Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Tea Party for Ava

Today Miss Mia and I had a tea party in honor of a very special young lady, Ava Rosemeyer. I have blogged before about visiting Ava's mother's blog. The blog is beautiful and heart breaking. I have stopped reading the blog at night because I have to hold my Mia after reading her words. This week would have marked Ava's 6th birthday and friends, family and admirer's of Ava's life are having tea parties in her honor.

Our tea party was supposed to be outside, but the weather did not cooperate. In fact it down right poured and thundered, so we moved a quilt to the living room and had just as much fun. Miss Mia and I were joined by a few of her "VIP" guests, including her Care Bear and Backyardigan Tyrone.
Our tea party fixings included goldfish, toasted baguette, brie, various fruit, tea and some yummy milk. I'll let you guess which were Mia's suggestions! = ) This picture breaks my heart a bit too. I love her eyes looking upward.
Eating a few more snacks..
Bunny's special seat at the party
Miss Mia posed this picture herself. She took Tyrone (whom she calls 'Mymone.') and told him to 'cheese.'
She couldn't hold back any longer. Twas the end of our dainty tea party.
This beautiful illustration was done in Ava's honor by Mandy at Belle & Boo. Mandy has done 5 special prints for Ava called the "Super Princess" Series. I have ordered a few of them for Mia's big girl room.
Ava's mother's blog can be found here. I urge all mothers, sisters, friends, whomever, to read some of the words that Sheye writes. I promise it will make you hug your children a little longer, linger in sweet moments a second more, whisper I love you a few more times, and not take a second of their sweet lives for granted.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Start of the year

I am alive...I promise! The past few weeks have been so busy with school just around the corner. I've been studying for my Italian proficiency exam (which I took last Wednesday). I am praying that all went well and that I passed and one less part of the doctoral process is behind me. I am now in full blown study/read mode. Comps are JUST around the corner and everyday I get a little sicker thinking about it. To top it all off, Hubby is gone this week to Beaver's Bend State Park as his firm is re-designing most of their camp grounds and such. Thus, Miss Mia and I are here to fend for ourselves as I get ever closer to October. I pray daily, sometimes hourly, that God will get me through all of this, and more importantly my family with my focus directed somewhere else.

So this is where I'm spending almost all of my time, in the OU Bizzell Library.
This library was one of the reasons I chose OU. As a historian, libraries are your home away from home. I needed a library or libraries with many of my primary sources and the ability to get whatever I needed. OU definitely offered that, espically given my area of focus.
This is the Great Reading Room of OU. My heart skipped a beat when I walked into this room. It had all the charm and character of the Great reading rooms Hubby and I saw on our trip to England and felt VERY out of place in Oklahoma. My nephew says it looks like it should be in Harry Potter & I must agree. I have my own little office in the library b/c I am a Ph.D student, but I still like to haul a few of my books down to the reading room and read. The best day in this room are the days when it rains. I can hear the rain drops slowly going down the windows. It is a small slice of heaven for a book nerd like me!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Show Us Your Life= Favorite Vacation Spots

It's Show Us Your Life Friday over at Kelly's Korner but today we are talking about favorite vacation spots. I love traveling, more than words could ever express. I love planning the trip, going on the trip, scrapbooking about the trip. Oh, how I love it! My family did not travel all that much growing up. When we did travel, however, we went to Civil War battle sites and cemeteries 'housing' our dead relatives. Isn't shocking how I became a history professor?

When I met Hubby, I told him that I want to travel, end of story. I don't have to stay at The Plaza every time, but I want to travel. In our 5 year marriage we have traveled all over the country, and once out of the country, and that finally brings us to my favorite vacation spot EVER...Bath England.

Hubby & I took a trip to England about two years after we got married. It was by far the most spontaneous thing we both have ever done. I happened to be perusing Expedia for cheap airline tickets, and found REALLY cheap tickets from Houston to London. Then the wheels started turning, could I find a good hotel, where exactly was everything in London, could we take a day trip out of the city, etc..

We booked in December, we left for London over our Spring Break in March...good time to go to England, still a bit cool, but definitely not crowded!

We spent our time in London, site seeing, going to museums, walking the streets, eating lunches in the various parks. All failed in comparison to our day trip to Bath. I have wanted to travel to Bath since I was in junior high and fell in love with Jane Austen. Knowing that she wrote some of her work in Bath made it all the more alluring.
We arrived in Bath a little after lunch after spending our early morning in Salsbury (another fabulous English village) and Stonehenge (another post in and of itself!). We got off the bus and this was the first thing we saw. In the center is the roof to the Roman baths, far right is part of Bath Abbey. The yellow lab in the picture followed us almost the entire day. Many of our photos have the dog in them. He was chasing a lot of ducks, which flew away and when we toured the Baths, found them lounging happily in the warm waters.
This is the entrance to the Pump Room and the Roman Baths. There is a small museum about the Roman occupation of England, history of the baths, etc.

