Friday, November 06, 2009


I am reading a lot which is sort of cheating on my getting better from my stroke. My Speech Tx said I should stop every so many pages and recall what has happened. Well, right now I am reading Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens and it is loooooong. But not only that, a normal Chs Dickens book has prorbably a dozen or so main characters that you must keep straight. This book however has probably twice that number and maybe as many as 30. So I thought I'd try to read something else bur nothing else works. The great thing about wahat I am reading is that every time I "open" my book (it is on my iPod) I can't remember where I am, who's talking and why. I remember many of the main characters but then again there are so many I don't remember that I've given up trying to keep track and everytime I read it is like a little story and although I have a general idea of what is going on with Little Dorrit and Mr. Clennam (name?) who are the main people, everyone else just is ... I don't know. Just a lot of people.

So, what are you reading?

-- Posted from my iPhone

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Put Blogger on my iPhone

I've been a very bad girl because I haven't been blogging but that is mostly because I don't use my computer at all right now (and obviously don't go to work). So I put a program on my iPhone so I can keep the blog updated. This is boring, I know. Sorry about that. I will write more and be interesting next time.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Ho-ly Crap

On September 11th I had a stroke (yeah, Sept 11, can you believe it?!?) Then I had another one a week after getting out of the hospital. I was in the hospital a week each time and then had to go back to the hospital to correct my heart hole which caused all the strokes to begin with. Then had bleeding and all that stuff so back to the hospital. And it has sucked, all except the part when I originally had the stroke because everything was sooooo funny. Unfortunately, that was a sign of the stroke. So it went away. And then everything has continually gotten ugly.

The good news is - well, sorta good news - is that I don't have any of the physical characteristics typically associated with a stroke. My second stroke had some but because it was only a TIA (ONLY), they went away very quickly, like within a couple days. The bad news is the stroke was in my thallamous (I can no longer spell). It's a place in the brain that controls all of your cognitive thinking, history, what you feel and all that kind of stuff. My husband rattles off the list but I always forget. Anyway, it's basically anything to do with what you think and your personality. I was talkative at first and laughed a lot but when people kept looking at each other weird I got quiet and have been pretty quiet ever since. I don't chit chat like i used to and I mostly just think of things to myself. The bad news is, when I do talk it is usually because I'm frustrated and I'm not nice, in fact, I'm a rotten horrible person. I REALLLLLLLLY don't like that. It makes me very angry, which I suppose is a stupid response to being a bitch. Ce ca. (Spelling, anyone?)

So, Chris just came back and I'm going to go real quick, but I just thought I'd say what-the-hell and cherry ho or whatever. Bye for now.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

5 Years and Counting

Glancing at my blog log I noticed that I've been blogging for 5 years now. Wow, has it really been that long? On the rare rare occassion that I read back over my years of scribbling and bibbling, I've come across some gems, things I am very proud of. Other things have great potential if I took the time to edit them. And then there are things I'd rather not read. Poorly written sign posts of where I was at that time. Bad company.

Now that life is less hectic with the girls out of school and nearly finishing the major portions of remodeling the house, I'm thinking I might go back and start weeding out the garden, picking a few floral specimens for the reading public at large. Who knows, I might hit a few homers.

Mixed metaphors, anyone?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Holy Shitoly

There is this guy who works at my company and he is the VP of Engineering. Right off the bat he didn't like me. I was too aggressive and what the heck was I doing asking him this question or that question. My boss went to bat for me (baseball analogies?) saying I was doing what my position required and that I had not crossed any lines...or hit any fouls (ugh). Even still, I learned to mind my P's and Q's with him and try to stay out of his....ballpark as much as possible. (Or should I say stay off his base - enough with the baseball analogies!)

Keep in mind this is a guy who outright verbally abuses his female engineer. He is quite buddy-buddy with the engineer I work with who is a very passive male and let's his barbed little comments go by with no reaction. Considering what a dick he is, I just ignored his attitude and continued to do my job in spite of him (with recent cut backs I know he would have loved to see me cut, too).

