info about my machine, however, I would rather do it via email.

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Beauty of a Sunset

“Sunsets are so beautiful that they almost seem as if we were looking through the gates of Heaven.” John Lubbock
Sunsets, what an amazing way God uses to showcase His ever-present glory. One can't help recognizing that there is a Creator, God, when gazing at such a display of beauty.
Until next time, HB

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Whatever it takes...

to cool off--that was our mission today. The boys and I have been cooped up in this house for the past 2 weeks due to the oppressive heat and today I said, "enough is enough". Especially since "Babbey" was over to play it just gave me more motivation and reason to get outside. What a better way to water the yard and cool off...than to play in the sprinkler. I didn't even bother putting their swimsuits on (Abbey didn't even have hers) so we just played in swimmers. It was actually pleasant since my driveway is shaded for the most part of the morning. All 3 loved it and I was glad they got to have some fresh air and run out some of their energy.

Even Gizmo found a cool spot to "chill".

Pappaw stopped by for a little while with a visit. CB and BB always enjoy Pappaw. It gives me another adult to talk to and it gives the boys a "big kid" to play with.

I have to admit, it's days like this past week that make me glad I am not spending eternity in Hell.

Until next time, HB (a few more pics below)

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Jesus Had No...

Jesus had no servants, yet they called Him Master.
Had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher.
Had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer.
Had no army, yet kings feared Him.
He won no military battles, yet He conquered the world.
He committed no crime, yet they crucified Him.
He was buried in a tomb, yet He lives today.

I found this on a friend's Myspace profile and thought I would share it. I've heard this before, yet even still it gives me an awesome perspective and reminder of just who Christ is.

Until next time, HB

Monday, August 13, 2007

Fish Tales

When you meet or just chat with my dad, it won't be long before the conversation turns to fish tales. Well, the above fish is one he will be talking about for awhile. He loves to fish. He lives by the motto..."I live to fish and fish to live". And we get to "eat" the benefits with an occasional good fish fry.

This past Saturday, my dad and his friend went fishing and the above picture is the biggest catch of the day. This bass weighed in at about 8 1/2 lbs and 22.5 inches long. He proudly showed his fish as the game warden took a picture. We can't kid him this time about his tales of how the big one got away.

Good job, daddy. Keep reeling 'em in.

Until next time, HB

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Our Friendly Visitor

Meet Kendall. She is the sweet friend that lives a few houses down from us who has been coming over to visit the boys for the past year. She waits until one of her parents gets home and then rides her bike over and stays for about 15 minutes. And let me tell you, that 15 minutes is the highlight of the day for the boys.
They love it when Kendall visits. She doesn't visit everyday but when she does it is a treat for all 3 of us. While she is here it gives me 15 minutes to do a quick chore...unload or load the dishwasher, clean the bathroom, unload or load the washer/dryer, etc. She is such a delight and so well mannered.
There are times that she likes to "show the boys off" to some of her friends that come home with her after school but actually the boys end up showing off for them.
Kendall is partial to twins because she has a half brother and sister who are twins. She visited today so I thought I would introduce her to y'all. We enjoy her visits and sweet smiles that brighten a busy time of day.
Until next time, Love thy neighbor....HB

Monday, August 6, 2007

Playing in the Rain...AKA...Taking a Shower

This past Saturday, we decided to try giving the boys a shower instead of a bath. Our first attempt several months ago only caused "bathing cat" episodes...(see previous blog to explain).

But the 2nd time was a charm, well, at least for CB. He calls the shower--"rain", so I asked if he wanted to play in the rain. And of course like most typical boys, he agreed and enjoyed it quite well. As you recall, he is my water lover. However, BB didn't like playing in the rain but I will admit that it wasn't as bad of a "bathing cat" episode as before.

Until next time, HB

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Bathing Cats...BKA...2 Year Check-up

Last Thursday, I took the boys to have their 2 year check-up. Also, to have CB looked at for his cold.

