Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Brad's Treasure

Brad has always wanted a giant TV with lots of initials - you know, LCD, HD, etc. I am not opposed to such electronic indulgences, but I have not been too keen on spending the necessary money to replace a perfectly fine TV, with a few less initials, just for the sake of it. I always felt like our TV worked just fine; even if we couldn't make out each individual blade of grass on the baseball diamond.

Brad, on the other hand, was anxious for the digital upgrade. So anxious, in fact, that he picked up an evening job delivering pizzas for Domino's just so that he could fund our transition into the 21st century, among other things.

First of all, Brad loves the work. It's fun for him to drive around listening to music, meeting people, and not stressing about work stuff since it's pretty cut and dry. Second of all, he loves the tips, which is what he was banking on.

For some reason (probably because he's weird), he decided to trade in all of his tip money for gold dollar coins and create his own pot o' gold. He received great pleasure each time he heard the clink of coins as they dropped into the grown-up piggy bank (aka, vase) on his night stand.

Finally, he saved up enough gold to cross the first item off of his wish list and fulfill his electronic aspirations. He stopped by Best Buy on his way home from his last delivery on Friday night and picked up his heart's desire. A 32" Samsung LCD TV fully equipped for HD and all that other fine stuff.
Now, I'm going to be honest, I wasn't dying to upgrade our (perfectly fine) television in the first place, and I really don't understand all of that initial mumbo jumbo. But, hey, since Brad went and worked extra, spent his "own money," and already purchased it, I'm not going to not enjoy the beautifully crisp, clear, bright picture illuminating our living room from the vibrant, wide screen TV! We've already viewed a few movies in HD with that DOLBY surround sound (or whatever it is), and they were great!

Too bad Brad's so excited about the long sought after wide-screen-ness, that he insists on keeping it in that format even when that particular channel isn't formatted for wide screen, and it just stretches people and makes them look short and squatty. Oh well, I guess he worked hard enough for it. He can have the pleasure of utilizing his treasure however he likes.

Until he leaves. Then I change the settings.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Blog Facelift

Since we've been in such a makeover mood lately, I decided to let that over flow into my blogosphere. With a little help from Megan at Shabby Blogs for the background, header and post divider, and Amanda for the fonts and easy-to-follow HTML instructions, I believe the facelift was pretty successful. What do ya think?

I get the cutest fonts from Free Scrapbook Fonts! kevinandamanda.com/fonts

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Back To My Roots

I guess Brad has been in the pampering mood, lately. Only days after he groomed Chester, he decided it was my turn to be spoiled with a little make over indulgences.

It's been over 6 months since I've stepped foot into a salon. Way back in January, I underwent this dramatic transformation. It was just a temporary hair dye that was only supposed to last 3 month at the most. Well, I had more than gotten my money's worth out of the reddish-brown 'do, and the sixth month was showing some signs of neglect.

I've been mentioning that I wanted to get it touched up again, and discussed what I should do next with Brad. We both agreed that the darker alter-Mindy was fun while she lasted, but we were ready to get back down to my blond roots. Well, just because the decision was made, didn't necessarily mean that the appointment had been.

That was, until, Brad took matters into his own hands. Monday, Brad was waiting in the car while I was tanning after work. (We love carpooling.) When I got back in the car 12 minutes later, he looked up at me as if he was offended, and asked, "What are you doing??"

"Uh... getting in the car. To go home. Like usual. What's your deal?" I couldn't understand why he was so upset. I assumed he didn't want me interrupting his book, and my 12 minutes didn't allot him enough time to finish that particular chapter, or something.

He replied, "What do you think you're doing? You have an appointment upstairs, right now."

"Huh? What in the world are you talking about?"

"You're going to be late for your hair appointment. Get out!" he smirked as he pointed to the new salon located above Sun Tan City.

Unbeknownst to me, he had taken it upon himself to schedule me a hair appointment. Well, when the man of the house gives you an order, who are you to argue? I grabbed his hand, hopped out of the car, and skipped steps as I ran toward my makeover.