Fast forward to last week. I needed to schedule a production launch meeting for a new product - a very critical product I may say. He was in charge of setting up production. I call him and ask when he would be available to meet this week. He said Friday. Um, I said, we will be on vacation for 4th of July that Friday. He snapped, too bad! and hung up on me. Whew, was I pissed. Later I cooled off and found out he was waaaay behind on setting up production and that is why he blew up at me. The thing though about the incident that really bothered me though was that I had always promised myself I would never let him talk to me in a degrading manner and that if he ever did, I would say, hey, that's innappropriate. So, what did I do? I cowered like a beaten dog and worst of all, my mind was blank as to what I could say to him about it. So, yeah, I cooled off but I was still a little pissed.

Ok, so today he walks into my office twice looking for my engineer. First time I said, he didn't tell me where he was going. Two minutes later Dick walks in again and asks about the engineer. I say that I honestly don't know. No answer and I hear the door shut. I say very loudly, I guess I'm talking to thin air! and then say quietly under my breath Dick! 10 seconds later he begins rumaging through my coworkers cubicle and I realize he had heard me!!! OMG, I got so scared. He could get me fired for this! However, the logical side of my brain says bring it on, dick! I'd just love to see him complain about something I said when he's been verbally abusing people for years - something I've witness first hand on many occassions. Plus, he has a habit of ignoring me when I speak, so I guess I just sort of spouted off.

I wonder what is going to happen?

Friday, April 17, 2009

Twist and Turns

Life is an amazing thing, you know? Thinking back to my single-mom days, life wasn't amazing; it was hard. It sucked. Part of my problem is that I'm just not cut out to be a single mom - I'm just not that together. It's the old looking-good-on-the-outside-while-crumbling-on-the-inside single mom thing. Who asks for help? Not us.

But life is vastly different now. Observe my Monday: van overheated in Holland around 2 p.m. and Chris comes and rescues me. He then spends the rest of the night trying to fix it (that DAMN BOLT!), but not to worry: we have a spare car. Rewind to single mom days when there was no one to rescue me, no one to fix my car and you'd see a screaming meemie on the side of the road - with no cell phone. Ugly.

Then again, observe my Tuesday: Chris bought a new refrigerator for our new house, Emily fell off the monkey bars and had to go to the ER. Chris wouldn't think of letting us go alone so we all hung out together in the ER until Emily was ok'd and we went out to dinner.

Or take any other day of the week. It amazes me - truly amazes me - who this man is and how he's transformed my life. My love for him is equal parts awe, respect, adoration, inspiration and...his eyes, his muscles, his sense of humor. Did I say his muscles? Mmmmm....

Even still, when are we going to get that darn house done!?!??!

For more widgets please visit

Friday, March 06, 2009

Still a hoot!

I know, perhaps it is unfair of me to make fun of the guys even after they have left office but gosh darn it all, I just can't resist!

P.S. Notice how all I do lately is post funny cartoons and stuff....well, sorry! It's just so much easier than actually putting two brains cells together and writing something! (Plus it's quicker...)

P.P.S. I'm also using a lot of ellipses lately too. And dashes. Where have all my punctuation super powers gone?

P.P.P.S. I just did a spell check, and you guessed it! Not a single misspelling. Hmm...apparently those super powers are still in effect....

Friday, February 13, 2009

The Question of Motivation

I received a great quote in my email this morning by Sir Alexander Paterson: “When a man is sufficiently motivated, discipline will take care of itself.” Wow, I thought, here is the answer to my lack-luster performance! I will finally be able to quit swearing, lose weight, keep my side of the bedroom clean, not let clutter accumulate on my dining room table, my dresser, my car and my purse. I will finally be able to motivate my children to do their homework, pursue hobbies instead of constantly FaceBooking, keep their room clean and be nice to each other. Perfect life, here I come!

That is when it dawned on me that for some people just the thought of doing the right thing is enough motivation. They reason that life is much easier, more fulfilling and less stressful if they simply do what they know they are supposed to do. But for others, like myself and my children, it seems like a headache to do all that stuff. So, we decide to procrastinate because it seems easier in spite of the often negative consequences. We reason that by putting off today what can easily be done tomorrow (or the next day or the next day or next week or next month…) we’ll be happier in the long run. Even we are not convinced by this logic and yet…our behavior speaks for itself.

Meanwhile, I am procrastinating on my work to contemplate how best to motivate slackers like myself and my children. Money is the obvious answer and yet who can afford the pay-out required to get us on track? We could target some specific behaviors, however, judging from times past, money will get tight and then the “allowance” goes out the window.

