Sunday, March 28, 2004

A "Normal"? Weekend

wedding.jpgThis weekend was a glimpse of what normal people do on normal weekends. How do we define normal? We define normal as a weekend where Ben doesn't preach and we actually have time to hang out together. It is much harder than it seems, but we figured out a few things to do. We went to a wedding, had dinner with some Pac Rim friends, and patiently sat through a Sunday service so we could go to lunch with a clear conscience (that is a joke, we take seriously worshipping the Lord).
Oh, I almost forgot!! We watched way too much TLC and not near enough NCAA basketball. Also, as we surfed through the TV channels, we kept seeing ads for MTV's "I Want a Famous Face" where people have decided that the solution to all the insecurity problems is to look like a famous person. Two problems: first, no amount of plastic surgery can make up for insecurity problems, and two, isn't it the famous types (especially if your last name is Jackson) that have the most insecurity? Just a thought.

Hope you all had a great "normal" weekend like we did!!

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Marriage Advice from the Experts

beau.jpgheather3.JPGWednesday night Ben & I had the opportunity to go out to eat with our favorite engaged couple... my cousin Heather & her fiance Beau. They thought they were just going out with their cousin & cousin-in-law, but little did they know that they were about to get some free marital counseling. It's always fun to prepare others with all the wisdom Ben & I have obtained during the past whole 7 months. After all, we are the perfect couple since we always agree on everything & are 100% compatible in every way. Here are the top 5 words of wisdom that we felt we should bestow upon the happy couple:

5. Make sure you focus on THE WEDDING rather than your relationship.
4. Once you're married, always use affection as a bargaining chip.
3. Let your wife do the plumbing.
2. Even though you cuddled before you were married, your wife won't ever want you to cuddle with her after the vows are said.
1. Yeah go ahead, save a few bucks & stay @ your parent's house on your wedding night.

(Disclaimer: If you haven't caught on to the sarcasm yet, this is horrible advice & should not be used in any way in a marital situation.)

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Our 1st Home

village2.jpgBen & I had a whole couple of days to go apt. hunting in the summer of '03 right before I left for Australia. We had to find a place that I could live the rest of the summer soon after I got back, so we searched high & low all over Edmond & Oklahoma City to find the perfect '1st home'.

We finally made a decision to locate @ Heather Ridge which has since turned over owners & is now called The Village @ Stratford (now we can say we live in a village rather than an apt). Our 'village' is much bigger than most of our friends apts. (744 SF) which is mostly what sold us on it. We took pictures for insurance purposes & so we thought we would put them on our blog as well so everyone can see our humble abode... enjoy!

Hand Soap Dispenser

Dining Room/Ben's Study
Living Room
Coat Rack

p.s. We've also included pics of some of our favorite simple things such as our hand soap dispenser from IKEA & our fun coat rack from Target.

Monday, March 22, 2004

Weekend in Springfield

Strap yourself to your chair and let us share our action packed Springfield trip with you. Yes, it was truly magical... no really. One highlight is that we saw Kirby VanBurch, Prince of Magic, in Branson. Neither of us had seen illusions this incredible live--he did some truly amazing things. We actually went free because Noel has mad connections--thanks Noel! We actually went with Janelle and Max and had a great time catching up with them.

Also, we got to have lunch with Bobbie, Dante (an incredibly cute baby), and Carol (a very proud grandma). Then we went to Gordmans with them and Monica did some shopping, while Ben found a TV with the NCAA tournament. Ahhhh... isn't shopping wonderful.

No trip would be complete without car repairs. Yes, we had to replace a motor mount on the car (only $125). We thought it would be nice to drive a car that is connected on all four corners. We also thought it would be nice to replace the right inner tie rod on the car as well and did that today (only $150). Fortunately, Monica's dad helped us bear some of burden, for which we really thank him.
Ben entered a new realm of nerd hood when he searched out a library in Springfield for some more work on his research paper. It turns out there is a Bible college on every corner in Springfield, so this wasn't a hard task--what a nerd.
So, the blog has now reached a socially unacceptable length. Here's a recap of what happened--magic show, car repairs, friends, libraries, and Steak N Shake (just added that to make you think about what real milkshakes taste like). Hope you had a good break as well. Coming soon--pictures of our apartment!!

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Hawaiian Dreamin'

hawaii.jpgIf any of you know Ben very well, you know that he comes up with some pretty crazy ideas. Just when you think he's 100% in the straight & narrow, some 'out of the blue' idea will shoot out of his mouth that makes you take a step back.
For example... last night while I was making a batch of my famous chocolate chip cookies Ben says that he's looking up properties in Hawaii & that we should move there after he's done with school. I usually humor him & start talking about these funny ideas of his as if I'm seriously thinking about it so I said, "Sure, let's go - why not?" Ben proceeds to find our 'mansion' in Hawaii that only costs $275,000 (see picture). I definitely married a dreamer who will make me laugh & smile for the rest of my life - I love this man!

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

The Only Nerd in the Library

laptop.jpgIt's true... I am certifiably a big nerd. As I sit in the library right now, I realize I am the only one. Fortunately, I get a glimpse of somebody walking past the window every now and then - which is good because I know I haven't missed the rapture and been "left behind" (banking on the fact that the person that walked by didn't miss the rapture too).
All I know is that my pocket protector, calculator watch, and protective eye shields will keep me safe from anything in the great book fortress I reside in (and only a nerd like me would shiver because I ended that last sentence with a preposition).

