My Gratefulness List……

Yesterday on the blog I shared about my stupid freak accident that boogered up my foot. Today I am reflecting on all the things I’m grateful for despite having to be couch-bound for the next few days:

  1. The inventor of sponge baths: I don’t know who came up with this concept, but I’m a big fan. Because I’m unable to completely submerge myself in a tub of water (cool water. I may be taking cold baths for the rest of my life, just as a precaution), a washcloth, sink and a bar of soap have been a god-send. Especially for visitor’s noses. Seriously, I was smelling pretty rank till yesterday. 😀
  2. Dry Shampoo: Although I’ve been able to give myself a sponge bath, I have yet yo MacGyver a method to wash my hair. The two cans of dry shampoo I received for Christmas last year has come in quite handy.
  3. Working internet: I’m SO thankful for working internet so at least I can chat with friends if they aren’t able to come over and visit me on the couch in all my dry shampooed glory.
  4. A loving and patient spouse: Since being confined to the couch, I’ve not been able to do the every day things around the house that I normally do. So Chad has picked up some of the slack. He’s done this without complaining. He’s also graciously ran interference with the youngest, gently picking him up and putting him at his food bowl when he tries to eat from his sisters bowl. To top it all off, he made sure we had a beautiful anniversary breakfast on Wednesday morning, complete with a dozen roses and a box of donuts.
  5. The sweet friend who has been changing my dressing twice a day. She is the future of medicine and that future is full of hope. She makes a house call right to our couch to check my healing process and change the dressing. And she does all this with a smile and a joyful heart. There has been more that I’m thankful for this week, but my eyes are getting pretty heavy so I think I’m going to end this entry here.

    We live in a world of darkness and pain and stress. But if we look around we can find the tiniest sliver of hope and encouragement. Even from the couch.


A Couch With a View: On How It’s a Miracle I Made it to 36……

It was literally the stupidest freak accident ever.


A trickle of water is the reason that I am living on the couch with my foot up for the next week.

Yeah. I told you it was stupid.

But let me rewind. One thing that you need to know is that with my Spina Bifida, one of the symptoms is a lack of feeling in my feet from the top of my toes till about my ankle.

So Monday afternoon I drew myself a bath to get ready to go out. I got in and went to turn the water off. I was in a hurry and didn’t push the knob in all the way, there was a steady small trickle of water coming out of the faucet. I paid it no attention and continued with my bath. It wasn’t until I felt the trickle of water move over my ankle that I realized how hot it had been. So I quickly moved my foot out of the way and turned the faucet completely off.

But the damage had already been done.

I only noticed my skin was red, so I thought that was the extent. It wasn’t until I got out of the bathtub and dried off that I saw the blisters forming. I texted pictures of it to our doctor friend and she told me how to proceed. I soaked it in cool water and didn’t cover it with a bandage till I was ready to head out the door.

As the evening progressed, the blisters started to swell. The next day I was told I’d need to keep it wrapped for a week and elevated, which means I can’t wear shoes. And will be confined to the couch till Tuesday.


That’s 5 more days. Which doesn’t seem like a super long time and with the stress of life lately, that seems like it would be pretty relaxing. But I’m beginning to get bored. There is only so many episodes of Cheers and CSI that I can take before my brain starts to turn to mush.

Not to mention we have two cats that fight like, well, cats.

And so I sit and write my blog. Pondering how miraculous it truly is that I managed to make it to age 36 with pretty minimal damage.

“There but for the Grace of God go I” (John Bradford)

Photo on 2016-07-26 at 20.36

My view from the couch for the next week. But isn’t Riley adorable? 😀

Monday Missives: Where Lulabelle Comes Up With Alternative Swear Words…..

I’m pretty sure you’ve been there.

You hit your funny bone on a hard surface or accidentally slam your finger in a door.

Then you unleash words that would make the Pope blush.

But then it happens. Your nieces and nephews grow up and start talking.

And they are there when you accidentally shut your finger in the car door.

And they start repeating the new words they just learned.


So today I thought I’d do you a solid and give you a list of alternative swear words to use when little ears are around. I’ll even use them in a sentence:

1. Bullsqueeze!

All the words coming out of Donald Trump’s mouth are pure bullsqueeze.

2. Holy Hannah Montana!

Holy Hannah Montana those chicken wings are so spicy that I’m literally breathing fire! Sorry about that hole I just burned in your sofa.

3. Holy Balls! (Ok, this one is iffy. Use with caution. Or something 😛 )

Holy balls, Batman! Did you see that big boulder coming down the street?

4. Holy Crab Apple! (Apparently part of the art of using alternative swears relies heavily on making something “holy”…….Carry on…..)

