Sunday, January 31, 2010

Advice Seeking Cowlicker

Friends, tonight I come to you seeking advice.

Serious advice.

I have a cowlick the size of Texas. It has a mind of its own.

You have probably noticed it. You have probably secretly wondered "why doesn't she do something about that horrible hair of hers?".

What, I ask you, what, can I do about this crazy sprig of hair that makes it presence known every day of my life?


(Yes, I'm serious).

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Addendum to Bellybuttonless

I am having one of those bouts of uncontrollable laughter. I am supposed to be getting ready for work. You know brushing my teeth, washing my face, putting my clothes on.

Instead I am laughing hysterically at this gem of a music video:

Sent to me by the lovely Jill. She is the mother of 2 sweet boys and somehow I believe she may have watched this video a time or two.

Oh I need to tell you something. I don't got a belly button.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Grace and Gratitude

Today I am consumed with the concept of gratitude.

On my list of personal virtues, I strive to place gratitude and grace at the very top.

I realize that I am blessed to find myself in a most grateful season of life right now. The blessings that surround me have never been made more apparent. My heart swells with thankfulness and my cup runneth over. Daily. Hourly. Minutedly. Secondly.

Some of the things I am thankful for are silly. Some are impossible to articulate. Some are trivial. Some are life-changing. Some are tangible. Some are not.

It's easy to express outward grace and gratitude when things are going your way. When things are easy-peasy. What never ceases to amaze me, is people who exude these entities even in the face of adversity. I am thankful for the people in my life who, by their own spirit and grace, remind me to be grateful. These sweet friends remind me that nothing in this world is to be taken for granted. Nothing.

An old Chinese proverbs reminds me: "When eating bamboo sprouts, remember the man who planted them".

How often do we focus on the bamboo sprouts in our life and fail to remember the man who planted them? I believe that the man who planted the bamboo sprouts deserves our utmost. I believe that sometimes we allow ourselves to become consumed with our bamboo sprouts and fail to offer up praises of gratitude.

So in remembrance and honor of the Farmer who has blessed, and continues to bless, us each and every day, tonight I am whispering up a prayer of thankfulness.

"I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder." ~Gilbert Keith Chesterton

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Things I learned today:
  • My belly button no longer exists.
  • If you drive too far into the garage you will, in fact, cause damage to nearby items.
  • Lawyers, like cloth diapers, are expensive.
  • Bonefish Grill makes for fabulous take-out.
  • Limiting caffeine increases hunger and ragefulness.
  • Children you once babysat will indeed grow up and go off to college one day. When that day comes, you will feel old.
  • Failing to use a level or laser light will result in crooked wall hangings. It's inevitable.
  • Husbands do not appreciate monogrammed onesies and personalized monthiversary outfits to the same degree that wives do. No amount of enthusiasm and shrieking will make up for the bewildered look they give when you confess your purchases of the day.
  • Attempting to use your bath robe belt as a rope to lift yourself from the bathtub will not prove successful. Repeated attempts will resemble the first.
  • God is capable of more than we can imagine or ask for.
The End.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Left Foot, Right Foot

Top 10 Reasons Why I Love Hobby Lobby:
10. Storefront located precisely 200 yards from Zaxby's drive-thru. Entirely too convenient to partake in fried pickles and sweet tea on any given venture.
9. Aisles upon aisles of large plastic Valentines Day decor (i.e. enormous dancing winking heart) and jumbo bags of colored plastic Easter Eggs.
8. Closed on Sundays. Just as you find yourself in need of a distraction from a sudden intense Chick-fil-a craving, you pull in the parking lot to realize craftiness must wait until Monday.
7. Cash registers circa 1978.
6. Super cute double pack seasonal to-do list pads. A must-have on each trip regardless of how many now clutter up the junk drawer in the kitchen.
5. Miniature buggies.
4. Weekly 40% off printable coupon. I refuse to go without it.
3. Craftiness implosion. Projects I never needed (or wanted) to complete are inspired by simply perusing the scrap book paper aisle.
2. Festive gift-wrapping accouterments. For example: zebra print tissue and coordinating ribbon.
1. Jazzy instrumental hymns played overhead. I am often forced to add my own lyrics as I browse the wall art.

