Friday, October 31, 2008


Listen, I'm just gonna put it out there. I believe in love.

I believe if two people are in love, they have the right to be together and to be happy...regardless of whether you and I agree with their relationship. And I fully trust that some couples are meant to be together, in spite of my moral beliefs. Or a decision to be determined by the voters in California.

Some of you may be surprised when I say this, but if these two are resolute in making their love endure at any cost, I say we should let them be happy. Let us allow them live their lives in whatever manner they choose. It's not for you and I to judge. These two may not be my cup of tea, but they've defied the odds these past few years. I commend them for that.

Happy Halloween and Happy Weekend,Y'all!!!

*Y'all know this is Mr. & Mrs. Tom Cruise, right? Androgyny be thy middle name. I mean, if this doesn't scare you, I don't know what will. BOO! Gotcha!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Threat or a Promise?

Dear Mattel,

Please make Polly Pockets smaller. It's not enough to find a miniature high heel in my MomVan...

Or a stylish little boot nestled cozily against my lip gloss. True, there's no better combination than great footwear and a shiny pout, but still.

And the point of wearing Clarks is comfort. This clearly defeats that purpose. Why does Polly's dog/cat/mouse/whatever need clothing anyway? Polly is not Paris.

I pride myself on buying tons of little plastic storage containers for all things Barbie, Littlest Pet Shop, Dora's Castle & Playhouse, etc. We are all organized up in here. Yet for some reason unknown to me, this house is unable to contain the bojillions of Polly Pocket accessories we have accumulated over the past year. I think the problem is that Polly's purses, shoes, skirts, pets, etc., need to be a bit smaller. Then I wouldn't notice them at all. Conversely, I could kick them under the couch with greater ease. Surely the dust bunnies would appreciate the opportunity to get their style on.

Thanks for listening, Mattel. I know you'll take my plea to heart. Doing otherwise would be fiscally detrimental to your company this Christmas season. I'm just sayin'.



We need a winner from last week's giveaway, right? we go:

Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:39
Timestamp: 2008-10-30 02:01:16 UTC

Number 39 is Angie, from Angie's Spot! Yay! Angie, your Target gift card and If book are on their way to you, my dear! Congrats, and thanks to everyone for playing. More free stuff in November...oooohhhh, free!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Booster Shot.

It snowed yesterday. It's October. This is unacceptable weather behavior in my estimation. I spent most of the morning and afternoon feeling rather blah. You know what I mean? Just BLAH!

I made pumpkin crisp. Eh, that wasn't what I needed. Listened to Brooke Fraser, and that perked me up a bit because she is simply divine. (You must listen to her "Live at the Aotea, Auckland, New Zealand" album. It's too beautiful for this world.) And then I had to fold clothes, as well as iron, for a good three hours. Yeah...blah again.

My mood completely mirrored the gray and foggy sky. I refused to feel sorry for myself, but I will admit that I was heading in that direction. Then UPS dropped off a package. I tore into the box and dug out these:

Nothing like a bit of vanity to boost my self-esteem! These sassy and classy Manolo-lookalikes were less than $20. Let me repeat that, y'all...less than $20!

I love cheap thrills. I love fabulous heels. And this particular pair happens to be comfortable! Oh, it makes me happy.

Today I'm going to wear these shoes while I do the dishes...fold more Polly Pockets with Caroline...let Libbey read to me after school...and I'll even wear 'em to bed. (Scott will love that, of course. Ahem.) I'm gonna wear them because it's Wednesday. Because it's no longer snowing. And because I can. It's for the good of my feet and the benefit of my state of mind. We're all the better for it.

*Here's the winner of yesterday's MommyGossip--GNO giveaway, according to
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:18
Timestamp: 2008-10-29 04:41:39 UTC

Number 18 is Brandy, from I'm Not Your Average Soccer Mom!!! Congrats, Brandy--I'll send your Twilight goodies right away!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Tuesday Evening Fun.

Had I my druthers, we bloggy folks would all live in one of those planned communities where we could stop in on each other in at any given moment, drink pumpkin spice lattes, watch the latest episode of True Blood, and pawn our children off on each other. And wouldn't we have fabulous weekend cook-outs and holiday block parties? And then we'd pawn our children off on each other. It'd go something like this:

"Debbie, I need to run 3 errands and would you please watch my kids for 1 hour and I swear I'll never do this to you again but I will bring you a Diet Coke with lemon, thankyousomuch!"

And Debbie would be all, "Absolutely...but bring a bottle of wine, 'cause I'll be far beyond Diet Coke by the time you return." OK, my dear...gotcha covered.

But we don't reside in blog utopia. We are scattered near and far, working jobs both inside and outside the home, managing kids, managing husbands, neglecting our need for a pedicure, and generally feeling worn out half the time. Girls...we need a break. We need some good, quality time with our bloggy buds. Yes, we do.

My blog pals, Jyl and Carissa, are geniuses. Recognizing the need for fun, adult conversation, these two created a Twitter Girls Night Out, or Mommy Gossip-GNO, which is its official title. What is Twitter, you ask? What is Mommy Gossip--GNO? The links are there for a reason--please, GO! Check 'em out. The Mommy Gossip--GNO site explains this far better than I could, but I will add my own two's a brilliant idea and loads of fun.

Tonight at 9 pm Eastern, 6 pm Pacific, (those of you in the middle can figure the rest out!) I will be twittering along with a great gaggle of fabulous girls. We'd love for you to join us. I'm actually honored to be a part of tonight's big event, because Jyl & Carissa approached me last week and said, "We want to have a Halloween/Vampire themed-GNO on Tuesday, the 28th, and since Stephenie Meyer was unavailable, we would like you to be our Guest Tweeter. We're gonna discuss all things Twilight. So naturally we came to you, the next best thing to Stephenie herself!"

