Friday, January 30, 2009

Seven Years.

Dear Libbey,
Tomorrow you turn seven years old. It's been almost fourteen years since I've seen your great grandmother, Memaw Roth, yet she is never far from my thoughts because I see her gentleness and goodness in you, every day.

Papaw Raley and Uncle Everett have also been gone almost fourteen years (one day Mommy will tell you all about how 1995 was the worst year of my existence!), but I love that you've inherited their spiritedness and southern charm.

When I think of your great grandfather, Papaw Smith, I am thankful he had three and a half years getting to know and love you. His ability to love without condition has clearly been passed down to you.

I never knew your great grandfather, "Frank," but it's apparent from all the stories we've heard that your sense of humor is pure Litton, through and through.

I often wonder if Mamaw Raley and Aunt Doris, now in Heaven, are fully appreciating your obsessive love of shoes and jewelry, your burgeoning fashion sense, and your hope that one day, like the rest of us Raley women, you will have big boobs, too.

I love that you are my daughter, my firstborn, and my heart. I love that I can see our family's heritage reflected in your smile and in the manner in which you conduct yourself as you grow to be a young lady. I love that these people we hold dear are never far from our hearts...because we see them in you. I love that you have Raley, Roth, Litton, and Smith in you. But more than anything...above all else...I love that I see Jesus in you.

"Seeds of every generation between our hands, and the promise to teach you the little I have learned so far. Child, what will you live to do? What have I left for you? What will we leave behind?" ~from Seeds by Brooke FraserHappy 7th birthday, my darling daughther! I love you more than you could possibly know.




Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Do you know what a four day headache does to me? A misery-inducing, pounding headache?

It keeps me from my family.
It keeps me from my church.
It keeps me from blogging.
It keeps me from reading blogs.
It keeps me from fasting & praying for a better New Moon. (Dakota Fanning as Jane? Eh...)
Dakota Fanning Pictures, Images and Photos

It keeps me from praying for Kat's husband.
It keeps from hanging out at the newest blog on the block, Sussing Out Lost.
It keeps me from cleaning my house in preparation for Libbey's birthday party.
It keeps me from learning that my Jason has an Audi commercial which will air during the Super Bowl, thereby making that game now worthy of my time.
jason statham Pictures, Images and Photos

It keeps me from reading the latest Entertainment Weekly, which just gave Battlestar Galactica an "A" rating, and a glowing review: "BSG is in every sense a spectacular blast." Why of course it is. Right, Cara?
battlestar galactica Pictures, Images and Photos

It keeps me from having a fridge stocked with organic skim milk & mini Cokes.
It keeps me from hearing Kelly Clarkson's "My Life Would Suck Without You."
It keeps me from tending to the pile of laundry that is quickly reaching the ceiling.
It keeps me from personal hygiene. Ahem.
It keeps me out of the loop. I feel so detached, y'all.

But I'm better. Two doctor appointments, one CT scan (complete with contrast dye, intravenously), and a bag full of medication later, and I'm starting to see the light...without having to put a pillow over my head.

Bear with me y'all...another new episode of my beloved show airs tonight, I have to check on Kat, respond to 53 e-mails, throw away the latest issue of People (blah, ad nauseam), plan, prepare, and clean for Libbey's two parties (yes, two--more on that later!), hang out at my favorite blogs, clean some more, and start reading my latest YA novel, Envy, by Anna Godbersen (the third in the Luxe series).

And I just totally gave myself another headache. I'm quite certain Calgon is calling my name, and doggone it...I am answering.

*Thanks for the calls and e-mails inquiring about my absence...Heather K., Heather B., Denise, April, Kristen, my Mommy Blabbers, and others I'm probably leaving out. (And I'm clearly too lazy to link all of you.) I feel loved. Also, a big HEY and THANKS to one of my lifelong friends, Abby Sanders Hunt...who does not blog but who worried about me via Facebook. Love you, Abby! Facebook is the best, huh?

Friday, January 23, 2009

My New BFF.

Everyone's all, "Tina Fey, oh I love her!" And yeah, I dig me some Tina. I do. Have you seen Mean Girls?

But there's another SNL gal who's making me actually want to watch the show. Seriously, I gave up on it years ago. No Cheri Oteri and Will Ferrell getting their Spartan Spirit on? Not worth watching, I tell you.

Have you seen this? Go watch. Now. Really. It's completely hysterical.

"I like chasing cars!"

Kristen Wiig...please be my friend. We can hang out in our fuzzy slippers & pajamas and watch reruns of Remington Steele while eating cookie dough & Doritos. Then we'll call KFC and ask if they have big breasts, or have "Phil McGroin" paged at the bowling alley. Ooooh, let's sneak out at midnight and go cow tipping. It will be good times.

