Monday, June 30, 2008

Fun in...Centerville?

Yes, it is possible to have fun in Centerville, Texas! Haha!

This past weekend I met up with 3 friends I haven't seen in a while. We all used to work together in College Station and in 2005 each went our own ways. We've been able to meet up at two weddings since, one for Shelley and one for Tory, but it has been a while since Tory's wedding. Since we are all spread out over Texas we decided that Centerville was probably the most middle meeting point. Good thing we weren't looking for entertainment! =)

So here we are...standing in the wind. Not a great picture of us, but at least there was someone to take it for us.
Fortunately the food was pretty good. The service was not, but we weren't interested in a fine dining experience - we just wanted to see each other again.

My camera has this cool smile shutter function in which it won't take a picture after you push the shutter button until it registers a smile on the person's face. So here are lovely smiling pictures of my friends!
Time flew and soon we all had to say goodbye and get on the road again.
Shelley and I rode together, so we had more time to keep talking and sharing, which was so great.

Thanks ladies for a fun Saturday lunch. Thanks for sharing your lives and wanting to be a part of mine. Shelley, thanks again for driving! =) I love you girls!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Birthday Cookie Cake

At the church office they are famous for "scratch-out" messages on cookie cakes. For every birthday of a staff person we get a cookie cake for the staff on staff meeting days and there is always a message. No simple "Happy Birthday Joe" will do. It's always something creative, funny, sometimes has to do with a joke or something going on with the birthday person's life.

So this is the cookie cake for my birthday this year. I thought it was great! My pastor loves to call my clients "patients." He'll call me to talk about something for work and ask "How were the patients today?" I think he really wants to be one of my patients. =)

Summer at the Nasher...again!

So I was doing really well at updates. This summer is busy! It's a lot more busy than I thought it would be. Fortunately it is busy with fun things and my counseling rather than papers and projects and tests. Still, it's busy.

A couple of weeks ago we went to the Nasher again. Some friends invited us to go on a Friday night because the Nasher Sculpture garden shows older movies on a big screen out in the garden. We went to see the Wizard of Oz. We hadn't seen that movie in years, so it was really fun.

There was also an art festival going on in Dallas in the museum district. So we walked around to see the booths and what was going on. Josh and I did a coffee tasting at the Starbucks tent. We got to sample 4 different coffees and then choose our favorite to receive a quarter bag of coffee free! Very fun!
Here are the guys showing off their strength. They each won a hat.
More updates to come!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Fortune Cookie Wisdom

Doing what you like is freedom. Liking what you do is happiness.

This is the fortune I got out of my fortune cookie today at Pei-Wei. I think it's pretty profound as far as fortune cookies go. Definitely beats the usual "Your plans will succeed" type of message.

Hope this brings about deep thoughts for the day, or at least reflection.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Sunday, June 08, 2008


The birthday celebration continues! I really wanted to go salsa dancing for my birthday. I knew I wouldn't find anything for Wednesday night, of course, so I had been looking for Friday or Saturday. Anyways, after following several links, I found out that at the Nasher Sculpture Garden in Dallas (at the Nasher art Museum) they have summer concerts. And last night was a salsa band! How cool is that! So we went!The concert was outside in the sculpture garden. They had a stage and sound system set up for the band. People brought their blankets to sit out on the lawn and listen to the music. And there was a space to dance in front of the stage on the grass. You can sure bet we danced! We had such a great time! We danced and danced. There was a photographer from the Nasher there to take pictures of the event for their publication and he asked to take pictures of us while we were dancing! haha!
Of course, I don't have any pictures of us dancing, but here are a few we took.
This one we set the automatic timer on the camera and the only surface we had was on the bench. But it makes for a good view of my shoes! =)

Like I said, we had a blast! We were hot, sweaty, and tired when we left - which means it was a good night dancing.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

My first quarter Century

Yesterday I completed my first quarter century on earth. Yesterday was my 25th birthday! Yay! I had a great day and enjoyed many birthday wishes, cards, some ice cream, and gifts. One of my friends took me out for ice cream after our supervision at the school and Josh and I went to dinner yesterday evening. We might still do more celebrating this weekend...we are working on coordinating schedules and stuff.