OK. I fess up. That's not how I was approached. I believe Jyl wanted to say, "Since you are so obsessed and freaky over this book and the impending movie, will you grace us with your uber-geek status and help us do this thing on Twitter? You total nerd, you." Of course Jyl has much more grace and tact than this...but deep down, I'm certain this was what she was thinking.

And y'all know me...I kind of have a thing for Twilight. Or had you not heard?

Oh my head, it's Chapter 13. The Meadow scene. I really don't have that entire chapter memorized. I'm not that big of a geek. Ahem. (Page 282 is my favorite.) Cough-cough.

I am officially inviting y'all to join us over on Twitter tonight. I know a lot of you haven't discovered the joy of Tweeting, and that's fine and dandy--the Mommy Gossip--GNO site explains the procedure clearly. Come...share some grown-up conversation with us. Kick back, have fun, and make new friends. Even if you're not a Twlight fan, I encourage you to take part with us...because you know a group of women of any size won't stay on one particular topic for too long. We're known for our rabbit trails.

Oh...and if you Tweet with us tonight, you will be officially entered in a special giveaway. (This one is separate from the other giveaway I'm running--that winner will be announced on Thursday, by the way!) I thought it would be appropriate to spread even more Twilight love by giving away two newly released companion guides to our world of Edward and Bella:

Yeah, remember my WWF Smackdown over the Illustrated Companion? That was just two weeks ago and I'm still not over it. Seriously.

The second book is brand new--it's being released today, and I think it's something we all need to add to our growing collection of Twilight love. Amen.

Ooooh, look at that--it's all unauthorized and stuff. Makes me feel a bit naughty & rebellious.

This is now the longest invitation I've ever my life. People, are you feeling my love? My joy? It's all for you. From me. With love.

Monday, October 27, 2008

36 Months and Counting.

A deep-seeded despair rooted in the far corners of my heart just over three years ago. Afraid to admit this fear, I kept it tucked firmly away in a location I would only visit for brief intervals of time. I believed if I neglected the frightening thoughts they'd just go away, or at least fail to surface regularly. Truly though, I was a walking charade...and that scam scared me more than concealing a dark heart.

Looking at Libbey, then a few months shy of her fourth birthday, I'd inwardly cringe knowing that her position in my life was about to be usurped. My most beautiful daughter, who was the world to me after my God and my husband, had allowed me to live my dream of becoming a mother, while working at that job full-time. I mean...come on...look at how precious she is in her Georgia Bulldogs shirt:

Three years ago today I checked into the hospital for the birth of my second child, a little girl we'd decided to name Caroline Raley. "Caroline," because we just loved it, and "Raley," after my maternal was their surname. At 2:39 pm our Sweet Caroline made her debut in the world. At 2:40 pm I began to prepare for the inevitable...what I'd been dreading for months. The first thing out of my mouth was, "She looks nothing like Libbey!" And I knew the despair was going to take over.
Carys, my friendly nurse with the fabulous name, wheeled me into the OR recovery room so that I could meet Caroline properly, and hopefully nurse for the first time. When Carys handled this bundle of new life to me I looked into my baby's eyes and felt a shame I never imagined possible. For I knew, in that very instant, that I loved this second child as much as my first. I was unaware that my heart could double in size in less than a millisecond. Any lingering grief I felt at doubting my adoration for another child was replaced by a Peace that continues to pass all understanding.

For not only did I become a new mother again on that day, but my eldest daughter became a big sister. Mama became the "Mamaw Pinky" of one grandson and two granddaughters. All of us--Littons, Roths, Smiths, Sanderses, Poes, Martins, Rasnics, Raleys--grew new, bigger, and brighter corners of our hearts as we welcomed Caroline into our family.

And my gift from God, Scott, was now the proud father of the two most beautiful children ever to walk the face of this earth. He never doubted his ability to love these two girls profoundly and with exactly the same measure. Scott's my hero for many reasons, just so you know.
And here we are three years later...

Honestly, I cannot remember how it felt to be afraid of not loving this gift as much as her big sister. The thought is truly incredulous to me now. I've had three years, as well as my entire lifetime, to be in this moment. And it's so precious to me that I cling to it tightly, guarding it each day.

Happy Third Birthday, Caroline Raley! I thank God for making me your mother, and I thank you for showing me I'll never fully realize just how enormous my heart is. Because I'm quite certain this heart of mine is no longer contained in my has grown to envelop every fiber of my being.

Thank you for completing our family, Caroline. Daddy, Sissy, and I love you far beyond what my limited words can express.

Now...wanna watch Scooby and eat something completely unhealthy for breakfast? Good. Me, too. We'll probably get chicken nuggets, fries, and a Coke later on in the day...and then we'll both take a nap. In honor of your birthday, of course.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Flash Forward Friday!!!!!

I swear to y'all...the second I clicked on this video, my heart skipped a beat, the stars shone a little brighter, and the Hallelujah chorus rang through my head.

Those of you hoping my Twilight madness will end after November 21 must take heart. Because just a couple of months after that bit of silver screen deliciousness (and my Twi-obsession will never end--it'll just calm a bit), this will return. And then it's on, my friends. It's ON, and in ways you've never imagined. Don't fear me. Just love me.

Oh how I love you, greatest show ever in the history of the world. No, I do not exaggerate.

People, many of you have trusted me and given Twilight a shot. Some of y'all even gave The Hunger Games a well-earned chance, and for that I'm grateful. But if you never listen to another piece of random advice I give, I beg you, take heed to my next plea:

You. Must. Watch. Lost.

Y'all know I'd never steer you wrong. Put it in your Netflix queue...all 3 seasons, and then the 4th when it's released in December. You still have time to get caught up before Season 5 begins in early 2009. Trust me. It's worth the viewing effort.

*This has truly made my weekend...thanks, Kat. You continually rock my world, and for that I love you in ways far too embarrasing to list here. Heather and Rhea, you have work to do.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?

