Blurb!

Monday, October 25, 2010

I never realized how wonderful a few hours of "boredom" were until I had a child. It is all in about the past 6 months that I have come to realize how much I can actually get done in a 60 minute period of time when I view that time as precious and limited. Needless to say, for the past seven days I have had numerous blog post topics pop into my head, but here I am a week later just now posting for the first time. Much to my dismay, this post doesn't touch base on a SINGLE thing I have thought to blog about, but rather is serving as a blank spiral for my exhausted mommy brain.

Here it is 5:00 p.m.

Caroline is taking a nap. I have cleaned the entire apartment, folded AND put away clothes, lit a candle, opened the windows and now I sit embracing the silence.

I know there isn't much substance to this post, but I can't bare to relish in my blog when I have a book I'm in the middle of writing. I need to spend this valuable time working on that. So for now I say: I'm taking all my good ideas for blogs with me as I go. I will hopefully be back sooner than a week from now!

Random " Likes"

Monday, October 18, 2010

So often I find myself inspired by the strangest things.



Thus, the old Ford truck with a cracked window. I keep imagining one of my characters driving a pick-up, distinguished by the broken window. There's a story behind the crack, I'm not sure what the story is yet though.


ALSO....


From a creative mind stand point...love this color...it's like a chalky charcoal color. Wonderful! I need to get out the sketch book and transpose this window into either a clothing or floral design. My mind is turning. I love the handle too. It's classic, straight lines, clean.
Movin on...




This arrangement is a lot like the one's I sketch. I love the "spunky" pine cone like inserts. This wheat color looks amazing with the navy. Defiantly a color combo I will be integrating into my winter wardrobe this year.

Trust, Love, and Twenty Dollar Pumpkins

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I was driving along the road the other day, and I saw a pumpkin that had rolled off it's cozy little porch and into the street. It was an nice looking pumpkin, identical to the one illustrated in children's Halloween and Thanksgiving storybooks. I considered, only for a moment, stopping and picking it up. Then I absent mindedly wondered if that would be considered " stealing". I mean, the street is technically public property right? So " legally" it was just as much MY pumpkin at that point as it was it's terrible owners. Makes sense. Then naturally my mind wondered even further ( as it always does), wondering: " If hypothetically I was to stop and pick up that pumpkin and the previous owner saw it and considered me a thief, then couldn't I just pay the difference and move on with my life. How much could a pumpkin like that cost? Seven bucks? maybe twelve? Certainly no more than twenty dollars. Twenty dollars, I decided, was the maximum I would have to re-reimburse the owner for either the taking or destruction of their flawless pumpkin. By this point I was like about a mile out of the neighborhood, but I had just successfully put a " value" to that pumpkin; deciding how much I found it to be worth. I find that I do this quite often with material things...figure out what I think the maximum cost of damage would be if I were to destroy something and someone be upset about it. Then, as expected, my mind went a step further.

How often do I place a value on things that are not easily replaceable? How many things in my life have I come across that simply no amount of money could mend if it were to be broken? The initial idea I kept coming up with was trust. Once someone feels safe in confiding in you, and you become a refuge of sort, trust's value increases to an unmatchable number. Trust is something that once it is taken away, no dollar bill can buy back. No haphazard apology can regain it. At what point do we as humans see trust as something with such high a value that it can not even be accurately described?

On the other hand, what about the things that we can not give a SPECIFIC value to. For instance, love is something else we have decided to try and define in terms of value. We tell ourselves that it's so important to hear, yet we allow ourselves to be annoyed and " not lovable" when we are not in the "mood" to be loved. Funny that it is, but love is "madness" of the heart. A constant battle between mind and spirit. If it's sincere, love is something that can not simply be said but must be demonstrated. I've found that we often times think we can place a value on love simply because we can compare our love for someone or something to the love for someone or something else. Love has no tangible value.

