Thursday, April 26, 2007

One Year Ago Today...

I started this post last week and am finally getting around to finishing it.(It is now Monday)

One year ago, Jenny convinced me to start a blog. I was a little hesitant at first, worried that my thoughts, words, photos, and everyday life stories would be a bit boring for anyone else living outside of my home. I then convinced myself this was a great way to journal things that happen in our family on a day to day basis. I have always been terrible at writing in my journal so I thought this would be a fun and easy way to document our happenings. I decided to just jump in with both feet, hoping I wouldn't regret it.

With that said, I can honestly say I am so glad I did this. I feel like I have gained so much from blogging. I have found out things about myself that I never knew existed. I have gained new friends, gotten compliments, great advice, reconnected with a couple of old friends, shared my addictions for one particular food item, cried, laughed, frowned and smiled more times than I can count. I have received and sent good mail, started participating in self portrait challenges, and come to love getting comments on my blog.
So, after 260 posts, a couple of template color changes, and much help from Jenny, I am looking forward to this next year of blogging and documenting my life, and gaining more from you. Happy 1 year to me.
Thanks Jenny for convincing me to do this.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

SPT Earth Day

this week's challenge is reduce, reuse, recycle. where are you on the green spectrum? are you an active recycler? do you reuse ziploc bags? do you carpool? use a travel mug? how do you feel about "gently used" items? do you utilize libraries? thrift stores? (kristi??) are your children setting a better example than you?

I'm not really sure about this SPT challenge. I kept debating "to" or "not to". I have never really been one to really watch the things I do and the things I use and how they effect the earth or how they don't effect it. I'm glad I went ahead with doing this. It really made me stop and think about the things I do and don't do that have a direct impact on our earth.

The only things I could come up with that "save" me, or the environment from was that I ALWAYS wear my jeans twice before washing them. That is unless I have an accident, or need I say spill something on them, I rarely have accidents anymore unless jumping on the trampoline. I also do this with my workout clothes. I wear the same outfit for either two walks, or a walk and a run. Never do I wear them again after a run. They are absolutely disgusting by that point and in need of some serious soaking and washing. This surely saves water and detergent and that helps the environment, right?

My other thing I thought of, is really quite embarassing, if I do say so myself. I almost feel like I am in a support group where I have to confess some of my weird quirks. This will probably come across very strange to some, but may be somewhat normal to others.

Not everytime, but sometimes, when Jenny and I go to Chuy's for lunch, I bring along one of my to-go containers they have given me in the past full of creamy jalapeno. I have devoured its' contents, washed it, and brought it along to refill with the creamy jalapeno we don't eat to bring home. Surely, this is not dishonest, right? They can't reuse what has been on our table that we have been eating. If I don't pour it into my container and "save" it, it will find a new home down a garbage disposal or in a trash can. The only other confession I have to make about this, is after I do this, we sometimes ask for another one and I do the same thing all over again. Then if we get "Alberto" (our new favorite waiter) he brings us to-go containers full of creamy jalapeno. He also makes sure he hooks us up with a big bag of chips, and two, to-go diet cokes.

As I sit here typing this, I almost feel like some sort of addict or something. Hoepfully none of you will see me as psycho, just someone that loves a certain mexican restraunt so much that I will do just about anything to have leftovers from it.
Other things I've found I reuse are my tupperware containers(store bought ones and ones we brings home takeout in). I also save plastic bags from my shopping trips. You can never have enough of these. They come in handy when I run out of my bathroom trash bags, or just to reuse to take something somewhere.
Having three girls I started out savin gall of their clothes. I think I have had, at one time, 12 runbbermaid containers full of clothes. As the girls have gotten older, as well as the clothes, tastes change, and stains somehow reappear, so I've been going through them and keepin only a few of them. The others have made their way dwon the street to Taylor, and some have returned from her too. Then they make the all important trip to the local goodwill store. I've never been one to find great deals at our Goodwill but some people really score at these thrift stores. So I guess my donations are a plus for them.
I love to do yard work and to be outside. I use to consider myself a person witha green thumb, but not so much anymore. I love when Spring returns and I can get flowers and plant them all aroun our house. I had plans to do just that this weekend but never made it to the nursery to get them. Maybe tomorrow, after the rain passes us by, I will get out and put a little beauty back into my yard.