5. Holy Buckets! (I have no idea what this means. I mean, if you put holes in a bucket, it renders it useless. Dear Liza. )

6.  Son Of a Monkey’s Uncle’s First Cousin Once Removed! ( I took an old classic and improved it. Yep. And an added bonus with this one is that it takes so long to say it, by the time you do, you forget why you said it in the first place. 😀 )

*use this when you hit your knee on the edge of the table*

So there you have it. Print this out and put this in your pocket or purse in case of a swear emergency.

You’re welcome! 😛


LAFF on Saturday: THIS is Really My Life……Envy Me.

Whoever said Saturday was a day to relax an recharge apparently doesn’t live in our house. So far today the oldest cat has thrown up, Little Man Kitty (AKA Riley) is a food thief,  and for a grand finale when he was caught red handed, he sneezed in my face. Well played, Weird, Oversized Furry Cheeto.

I probably have some sort of weird foreign kitten virus now.

The veterinarian community will probably do a case study on me for one of those stuffy medical journals. Which would be just fine because we really could use the money.

Taking a break now and watching Notting Hill while eating my weight in chocolate.

How has your Saturday gone so far?? 😀


“My name is Riley. I have a cute face and I am very charming. But I am a thief who steals my sisters food and doesn’t feel bad about it. I may not have a soul.” 😛 



Money Well Spent: Why

**FTC Disclosure: Affiliate link to sign up for is below. As always, my opinions are my own.

Chad and I met online a little over 8 years ago. I was at a point in my life where I just wasn’t meeting anyone in person, even though I lived in a city of 1 million people. Honestly the only way I was gonna meet someone was if the FedEx guy asked me out, which…..never happened.

So what’s a girl to do?

So I decided to take my search for love online. After all, I wasn’t tall or shiny enough to compete on The Bachelorette. 😛

It was around this time that online dating as a concept became more mainstream and the stigma that had been long attached began to fall off like stubborn onion skin.

So my next thought was, which site will I choose? I decided to go with a site that a good friend of mine had. Where he met his wife;

So I made an account and sat back and watched the guys flock to me. Ha! Ok, it didn’t happen like that. Really. 😀 In actuality I spent time on the daily going through guy’s profiles from the geographic area and age range I had selected.

After several weeks of using the site, I ran across a profile featuring a cat drinking out of the toilet. If you regularly read my blogs, you’ll know that I eventually married the man that posted that picture.

Today I wanted to give you a few reasons why I think ChristianCafe is unique to other dating websites out there, and why if you are thinking of online dating, you should give it a whirl:

1. Diversity: Although it is a Christian owned dating service, you aren’t pigeon-holed. What I mean is that you don’t have to have a one-size-fits-all faith.

You can come as you are.

2. Even as a new member, you get to enjoy the entire site: There isn’t any restrictions to new members except the inability to give out phone numbers. (This was not an issue for me as I had a one month rule to giving out my number. You can find more of my tips of online dating here)

3. You get one week free: Before you pay, you get to set up your profile and browse others profiles for absolutely free. And if you upload more than one photo of yourself on your profile, you get three more days free.

And at the time I signed up, free was in my budget. 😉

4. Troll blocking: Don’t think that just because you haven’t gone out to a bar or club, you’ll be able to avoid sleazy guys. With online dating, they can troll from the comfort of their one-room apartment in their mama’s basement. But don’t despair. If you run across a trolly sleaze, simply report them to an administrator and they will be blocked within a day.

I know that online dating can be pretty intimidating. But ChristianCafe makes the process simple and fun.

Good luck 😉



Milestones and Trendsetting……..

At the end of this next month, friends and family will gather at our house to celebrate the adoption of Riley.

We are throwing him a kitten shower.

No, I’m being completely serious. I know what you must be thinking; anything from, “Oh my gosh that’s the best idea ever!! Tell me more!!” to, “Lord have mercy, these people have lost their minds!!”

I get it. This is a new idea (I even googled “Kitten Shower” and the only thing that came up was a link to a humane society shower for kitten supplies…..totally made sense.) But I’ve never heard of anyone else throwing a shower for their new kitten.

It’s probably the same response the maker of the Snuggie got when he first pitched his idea. I mean, a blanket you can wear is a bit crazy when no one else has thought of it, but look how popular it is now.

We are totally gonna be the pioneers of the Fur Baby Shower industry.

Honestly I’m a little surprised this idea hasn’t taken off sooner. With the way our generation is having kids later in life and lots of us remaining child free, having parties for our fur babies seems to be the logical next step.

So keep watching this space for updates and pictures from the event. Stay tuned! 🙂

Lulabelle Cooks Without a Net: Pretzel M&M Cookie Bark….