We’ve also grounded them from the computer, TV, cell phones and Wii. That has actually been pretty effective in the past but as motivation is an on-going struggle, grounding constantly seems unrealistic. Besides, I’d also have to be setting a good example, and so far I’m just as guilty as they are.

In thinking about this it occurs to me that while our environment exerts pressures to help guide our behavior, the question of motivation that outlasts the hurdles encountered when changing significantly is really one that boils down to our own internal thoughts, will and emotions. George Bernard Shaw said, “Imagination is the beginning of creation: you imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last you create what you will.” The control clearly lies within us.

Which brings me back to the dilemma of how to desire doing the right thing when most of the time I don’t. Perhaps I should just follow the advice of Mssrs. Marcus Buckingham and Curtis Coffman in their management book, “Now, Break All the Rules.” They argue that people don’t really change all that much and when we do, the way our brains work constantly nudges us back to the way we were before. The true path they say is to focus on improving your strengths and build your success from there and just forget about all those rotten old faults.

Which leads me to the conclusion that when you go searching for the hard answers in life you end up getting a lot of difficult-to-digest answers.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

What kind of soup did you say that was?

So the hubby met me for lunch today in what is reported to be the best Chinese (Laosian) restaurant in town. We walked in and there sat three of my co-workers (also known as bung holes if you read my FB). We walked over and said hi and we were told to try the Coconut Curry Soup – it’s the best. I got really excited because I love curry and so got myself a very large bowl of the soup.

Boy, were they right. That soup had the delicious depth of flavor that only curry can add to food and the hot kick from ground red pepper. Even the coconut milk added a layer of flavor that made my taste buds sing. There were also veggies and chicken – oh, those potatoes! They absorbed the flavors of the curry and salt and crumbled deliciously on my tongue. I don’t know that I’ve ever had a better bowl of soup, and firmly vowed right then and there to figure out how to make that soup at home. Yum!

In spite of being rather full I knew I couldn’t leave the restaurant without another bowl of that soup. I eagerly went over to the large sunken pot of the soup and began to delightedly fill my bowl anticipating all the foody loveliness in store once I got back to my table. About the 3rd ladleful I saw something unrecognizable flash into my bowl. Surely – that could not be a shirt tag?!?!?! Oh, indeed, it was! An XXL no less!!!!

Staggering with a combination of shock, amusement and disappointment, I hurried back to the table, put my bowl down and said, “Honey, look!” He took a look and said, “Is that a shirt tag? Or is an underwear tag? I think that’s an underwear tag!” Now please understand, as wildly unlikely as it is to get a shirt tag in your soup, I just can’t buy getting an underwear tag in your soup. I’m sticking with the shirt tag.

Now my hubby tends to be quite the assertive complainer. However, the tragi-comic element of the situation had him in a uncharicteristically congenial attitude about it. He calls the waitress over and shows her the soup. She says, “What is that, a tag!? Oh, so sorry!” and she takes it away. I watch her walk over and dump my soup out, and as I’m praying she takes the soup off the buffet, it is with relief I see her walk over and lift the lid to the soup pot. She stirs it a few times, replaces the lid and walks away. Walks away!?!?!??!?!?!? I could hardly believe my eyes. Before another moment passes, a man walks up and fills a bowl and then another man walks up. All in all, after the discovery, I saw six people walk up there and get soup – including the bung hole co-workers who each had two bowls apiece.

Even still, I gotta say, that was damn good soup.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

True story

Shuffling through an ex-coworkers desk, I came across the cartoon here. As you can see it is in some disrepair and had been casually tossed aside where it had once been tacked to her cubicle wall - in a place of honor, no doubt.

But here's the interesting thing: She was pregnant from the Shipping Guy out in the warehouse. One day, she just quit coming to work and the Shipping Guy called saying his doctor wouldn't let him come to work until further notice. A couple weeks later, the pregnant girl's boss is coming back from lunch and he sees her strutting down the street, still preggers. He goes back to the office and fires her (and the cause of the delay was.....?)

So fast forward a couple weeks and the warehouse gets an inventory count. Hmmmm, a number of our stainless steel and aluminum parts are missing. Like hundreds, perhaps thousands (unfortuantely, I didn't get to get in on the really juicy details). Suddenly things start to click for the upper "execs" at my company.