Remember The Cranberries? I stole my post title from their album of the same name. Oh, the early 90's...I was a new college student, attending a state school just outside my hometown. Meanwhile my friend Kelly was living the full collegiate experience at Georgia Tech, becoming cooler by the minute, soaking up the Atlanta atmosphere. I made frequent trips up and down I-75 to hang with her there, because I wanted to be cool, too...and the University of Georgia is in Athens, which was a further drive.

But I digress.

Everybody in the blogosphere seems to be having a giveaway. And it's a good time of year for it, what with the holiday season in full effect. Have you been in Target lately? They are in full-on Christmas mode. Already. Before Halloween. Seriously, it has to be Thanksgiving day before I break out the Christmas With The Rat Pack CD. Or pour my first glass of eggnog.

Again, I digress.

I feel the need to give away free stuff. Yes, free stuff. Don't you love that word? FREE! Since I love Target, despite its early decking of the, aisles...I think it's appropriate to give y'all some Bullseye love. Who wants a $25 gift card? What a silly question. We all want a Target gift card. And if you don't, please have your head examined. Then go read The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.

And because I would feel lame just giving away a "flat one," (as it's called in my husband's family--"flat ones" are cards containing money and/or a gift card--we love flat ones!) I'm throwing in one of my favorite, fun books...I've posted about it previously:

(But don't "Search Inside"--I ripped this off Amazon. There is no searching in Lulaville. I put it all out here for y'all. It's just the way I am.)

We love this book. It's bunches of fun on cold nights, long car rides, meals with friends, at family get-togethers...and it's perfect for this time of year.

So how do you get the goods? Glad you asked. Just leave me a comment. But wait...I'm gonna throw out a question from the If book, and I'd love to hear your response in my comments. I'm not making you work too hard here, huh? I'll go first:

If you could pick one famous person to be your next door neighbor, who would you have next door to you? Paula Deen. We'd share tomatoes and squash and hang out in our gardens. And I'd watch Bulldog football with her sons, while Caroline plays with her grandson, Jack, with Libbey supervising. Scott & Capt. Michael would be doing their own thing...watching Nascar, listening to Charlie Daniels, chewing tobacco...being manly men. We'd also be invited to her dinner parties, as well as Easter brunch and a big ol' fish fry on Independence Day. Also, every now and then she'd call and say, "Hey, Lula--my close, personal friend--wanna come over and drink some coffee with me? We'll give each other pedicures and eat Chess Bars and drift off into a sugar coma. Whaddya say, darlin'?" Good times.

[And y'all thought I was gonna say Jason Statham. Or Stephenie Meyer. Or JJ Abrams. Or Joss Whedon. Or Tim Curry. No, I'm sticking with Paula. The rest of these folks will just live within driving distance, of course. Dang, won't I live in the coolest place ever? Y'all come live near us, too.]

Let's discuss amongst ourselves, peeps. Comment away! I wanna give away free stuff. It will make me happy.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Redefining The Taking of The Cake.

My father-in-law loves nothing more than to watch people fall. He's even been known to purposely trip his grandchildren, for his own twisted giggles of glee. And now my daughters fancy viewing a good tumble, as well. The three of them fully believe that "America's Funniest Home Videos" is prime programming.

In honor of Scott Litton, Sr., aka "Poppy," I gift y'all with this bit of yumminess. No, not the confection upon which she body surfs. Watch 'til the end for your sweet reward.

I so love seeing famous folk bite the dust. Nothing personal against Katy Perry or anything. She's totally having her cake and eating it. Off the floor.

I've only watched this 17 times. It takes to little to amuse me, y'all.

We all need a mid-week chuckle. I hope this fills a small void in your day. Sincerely.

Now go forth and be happy.
(And as of today, it is officially less than one month 'til THE movie is released. You know of which film I speak. Yes, you do.)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Birds of a Feather, Not Ruffling Feathers.

Last week I was asked by an inquiring mind, "So what kind of circle do you blog in?" I was all, "Huh? Circle?" Sometimes I can be a doofus. The last instance in which I was stumped and/or at a loss for words was years ago...clearly, I never run out of words. (OK...that's a lie...Heather got me good last week...and she totally called me out on it, knowing she'd caught me off guard. Rare. But it happens. I'm just sayin'.) Again, with the questioning..."You know, like political bloggers, religious ones, stay-at-home Mamas...your circle of blogging friends? People with interests like yours, of course!"

I thought about it for a minute. I then thought about it all weekend. What is my blogging circle? Do I have a circle? Thinking of you bloggy pals, I realized that regardless of politics, religion, employment situation, or marital status I consider each of you friends. Folks I'd hang out with "real life," since I'm obviously enjoying your presence in my computer. In a big way.

When I began blogging back in January I didn't advertise on my profile, "Vast Right Wing Conspiracist, Lost-loving, Sci-Fi Nerd, Obsessive Twilight Fan, Southern By Birth--Bulldog by the Grace of God, Liberty University Graduate, I'm-Not-At-All-Crafty, Seeks Friends With Whom to Watch Fox News." I mean, why pimp myself out more than usual? Or unnecessarily frighten the heck out of unsuspecting bloggers? Besides, I am so much more than these...because I didn't even mention my serious gluttony issue when it comes to being a cosmetic whore. Saving my Sephora love for another post, y'all.

There are many vast and varied personalities hanging out around here and on the blogs of fellow pals.

Want examples? Sure you do.

Let's take my friend Amy. I adore her. She is fearless...two weeks ago she jumped from an airplane. That. Is. The. Coolest. I have a picture of her and Kid Rock on my laptop (as in Amy posing with Kid Rock!). She has the best taste in music (forever in your debt for sending me the link to the new song from The Cure!) and is constantly turning me on to new artists, which makes me very happy. But Amy is also a yoga expert...I can barely spell "yoga," much less contort my body into the required positions.
Yoga for Elephants Pictures, Images and Photos Hey Amy, what's Babar doing in that final pose? 'Cause I think he left yoga and headed straight for the Kama Sutra. For Soloists. Ahem.
Amy and I also share different political views, and ya know what? It's not an issue. Seriously. Go ask her. We're too into the music and Jason/Johnny love to even discuss it. Besides...she can never break up with me because I know one of her biggest secrets of all time...she's stuck with me. Regardless of what happens November 4th.