Thanks Lelly for another challenge. I just hope the little things I do are some what helpful in making our environment a lttle better.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Weekend Happenings

A quick glance at our weekend happenings.

Greg has the day off on Friday, so after the bike rodeo, and getting my hair done we headed out to the mall and dinner as a family. The girls had gotten gift cards from Claire's for Easter, from their Nana & Papa, and had been dying to use them. I took them shopping while Greg occupied Maryn, and did a little shopping on his own. Mackenzi & Maci had a hard time deciding what to get, even so much that Mackenzi bought something and then exchanged it for a watch within just a few minutes. Maci got a pair of Hollywood sunglasses and a pink hair thingy. They were surely in their element, and are already asking to go back to spend the leftover money.

Reagan and Mackenzi

Mackenzi had a swim meet, early Saturday morning. We left our house before 7 a.m. and headed downtown to the Nadatorium that the meet was at. She was entered in 3 events. The 50 yard freestyle, the 50 yard backstroke, and the 50 butterfly. She got 1st in all of her heats, but when the results came out in age groups, she got 1st in the freestyle, and 2nd in both backstroke and butterfly. We are so proud of her and her desire to do her best. Great job Kenz!

Mackenzi & Mom

Greg was on trauma call on Saturday, but was lucky enough to get away to watch part of Mackenzi's swim meet. He then went back in to work but was again not too busy that hw could escape so we could attend the Alamo Orthopedic Society dinner. They have this every two years and is becoming more and more of a reunion for the people who trained here in San Antonio. We took the girls with us and they had a room set up at the Resort for allof the kids. They fed them and played games. The girls had a blast but all fell asleep on the way home.

The girls at our table: Joanna, Tracy, Katrin, Melanie, & Me

It was fun to see past residents and their wives and to get advice on practices and what not. It is to great to get together with the residents that are still here now and their wives. It is always nice to see and talk with some of the staff we hear so much about. Being the spouse, you always here stories about them but rarely see them in person, so it is always fun to put a face with the story. We had a great time chatting, catching up, and listening to the stories that we have heard over and over again. I hadn't laughed so hard in a long while. It is so funny to hear so many people tell the same stories that have been circulating year after year. I am already excited for the next meeting and reunion that will be in 2009. Hopefully more people will come each time. (Hint, Hint- Bridget & Jim!!)

Most of the residents & past residents and Dr. Corley.

Amanda sent me this very cute fairy poem. Thanks Amanda for thinking of me. Anna, also thought of me when she was sending out good mail. She sent me the cutest hnadmade card, and A note pad, the letters A and G for me to use any way I choose, sunflower seeds, a mini scrapbook, ribbon, and the new pomegrante fragrance from Bath and Bodyworks. Thanks bunches Anna.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Rodeo, Ribbons, & Roots


Today the girls had their bike rodeo at school. If any of you are unfamiliar with this, it isn't what it sounds like it would be. The first time I heard about this I thought it was contest to decorate your bike and then have some sort of parade. It turns out a bike rodeo is about safety. The kids bring their bikes to school and a police officer inspects it to see if it passes street regulations. Then they have several safety courses to ride on. First, they have to perform a balance test while riding. Then they have to ride between two, 8 inch parallel lines without crossing over them. They then have to ride in a cirlce without crossing over the lines. Last, they have to weave in and out of a cone obastacle course without touching any of the cones. It sounds like it would be easy, but in reality it is pretty difficult.

All of the kids did a great job. Greg and I were both proud of Mackenzi and Maci and how they performed.
As I was sitting here uploading pictures from this morning, the girls came bounding in the house. Both of them sporting 1st place ribbons(medals). Maci got 1st in Kinder girls, and Mackenzi was the 1st place girl for 4th graders. It was so fun to see them and how proud they were of their accomplishments. They now are entered into the city wide bike rodeo that will be held in May. Way to go girls!!

After my $100 virtual shopping spree post, I was so excited to get rid of my terrible roots. I last got my hair done the first week of December, and even then, I only go the crown of my head highlighted. I was in desperate need of a root cover-up and now can smile a lot easier knowing my hair looks like I take care of it. I for sure feel like a new woman, and only wish our babysitter wasn't busy tonight, so Greg and I could go out. It always feels so great for someone to take the time and blow dry every wave out of my hair so perfectly. It makes me want to go somewhere special.