Call me, Kristen. I'llBeYourBestFriend.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


True story.

A couple of nights ago Scott and I were entering bills into Quicken. I had the credit card statement and would call out each purchase so he could log it properly. We were coasting along fine, me reading off the statement, naming where the purchase was made, the amount, and the budget category (i.e. gift, entertainment, household expense, etc.), and Scott keying the info into the computer.


Me: Target...$

Scott: Wait. $24.87? At Target? Double check that.

Me: Yes, $24.87. Wow...

Scott: Yeah, when have you ever spent less than $25 in Target? Was there another purchase there that day?

Me: No.

Scott: I don't know what to say, honey.

Me: It's a Christmas miracle!


We will tell our girls about this one day, who will, in turn, pass it on to their own families. It will grow as legend and will be retold each Christmas, forever immortalized as that year Leigh Anne spent less than twenty-five dollars on one Target shopping excursion.

target dog Pictures, Images and Photos

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

At Last!

I wish y'all could hear me...'cause I'm totally squeeeeeeeeeeing right now.

It's here! My little counter has been ticking since I swiped it off Kat last May, mocking me as the days slowly passed.

It mocks no more.

Folks, destiny calls...and I will heed it at 9pm tonight.
Lost Season 5 Pictures, Images and Photos
My show is back! My. Show. Is. Back!

Please resume your life now. Or, if you are also a Lostie, please join me and a gaggle of fabulous bloggers over on a brand new site: Sussing Out Lost

This is a safe haven for discussing, theorizing, summarizing, and raising your Lost flag. Without alienating your non-Lost watching readers, that is. (I know, I know...hard to believe these people exist.) Lost with us. It's gonna be good times.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

This Day.

No unnecessary debating. Instead, a prayer for this day, and for our new president. From my heart, as well as David's, as he's quoted in Acts 2:25, 26:

Lord, I see You always before me. You are at my right hand. I will not be shaken. Yes, my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices. Indeed, I choose to rejoice!
Thanks, my God. I trust You implicitly.

Peace, my friends...

United States Pictures, Images and Photos

Monday, January 19, 2009

A Bit O' Fun.

It's Monday, y'all...and here in my mountain town that means ice, snow, blah-blah-blah and all that. Kristen posted this game over at her place, and I figured it would be fun to play along, too. It will lift me from the doldrums.

It's vitally important to our existence that we know our alter ego names. So participate, 'em all or pick a few, and lemme know what you come up with. Good times.

To find your ROCK STAR NAME take your first pet & current car:
Heidi Odyssey.

To find your GANGSTA NAME take your favorite ice cream flavor and your favorite cookie:
Lime Sherbet Peanut Butter. (Eh, that's lame.)

YOUR DETECTIVE NAME? Your favorite color and favorite animal:
Pink Owl. (What a fab name for a nightclub, huh? Just sayin'.)

Want to know your SUPERHERO NAME? Just add the word "The" plus your 2nd favorite color, and your favorite drink:
The Black Coke.

Your NASCAR NAME. Take the first names of your grandfathers:
Edmund Levoid.

If I ever go into WITNESS PROTECTION you can find me with this name. Your mother & father’s middle names:
Elizabeth Henry.

TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME? Just take your 5th grade teacher’s last name and add a major city that starts with the same letter:
Housand Houston.

Of course, if you find me in witness protection I will assume it was because you were using your SPY NAME. Add your favorite season/holiday to your favorite flower:
Autumn Peony.

Find your CARTOON NAME by taking your favorite fruit, and an article of clothing you’re wearing right now, then add "ie" or "y":
Appley Hat. (I changed the order around. It's my game, I'll play as I want to!)

Your ROCKSTAR TOUR is heading across the's called "The” + Your fave hobby/craft, your fave weather element + the word “Tour”:
The Reading Fog Tour.

Finally, I'm adding in that one we all know and love...your PORN STAR name! Take the name of your first pet and the first street you lived on:
Heidi Hills.

I win this one. I'm sorry, but I do. Come on, Heidi Hills? You know that was meant for the centerfold. (If there is a Heidi Hills out there and she reads this, please forgive me if I've offended you. But I have to ask...were you Miss March or Miss September?)

For the rest of the day I will now plan The Pink Owl Nightclub. It will be our respite from the world, for bloggers only...where we go to relax, unwind, dicuss Lost, Twilight, music, good reads, etc. And all things in between, of course.
Owl in Pink Pictures, Images and Photos

Friday, January 16, 2009

Gnawing My Toes.

