I have to start somewhere!

I blog daily.
Reading others blogs daily, I mean.
But that's not good enough for me, 
I miss recording our life & being able to look back on it!...
I haven't written on this blog in months because I feel like there is nothing to write about :)

So today I will start by writing about "NOTHING" in particular.

I'm wearing my green.
It's Saint Patrick's Day.
Our Laney love is basting in the sun by the front door.
My husband is playing neighborhood I.T. Tech.

I'm about to continue my mission of "forty bags of purging"
during the 4-0- days of lent.

So far so good, we have cleaned "out" 
and organized almost every nook & cranny in our house.
except the attic. which we will get to no-where soon
No we are on to round two..., 
going back through all the areas we have cleaned & re-purging.

Here are my tips in case you are right smack dab 
in the middle of "SPRING Cleaning" 
or just thinking about maybe,  someday, possibly, doing it...

*go purchase 3 or 4 large moving boxes from your local home improvement store.
(label them: donate, consign, trash, keep- find new home)
*place your boxes in one central location in your home.  I take a laundry basket to the room I am currently sorting & then transfer from laundry basket to appropriate box.

*make a list of all the rooms in your home. under each room categorize the  main areas to sort.  
*once you conquer one area. CHECK IT OFF YOUR LIST (with the most obnoxious color highlighter)... Damn doesn't that feel good :)!

*when your donate box gets full pack-it into a trash bag (label with a marker) and load into your car :) to then take to the appropriate place.  We are donating to the local Bargain Box.  I am a member of the Junior League of Raleigh and each year I have a quota donation to meet (last year we were the highest donors... go us :).  When tax time rolls around we get an itemized document of every item we have donated and an associated value.  EASY write off!

*once you have purged an area... throw away the random trash, dust balls, etc. and put that room back together again ( I leave the "deep cleaning" for another day/ another list).

*after you have purged the areas on your list.  Only if you have a brain like mine... Start Over and do it again!  I have a really hard time getting rid of because I feel like I will need or regret tossing.  Partly because at some point it was paid for or given to us as a gift (because they obviously wanted us to have it, right?).  Secondly, I have a daily battle with myself about being overwhelmed, overwhelmed with STUFF.  I need "less is more" in my life!  I need room in my closets.  I am a chronic organizer.  Everything in my life is labeled, sorted, and organized. ALWAYS.   I often feel like we are growing out of our 2000 sq. ft. house. just my husband, dog, and I.  Not possible.  Don't need larger, just need less.

*then when all of the purging is finished.... I break out my trusty weekly & monthly cleaning list.  Remember I told you I had an organized list for everything in my life.  NO LIE.
My goal is that when SPRING really arrives in full fledged fashion.... 
We will have a lighter load & an un-guilty conscious 
Sooo... that we can play outside ALL SUMMER LONG.  

Back to work!



Our heads are hanging very low.
They might even soon wobble to the flo' floor.

So discouraged after our big loss to the Florida Gators.
Will be back to blogging as soon as I have time to compose myself, 
get my shit together, and learn that life will go on even though 
Tennessee did not pick up a win today.


Oh well, now please excuse me while I go back to my 
"orange-cha-glad-you're-not-a-gator-rita"orange margarita
to liquidate my sorrows away.

Thank god we have good friends to soften the blow & drink with us, ha.


mmm tasty... would hate to be a Gator


 3 pounds Alligator, cut into cubes
1 leek
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp dried tarragon
1/2 tsp grated lemon peel
1/2 tsp dried thyme
tsp white pepper
tsp dried sage
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup whipping cream
pinch of salt
chopped parsley
thin lemon slices

Who's ready for a little Alligator Stew?!

Well to be real honest, we aren't really.
We quiver at the thought of indulging in anything gator related!
We are gator HATERS in this family...
Hoping to score a Big WIN against the Florida Gators today!
Hang a gator, skin a gator, eat a gator... 
Have at it BIG ORANGE!!!



Yesterday was a hard day.

My stomach was in knots, and I couldn't quite shake the "I'm about to bust in tears feeling".  Thank goodness I had some girlfriends with me to dry my tears when they started to flow.

I struggled with several different emotions yesterday... 
anger for the stupid sons of b*&c#@s that thought it would be cool to kill thousands, sadness for those that have lost, gratefulness for those that put their lives on the line.  You name it.. the thought probably ran through my anxious mind.

However, throughout the day the one thing that was on my mind, & more persistent than any was sorrow for my sister in law Stacy and our nephew Richie.  On September 29, 2008 they suffered a terrible loss...We all did!  Our hero, Captain Richie Cliff was killed while deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.  

It was three years ago yesterday that Richie left for his 3rd and final deployment & not a day has gone by that I have not stopped to pray for those that have lost a spouse, father, mother, child, brother, etc.  It is gut wrenching to think that everyday a widow is carrying on because of careless, heartless people, who are out to take down our country which is based upon freedom.

This is the last picture that we have of Richie, Stacy his wife (pregnant with their first child), and her two sisters at our wedding reception three years ago in August.  I look at this picture often and wonder what life would be like with him around.  Stacy has shown more courage and strength than anyone I know, and I am so proud of her for raising their little boy as a single parent.  I am grateful that her husband sacrificed his life for me and my family; she is living proof that we still have amazing people on this earth that are willing to give their lives for others!

9.11. was a day that we as Americans will never forget, a day we lost so many, a day that our lives all changed...  It is so important to remember as we go on with our everyday lives that we still have troops fighting unselfishly for our freedom and giving up their lives to make sure we live in a world of peace!

"Some Gave All"