Today I'm grateful for Sara(the girl who does my hair), who is 7 months pregnant. I know it must be a challenge to stand on her feet for 3 hours straight doing my hair. I'm also grateful for Greg, for working so hard and doing extra shifts so that I can have these extras in my life. Thanks honey, for your sacrifice, patience, and support. You are wonderful.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Angie in 3's

My 3 beautiful girls and I

I was inspired by several of you to do my life in three's. Some of these you may or may not know about me. See if I surprise you with any of the 3's in my life.

3 things I LOVE
~Greg coming home after being gone (work, trip, etc.)
~hearing my girls' laughter
~The Temple

3 things I MISS
~my family
~having a baby around our house
~feeling like I'm young (I'm approaching middle age and I don't like it)

3 things I LIKE
~to exercise (notice this didn't make my LOVE list)
~the combination of newly shaved legs and clean sheets

3 things I HATE
~being sad
~getting upset or frustrated at little things
~feeling rushed

3 people who make me LAUGH
~my brother Art
~my sister in-law Tori

3 things that SCARE me
~losing someone I love
~noises at night when I'm home alone
~getting into a terrible car accident

3 things on my desk
~cluttered papers

3 things I want to do in my life
~make a positive influence in someone's life
~overcome my shyness
~go on a church mission with Greg

3 things I CAN do
~ have girls!! ha ha
~ slalom water ski
~ cook

3 things I CAN'T do
~ have boys!! ha ha
~ keep an immaculate house ALWAYS
~ watch a sad movie without crying

3 things I would like to Learn
~ professional photography
~ interior decorating
~ to clean and organize better

3 things I Regret
~ not earning a college degree
~ not continuing to play the piano(I forgot how)
~ not keeping in contact with old friends

3 of my Favorite Foods
~ Chuy's chicken burrito
~ homemade chili
~ M&M's

3 T.V. shows I liked as a kid
~ Growing Pains
~ Captain Kangaroo
~ Dukes of Hazzard

Was there anything that surprised you? Will you let us know the 3's in your life?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

SPT-Shopping Spree

I thought this would be the easiest challenge yet for me. I am a shopper, and an addicted one at that. I love any chance I get to HAVE to go to Target for some necessities, so I can browse the store like I have an endless amount of money. I love looking online for things to buy. I put things in shopping carts online but rarely ever find myself clicking the purchase button. I love to buy for others so, thinking of what I would use the $100 to buy for myself was not necessarily a challenge, but thinking of things that were within my limit, was the challenge.

I have many wants these days and most far exceed my "allowance" given for this challenge. I thought of several things I could use towards my purchases but none that I could fully pay for. Some of you may think my list is somewhat a list far too big , but since I probably will not be getting any of these in the near future I thought it was fun to jsut think of things I would like to have someday.

*a new camera
*a new cell phone
*a cleaning lady
*a carpet steam cleaner
*a pair of jeans that fit great
*laser hair removal
*an overnight babysitter or a night away in a hotel
*new furniture for our house when we move

I went to the mall with intentions of finding myself something really cute to add to my wardrobe (everyday I go into my stuffed full closet, and hear myself uttering the words, "I don't have anything to cute to wear.) Instead I ended up spending my "100 dollars" on my girls at The Children's Place Spring Sale. Everything that was on sale in the store was only $4.99, everything! From dresses and skirts to shorts, capris, & shirts. I walked out with ANOTHER bag full of bargains. I then went to Dillard's to look for myself a dress or skirt outfit for church. My Sunday attire is very limited. I tend to wear the same outfits over and over and over again. I did find a skirt, but not sure if I love it or not. I then went to the girls' department to look for Mackenzi some new things for church. She has had a growth spurt, and all of the things I thought she could still wear from last summer are all to small. I ended up buying three things for her to try on. Hopefully at least one of them will work out so she will have more than two skirts to wear to church.
Since this was a challenge about using the money for myself I came up with the perfect thing to buy.


I am in a desperate state of being with my hair looking like this. I can't remember the last time I have gone over 4 months without getting my hair cut and highlighted. I hate to spend so much money on one thing that I always know will need to be "replaced" in 8 to 12 weeks. Right now I feel my hair always look dirty, and never cute. It feels like hay. So, with this being said I called the girl that does my hair and I will be giving her my $100 later this week. This will definitely be the best 100 dollars spent in a while. A haircut, highlight, with and a smile added back to my face is worth every penny of it. The feeling I feel after just being "redone" is priceless. I hope that doesn't sound selfish, but feeling good about the way I look to me is PRICELESS!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Big S Little s

Sonic Sodas, Sunshine & Super breezy. Sweet or Sick. Spring, Seven 1/2 & Sleeping. Shadows & Several Sweet items of Good Mail. Single & Starving. Survivor & a Super Sweet and Spiritual Mackenzi. These are things that begin with S.

