December 16, 2009

Angels We Have Heard On High--Aretha Franklin

Rachael Ray is playing in the waiting room. Her guest today is Aretha Franklin. As usual (remember the 2009 Inauguration?), her appearance anywhere is an interesting one.

Aretha is wearing a long brown wig that apparently has come off the head of a 15 year old. It is not a hairstyle generally worn by a woman who is almost 70 years old. I guess maybe when you buy your hair you can afford more hits and misses. It's not cheap polyester hair or anything, it's just not a style women her age usually go for. She is also wearing what appear to be maroon pajamas from the Hugh Hefner collection.

The thing that caught my attention the most about her stint on Rachael Ray was her butchering of the song "Angels We Have Heard On High". I'm lucky I know the words to this song because otherwise I would have had no idea what she was singing! After deciding which song she was singing (and staring at the TV open-mouthed in disgust), I heard the people in the waiting room trying to decide which song she was "singing".

Don't get me wrong, the lady still has some major pipes. It was the sheer volume of runs she used that ruined her performance. The phrase, "Angels we have heard on high," became "Aaaangels we've heeeard on hiiiigh." The tempo, tune, phrasing, everything about the song was changed until it was unrecognizable.

The use of runs in music today has become ridiculous. To my knowledge, runs were invented by slaves to make songs more interesting without music, since they didn't have access to many instruments.

My advice to Aretha, save my ears the strain. Get a guitar.

November 22, 2009

Chicken Fried--Zac Brown Band

Jaime Oliver has been in Huntington filming a show about how fat we are. Yesterday was the final day of filming. On Thursday of last week he filmed at Cabell Huntington Hospital. The nurse I work with, Lisa, and I went over to the hospital to check it out.

Jaime was cooking on what was called The Green Truck ( The whole thing was interesting to say the least. When Jaime came out, he was very unfriendly and fake. He acted annoyed by the couple of people who said hi to him.

Lisa had to sign a tv waiver to be able to order. Seeing as I'm 7 months pregnant, I have no desire for all of this to be on national tv. I did, however, stand in line with Lisa for some of the time. The fumes from the "Green Truck" made me sick. It may run on old cooking grease, but there were plenty of fumes. Not sure how that's good for the environment.

The production assistants moved everyone inside before taping started. They said for them to act busy and Jaime would come in and lead them outside. I was totally shocked by how produced and ridiculous the whole thing was. Mom and I were in the fountain scene in "We Are Marshall" and it wasn't even this fake! So much for reality tv.

Then they moved outside to the truck. The truck served a salad, bison burgers and bison hotdogs, and chilli. Lisa was in line for 40 minutes. She said the salad she got was really good.

Jaime acted annoyed to interact with people in line. After about 10-15 minutes of shooting he moved inside to cook. The whole thing was very eye opening.

The best part of the whole thing for me was the guy who actually ran the truck. Had he not been a short hippie in need of a bath, he could have been an actor or model. Then again, the truck is from LA, so maybe he's just waiting for his big break.

-- Post From My iPhone

November 12, 2009

Tristan und Isolde--From the Wagner Opera

Our baby boy officially has a name! Tristan Scott Ellis! Tyler agreed to it last night. Tristan has been my favorite name for a boy since before Tyler put the stipulation in that boys are named T. Scott Ellis.

Here is some background on the name Tristan.

Tristan & Isolde
The most well-known story of Tristan, is Tristan and Isolde. It is a Celtic love story about star-crossed lovers, often thought to be one of Shakespeare's influences for Romeo and Juliet as well as an influence for the story of Lancelot and Guinevere. In my favorite version of the story, from the poem by Algernon Charles Swineburne (also the inspiration for the 2006 movie, Tristan & Isolde), Tristan is adopted by Lord Marke after his family is murdered in an Irish raid. Tristan grows to become a brave knight. He leads a raid against the the Irish to free slaves and is stabbed with a poisoned sword. He is believed to be dead and sent off in a funeral boat that washes up in Ireland. He is found by Isolde, Princess of Ireland, and secretly nursed back to health, though she says she is Bragnae, a hand maiden in the court. They fall in Love, but Tristan leaves Ireland when his boat is found.