These are the things I think of as I run about skipping and frolicking on my Wednesdays off.

My new routine: see private patients from 8-12. Eat yummy lunch. Take 2 hour nap. Watch approximately 3 minutes of Oprah. Turn off TV. Drink caffeinated drink (D day as of tomorrow friends). Check mail. Fake a reason to go to Target. Cook dinner (a once a week phenomenon when you work 10 hour days the other 4 days of the week). Watch trashy TV. Cuddle with husband. Prepare for next 10 hour day. (sigh).

Totally worth it to have a play day smack dab in the middle of the week! I can't wait until Mini Coop comes along. Oh the mischief we will create...

Speaking of the little fella, last night his tiny foot attempted to push right through my belly. As I sat in the pedicure chair trying to reduce the size of my swollen feet and cankles (yes, glorious new side effect of sitting criss-cross applesauce all day I suppose), there it was. You could almost make out each little toe. It was amazing (and a tad bit freaky). I put my hand there and 2 seconds later he kicked it out there again.

I read him the Foot Book by Dr. Seuss when we got home to commemorate the moment.

And just in case you find yourself in need of a walk down memory lane...

Left foot. Left foot.
Right foot. Right.
Feet in the morning.
Feet at night.
Left foot. Left foot.
Left foot. Right.
Wet foot. Dry foot.
Low foot. High foot.
Front feet. Back feet.
Red feet. Black feet.
Left foot. Right foot.
Feet. Feet Feet.
How many many feet you meet!

Monday, January 18, 2010


25 weeks!

I celebrated by taking a 2 mile walk in the park with Gidge and JB. Woo. The feeling of circulation pulsing through my legs was almost unrecognizable. It. was. wonderful. The best part? The SUN WAS OUT! Glorious sunshine!

We checked in with Sermonator this afternoon. All is fab! He warned Mini Coop that he better slow down a little bit. Mini Coop promptly kicked the Doppler probe as if to remind us that he's the boss. I left the office bearing one 50 mL bottle of glucose test juice. Test is scheduled for the first week in February. Nurse Maggie assured me that if I puke up the first bottle of glucose, no worries, she can send me another and we can just reschedule. How bad can it be, really!??

In other news, Chris flies for the first time this week since that unforgettable Monday back in December. He is set to fly out at 10:30 tomorrow morning. We have both been a mess about it. We finally looked at each other tonight and admitted that we were, well, frazzled. We know that everything will go smoothly, but can't help but remember what happened the last time he pulled out the red Samsonite and headed for the blue skies. Mr. Glock has helped Chris file a formal "apology" letter to the lovely people at TSA. A formality, but necessary nonetheless. It takes 30-45 days to determine whether or not they accept the apology and whether or not Chris is listed on the "Do Not Fly" list.

Since we do not have 30-45 days, Mr. Glock recommended Plan B. Basically, if Chris is granted a boarding pass and is allowed to board the plane, all is good. If not, well, look for me in Tahiti under a tiki hut with a lovely little umbrella drink and dark tinted glasses.

Thank heavens for our faith,

"Teach us to escape the worries of the world, and to live and rest in You."~Harriet Crosby

This Weeks News:
Food Cravings: Fried pickles,Mrs. Edward's Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Pie, and Quaker Chewy Dips Bars

Emotional Basketcase Moments: watching this sweet video and being overwhelmed with God's greatness

Hormonal Rage Currently Directed At: Home Owners Association Lady and her tacky, tacky Christmas decorations she felt compelled to vomit all over the entrance to our neighborhood and leave up until January 15.

Also, I had a bout of rage directed at my most favorite sushi place, Utage Sushi Bar in Athens. When I rolled over at 7:30 am Sunday morning and told Chris that I wanted sushi for breakfast, he humored me and planned a date day to Athens to partake in the only sushi goodness I love (fried Utage Special roll with yum yum sauce). I was even going to take it for the team and have mine sans tuna. We bounced all the way to Athens after church, laughing and chatting about how much fun we were going to have, scored a top notch parking place on Clayton Street, and bebopped up to the doors of Utage.