Sonic Sodas Yes this is a Sad case. Jenny and I got our huge Route 44 Diet Cokes on the way to park play day. We decided to leave them in the car so the other girls wouldn't see how addicted we are. Of course, when we got back in the car all of the ice was melted, and our Sanity Savers were flat and yucky. We stopped back at Sonic, on the way home and asked for refills so we each had 88 oz. of Soda to bring home. The Sad thing is I didn't even drink a 1/3 of one of them. They just weren't that great today.

Sunshine There was an abundance of Sunshine today. I took advantage of the beautiful weather and Sat out to catch a few rays after my afternoon walk.

Super breezy It has been super breezy today, which made my walk a bit difficult and made my face and hair feel like I rode cross country on a Harley.

Spring is out in full force this week. After our thirty degree Easter weekend is a very welcomed Sight.

Seven & 1/2 miles(3 mile mornign walk 4 1/2 mile afternoon walk/run)of exercise today. Please don't call me crazy! I feel the need to work off all of the Sweets and Snacks I eat on a daily basis.

Sleeping I couldn't pass up being outdoors this afternoon so I decided to drag Maryn on a Second walk/run. She lasted about twenty minutes and then gave up and was Sawing logs by the time I made it back home.

Shadows were everywhere we turned today which always makes me smile.
Several items of Good Mail have been Sent my way lately. I just now have gotten around to documenting it all. Anne sent me a cute notepad. Janae sent me Sweet note and a cute sticky note pad, Allison sent me awesome Stuff from her recent trip to Sunny Hawaii. Bridget Spoiled me yet again with a notebook, ribbon, & lotion. Kristi sent me one of her fat free chocolate bunny cards. I got a thank you card from my friend Tara and a cute Easter card from Natasha. Thanks for thinking of me and making me Smile.

Sweet or Sick Some of you may view this as a Sweet picture but others may see it as Sick. But whatever category this picture falls into for you, it makes the Sad category around here. We found out last week that Maryn is allergic to dogs and our Cocker Spaniel Nikki may be contributing to Maryn's eczema. We sent her to live with Greg's parents for a while to see if we can get her skin problems under control. Everyday Maryn wants to know if we are going to pick up Nikki and I have to break her little heart and say no, not today. Hopefully Maryn will get better and she soon will out grow her allergies and Nikki can come back home.
Single, Sad, Starving & Survivor I'm a Single Mom today Shuttling kids to and fro while Greg is on call. This always makes my day a little longer and me a little Sad. Luckily the girls are all now Sleeping. I'm Starving so I'm about to indulge myself in a late night Snack, while I watch Survivor.

Sweet & Spiritual Mackenzi My heart is bursting right now. I went into to tuck Mackenzi in and I found her kneeling down saying her prayers. This isn't the first time I have "caught" her doing this but this time it brought tears to my eyes. Lately, I have wondered if my girls "get" anything we try and teach them. I sometimes feel the things I say over and over again often go unheard. I got a little extra proof tonight that my girls are choosing the right and have heard the things I reinforce each day. I feel truly blessed to have such a wonderful family.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Happy, Happy Birthday Baileigh-Boo!!
Today is our niece, Baileigh's 5th birthday. We wanted to wish her a fun day full of fun, smiles, laughs, and wonderful memories of her special day.
Here are 5 things we love about Baileigh...
1. She has the cutest, deepest dimples.
2. Her southern twang will melt you heart.
3. She is a great friend and loves to share her stuff.
4. She loves to wear "frip-frops".
5. She is beautiful.
We love you Baileigh and hope you had a fun-filled day!

SPT Easter Frills

This week's challenge: in your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it. what are your fondest memories of Easter as a child? are you chocolate, or jelly beans? did you ever actually have an Easter bonnet?!?
Art & I 1976 Easter. You got to love my Little House on the Prairie dress.

