Monday, December 29, 2008

Emptied my camera... so here's a long post for you!

I just emptied the pictures from my camera on to the computer... and realized I've got a bit to blog about, so this will probably be a long one! I also started this blog earlier, slowly adding to it, so it'll post on Jan 3rd, but the date will say sometime before then...

Miley/Samson Play Date: Let's see... before Thanksgiving sometime, (yes that far back) my friend Claire and her puppy Samson came over for a play date. He and Miley have a ball when they play together, and Claire and I enjoy the opportunity to chat and spend time together.... while letting the ''pup-children" get out some pent up energy! Here are some pics from the play date... although, I'm quite sure Samson has gained at least 10-20 lbs since these were taken! It was cold outside, so we had to move the "date" into the kitchen...wrestling between claire's legs lol

Baby-sitting for the Morris Boys: The weekend of the Auburn-Alabama game, Josh and I babysat the Morris boys: Gordy (5), Mack (3), and Sanders (2). They are precious. Gordy was in my class back when I taught 3 yr old preschool, and I've babysat for them occasionally ever since then... Sanders was about 4 months old when I first babysat him! Anyways, it was a pretty fun weekend... we watched some kid movies, played hide-and-seek, took the boys to our house to play with Miley some, and went to the McWane Center. Sunday morning, I looked over to see this cute sight... all three of them huddled in a box together, watching tv lol.

Dog and House-Sitting for the Turners: The week of Dec. 18th-23rd, Josh and I house and dog-sat for the Turners. Typically, it is just Bear and Phoebe, but since my cousins were with my aunt and uncle skiing in Park City, we kept Dill and Macy, too. Macy and Phoebe don't get all too well, so Macy (75 lb golden retriever) came to stay with Miley and me and our house, and Josh went to stay at the Turner's with Dill, Bear, and Phoebe. Miley had a BALL with Macy... it was her fantasy-new toys AND a play mate every day for a week- and we just scooped her in like one of the family, taking her on errands, getting treats, etc. Every now and then Macy would take a break to rest b/c she's a few years older than Miley, so she doesn't have that unending supply of puppy energy that Miley does :) . Although, as you'll see in the pics, Miley got worn out, too... so the breaks were welcomed by all. Haha. Over the course of the week, as they got to know each other better (and got some of the playing out of their system) they were able to just chill together. I took the love seat... they took the couch. Miley was relentless about stealing Macy's special Tiger, so she got one of her own lol. It was a fun week...we did, however, decide that we'll work some kind of "house cleaning fee" into keeping Macy...despite our vacuuming and sweeping, we're still finding Macy fur around the house haha. Here are some pictures from the week. We brought Dill over one day to play with Macy and Miley. They had a big time.Treats, please!
Miley's new tiger... b/c she wouldn't leave Macy's alone.
She loved Macy's bones (little did she know I had one hidden for her Christmas)
Miley does Cocina SuperiorNap time for Miley and Macy...Dill came over to play!"Everyone pile on Macy!" Miley's (Taylor's) fave Christmas present: Over the course of the week keeping dogs, I was doing some serious Christmas shopping. Apparently, this year I was in denial that Christmas was coming as soon as it was after school got out, and didn't really get on my shopping until about 1.5-2 weeks before Christmas. Fortunately, everything got here on time! One of my favorite things that I ordered was Miley's new crate! At 7.5 months and about 41 lbs, we don't think she's going to get too much bigger (maybe 10 lbs?). She had, however, grown out of her old crate, and would hit her head on the roof when she barked! Poor baby. So, we went ahead and ordered her a new big girl crate! What a great purchase--and might I add, I found a major deal on Amazon! I saved probably $30-$40. Miley has been sleeping longer before waking us up to take her out in the morning, so we're thinking she was definitely out of comfortable sleeping room in her old crate. She loves it, and it is a double door crate, so I've turned it sideways in the laundry room, allowing it to fit flush with the washing machine and it gives more room in there. :) Definitely a good purchase!
Trying it out in the kitchen after it arrived on Christmas Eve!Check out all of this stretching room, mom!!!
Christmas at the Brannon House: Josh and I spent Thanksgiving in Nashville, so we got to spend Christmas in Birmingham again this year with my family. Josh, Miley, and I spent the night at my parents' house, which is fun, b/c we get to wake up and open presents with everyone, but also b/c it's delightfully ridiculous... we live 0.87 miles from them! :) After opening great gifts, we headed home to drop off Miley and get ready for the day. My mom's side of the family gets together at my grandmother's house on Christmas afternoon for lunch and a rousing game of Dirty Santa. This year was special b/c my cousin Christopher and his wife Brandy brought their baby Braegan for his first Christmas! I got my good baby fix before we headed out to the movies. Josh's mom, Regenia, was on her way to see family in Shreveport, La, so she stopped in Birmingham Christmas evening to break up the trip. We were happy that she could join us at the movies to see "Marley and Me" since we was in town! The next day was Grace and Paige's birthday! 22 years old! I can hardly believe it... Time is flying. They are growing up into such smart, beautiful, talented, and interesting young women.

