Monday, December 13, 2010

Carrie Ryan's The Forrest of Hands and Teeth

After a brief meeting with author Carrie Ryan at the National Council for Teachers of English's national meeting this year, where I too was proud to present, I could not push her books out of my head. She intrigued me so much in her session that I couldn't make myself think about reading anything else but the Forest of Hands and Teeth. So, the moment that I finished my semester at the University of Alabama I downloaded my first purchase on my Nook and started reading. I read and read and read and read so much that my fiancé got slightly aggravated at me, because I was so consumed in the book! It was greatly impossible to put down - even to make the 10 minute drive from his house to mine! I crawled into bed last night at about 11:00 or so and picked up my nook and started reading again at around page 115. I told myself, "I'll read until midnight." Well, that turned into "I'll stop at 1:00" or "I'm just going to finish this chapter." Before I knew it I was entirely through the 233 page book (according to the pagination of my Nook) and it was 3:15 in the morning! My fiancé was shocked when I called him on his lunch break at work at 3:30, since I am nowhere near a night owl!
With all of that said, I am completely in love with Mary and her story. I love her persistent and hopeful soul. I love that she never gives up on anything, and will risk life and limb to prove her dreams true. . I had just recently finished Sherman Alexie's book The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian for a class project, which is written in first person, diary-like, stream of consciousness form, so I felt at ease reading all of Mary's inner thoughts. I enjoyed seeing her struggle between her heart and her village's traditions -something that I think many teenage girls deal with today, just slightly different circumstances- because it makes you feel like Mary is real. With the amount of detail that Carrie Ryan gives it's almost as if you can jump right into Mary's body and become her. You are immediately overtaken by her thoughts and consumed in her. There seems to be no lack of action in this book, and I was always left hanging at the end of a chapter. That might be the reason I couldn't put it down!

Hint: Never tell yourself you are only going to read the first sentence of the next chapter! You will NEVER quit reading the chapter!

In closing, Give her book a try; it's not all about zombies and them eating people (although there is no lack of death and zombies). I love how Mary tries so desperately to find the life in a world so surrounded by death. It is her unrelenting spirit that pushes this novel forward. Alright! It's time for me to put away the computer and go download the next book, The Dead Tossed Waves! Congratulations to Carrie Ryan and her success! God Bless!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Cool Ideas and Things

Just some new links to places I've looked at in West Alabama and East Mississippi, and some ideas that I have ran across. I will post some pics of things I've bought soon!

-->Our venue was going to be the chapel at Tannehill State Park. The link to their website is The direct link to the chapel is

-->Our wedding song is "My Love is Deeper" by Randy Travis. We are also playing "Huckleberry" by Toby Keith. For the wedding march I have opted for an alternative of having a friend and his daughter play the guitar and fiddle. The two of them are members of the Pickens Bluegrass Band. They are a local band that always play at any community function, and they are WONDERFUL!

--> Shadow Lawn - An Antebellum Bed and Breakfast located in Columbus, Mississippi. The rates I have are $600 for the outside or inside and $800 for both. They do not allow outside food and insist that they do their own catering. Their web address is

--> Huckleberry Farms - a horse farm located in Jasper, Alabama. It is home to a beautiful bunch of horses and a lovely barn. They are incredibly nice people but unfortunately I can't afford their prices.... The venue rental included all tables, chairs and linens and was $3,000. The food was at least $21 per person. They do all of the flowers to and I was quoted $800 for only white and yellow daisies. Their web address is

--> I have also fallen in love with this website. It's called Daisy Days and they specialize in wedding accessories. Including everything from cake toppers to wedding favors. I thought their prices were reasonable and pretty fair. I am actually getting my cake topper there! The website is

These cute place card holders are available at their website. You can sort the items by theme, and these are found under the "Butterfly" theme. But, dont limit your self to one theme. Try going to "Ceremony" or "Reception" and choosing an option like "Place card holders" or "Cake Toppers."

This is the Cake Topper that I am in love with. You can customize it with your initial and wedding date! If you are interested in it you can find it at this link

*One of the ideas that I had for the Ceremony was to paint cute signs to direct people to the chapel that we are planning on using at Tannehill State Park, located just outside of Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, AL. I am going to do two of them. One will say "We're going to the chapel..." and the next will be placed at the entrance to the chapel saying "...and we're gonna get married!"

I hope you enjoy these sites and ideas as much as i do! Good Luck and Congratulations on your engagement!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Latest Finds

I found these galvanized steel buckets at a store called Home Accents in Northport, Alabama. Northport is a city that is essentially attached to Tuscaloosa. They are $20 for the buckets and $20 for the stands also.

Here is also a picture of the cupcakes that I plan to use!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Cool Websites!

Here are a few of the websites that I ran accross. I will try to remember to update the blog everytime I find a new one. - here I found the red checked tablecloths that I wanna use for under $10 a table... I did use a promotional code though.

All of my promotional codes come from the coolest website ever its called Here you can type in the website that you are shopping on and find good codes for discounts... They have everything from free shipping to 20% off. This one is really worth while.

