Wednesday, December 13, 2017

What I'm Loving Wednesday

1. My Christmas tree and fireplace.  There's nothing better than sitting in our living room with no lights other than the ones of the tree.  Okay...well I can think of a way to make it a little better.  Give me a Hallmark Christmas movie and a fire in the fireplace. :)

2. Big Boo Podcast.   Whenever I'm in the mood for some lighthearted fun and laughter I listen to Big Boo.  It makes me laugh until I cry every time.

3. Andrew and I have a seen a few plays and concerts lately and have more to come.  They have all been soooo good!!

4. This Album....on least when I'm not listening to Christmas music and Big Boo Podcast.

5. All the hype about our new football coach.  WPS!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Never Have I Ever Food Edition

Those who know me even a little bit know that I'm a tad bit picky about food.  Okay I'm a whole lot picky about food.  Andrew and I have had many conversations over a dinner table that sound something like...

Andrew: Try this.

Me: No.  I don't like that.

Andrew: Have you ever even had it?

More times than not my response is No I haven't tried it but I know I don't like it.  

Seems like a fair response to me.  I've never been shot either and I don't need to be to know it would hurt.

And that's definitely an equal comparison.

Being shot and eating food.


Anyway...snack time with my students got me to thinking about foods I've never eaten that every other human on the planet has had at one point or another.

This list is long but since I know you probably have better things to do than read about food I've never eaten but will claim I don't like, I narrowed it down to ten for you.

Never Have I Ever Eaten....

1. Poptarts
2. Vegetable Soup
3. Twinkies
4. Dressing
5. Meatloaf
6. S'mores (Yet I like the individual ingredients)
7.  Oatmeal
8. Waffles 
9. Onion Rings
10. Ketchup

What's something you've never eaten?

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Matchbox Twenty and IKEA

Back to school season is upon us.  

I've been very busy the past couple of weeks getting my room ready and attending workshops.  I will be coteaching this year which means I will have another teacher in my classroom with me.  I'll admit I was a little anxious about that at first, but I LOVE my coteacher.  She has lots of experience and is so sweet.  Plus we seem to have a lot in common.  I have a feeling I'm going to learn a lot from her.  

Open House

Andrew and I were able to sneak away yesterday afternoon for a night in Southhaven, Mississippi for a concert.

But not before grabbing dinner at one of our favorite places.

We saw Matchbox Twenty and let me just say it was best concert we've been to in a long time.  GREAT show.

This morning we drove over to Memphis so that I could go to IKEA.  I've been wanting to go ever since they opened the Memphis store.

I found the things I wanted for my classroom along with a few other fun things.

I could have stayed in there all day but we had to get home to pick up Liberty & Lincoln from the kennel.  According to their report card they had a good time.

We all the perfect little get away before school starts.  

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Throwback Thursday: We're Engaged!

Summer 2003

Andrew was living with his parents and I was living two hours away with my parents.  We knew our relationship was headed for marriage.  We were in it for the long-haul.  I had told Andrew I didn't want to know when the proposal was coming and I didn't want to know what the ring looked like until he was ready to give it to me.  

Living two hours apart meant we didn't see each other throughout the week.  We alternated on the weekends who would be the one to drive the two hours to see the other.  

One weekend he informed me that he was hanging out with his guy friends.  They supposedly had big plans to play basketball and do manly things. So that weekend I was hanging out with my family and was in the truck with my dad on our way to pick up pizza when my phone rang.  It was Andrew.  We had a very quick conversation in which he asked me to remind him of my ring size.  That was an odd question for someone hanging out doing manly things to ask.  

August 29, 2003

The day before my birthday.  I had to work that day.  I was working at Sonic and was scheduled to work 6:30 to 1:30.  Andrew was driving up that evening and we were going out to dinner.  I just knew I was getting engaged that evening.  I was so incredibly excited.  

1:30 could not come fast enough.  I was ready to go home, shower, and get ready for the best date of my life.  

And then our computer system at work shut down.  We were sending people outside to take orders by hand.

Right in the middle of our lunch rush.

I remember it being so crazy busy.  

1:30 came and went and I was still at work.  

I don't remember what time I was finally able to leave work but it was much later than 1:30.  

I'm sure I sped home that day.

I got showered and dressed in my white shirt with green flowers and my denim skirt.  

Oh the fashion!

Andrew took me to the nicest restaurant in our little town that evening.


We ate our dinner all the while I was a nervous wreck waiting on him to propose.

He never did.

August 30, 2003

My birthday.

Andrew slept on our couch the previous night.