I guess where I am going with this is: There are things in life like smashed or stolen pumpkins that we can fork over a days pay for and move on down the road without missing much. Then, there are other things such as trust and love, that once taken, said, felt, expressed, lost, etc. can not be " paid off", and that have much higher value than any man could buy. Take the time to recognize those infinitely valuable things in your life and always remind yourself, " your no twenty dollar pumpkin."

When Is It Okay To Walk?

Monday, October 11, 2010

I was homebound. On the downward slope, wind to my back as though it was ushering me along, I steadied my pace and concentrated on my breathing. I find it funny when people say, " running is my time to think." I mean, for me, ALL I can think about IS running. There is no room in my head for miscellanious thoughts...I'm much too busy scoping out my next rest spot. I alternate between " Inhale through the nose, exhale through the mouth" and " Okay, I just have to make it to that ' School Zone' sign and then I can walk." I suppose the more you run, the less you think about running, but I've been running for years now and I havn't gotten to that point. Forget relaxing, running with my coach is anything but relaxing. Yes, I said running with my coach. She is the most useless, good-for-nothing, phony out there. The coach in my head never fails to let me down.

Once I reached the bottom of the hill, approaching my designated " walking point", I could again think outside the rehelm of pain. I silently cursed my coach. I mean, coaches were supposed to be encouraging, and full of motivating phrases to keep pushing you through. Mine, on the other hand, would have rather sat on her lazy butt all Sunday afternoon, reading a book, eating ice cream. Once my lungs again felt functional, and I wondered why I had ever began walking when I was feeling so good now. I started to ask myself something that I think every wanna-be-runner asks: When did it become okay to walk?

In high school, it was never optional. You ran or got benched. You ran whether you felt like your throat was as dry as sand paper or your stomach was in your chest. You ran an 8 minute mile, because walking wasn't optional in order to keep up with the best athletes. So again, I wondered, when did I start telling myself it was okay? So often my mind gives out WELL before my body. My lazy coach tells my body that it's tired and it's going to "DIE" when by body is confussed because it feels fine. The mind is powerful thing, and it almost ALWAYS wins this battle. SO, I find myself walking briskly, disgruntled about the fact that I slowed for NO reason!

It is in this time of question, that I was struck with a bit of fear. How often, I questioned, does my mind tell my body it's too tired in other areas of my life? How much more could I accomplish, how much better of an employee and mother would I be, how great are the things I could achieve, if only I wouldn't let my mind give up before the rest of me was litteraly unable to go further? To this sobering thought I found do answer that left me content because I realized that the answer was reason enough to start pushing myself past those self imposed boundries.

I havn't yet prepared myself for the emotional, phsyical, and mental challanges that lie ahead if I choose to make a change in my approach to success, but the one thing I know is that in order to get there, I have GOT to fire my coach!

Love and All We Don't Know About it

Here is what I know...

Love was supposed to be a cuss word. Think about it, they all have four letters which is what they have become infamous for: shit, fuck, hell, damn, and love. You know why love should have been a cuss word? Because most often times it is used when the speaker is at a loss for a more distinguished word to say. People can use " four letter words" as frequently as the phrases " A" and "The". Thanks to the people that abuse the words, they sound cliche and have little meaning than to display ones ignorance. Love is no exception to this realization. It has been over used and watered down so much today, that when it is truly felt and sincerely expressed it is under appreciated.

SOO....

Why bother at all? If the reality is: Love is just another four letter word, then why do we bother to give it any significance in the first place. It's sincerity will ALWAYS be questioned, it's presence will ALWAYS become unnoticed with time, and it will ALWAYS be used, " too little" or " too much", never a satisfying amount.

Someone once said, " To love is the single greatest thing any being can do." I must disagree. If the " single greatest thing I will ever do" is equal to the single greatest thing lets say an abusive, drunken, unemployed, lazy man can do, than I mind as well quit life right now.

Love is involuntary when it's real. It burns like fire in your chest just begging to be released so it can burn through your life. If someone were to ask me if I would choose to love something I would say, " absolutely not." For it is something that will never be appreciated enough to justify the pain ones heart must endure in order to be considered, "in love."

But because love is involuntary and it burns until you set it free, I have concluded that
... I know nothing...