Last night we also spent a while playing with one of my presents. My dad got me a new digital camera! The one we had, while still acceptable, is now 4 years old and is somewhat grumpy at times. Josh has had several occasions in which it would not turn on. Now we have a fancy new one! And this camera is amazing! Not only does it take beautiful pictures, but it has so many features for different lighting, focus, etc. Also, it has picture editing...right on the camera!
Here are some of the results:
(note: the pictures might look a little low-quality. That is because we used the down-sizing feature on the camera for easy emailing and uploading. We took the pics at 10 megapixles and then down-sized for the upload.)Okay, here we are in the first one. Yay for birthday!
Now, check out Josh's smile in this second one! There is a feature on the camera to enhance smiles! Isn't that hilarious! There is also a retro edit to the photo to give it that old-picture style with black around the edges.

Okay, now check out my smile enhancement!First, here I am, not smiling too widely.
But then....haha! Isn't that crazy! Do you like the blur-the-edges effect?

All of this was done on our camera! There is also a red-eye correction and several other blurring/editing effects. Another feature is the smile shutter. When you put that on, the camera will wait until a smile appears on the face of the person in focus and then it will take the picture. We played with that for a while, too. I sat on the couch with no smile, then would laugh quickly and it would take a picture! and another when I smiled again!

You can also play a slideshow on the camera with music of the pictures you have taken. I just can't believe all of this! So much fun! Just thought I would give everyone some laughs today!

Smile big....gottcha!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

More Memphis

We also went out to Mud Island on the Mississippi. They have built a scaled model of the river showing which states it passes through, the cities on the river, and the depth of the river along the way.It was really cool! You could walk through the "Mississippi!" And it was neat to see the different cities along the river as it flowed through different states.

This is one of the beginnings of the Miss. If you look closely you can see a little dam in front.

So that was another educational part of our vacation. =)

All in all we recommend Memphis for a weekend vacation. Let us know if you decide to go, we just might come along! =)

Monday, June 02, 2008

Memphis Trip

Josh and I decided, on a whim, to go to Memphis for Memorial Day weekend. We had so much fun! We decided on Memphis because we had never been there and found a great direct flight there.
This is at a park downtown. There was almost always some band set up playing. It was so fun to walk by, stop for a bit, and hear some live music.

This is a scene from downtown on Beale street. The buildings were all old and it had that quaint, old-town feel.
This is the first radio station that allowed Black men to be announcers.

Here we are with Elvis! He still looks good, huh?

This is us after dinner one night walking on Beale Street. This is where all the action happened. They block off the street at night so that it is one big pedestrian walkway. People just stroll up and down, getting something to drink, stopping to hear music. There were people set up playing on the corners, down alleys, and in almost all the restaurants. So fun!

We loved getting to hear music everywhere we went. We even danced in the street one time and danced on the patio of another restaurant.

On our first day there we went to the Rock n Soul Museum. It was a great museum and really helped us understand more of the history of soul and blues. It gave us an appreciation for Memphis and all the history that took place here. We got to hear about the greats like Elvis, BB King, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Al Green, and more.

We also went out to Graceland while we were there (Elvis' house). But we did not end up going on any of the tours. Just to tour the mansion it would have cost us $50! We were not that interested. So instead we found a pop-up book of the Presley mansion and took our "tour" that way! =) We got to see lots of pictures in the gift shops, see his planes, one of his cars, some of his jumpsuits, and a few of his suits. Pretty crazy how much of a theme park it is. Oh, and we did go in Heartbreak Hotel, which was pretty much just bright and bold with Elvis' face everywhere. =)

I'll put a few more pictures on the next post and what else we did.