Friday, November 18, 2011


I'm sure I've mentioned more than once on here that I have a big brother.  In most of the obvious ways, we are night and day.  He's always been a daredevil; I'm a bit of a scaredy-cat.  He's a boundry-tester; I'm a strict adherer to the rules.  He's hard rock; I'm bluegrass and jazz.

Needless today, a very large portion of our lives was spent at least a little at odds.  We are 2.5 years apart (and only 2 grades in school), so we were close enough to clash over friends and coolness frequently.  And then during our college and post-college years, we had moments of really connecting and moments of "forced friendship".

A month or so ago, I was chatting with one of Drew's graduated students and he was saying he needed to go spend some time with his brother.  Then he said, "I don't know why I bother.  We have NOTHING in common and he doesn't make ANY effort."

I was so glad to be able to say that I knew EXACTLY what that kind of brotherly-relation ship felt like.  I told him that my brother and I went through years of that, but that I am SO GLAD that one or the other always MADE the interaction happen occassionally because now, when our lives have become much more similar than dissonant, we very easily slipped into being close friends.

NOW, we're both parents of 3 year olds (born exactly 4 months apart, to the day).  We're both married.  We both have had struggled through unhappy work situations (and now we both have found better jobs).  We struggle through many of the same things in life, we find the same things funny, we cheer on the same football team (ROLL TIDE!), and we both LOVE our lives and try to stay focused on the joys our families bring us. 

We still listen to different music and he's still WAY more *ahem* BALSY than I am, BUT he's one of my best friends.  We talk regularly, whether it's about what to do when X happens with one of the girls or just to check in and say, "I was thinking about you and wanted to tell you that I love you!" 

I'm so glad that we always made the effort to keep a little in touch and I'm even MORE glad that we have grown so close.  (And I am VERY glad that I will be seeing him for a whole WEEK very, very soon!)

Love you, Scooteroo!

Love & Shipoopies,

Friday, November 11, 2011

Lest we think she's not paying attention...

Tucker LOVES to "read" her books to us.  For a long time her stories all began, "Cinderella (or whichever character) was a kind and beautiful."  Now she's started picking up other parts of stories she's been read and throwing them in.  My favorite parts?  "Who's been benning in my house?!?"  and the fact that she is SO PLEASED with herself for putting monsters in the story.  So funny!

Happy Friday!  One more week for me at this job!  Woot!!!

Love & Shipoopies,

Thursday, November 10, 2011

If you don't ask...

I realized something about myself recently.  I have been putting limits on the things I pray for.

Don't get me wrong.  I would never put limits on what God is capable of.  I'm not crazy.  I've read about and even seen some of his miracles and I know if it's his desire, he can make it happen.

It's just that I've always put limits on what I'm willing to ask for.  I guess I've sort of developed the sense of, "There are so many other people in the world who have diseases and missing children and horrible tragedies that need his help, and I'm doing ok."  I mean, my life's been far from perfect, but I figure I've got a home and food and family and friends and in the greater scheme of things, I'm doing alright.  So I guess it felt sort of selfish to ask God for GREAT things in my life when there are people who really NEED great things, so I limited myself to asking for just enough to survive. I mean, WHO AM I to ask for miracles when God could spend his miracles on someone who needs them more?!?

But here's the thing.  God's not like a jug of lemonade, so when it's used up, it's used up.  It's not like to give one person a miracle, he has to deprive someone else of one.  He is LIMITLESS not only in his power, but in his ability to give and love.  It's like being a parent.  Having a second child doesn't take love away from your first child.  There's a whole other chunk of love that develops and multiplies to cover the second child.

