Monday, October 30, 2006

Seriously, How Cool is that?!?!?!?!?!?

Every year, I ask my children what they want to be for Halloween. This year, Ella told me she wanted to be, "Chuck Norris." Seeing as how there aren't a lot of Chuck costumes for 3 year olds, I asked her what her second choice was. She replied, "Green Pringles." Well, being the type of person who will jump through hoops of fire for my babies, I decided to attempt to make Ella into Green Pringles. As near as I can tell, it worked. She has a turtleneck and leggings to wear under the can. These pictures were of her final "fitting." More pictures of all the children nuggets in their costumes later...

Thursday, October 19, 2006


Layton is one!!!

At least she tried...

One of the few perks of having a name that begins with the letter "A" is that I always come first in programmed lists on others cell phones. Whether they like it or not, my name is like a trump card. I'm trying to figure out a way to beat out all the Alex-es, Allie-es, and Ada-es of the world. Maybe I will drop all the letters in my name except for the "A." That's right. Oprah is O...I am A. I noticed that my relatives...The Fabulous Fondrens...have added me to their links of blogs, and as you may have guessed, I top the list. Jay got a new cell phone one time that organized the address book by something other than first name. I made him change my settings so that I showed up as number one. Sadly competitive. I've begged Jay to make my epitaph read, "At least she tried." When I was 13, I decided that I wanted to win the Nobel Peace Prize. Please, keep the "poor kid" comments to yourself. Wes told me that if I ever won it, he would learn to play the harpsichord for my mother's funeral. In an effort to help attain world peace (I know, "poor kid"), I have placed bets on various charities. By bets, I mean concerted efforts to further the cause of the organization. The housing ministry was my first bet. I have been thrilled with the response and results of being involved in Habitat for Humanity and three different international housing ministries. Then, there was my quest to get the "Anytown" meter maid fired. Wait, that wasn't a charity, but it would've helped countless citizens who work around downtown "anytown." You see, downtown "anytown" is comprised entirely of two-hour spaces, so if you work in downtown, you have to go out every two hours and move your car or risk a five dollar ticket. I prepared a lovely study for the city detailing the fact that no matter how many tickets the meter maid writes, the revenue from said tickets does not cover her salary and the repairs to the golf cart looking thing she drives. I got the info for her salary from the CAFR for our local government. A CAFR is a comprehensive annual financial report. Most municipalities and publicly owned properties are required to produce these reports. It's public info. You wouldn't invest in the stock of a company without checking on the performance of the company. I don't invest my tax dollars in a city without checking on it's performance. Aside over. So, I sent my extremely long report to the city. I even included another option. Sell parking decals to the employers in downtown for $50 a year. The decals would have to be turned over to the employer when an employee quits. I have never received $50 worth of tickets, and I have lived here right at 30 years. However, I would gladly pay $50 a year if it meant I would never have to get up and move my car during tax season. The city's response....They raised the price of tickets to $10 and sent me a thank you for bringing this to their attention. At least I tried. My most recent quest is bone marrow transplants. I recently signed up for the volunteer donor list. I am very excited by the possibility of saving someone's life. I know in my heart that if one of my children needed a transplant that I would pray day in and day out for someone to take a few days of their life to save my child's life. Well, my children are healthy, but that doesn't mean that all children are healthy. Almost anyone is eligible to be a marrow donor. Signing up is easy. You can go to almost all locations that accept blood donations to sign up. The test is painless and quick. You swab the inside of your mouth with four q-tip like things. You answer a few questions about your lifestyle and health history. That's it. Then, you could potentially give someone's child the opportunity to have their first kiss, to go to prom, to go to college, to get married, to have their own children, the opportunity to live. How great is that? You don't have spend months or weeks in the hospital to do it either. Most of the time it's a one day thing. ONE DAY!! That's a really quick life altering event. Having children takes months...Sometimes years to complete your family. Saving children or people who want to have children takes one day. It's at least a start....

P.S. I didn't even proofread this. How bad is that?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Fiddle = Funnel Cake

Some of my fondest memories of being a child are the ones I have of the Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention. Boom Paw, my grandfather from Tuscaloosa, loved the Fiddlers Convention. Every year, he and my grandmother (Maw Maw) would come to Athens for the convention. Boom Paw and Ed would take us to hear the fiddle off on Saturday evening. Some years the weather would be so cold that my mother would bundle us up in layers and layers of thermal underwear. As soon as we'd get to the college campus, Boom Paw would purchase funnel cake for us. We would sit in the bleachers and eat funnel cake while sipping on hot chocolate. I almost never stayed awake until the very end. I can remember resting my head on the cold metal seat and drifting off to sleep only to be awakened when either my father or grandfather would lift me up for the ride home. Both my father and grandfather have passed away, and my fondness for the annual convention has become an even more sentimental. This year, Jay and I took our children for the whole day on Saturday. We took strollers and blankets. We bought pork rinds and funnel cakes. We sat on the same metal bleachers that my father and grandfather sat on for so many years. I was able to share something with my children that my father was able to share with me. I wish that I had pictures of Ed and Boom Paw enjoying the music.

What does "Alone" mean?

One afternoon I was trying to take a cat nap. Things didn't quite go as planned. Shortly after getting in the bed, Layton cried. I fixed a bottle for him and tucked him in with me. A few minutes later, here came Ella. For some reason she was wearing only a pull up. Nearly five minutes later, Hadley came bounding in too. Suddenly, my lovely alone time was covered in kids. They piled up in the bed with me...I didn't take a nap, but I had a lot more fun.
Keep your eyes out for more info from Mrs. Jay....