Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Playing Catch-Up

I am so far behind posting pics that I decided to just start with the most recent events. You'll just have to imagine the fun we had at the circus and how special it was for Priya and I to experience her first-ever pedicure.

Saturday we hosted an intimate dinner party for Mom and Dad's 40th anniversary. Dad wanted a party; Mom did not. So, we compromised and had something small-ish with family and 2 of their best couple friends...people we have known for 25 years. I haven't laughed or cried that much in a long time. I believe a good time was had by all. It wasn't even stressful preparing for the dinner as we had it catered. Oh yeah, that's the way to go.

**NOTE: click on any photo to enlarge.

I used my formal china (only the 2nd time in 11 years). I even had time to make these. Thank you, foldingnapkinguide.com.

Mom and Dad 40 years ago. But, now in edible form.

Sweet pic of Mom and Dad smooching after the toasts.

I love this picture of my bro, sis, and I. Jim and Judy's offspring. We had just finished giving our individual toasts, so we were a little "verklempt." Or maybe it was the wine.

La Familia.

The cousins were here the week leading up to the party. There was a lot of swimming involved. It's always amazing to see where the kids just pick right up where they left off...even after not having seen each other in 6 months.

Baby Drew is the newest addition to the "cousins club." He is a big hit and loved by us all.

I was outside a little while ago watering my plants, and I do believe a storm is a-brewin' in South Texas. Hurricane Dolly's presence may be known here in Boerne in just a few short hours, and boy, do we need the rain. If only it weren't feast or famine.

I've loved being a part of Vacation Bible School with the kids this week...till Thursday when I will be having my own spiritual renewal this weekend. Looking forward to hangin' with some of my fave people while praising God and reminding myself just how blessed I am. Daddy will no doubt do a superb job holding down the fort. He always does.

Enjoy your weekend!

Sunday, July 20, 2008


Virtual Flower Graphics

It's been a year. Cannot believe it. I honestly didn't think I'd stick with it. But, here I am. Still kickin' in blogland.

Today I'm suffering from the aftermath of a highly successful 40th anniversary party for my parents. Had it here at the house last night, and let's just say that a good time was had by all. Good food, family, and friends. Oh, yeah. And good WINE!

Emotional toasts were given by each of us 3 kids. Dad and Mom even spoke. And, there were lots of laughs and happy tears.

Forty years is a milestone...in this day and age. So, how fitting on this one year blogaversary that we would be celebrating Mom and Dad's anniversary, too.

I'll be back later with pics. Mine won't surely be as beautiful as the ones Melody took of our whole entire family this morning. Can't wait to see those.

But, first there are dishes to wash. Floors to sweep. Sheets to wash.

And, Motrin to take.

Happy Blogaversary to me.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

My Mantra

I'm not sure how it happened. When school ended, I vowed that the pace would slow down. I promised myself that I would spend endless summer days in my jammies--at least till the pool opened for the day. Then I would throw my suit on and lounge with the kids in the water till it was time to go home for dinner. I TOLD MYSELF that summertime would be different. That I wouldn't allow myself to be stressed or tired or fearful that my commitments would take over my life.

I have let myself down.

Because, now, in the middle of July, I am finding myself freaking out that there are not enough hours in the day to complete what I want to complete. That there are not enough hours in the night for me to acquire enough sleep to enable me to feel human.

Don't misunderstand. I am enjoying my kids and our time together. A LOT. We have had so much "cousin fun" in the last week with my sister and her kids in town...but that means we're not at home doing the things I need to do. Laundry, anyone? When Trevor comes to me asking if he can wear Priya's jammies because she has clean pajamas, well, I know there's a problem.

In the next couple weeks we have an anniversary party for my parents' 40th (at my house...of course), Vacation Bible School (yes, I'm a volunteer), a Walk to Emmaus I'm attending (I wouldn't miss it for the world but there is a LOT of prep involved), and then Sea World camp for all 3 of the little Indians (no small feat when you live about an hour away and it starts at 8:30am).

Not to mention my commitment to myself to train for this. And, this. OH, YEAH! And THIS!

Yes, I do it to myself. Yes, I have no one to blame but me. Sigh.

So, when it all gets too heavy...I just gotta live by my faithful mantra that keeps me centered (after those all important scriptures like Philippians 4:13). Yes, it's all good in the 'hood. Busyness is a blessing compared to other things people are facing in their lives.

Oh, yeah. And then there's Animesh citing the "It's all good" phrase that inspired me to make the sign purchase in the first place.

I also have the great t-shirt that was sent to me by the marvelous Maile to help me remember my mantra.