Sunday, March 14, 2004

The Tortoise & the Hare

bugs.jpgYep... we are definitely married, & we have both taken characteristics from our dads. For some reason (Bill Thompson) Ben always drives a little below the speed limit & is completely fine with it. We'll get there when we get there is Ben's motto. However, for some reason (Larry Baggett) Monica is more fast paced & is not happy unless she is going the speed limit + 5 mph. Her motto is to get there as quickly as possible.

So, we fight constantly about it. In fact, it is one of our biggest disagreements. Who's right? Is it the patient one who is capable of enjoying life & the beautiful world in which we live? Or... is it the one who actually wants to get there in time at the proper speed, and enjoy life once there? We have a feeling this will continue to be a major conflict in our marriage, & we will choose favorite children based on which one agrees with which parent.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Spring Break is for dummies!

bass_pro2.jpgIts Friday afternoon right before Spring Break on the OC campus = ghost town. I WAS excited to learn that as a Staff member I get to partake of 1 day off during the week, but besides that it's pretty much a HUGE wake-up call into the Real World. No, we're not going to a beautiful beach somewhere or skiing or on a mission trip. Instead, I'll be working & Ben will be doing homework & research papers all week. Trying to be conscious of our budget & our attempting to be financially responsible does have its downsides. We'll just keep playing that saying by Dave Ramsey, "Live like no one else so that you can live like no one else," over & over in our minds.

We will be taking a short trip up to ole' Springfield Missouri... land of the granddaddy Bass Pro & cashew chicken. I hope to spend a couple of minutes with my dad in the midst of tax season (I think he penciled me in). Springfield has really changed since I last lived there, downtown has turned into more of an artsy district with a lot to do. For those of you who have the pleasure of having a Spring Break, enjoy!

Tuesday, March 9, 2004

First Western Civ, Then the World...

Monica aced her Western Civ final and class like nobody's business. That's right, a big fat "A" goes in the record books. There is much rejoicing at our house tonight. It's amazing!! Monica got glasses and all the sudden she is miss smarty pants. We are so proud and she deserved it because she worked her tail off writing countless note cards and studying like an animal.

Monday, March 8, 2004

Hmmm... What's Been Happening

directory.jpgFor all those that are dying to know what is going on in our lives... here is a quick look at what we've been up to.
Wednesday--We started the Financial Peace University class at Quail Springs Church of Christ. Yes, we are members at Memorial Road, I preach at Wellston, & we go to Quail Springs for this class on Wednesdays! Later that night we saw The Passion of The Christ movie with Christel, Lacey, & Patrick, & were blown away by it.

Thursday--Ben substituted in a high school class & that night we went to Spring Sing at OC. I mean what else can you do when Friends is a rerun?
Friday--Monica was busy with the Dell launch at OC. Ben put $45 on the pike pass that should last 3 weeks. We ate steak with Ben's parents.

Saturday--Ben worked on his sermons all afternoon. Monica went shopping with Christel & bought some new jeans (which she still hasn't taken off!). We also went on a date to Abuelo's which is my favorite restaurant which serves my all time favorite meal there, the chicken fajita chimichangas. Oh, & Monica had enchiladas & a Dr. Pepper.

Sunday--Ben pulled the triple play (Sunday morning Bible class, the morning sermon, & the evening sermon) at Wellston Church of Christ while Monica played the daring role of the preacher's wife. Actually, that means she just sat in her pew silently with perfect posture. Sunday night after church we ate at Milano's because we wanted real brick oven pizza (Little Caesar's just makes us feel cheap & it's not real pizza). We highly recommend Milano's. Then, we studied for Monica's Western Civ class for 2 hours.
Monday (or today)--We went to take Monica's final Western Civ test in Tulsa that we BOTH really studied hard for the past few days (ask Monica how we study). We try to use our ESP at the testing sight, but there are too many cement walls & it blocks our telekinesis. So, she just has to ace the test by herself!

One hour ago--Monica almost starved to death, & we barely made it to the gas station Subway in Stroud. We got the food to her just in time & the color came back into her face & limbs. Thank you Subway!

Right now--Ben is working on his research bibliography for Psalms due tomorrow (after he finishes this blog, of course), & Monica is working hard in the Marketing office.
Phew!!! Now you are all caught up on our lives. See, we do stuff even though we're married. By the way, we always have time to do things with our friends, so don't forget us!

Wednesday, March 3, 2004

She Can Cook!!!

cookies2.jpgHow many of you have heard Monica complain that she doesn't know how to cook? I hear it all the time, and consequently, I do all the cooking. However, she foiled her plan yesterday, and it turns out she does actually know a little about cooking.

I went home last night after a grueling day of school and saw a rather large container of cookies on the counter. So, as any insensitive husband would ask, I asked her if they were slice and bake cookies. And to my surprise... she made them all by herself--4 dozen in all!! Not only that, but they are some of the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever tasted. Honey, I am on to you, and now I know you can cook. We are going to get you an apron tonight!

Tuesday, March 2, 2004

South Beach Diet Goes South

beach2.jpgWhat do you know? The diet failed. It failed because it couldn't hold its weight against Subway. Some of you might think that we actually failed the diet, but no, it is completely the other way around!! The diet failed Monica first, but it quickly failed me. Egg beaters are from Satan's chickens and salads are meant for appetizers... not stinkin' meals--can I get an Amen?
So, watch out for these diets that are doomed to fail you. They are so undependable and will leave you lonely every time you go to eat. This is just friendly advice for you. If you can find a diet that won't fail you, please tell us about it... but as for now, we have been jilted because the South Beach Diet failed.