Timeless Memories

I never imagined this weekend as a gift, but it truly was. A gift of delightful memories.

This weekend wasn’t just about Thanksgiving, it was about how much could Jason take and still love me? Mom staying with Jason and meeting the girls for the first time. Of course, she fell head over heels in love. And they took to her like stink on a dog because, well….she brought four furry children with her. FOUR.

Two tiny Papillons, Buddy the man, and Little Chevy who weighs an ounce? A Yorkie terror terrier named Lola. Poor thing, she has a disorder that requires medication every six hours to keep her from convulsing scarily. Yikes! And lastly, one FRED, a Shih-tzu boy, the biggest of the bunch, found wandering the highway one evening, that she promptly picked up in the Chuckwagon.

I call her vehicle the Chuckwagon, because it’s like the old commercial where the dogs are chasing the wagon with dog food, except it’s her van. The van stops and the dogs pile in. She takes them ALL home. I am not even kidding. My mom has 23 dogs (yes, she lives in the country).

I think half of them she has been trying to find homes for…for-EVER. But ya know? Her guidelines for a doggy home is VERY strict (which is good). Most don’t qualify, the rest don’t want grown up dogs. Then, MORE dogs come chasing down the Chuckwagon, which isn’t hard to catch. I think she ties meaty lamb chops to her bumper. Kidding! She doesn’t.

In all honesty, she rescues bloodhounds. She is part of an organization that will save a bloodhound (or part bloodhound) before they are euthanized at a shelter. They pick them up, put them in foster care until they can be adopted out. So, some of the dogs are fosters, others followed the Chuckwagon, and the rest happened to be on the right road, on the right day.

Whichever way you want to look at it, if you need a pet, please let me know. It really is a great service they do. They all have their shots and have been fixed. The fact that Mom only brought FOUR, ha, that’s a miracle. Lucky JASON!

Why did she stay at his house and not mine? Well, there was a little incident at my Mom’s house where Buddy the dog decided to get in Salem’s face, all chest bumping, and fake punching. She told him to get lost with her teeth and thirteen stitches later……yeeeeeaah. Not good.

Salem does NOT like little yappy, bossy Buddy dogs. Did I mention Buddy is eleven years old and has no teeth? Oh Salem, you are such a brute. Making her apologize would not have come CLOSE to making up for what happened to the little guy. In her defense, she only put her mouth on him for a second.

So, NO, I would not risk four doggy lives at my place with not only one big dog, but three. Not to mention, I have no extra bed. AND three grown ups share a very tiny bathroom already. One more might just push me over the edge. Ahhh!

Jason’s house it was. Extra bedroom, new mattress, cleaned up toy room, converted to guest bedroom (which Bridget kept asking me if I was going to sleep there). Uhh, no GRANDMA is “Gwanmah seep dere?” Yes, SHE is sleeping there. Isn’t that cool? (nods head, beams a smile) She only thought it was cool because Grandma has presents, and puppies.

Jason has a doggy run in his backyard, and LOTS, and LOTS of tile. Jason, sweetie, I know I can never EVER possibly make up for your most generous hospitality in the whole wide world. Ever to infinity times squared to the tenth power. But pssssst, you totally passed the TEST. Heh! You had no idea right?

Watching the little girls with my Mom and the dogs brought me great joy. Molly and Bridget LOVE the puppies. They love to hold them, pet them, cuddle them, and even drop them. Luckily they are close to the ground. Please don’t tell them they are not “really” puppies, especially old man Buddy. They were in heaven with all the puppy love.

Fred the Shih-tzu is one of my personal favorites. Cutest dog in the world. He is a love. I am not a little dog fan, but I would take him home in a second (Jason says no, hmph!). This weekend we carted around lots of dogs. Moving them back and forth from outside to in (even in the rain, right Jason?). Pictures galore were taken, adorable subjects, equals timeless shots.

Molly and Fred

Molly, Bridget, and Sydney – Can I just say this photo turns me to mush, awh!

