Saturday, November 11, 2006

More Shopping

The antique show at Warrenton is so big that after two Saturdays of heavy duty shopping, I still only saw most of Warrenton, and didn't even stop at Round Top or the surrounding communities. Mom Wood, Aunt Debbie, John, Chad and I returned to the antiques festival. John & Chad had to leave early to do some fishing but I think they enjoyed looking at the antique signs, fishing lures & other guy stuff. :) We girls stayed until we couldn't walk any more but it was a lot of fun. Before they left Sunday, we hit the mall in College Station too.

Western tree topper

Aunt Debbie & Mom Wood looking at antique cookbooks

Pulleys with character

Chad & John looking at pocket watches

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Shopping is hard work

John & I discovered that every six months there is a fabulous antiques festival in Round Top & Warrenton, TX and the surrounding communities. We love it and if we were sufficient flush with funds, would probably come back with a truckload of stuff. As it is, its a great place to look & selectively purchase all kinds of things. This time I went both weekends, first with my mom & sister, Val. Then with John's mom & Aunt Debbie. Mom & Val came down for the weekend and we totally wore ourselves out on Saturday in Warrenton. We had a late lunch at the Legal Tender Saloon, which has the Best Chocolate Pie ever! It was an awesome, if tiring day.

Val, Mom & I each went home with some of these great painted gourds - they're a wonderful fall decoration. Most people couldn't handle our kind of shopping - we were there 45minutes trying out different combinations before we finally made up our minds.

Loved these tags for Halloween decorations!

Val loved these water pumps (of course - they're red)

Some vendors had great displays.

Awesome place to eat - but get there fast because they run out of brisket & chicken salad fast!

We had a great time in Warrenton. Then, just to make sure Mom got her workout, we went to the Southern Living Idea House the next day after church. We three went to the HGTV Dream Home last year in Tyler so it was fun to compare the two.

This is a shot of part of the master bath - it was awesome.

Edited to add: I forgot to mention that while Mom & Val hit Dillard's Saturday night, I got to spend some time with my friend Melissa Mezger & her hubbie, Luke. They came into town to see the Aggie game and it was wonderful to talk to them.

A 'Bowl' Lotta Fun

A disappointment turned into a great night (though John might debate it wasn't quite as much fun). We had planned on going fishing with our friends, Robin & Jared, one Saturday night but it was not to be. John was in complete denial of the approaching thunderstorm system until it hit Saturday night but even he had to admit he wouldn't have wanted to be out in that (in his aluminium boat). So we went bowling instead. Another sport I totally stink at but enjoy. John finally got to use his bowling ball and Jared got a six-pack (that's 6 strikes in a row)!

Robin & Jared

Jared bowling (in our defense he did take the kines. class when the MSC still had a bowling alley)

John taking a turn

Robin bowling

Special Delivery

In the middle of September John received something he's been waiting quite a while for - his Aggie Ring! It was a great day and he was so excited to go home the next weekend and show his family. Little did he know, Mom Wood & I were cooking up a surprise for him. She arranged a celebration for him at the BBQ House in Nacogdoches and did all the work - all I had to do was keep it a surprise & get John there at 7pm. He was getting pretty frustrated with me by the time we got there. We thought he'd be onto us when he spotted the cars in the parking lot but he just thought everyone was in the mood for bbq. He was so surprised when we went to the back room and most of both our families were there. It was a really wonderful evening and he totally deserved it.

The next day we drove to Center, TX (which is even further beyond the Piney Wood curtain) to play some softball & celebrate John's cousin, Brandy's birthday. It was so much fun - I stink at softball but I love playing. It was another awesome time with family & friends - we truly are blessed.

John & Mom Wood at Ring Celebration

Bruce Steptoe, John's 'little' brother Chad, Pops (seated), Uncle Gerald, John

The Weekend Warriors

Our cheering section

John took his turn pitching

Where to start...

Waayy back in September John's folks & brother came down for a visit. We had a great time showing them around and checking out some of A&M's traditional spots. After lunch at the Chicken Oil, John showed his dad & Chad the local mecca for men on a budget - Harbor Freight tools. John's mom & I found our own pantheon for women - the Southern Living Idea House. It was gorgeous! And of course we had to check out one of the places that supplied the furnishings - the Old Bryan Marketplace in downtown Bryan. I can't believe I went to school here for 5yrs & have been back for 2yrs before I found this place. So much cool stuff! To top it off, we had dessert at Cafe Eccel - strawberry tarts of course. For dinner that night, John had to introduce his dad to the place to get steak - Somerville Steakhouse. It was a great weekend and we just hope that they had as much fun as we did!