I fully realize this means diddly squat to about 99% of you. OK, probably all of you, with the exception of the brilliant Cara, who has impeccable taste when it comes to habits involving the small screen. (Unless Greg is reading, in which case I will not leave him out--hey, Greg! The wait is over! Wooooooooo!)

Tonight is a very, very, very big deal for me.

Wait, quit skimming. Did you hear what I said?

Tonight is a very, very, very big deal for me.

It's the first of the final 10 episodes of my beloved Battlestar Galactica. The critically acclaimed and universally lauded Battlestar Galactica. The hour of television too complex to be pigeonholed into a mere "Science Fiction" label, because it's so much more than that. Seriously, it's the best show out there...right after Lost, that is.

I'll have no toenails by the time the show airs tonight.

Again, since I'm aware this evening's epic return to all things BSG is not a big deal to y'all (and I forgive you for this!), I'll pose a question. Other than Lost, whose return next Wednesday is being anxiously awaited by all sane, level-headed people on Earth proper, what show(s) are you looking forward to this season? Personally I cannot wait for the premiere of Joss Whedon's latest, Dollhouse, and Mad Men is absolutely my newest addiction. Oh, and The Tudors? Why yes, it's brilliant.

Love my not-so inner geeky, Sci-Fi loving self.

Happy weekend, y'all!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Pretty Soon I'll Need A Room To Hold 'Em All.

I've long been convinced that we mothers are racking up imaginary awards and trophies and points and badges for the victories we encounter in the every day routine. Didn't scream at little Sally when she wrote on your newly hung wallpaper? SCORE! You get an award. Took your child and a van full of other kids to the park, remembering to bring snacks, juice boxes. repellent, and SPF 50? AWESOME! You've earned a medal, super mom!

I tally my little awards a few times every month. It keeps me sane and gives me something to do. I'm not busy enough with raising my kids, hanging with my husband, being a chauffeur, cook, maid, teacher, friend, foe...

Most of my trophies are on the small scale, but I have a few really shiny ones which warrant special attention. I've endured and persevered in categories such as:

That Time Libbey Threw Up 2 Hot Dogs (i.e. A Bojillion Chunks) All Over Her Bedroom When I Was 9 Months Pregnant With Her Baby Sister.


The Night A 3-Week Old Caroline Shot Shadoobie Across The Room And Some Of It Got In My Mouth.
(Yeah, it happened...I'm not painting the picture for you, though.)

or my current favorite,

When I Refrained From Beating The Fire Out Of Caroline For Hiding In A Rack Of Clothes At Kohl's While Every Mother In The Store Gave Me That "What Kind of Mother Loses Her Child?" Look Of Incredulity When I Ran Frantically Through The Store Sobbing Her Name.
Yeah. That one's a big honkin' trophy.

Tuesday night (well, Wednesday morning, really) I earned another award. It's a small plaque, but it's brass-coated and awfully nice, and I figured I'd share it with y'all.

Libbey woke at 3:00 in the morning and came to tell me, "I almost thew up but I swallowed it back down." I was still completely asleep and unable to comprehend her name, much less process her story of re digesting bile. I put her in bed between me and Scott and resumed my slumbering status.

Thirty minutes later I was dreaming of a waterfall. Then I realized the waterfall was, in fact, a geyser of puke.

Another thirty minutes later, after Scott cleaned and changed both he and Libbey, and after I'd stripped the bed, put on new sheets, cleaned myself and the area surrounding the bed and bathroom, we all fell back asleep. For thirty minutes.

We then lathered, rinsed, & repeated, as needed, for the rest of the night.

I've totally earned every bit of my newest plaque. I'll mentally hang it in my virtual trophy room while browsing the aisles at Target over the weekend. Why yes, I do need those Converse wedge tennies! They'll position me higher so I can hang my latest award just so.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Escape Into My Thoughts...

That's the title of my dear Amy's blog. Every time I go hang out at her place and see her page header, I always think, "Escape into my thoughts...yeah, and there ain't no way I'd let my peeps rummage around this noggin o' mine!"

I mean, come on...deep down inside we are all weird in some way or another. Some of us choose to fly our freak flags out in the open, brazenly unfurled. Yet others have their flags at half-mast, or even better, off the pole completely, folded and tucked away in a dark drawer.