Apparently Amanda and Jay, the culprits described above, had been coming in on the weekends to finish up work they had gotten so far behind on. Jay would often have to use the company truck on these weekend overtime adventures (and yes, they were both paid overtime). So, Jay and Amanda weren't really working; they had thought up a get-rich-quick scheme to help keep them afloat since Jay apparently had some sort of severe addiction: they would just go scrap (perfectly good) parts at the scrap yard and pocket the money. This had been occuring for a number of months before they both disappeared. Suddenly that little cartoon there doesn't seem so innocent, huh?

Ok, so fast forward a couple more weeks after the cops investigate and come to find out, the Warehouse Manager had been also involved in the scrapping scheme. He also came up missing one day with an email that read "I am going to be out of the office for about a month." The next day his boss sent an email saying he wouldn't be coming back. Word is they are all getting prosecuted. And you know what else? The Warehouse Manager's son has taken over the managing position his father vacated.

And all because that damn beer was addicted to Jay! Poor guy.

Monday, February 09, 2009

This is purported to be true...and I believe it

Q: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
A: No.
Q: Did you check for blood pressure?
A: No.
Q: Did you check for breathing?
A: No.
Q: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
A: No.
Q: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
A: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
Q: But could the patient have still been alive nevertheless?
A: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law somewhere.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Remember when...

Date: Wed, 7 Apr 2004 12:27:21 -0400
Subject: from Grace

Dear Ant Jamie I love being in Tulsa. Grandma Larson sits on
her chare at night and she watchs Tv. I get to sleep in the Livingroom and watch Tv. I love doing chors for Grandma.
I also like playing Jenin.We went to a Restorant. There was
a man who makes Buloons. He made mom a spongebob.
We got to play at Jenins house. We played dogs and painted
wood.Myne was a hart with two colors on the sides and on top
and on top of that it said, Iln,.Gess what it standed for.
I love Noe. He is a boy at My School.My freinds cosoune.
The best part is I got to go to a Restorant with my dads
Relativs. Thay gave us a presant. It,s raining out side so my
wood got ruended and I can,t play outside.Well I gess it,s
goodbuy can,t keep you forever say hi to grandma for me.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Goodbye Rabbit

Pulitzer Prize winning author John Updike died Tuesday and chances are you've heard the sound bites already. He is the guy who wrote the “Rabbit” books. You know, “Run, Rabbit” and “Rabbit is Rich.” He is considered by many to be one of the great literary figures in American history. Here's the thing, though, the sound bites won't tell you: John Updike is a man who speaks truth. He's incredibly funny and not in that stand-up comedian kind of way. He's got this wry, ironic spin to everything he says but he never sounds supercilious or pretentious – it’s the sincerity in his humor that brings it home. His observations amuse and sting at the same time - you can't help but see yourself in his masterfully crafted observations; you laugh and think, ‘This man really gets it.’

He’s a guy who thinks deeply about things but doesn't talk over your head.

And he was human, infallibly human. John Updike, who like most of us had professional jealousies, envied Jack Kerouac so much he refused to read “On the Road” for years after it was published. Instead, Updike wrote a sort of antithesis of it with his novel “Run, Rabbit.” Updike thought that not everyone can be on the road all the time. Someone has got to be back at home doing things or nothing would get done, he said. That's what came out of his small-town Pennsylvania upbringing - an appreciation for home and not for running.

This theme is reflected in the character known as Rabbit. Rabbit was a family man, a very unhappy family man. And Rabbit ran; he hit the road like so many people in the 1960’s feeling constrained by middle class conformity adopted in the 1950’s, but inexorably Rabbit found himself going back home again. When asked about this, John Updike said, "I think a lot of us yearn for more freedom, the ultimate freedom of walking away, but then when we do it, we realize we don't know what to do now that we're free." Besides, he said bringing the theme back to Kerouac’s beatnik pretension, even though Kerouac hung around with Allen Ginsberg and that crowd, he used to run home to Mama Kerouac's cooking for months at a time, "So, so much for him." See, even Kerouac didn't want to be on the road all the time.

