Wednesday, December 31, 2008

HOGS win 96-88!

Last night while shopping in a Wal Mart in Arkansas, close to the Oklahoma line, there was no doubt which team was the next up for the Arkansas Razorback basketball team. It was the 4th ranked team in the nation, the Oklahoma Sooners. I seemed that everyone from Oklahoma was proudly wearing their Sooner t-shirts prior to the game. When you live on the border of a state you play, it makes a win against that team much more enjoyable. The HOGS won 96-88.

At this time I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. I pray the best for everyone in the days ahead. Happy New Year!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Back to work...

Did everyone else have a hard time going back to work today? I had not worked since December 22nd! Everyone loves being off for the Christmas Holidays, but we do pay for it when we go back to work huh?

It is bad enough some of us take extra time off, but many times can one eat over the holidays? Turkey, ham, pies, cookies, peanut brittle, and on and on and on the list goes. You go to one place and eat, and then you eat at another place. It's really unbelievable how much food we consume during this time of the year. Should it be a surprise that dieting is almost always at the top of our New Year's resolution lists? After the holidays, we just get tired of looking at food after awhile. Did I say that?

I am trying to figure out what my New Year's resolutions list will look like. I know I want to read my Bible more. I also have some books on the shelf I have not read yet. So, I guess reading is going to be high on my list. I have a few other things in mind I could add to the list - they are kind of unspoken requests as we say in the church. I know there are a lot of areas I need to improve on next year. I will let everyone know if I add more to my list - maybe.

I would love to hear what your New Year's resolutions are going to be. Oh, year I am going to get my first deer. I will do this either by hunting or by driving late at night! OK, prediction...I will get my first deer hunting next year! You heard it here first!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas is not just a one day event...

Thought I would share some thoughts and pictures from our Christmas this year. Morgan and Lizzie Kate tore into their presents on Christmas Day. Yes, Lizzie Kate got her swimming puppy.

Christmas night we went to see the movie "Marley and Me." I would recommend that movie for anyone to watch. I was told by someone before I went that it was a "Modern day Old Yeller." I think that is a pretty good assessment of the movie.

The day after Christmas, I went hunting with my father-in-law. I did not see any deer from my stand all day. Oh well, maybe next year.

Yesterday, my family met at my sister's in Maumelle. I have some pictures from there as well. After some rain moved through the area and the temperature fell, I took this picture of a double-rainbow. I sent this shot to our local weather gurus. I am crossing my fingers and hoping they show it during the weather. If you remember, that is one of my goals.

One of the funniest pictures is when the "Caker" pretends to warm up in front of a roaring fire. It is really a DVD that plays music as you look at a fireplace. "Caker" did a great job in selling everyone on the "real" fire.

Then my brother-in-law Mark Morris was taking a siesta right before we opened presents.

I also have a picture of all of us eating dinner at Larry's West that night. Everyone talked me into wearing a nice orange hat...

Well, that should catch everyone up for the time being. I hope everyone else had a Merry Christmas, and may 2009, be your best year yet!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Prayers and Wishes...

Since it is Christmas, I would like to offer a few prayers and well wishes...

My prayers and heart goes out to those that have lost loved ones this holiday season. If anyone has lost a loved one, you know how hard it is to be without them during this time.

I pray that God help those who are sick and give the healing only He can provide.

Now, to those that are fellow bloggers, and some others I know...

To the Shannon and Scott Walker family my prayer is that God help Scott in any way and only He can. Comfort their family Lord...give them some peaceful days. To have the spirit this family has is a blessing to us all.

To Andria and Mike Francis...My family values our friendship. May God continue to bless your family in the days ahead as you watch your children grow.

To the Jeb Baldwin Family...I pray that God provide healing touch for your children and that He provide for peaceful moments in the days ahead.

To the Tim Brinkley Family...I pray for Tim's knee, and that you will bless their little children. Help their family to continue to grow in You.

To the Drennan Family...It is good to see that your family does so much together...May God continue to keep you together and keep your paths straight.

To the Dolan Family...You guys are so nice and will do anything for anyone. I pray that God will continue to give you that giving and caring spirit.

To the Bartlett Family...what a nice family, and always smiling. May God continue to show His joy through your lives.

To the John Ciesla Life Group...May God grant us an even better year ahead. God has blessed us and guided John and Angel into our lives and our class. May God bless and guide this family in the days ahead.

To those that are serving our country in the Armed Forces...God Bless you for your service to all of us to help provide the freedoms we so love and share.