Bluegrass and Bar-B-Q: Every year, a few days after Christmas, a friend of my dad's has Bluegrass and Bar-B-Q at his house out by Oak Mountain. He invites musicians, novice and pro, to come out and "jam," along with friends and family to come enjoy some BBQ and great music. As you walk from room-to-room, you'll find a different group of musicians playing. This was Josh and my first year to go with my Daddy, and had a great time. I hope that everyone had a beautiful Christmas surrounded by friends, family, and lots of joy.

New Years Eve 2008: We spent NYE with the Byingtons, Schaefers, Cowarts (dinner), and Elams. It was a great night! We all met for dinner at Tavern at the Summit, and then headed back to the Byingtons' house for some mario kart, guitar hero, and "Things" board game! The guys' facial expressions were so funny playing guitar hero. They looked so serious, but they were really just concentrating! Ha ha. Josh and I are praying for a blessed, God-glorifying, prosperous 2009, constantly seeking God's perfect will for our live together and surrounded by faithful friends.Here's to a beautiful and blessed 2009!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

whoops!

Sorry to all.... I somehow temporarily forgot about updating the blog! Ha ha... I guess I've been too busy doing... nothing at all~! and it feels lovely :o) Well... not nothing, but just not as much as I was before I got out for Christmas Break.

I'd also like to mention that I made ALL A's this semester! This is the first time I have ever made totally all A's in a real college semester... even at Vandy. I'm pretty proud :o) (I always make A's in summer school when I just take 1 or 2 classes at a time, b/c I can focus on just those few classes.)

Monday was fantastic... I went to Montgomery, AL to visit my bff Eden and my precious nephew Wyatt! Lately, my opportunities to see Eden have been brief visits at her parents' house or a quick lunch and maybe some shopping when they are in town... so I loved having hours of quality chat time with her! Of course, there's never enough time, and we certainly weren't finished chatting... we're really never finished. Ha ha... It was wonderful though. I loved getting to see my sweet Wyatt, too. He is getting SO big and is suuuuch a good baby! The only time he was fussy all day was when he lost his pacifier in the car... and who could blame him for that!? When I got there we sat around chatting for a few hours while Wyatt napped, and then decided to head to lunch once he woke up... and let me tell you-we totally lucked out for lunch! We were originally headed to Chili's, but when we saw Mimi's Cafe, we decided to check it out. (I'd been 1 time before.) Well, when we got to the door, the manager told us that they were just opening and having a training day. If we would order from different sections on the limited menu and give feedback afterward, lunch was FREE! They chose an appetizer and dessert for us, both were delicious!... We ended up getting a $40 lunch for FREE! What a blessing! There is something about a FREE meal that just tastes better. Ha ha.

That night, Josh and I had our Sunday School Christmas party (went home with some coffee and a pretty cross from Dirty Santa) and then, last night, we met our friends and December prayer buddies, the Schaefers, at Nabeel's for dinner. YUUUM! I forget about Nabeel's, but always like it when I go! After dinner, Josh and I returned a few movies, and rented another one. We are considering doing Blockbuster Online. At about $4.00 to rent 1 movie, it would pay for itself in only a few movies... especially b/c Josh and I usually rent 2 at a time.

Who has had experience with Blockbuster Online?
What are your thoughts?


Today, I am being more productive around the house than I'd originally intended... I love it when that happens. Ha ha. So far, I've been working on laundry, unloaded the dishwasher, talked to the mortgage broker about refinancing the house at the lower interest rates, and have been cleaning out the hall closet. My goal is also to go to the gym every week day and maybe weekends during break... I'm sad to say that I have been a major slacker in this area of my life ... well, I don't even know for how long... hopefully I can keep it up this time, and form a habit!

