Friday, September 16, 2011

Today I'm 34

Today is my birthday and I'm 34 years old!

Here I am at about 6-9mths old.  I think.

Last year I had fun sharing a list of random information about myself.  If you want to check it out, here it is.  Is it just me or do others love reading these silly lists as much as I do?  A while back my friend Katie at minivan diva wrote some fun facts about herself, which reminded me to make my birthday list. Thanks, Katie!  She and I have a lot in common.

1.  My favorite color is blue, but the interior of my house is brown, brown and more shades of brown.  I'm slowly working on changing that.  Well, that's not completely true, Ben's room is pale green and there are two rooms that are Silver Sage by Restoration Hardware and Will's room is gray.

2.  Birthdays don't bother me.  I didn't freak out at 30 and I don't dread 40.  Mostly I'm grateful that I've been given another year on this earth to spend time with the ones I love most.

3.  The ones I love most are Mark, Will and Ben.
Photo by Lauren

4.  I love to bake and cook, but I hate the cleanup.

5.  In high school, I went to state in the mile relay my junior and senior year.  I was the slowest leg on the relay, but I was still proud of the accomplishment.  Mark and I used to run a lot before we had children.  I wish we had more time for it now.  I've thought about training for a 1/2 marathon, but I don't know where I'd find the time.  Maybe someday that will fit into my schedule.

6.  If you've read the "About Me" section on my blog you know that I had what I call an unconventional childhood.  I lived with my grandparents, which ended up being one of the biggest blessings of my life.  The "About Me" explains how I ended up living with them.  Papa Ralph and Mama Winnie are the best parents I could ever ask for.

7.  Since I lived with my grandparents and they were retired, I traveled with them wherever they went. They had a travel trailer/camper that we stayed in on our trips.  I remember spending time at the lake and along the Gulf Coast of Texas with my great-aunts, great-uncles and cousins. I also remember living in South Texas during part of the winter months.  My husband thinks this is hilarious because he said I was the youngest "Winter Texan" or "Snowbird" that he's ever known.  It was me and the retirees playing Bingo!

Here I am sitting on a little chair wearing a hat at the beach. We were staying at Indianola near Port Lavaca, Texas.  It's on Matagorda Bay on the Gulf of Mexico.

Here's my brother, Brian, cousin, Tommy, and me.

I was probably about 9 in this photo.  Here's the travel trailer I remember so well.

8. I think in many ways I'm an old soul and young at heart.  My aunt told me when I was a little girl I talked just like a 75 year old woman would.  Here's the quote, "Just to to TG & Y and get you some thread to fix it."  Isn't that funny?  Now as an adult, the younger people we work with always tell me and Mark that we seem so much younger than most of the people our age.  I take that as a huge compliment.  Maybe we're still hip...or not ;)

9. We take advantage of the free movie weekends on HBO and Starz.  Since having children, we rarely go the movies anymore and we don't do Netflix (Gasp!, I know!) so we save the movies to our DVR and watch them when we have time.  It's a great way to get caught up on movies, other than being a year behind everyone else who has already seen them, it works for us.

10.  When I graduated from college I wasn't sure what I wanted to do.  I seriously considered being a flight attendant.  I even had the application from American Airlines.  I can't imagine doing that job now.

11.  I started this list in July.  Just being honest.  It takes me a long time to think of this stuff and I get sidetracked easily.  I know my birthday is at the beginning of the school year, and I'm usually swamped.  I knew I wouldn't have much time for blogging and this takes me a while to type.

12.  I dream of our forever home A LOT.  Hopefully we will begin building it in 5 years.  I know that seems like a long time, but it's really not.  We've been in our current home since 2002 and that's flown by so much faster than I ever imagined. 

13.  I started reading blogs to observe so many things--family life, home decor, fashion.  I didn't ever expect to make friends in the blogosphere and that's what has ended up happening.  I've made friends.  Real-Life-Friends. 

14.  I changed my major 3 times in college.  It was nursing, history and then sociology.  I have a degree in sociology and minor in psychology.  The psychology part was to help me work out my own issues.

15.  I have a math phobia.  Seriously!  I cry when I think about it.  I would have graduated a semester early if I hadn't of dropped so many math classes.  The irony of this is that I married someone who majored in mathematics.  There you have it, God gives us what we need. 

16.  I had a show steer when I was in high school.  I only did that one year because it was so much work.  Here I am giving him a bath.  I was even a member of FFA (Future Farmers of America).  I showed the steer at the county fair and sold him.

17.  I was also Football Sweetheart in high school.  It's similar to homecoming queen.

18.  I've been a teacher since 2001.  I can't believe that I've been teaching for that long.  This is my 11th year teaching history/social studies.  I still enjoy the subject and I love working with the students.

19.  In 2009, just before Ben was born I developed Bell's Palsy.  My face will always have some paralysis from that.  My OBGYN said it was the worst case he's ever seen and he's been practicing over 20 years.  There are things in life you would like to be remembered for...this is not one of those things.  If you want to read my deep thoughts about that, you can check it out here.

Here I am with my eye patch and crooked smile.  I'm overjoyed about my little family of four despite the crazy face thing.

20.  My husband and I have so many similar interest, but that all stops when it comes to fantasy football.  I don't really understand it.  I guess it's like he doesn't understand my obsession with the Royal couple Will and Kate.