To everyone else, I pray that God Bless your families in the days ahead and give you a Happy New Year!

Jesus is the Reason for the Season...

You cannot have Christmas without thinking of the Birth of Jesus...

Luke 2:1-20 (King James Version)

1And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.

2(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)

3And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

4And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)

5To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

6And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

7And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

8And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

9And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

10And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

11For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

12And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

14Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

15And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

16And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

17And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

18And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

19But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

20And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Merry Christmas everyone. I pray that Christ is a big part of your Christmas. Remember those with needs during this season.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A few more presents are open...

As you can see Morgan and Lizzie Kate received plenty of presents from family members tonight. Morgan is in her new robe and Lizzie Kate has on a new set of p.j.'s waiting for Santa Claus to visit tonight. Morgan is looking at the computer as we speak...but, she knows she needs to go to bed soon. She does not want Santa to catch her up when he comes.

As for me, I am comfy and cozy in my new Crocs thank you.

Christmas Eve Gift!

New gifts already on display...

You might notice a Sharon that makes comments from time to time on my posts. Well, Sharon gave my father-in-law a neat gift that all Hog fans would probably like - a Hog. No, it is not a real one that wallers around in the mud. It is a metal Hog that you can put in your yard. How nice is that?

My girls also got umbrellas and matching boots from Steve and Elizabeth Ross. They were really nice and cute gifts. That was so nice for them to give them to the girls. I will post pictures of them later.

Kelley got me the book, "The Razorback Vault." It is a good history book for any University of Arkansas supporter. I love it, I love it, I love it!

I am about to head to Bastrop, Louisiana today. I plan to go to Simmons Sporting goods for the first time ever. I have never been there, but I am expecting great things. I will also tell you more about that later.

Folks, I leave you with a phrase my Aunt Lotha would say on this day..."Christmas Eve Gift!" Merry Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Gardetto's and cold weather...It must be close to Christmas!

Last night I drove to Maumelle and stayed with my sister and family. I appreciated their hospitality. It was good to see sister Carol, brother-in-law Robert, and my niece and nephew Emily and Adam.

I woke up to find my car basically in a sheet of ice. After my car thawed out, I headed to Wal Mart to get some survival food before I headed to the in-laws. I reached guessed it, Gardetto's. Well, I survived the trip South! Thanks for the prayers. We had a little get together with friends tonight. The weather turned unbelievably mild tonight going over 60 degrees. This is crazy.

Well, have one more day to be nice before you get your presents. I know what you are thinking. Make it one more day, get your presents and then turn back to meanness right?

Good luck to you on your presents. I hope Santa brings you what you wanted. I will check back with you tomorrow.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Razorbacks need your help quick in the "Best Helmet" contest! Voting ends today!!!

The last time I looked, the Razorbacks were losing in the finals of the "Best Helmet" contest to West Virginia 51% to 49%. We cannot let this happen!

Click on this Hog Helmet is best link, vote and vote often. Spread the word around to everyone you know. We cannot lose to West Virginia!

Thanks, and GO HOGS!!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Weekend in Review!!!

Driving through town on Saturday, I could not believe my eyes. A hot dog vendor set up shop at a busy intersection. I called Mike Francis and he could not believe it. Well, the proof is in the pudding, or at least the hot dog as in this case. We may turn into another New York City. A skyscraper will be going up any day now I am sure.

Today I took mom out to eat. We were going to Cracker Barrel in Alma, but we noticed that Catfish Hole was open...My eyes opened up with excitement!!!

I had the catfish fillet dinner with those great hush puppies they serve. I usually kid my waiter by saying..."Keep bringing the hush puppies out every 5 minutes until someone passes out...then bring them every ten minutes.

Tonight I took my mom to her church to see their Christmas musical. Before we left, I made some chocolate chip cookies for her to take. I put them in a festive tin with Christmas paper inside with the cookies. I have found that presentation is everything. My cookies were a hit. Not a cookie was left. I then went home and made myself a grilled cheese sandwich. I should have my own cooking show.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Phrases or words you hate to hear...

Do you ever hear words or phrases that just drive you crazy? For example, when teachers hear the word ain't, it's like fingernails scratching a chalkboard.

Well, right now the one I hate to hear is..."It is what it is." I hate that phrase. I really have no idea why they use it...they just do. I just want to go on record saying I hate the phrase. Tony Romo of the Dallas Cowboys said it twice tonight after they got beat by the Baltimore Ravens.