King Donnchadh, Isolde's father, decides he will hold a tournement with Isolde being the prize. He intends to disavow her and wage war with the British tribes, already in a shakey peace forged only to keep the Irish at bay. Lord Marke, having lost a hand in the battle that saved Tristan's life as a child, sends the newly returned Tristan in his place to win the Irish princess and peace for Britain. Tristan wins and Isolde removes her veil to reval herself to him, only to lear she was won for Lord Marke. Tristan refuses to tell Marke the truth because the marriage means peace for Britain. Eventually, Tristan and Isolde begin an affair. Isolde's father uses this as the reason to wage war, with the help of a few British traitors. Lord Marke, sends Tristan and Isolde off together once he learns the true story of Tristan's "death". Tristan sneaks back to help with the battle against the Irish and, ultimately, sacrifices himself to help defeat them. Isolde, as the legend goes, disappeared into the forest, never to be seen again.

Sigh. What a love story!

Sir Tristan
Tristan appears in the Arthurian legend, as well. He was a Knight of the Round Table who searched for the Holy Grail. His skills as a warrior were only matched by Lancelot.

There seem to be LOTS of meanings for this name. Everything from "tumult" to "noisy" to "bold" to "sad". Another meaning I found was "Arthurian hero." I like "bold, " so that's the one I'm going with.

I'm so happy he finally has a name! It makes him seem more real.

October 22, 2009

It's Been a While--Staind

It has been a while since I've posted. The truth is, I've had huge posts ready to go up about 6 times and my internet at work blocks them (it does this after an hour of use). I've got lots to update, but I'm afraid my internet will cut out so I'll sign off for now. I just wanted to let you all know updates will follow soon.

June 29, 2009

Yankee Doodle Dandy

Ok, all you Cincinnatians (is that a word?). We are thinking about going to Cincinnati for the Forth of July and need your help. If we make it, we are going to see the Reds at 1:10pm on July 4th. When the game is over, we want to hit the best celebration in the area. I've been looking at hotels, but I hate to spend the money for a Downtown hotel if another area has a better thing going. Here's the call: If you live in the Cincinnati/Dayton area, what is the best place to go to celebrate the 4th? The best not only means best display, but also most managable crowd. 50,000 people in one place is not our idea of a good time. I can't wait to hear from some of you, thanks in advance.

June 25, 2009

Church in the Wildwood

Sorry it has been a while since I've blogged, I've had a LOT going on. My mom was in the hospital for a week with gallbladder issues (it was enlarged to the size of a football), that eventually ended in it being removed. It took a week for her to recover.

Then last week, my granny died.

My granny was one of a kind. She was always either saying something unintentionally funny or being funny on purpose. Here are a few examples:

  • She got a shirt "at the rummage" and was afraid it said something dirty. She unveiled it for my mom, since she said my mom would know, and it said Capistrano and had flowers and swallows on it.
  • She ask my dad what the middle finger meant by flipping him off so close she almost touched his nose!
  • She got a pair of red bloomers from a "boyfriend" (men were ALWAYS after granny) and wore them one Christmas Eve. My uncle pulled her pants down and daddy took a picture of her bloomers! She had to have a good sense of humor with 4 boys.
  • The first time she met Tyler he was teasing her about her boyfriends and she said, "Trust me, I know how to have fun!"
  • My cousin brought her a footlong from Subway. She said, "Sissy, Nicky brought me the best sub sandwich. It's this long (demonstration), but they cut it like this (another demonstration) and you get to keep the whole thing." Mom and I started cracking up and she asked Tyler, "What are they laughing about?" That was a regular occurrence. She'd say something unintentionally funny then not be able to understand why we were cracking up.
  • One of her best was a few weeks before she died. She told daddy she wanted to go to Wallace in Barboursville when she died. She said the make you look the prettiest and you don't even look like you are dead. She was right, she didn't.

I get told a lot that I am just like her. This always makes me happy, especially now. I'm proud to be like granny.

He funeral was beautiful. She said she wanted Kathy Lou (her niece) to sing three songs and she wanted everyone to stand up at the end and sing Amazing Grace. Her favorite song was "Church in the Wildwood" which is a song with very prominent parts. Kathy had everyone sing and it was lovely. We were surprised by how many people knew it. At the end everyone stood and sang "Amazing Grace".