21.  I feel guilty when I forget to use my reusable shopping bags at the grocery store.

22.  I love to travel.  Mark and I save money all year so that we can take trips in the summer.  This summer we hope to visit Yellowstone National Park, Grand Tetons National Park and Mount Rushmore National Memorial.  We're hoping that Mark's parents can go with us. 

23.  Mark and I are obsessed with the show Mad Men.  We're only 4 years behind everyone else, ha!  We got hooked this summer when AMC started replaying all the episodes starting with season one.  Three episodes are shown on Sunday and we DVR them and watch it throughout the week.  One night we stayed up past 1a..m because we got so into it that we watched all three episodes at once.  I can see how people who get an entire series on Netflix can spend an entire day watching it completely.  We feel that way about this show.

24.  I miss my college friends.  I have friends where I live now, but not like my college friends.  Life is so different now.  My friend Cory once said regarding life in college, "We didn't know how easy we had it." She's so wise.  Life in college was so carefree and fun.  We thought it was so tough, but we had no idea how easy things were.  Now that I'm married and a mommy, I devote all of my time to my family.  I don't mind at all and I wouldn't have it any other way, but I wish my BFFs lived just a little closer so we could hang out more.

Here are some of those BFFs I just mentioned, Cory and Terri.  This was taken last fall at Will's birthday party.

25.  When I was in college, I had an obsession with the TV show "Dawson's Creek", "Felicity" and "Friends".  I remember watching "Friends" with my roommates and suitemates in my dorm room.  When I moved to an apartment I remember meeting up at my friend's house to watch "Dawson's Creek".  I still can't believe Katie Holmes married Tom Cruise.  Wow!  I outgrew "Dawson's Creek", but I stayed with "Felicity" and "Friends" up until the very end.  I cried when both of those shows ended.   I could have entire conversations using dialogue from "Friends" when I was younger.  My talent at reciting dialogue and knowledge of "Friends" trivia does not impress my husband who is a Seinfeld fan.

26.  In college, I had two years of being really good and two years of being not so good.  I'm glad I had a little wild phase.  It's totally out of my system and when I got married I was ready to settle down. 

27.  In addition to our family road trip to Yellowstone, Mark and I are planning a 10 year anniversary to trip to Las Vegas this upcoming summer.  Sans children!  I'm nervous about leaving my boys, but what a fun way to celebrate 10 years of marriage.  I can't wait!
28.  Do you ever feel like your life has been taken over by plastic sippy cups?  I love sippy cups because they help prevent spills, but they also are a pain in the butt to dry.  At all times I have a about 8 drying on my kitchen counter after I empty the dishwasher.

29.  I wish I was about 10 pounds thinner.  Who doesn't, right?

30.  All of the tops in my closet are arranged by color.  Yes, I'm a little OCD.

31.  I have an obsession with family photos.  We had really bad wedding photographs, which makes me sad to this very day.  To compensate for the bad wedding photos, I hire our favorite photographer, Lauren, at least a couple of times a year to capture images of the boys.  Mark likes photos about as much as he likes a root canal, but he's always a good sport because he knows how disappointed I was over our terrible wedding photos.

Our last attempt at a family photo in July.  My boys are too silly!
Photo by Lauren

32. Sometimes I eat my kids gummy vites.  Sometimes I eat their fruit snacks and drink their juice boxes, too!

33. I've worn glasses since I was in the 5th grade.  I'm terribly nearsighted.  I got contacts in the 7th grade, and I still laugh when I think about how hard it was to put my contacts in the first time.  I'm pretty sure it took about an hour.  Now I can put my contacts in without even looking in a mirror (although I usually use one).

34.  This is my second birthday with my blog friends.  You guys continually encourage me and lift my spirits when I'm down.  It's hard to explain to people who don't blog and don't have these relationships how it all works.  I don't know how we have all found each other, we just have.  My blog and the friends I've made blogging are a blessing.  Thank you for celebrating this birthday with me.

Much love,


  1. Happy Birthday Michele!!!! Loved reading your 34 things :) I also eat my girls gummy vites sometimes! Hope your birthday is awesome!!!!

  2. Michelle, I hope you have the BEST birthday. I loved reading your facts. I now know that we have way more in common than I already thought we did!

  3. Darling Michele,

    Have a wonderful birthday. You have blessed my year with your kindness and thoughtfulness. May the same blessings be returned to you many times over as you celebrate today.

  4. Hope you have a wonderful birthday!

  5. Hey lovely girl,

    I hope you had a fab birthday weekend - many happy returns!! I love your list - the combination of things you've listed reflects you as a gorgeous, sweet person, as does your blog!


  6. Hope you had a wonderful birthday Michele!!! You are such an inspiring person. I had no idea about your bells palsy. I can't imagine how that has changed you. My husband knew a friend in high school who went through the same thing. It happened to her all of a sudden and then almost one year later it completely went away. I am impressed to read how you handled things though. You are only better and wiser for it now you know. And i think you are beautiful!! Happy 34!

  7. I have been so MIA lately - I hate I missed this post!!! Hope you had a great birthday! I absolutely loved this post!!! What a great way to learn more about you! Also, did I ever tell you I showed cows in high school! I almost fell off my chair when I saw you with your steer! Know wonder we are bloggy BFFs - we might be the only people in blogland that know what "showing cows" means! Again, happy bday!!! Hope school is going great!!! xx.


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