Now, a shout out to Andria Francis on her birthday today. I hope she got to celebrate someplace nice like Joe's Pasta and Pizza! Happy Birthday Andria.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Eating some sketti!!!

Last night the entire family went out to eat and then look at Christmas lights. I love to look at Christmas lights. They seem to put you in the Christmas Spirit.

We first went to George's to eat. Lizzie Kate ate some sketti. Oh, she also was wearing it as well. Kelley took her to the restroom after she ate to "hose" her off a little. "Caker" made a sweet little face for everyone. As you can see, Morgan is not quite sure of Lizzie Kate.

So, we then proceed to go up in the Hills to see the Christmas lights. Some go overboard. I always like going through that street that tells "The Night Before Christmas." That has always been a favorite of mine. If you remember an earlier post of mine, I told you I was being pressured to conform to adding lights to my house. I have gotta do it. I need to spread more cheer around. We all need to raise our spirits some.

Everyone have a great weekend. Have fun with Christmas, but also remember the real reason for the season...Jesus!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Sharing my early Christmas pictures with my friends...

Pull up a chair, make some hot chocolate, and let's pop some popcorn. I found some Christmas pictures of me on one of my "scavenger hunts" at my mom's house. I hope you enjoy...ah....memories!

In this picture you see a young lad that has just told Santa what he wants for Christmas. He probably told Santa he was a good little boy and that he would not put an eye out with whatever Santa brought him. What a cute little kid!

Now in the following picture we see how a young kid is rewarded if they have been good. I am sure when Santa saw my name on the "Nice" list he did a double-take. It probably was a slip up by one of the elves who comprises Santa's list. More than likely an elf lost their job over this. I remember that horse...I LOVED IT!!!!

One thing I also noticed in the above picture is how much Morgan looks like me in that picture. Did I mention that was a cute kid in the picture? Just kidding.

Well, time to move on. I am out of popcorn and my hot chocolate is cooling down.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Pressure to conform...

As I turn into our neighborhood, I cannot help but see so many houses with Christmas light displays. I am starting to feel the pressure to throw my hat in the ring next year. I know it will require getting on top of the house and stringing up lights, but you got to do what you got to do. I just feel like I might need to get more in the spirit.

I have even toyed with the idea of showing a Christmas movie from the side of my house. What can I say? I am dreaming I know.

Do not be surprised if you see me climbing on top of my house next year to work on my display. If you do see me, please be prepared to call an ambulance and make sure my life insurance is up to date!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What kind of ornament do you want this year?

Tonight, Kelley told me she had something I could put in my blog. She then told me the following story...

Kelley said, "You know how we always get the girls an ornament every year that says this is me?" I said yes. "Well, Morgan got a Hannah Montana ornament. I then said, "Caker", what kind of ornament do you want this year?" "Caker" said, "I just want Baby Jesus."

Morgan is pictured with her Hannah Montana ornament and the "Caker" is holding her Baby Jesus ornament.

Thank you Kelley for the story!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Freezing rain, sleet, and spitting snow...

I stuck my head outside just a few minutes is bitter cold! Kelley made some chili and that warmed me up a little bit tonight.

Tonight I did what everyone else does when there is a hint of snow...I went to the grocery store. Why do we run to stores and buy close to 10 days of groceries when there is a hint of snow? I know tonight I overbought.

I wanted to send in a weather picture to one of our local television stations tonight, but I just do not have enough ice or snow to take pictures. That is my goal - to get one of my pictures mentioned during the evening news on television.

Well, I better get off here. I feel like falling asleep at the keyboard.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

You can lead a squirrel to water...

I thought I would share a few pictures of a squirrel that was using the hole for the handrail of our pool as a personal watering hole. As you can see, the squirrel's head disappears in one of the pictures.

We watched the squirrel for probably ten minutes before it got enough water and went away. Lizzie Kate accused me of scaring the squirrel away. This coming from a little girl that kept hitting the wood blinds into the window as we watched. There is no way her making all of that noise could have scared the squirrel away.

Great Party!!!

Last night Kelley and I attended our church's Life Group Christmas party held at Jessie and Michelle Winter's. We had a great time. That was nice of them to open up their home to everyone.

We had good fellowship, great food, and we played our favorite gift exchange game as a group - "Dirty Santa." Everyone seems to have fun with it. Gifts went from one hand to another. It was very amusing all the way to the end. Kelley and I ended up with a Sonic card and a DVD. Both were great gifts. I think the real winner was the person that ended up with the Old Navy Happy New Year t-shirt that I brought for the exchange.

