This and that and the other

There are a few different things I’d like to address and so I am going to go with the handy list format, otherwise known as the lazy bloggers answer to midnight writer’s block.

1. I cannot even express my joy over how much y’all share my love of the occasional fast food item. I’d like to think Monday was a day that caused sales at Sonic and McDonald’s to skyrocket as we all indulged our cravings.

Also, I feel that I owe a huge apology to two fast food establishments for leaving them off my list. How could I forget my love of Long John Silver’s fish and chips covered in malt vinegar sauce? My only excuse is that the one near our house closed down and is now just another local taco shop. Because San Antonio really needed another one since we only have 846 of them already.

And Dairy Queen. The Reeses Peanut Butter Cup Blizzard is on my list of perfect foods. It’s got calcium, protein and chocolate. All the basic nutrients a girl needs to survive PMS or just a road trip to Houston.

2. Several of you have asked about the trip to Memphis. Sophie and I write for LifeWay on their Allaccess blog and occasionally we get to go on trips and then write about them. In fact, Sophie wrote a great post about the Memphis trip on Monday and you can read it here.

3. Every now and then I tend to get these ulcer-type things in my mouth. A few months ago, Mimi showed me an article that said L Lysine supplements are supposed to keep you from getting them. I’d kind of forgotten about it until I found myself on the vitamin aisle at the store the other day and I bought some.

You know why the L Lysine keeps you from getting ulcers and cold sores? Because the pills are so dang big that you’ll choke to death if you try to swallow one. I wish I had a picture to show you, but I don’t because that would have required effort.

4. Gulley is looking for new bedding for her bedroom. We have searched high and low, but can’t find the right thing. And by the right thing, I mean something that’s not floral or looks like the same tired Ralph Lauren bedding circa 1992. If you know of a great place to find bedding, I’d love it if you’d share.

5. Caroline and I were in the car yesterday and she said, “Mama, when you get dressed up for a wedding or a party, you always look so pretty!”

“Thank you, baby. You know what?”

“What?”

“I think you’re beautiful all the time.”

“Of course I am. Why wouldn’t I be?”

Bless her heart. She just has barely an ounce of self-esteem.

See y’all tomorrow for Fashion Friday.

Who knew Memphis was a metaphor?

You know why it’s taken me so long to write about last weekend? I mean other than all the television viewing I had to catch up on and the shopping for Christmas card outfits? And the laundry? And the dirty house? Because I know it’s going to be so long and I am a poor editor and won’t be able to cut anything out. So proceed at will, my friends, but just know that I enjoy the words.

I flew into Memphis on Thursday night. The plan was for Sophie to pick me up from the airport but she wouldn’t be able to get into town until about an hour or so after I arrived which was no big deal because I figured I’d use the time to work on Fashion Friday so that once we got together we could focus on important things like eating barbecue and discussing various reality T.V. programs. I found a vacant seat at Gate 24, purchased two hours of Boingo Wi-Fi, and began working on Fashion Friday. All was well until my Boingo wireless went away after eight minutes.

I did what all the socially relevant media hipsters are doing these days and twittered (tweeted?) about my disappointment in Boingo and how they had ruined the next two hours of my life. Within seconds, Boingo had tweeted (twittered?) me back and asked me to call their customer service hotline. So I did. And they were absolutely no help at all as I spent the next forty-five minutes trouble-shooting with a customer service rep who gave me the age old wisdom to “Shut down your computer and reboot”. In the history of technology that helpful strategy has never worked, not even one time, but it’s all the Level 1 customer service reps have in their repertoire.

However, they did reimburse me $3.95 for the internet I didn’t get to use. So although my time was totally wasted, at least it didn’t cost me $3.95 for the pleasure.

After Sophie and her mother-in-law, Martha, picked me up, we headed to Corky’s Barbecue to pick up some dinner. That was the point when I discovered that a sandwich topped with coleslaw is a thing of beauty. Then later that night I was able to meet Sophie’s dear friend, Bubba, who stopped by to say hello. I don’t know that it gets any more Southern than sitting in a living room in Memphis visiting with an elderly Southern woman who pronounces her name “MA-tha” and a man known as Bubba. It was delightful.