My flag is usually at half-mast, to be honest. Most of you know by now that I'm an enormous Sci-Fi Geek of the highest power, and this admission brings me no shame. I don't mind revealing that I have a large amount of cheesy fluff on my iPod...easy listening goodness such as Barry Manilow, Little River Band, Neil Diamond, and Olivia Newton-John. Furthermore, I firmly believe that anyone who doesn't think The Goonies is one of the greatest works of film in the history of the medium should have their respective head examined.

This is all well and good. But then I feel an urge to let y'all in on the daily panderings of my train of thought. Actual thoughts which scroll through my brain. Such as today's offerings:

*Would Rufus Wainright agree to sing to me each night at bedtime if I paid him a handsome figure for his melodic services? I was meant to be lulled into slumber by the sound of his voice, live, performing "Poses." Seriously. When I'm a millionaire do not think I won't try to make this happen.

*Clearly the best cake mix on the market is Duncan Hines Butter Recipe Golden. Why doesn't the world accept this as fact and move beyond those pointless imitators named Betty Crocker and Store Brand?

*There are actual men and women walking around in this country, clueless as to the genius that is that hour of television known as Lost. It's very hard for me to love someone who doesn't love Lost. And why don't you love Lost? Lack of Lost fervor mystifies me in ways I cannot fully express here. There. I said it. You cannot imagine the weight that has been lifted off my shoulders. Sigh...

*Next time I see Lizzy (soon, baby--soon!) will we have time to watch Space Camp, Better Off Dead, the original Parent Trap, and Meet Me In St. Louis? Because this has to happen. It means that much to us.

*I miss Lawrence Welk. Deeply.

This makes me want to drink Tang and have some Jiffy Pop. In my footed pajamas. I am not remotely joking, either.

Yes...escape into my thoughts. I cannot make this stuff up, people. I cannot believe some of you are still reading at this point. OK, so go check out Amy's thoughts...they're Tang free.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Mr. Lula In The House.

*I have given over the reigns of the blog to my husband, Scott. This was all Tattooed Minivan Mom's idea. I want everyone to know he did this all by himself, except for the photobucket tutorial I had to give him. He even went to to look up pertinent info. Kid you not.
Lord, help me.


The real title of this post is:
The Top 10 Reasons Why I Am Really Cooler Than Jason Statham.

Now that we got that out of the way...hello to everyone in Lulaville! This is Scott, also known as June...Dr. Litton...Scotty...Scott, Jr...or Mr. Lula. I'm glad I have this opportunity to speak to the millions of daily readers of my wife's blog. Now that I have your attention, I believe quality is more important than quantity, so please relish my thoughts as I share them here.

I think we all know that my wife's boyfriend is that one guy called Jason Statham.
jason statham Pictures, Images and Photos
I don't get what the big deal is, but hey...he's her dude. I'm ok with it.

(For the record, I have a girlfriend...her name is Katherine Heigl, and she's smokin' hot, however not as hot as Lula. Awwwwwwww...)
katherine heigl Pictures, Images and Photos
She ain't a boy, that's for sure.

That Jason guy is all well and good, but I think I'm significantly cooler than he ever thought about being. Here's my proof--all 10 points of proof.

*My hair line is not receeding.

*I'm a country boy, and as Hank Williams, Jr. says, "A country boy can survive." Take that, action hero!

*He may have a charming British accent, but my southern drawl is much sweeter...and more soothing.

*Jason never graduated medical school, with honors. No one has ever referred to him as "Doctor Statham." I'm just saying. (Lula got that from me, by the way!)

*He is capable in the butt-kicking department, but I have serious butt-screening skills. That's colonoscopies, just so you know. I perform this procedure every week. On Brown Friday. Without a stunt-double.

*Jason Statham is 5'10". I looked it up. I'm 6'3", and you know what they say...size matters.

*That guy may get all the ladies due to this high-profile status, but I got Lula. 'Nuff said.

*So he's been on the British National Diving Team, but have you seen my cannonball? I'd take him anyday. Me and my mad diving board skills, that is.

*I don't think he's ever recorded a CD. I have. Let's hear it for the University of Virginia's Spinal Chords, particularly the baritone section.

*It takes more skill to repair a facial laceration than it does to create one by use of fist and force. Oh, and I can deliver babies with my bare hands. I can also stitch one-handed. I think it's clear that I win!

So I'm not an action hero. Or a member of the cast of Lost. Or a vampire named Edward. Or a Cylon. But I am a pretty swell, guy. I am Mr. Lula.

Hear me roar!

Thanks for letting me bend your ear. And thanks to you, honey, for letting me take over your blog for once. See? I am way cooler than Jason Statham. But I don't have to convince you of that!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Going Public.

