Saturday, December 31, 2011

Goodbye 2011

Well this clearly hasn't been my best year for blogging. But with the holidays it's hard to stay caught up (or that's my excuse anyway).

I'm currently waiting on just under 800 pictures to upload, after that, I'll have to start filling in from all the way back in NYC!

Happy New Year!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

And I've gone more than a month without posting ... oops! I'll do better y'all. I promise. Besides, I have a few pictures of NYC to share after this day of thankfulness and feasting is over.

Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy the beginning of this holiday season and remember the true reason why we celebrate.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:11

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Midweek Update

So in the interest of accountability, I thought I would do a quick (or not so quick) update on my goals for the week.

Here were my goals:

  • Make up the bed daily and pray for Steven while I do it.
  • Do a Bible Study with Steven at least 3 times this week
  • Eat dinner at the table with no TV once this week.
  • Cook at least three meals this week.
  • Do a small cleaning task daily to maintain my home.

So far I have made up the bed and prayed for Steven all three days. Steven and I have done our Bible study  twice, and will do it again in a little while.

We ate at the table with no TV tonight (before the World Series). I made this:

And it was pretty much amazing. That's my version of my mother-in-law's Parmesan Chicken with Red Potatoes and Green Beans and Parmesan Knots! Super yummy!! I've met my fourth goal and cooked all three nights (even if last night was just nachos -- it came from the kitchen, not a restaurant, so it counts!)

I've also done my cleaning. Steven even joined in tonight and helped me clean up the "man cave" (which has become the junk dumping ground). He even moved miscellaneous furniture around so I could vacuum it really well!

And if you didn't read it earlier, God pretty much punched me in the face this morning about my mouth, so I read up on the rest of 1 Peter 3, and lo and behold, it completely and utterly fits in with what I've been working on this week! I read mostly in verses 1-12, and verse 1 jumps right into what it means to be a godly wife.

He tells us that our behavior should be so glorifying to Him, that our husbands should be able to see God through our actions, without us ever saying a word! What a challenge for us! I have really been able to see God's hand this week, and it's such a blessing. Jessica, the author of one of my other favorite blogs, The Southern Belle Baby, posted today about respect, specifically about wives respecting their husbands.

I really think it's important for godly women to speak up about what it means to be a godly wife in a society that is so focused on independence and living without a man, that we forget about godly submission, and becoming the women that God has called us to be.

If you haven't read 1 Peter lately, I really encourage you to jump in! Even if you aren't married, getting closer to God now, just means a healthier marriage and healthier dating relationships until marriage happens. I believe that you will never regret learning more about God and drawing nearer to him.

I would love to hear what you think about the passage too. I'm by no means a scholar, but it really spoke to me tonight.

Tweeting the Message

I'm not sure how many of you are twitter addicts, but I can tell you that I am hooked. They keep it simple and it rarely changes, unlike some other social networking sites (**coughcough**Facbook**coughcough). The best thing about it? I not only get to keep up with friends and family (and post the occasional embarassing picture), but I also get to follow some really incredible people, that I wouldn't be able to hear from on a daily basis otherwise, and no, I'm not talking about Kim Kardashian.

I'm sure most of you who even sporatically attend church, have heard of Beth Moore. I have to tell you, she's a hoot, and I've never met her. I follow her on Twitter, and she blesses me, makes me laugh, and opens my eyes to scripture regularly.

But this morning she BROUGHT IT. In like 4 tweets. You can only have 140 characters in a tweet, and this woman quoted scripture, and then completely brought to light one of the biggest issues in my life in less than 600 characters. CHARACTERS people, not words. That is why Twitter is awesome. Because I can hear from my friends, my family, and other wonderful, Godly people, while sitting in the office waiting for my coffee to cool off. For some technology may be their downfall, but for me, it means there's a laugh, a smile, and a word of encouragement just a click away on my phone.

And just to fill you in, she tweeted about 1 Peter 3:10. I plan on digging into the chapter tonight, but here's the verse in case you're curious. It's about our MOUTH and how it can make us or break us.