A Bag Full Of Nightmares. ( ABC Stories)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Anticipation grew in me as I waited to enter the room. Behind those closed doors stood a world of evidence to crimes that may never be solved. Carefully collected clues to criminals that might not ever be caught resided upon those hundreds of shelves. Darkness engulfed my presence as the steel door began to shift slowly to the right, wearily accepting my entrance. Every woman and child that had been a victim's nightmare sat in an indistinguishable, labeled, brown bag, right before my eyes. Floor to ceiling the obviously full shelves stretched, forming rows of tragedy throughout the room. Galvanic emotions swept quickly through my body causing a need to brace myself against the cold door frame. Half a decade had passed since I was one of those helpless victims, but still horrifying memories and images flashed through my mind at the most random of moments. Incomprehensible numbers were presented to me when I asked the detective "how may?" " Just in this facility alone, mam, we currently house just shy of 500,000 victims' cases, but we are the smallest of 47 other housing units in the nation, " he informed me. Keeping my astonishment to myself, I swallowed hard and slowly began to walk the calloused rows, caressing each shelf ledge as I passed. Lifelessly I stared at each bag, at each label, at each life. Masses of people had suffered, still suffer, from a crime they did not commit. No one understands how long the wounds take to heal unless they have had the same tragedy plague them personally. One time forever changes you: who you were, who you'll be, how you see yourself and every unknown face around you. Perfectly innocent people fall into the hands of a stranger that will change them. Quietness is just as terrifying as the crowd to a victim of this crime. Regretting my decisions to come, I continued to walk. Sometimes we have to face ourselves, our circumstances, and our past in order to break free of the line that someone else seems to be holding on to. Tragedy is what we make of it, so I was there to make an impact on the world through mine. Uniqueness is no word when it comes to a rape case. Variety only surfacing in victim names, each case is the same. Whether it is by a friend of a foe, to the young or the old, rape is a scar written across every part of the inner and outer body, that will never go away. Xenophobia is built in every single victim, forever making it a challenge to re adapt to everyday life. You wonder why the world we live in is so corrupt? Zealous strangers are leaving way too many innocent people a bag full of nightmares.


"A writer who can take you to a place they themselves have never been, experience something they themselves have never experienced, and feel emotions they themselves have never felt...has succeeded."
- Courtney Surber
Hope I succeeded!

"A synonym is a word you use when you can't spell the other one."

I heard this quote today and fell in love! As a writer I'm just going to go ahead and say... THIS IS SO TRUE! Don't get me wrong, a writer often uses synonyms when the word he/she uses tastes too dry, but I am guilty of using a synonym because it has a simpler spelling ( mostly when I don't have computer access)! On that note, I would like to relate this common laziness in writers to most of our lives.

Lately I have come to find that most often people make the decisions they do because it's "easier" than maybe the other option. This is especially true in the aspect of careers. People tend to gravitate towards jobs that are "easy" to obtain and maintain. Yet, interestingly enough, most people long for more recognition. Notice: All the famous people that you can probably think of didn't get where they are because they just walked in and filled out an application. No, these people did what everyone said would never happen to them.

I can relate. While I work an alternate full time job, I do not accept that I should give up on writing and face the reality that the possibility of becoming a published author is unlikely. If every writer listened to this we would have no literature at all.

The truth is, we should all attempt the things we've been told are impossible because we were probably told that by someone too afraid to do something that wasn't "easy". All good things in life are worth working for. Don't find another word just because you don't know how to spell the one you want to use.

Picture Perfect?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I'm sure I am a bit bias, but on a regular basis people everywhere comment on Caroline. Random people come up to us and say she's the most beautiful baby, and even today my mom said the UPS guy said, " you need to get that baby into modeling." ( Surprisingly more males gape over Caroline than women). After careful consideration, I think I will slowly get her into some contests or maybe some modeling. I too did modeling as a child, but I was a bit older so to be honest I don't even know where to start with this whole thing. Most agencies don't start will babies so young, but I am just wondering how companies like pampers, huggies, ect. get their baby models. So if anyone wants to contribute information to this new adventure please comment.