Somewhere in the world there is place for people such as me, who struggle with addiction. There is no 12-step program that I am aware of, nor a facility akin to the Betty Ford. Unless Coco Chanel has recently opened a luxurious treatment center, in which case I'm booking my stay now.

My addiction is a collection of paints, powders, and potions in all shapes, sizes, and hues. There is a reason I refer to my beloved Sephora as The Mother Ship. Because truer words have never been spoken. Please take me seriously when I inform you that upon entrance into this bastion of the cosmetic world, the heavens part and I audibly hear the Hallelujah chorus being performed by a cloud of witnesses. Amen.

Witness one of my drawers full of delights so outstanding that mere words fail me:

Lest you think I'm spoiled rotten, please know it has taken me years (and many Bare Escentuals TSVs on QVC!) to accumulate this collection. And yes, I wear it nearly every day. Not a full-face of it, mind you. But at least some lipgloss and mascara--you know, so I'm not frightening people with my bare visage. My mama brought me up right.

This little white bag is full of fun stuff--glittery, sparkly, "date night" make-up. Meaning I wear it once a week. Or when I'm in California. Necessities, y'all.

And here's my perfectly pink bag, all packed and ready to go at a moment's notice. It stores all my applicator brushes, fun eyeshadows, mascaras, and eyeliners. (Yes, plural--everyone needs black, charcoal, and mocha eyeliner, of course, but navy, plum, and emerald are fun to have on hand, as well!

And here's the stuff I received at Christmas...I've yet to store any of it away, because I just like looking at the newness on my vanity. Painted my toes in the blue color--it's called "Skinny Jeans!" Fabulous, no?
Please stick with me through this admission of my addiction. We all have skeletons in our closets, of course. Mine just happen to have remnants of highlighted cheekbones.

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised." ~Proverbs 31:30

Yes, I know it well, Lord. And You still love me...

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Finally...a winner!

Yay, it's Saturday! Today is going to be a much better day than yesterday. Giving away something free is always guaranteed to put me in good spirits. So...let's get on with it:

Random Integer Generator
Here are your random numbers:

Timestamp: 2009-01-10 14:38:02 UTC

OK, lemme count backward from 68 to the chosen number 50...
My's none other than Tiffany!

There's so much that's right with this picture--the fact that she's completely photogenic, that fabulous necklace, that fabulous clevage (!), and fancy meatloaf. Yes, y'all...fancy Croce's in San Diego. To die for! But I digress...

Truly, are all winners if you're a lover of books, because my dear Sissy, who is a middle school librarian, is sharing some of her favorite recommendations with all of us. Sissy knows her stuff--so it's a WIN all around! I'm adding these to my long to-read list:

*The Blue Sword--Robin McKinley

*Dragonhaven--Robin McKinley

*Anne Frank and Me--Cherie Bennett

*Flipped--Wendelin Van Draanan

*The Truth About Forever--Sarah Dessen

*Speak--Laurie Halse Anderson (This one is brilliant--and heartbreaking. Go read! Then watch the movie version, starring Kristen Stewart. It's almost as good as the book.)

I have a few more chapters left in this one:
Adoration of Jenna Fox Pictures, Images and Photos

It's been very entertaining and surprising.

I have a whole Saturday before me, with laundry to tackle, a Bible study to write, e-mails to respond to...but I'm going to be honest here. I'm really just going to read most of the day...while Caroline naps, at least. It's fuel for brain power, or so I tell myself. Keeps any lingering guilt at bay. I highly recommend this tactic.

*Thanks for the prayers for my cousin, Brian. I hate cancer pretty much more than anything in the world. But we are going to keep praying...

Friday, January 9, 2009

Today, Thus Far...

Please bear with me.
It is not even 11 am on the east coast and already I've endured:

*A throbbing headache that laughs in the face of Excedrin Migraine.

*My brand new pair of fuzzy slipper/socks being thrown into the potty by my 3 year old...a potty full of shadoobie, no less. (Long story...don't ask.) Ew.

*News that one of my cousins has just been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. (Praying for Brian, earnestly.)

*A bite on the thigh from Lewis. I love that cat, but he's thisclose to becoming a fur muff.

*News that my beloved Herschel Walker will be on the next installment of Celebrity Apprentice. It made my head pound even harder to think of The Donald being mean to my man. I don't think I'll be able to watch. Gulp.

Oh, my head. Literally.

Again, please bear with me. I will pick a winner of the autographed copy of Kristin Cashore's Graceling later on today. Go back and comment again if you want--it will only increase your chances.

Why does this particular Friday feel like a Monday? Yeesh...

Thursday, January 8, 2009

That's What Friends Are For.

