" Not all who wander are lost."


Goodbye 2010!

I won't lie or try to find a positive spin on this one, a lot of 2010 sucked! I am thankful God used it to teach us so many lessons, and I am grateful that it is now almost over. I know a new year will not fix all my woes, but it feels like a fresh start. I feel like I may be able to let go of 2010 and possibly some of the stress it created. I am taking the time to recap for myself, so read if you'd like:

We were jobless (cashless) for most of it. We struggled not to slip into debt to stay a float. We cashed out every savings account we had and somehow we made it. I still feel like I am holding my breath, waiting for the worst to happen. We had so many amazing encouragers (not sure if this is a real word, but I'm keeping it). We could not have survived without the help and prayers from our families and friends.

Jason did a short tour of night shift in 2010. We were so grateful for the income that provided, but the hours turned our household upside down. Jason will agree that the low pay, mindless work, and late crazy hours left him feeling hollow and depressed, especially after being laid off from a job he loved and was so good at. Hannah is SUCH a Daddy's girl. She missed him tucking her in bed each night. Her little world was so confused and her sleep patterns are still crazy. We would have adapted, but the job was gone almost a quickly as it came it seems.

I love my job deeply. I love being the 4th generation in my family to hold it. I love working side by side with Dad and seeing my Aunt each week. I was so heartbroken when I had to be laid off. I cried as I searched for other work. I felt like I was letting down 4 generations! It hurts to see my Dad, my superman and fixer of all things, struggle and worry about the future of this business he has worked at his whole life.

We are blessed with Hannah and any time we can spend with her. She has always been such a grown up, well behaved child. 2010 was her 3rd year, the year she discovered her emotions, how to throw a tantrum, and that she could in fact reach the kitchen counter tops. As a parent, 2010 was a bit of a struggle! I do not regret it at all and cherish every minute I get with her, but some of those precious times can be tiring and frustrating. I think we have honed our skills and come up with a plan to reinforce good behaviors, but for about a month there I feel like I lost control. With so much going on, I forgot that Hannah could sense our fears. We tried so hard to not discuss adult things in front of her, but she's so smart. She was stressed right along with us.

Jason's sweet mother fell and broke her hip last Christmas, and had to spend the first few months of 2010 in a rehab facility trying to heal and recover. Bobby and Diane watch Hannah 2 days a week and are her 2 favorite playmates. I am happy to report Diane is doing better now and had a great Christmas at home with our family!

So, all this was making what we felt was the worst year of our lives, then came the FLOOD! I know for so many families, this was the most awful experience of their lives, but for us I feel it was a turning point. We were trapped in our neighborhood with no electricity for days. Sounds awful, right? Well, we made some amazing friends that week. I discovered that the nicest people I have ever known live right in my neighborhood!The flood also brought new life to our business. Suddenly there was work to do again! I was never so happy to be busy and be able to help flood victims move back home. 

We spent the end of 2010 cultivating some great new friendships, relaxing around a fire pit, and finding fun free things to do in Pegram. We began laughing a bit more and letting loose to play more with Hannah. Then, BMI came along, hired Jason, and so much of our financial stress suddenly dissolved.

As the year closes, I can see how God was trying to teach me about HIS timing. I desperately needed some patience and a reality check. He showed me (I thought) how bad things could get, then the flood came and I learned I still had way more than I needed or deserved! I have met some amazing new people (clients too) this year, real people with stories and struggles too. We learned how to lean on each other a bit harder and ask for help from family when we needed it. God answered each of my prayers. We still live in our warm cozy house, have plenty of food in the fridge, managed to keep the bills paid, and everyone is healthy! We were blessed beyond measure.

This year I will actually celebrate the close of 2010. It was a tough year and I won't miss it. We enjoyed some sweet times with the struggle, but I am praying 2011 is a sweeter, more lighthearted year for us all!


Just made me smile

Awesome Picture taken by my neighbor Brian! This is my little Tinkerbell playing on Halloween afternoon. I just love it! This photo somehow captures the little girl I'll always see in my head, even when she's old like me. I am so thankful God blessed me with her!

Day 16

Someone or something you definitely could live without....

Ok, so this is a broad topic. I could live without world hunger, war, racism, negativity,my mortgage, that extra 30 lbs... long list, but I guess it should be a bit more specific.

I could live without a telephone. Random I know, but I HATE talking on the phone. I could not live without the ability to text, email, face book, or even better go visit people however. If I never had to answer another ringing phone? I'd be in heaven. I don't know what it is about phone conversations that I dislike so much. I even dispise listening to voicemail.

This does not mean I hate you, friends, for calling me. I love surprise calls from friends I haven't talked to in forever. I do enjoy an occasional chat while driving as well, but I have to be in the right mood.

I know the phone is a necessity in my office, and gladly make sales calls and talk to clients, but deep inside I wish it could all be done in person or via text message. Don't know why. I have no tragic phone memories or anything. Maybe I just wore myself out talking in my tweens and teens. I dunno.

So please friends, call me anytime. Do not be surprised if you hear me grumble when answering, and know it's not you at all. It's the evil device I must hold my ear against in order to hear your sweet voice.


Day 15

Ok, I am overachieving now. I'll do 2 today for whoever is still reading this.

Day 15- Someone or something you can't live without, because you've tried....

I could be sappy here and write a tribute to Jason, but honestly, I have not tried living without him. Not as an adult anyway. I have friends I could not live without, but haven't tried that either. There are a few people I wonder how I managed without them in my life, but I'll save that for another day.