Mom and girls walking together.

Then finally, we ended with ICE at the Gaylord Texan in Grapevine. What a finale! That place was incredible. The decorations, the art, the imagination of it all, just wraps you up, like a living present. Plus the ice slide, a grown up child’s dream – FLYING down the ice – no holds barred – Weeeeeeeee! It was glorious fun. If it wasn’t so crowded, I would have done it over and over til my fingers and nose froze off (totally worth it by the way).

Did I mention it was nine degrees? Before you can go in, they wrap you up in these big blue suits made for Eskimos. I guess they know Texan’s don’t have “real” winter coats, nor do we need them, although some people think we do when it goes from 110 degrees to 60 degrees, phhsss. Either way, we got a nifty warm sleeping bag garmet to wear in the ICE. Awesome.

Without further ado, timeless memories..

Jason, Mom, Me, Sydney, Kyle, Molly, and Bridget in front.

Jason and his two beauties.

Sydney and the girls.

One of my favorites, Bridget and my Mom.

Ice sculptures.

Molly and an ice lamb.

Me and Sydney. I swear that’s a camera bag under my coat, not like one of Mom’s small dogs or something. Heh!

The Grinch and my heart after this weekend.

Sweet timeless memories, I am not worthy.

A blessed year begins

I have to say this was the BEST birthday I have ever had in my life.
*unless you ask my mom and she swears it was my first birthday*

Yes. I planned some of it. It wasn’t a total surprise. What was a surprise was how the plans fell together so perfectly. How the entire weekend was one thrill after another. How Jason surprised me again and again. He gifted me the most wonderful gift of all. His love and affection so untainted, it soaked to my very core. Because last year? There was a taint to his love. That taint was that he wasn’t divorced.

His X held up the paperwork and used a shoddy lawyer even though SHE was the one that wanted the divorce arguing over piddly things -like how he should be required to buy HER a $40.00 mothers day gift every year from the girls. Being pissy that she can’t take off to Massachusetts with the kids and leave him in the dust (take her children away from their father) because Texas courts say THAT is not allowed (and for a reason thank you Texas) but SHE would have. That’s just kind of person she is.

So, yes the divorce was tied up and last year that put a taint on my birthday. I could feel the strain on Jason and our relationship. He held back in his turmoil and I don’t blame him one bit.

Thank God, that is over and thank God it made this birthday shine even brighter. God Always wins. I am even more grateful and appreciative because this birthday was more special beyond measure. *Last year we saw Linkin Park which WAS awesome don’t want to mislead last years greatness it was great* But this year? This year was magical.

Friday night started with Sushi (yay). It was delicious. It was mouth melting. It was everything I had anticipated and more. *plus I only embarrassed myself once* I had a present waiting for me along with a sweet card and a runners store gift card. *so I can train for a half again yeah*


And what was in the pretty box (he wrapped himself)?

Something as beautiful as his love for me.

On the next day we went to get a bike rack for his Jeep Commander so we could take our bikes to the lake or Trinity Trails but THAT involved a trip to a retail store on tax free weekend. Not the best idea and it kinda stunk. So ,let’s just skip over that!

The next stop WAS fun and spectacular.

The Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine, Texas.


Here are some inside shots. The pictures don’t do it justice. Four and half acres of an indoor waterway and lush gardens set to a nice 72 degrees. Amazing!





After walking around awestruck, we ended up in a gorgeous wine bar.

I wish I could tell you how many wine bottles were there. Seriously? I have no idea. They had some beautiful bottles and they even had some modern self serve wine counters. It was a mix of old class and new at just the right sophistication.
Also there were several very knowledgeable wine connoisseurs. We took their recommendation and tried a red wine called Tikal from South Argentina. I may not have been a wine drinker before but I sure am now. Exquisite! The wine tasting and a nice steak dinner out made my night.

