Friday, April 30, 2010

Habitat for Humanity

Last week, we volunteered a day for Habitat for Humanity. We worked on a site here in town which is an entire neighborhood of Habitat homes. If you have never volunteered for Habitat for Humanity, you should. You're helping someone, you're helping a community, and you will have so much fun!

We have volunteered by ourselves and through organizations. This year, Ben's company sponsored a work day (employees could volunteer one day, still get paid, and not have to take vacation). Check with your employer. You might have the same program. If not, ask your employer to start one. Also, you can volunteer on Saturday. Having a home that is safe and that you can be proud of is one of the most important things in life. It makes me so happy to help, even just a little, make that dream come true for someone.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pay It Forward

Today is Pay It Forward Day. Do something today for someone else with no intention of getting something in return. Do it anonymously if you can. What can you do? Whatever you can. You could compliment someone, mow your neighbor's grass, pick up the tab for the table next to you at lunch or dinner and leave before they know you did it, pay someone's hospital bill. Obviously, not everyone can afford to pay someone's bills, but amount is not what it is about. It is about doing something nice for another person with only the hope that the person will pay it forward. What will you do?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Great Movie

Last night while we were waiting out the storms (a live feed of the weather on my laptop, sitting in my lap the entire time), we watched Phoebe in Wonderland. It's not new. It has been out a couple of years, but we just watched it off our instant play on Netflix. It was great! Not great in a feel-good way (although it does have some of that), but great in an everyone-should-have-to-see-it way. You know those classes that universities make you take before you can graduate. This movie should be played in one. Even better would be showing it to students entering middle school. It's about a girl who is different. She happens to be different because of a condition she has, but the message would work even for someone who is just quirky. I have always believed that there is no "normal" where people are concerned. Normal is relative to each individual person. Normal is the way your close group (family, friends, etc.) functions. Additionally, everyone has something "crazy" about them. Whether it is a quirk, a bad habit, a mental condition, or issues caused by suffering (such as physical or emotional abuse), EVERYONE is different (or "crazy" or "weird" or whatever words you use). Never discount anyone. Some of the craziest people have also been the most brilliant. I remember once when I was in elementary school and stayed overnight with a friend. The next morning her mother made breakfast which included scrambled eggs. Everyone at the table put ketchup on their eggs and then passed the ketchup to me. I politely said "no thank you," but what I was thinking was, It is so weird that they put ketchup on their eggs. It was normal to them. She would have thought my family was weird if we had scrambled eggs and had no ketchup on the table. There are so many important lessons in this movie. One is accepting people who are different or have difficulty. Another is that you should never assume that you know what is going on with another person. People are very good at hiding things that are embarrassing or different. If someone seems weird, that person might just be quirky, but it could also be the result of something that he/she is going through. Don't add to that burden. Help if you can. Also, it was incredibly moving to watch the mother deny what was going on for so long. It made me cry that the little sister had the clapping, hopping, and twirling memorized and the mother didn't even know how bad it was. It know a mother like this. Nothing is ever wrong in her family. Nothing runs in the family (unless it is something good), not cancer, not hair loss, not depression, nothing. Nothing bad ever happens to anyone, nor does anyone do anything wrong. If something bad does happen, she tries never to tell anyone else in the family. What is worse? Knowing about something bad or sticking your foot in your mouth when you see that person the next time, or, even worse, not knowing your own medical history? This behavior makes me so sad. This mother never has accepted anything (unlike the mother in the movie) and her family has suffered for it. The family gatherings are like several acquaintances, who don't really like each other, being forced to spend a few hours together. Everyone is polite and pretends to have a good time, but no one is close, no one really talks to each other. None of them know each other.
I also have to say that Elle Fanning's performance in this movie is amazing! She is so young, yet she delivers a haunting portrayal of a troubled soul. Needless to say, this is a thought provoking movie that everyone should see and learn from!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

War Eagle!

Late Friday, we were offered tickets to the A Day game by one of Ben's coworkers. We hadn't planned to go, but changed our minds. We had so much fun! We've been too busy to have season tickets the past few years, but A Day reminded us of how much we do want to have season tickets soon.

We were extra excited to go this year because we could watch my cousin play. He is on the offensive line, number 63.

We also got to preview the new Auburn Arena. It is great! Our old basketball arena had entrances to the seats from the corridor, but wall in between all of the entrances. In other words, if you were out in the area with the concession stands and the restrooms, you could only see the game if you were standing at one of the entrances. The new arena is open with only columns. That is my favorite feature because you can see the game even if you go to the concession stand.

Before we left Auburn, we ate at Niffer's. Niffer's is an Auburn institution, but it is extra special to us because we had our first date there. Ben and I knew each other for several years before we started dating so we had been plenty of places together, even Niffer's, but when we went on the first date, we went to a movie and Niffer's.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

That's, Like, So Yesterday

Do you consider yourself trendy? I guess I'm not really trendy. I just do what I like and don't do the things I find uninteresting. Here are some current (some might be considered continuing) trends I am just not interested in:

  • Twitter
  • American Idol
  • Lost
  • Tanning
  • Sarcasm
  • Celebrity Gossip
  • Dancing with the Stars
  • Facebook Games
  • Geocaching
  • Dying My Hair

And here are some trends I am interested in:

  • Blogs!
  • Facebook
  • Wii
  • I want to paint my kitchen cabinets white.
  • Being Green (It is sad that this is what is considered "in" right now. I have tried to be green since before it was the hot new thing, and I hope it grows out of the trend stage and becomes a permanent fixture in people's lives.)
  • Botox (I don't think I need it yet, but I'm not ruling it out. Also, kind of gross to think about, but I would love Botox for my underarms. It would be so great to not have to think about deodorant - not having to buy it, not having to put it on everyday, not having to think about whether I forgot it, not having to think about whether it is working. . . you get the point.)
  • Mothers Staying Home - I don't know if this is a trend or not. It does seem that more mothers are staying home than have in the past few decades. I don't find any fault with women who don't stay home, but I think it is great to do it if it is right for you.

Monday, April 5, 2010


We go to Ben's grandmother's church every year for Easter. They have a tradition of "blossoming the cross." Everyone walks up and adds a flower to the cross. It's really pretty when we are finished and it sits at the front of the church for the service. You can see it in the first picture below. It and our cute nephews.

We also got to take some pictures with Ben's uncle's 1929 truck.

I think even the cows had a great Easter!