Monday, December 29, 2008

Our 1st Anniversary!

Well, today is our very first wedding anniversary. We can't believe it has been a whole year already. It really has flown by! We have been given so many blessings in this past year. We have taken our first vacation together, experienced our first time to organize our own high school mission trip for the youth group, joined our first married CG (for people who don't go to cLife, that is short for community group, our in home Bible studies), made many new friends with other married couples, moved out of our first home (our lake view condo) and into our very first home which we own. We've also gotten our very first pet, a kitty named Winter.

While sometimes it is hard to adjust to living with a new person with different ways of doing things and unique quarks, we have had a lot of fun this first year of marriage. We have grown closer than we thought possible when we were just dating. We both feel very blessed to be given this gift from God. What a wonderful thing to get to spend your life with your very best friend.

I love you very much, Casey. Thank you for a very memorable year.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Homeowner Update!

I guess it's about time for an update! My last update was Saturday, November 22nd and a lot has happened since then! We moved into our first house on November 25th (the Tuesday before Thanksgiving) and have had lots to do ever since! For a week we didn't have Internet, so I felt cut off from the outside world. It was okay though because we had a lot to keep us busy. I was so thankful that I had an ENTIRE WEEK off for Thanksgiving. Vacation days, in my opinion, are the #1 reason to be a teacher. I know that you should love kids and all that (and I do), but you just can't beat the vacation days with any other job. Casey and I debate our jobs a lot, and while his is super flexible during the day (he is able to leave and run errands if he needs to) and mine is not, he does not get near the days off that I do (duh!). Who else can say that they only have to work 180 days out of the year? I have 185 days OFF--that means I am off more days than I have to work :)

Anyway, back to the house. We had some pretty good help moving even though it was a weekday. Casey took off of work that day, and we also had both of our parents, Casey's grandmother, and Jeremiah help us move. We got EVERYTHING moved out of the condo and into the house in one day. Amazing. I thank Casey for being the "packing Nazi" for several weeks up to the move. Without him, nothing would have been in boxes. I absolutely despise packing.

The next day (Wednesday) Casey was as sick as a dog. He took off work that day, too. I was excited for him to be home with me until I realized that he wasn't going to be any fun! Thursday we went to both my mom and dad's sides of the family. Afterwards we drove to Austin and bought tickets for the A&M / UT game. I guess that has become a tradition for us! We have gone four out of the past five years. It's always a lot of fun, but it is MORE fun when the game is closer. This year was a little bit of a let down for me, but I know that Casey was excited to be in UT's new stadium. They added a section in the endzone. It holds a lot more people now. Of course, I still don't think it is cool as Kyle Field :)

Friday we slept in a little since we got home from Austin at 2:30 in the morning. We then went to have Thanksgiving with Casey's family at his grandmother's house (mom's side). We stayed over there for a while, but cut it a little short because Casey was sick again!! He had this stomach virus forever!

Saturday we did some more unpacking when Casey felt a little better. We also went with my mom and got a new washer and dryer at Lowe's. We went and saw the new James Bond movie that night. It was good, but not nearly as good as Casino Royale. I loved Casino Royale. And I really like this new James Bond. He is more rugged than the typical tall, dark, and handsome type.

Sunday I stayed home for the morning services while the new washer and dryer were delivered and hooked up. I went to the 4:30 service (we now have 3 services on Sunday! They are all the same, so that's nice when I want to sleep in:)!

Monday I went back to work. It was a hard day! I've learned that it is always really hard to go back to school after a vacation. I think the kids feel the same way. The rest of that week was typical. All work and no play. Ha ha. Thursday night we did get to go out with Charlie and Ginni! The came over and saw the new house, and then we went to eat at Snuffer's! Yum!

Finally the weekend came and Friday night Casey and I had dinner with his parents at Martinez! Yum, again! We also saw their newly painted house. It looks great! So great, it inspired us to go home and begin painting our furniture. We are painting two bookshelves and my old bedroom furniture. They are all pine and we are going to paint them black. I am excited to see how it all looks. So far we have only done one bookshelf...we have a LOT left to do. My bedroom furniture is made up of a LOT of pieces. Saturday we had the ELF BOWL all day. It is a football tournament that we put on for the youth group. It was awesome! We had 18 teams show up! It lasted from 9 to about 4:30. Last year's champs, the Rumble Bees, one it again! Protect the Hive! Today I stayed home again this morning to stay for the DirectTV guy to come and give us HD cable and DVR! This will be my first time EVER to have DVR. Casey told me he thought it would revolutionize my life (not his, just mine). I "tape" things ALL of the time! But I tape them on a VHS tape in my VCR. It is pretty outdated, I know. I am also really limited, too because the tapes are only 4 hours long, so if I am leaving 4 hours ahead of time my show won't tape! I am so excited about DVR!!! Yea!

Anyway, I will post some pictures later from our Thanksgiving week! Happy Sunday!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

On a Happier Note...