"Whoever desires to love life and see good days,
let him keep his tounge from evil and his lips from deceit;"
1 Peter 3:10 ESV

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


If you want to see what a beautiful thing can come from obeying God, I highly recommend hopping over to Our Happily Ever Afters. Ashley and Kurt are currently in South Korea, bringing home their precious little boy Liam. They even posted a few pictures of their sweet son.

Ashley's cousin actually goes to our church as well. Ever since my mission trip to Romania in high school, I have always held a special place in my heart for international adoption. Ashley has kept up a blog of the entire adoption process and I have loved reading how God has worked out a perfect plan for them to grow their family. You can read all of that on Our Adoption Tapestry.

Monday, October 17, 2011


This Sunday, our Pastor completed a series called "Modern Family." I missed most of it (I can admit we've been bad about going lately), but this week's message was one that hit very close to home for me. Brother John chose passages in Genesis, Romans and 1 Corinthians, and talked about how our society as a whole has perverted the view of the family, and what "ideal" family and marital relationships should look like.

I'm not going to skirt around this -- he very clearly called out homosexuality as sinful, and I agree with him. Now don't get me wrong, he also called out many other sins -- adultery, lust, etc.  But that's not what struck me this week. The more he talked about marriage and family, the more I realized that I haven't been fulfilling my place in my home.

My attitude has been horrible. My moods have been unpredictable. I've been greedy and selfish. And on top of all of that, I manage to justify it by the time of the month, my work schedule, and my health.

"I worked all day, I don't want to cook dinner."

"I've been a showsite, I don't want to get up for church."

"I'm taking medicine that makes me feel angry, so I can lash out at my husband whenever I want."

Umm, yeah, that's not really how this whole marriage/Godly woman thing is supposed to work. AT ALL.

I'm sure you've all read Proverbs 31. It talks about the woman who fears the Lord. If you want to read the whole thing, you can check it out here.

Obviously I've recently had a big fat FAIL in these areas. Like, all of them. Seriously.

So here's the deal. God and I, we're working on it. And I'm putting it out here, because, well, I don't like to look like a failure in public, so this is motivation for me.

I'm setting mini-goals for the week, that will hopefully build up and turn into habits that are good for my marriage, my home, my health, and most importantly my relationship with God. What I'm realizing is that I'm not that "undomestic." I just have a bad attitude, and I need to work on it.  By not honoring my husband, I'm being disobedient to God.

This week, I'm focusing on my idleness. Verse 27 says that the woman who fears the Lord doesn't eat the bread of idleness. Lately, I've been buying the bread of idleness in bulk from the warehouse store, and gorging on it 5 times a day.

So here's this week's goals:

  • Make up the bed daily and pray for Steven while I do it.
  • Do a Bible Study with Steven at least 3 times this week.
  • Eat dinner at the table with no TV once this week.
  • Cook at least three meals this week.
  • Do a small "cleaning" task daily, to maintain my home. (Today I dusted!)
I think I've rambled on far long enough. Let's see how this goes...

For the Love of the Game

Most people who know my family well knew my Aunt April. She was a funny, happy, godly woman who loved baseball more than anyone I knew. In fact, she took my sister and me to our first game at the Astrodome in Houston when we were kids. I don’t remember who won or even who they played, but I will always remember the fun, and the passion she had for the game and for her team.

April was a huge baseball fan, and was fiercely loyal to the hometown team wherever she lived. April had been living outside of St. Louis for years, and was a huge Cardinals fan. When the Cardinals played the Boston Red Sox in the World Series when I was in college, I rooted for the Red Sox just to instigate trouble. She watched almost every game, and could always tell you how well (or poorly) her team had played. She made my level of fandom look laughable. She lived in the DFW area for awhile when I was younger, and during that time she was, of course, a Rangers fan.

