There Were Highs And There Were Lows And Then There Were Highs

Last Wednesday or Thursday or maybe even Tuesday (if you can’t tell, I’m not very strong with the remembering), D mentioned that he might drive over to our hometown on Saturday and pay his grandmother a visit. He knew that Alex wanted to go, too, and the timing of the whole thing was actually pretty great because I was having a baby shower at our house Sunday afternoon, which meant that their little road trip would give me lots of prep time.

I love prep time.

Saturday morning the boys hit the road around 9:00, and by 10:30 I was standing in the middle of the clearance aisle at Home Goods (or as I like to call it: MY HAPPY PLACE). I picked up a cute little basket to hold all the remotes on our coffee table (it’s an idea that I got from Nester and another one of the things on my mini-makeover list), and then I headed over to the Walmarts.

Now the thing about Walmart at 11 o’clock on a Saturday morning is that it’s insane. There are no happy adjectives to describe it. You just have to put your head down and push your cart with purpose and get ‘er done, which is exactly what I intended to do. I blazed through the store, got my stuff, and silently patted myself on the back for my Shopping Efficiency. I even found a check-out lane with no wait. But about mid-way through the check-out process, I realized that there was a hitch in my plans. I’d forgotten to get potting soil, so I decided I’d just go back to the garden center after I paid for my groceries and get the potting soil before I left. Not an ideal set-up, but not a big deal, either.


The garden center check-out was about seven people deep, and at the front of it was a family who had two carts filled to the brim with all manner of groceries and fall decorations and car batteries and pajamas and tool kits and whathaveyou. There was only one cashier – of course – and bless his heart, he was working just as hard as he could to speed things along. I thought about leaving, but since I’d already bought some pansies and really wanted to get them planted, I persevered.

So there you have it. My sad, heartwrenching tale of how I waited twenty minutes to pay $2.48 for a single bag of potting soil. And I really don’t have any idea why I just shared all of that. As you can see my life is VERY DIFFICULT, not to mention FRAUGHT WITH DRAMA.

(Oh, I kid. Though there was one truly horrific incident with our dog Saturday morning, but I can’t talk about it yet because the memory is just too fresh. I LITERALLY DIED.)

(The poor puppy wasn’t to blame – she was just very, very sick. And as a result made a very, very big mess. And I had to deal with some very, very strong odors. And we’ll just leave it at that.)

(Except to say that IT WAS LITERALLY A NIGHTMARE.)


After the Walmarts debacle, I came home and got everything set up so that Melanie and I could record a podcast. We had big plans – even a list of topics, thanks to y’all – and had been talking on the iChat for all of two minutes when we got disconnected. We figured it was no big deal – something strange must have happened – so we started talking again, and two minutes later: disconnected. We were even getting the same error messages on our computers. We tried to record six more times, and without fail: disconnected. What made it especially painful was that Melanie kept trying to replicate the same story about the A&M football game, and by our fifth try she had whittled that tale down to something along the lines of “A&M. Missouri. HORRIBLE. Sadness.”

We finally realized that the podcast just wasn’t going to happen on Saturday, but we’re holding onto hope that we’ll be able to record without any iChat difficulties later this week. Of course, this would all be so much easier if we had even the slightest idea about the technical side of podcasting. Basically we just push “record” and hope it all turns out okay.

I believe that “clueless” is the word you’re looking for.

After Podcast Fail ’10 I cleaned and straightened up the bedrooms and tried to make things look reasonably purty for Sunday’s baby shower, all the while knowing that Mississippi State was playing Florida at 6, which meant that I was alternating between feeling terribly excited and sick at my stomach. I got take-out sushi for supper because I’m the only person in this house who likes it – therefore it is my food of choice when I’m alone – and I nervously settled in to watch the game.

That whole “settled in” thing lasted about 4 minutes.

Because here’s the thing: I don’t know when I’ve ever had a game-watching experience like I did this past Saturday night. I paced the entire time. Couldn’t sit still. Had TVs on in the kitchen, the den and the bedroom, and I alternated between all three (I know. Three TVs. I should be ashamed, but please, let’s deal with the shame later. Right now I need to vent.) for the duration of the game. I texted so much that I had me a nice carpal-tunnel flare-up going on by the third quarter, and there were several times when I vacuumed like crazy because I just couldn’t watch.

PERFECTLY NORMAL BEHAVIOR, wouldn’t you agree?

So with nine seconds on the clock, the back-up kicker for Florida attempted a field goal to tie the game, and the kick was wide to the right. State won, 10-7. I didn’t just yell; I HOLLERED. I halfway expected for our neighbors to knock on the door to see if I was okay. HOLLERED. I was so tickled for our coaches and our players.