We bought a refrigerator and oven/range last night! We got two excellent deals!! We went into the scratch and dent side of Conn's in Mesquite and found a stainless steal refrigerator that is normally $2, didn't have the price tag so we asked the guy how much it was. He said, "I think that one is 1199, but I'll check to make sure." He went and checked and it said 1499, but he said, "since I told you I thought it was 1199, I have to give it to you for that price if you want it." We went and looked at that particular fridge at other stores and sure enough, it was almost 3,000 at other stores so we went back and bought it for only 1199! We were so excited! It is one of the new fridge's that have the nice freezer drawer on the bottom. It is really nice!

Then we went to Best Buy and got a great deal on a stainless oven/range! We got the floor model and told them how cheap some of the stoves were over there. The manager asked how much theirs was and I told them it was 540 at Conn's if we opened up a card, while Best Buy's was 599. She said, "well how about you get this one for 499!" I am pretty sure my jaw dropped because I was not expecting her to take 100 dollars off of the price just because Conn's had one for 540. It was great. Casey and I were both on a high after getting such great deals on our two new appliances. We can't wait until they are delivered to our new house on Tuesday!


We were supposed to close on Thursday afternoon, but everything went wrong. The title company in Houston that we have to use is mean and incompetent. We ended up closing yesterday afternoon, BUT we didn't get the keys! =( So we don't get to move in today like we had planned! We are supposed to get our keys on Monday, so hopefully we'll be able to move in on Tuesday.

I am just sad because I have the whole week of Thanksgiving off and really wanted to be moved in today so I could spend the whole week painting and unpacking. It is sad =(

Pray that nothing else goes wrong and that we can still get the keys on Monday!!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

4 Years Together

Yesterday was mine and Casey's FOUR YEAR ANNIVERSARY (since our first date)! We both felt like four years was a long time--especially for me being only 22. For those of you who don't know our "story," I will share it with you :) It will probably be really "gushy" so don't read if you don't want to know!
(For all of you that go to our church and have Paul McDill constantly telling you that we started dating when I was in the 7th grade, here is the real truth!)

