Monday, October 26, 2009

Winter Jackets, Bathing Suits & Books!

5 nights in my own bed in what will end up being 17 days total... all of my travel seems to come in bulk. I won't be surprised if I have some horrible cold here soon because of all of the climate changes I am going through! All of the trips have been amazing, but it's super hard when Grant can't come along :(

I went with my Mom to visit Sabrina at UT for her Fall Break. Here is a picture of us on a over night trip in Gatlinburg...this is somewhere close to the Donut Friar. We were freezing our tails off!

This next picture is in Gulf Shores with
The Nixon's/McCaskill' longer freezing.

My sister, Kristina and I will be leaving this coming Wednesday to complete the 17 days I have been in and out of town to head to Cincinnati, Ohio for a National Youth Workers Convention with Youth Specialties. With my job (, I typically go on three Youth Specialties trips between the months of September, October, and November and since this is one of our slower times at work, I thought I would take advantage of a few short trips...they all just happen to fall back to back!

With having these different trips to relax (the first two were "relaxing" trips-the Cincinnati trip is work). I have done a TON of reading which I just love! I finished the last three books in the "Firstborn" Series by Karen Kingsbury. I have pretty much just read her books in the past six months (with a four book distraction from "Twilight"...totally worth it!) and love them! I finished the Redemption series, moved on to the Firstborn Series and I am now on the Sunrise Series-all featuring the same Baxter family. I don't know what I will do when I am done! I kind of want to slow down! If you don't read Karen Kingsbury-I highly recommend her.

One thing I ran across yesterday as I was finishing "Forever" from the "Firstborn Series" were the "Ten Secrets to a Happy Marriage" (they fit well with the story, but I can't say more than that or I may ruin some things.) Even though these books are fiction, I have really learned a lot and wanted to share these "secrets". (These are from Karen Kingsbury so I am not intending to steal her ideas).

Ten Secrets to a Happy Marriage
by Karen Kingsbury
From "Forever"-Firstborn Series

  1. God has you here to serve one another. Love acted out is serving.
  2. Women need respect and nurturing. Love your wife so she knows you'd lay your life down for her. Continue to date her and admire her. Share a hobby-find something you can do to have fun together.
  3. Laugh often.
  4. Be patient. Love crumbles quickly under the weight of unmet expectations.
  5. Spend more time trying to fix yourself than your spouse.
  6. Keep short accounts. The Bible says, "Do not let the sun go down while you are angry." Make it a habit to forgive.
  7. Determine up front that divorce is not an option.
  8. Learn about love languages. Not all people show love or receive it the same way. You want a back rub and your spouse wants a clean kitchen. The love languages are fairly simple: acts of service, time, physical touch, gifts, and words of affirmation. Learn them. Love is better received when it's in the language that person speaks.
  9. Words of affirmation are a love language for all men.
  10. Men are born to be leaders. He cannot lead unless she gives him the confidence to do so. If you love your husband, build him up. Confident men do not seek love outside the home.
Let me know if you find encouragement in this as much as I did! Until next time....

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Memphis Heart Walk

Memphis Heart Walk-The American Heart Association

So, my sister-in-law approached me with this walk-the Memphis Heart Walk for the American Heart Association. Little did I know that once I stopped and thought about it, I had several family members who were affected with heart problems. For starters, my Mom's father, Grandpa McMurray passed away from a heart attack at the early age of 45. My grandpa Morella had several heart surgeries in his lifetime and finally, my father-in-law, Nick Nixon, is a Survivor! So, once I thought of all that, there was no way I could not have done this walk.

We ended up having a good mix of people join Amanda's team and come out! The Nixon's, my Dad, Alan, and my close friend, Allison Butler and her baby, Hudson!

We completed the 5K and Hudson slept the whole way! How nice would it have been to be pushed in a stroller for the walk :)

The walk was success after a failed attempt at going on a hayride and picking pumpkins the night before. That's another story for another post.

I love this time of the year and I love being outside. This Saturday is a race at Shelby Farms called the "Eye Opener 5K: Please Don't Drive Drowsy". One of my sister's close guy friends was killed by someone who was driving while drowsy/sleepy. If you are interested, go to: