Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I don't know about ya'll, but sometimes I wonder how two people can be as busy as Heather and I are. Between both of our jobs, Heather teaching nursing students on Tuesdays at UAB, our various committee and board meetings, Alabama football on the weekends, and trying to keep in touch with family and friends, it seems we barely have time to sleep and eat. So this morning, I thought I'd take a few minutes and forget about all of that other "life stuff" and think about all the reasons I have to be thankful.

First and foremost, I am so extremely thankful for our families. God has blessed me from the beginning with a family that is loving, supportive, and generous. Having been adopted at the age of 6 weeks, I have always known that my life could have been so different, and I have always tried to keep that in perspective and be thankful. When Heather and I met and started dating, her family took me under their wing and accepted me as one of their own. I could not ever have asked for better in-laws. I am as close to them as I am my own family. We are especially thankful this year for them, because we almost lost my father-in-law, Terry, this year to a ruptured abdominal aneurism. By all medical laws, Terry should not be with us this Thanksgiving. His doctors and nurses have stressed that his recovery was not by their hands, but only the result of God and our prayers. He is the rock in that family, and I think that whole ordeal has reminded us to cherish and appreciate our parents more than ever before.

Every day I grow to be more thankful for Heather. It is amazing to look back at our lives and see how the sometimes crazy paths that we have led ended up making everything fall into place for us to be together. She has a full time job keeping me in line sometimes, but she hangs in there with me. We have fun together, and I really don't know what I would do without her.

I am also thankful that we have good jobs. So many people in this area are looking for jobs lately, but hopefully, UAB Health Systems and the City of Tuscaloosa will be around for the long haul, and we are blessed to work for people who care about us and want the best for us.

I have always been thankful for my friends. Many people have come and gone throughout my years of growing up and school, and now in our "settling down" stage, I appreciate those friends that have been there through thick and thin. There are always those who you think will be friends forever, but who, for whatever reason, tend to fade away through life's twists and turns. And then there are those who have always been there and who keep on being there, and who will always be there. Those friends are much fewer in number, but those are the ones who are the most treasured.

We will travel tomorrow. We did our baking yesterday and last night. We are heading down to my parents' house in Jackson, AL in the morning where we'll be getting together with Mama's side of the family, the Gibbs. Mama was one of 9 kids, so there will be a pile of us, and I am looking forward to seeing all the aunts and uncles and cousins. We are all just a little bit crazy, and we all have so much fun together. Then tomorrow afternoon, we will head back north to Demopolis to visit with Heather's family. Her brothers, Heath and Hess will be there with their families, and her brother Coroy and his family will be down from Memphis, so that should be fun. We also get to eat Thanksgiving in 2 places!!!

Friday afternoon we will start setting up our tailgate on the Quad for the Iron Bowl. If the rain cooperates, we will get the tents set up, the TV going, and will hang out with our friends and watch football all afternoon. Of course we will eat and drink more as well. Hershey will get to go on Friday. She loves the Quad.

Saturday will be ROLL TIDE ROLL day. We're all looking forward to that. Should be another long busy day of Alabama football. We Love It!!!!! I even have new red pants with elephants all over them to wear for the game.

I hope you all have a safe and wonderful Thankgiving, and I hope the next year brings you all more blessings than you can count.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Stitches are Gone!

I got my stitches out! It only took about 2 minutes and I didn't even feel it. I was very jumpy though. Dr. Bill was home sick, but his assistant took care of it for me. I was really afraid that it would hurt. I've never really had an abundance of stitches in my life. And, as bad as this whole thing has hurt, I was not looking forward to any more unfortableness.

So I asked, "Is this going to hurt?"

She replied, "I don't know. Let's find out. I bet it doesn't hurt me at all."

(I told ya'll those girls try to mess with my head.)

So then she starts to put that 'mirror on a stick' thing in my mouth to look at it, and I literally almost jumped out of the chair. She laughed at me. Then she proceeded to remove the stitches.