So, at a time when the middle class was bursting out onto the road and rebelling against the constraints of domestication, John Updike chose to write about just that; families and their real lives lived behind closed doors, the place where the rubber hits the road for all of us; the hard place, the place where there is no place left to hide, where we are who we really are, and we aren't running anymore.

Even if you never read a word he said, do yourself a favor - log onto and download the NPR broadcast of interview excerpts with John Updike compiled by Terry Gross on Fresh Air from WHYY. His words will inspire you and move something deep within you that needs moving, I guarantee it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A day we will never forget...

Ok, so this morning Chris smashed my car. Here’s what happened: he went out to start my car because it has a weak battery and often doesn’t start when it is sub-zero wind chill outside with ambient temps in the single digits. Ok, so he got it jumped but the hood latch wouldn’t latch. He dinked around with it for about 15 minutes, and meanwhile I am quickly becoming late for work. He’s all pissed off and tells me to take the van which was running. I hop in and the windshield is completely frosted and so try to get down the road as best I can since I can barely see.

I get to US 31 when I realize the temperature gauge is buried in the H. Holy shit, the van is totally overheated! I can’t pull off right away but I do so as soon as I can and turn off the engine which immediately starts to gong like Old Ben. Oh shit, right? So I call Chris and tell him what’s going on, and he says he’ll be right there to pick me up.

I wait and wait and wait and finally call him on his cell. He yells he just smashed the car. The hood flew up and he lost control on the icy roads and hit a snowbank. Thankfully he wasn’t hurt but the car spun about 8 times he said before crashing into the snowbank. Thank God he didn’t hit anything else! So I tell him to call the cops and they can pick me up on the way to the accident. So I wait and wait and wait and meanwhile my fingers and toes begin to really hurt from the cold. So I call him back and guess what? He’s driving the car and on his way to pick me up. When he gets there, the hood is sitting crooked on the car, sticking out about a foot and tied down with all kinds of ropes.

He starts the van but the engine is knocking horribly so it is probably toast.

My car, although drivable in the emergency circumstances, will need a new hood (goodbye grille) but it is unknown whether that will even attach since the hood blew a hinge on the drivers side and blew back in a twisted fashion so will most likely have warping on both sides where the hood attaches to the car. What a morning. Good thing we have his dad’s truck. I’m alternating between feeling that there is nothing broken that can’t be fixed and frustration, but all in all, I guess it’s ok. I’m trying to focus on what an amazing day this is and how exciting to be a part of the USA on such an historic event. I think I may check out the coverage - it might cheer me up a little.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Making Progress

For any of you who may be interested, I have exactly six 6' sections of quarter round to poly (3 coats) and one large door that needs 1 coat poly one side and two coats poly on the other side. I have two drawers that need 3 coats poly each. AND THEN I AM DONE WITH REFINISHING MY KITCHEN CABINETS!!!! It only took me, what? Six months? Please keep in mind I had a total of 33 doors and 14 drawers to sand to bare wood, stain twice and poly 3 times PLUS ditto on the bases and the new bar we built. Quite an ordeal, I tell ya. If it hadn't been for the fact it was a custom kitchen with solid would have been a hatchet job, literally. If anyone ever considers it, my suggestion would be this: either paint the dang things or replace them altogether. Sanding, staining, sanding, staining, sanding, polying, sanding, polying, sanding, polying and sanding again is way too much work even when the result is beautiful. Trust me.

Stay tuned.....I will be posting pics of my progress and the (somewhat) finished result soon....that is, whenever I can find the time to download my pics. Sigh.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

So much to say

I wish world events would slow down until I can get my house finished, and I actually have time to write again. Each day I mentally compose multiple blog posts when I hear the latest news from around the world; inevitably I end my day in frustration because I haven't had the time to actually sit down and write my post. However, FBing isn't helping in that regard, so I've decided to join the ranks of my bro and resolve to be resolute.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Crumbs and All

Did you know that if your keyboard ever stops working or starts acting really weird like it won't type for you, all you have to do is turn it over and dump all the crumbs and crap out of it? Really, it works like a charm. Ask me how I know.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

My beautiful family and the wedding

Please note, I wrote this post April 18th, 2008 but it was so meaningful I couldn't help but publish it in its current form. Hope you enjoy....

