Friday, February 27, 2009

You think you had a RUFF week

Poor Dallas. The past 2 days haven't been very kind to our fuzzy kiddo. Dallas is the most fun loving dog you'll ever meet...until he walks into the vet. He turns into 90 pounds of frightened fuzz. Brad has to go with me because I can barely pull him through the front door and I can forget about being able to pull him out from underneath the chairs in the waiting room. By the way, all of this is very embarrassing.

I know that right now my Mom is remembering the times when she had to take me to the doctor as a kid. She is thinking that Dallas can not be more embarrassing than her daughter Alicia jumping off of the doctor's table and making a run for the exit.

Back to Dallas. After another traumatizing trip to the vet, Dallas encountered his second worst enemy... bath time. He endured all of this torture so he can be ready for doggie daycare next week when I start working again. Another side note, I went to check out the doggie daycare place today and I loved it. Dallas will be hanging out at "camp" 2 or 3 times a week.

Just when Dallas thought it couldn't get any worse, it did. There is an electric fence that backs up to our back yard. Now this isn't some wimpy electric fence. We're talkin livestock grade here. And yes, you guessed it. Dallas was tending to his business and shocked the @#$% out of himself. Brad had to spend the rest of the evening trying to convince Dallas that the backyard was not evil.

Poor Dallas. He just wants to go back to the lazy days of living in Texas.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A Pretty Reminder

I love love love unique, simple, and inexpensive jewelery. I was surfing through and found this necklace I had to have ; ) It will be a sweet (and fashionable) reminder of this new adventure and chapter in our lives. You can check out the artist's blog at . She is a mom of 6 and still finds the time to create beautiful jewelery.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A Celebrity Among Us - Tennessee style

Now here is an interesting fact for you. Brad and I were pretty darn excited to learn that our next door neighbors are practically Tennessee royalty. Oh yes, the next door Mr. and Mrs. are TN State Horseshoe Champions.
I was playing outside with Dallas and I noticed the neighbor raking his horseshoe pit. Then I heard the sound of him nailing every throw (I don't know the correct horseshoe lingo). I yelled across the yard that I was impressed with his horseshoe skills. He was very humble and finally admitted that him and the misses compete at the state level, and have even taken home the title a time or two. Imagine my surprise!

Monday, February 23, 2009

What we do best

Things I love about living in Tennessee:
a Incredibly nice people
a Beautiful mountains, rivers, and sunsets
a Stan's BBQ (That one is for Brad)
a No traffic

Mom and I ventured to nearby Sevierville, TN to check out the outlet mall. This place has it all! Banana Republic, J Crew, Coach, Ralph Lauren, Fossil, and the list goes on. There is a Chico's and Coldwater Creek for the mommas. We had a great day of shopping and I was able to get lots of great/inexpensive clothes for my new job!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Our 1st Tennessee snow. WOO-HOO!

YESSSSSSSSS! Dallas LOVES snow almost as much as he loves swimming.

Time for some doggie snow angels.

We could definitely get used to this!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Swing and a miss

I had such high hopes of taking my Mom to Wal-Mart to show her all of the glorious heads of hair, you know....the mullet. No such luck. I even tried to buy some time by wondering around to find a movie (I got Fireproof and can't wait to watch it). I just knew that if we could spend a little more time that it would pay off. Spotting the perfect mullet is a bit like fishing. You have to be patient, and then once you get a fish you freak out because it is gross and you don't want to touch it. Okay, maybe that's just me but you get the point.

Well we walked away without any mullet sightings. Darn it! I didn't want to come away empty handed, so I took note of this interesting fashion statement:

This is a genuine John Deere purse. I know you're jealous. I was too, especially after I saw the matching John Deere wallet. Let me know if you are interested in getting one of your very own. I'll try and hook you up.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I got my Momma!

I'm a very happy girl! I picked my mom up at the Knoxville airport this afternoon. As many of you are fully aware, I'm not the best driver (stop laughing Lana!) I am now aware that I could use some extra training to be able to drive on these narrow and winding roads. Brad tried to give me my first lesson last weekend, but I wasn't ready to learn at the time so it came across as nagging. My mom is notorious for being terrified while driving in the mountains. For those of you who have been lucky enough to get some first hand experience (Kevin and Lisa), you know how she does, it's not pretty. Well, I knew I had to be on my best driving behavior or she might not be so willing to come visit me anymore. Good news, we made it home safely, no tears shed or ugly words shouted. I'm still not up for the Best Driver of the Year Award because she had to remind me I was about to run a red light, but you can't have it all.

When we got home, my Mom and Brad tried to decide/debate why I'm not a good driver. Mom believes it is because I think too hard and I just need to drive. My sweet husband disagreed. He believes I am a bad driver because I don't think enough. nice.

Monday, February 16, 2009

A change of scenery

Our sweet dog Dallas is used to this whole packing and moving thing since his parents are essentially nomads. Dallas always finds his look-out post (as we like to call it) every where we have lived. He thinks it is his duty to monitor the neighborhood and alert us of any strange activity, particularly if anyone is carrying a dangerous weapon like an umbrella or baby stroller. We briefly lived in an apartment when Dallas was a puppy. You could always find him watching the cars drive by and monitoring those annoying kids on their skateboards.

Dallas has assumed a new responsibility now that we are living out in the country in Tennessee. It is a pretty big change from his apartment days. See for yourself...

You might be a redneck...

I'm learning that things are done a little different around here...