Brad, satisfied with himself, lounged on the couch and continued reading while I had the most enjoyable salon experience of my life. The lady was so nice (she did take basically a walk-in appointment at 5:30 in the evening and didn't even seem rushed); she offered us both something to drink before proceeding to create Martian Mindy with all of the foils containing blonde dye wrapped around pieces of my hair. Once I landed back on Earth, she performed a professional head massage masqueraded as a shampooing. She put final touches on the cut and style, and sent me home looking like this.

Brad was very patient to wait for me throughout the whole pampering process, not to mention completely wonderful for surprising me with a little (unnecessary, but oh-so-necessary) indulgent treat. However, I think he's as happy about the outcome as I am about the process. After all, Brad has always been partial to blonds...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Gutters and Strikes

Last Friday night, Lindsay called me up after work to ask if we were interested in spending some time on the lanes with her and Charlie. Well, of course we were! Brad and I are like pro bowlers. Okay, well, maybe not quite pro. Actually, we're kinda bad at it. But we still love it! And we're always up for any opportunity to improve our game.

So we hit up Tusculum Lanes and had a showdown between the couples. Apparently, Charlie was some bowling phenomenon in high school and goes by the bowler name, Tex. He proceeded to "shoot ya" every time he got a strike, which was, admittedly, much more frequently than any of the rest of us.

As a general rule, I'm pretty terrible at bowling. It would not be surprising for me to score a 48 (again). But, for some reason, I'm always on fire the first game. Check it out. I scored a giant 105. A score like that even let me beat Brad! Holla! (You may not understand just how exciting this is, but I can count the number of times in my life that I've broken a score of 100 on 3 fingers...)

But my flame wore out as the second game began. My 105 nearly shrunk in half down to a measly 60. (Lindsay barely beat me with a 62.) And Brad, true to his form of improvement with each game shot his original score of 89 up to a whopping 151! He even defeated Tex's decent 131. It's a good thing Brad and I evenly swapped places with the games. Our combined scores proved to dominate over Team Dizzle. Boom, roasted!

We had a lot of fun making loud fools of ourselves in front of everyone, and Lindsay and I had our fair share of celebration dances for any non-gutter balls. We didn't really care how many pins fell down; we were just proud that it stayed on the lane! What a great time with great friends.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Pampered Pooch

Chester was getting pretty shaggy, and understandably embarrassed.He asked us if he could have a Doggy Makeover, so Brad and I decided to gift him with an all-expenses-paid trip to the Mehaffey Manor Spa.

His pampering began with a simple hair trim.Then he got his nails done.Next was the washand the rinse He got all driedand styled.After a polite thank you to his (wonderful) spa technician,he went wild!He apparently didn't like the poofy style, because he decided to "fix it" by rubbing his face all across the carpet.Ahhh... That's much better.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Reservations for Two

Saturday night dinner at 7:30
Make sure and bring a cardigan because we may be sitting outside by the pond and I don't want you to get cold.


This was the subject line and email that I received from Brad early last week regarding our 4th Anniversary celebration. He gave me no other details, and refused to let any hints slip for the rest of the week, despite my multiple pleas. Much to his great pleasure, the suspense drove me crazy!

We were going to be spending the weekend in Illinois helping my brother move and prepare his new house, so I didn't know what he could possibly be planning. I was expecting a simple dinner at TGI Fridays or something, since I know what few restaurants are available in my Illinois hometown. But then Brad whips out this sneaky little trick, and convinces me to bring a dress with us on our trip north. Hmmm... I figured that we must be driving out of town for dinner.

At 6:00 on Saturday, he instructed me to put down my paintbrush and start showering and getting ready for our date. I wasn't sure how this would leave me enough time to get ready and drive to the nearest decent-sized city, but I didn't ask any questions of that ornery face he upheld.

To my surprise, there is apparently a really nice restaurant tucked away within the little town in which I grew up! Brad was sneaky, indeed! We enjoyed a romantic dinner for two at the Firefly Grill. While we waited to be seated on the back deck, we relaxed at the bar, where Brad got a sophisticated glass of wine, and I got a pretty strawberry daiquiri (virgin, of course - much tastier and much cheaper).