I woke up and took my shower and got ready for the day.

Then he got up to shower and I was the day.

I was very nervous.  

Once we were both ready for the day we were sitting in my room and he hands me a birthday card.

I opened and read the card.

Then he says to me...

"I'm only going to ask this one time so you better not say no."

He hands me a box and says, "Will you marry me?"  

I'm pretty sure I opened the box myself and I put the ring on myself.  

 I already had wedding catalogs.

There was no one knee or grand gesture.

And even though I give him a hard time about it now, it didn't matter.

I knew he loved me.

And I loved him.

Since it was lunch time we headed off to town for a nice lunch at...

McDonalds where my newly engaged 20 year old self ordered a happy meal.

And in case you are wondering how my ring fits Andrew...

The day may not have been his most romantic gesture but it was still one of the best days of my life.  

It was the beginning of a life long commitment to my best friend.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Walmart Grocery Pickup

I'm never going in Wal-Mart again!

Yes I'm aware of the boldness of that statement.

I used Grocery Pickup today for the first time and it changed my life.'s the best thing ever.

I went online to and added my items to my cart.  You can also do this with the Walmart Grocery app on your phone.  I've already started my second order with the app.

After you add all of your items to you cart you can click Check Out.  You will then be prompted to select a location and a time slot for pick up.

Notice the blue section in the picture below.  It automatically checks to allow substitutes.  This means if they are out of one of your items they will substitute a similar item.  I've not had anything substituted but I've read that if the do this they charge you the cheaper price of the two.

I placed my order early this morning and was able to pick it up this afternoon.  I had scheduled my order for 4:00 - 5:00.  Right before 4:00 when my order was ready I received an email letting me know that it was ready and I could check in.

I was in a meeting all day today so when I finished with my meeting I logged into the app and checked in.  Checking in is your way of telling them that you are on your way.  It tracks your route so that they know when you arrive at the store.  

I admit that's a little creepy.

However I didn't mind when at the exact moment I pulled into the parking spot two employees walked out the door with my groceries in hand.

Corey came to my window and greeted me with a goody bag.

He was super friendly and went over a few details with me while Brittany loaded the groceries into my trunk.  He came around and asked if I wanted my bread in the front so it didn't get smashed.

They were so friendly and it was the best experience.  They did all the work for me.  

I would have loved to tip them, but they cannot accept tips.

Inside my good bag was...

 A recipe book


I have a link for you to sign up.  You will receive $10 off your first order.  Yay!!  Just click here to sign up and receive $10 off.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Five on Friday


I've been toying with the idea of bangs for over a year now. Andrew is not a fan so I always talk myself out of it.  Not anymore.  I went to a new stylist who felt like an old friend yesterday and cut over three inches off my hair and got myself some bangs.  I LOVE it!!

Thank you Jen for recommending Kami. :)  She's fabulous.


Speaking of hair, I started using a new shampoo a couple of months ago and I can already tell a huge difference in my hair.  It is healthier, thicker, and smoother than it's ever been.  I quickly became a huge fan of Monat products.  I signed up as a VIP so I could get a discount and I'm so glad I did.  If you are interested let me know and I'll get you in touch with my Monat girl.


Last night I went to Zumba for the first time in over a year.  Seriously.  I do not remember the last time I went to a class.  I was easily the youngest one there and it was a very small class.  There were seven of us plus the instructor.  The instructor introduced me to the other ladies and most of them are or were in education.  They get together once a month to eat after a short Zumba class.  They were so welcoming and friendly.  Some would even stop during a song to talk to me.  It felt so good and I'm glad I went.  Pretty sure you will find me there every Monday and Thursday night from now on.


I've recently started listening to Podcast while I drive.  Most of the ones I listen to are education related, but I've been loving A Mom's Story by Megan.  It may be called A Mom's Story but it is not just for mom's.  It is stories of women and the journeys God has taken them on in life.  


Have you seen the new craze that is donut walls?  I'm obsessed with this idea.  I want to throw a party just so I can have an excuse to make a donut wall.  So if you receive an invitation from me to some random party just know that there will be a wall of donuts waiting on you.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Boy Bands, Zoo Animals, and Pro Wrestling

In the past week I've had some very rough days.  Actually they've been much worse than rough but this is a happy post so we won't talk about that.

I asked you guys the other day on facebook to send me some random questions to answer in hopes that it might lift my spirits.

It worked.  Some of your questions made me laugh out loud.

And those more serious questions provided me with distraction.

So thank you!

Now let's answer those questions.

What does music do for you on days like today?