Locked. No rhyme, no reason. I promptly laid down in the middle of Clayton Street and refused to move (until Chris tempted me with lunch at Depalmas). We drove back home, sushi-less, and sad. Take two, next Saturday.

Currently Grateful For: my husband who supports my "need" for select sushi that is approximately 60 miles away, unexpected holidays and snow days off from work, sweet little kicks and jabs that remind me of the bouncing baby boy growing like crazy inside of me, and marathon shopping days with mom in the rain.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Just Another Manic Monday

Woke up today. Threw up 6 times. Husband attempted to put hair in a pony tail. I cried. Recovered from mysterious puking attack. Reminded self never to eat another jumbo hot dog from Ikea. Shuffled into work. Ate fried pickles dipped in ranch dressing for lunch. Started playing around with post-baby-return-to-work plans (new possible plan makes me oober happy!). Now home in the pj's. Such a sweet, sweet life :)

"The less routine, the more life". ~Amos Bronson Alcott

Sunday, January 10, 2010

ABCs of Pregnancy

I am about to post about the unthinkable.

The honest to goodness truth about pregnancy. Whether or not I have the kahunas to post this list is yet to be determined. Regardless, there is so much about this journey I want to remember and look back on that I fear not writing this post will result in the post-pregnancy amnesia all my girlfriends speak of. So here goes, spelling it out; the absolute truth about pregnancy, as it has unfolded for me.

Advice: fitting that the word "advice" begins with the first letter in the alphabet, as the phenomenon itself begins the MINUTE you even conjure up a thought about creating a little person. Generally speaking, I love advice! Who better to learn from that those who have gone before you?

As a preggo lady, you receive MORE advice than you ever dreamed possible. Apparently, as a new mommy, you receive even MORE advice than ever dreamed possible. Fabulous.

My personal rule of thumb: if the preggo lady does not explicitly ask for advice (i.e. "So tell me, what kind of birth defects typically result from the consumption of caffeine..."), do not give it. Sharing nitty gritty details is, of course, completely welcome. Bring on the nitty gritty, friends. Just don't feel like you have to remind me not to lift a 12 pack of cokes or how dangerous it is to take a hot bath.

Boobies: good heavens. As any good pregnant lady, I now have a set of boobs I would have paid at least $30,000 for several months ago.

Caffeine: allow me to be completely honest with you folks. If you are even slightly fond of the bubbly, fizzy, dark-colored drink that used to be infused with crack-cocaine itself, your fascination and addiction will only worsen as you embark upon pregnancy. Although I have switched to decaffeinated coke (thank you for your encouragement, Gidge) and decaffeinate sweet tea (thank you for your never-ending supply Husband), I still cheat. Daily. I am sure Little Bit (who is now nameless, by the way) will come out bouncing and healthy...and craving a Dr. Pepper.

Daddy: there will come a day where you glance over at your sweet spouse, become emotional and teary-eyed, and realize that he is going to be a Daddy. A father. A dad. A pop. For me, that day came early in the pregnancy when I came home with a trunk full of baby accouterments and Chris set right out to assembling things like car seats and convertible strollers. It came again as I saw him secretly reading up on Little Bit's development on the Mayo Clinic's website. It is an absolute beautiful thing, to think of the man you love most in this world, becoming a dad.

Exercise: sigh. I, the lady who ran a half marathon just a mere year ago and set out at the start of this pregnancy chanting "We shall overcome!", have ventured off the couch 1, count it, 1 time since taking that sweet home pregnancy test in August 2009. While good intentions mean well, they are not enough to sustain you in this journey. You are tired. Your legs are enormous and require great effort to move (aka: shuffle) about. You suddenly spend your spare time snoozing, eating, gagging, hiccuping, and farting rather than treadmilling, elipticalizing, or stairmastering. I am most thankful that Little Bit will be arriving in the spring, as we can tackle good health and exercise at that point. When the sun comes back out.

