Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Blog Identity Crisis

I'm going to be making a few (awesome) changes to my blog over the coming weeks.

Oh, you want to know what changes?

Well, first... a back story.

I've been struggling a bit to give my blog an "identity." Because, I'm not a professional, paid blogger. I'm not promoting a business. And I'm not a mommy blogger- which is HUGE, by the way. I don't have a story of triumph, or loss. In a few words: I'm just a regular gal who likes to write.

So, finding a niche has been trying. And, my Type-A personality really needs, craves, a niche. A place. A nice little folder I can tuck this blog into.

But, life isn't always so easy to tuck into a little labeled folder. So, I've just had to go with the flow on this whole blogging thing.

I've read a lot of blogs. And the ones I always come back to revolve around travel... fashion... food... and parties. Lots and lots of parties.

In fact, I throw quite a few parties myself... usually of the baby/bridal shower kind. Parties that include food, and cute shoes, and maybe an out-of-town adventure.

But I don't want to limit myself to this niche. So... that's where the blog changes come in.

There's going to be a special place you can click to read about all things "party" related... from themes to thank-you gifts, quiches to cocktails... you name it, I'll write about it.

I'm SO excited about this new feature- because it makes my put-things-in-their-place heart happy... and because it will allow me to still post rambling ramblings like this whenever the need arises.

So, stay tuned! I seriously can't wait to debut this new feature and kick into party-planning mode.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Priorities Revisited

Ok, so I think I'm figuring it out.  Getting my priorities in order... slowly but surely.

Do you ever feel like you just need to slow down... re-evaluate what's important?  What to focus your time and energy on?

I had one of those moments last week.  So... after lots of thinking, lots of praying for stillness and quiet, and lots of naps this weekend (yes, I strongly believe naps are therapeutic)... I have...


Yes, plans are probably half of my problem with priorities.  I plan too much.. and get overwhelmed.

But this is a plan to stay underwhelmed.

So, the plan starts with.... me.

Commit to going to church. Work out frequently.  Eat better.  Try to look cute a couple of times a week.  

And, then it moves from me... to you.

Blog often. (Because it makes me happy.)  Spend time with Toby.  Make more time for phone dates, coffee dates, real dates with Bryan.  Drive to Plano more just because.

And, from there, everything else falls into place.  Because the rest is just that... the rest.

Work manageable hours.  Stay away from drama.  Ease up on the self-guilt.

So, that's the plan.  And, you wouldn't believe how much better I already feel.

What's your "plan" for prioritizing?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mueller Wedding- Lindsay & Leah

Here's another flickr test. Still can't figure out how to blog multiple pics at once...?! Bear with me!

Mueller Wedding- Lindsay & Bryan

I'm testing flickr right now.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


I'm figuring them out- priorities, that is. Well, it's less that I'm figuring them out... and more that I'm being forced to contemplate my priorities.

And, it's a good thing. I think we should all be pushed every now and then to figure out what's worth fighting for... and what's not worth fighting for.

I know what matters to me. But if you don't hold it closely and make it a priority, other things take it's place.

So, that's where I'm at. My top priorities feel very low on the totem poll... while I devote all of my hours to something that shouldn't be worth all of the energy, stress.

I'm overwhelmed, plain and simple. Life snuck up on me and got a little too complicated. And, at the end of the day- I'm happiest when it's simple. A clean apartment. A sweet purr.

I started this week with Psalm 46:10 ingrained in my brain, and I've been chanting it in my head all week like a mantra... "Be still, and know that I am God."

I guess the Lord knew I needed that verse in particular right now. How absolutely amazing.

I'm working on it. Scratch that- I will work on it. Tonight, I cried about it. But, as my dad said, these are times to pull from your inner strength. And, as my mom says, make a plan.

So, I'm pulling on my inner strength and planning and plotting and prioritizing.

Tonight, instead of relaxing with a glass of wine or losing my thoughts in The City... I took a bubble bath. I didn't even turn on my TV. I played with my cat. And now I'm curled up in bed in an oversized T-shirt.

That's a good start, right?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Mueller Wedding Weekend Recap

This weekend, I ate too much... drank too much... danced too much....

Symptoms of a crazy wedding weekend? I think so!

And... it was SO all worth it.
This weekend was Leah & Heath's wedding weekend, and we celebrated for 3 days straight!

It all started Thursday with a pool party/sleepover in Okmulgee. Here's Leah with a few of her bridesmaids and house party girls!

Friday, we attended a beautiful bridal luncheon in Okmulgee. The place settings were perfect!