Exterior of the Idea House

One of my favorites - the kitchen

A fun place to shop

Cafe Eccel's specialty

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Best of Intentions

So I was set to show all the cool pictures from John's Ring celebration, softball, etc. But I took them in NEF format so it'll take me a while to convert them to JPEG. In the meantime, here are so butterfly pictures I took a couple of weeks ago at my mom's house. These were the biggest butterflies I've seen in a while.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

For Modesty

My firend, Jennifer steered me to an excellent post on Everyday Mommy about modesty. My mother emphasized modesty so much growing up but I never really understood why until I was in college. We had a class one morning that was split by gender and some older men from the church came and spoke honestly about how immodesty affected boys/men. What a wake up call. Last Sunday we were in church and there were several girls, some with their parents, who were wearing extremely short skirts. By extremely short, I mean, wouldn't come close to passing the "finger-tip" test. And while I certainly don't feel that someone should meet a dress code to come to church, I believe in dressing appropriately to the situation. I would not wear jogging pants to the office or a swimsuit to a funeral or revealing clothes to church.

So even though I don't have children, I fully support this stand. I myself would like to be able to buy stylish, misses clothes that are not cut down to my navel. And when I do have children, I'd like my sons to be able to go places without having girls flaunt themselves in front of them. I'd like my daughters to be able to dress and feel pretty without objectifying themselves.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Redneck Skeet Shoot

We had the most awesome weekend!

First we visited the Cabella's in Buda, where John got to visit Miss Opal. Miss Opal is an 82lb catfish that his cousin caught and she currently lives in Cabella's aquarium. We had so much fun looking at all the stuffed animals, aquarium and gun displays.

Then we traveled to Neiderwald to see my friend Holly and her brother, Cody, and go to Cody's Redneck Skeet Shoot. In case you haven't heard of Neiderwald, it is a tiny little place that is the most perfectly situated little town. It has back-in-the-boonies vibe but is just off Hwy 35 between Austin & San Marcos. So its less than an hour to the outlet mall & Austin resturants. And only 10 minutes from the Cabella's in Buda. Holly is a good friend of my from back in my Ernst & Young days. She & her husband, Jeff, are raising a beautiful bunch of kiddos - Madylyn, Beckham & Bristol. And while she is a sophisticated grad of t.u., she also loves the redneck side of things - shooting, Nascar, Cowboys football, etc. Despite what John claims, she did not name her youngest after a Nascar race, it's a family name. It was fantastic to see her again and catch up. Cody's skeet shoot is the most fun - friends and family over for brisket, washers, skeet and an all around good time. This year they 'borrowed' Holly's satellite and brought it out so they could watch the race.

(Holly & I)

(John & Cody)

(Bristol has the cutest smile but wouldn't mug for the camera)

(Skeet setup)

It was super hot so there wasn't much shooting til later in the day but Cody has big stadium-type lights so we kept shooting after dark. John says that technically, we're shooting trap but I still call it skeet shooting. I got to show off my 1st anniversary present - a 20 gauge over&under shotgun. It sure gets the job done. John used his 12 gauge coach gun most of the day. We found out this week that his gun is so old you're not supposed to put modern ammo through it because it might blow up - good to know... There were only 3 competition rounds while we were there. Dollar elimination rounds, shooting from 3 positions, with 6 to 15 people participating. It was really exciting - John won the 2nd round and I won the third. I was only up against 6 other guys but it was so exciting! I love to shoot and while I'm not a stud, I do pretty well and most of the guys out there were really nice & encouraging. I went through a little over a case of 20 guage and John shot at least 1 & 1/2 cases so our shoulders were sore the next day. But that's one of the best measures of a good time - when you're battered & bruised the next day and you don't even care because it was that much fun.

Thanks Holly, Cody & family! Looking forward to the next Redneck Skeet Shoot!

(John had to do double-duty on the thrower because I'm not stout enough)

(John with his coach gun)

(Christy with over/under and pink John Deere hat)

Friday, August 25, 2006

Just when you think...

"There is nothing new under the sun" (from Ecclesiastes). Hollywood and MTV have the best recycling programs around. The number of remakes and sequels the past few years is proof of that. Even Pirates of the Carribean was generated from a theme-park ride. But just when you think there isn't a new, innovative idea out there, especially not one that's unique and simple in execution, some creative person surprises you. Not being a creative person myself, it is a trait I really admire and honestly feel that the creative spark is something given by God. For the record, I am not saying that this video is a message from God. I am saying that creativity is a blessing and I do think He gets a kick out of what His children come up with (just like any parent). I'm sure most of you have seen it but this video is so neat that I had to post it.