Now, in full disclosure this recipe was originally for just straight cookies, but I had to call it what it turned into, a brittley bark like sweet cookie yumminess. Why didn’t these turn into regular cookies that everyone on the planet can recognize?

You should know by now that it’s simply because I was the one that baked them.

Of course. 😉

This blog entry idea came about after I watched one of my favorite YouTubers bake a batch of cookies. Tanya Burr, a beauty vlogger, also has a baking channel and made these amazing looking cookies that I just had to replicate, with a twist of course.

The twist being Burr actually made the cookie dough from scratch and this mama doesn’t have time to do all that!! (Plus I had enough trouble with just pre-made dough and trying to keep Riley from climbing onto the baking pan to eat it. I was almost successful. So far he’s not gotten sick so apparently kittens can eat a smidge of raw cookie dough without any ill effects 😛 ). I also left out the peanut butter because of an in house allergy and we were out of almond butter. If I make these again–scratch that, WHEN I make these again, I’ll add in some almond butter.

So for my recipe you will need 1 log of sugar cookie pre made dough (I used Pillsbury), a package of regular M&M’s and a package of thin pretzel sticks.

Place the cookie dough on a cookie sheet according to the package directions. Or do it however you want. I tried to follow the package directions, but I didn’t realize cutting cookie dough into even slices would be so difficult. I ended up putting the entire package onto one sheet and when the cookies baked there wasn’t enough room between them, so they basically baked up to form one giant rectangular cookie. Add a cape and your giant cookie can now fight crime. 😀

Ok, let’s back track. Before putting the cookies in the oven, but after spreading them on the sheet, take a couple M&M’s and pretzel bits and push them down onto the top of the cookie. I managed to get 4 tiny pieces of pretzel and 3 M&M’s on each cookie. I’m sure that if you are better at executing directions than I am, you’ll be able to fit more on.

So now your cookies are ready to bake per the instructions on the back. While they are baking, use this time to corral the kitten who has decided that he really wants to take a swan dive off the top of the refrigerator just to see if he can do it.

When the oven timer dings (let me backtrack again–set the oven timer after putting in your cookies), carefully take them out of the oven and hold them in one hand while you frantically clear a space on the counter since the kitten is not strong enough to jump that high yet. Putting them on the table would just lead to an emergency vet visit later that same night. So after unplugging the toaster and shoving it against the back wall, you finally can set down your cookies and take a break while you wait for them to cool.

Don’t wait too long. I got distracted by an episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and when I went to take the cookies off the sheet, they had definitely cooled, but had also somehow adhered themselves to the cookie sheet. When I took a spatula to them, I had to push really hard and they didn’t separate into individual cookies. I basically had the equivalent of cookie bark, hence the last minute title change.

The taste? Oh my goodness!! SO good. The sugar cookies and chocolate pieces were sweet, but the pretzel pieces added a savory note that helped the over all cookie not be too sweet.

I will definitely be making these cookies again. In a way I have to….I have another log of cookie dough in the fridge. 😉


PS: Happy belated birthday to my new niece Rosie who I’ll be making these cookies for the moment that she can have sugar


But Joy Comes in The Morning…..

Every Saturday night for the past month at 10:22pm sharp Chad and I observe what has become a sacred ritual; we bow our heads and thank the Lord for giving us Cathy Cat for as long as she lived. We also pray for Phoebe that she would adjust to our eventual new addition to our family; a kitten.

Why 10:22 PM? It was in that moment that our precious cat’s heart stopped beating this side of heaven as she passed peacefully over the Rainbow Bridge.

Losing a pet sucks. Especially when you consider them a member of your family. Your child.

And I slipped into a depression that I hadn’t expected. It was awful. I didn’t even have the strength to blog.

Feelings of guilt, sadness, and grief freely flowed through me.

The guilt? Thinking that I, Cathy Cat’s primary caregiver, did something wrong to cause her death.

It got so bad that Chad and I went to a session of grief counseling. I have no shame over this and encourage anyone that has experienced the loss of a fur baby to consider talking to a professional if you feel like you need some extra help navigating your feelings.

So after we lost Cathy Cat, we had a hole in our family. In a way we always will. But in the meantime we wanted to expand our family to include a little furry bundle of joy. So last Saturday, this little guy joined our crazy family.


Mr. Riley Bean is 10 weeks old and all kitten. He’s added so much energy to our house. And JOY. SO much joy! You can’t help but smile when a 10 week old kitten frantically tears around the room playing hockey with a Cheerio. It never occurs to him to eat it, thankfully.

All this last month, I’ve been thinking about the verse in the Bible about pain only lasting for a night, but joy comes in the morning. This has been SO true for us. Riley Bean is our true joy and we thank the Lord daily for him.