There were so many people at her funeral that they had to open up the next side and put in 5 rows of folding chairs. Daddy said she would have said, "Look at all these people here to see me and me looking so good!" That's exactly what she would have said.

May 20, 2009


My friend Ashley from work brought me a present this morning:

She said I was the only person she knew who would appreciate them. They are fruit flavored!! Why aren't ALL conversation hearts this yummy?

-- Post From My iPhone

May 8, 2009

Grand Hotel--Irving Berlin

We are nearing the end of our stay at Disney's Grand Floridian. It is honestly the most gorgeous place I have ever been! It is made up of 8 buildings across Bay Lake from The Magic Kingdom. I can see the castle from right in front of our building. I'll be posting more pictures and details when I get home, buy here's a beautiful one I took the otherday looking from the main building toward the pool.

-- Post From My iPhone

April 22, 2009

Brick House--The Commodores

Tyler and I are going to look at a house today! It is pretty much perfect for us. It is brick, 2 bedroom, 1 1/2 bath, nice size yard and right at the entrance to Woodmere Cemetary! Please pray for us as we look for a place to live.

UPDATE: That house wasn't the one. It needed a lot of elbow grease, which wouldn't have been a problem. The foundation damage on the other hand was a no go. The hunt is on.

April 12, 2009

The Way He Was Raised

The Way He Was Raised
Written by Josh Turner, Mark Narmore and Bobby Tomberlin

He always wore those worn out flip-flops
Spent hours in his Daddy's workshop
he loved being on the water
Fishing with His friends
He always listened to the old folks
When they'd tell stories and crack jokes
Didn't talk back to his Mama
When she got onto Him

Oh, that's just the way He was raised
Had to finish all His chores 'fore He could go outside and play
they always went to church that's were he learned how to pray
And that's just the way He was raised

He grew His hair out when He got older
Grew it clear down to His shoulders
Started hanging with the outcasts
When He went off to town
Some called Him a troublemaker
Even some said a lawbreaker
No matter how they talked about Him
He never put nobody down

'Cause that's just the way He was raised
When people start to gossip, He'd just walk away
He always loved his neighbor no matter what they'd say
Oh, that's just the way He was raised

On a cross, on a hill
That longhaired boy was killed
All our sins washed away
When He walked out of that grave

Oh, that's just the way He was raised
there's no way we can measure
The sacrifice He made
He knew He had to die
For our debt to be paid
Oh, that's just the way He was raised

It took the hand of God to roll the stone away
And that's just the way He was raised
Yeah, that's just the way He was raised

I suggest everyone download it and listen to it. It still makes me cry eveytime I listen to it. God is SO good!

April 4, 2009

The B-I-B-L-E

Tyler just showed me his Bible he bought in Basic. It has some really great prayers in the back by everyone from George Washington to George W. Bush. I'll be posting some of the best ones in the days to come.

April 1, 2009

Mr. Jefferson

Most of you should know by now that I am a bit obsessed with politics. I've tried not to vent too much on here, but I found this video and couldn't resist.

This video rocks!

March 31, 2009

Spring Song--Felix Mendelssohn

Spring is here! My Weather Channel widget says it is 72 degrees! At lunch, Lisa, the LPN I work with, and I sat out on a the smoke bench for half an hour in the sun. It was GREAT! I've been trying to capture spring with my new camera. Here's my best pic so far (probably ever!):
I've been trying new things and it seems to be working.

Tyler will be home tomorrow! I'm so excited I can't stand myself! Next up...Disney! Does the sheer volume of exclamation points in this paragraph convey my utter excitement of things getting back to normal?!

March 24, 2009

Days Go By

It's a lonely week. Tyler is at his field training, so we can't talk on the phone. I feel like I'm having a flashback to when he was in Basic.

I'm ready for him to come home. He should be home by his birthday, but could be home as early as next Wednesday (hopefully him saying that isn't an April Fool's joke).

We are going to Florida in May! May 4-10 we will be staying in the Animal Kingdom Villas at Disney World. We are SO excited about this, although I REALLY wanted to stay at Grand Floridian. Disney is running a special for military members. Our room was 40% off, his ticket is free, and mine is $99 for 5 days! May 10-16 we are staying at the Orange Lake Resort in Orlando. Neither of us can hardly wait!