So, if in the next few weeks you see me out in public looking dazed and confused...just shout out, "Jen, it's all good!"

And, say a prayer that I snap out of it.

At least till school starts next month.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


With my blogaversary quickly approaching...I thought I share more flashback posts that I stumbled upon while reviewing my blogging life over the last year.

Ah, yes. There's this one. I can't believe I actually followed through and did it.

And, this one. A post I certainly needed to read this morning. After a horrible day yesterday.

And, even though I had a rough day yesterday...I realized that in the midst of the horrible-ness (have I mentioned I like to make up words?) God still calls us to shine as best we can. Even if at times it's only a flicker. This post reminded me of that.

Till next time...let YOUR light shine!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Worthy of Mentioning

Happy 11th Anniversary to the Chief Indian and I!

Well, actually, it was yesterday, the 12th. Oh, yeah, and the 5th. We have two anniversaries. So we went out twice to celebrate. Which is good because our kids LOVE babysitters. Babysitters mean frozen pizza. And, the 3 little Indians love frozen pizza.

We have two anniversaries because we had two weddings. A week apart. The July 5th wedding was an Indian ceremony in Dallas...with a mere 500 guests in attendance. It was somethin' else. I was treated like a princess by my MIL and her friends as they wrapped me in yards and yards of luxurious silk saris and adorned me with 18K gold bangles...it was so much fun. I wasn't digital back then, so when I get a chance to scan pics I'll post them.

Then, a week later we came back here to San Antonio and were married in the church...celebrating with 250 of our closest friends and family. It was actually a bit more stressful because I was aware of all the "little" things that went wrong. And, they were little in the grand scheme of things. But, to a stressed out bride and her even more stressed out mother...it was, well, a little stressful.

So, happy anniversary, Animesh. Thanks for tolerating me and being such a wonderful husband and father.

To put it in a very eloquently...you rock.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Blog Post Flashback: I Wanna be a Rock Star

I used to be really hip and know all the latest rock bands, new artists, and top 40 songs. With one child I could get away with listening to "mommy's music" in the car. Two kids? Not so much, but I still stayed on top of the latest music trends. Three kids? You gotta be kiddin' me...for a long time it was The Wiggles and Sesame Street you'd hear coming from my car speakers. Now, it's The Cheetah Girls and the soundtracks from High School Musical and Camp Rock (with the Jonas Brothers). Well, at least these songs have a cool beat and decent lyrics.

For awhile all my friends were telling me how they work out so productively while listening to Christina Aguilera's "Fighter." I was too embarrassed to admit I'd never even heard the song.

So, a couple weeks ago I was toodling around town (in a kid-less car, mind you) with my cool XM radio on when I heard this song. The words are a little disturbing, but the video is hilarious (check out the little old lady) and, thank goodness, censored. And, it reminds me about my weekly guitar lessons. Yes, I still waste Richard's time every Wednesday evening (well, he's gettin' paid and I feed him beer--so I guess it's not a total waste). Actually, this past week I was kinda jammin'! Yes, for the first time I felt as if I was FINALLY (after 21 months) making some kind of progress.

I mean, who wouldn't get better after playing American Pie--perhaps the longest song in history?! My fingers were numb after Richard left...and I couldn't get that song out of my head the next day.

Don't you hate it when that happens? On the bright side...at least it wasn't a Wiggles song.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Nurses Call all the Shots

My nursing career served me very well. I lived on my own, payed my own bills, developed a fierce sense of independence, met my husband in the hospital, and formed a (somewhat sick) bond with co-workers that only medical professionals understand.

I started out working day shift and then moved onto (in my opinion) the BEST time to work in the hospital...the night shift. I'm not even a night person, but it was such a refreshing change to not have our work routines interrupted by those demanding doctors (sorry, Animesh).

I was young...early to mid 20's, and we did some immature things during those rare lulls at work. Riding I.V. poles down the hallway, having dance contests in the break room, going out for margaritas after work at 7:30am (hey, Chachos was serving so we were gonna drink 'em! It WAS our happy hour, after all...).

Then, everyone I knew (my mom included) started buying me every kind of nurse t-shirt, earrings, home decor you can imagine. At the time it was...well...cute. But I had to draw the line about 3 years ago. Not so cute anymore.

When I stopped working 7 years ago just before Priya was born, I didn't really miss it--the mandatory overtime, the stress, the virtually non-existent lunch breaks--but this post from my blogging soul mate made me recall some of those fond nursing memories. Certainly not meant to offend anyone...but some of them are really funny.

By the way, Animesh is soooooo #19. He's not allowed to watch ER or Grey's Anatomy with me anymore. According to him, Hollywood has it all wrong when it comes to broken bones.