Farting: yes, friends. I am the queen of the "silent-but-deadly" fart. Always have been. In our marriage, I have always been the one who could clear the room without making a sound. No more. No, no. I can now rip one LOUDER than my dear husband and clear the room faster than ever before. It makes me giggle. I have been given the endearing nickname "Foghorn". And I deserve it.

Gagging: every day. Two times a day, guaranteed. Strange, it is. I go to brush the pearly whites (now yellowed from too much coke and sweet tea consumption), take one look at my purple toothbrush, and heave into the sink. It makes Chris giggle. A lot. I have done what all preggo ladies have done: switched toothpaste, changed toothbrushes, tried to brush at different times of doesn't make a bit of difference. Bleh. 2 times a day. Minimum. Our best solution, once Chris regains composure from laughing at me, he waddles into the bathroom and rubs my back throughout the remainder of the "Happy Birthday"-song long brushing routine. Somehow the distraction helps. Bleh.

Hemorrhoids: enter, ginormous fear. I read about them. I hear about them from friends. So far I have dodged that delicate bullet, but they tell me I'm not out of the woods yet. I cannot even fathom walking into Target, picking up a package of Tucks Medicated Wipes, and coming home to, ahem, take care of things. Have mercy on me Lord.

In-laws: the journey into parenthood would not be complete without those two sweet people you call "mother-in-law" and "father-in-law". Seriously. For me, announcing we were pregnant brought about a whole new level of closeness between myself and the in-laws. Blessed? I think so. Actually, I know so.

My mother-in-law, Ms. Pat, is an absolute angel. She emails me to check on her grandbaby, calls after each OB appointment, asks how the nursery is coming along, volunteers to baby sit (never too early to offer), and loves us unconditionally. She loves me so much, I feel, that she might even make that unsightly trip to Target to round up Tucks Medicated Pads for me one day.

Jelly Roll: this is the best way I know to describe my lower abdominal region for the first, oh 16-17 weeks or so. At times I felt "beer belly" to be a better descriptor, but since I was not in any position to think about beer or partake in beer, I ultimately felt that "jelly roll" best suited this transitionary period. Thankfully, with time (and boxes of jelly donuts) this phase quickly passed.

Krispy Kreme: as a preggo lady (or any kind of lady for that matter) I find myself screeching into the parking lot on 2 wheels, day or night, when that blasted sign is lit up. One night Chris took me up there and I had 2 hot glazed donuts and a coke. Soon after, I faded off into diabetic coma. Sadly we haven't been back since.

Laughing: every pregnant lady must endure some sort of pregnancy induced neurosis. Mine, laughably, is uncontrollable laughter. I am not kidding you one bit. Since becoming pregnant, I have laughed more than I can ever remember laughing. Sometimes appropriately, sometimes not. Perhaps it is uncovering new skills and talents such as foghorn farting or gagging so much you just have to laugh. It's beyond me, but I adore it.

My biggest laughing fit to date: driving home from church with hubs last Sunday. We decided to swing by Home Depot and pick up some materials to embark on a project in the nursery. The lumber was so big that I had to drive so Chris could prop up the boards as not to impel ourselves going down I-85 in our small SUV.

Chris always backs into the driveway. He is a pro at it. I tease him about it. (Does the car have to be parked in a manner that you can plan your get away without waking the neighbors???) Anyway, I knew he would want to back in to unload the lumber. I took it for the team, lied, and said "How bout I back us in so you can unload?" He looked at me with one cocked eye brow and a grin and said "Are you sure?" In all seriousness I told him, "Yes, I have been practicing (lie) and am now quite good at this!"

I pulled forward into the street, glanced in the rear view, and gunned it. We skidded, screeched to the left, crashed over the sidewalk, and landed 2 inches in front of our sweet little landscaping tree.

The uncontrollable laughter started and took at least 45 minutes to subside. 5 minutes later, we replayed the scene and I laughed so hard I peed in my pants (more to come on that as well).

Laughter is the best medicine. Enough said.