April died earlier this year, very suddenly, and I’ll admit it knocked the wind out of me.
I handle tragedy and death very well outwardly. I’m really good at being the strong one. I learned the art form last year when we lost my mother-in-law. Being the strong one is how I get through the motions of death, of funerals, of my family’s heartbreak. It keeps me busy, and leaves me very little time to get caught up in my own emotions. I’m the one who can call the florist, write the obituary, make lunch, whatever has to be done.

Steven and I have gotten into the habit of buying a Texas Rangers discount thing every year. It costs $40 and gets you a certain number of free games and then a few buy one get ones, etc. We bought it this year as usual, but after April died, I couldn’t make myself go. For me, baseball’s biggest fan was gone, and things just weren’t ever going to be the same.

Different members of my family always joked that it would make the perfect World Series for us. Our Texas Rangers versus the St. Louis Cardinals.

Well this year it’s happening. April is finally getting her World Series, and no matter who wins or loses, I’ll be happy because they’re both April’s team. I know she’s moved on to much better things than baseball, but I have to think that she just can’t wait for Wednesday.

So Go Rangers, Go Cardinals. Be stars. For the love of the game, and for one very loved Aunt.

Monday, October 10, 2011

He is Mighty to Save

I'm sure most praise and worship music lovers know the song I'm referencing in the title. It is by Hillsong:

For the first time tonight, I looked up the scripture that references our GOD as mighty to save. I found a passage from Zephaniah that really spoke to me.

The Lord your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness;
He will quiet you by His love;
He will exult over you with loud singing.
(Zephaniah 3:17 - ESV)

I love the song, but my favorite part of this verse isn't that phrase - although I am thankful that my God is mighty enough to save me. What stands out to me is something else: "He will quiet you by His love."

He can move mountains.

He can calm the raging storm.

He is mighty to save me not just from my enemies, but also from my sin.

He will quiet me with His love.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Jamesie Beat the Tumor

Please Continue to pray for this family. Their son went to meet Jesus this afternoon.

Jamesie beats the tumor: Jamesie Beat the Tumor: "At 3:50 P.M. Jamesie beat the tumor. We had our angel for eight months. That's a long time to spend with an angel."

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Please Pray

I'll warn you that the blog I'm about to link to will break your heart, so don't click unprepared. I had a class with Kara Sikes (the mom in the blog) in grad school. Her son was diagnosed with a brain tumor last month. They removed it, and two weeks later it has returned with a vengence. They're bringing James home, knowing that there's really nothing they can do. Please pray that God will give them peace and comfort.

Jamesie beats the tumor: Day Twenty One: "I am taking my son home today. I am taking him away from the wires, the needle pricks, and the constant pain he lives in. I am taking him ho..."

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Two Years

On Monday Steven and I celebrated our Second Wedding Anniversary! It's so hard to believe that two years have already gone by.

On that day I was completely unemployed! I'd just finished up an internship, and interviewed for the position I'm in now, but I didn't get the job until we were on our honeymoon. And even then, I wasn't permanent until late last fall! Even through the times of me being un- and under-employed we have been incredibly blessed.

We spend most evenings just like we did two years ago, snuggled up on our sofa (at least it's bigger now!) with our big ol lump of a dog, Foster.

I can't say it's all been easy. We've dealt with parental illness and almost a year ago we lost Steven's mom in a very tragic accident. I still tear up often thinking about her, and I'm very prone to snap at people who gripe about their mother-in-laws because I would give anything to have her back in our lives.

We've been on some amazing vacations thanks to the awesome benefits we get through Steven's job. Since our wedding we've been to:

  • St. Kitts (Honeymoon!)
  • Las Vegas (me for work, Steven to come visit me)
  • Disneyworld
  • San Diego
  • Disneyland
  • Atlanta
  • Charlotte (Steven took me to see Mary Poppins for my birthday last year!)
  • Chicago (me for work, Steven to come visit me)
  • Hawaii
  • Philadelphia (again me for work, Steven to visit)
I am so lucky to be married to my best friend. I'm spoiled rotten. Steven's surprising me with a trip to somewhere for the weekend to finish up the celebration! I think he's trying to catch up because he got an iPad.