Casey was the youth intern the summer after his sophomore and junior years of college. I met him his first summer as intern, but barely talked to him. His second summer of interning was the summer after I graduated high school--my last summer in the youth group. Which still happens to be my favorite summer of all--even without knowing Casey--ha ha. Anyway, that summer youth camp was like the first week in June. I was sitting at the lunch table with my best friend, Lauren Smith (now Stevenson) on the first day of camp. I was just sitting there and complaining/venting about my ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend when Casey comes and sits by us and just listens to me talk for a second--just eaves-dropping. Eventually he just says rudely/jokingly, "You just need to get over it!" Lauren and I just looked at him like he was crazy. Here he is telling me what to do and he doesn't even know me. It was pretty humorous. From then on he gave me a hard time every time I saw him. Anyway, that week at camp was our first time to really talk much, and I developed a little crush on my college intern. I looked at it as just a crush on my cute and funny intern, but I knew it seemed like a little more than that when I went home and hung out with my future roommate Amanda and told her, "I met the man I want to marry!" I ended up telling my mom the same thing, but I knew it sounded immature so I ended up changing it to, "I met a guy that I want my husband TO BE LIKE."
Later on that summer (in July) we went to mission trip in McAllen, TX. I was on-and-off dating this guy named Corry at that time, and we were kind of "off" during mission trip. We still sat together a little during the van rides, but weren't really getting along. There were several times that I was stuck on the very last row (where you don't want to be after a long time of working outside) right in the middle of Corry and Casey! Boy was it stinky, ha ha! But those were the times that Casey and I got to know each other really well! Some of those van rides back and forth from the work site and where we were staying would be an hour long, so we got to talk about all sorts of stuff. One of our big talks that week was about my breakup that he had been giving me a hard time about ever since youth camp. He shared with me about his really bad breakup after a two year relationship as well, and how long it took him to get over it. It was kind of funny that he was so harsh with me when he went through the same thing. Typical Casey though--not one for compassion or empathy, (unless he's in a serious mood) ha ha. Anyway, by the end of the mission trip, Casey and I had grown quite the friendship! I was still totally crushing on my intern, but really really felt like I was looked at like a little girl (and probably was then).
A couple of weeks later Casey was at church on Sunday handing out little strips of paper to all of the youth kids that wanted his email address and screen name (does anyone IM anymore??) because he was going back to UT. Anyway, I got one of the pieces of paper and emailed Casey as soon as I got home from church (a little overly excited) my bewilderment he wrote me back that day. I was so super embarrassed that he knew that I had emailed him so soon. For some reason I was thinking that since his email was his UT email, he couldn't check it 'til he got to school that next week. I was wrong and thoroughly embarrassed. Oh well.
From then on we talked on IM and through email several times a month. In the beginning we only emailed or IMed every now and then and for very short amounts of time. We talked about important things. I actually have most all of the emails that we wrote back and forth. It's fun to look back at! After a couple of months, we got to where we talked on IM almost every night and emailed several times a week (big nerds, I know).
Anyway, one weekend Casey home for the UT/OU weekend at the Cotton Bowl, and we decided to meet at Starbucks that night. Not a date, just catching up on the semester. I was super nervous and even had Amanda at my house waiting for me until I got home to tell her all about it. She also went to church with me the next morning just to meet Casey (Casey didn't know this though, of course)! Anyway, apparently that night Casey had thought about telling me that he had feelings for me or something, but I talked all about how I wasn't over my ex-boyfriend (the same one that I was talking about at youth camp) and ruined it. He went home feeling all discouraged (he later told me all of this).
About a month later, November 5th I believe, Amanda and I went up to Austin to visit some of her family and while we were there, we hung out with Casey and his friends quite a bit. It was a lot of fun! On the way home, I talked all about how discouraged I was with Casey, and how much I liked him, and how he didn't like me back. I went on and on about it--thoroughly convinced that he saw me as a "youth kid" even though I was now in college! Amanda just kept saying that she "thought" he liked me, blah blah blah. I thought she was just saying it all to make me feel better and still do, ha ha.
Two days after we got home, Tuesday the 9th, Casey called me. This had NEVER happened. We NEVER EVER talked on the phone. As soon as I answered I said, "Hey, what's wrong?" I kept asking over and over. He said, "Can't we just make small talk for a second?" I thought that was odd, lol. He finally told me he was coming home for a doctor's appointment on a Thursday (incredibly weird for him because he does not like to miss class/school/work). He asked me if I would like to eat dinner with him on Thursday when he got in town. I said that was cool, and he said he would "pick me up around 9." I thought that was REALLY weird because we had never ever gone anywhere together-we always met at the place we were going to. I got off of the phone ecstatic and confused at the same time. I went into my parent's room and told my mom. I started jumping up and down...I didn't even know if it was a date or not, but I felt like it might be. I was very exciting. The next day I went over to my friend Laura's to borrow clothes for my big "outing." I think I started getting ready around 6 when Casey didn't get there until 9. I just sat and waited. I was extremely nervous.
Casey got to the house around 9 and met my parents. He had briefly met them at church before, but neither of them remembered I don't think. My dad embarrassed me by asking if I wanted him to take our picture. I secretly did, but I was too embarrassed to let him. I would kill to have taken that picture now. Our first date. That would have been a nice picture to have. Anyway, we left and went to Napoli's on Centerville where we both ordered and hardly ate at all. Even Casey had a full plate at the end. We both acted so nervous. Eventually Casey pushed his plate forward and said something like, "I didn't really come in town for a doctor's appointment..." He went on to say how he had feelings for me and couldn't wait until his Thanksgiving break to come home to tell me-he couldn't even wait until the weekend. He talked about how he had felt discouraged at our Starbucks meeting, but later felt like maybe I did like him too, etc. Finally he took a breath and waited for me to say something. I hadn't said anything. I felt like I was in shock, ha ha. I just kind of stuttered, and his face dropped! I realized that he thought I was going to shoot him down, so I just said something like, "I feel the same way!" I hadn't even thought about what I would say back to him. I didn't know what to say. Nothing I could say would match all of the nice things that he had said about me. After that we went to Friday's to get dessert that we didn't eat (again)! We did that just so we could talk some more. It was a great night and the rest is history!
I can't believe that that was all four years and a day ago. Feels like last week. It is crazy how time flies!
Now you know the real story of Casey and Lauren Coats!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Packin' Up!

Time to update! Not much has been going on lately. Casey and I have begun packing for our move. We are still supposed to close on our house on the 18th and hope to move in the weekend after that. I have the week of Thanksgiving off so moving in the weekend before that works out perfectly! I will have some time to paint and unpack. Casey and I have decided that we are going to go to Austin on Thanksgiving afternoon and try to get a couple of tickets to the A&M/UT game! We have been able to do that before so we are thinking that we might be able to again. Wish us luck on that!
These are some pictures of our Halloween weekend. We went over to Charlie & Ginni's to hang out with them and some other couples and pass out candy to the kiddos. It was good fun. The boys played with the wii pretty much the whole time while we girls made candy, caramel, and chocolate apples! Very yummy! Then, the next day I went with my mom to Laura's baby shower. It was very cute and girly :) Here are some pics of that weekend!
Casey and the rest of the boys playing a video game!

Me and Ginni hanging out!

Madison, their cute puppy
Laura's Baby Shower Cake--Welcome Aubrey Kay!

Cute diaper cake! They made it themselves!

Me with the mommy-to-be!

Laura with the grandmas and one great grandma!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Future Scrapbooking Room :)

Well, today is two days from the day we are supposed to close on our house! Very exciting. We are hoping to lock in a mortgage rate tomorrow. Anyway, because of all this...I am going to share my plans for my future scrapbooking room :)

I am hoping to get all my scrapbooking stuff organized and put away nicely, but also cutely!

Here are a few pictures that I've been looking at to get ideas:

All of these are inspiring, but my very favorite is this one. I think I am going to get one of these shelving units (probably from Ikea) and do the same thing with red or a different color. I've never been a really big fan of red, but I do really like this look.

What do y'all think?

And now, here is my little reminder for everyone to vote tomorrow!!! I thought it was super cute so I stole it off of Ginni's blog, and I have to give her credit!

