Monday, September 26, 2011

Brent and Gina's Baby Shower

We have been so busy around here and it's not slowing down anytime soon.  This past weekend, we left Saturday morning, to go to Monroe to host a baby shower for our dear friends Brent and Gina.  Matt's parents were fantastic and let us host the party @ their house.  The Creel's will be welcoming a little boy, Reid Walker, in November.  We are so excited for them and can't wait to meet their little bundle of joy.   

Matt's parents house is GORGEOUS and right on the LA bayou.

Ready for guests!

Brent, Emily, Sarah and Clint

Love all these boys

My beautiful sis-in-law


Our monogrammed PatyInc. outfit for Reid

Jeni and Me

All the hosts with Brent and Gina

Clay and Katie drove in from Shreveport and we got to meet Annah Kate!! 

Uncle Matt is smitten ;)

We had such a great time and little Reid should be ready to go...he got SO MANY nice things! :)) 

 I am already starting the week tired...not good!!  It was a full day for Matt and me and I fly out to Miami tomorrow for work.  I decided not to stay over for the weekend, so Kyndall isn't flying down to meet me.  I really want to go home this weekend to see my Dad and to spend time with my family.  I am thinking Matt and I will be making a trip to NWA Saturday morning :)

Hope everyone has a great week!! 


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Give Thanks

There are so many things that go on in our daily lives.... We all experience ups and downs, good days and bad, and then there are those days/weeks when something happens and you realize how little everything else in your world matters.  This week has been one of those weeks for me. 

As many of you already know, my Dad suffered another stroke on Monday.  This time it was on the right side of his brain.  After running a CAT scan, doctors told him that nothing really showed up and he was free to go home.  Thankfully, that wasn't good enough for him, he wanted more answers.  Dad has had every test underneath the sun run this week...EKG's, MRI's, Heart Caths, name it and he's had it.  To make a long story short, he has complete blockage in the small vessels of his heart and 50% blockage in a larger artery.  His main arteries look good, but unfortunately since the smaller vessels that are blocked are so tiny, we were told he can't have stints or balloons put in.  His only alternative (according to the cardiologist) is to lose the weight and exercise EVERY DAY.  Yes, he can be put on beta blockers and blood thinners, but at the end of the day, it comes down to a complete lifestyle change.

My dad had his first stroke in May of this year.  Since this stroke (only 4 months ago), he has lost over 40 lbs.  He (and my Mom) have truly made a change in their lifestyle and I cannot express it enough of how PROUD I AM of them.  They are on the right track and I know they will continue to succeed with the help of our family and our God.  My dad battles diabetes and the truth is this horrible disease is the cause of everything he has been through over the past 6 months.  This really hits home to me because my job every day consists of talking to doctors about this disease and helping them realize the importance of their patients getting the right medicine and education about diabetes.  Unfortunately, this disease can go "undetected" or diagnosed as metabolic disorder for sometime, and that's what has happened to my dad.  He was fighting diabetes long before he ever knew that he had it and it was affecting his heart and body. 

I write all this because through everything that has occurred this week, I still hit my knees and GIVE THANKS to God.  I believe that there are certain ways we can look at things in life, and I am choosing to look at this as a blessing. 

  • I think it's a blessing that my job consists of dealing with this disease state everyday - I believe God had much bigger plans for me (and those that I love) when he put me in this position @ Eli Lilly.

  • I think that Dad having a second stroke was a blessing.  It was God's way of telling us we still had some things to uncover.  By identifying that these arteries are blocked, Dad can focus on the problem and make even more changes. 

  • I think it's a blessing that Dad has no permanent damage from this stroke - yes, he has a long road to gaining his strength back but should make ANOTHER full recovery.  I know God had a hand in that.