I hope everyone is having a beautiful Christmas season!

What have you been up to?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A childlike faith

I borrowed this from Shea. About this time last year, my father-in-law played it for me, and I was so pleased to see it on Shea's blog, and be able to enjoy it again. It brings tears streaming down my cheeks every time I hear it. I am humbly grateful for the reminder for us to have a childlike faith, and for God's sacrifice for all of us.

"So simple, yet so profound." So true...

The Sky Angel Cowboy



Monday, December 8, 2008

Bailey Louise Brannon

I'd like to introduce you all to the newest member of the Brannon family, Bailey Louise Brannon. (She has put on a little bit of weight since this picture.) My sister, Grace, picked her up (apparently she jumped in her car!) at a gas station on the way back to school after Thanksgiving break. Poor Grace got caught with Bailey in her dorm room, and called my mom in tears. My sister, Paige, recognizing that Grace doesn't cry often, knew this was serious, and drove all the way to Rome, GA to pick up Bailey and bring her to Birmingham. Bailey is currently on probation at the Brannon house to see if she's going to be allowed to stay... but between us, I seriously don't see this sweetheart going anywhere anytime soon! My dad is already talking about looking into an invisible fence for her. She's weighing in around 40 lbs, clearly a mix, a tiny bit larger frame than Miley, about a year old, sweet disposition, calm, loving, usually comes when called, has apparently had puppies in the past, and gets along with Miley and Elsie. Only faults so far: not spayed, she has a wild side that causes her to occasionally run off, and has a random play threshold so far with Miley (she'll play with her for a long time, and then she'll randomly warn Miley to back off- I will say, it is fairly understandable... she is from the streets, in a new environment, and Miley Jean, as a 6 mth old puppy, can be relentless when it comes to playing lol). I'm sure it'll get much better as they get to know each other more as time passes. Bailey and Miley did have a big old fun time Saturday, running around and playing in my parents' yard. Miley seemed glad to finally have a playmate about her same size that is so good at playing chase with her!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

"That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown"

OK...so, The radio station, Magic 96.5 FM, here in good ole Birmingham, festively starts playing non-stop Christmas music around Thanksgiving. Between songs, they occasionally play a little excerpt from A Charlie Brown Christmas that I think is precious... and I just adore it. I wanted to post the movie clip and the words, so y'all could enjoy it, too!

In the midst of the shopping, gifts, parties, traveling, and more, it is so incredibly important to not lose sight of the TRUE reason for Christmas:
The birth of our precious Lord and savior, Jesus Christ!


Here's the clip: A Charlie Brown Christmas.

Charlie Brown: I guess you were right, Linus. I shouldn't have picked this little tree. Everything I do turns into a disaster. I guess I really don't know what Christmas is all about.
[shouting in desperation]
Charlie Brown:Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?
Linus Van Pelt: Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you what Christmas is all about.
[moves toward the center of the stage]
Linus Van Pelt: Lights, please.
[a spotlight shines on Linus]
Linus Van Pelt: "And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, 'Fear not: for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.' And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.'"
[Linus picks up his blanket and walks back towards Charlie Brown]
Linus Van Pelt: That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Humbly Grateful.

I just wanted to wish everyone a very HAPPY THANKSGIVING! Josh, Miley, and I are excited to be spending this Thanksgiving in Nashville with Josh's parents, Regenia and Milton. :o) I am humbly grateful for so much today and everyday... God has blessed me in so many ways... most importantly, my salvation. I hope you have a beautiful day with friends and family. We all have so much for which to be thankful!

"Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good. For His loving kindness is everlasting." 1 Chronicles 16:34

Sunday, November 23, 2008

"You have a freak flag. You just don't fly it."