VOTE TOMORROW. (preferably with the blue elephant...)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

10 Month Anniversary!

I just wanted to add a special "shout out" to my wonderful husband Casey! Today is 10 months since we got married! Time has flown by! I feel like we have been together for four years, like we have, but it does NOT feel like we have been married for ten months! Amazing.
Here is a picture of us from wayyy back when we first started dating :) This was Christmas break 2004.

Trunk or Treat

Sunday night Casey and I went to his sister and brother-in-law's church in Richardson. It was their "trunk or treat." We really wanted to see Caleb (our two year old nephew) dressed up as Elmo, but also wanted to see the rest of the gang dressed up in Sesame Street gear--including Big Bird, Cookie Monster, Grover, and the number 7. Oscar the Grouch was even there via trash can. It was pretty funny. I didn't get any pictures of the rest of the gang because I was too busy playing with little Caleb so I stole one off of Beverly's facebook :)

Here are some of the pictures from the night!

Little Elmo on sucker #5

Elmo and Uncle Casey

Me with Caleb and sucker #6

He looks like he is wearing a mask with his head down like that...Diggin' in!
Super cute picture of Elmo offering monkey boy a piece of candy :)

The whole Sesame Street gang!!

Cookie Monster, Big Bird, Grover, the #7, and Elmo!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Our New House!!!

Yep, I said it. We got a house, and we are super excited about it. We have been looking at houses for a month now--feels like a year. Last night at dinner we counted how many houses we had looked at. The number feels like wayyyy too many. 24 houses. We have looked at 24 houses. OUR house is number 22 out of 24. We were pretty positive that we wanted to put an offer on it when we saw it, but we still had two more houses to look at that night. That is why it is 22 out of 24.

We feel like this house is such a "God thing." We had fallen in love with another house about 2 weeks ago, put in an offer, and they went with someone else. We were pretty upset. It took me a while to get over it. Since then we have liked several other houses enough to put in an offer (just didn't get around to it), but they all sold. We were like, "are we supposed to get a house? Or just rent for another 6 months?" But then this house dropped $28,000 because it is a foreclosure. The bank just wanted to sell it faster. The honest truth is that we had seen the house before, but didn't go in it because we thought the outside was ugly. It was definitely still in our price range before they even dropped the price, but we judged the book by its cover. Kristin, our realtor and my friend from middle/high school really pushed us to see it. We weren't excited about it, but we went ahead and saw it. We were pretty much up for seeing anything. Especially cheap ones.

We loved it. The outside has NO landscaping...which is why we didn't originally go see it. The inside is just what we need for our very first house. We are really excited :) One of the funny things is that it is two streets away from Kristin!! Ha ha.

Friday afternoon Kristin called me and told me that we had gotten the house. I was still at school and there were some students still in my room. They got to see my jump up and down :) I immediately started scheming up a plan to surprise Casey. I decided to make a little "card" out of construction paper from my classroom. I drove from school to the new house and put the card in the mailbox. I then went home and asked Casey if we could just drive by the house. We do that a lot, so it was not out of the ordinary. He didn't even complain-he was totally down for going to look at it again. I told him that I called Kristin to see if she had heard anything, and that since she knew we were going to go by the house she was going to put a copy of the offer in the mailbox since she had forgotten to give it to us the night before. All true so that worked out well. He fell for it all. When we got to the house, Casey got the mail and saw this little card from me :) He was really surprised and happy. I was glad I could surprise him. I never get to surprise him-he always surprises me with stuff. Here are some pictures of the card and our new house! :)

The front of the homemade card I made :)
The back of the card The front of the house! It needs landscaping badly!
The formal living room is the closest and the formal dining room is right behind it with the chandelier that we are going to change out :) LOVE the massive kitchen. The tile back splash is really growing on me, too! :)

The little breakfast nook and a view of the pantry on the right. That is the mud room on the left with the door to the garage. The living room with the hallway on the right. The front door is on the right as well. Also, we are going to get a wood mantel-that fireplace doesn't have one yet!Yea! We are homeowners! :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Political Talk

(Disclaimer: If you tend to get really steamed about politics when you don't agree...I would suggest you don't read it or if you are going to anyway, please don't leave me any "hate comments." Ha ha!)

Have you ever felt the Holy Spirit tugging at you when you're listening to someone talk? Have you ever just felt like you're being warned against what they were saying?

That's how I felt tonight while I was watching the presidential debate. In the beginning of this election year, I felt myself agreeing with Obama on several different topics. After listening to him for about a year now, I am beginning to see where I was "smooth-talked" or swayed by his eloquent speech. Tonight McCain said something about how we need to look past Obama's eloquent speech and listen to his words. He is SO right. Obama can really make you agree with him if you're not listening closely.