Dessert was served a la "Top Chef" with a different mini dessert in each section of the plate. Tiny cupcakes, lemon sorbet with blueberries, a cream puff & a small chocolate mousse pie.

Um, hello delicious.

Me & the pretty girl herself! Her last day as a Barksdale...
The rehearsal dinner was a blur of practice... dinner... wine... and a bridesmaid going into labor. So.. I don't have any pictures!
We woke up early Saturday for hair, make-up and of course... cocktails.
And finally, the big moment! Leah could not have looked more beautiful. Her dress was designed by Johnathan Kayne out of Norman, OK. He was on project runway! A true one-of-a-kind keepsake...

...and yes, Heath looked pretty handsome, too.

Mom, Ali & I sassed it up in true O'Donnell style.

Maid-of-honor, bride, and matron-of-honor.

I love you so much, Leah! Congratulations, and enjoy Mexico! :)

And a huge shout-out to Holli B- I'm such a fan, and it was so great to see you work in person! And Pen Weddings... you guys are fabulous videographers and the same-day video edit was incredible!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Ramblings of a Red-Head

*Disclaimer: This post is long and rambling.*


It's been a crazy few days around here. First off, an update on the little guy. Toby is doing so much better- he's eating on his own and his energy is definitely coming back- but he still needs to gain weight. So, send prayers his way! We all need it.

My mom has been here since Sunday to help make sure he eats since I have to be at work. What a huge blessing that has been! It comforts me so much to know he has company all day long with someone who loves him (almost) as much as me. :)

You guys with furry kids know how hard this is! I hate seeing him sick. I haven't slept well at all this week.

And, I keep thinking about how things like this will happen when I have a human baby. I hope I can pull it together better than I am right now.

Or else... mom will be here... a LOT. :)

Onto more exciting news- Leah gets married this weekend! I can't wait for the big day! I have the shoes... (oooooh, the shoes. can't wait to show those off!) the hair appointment... the luncheon dress... the rehearsal dinner dress... and the toast, ready to go.

Well- almost ready. Toasts are nerve-wracking! Even for a red-headed blabber mouth like me.

Speaking of toasts- can I share my new favorite blog with you all? If you love wine... click here. You won't regret it. So cute.

That's it for now! I'm planning a few fun "updates" for my blog. Just like a child (or even a furry child) blogs take a lot of work, I'm learning! Finding time to write... time to take pictures... it's a job in itself.

But, a job I would gladly love to spend all of my time doing! So, stay tuned for some fun things in store.

I'll update throughout the big "wedding weekend."

Happy Wednesday!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

When Life Throws You Lemons...

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger. At least, that appears to be the lesson God is teaching me this year.

And in all honesty, there have been a few events this year that have taught me how important it is to lean on Jesus during our most troubling times. It's easy to be thankful during the good- and when life throws you lemons, it's time to turn your eyes to the skies.

Hmm, that might make a good bumper sticker. :)

I say all of this because today, my first baby, the love of the past 4 years of my life- Toby O'Donnell- got really sick.

Toby is a Norwegian Forest Cat. I never knew that, until I was staring at the wall in the vet's office today, in a comatose state at the thought of my poor sick baby.

He's probably been sick a few weeks, and I didn't notice... or maybe I did... but, in dential, just kept hoping he would bounce back.

It's an issue I may have to work out in extensive therapy.

He has liver disease. And, it's treatable- as long as I force feed him the next couple of weeks and he starts to gain some weight.

The liver is remarkable like that- it heals itself.

I know a thing or two about the liver- I had "liver disease" myself in high school.

But determination and will- and yes, a large dose of faith- goes a long way.

It did for me... and it will for Toby.

What caused this? Any number of things. Toby tends to go into "starvation mode" when I go out of town- which I did recently. And he isn't a super social Norwegian. So, there's that. He's happiest at home, no visitors, no strangers, with his momma.

Did my inability to properly socialize him cause this? Should I stay in town forever? At home? Should I have realized he lost 3 pounds? Why didn't I see that? Shouldn't a motherly alarm bell have sounded in my head when a day... then two... then three went by... and his food just sat there, untouched?

Ugh. You can see why I need extensive therapy.

I gave my first force-feeding a few minutes ago. It was excruciating for both of us. He cried, I forced. He gagged, I gagged. And little by little, he got some food in his belly. And I got more than some food on my shirt.

But that's motherhood, right? Am I being tested? Prepared? Taught a lesson?

