tis' the season.......

I was grocery shopping today and made my round to the milk aisle. I picked up my gallon, my bottle of Coconut creamer, and as I was looking for the whipping cream, my eyes fell upon something that I crave 11 months out of the year....my favorite wintery night time drink. EGGNOG! There are a few secrets to enjoying my glass.....and I am going to share them with you!
1. You MUST drink eggnog from a chilled glass. Stick it in the fridge for about 30 minutes or so. It MUST be clear glass so you can watch how the eggnog sticks to the sides after each sip.
2. never EVER fill the glass all the way up (refer to number one for my reasoning)
3. Do not drink eggnog before 6:00. I prefer to drink it after the sun goes down. It's comparable to a glass of wine. It soothes, it relaxes, it fills my tummy with a nice rich sweetness that gives me that warm comfy feeling of home. This is NOT a feeling to be taken lightly, or at 3 in the afternoon! Your mind must be ready to unwind when you crack open that bottle:)
4. Hide your bottle of eggnog behind the carrots and cabbage to ensure no one will go searching for it! Even more important, so that no one will find it! Nothing is worse that coming downstairs at 8:30, when the kids are in bed, to find that your bottle of eggnog is gone or even worse, empty but still sitting in the fridge!

Now that you have been schooled on proper "eggnogging", sit back and enjoy~


Where'd we go?

I was thinking about my family last night....my extended family of cousins to be exact. Most of us are grown and married, and a few of us have bitten the proverbial bullet of babymaking! Growing up, my cousins were some of my very best friends. Chris was my first best....we spent all of our time together! ABC (Alisha, Beth, and Chris) were inseperable! We had this crazy friendship, that was loyal and fierce. We loved each other to the point of doing anything for the other. We shared many laughs, skipped school (too often) together, had sleepovers at Chris' first house (eating too much boiled shrimp, mac and cheese, and Hungry Howie's pizza!!!), and understood each other in ways that no one else did.

I moved from Florida to Mississippi in the summer of my Sophomore year. Chris and I kept in touch, he came to visit (surprised me on my first birthday away and even got sleeted in!), we called each other all the time, and he came to pick me up for Spring Break and for a few weeks in the summer. I remember one night when I was feeling really low and missing them(Beth and Chris) a LOT....Chris called and told me to go outside and look at the moon. He told me that he was looking up at the same moon and that I shouldn't feel so far away from him because we were able to look up at the same moon at the same time. It was very sweet....and I have many wonderful memories of our friendship.

After moving, I became very close to another cousin, Devonn. He sort of became my "Chris replacement". He was a HOOT to be around....always making me laugh, stopping by to see me at work, and even taking me on a "date" when the two of us were both single. As with Chris, Vonn and I spent a LOT of time together and got to know each other quirks and foibles better than anyone else....his brother, Damon, is younger....but he was always there too. It was me, Ricky, Daryl, Vonn, and Damon (and then along came our other cousin, Daren, Chris' brother...when HE moved to Ms)....we were a crazy group of friends, who just happened to be cousins. Maybe we were an oddity....to be family and be so close. To have each other's back no matter what. To not think about what OTHER'S thought about us...we were a happy little group and we chare MANY wonderful memories.

I have many wonder memories of Christmas's at Nanny and Pawpaw's house....seafood dinner on Christmas Eve, Fried turkey on Christmas....opening presents Christmas Eve and all of us kids waiting impatiently for the grownups to finish cleaning up so we could tear into our presents. I remember the first Christmas that WE were allowed to pass out presents...the bonfire, fireworks, stink bombs...the Christmas at Uncle David's that "Ricky hit a chicken!"...."our" Christmas song (Simply, having, a wonderful Christmas time...) and I remember us making a vow to ALWAYS have Christmas like this. I remember us trying to imagine us all grown, and vowing that we would have Christmas together forever....with our husbands/wives/children. We couldn't imagine it ever being any different than it was then.