My two favorite books, equally tied in my world of perception of greatness, are Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind and The Westing Game, by Ellen Raskin. (Right about now some of you are reeling..."WHAT? Not Twilight?" Oh, my lovelies...the four books of that saga are in the top 10, rest assured. Resume your reading now.) I also adore anything Francine Rivers ever penned, as well as Steinbeck's East of Eden, which my forgetful friend, Kelly, gave to me on my 18th birthday, with an inscription that read, "Thought you'd like this--it's rather soap operaish and stuff." To this day I haven't determined if I should've been flattered or offended by that summation, but no matter. I loved it.

I love to read, clearly. It's my passion. And I am not, nor ever I have been a book snob. If I feel like reading some Stephen King, I'm reading Stephen King. (Oh, The Stand. Fabulous!) Every now and then I break out some Judy Blume, just because. Her works of fiction, for all age groups, mean that much to me. And do not even get me started on my beloved Mary Higgins Clark...I've read every word she's ever written, with rapt attention and a fondness normally reserved for members of my own family.

The last four novels I've read have had two traits in common: they were unputdownable (yeah, I made that word up!), and sold in the YA section of bookstore. YA--as in Young Adult. Heather said recently, "YA is where it's at!" Truer words have never been spoken. Hello--Twilight? The Hunger Games? (Click the links to read my posts on these two, if you're so inclined.) I rest my case.

Because I love each of you, I have to pass on my latest and greatest reads. If you're in a cold, snowy part of the country, there's no better time to curl up with a fantastic story. If you're in warm, sunny parts, I hate you. OK, I jest. Kind of. Also, because I love each of you, I'm linking each book's page on Amazon's synopsis (because I'm the world's worst at describing why I love a particular story), order away, and be happy.

Graceling Pictures, Images and Photos

Graceling, by Kristin Cashore, is this author's first work of fiction. My dear Angie gave me the heads up just before Christmas and because I trust her, I instantly ordered it from Amazon and read almost every word by Christmas Eve. Once I got into the story, it was unputdownable. Truly, Graceling is in my top three list of favorite reads of 2008. It also contains one of my favorite scenes I've ever read...ever...but I shant spoil it. Go read...then we'll discuss. (And thanks, Angie...I'm indebted to you for this one!)

cover wake Pictures, Images and Photos
I read this a few nights ago. In the bathrub. The entire book in less than 2 hours, while I became all pruny and waterlogged. Wake, by Lisa McMann. What made this work brilliant for me is that I literally saw it in my head as I was reading. I saw it as a movie, continually playing in my overly dramatic brain. It was fantastic. And the sequel comes out next month. It makes me happy.

Life As We Knew It Pictures, Images and Photos
Susan Beth Pfeffer's Life As We Knew It. Unputdownable, to say the least. It's the diary of Miranda, a sixteen year old girl whose life is drastically altered when a cosmic event changes the world as we know it. Somewhere Michael Bay is dreaming of bringing it to the big screen...

The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks, by E. Lockhart. Smart. Serious. Saucy. Utterly brilliant. Just read it. Trust me.

If you've made it this far, without skimming, I have a little reward in the form of a giveaway. Because I loved it so much, I think someone needs a copy of Graceling. An autographed copy, at that. No, not by me, by its author, Kristin Cashore. Leave a comment...and I'll pick a winner on Friday. I'll also share a few more recommended reads, some of which come by way of a middle school librarian. Now that's a gal who knows her YA literature!

OK, y'all...get reading. And then we'll discuss, as always.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Where I've Never Gone Before.

*I preface this post by emphatically stating that I am not a crafty person. At all. Yes, I have a scrapbooking room, but I have not scrapped in almost two years, and scrapping does not make one crafty. Just as being in Victoria's Secret does not make one Heidi Klum. You know...

This is what I do with all the many photo cards we receive each Christmas. I refuse to throw them away, but what good are they doing anyone tucked away in some dark drawer or a forgotten album? And let's not even speak of the fact that we've all spent the big bucks to show off our family's image each year. Even cheap photo cards are not cheap!

I take each card and trim the superfluous stuff, leaving only the beauty of the face(es) smiling back at me. Then each picture is stuck into one of these nifty little French memo boards. This one is in my bathroom. Look at all those famous bloggers up there--I'd list and link 'em, but I'm too lazy. Feel free to out yourselves in the comment section!

This one is in my laundry room. And the deal is this: send a photo card and you get your picture put up for an entire year. But the best part is that not only do I lovingly glance at y'all while brushing my teeth or separating whites and brights, I also pray for the families represented in each photo. And I thank God for each of you. I do!