For instance, I didn't fully appreciate the convenience of having our garbage picked up once a week when we lived in Texas. I went to the local water company to take care of getting our account set-up because they could only process this in person (not too convenient), and I figured they would be able to help me set up or find out about trash pick-up. When I asked the kind lady about this she gave me a puzzled look like I had just blown her mind with some new and cutting edge idea. No help.

We asked our neighbor what he was doing. This lead to complicated directions to a nearby dump, but if you don't have TN tags on your car, "They'll come after you." Yikes, and no thanks.

Finally, I called the city and they gave me a phone number for a private trash pick-up company. I was happy to find a service that would come pick up our trash once a week! Success! Now I did find it interesting when the man with a thick southern accent told me that I "would receive a bill every 2 months, maybe 3 months sometimes." Hmmm.?.?.? They may not have a process but at least I will not have to pile it in my car or burn my trash like everyone else . I expected to see a normal garbage truck this morning, but this is what we got instead. I couldn't help but laugh and think to myself, we aren't in Texas anymore.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Visitors wanted

We have been Tennessee residents for just over 1 week. Our house is finally looking like a home instead of a storage unit! This is a picture of Brad and I on the back deck. We have loved sitting outside watching the horses graze and the beautiful sunsets. The pictures just don't do it justice, so you should just come see it for yourself : ) I was so sad to see Brad's parents leave, but now I get to look forward to a visit from my Mom this week! It is pretty clear that I am wanting visitors because I have spent a lot of time setting up the guest bedroom, meanwhile our bedroom is a complete neglected disaster. Well, I like to think my priorities are straight.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! Dallas has been sporting his "LOVERBOY" bandanna. We have had a lot of service men come out to the house to set up the Internet, Dish, etc (yes we have such modern conveniences out in the boonies). Every single one of them have been terrified of Dallas, and they always ask if he bites. It cracks me up that someone could be afraid of this blond bombshell wearing a scarf that says lover boy.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Mullet hunter

Now I understand that places like Wal-Mart may not be the best place to judge the people in this area; however, that's all I have to go by at this point. I've made a trip to Wal-Mart almost everyday that I've been here to buy all the random things a person needs when they move into a new home. My mom-in-law can back me up on this when I say about 50% of the people are rockin' the mullet. The other 45% just have horrible hair. A couple of days ago I saw such a fantastic mullet that I lost control of my cart and ran into a display. I am giving myself the title of Town Mullet Hunter and I'll try to give everyone a glimpse into this mullet movement in TN. I went to Wal-Mart again today, and I was prepared to snap some mullet pics with my iPhone. I actually saw a guy wearing a shirt that said, "Friends don't let friends wear mullets." He must be on the same mission, perhaps there is a club already formed. I wanted to take his picture but I got scared and ran to the organizational isle where no hillbillies will ever be found. Here is Dallas giving the mullet a try.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Ready or not...Here we come!

That's right. Brad and I loaded up (with the help of our wonderful family) and moved to Tennessee! We want to keep in touch with all our family and friends so a blog seemed like a perfect way to keep you updated on all of our adventures in The Volunteer State.

So how did this happen?

I'll try to make a long story short. Sometime in September or October, Brad and I were at church and a verse really stuck in my head. I kept thinking about it and I wrote it down on a dry erase plate in our kitchen. "Don't worry. I have it all planned out. Plans to take care of you, not abandon you. Plans to give you the future you hope for." Jeremiah 29

I knew God had a plan for us, but I prayed that He would clearly show it to us and help me be still and listen.
Not long after this, Brad's job in Fort Worth sent him to Tennessee to work on a project for a couple of weeks. Brad really enjoyed the people and the work. They really liked him too and offered him a position in their TN office. Brad and I had a lot of reservations because I had a great job in Texas. His company flew me to TN in November and we had an incredible time exploring the Smoky Mountains. We decided that this crazy idea could only work if I were able to transfer to TN with my job. Brad travelled to TN several more times over the next couple months. Brad recently went back to TN for 2 more weeks in January and his company made him a final offer. We finally started to realize that God couldn't make this any more obvious. We knew what we had to do. Brad accepted the offer and I turned in my 2 weeks notice at work.

My head is still spinning from all of this! We frantically packed up our house that we loved and we didn't have much time to say goodbye. Brad's incredible parents helped us pack and even made the long journey to TN with us. Somehow Brad and I have managed to accumulate so much stuff. We rented the largest U-haul thinking that would take care of it. Of course that would be too easy! We ended up with the huge U-hual , a slightly smaller one, and our 2 vehicles. So picture a 2 day caravan with Brad driving the biggest U-haul, I was right behind him in my car, Brad's Dad was behind me in the other U-haul, and Brad's Mom was at the back with Brad's car. Thank goodness for 2-way radios and creative trucker names to keep it entertaining.

Brad, aka Sasquatch
Alicia, aka Short bus/Squirt/Ricky Bobby (Thanks Lana)
Carter, aka Jack Bauer
Yvonne, aka Mother Goose

We drove from Fort Worth to Birmingham, AL and stayed with my best friends Stephanie and Todd. They were kind enough to let us hog their driveway and stay in their beautiful new house. We made the rest of the trip this past Saturday. It was such relief to all make it here safely. Brad's wonderful boss and coworker had decorated the outside of the house with posters, streamers, and balloons to welcome us. The best part was his boss showed up with a car load of the best BBQ we've ever had! So here we are. Brad and I are living out in the country with the most gorgeous mountain views. His Mom stayed for awhile to help us get situated and organized (this deserves another post, but she has introduced me to the world of labeling...awesome). And just so God could show us that we were doing the right thing, I was unemployed for less than a week! My company ended up rehiring me in TN! God is good!