After a short while, we were escorted to our secluded table out back by the pond. We loved pretending to be fancy enough for this nice place. When seated, the server asked us if we would prefer "sparkling, spring or tap water." Brad shot me a confused expression, and I quickly requested spring water. He then brought out a brand new bottle of spring water and proceeded to pour it for us. Wow, totally out of our league, and totally so much fun!

I chose the rib eye steak and snow peas and Brad decided to test their "signature elk steak" and whipped potatoes. We were both extremely pleased with our selection and soaked in the sunset, sounds of nature, and the uninterrupted company of our soul mates. It's nice to still be so in love after four years of marriage...

Brad wouldn't let me order dessert at the Firefly Grill; he said he had something else special planned. Following dinner, we drove to the other side of town to a very familiar location. Brad tapped into my nostalgia and surprised me with a trip down memory lane as we pulled into the Homewood Grill parking lot for some ice cream.

My friends and I used to frequent this tiny little ice cream stand when I was younger. We would walk, roller blade, ride bikes, or beg our parents to drive us over to Homewood for some candy (they have everything you could ever want), ice cream (a variety of soft served, hand-dipped, sundaes, and shakes), or some good, old-fashioned junk food (nachos or cheese fries, anyone?).

I abandoned my childhood favorite of two scoops of hand-dipped home-made vanilla ice cream in a waffle bowl to sample a (more adult) turtle shake-n-more, and Brad (not having grown up in this small town, nor being very familiar with its offerings) based his decision off of his favorite Dairy Queen cool treat and went for an M&M shake-n-more hoping it would taste like their blizzard. He was right, and we had a great time reminiscing the "good ol' days" and comparing my childhood ice cream shop in Illinois, Homewood Grill, to his childhood ice cream shop in Indiana, Dari-Licious. I believe I won.

How blessed we are to have enjoyed four wonderful years of marriage. How blessed we are to be able to happily celebrate the milestone together. What a wonderful memory, just perfect for the two of us. I mean, really, who doesn't love getting all dolled up and spending a lovely evening with the one you love?

Oh, and by the way, I was glad that I brought a cardigan to wear. Thanks for thinking ahead, Baby!

Entire Anniversary Celebration Photo Album

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Moving Metcalfs

This past weekend, Brad and I headed up to Illinois with Chester in tow to help my brother and his family move into their new house. We already had planned to take Friday off work (for an intended anniversary weekend before TJ's closing date got moved up), so we headed north Thursday evening. I was so anxious to see my favorite niece and nephew! Look at Rachel "Cheese-ing" for the camera. Love her!

With the arrival of their newest family member, some more living space became necessary. TJ and Jennie upgraded from a 2 bedroom / 1 bathroom home to a 4 bedroom / 3 bathroom house that they can comfortably grow into over the years. Rachel not only loved the idea of having her very own (pink) room, but she also loves their new pool! -And the excuse to constantly wear her Princess swimming suit.

Too bad we didn't get any time this weekend to relax in it. Don't worry; we'll definitely be back for that activity soon. However, this weekend was dedicated to moving in. All of their belongings were crammed into their garage (yes, everything from their previous house fit into the garage of their new house), awaiting placement until we got the house ready.

We spent three solid days cleaning, painting, and purchasing. While the boys painted the entire ceiling, Jennie and I ran to Walmart with creative freedom to buy curtains, rugs, bathroom decor, etc - and lots of colorful paint!

Rachel was very expressive that she wanted a pink "princess" room. We chose baby blue for Clinton's room to match his Sesame Street theme. We had a pillow from TJ and Jennie's new bedding to match the beige color with, and Jennie had liked the khaki color that they chose for their old living room well enough to stick with it. The kitchen / dining room color, however, was up for grabs. The final decision came down to either red, orange, or green. A light sage green won Jennie's heart, and we headed home excited to get started.