Now I'm off to make a birdcage built out of popsicle sticks. (Quick, Lizzy--what movie is that from???) It's unchartered territory, indeed.

*I am going to be bold here and ask you praying peeps to lift up my dearest Kori, please. Because I love her and she needs comfort, strength, and healing in her life right now, and all I can do is pray.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Best News Ever.

On the first morning of our new year, Scott and I slept in 'til about 9 am. We love to sleep...we love to sleep late. We're good at it. I'm not embarrassed to admit this, because while we both work hard, we also play hard. And sleep hard.

When asked to list my favorite activities, sleep is always included..."Reading, blogging, music, sleeping, pop culture..." Seriously. It is an activity, you know.

Last week my dear Kristen sent me an article from Wired magazine, entitled "3 Smart Things About Sleeping Late." The terms smart and sleeping late in the same sentence? Well, my interest was immediately piqued.

Some highlights from the article, written by Daniel Dumas:

"You may need more sleep than you think. Research by Henry Ford Hospital Sleep Disorders Center found that people who slept eight hours and then claimed they were 'well rested' actually performed better and were more alert if they slept another two hours."

I'd kill for 10 hours of sleep each night. But then I'd have to go to bed at 9 pm, and let's face it...I'm still reading Perez Hilton at that hour. Just keeping it fully real here.

"Night owls are more creative. Artists, writers, and coders typically fire on all cylinders by crashing near dawn and awakening at the crack of noon."

I was smarter, prettier, much thinner, and generally more agreeable about life while in college. Going to bed at 2 am, waking at 9:00 for a 10 am class, then napping from 2-4...oh yes, it was the good life. Are you seeing the correlation here? While I don't want to return to my college days, my schedule from that time period is one I'd gladly relive.

"Rising early is stressful. The stress hormome cortisol peaks in your blood around 7 am. So if you get up then, you may experience tension."

Well, DUH! I wake at 7 am every morning...and this now explains so very much. Darn cortisol. I hate getting up at 7:00. I would much rather sleep until 10, but Libbey has school, Caroline has her daily activities, I have blogs to read, phone calls to make (8 am Colorado time: "Heather, I'm in the store buying stuff for your red beans & rice recipe--HELP!"), and you on and so forth.

In my most-quoted movie, Steel Magnolias, Clairee tells Ouiser, "You would be a much more contented, pleasant person if you would find ways to occupy your time..." I think 10 hours of sleep is the perfect way to occupy my time. For a more contented and pleasant me. Someone please say "Amen!"

This little article has confirmed what I've suspected all along. From henceforth I will refuse to feel guilty for sleeping late whenever I have the chance. It's all for the good of my intellect. Brain power, y'all...we all need more of it.

Monday, January 5, 2009

For Your Consideration.

Around the blogosphere I've seen many "year in review" posts, or "favorite pictures from 2008" and that type thing. I love these kinds of posts. They are fun and informative and enjoyable.

But I'm not going that route. Not today.

Instead, I'm going to post pictures that I did not blog about this past year. Oh, it's all blogworthy stuff, rest assured. Maybe I was just too busy writing about Twilight...or Jason Statham...or know, really important subject matters. For whatever reason, the events below escaped a mention on Lulaville. Until now.

I present to you: Neglected Events of 2008!

Certain bloggers got together in California to see a certain movie based on a certain book we all know and love. (Love you and you!) After the movie, a fantastic meal enjoyed al fresco and a trip to Home Goods, we had to stop for some nighttime nutrition. I photographed a bit of the bagged goodies. Because that's how I am. (TatMiniMom, you reveal what else was bought amongst the Filipinos and you die. I can take you, ya know?)

We live on almost 18 acres of rolling land and I'm often asked what we do with a "yard" that big. Well, we farm it. We are hay farmers. Yes, people, it is an actual, agricultural commodity. What do you think cattle eat? So we grow our fields...then Poppy (with a little help from Libbey) and our friends, Seth and Howard , cut the growth...fluff it up a bit, place it in rows, then bale away. We're part of the circle of life, we Litton Family Hay Farmers. Our contribution is the lowest on the food chain, which is completely appropriate given that it is us, after all.

Seriously, is that crepe myrtle not gorgeous? It's called "Watermelon." And yeah, so it sheds and drops teeny tiny watermelon-hued blossoms in the pool, but I can deal. Oh, that's my brother-in-law, Robbie. I'm expecting a phone call from him any minute. It will be filled with choice, four-letter words after he sees this. Love you, Robbie.