Whatever it may be- I'm embracing it. I'm committed. I'm in this.

Because I have big plans for you, Toby.

Someday, we're going to move out of our cozy, built-for-two apartment into a house. And, that will take some adjusting- but you'll adjust. And you'll rule the roost.

And then, maybe down the road, a d-o-g might come into the picture. Too soon to talk about that? Ok.

And, in a few years... there might be a baby. Someone i'll need you to protect and love and watch over, just like you do your momma.

So, here we go. Another lemon. Another trial, another test.

Another opportunity to lift my eyes to the skies.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Favorite Bible Verse

I think different Bible verses speak to us at different points in our lives.  

I remember, when I was desperately searching for a job and unsure of what my future held... I grasped to this verse:

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:11

What an awesome reminder to turn to God with anything and everything!

The verse that has been on my desk at work lately is this one:

"Be on guard.  Stand firm in the faith.  Be courageous.  Be strong.  Do everything with love."
1 Corinthians 16:13-14

I just love how we're encouraged to be strong and courageous in our faith, no matter the circumstances.  And after such a bold charge... we're asked to do everything with love.  

I love how the words courageous.... strong.. and love are all tied together in that verse... because loving the Lord and each other is our greatest charge on this Earth.  And it almost always take a lot of courage to do that on our end, no matter what.

Kelly over at Kelly's Korner wants to know what your favorite Bible verse is today.  Head over to her blog to share the verses that encourage you!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Three Things

There are three things I just keep coming back to.

Three things..... I want.

I really, really want.

At the top of my list is this.... a Nikon D90.  Beautiful camera.  I'm ready to have a big girl camera- no more point and shoot for me!

The second... this Swiss Army watch.  I've been wanting a new watch for a long time now, and I think this one is classy and perfect for me.

Because I'm classy like that!

And last... I join the world in wanting one of these.

I debated a long time about it.

But... 2 things won me over.

Books.  I would read lots of books on my ipad.

And... GIANT Words with Friends games.

Those are good reasons, right?

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Midnight Cake

Today is his birthday.
Happy birthday, my love!

Last night, we celebrated at midnight with this:

And it... was... delicious.  Funfetti.  Don't hate- it's one of his favorites.

I baked a cake.

I waited up until 12:30p.  (He doesn't get off work until 11p usually.)

I made him close his eyes and sit on the couch.

And I sang happy birthday.

And... I forgot to light the candles.

So we did it all over again.... with the candles lit.  :)

Happy 26th, B!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Me & "T"

I have a love/hate relationship with this guy.

And since I'm hoping to run this in a couple of months... we're about to get really intimate.

Really intimate.

Eventually, I'll run outside.

But for now... it's just me... and "T".

("T" being the treadmill.)
Did it insult you that I just explained that?

How are you staying in shape this summer?

Or... are you just eating a lot of this?

Because.... I did.  This weekend.

I hate bathing suits,

Monday, July 5, 2010

Top 10

4th of July 2010: Top 10 Favorite Moments

1) Arriving at the lake late Thursday night

2) Finding a cute candle centerpiece in Canton

3) Waking up Saturday morning to find my boyfriend (who "couldn't make it") having coffee with my parents 

4)  Unplugging all weekend

5) Swimming in the pouring rain with the family

6)  Watching my brother lose his pants and shred his boxers while trying out the new tube (they're now hanging on the mantle forevermore.)

7)  Getting up on the wakeboard.... SECOND try.

8)  Food, food & more food
Bean dip, salsa, olive cheese bread, bbq EVERYTHING, fruit salad, and on and on...

9) Fireworks Saturday night over the lake

10) MUCH-needed R & R

Thursday, July 1, 2010

*Crackle Crackle*

*Crackle Crackle*

Hello?  Is anyone out there?

I'm blogging from the depths of the jungle. I left Tulsa at 5:30pm... and somehow, I crossed the ocean and I'm deep in the heart of the Amazon.

This land has a deep hatred for all things AT&T.  Cellular service is forbidden.

I hear there is a lake here, but I have yet to see it in the pitch black.

All I can hear are chirps.  From voracious insects of every species, I suspect.

We have electricity... but for how long, no one knows.

Send help immediately.

Oh, and margaritas.

*Crackle Crackle*

Boom Boom Pow

I hope everyone has an amazing 4th of July!  

I'm taking off in just a few hours for our annual family weekend at the lake.

You know what that means... plenty of videos and pictures to share next week!

Have a wonderful and SAFE holiday!  

God Bless America!
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