Saturday, December 30

Christmas: A Summary

I'm not known for my brevity. But in an effort to be brief, I will summarize our Christmas.

Visited Santa at the mall. Thankfully, Emma didn't scream her brains out in fear this year. She did last year, but it made for the best picture ever!


Did Christmas with my parents at my sister's house around the corner. Emma scored a bunch of dress-up stuff (skits/crowns/high heels/etc). Food was great. Left there and headed to Little Rock.

Sunday (Christmas Eve)
Didn't do much during the day. Went to Emmanuel Baptist Church's Christmas service. Emma kept asking if Mary and Joseph would be there at the church. Afterwards, went to Cathy's house (Allison's sister) and had a rocking dinner with the family. Opened a few gifts, just to prime the kids.

Monday (Christmas Day)
Santa came and brought Emma some more dress up stuff (a toy makeup kit...yippee), a cooking apron with her name on it, and some other stuff. Brooklyn scored some righteous teething toys and some of those dangly things that you hang on the car seat to entertain them. Allison and I are apparently alcohol-deprived in the eyes of our family. We scored about 4 wine-related gifts (opener, new stemless glasses, stoppers, etc). My parents got us Amaretto. We're set. Emma did score one of the new TMX Elmo dolls, and it's a riot! Annoying, but the laughing is contagious. We hung out the rest of the day and played.

The most fun gift Emma received was a kids digital camera. It's virtually indestructible and has like 4 buttons on it. You can see some of her masterpieces here. She's not bad. Just gotta teach her to stand still for 2 consecutive seconds so the pictures don't blur. She'll learn.

All in all, it was a really good Christmas. Lots of family, eating, and playing. Of course, Josh thinks we should give our kids a rock, tell them Jesus killed Santa a long time ago, and hang out in a commune growing corn. He's even influencing Martha, which isn't good...she's powerful.

Hope y'all's Christmas was great!

Thursday, December 28

Poll: Wild Animal Pets

In a moment of extremely random thought, I asked myself the following question:

If I could have any wild animal as a pet, which would I choose?

I'm pretty sure I'd pick a squirrel. Why? Because they freaking rock! I mean, they can climb just about anything, they jump really well, and they're extremely cute. Tell me the picture here isn't cute? Makes you want to just hug it! And how about that cool thing they do with their tail? You know, where it shakes/shimmies really fast? That's awesome! And don't get me started with how fun playing fetch would be...the possibilities are endless!

So what about you? What wild animal would you choose as a pet?

Note: any animal is allowable. I'm going under the assumption that the pet would not harm you or loved ones in any way (aka Bear mauling).

Thursday, December 21


I gave Nestle my two weeks notice yesterday. Starting January 8th, I will be an employee of Time-Warner (specifically Time, Inc.). I'll be working on the Wal-Mart team in Rogers as a Customer Development Analyst (aka Category Analyst). It's pretty crazy, but I'm out-of-my-mind excited! It does suck to leave all my Nestle co-workers after becoming friends with them over the past 5 1/2 years...that'll be the hardest thing. That's not true....the hardest thing was actually telling my boss I quit. Shockingly enough, all of my bitterness washed away and was left with a large heart of gratitude for the great years I've had at Nestle.

But it was time for change. And this is a really great move to a great company. On the fun side of things, I did get to purchase a car for the first time in 6 years! Nestle provided a company car, but Time doesn't. So, I bought myself a 2004 Acura TSX. It's sexy...I'll post sexy pictures of it's hotness later. A tentative name for my car right now is T-Rex. If you have suggestions for names, I'm open to them. Josh can't believe I still name my cars. I feel it is a mandatory thing. After all, I spend a minimum of an hour per day in the car commuting. That's more than a lunch break. Cars should have names.

So...that's the big news today.

Thursday, December 14

Movies & More!

Last weekend, Josh and I went to see Apacalypto. It ended up being a really good movie. Not great, but pretty darn good. All the reviews said is was terribly brutal and gruesome. Honestly, I never had to turn away at any point in the movie. Though parts were pretty brutal, I was expecting much worse. The was one scene where a man's face lost a battle to an angry jaguar, but that was about the worst of it all. And, it was a pretty awesome scene!

However, during the previews before the movie started, I saw a movie trailer that basically killed all desire to see any movie but that one. Frank Miller's "300" is coming out next March and it looks absolutely amazing! Frank Miller also wrote "Sin City", which is a fantastic movie! So, after the trailer was over, I pretty much didn't care to see a movie except for 300. It's going to rock! Go see the trailer, you'll be blown away (more so if you're a guy).

Eragon opens this weekend, and it looks pretty great, too. I've been wanting to read the book before seeing the movie, so I bought the book (Allison's early Christmas present to me) and am halfway done with it. It's pretty good. Very Lord of the Ring-ish.

Tuesday, December 12

Favorite Christmas Songs

As the Christmas time is upon us, it's hard to scan the radio and not find a station constantly playing Christmas music. I have 250 Christmas songs on my iPod. I heard a song on 107.9 tonight coming home from work, and I reminded myself that it was one of my favorite Christmas songs. Then I automatically made a top 3 list: my top 3 favorite Christmas songs! So, here are my favorite 3 Christmas songs:
  1. Breath of Heaven
  2. O Come, O Come Emanuel
  3. Carol of the Bells
I know everyone else loves Christmas music, so this is a tag for you to blog about your favorite songs! Get after it, yo!