While I was listening to the debate, I felt myself being stirred. I felt uneasy about the things that Obama said. I really feel like it was the stirring of the Holy Spirit like I talked about before. I have only had that feeling that strongly a few times in my life. It is not just a "bad feeling" that you can sometimes get when you're walking down a dark alley, lol. It is a genuine stirring in your soul, where you know that what is being said is not truth. I felt especially grieved when they began debating abortion. I feel very saddened at the thought of losing millions more unborn babies at the hands of another careless political leader. While this will be my second presidential election to vote in, I feel that it is my first one to lean VERY strongly in one direction. Obama has been said to be perhaps the most liberal member of senate and perhaps the most liberal democrat to run the presidential race.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Lauren Dumb Dumb

So, last night Casey, my mom, his parents-Beverly and Mitch, and I all went to look at houses with our realtor, Kristin Huie (aka Kristin Gibson, my good friend from high school)! Well, we looked at the three different houses from about 5:15 to 7:15. At the last house, I got in the car with our family and Kristin left in her own car. About two seconds from when she pulled away I figured out that I didn't have my purse. I must've left it one of the houses. No big deal, I'll just call Kristin and she'll come right back and we'll get my purse. Well, my phone is in my purse and Casey doesn't have her number. Grrrr. We start to chase her down but can't find her. We all think I must've left it in the second house because we stayed in their for a while talking. We decide to drive back to that house and ring the door bell, hoping the owners are home by now. Nope. No luck. Meanwhile, I'm calling all of my friends that know Kristin, trying to get her number. No one answers. Of course, they don't know who is calling them because I am on Casey's phone. So, I start texting hoping that they will respond. Eventually I get two people to send me Kristin's number. By this time we are already on the way to her house. She answers, and we meet her back at the second house. No purse inside. GRRRR. We go to the first house. No purse. GRRRR. We decide to go to the last house. It's further away. The whole time I am worried that we are not going to find my purse, keys, camera, wallet, and phone. My life is in that purse. My car will not start without my ONLY computer chip inhabited key. This could potentially be a nightmare. I already feel bad that I am dragging my entire family and friend around looking for it all. If I could've gotten into the houses on my own, I would have. Finally we pull up to the last house-the one that we were at when I REALIZED I didn't have my purse. Good grief, all the trouble that we went through. Kristin pulls up and says, "they just called. Your purse is inside." We thanked her, and she left. I knocked on the door, and a very nice couple (about our age) answers the door and gives me my purse. The man made a joke about thinking that we left my purse as a downpayment. Ha ha.

After all that we went to On the Border for dinner. Whew.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Fall Conference Night

I am sitting here at school waiting on my next appointment. Suddenly I get the urge to see if my blog will come up if I try it. I have tried it a million times, but every time the school's safety net kicks in and it says in big, red letters, "ACCESS DENIED!" However, for some crazy, unseen reason it worked! Yay (now if I could only break into Facebook somehow I'd be a happy woman)! I am glad it worked tonight because I have a break from meeting parents, and I really need the break! So far I have met with 8 sets of parents about 8 different students. I am plain tuckered out. I still have 3 more conferences to go! Wow. I did not think that this many parents would care now that their child is in 6th grade. I know it is not even half of the class, but 11 seems like a lot to me. I am glad that they care about their child's progress though! All of the meetings have gone well. I always get nervous talking to parents, but this night has definitely taken the nervousness away. They are just people, and some of them are more nervous about talking to me than I am talking to them! Ha ha.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

God is good.

Today was my very first picture day! I got my picture taken for the yearbook. I haven't been in a yearbook for four years, and now I am going to be in one as a teacher. I just cannot believe it. Sometimes I sit in my classroom and just think about how fast my life has gone by. Not really elementary or middle school, but really high school and college. I so enjoyed high school and college! I am enjoying my life right now too, it is just different. I have come to the conclusion that I really do enjoy all the stages of my life so far. I thought I was going to get caught in my post-college depression, but that really only lasted like two days (right around the first A&M football game on TV).

I am really enjoying being married to Casey, and all the adventures we have together! Right now our adventures include looking for a house! We are really excited to see what God has for us this next year. We have been very blessed with so many things so far. We talk every now and then about how our entire relationship seems to have been orchestrated by God-right down to the very minute. When I think about how we met, got to know each other, and dated it seems a little surreal, but then when I think about how student teaching got opened up to new places (not just College Station) and how Casey got the cLife job the very weekend we got engaged it seems amazing! God has been good to us. He has continued to bless us since our wedding with a great CG (community group-aka cLife Bible study group), and my new job at a brand new school--with a great principal as a bonus! Now we feel blessed to be looking for a house in Rockwall to buy! We never thought that we would be able to buy a house in Rockwall. We thought surely our condo would be the last we saw of lovely Lake Ray Hubbard! It doesn't appear to be that way though, and we couldn't be more excited about it! I can't wait to see what God has in store!

Be praying for us as we look at houses. We want to make sure we are in tune with what God wants for us, not what we want for ourselves (always a little hard for me:).

Love y'all!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

I love my church...

because today they brought lunch to the entire staff at school!! It was greatness. They brought us Tino's. Casey got to come too and sit with me at lunch! All of the teachers loved it, and I loved that it was my church. They don't call us COMMUNITY life church for nothing! ;)

This is our current series: The Classics

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I know, I know. 2nd post tonight. I have a good reason. I went to Taco Bell a little while ago and had a very annoying experience.

