Friday, May 7, 2010

Meet the Blogroll

(*Warning: this post turned out to be FOREVER LONG, and I should have broken it up into like 3 posts, but I didn't. Sorry.)

Anyone want to see more pictures of Dane in his goggles? What about Harper in a cute outfit? Or read one of Aidan's conversations and wonder why I don't drink more than I do? No? Then how about a trip down the sidebar. Let's meet the blogroll, shall we?

MckMama I don't know her in real life, but I love reading about people who live very different lives than I do and love Jesus big. She loves Jesus big. 90% of the time I love reading and checking out the pictures, and sometimes I feel like I'm eavesdropping on something that's none of my business.

Brandon's Bible Blog Hello, Hot Brandon my husband. Brandon studies several chapters of the Bible most days, and blogs his thoughts on such. He tends to not blog about our family, children, or post cute pictures of our daughter topless. He pretty much just sticks to Bible study. Not involved in a study of your own? Jump into this one.

Confessions of a Pioneer Woman Is there anyone who does not read this blog? If not, start with Black Heels to Tractor Wheels from the beginning. A great story, it will take an entire naptime and then some to read, and it's being made into a movie next year. How cool is that? This week her blog is 4 years old, and she has been taking a trip down memory lane with some of her funniest posts. Enjoy. And please make her Crash Hot Potatoes.

The Chisam Trail Once upon a time when Brandon was in middle school (elementary school?) He had a friend named Matt. They were friends for years and years, and one time Matt set his arm hair on fire using a can of Aqua Net hairspray and had to jump into a swimming pool so he wouldn't lose an arm. Now Matt is in the Air Force and flies expensive airplanes and lives in Germany with his wife Carma and baby boy Easton. We love this family, and I secretly wish Matt would come fly planes in Houston so me and Carma could have play dates together and plan Easton and Harper's wedding. I like to read their blog and pretend that I, too, can hop into the car and be in Switzerland in 20 minutes.

Dill's Blog My cousin Dana married a boy named Bryan and they live in Kentucky now where he is a preacher and they have a cute baby boy. I never see them, except for the odd holiday where they come to Houston where Dana's mommy and daddy live and we stop by to see everyone and Harper plays with baby Asher while Aidan squirts hand sanitizer on our heads from the upstairs balcony.

Big Mama A funny lady who loves Jesus and lives in Texas and makes me laugh more often than not. I don't know her in real life either.

I Was Just Thinking... Mike Farra was Brandon's youth minister, and then Brandon worked as a youth intern under him for several years after he graduated. I love his perspective and thoroughly enjoy mooching wisdom via his blog. He's been writing about marriage on Tuesdays, and it's definitely worth the read. I miss Mike and Wanda, and they're pretty high on the list of People I Wish Lived Closer to Me.

BooMama Another funny lady who loves Jesus and I don't know her in real life either. I love reading about her family, and some of my favorite posts of hers involve her mother in law Marti!

Hathorn Highlights The Hathorn family goes to church with us, and I love them. They have two of the most well behaved children I have ever seen, and sometimes we trick-or-treat together on Halloween. Their daughter Shelby plays softball, and wears knee high socks with red flames shooting up them. These socks are almost cool enough to make me want to take up softball. And then I remember about all the sweating and lack of athletic ability of any kind, and I sit back down at the computer.

The Carvers Once upon a time, I grew up in another church and went to youth group every time the doors were open. And so did Lindsey and Cody. And then they got married and had a baby. A really cute baby. And Lindsey makes stuff and sews stuff and crafts stuff, and makes me want to go buy cute fabric and a sewing machine. Then I remember about all the time consuming, "detail-orientedness" that is required for sewing cute things, and it makes me happy that my friends and family sew so I don't have to.

Yellow Door Barn My uncle Tom and aunt Carol have a son. His name is Noah and he is a brilliant computer genius. So much of a brilliant computer genius that we usually don't even speak the same language. He knows a lot of computer words like "dos" and "matrix" and "internet", and I know a lot of words like "naptime" and "don't eat Legos" and "yes, you have to take a bath". He married a really cool chick Heidi, and now they live in Austin and ride bikes and grow things in the dirt that they then eat, and have goats and chickens. They use words like "animal husbandry" on their blog. I love reading about their adventures and their life, and I'm still mildly fascinated that the Thanksgiving turkey they ate on a Thursday was still alive on Tuesday. It makes me wish Kroger offered that as an option.