Every time I try to write about the wedding - indeed every time I think about it - I just become overwhelmed with emotion. I like what mom said on her blog - sometimes there really are perfect moments in life that so capture our hearts and minds that they become recorded like a video inside our very soul. That is how I feel, and in all honesty, our entire wedding, our entire day was absolutely the most beautiful and meaningful experience of my life. I am going to post Chris's vows to me and mine to him because they epitomize the evening in a lot of ways. I want to make a big shadow box with our place cards and some flowers and our program and our vows so that we have that reminder of our amazing day always in our sight.

From the very beginning of all the festivities, which began with Jamie and I getting our hair done, the day was filled with joy and peace and good things. It felt like coming home again having Jamie there with me getting my hair done. We were so combative throughout our years when we lived at home, and that carried into our adult years where we got along but just barely. Honestly, I don't really know why. Well, actually I do. It is because I was so judgemental of Jamie. I feel so sad when I think of it because I missed out on such a loving, giving, fun and amazing person and for what? So I could make myself feel a little superior and appease my jealousy. I am so glad I put that behind me. I can say that over the last couple years, God has really changed my heart and now I appreciate the differences Jamie and I have instead of being such a bitch.

When I asked her to be my Maid of Honor, I was hoping that the experience would help bring us closer together, and boy she just amazed me. I can honestly say that without her help, my wedding would not have had the of elegance, class and sophistication that it did. Plus, without her prodding in the early months of planning, who knows what we would have been doing - most likely a quickie service at the Justice of the Peace. She inspired me and helped me get over my "who the hell cares" hang up. Thank you, sister. You were the absolute best Maid of Honor in the whole wide world.

Oh, I can't forget her shining moment of heroism! This is what happened right before I had to appear for the private dinner with the wedding party and our parents. Jamie and I had gotten to the hotel around 3:30 after having our hair done, and the private dinner was due to start at 4:30. We had to be done with dinner by 6:00 so Jamie and I could change into our ceremony gowns and hopefully get some pictures. When we got to the hotel at 3:30, we started helping the girls with their hair. With four girls clamoring for our attention, it was a little overwhelming. Ok, so we are busily but happily working away on the girls' hair when Jamie says, "You should keep an eye on the time." The clock said 4:15! I didn't have my make up done, my gown on, my jewelry on and I had forgotten my vows down in my Bridal clutch purse that was in the Grand Ball Room for some reason. Mental scream!!!! I began running up and down the hallway from our hospitality suite to our private room because I was forgetting things and then once in my room I was shaking and sweating and started to cry because my hair was going to lose it's curl. Ok, I was in a full blown panic attack with large sobs thrown in for good measure. Oh, and some major self-pity. Chris kept saying, "Calm down, honey. It will be ok." He wanted to have Jamie come in and help me get ready, but I kept saying, "What can she do to help? I can get ready by myself." But meanwhile I'm in an absolute puddle of anguish. Finally, after about a half hour of this, Chris says, "That's enough. I'm getting your sister." Jamie came into the room (looking beautiful, by the way) and immediately saw I was in a terrible state. She very gently kneeled down in front of me and put her hands on my knees, and I saw so much love and compassion and caring, it went immediately to my heart. She said, "Laura, it's going to be ok. Everyone is down stairs mingling and enjoying themselves, so you don't have to worry. You don't have to rush. Everything is fine." Those words calmed my nerves and I don't know, it's like something in my soul lifted and my heart opened up and suddenly I felt light and excited and at peace. I will never forget that as long as I live.

Well, once Jamie got me all tussied up, we went down to the Garden Room at Jacks (which looked beautiful and elegant) and began our dinner. Chris and I had bought presents for the bridal party and our parents, so it was a lot of fun to pass those out and say how much we appreciated each of them. I had two glasses of wine, so by the time Jamie and I got back to the room to change into our gowns, I was floating and giggling and just really having fun. Grace and Hailie came into the room, and we all did Satin Hands which was a lot of fun. We kind of goofed around and giggled a lot (and I used Chris's toothbrush to clean under my nails which raised a volley of giggles and an solemn vow to never tell a single soul). Ok, I admit, I was giddy. We were having so much fun, we weren't paying any attention to the time when Melissa, the Banquet Manager, came to tell me that it was 7:15. We had put on the invitations the wedding started at 7, but we really planned on 7:10 because that would give the last-minuters a chance to find a table and get seated. I was late! But I didn't care. I was so excited and my heart was just beating a million miles an hour. I started to get a little nervous. After all, I was about to give my life to the only man who has ever truly known me, truly loved me and truly devoted himself to me. I felt like Cinderella, I kid you not.