So, thanks everyone...I had a great time. Thanks to Jessie and Michelle again for the hospitality, and thanks to everyone that prepared the food for everyone to eat. Everything was great and much appreciated.

Friday, December 12, 2008

I like to move it, movie it. I like to move it, move it...

Before you hit me with all kinds of wisecracks due to the title of today's post, let me explain. There really is a story behind the title. This morning I was hard at work as laughing. It was trash pick up day, so I was collecting all the trash around our house. No matter how hard I tried, our dog Zack would not stay in the bag - just kidding. The last bag was from the garbage can in the garage. I pulled the bag out of the can and placed it on the ground. I could not believe what I heard next from inside the bag..."I like to move it, move it...I like to move it, move it." I could not help but laugh. Inside the bag was a McDonald's Madagascar 2 Happy Meal toy. I went back inside the house and told Kelley. She said she threw the toy away. It was in her car and every time she hit a bump on the road, it would say that now famous phrase.

Well, I knew I had to share a laugh with someone. In fact I would have loved to have been home today when my garbage is picked up. Because,when the garbage man picks up that one special bag he is going to hear..."I like to move it, move it. I like to move it, move it." Priceless...

Thursday, December 11, 2008

New Math...

Bad Economy + Lower Gas Prices = More State Troopers on the Highways.

Click it...

or Ticket!

Drive safely this Christmas Season!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Doing the right thing...

Throughout our day we are hit with so many choices. Yesterday, I was about two or three car lengths behind a police car, but in another lane. As I followed the police car, we got closer and closer to the stop light of a busy intersection. You guessed it - the light turned yellow. Right then I had a choice...either go through the light and risk a ticket, or stop quick. I chose the latter - to stop quick. You try to do the right thing. You try to do the right thing. Since I stopped quick and sort of at the last minute, my car hung out into the crosswalk a little bit. But, it was not totally blocked. Now, this intersection rarely ever has pedestrians. It's just not an intersection where one would want to cross because it is always so busy. Well, you guessed it...there were people waiting to cross. It looked like two sets of families, and both sets were pushing baby strollers across the intersection. Was God testing me or what? Once they passed in front of me, one of the men that was pushing a stroller looked at me angrily. I could tell he was not happy, muttered something that I could not totally understand. And if I could understand, I probably could not print what he said in this blog. My eyes narrowed, and were beaming in his direction. I was locked in. I gritted my teeth...I wanted to say something! I really did want to say something. But, then I remembered we are in the Christmas Season and some words from the Christmas song "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" came to my mind at that moment and hit me like a ton of bricks...

"Peace on Earth, Good will to men."

Do the right thing...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

"I want a big puppy. I WANT A BIG PUPPY!!!!!"

Before anyone reads this, I want to make sure everyone understands the purpose is not for someone to bring us a BIG puppy. We have a dog. He is not a BIG puppy, but he is usually a BIG problem. So, no dog needed here.

Now, on to the story...This morning the "Caker" is talking to Morgan about a friend of hers named Carolyn who has a big puppy. They talk on this subject for a few minutes when "Caker" turns to me. She says, "Dad, I want a BIG puppy." I said, "You already have a puppy." "Caker" replies louder this time..."I want a BIG puppy!"
This goes on and on and on with me finally replying with the following phrases:

"We will have to talk about it," "Let's see." And finally I said, "We need to talk to mom about it ok?" I was thinking this may work since her mom was not home at the time and maybe it could buy me a little time. I mean she wanted a BIG puppy and she wanted it now. She was so much into wanting that BIG puppy that she started crying almost to a lather, while stomping and screaming the words "I want a BIG puppy" in a corner of our garage.

I really do not know how I finally got her to stop crying. It is all a big blur now. I just hope she does not think of her friend Carolyn, or that BIG puppy again any time soon!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Update on Uncle Mac...

Many of you remember me requesting prayer for my Uncle Mac. Well, I visited him yesterday. He has had some improvement. He has gained back some of his weight he lost, but he still has a long way to go. Mac is still in a rehab unit as he tries to regain his strength. My brother visited with him on Friday and said Mac was not getting around too good. Sunday as I walked into the facility, I met Mac walking around with the help of a walker. So, maybe he is showing some improvement.