My favorite photographer is Miranda Owens. Miranda is a fellow Palmettoian (or how every you would describe us). She now lives in Louisiana with her Airforce husband and son. Miranda does great work and I am so wanting to get her to take our pictures. She has great rates for anyone in her area and her website is full of pictures that she has taken in the past.... you can find her on Facebook and at

If anyone finds any More websites that are handy let me know and I will be more than happy to post them!!

Fellow Blogger!

While searching for inspiration for daisy cupcakes, for the wedding of course, I ran accross this blog. The intire blog is full of ideas for fun and tasty crafts and treats.... I have chosen to use these cupcakes for my wedding cake instead of a traditional cake... You can find the fondant cutter at Michael's Craft Store and at several places on line...It is not under the coookie cutter section if you Google it. I paid $2.50 for my set of three daisy cutters, online they are about the same price, BUT you have to pay shipping, so unless you already have a decent order i wouldnt pay the extra ~$7 shipping...

This is the Cool Crafters Blog Link to the Daisy Cupcakes.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Begining

I had dreamed of this day forever. The candle lit diner, the roses (not red ones), the romance, and the ring. I knew that it was coming one day, just never knew when. Three whole years had passed since that first date to the movies, and dinner. Daniel never thought it would last by the time we got through dinner. I hadn't eaten any of my chicken fingers from Backyard Burger, and he had nearly devoured his Hawaiian chicken sandwich. My only saving grace was that I was not the typical girl Daniel was used to taking to the movies. Naturally he let me pick the movie, but to his surprise I did not choose the cliche chick flick like most girls on a first date, I picked one of the greatest football movies of all time, in my opinion. It was Invincible, the story of a walk on pro football player Vince Papili. Daniel didn't even realize what movie I had just picked until we were already seated in the theater.
So three years had passed and our love had gotten stronger and stronger. We had been through hard times like the death of very close pets, which was incredibly hard on me, and some family marital problems, that had really been acts of tough love. We had worked hard all of this time to make sure that we were completely honest with each other and never putting on a show. None of our friends seemed to realize why our relationship was so strong. No body could figure out how we could let the other go out and hang out with friends with out the other. We immediately had this connection and understood that we could trust each other. This was a good thing because three weeks before our one year anniversary I started college at The University of Alabama, an hour away from our homes in Kennedy and Palmetto, Alabama. This really pushed our relationship and our trust to the max. He had to know and understand that it was okay for me to be making new friends, and that I was not going to go out and party with out him. One week before our anniversary Daniel "presented" me with a promise ring. I more or less found it on the dashboard of his truck. That's when I really figured out that this relationship was going to last and that he would stick with me through college.
After my Freshman year, and a couple of different majors, I moved back home and made the decision to commute, it was only about a 45 minute drive with traffic. This decision really came when I got word that my dad may be traveling back to Iraq for another tour of duty. I couldn't possibly leave my mother at home for a year with my sister and brother. At the time Kat, my sister, couldn't drive and mom worked odd schedules, so getting the kids to and from school might prove to be a hassle. I made the decision so that I would be able to help her in anyway that i could. I had arranged my schedule for nursing school so that I would only be gone two days a week. This you would think would make life easier, but not with Daniel's work schedule. He was now working at a wonderful company in Columbus, Mississippi. It was called Baldor Electrical Company, and he was working second shift, with tons of hours of overtime. We maybe only got to see each other one day a week and most of that time was consumed by church on Sunday.
The next year proved to be easier. I had found what God had really wanted me to do with my life, and that was teach. I was a much happier person now, and not to mention my grades were a heck of a lot better. We had been talking about getting married and knew that it was something that we wanted to do eventually, but I never expected to get engaged when we did. August 26, 2009 had been our three year anniversary, and still no ring, so I figured that it would just come later.
It was October 3, 2009 and I had been at Tannehill State Park for the Thomas Family Reunion. Daniel decided not to come, but was totally instant that I come home, but i just dint see that happening. We proceeded to get involved in this huge argument. It resulted from me not having very good cell service, and he thought I was simply hanging up on him. Little to my knowledge he was trying to plan an evening where he could propose.
I came home that night just to spite him. I was so mad I could have cared less to see him the next day. After I got home and got dressed for bed, because it was already about 10:00 p.m. he called me and asked me to meet him at our church. He said that he did not want for us to fight in my front yard, in front of my parents. Being as ill as I already was I was looking for a good fight, so I went. He put on a good fight, for about thirty minutes, then he cranked his truck and would not tell me where we were headed.
I started to notice that he was incredibly nervous, and would not leave my promise ring alone. I thought he was just crazy and the weird-o that I had fallen in love with three years before. We ended up at my favorite spot ever. There is this place where you can pull off of this rural road on top of a hill. There are no trees around and you can see every single star God ever created. We got out, and he sat me on the back of the truck, barefooted, in my sweatpants, and a t-shirt. Then all of the sudden, it happened. He got down on one knee, and finally asked that one simple question... "Will you marry me?" My heart nearly exploded!!!!! I couldn't believe that the moment I had dreamed of had just happened. Did I mention that the ring was amazing? It was perfect, and beautiful, and I could not have picked out a better one!!

More of the Wedding Process to come!