I know for some people they go right to music as a method to lift their spirits.  Music can lift my spirits but I'll admit it is not my go to remedy.  However Andrew picked up the guitar this weekend for the first time in forever and listening to him play and sing made me smile which I haven't done a lot of this week.

What is your favorite FRIENDS episode?

Easy!  The One With All The Resolutions.  Rachel resolves not to gossip anymore but then learns that Monica and Chandler are dating.  She wants so badly to tell Joey but he is trying to help her keep her resolution.  He covers his ears, closes his eyes, and screams lalalala.  She leaves and Chandler walks in.  He holds the duck in Joey's face and when Joey opens his eyes to that flapping duck it scares the mess out of him. And Ross in those leather pants!

What is your favorite teacher moment?  And what is the funniest question you have ever been asked?

I don't know that I can narrow it down to one specific moment, but my favorite thing is when a student tells me I'm like their mom.  I think this is absolutely the greatest compliment they could ever give me.  It lets me know they feel loved and cared for and protected.  There is no more important job in this world than that of a mother so when I can come close to that job with my students I know I'm doing something right.

As far as the funniest question I've ever been asked...hmm.  There have been several.  I had a student one time who was mentally younger than all of her classmates.  She always brightened my day.  She asked me one time if I was a mommy and when I said no not yet she proceeded to ask me if I wanted to know how to be a mommy.  Before I could even answer she told me to take my husband in the bedroom for private time and then I would be a mommy.  Oh she made me smile!

If you were on a deserted island and could have only 2 things from home (people not included) what would they be?

Well I already know if I'm on a deserted island I'm not going to survive no matter what I have with me so forget survival things.  I'd say my cell phone so I could call for help but I'm assuming there will be no signal on this island.  So....

I would want a hammock and a huge bag of good books.

If you were not teacher, what would profession would you be interested in and why?

I would want to work in an eye doctor's office.  I don't know that I necessarily want to be an optometrist but I am so fascinated with eyes, maybe because I'm blind.  And I love organizational things and calendars.

You have been selected to do a commercial...What product and why?

Lush...don't even have to think about it.  I'm assuming I would get a major discount on their products, maybe even free.

If you were in a girl version of any boy band, which boy band would it be?  Who would be your band members?  And which member would you be?  For example, are you the Justin of N'Sync

Umm..Joey in New Kids on the Block!  And for band members...let's get the girls from Bottomland Naturals back together.  Fun memories of us singing while we made birdhouses.

Would you rather never have another duty or never grade another paper?

Oh never have another duty for sure.  I don't even care what duty it is, I hate them all!
Grading doesn't bother me.  Of course I don't teach writing.

If you could have lunch with any person who is no longer living, who would it be?

My Granddad.  I was too little when he passed away to remember him.  But if you talk to anyone who knew him, he was a pretty special guy.

What is your favorite animal to visit at the zoo?

Can I pick four?  LOL.  I like the giraffes, panda bears, kangaroos, and penguins.  But if I have to pick just one...

Who do you admire most and why?

Wow!  Now that's a question!  There are several people that I admire for different reasons, but the first person who popped into my head when I read this question was my sister-in-law Joy.  She has a love for the Lord that is so sweet and genuine.  Whenever I'm around her I always leave wanting more of Jesus.  That's the kind of person I want to be...I want other to want more of Jesus after spending time with me.

If you could host a dinner party for four people (living or dead) who would they be and what would you serve?

Well my husband definitely.  He makes everything more fun.  And we're eating with President and Mrs. Reagan.  I'm sure most people would serve something fancy if they were eating with a former president, but we're having grilled chicken sandwiches aboard The Liberty Belle because they are just so dang good.

What is your least favorite chore?

Cleaning the kitchen.

Why is Jill Averitt your favorite sister-in-law?

Because she is amazing of course!  And she lives close to a Lush store. :)

If you decided to join your brother in professional wrestling what would be the name of your tag team?

Let's be my brother would ever choose me as his tag team partner!  But if we were a tag team our theme music would be something by Aerosomith :)  and our name would be The Bobsie Twins...I know that's horrible but I didn't have an answer and then I rememberd how when we were little we thought it was such a treat for mom and dad when we wore matching shirts for bed.  Mom would always tells us were Bobsie Twins.

What is your least favorite color?

Orange...I don't think I knew that about myself until you asked.

What is your favorite book?

Oh I don't even know.  When I was a kid it was Just As Long As We're Together by Judy Blume.  Lately I've been loving historical fiction - especially WWII stuff.