His daughter has some decisions to make, and she is taking him to visit an assisted living facility. Mac says he is going to go, but he wants to go home. That is understandable, but his daughter just wants to do what is best for him. I prayed with Mac. I asked God to help Mac in his healing, and for his renewing of strength. I told him God was there for him any time he needed him. He said he knew it. Please keep him in your prayers.

Living Nativity...

Saturday night Kelley and I drove the girls through the Living Faith Missionary Baptist living Nativity. We waited an hour in a line of cars, but it was well worth it. Each car is handed a CD player with a CD that narrates what you see. They did a great job telling the real story of Christmas - The birth of Jesus. There were sheep, goats and even a camel in their presentation. "Isaiah" waved at my two girls at the first station we saw. He looked like the real McCoy...or at least the real Isaiah. I know, I know it was not him, but he probably was a dead ringer to the real Isaiah. I wanted to say, "Are you the real Isaish?" But, he probably hears that all the time.

The picture you see is from my cell phone. No, it is not the Loch Ness is a camel. I know it is hard to see, but it was night. Hopefully, you can make out the outline of the camel.

We really enjoyed going through the Live Nativity. I think they have finished their presentations for this year. Everyone working in the Nativity did a great job in making you feel welcome. I am sure we will do it again next year.

Isaiah 9:6

6 For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, [a] Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

In my opinion...

Most of you that follow my blog know I try to talk about what is going on in my life. I also try to throw in a little bit of current events for good measure. I have not been too political, but thought I would chime in on what has been going on in our country lately.

Let there be no mistake, our country is in the midst of a major financial crisis. The American consumer has lost confidence in the economy. But, one of the big things that is bothering me is all of this bailout talk. I am not saying that our country should not bail out some of these industries, but I think changes and promises should be made. There have been companies ask for a bailout, while they lay off workers in this country. These companies have also moved many of our jobs to other countries. Why should we help these companies out when they take the jobs of American workers away? I just think changes need to be made. If they want us to buy their goods, they better keep our jobs in place where someone can afford them.

It may be that we as Americans would have to pay more for our goods and services to keep American jobs in place. I for one would be willing to pay $25 or $50 more for a refrigerator if it meant it saved American jobs. As I said earlier, some changes and promises need to be made.

I know there are no easy answers, but we need our jobs to stay in this country and not lose them to other countries. We need to do whatever it takes to keep our jobs here. You want our help us. Just my opinion...

Friday, December 5, 2008

"Dad, what is a Whippersnapper?"

One morning this past week I was driving Morgan to school. We were having our little conversation and sing-a-long time as usual. I started kidding around with her and then I said, "You ole' whippersnapper!" Morgan then asked me, "Dad, what is a whippersnapper?" Now, I have said whippersnapper probably a million times in my life...many of you reading this are whippersnappers and you know who you are...but, I got thinking about it and told Morgan that I would have to research it and get back with her. Why do our kids have to ask us these tough questions?

Well, I have done a little research, looked at a few sources, and found out the following:

Merriam-Webster defines whippersnapper as - a diminutive, insignificant, or presumptuous person.

Then, I used a phrase finder where it stated...Though "whippersnapper" originally referred to a young man with no visible ambition, the term has changed somewhat over the years, and today is more likely to be applied to a youngster with an excess of both ambition and impertinence.

I would like to think that the latter explanation is my answer. That is the one I am going with anyway. I sure did not mean anything derogatory toward my daughter.


First, I came across a good deer story for you. Click on this DEER.

Also, if you are in the woods...and you are pretty new to deer hunting, and you see something that looks like berries on the ground...they probably aren't berries! Just sayin...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Today I am really working...

Today one of my girls was not feeling that great, so I stayed home with her. She is feeling better now. I know I stayed home from "work", but believe me I worked just as hard if not harder today here at home. Besides tending to my daughter, laundry was on the agenda...Yuck and Double Yuck!!!

You know you hate doing laundry too...let me see the show of hands. I knew it, everyone hates laundry. You know us guys, I started out with a plan. I put the whites in a pile, the colors in a pile, and then the towels in another. No, I do not mix colors in with my whites. I am especially very aware not to mix my reds in with my whites. You are not dealing with a rookie here. This is not my first rodeo. I may put off the laundry from time to time...OK, I put it off quite often. I know when I do put off doing or helping with the laundry, I usually pay for it. That is what I am doing today. I am paying for it. I think I am up to my fourth load with more to come. Oh well, I must trudge on.