AP photo by John Raoux

It took me about two hours to feel normal again, by the way.

And now the ‘Dogs are #24 in the Coaches’ Poll and the AP Poll, but I can’t talk about that because any good Bulldog fan knows that you TIPPY-TOE around the rankings. No need for overconfidence. Cautious optimism will do just fine, thankyouverymuch.

OH my word this is some epic rambling, isn’t it? I do apologize. I haven’t even gotten to Sunday yet. What is wrong with me?

So. How are you? How was your weekend? How were the check-out lines in your Walmart or Target or etc.? And most importantly, how did your team do?

I’ll just be sitting here pretending like I know how to troubleshoot iChat ish-ahs if you need anything.

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  1. Oh, where does the envy STOP? I need a remotes corralling basket or anything else Home Goods has. I need potting soil, pansies and WalMart. I need Clemson football on the real TV instead of wearing the print right off of the refresh button on the laptop to get scores in the middle of the night here in Germany because football is played in America where it’s six hours or seven hours or eight or nine hours earlier like it’s supposed to be.
    Love from the land of I married an army man and turned my life upside down,

  2. ~Barbaranne~ says:

    I am right there with you Sister! Between Clemson beating MD (which I watched on DH’s new nifty phone and screamed in the Sonic parking lot like a loon!) Getting a fab new winter coat only to find they had left the “security” tag on the bottom. Then to watching the Bulldogs whip up (I am going there!) on Florida – it was a weekend that proved the need for more cardio in my life :-)


  3. The football behavior is very normal to me during college football season. My two children, ages 16 and 19, tells everyone that they know that they are orphans on Saturdays between the months of September -December. One day I pray that they will repent of their sin of not loving college football and turn from their wicked ways.:)

    For the record, I was pulling for Mississippi State during the game while hosting a dinner party and one of my guest is a die hard Gator fan; she is a member of the local booster clubs. Do I get extra brownie points for that?

  4. My team did AMAZINGLY. Anyone else hear about the Auburn game this weekend? LEGENDARY, y’all.

  5. My sister went to MSU. I was texting with her all Saturday night. You were the 2nd person to come to my mind. That doesnt’ make me sound pitiful, does it?

  6. It is only if I am desperate that I even attempt Walmart on a Saturday. Your description was spot on – head down and just GO!

    Glad your team won, mine did, too! (Vikes)…it’s about time we had a win! :)

    Can’t wait to hear about the baby shower…even the tiniest things you describe are so fun for me to hear!





  8. I had no Wal-Mart/Target runs on my list this weekend (HOORAY!), but I will say that I got sucked in BIG TIME to the movie, “The Blind Side” on HBO.

    I had never seen it and oh my word…what a movie! LOVED IT.

    Of course I watched it while cleaning the house, rotating 800 loads of laundry, making Butternut Squash soup & Apple Butter in the crockpot and a million other little tasky things.

  9. The only thing that would’ve made your win sweeter was if Steve Spurrier was still coaching at UF. I was pulling for your team during that game because anyone that plays the Gators? I love them.

    Which brings me to my two teams, FSU and UGA.
    They both won. This is a feeling I’ve not gotten to enjoy much of late, so Amen and Amen.

    I’ve had a remote control basket in the living room for about 10-12 years now… honey, it was life changing when I first got it. I still look adoringly at it on occasion. (There’s also a pretty dish from Lifeway on the foyer table that holds our car keys when we walk in the door.) I may not can find my favorite yoga pants but the remote controls and the car keys? I know right where they are.

  10. Well, being that I’m a Florida Gator girl….. I think you know how our team did :( Ha!!

  11. Oh I can relate to your football angst. When TN plays sometimes I pace and at least once a game I go stand in the doorway of our office which allows me to sort of hear the game but not actually see it. Insane. And of course this year my expectations are pretty low when it comes to the Vols so it’s not quite as gut wrenching.

    Congrats on your big win! We’re TN fans so obviously we were rooting for Mississippi : )

  12. Oh, college football! There really is nothing like it. We just love it around here. I’m a Tulsa fan, so we did great this week. TU is playing Notre Dame on Oct. 30th, and Ace said “We’re going”! Bless that man; he KNOWS the importance of college football! Anyway, I so enjoy all the fun had by all on this site. I hope everyone’s team wins (?) and happiness reigns!

  13. My team’s #1 in the BCS! Boomer Sooner!

    And I didn’t darken the door of Target or Wal-Mart, but I’m going to have to go to one or the other this evening….

