Monday, December 29, 2008

*gasp* NERDS!

Here it is. The long awaited (mostly by Mandi) post about the Anime Convention Ross and I found. Coincidentally, my brother and sister-in-law found them later. The hotel her company Christmas party was at just so happened to be the hotel next to the convention center. When they walked in, one of the nerds saw them looking around and said, "The people dressed like you are on the 3rd floor." PRICELESS.

So, this was the first picture I made Ross take. I say that because, well, I couldn't keep a straight face and he could so I made him go take the pictures. He walked up to this kid and said, "Hey dude, sweet Link costume! Can I take a picture?" The kid got WAY excited (yunno, since Ross and I are obviously normal people) and unsheathes his sword and strikes this fierce pose.

I actually took these 2. Please be advised that this is actually a female.

These girls were wearing vampire fangs. And they seemed to really enjoy Ross, mostly because he's not ugly and he has facial hair. *giggle*

What? You're in a giant amphibian costume? *click*

There were so many more fantastic outfits, ranging from Harajuku-esque crazies to ninja wannabes. It was GLORIOUS.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

what a difference a year makes...

Last year, Christmas Eve was actually really really fun. Denver and I had some breakfast over at his grandma's (we spent Christmas with his mom's family in North Carolina) then went exploring. We took silly pictures on the cannons and statues at the capital building in Durham. We walked all over campus at Duke (which is really beautiful). We picked up shirts for my brother at NC State and UNC. We got Caribou Coffee on campus in Chapel Hill. We had an intensely beautiful and intimate moment when he took me to meet his mother, which means we went to her grave together. To be in that place with him, holding him and talking to her, I felt for a moment like my heart was going to burst with all the feelings I was experiencing - love for him, absorbing his pain and wanting to take it all from him, wishing I could actually have known her, and a gagillion other things. Then it was dinner and presents with the family at Grandma's. It was really really simple and great.

This year, I got up at 8:15 and scrubbed the toilet. Bernie, Katy, and the kids came over at 10 and we all had brunch. Then I ran a bunch of errands with various members of the immediate family. We went to church at 6 (where another passage from Joel was paraphrased, and I really think God is poking me pretty hard there) and then had presents at the parents' house afterwards. My brother and Katy know me so well. They got me a giraffe and an ELI MANNING JERSEY. I'm feeling so good with my family that I have been really good at not feeling so lonely like I did on Thanksgiving/my birthday. Maybe that'll change tomorrow. Who knows? In the mean time, I'm rocking my jersey and looking forward to pimp cups with my cousins tomorrow.

Merry Christmas, y'all. God bless you!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Total God Day

Mandi, I'm gonna have to save the nerds for another entry. God was too big today to not blog about it.

I have said several times, to several different people, that one of the biggest things I am angry about is feeling used up and wasted.

A little background: I was 22 when I met him, 24 when I married him, and apparently 27 when I'm getting divorced from him (although I still have yet to be served with papers). Because I have had to come to terms with limits on my life due to diabetes, my 20's have been prime real estate in my life. Those years were the best chance in my life to have children, and I always wanted to have them that age anyway (even before I had diabetes) because my parents and grandparents were older when they had children, and I found that very distasteful. Becoming a mom in your mid-20's has always been my ideal, so when I was 19 and my doctor informed me that when I hit the big 3-0, my status as a high risk pregnancy would basically triple, which means the odds of me being able to successfully have biological children get even lower (which is pretty sobering, let me tell you), I became even more determined that being a mom in my mid-20's was the way to go.

In addition to the beautiful children I've been dreaming about since I was 12 slipping away, I also felt just emotionally used up. I have given everything, "my all", to him and my marriage. I have been the best wife I could possibly be. I'm not, nor have I ever claimed to be, perfect, but I tried. And the used up part comes from feeling like I did as God commanded and gave myself completely to my husband. I feel like I can never be anyone's wife but Denver's, mostly because all the wifely acts and behaviors would feel insincere to anyone else. Those were things intended for him and him alone, and somehow I feel like it would always feel cheapened with someone else. That absolutely TERRIFIES me. I love him so deeply and unconditionally, so how could I possibly ever feel that intensely for someone else? The fact that my marriage being reconciled is God's best for my life is because those things were intended to be just for him. I need to trust God's provision, and I do know that he will provide and fill me. Its just very hard to feel that way when you feel so used up and wasted on the inside.

So here's where God gave me a big blessing this morning and made it relavent to spill that info. I was on my way to pick up my brother for church this morning, and I was listening to Joel Osteen's sermon on the radio. God knew I needed to hear it, and that's honestly why I was running late. If I had been on time this morning, I would've missed it!! Basically, he was talking about enduring trials and hard times at life. The point of going through things is to be a victOR not a victIM. You got THROUGH it. You didn't stay there. God didn't leave you in the tribulation. And by faith, you know He always will. He paraphrased some scripture from the book of Joel. Basically, he said, "God will give you back all the years that are stolen from you by trials and troubles." Joel Osteen, God just used you for my personal prayer fulfillment.