March 20, 2009

Who I Am

I've been thinking a lot lately about what I want to do and who I want to be. I know my goal is to be a stay at home mom, but beyond that...

I've got a few things I'd like to accomplish in my life. I've actually got a huge list, but I'll only inumerate a few here.

1. I want to learn photography. I love taking pictures and seeing things through the camera eye. I love looking at pictures, even of people I don't know. I'm looking for a book I can use to learn. Hmmm, I wonder if Marshall has a digital photography class, I bet they do.

2. I want a sewing machine. I can't sew a bit on my hands, though I wish I could. I have taught myself just to sew a straight stitch with mom's sewing machine (which is almost more than
I can say for her, LOL), but that's the extent of it. I want to be able to make things. Jan makes quilts and I am SEW jealous (get it sew?!).

3. I want to learn to play my mandolin. Jared got me one for Christmas like 2 years ago because I have little hands and "every bluegrass band needs a mandolin player". I taught myself a few things in the begining, but I'm easily frustrated and need someone to show me rather than reading it from a book. I'm more of a doer. The songs I did teach myself, I picked out by ear, not by the beginner's book. Music really is my thing. I have the uncanny ability to pick out any note and be right. I help my brother come up with tabs for his guitar by humming the right note for him. The other day I listened to The Wreckers. Sometimes I will sing along to the lead part, sometimes to the harmony. This time I deceided to alternate each line between melody and harmony. I surprised even myself. Whichever line I was singing was the line my hear picked out in the music. It was like if I sang melody, I only heard melody. If I sang harmony, I only heard harmony. Very cool.

Wow, I digressed a bit. The point is, I've got lots of things I still want to learn. Not sure how to go about them, though.

March 15, 2009

The Camera Eye

Last Saturday it was in the 70's here.  I took my new camera out and took a few pictures.  

This is probably the best pic ever taken of Lucky.

These crocuses are all over the whole yard in ones, twos, and threes.  They seem to spread more every year! 

Come Home Soon

It is almost time for Tyler to come home! Tomorrow night starts his last week of class. The following week he has his FOB (not sure exactly what that stands for). Essentially, it is where they're in the field for a week putting what they've learned into a simulated practice.

He went to the PX today and got his "brass" for his uniform. This puts him one step closer to his graduation. The only thing I know for sure is new is the ribbon bar.

-- Post From My iPhone

March 6, 2009

What's Up

I have a confession to make, I have spent the day stalking the UPS man. My new camera is finally being delivered today and I have probably checked the UPS tracking website 15 times.

At 7:42am the camera made its arival in Huntington.
At 9:03am it got it's departure scan and its status chenged to "Out for Delivery."
I just now checked the status again and it has been delivered!!

I can't wait to get home and play with it. I want lots of good shots when we go to Walt Disney World!

March 5, 2009

It Makes Me Ill

I'm sick! It started yesterday afternoon. I thought it was sinus related at first, since it seemed like my nose was running, but it just got progressively worse. I now have a sinus headache, runny nose, watery eyes, sore throat and I'm starting to get achy and cold. This is a bad sign.

Tyler is sick, too. He called me yesterday morning and sounded horrible. He told me I needed to fly there and take care of him, hehehe. I told them at work he got me sick over the phone. I used to say that I got sick hearing the word "sick". Now I wonder if that is true...

March 1, 2009


I bought a new camera on eBay!  I'm so psyched for it to come!  Here's a pic:

Baby, Baby

Addison Brittany Arthur is here!
Congratulations to Brittany and Timmy!  Addison was born on February 26 at 3:44pm.  She weighed 6lbs 15oz.  She is beautiful!

Britt and I have been best friends since she was 5.  She started Kindergarten with my brother and when we started going to 26th Street, she and I became best friends.  We have been ever since.  We do everything together, including being each other's Maid/Matron of Honor at our weddings that were less than a month apart.  I was so blessed to be able to see Addison within a couple hours of her being born.
Addison was due on February 23.  Britt was induced at 7:30am on the 26th.  Her labor wasn't terribly intense, but she did have an epidural.  About 2:00pm things started to speed up.  Timmy went to eat in the cafeteria and got a call saying he better hurry cause they were progressing VERY rapidly.  He says he was close to not making it in time.
That is my brother Jared holding the baby!  Jared is scared of babies (he says he's not, but it's really just semantics).  He says you could cure cancer, but drop one baby and you're the baby dropper for the rest of your life.  You'll walk down the street and people will say, "Hey, there's the guy who drops the babies!"  Britt told him she was going to make him hold the baby as soon as she was born.  He dreaded it for months, but when the time came, he held that baby like a champ.  He said the only thing that made him nervous was passing her off.