So I decided I wasn't going to put limits on my prayers anymore.  I've been praying about a new job for a very long time now, and I wanted to find a GREAT job not just another job to get by on.  (Heck, I've been doing that for 8+ years now!)  I've been praying that God would just help me find something where I wasn't unhappy more often than not.  It didn't have to be amazing, just better than the current.  But I finally decided to ask God for the stars.  I began praying for a GREAT job, one that would make me HAPPY and where I would succeed and feel WONDERFUL about the job I was doing.  I asked for a job where I would feel I had a purpose and was making a difference.  And then I asked for a budgetary miracle because, let's face it, the job I'm currently miserable doing pays WAY better than the jobs I know I'd be happy doing.  It's the reason I've been doing it so long.

And you know what?  He did it.  He has guided me through multiple interviews and multiple churches (and 4 interviews at the final church).  He kept me calm and helped me show myself, not some fake interview-version of me.  And then?  He gave us a budgetary miracle. We didn't win the lottery or anything, but he tweaked enough stuff here and there that it's all going to work out.

And?  I HAVE A NEW JOB!!!!!  Starting the first Sunday in Advent, I will be the Director of Children's Ministries at a local Methodist church.  It's the dream job I never knew I wanted and I'm SO excited about it.

And God and myself?  We have a new policy.  I'm going to continue asking for the stars and for my dreams
knowing that sometimes the answer will be "Not that", "Not now", or just plain "No".  But I figure it can't hurt to ask because he loves me more than I deserve and he wants me to be happy and he wants me to contribute, and he wants me to do it WITH HIS HELP!!!

Love & Shipoopies

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

The Hidden Meaning

I'm always curious when I hear commercials if others listen to them as critically as I do.  I mean, I don't intend to be critical, but sometimes the "hidden meaning" behind what they are saying is too obvious to not mock it just a little.  You know, like when a store advertises "Everything up to 50% off!"  You know technically, that could mean that nothing in the store is on sale AT ALL, right?!?  Because 0% off falls into the "up to 50% off" category.  Tricky, tricky...  Here are some other commercials I've heard or seen lately that have prompted my ScoobyDoo ears to say, "Uuuurrrrrrghhhhh?"

*One particular chicken chain has recently been advertising their "popcorn chicken" saying something to the effect of, "Those other guys have chicken NUGGETS.  What part of the chicken IS a nugget anyway?  Here at KFC, we serve succulent, juicy POPCORN chicken." 

Umm, dude, what part of a chicken is the popcorn, anyway?!? 

*A local car dealership advertisement I heard on the radio the other day claimed, "Open until 10:30... even later if we know you're coming!"

Who the HECK buys a car at 11pm at night?!?  I mean, yes staying open until 9 is probably VERY helpful to some people who have full time jobs and kids to feed and bathe and can't get to the dealership until like 7:30 or 8 and still need some time to look.  But past 10:30 at night?!?  REALLY?!?  Remind me to never apply to be a salesman at THAT place!!!

*And then there's Moe's.  And trust me when I say, the Bowers fam consumes its fair share of Moe's.  My husband could eat it every single meal of every single day and never get sick of it.  But I heard an advertisement the other day discussing their amazing meat options as "grass-fed cows, cage-fed chicken, and pulled pork!" 

Does that translate to anyone else as "super healthy cows, amazingly cared-for chickens, and... ah heck, pigs'll eat ANYTHING so who cares?!?!!!"  hahahaha!

Do you guys ever do this?  What are some of YOUR favorite commercials with hidden meanings?

Love & Shipoopies,

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

We didn't have a pumpkin, but it was GREAT!!!

Get it?  The Great Pumpkin?  tee-hee

Ok, here's a little dose of our Halloween.  We always hand out candy at Will & Ashie's house because no one makes it up our street far enough to get to us.  And can I say, our 3 year old liked handing OUT candy more than getting it herself.  So cute!

I LOOOOVE this face! 

As we were taking our family picture, one of Tucker's best friends from daycare walked up.  Daya and Tucker were in the same room from the time they were 3 months old until Daya moved to a nearby city at the start of this school year.  We have only been able to have one playdate since she moved, so they were SO EXCITED to see each other. :)  Monkey Joe's, you should expect 2 VERY giggly girls soon. :)

Love & Shipoopies,