If you know me, you know I like my condiments. Especially mild sauce from Taco Bell.

Well, I went through the drive-thru and everything was going fine until the lady asks me if I would like sauce. Of course I would like sauce! I tell her very politely that I would like "a lot of mild sauce."

Guess how many she gives me.


I think, "is she kidding? I got two I supposed to use one package of sauce on each item?" I am sure that there are some of you out there that think one on each item is plenty, but not me. Anyway, I wasn't upset at that. I just waited until she turned around again, and I said, "Ma'am could I have several more mild sauce packets?" She turns around, rolls her eyes, and gives me ONE MORE. At this point I am getting a little frustrated with her. I mean, seriously, what does "a lot" and "several" mean to you?

At this point I would like to say that I HAVE worked in fast food. I HAVE worked a very busy drive-thru line. I HAVE had rude customers. I am NOT a rude customer. I do NOT freak out about pickles on my sandwich or fries that are too salty. However, I DO have a problem with employees on a power trip.

I mean, really, are the condiments coming out of your paycheck? NO. Do you have a personal reason for not wanting to give them to me? NO. Admit it, you hate your job and want me to hate it, too. Well, I am sorry that you have to work at Taco Bell for that one year in high school (I did it for three), but really, it isn't my fault, so give me my mild sauce please.

Anyway, back to the story.

I said, "Ma'am, I would REALLY like a LOT of mild sauce. I like to have a lot on my food."

She says, "I'm sorry, I am not supposed to give you more than two."

I say, "You are telling me you are not allowed to give the customer the amount of condiments they want?"

She doesn't say anything. She just kind of stares at me. She doesn't reach for more mild sauce or anything.

I know a lot of you would give up, but I think you are underestimating my love for mild sauce. I pretty much don't like any fast food without that place's condiments. I don't each Chick-fil-a fries without the Polynesian Sauce or the Arby's Melt without the Arby's Sauce. I am the same way with Taco Bell. It REALLY disappoints me when I realize I did not get enough mild sauce when I get home.

So....(don't hate me for this), I asked to talk to her manager.

She leaves without speaking to me.

Fine. I don't care. I am going to get my mild sauce!!!

The manager comes to the window, and I just tell her that I don't want to complain, but I want my mild sauce. I only have three packets and I need like 7 more (at least). She tells me that is fine and gives them to me--no problem.

Is it really Taco Bell's policy to argue with the customer about sauce until they have to ask for the manager just to get a decent amount? Geez.

Job Security?

The other day I was talking with Casey about the economy being bad. I keep saying that I think we are going to drop into another Great Depression and it is going to go into history with people reading about us in years to come. Everyday I come home from school and turn on the news to see if the stock market has crashed.

I always think of the line at the end of Titanic where Rose says that her fiance had gotten off of the boat, "but after the crash of '29 he put a pistol in his mouth." (Sorry if that was to gorry for you). I keep wondering if people are going to kill themselves if our economy gets to bad that our money isn't worth anything.

However, even though I am talking through all of this, I was bragging to Casey that I would be able to "carry us" if bad stuff happened because I am a teacher, and teachers have great job security......A couple days later the Dallas Independent School District laid off hundreds of employees, including teachers. Well, I guess I was wrong. Apparently no one really has job security. Ha!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

When We Have Company Over

...we always go crazy cleaning. i LOVE it. i love when we both just clean for like an hour and get everything spotless. we usually turn on music and just work. we straighten things up, hang up clothes, do the dishes, wash the counters, do the laundry, make the bed, dust, vacuum, sweep, mop, and clean the bathrooms. it's greatness. i love it because when we're done, we just get to sit in this super clean condo and relax. usually it stays really clean for several days, sometimes even a week or two. eventually it gets dirty again, but we invite people over, and away we go cleaning again!
Here is a picture to show the cleanliness!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Mean Teacher

I was a mean teacher today.

The second class drove me nuts.

Please don't tell my principal.

I thought I would give them a "fun" project. I have been teaching them about the plot, conflict, climax, and resolution of a story. I showed them a cartoon and told them that they could write and draw their own cartoon using all of the elements. I had special instructions that I repeated about 5 times.


5 times.

I am not exaggerating.

But still, after 5 times, I had about 10 students come up to me asking the same questions over and over. I almost lost it on them. Instead, I calmly told them to sit down. I asked them if they would like it if a 52 people came up to them and asked the SAME question.

52 times.

Of course they all said "no." I told them that I had 52 students and it gets old having the same questions asked 52 times, especially when I have already told the entire class 5 times.

I asked them if they thought it was fair for me to get "chewed out" by their parents when they received zeroes on progress reports for simply not turning in their assignments.

Not turning in their assignments because they, for whatever reason, didn't follow instructions.

Didn't do it.

Or my favorite, did it, but didn't turn it in.

Of course they all said "no" to that as well.

So, I gave them an ultimatum.

I told them that recess is an "extra" in the 6th grade, and from now, if people ask me to repeat simple instructions (not related to content), they would sit out in recess and write the instructions I had given. That way they could remember them.