Money: you suddenly stop it spending on yourself and start spending it on a little person who is just sure to steal your heart in the peanut sized Sperry shoes you just had to buy him. For me, this has been a most refreshing change. I love loading up and heading off to Target or Gymboree to purchase pint sized items. My current favorite pastime is swinging by Babies R Us and snatching up things off my registry. My girlfriends remind me almost daily that I am not supposed to be doing this. Somehow I just can't stop. It brings me such joy!

Naming the Baby: fitting that "Nolan" and "name" both start with the letter 'N'. What seemed like such an easy task has turned into yet another laughing matter at our house. After deciding on "Nolan" at -4 weeks gestation, we (aka: I) decided we weren't too sure about the name.

The biggest reason, truthfully, is that every time we tell someone what we are going to name the baby, they say "Oh, Nolan, what a perfect baseball player name. Nolan Davis, yes he will grow up to be a baseball player". Silly as it may be, I don't like the idea of predestining your child to anything (greatness, yes...sports-related activities, no).

I thought Chris had always wanted to name his boy "Nolan" (undoubtedly out of his love for Nolan Ryan) but turns out, upon gaining enough confidence to broach the subject, sweaty armpits and all, he's not crazy about the name either.
We have several other names up our sleeves and may just have to wait to see his sweet little face before deciding which one we will go with. This is SO not like me. Being a monogram freak and all.

Optimism: my once Negative Nancy self has been overtaken by a sense of optimism that is almost unexplainable. Simply put, I feel so incredibly blessed. So incredibly loved. So incredibly happy. No amount of worrying is worth losing that feeling. So my worry wart days are a thing of the past.

Private Parts: by 20 weeks I made the shocking revelation that I could no longer see them. They no longer exist. Neither do my feet.

Queen for a Day: the feeling I get when splurging on pedicures (way too often) in order to care for the toes and feet I can no longer see. It's like heaven in a bubbly tub of sea salt and sugar scrub.

Rookie: how I feel when compared to 99% of my girlfriends who have paved the way before me. Am I wrong to love the "ignorance is bliss" phase?? As a good friend once told me "The caboose has the most fun. That's why it's painted red".

Stretch Marks: so far, so good in this department. My fear (and ultimately what I know is going to happen) is that along about 39 1/2 weeks, these little boogers will magically appear and leave their mark forever. The 9 tubes of stretch mark creme, oil, minimizer, and moisturizer can't possibly work well when kept in an unused pile under the bathroom counter. We'll just worry about that later.

Tums: although ideally these chalky, rainbow colored tablets would work wonders on the heartburn that rages through my esophagus, I can't seem to choke them down to save my life. I take approximately 47 tiny bites just to get one down. Insert additional laughing matter.

Underwear: although I am still squeezing into my pre-pregnancy skibbies for now, I feel the walk to shame to the Panty Palace coming soon. Goodbye XS anything. Hello granny panties and abdominal support drawers.

Vericose Veins: well truly spider veins, but since the letter 's' was better spent on stretch marks, I figured I could squeeze this truth in under 'v'. What better way to decorate a pair of ham hock thighs than with clusters of purple spider veins? I call them “accessories”. So much nicer than “eyesores”, don't you think?

Weight Gain: alas. What is there to say? You get pregnant. Your body is no longer your own. You see numbers on the scale never seen before. I started at 117 and now weigh in at 130. Total gain = 13 pounds in approximately 20 weeks. There it is.

X: 'x' is for "cross eyed" which is what you probably are if you are still reading this ridiculousness :)

Yearning: this little word has taken on a whole new meaning in my life since learning that we would be welcoming our very own little person into this world...sappy and embarrassing as it is, I absolute yearn for him. To hold him. To rock him. To feed him. To kiss his boo boos. To read to him. To sing him off to sleep...

Zzzz: sleeping while pregnant closely resembles a trip to the circus. You flip, you turn, you shove pillows between your legs and under your tummy, you flail, you fart, you fluff the covers to make your spouse laugh, you snore, you drool, you get up to pee 5 times a night, and somewhere in between you sleep a little bit. The advice-givers tell me "it's natures own sweet way of preparing you for motherhood". Super.