Looking back over the past few years since we've met makes me unbelievably happy. I always knew that some day I would meet my own Prince Charming (thanks to watching too much Cinderella!), and I am so lucky to spend my life with someone who loves me so much! I'm looking forward to the next 2, and the 2 after that, and the 2 after that, and ...

Monday, June 13, 2011

5 Things

I'm stuck posting from my phone so I'm keeping it simple.

1. I'm in San Francisco. For work. Without Steven. I like it better when Steven is with me.

2. It's in the 60s here. Steven said it was around 100°; in Texas. Feel free to be jealous.

3. There's a Bloomingdales right across the street. I may get into trouble.

4. The two hour time difference kills me no matter how many times I've been out here.

5. I ate at a place called "Super Duper Burger." It was fantastic.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

My Newest Addiction

As if I needed another one. Between Facebook, Twitter, and my very full Google Reader, the last thing I needed was another website to get hooked on.

Too bad though, because I found one.

Have you been on Pinterest yet? It's basically an online bulletin board where you can "pin" anything. Books, decorating ideas, recipes, ANYTHING.

Even better, you can follow people and see what that pin. So all those bloggers out there with taste I adore, yeah, I can see the things THEY pin. And love them.

Mostly I find food I love, but I'm trying to pin two other things for every food item. Because I need to have self control with food.

Even if it is just over the Internet.

ANYWAY ... are you on Pinterest? If so, follow me, so I can follow you back! I think you can find my boards here:

If you need an invite, just leave a comment with your email address so I can invite you. It takes forever if you have to wait on one from the web site.

Are there any other awesome new sites I'm missing out on???

Monday, May 30, 2011

Fur and Fin Babies

Meet the Michael Family pets.

Most of you probably know Foster. Also known as Foster-Bear, Foster Won Kenobe, Pumpkin Bread, Tweety Bird, and Oofa Lump. I can openly admit that he's spoiled rotten, and treated like a baby. Steven thinks he needs a (four-legged) brother. I think he needs a (two-legged) sister. But that's a whole other argument/post. 

More recently we have added 8 various tropical fish to our family. One of them had babies and we have 3 little ones swimming around as well! Most of them don't have names yet, but the one Dalmation Molly we have (he replaced the first one that died, and then the other one died, and we didn't replace it), is named Big Eyes. I'm sure you can figure out why. He reminds us of Foster, because he eats like crazy.

ETA: We have now named the rest of the fish. The 3 Black Mollies are named Huey, Duey, and Louie. The two gold and the two orange Mollies are collectively named The Golden Girls, and Big Eyes, is of course Big Eyes. Call me cynical, but I'm not naming the babies until they're too big to be eaten. 

I'm in the process of cleaning, so I can get pictures up of the new place. We're about to spend the rest of the day with the family relaxing!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day and remembers those who died to give us Freedom. 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Mini-Yard Work

The back of our patio has a little 4'x15' section of dirt. It's great because that means Foster can go out leash-free, and we don't have to go out if he just needs some room to romp.

The problem is that it was 100% dirt.

We worked on that today.

Meet my manual labor:

I'm not sure I'd call them willing. But I'm paying them so that they have enough for tickets to Disneyland (where we plan on taking them in July).

With alot of digging, only one screaming match, and $50 well spent at Home Depot, we now have grass, and a drain set up to keep our patio from getting covered in mud every time it rains.

Now it's time for a (very) late lunch, before we finish clean up and head off to the pool! Happy Memorial Day Weekend!!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Coming Soon...

Pics of what's been happening lately...

I promise.


(Really Suzi, I mean it!)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

He Is Risen! He Is Risen Indeed!

And he said to them, Do not be amazed; you are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who has been crucified He has risen; He is not here; behold, here is the place where they laid Him.
Mark 16:6

Happy Easter! 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Longest Short Week or I Am So Flipping Lazy

That's what this week has been. Since the service here in Texas for my Aunt is on Friday, Steven and I are taking Thursday and Friday off this week. That means I'm done with work, but man, those three days were long.