I slept in the next morning which was divine because it was dark and rainy. Plus the room I slept in was like a cold, dark cave complete with the softest sheets ever. If someone would have agreed to bring me food I could have stayed there until I became the subject of some sort of tragic documentary on TLC. But eventually I got up and we headed downtown to the Fed Ex Arena for sound check. I realize that makes it sound like we had some very important sound check duties, but the truth is that we basically just stand around while other people do very important things. I’ve had years of experience with this particular skill.

This next part contains a lot of sap, but it must be said because my heart was full.

When we arrived back at the arena on Friday night, there were so many familiar faces there. The faces of the LifeWay staff that have become dear friends and the faces of women that I know mainly through the blog world and Twitter. And as Travis and the Praise Team started to sing, my heart just felt so overwhelmed as I thought to myself “Look what God has done with the internet”.

I know. Totally sappy and sentimental. You were warned.

It even hit me that my friendship with Sophie seems so normal now that I often forget that our paths never would have crossed in ye olden days of the early 1990’s. Well, unless Mississippi State and Texas A&M were playing in a bowl game and we’d both happened to have been there, but the chances of that encounter turning into a lasting friendship would have been slim at best. Yet there I was in Memphis staying at her brother’s house, meeting her best friends and talking to her mother-in-law about the gold jacket she found at Steinmart(s). (It wasn’t a gold gold jacket. Just more of a mustard gold. A mustard gold! She wasn’t sure the size 4 would fit because she is very tiny! Very tiny!)

My heart was already full by the time Beth got up to speak so it should come as no surprise that I had tears in my eyes about three minutes into her lesson. She shared that she’d barely made it to Memphis because of the weather. But she knew that if God wanted her to make it to Memphis, then she was going to make it to Memphis no matter what the airlines said or whatever else happened. If she was supposed to be in Memphis, then she’d end up in Memphis. (This is all a paraphrase, but it’s the general point)

And I just felt God saying to my heart that I don’t have to worry about how I’m getting to Memphis or what Memphis will look like, I just need to trust that He’ll get me to Memphis if that’s where I’m supposed to be.

I hope it’s obvious that this epiphany wasn’t actually about getting to Memphis since I was actually already in Memphis when it happened. It was just a sweet reminder that God is the architect of the details and He doesn’t need me to control all these things that I tend to fret about because I am a fretter (not a real word) and He certainly doesn’t expect me to get to Memphis without Him.

Anyway, the Memphis part of that in my life represents several different things that I’ve been struggling with or trying to understand. I don’t know what the Memphis is in your life, but I know that if God wants you in Memphis then He’ll get you to Memphis.

I realize I am rambling at this point and if you just skimmed this post you’re probably thinking, “Wow, what’s the big deal about getting to Memphis? Doesn’t Delta fly there?” And there were so many other things that spoke to me from Beth’s message on Friday and Saturday, it just made me laugh that one of the things that spoke to my heart the most was something that wasn’t really even a part of her message.

And now that we’ve come to the 1100 word mark, I think you can understand why I’ve had such a hard time figuring out what to say about the weekend. In fact, I could go on for about another 1100 or so words, but I’ll spare you that experience since I feel that what I’ve written should serve as an example of how exhausting it would be to live inside my head.

The quest for a photo-worthy outfit

Caroline was out of school yesterday so I took the opportunity to take her shopping. A.J. is going to attempt to take our family portrait this coming weekend (God bless her) and Caroline needs something to wear since she totally nixed me on the adorable plaid vest that I found at TJ Maxx.

(I still haven’t actually returned the vest because hope springs eternal. Plus if I can’t find an alternative I may just bribe her to wear it for ten minutes for the picture.)

I didn’t see anything that I really liked but Caroline found something she adored. In fact, she told me it would be perfect for the Christmas card picture.

IMG_0105

Yes, if we lived in Siberia or were filming a scene for an updated version of Rocky IV where he goes to Russia to fight Ivan Drago and trains in that remote cabin and remains uninspired until Adrian shows up wearing that big fur hat that she must have bought at the Moscow Airport, it would be perfect.

This was her next suggestion.

IMG_0107

As much as I’d like to forever remember this year as the year we sent out a Christmas card with my daughter wearing a fedora, I declined to purchase the hat.

The good news is that while I haven’t found an actual outfit for her to wear, she has the posing thing down pat.

And, yes, I realize this is not any sort of recap of this past weekend, but in my defense I was very busy shopping with my child and taking photos with my phone. Also, the DVR gets very full when you’re out of town for four days and it’s not like all that T.V. is going to watch itself.