The gum was still a little puffy and red, so she got Dr. Smith to come in and look at it. Now, I know Walt Smith and think he's a great guy. Nothing to be afraid of. But when he came in and spoke, I was still so rattled that I started spouting nonsense.....

"Hey, Walt. How 'bout that ball Crimson Tide games how's that working for ya?'

He just looked at me. I laughed at myself and passed it off as a momentary loss of good sense. Which I guess is what it was.

I'm done 'til Dr. McIllwain sees me Monday. More to come.....

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Soap n Stuff

I want to share with ya'll a secret that Heather and I have discovered. We are the best of friends with Adam and Katie Benefield from Greensboro, AL. Adam owns TNT Custom T-Shirts (205-750-0690) here in Tuscaloosa, and Katie has Serenade Handmade Soaps that she operates out of their home. Heather and I, as well as a multitude of our friends, have been using her soaps for a couple of years now, and I don't think we will ever buy soap from the store again. Katie also has homemade lotions, lipbalms, and bath stuff. My favorite soaps are her Man Soap, her Bamboo Teak and her Spicy Lime. Heather tends to like the Camomile Pear and the Coconut Lemongrass. (Actually, I don't think there's anything Katie makes that Heather doesn't love!) We like to go down and visit them because when you walk in the door to their house, you can smell a mixture of all her soaps and I'll tell you, it smells sooo good!

Check her out sometime when you get a chance. You won't regret it!

Tooth Implant Update

This has been a rough week for me and this tooth situation. I am such a wuss when it comes to taking any kind of prescription pain meds, and after a day or so on the Lortab, I had to switch to Advil and Aleve and Tylenol during the day and just take the hard stuff when I knew I could lay down and go to sleep. I did get Dr. Bill to call me in an antibiotic, and I think that helped profusely. I get my stitches out this afternoon, and I will tell you that I am sooo ready for that to happen! It's like I have a wad of thread wrapped around my gums. Sounds great, huh? Anyway.... maybe phase one of this ordeal will be over soon. I hope so. It's wearing me out.

More to come.....

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I was watching the Alabama - LSU game Saturday night when I lost a crown off of my back left bottom tooth (#18 for you dental folks). So I called Dr. Bill and let him know. I was off of work yesterday for Veteran's Day, so I schedule an appointment with his office to have a temporary replacement put in my mouth.

Those girls at Dr. Bill's office are really a hoot. But I never know if they are being serious or just trying to mess with my head. So when they looked at my x-ray and started talking about how bad that tooth was, I really didn't pay much attention. The Dr. Bill came in and basically said the same thing. Evidently, the tooth had cracked into 3 pieces. Not a good thing. It had to come out.

This cartoon is kinda funny. Except for the fact that it is close to being the truth. Evidently a tooth doesn't come out very easily. At one point, after I was sure my jaw was about to break, I held up my hand and asked for a progress report. Dr. Bill compared it to a pecan that has been cracked but has pieces of it stuck in the hull. You have to keep digging until you get it all out! He almost had the first half completely out at that point. After a little more pushing and tugging, the rest of it all came out and we were done with that part. Then it all had to be closed up with stitches so I could go home.

All afternoon I took pain meds and slept. Today I look like a chipmunk on one side of my face.

This will be the first of several posts. Next Tuesday, I will go back to Dr. Bill's to get my stitches out. Then on the 24th, I will see Dr. McIllwain for a consult on having an implant put in where the tooth used to be. This process will probably take 7 or 8 months.

More to come...

Monday, November 10, 2008

So, What is Alabama Football?

SO WHAT IS ALABAMA FOOTBALL? -from Leigh @ Bloggeritaville, author unknown

It is Wallace Wade.

It is Bear Bryant.

It is Gene Stallings.

It is this man in charge.

It is not Bobby Bowden, Phil Fulmer or Dennis Franchione.

It is the Rose Bowl.

It is hearing Keith Jackson call an Alabama game.

It is watching George Teague running down Lamar Thomas in the 1993 Sugar Bowl then rewinding it and watching it again.

It is hearing the first notes of Sweet Home Alabama .

It is the desire to beat Auburn at any competitive event that exists.