Whew! What a welcomed weekend this one was! Last week was busy with finishing up observation hours, projects, etc. I was so glad when Friday afternoon finally got here. Friday night, Josh and I thought we'd go out to eat, and headed out to Patton Creek to see what struck us as most appealing. We decided to try Cafe Lazio, an Italian cafe. While we were waiting to be seated, Rebecca Morris, the mother of Gordy (5), a little boy that was in my class when I taught 3 yr old preschool a few years ago. He also has two little brothers, Mack (3) and Sanders (2). They are all PRECIOUS! I got to go nanny for them at the beach for 3 weeks summer of 2007 and it was so much fun. Anyways... back to topic. Got a call from Rebecca in a panic for a last-minute babysitter. Since we didn't have anything going on other than dinner, and we could really use the extra money, we took her up on her plea for help. We got our dinner to go and headed over there. Rebecca had been home alone with the boys all week b/c her husband, Ben, had been in trial out-of-town all week, and she really needed an evening out of the house. It worked out really well, b/c we got some time to play with the boys and Ben ended up getting home like an hour after Rebecca left. Saturday, I spent the morning on the couch drinking hot chocolate and watching tv with Miley, while Josh braved the cold weather to ride his bike. "The Family Stone," one of my favorite movies, was on tv, so I made sure to watch and Tivo it, so I can re-watch it later! :o) That afternoon, we went to a wedding, where we got to hang out with my parents :o) and see sweet friends like Bridget and Steve Adams! After the wedding, we picked up a few movies ("You Don't Mess with the Zohan" and "Forgetting Sarah Marshall") and headed home to thaw. Today, Josh and I spent some time being lazy watching movies, and then this afternoon/evening, we got to work on the house. Josh went outside to get some much-needed yard work done, while I did stuff inside. I've been working on cleaning out/purging the house for a few weeks now. I was hoping to be finished the first week, but school has kept me busier than I'd expected, and the job has been strung out a bit. Ah well. It will feel AMAZING when it is all finished! Today, I started tackling my closet.... WHEW! I'm trying to be more ruthless than usual, so I can get rid of a bunch of clothes/junk I don't need/wear.

Well.... I guess it's time to get back to the cleaning/purging.... Any good purging/organizing advice? A neat one (that I'm actually not doing haha) is to turn all of your clothes hangers in your closet backwards, and after you wear an item, hang it up and place the hanger the correct way. After a year, look at the hangers that are still backwards, and those are the ones that you didn't wear for a whole year! "They" say you should definitely get rid of those clothes. It's a good idea... I'm not sure if I'm brave enough lol... Hmmm... well, maybe I'll consider it!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

It's an early Thanksgiving miracle!!!

Hallelujah and Praise the Lord!
Guess who did not bark at all to go potty last night????
~MISS MILEY JEAN GAMBLE!~
It was so beautiful to wake up this morning to silence... and realize that I had not been woken up over and over again by my sweet puppy's cries to poop! lol....as well as to realize that we may possibly have solved the problem we've been exhaustedly dealing with for so long now! I don't want to get ahead of myself and assume everything is fixed, but that is the first night in almost 2 MONTHS that she's been quiet all night. I am hopeful, though!
Sigh.... Thank you so much, Lord. What an answered prayer!!!HIGH FIVE, MILEY!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Papers, a pug, and some poop....

Sorry to all of you loyal readers for my blog-slacking.... School has really picked up here at the end of the semester, so I'm super busy finishing my observation hours, doing projects/papers, and taking exams. DEFINITELY looking forward to a few days off next week...Whew! Let's see... what have we been up to, other than previously mentioned?
Last weekend, Josh and I went to see one (one of two) of my very best friends , Joy, and her husband, Luke, in GA. It was a great time and much needed refreshing of our souls with good friends :o) They have an 11 mth old pug named Captain Jack who got along with Miley wonderfully! (Picture: Miley and Captain playing tug... too cute! Sorry for photo quality, I left my camera in B'ham! Hence, no pictures of people haha) We spent a lot of time visiting, watching movies, eating, going to church, and watching the puppies play.... a quality weekend. The only downside to the weekend was that we planned the trip before we found out when sweet Wyatt was being dedicated at church, so we missed that... :o(

Here's a pic so you can see how precious he and his parents are though!This week has been mostly school work...but there have been a few other items of interest... I got my hair cut last evening.. which, if you know me well, you know that I adore getting my hair cut! Nothing drastic, just a trim and some shorter layers. I like it :o) Also, yesterday afternoon, we met with Adam Summerford from How to Talk Dog. They really focus on establishing dominance with your dog and learning to speak most effectively to it. He said we were already doing a lot right with her, but no dog is perfect, so we had some areas to work on with her. Yesterday, I saw her walk down the street in front of our house without any tension on her leash... which is great for her! Normally, she's more "on a mission" walking. I can already tell a difference in sweet Miley's obedience level after only a day, so I'd definitely recommend that anyone with a dog give Adam a call! Obviously, you don't have to have major problems to work with him, and let's face it, there is no such thing as a perfect dog, ---especially not a perfect puppy! Ha ha. Adam is also very good about giving you his time and is only a phone call away if you have any questions, which I greatly appreciate, b/c if I'm going to do something like this, I want to do it right and need someone there to answer my questions, which I definitely have haha.
Oh yeah... I almost forgot the "poop!" Well, as I've mentioned in previous posts, Miley has been giving us some trouble during the nights, barking to go potty, and each time pooping. So, we've played with her food some (starting today we are cutting back on meal frequency) and decided to try to let her "bark it out" last night like you do when they are a little puppy and don't like their crate yet... well, apparently she couldn't take it anymore...because when we went in there at 5 a.m., all excited that she'd stopped barking, we find her in the midst of poop. Everywhere. NOT the best way to start my morning, needless to say. So, I got on my hands and knees to scrub the laundry room floor while Josh bathed Miley. I know she seriously had to go b/c dogs don't like to poop where they sleep. We'll get it worked out. Poor baby...