As I thought about what I would do with my Easter post I immediately thought back to my childhood and of dying eggs, egg hunts, getting a new dress(most of which were these long pioneer type dresses). Easter dinner at my grandparents house always included ham, chicken n' dumplings, mashed potatoes,a veggie and rolls. Church on Easter Sunday always was a special one. Sacrament meeting always included our ward choir and primary singing songs about Easter. The talks were about Christ, his sacrifice, and the resurrection. I always left with my simple testimony a little stronger after reflecting on the Christ's Atonement.

The Easter Bunny always came to our house leaving, goodies in our baskets, and have hidden our dyed eggs, out in our yard. Us kids, always made a mad dash out the back door to see who could find the most, and would tease and torment the one that got the least. It is so nice to really know and celebrate the true meaning of Easter.

I had a dress with a matching bonnet for Easter one year, but I think my mom has it still hanging in her house. I found this picture with me in spring outfit with a matching hat and decided I would use it for my post.

Easter 2007

Having three girls I always try and match some of their outfits, especially Easter. I can't decide if I'm taking away from what Easter really means to us, but I think they look cute when they match and love a coordinated picture. Not having our girls really close in age, it is a bit difficult matching them exactly, and as they have gotten older, I have just tried and coordinate colors.

We usually dye eggs on Saturday, and leave out carrots for the Easter Bunny. We attend church and are reminded once again of The Atonement. I am easily touched by the Spirit during Sacrament Meeting especially when their are people sharing their musical talents.

Matching girls

This year we were in San Antonio alone, so we had Easter dinner with just the five of us. We thought about doing a ham, or a brisket, but I mentioned picking up Rudy's. So on Saturday night we picked up brisket and smoked turkey and I got stuff to make cream corn and baked beans. We had a fun dinner with the girls talking about Easter and what they learned in primary. After dinner, we hid the eggs outside for the girls. It seems they could hunt, hunt, and re hunt them all day. My girls love the candy they get for Easter, and admit I love the chocolate and the Easter Bunny can keep the jelly beans for himself.

I love Easter and am so grateful for my Savior and his atoning sacrifice. I am overwhelmed at the love He has for each of us and what He was willing to go through so that we could make mistakes, repent, and be forgiven. I am so grateful that through His resurrection, we can be with our families forever. I am grateful for my parents and grandparents for teaching me the true meaning of Easter and for their examples. I love how my girls are able to learn the same things I learned as a young girl. I love their inquisitive minds, how they want to learn more than I feel I can teach them. I am grateful for a husband that believes the same as I do. I appreciated his sacrifices for our family and how he provides for us.

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter, celebrating Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


This is a word that best describes me as of late. Not for just one reason or another, just because, I guess. Life is too short to be selfish, but I warn you beforehand this may be a selfish post, something I would not consider myself to be, normally.

I feel my life has been blessed far more than I feel I deserve. I'm healthy. I was raised by wonderful parents and had great siblings. I married the man of my dreams and have been blessed with three healthy girls. I've seen many places and experienced things, some of which have been great and others I would have rather never happened. So if I feel so blessed with the things I have why, oh why am I about to go here. I've tried to talk myself out of psoting this, but it keeps coming back to me, so I'm just going to get it off my chest and hopefully, if nothing else I will feel better, just because.

How much is enough? I ask myself this question several times throughout my days. I feel I am trying my best at doing things I should be doing. I try each day to be a better daughter, sister, wife, mom, and friend, but admit I fall short more times than I would like. I keep telling myself I'm trying and that's the best I can do. A few days ago, I caught myself asking the question, "Why am I being punished?" I gasped, as I stopped in mid-thought. Am I really thinking this way? A few things came to mind about why I was thinking this. For a few reasons I have thought someone is out to get me. I think life is unfair to me and overly fair to others. Why do I compare? There have been a few things happen in our life that have seemed to be the straw that broke the camels back so to speak. They are things we have survived through thus far, but still ask why do these things happen to us. Bad things happen to good people and worse things happen to people much better than us. I thought about the few trials I've been handed, knowing there are people that are going through worse things than I. I felt ashamed for thinking someone is punishing me. I just need to remember to look at the big picture of life and see I have been given so much. I need to gain a little faith and realize the trials that are given to us will make us stronger, better people in the end.