So there you have it. The honest truth. The good, the bad, and the ugly. And I honestly love every minute of it (but not as much as I love the thought of holding sweet Lil Bit in my arms at the end of this grand adventure!)

Friday, January 8, 2010

What's in a Name?

Must confess loony toon moment I am currently having.

TOTALLY second guessing baby name. Yes. I am being that preggo woman. We have played around with another name the entire time and sometimes I catch myself thinking about it. And about 2 other names I still love love love. Goodness gracious.

I purposely had a diaper bag monogrammed so that such silliness would not take place. But what's truly more important? Having the perfect name or keeping a name based on a diaper bag?

I sense an intervention coming soon.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Tug Boat

Perinatologist = total success. What an absolutely AMAZING experience!

Lil Bit is weighing in at a whopping 1 pound 8 ounces. He is measuring a week bigger than what he should based on our first estimated due date. We thought we were 23 weeks and 1 day. They say we are 24 weeks and 1 day. I wonder if that means he will be the size of a small tug boat or if he will be ready to come sooner than originally anticipated.

Dr. Stone, our perinatologist, is just the nicest, cutest, coke-bottle-glasses wearing 3 foot tall little man.

We were amazed at the detail involved in the high tech scan he performed.

Kidneys: check; four chambers of the heart: check; fingers/toes: check; cerebellum: check; liver: check; tummy: check; femur: check; spinal column: check; humerus: check. Absolutely amazing.

We were given the best news two parents-to-be could ever be given...we have ourselves a healthy, growing baby boy just waiting to enter this world and leave his mark forever.

As I wiped the gooey jelly off my belly and "foamed up" on my way out of the ultrasound room I was reminded: "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." Psalm 139:14

Fabulous day.

Now off to fall asleep chanting "SNOW DAY SNOW DAY SNOW DAY". Come on Old Man Winter.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Spaghetti Squash

What better time to post an update than as I sit here at the Chevy Dealership, wasting away a blustery Wednesday afternoon? I wish I was shopping. Or getting a pedicure. Instead I am waiting on the verdict on the Envoy. Something about a little orange light that came on last night on my way home from work. Something about some gadget that controls the amount of air flow through the engine. Something about a couple hundred dollars and a rental car. Something about it not being covered under the warranty.

I am happy though, because it's Wednesday and instead of being at work, I have the flexibility to be sitting here at Rick Hendrick Chevrolet (and to be honest, before I waddled my responsible car-owning self down here, I took a spin around the mall and bought 3 or 4 new little outfits for Nolan and took a ride in the chocolate colored glider that I hope will soon sit in front of the window in the nursery...)

I have fallen in love with Nie's blog. It stops me in my tracks almost daily and reminds me thank God for every little blessing in my life. I saw Stephanie on Oprah a while back and was oober inspired. O paired her up with a grumbling, burnt out stay at home mom and illustrated, what I think, is an almost supernatural human being dealing with the aftermath of an absolutely horrific plane crash. I had no idea she has a blog. I am in awe of her. And I admire her wit and honesty. The next time you feel grumpy because you have to load the dishwasher, vacuum your house, or start a load of laundry, you should check her out. Her story will change your life.

Yesterday while I was soaking in the bath and trying to make sense of the ham hocks that have taken over what used to be my thighs, I realized that we now have more weeks behind us in this pregnancy than in front of us. It made me a little sad. As much as I absolutely can't wait to hold our sweet baby boy in my arms, I am savoring this experience. The good, the bad, the ugly. It's an awesome thing, being a human vessel and all.

My most cherished moment this week: feeling Nolan kick and dance around during worship Sunday morning.

Most most horrifying moment this week: peeing on myself three times without warning. Thank heavens I have been at home each time. Thank heavens my husband has a good sense of humor and loves me anyway. Thank heavens I have a lot of changes of clothes.
21 weeks brought about the need for a new round of maternity shirts. The belly started to fall out of my pre-baby clothes. There's beer gut and then there's baby gut. Neither look good on me.