I have proof that Sweet Caroline is, in fact, sweet. Some of the time. Look at that face, I beg of you. She's (and Libbey) my life...I'd die for her. She might be our spitfire girl, as I've frequently had to blog, but for all the tears and potty-training refusals and vaseline misuses, she's still our Sweet Caroline.

Back in October Rhea was all, "I put pink streaks in my hair!" Not to be outdone, I put pink streaks in mine & promptly sent her this picture. But while Rhea's was permanent (and rather awesome, I must add), mine washed out later on that evening. You should've seen the looks I garnered when picking up Libbey from school with my pink 'do. Ahhhhhh...small town living at its finest.

Because I'm not opposed to some bragging, I have to share one of my favorite highlights from last year. If this sounds competely superficial and changes your opinion of me...oh well! Let go and let God, I always say. This is the rooftop pool of the Hilton Austin, where I spent 3 days completely by myself while my husband attended boring medical meetings. No kids. My own lounge chair and side table. The pool bar mere steps away. Ninety-five degree temperatures. Plenty of delicious-smelling Coppertone SPF 30. And every mesmerizing word of Breaking Dawn, the ending of my 11 month long wait, and the completion of the saga. A much-needed mommy vacation. In a word it was perfection, y'all. Perfection.

(OK, so I did kind of blog about the whole pool scenario in Austin...but it was mostly about the book and not about my lazy self spending hours doing nothing but reading, aka my dream vacation scenario.)

As Kat is famous for asking, what about you? What didn't you blog about this past year? Share, please. Or, even better, go post. See how much fun it is? Truly.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Where you'll often find me...

Greatest Hits

Clearly I have a lot to say...funny or sad, angry or mad, happy and glad...this is me.

*I Hate Cancer, But I Love Her Victory!

*Miley, That Skank, Touched My Boyfriend.

*Twilight Is A Very Big Deal.

*Mother, May I Pole Dance?

*Don't Even Think of Coming Between Me and the Twilight Illustrated Companion!

*Paula Deen Is Totally My BFF

*The One About Cheerleading Tampons

*That One Day I Felt Like The World's Worst Mother

*Climbed Up the Water Spout...

*The Sex Industry (To quote my pastor's wife.)

*I Don't Write The Songs That Make The Whole World Sing

*Summer's Eve--Yes, It Is That Fresh


*I'm Leigh Anne, also known as Lula.  Why is "Lula" my nickname?  I have no idea...remind me to ask my sister-in-law, MandyFabulous, where she came up with it.

*My husband, daughters, family and friends are my world.  But Jesus rules all of these.  It's important you know that I am a Christian* first and foremost.  The rest is just gravy.

*I believe the South is the center of the universe.  Yes, there are other breathtaking and majestic locales around the world, but if they're not below the Mason Dixon line, I regard them as unimportant.  Except for brief vacations, of course.

*Steel Magnolias should be quoted daily.  My favorite line:  "Pink is my signature color!" Truer words have never been spoken.

*Jason Statham is my boyfriend.  It's perfectly acceptable for you to think he's a work of finely chiseled art, however please keep it forefront in your mind that he belongs to me.  

*My favorite animal is a pink owl.  I'm still holding out hope for the existence of said pink owl.

*With every fiber of my being I believe that Paul Simon and Van Morrison are the greatest poets of the modern age.  That their poetry is set to music just transcends the spectacular.

*In our family, the Christmas season begins the day after Thanksgiving and only ends on January 2.  Vince Guaraldi's soundtrack to "A Charlie Brown Christmas," is played non-stop during this time.  

*I think it is perfectly ladylike to drink beer directly from the bottle at any time, and sip wine from a red Dixie cup when outdoors.

*Hello Kitty and I are the same age.  This makes me cool.  

*I am Georgian by birth, Bulldog by the grace of God.  GO DAWGS!!!!

*If I had to create the menu of my final earthly meal, it would be comprised of crab.  Crab legs, crab cakes, and She-Crab soup.  Throw in some cheese grits, Tiramisu, and sweet tea, and I'll enter Heaven all fat and sassy.

*My favorite line of Shakespeare's comes from Much Ado About Nothing:
"Silence is the perfectest herald of joy."
Which is ironic, as I am never silent.

Leigh Anne is a wife, mother, and rebellious southern belle...
who fully believes tattoos and monogrammed handkerchiefs 
will never be out of style.

*I am an evangelical Christian who accepts the Bible--and only the Bible--as the infallible Word of God.   I also believe God loves me just the way I am...but He loves me far too much to leave me this way.  
"For it is by grace that you have been saved, through faith--and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God--not by works, so that no one can boast."--Ephesians 2:8, 9