Friday, December 8

2006 Gingerbread Party Results

Well, I should have stuck with my original plan of sabotaging the other contestants. Even though Allison and I pulled off a very excellent, artistic, simplistic design this year, we were simply out-matched. soon as the to-be-winners began, no one stood a chance. The first crushing blow came when Melinda Thompson walked into the house with a life-sized woman's breast made of gingerbread...complete with nipples! From there, we all knew we were losing.

We didn't place in the top 3 this year, but we felt pretty good about our effort. The winners (in order) were:
  • The Thompson's: they pulled out the a 3-foot long female gingerbread body sporting an icing bikini. It was really amazing. The pictures are below.
  • Cory Rogers: nutter butter house. It's a little unfair, since Cory is a home builder in real life. But props to him for using such great building blocks!
  • The Whitaker's: John did the planning / creativity portion while Amanda executed a pretty great replica of NYC's Rockefeller Plaza, complete with skyscrapers and a huge tree.
All in all, it was another fantastic event hosted by the Elleman's. Props to them for all the hastle they go through to put this together (including some crazy cleanup after the party)!

Thursday, December 7

Random Things...

1) Does anyone know the answer: When I click on an RSS feed and it loads a preview page in the main screen, does that count as a hit on the page? Or does a person have to land directly on your URL to count as a hit / visit?

2) If you use Firefox, there's a great (cheesy, but great) theme out there called Tinseltown. It's a great Christmas / Winter theme that was done really well. Once I got over the cheesiness, I've really begun to like it a lot!

Annual Gingerbread House Competition: Pre-Game

Well, it's that time of year for a crazy amount of Christmas / Holiday parties. Each year, Aaron & Allyn Elleman (say THAT 3 times fast!) host a gingerbread house competition / party. In the past, Allison and I have put our best foot forward, only to get it smashed by some ugly but architecturally astounding house. Last year, we actually placed 3rd, our highest rank in 5 years. Pathetic.

This year? We pretty much lost the urge to compete. My original plan was to sneak around and sabotage others' houses. But that's just mean. So, we decided to do a "artistic" scene by utilizing a 2D house setting (read: we're not architects or building, but we can cut out shapes!). We will prop up the house, some gingerbread people, and some trees on a coconut-coated gingerbread ground. It's simple. It's genius.

Tomorrow, I'll post pictures and the results. Wish us luck!

Oh God, It's True!

Another badass quiz from eSPIN-the-Bottle...

What’s Your Mental Age?

MY RESULT:Middle Aged

Regardless of how old your body is, up in your head, you’re paying mortgages and complaining about back pain.

That's great that you're so mature, but remember: it's okay to cut loose and act young every once in a while. Do your wild side a favor and stay up past 10:00 one night this week.

Take This Quiz!

Tuesday, December 5

Happy Birthday, Emma!

Today was Emma's 3rd birthday! It's crazy that's she is already 3 years old! As I'm writing this, she's screaming her head off in her room: a result of an over-stimulated kid.

The day started off with her birthday party. It was 1000% Princess Party. Everything was pink and had a Disney princess on it. For a guy, it was pretty emasculating. For a 3 year old girl, it was heaven. We had a small gathering of Emma's friends over to the house to have (princess-shaped) waffles and cake (yeah...princesses on it). Todd and I put up a big cardboard castle last night for the kids to play in and color on. The mothers (and me) sat around and talked while the sugar-infused kids ran nutty around the house playing. It was fun!

Each year, we go to the Fayetteville Square with my sister's family to eat at Tim's Pizza and see the Christmas lights (that are now red instead of white). We had a great time, and Brooklyn slept the entire time (aiding in the great time had by all). Here are some pictures to enjoy. I also have 2 new folders set up on my Picasa site for the above-mentioned events.

Saturday, December 2

Parenting Tips: Bribery

Ever wondered how to get your kids to do something they don't want to do? Here I come to the rescue with a solution: Bribery! That's right, folks...flat out, blatant bribery.

"If you'll just stand still for 2 minutes, you can have a cookie when we get home"
"If you obey me and stay quiet while we're in this store, we'll stop and get McDonald's"
"If you stop talking for the rest of the night, I'll give you some money!"

That's right! Money. The root of all evil...and obedience. Emma has a piggy bank that she got when she was born. Until recently, it sat on the shelf as decoration. However, now that we've invoked the above mentioned parenting tip, that bad boy is filling up quickly! The best thing about this, is you can mask the shallowness of money bribes by reminding your child it's a time to practice counting! That's right! The kids can count how many pennies you give them as bribes for obedience! It's a learning experience!

So if you're in a pickle and need your kids to obey, try bribing them. It works like a charm!

The "N" Word

I'm very sick and tired of all the celebrity hoopla and the public apologies. I just read an article on MSNBC about all the apologies from all the celebrities/politicians this year. Of course, it mentioned Michael Richards (Kramer) and Mel Gibson.

I then read an article on ESPN about the double-standard of using the "n" word between races (eg, it's ok to say it if your black, but it's a career-ending word if you're white). It's really a great article, and I agree with the guy's point 100%. If you've got some time, go read it.