Tuesday, December 21, 2010

top 5

Top 5 Reasons I work for my Alma Mater

1. They hired me!
2. The awesome people. DMVC people are pretty great too! Miss you all:)
3. WKU is in Bowling Green, so I don't have to drive 45 minutes to get to work.
4. There are a lot of opportunities to learn new skills. I hope to learn more about web and continue to improve upon my marketing skills.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

a very nichols christmas album in stores now!

If you would like to hear the 10 minute Christmas album that Chris produced last weekend with the Nichols girls, go to: A Very Nichols Christmas  It's free to download. You might even hear my voice on it here and there. You can't hear me much at all, but I promise that I recorded with them for every song. You're more likely to hear me washing dishes in the background! Enjoy!

Monday, December 13, 2010

a very nichols christmas

My sister's family has had a tough time the last couple of weeks. My brother-in-law has been battling an infection in his knee since they operated on his ACL in March.  The infection has been resistant to antibiotics.  Last week he had a bad reaction to the bacteria and ended up in the hospital for several days.  They scheduled surgery to remove more of the infection and to start him on some more aggressive antibiotics.   That meant four more days in the hospital.  My sister called me on Thursday night stressed out.  She had finals to study for, a sick husband in the hospital and two little girls to care for.  I thought it would be a good time to offer some help. Chris and I took our nieces for the weekend. We had to miss Family Christmas with our friends in Louisville, which was a bummer, but we knew we needed to help out. 

We played games, recorded a Christmas album as a surprise gift for their parents, colored pictures (and "Get Well" cards for Daddy), watched the movies they brought with them (including the Polar Express about three times), went to church, and ate, and ate, and ate! It was so much fun! I got to say things like, "You need to pick up your mess," "Do you need help with that?" "Let's go brush our teeth," "Do you need to use the potty?" "Stop picking your nose," "Did you wash your hands?"  "Did you flush the toilet?"  "Chew with your mouth closed,"  and "Elbows off the table." It was great. We don't get to hang out often enough!

I had met my sister Friday night in Russellville, Ky, which is roughly halfway between Bowling Green and Clarksville, TN, to pick them up. The plan was to do the same to get them home again on Sunday night. With the weather being a bit snowy and icy, we decide to make the trade a little earlier while the weather was still decent, late afternoon, before dark.  Well, we should have made it early afternoon because by the time we were halfway to Russellville, 68-80 was completely covered with snow.  Luckily, the ice hadn't yet formed underneath.  However, by the time we got to the meeting place, it had.  We were having to creep along.  My sister, Melay didn't have a very easy drive either, she had more of a farm road to travel. Luckily, after sliding around at each stoplight and driving very, very slowly on the way back, we made it home safely.  I got a call from my sister saying they had made it home okay too.  Praise God!

Emberly explains how she was grounded once for throwing chalk on the roof.

Charis informs me that she is drawing a celebration.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Chris and I are planning a vacation to Asheville, North Carolina at the end of December, and I am getting pretty excited about it!

I am mostly excited because this trip isn't going to cost me any vacation days at work! Two week Christmas breaks are the best!

This will be our first bed and breakfast stay. They are supposed to have a great breakfast each morning and pastries and fresh-baked cookies every afternoon!  We're partaking in the Biltmore Estate Package, which should be fun.  We'll probably try to find something interesting to do the other four days that we're there. I know it's silly, but I am kind of excited about the claw foot tub. I just think they're really neat. We're praying for good weather through the end of December so that we're able to keep our reservation!

Saturday, December 4, 2010


Chris just left a little while ago for a doctor's Christmas party that he and Lopez have been practicing so hard for lately.  They are getting paid pretty well to play, but Chris didn't have a suit, so he's already spent what he would have made playing at the party on a suit to wear to play at the party.  Oh well. He needed a suit anyway.  I'd say it's worth 3.5 hours of playing music.

Lookin' snazzy!

He was looking so nice, I had to grab a photo of us together.