But look at us now.....

My cousin Damon's first born son was born a few weeks ago and I called to tell him congrats. I am so excited for him and I really wanted to hear his voice. But all I got was voicemail....and never got a phone call back. It made me sad....that although I KNOW what is going on in his life, I am no longer a TRUE part of it. Just an outsider looking in....and hearing about it through the grapevine (or in my case, the phone line!)

Chris and Daren's first borns are on their way.....but I don't know anything other than that. I'm not sure when they are due, or what their names will be.

Devonn was married a year and half ago to a sweet girl named Julie....but I have no idea how they met....I have no idea WHY he decided SHE was the one...I have no idea if and WHEN they want kids....I don't even know where Julie works at.

Now, as I lay in bed last night thinking about them (which I do very often), I was saddened over this simple fact....Time, distance, and circumstance have driven wedges between these relationships that were once so fierce, so protective, and so full of love and happiness. I never dreamed we would be this "far apart", in every way. Even though I rarely see them, these people mean sooo much to me. I think often of how I wish I could talk to them more often....I often wonder how they are doing and if they are really happy in the decisions they've made for their lives. I wish they could know that I, Alisha, am now content and have finally come into my own.....that I am happy. I hope that they are happy too.

I still love them beyond words...these people that hold a piece of my childhood, these people that hold the other half of memories that make me whole....these people who contributed so much to the happiness of my childhood.....I wish there were some way to thank them for the memories....because all these years later, I still have those precious memories to reflect opon and they never fail to make me smile.

Chris, Daren, Vonn, and Damon.......I miss you guys.....I miss the innocence of our childhood, before we were all jaded and hurt over actions of the others......I miss being close enough to pick up the phone and call whenever I wanted to hear your voice....but most of all, I miss the friendship that was once such a defining part of my life.


Country Adventures

Here are pictures from my playgroup's latest outing at Country Adventures. My friend Dawnmarie planned it all out, so there was no work involved for me (yipee!) besides driving out! The kids had a really great time. Bub was so excited because his "other best friend", Logan, was finally home, so he had someone to hang out with! We were able to pet some animals, pick a pumpkin (from a basket), and go on a great hayride.


Brandon found out this week that Trane is sending their production managers and ONE guest to see a basketball game in Charlotte next month. When Brandon first told me, I was like.....?so? I am not a basketball fan by any stretch! I watch boxing, Sportscenter top 10 plays, and sometimes football (but usually only if the Manning boys, Tom Brady, or Brett Favre are playing), but NO basketball. The last time basketball appealed to me was when M Jordan was playing for the Bulls, and if you'd ever watched them play, you'd understand why. They played like magic! The way they passed the ball....it was like watching a finely tuned orchestra play the masterpiece of a lifetime. Anyhow, after my initial scoffing, he gave me this crazy look and said, "You don't want to see LeBron James play basketball!?? He's the best!? Are you crazy!?" Well, I did recognize the name, and yes, I DO know the guy is suppossed to be very good....but I don't think it's driving me like it is Brandon:) I tossed around the idea of telling Brandon to take a friend of ours who's team is ANYTHING Ohio, but I think this will be a lot of fun for me and Brandon. We will be traveling with other people (the company is renting a few cars to take us down) so I will get to meet some new people (YAY!) and Trane is also giving us $$ to spend at the game (assuming that's what it's meant for) We have really great seats (behind center court something) so I am looking forward to MAYBE getting a pic of someone "famous" to post o my page:) hehe...


Munch on this Thomas Kincaid

Lori took this picture with my camera last night and I LOVE it. I applied Sepia tone to it and prefer it over the color one....just had to post it! If you click on it, you can view the larger version of it.