He's probably right.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Par for the Course

I've been flashbacking to old posts from way back when...in anticipation of my one year blogaversary. I stumbled upon this one--and enjoyed a hearty chuckle when I read it. Yes, I did end up exchanging the sign for one that is spelled correctly...but I wish I hadn't now. That sign is so par for the course that my life is on right now.

Remember, friends. You just gotta "bellive."

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Benefit of the Doubt

We partied hardy at our neighbor and friends' house yesterday...celebrating Independence Day with a big splash. Thanks, guys, for a great time.

The kids BEGGED us to put them to bed after a day of swimming, trampolining, and sand-boxing. Hopped in bed and tuned into the final swimming trials...just in time to see the awesome 41-year-old Dara Torres qualify for her FIFTH OLYMPIC TEAM! Totally awesome.

This morning as I ran 4 miles with my Marathon Mom group, I was feeling extra-inspired by Dara and what she has accomplished...earlier in her career and now in her 40s after having a beautiful baby girl.

When I got home after the run, my excitement was tainted by this story. Apparently, Dara's success is just too good to be true for some to believe. Accusations of drug use are flying. And, critics just can't fathom Dara's increased swim times--based on her age and other ridiculous reasons.

As an almost-40-year-old, I am offended. As a woman, I am offended. Why can't we just give this athlete the benefit of the doubt until there is actual proof she is using drugs? At 38, I can honestly tell you that I am in the best shape of my life. How is it not a possibility that Dara's physical abilities have not gotten better with age...just like a really good bottle of wine?

As a novice swimmer I want to be like her. As a chick with flabby triceps I want ARMS like her (check out the slide show...man, she's got some biceps and shoulders on her). I think Dara is a true inspiration and role model for females of ALL ages.

So, you go girl. Don't let anyone bring you down. In fact, make this criticism fuel your fire.

And, if she IS found to be guilty of any drug usage, I'll be the first to admit that I'm wrong.

Till then, I'm gonna give Dara Torres--41 and swimmer extraordinaire--the benefit of the doubt. Which is something I believe everyone deserves.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Let Freedom Ring

4th July Graphics

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Isn't it a bummer when...

...you head out for a run and your Ipod battery dies after the first song because you forgot to charge it?

Or, does that sort of thing not happen to you because you are organized and remember to do such things the night before?

OK. Maybe it's just me.

But, that is EXACTLY what happened this morning. I crawled out of bed, fighting every urge I had to snuggle deeper under the warm covers when that blasted alarm went off at 6:15am. I knew I had only a few minutes to decide whether to snooze or run. If I ran, I had to be back by 7am so Daddy could head out to work. Sleep or run? Sleep or run? SLEEP OR RUN?

My motivation to run had everything to do with the new songs I'd added to my workout playlist on the Ipod. I was ready to run and rock out. It was a gorgeously (is that a word? I make words up sometimes...) cool morning. It was gonna be a great workout. Feeling strong I began the climb up the street. My feet hit the pavement to the beat of the song, and then---nothing. Silence. Ugh.

But, I kept going. I think I ran faster because I wanted to get the 2 miles over with. And, oddly enough, the quiet morning run with nothing but me and a few deer on the road was actually a peaceful way to begin my day. With a house that is filled with incessant noise all day long, the quietness (another made-up word?) soothed me and prepared me for whatever may come today. It was nice.

All this to say that I'm now running to train for the San Antonio Rock-n-Roll half marathon in November. It's official. I'm registered. And, I'm freaked out. More freaked out than I was about the triathlon. Because this is nothing. but. running. At least with the triathlon there was some variety. Something to look forward to after each event. But, running? 13 miles? Yawn.

Hopefully, there will be some added excitement thanks to 70 rock bands that will be flanking the course...injecting some coolness and fun into the event...motivating me to run just one more mile towards the finish line.

We shall see. The training group I'm running with tells me I'll experience a "runner's high" after mile 5. I wouldn't know. I've never run more than 3. So, I'll believe it when I feel it.

Till then, there's more tri training to be done...I'm doing another local triathlon in August.

Which will most certainly be easier than the TOTAL CONDITIONING class I did yesterday at the gym that nearly killed me. You know it's bad when you have to ask your 6 year old daughter to get the milk out of the fridge because your arms are too sore to lift it.

No pain, no gain, right?

On a different, more painless note, I have a BLOGAVERSARY coming up! In a couple weeks I will have been blogging for one whole year! I've been going through my first few posts...and I thought I'd share some of my faves every day or so, ya know, since nobody read what I wrote back then. I've made some bloggy friends along the way, thank goodness. Enjoy!