Monday, August 21, 2006

As Promised

As promised, a plethora of fishing photos:
John shot a needlenose gar when he went bowfishing with his buddy Chris. The photo's a little off since he went swimming with the elf in his pocket (both the elf & John survived - this is why he doesn't get to use the Nikons near water).

The next one is John & I on Lake Nacogdoches in May. We didn't catch much beyond a sunburn but it was fun. Oh wait, John did catch a little fish. And we saw a gator.

The last three are from the tournament. Although John did not take a photo of his friend's boat or the fish they caught, these give you an idea. The airboat is one of the big impressive models. I loved the name of the next boat Ridin Dirty (redneck-style). Ridin Dirty is an apt description of these guys after they come home too. The big bucket of gar is just part of one team's catch. John & Doug shot 55 gar and 9 carp and they placed 7th.

Unjustly Accused

So, I try to get back on blogging track and Blogger says I'm a spam blog and won't let me post. Seriously, its like the universe conspires to prevent me from posting. Of course, some of you probably think that's a good thing...

Yes, I've been a procrastinator. You know, the whole I'll wait to post when I get pictures, which means I have to actually scan or download the pictures, then tweak them, then actually write something about them. I finally broke down & said forget it, I'll post now and add photos later, and Blogger starts hating on me. But really, I am glad they're trying to block the spam because I've seen the spam comments on other people's sites and that's not cool.

So what's been going on with the Wood's in the past month since we've posted. Well, for John, bowfishing, bowfishing, bowfishing. (pause while everyone gasps with shock) He's fished in Lake Summerville, Lake Nacogdoches, Toledo Bend, and in other assorted rivers & swamps on his boat, a swamp boat & a pontoon boat. It's a good thing he loves the art because the fish weren't there most of the time. He did get to go to a big bowfishing tournament in Anahuac. His buddy, Doug, has a swamp boat and they had a blast. They placed 7th of approx. 30 in number of fish (which was great considering they had a two-man team instead of 3). Their d'oh moment came when they passed up weighing in their top 10 - they would have placed 2nd & won $$$. Some of these teams had $50,000 boats with 502cu and 700+ horse-power engines (apparantly that's impressive - our truck is a 350cu). I didn't realize that swamp boats were powered with auto engines - when you see even a small one in person, it is impressive.

As for me, nothing too crazy - went on a spree in Barnes & Noble, then the local library. I toyed with the idea of keeping a list going on this site of them but that would take time away from my busy schedule of reading and watching Project Runway. I'm not normally a fan of reality tv (other than HGTV) - never got into Survivor, etc because to me, those shows usually show humanity at its worst (lots of greed, backstabbing,etc) and I find it a little depressing. Maybe that's why I enjoy HGTV, Project Runway and Extreme Makeover Home Edition, because the focus is more on creativity and making beautiful houses/clothes. Sure sometimes drama queens win out over actual talent (why Allison got kicked off instead of Vincent the wackadoo) but overall I think these shows demonstrate more of the positive aspects of the human condition and I can really get behind that. I could also get behind someone coming to my house and giving me pretty furniture and/or clothes. ;)

We did get to see the Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus when it came to College Station. It was John's first circus ever! So much fun! Whether you've got kids or not, it's a great show - we really loved it.

We're planning on attending the (usually) annual Redneck Skeet Shoot at my friend Holly's this weekend. Hopefully we'll have some good pics to share from that & I'll get off my duff and post some fishing/circus pictures too.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Nerd Score

My friends, Jennifer and Lisa have both taken the Nerd Quiz. My score was I am nerdier than 4% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!
Anyone who knows me will dispute that! The quiz is way slanted towards engineering/math nerds. It doesn't have anything on there about accounting, otherwise my score would be much higher. :)

Saturday, July 15, 2006

His & Hers

Yep, you can tell we've been married for a little while now. Last night, John went bowfishing til 1am and I happily stayed home scrapbooking. There was a time when I would have tried to brave the mosquitos but we've reached an understanding - I won't make him scrapbook and he won't make me fish for more than a 3-4 hour stretch. :) Pictures to come of the needle-nosed gar he shot. Evidenly, its more impressive than shooting an aligator gar. This is what I worked on last night - my first page in my Mt. Kinabulu spread from AFCO 2002. If you're interested in seeing any of my other pages, I have a gallery at under briar-rose.