Then there's Scargosun. I want to drink beer and eat crab legs with her at the beach. She has a beautiful dog (I'm a cat person--oh, the horror!), does not have children, cooks with delicious organic and locally grown produce, and also has political passions that differ from mine. Where is our common bond? Two words: Tim Curry.
Tim Curry Pictures, Images and Photos
OK, more than two words: Jason Statham (she's one of the few in my life, I might add, who get him as I do), Clue, and her "Island" concept that I now use as my own, while crediting her, of course. I think we would be friends in "real life," because let's face it...Tim Curry is bigger than any red or blue state...his ans look past the colors, as a general rule. I'm just keeping it real here, people.

I can't mention my bloggy "circle" without showing love to one of my first bloggy pals, the famous Insane Mama. She constantly cracks me up, amazes me with her writing talents, and is always quick to offer encouragement & a kind word when I need it most. And oh yeah--she sent me a t-shirt from the Booger Hollow Convenience store in Blairsville, Georgia, which is less than 5 minutes away from where some of our best friends live. Yet I never thought to stop and grab a t-shirt from this most esteemed locale. Thank God for Insane Mama & her generous self!
She sits high atop my pedestal of utter coolness. Yet Insane Mama and I have completely different lives. She has about 37 children, all of whom are gorgeous. (She makes pretty babies, I tell ya...and she really doesn't have 37 kids. It just seems that way!) She lives in California, a world apart from my teeny, tiny mountain town, with her guy, Chris, both of whom are big lovers of the great outdoors. So. Not. Me. But Insane Mama and I have loads we willingly share...the delicious Sawyer from Lost, Edward, Land Shark, and Mary Modern, to mention a few. Are we completely different? Yes. But are we also completely the same? Totally. I dig that. And I dig her.

What is my blogging circle? Evangelical Christians, Atheists, Jews, Mormons, Church of the I-Don't-Go. Republicans, Democrats, Independents, Libertarians, the Plaid Party (she totally has my vote!), the Green Party, and I-Could-Care-Less-About-Politics. Moms who work inside the home, moms who work outside the home. Singles and married folks. Children raisers and empty nesters. City slickers and country bumpkins. Homeschoolers, public schoolers, and private schoolers. Twilighters and People Who Aren't Right in the Head. (Kidding. Kind of. But not really.)
(Let us pause for the obligatory shout-out here. And please, by all means...feel free to SWOON!)

Wow, it's a myriad of characteristics, traits, and belief systems that might typically separate a specific group of people in "the real world." Yet here we are, blogging away, making our rounds, checking in on each other's lives, building relationships, and just having fun. Isn't that what all of this should be about, anyway? I prefer to believe that we are birds of a feather, regardless of whom we're voting for, where we worship (or choose not to), marital status or whether we have 3.5 children or none at all. And I refuse to ruffle feathers. I hate controversy and confrontation. We are not good bedfellows.

Do I have a blogging circle? Yes, I suppose I do. And it's a very big circle. Huge. Enormous, in fact. It regularly grows in width as well as respect, friendship, fun, and love. And if this circle I'm a part of ever ceases to be all that I've described here, I'll be the first to bow out gracefully.

I'm Lula and I approved this message.

*Thanks, Kat, for inspiring my title. Do you think folks are heading for the hills?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Taking Pictures With My Heart.

For the many times I've had to say, "GIRLS!" in my I-mean-business voice.

For the hurried mornings I've not greeted you with a smile and a hug.

For the many nights you've eaten cold cereal for supper, without complaint.

For all the times we've been late. (And it's always my fault.)

For the days when I let you watch loads of Scooby, just so I can clean.

For the afternoons we haven't spent in the pool.

For the nights we didn't play on the swing or catch lightening bugs.

For the times I beg, "Just give me 5 more minutes and then I'll play with you..."

For buying you chicken nugget Happy Meals more times than I care to admit.

For the hours I've spent on this computer.

For the times I've said, "No, we're not getting out the play-dough today."

For not taking you to see your great grandmothers more often.

For the evenings I've said, "No, you cannot stay up 5 extra minutes!"
For constantly thinking every other mother in the world is doing it better than me...
For never giving myself enough credit...

For all of this and much more, I want to say thank you to my most precious gifts.

It is a privilege and a blessing to be your mother. Today, and everyday, I'm taking pictures with my heart. I love you both, and I never want to forget this time in our lives.

Because one day you'll both be teenagers. And Daddy & I will most likely want to shoot ourselves in the head.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Flashback Friday!

Every October I force myself to sit through this movie, with at least one light brightly burning, while peeking around the pillow I keep firmly planted against my face:

It stars Bette Davis. And her eyes. It features oh-so-chic stylings from the 70's. And let the record's a Disney movie, albeit a very nontraditional Disney offering. Shiver-inducing and spook-filled, this movie scares the shadoobie out of me. Every. Single. Time.

"The Watcher in the Woods," is on my list of most chilling films ever. There's no blood, no gore, no hockey mask, or eerie piano accompaniment. A Gothic ghost/paranormal story at its finest, "The Watcher..." creeps me out, but in a good way. I love being frightened psychologically. I love that I've seen this movie at least twenty times and still have a hard time sleeping after each viewing. I love that the girl from "Ice Castles" co-stars, and holds her own against Ms. Davis. And her eyes.

You. Must. Watch.
*This message brought to you by Lula, who had to turn on the lights while embedding the movie clip from You Tube. For real.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

My Serenade.

I am still tired from yesterday. It was fast and furious...a go-go-go kind of 24 hours.