How much is enough? I asked myself this question again today as I was leaving HEB. I had been out doing a little last minute shopping before Easter and remembered I needed a few things for Kristi's chicken salad recipe. I was near the big marketplace HEB that I normally don't go to, because it is in a different area of town I don't travel frequently. It was nap time for Maryn, so keeping her sane was a difficult task. I ran through the store, not being familiar with where things are located and couldn't find a few things I needed and didn't want to pay the price they were asking on others. I was quickly getting disturbed. In the mean time Greg called me on my cell phone discussing his night on call and his frustrating clinic. I was trying to be supportive while trying to make him feel better, when Maryn decides to purposely kick her flip flops off. I knew she kicked them off but I wasn't quick to grab them before she was screaming and several people were telling me "Mam your daughter's shoe", all while probably looking engrossed in my phone conversation. I quickly hung up the phone to avoid anymore evil looks. As I rounded another isle, off came the flip flops again. URGH!! I said, probably louder than I should have, this caused more looks. As I was deciding what cereal to choose, a lady says to me, "Your daughter has a big cut on her foot." "Yes, I know" was my response. I stopped myself before I explained to this strager how she has really bad exema. Her shoes irritate her feet, hence the flip flops that I keep losing throughout the store. She's being tested for allergies, since she has had this since she was born... Why did I need to tell this lady how or why her foot looked this way. I almost thought I needed to let her know the bruises on her arms were from the blood tests she had for the allergy testing not from some sort of abuse. My being disturbed was getting worse and worse, so I quicly ended my shopping. At this store I had parked on the side you enter, and forgot I would be pushing a cart full of groceries and Maryn over several speed bumps when I came out, on the other side of the store. As I manuevered the cart over a speed bump my two twelve packs fo Diet Dr. Pepper crashed to the ground. URGH!! Flew out of my mouth once again as I was holding up traffic. Finally I made it to my car loaded my groceries, put the cart away and was getting Maryn into her seat, when out of the corner of my eye I saw someone approaching me. I looked up to see a familiar face. No, not a friend, not even an aquaintance, but someone I have seen on several occasions. This lady and two school-aged kids(it is 1:30 p.m!) walked up to me and she asked if I could spare some money for her to buy groceries. I wanted to help her, kind of, but didn't have any cash on me. Nothing more than a little bit of change, and I figured that wouldn't help that much. I also thought, briefly, how dare she ask me for money, AGAIN! I have given to this lady several times at two different Wal-Marts and another HEB. I wanted to tell her that and ask her if she was for real. I know there are people out there that are suffering and needing, much more than I, but after the crap I just went through in the store, I had nada sympathy bone in my body. Selfish again, I know. I got in the car and reminded myself I have never been selfish before and tried to figure out why I was feeling this way, so often lately. As I was driving away I felt guilty and dug in the bottom of my purse to find one dollar folded up and decided I could give that to the lady. I circled the parking lot, but couldn't find her. I got a little sad thinking of my selfishness and wished I would have been Christlike and helped her out when she asked. I drove home thinking about being grateful for what I have been given and trying to not dwell on the challenges I face. I promised myself I would serve others without being asked, but especially when I am given the opportunity.

I answered my own question as I pondered it while driving. How much is enough? There's never enough giving, serving, loving, and doing. It's just what I am supposed to do. I shouldn't measure my contributions to my life and to others. I should just smile and be grateful for the opportunities I am given.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

SPT~ Plays Well With Others

My friends have made the story of my life.
Helen Keller

I would love to see how we play with our friends, our neighbors, our siblings. are you having a game night? a date night? a girls morning out for coffee and target? will you go to a party? or a picnic? are you on vacation? do you find yourself intimidated by these gatherings, or do you jump right in and organize them yourself?do you play well with others?

Like I have said many times before, I am extremely shy, especially when it comes to talking to others and sharing my feelings. I am this way with everyone~ strangers, friends, & family. I have a hard time opening up and letting my true self shine, for fear of being judged, not only by others, but mostly by myself. Am I as thin or pretty as the next girl. Have I been as successful, traveled the world, raised valiant children?

I have always been the follower of the crowd, but always knew when to stop following when things were going on that I didn't like to participate in. I think this hurt me as young teen. Instead of standing up for myself and speaking what I felt, I tended to just stop being friends with those people, fearing I would be judged by what I would or wouldn't do. I wish I would have been told this quote back then...