The next day, on my actual birthday, I got my first Swedish massage at Relache spa. NOW I know what everyone is talking about. It was like heaven on earth for a blissful 50 mins. One of the best presents I have ever received. *thank you thank you Jason*

My locker.

The fountain in front of the spa.

After that, I was very chill and relaxed. We took Sydney and Jaelynn to Spaghetti Warehouse for my birthday lunch. I had MY favorite (spaghetti w/mushrooms). Jason even told them it was my birthday and they sang to me. *ugh* Still it was fun and delicious. Best of all, the day was far from over.

Onward we go to Hot Nails for a manicure and pedicure which is almost as good as a Swedish massage. Uhhh, actually doesn’t even come close but it used to be. I sill enjoyed it to no end. My nails and toes are gorgeous!

With daylight still burning I got Jason to take me to a movie at the Rave. Sometimes, I love the buttered popcorn more than the movie. Or should I say I go to the movies for the buttered popcorn?  Ha! It was too close call this time too.  I just loved the never ending awesome day. But after the movie, finally, night fell and my birthday day ended.

However, at work on Monday, I was greeted with a wonderful birthday spread. Fresh Fruit and my favorite dessert; a chocolate trifle. Donna is a fellow co worker and genius in the kitchen. She really went all out for the August birthdays. I was so grateful she remembered my favorite, the chocolate trifle. It was just as good as last year (ummm better). I think I had three helpings! *thank you Donna you are the BEST baker I have ever known especially since you do it all from scratch*

Birthday spread on Monday in the work break room.

You can understand why I would recognize a blessed year ahead.
How could it not be? The way it started and ended was right out of a fairy tale.

I am so grateful for my 38 years. I am so happy for the lessons I’ve learned. So incredibly humbled by the beautiful Godly people I have in my life.

Here’s to a great year!

May you always remember your best birthdays with a heart glow bigger than the Gaylord. I know I will.

Birthday treasures

Happy Birthday week to me!

Oh yaaaah, every year just gets better and better.
Every age gets better and better.
Every birthday is better and better.

Birthdays are definitely not a disappointment to me. I ensure that I have the best birthday in the world and guess what? It works!

This year my birthday week started with my own personal gift.
An iPhone 3Gs. Oh my. Oh wow. Oh Lordy is it cool.  What a wonder. Incredibly,  it only increased my phone bill by $15.00 dollars! I am fascinated by this phone for a number of reasons (facebook, email, games, internet, bible scriptures) but part of the wonder is considering what Carl would think of this gadget. Oh, he put a love of all gadgetry in my blood. From his building of computers to his robots. He was a fascinator of gadgetry. He gifted me that love at an early age (that and jewelry ha).

Any gadget I wanted HE made sure I had. When I was 13 and began writing horror short stories (Stephen King fan anyone?)  he gave me a word processor. A word processor was pretty fancy for 1984. When I started running in 2006, he bought me a Garmin that goes on my wrist and tracks your speed, distance and route. I was definitely a hi-tech runner.  In 2007, it was my very own Dell Laptop which totally made up for not having cable. Now that he is gone, I guess you could say I am upholding my end of the gadget bargain.  He would be so proud.  *Thank you for all the wonderful gifts you instilled in me*

I bought the iPhone 3Gs partly because Jason owns the first model that I really liked. Secondly, because I can’t think of a single thing I would have wanted more. The cool geek factor is not contestable.  I praise the makers of this invention every time I pick it up and connect to the internet via a device you hold in the palm of your hand (the PALM of your hand!!!).
Unreal!!! * Beam me up Scotty*

I have many other treasures scheduled.

Wednesday, I will take my lovely daughter to Six Flags. Friday is Sushi Night with Jason. Saturday is celebrating at the Gaylord Hotel (massage–aaah heaven!). Sunday is my actual birthday and what gets better than that??? My birthday is on a SUNDAY! And since I already did Syd’s school shopping no tax free weekend chaos. YAY!

No day is exempt from celebrating. No day can hide. Shine on dear birthday week. SHINE on!