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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

I am sick.. My Bed, T.V., and Laptop= good medicine or overdose?

I have been sick, and I have spent the last two days in my bed watching t.v. Yesterday I caught up on all of the “Ellen” episodes which I have on my DVR… luckily, I also had my laptop in bed with me, which gave me easy access to “Google”... I found this very helpful, because I had no idea what has really been going on in the world outside of my own little bubble. And by “the world” I mean the entertainment world.

 I love “Ellen”…   My daughter, Lynnsay and I share the dream of one day being in the audience of her live show. We have even entered a couple of contests on the show in the hopes of winning a new car, or a home makeover.  My youngest son’s girlfriend, Allie, is also a fan, and we have been known to watch multiple episodes on lazy weekends while we work on various projects. Ellen is really funny, and seems genuinely kind. Every episode seems to have a surprise guest that she is giving some great surprise or gift, usually cars or cash.

During the last two days, I have spent a great deal of time with Ellen… I have laughed.  I have cried. (And I will admit, I have coveted…the show is in the middle of “Ellen’s 12 Days of Christmas Give Aways.”)

During my days of television overdose, I realized I have missed out on A LOT… First of all- Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake got married???  When? I did not have a clue! Then- shocker of shockers… Gerard Butler actually answers to the name of “Gerry Butler”?? I “googled” both of them and learned all sorts of facts and read all kinds of stories. (Really? Mostly, I just looked at pictures of them both. Gerry is pretty easy on the eyes)

Olivia Newton John and John Travolta were guests… did you know they have made a Christmas Album? And even though the last I heard of John Travolta was that his marriage was in trouble because he was doing things he should not be doing... none of that was mentioned…but his 2 year old son, (who is still breast feeding… he did mention that) his wife and older daughter are on a video for a song from the album. And whatever he is doing…. His hair and “patch” on his chin are jet black…it sort of reminded me of the old school G.I. Joe’s with the painted hair. I “googled” the ages of them both and while they both look amazing, John Travolt’s hair should not be that black. (just sayin’….google it for yourself.)

Lisa and Cheryl- two lucky guests from an episode in October who Ellen helped, returned for the “Twelve Days of Christmas” and received not only the “give aways” for that episode, but all of the other “give aways” as well!! 

By the time Cody came home from work, I was, sadly, still curled up in front of the t.v., and still watching Ellen.  He snuggled up with me, and asked me what I was thinking about for Christmas…unfortunately, after watching Ellen all day, I want EVERYTHING!!! I also want to donate $10,000 worth of toys from Walgreens to “Toys for Tots.” (Ellen’s pet project- I know what you are thinking, I did not realize Walgreens had the best selection for toys either- but Ellen is promoting it)

Fergie was a guest on Monday. Now, I have been out of the loop, however, she did not look like I remember. And after the help of Google, I am almost positive that she has had “some work done”. And thankfully, again, with the aid of Google I know her real name is Stacey Anne Ferguson, and that she is married to Josh Duhamel and since Ellen showed some clips of him being on her show, I knew what he looks like; but now, thanks to Google, I know that his acting career was launched on “All My Children”, as well as other roles he has played.

You can learn a great deal from internet research…I have googled all kinds of stuff- way too much stuff, and way too many people… Tony Goldwyn, who plays the president on “Scandal”, I know now that his grandfather is the “G” of MGM. I actually learned that from “Live with Kelly and Michael”- but I did google him.

I learned that Cloris Leachman once said, "I've been so relieved and so grateful to not have a god to believe in.” (I googled her because she was mentioned on an episode of Ellen.) That made me really sad for her- and I have to say that I did stop and say a prayer, and thank God that I do have Him to believe in…(otherwise, I possibly could just stay in my bed forever)

I learned that one of the stars of “Storage Wars” is suing the show, and making accusations that the “reality” show is in fact “staged.” Hold on- I will google it and see if I can figure out his name… Dave Hester… it appears that he is a real person who goes to storage auctions, and he is claiming that he was terminated because he accused the network and producers of committing fraud!  WHAT? A reality t.v. show that is not real?? Say it ain’t so!

The only time I have ever watched this much t.v. in a 48 hour period was during the months of our lives when we were watching every season of “24” back to back…I learned today from the Jeff Probst Show that the term for that is “binge watching” – and Netflix is about to start producing their own series which will allow everyone easy access to “binge watching”… You mean I won’t have to wait a week for the next episode? Sign me up!!

I have to feel better tomorrow.  I can’t stay in this room and bed for very much longer. I am getting on the dogs’ nerves… I am getting on my own nerves.  I just googled J.R. Martinez who is a guest on Ellen today. I am watching it as I write this blog.  I.Am.Out.Of.Control…

I miss my “bubble”… I want to be back in my real world.  I miss my office.  I miss my job.  I miss working with my husband during the day. I miss my car.  I miss my grandbabies. I am ready to go back to my Kindle and read… I am ready to just watch my normal shows…Parenthood, The Voice, Go On, Up All Night, and Modern Family. I need a break from this bed and the television!!!