I know it's because we're grieving and I am severely out of my routine (I'm picking up the kids from school since the parents are out of town), but knowing the reasons for my sluggish bad attitude really isn't helping things any.

I have so much that I need to be doing, but I can't really motivate myself to do any of it. We move in almost exactly a week, and my house is not packed up. At all. But what am I doing? Sitting. Playing around on The Nest. Reading blogs. Playing on Twitter. Any and everything but packing.

I'm really having a flashback to my college days when I only blogged (on Xanga!!) when I had a test to study for or a paper due.

Must. Get. Off. Couch.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Great is Thy Faithfulness

A little less than a year ago, my second family was ripped apart and sewn back together as closer, and stronger than before when we lost my precious mother-in-law Donna. As the weeks and months have past, I've learned to live with the hurt that never quite goes away. I still get mad at people who whine that their mother-in-laws are too nosy or bossy, because I would give anything to have her back in my life, even though she was anything but bossy or nosy.

Today I felt that all-too-familiar heartbreak again. 

Today we lost my sweet Aunt April. It was unexpected, and happened faster than I can believe. Even now, hours later, I still can't comprehend that she's gone. I'm sure it will take the rest of the week, and seeing the heartbreak in the eyes of my precious family before it really sinks in. 

I don't have the answers, and today I haven't even made it to the zen place of knowing that everything "happens for a reason." I know that God is in control, and I know that everything works together for the good of those who love Him and are called to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

Please pray for my family during this time. April was an incredibly special woman. She took me to my first professional baseball game, and I have so many sweet memories of shopping trips and sleepovers.  I know she spent her first day in Heaven praising God and giving Him the glory. All I can do is strive to do the same here on earth and follow her example as a beautiful woman of God. 

The LORD'S loving kindnesses indeed never cease,

For His compassions never fail. 
They are new every morning;

Great is Your faithfulness.

Lamentations 3:22-23

Saturday, April 9, 2011


I'm sitting in the midst of an apartment in complete disarray. In just about 2 weeks, we're moving down the street into a larger apartment. We're thrilled. We have a new sofa, dining set, and washer/dryer on the way, and we can't wait to have more space.

But as I pack up dishes and shop for curtains, I have to admit that I'm a little sad. We moved here when we married, and despite the fact that there's not much space, and the complex isn't the nicest, we've made this home over the past few years. It's cozy and homey and we've loved spending many nights snuggled on our old, lumpy, comfy couch.

I know this is just the first of what will likely be several moves over the course of our marriage, but I'm still a bit sad about it. I know I'll get over it quickly when we're settled into our new place. Maybe I'm just sad that I'll be spending most of the next two weeks packing... oh procrastination...

Friday, March 11, 2011

You Know You're "Old" When...

Shopping for this gets you excited:

We picked this up (and the matching dryer) on sale at Best Buy last weekend! They won't be delivered until the end of next month when we move into our new apartment (the stackables just won't fit ... I'm heartbroken... ha!)

We're also contemplating new living room furniture. Our current couch and recliner are in sad shape. We're thinking about getting these:

Ok, well not the whole room, just the sofa and loveseat ... and both in red! They're in the Cindy Crawford collection from Rooms to Go, and on sale this weekend (yay sales!)

Oh and I finally got Steven's Valentine's Day gift in:

He's currently flashing back to his childhood with the original Mario Bros. I have to say that beyond that life has been pretty quiet around here. We're just starting the process of packing up everything and getting ready to move... can't wait until Easter weekend, and our new, bigger apartment!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Snow Day To-Do List **FINAL UPDATE!**

Last week during my 4 days off for weather, I was very busy blogging, tweeting, and immersing myself in my favorite TV shows and chick flicks. I was so lazy that I didn't even read anything. That is sad.