I'm so tired of people saying, "You're next."  If I had my way I would have a baby by now!  If you talk to me, please don't tell me I'm next.

February 26, 2009

I'm So Excited

We have a baby!! I was too excited to even find out anything other than she was born at 3:43pm. More to come.

-- Post From My iPhone

Here She Comes

I am on high alert! Brittany was induced at 7:30 this morning. She is progressing pretty slowly, but Addison is on the way! We are going to King's Daughter's as soon as I get off work. I'm so excited to see her as a real person.

I wish Tyler was here. It kinda feels like everyone is sprinting forward and we are going in reverse. Things will get back to normal, at least somewhat, when her gets back. He passed his final PT test today, so he is one step closing to coming home. As of right now, he will be released on April 2. He plans to spend all day on his birthday, April 3, in bed. He said he doesn't even want to go to dinner!

I'll keep everyone updated on Addison!!

February 21, 2009

Have a Cuppa Tea

Kim held a bridal tea for Katelyn at The Tea Room in Proctorville. I had never been there before and it was really nice. The food was yummy, too. I had a chicken salad crossant, cream of broccoli soup, a piece of lemon bread and bread pudding.

It was just immediate family. Those in attendance were Granny, Berta, Lisa, SueSue, Kim, Katie, and me.

Katie got a George Forman Grill, a Longaberger cookie sheet, a pretty picture frame and a boatload of Pampered Chef utensils.

It was a fun day. This evening we are going to Ming's for Papaw's birthday dinner. I'll post details of the rest of the day later.

-- Post From My iPhone

February 19, 2009

Live in Washington, D.C.

On the last full day of our trip, February 15, Tyler and I slept in. We got up around 11:00am and hit the road. We drove to the Inner Harbor in Baltimore. This place was nuts! I saw a sign that said Auto Show, so I think that is why it was even crazier than I expected. we couldn't find a place to park, so we ended up getting back on the highway and heading to D.C.

Washington, D.C. is a large, busy city. It isn't that easy to navigate, either. I think the fact that it was President's Day weekend didn't help to crowd situation. As we drove past the Washington Monument we realized there was no place to park in D.C. We started to drive around looking for the highway and I happened upon a sign that said "Monument Parking." I patiently followed the road until someone pulled out.

We went to the Lincoln Memorial, first. It was very crowded as you can see from the picture. The whole monument area is beautiful.

As we walked around the monument are holding hands we came upon a little pond. We saw a duck couple, male and female, swimming all alone. I had to snap a picture because I thought it was so sweet.

For whatever reason, Tyler didn't want to walk all the way over to the Washington Monument. He said he wanted to see it and he had, so after this picture, we walked back to the car. We also saw the Vietnam Memorial and the World War II Memorial.

I should mention somewhere, that Tyler gives the worst directions in history! I learned this driving in the D.C. Metropolitan Area. Not fun. He waits until you get right at a turn or exit and says, "You need to turn." He says this while I am 4 lanes across traffic! I was a nervous mess the whole time. I would have been nervous anyway, since 3 lanes is the most I had ever driven before, but this was too much! I told him I will never drive with him navigating ever again!

I started an online album for our pictures. I will update this as frequently as I can with pictures of our lives. The address is:

Also, I've decided to title the blog posts after both song titles and album titles. I don't think anyone but me really cares about that anyway, but FYI.

February 15, 2009

Stay Tuned

Today was a busy day.  I will post the details either tomorrow (I'll probably have time in the airport), or when I get home.  Stay tuned.

February 14, 2009

My Valentine

Today Tyler and I went to the mall in Towson.  It was probably the biggest mall I have ever been in.  Tyler had an appointment at the Apple Store to get his iPhone checked out.  He cracked the screen on his bed and needed a new one.  The Apple Store is like my Mecca (except those people need hair stylists because I didn't see one person with good hair!).