Weston Lake

Lori and Duane invited us out to Weston Lake with them on Friday night. We had SUCH a great time!! The weather was amazing....very fallish (is that a word?)! I even had to wear my fluffy coat!! The kids fished for bit and all of the kiddos caught "baby fish" and Cody even caught a small snapping turtle, which Brooke picked up and promptly THREW when her daddy told her what she was holding...lol! We went for a walk in the woods, and my lovely husband decided to scare the poo out of me and Lori by sneaking up on us. We grilled, ate, sat by the fire, made s'mores, and had a really nice evening. We really are lucky to have these two, no, FOUR, in our lives! Good times, and even GOODER friends! I'll post more of these pics later.


Punkin' pickin

The kiddos begged me to take them to the pumpkin patch today so I grudgingly gave in...and got some great pictures! They had a fun time running around picking out pumpkins to decorate their rooms with. It was pretty cold out so we stood by the fire for a bit and the man running the patch was nice enough to offer me a bottle of water when my coughing got the better of me! There was also a little booth set up for taking pictures, so we posed for a few silly ones.

border="0" />

Life Laughs.....crazy mum style

My friend Casey hosted our "Life Laughs" book discussion last night at her house. Everyone brought food and drinks of their choice. The spread was wonderful, drinks were plentiful (some indulged more than others..lol), but the conversation topped it all! HELLO!? Have you ever gotten a group of women together to make fun of the men in their lives!? Trust me, it was a no fail night of laughs.....lots of them! From Sarah not knowing who Amber was (when she'd been talking to her half the night), Anne spilling the beans on her bed fun, some of us admitting the terror we rent on a certain "crunchy group", and Erica getting a whole LOTTA loose....the night was a success! I have got a crazy group of some serious closet freak friends:) I had such a good time forgetting about time, and just having a nice night with my girlfriends. Here are some pictures from our night of "debauchery".....mum style :)


fun shmun

I had quite the night and just have to document it for future generations....or just for my family to refer to at some inopportune time over Christmas dinner.

I was getting very bored sitting around the house this evening and entertained the idea of loading the kiddos in the car and heading to the gym for a bit of a workout. After much coaxing and begging on my part, the kiddos still didn't want to go and sit in the nursery while mummy burned a few hundred calories. sigh. In efforts to get them moving as well, I resorted to acting thrilled with my new idea for some exercise.....jumping on the trampoline.

The kids went crazy because they are always begging me to get on, but I know just how big a workout it is, so I more often than not....decline. (and if you haven't jumped on a trampoline in a while, please don't scoff until you've jumped for a good straight ten minutes. Trampoline mats are tighter than they use to be. That or my muscles are a bit looser)

So we head to the trampoline and I hop on ahead of the kids to sweep the sand off. When they get on, Bub decides that we should play chase. *chase on a trampoline involves running around in crazy fast circles, in half bounce mode* we take turns and I am now the chasee *the person doing the chasing*. I round one "corner" and go to grab ahold of Bub's shirt when somehow my foot catches in the net. I jerk because for some strange reason it scares me. (the whole hand reaching from the grave and grabbing your foot experience in broad daylight while the kids were watching kinda thing) When I jerk, I somehow bring down half of the net with me. The kids scream, I fall and become even MORE entangled in the net. When I try to stand, I find my ponytail is now also trapped in the twisted mess.

Recovered from their initial shock of the net falling around me, the kids are ecstatic, thinking mommy planned the whole thing. They are laughing and jumping as hard as they can, in turn bouncing me in such a way that I am becoming more wrapped up by the second. My first instinct is to yell bloody murder at them and demand for them to stop....but I am laughing too hard. That's when I realize that my backyard neighbor has stopped sweeping his back steps to watch me....and he is laughing as well. It was my sobering moment.

I somehow got the kids off and untangled myself from the net. I then spent a good 15 minutes trying to re-tie the net to it's posts....which I succeeded in doing minus one side of the net (which my hubby will tend to when he gets home this week)

All said and done, I am sure I burned at least 300 calories......on sheer laughter alone :)