At the end of frantic but fun days, I crave the comfort of my warm bed. This past Sunday I put on the flannel sheets for the first time this season, and all I want is to be enveloped in cuddly softness while reading my book and listening to the hum of the fan. Oh, and Scott...honeysweetiebabycutie...would you bring me a mini Coke, please? I love you.

Just before falling asleep I felt tension lingering in my muscles...sore neck and back, sore knees (from scrubbing the shower--those Mr. Clean Magic Erasers get the job done, but it took two to accomplish it halfway...more scrubbing later on today...sigh...), and tired eyes. All I wanted was a massage or a hot oil scalp treatment, neither of which was available at midnight in Pennington Gap, Virginia.

I found the next best thing. And I let him lull me to a blissful, dream-filled slumber that was rivaled only by the gentle sleep of a newborn or a really elderly man on a Saturday afternoon.

He's better than any sleeping pill, y'all.

Conway Twitty...the original crooning pervert and his amazing white man 'fro. May Conway always bring me happiness with his two best loved words..."Hello, Darlin'..." And may he rest in peace.

Try him, y' makes for super sleeping, I kid you not.

Heather and Tiff, I'm prescribing some Pimp Daddy Conway for you girls, too...and a pink flask...I know you need it after yesterday! Love y'all & appreciate all your hard work.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Little Ditty.

Lula and SITS sittin' in a tree,
First comes recognition,
then comes featured blogger,
then comes comments that will make you stagger!

And thus ends my brief and glorious career as a jingle writer (plagarizer).

My beautiful, fabulous, sassy, loving, caring, intelligent, and hilarious friends, (who don't mind one bit that I lay it on thick!) Heather and Tiffany, have made it possible for me to meet and befriend so many wonderful and fun ladies over the past few months. I was a blogger before The Secret Is in the Sauce was introduced in the blogosphere back in June, however I felt something was lacking in my posting life. I now was SITS. Ronnie Milsap sang it best..."What a difference you've made in my life..." Oh, Ronnie...I dig you.

I digress.

What is SITS, you ask? (Come on, ask if you don't know...) It's a community of bloggers who support each other every day via blog recognition and comment lovin', the two things every blogger desires, of course.

Click on Miss SITS to learn more about The Secret Is in the Sauce. You will not be disappointed, I promise.

If I were to list the full gaggle of gals I've met since SITS' inception in June, this would be one very long post. For now, I'll mention a few must-reads that I think are deserving of mad props. Yeah, I said mad props. Don't judge, y'all. Go with my pseudo-teeny-bop lingo, please.

Rhea of Texas Word Tangle has the best pink hat in the history of the world and she makes me laugh. She also makes me think, as she's a brilliant writer. Rhea is creative, unique, fun, and someone I'd like to sit next to on an flight to the Pacific Northwest. I'm just sayin'. Go read her.

Caroline, from Pocket Change, is one of my favorite people "in real life," even though we met via blogging. She gets me. She trusted me enough to read Twilight, which we've since discussed ad nauseam. Caroline has a heart for God, is truly hysterical, and has a two year old son whose hair color I covet. (He also needs protective head gear, but that's for another post.) Go read her.

"This is the Day's" Heather is one of my favorite SITS finds. We get each other. Our quirks, our families, our love of certain couple named Edward and Bella, and our ability to talk each other down from ledges of frightening heights are just a few of the reasons I love Heather. I feel as if I've known her my entire life. I might even invite Heather and her equally fabulous sister, Michelle, to my house in November. And you know we'll blog about it. Go read her.

Stephanie's blog, Live. Love. Eat, is the place to go for absolutely the most fantastic recipes you've ever drooled over. For the past few months I've been begging her to write a cookbook...why don't y'all head to her site and plead along with me? Let's convince her together. Stephanie is a blast--I wish y'all could have seen the bojillion e-mails we bounced back and forth while she was reading a certain series of four books. I won't beat a dead horse to death, but I think you know of which books I speak. (Cough-cough...we love Edward...ahem.) I adore Stephanie. Go read her.

Cara, of Land of Bean, is someone I'd really love in the "real" world, away from the blogpsphere. She has the most gorgeous baby and it's been fun watching little Sophie grow over the past few months. Cara's posts on her first year of motherhood have literally left me in puddle on the floor, weeping and reminiscing over the infancy of my own daughters. She's not afraid to admit when she's struggling (oh, those sleepless nights with a small child!), yet also happily shares when she has one of those coveted "A-ha!" moments we parents seek. As I've told her many times, she needs to be writing for a parenting magazine. And then I can say, "I totally knew her when..." Cara rocks. Go read her.

There are numerous, fabulous SITS gals out there that I dig in a major's a few more I think are worth mentioning, among many:

Our Piece of Quiet

Not Your Average Soccer Mom


Sippy Cups and Blackberries

I'm Changing My Name to Ouisa

Quietly Chaotic

Jump on the SITS bandwagon, y'all. It's a fun ride, I promise! And thanks to my beloved Tiff and Heather for making all of this possible. You both know I'm counting on our pink beach house in Hilton Head and all the good times and precious memories we'll share there. Oh, but yes.

Monday, October 13, 2008

On the Ledge.

Dear God,

I know You have a lot to tell me, and I'm almost ready to listen. But can I go first? Thanks.

My house is a wreck. Even after days of cleaning, it's still a wreck.

My elliptical has dust on it.

This whole week is booked solid. Especially Tuesday & Thursday.

I drink too much coffee, right?

My closet resembles a landfill.

Despite repeated cleanings, I have a mineral deposit in my toilet. Or is it something toxic?

Why does Caroline refuse to potty on a regular basis?

The living room rug needs to be shampooed. It's not supposed to be spotted.

Are all these politicians grating on Your nerves as much as mine?

What is that smell in my fridge? Am I gonna have the clean out the entire thing?

If the Mr. Clean Eraser is so Magic, why won't it scrub my shower floor by itself?

I found a cobweb at the top of the staircase. It is not a Halloween decoration.