Anyways. So all this talk about the baby contest keeps bringing me back to the show " Toddlers in Tiarras" we've all seen it...terrible acting children raising monster parents. Yes you heard me right, children raising parents. That show epitomizes American culture. Since when was it okay for a four year old to tell her mother, " You are really getting on my nerves right now!" ? We all watch each week and laugh at this twisted life style, yet anyone who is a mother can understand how easy it could be to get sucked into this type of situation. We all want THE BEST for our little ones, even at the sacrifice of our time, energy, and sanity. In an essence, mother's tend to live an entire second lifetime vicariously through their children. When Suzy Q. does good in school, somehow as a parent, her mother feels like SHE has now done good in school. Our children's accomplishments are assumed to be our own.

So at what point do we stop thinking about our own pride as assigned, " proud parents" and start to really consider the long term affects of the short term achievements? Which brings me full circle to my new idea of putting Caroline in modeling...is this because I feel like Caroline could benefit from this opportunity, or because I simply feel like I have the most beautiful baby girl and I want the whole world to know it? Maybe A little bit of both?

Back on the Porch

I should be sleeping right now seems how it 1:15 a.m. but my creative juices are just flowing and I'm running out of buckets to catch them in. I have already changed my facebook staus 3 times in the past 3 hours ( obsessive? Yes), I have added about 4 lengthy paragraphs to my book that I'm writing, and now I have spent 30 minutes trying to figure out how to get back onto my blog...clearly that 30 minutes were not wasted because here I sit.

Major focus these days? Running. I enjoyed running before I weighed 35 lbs. heavier than I had my whole life and felt like I was carrying an exercise ball in my stomach, but post baby Caroline I have found running to have a whole new meaning. Sure it's a great way to get in shape, but even more than that, running has given me the ability to have something for myself that involves NO ONE else. I run for me. When I run far and without rest, I am proud of my persistence. When I let my mind tire before my body and convince myself to stop, I am disappointed in myself. When I get finished running ( regardless of the productivity of the run) I feel like I've done something to better myself that day. Now, running has become a passion of mine and I am registering for three 5K marathons that will take place through the end of the year. The Allen Fall Festival 5K, The Turkey Trot, and The Frisco Frosty 5K. If anyone is interested in participating look em up and let me know.


Anyways, so the book I'm writing, has been inspired by this running passion. The catch? It sort of takes it to the extreme. Here's the gist: Single mom finds solitude in running, it starts off as a passion and quickly turns to obsession causing disarray as a mother, daughter, and girlfriend. Her selfishness in staking claims on running lead to her life being changed for the worse. So we will see how this goes. Already I am feeling good. The main character, Lucy, is starting to write her own story... I feel like am the translator, interpreting novel characters and translating them into real life language.

Okay, the bed is calling. Goodnight all!

-Courtney Jo




" I Was A Really Good Mom Before I Had Kids"

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Okay Mommies!
I am currently reading a book right now called "I was a really good mom before I had kids" By: Trisha Ashworth and Amy Nobile. This is a MUST READ! The subtitle says, "reinventing modern motherhood," and this book does just that.
It first addresses the common daily issues that being mother brings upon a women. From getting time alone to grocery shop to trying to have a simple phone conversation. The best part about this book is how real it is when tackling these issues. They lay it all our there for you when they basically admit that as mothers we say we are happy because we feel like we are SUPPOSED to be happy. When in reality, this role as "mommy" and "wife" aren't the fairy tale we imagined them to be. By reading this book, it relieves you a lot to realize that IT'S OKAY TO ADMIT THAT THIS ISN'T ALWAYS FUN!
an excerpt:
" As we talked, our kids tattooed one another with permanent markers and played in the dog-food bowl. Whatever-it really didn't matter. We discussed our days, and within ten minutes we'd laughed, cried, whined about our husbands, wondered what happened to our sex drives, snapped at the kids, wished we had passions, and questioned why we sometimes felt like bad moms. Were you a bad mom if you screamed at a four-year-old for getting up twelve times in one night? Were you a good mom if you stayed up late baking fifty cupcakes for the next day's ballet recital? Would passing off store-bought cupcakes as homemade really be a terrible offense?"
This along with 172 other pages full of humorous writings make up this awesome book, that could easily be considered, " The REALISTIC mother's handbook."
This book is the PERFECT read when you feel like you have a lot of expectations to meet and you feel as though you are failing at them all.... ie. cleaning the house, bed time routine for the baby, cooking dinner, and some how managing to be nice to your husband/boyfriend/ fiance ( at least nice enough not to run him off). When balancing life becomes just another thing on your to do list, forget the dishes and the laundry and pick up this book. You will feel like a million buck; or at least until someone yells, "MOOOOOOM!"