Oh yeah... and today is Josh and my 1.5 year anniversary :o) I know, not a huge one to celebrate, but I thought it was nice to acknowledge! Josh is amazing, and I love him so much! God is so good to me! :o)

Well, that's the latest with us... post a comment and let me know how you're doing and what you've been up to lately!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Senior night ,spend the night company, and the bell ringer..

My sweet sister, Grace, is on a volleyball scholarship at Berry College in Rome, GA. One of THE most beautiful college campuses ever... and is the biggest in the world. Surrounded by woods, there is a 13:1 deer to student ratio! My other sweet sister, Paige, and I are always excited to see the deer, but after 4 years of seeing them all of the time, Gracie just shrugs the sightings off like they are yesterday's news lol... Ok, back to volleyball. Grace, to say the least, is a volleyball champ. Yes, I am somewhat biased, but the numbers don't lie! For example: Berry vs. Faulkner. Their team is #1 in their conference! Check out her blurb: GRACE. I don't think I could be more proud of her. It takes A LOT of hard work and self-discipline to be a successful collegian, but she does that AND manages daily practices along with games, many of which are out of town. She's recently applied for Vet school, as well. On top of all of that, she has her personal priorities straight, with God at the center. All of that said.... Tuesday night was Senior night for Berry Volleyball. This is the night when they honor all of the senior players and their families. My mom called me and told me it was coming up to see if we might be able to swing an attendance. She also mentioned that Grace had told her in passing how much it would mean to her if we could come, but knew that we had work and school. (This would consist of leaving town around 1 or 2 p.m., finding someone to take care of Miley, going to the game at 7 p.m. EST, then turning around and driving back to B'ham around 9:30 p.m., only to return around 11 p.m. Then, getting up for my 8 a.m. class the next morning.) I told her we would make it happen, and we decided we'd keep it a secret. Grace also mentioned to me on facebook that Senior night was coming up and that she'd love for us to come. Knowing that plans were already made, I put her off a little, saying I'd talk to Josh, but wasn't sure if we'd be able to come or not. Well, we pulled it off beautifully and it was all worth it! Grace texted us (Paige, Josh, and me) on the drive home, saying how incredibly special she felt that we came. Another sweet note... Grace had to let the announcer know who he needed to announce as her family that would be walking out with her on the court...This is what was said: "Grace is accompanied by her parents, Vicki and Harrison Brannon, her sister, Paige Brannon, her sister Taylor Gamble, and her brother, Josh Gamble." We all giggled at first, but it then realized how sweet it was that Grace didn't even feel the need to specify that Josh was her brother-in-law. To her, he is her brother, and it touches my heart.

Miley FINALLY got to meet our friends Claire and Brian Jackson's puppy, Samson, this week and had a playdate while the pup-moms had their own play/chat date. He is a 12 week old, pure chocolate lab. I tried to take pictures, but my camera battery was dead! I know... Get on the ball, TAY! I'll definitely have it charged for the next one. Claire and I have decided it needs to be a weekly occurrence.