Dear reader, if you have ever lost a pet and are in mourning, take heart. The Lord cares for your hurt and will restore your heart.

“But joy comes in the morning!”

**Special thanks to S-R Images for doing Riley’s first baby photoshoot and providing a photo for today’s blog.  If you’d like to book them for your next event, find them on Facebook at

Graze Box Verdict…….

**Trigger Warning**  Today’s blog contains mention of a specific bodily function. If you don’t like hearing about bodily functions or need a break from hearing about it (because you have a son between the ages of 6 and 30), you can skip this one. See you tomorrow. 😉

I know you all have been waiting to hear Chad and my first impressions of the Graze Box that came in the mail the other day.

The wait is over.

So in answer to the first question, “How many snacks were left upon Chad’s return?” The answer is all of them.

Fortunately I was able to pacify my hunger with leftover mac and cheese (one of those gourmet home made varieties that contains 6 different cheeses made by our best friend Adam. Everyone should have an Adam.) until Chad came home.

I was so proud of myself that I hadn’t even opened the box. #WaitingIsHard

What was inside the box? 4 different snacks. Specifically:

1. Peachy Orchard (a mix of dried rhubarb, pears and peach fruit drops (basically tiny peach juice gummy balls) )
2. The Cheese Board (cracker-y baked herb bites, cashews, and cheesy bites)
3. Salted Popcorn (literally a tiny pouch of microwaved popcorn)
4. Summertime Punch (dried pineapple pieces, goldenberries (raisins, pineapple syrup, and pineapple juice concentrate), and coconut flakes) )

Each of these snacks are hovering around an ounce in size and contain one serving each. I know what you are thinking, and I totally agree-that’s pretty tiny for a snack.

So I ate them all in one setting.

I was a good wife though and gave Chad the Summertime Punch snack because he loves shaved coconut. It absolutely doesn’t matter that he forgot to eat it and it was still unopened when he got home. So I did the only reasonable thing and opened it myself and ate the dried fruit bits, leaving him all the coconut. I really am a catch, people. 😉

So here are our thoughts (Dang, that was a long*ss intro. Sorry ’bout that 😛 ):

The Good:

-The box contained snacks that were pretty enjoyable.
-Eating all of the snacks in one setting did serve to fill me up.
-The box it came in was cute.
-There were over 100 snacks for me to choose from. I was able to rate each snack so my box was customized, although my top picks were not guaranteed to be in the box.
-All the snacks were relatively healthy with no preservatives. Chad commented that the coconut was plain with no oil, which apparently is not a common thing for a snack mix. I wouldn’t know because I don’t really like coconut so I don’t actively seek it out.

The Bad:

-The serving sizes were teeny tiny. Which is why I had to eat the entire box. Granted, I don’t blame the company for not anticipating my snacking needs, but a bigger serving would have been awesome.
-Considering the size of each of the snacks, the price is a bit up there. Your first box is free with a special code and includes 4 snacks. After that your box is double in size and the cost is around $12. You can choose to receive the box weekly or monthly.

The Ugly:

-None of the snacks in my box tasted all that special. I honestly could go to our local bulk health food store and buy essentially the same thing, but in much larger quantities.

The Unexpected Best:

**Bodily Function Discussion Time**

Because I ate the entire box in one setting, and each snack had several grams of fiber, I uh, well…..I had a really good poo! 😀

So there you have it. I’m glad that we got a free Graze box to try. Even though we won’t be getting it again, I thought I’d review it anyway and let you decide whether or not to get it.


Math Problems…….#BloggingWhileHungry

Remember the other day when I said I was so hungry that I signed up for one of those snack subscription services? Well, the box came today. But there is a problem.

Chad had to go to a work meeting. Leaving me alone with the box.

I haven’t yet had anything to eat today.

Before he left he told me he wanted to try some of the snacks when he came back.

I don’t know how long he is going to be gone. So here is a math problem:

“If Chad leaves the house to go to a meeting, leaving his wife with an unopened snack box of deliciousness (for an indeterminate amount of time), how many snacks will there be left upon Chad’s return? Here are some facts to consider:

Photo on 2016-07-05 at 15.46 #2

1. There are only 4 snacks in the box

2. The box is only an inch thick

3. The box measures 7 inches across

4. I’m pretty sure I’ve never been this hungry in my life”

So how many snacks do you think will be left when Chad gets home? Put your guess in the comments below!

Happy Eating!

FTC Disclosure: All products were procured by me. This post is not sponsored.

Psst! Hey guys! Even though this post was not sponsored, the good folks at Graze gave me a coupon code that you guys can use to get your 1st and 5th box FREE!

Just enter the promo code: 79RK62MNB