We went to see Pirates of the Carribean today - awesome! I had heard some semi-negative reviews but I loved it! You have to love the characters & the sets were out of this world! But that's just my opinion. :) John's about to go bowfishing again tonight - how do guys have such an unlimited capacity for that type of stuff?

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Thoughts on Christ's church

On a more serious note, last Sunday John went before the church with something he's been struggling with for a long time. It was a difficult thing to do and I'm so proud of him for having that courage. I was also awed and humbled by the outpouring of love from the congregation. When John went forward and after the service, he was surrounded by people offering encouragement and support. Not the judgement he feared. This was even more impressive due to the fact that since John & I are gone so much, we haven't done the best job of getting to know people and making a place for ourselves in the church. Not only did these people offer John support that day but since then, he's called on some of them and they have dropped whatever they were doing to help him. What a beautiful expression of Christ's love!

This is what the church was meant for - not just teaching or good works - but to spread the word and help our brothers & sisters in Christ when they're struggling. I think we all fall into the judgement trap sometimes, the world certainly pushes us to judge & judge quickly. We all have our failings, our fears. How many times have I sat in the pew when someone went forward, letting my doubts overcome me. "I don't know them - how would they feel if a stranger came to them?" "I don't know what to do or say to them" The church shouldn't be a place where we're scared to go forward with our problems and sins, and shouldn't be a place where we let doubt stop us from showing love.

"Finally, be ye of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethern, be pitiful, be courteous.." 1st Peter 3:8

John and I are so thankful for the Christian love that people have shown us, without judgement, without reservation. I hope & pray that we can use our struggle today to help others as well in the future.

Can I get a Whoop!

John got to do something very exciting about a week ago - order his Aggie ring. Whoop! He'll be getting it on September 14th. Since both beer and ice cream are out, I'm not sure what he'll be dunking it in...powerade maybe? What he'd probably like best is to have them stick it in one of those giant steaks at Sommerville. That might be a first. :) We'll finally have two 'o1 rings in this house! Now I just need to get that Knox rings print...

Last weekend my mother & grandmother came to visit us. It was Mamaw's first time to see our house with furniture & everything. I'll have to take some pictures and post them the next time the house is clean for those of you who haven't visited.

We had a great visit. Then Monday, us girls headed to Houston where we met two of my sisters, Val & Sabrina, at the Galleria. I don't know anyone who would have the stamina for one of the Gray girls' shopping marathons. We procured wheelchairs for Mom & Mamaw and then spent the next 6 hours roaming around the Galleria. Val & I stayed after the others headed home and we shopped on Westheimer until 9pm. OK, we did take a small break at PF Changs - yum! It was an awesome day! Oh, and while us girls were living it up, John did get to play golf with Tristin & Jeff so he had fun too. ;)

For the Fourth, John & I had a nice, quiet day. We watched the fireworks over the George Bush library that night. It had been a long time since either of us had been to a fireworks display - it was gorgeous.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

A Full Life

John & I have been blessed with excellent, active weekends recently. Last weekend we did the photography at our friends, Robin & Jared Hanselman's, wedding in Tivoli. It was a gorgeous country wedding complete with a Grand March, brisket and a horse-drawn carriage. Neither John nor I had ever done photography for a wedding but with the help of my new Nikon D70 and my reliable N80 we were able to capture quite a bit. Since photography is more of my hobby, I was very impressed with John's gusto - he grabbed the N80 & Domke bag and took off with it. :)

This weekend, Jared & Robin came to College Station. We saw Kevin Fowler in concert Friday night, then Saturday Robin & I went shopping (Target & Scrapbook Country) while the boys went bowfishing (John's latest fishing addiction. We were able to get all Robin & Jared's wedding photos printed out before they left. After church today, John & I took the boat to Lake Bryan. As usual, we didn't catch anything but it was nice just being outside and hanging out together.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

June Update

Guess we're off to a slow start (posting photos is still a mystery to me). May was a busy month for John & I. But we're looking forward to a great summer. John's taking 6 hours at A&M during Summer I plus working. I keeping looking forward to the slower summer season at my firm but things haven't slowed down too much.

We went to our good friends, Robin & Jared's, wedding this past weekend. John & I did the photography for the wedding so it was quite the adventure! It was a beautiful, lively wedding - we'd never seen a 'Grand March' - it was awesome!

This weekend we're looking forward to being in College Station as we've been on the road four of the past five weekends.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Getting started

Just getting started with the blogging universe - inspired by our friends, David & Lisa Noble and their blog 'Living Forgiven...In Alaska.' Hopefully, this will be a good way to share the latest photos and stories with friends and family.