After feeling great about my Psychology exam Friday morning, the weekend got off to a great start! When I got home, I checked my e-mail and found this precious e-mail waiting for me:

"I miss you so much, aunt tay, that i'm eating my own arm..."Sigh... my sweet Wyatt Keever... Who, by the way, is rolling all the way over by himself! (Click for video) He will be 4 months old tomorrow, November 10th. Wyatt and his mommy and daddy are down in Jacksonville, FL right now, meeting more of his extended family. I can't wait until Josh and I get to do that with our little ones one day :o)

Friday night, Josh and I went to Sekisui, one of our fave sushi restaurants, for dinner. We got some gift certificates, which I think are more like coupons b/c you have to spend a certain amount but get $25 off the bill... either way, we got like a $40 meal for more like $15-20... can't complain. :) Then, we came home and snuggled up with our sweet Miley. So much snuggling, in fact, that we both fell asleep and Miss Miley got the treat of her life... a FULL NIGHT in the bed with Mom and Dad! lol... Normally, I'll go snuggle and watch tv for a little bit with Miley, and when Josh comes to bed, he'll take her out and then put her in her crate. It's funny, b/c Miley HAD gotten to where she'd make it without barking to go potty until like 6 a.m., which was totally great with us, but in the past month or so, she has regressed back to waking us up in the middle of the night, like she did when she was really little.. 2:30 a.m. ...5:30 a.m....(not the funny part, of course!) Well, you bet your sweet booty that she did not dare wake us up Friday night! Ha ha... She's a very smart girl!

Speaking of how smart Miley is... My sweet sister, Paige, is in a Psychology class at Samford for which she has to teach someone to do something for a project. She chose to teach Miss Miley to ring a jingle bell hanging from the backdoor handle when she wants/needs to go outside. (Pottying optional b/c point is just to ring to go outside.) At first, Paige was incredibly frustrated, b/c Miley was afraid of the bell! "Oh no!" We all thought... "Paige's experiment is ruined..." After some thought, I pointed out that she is only 5.5 months old and has never seen/heard a bell like that, and suggested Paige desensitize her to the bell a little. Initially, it didn't seem to be working, but after many treats and showing Miley (by grabbing her paw to make her hit the bell), Miley learned the new trick! It was a weak knowledge at first, but after a week of practice, she now goes to the door and rings the bell completely on her own! lol... I now laugh about it b/c Aunt Paige MAY have created a bell-ringing monster... We have to document every single time she rings the bell... and every time she rings the bell, we praise her, open the door, let her outside, and give her a treat... Here is an example of our log this evening: 5:40 p.m., 5:42 p.m., and 5:52 p.m.... I'd definitely say she's caught on. Ha ha. I am really glad Paige's experiment has been a success, and am proud of our super smart pup-child, Miley Jean. :o)

Last night, my God-mother, Susan Bayliss, (I have called her "Susan Bayliss" since I was little lol) threw a casual dinner birthday party for her husband (my God-father), "Michael Bayliss." She was very smart and had a friend of hers help plan it and run the show, so she wouldn't get stressed over details, etc. Kathy G catered it and it was delicious! Arugula salad with walnuts, grilled pears, and blue cheese, topped with a vinaigrette dressing, to start. The main course was steak, asparagus, and mashed potatoes. YUM! Dessert was homemade strawberry cake, chocolate cake, vanilla icecream, and chocolate icecream. Josh and I were in heaven. To add to the wonderful meal, was the wonderful company. We sat with my daddy, sister Paige, cousin Rachel, her boyfriend Chris, Aunt Sharon, and Uncle Ira. Needless to say, we laughed and cut-up the whole meal. It was fantastic :o)

By the way, it has been brought to my attention that I need to be updating the blog a little more often, so I will be putting in more effort to do so! :o) "Thank you" to everyone that reads it!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Life with the Gambles...

Well, my dear Aunt Sharon made a very reasonable request... that I tell about what Josh and I have been up to lately! lol.... I guess I just get so wrapped up and excited about what my friends and family are doing, that I forget to tell about us! :o) Here goes! Sorry, it's a really long post, but at least there's lots of new stuff to read and see :o)

The weekend of October 17-19, we went down to Fairhope, AL to see our friends Sarah and Keith...(who just got engaged a few months ago!) and their 2 yr old golden/rotweiler mix, Patton. We had a wonderful time and it was so great to catch up and hear about wedding plans! They had never met Miley, so we were extra excited to be able to bring her with us! (We don't really go out of town these days if Miley can't come, apparently haha) Here are some pics of Miley and Patton playing. Miley (whom I have deemed "Miss Congeniality" b/c she never meets a stranger and has won the heart of multiple non-social dogs) is in this energetic, loves-to-play stage. She will play until she is seriously exhausted or until we split her up from her friend. Well, this was exactly how things went in Fairhope. She and Patton played SO hard that sweet Miss Miley slept from Fairhope, all the way to Birmingham, and then some more when she got home! haha...
The water bottle goes everywhere!
Miley flirting with Patton- so cute! She'd look at him and when he'd look at her, she'd look away. lol.
Mid-play
Miley discovering the joy of destroying a paper towel roll. (the cardboard tube thing)
SWEET Mr. Patton!
The week after we got home, inspired by sweet Patton's catching abilities, Josh started working with Miley to teach her to catch a ball, etc. in her mouth. She doesn't have it 100% of the time, but she can do it! I probably get a little too excited haha... what can I say, I'm a very proud pup mom and no one can deny that she is deeply loved!