When will I ever get around to refinishing those side tables for Scott's "Man's Room?"

Do I really have to till up my garden, put away all my pots, and pull countless weeds? Maybe a disheveled-looking yard is chic this season. Let's take that and run with it.

The basement is a nightmare. Let's just not go there. Ever. (Except to get the Schwans goodies out of the freezer.)

Why am I so tired? Wait...I just reread all of the above. Now I'm exhausted.

I. Can't. Do. It. All. I want to, but I can't. Somewhere along the way I've lost my Wonder Woman cape. And Wonder Woman figure.
ww Pictures, Images and Photos
But I don't want to complain. I have my husband, my girls, my family and friends, my health, a roof over my head, and blessings too numerous to count.


OK, God...Your turn...I'm listening.

Cast your cares upon Me, Leigh Anne. Because I care for you. It's really not about you. I know at times you'd like it to be, but it's not. It's about Me. I'll deal with the rest. Oh, and I never asked you to be Wonder Woman. I just ask you to trust Me.
I love you for eternity,


And this is exactly why I love Him.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Flashback Friday!

Sometimes I fear many of my admissions will frighten y'all, send you running for the hills, and/or leave you with a big case of rolling eyes and a clicking tongue. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Twin Peaks, Battlestar Galactica, Lost fanatic, Georgia Bulldog devotee, quoter of Steel Magnolias, obsessive spreader of Twilight love...all the quirks that make me...well, Lula!

This month, however, I am casting all fear aside. It's October. I love October. I love that it's Caroline's birthday month, as well as my brother's and our niece, Eliza. I love Halloween. (Yes, I'm a Christian, no I'm not a pagan. End of story.) I love scary movies and haunted houses and being frightened out of my gourd. Love, love, love it.

I have a list of movies that I make a point of watching each October. This one is at the top of my list. I have it memorized. The soundtrack in on my iPod. My husband gave me the DVD the first year we were married (he's so romantic that way!). I want to star in a remake, but only if my most favorite actor in the world, Tim Curry, would agree to star with me. It's my dream.

For the record, I want to play Magenta. For those of you unfortunate enough to not share in my love of Rocky Horror Picture Show, she's the one galavanting in the maid uniform. I love me some Magenta. I love me some Dr. Frank-N-Furter. I love me some youthful Susan Sarandon ("Toucha, toucha, toucha touch me...I wanna be dirrrrrrty...").

Don't judge. Just embrace me and my quirks, please.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Soon-To-Be A National Holiday

I've been telling some of my bloggy peeps that I was going to do this. Today is the day, I have decided. Just like deciding to follow Jesus, there's no turning back. (Oh, come old school got that, didn't you?)

I am proclaiming today, October 9, 2008, as National Delurking Day!

Not a week goes by that someone in my hometown doesn't mention my blog...and when I ask, "Do you read it?" and they respond in the affirmative, I nearly shout, "THEN WHY DON'T YOU LEAVE A DARN COMMENT?!?" I don't want comment padding...I just would love to know when my hometown peeps are stopping by Lulaville. Sherry Myers...I am looking at YOU!

Also known as "Ms. Sherry," she's the Children's Programmer at the Lee County Library, where my girls have grown up. My girls love her, I love her, Scott loves her, and yet she refuses to leave a single comment on Lulaville. Sherry tells me she reads my posts at 2 am. Well here's your early morning eye-opener, my dear. COMMENT! Please. Or I'll post more pictures of you and your infamous costumes. Or you with balls stuffed up your shirt. You know I will.

Weeeeeellll...aren't they just too cute for words? Kinda like like Barbie and Ken. (And she pretty much has a body like Barbie...yeah, puke now.) I'd hate 'em if I didn't love 'em. This lovely couple happens to be Scott's sister, Mandy, and her husband, Robbie. They claim to frequent Lulaville quite often. Robbie has commented once or twice. But not my sister-in-law. Not even when I post pictures of her beautiful daughters. I ask y'all...where is the familial love?

Josh Holloway. Oh, I dig you. You're married, I'm married, and our relationship is completely platonic. You're from Georgia, I'm from Georgia...we both love the Bulldogs...and this makes us kinsmen, without a doubt. And I'm not 100% positive that you're stalking Lulaville, but Site Meter informs me that someone in Hawaii has been visiting a lot since August. And I think true Lost fans know when shooting resumed on our beloved show. I'm just saying. Why don't ya leave me a comment. Or 87?

Oh, and Leslie Harless...if I had a picture of you it would be on here. Don't think I'm not going to mention your name, though. LESLIE HARLESS--leave me a comment every now and then.

National Delurking Day works both ways, too. I've been reading Dooce for almost a year and have never once left her a comment. I will amend that situation the very next time she does a post and leaves her comment section open. It'll probably go something like this: "I am not your demographic, but I love you anyway. The End." And she will be all, "LULA--I've been stalking you for months!" And then we'll be friends and regular comment lovers on each other's blogs.


So here's your assignment...all you peeps hanging out in Lulaville who have yet to make your presence known...leave me a comment, please. And all you regular bloggy homies (yes, I said that!)...I know y'all are stalking other blogs without leaving comment appreciation. Today you must delurk and comment for the first time. Please.

Won't this be fun? Now...get to it. Please! Notice that I said "please" a whole lot in this post. I'm trying to keep it polite, y'all.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


Twilight. Little over 1 month away from the big screen debut, starring Robert Pattinson as Edward and Kristen Stewart as Bella. As I've stated before, to say I'm excited is putting it mildly.

For all of you non-Twilighters, I sincerely mourn for you. I'm sorry you have not joined our Edward & Bella bandwagon. There's still time, though--start reading now. For the rest of us...simply take in & relish these newly released pictures*, and celebrate the glory that is the love story of our age. Indeed.

It's Rob-As-Edward. How you doin'?

Method. Acting. That's all I'm gonna say. Just putting it out there.