Be who you are and say what you feel, because, those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind. Dr. Suess

I grew up in a small town, and graduated with most of the same people I started kindergarten with. I had friends, usually just a few that I did stuff with regularly. I had many(what I thought were friends, but now realize they were more just acquaintances, all through school. Just a few weeks ago I was packing up some things from my childhood(I shouldn't have taken them to storage) and came across some of my yearbooks. I flipped through all of the "autographs" and was brought back to my years in junior high and high school, realizing I had people I chatted with and hung out with at school, but few true friends. I don't remember how many, but there were quite a few of the girls that signed B/F/F, before their name. I smiled at some of these as I recalled fun times we had, but smirked at others when I flashed back to some of the times when they were mean to me, and I was to them.

As I got older, I shifted from having girl friends to having guy friends. Not because I was this hot babe(I was so far from that) all the guys liked, but because I felt less intimadated by guys and knew there would be no competing with them. I always felt with girls that you had to be a certain way, wear a certain type of clothes, wear makeup and have your hair done ALWAYS, or you didn't fit in. Having my guy friends illuminated this, to a degree. I sometimes was looked down upon by the girls because I hung with the guys. I didn't necessarily want to marry any of these guys, but I just felt more comfortable being with them, and the girls saw it a different way. I played sports, as did they, so I felt I had more in common with them, than my friends that were cheerleaders. I never considered myself a tomboy, just an average girl that didn't want all of the competing that went along with hanging with the popular girls. I did continue to have a few girl friends that I would do things with on the weekends. I send Christmas cards to them, and have even ran into some of them years later and started giggling and chatting like no time had passed. Thinking about all of my friends I had growing up there are only a few, if they were asked, that would probably say we were great friends, back in the day. This somewhat makes me a little sad, wandering if people would consider me a friend, many years later.

I had report cards that were almost a repeat every six weeks. The grades wouldn't change much and the teacher's comments were always the same. "Angie is very quiet in class. She pays attention and she gets along with others." I was definitely not the type to cause contention with friends. My siblings, well that is a totally different story.

Playing has not always been a challenge for me, but it seems it is now. I remember having a great imagination as a kid, and would rather take a hatchet or saw out into the woods, to build a fort than sit inside and play dolls or a board game. Now that I have gotten older, my ideas of playing have changed. I think I have a hard time with letting go of being an adult and getting down on my girls' level, and playing as if I were still young. I have a fear of my daughters growing up and only remembering the shopping, running errands, cleaning, and not remembering me playing with them. I tend to worry about the cleaning, laundry, a tv show I am watching, and catch myself telling them, on numerous occasions, "not right now", or "in a minute." We plan fun things to do, but that's just it they are always planned, hardly ever are they just a spur of the moment card game.

Having friends is very important to me and keeps me smiling. I have been blessed with great friends throughout my life, along the roads I have traveled. Making these friends did not come easy for me. I realize it is my true nature to stay distant, follow what others are doing, not opening up, and hoping they will like me, just because. These friends have helped me through happy and sad times, rough ones and easy ones. They have kept me sane and laughing when laughing was farthest from my mind. Hopefully these friends will always be able to think of me as their friend and not think of me as "she was my friend."

This weekend I made it a point to let loose of the grownup in me and be a kid again. Jenny and I jumped on the trampoline, palyed on the swings and slide and were laughing so much we almost peed our pants. Even though we were doing this mainly because we needed pictures to post for today, it was fun to play like we were small, and for our kids to see us playing. Jenny has been a lifesaver living down the street. She has seen me at my worst and at my best. She knows when I need a pick me up, a kick in the butt, or just an ear to complain to. I believe we are put in places for reasons, and know we both ended up in San Antonio for a reason , not just by coincindence. It always brings smile to my face when people will say they thought we knew each other long before we ended up living down the street from one another. It is funny how we get the sisters comment, and the occasional twins comment. We don't look alike(to us) but others seem to think we do. I guess it is true you start to look and act like the friends you have. I feel the friends I have had over the years have surely made me a better person. I am so glad I have had friends that have lifted me higher like Oprah says in this quote...

"Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher." - -- Oprah Winfrey

Out of all of my friends, Greg is my favorite. He knows me inside and out. The good, the bad, and the ugly and he still loves me. We have fun together. We were friends long before we ever started dating, and have become better friends every year we have been together. We have a great time together, laughing, smiling, and playing, just as we did this weekend, on our date.

I hope to take time to be a better playmate to my girls, my husband, and my friends. I want my "life report card" to state boldly- She plays well with others!