A few minutes ago I realized the day was nearly over and that I hadn't eaten lunch or dinner.  Thankfully I am going to a Christmas party in an hour. There will be lots of food there, so I won't really need dinner. But it was four o'clock, and I needed to eat something to get me through to six o'clock...preparing something quickly for one person is always tough.  I peered into the fridge at the sliced cheese and ham lunch meat that I had been eating on all week for lunch, and thought, "If  I have to eat that again today, I might cry."  So what did I do? What any normal person would do that had bagels, cream cheese, half a jar of pizza dip, and a little bit of mozzarella cheese on hand. Can you tell I made pizza dip earlier this week?  I had all the right ingredients, but I didn't want to make an entire batch of dip.  My solution? Reinvent the pizza bagel.  Toasted bagel and cream cheese, a thin layer of pizza sauce, a sprinkle of parmesan cheese, smothered in mozzarella and topped with parsley and basil.  Yum!  I nuked it because I was starving, but it was a little soggy. It would have had a better texture if I had oven heated it.  Healthy? Nope. Tasty? Yes! 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


God's little reminder that he is taking care of us and has taken care of us through a tough year is that Chris secured a long-term science substitute teaching assignment.  Correction, he actually got two long-term sub assignments! He started at Greenwood High School yesterday, and he will finish out this semester there.  He's also covering a Biology teacher's maternity leave for ten weeks starting right after Christmas break at Warren East High School.  If all goes as scheduled (the teacher is having a scheduled C-section the last week of December), that should bring him through the first week or so of March.  Praise God! He will get a break from calling the sub-caller a couple times per week to get assignments. (Yes, you have to call the sub-caller for assignments if you want to work every day. It's a little backwards.)  They consider subbing for the same class for longer than 10 days a long-term assignment.  After 10 days, long-term subs that are certified teachers are paid on a per day basis at the same rate that a full-time teacher of that rank is paid.  That means Chris should get paid like a full-time teacher for four days on this first assignment and for eight weeks on his next assignment! A full-time Rank II certified teacher is paid over double that of a certified Rank II substitute, so the extra income, even just for a few weeks is a huge blessing.

The Lord has been faithful!  Since he's started subbing at the beginning of the semester, I think he's been able to work every day that school was in session except one. We're praying that all this subbing, especially subbing long-term will help him get to know some principals a little better and help him to get his foot in the door should a full-time high school Biology teaching position become available in Warren County. He's certainly putting in his time to earn it!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

christmas time is here

Chris and I went Christmas shopping for a little while yesterday. When we had enough of that, we came home, turned on the Christmas tunes, baked some cookies, drank some hot chocolate and decorated the tree! I love Christmas time. It seems like it's come quickly this year, but the season has only just begun. I love the listening to the beautiful music, hanging decorations, giving gifts (I don't love shopping for gifts amongst the crowds, but the giving of gifts is fun), eating sweets and celebrating the birth of my Savior, Jesus Christ. 

 Wreath by Tabitha Bailey. Her pieces are reasonably priced, and she does beautiful work!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

happy thanksgiving

I have had a really good Thanksgiving break.  WKU shuts down for three days for Thanksgiving, which is nice.  I don't think I've had a Thanksgiving break like that since high school.  Chris and I went to visit his stepmother, Lori's family in Lexington and Hebron, KY.  I think I finally got to meet just about everyone in her family.  Chris and I have been married for two years, while some of her family did come to our wedding, I don't think I remember meeting anyone besides her mother. That is just because her mother had visited Keith and Lori the same weekend Chris and did once or twice in the last two years. We got spent two days with them, and had a really nice time.  

I love Thanksgiving. It makes you realize how many blessings God has bestowed on you.  I've spent too long fretting about what I don't have.  I need to be thankful and count my many blessings. Lord knows I don't deserve any of them.

Friday, November 19, 2010

meeting Lola

Even though I had hoped my newest niece would arrive on my birthday, she decided that she wasn't quite ready on the 13th, and was born just three days later on the 16th. That's okay, we can still celebrate together, and I since it's near my birthday, I don't think I will ever have any trouble remembering her's.

She was born early Tuesday morning. Chris and I couldn't stand waiting until the weekend to see her, so we drove to Evansville Tuesday night after work.  My other sister got to drive in that night as well. After visiting for just an hour and a half, we jumped back in the car and drove back to Bowling Green to make it home just in time to get a decent night's sleep.

Jamie looked like she had just gone on a walk in the park, nothing like she just had a baby. She's just beautiful. Like mother, like daughter Lola Claire is a gorgeous baby.  She has big eyes, chubby, rose-colored cheeks and a full head of very dark hair. I can't wait to spoil her with attention! All I kept thinking was how much my mother would have loved her! I don't know when I will get to see them again, but it needs to be soon! Here are some photos I took while we were at the hospital.

By the way, the visit didn't help at all with my baby fever, but I suppose there's no getting around that at this point.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

happy birthday to me

Saturday, November 13, I turned 26.  That's right, 26.  I truly feel like that is an adult age.  I am now closer to my 30th birthday than my 20th, which feels a little weird.  Luckily, the people I am around most of the time at work and home (Chris) are older than I am. They all keep telling me that I am still young, so I guess I can live with that!