The pump room, which has been used several times in various English films, and by Jane Austen herself is a fabulous ballroom with a large fountain where patrons can drink the supposed cure-all waters of the Roman Baths. We tried some, and it tasted like West Texas water warmed up--i.e kind of chewy, little bit sulfury and long lasting flavor!

Around the Bath and the Abbey is a mixture of gift shops, small restaurants and various businesses. Bath has the old warm charm that one dreams about.
In my head I knew I was walking the same streets of Jane Austen and other various English historical figures, but in my heart I was hoping to see someone in costume walk around every corner. While we were there we saw an older couple performing songs for the tourists..we ate some pizza from a mom-and-pop English vendor--it was fabulous! We sat at a small cafe and Hubby drank tea whilst I had some hot chocolate..
You can take many tours around Bath, several of which are Jane Austen walking tours. I bought a book on

The Jane Austen Center..all Jane Austen, in bath= My little heaven!
I still cruise the web looking for good deals to England, and am constantly looking at real estate in Bath. I have already told Hubby to be prepared once we either retire or make way more money to spend weeks of his life in the beautiful city of Bath!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Homeland Deals Aug. 12- Aug 18

Head over to Homeland for some really good deals. Today I spent $25 and saved $35. I love when I save over 50%!
Some of the great deals with week:
-Chicken Tenders/Chicken Breasts, 3 lb bag, 4.99
-Velvetta- with $1 Q from this Sunday's paper (which will double), 50 cents
-Kelloggs Cereal 2/$3, use whatever Kelloggs coupon you have, plus use the $1 off 2 Q in the Homeland weekly add, FREE or at the most .50 cents each
-Colgate toothpaste, use $1 coupon, FREE plus overage!

Good, Good, deals! So excited!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Home Sweet Home

Miss Mia & I have made it back from our week's vacation in Texas. It was very relaxing..oh how I already miss the pool!

Mia & I weren't in Houston but a few minutes before she decided to hit the pool. The pool was such a big hit. She swam at least twice a day every day we were there. She loved swimming at night the most when the pool lights were on.

Our adventures took us to the Houston Children's Museum and the Natural Science Museum. She loved them both.

The Children's Museum was such fun for Mia but a bit of sensory overload for the rest of us! The second floor of the museum is only for children two and under. The bottom floor had a "Vetsmart," HEB, post office, paint gallery, fire station, the works. Mia most enjoyed shopping at the grocery store and putting the puppies in their kennels at the vet clinic. She even climbed into one of the kennels. It was quite comical.

At the Natural Science Museum, we had a wonderful private tour from my soon to be brother-in-law's roommate. We saw an exhibit on diamonds (LOVED!) and then the new terra cotta warrior exhibit. I did my senior thesis for anthropology on the dig. It was amazing! Miss Mia thought all the horses were cows, and proceeded to shout "Booo!" (supposed to be moo" at all of them!

The following day day we went to try on flower girl dresses for the upcoming wedding.

My little girl Loves puffy, girly dresses!

This dress was the winner, only we are putting it with a black sash. She will be the cutest flower girl ever! Can't wait to see her that day!
The plane rides were great, Mia found the turbulence exciting- shouted "wee" every time we hit a bump.
Upon our arrival back to Oklahoma, we were both worn out. Many naps have transpired in the last few days. It's good to be home...

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Poolside Retreat

This week will probably have fewer posts as Miss Mia and I are on vacation at Hubby's parents house in Houston. We survived Mia's first airplane ride even though it had so much turbulence. So much so, in fact, that the flight attendents never could get up. Mia thought the bumps were fun and continunally shouted, "weee!" This made everyone around us laugh. She also sang 'Old MacDonald' to the little old lady across the aisle. She was very prou of herself, especially when she got to walk in the Houston airport.

Hubby's parents just put in a new pool in their backyard, and we are beating the Texas heat with lots of time poolside. She goes in twice if not three times each day. She is completely fearless--wanting to be thrown in the air or put her head under. (We have to watch her VERY closely!)

Today we are taking her to the Houston Children's Science Museum. She is going to love it so much. I am not going to want to leave the pool! Its great when you can swim at 10:30 at night and the pool is 85 degrees!