So today, during Snow Day #5 of this season (just in case you're counting), I am going to accomplish the following:

** Final Update: I got everything done that was a necessity! The laundry is in progress, and will be done in soon enough. I'm not in a dig through things mood, so I'm not going to get my kitchen bonus done. Now I'm snuggling down on the couch with Foster to watch Mamma Mia!**
  • Kitchen:
    • Do dishes
    • Wipe down all counters and sink
    • Sweep and Mop
    • Bonus: Clean out cabinets and make a pile of goodwill donations (I have tons of junk I never use) ... Yeah I'm not doing this today. I've done enough.
  • Dining Room:
    • Clean off table and actually put everything where it goes
  • Living Room:
    • Pick up all of my junk that is everywhere
    • Go through books and see if I'm ready to donate any of them. (I couldn't get rid of any -- I'm such a nerd)
    • Rehang curtains that have needed to be put up since Christmas decor came down. (Technically they aren't up, but my curtain rod got bent -- not sure how -- but they can't go up without a curtain rod, so even though it's not done, it's off my list)
    • Sweep & Mop entry way
  • Bedroom:
    • Wash all laundry including sheets and towels. (Only the towels are left. Just waiting on the dryer!)
    • Make up bed
    • Find a place for art that has no wall to live on.
    • Hang up clothes, and lay Steven's out for him to hang up.
    • Clean up my corner that's full of stuff I don't know where to put.
  • Bathroom:
    • Clean it.
    • Sweep & Mop
  • Whole House:
    • Vacuum (Only the bedroom is left at lunchtime!)
    • Dust
I'll be back periodically to update. I'm sure I won't get it all done today, but I hate incomplete to-do lists so here goes nothing! And yes I put things on the list I already did this morning. I like a head start. 

Saturday, February 5, 2011

A Real Snow Day

Yesterday we woke up to an actual full-fledged snow day. Snow started falling sometime last night and continued off and on all morning. It was actually a really nice change, because it covered up the ice and made everything (except the roads) much less slippery.

If you look back at my first snow day post, you might recognize this picture ... only it's not the same. We had a total repeat of the ice situation on our very hilly road. It was nuts.

Someone else was also a little nuts for the snow. Much like the last few days it was a big fight to get him to come inside. He loved sniffing and prancing and kicking up the snow. It was pretty cute, and I didn't mind as much this time because I wasn't constantly concerned about sliding down the hill and breaking my neck.

The sun came out in the afternoon and started the thaw, and let me tell you, after the past few days of 15 degree weather, 28 felt straight up warm. We're supposed to get up into the 40's today, so I'm sure everything will melt away. It's been fun, but I'm actually looking forward to getting back to work Monday. Sitting at home all day gets dull!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Kauai -- The Food

One of the things Steven was most excited about when we started planning this trip was the food. He loves seafood, and I'm learning to like it, but we don't eat it nearly as often as he'd like. So we ate alot of seafood while we were there, and I rejoiced every time the place we were going had a burger that had a decent review.

Burger from Brennecke's Beach Broiler on Poipu Beach

But have no fear, we ate plenty of fish. Some of it was not that great, but much of it was delicious. And that's alot coming from me. We had a couple of "nice" meals, but unfortunately food in Hawaii is ridiculously expensive (even McDonalds -- $8 for a "value" meal -- and I wish I was kidding)

Shrimp Burger & Fish and Chips from the Hanalei Dolphin Restaurant

Surf & Turf and the Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi-Mahi from Roy's Restaurant. Yes it's a "chain" but it's yummy.

We also indulged in some sweets (of course). Lapperts was my favorite. It's like a Baskin Robbins and Starbucks combined. What more could you ask for?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Snow Day #2

Yesterday was Snow Day #2. It wasn't as fun as Snow Day #1 for a couple of reasons. Steven had to work. So it was just me and the dog. He took my car, so all I had was the truck, and trucks don't mix well with ice. So I was home with the dog ALL DAY.

And just to keep things interesting, there are issues with the electrical grids in Texas, so we had rolling power outages yesterday. My dog is a big chicken, and flipped out every time it went off or came back on. So he spent a large amount of the day in my lap.

Don't worry though, he recovered and got back to napping.