While walking around the mall, we saw a Coach store.  He told me he would buy me a purse.  Here's the one i picked:
When I told the girl which one I wanted she got a slip out and asked for my name.  When I told her she said, "Are you serious?"  I figured it was her name, but she said, "That's the name of the bag!"  It was meant to be.  They are shipping it to our house for free.  I will have it in 3-5 business days.

Tonight we are going to a place called Mamma Lucia's for dinner.  We may go see Friday the 13th after that.  I mean it's Valetine's Day so maybe we'll see Jason cut out a heart, LOL.  I'm just kidding.  The older I get, the more these slasher movies freak me out.  Used to be I drug Tyler to them, now the last two I've seen literally made me scream and everything.  Who knows why I'm more freaked now?!

February 13, 2009

Good Morning Baltimore

It has been a long day already and it's only 7:30pm! Here's a rundown of my day:

I arrived at Tri-State Airport at 5:00am. All the TVs were blasting images of the plane crash in Buffalo, NY. I thought this was totally ridiculous. Bad planning Tri-State! My plane left at 5:30am. I has my whole row to myself...Awesome! It was super dark so I stretched out and listened to my iPhone (couldn't sleep, though).

Once in Charlotte, I walked to the next gate (clear across the terminal of course). I listened to my iPhone and played a game until boarding. I fell asleep before this plane even took off. I woke up as the plane was approaching Baltimore. The flight attendant announced that the flight would be rough until we landed, and boy was it. Like clockwork, as soon as she finished the announcement we flew into dense white clouds.

Once we landed their was a bit of a wait for another plane to leave our gate. We were 15 minutes early if you can believe that. As we waited to disembark I stood looking toward the front even though for whatever reason we used the middle door. As I stood there this man stood up 4 rows in front of me:

That, my friends is Cal Ripken! I was shocked! I guess first class is good because I hadn't even heard a rumble he was on the plane! My hands were shaking I was SO excited! I'm not a big sports fan, buy I know this guy is a legend. He has the most consecutive starts of any player in the history of Baseball! Anyways, I sneaked my phone just over the top of the seat to snap this.

Off the plane I called Tyler. Cal passed me at lightning speed and headed into the men's room which I dutifully reported to my husband. The guy in front of me, a big black dude in a tracksuit with UnderArmor luggage (struck me as he could have been someone famous, too, but I couldn't place his face), turned around and joked, "You can't follow him in there."

We left the airport and I drove straight to the base (Tyler isn't allowed to drive while on leave), to get our taxes done. This took three hours! Here's a pic I snapped from the back of the tax building:

This is the officers neighborhood and it overlooks Chesapeake Bay.

Tyler and I went from there to his favorite chinesse place Peony Garden. It was right at 5:00pm when we checked in here at the Hilton. It seems to be REALLY nice. I pretty much immediately took a nap and just woke back up. We are gonna grab dinner and go see "Friday the 13th". Stay tuned for the next edition... Same Cal time, same Cal channel ; )
-- Post From My iPhone

February 11, 2009

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

This afternoon has been nuts!  

When I got home from work it was sprinkling.  I dropped my stuff and went straight to let Lucky out of his cage.  I walked straight back to the door and it was like a different world.  The wind was blowing crazy (60 mph according to the weather) and it was pouring the rain.  It looked like news footage of a hurricane!  Literally about 3 minutes in, the power went out.  I was not happy!  Fifteen minutes later, the sun started to come out and the rain stopped.  The power remained off.  I saw the guy across the street taking pictures and wondered what he was doing.  I sat in the floor with Lucky and saw this:

I had 2 pairs of pants I needed to hem (I'm a midget, so I've become a pro at hemming), so I lit some candles and started pinning.  I donned my best British accent and said, "I'm darning my knickers by candle light."  I felt all Jane Austen.

Mom, dad and I decided to go to Subway for dinner.  On the way out we saw a tree down at Fatima (right behind our house).  There were lights shining on the tree, so we thought the power company was out to inspect.  When we got home, it was still dark, but I could see the outline of the tree against the night sky.  It was still totally intact!  We decided to walk down to check it out.  We we investigating the tree totally uprooted and laying on the power line when the Virgin Mary lit up...the power was back!!!  I got a shower in time to watch Lost!  I should note that Trevor and I texted back and forth through the evening.  Their power was out due to a transformer blowing and still is as far as I know.