  • I also believe that things such as this occur in our lives to remind us that we need others...and THAT is a blessing.  'Unbelievably Overwhelmed' is a good way to describe how I felt from the phone calls, texts, and facebook messages that my family and I received. I cannot tell you how much strength I was able to draw from reading those or talking to friends who care.  When you know people are praying for someone you love, it gives you a sense of peace.  It's a very humbling experience to be so vulnerable and to NEED others so badly.  I am grateful for friends and family who will never know how much their kind words meant.

I've said this before...FAMILY is the most important thing to me in this world.  Every single night I thank God for the amazing family I am a part of.  I thank him for parents who taught me that when things are good, or when things are bad, we GIVE THANKS to Him.  I am so thankful for a brother and sister-in-law who were able to be with my mom at the hospital to support her when my sister and I could not be.  I am thankful for church friends who lift my family up in trying times.  I am thankful for the Honea family, who are the best friends in the world and I love them with all of my heart.  I am thankful for grandparents, aunts and uncles who made a two hour drive one-way to spend an hour with my Mom and Dad.  And I am SO VERY thankful that my dad is now at home, resting, and that God is continually watching over him.

My prayers to God every single day, for the rest of my life, will be to help my Dad's heart to stay stong and for him to not have to experience anymore strokes.  I hope that each one of you has a faith and hope in God when struggles occur in your life.  I truly can't imagine getting through tough times without the Lord and his word.  Over the past week I've drawn strength from these verses...

"Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never allow the righteous to fall." - Psalms 55:22

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." - Phillipians 4:6

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand.  - Isaiah 41:10

Again, THANK YOU to so many of you who have been praying for my family.  I would ask that you continue to do so.  Our God is an awesome God and I GIVE THANKS to Him.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Crazy Busy Days

I know we are all extremely busy, but these past few days have been ridiculous!! WOW!! SO much going on!!  I guess I can start with Thursday....  After working that morning in the field, the 7 girls on our team loaded up to head to Branson for the night.  Random? Maybe, but I told my boss that I wanted to put together a "teambuilder" for just the girls.  Before the meeting, everyone read the book I suggested called "How Remarkable Women Lead."  It's actually a great book and I definitely recommend it.  Our time there consisted of lots of shopping @ the Hilton Landing, drinks and dinner @ Cantina Laredo, and discussing the book in a meeting on Friday morning.  I loved facilitating the discussion (and capturing our fun times on camera too!)

Rhonda, Brittney, and Nicki

Rhonda and me "considering" these entertaining headbands

Ashley, Nicki and Brittney

Nicki just had her 30th birthday so we had to celebrate!!

The whole crew

I have to say that I feel very blessed to work with these ladies.  Friday was incredible and I am very fortunate to work with such smart, accountable, hard working, beautiful women.

After crashing early Friday night, I woke up at 5:00 a.m. to get ready for the JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) event on Saturday.  This year I was the one who was responsible for putting everything together for our company.  We had lots of great stuff to give to families and children who battle this disease and had a turnout of around 4,000 people from the Central AR area.  It was awesome!!

Whitney, Steph and me setting up SUPER early

It was so cold that morning...secretly, I was LOVING it!!

Kyndall came out to bring me some spiced apple cider (best sister EVER), and then she, Brittney and I went to have brunch at The Red Door.  DELICIOUS!!!  Afterwards, I probably should've gone home to get a nap in, but I went with the girls to shop a bit.  I found a couple of things (in my opinion, we're still between seasons so there's really not a ton of cute things out yet.)

Saturday night, Kyndall and I went to Thom and Tara's wedding.  (You may be noticing a trend here...Matt is no where to be found in any of this.  :(  He has been working the last four days.  Thankfully, tonight I will actually get to see him!!!  )

The wedding was held at 'The Manor House,' a beautiful location in downtown Little Rock.  It was perfect and we are SO VERY HAPPY for these two special friends!!!

First Dance

I love Thom's face in this...getting ready to cut the cake

The cake topper

I was exhausted when we got home last night and enjoyed a two hour nap today after church.  It was fantastic!!  I am now waiting for my handsome husband to walk in the door at any moment and can't wait to curl up tonight while it rains. 