So, Aunt Valerie and Marty from her band played "Thank You" by Led Zeppelin which is what we walked to (Chris and I walked together). I am going to post the lyrics here because the more I reflect on the words and the more I remember the way Aunt Valerie's voice sounded, the more incredible it becomes for me:

If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you.

When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me.

Kind woman, I give you my heart,

Kind woman, nothing more.

Little drops of rain whisper of the pain, tears of loves lost in the days gone by.

My love is strong, with you there is no wrong,together we shall go until we die.

My, my, my.

An inspiration is what you are to me, inspiration, look... see.

And so today, my world it smiles, your hand in mine, we walk the miles,

Thanks to you it will be done, for you to me are the only one.

Happiness, no more be sad, happiness....I'm glad.

If the sun refused to shine, I would still be loving you.

When mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me.

I just cry when I read those words. I can hear Aunt Valerie's voice, so beautiful singing that right to Chris and I. Like I said in my other post, I never believed my life and my love could reflect such deep passion and devotion and togetherness - and to have it brings me to my knees in gratitude. Ooo! I forgot to mention! Chris got me an ipod nano for my wedding present, which hellow! How great is that!?!?! But anyway, I have to play Thank You at least once every day because it means so much to me. I am playing it right now. :)

After the Reverend did the introduction, Chris and I lit a candle in remembrance of those who could not be there. We did that because he just lost his sister, plus there's Kady and my grandma. And there were guests there who had just lost a son and brother. It was something we all felt really strongly we wanted to do. We put the candle in the lantern so it could burn brightly during the whole wedding and reception.

Oh, perhaps I should say a word about how we did the wedding and reception. It was in the Grand Ball Room with all the round tables decorated with a 12x12 mirror, an Eiffel tower vase with one white gladiola and four candles, one on each corner of the mirror. Everyone said it was gorgeous, and with the lights down it added an element of intimacy and coziness that I just loved. Everyone at the tables sat in a crescent so no one had to turn around in their chair and I did placecards for families that needed a full table (so they wouldn't have to split up). It was a dessert reception with the wedding cake and three kinds of these delicious mousse desserts in fluted champagne glasses. We had an open bar, so later in the night, like around 10 pm, we served Artichoke dip and some kind of fancy cheese and meat tray so no one got too drunk or felt sick from dancing and drinking. Anyway, enough of the stats, back to the fun.

Ok, so Chris and I each wrote a devotion statement I guess you could say that we read to each other before we said our traditional vows. Ray has a great little video clip of that on his blog. I tried to make mine a little bit funny because I knew that the whole wedding was going to be a tear-jerker. Anyway, that was cool. Then, when we were pronounced man and wife, the girls (Grace, Emily, Hailie and Brandie) sang "Hero" by Enrique Iglacias. Now that was awesome. Chris got really really choked up listening to the video on Ray's blog. He had to step aside for a moment. But how much better does it get than dancing with your new husband while your children (and neice) sing "I can be your hero, baby. I can kiss away your pain. I will stand by you forever. You can take my breath away." Oh, the night was full of so many moments I will never forget and that are like treasures in my heart.

After that, we cut the cake and greeted all the guests and after everyone had their dessert, I threw the bouquet and Emily caught it. I spent some time on the dance floor, but most of my night was spent visiting with the guests. I took a lot of pictures toward the end of the reception (when I realized that if I didn't get on the stick, I wouldn't have any pictures of my reception which actually wasn't true. Uncle Yoobee and Ray and Mom all have great pictures on their blogs).

Anyway, there are so many more cool moments to share....the dance off between the kids, Emily break dancing, everyone doing the Cupid Shuffle and the Casper Slide, how happy my grandpa looked and how everyone joyfully welcomed Mai to the family, Chris's best friends' wives who have been so on the outs they wouldn't be in the same room together for 20 years were laughing and giggling and hugging with grins for pictures. It was truly amazing all the wonderful experiences and healing and enjoyment that came out of our wedding. I told Chris, it absolutely changed my life. And it has.