On my birthday, Chris took me on a surprise trip to celebrate with my family in Henderson.  He made sure to include a meal at my favorite fast food restaurant, Taco Johns.  He said that I always complain that we never get to eat there because every time we're in town it's to have dinner with my parents at their home or go to a wedding.  This is true, so it's a rare occasion that I get to eat there since the closest Taco Johns to Bowling Green is in Henderson. It was funny to drive all the way to Henderson for Taco Johns, but it was also very thoughtful of him plan that out.

It was a great birthday. I got to see my parents, sister and brother-in-law (only a couple of days before they had her baby), niece and my two younger brothers that still live at home.

My dad took this photo of me before we sliced into the ice cream cake. The quality of the photo is horrible, but it's the only one taken that day.  The cake was very tasty.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

nice relaxing weekend

We had a nice relaxing weekend.   Even though it was his birthday, Chris insisted that I take some time after our lazy Saturday morning to use the nail salon gift certificate that he had given to me as an anniversary gift. I just hadn't had the chance to use it.  I got a manicure and a pedicure. It was amazing!
Thought I'd take a picture since the lady who did my manicure said, "It won't last long. French manicure never lasts long on real nails."

Later on, Chris' dad and stepmother surprised him for his birthday by showing up at Samurai Japanese Restaurant. Chris was playing jazz there with Lopez as he often does weekend nights. It's actually a really good gig.  He gets paid for doing something he loves to do.  It was a surprise for him, but I had known about them coming since Wednesday.  We enjoyed dinner and then came back to the apartment for cheesecake, which turned out to be really good even though, as usual, the top edges of my cheesecake fell apart. I must not do a great job of "loosening the edges."  Oh well...he said it made a perfect birthday! 

Today our church, Burton Memorial celebrated the 160th Anniversary Homecoming. There were a lot of visitors, past members that attended. We had a potluck after church and then a concert of worship songs after.  It was a lot of fun to praise God with a larger group of people. It was nice to see friends that I hadn't seen in a while. There were also many visitors I had never met before.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The way to a man's heart is through his stomach.

Today is Christopher's birthday, so I made him a pumpkin spice cheesecake last night.  I've made cheesecake for his birthday for the last three years. He said his mom used to make one for his birthday, and she lives too far away to do that now. I've never made this flavor before, so it was a whole new challenge. I hope it's good! I can't wait to try it later!

My dearest Christopher is 29 years old. That means one more year until he's 30! He's turning into an old man!

I am so thankful that God gave me such a wonderful old man! Happy Birthday, Chris!

"Statistics show that birthdays are good for you. People who have the most live the longest." - I don't know who first said this, but it's funny.

After a lot of grinding, I finally got graham cracker crumbs.

I've never made graham cracker crust with pecans. I had to make part of this up...couldn't find ginger snaps at Wal-Mart...

Recipe I sort of followed from Real Simple.

Yes, cheesecake sometimes calls for four 8oz. packages of cream cheese. A bit overboard? Probably. Delicious? Usually.

This is where the cheesecake deviates to become pumpkin spice.

All mixed up.

Going into the oven for one hour and twenty minutes.

Let's see if it's done.

Cheesecake always looks puffy and strange when it first comes out. I haven't perfected a "pretty" cheesecake. Is it any good? I don't know yet.

All that work for this guy. You're worth it.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

babies, babies everywhere

A couple of my good friends had babies in the last 24 hours (Congrats, Jordan & Marissa and Russ & Lindsey on your new additions), and I am expecting my fourth niece in just a few weeks.  It seems this is the season of my life where many of my friends and siblings will be having babies.  I'm mostly just excited for them, but part of me it a bit jealous as I have recently felt a growing desire for children. I'm told that is simply biological and that I'm really not crazy.

My husband has pleaded with me to wait a while to make this a priority as there are a few preparations we would both like to make before we begin building our own family, such as finding a stable job for him and paying off student loan debt, which we've kicked butt at by the way! We're making progress there. I know that God's timing is perfect, so whatever preparations he allows us the patience and time to make before children enter our lives (if He decides to bless us with them), will be the ones that He thought were needed.

In the meantime, I can enjoy playing with other people's children while striving to be a good friend, aunt and most importantly, a good wife!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Jackson's Orchard - Pumpkin Festival

We stopped by Jackson's Orchard today. I don't think I've ever seen so many people there before. They had pony rides, sand art, a small petting zoo, food, a monstrous slide and the list goes on. Though we had to wait in line for 30 minutes to get some peach ice cream and a caramel apple, it was well worth the trip.

These reminded me of the pumpkins from our wedding.

The one we brought home.