I hit up Gap Maternity on the way to the in-laws one afternoon and for $58, I got 5 new shirts and a pair of fancy pants. I danced around the dressing room, completely oblivious of anything but the joy of finding non-frumpy, super comfy tops and pants.

Week 22 was quiet. We breezed through the holidays and I ate my weight in Candy Cane Joe Joes and sausage balls. We made a bit progress on the nursery and I made mucho progress in the way of developing my first set of cankles.

Here's a little sneak peek into the nursery so far...we've had so much fun putting it all together. Next up: window cornice project. We'll see how that one turns out!

Off to the perinatologist tomorrow. We are officially 23 weeks along! Can't wait to get a glimpse at Lil' Bit and see what he's up to in there...

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Tangy Gobblers

I kidnapped Chris on Thursday morning. Put him in the car. Blindfolded him. And squealed off on 2 wheels.

Well, ok that's mostly true, minus the blindfold part and the 2 wheels part. Plus he ended up pulling details out of me late Wednesday night. See, this is why we never even make it past December 20th before we tell each other about ALL of our Christmas presents.

Regardless, we loaded up (translation: Chris threw in a pair of clean underwear and his toothbrush; I meticulously packed 3--yes, 3--bags complete with entire night/morning skin care products, 3 outfits to choose from, 2 pairs of shoes, 2 sets of pajamas, 5 pairs of clean undies--something mom taught me to do when I was little, and snacks for the hour and a half drive up) and drove up to the mountains.

Our main motivation? Tangy Gobblers at the Cottage Deli in Hayesville, NC. What is this "Tangy Gobbler" you ask? How good does a sandwich have to be to create the urge to drive 2 hours just to take that first savory bite of one?

Heavens to Betsy. It starts with 2 slices of toasted panella bread. Pile on approximately 8 slices of Boar's Head Cajun Turkey, cheddar cheese, lettuce, and sweet pickles. (We 86 the tomato because its just creepy to eat warm tomatoes on sandwiches, but you do as you like...) The absolute kicker...the spicy cream sauce they slather on after warming the entire sandwich. It's like heaven on a plate. All for $6.95. It's crazy.

The sweet family who owns the Cottage have been feeding us both since our early college days up at Young Harris. We have been known to jump in the car, drive 2 hours up to the Cottage, eat, and turn around and drive 2 hours back home. All in the same lazy Saturday afternoon.

Back in our active: "Let's-go-climb-a-mountain" days,
we would hike Blood Mountain all day and then head over to build back up our strength before climbing another mountain. So many memories at that place.

This year, in my sneakiness, I booked one night's stay at The Ridges Resort and Club. We had decided to save our Christmas money for lawyers fees and whatnot, but I just snapped and decided that we needed one little night away, just to melt away some of the stress that comes along with having to entertain the thought of "lawyer fees". It was SO worth it.
The room was beautiful and cozy. The lobby had dual fireplaces and hot apple cider and homemade Otis Spunkmeyer cookies ALL NIGHT long. The huge picture windows overlooked God's majestic landscape of rolling mountains and Lake Chatuge. We were happy. So happy.

We spotted an old copy of "Scrabble" in the lobby early in the afternoon and despite Chris' grumbling, decided we would spend the evening cuddling by the fire, watching TV and playing cheesy board games.

Luckily, as we sat eating our Tangy Gobblers on New Years Eve, we learned of the annual NYE mountain celebration. Brace yourself.
The annual Possum Drop was to take place at midnight in Hayesville. At the local gas station. Complete with bleachers, watered down hot chocolate, and a drag show. Chris assumed they meant drag show as in cars racing around. Oh no. The local boys indeed put on their very own version of a drag queen show.

We were beside ourselves and instantly knew that was where we would be saying goodbye to 2009 and hello to 2010. Scrabble would just have to wait.

Sadly, as we cuddled and waited for the clock to roll around to 10 or 11pm so we could bundle up and go marvel at the sweet little possum falling from the crane at the gas station, I fell asleep. And then it started to rain. And sleet.
And we chickened right out of the Annual Possum Drop. Tragedy. It just gives us a reason to go back next year. You should make plans to come too.