The U Turn

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Hello!

Okay, so today was a big day. After months and months of confussion with me and Caroline's Dad, Tyler... today we finally had our court hearing. Things went fine. The court is the court ( I would be fine if I NEVER had to go to one again). haha. But bigger than the court hearing, we all talked and came to the agreement that if we can all communicate and get along...everyone will be happier and we will both be better parents to Caroline. Now that we are past our OWN issues with eachother, my hope is that we can focuss on raising her and be " Friends" for the sake of parenting.

I have been praying for God to show me his plan for this situation, and that his will be done. While I will NEVER know exactly how things will turn out. The peace I have in the Lord right now is a sign to me that I'm continuing to walk down his path. The most exciting part is getting to wait and see all of the amazing things that God has in store for all of our lives. I feel like a weight has been lifted off my chest because things are what they are and there isn't a lot left for interpratation or wondering.

I Feel So Blessed. Caroline will always be my girl.

Advice for any parents going through a tough situation either with the parent or lack there of.... trust in the Lord. He really is the prince of peace and some things in our lives are beyond our understanding. I heard in a sermon on sunday that sometimes a parent will be on the other side of the street from the child and the parent will see a car coming and because it see's something the child doesn't see, when the parent yells, "STOP" it is for the child's own safety that he/she obeys. I feel that this is much like our God. Sometimes he see's the car coming that we just don't see! When he tells us to STOP, we need to obey for our OWN safety.


Mommy Product Of The Day


One thing that I feel is ESSINTIAL for a new baby is a bouncy seat. The one I have is made by fisher price and you can buy it at Target and other retailers. The funny thing about this seat is... It's the ONE thing I didn't register for, but then one of my mom's friends who has 5 KIDS said that I HAD to have one of them, that it was the best thing ever! Now I am SO glad she got me one, because Caroline LOVES her bouncy seat. She takes naps in it, plays in it, and sometimes eats in it (because it is a good angle for bottle feeding if you take her out and burp her).


I am going to go now, and enjoy the end of my day off.

C'YA!

TOO MANY/TOO FEW Hours in a day!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Welcome back to the porch! Happy Friday to all! I can't begin to tell you how relieved I am that this hectic week is over and that I survived it! I am having the hardest time waking up in the mornings earlier than what is completely required in order to get ready in time ( sometimes not even in time). I have been stressing SOOO much about getting everything done that I need to get done, but after such a busy week, I feel like I have a better perspective on the 24 hours God gives us each day.

Prior to this week (and even during it), I kept thinking to myself, " I wish I didn't need sleep, I wish that I could just stay awake because I need those extra 6 hours ( 4 or 5 sometimes when Miss. Priss doesn't sleep) to get more DONE!?" And I think this is probably a common thought process among working mothers. This desire was totally reasonable to me up until this afternoon, and then it just sort of HIT me.

The way that I feel right now as I blog, watch baby Caroline sleep, and get ready to go out with one of my good girlfriends, is EXACTLY why God didn't want us working 24/7. I feel relaxed, relieved, at peace, thankful, and happy. Feelings all of which you don't usually feel when you are working and doing and moving and going and coming. God gave us day/sun, so that we may see to do our work. He shut off the lights and gave us night/ the moon, so that we would no longer BE ABLE to work and toil and stress ( as he knows our human desires to be productive all the time). He calls us to rest after hard work, just as he did on the 7th day! If we were to be doing things ALL the time, our lives would be one long day. But instead each day has a beginning and an ending as should our toil.