Rob is particularly Edwardish in this shot, no? It makes me happy.

Again, he's looking very much the part of our Edward, and Kristen seems to be channeling Bella as if her life depends upon it, and it better. And again, it makes me very happy.

Let's ignore the wardrobe and instead focus on how he is looking at her. Because that's the point.

But you want to know what makes me happiest? Truly giddy with delight?

This: My friends, this is exactly how I've spent the past year picturing Edward & Bella in my head. And now it's coming to life...before our eyes. Judge if you must upon this admission, but trust me when I tell you that my heart literally skipped a beat when I first saw this picture.

Hello, my name is Lula and I am a Twilighter. Loud & proud, y'all!

*pictures originally from

p.s. One more picture...this is my niece, Eliza, who turns 2 on the 21st. I love her with every fiber of my being, and this photo made me want to smother her in kisses. More than usual, I mean. Here she is with the copy of Twilight her Aunt Lula (or "Aunt Lola," as she calls me!) gave to her Mommy. No aunt has ever been more proud! I love you, Lizee!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Pics, Or It Didn't Happen.

So here's my proof. I went to Vegas. I must share:

Cue the Barry White...or Marvin Gaye...but turn it up, 'cause check out this room. A white, quilted vinyl headboard? I'll say no more.

She looks all sassy perched up there, that Miss Glitter Gulch. Too bad her hat's not pink, 'cause then I'd name her Rhea. She looks like a Rhea, doesn't she?

What almost-34 year old climbs atop a faux Egyptian ram outside the Luxor? That would be me, obviously. Thankyouverymuch.

After my ram riding (ew,that just sounds wrong!) I donned one of my many wigs and some sequins and took my act onto the stage at The Plaza. OK, clearly this is not me. My boobs are bigger. Is that crass? OK, I'll amend that statement: My breasts are bigger. And right about now my mother is dying a slow, painful, red-faced death. I want that dress, by the way.

For Mariah...because she knows. And she gets it. And we need to get some together, please.

Cher...oh, do I express my feelings about you, oh living legend?

Do you believe I'll kick your boo-tay? Count on it.

Will you go down in shame, just like Jesse James? Yes. I will take you down.

If I could turn back time, I'd slap you around a few times.

Gypsys, tramps, and thieves? Yeah, they're all after your boo-tay, too.

Why the vitriol? My friends, it saddens me to tell you that Cher canceled her concert on Saturday night, October 4. That heifer. My dad's waited 66 years to see her perform live. I am very, very, very unhappy with this woman. She crushed a dream, man. To quote my beloved Ouiser, Cher is "evil...and must be destroyed." Amen.

Wayne Brady was marvelous, though...we laughed until we peed our pants. Not really. Or maybe really.

I searched and searched all over Las Vegas for my boyfriend. With my husband by my side, just so you know. We never found him, though. It saddens me.
When I do find him, though, I'm gonna ask to borrow this jacket. It's truly rocking my world right now.

I also searched for my new fella...behold:
This is Alexander Skarsgard. I kind of dig him. A lot. And if you don't know how he came into my life, tough tooties...I'll never tell. She won't either.

Other Vegas events not pictured in this post:

My new pink phone (it's so me!)

My new purple bag (it's so me!)

My new 5 pound weight gain (it's so me!)

My photo with Wayne Brady (it's so not me--'cause it didn't happen. Sigh...)

Vegas, y'all. Who's going with me next time? It's a good time. Promise.

Monday, October 6, 2008

What Ad Exec Came Up With This One?

Never been a fan of this ridiculous saying. Maybe it's because I'm drawing nearer to my mid-30's, my wayward, misspent teenage angst long over. Or maybe it's that I've never been to Vegas with a bunch of Crack Whores (and those gals know who they are--love y'all!), trolling the strip in a drunken state, searching for Crack Mutts. (That's "male slut," in case you didn't know.)

No...not a fan of this ad campaign. I wanted y'all to know. It's not a big deal, just something I needed to get off my chest. I feel better.

We are now back on East coast time, having spent five days in fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada. We ate a lot...walked a lot...played a lot of penny slots...won some...lost some...ate a lot...saw some good shows... and well, we pretty much had a great time. Before I share pictures and regale you with Sin City stories, today I want to take a moment and get all Hallmark/Lifetime Television for Women on y'all. Prepare for the schmaltz...'cause I missed you while I was away from the world o' blogging, and I think you need to know just how much. Witness:

*Our first full morning in Vegas was spent poolside...and the woman sitting to my right looked so familiar that I was guilty of staring from behind my sunglasses. About an hour into my stalking I realized..."She looks exactly like Swirl Girl!" Yep...thinking about bloggy pals while soaking up the sun. Good times.

*Also while poolside I finally read Dark Lover, the vamp book Kat's been begging me to read for the past few months. Then I e-mailed to tell her I'd read it...and liked it...good vaca reading. (Thanks for being my literary touchstone, Kat--especially today, while in the airport bookstore. We talked about Rhea during that conversation, too...started The Eight, and I'm loving it!)

*Heather, I didn't see your sister-in-law. But I did deduce that Scott & Joe can spend a weekend playing video nonsense while you and I take a casino trip somewhere...Ohio has those floating gambling barges, right? Let's bring Michelle and Becky, too. I'm a big spender when it comes to penny slots.

*Speaking of penny slots, thanks for the Hot Hot Penny tip, Heather. I was up $50 at one point! Also, thanks for the big, bad wolf (swoon!).

*On Saturday I couldn't get away from college, I wasn't in my room watching, but every single store, restaurant, or casino I walked into had the games on. And, like a good friend, I made sure to check and see if Debbie and Tiffany's teams won. They did. Georgia was open. All's well in the world of collegiate pigskins. (And Debbie...your post today came from your head and heart, but I could've written every single word myself. I love you. And your public-schooled kids.)

*Julie, you know the second my phone died I panicked...because how could I go any amount of time without texting you? I mean, please...come on. Thank God I got my new one. My new pink one, of course!