See, I told you I was a mean teacher.


Now something on a lighter note!

Here is a picture of Casey & I from the Cowboy game we went to a few weeks ago. It was a lot of fun, and of course the Cowboys won! Don't they always?

Monday, September 22, 2008

Random Updates

Today I let my students vote on the name for our new class pet, the gerbil. I know her name was Ginny, but I wanted to give them some "ownership" over her, so I let them nominate names, and then they voted on them. Well, the verdict is in. Her new name is Skittles. Sounds like 6th graders named her, doesn't it? I think so. I am okay with it though. It was better than some of the other nominations though. Ms. Sunshine was a hoot. I really hoped they didn't vote on that so I didn't have to refer to the gerbil as Ms. Sunshine, lol.

This gerbil is very active. I think I may have to remove the "running wheel" during class because that thing is constantly on it! I think she thinks she is getting away. Isn't that sad? I suppose we can be like that sometimes, too. Running from God, but not getting anywhere.

On to other news, Casey is away on a mini-trip. He is playing golf in the "Tin Cup." Roger Clark (my former CFA boss) puts it on every year, and he invites about 25 guys to come and play in East Texas. They stay at his lake house (except Casey and a few others are staying at a hotel due to lack of room for everyone). He left the house at 5:25am this morning in order to get to Chickfila by 5:45. They headed out to East Texas and teed off at 8am. They'll get back tomorrow evening. I think they play 45 holes in all. I think Casey would do this monthly if he could. If it weren't $175, I might let him! :)

I think someone with some resources needs to plan a girls' mini-trip. I know people do this, but it is normally geared for older women, I think. I want a weekend of massages, manicures, pedicures, and shopping :) Too bad that costs more than $175. Maybe I'll get to spend that much on clothes or something since he's getting to do that on GOLF--I cannot think of something I would like to spend money on any less. Ha ha. The difference in guys and girls (I know a lot of girls play golf, but not many of them would rather pay to play than shop)!

Speaking of money....I GET PAID IN TWO DAYS!! WOO HOO! For those of you who don't know...this will be my first real pay check ever. EVER. I think my last pay check over $100 was at Chickfila, which would be like 4 years ago. AND I've basically been working for two months with no pay. Can't wait, can't wait, can't wait! woo hoo!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Gerbil Alert!

I got a gerbil. Yep, that's right, a gerbil. You see, there's this woman at our church who is on staff with Casey. Her 2 kids had a gerbil named Ginny, but recently they got two little puppies. Sooo, she asked Casey if I might like it for my classroom. I said "sure!" I think it would be fun to have a class pet :) The first time she tried to give me the gerbil her little girl just started crying and so she let her keep it. Today she asked her if she thought it was about time to give Ginny to "Mrs. Lauren." Her little girl said yes, so today Casey brought little Ginny the Gerbil home. Ha ha. I have been watching it all night-it is so interesting. I guess I am pet deprived because normally a little rat-like animal would not intrigue me so. However, Casey has deprived me from any cat or dog since we have been married. I have actually never had a hampster of gerbil or anything like that so it is kind of fun watching it. I think I will wait to bring the gerbil to my class 'til Monday though. It will be a nice surprise for my students :) I think I might let my kids name her...maybe I will let them vote since it is an election year ;) ha ha--always trying to think of a teachable moment. Lol.

Anyway, tonight Casey and I were watching The Office when Ginny started going crazy in her wheel-she was running so fast and eventually went too fast! She turned upside down and went all the way around until she fell right out of the wheel. It was so funny. She did it twice, and Casey and I laughed our heads off. So far she is pretty fun, but her wheel-running is kind of loud. I might disable it tonight so it doesn't wake me up. I might even have to do that when I am teaching so the kids are majorly distracted.

Anyway, that is my life right now. New gerbil in the house.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

i promise i really do like it.

teacher update. kids are funny. they do funny things. they are sweet. they are kind. they are loving. but they are also annoying.

i really like teaching. i swear i do. but i am tired. i get tired of telling kids to stop talking. stop tapping on the desk. stop humming. stop making "spinners" & "flyers" (as they like to call them) out of your papers. stop touching the glass when you walk in the hall. stop running. stop yelling. stop forgetting your homework. stop daydreaming. blah blah blah blah blah.

but other than that i love teaching :)

Monday, September 8, 2008

All of "The Laurens" are Now Off the Market

This past weekend was Lauren Smith's Wedding Weekend! Thursday night-Bachelorette Party, Friday night-Rehearsal Dinner, & Saturday-Wedding! I unfortunately had to miss her bridal brunch on Friday morning because of work. I just could not ask off on my 7th day of school.

with my gorgeous friend, the bride!

casey and i after the ceremony!

with my dear besty laura k. we love this pic. we're cute, that's why ;)

me with my momma--we're cute too :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

An Apple for the Teacher

Teacher Update!

I know, I know. People have been asking about school. I am sorry it has taken this long to get to my blog. I have been so overwhelmed/busy. I think I am getting better at it all though.