The weekend after our Fairhope trip, we went to Nashville for Vanderbilt Homecoming October 24-26! This has been a tradition for Josh and me since we started dating back in Summer of 2004-we have gone every year and look forward to many more together :o) This year's homecoming was kind of a bust b/c not a lot of people came back for it, but next year should be great b/c it'll be my 5 year reunion! We walked a lot that weekend! We went around campus, got SATCO (of course!), and then walked up where the tailgates were and then back down 21st to our car... which, if you know Vandy's campus, that's a lot of walking, especially for Miss Miley! When she got in the car, she passed OUT! The highlights of the weekend definitely were getting to see Josh's parents and meeting my Big Big Sis, Kristin Zaleuke Westberg, for breakfast! Here are a few pics from the weekend. It was also Miley's first trip to Nashville and first time to meet Josh's dad, Milton. She still does such wonderfully riding in the car and I can tell that she loves Josh's parents! We got Miley a Vanderbilt collar while we were up there-she's so cute!

Getting some water by You Greek, Me Greek. Sacked OUT after walking around Nashvegas!
Josh's parents puppysat so we could go get dinner and hang out in Nashville :o)
Worn out on the way home... she's getting so big!
This weekend has been pretty low key. Friday night, I had to go down to UAB to do a big school project while Joshy and Miley handed out Halloween candy. Saturday morning, we took Miley to the vet for her last round of shots after Josh's morning ride. She is 23 weeks and is up to 32 lbs now! On November 21st, she'll be 6 months old. The past 4 months have been a great lesson in patience, love, and responsibility, and I am SO glad we rescued Miley in July! She's such a great addition to our little family and brings us so much laughter and joy :o)
Saturday night, Josh and I were honored to attend a wedding party for Lindsay McGinnis and her fiance', James Morris at Lindsay's parents' house. They are going to be married at St. Simons, so their friends and family had a party for them in Birmingham b/c they knew not everyone would be able to make the trip for the wedding. We were also excited to go b/c we got to see our great friends, Claire and Brian Jackson! (Lindsay's sister and brother-in-law)
Miley has gotten to where she absolutely loves going to play in the backyard, so we'll let her go out for a while here and there. Since she is still a curious puppy, we try to monitor how long she's out there (to cut down on how much trouble she could possibly get into! haha), but she actually usually ends up coming back to the door before we call her to come in, so that's good. Sometimes Josh and/or I will go out there to run around with her and throw the tennis ball. She loves it!
Miley has started doing the cutest thing where she'll stand up, lean on the back of the couch, and look out the window. 99% of the time, she doesn't bark or anything... just checking out the view! haha. She's also gotten more snuggly again :o) She and I have developed a routine of getting the bed to watch tv while Josh messes around on the computer, or like last night, watch football. We get all snuggled together and usually both sack out before Josh comes to take her out and put her in her crate. Josh and I also have gotten some stylin' sheets to lay over stuff we really don't want dog hair on--our bed and the day bed in the study. The day bed in the study is probably Miley's fave place to nap, something she's been doing quite a bit of lately. Mama Tay thinks she's going through a growth spurt!
Checking out the view.
LOL... I love this one... just hanging out.
Sacked out on her stylin' TJMaxx Tommy Hilfiger surfboard sheets on the day bed. haha. ,Tired girl...My view from the love seat most evenings :)
Our sweet Miley! Miss Congeniality!
Josh's view this AM when Miley fell asleep on his legs. lol.
Different angle
My view later... They are so precious to my heart.
Hope everyone enjoyed the update! We have spent all day today, Sunday, (I started this blog entry a few days ago and finally got the chance to finish it this evening) cleaning.... well, purging the house. It's tough work, but it will feel AMAZING when it's finished! Repeat after me... "If there's doubt, throw it OUT!"