You have a chicken, a fox, and a bucket of corn.  You have to cross a creek and can only carry one thing at a tie.  How do you get all three across without one eating the other?

I have no idea but I hope the chicken is what's left at the end because I'm going to be hungry by the time I carry all that across a creek.

What drew you to teaching?

I don't have a specific answer to this question.  I've just always wanted to be a teacher.  I never even thought about doing anything else.  I love watching my students grow and mature and gain confidence.

What's your favorite cocktail?

I can count on one hand with fingers left over the alcoholic beverages that I like.  LOL...just not a fan.  Andrew makes me something I like but I don't even know what's in it or the last time I had one.

Which was your favorite question?

All of them...I'm a teacher and isn't our motto supposed to be the only bad/dumb question is the one not asked?  :)

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A Mini Update

Friday, June 16

It's IUI Day!  I woke up feeling blessed.  Just so very blessed.  

I'm very teary this morning.  Liberty has not left my side.  She is very concerned about all the crying going on this morning.  Dogs don't really understand the difference between sad tears and grateful tears.  And it's grateful tears this morning.

I feel covered in prayer by so many people.  There are no words to describe how appreciative I am of that.

Everything seems to be lining up perfect.

It feels like Baby Weaver day.

I'm just happy.  A little reserved and hesitant but a lot happy.

Tuesday, June 20

I had planned to save everything for when we knew the results but I've had  several people message me to ask how I have been feeling and when we would know the results.  Because so many people are praying on our behalf I don't want to leave everyone hanging.  I hate it when books or movies do that.

It's not much but here's the latest update.

The procedure was a little more painful than our first IUI.  Andrew was across the room and I came very close to asking him to come over and hold my hand.  My doctor kept asking the nurse for different instruments.  I just closed my eyes and prayed for God to guide her hands and help her do what she needed to do.  Right as the nurse opened a new tool my doctor said nevermind.  She got it.  Afterwards she told me I did not want them to use that new tool, that it was very painful.  Praise God she didn't have to use it.

When the procedure was over they left me to lie down for about 10 minutes.  I closed my eyes and prayed and just relaxed.  If they had left me there much longer I could have fallen asleep.

With  IUI I was able to resume normal activities once I left the doctor's office.  

I had some cramping that first day which is totally normal.

Saturday, Sunday, and yesterday I had moments throughout the day where I felt nauseous. It sounds silly but if you've dealt with infertility you know that you sometimes have to remind yourself that it can't already be morning sickness.  I'm pretty sure it was a side effect from the trigger shot.  Maybe it has just been nerves.  I don't know.  It's hard not to analyze every little thing I feel.

As for results I have an appointment for Thursday morning to check my progesterone.  This will let us be sure that I did in fact ovulate when we think.  While this is not an indicator of pregnancy it can be an indicator of no pregnancy.  When we did our first IUI back in January by progesterone was very low at this point and we knew then I was not pregnant.   I don't really feel nervous about the appointment.  I believe our timing was spot on and that my progesterone will be where it is supposed to be.

I do fear it being where it is supposed to be and me taking that as a positive pregnancy test even though in my head I know it doesn't work that way.

The big results...well we have a few weeks of waiting before we know anything.  We have not shared the exact date with anyone.  Whether it is positive or negative we want to have time to process the news before sharing with our family and friends.  But don't worry I promise to let you all know something as soon as we are ready to share.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Travel, Toys, & Things

I used to love watching The Newlywed Game.  Andrew would come home from work and I would ask him some of my favorite questions from that day's show.  I'm sure he loved it.  Ha!

I've quit watching the show but I still like to ask him random Question of The Day questions.  

I thought it would be fun to share some questions and answers with you.

QUESTION #1: If you had to live in one of the places we've visited on vacation which one would be your first choice?

Andrew: Probably Charleston

Elaina:  Denver I think.  I really enjoyed our time there and I love the snow.  

QUESTION #2: If you inherited ten million dollars, what would you buy first (after all the bills/debt were paid off)?

Andrew: Tickets for us on a world cruise.

Elaina:  I'd buy an RV and we'd take a long vacation traveling across the US going everywhere we've always wanted to go.

(Great minds think alike.  We like traveling together.)

QUESTION #3: What is your least favorite think about travel?

Andrew: Other Travelers

Elaina:  Definitely flying.  It is slightly scary to me and it makes me sick.

QUESTION #4: What was your favorite toy growing up?

Andrew: Legos

Elaina:  Probably my chalkboard and then whiteboard.  I've always been a teacher. :)

QUESTION #5: If you could medal in an Olympic sport, what sport would you participate in?

