My they have grown.

Two snuggly puppies in December 2008.

Two snuggly puppies in September 2009.


a blast from the past

I don't have the best memory when it comes to vivid images of my childhood, but every now and then I catch a vivid glimpse of the past through an image I recognize and memories begin flooding back. Last night my friend and I were talking about childhood toys and it just got me thinking and remembering toys that shaped my growing years. So, I spent some time this morning (because I currently have no job and I have time to do something like this) looking up 80's and 90's toys and it brought back so much of childhood. I am posting pictures of some of the toys that i remember the most- the ones that I loved as a kid.

I don't know what you call this, but I remember it so well. You viewed a movie by clicking.

Now, who doesn't remember these...Why did we like these?

I LOVED this toy. I made Creepy Crawlers all the time (I was not a normal girl). I still remember the little jingle from the commercial. I also remember the smell it made.

One of my first memories was my friend's 5th birthday...it was the first time I saw a Ninja Turtle. These were probably my favorite as a kid...again, not a normal girl.

I remember the day that Teddy Ruxpin broke. I was devastated. You put a tape in his back and he told you a story. He was hard and not cuddly, but I LOVED him!

I think Speak and Spell was such a hit. I didn't remember it until I saw it in a picture.

I don't really know what this is called either, but I loved it. You kind of wiggled from side to side to get it to move. It was a lot of work and probably great for your abs. I don't think I ever had one, but my best friend Holly did and I loved it.

Popples. Need I say more! I still remember what my Popple looked like. I also remember what my sister's looked like and that my aunt had one that was Clemson.

Pogs- a strange fad huh? You stacked them with a friend and you and your friend used your "Slammer" to hit the stack. which ever ones landed face up you got to keep. Sounds kind of boring now, but it was so exciting then. I had a rocket to keep mine in that came from Hardees. You had to get all 3 pieces by buying kids meals. I loved my pogs.

Now whenever I tell people the story of pipeworks, nobody really knows what I am talking about. I had a friend who had them and I wanted them so bad. I told nobody until Christmas Eve and then miraculously the next morning...there they were. We built all kinds of things with these...especially forts.


to hybrid or not to hybrid.

For some reason I have been very fascinated lately with the idea of getting a new car. Mine is not that old- a 2004 Jeep Cherokee-but we bought it used with a lot of miles on it, so it is already over 100 thousand. It has been a good car, but it has also had a lot of random issues and I just don't think I trust it. My mom has told me to do some research on how much mine is worth and cars that I would want to by and so on. So this past week I drove up to Carmax and had them appraise my car. While I waited I test-drove my dream car- a Jeep Wrangler...SO FUN. I am not getting a new car any time soon (mostly because I don't have a job and apparently that is some kind of precursor...I don't know it might have something to do with money). The point of this long winded story is that I have been doing research on cars and I discovered something very interesting tonight. I know I am probably not the first person to discover this, but it was still shocking to me. I was comparing a few hybrid cars with their non-hybrid equals using both the dealer website and a website that compares the fuel economy of cars. I was mainly looking at the Civic and its hybrid and the Ford Escape and it's hybrid. For the Ford Escape the difference in price is $11,000. You will pay $11,000 more for a basic Escape Hybrid. I wanted to know how easily that difference was made up in fuel costs. The difference in annual fuel costs of the two Escapes is only about $400/year, which means it would take you 27 years to make up that $11,000 difference! In case you missed it......TWENTY-SEVEN YEARS!!!!!! And that is just to break even on your purchase! The same thing goes for the Civic and the Civic Hybrid except it would only take you 18 years. Who keeps a car for 18 years? What about 27 years? At average yearly mileage the car would have over 300,000 miles on it!

What a scam! I mean, you may get your money back quicker if your decision is between the hybrid and a Chevy Suburban or Hummer, but come on! I was really blown away. The regular Civic and the regular Escape both get close to 30 mpg's on the highway, which is pretty good gas mileage. Maybe this wouldn't be surprising to some people, but i found it so shocking especially because Hybrids are all the buzz. Maybe they are better for the environment, but they are not better for your wallet! Maybe in 10 years, when they are the norm and prices aren't so high it would be a good decision. If you like spending a lot of money on cars then I guess it doesn't matter, but if you are looking for the better deal-the most bang for your buck in car price and at the tank...the hybrid is not the right choice.


"What's your name?"

On Monday i met one of my dearest college friends in Columbia. We went down to the river walk and were sitting on a bench near the water just catching up on life. As we were sitting there this father with 2 children, a baby in a stroller and a child maybe 3 walking, were walking down the path near us. As they were about to pass the older child stopped and left her dad's side to wave at us and say hey. She kept coming over and asked, "What are your names?" My friend and I were pleasantly startled by this very mature gesture from such a young stranger. We told her our names and asked her her's and she sat down on the bench across from us. She asked us several questions and when her dad told her it was time to go, she instead got up and came over to our bench and sat down between us. Neither of us knew what to do. We talked to her for several more minutes about normal stuff; what we were doing, her baby sister's name, trolls under the bridge...ya know...the usual.
She finally left and as she walked away I realized how surprising her actions had been to me. A person, a child, reaching out to two total strangers, asking their names, approaching them, sitting with them, it was so out of the ordinary that it almost seemed unhuman. Each time I think of it I hear the words of Jesus in my head, "be like these little children." A child has so little self-awareness-they are other aware. They do not care about status, appearance, or their own insecurities- the very things that keep us at a distance from others. This is exactly how Jesus interacted with the world-no care for the opinions of others. He operated outside of everyone of our known confines and hidden rules. I wish I was like him. I wish I was like that little girl, with a faith in God so deep that I didn't operate by the rules the world does because I didn't need them. If only I had the faith of a child.