Then after Sunday school, I was really filled with realization at a HUGE way God's really changed my heart. That little boy "Timmy" that I blogged about a few weeks ago, I really used to hope he wouldn't be there on Sunday mornings. I just did not like that kid!! He's still a bit of a challenge, and he still throws fits, but the little guy has wormed his way into my heart with his giant blue eyes. In large group, I sat with him during the songs because he doesn't always participate and that keeps him from distracting the other kids. He has become quite the snuggler. He was holding my hands and wrapping my arms around him. At one point, he said, "Remember when we saw each other at that party (the church Cowboy Christmas) when I had my face painted? Wasn't that just so fun?" It absolutely filled my heart with the purest kind of joy. He eventually climbed up in my lap and snuggled up against me. He popped his thumb in his mouth and started to doze in my arms. Isn't it amazing how a little boy that made me crazy and I could hardly stand a few months ago could turn around and make me love him so much? God's just cool like that.

Do you think it was because tonight started Hannukah? ;-)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Sights of the Season

Last Sunday, I took 2 of my nieces to the Cowboy Christmas party at my church. I would like to share how stinkin' cute they are with their faces painted:



This awesome car was in the parking lot when we were waiting in line to get on the hay ride. Yes, it really does say, "This is Holy Hip Hop"

After dinner tonight, we partook in one of our most favorite pastimes... we went and looked at Christmas lights! This time, I totally took some pictures.

the afore mentioned LITE BRITE HOUSE

This house is ATROCIOUS. They are in violation of just about every rule of outdoor Christmas decor out there! How many Santas do you need in one small yard? You're not supposed to have more than one anyway, because it causes rifts in the space/time continuum if you do. Not that anyone really instantly notices that there are like 6, because, well, the yard is so littered with Garden Ridge and Walmart specials that you can't really tell what anything is! Maybe that's why they didn't notice the chunks of burned out icicle lights on the eaves...

Except this. My dad was all wrapped up in the fact that Mary has sunglasses on her forehead. Me? Well, I was too busy being obsessed with/appalled by the fact that they have an ADULT JESUS in their nativity looking at the BABY JESUS. Ross said that if you're Jesus, you can be at your own birth. You're JESUS. You can do anything. I still think this is just INSANE.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

These are a few of my favorite things!

I know I'm not the only person out there who is like, "Okay, SERIOUSLY. No." when My Favorite Things comes on the radio this time of year or gets included on Christmas CDs. Its totally SPRING when that song comes on in the movie. Lisle was out smoochin' Rolf in the gazebo in the rain, then there's a thunderstorm and the kids all get Colonial American in Maria's room. That doesn't say Christmas to me!! Is it just because she mentions packages and snowflakes? Is that all it takes to make a Christmas carol now? Sheesh. IT IS NOT A CHRISTMAS SONG, Y'ALL! Anyway, I just needed to address that since I'm about to give a list of some things going on in my life over the next week or so that I'm totally about.

with regards to Julie Andrews...

1. Ross Thomas Lucksinger. I was super stoked believing I'd get a whole night with the most wonderful man in my life, but then the stupid Amarillo airport messed that up. Instead, I get about 2 hours Saturday morning. Hey, better than nothing.

2. Cardboard cut outs. Now, you actually may not have known about the Beacon of Awesome, but its the trifecta of Ross, Jen Hernandez, and myself. So that we can always have the full beacon assembled, we're having lifesize cardboard cutouts made of each of us. Yes, we will take them places and take pictures. We can do things like that because, well, we're awesome. And awesomely obsessed with each other.

3. Donde Esta Santa Claus by Guster. If you do not know this song, or have never heard it, stop what you're doing (okay, maybe finish reading...) and download it on iTunes. That song is THE JAM. Hello?! They hope Santa doesn't forget his castanets?! And they're a bunch of Jews from Massachusetts singing the song? GOLD.

4. Grey jeans. More specifically, cute, insanely comfortable grey jeans for $10 a size smaller than the pants I wore into the store. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS

5. Okay, clearance racks in general. I can't help it. I love a deal. I got an adorable pink lacy camy for $2 and then a green dress for $7. Put 'em together and it's a suuuuuuuuuuuuper cute outfit for less than $10. I also got a few new long sleeve shirts (ya know, for the 3 or 4 days a month its in the 30's and 40's before darting back up to 75) and pretty much all for under $10.

6. Sil Pat sheets. Okay, seriously, how did I bake without them? I've been baking 84,000 Christmas cookies this week and those sheets are the greatest thing EVER. Trust me.

7. Natalie and Isaac. Tonight is my brother's company Christmas party so I get to watch the kids. OVERWHELMING JOY. When I was telling Natalie about it last Friday, the conversation was a priceless classic:
Aunt Suzy: Hey Nat, guess what? Next Thursday night, I get to be here when you go to sleep!
Natalie: Slumber party?! (eyes light up)
AS: Maybe. But you'd have to sleep in the bed with me because I might get scared.
Nat: No, Aunt Suzy. I have to sleep in my own bed. But if you get scared, you just holler for me, and I'll come. I'll come protect you.