Today was my 5th day of school. We started last Wednesday, and then we had Monday off, so I still haven't had a full week of school. I've been okay with that though :) I had a relaxing 3-day weekend.

My first day of school was a lot of fun! I REALLY like my homeroom class. My team teacher's class, however, is a handfull! I get them about 2 hours a day. Some of them are crazy ;) It is okay though. I'll get a handle on it :)

I'll put pictures up later, but for now, here is a fun, little survey about myself!

I AM … a believer. a wife. a daughter. a friend. a teacher.
I WANT… an animal running around our condo.
I HAVE … the love of an amazing man.
I KEEP … all of the notes and cards that mean something to me in a metal basket on my desk.
I WISH I COULD … get over my fear of heights! I almost couldn't get all the way up the Eiffel Tower.
I HATE … running late. All the time. I am slowly getting better at this. I promise.
I FEAR … speaking in public-crazy, that I picked a job talking in front of adolescents, I know.
I HEAR … the harshness of the wind blowing across the lake and shaking our windows.
I DON’T THINK … that the Olympics should only be a couple weeks long. Casey and I definitely had withdraws.
I REGRET … quitting piano lessons in middle school (after several years of practice)!
I LOVE … my adorably cute husband.
I AM NOT … easy to convince. I guess you could call me hard-headed.
I DANCE … really silly when I'm hyper.
I SING … along with any song that I know the words to, and some that I don't (this makes Casey laugh).
I NEVER … want to miss out on any opportunity that God is giving me because I am scared of the unknown.
I RARELY … go a day without checking Facebook-that's probably because I am a Facebook addict. However, I have been skipping a few days every now and then since I started school.
I CRY WHEN I WATCH … Oprah. It gets to me almost every time. I also admit that I cried during one episode of The Office. Sad, right?
I AM NOT ALWAYS … in a good mood, but when I teach, I try to fake it.
I HATE THAT … there are students in my class that feel like misfits.
I’M CONFUSED ABOUT … children whose parents are okay with them being disrespectful to other adults, or even themselves.
I NEED … to cook more. Please help me save my famished husband!
I SHOULD … be reading or cleaning. But rather I digress by this fun little survey.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


I am in my millionth day of staff development. I am super tired. I have been staying at the school late everyday getting my room ready and working on lesson plans. Today I got there at 8am and left around 7:15pm. I never would've thought that I would work over 11 hours in one day. That's just not me-I'm not an overachiever, haha. When I left school at 7:15 tonight I went straight to Momentum (the youth church service). I ended up getting home at 10. Wow. I considered not going, but I decided I would go ahead because I haven't heard Casey talk in a while. He did really good too, so I am glad that I went! :)

Anyway, all that to say: I am tired, and school hasn't even started. Interesting.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

San Antonio Here We Come!

In about two hours Casey and I are heading for San Antonio! This is going to be our vacation this year since we're poor folk. Actually, we are already went out of the country this year for vacation (our honeymoon to Jamaica), so I guess you could say another trip to San Antonio ain't that bad! ;) We're going to Sea World on Friday and probably dinner on the Riverwalk and then on to check out the Alamo. Saturday we're going to check out the Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch (where you drive your car and feed all sorts of animals, including giraffes:), followed by dinner on the Riverwalk again. Sunday, on our way back to Rockwall, we are going to stop at the outlet malls in San Marcos and Round Rock and shop for school clothes! Very excited about that.

When I was five I went to Sea World in San Antonio for the first time. I had a BLAST. I still remember it. It is one of my favorite childhood memories. It is also where I met my favorite animal: the dolphin. I keep telling Casey that we need to set aside at least $20 for me to feed the dolphins. When I was five, the little fish cups were $2 a piece and we got 10 of them! I fed the dolphins for at least an hour. I adored them. So now, I am really hoping that the fish cups haven't gone up too much (but I am pretty sure they have). When we return we'll be sure to post some pictures from our trip!
Yay! Shamu!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

I Just Can't Put Down a Good Book!

When I get a good book, I just cannot put it down. Sometimes Casey gets irritated with me for doing this because I will straight-up ignore him when I am reading a good book. One night he came home, and I was reading a Francine Rivers book, and he got so mad that I had been reading the whole time he was gone. He said I should've done the dishes. Maybe he was right, but that's not the point. The point is, when I get a really good book, I cannot do anything productive until I have finished it. Sometimes it is all I can think about when I am at school or work. I just can't wait to be home so that I can read my book of the week! Ha ha. Sunday we went to Kroger to grocery shop, and I found a book that I wanted to buy, and I already finished it. I read it in three days. It was almost 400 pages. I just can't help it. Because I am a reading teacher, I think I can place this trait under my pro list instead of my con list ;)

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Bridal Shower Fun

This past Sunday I threw Lauren Smith (soon-to-be Stevenson!) a bridal shower at Mimosa Lane. It was fun to see the Mimosa People again and also Rachel & Amanda were there. Haven't hung out with either of them since Amanda's wedding! Here are some pictures from the shower!
Lauren and all of the hostesses
Watching Lauren open her presents!
High school friends-Amanda, Rachel, Lauren, and myself