I tried living without carbs briefly once. Epic fail. I NEED pasta and bread apparently :) It was not impactful enough to blog about...

There is one thing that I very recently tried to remove from my life. I feel guilty even admitting this.... I simply can not function without TV (and the DVR and remote control to be specific). We removed it from our living room this summer in effort to encourage more family bonding. It worked. We spent the summer evenings playing games, music, and reading.

We enjoyed our time together, BUT somehow all ended up in bed most evenings watching a movie before H fell asleep. As the days got shorter and the nights colder, I began longing for the TV in the living room again. I crave Sundays by the fire, eating junk food, and watching the Titans play. I adore my Thursday night shows and feel lost without knowing what is happening at Seattle Grace or in Scranton, NJ. About a month ago, Jason reluctantly helped me rearrange the living room yet again to make room for my beloved moving picture box.

I feel so bad admitting this, but I love TV! It helps me forget my day and focus on something totally unrelated. I enjoy the noise as I fall asleep each night. It keeps me company when I am home alone. I will watch most anything reality related. I LOVE Deadliest Catch, anything with Mike Rowe, cash cab, MythBusters...  I have several shows I record and watch every week. Even Jason now sits with me to watch Desperate Housewives each Sunday evening when Hannah is asleep. I hate that I like to watch TV so much. I know there are much more productive ways to spend my time. I just can't help it. I have tried, and failed to remove it. Most any night at our house after 7:30 pm, you can find me watching something on tv, playing my guitar, and texting or facebooking from my phone. now there's pure honesty for you!

I'm BACK!!!

Ok, I have returned. I got very busy at work and had to walk away from the world of blogging for a bit, but do not fret. I'm ready for day 14.... a hero who has let you down (it says write a letter, but I won't )

I can not actually think of one person I would call a hero who has let me down as an adult. I know better than to expect anyone to be perfect, especially not celebrities, athletes, etc. The heroes in my life are people I actually know. People who inspire me to be a better me in many areas. My hubby, who is such an amazing father to Hannah, inspires me to keep my patience with her. My in laws, who have been married forever and still laugh and smile together inspire me. I have friends who are "heroes" because they are excellent wives and fabulous mothers and fathers. I know many military heroes, whose bravery I could never even grasp. I have heroes I look up to at work, trim carpenters who can fix anything, guys like Dad who can solve the worlds problem with a drill and some screws. I never in my adult life have looked to any one person to be a hero in every area.

I guess to satisfy this topic I'll say that when I was much younger looked up to my parents as heroes in every area of my life. What little girl doesn't think her Daddy hung the moon, and want to grow up to be just like Momma? When they divorced, I discovered that even parents aren't perfect. They let me down. I thought they would be together for my whole life. I expected to always have my complete family at home each night for dinner. If I could count on anything in life it was them, and then they were separated and I was beyond lost. Since then, I realized that no one is perfect. Life is rough and things just happen. If I can count on anything, it's that things will change and I'm ok with that now. Maybe they did me a favor teaching me that so young.

I pray daily and try to be sure God is in control of my life. I enjoy my "heroes" for what they can inspire in me. I know that no one is perfect, and do not expect anyone to be (well except myself, but that goes back to day 1 and "let it go").


We now interrupt this regularly scheduled Blog....

I have been working like a crazy person this week, which is a GOOD thing! I promise to return to blogging soon. I never promised to complete all 30 days in 30 actual days anyway, but no fear, I will finish the list...

On a random side note, anyone want to go out dancin' with me soon? I'm feeling the need to cut loose and go wild for an evening...

Stay Tuned. More crazy ramblings from Pegram coming up after the break.


Day 13

A band or Artist who has gotten you through some tough ass days (write a letter.)

Um, ok. So maybe a 14 year old created this list after all.... I'll attempt. It'll be lame. Just warning you.

Dear James Taylor (told you it'd be a lame attempt at a letter),

    I have seen you in concert with the greatest loves of my life. Even once, I sat at the Ryman, singing along, with sweet Hannah in my belly. Your sweet, smooth voice mellows me. Your lyrics remind me that all is well in the world. My Dad introduced me to your music long long ago (by 8 track). I feel like I have known the words to Sweet Baby James since I could talk, though never could sing them in a way that would do anything but insult you :)

I have listened to you through some tough break-ups. You helped me fall asleep at night, and I spend many mornings listening to One Man Band as I apply my makeup. I even selected "How Sweet it Is (To Be Loved By You)" as my first dance with my husband. "You were better to me than I was to myself. For me there's you and nobody else..." Could there be more perfect lyrics for a first dance? Bonus- It was upbeat, went by fast, and easy to dance to in front of 150 of our closest friends/ family members. You have a little country twang and great soulful and sometimes funny lyrics.I can listen to most any of your songs without worrying that Hannah will start asking about the meaning of certian "words".

I laugh now when Hannah points out that "Our Town" from Disney's CARS, "Sounds like that man you like Mama..." She can already hear and pick out your voice. She has been listening to you since conception. She'd better know you. I want her to at least be exposed to real music, before Hannah Montana or that Beaver kid infect her brain.

So, Thank You James. Thank you for being an awesome musician. Thank you for being someone that my hubby and I can both enjoy (which is a great feat considering he is such a metal head). You have laid out some pretty daunting challenges when it comes to guitar playing. I'm tackling some of them as best I can. I'll try to do you proud.

Sincerly (and reluctantly writing this)