*Insane Mama, tomorrow I'm posting the picture I took especially for me and you. Because we are cool. And I'm not embarrassed to be a tourist, standing on the corner of the Strip, taking photos of random things. All for you, my dear.

*Went into True Religion...thought of Sassy Stephanie. Ate a meal that Live. Love. Eat's Stephanie could've made much more palatable. Saw a frazzled mother flying with a baby and worried about Cara's flight with sweet Sophie. Spent half of my flight home on Sunday wondering if Amy jumped from a plane...she did...go read. Oh my head, it's so exciting!

*Our plane had monitors in each headset so that passengers could enjoy a movie (I watched the new Indiana Jones), television, trivia games, music, and even flight info--a map showing the flight's progression from Nevada to Atlanta. Jennifer P., I now know where Idaho is. And that makes me very happy!

*Kathy, I saw a tarty lil' thing strutting her stuff on a platform, in the middle of the Flamingo's casino, to the vocal stylings of Britney. For a moment I thought it was you. The I realized it wasn't. And I died a little on the inside. You were made for Vegas, girl.

And on and on and on...truly, I missed y'all while on my Vegas vacation, and thought of you while in the middle of neon & flashing lights. I've learned that I never truly leave it all behind. Because it just wouldn't have been fun if I didn't think of my bloggy peeps for a full 5 days. I kind of dig y'all in a very big way.

Do they have a Hallmark card for that sentiment? Let's make one, shall we? And you know Lifetime's next made-for-television movie needs to be about the love and support found amongst the blogging world. Who would play each of us?

Friday, October 3, 2008

It's Friday, But It's Not A Flashback!

This is where I've been for the past few of bright lights, big spenders, flashy shows, and flashy women. I am none of these, so of course I stick out like a very sore thumb. And that's OK...we just bring country to town. I think Las Vegas appreciates our downhome presence.

It's very pink here. And that makes me happy, of course. Flamingoes roam the property. I've decided we need some back home. Our flamingoes might be of the plastic variety, but I'll not make an issue of that. You won't either, right?

Wayne. Brady. Rocks. My. World. We're seeing him live. Tonight. Yeah, just a bit excited. I really want to give him a hug. Do you think he'd mind?

My parents believe their lives will not be complete until they have seen Cher perform live on stage. Their completion will be finalized at 7:30 tomorrow night. I'll let y'all know if she's fully dressed the entire time. But really, I highly doubt it. I may have to sneak backstage and borrow some of her wigs.

I hope y'all have a fabulous weekend...if I win big on the penny slots (woo, I'm a rebel!) I'll be sure to spread the love around to all my bloggy peeps. Yesterday I won $18! No, I won't spend it all in one place.

Happy weekend, everybody!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

It Makes Me Happy.

I just wanted to let y'all know that I am wearing these shoes for the first time tonight. I'm fully expecting to turn a few heads. My evening will be complete if a gay man gives my feet a compliment. Because that particular man will know...he will get me...and I will feel a sense of pride so sassy it literally curls my eyelashes. (And please know I do not mean this in a derogatory manner--it's just the few gay men I've actually known have all had tremendous taste in foot apparel...I trust them implicitly!)

Check out this award I got from Kat...she's one of my favorite bloggers, just so y'all know. Go read her, if you're not currently a fan. Anyway, apparently she thinks I'm popular. Or our mutual peeps do...thanks, mutual peeps! For the record, I'm not. Nor was I in high school. My best friend was the popular in Homecoming Queen, Most Likely To Be IT (she won many "Most Likely" awards--I'm just condensing them!), etc. This is my first award of such magnitude. I am truly honored and thankful. And now you're all invited to my house for pumpkin crisp, pumpkin spice coffee, and a big ol' Twilight lovefest. Thanks, Kat...but I really want this crown...the actual crown. It's all starry and multicolored and totally ME!
Jason Statham. I'm just sayin'.
Photobucket Y'all know I was's been a long time since I've given him a shoutout! What also makes me happy is that last week while walking out of the grocery store, one of the teenagers from my church (who works at the store) handed me a rolled up poster..."It's from The Bank Job...take it!" You've never seen two hands snatch faster than mine...awwwww yeah. Got me some Jason for our movie room!


Two weeks ago, Lauren from A Life of Delight (another must-read!), posted about getting ready for fall. In that post she had a picture of an embroidered hand towel with an owl on it...I immediately e-mailed her, pleading, "Please tell me where you got that hand towel! I must have it! Anthropologie? Urban Outfitters? I want one!" (I get kind of dramatic at times.) Lauren replied, "I made it. Want one?"

Why yes, yes I do. And you are awesome! One week later I received a very lovely package in the mail...not only did Lauren send me custom-designed, handmade owl towels (!), she also created the most fabulous magnets for me! You have to see her handiwork:

They're almost too pretty to use--but Lauren has convinced me. Use them I must! And then these magnets:
I love that she gets me...the Georgia Bulldog, the peach, that adorable owl (I think they're my new favorite animal!), and...ahem...a skull and crossbones with a bow. Yep. That's ME! Thanks again, are indeed talented, generous, and loving. I heart you!
Did a little Christmas shopping recently. Mama Dawg (yet another must-read!) has created some truly wonderful works of jewelry, among other items, and it's all on sale in her Etsy shop. Go there. Get stuff. I am now the owner of the most beautiful earrings. Remind me to take a picture of my adorned ears, 'cause it's truly a sight to behold! Yep, it makes me happy!


I could go on and on about all that fills my life with glee, but I'll end with this:

Do not fear for our future, y'all. We are in good hands. This was sent to me by Kat's daughter, Katie. She and I have a little thing going...we kind of dig our Edward. (But really...who doesn't?) Thanks, Katie...I always knew I liked you. Now go out and conquer the world some more, please!

Happy Thursday, everybody...wanna share what makes you happy? By all means...