I didn't realize that they would need their fingers pricked for a CBC. But the boys only whimpered through this. However, the rest of the exam was a nightmare. You would have thought that the finger pricking would have brought about the screams...but nooooo. Let the doctor just touch them and they went to hollering, screaming, crying, tears, snot, gagging, wailing and gnashing of teeth--both of them. It resembled the behavior of a cat being put in water for a bath...clawing, hissing, and growling. And then I started to laugh and cry at the same time. Literally laughing from embarrassment and crying from the stress.

After the exam and while mamma and I were trying to dress the "bathing cats", the doctor asked me how as I was doing at being the mom of twin toddlers. I was still in a crying/laughing state and before I realized what I had said, it just came out..."It's times like this that make me want to go home and get drunk." If looks could kill, I should be dead by the look my mamma gave me. I honestly didn't mean to say really just came out. I guess it was just a Freudian slip. I know that is not something you need to say to your child's pediatrician, but I did all the while not meaning it.

Let me clear it up before it starts...I DO NOT drink. Please don't be planning an intervention on my behalf. Thanks for the concerns, but it really is not necessary. And NO, I am not in denial.

Now for their progress...
CB weighs 26 lbs 4 oz. and is 35 inches tall

BB weighs 26 lbs 2 oz. and is 34 inches tall

Both of them are beginning to talk more and more with CB's language skills a little more advanced. But BB is not far behind and is progressing every day. I am amazed each day at what they are learning and feel so blessed that I am home every day to watch these new milestones.

Until next time, HB

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Little Did I Know...

that I was ordering food from the Britney Spears' "favorite hometown place to eat when she comes home"--as Nyla's Burger Basket's menu proudly proclaims.

Last Wednesday, I traveled to south MS for a cousin's wedding. As I neared exit #1 to my destination, my sister called and asked if I would stop somewhere and pick up a burger or something of the sorts for the "little ones". For those who have never traveled those parts, you can't just stop at the next exit for fast food...there aren't any (exits nor fast food).

As I got off "exit #1", I turned left instead of right to find a place to pick up a few burgers. This direction took my to the little town of Osyka. As I approached the downtown, such as it is, I came up on Nyla's Burger Basket. My dad was with me and stayed in the car with the boys while I went in for what I thought would be a quick order of burgers and fries.

I walked up to the counter not knowing the place nor the menu. I explained to the lady..."I'm not from here and so I'm not familiar with the your menu, is there one I can look at?"

With a leery look, she replied..,"Honey, there's one on the table, take your time."

As I reviewed the menu, I didn't really notice anything special but your regular "hometown menu". So I proceeded to order 2 hamburgers and 2 grilled cheeses for the "little ones".

As I waited for my order, I looked around the little trailer restaurant and noticed all the signed pictures of Britney Spears. I also noticed all the framed reviews from Southern Living and newspapers of both local and national. Looking back at the menu the upper left-hand corner was proudly displayed, "Britney Spears' favorite hometown place to eat when she comes home". And then it hit me---I am at the "NYLA'S".

I am not a fan of Britney but have seen a few interviews of her. However, I became interested in a few of the interviews as she mentioned a "Nyla's" in Osyka. My interest was only because I have family in that area.

As I continued to wait for my order, the locals came and went. I realized while waiting, that I was definitely in a small town. The children that came in talked about swimming in Mr. So-in-so's pond and eating watermelon. Which is a far different conversation than what I hear where I am from. The kids here talk about what country club or neighborhood pool they swim in. The people coming and going all new each other. There was even one teenage girl who came in and asked Ms Nyla if she needed help that night. To which Ms Nyla replied, "Not tonight, Honey, but come back tomorrow and Friday night. I will definitely need it then". I guess they don't display "help wanted" or "now hiring" signs. Why should they when the locals stop by on a daily basis willing to help. Maybe the possibility of Britney stopping in is a good enough incentive to work...especially if you are a teenager.

I would like to return and actually sit down and eat at the Nyla's Burger Basket. Who knows, even I might get to eat and converse with Britney. Now that would be blog worth writing and reading.

Until next time, "oops, I did it again"...another blog, HB