The Driskells Once upon a time, my dad went to college and had a friend called Wazzo. I'm pretty sure he has a real name, but he was Uncle Wazzo growing up. When I was in high school, I discovered that Uncle Wazzo had a daughter Kara who I still kind of want to be when I grow up. Kara's husband Len is a chaplain in the military and they live far away with their three beautiful daughters, and I love reading their blog and pretending that we're next door neighbors.

Family, Fibers, Flowers, and Fish My aunt Betsy knits. Like, all the time, super cute stuff like scarves, hats, socks, and sweaters. Cute, pink sweaters with duck buttons and a matching hat that looked so cute on Harper when she was a leetle baby. She's also capable of keeping things alive in her yard, and keeps me up to date with cute pictures of Harper's cousin (3rd cousin?) baby Mason.

Stars In Sky My friend Abby and her family go to church with me. She is lovely and sweet and wise. And she just had twins a couple of months ago, her 4th and 5th babies. Yes, she has 5 precious kiddos, and the oldest is Dane's age. She is super mom, and I can't wait to cuddle those babies in Sunday morning nursery when they get a smidgin bigger.

Revolution. Revival. Redemption. Emily, I miss you! Brandon and I know Emily from back in Brandon's youth intern days with Mike Farra's youth group in Lewisville. She is beautiful and creative and unique and so different than me, and when I read her blog I feel like I'm peeking into her brain just a little bit and I really wish she lived by me (or maybe I wish I lived by her, in Colorado) so I could hug her more. Every time I read Emily's blog, I say a prayer for her and her family. And I wish I had the guts to get a really cool looking tattoo.

The Ray Family Tommy Ray went to college with Brandon and taught us all how to talk just a little bit more country. A few years later, he married a ballerina from the church we all went to, and now they have a beautiful little girl and another baby on the way. When Kristin was pregnant with their daughter, Tommy told Brandon that he wished the baby was ugly so he would never have to worry about boys and dating. No such luck, Tommy Ray. Haylee is beautiful.

Holcomb Family Becky and her family are friends from my neck of the woods that we got to know at church. Her little girls are buddies with my boys, and Harper has been the recipient of lots of Holcomb hand-me-downs! I don't see Becky as much as I used to, and I love catching up with her adventures via her blog. And I'm more than a little jealous that she has met both Paula Deen and the Pioneer Woman.

My Kind of Wonderful Another local friend, I know Kay and her precious family from church also, and she has maybe the greatest laugh in the world . She tells great stories about her family, and frequents Chick Fil A often enough that they recognize her voice at the drive thru and know her order. One time she got to the window, got to chatting with the drive thru guy for several minutes, and eventually drove away forgetting to pay for her food. No worries, they just put it on her tab and she paid them the next time.

Mister and Doctor My cousin Jack in Kentucky married a girl Francie who I'm pretty sure has just always been in our family. I really want them to move to Houston, too, but I love reading about their life and their home and their world, so foreign to my day-to-day, but familiar a little bit because their town is where we have gone for family reunions since Jack and I were teeny tiny. And Francie is a PhD, which makes it a little hard for me to call her Francie, because if I had gone to school for that long, I would pretty much make even my grandmother call me Doctor.

Welcome to Sloanville My brother John, his wife Brandy, and plenty of pictures of my nephew Zane. Zane will be a big brother in July. Apparently my brother and I have a cousin who will soon be having a baby named Zelda, and I'm pretty sure John is disappointed that the name Zelda is now "taken". And I'm pretty sure Brandy is relieved. My brother's sense of humor may give you just the tiniest glimpse of life in the Sloan home growing up. We think weird things are funny. He loves his family, The Simpsons, and Baris pizza. Not always in that order.

Rocky Hernandez Another one of Brandon's college friends. I think this guy is great, and would love to have just the perfect girl to set him up with, but I got nothin'. Rocky and I once paced around my kitchen making chocolate chip cookies while talking about girl drama. Because some stories need cookies.

Wrapped in Pink Ribbons of Faith When Brandon and I went to NYC last year, Harper stayed with Ellen and her family for a few days. Ellen is another good friend from church, a breast cancer survivor, mother of two wonderful daughters that I want to steal sometimes, and sews beautiful, sentimental quilts that carry stories with them.