But before I close this blog out- I do have to tell one more story about today’s Ellen episode. If you don’t know who J.R. Martinez, you really should Google him, or buy his new memoir, “Full of Heart.” In March of 2003, Martinez, a soldier, was injured in Iraq when his humvee ran over a land-mine and he was trapped in the burning vehicle.  He sustained burns to 40% of his body. His story is pretty amazing as he earned a leading role on “All My Children” and has been the winner of “Dancing With the Stars.” He was on Ellen promoting his memoir. J.R.’s story, in and of itself is incredible, but Ellen also had the Faile family from Georgia as guests today. 

Long story short, Sgt. 1st Class Scott Faile’s family was surprised last month by Ellen in their home when she sent someone to “play a game” and in the end the Faile family won $25,000.00 and evidently tickets to one of the “12 Days of Give Aways” live shows because they were among the audience members today. Ellen had them come on the stage with J.R. Martinez, and she talked to them about how impressive it was that when they had won $25,000, almost immediately, Scott said that they were giving 10% to "Wounded Warriors Program." She pointed out that the Wounded Warriors Program was a program which J.R. Martinez would have benefited from.  She also talked about  another family’s first response after receiving help from her show was to go to their church and use the gifts they had been given to help others who were in need…Sorry Mrs. Leachman, but both of these actions prove to me that there is a God to believe in and I beleive He was glorified.

My heart was touched and I was reminded of some of the good reasons I watch television. There really are sweet, heartwarming stories on it about real people…stories that can change my life and the lives of others… But after 2 days of overdosing on talk shows and daytime t.v., and celebrity research- I realize once again, that too much of a good thing is not ever a good idea. Watching Ellen for an hour every day is ok, but watching her for 5 hours in a day is not.  Waiting a week for the next episode is actually emotionally healthy… binge watching is emotionally draining.  But that is just my opinion. And I have been sick...


Thursday, December 6, 2012

My Thanksgiving Post

So, starting sometime during the last few weeks, the “Status Trend” on Facebook has been the “Days of Thanksgiving.”  While I did not receive the memo that this was what we were supposed to do…I did notice somewhere around day 8 or 9 that many of my friends were complying…

I, however, made the conscience decision not to get involved in this latest online fad because I felt it would inevitably lead me into a sea of “false” guilt…and I have swam those rough waters many times. I knew that I would get busy in my real life and get behind on Facebook thankful status days and then I would feel horrible about myself. I would begin to tread water in the worry that all of my friends would think I was not thankful or not a “finisher” or just lagging in effort… Who needs that stress???

But I did decide that I would write a “Thankful” Thanksgiving Blog…

Now let me start by saying that Cody and I recently celebrated our 28th Anniversary.  My gift to this man I have been married to for 28 years was “28-ish” gifts accompanied by 28 notes telling him 28 things I love about him, as well as 28 memories. A really great, creative idea you say?  I respond with a whole hearted “I AGREE”…however, I should have begun to prepare for this gift way before the night before our anniversary…

Unfortunately, my preparation for the “Thankful” blog more or less mirrors the preparation for my anniversary gift to my husband… Thanksgiving was 4 days ago… and I have not even begun to work on my blog, until now…and it has taken several different shapes as I have re-started, re-directed and of course re-written!

I began with the idea that I would write about 48 things I am thankful for. I decided to go with the number 48 things for a couple of reasons: First, I was going along with the same philosophy that I used with the idea of the 28 things I love about my husband as well as 28 memories… we were celebrating our 28th Anniversary; I have recently celebrated my 48th Thanksgiving. Second, I am not sure how many days of Thankfulness was being required for the Facebook status trend, and I did not want to appear to be not as grateful as all of my Facebook friends.  So I was hoping that 48 would be above and hopefully beyond.

ONE: I am thankful for the relationship I have with God, the Father, Jesus, the Savior and the Holy Spirit, the Comforter.  I have no words to describe this relationship, other than it is the most important one I have.

TWO: I am so thankful for my husband of 28 years, Cody.  He is a wonderful man- generous to a fault, and loving beyond belief.  He always puts me first, takes care of me and continues to make my dreams come true.

THREE: I am thankful for my oldest son, Jacob. He has surprised us and delighted us since he was born.  He is a young man who does not realize how much love he has to give, nor how much is available to him to receive.  He has inherited his father’s generous spirit.  Watching him be a daddy to his daughter, Aubrey, has been a wonderful blessing.

FOUR: I am thankful for my daughter, Lynnsay.  She has always worked hard to achieve whatever she wants.  She is an incredible wife, mother, teacher and photographer.  I am always in awe of her beauty and her talent. She is my friend and she is as role model for me! Like Jacob, watching her take on the job of motherhood has been amazing.

