Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Dog

While cooking dinner a few nights ago, Matt peeled a sticker off a potato and decided to jokingly stick it on Maggie's back. It was funny for a while. She didn't even seem to care, she just kept walking around with that thing stuck to her back.

After a while I started to feel bad for her so I tried to get the sticker off.....except it was stuck--like when a bandaid gets stuck to your arm hairs kind of stuck. If I weren't persistent with some warm water and a good tug or two that poor pup would still be walking around with a potato sticker on her back.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Ground Breaking

It finally happened! Sunday afternoon we broke ground for the rebuilding of Woodlawn United Methodist Church. In case you don't remember, the church burned to the ground in May of 2009. It has been a long journey, one which Matt and I only joined in January of 2010, but we are so grateful for the love and commitment of this congregation.

We also opened the original 1909 cornerstone and found a 1909 copy of the Methodist Book of Worship. It was in pretty rough condition (didn't they have plastic bags or something back then?) but still a pretty fun relic of times gone by.

Here's to the future of Woodlawn!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Working in the Church

There are days that seem long and can be very frustrating work at times. "Results" are often slow and take a lot of time and energy.

But this past Sunday, I experienced one of those moments that make the whole thing worth it. We have been in the middle of a series at First Church Birmingham entitled "Sexuality: Let's Talk About It." Mostly because churches all over the country have remained silent on any and all issues of sexuality. This Sunday was the 3rd in our series and we braved the topic, "LGBT: Has the Church Got it Wrong?" (Many people were simply amazed that a church even knew what LGBT meant much less use it in a sermon title)

In our Sanctuary service, the pastor finished the sermon with our motto, "First Church is an OPEN place for ALL to worship, grow, and serve." Next thing you know one person started clapping and before we knew it the whole Sanctuary was offering a standing ovation. As we started into our last hymn the sun began shining through all of our beautiful, 100+ year old stained glass windows. I was overwhelmed by the love of these people in that moment.

From our pulpit we said that we are sorry for all of the hurt. From our pulpit we spoke the truth of the love of God. From our pulpit we declared that we are an Open place for All people.

If you want to give a listen to one (or all) of the sermons, here is the link:

(Note: Matt's church, Woodlawn UMC, is much further along in the declaration of being an open and accepting congregation. We are thankful that they have paved the way for others to do the same. And how lucky are we that we get to serve in these two bold and loving congregations?)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Is it Spring Yet?

I realized I had a few other pictures from our Snow Days here in Birmingham last week.

Since we can't use our fireplace this little heater did the trick:

And of course, who could resist this cup of hot chocolate (and a good book) on a cold day?

I am SO ready for warmer weather. I want to be outside & not freeze. Plus I want to wear dresses and skirts (sans boots and tights/leggings). See you soon Spring???

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

One Year Anniversary: New Orleans

You only get a 1 year anniversary once in your married we decided to take advantage of a chance to celebrate and made a quick trip to New Orleans a few weeks ago. While planning we decided to take the train down instead of driving or flying.

Overall, the train was a great choice. We paid to have our own small room (which was great at 7am on our way back b/c we could pull out the beds and take a long nap) which also included our meals! It was definitely a fun adventure.

We stayed at the historic Hotel Monteleone. We were a bit underwhelmed but it was fun to stay in a New Orleans-y hotel. And it is home to the famous Carousel Bar (see below) where we had drinks in the evening.

Of course we couldn't visit New Orleans without a trip to Cafe du Monde. It was so tasty. (also, I recently watched Princess and the Frog and it made me crave these beignets like never before)

In addition to some time at Harrah's and the World War II museum, we took a trip to Preservation Hall for some quality jazz music one night. Wow! There is just nothing like the real deal jazz.

Waiting in line to get in:

Please note: this is not my favorite picture but it's the only one I took of the two of us. I am still working on the "hat" look but the guy from Meyer's Hats (famous hat shop in New Orleans) insisted that I could do it, so it's a work in progress.

All in all it was a great little getaway. It certainly wasn't long enough but we definitely marked the momentous occasion (and ate some great seafood)! Here's to many more!

One Year Anniversary: Paper

This year we stuck to the traditional 1st year anniversary gift of paper.
I printed a copy of this here blog for Matt & since you've seen all that, I didn't take a picture of it! Matt, however, gave me this beautiful peace crane mobile.

If you'll remember we used peace crane bouquets instead of flowers at our wedding so this gift was just perfect. It is now hanging in our study. I love the earthiness of the wreath and then all the colors and sparkle of the peace cranes.

Home Improvement: The Kitchen

We are still plugging away at "finishing" the kitchen. When we bought the house, the kitchen had been mostly redone. However, many of the changes were done to the taste of the previous home owners. So piece by piece we are finishing up the kitchen....and this time it suits us!

For Christmas, with the help of my mom & dad, we decided to add a backsplash.
Here is the before picture:

And here is the after picture:

I wanted to have the backsplash professionally installed but Matt insisted he could do it. So he did. And it turned out rather well if I do say so myself!
Here is the backsplash close up:

Now on to the next project....

Monday, January 3, 2011


Here we are in a new year! I can't believe it's 2011....that seemed so far away a few years ago. Anyway, I thought we'd begin the new year by sharing a few of our "resolutions" for 2011.

1. Use more coupons. We started doing this a while back and then just got lazy. So this year we are going to take another go at being the crazy coupon people in line ahead of you at the grocery store.

2. Bring back reading night. One night per week we will turn off the TV and crack a good book.

3. Have a game night at least every two weeks or so (this can include playing the Kinect!)

4. Eat (and cook) better-for-you vegetarian foods. This includes learning more about a well-rounded veggie diet and making sure we are eating well and not just eating to fill up.

5. Learn (and practice) how to have a better garden.