This blog is just a brainstorm of the thoughts that I have had this afternoon, so bare with me if it doesn't flow much. All I know is I change my mind: I am HAPPY that there is a time each day that I can shut off the lights and close my eyes and stop working and thinking and stressing. That way I am ready for the next set of 24 hours! ;)

Have a happy weekend!

Mind Games

Thursday, June 17, 2010

It's that time of night again....10:00 PM and I have just now found 5 minutes to myself. Putting Caroline to bed is one of my favorite times of the night but it seems to last FOR EV ER. But, none the less, she if finally asleep and as I type I am listening to her breath like Darth Vader over the baby monitor, holding my breath that she doesn't wake up every time I hear her stir.

Reflecting over my day, well the past week or so really, I finally have come to the conclusion that often times we get an idea in our heads, and then begin to shape our emotions ( the way we feel) around that idea. Okay, for instance, It has been lately that I have noticed how independent I really am, and recognizing that has made me irritated with things that challenge my Independence ( ie. people helping me do things) . When in reality I don't mind being helped, but that contradicts the idea of Independence in my mind, causing me to get agitated by the act that otherwise wouldn't bother me. It's as though I have convinced myself: Because I am independent, anything that someone else does for me WILL bother me.

Realizing this ridiculously confusing concept is like acknowledging being an alcoholic, it's the first step to improvement. Having such a helpful guy in my life is something I should be GREATFUL for, not challenged by. I have got to learn to stop trying to be "Super Women", and realize I can't do everything. God didn't intend for us to live this life alone...THUS why he mad a companion for Adam, Eve. It is important for both my sanity and my relationships that I let go a little bit and let other people help me out.

Thank you to everyone who has tried and continues to try and lend me a helping hand. I'm excited to show you that I CAN be appreciative.


Mommy Review Of The Day

Today my most loved item is....


The Adena and Anais Swaddle Wrap Set from Target.


This set comes with four swaddle blankets that I found to be the perfect " Night Night" blanket for Caroline. They have Gender Specific patterns on some of them ( Caroline's are pink and brown). My favorite part about these natural blankets are how light weight they are. They are PERFECT for covering little ones up in the Texas heat during the summer when you don't want them to get too chilly with the fan on. They are super soft and very comfy.


I would give this product 5 out of 5.




Behind the Blinds

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

As a first blog entry, I guess it would be appropriate to introduce myself and open the blinds of the windows of my world so that you may see inside the day to day life in which I lead.

My name is Courtney. ( I find it humorous that I feel somewhat stuck after saying that....)

... I was a week old Freshman at the University of Oklahoma when my whole world changed. The week before school started I found out that I was going to have a baby. Eighteen years old ( at the time), dating a guy I never intended on spending the rest of my life with, and with a world of possiblities in front of me... and suddenly everything froze as I was forced to make decissions no eighteen year old should have to make. While deciding to keep the baby was no problem for me, the decission to stay at OU for the fall semester was a challenging one. But in the end I found that to be the best decission, with a plan of moving back home at Christmas break. About 3 months later I broke up with my boyfriend ( the baby's father), after realizing that this was no game, and I wasn't going to play "house" with a man I never even loved. I just KNEW that God had something greater in store for me. I was right.

During the next seven months all the following happened by the grace of God: I turned Nineteen ( wahoo), I finished a semester at OU with a 3.8 average ( through the morning sickness and all), moved home, got an AMAZING job for my situation, and then on April 13, 2010 gave birth to my wonderful baby girl, Caroline Jo.

God has used Caroline to change my life and I want to share each day that he gives me with you. By the power of my testimony I pray that the Lord touches some special place in your heart as well. Maybe this is a chane of life changing events for you. God through Caroline, Caroline through me....to you.
 
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