The Luedeckes Gary is on staff with Brandon at the church, and we have had the privilege of getting to know him and his bride Krissy these last couple of years. Gary and Krissy are also in the process of adopting a baby from Mongolia, and we pray for them and their growing family often. I love reading about their road trips and wishing I were a person that likes to camp in tents. But I just don't. Mandy needs a BED and an AIR CONDITIONER. (I just proofread this, and initially I typed "Magnolia" instead of "Mongolia". They are very different places.)

Hancock Monkeys Rebecca and her family are some of those people that if we go months and don't see each other, we don't skip a beat when we finally do. Humor is a must with the Hancock family, and Rebecca has on more than one occasion pretended to be hearing impaired, complete with faux sign language, to avoid awkward conversations with strangers. When the TXU man came knocking on the Hancock's door to try to get them to switch electricity providers, Rebecca tried to sell him electricity from their non-existent solar panels on the roof. They also may have brought Boone's Farm strawberry wine as a hostess gift to us one night last summer.

The Valdez's My sister in law Val, her State Trooper husband Izzy, and two of my three nephews. Val works as a middle school English teacher, and she is one of those few people who was put on this earth to be a middle school English teacher. Val just had a baby, and she never updates her blog because she lives in the boondocks and has dial up. But she does have one of those phones that is practically a computer, so I get to see cute pictures on Facebook of baby Uriah.

Tyler and Loralai Growing up one of my Grandmothers lived in Waco, and we would go visit her on the weekends and go to church with her on Sunday mornings and I had a friend at Bible class at my grandmother's church in Waco named Jennifer and we got along so well. Then I went to ACU 12 years later and discovered that Jennifer lived 4 doors down from me in the dorm and we still got along. Now she lives in Georgia with her preacher husband Drew and two cute kids and I haven't seen her in about 10 years and she still looks exactly. the. same.

cliff + andrea Cliff is another cousin who lives in Dallas with his darling wife Andrea. Cliff sells something to do with medical equipment (Cliff, every time I see you we talk about your job and I still can't remember what exactly it is) and Andrea is a speech pathologist (right Andrea?) and works with elementary school kids. Andrea's mom makes really pretty cookies, and one inexplicable weekend found Cliff, Andrea, and her mother at the Sloan table at my parents house with all of us sitting around telling stories that Andrea's mother could probably have gone her whole life without hearing.

Jefferson I'm pretty sure my friend Keri has stopped blogging (along with the following people on this list, since it's been around a year since the last update) but Keri is one of my church buddies, and her husband Sheldon is our Jr. High Minister, and is responsible for making Brandon's life a billion times easier for the last several years.

sunjane Another friend from Brandon's college days, Sunni. Her family lives in Corpus Christi and she also looks exactly the same today as she did 10 years ago. There was something in the water where Brandon went to college. No one he went to school with has aged.

McLife Velvet and her husband Scott (sidenote: Scott, Keri Jefferson, and Becky Holcomb, all of the sidebar, are all siblings). I'm pretty sure she has stopped blogging, since she last updated December 2008.

There are a couple other friends and family blogs that are private, and you need the super secret password to see, but you don't get to hear about those, because they are very private and very super secret.

Read my blog? Have a blog? Let me know so I can check it out!


John said...

eh? What cousin is having a baby?

Betsy said...

Thanks for the blog shout out Mandy!

The Rays said...

You can make anything funny, I sware. When I started reading this I wondered what you would put about our blog. I completely forgot Tommy used to say that to people about Haylee. HA! Now we have a 2nd girl on the way...but he hasn't said that this time...?

Kristi said...

can you not read ours anymore? If not email me so I can send you an invite....sorry!

Love reading yours and SO wish we were closer so our kiddos could have all kinds of wonderful adventures ;)

Kay said...

I am totally laughing out loud!! Great post! Very funny.

Carma Chisam said...

Yea! We made the blog....I'm glad The Chisam Trail has one loyal reader.

We can't wait to be back Stateside so we can have play dates (for big kids and little kids alike) and plan that wedding! :)

Dana Dill said...

Great idea, Mandy!! I will have to check out the ones I didn't know about :) thanks!!!

Jen said...

haha! I just read this (since I haven't even visited my blog in almost a year). You made my day saying I look the same as I did 10 years ago, although I assure you I don't!

I scrolled down and read your "show us your life" blog and I wanted to let you know that freshman year was my favorite year of college and I think many of our friends during that time would agree as well.

~The South Dakota Cowgirl~ said...

I like how so much of your family blogs! that's got to be a great way to keep up with everyone!