It is a houndstooth hat.

It is being 'Dixie 's Football Pride'

It is having enough pride to fight for your school but having enough class not to.

It is cheering the same amount for a first down on second and 6 as on fourth and 1.

It is watching Cornelius Bennett give Notre Dame quarterback Steve Beuerlein a concussion on that October day in Birmingham in 1986.

It is determining who you are going to date & marry by which team they swear allegiance to.

It is beating Florida in the SEC title when everyone said the game in 'The Swamp' was a fluke.

It is watching The Bear on the Jumbotron before a game in Bryant-Denny Stadium and almost seeing him leaning against the goalpost in the end zone.

It is right behind God and family.

It is spending a day at The Bryant Museum and still not seeing everything.

It is cool crisp autumn Saturdays where you can smell football in the air and feel it whenever there is a slight breeze.

It is watching The Bear get number 315 against Auburn .

It is watching The Bear get number 323 against Illinois .

It is hearing Paul Kennedy do the play-by-play when Van Tiffin kicked the 52-yard field goal against Auburn in 1985.

It is remembering the feeling of the upper deck at legion field rumbling due to feet stomping.

It is knowing how many days until the start of a season year around.

It is driving down Colonial Drive to see Bryant-Denny Stadium not the sorority girls.

It is getting chills up and down your entire body whenever you hear anything about the 1993 Sugar Bowl and the pride you feel because that night tradition ruled.

It is hearing The Bear's voice and having all the hair on the back of your neck stand straight up because you know no matter what it was he said, it was something special.

It is hearing The Million Dollar Band play 'Yea Alabama' and knowing it just does not get any better.

It is imagining hearing Penn State Quarterback Chuck Fusina ask Alabama linebacker Barry Krauss 'How close is it?' and hearing Krauss say 'About an inch, you'd better pass' right before fourth down during The Goal Line Stand in the 1979 Sugar Bowl.

It is almost coming to tears whenever Alabama loses to Auburn or Tennessee .

It is The Kick. It is The Goal Line Stand. It is The Desperation Block.

It is purposely not wearing any clothes with the colors orange and blue.

It is the Third Saturday in October.

It is not needing an alarm clock on game days, you sit bolt upright in the bed long before the alarm goes off because you know that it is a gameday, you can sleep after the bowl game.

It is walking into a stadium and knowing Alabama will win the game no matter who they are playing because is just the way it is supposed to be.

It is the saying 'Offense wins games, Defense wins national titles.'

It is the Bear Bryant 'A'.

It is getting to the stadium hours before the game just to be there.

It is walking into another team's stadium and having those fans hate you because you are from Alabama.

It is the pride that a father has when he brings his children to a game so they may cherish the tradition.

It is the hit by Roman Harper in the 2005 against Tennessee that meant everything.

It is beating LSU in Baton Rouge.

It is hearing the crunch as a linebacker dressed in crimson and white hits a running back dressed in orange and blue.

It is the pride you take in being every team's rival.

It is pulling for any team that is playing Auburn.

It is pulling for any team that is playing Tennessee.

It is singing Rammer Jammer period.

It is wishing both teams could lose when Auburn plays Tennessee.

It is knowing that the SEC Championship is a birthright.

It is being respected and feared at the same time.

It is holding up four fingers at the end of the third quarter.

It is not caring about a Heisman Trophy.

It is knowing what 'Mama Called' means.

It is whipping Auburn 31-7 in Jordan-Hare Stadium when nobody picked you to win.

It is NOT 'The Jungle'.

It is 'The Catch.'

It is having 21 Southeastern Conference Titles.

It is having 12 National Titles.

It is more than I can ever mention in this list.

It is class.

It is tradition.

It is Alabama Football.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


I have done my civic duty for the day. I waited in line for an hour and a half this morning to cast my vote. The lines were long, but everyone was in good spirits. I voted at the Phelps Center, and the poll workers were doing an excellent job getting everyone taken care of. I personally am supporting John McCain and Sarah Palin, but I encourage you to get out and vote regardless of who you support.