Whew! I can't believe we got it all done in one weeked! The entire ceiling; 3 bedrooms; living room / stairway; kitchen / dining room, and not to mention steam cleaning all of the carpet! Now, where was that pool?? I'm ready to relax!

All the pictures from the weekend

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Four Wonderful Years

Four years ago, today, Brad and I said our vows, exchanged rings, and began our lives together as Man and Wife.

Four years.

I can't believe it's already been that long. It's gone by so quickly. I remember our wedding, honeymoon, and first (1-bedroom) apartment as if it was only a few months ago.

However, on the other hand, I feel like we've been married forever. It's completely hard to remember my life before it was joined by his. We've come a long way, and we still have so far to go.

My life has been so richly blessed by his presence. God knew exactly what I would need when He brought our two hearts together. Brad is my best friend, my confidante, my lover, my spiritual leader, my other half. He knows me and understands me down to the core of my soul. He quite literally completes me. He is my husband, and the love of my life.

Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:
If they fall down,
they can help each other up.
But pity those who fall
and have no one to help them up!
Also, if two lie down together,
they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

I pray that the Lord forever remain entwined in our relationship as that third strand. We would be nothing and have nothing without the Grace that He has extended to us.

I love you, Bradley Jay Mehaffey, with all of my heart, even the point. Thank you for who you are, and for who you are to me. I'm so proud of the man that you are and of the marriage we have created together. Happy Anniversary, Darling. Here's to many, many more blessed years together!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

There's a Lump in the Bed

I can't stand for things to be out of order. I simply cannot function when things are out of place, and I go a little crazy. FlyLady taught me to always make my bed. (After all, "it is the kitchen sink of your bedroom.")

Brad and I tagteam the bedmaking routine every morning. After I get out of the shower, I wake him up, and we each get on our respective sides, fold down the blankets just so, and then strategically place each of our pillows so that it becomes the beautiful masterpiece of our master bedroom.

However, the other day, Brad was not being very cooperative. He was just "too tired" to wake up and get ready for work at all. Well, it was getting late, and I, being the anal, annoying wife that I am, went ahead and made up the bed all by myself; with him in it.

Sorry, Baby. But, that's what you get.

However, my efforts were futile. Chester quickly proceeded to destroy my work of art in a frantic search for his daddy.

Turns out, Brad was faking the whole time, anyway. Apparently, he was the one being annoying! (Surprise, surprise.) But, don't worry, the wrestling match that proceeded between he and Chester was totally precious and completely worth the morning routine fiasco. I absolutely adore my little family.

Oh, and when we remade the bed, we did it together. :)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tiki Party

This past Friday, Charles and Emily hosted a Tiki Party in their back yard. Everybody donned the complimentary leis, munched on grilled hamburgers and hotdogs and sipped our Southern Sweet Tea through festive umbrella straws, surrounded by the glow of the tiki torches.

After the kids nearly injured themselves on the hammock, they played with bubbles and sidewalk chalk until night fell. Once the sun went down, the girls all huddled around citronella candles (not salmonella candles, Heather) and wrapped themselves in blankets while the boys slaved over a hot stove fire to produce some Grade A s'mores. It was a terrific evening spending time with friends, both old and new. Thanks, Charles and Em!

Complete Tiki Party Photo Album

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

FDH Field Day '09

I'm lucky blessed enough to work at a super great firm and also genuinely enjoy spending time with the people with whom I work. Not only does it make the day-to-day activities more bearable, but it also makes firm-wide events much more fun!

Yesterday, we closed the office early and headed to the park for the Company Picnic, which included a cookout as well as "relay events." There were two teams that competed in the activities: the audit employees (the A-Team) and the tax employees (the T-Team). Apparently, there is an unspoken rivalry between these two accounting fields that I was oblivious of until a competition was suggested. Let me tell you, trash talk abounded throughout the office in the days and weeks prior to the picnic!

Since I'm "neutral," I, along with the few other non-tax-non-audit employees were haphazardly placed on one team or the other. For a few intense days, I was tax, through and through. You better believe I was smack talking with the best of 'em! (Even though many of the auditors are some of my best friends in the office!)