Andrew: I think it has to be 100m sprint.  That's the fastest man in the world.

Elaina:  Gymnastics for sure.  I've always wanted to be able to flip across the floor like that.  

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Here We Go Again!

The question I've been getting a lot lately...

"What are you doing this summer?"

My answer...

"Not much"

Which isn't really true at all, but I'm pretty sure it would be a little awkward for some if I answered honestly.

My summer plans include a TON of doctor's appointments.

It's time (hopefully) for IUI #2.

Emotions...I have so many of them.

Let me just walk you through we are at right now.

We took a bit of a break after IUI just hadn't been the right time.  The break was long enough that everyone at my clinic commented on how excited they were to hear from me.  I seriously love the staff.  They are so sweet and are the biggest cheerleaders for their patients.  

So anyway...we finally decided it was time.

Or maybe I decided, but Andrew agreed. :)

Last month I was on birth control.

Seems counterproductive doesn't it?

The plan was that the birth control would allow my body to rest so that it would be all ready for an IUI.

So I did that and then I had my baseline ultrasound last week.  This is where they check to make sure there are no cysts and my body is ready to start the process.

I had zero cysts!!

That's such a huge praise because I normally have 1-3.  

I have a total of 13 follicles (potential eggs).  She told me this during the ultrasound and how many of the 13 were in each ovary.  I didn't really think much about it other than it sounded good.

Then a few days later I went back and looked to see how many follicles I had at this point when we did IUI #1.

I had 7.  

Another huge praise!

Everything about this cycle feels different and look different.

I feel different during this cycle. 

I feel hopeful and scared.

But I also feel trust, which I'm not sure I did the first time.

I trust that no matter the outcome it's going to be okay.

I trust that God has me in the palm of his hand and he's not letting go.

And I keep telling myself those two things over and over and over.

Because there is that fear and the enemy tries to use that fear to fill me full of lies.

It's a daily struggle.

I will begin home ovulation tests this week.  

My next appointment will be Monday or when I get a positive ovulation test..which ever comes first.  That appointment will determine where we go from there.  I am taking 150mg of Clomid which is the most I've ever taken.  And so far (knock on wood) I haven't had any hot flashes with the Clomid.  


I would greatly appreciate your prayers.  Pray that clomid will work and I will have plenty of good healthy eggs.  Pray that I would have the strength to fight the lies that too often fill my head.

Thank you for praying and for walking alongside me in this journey.

Monday, June 5, 2017

The Fourth Annual Americana Porch Party

It seems as soon as one year's party ends my mind goes to the next year's party.

I'm already thinking about centerpieces and outfits for next year.

How do we make it better?

I may say it every year but I think this year was the best year yet.

The porch looked great as always.

We had our biggest group yet this year.


Andrew says we are shooting for 50 next year.

In order for you to truly appreciate the growth, let's take a look back...

First Annual...2014

Second the rain

Third Annual...2016

And the Fourth Annual...2017

I love having these group pictures every year.  It's fun to watch new family members and friends join us.  

The group photo starts the party...

It was time to eat.

A huge shout out to Carl for providing all the meat...he smoked turkey, pastrami, and pork tenderloin.  I sampled it all and it was all AMAZING...and I don't even like pastrami. :)

As people were waiting to eat or finish up their lunch we snapped a few more fun pictures.

I shared the camera with Uncle Kevin.  It made me smile when I started going through pictures.  I think he captured his heart...

The Annual Porch Party brings with it the celebration of two very special people.  We love getting to celebrate Jayna & Jessica's birthdays.

Photographed and well fed, it was time for yard games.

Andrew outdid himself this year with yard games.

Whatever your favorite yard game may be, I'm sure we had it set up.

This is  easily one of my favorites from the day.  This is my niece Kandace.  I was just looking at her thinking about how tall, how pretty, and how sweet she is!

 Deep concentration before she throws...

Yes...Andrew and I changed outfits this year...we were too fancy for yard games.  Picking out our outfits is one of my favorite things about this party.  We have fun with it.





Andrew and I love this party.  But I will say we do not do this by ourselves.  My kitchen is full of women (and a few men) the entire time helping prepare the meal and clean up after the meal.  There are men moving about everywhere setting up tables and chairs, yard games, and any other last minute things.  We are so thankful for all the help.

And we don't have any pictures but my favorite part of this party is preparing care packages for soldiers who are out there fighting for our freedom and are away from their families.  The biggest sacrifice!  Everyone brings items and we fill as many boxes as we can.  I'm glad Andrew started this tradition the first year.