FIVE: I am thankful for my youngest son, David.  He is a Godly young man who is trying to figure out what he wants to do with his life…  He inherited his dad’s self-confidence and dry wit along with my desire for life to always be a party surrounded by friends and family.

SIX: I am thankful for my son-in-law, H.B. Macey.  He adds laughter to our already loud family. He is a good husband and daddy.  He, Lynnsay and Hudson make a great family unit. Cody and I feel so blessed to be able to watch them grow! He is leading his family, and it is a role that he takes very seriously. He loves Lynnsay and Hudson completely and unconditionally. He likes to have a fun time, and he loves to aggravate.

SEVEN: I am thankful for my daughter-in-love, Katherine.  She is a woman full of love and grace.  Her faith has helped her make it through difficult situations while remaining positive. She is an incredible mother to Aubrey, and while Aubrey looks just like her daddy, she acts just like her mother!  It is fun to watch those two unmovable forces as Katherine trains Aubrey “in the way she should go.”  Katherine, Jacob and Aubrey are a delight to watch as a family unit that is always evolving.

EIGHT: I am thankful for my grands.  Aubrey and Hudson have added such happiness to our lives.  They have filled a void that I did not even know existed! They are the sweetest, cutest, smartest little munchkins ever!  Just seeing them makes me smile, and often makes me cry.  I am so thankful that God not only blessed us with children, but He also blessed us with grandchildren.  This blessing is truly humbling.

NINE: I am thankful for my parents, Reagan and Marilyn Cox.  They continue to be the best role models ever.  They have modeled to all of us what it means to be Godly, loving parents as well as what it means to have a Godly, loving marriage.

TEN: I am thankful for my incredible in-laws, Jean and Wayne Crittenden…they, too, have always modeled a Godly, loving marriage to us…and have always shown us what unconditional love and support looks like.


It is now, Nov. 30, and Thanksgiving was well over a week ago… Heck, I have already gotten all of my Christmas decorations out and put away my fall foliage…Thanksgiving is well over in this house, and I have already entered into the madness of “oh my gosh!! What.Are.We.Buying.Everyone.????”

But my Thanksgiving blog is still nagging my thoughts, my heart, and yes- my conscience…(I am feeling guilty…and like a “Facebook Days of Thanksgiving Failure”)

I have to say that I am thankful for all of the things I see on Facebook… my family- some of which are already detailed earlier… however, if I numbered each one of them separately, my number, I think, would completely exceed my “self allotted” number of 48… I stopped at the number “10”… so let’s see where this leads us…

ELEVEN: My brother and sister, Brandon and Stephanie (Which could actually make my total 12.) TWELVE: My sister-in-laws and brother-in-laws, Susan, Julie, Katie, Michelle, Kyle, Danny and Maarten… (Which could actually be 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and 19 as I have four sister-in-laws and three brother-in-laws)

THIRTEEN: My nieces, D’Nae, Danielle, Reagan, Preslee, Bella, Hadyn, and Zoe (My total could easily be 26)

FOURTEEN: My Nephews, William, Andrew, and Jordan. (I am totally at 29)

FIFTEEN:  My “Temple Family” The Luckett’s… Bobby and Karen and their family- Bryan, Mandy and Benjamin; Katie, Jeremy and Jack, Ryleigh and Henry; Melissa, Kevin and James.. (My total is now 42)

SIXTEEN: My local “Nix” family…My Aunt Sandy and Uncle Mike and my cousins, Kaylenn and Ron, Blythe and Abby- (Amazingly… this total is 48)

SEVENTEEN: I AM THANKFUL THAT I HAVE MORE THAN 48 THINGS TO BE THANKFUL FOR!! (And I have still not once had to go to the “I am thankful for Coffee” moment)

The thing, for me, is that I have so many things to be thankful for…and really over the last year that heart of thanksgiving has become so much more inclined to be thankful for more situations and less possessions…in fact, as long as I perceive all of my belongings and possessions as, in reality, God’s property… it is much easier to take my focus off of what I “have” and onto what I have been “blessed” with…

FOURTH TRY AT FINISHING THIS UP: DEC. 6- THANKSGIVING IS TWO WEEKS BEHIND ME…I.AM.A.THANKFUL.FAILURE… (I think you can all see why I did not enter into the “Days of Thanksgiving Madness”…)

Over the last year I have realized that I am truly thankful for the hardships we have endured. And we have gone through many… the hard times have left me completely dependent upon God…and guess what? He has proven to be faithful!! Many things in our lives could appear to be “bad”- however, God has turned them all to “good”.

We have “lost” a great deal of “things” over the last few years… but what we have gained is unreal… I think we have all realized that our happiness is not contingent on what we “possess”- it is not contingent on our circumstances are… our happiness comes from the fact that our hope is in our Savior and our faith in what we are investing in..not the things that make us comfortable financially, but the things that will last eternally…