(This was my lovely view for most of the day)

I also made chili for dinner last night. I LOVE that I can make chili in my crockpot. It's so much easier (especially on days when I work, or when I want to be lazy -- like yesterday)

(Also, that's my new can opener ... It cost more than $5, and you can tell. I'm kinda in love)

It was yummy. Today is Snow Day #3, and I don't really have high hopes that today will improve much. I really thought that I'd be back at work today, but according to HR the streets by the office and our parking lot are basically ice skating rinks. To top things off, we have another (good) chance for another round of weather tonight, so I'm not sure I'll be back at work tomorrow.

Well it's off to more (really bad) Daytime TV and my chick-flick movie collection.

In other words, I'm bored.

Really, really bored.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Wings Over Kauai

When planning this vacation, Steven and I decided pretty quickly that we would NOT be doing a helicopter tour. The costs were outrageous ... almost $500 for a 50 minute ride. Even if we COULD have afforded it, we just refused to pay that much even if it was a "must see" with all the guides we read.

Once in Kauai, we found something that allowed us to get the views without the price. Steven found a company called "Wings Over Kauai" in a magazine. They were able to get us in the same day, and the costs were significantly less (we're talking less than half). I did a full review on trip advisor, but I will say that we were beyond satisfied (even if I did get a little motion sick... yikes!). Here are most of the pics from the trip. I was honestly so overtaken by the views and the experience, that I didn't take as many pictures as I intended. Our pilot, Bruce (who also owns the company with his wife), encouraged us to not just look through our camera lens, but to really take in the view.

This was the shot that was taken by Ellen (Bruce's wife), and they sent it to us via email. No extra charges for photos (and this is one of many reasons I love small, family owned companies -- they don't try to rip you off). 

Norwegian Cruise Lines "Pride of America." It exclusively tours the Hawaiian Islands.

These are all shots of Kauai's coast line. It's all absolutely gorgeous. We loved that Kauai is still very "rustic." No huge towns, no skyscrapers. In fact, there's a law in Kauai that no building can be taller than a coconut tree ... which means nothing's more than 4 stories high. It's a nice change from the city environment we see every day!

This is the only shot I got of the famous Napali Coast. You can't get to it by car. The only way to see it is from the air, by boat, or by taking a 20 something mile hike. It takes an entire day to get there and a day to get back. The view was beyond breathtaking.

These two are of the Waimea Canyon or "The Grand Canyon of the Pacific." You can also drive up to this and see it, or hike down into it. We drove up, but skipped the hiking (shocking, I know). 

This is one of the last things we saw was this gorgeous waterfall. I want to say it's the one from Jurassic Park, but I could definitely be wrong. Anyway, it's pretty, so who cares!

So there's a quick look at the views we got to enjoy from way up in the sky. I'm so glad we decided to do this tour. Not only was it less expensive, but since I do get motion sick, it was much easier for me to deal with. A helicopter tour would have killed me. If you're going to Kauai, I highly recommend the company. Check them out at

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Snow Daze...

Sometime late last night our torrential rain turned into torrential sleet that come sunrise turned into snow. Combine that with temperatures barely in the 20's (make that the teens now that the sun has set) and you have a good old fashioned Texas "Snow" Day. Lucky for me, my office closes with the school district and Steven was able to take a vacation day, so we stayed in and snuggled and watched the cars attempt to make it up and down the street.

Foster loved exploring his little piece of the arctic. We went out three or four times and I had to drag him or carry him in every single time. He just wanted to stay out any play!

Our office is closed again tomorrow, so I'm home again. Steven (unfortunately) will be at work, so Foster and I will have a chick flick day, and wait and see if it's going to thaw out any time soon.

Stay warm and safe!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Views from Kauai

As I'm sure you can assume, I took a ton of pictures while we were on vacation. I could spend two weeks worth of blog posts going over all the details. This time I'm just going to share some of the gorgeous views we got to see while we were there! We also did a plane tour, but I'll share those photos later. Here we go...

Sunrises & Oceans & Beaches

Waterfalls & Overlooks

A Church & A Lighthouse & A Warning Sign