8. The Lite Brite House. I went out looking at Christmas lights with my parents the other night and my dad took us to see the coolest Christmas lights I have ever seen. Not cool in the breathtakingly beautiful, sparkly traditional sort of way. Not cool in the spectacular, cohesive display kind of way. No no. Cool in the "Holy crap, you just took your childhood to a whole new level" kind of way. This man (I know its a man because my dad saw him out working on it) meticulously strung LED lights in perfect diags (he could write band drill, seriously) over his ENTIRE ROOF. I'm trying to figure out how to take pictures that convey the amazing spectacle.

9. Bowl Pools. Fantasy Football was a bust for me this year (thankfully I played in a free league) so now its time for Round 2 of football gambling: BOWL POOLS! I'm playing in 2 this year, and that means I can be twice as excited when Florida beats the Hell out of Poops and his merry band of dirty cheaters (I love you, Erin). I think the Gators can BOOM, too.

10. PIMP CUPS. After downing several bottles of wine between us on Thanksgiving, my cousins and I have taken a stance on holiday drinking - we're all for it! I came up with the idea that we need pimp cups for Christmas. So I'm making them. I found goblets. I bought rhinestones. I'm craftacular and I love my cousins.

Monday, December 15, 2008

just some scriptures I'm claiming

"We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose." Romans 8:28

"Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]." I Corinthians 13:7

"But He said to me, My grace (my favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for My strength and power are made perfect and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness. Therefore, I will all the more gladly glory in my weaknesses and infirmities, that the strength and power of Christ may rest upon me! So for the sake of Christ, I am well pleased and take pleasure in infirmities, insults, hardships, persecutions, perplexities and distresses; for when I am weak [in human strength], then I am truly strong." II Corinthians 12:9-10

"But whatever former things I had that might have been gains to me, I have come to consider as [one combined] loss for Christ's sake. Yes, furthermore, I count everything as a loss compared to the possession of the priceless privilege of knowing Jesus Christ my Lord and of progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him. For His sake I have lost everything and consider it all to be mere rubbish, in order that I may win Christ." Philippians 2:7-8

"Fear nothing that you are about to suffer. [Dismiss your dread and your fears!] Behold, the devil is indeed about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested and proved and critically appraised, and for ten days you will have affliction. Be loyally faithful unto death [even if you must die for it], and I will give you the crown of life." Revelation 2:10

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

they're so precious

Okay, you may not have known, but, um, I'm the proudest aunt ever. I am beyond in love with my niece and nephew. Seriously. How my brother and Katy managed to produce the most amazing children ever is beyond me, but I'm so glad they did.

Here are a few ridiculously adorable pictures from their birthday party this past weekend (Natalie turned 4 at the end of November and Isaac turned 1 at the start of December)

Too much cute, right?

Sunday, December 7, 2008


"Nevertheless I am continually with You; You do hold my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to honor and glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And I have no delight or desire on earth besides You. My flesh and heart may fail, but God is the Rock and firm Strength of my heart and my Portion forever. For behold, those who are far from You shall perish; You will destroy all who are false to You and like [spiritual] harlots depart from You. But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God and made Him my refuge, that I may tell of all Your works." Psalm 73:23-28

"The Lord raises the poor out of the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap and the dung hill, that He may seat them with princes, even with the princes of His people. He makes the barren woman to be a homemaker and a joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord!" Psal 113:7-9

"Remember the word and promise to Your servant, in which You have caused me to hope. This is my comfort and consolation in my affliction: that Your word has revived me and given me life." Psalm 119:49-50

Friday, December 5, 2008

I've talked enough about my 84,000 trips to Garden Ridge that I probably should post some of my fine work on here. I'd been procrastinating about blogging because my heart told me there was something big and meaningful coming that I needed to blog about. I'm sure it's still coming, but I couldn't stand not having updated in over a week, so here's this instead.

The day before Thanksgiving, Mom and I went over to bake cookies with Natty. I know I'm biased, but seriously, look at this kid and tell me she's not adorable:

Decorating was decidedly less fufilling this year. When it's your own home, there's something deeply satisfying about it. The past 3 years, making the apartment cozy and festive for Denver and the girls just made me feel right. Even though most of the decorating I did this year was my decorations just at my parents' house, it still didn't feel the same. I like having them up regardless, so here's some pics of highlights.

That empty stocking hook sucks.

Lucie says, "Look, Mommy! I can help you unwrap decorations!"

until she gets tired and takes a nap on our stockings.

my beautiful Hallmark tree in the dining room!

Yea, I made that wreath. Garden Ridge hooked it up.

my amazingly wonderful UT tree and my super cute nutcracker pillow that magically matches my bedding (totally unplanned. I've had that pillow since high school)