The whole FDH Crew, along with their families, came together on the field to compete in five relay events: The Sack Race, The Dizzy Bat, The Egg Race, The Wheel Barrow, and The 3-Legged Race. You can't possibly understand how hilarious it was to see our partners hopping around in sacks and spinning in circles with their heads (supposedly) on baseball bats. We all laughed so hard and had a great time, despite the stiff competition. Brad and I both participated in the sack race, the egg race, and the wheel barrow race. And just FYI, it's very difficult for a short person to hold an extremely long person up by only their legs!

The A-Team thought they could intimidate us by sporting some sweet, matching sweatbands, but we knew it was all just talk. As evidenced by the fact that we dominated the sports. The T-Team creamed them with a whopping 4-1 victory. Boom! Roasted!

But I was glad when the games were all said and done so I could reestablish my neutral position. Even though I love a lot of the tax guys, I was starting to miss my audit friends. Now, it's all water under the bridge. Well, kind of. The scoreboard has been displayed right outside of the office kitchen, just to "gently remind everyone of who defeated whom." Old rivalries die hard...

Oh, and just because I have to, look at some of the oh-so-adorable kids that I got to spend time with! I never knew my coworkers had such cute families!

Company picnics are the best! Especially when you're so blessed to work with so many friends!

Complete FDH Field Day Photo Album

Monday, June 1, 2009

Two Thumbs Way "UP!"

Pixar has never let me down before. I fell in love with them with Toy Story (1 and 2), and have excitedly followed them through Monsters, Inc., The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, and others, including my personal favorite, Cars. Brad and I are not ashamed; we've not only bought movie tickets to these "children's movies" even though we have no children to use as an excuse, we've also joined right along with all the kids while we laugh hysterically in the theater.

When I heard that they were coming out with a new movie, I got super excited. What could they possibly come up with next? (Pixar has never followed the Disney "damsel in distress / save the princess" routine, and every presentation has been uniquely different.) All that I knew about Up was what I could gather from the poster: It was about an old man, a little boy, and a house floating by balloons. I tried very hard to not watch previews, because I have learned many times over that previews oftentimes spoil the movie by showing all of the best parts. (Which is also the case with this film. I have since watched the preview. Consider yourself warned.) Besides, I knew it was Pixar, I knew it would be great, and I knew I wanted to see it. Why would I need to watch a preview, anyway?

Just as I presumed, Brad and I, along with Alex and Amber, ventured out into the movie world and forked over a small fortune to gain access into the Wonderful World of Pixar this past Friday to lounge in stadium seats and view Up, first hand, on its release date.

Oh, and Alex and Amber smuggled in some Dollar Tree candy. Shame, shame.

Alright, my final review? The movie was awesome! I'm not kidding. I t-totally loved it! I won't say much, because I would hate to spoil it for you, since I know you're all going to take my recommendation and run out and watch it this week! But I will tell you that I laughed, and I cried, and I wasn't the only one! It was seriously an emotional roller coaster! I can't believe that Pixar was able to make you fall so in love with their characters that you literally feel every emotion right along with them! Amber and I (along with the boys, only they won't admit it) grew completely involved with this little old man and his young counterpart. We would be moved to tears in one scene, only to be pleasantly humored in the next. I've never been laughing and crying so much at the exact same time! Here's proof of our simultaneous, opposite emotions. This picture of Amber and me was taken immediately after the movie. We were sufficiently filled up with happiness and literally ready to stay seated just to watch the next showing of the film right over again! (If only that were legal.) I give it my highest recommendation. I have a strong feeling that you'll like it.

Oh, and as a special treat, look at what they teased me with! The sixth Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, coming out next month!! I can't even describe how anxiously I am awaiting this installment of my favorite series ever! This is one case in which I do watch the previews (over and over again). Just in case you're wondering, my prep work is coming along swimmingly. I'm about half way through the 3rd book as I reread the Potter Story (for the 3rd time) to get ready to witness the intensity that this 6th movie is sure to deliver! If you're new to the Potter-verse, come on in! The water's fine!

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