I hope you all had a great weekend!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

A New Hobby...Kind Of....

So, since Matt now has his new golf clubs, and LOVES playing the game, I decided that I should get back into the game of golf too. You may think, "Get back into the game???  Do you even know how to play golf?"  Well, as a matter of fact...I was on the golf team in high school!!  (I love telling people this, they immediately think I must be very good at this sport.)  Au contraire my friend...  I am absolutely no good.  I've NEVER played in a golf match, and only joined the golf team because it got me out of 8th hour and I had a WHOLE lot of fun "pretending" to play the game with Lindsey and Tara.  We would normally go to the putting green (with a sonic drink in hand), putt around for approximately 15 minutes and call it a day.  Lord help the poor soul who was out there if coach actually made us play 9 holes.  Ahh memories!!!

Needless to say, I may not have been close to the professional level of playing, but I grew up playing out at Bella Vista's golf courses.  Sunday afternoons, Mom and Dad would load us up in the van and we'd all head out to play a round.  It was something I always looked forward to, and they were so good to work with the three of us while we tried really hard to learn the game.  Eventually, I became decent.  So when we were home for Labor Day, I picked up my old clubs, bought a new bag and golf glove, and Matt and I hit the driving range yesterday. 

I am WAY out of practice, but with Fall around the corner, I think this will be a really fun sport for both of us to play together. 

My good 'ole clubs - a new bag dresses them up a little bit :)

Heading to the driving range

You can't see his game face, but it's on!!!

I did tell Matt that if I was going to get into this, I would need to buy some CUTE new golf shoes and a couple of PRETTY polo skirts and shirts.  A girl needs to look the part!!!  :) 

It was a great day!!  I am already looking forward to playing again soon!! 

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Red and White Weekend

We had a blast this weekend tailgating and watching the game at War Memorial.  The Hogs killed New Mexico so it was the perfect ending to a perfect day!!  We tailgated at our regular spot with Jason and Jules and then my Lilly team had a separate tailgate that we went to as well.  My partner @ work is Marcus Elliott, a former Razorback player who played under Lou Holtz, who was able to get us all into the player's club for the game.  Although we didn't stay for the whole game, it was a fun experience!  By 9:00 we were ready to head back to the house and put our feet up.  Here are lots of pictures of game day!!

Love me some Brittney!!

My gorgeous little sis

The Garner Girls :))

Charla and Kyndall

Kyndall made this awesome red velvet Razorback cake and cake balls

Jason and Jules

Chance came in town!

Clint and Matt

Brittney, Whitney and Ashley (3 of the girls on my team)

All the "Lilly" ladies (minus Nicki...we missed you girl!!)

Jaime and Rhonda enjoying the Players Club

I ran into my old boss (Lisa-R) from Staffmark.  Allison was on the management team with me.  It was SOOO good to see these two!!!  Lots of fun memories!

I am sure you all have seen this picture posted on FB, but it's amazing to me!!  How awesome to be able to honor the 10th anniversary of September 11 like this at War Memorial.  It gives me chills!!

It's hard to believe that it's been 10 years since that horrific event occurred.  Our church service was so good this morning and focused on how our world has changed since that moment.  We watched clips of what happened that day and I bawled like a baby.  Like you all, I can remember exactly where I was at that time 10 years ago.  I can remember walking into chapel @ Harding, and seeing that second plane hit the other tower on the big white screen that projected the news.  I couldn't believe it. It was extremely scary and I think we all had a feeling of violation seeing our country under attack that day.  I remember sitting in the student center for most of the day with so many others, crying and trying to tear my eyes away from this horrible day of terrorism.  My heart will forever go out to all those who lost their lives, those who gave their lives for others, and those who've had to live the past 10 years without their loved ones.  It was a day that our country was brought to our knees, but it was also a day that God brought us through.  I hope we are all continually praying for our country, it's leaders, and those that have such a hatred for the U.S.A.  May God continue to bless us all!!!