  14. Football is Paramount in our house. IT’s HUGE! It’s all we do. However, I Hate to say, we don’t watch college hardly at all. But, I DO say a silent prayer for both state and A&M :)

    However, all three of my Black and Gold teams did awesome! My man’s football team won, my daughter’s football team won (they are in the playoff’s and are currently undefeated), and the Steeler’s won against my “home team”. It was a great day for football!

  15. Boise State is #2 in the AP, Harris and Coaches polls and #3 in the BCS poll, not bad for a non-BCS school eh? Go Bronco’s!!!

    Oh and I feel your pain regarding the dog story. But I bet I have one that can out do yours – we will have to compare notes someday. When I can get up the nerve to talk about it anyway!

  16. Sophie, you absolutely crack me up! I just love reading your posts – regardless of how wordy you are!! Unfortunately, my team succumbed to the pressure of being #1 in the AP poll and was upset on Saturday. I tried telling them they didn’t want to be #1, that #2 is a much better place to be! So now my Buckeyes are #10 in the BCS. I, too, visited the Walmarts this weekend – Sunday evening when the shelves were completely picked over and there were still way too many people filling the aisles. So it wasn’t one of the better trips to Walmart I’m afraid!

  17. I was so nervous I couldn’t watch. Well I pretended not to watch b/c they seem to do better when I did that. Can we say extremely anxious and kinda sick to my stomach the whole time. I picked State in my pickums’. I knew they could do it esp if I didn’t watch!

  18. Bama won thank goodness. was at the Georgia game and got to see the new UGA. He was struting his stuff well except when he was sleeping in his air conditioned dawg house. Got to spend the day with my daughter, good times.

  19. oh yeah, the Bama game started at 9:15 at night.It made for a very late stressful evening We also yell and walk during games. but we’re #8 again, boo

  20. As a Gamecock fan, i feel pain about needing to tippy-toe around football rankings. USC beats Alabama, shoots up to #10 and then . . . promptly loses to Kentucky.

    It’s not for the faint of heart!

  21. As a Missouri fan-my team did GREAT-Thanks A&M!!! Now we’re heading into Homecoming week sitting pretty. Of course we face Oklahoma so we are also tippy toeing! :)
    And WalMart. Oh Wal Mart, I do not enjoy the wal mart but had to face it Sat as well. I felt as if I should be receiving some sort of award after I left.

  22. The Walmart story reminds me of the time I was at the Dollar Tree and the lady in front of my bought 97(97!!!!!!!)items. I was only buying 3, but I had to listen to the thing beep 97(97!!!!)times before she finished and paid. That was a very,shall we say,unique dollar store experience for me!

    I can’t wait to hear the podcast! I love them! :)

  23. I think Melanie summed it up best, “A&M Missouri HORRIBLE!”

  24. We were all about the baseball this weekend. Excited both series are tied up going into Game 3.

    Our favorite college football team won (Go, Hokies!) but unfortunately we don’t get ESPN 3, so we didn’t get to watch.

    CanNOT believe you went to the Walmarts on a Saturday morning.

    And when I was at first speed-reading through your post, I thought you had written, “But about mid-way through the check-out process, I realized that there was a hitch in my PANTS.” I actually cringed and looked away for a moment, wondering if I really wanted to continue. But so glad I did and thankful the hitch was only in your PLANS. :-)

  25. There was some hollering out here as well…a lot of hollering actually. And then when the polls came out yesterday and Mason looked at his Dad and me and said, “I’m not sure I like this. It worries me a bit.” We both laughed and said, “Ah, dear boy, you are a TRUE Mississippi State fan!” Love you Soph! (We’ll be at the MSU-KY game…any chance you will be too?)

  26. Consider for a moment those of us who are Razorback fans! OMG, our quarterback hurt in the first quarter, our backup quarterback comes in and throws for FOUR touchdowns and plays his heart out then we hand Auburn 3 touchdowns so we could self destruct in the 4th quarter. It was the MOST stressful game ever. Worse than 10 trips to Walmart on Christmas Eve. I’m just sayin…….

  27. Well, our Wildcats beat the Gamecocks for the first time since 1999. So our Saturday evening was pretty daggon awesome. I avoided the Walmarts like the plague this weekend and have to go this evening. With my preschooler. Your prayers for my mental health would be appreciated.

  28. Girl. I thought I might pass out for most of the 2nd half of the game, and I probably would have were it not for David reminding me to steady myself every other minute. I thought I might LITERALLY DIE when the field goal went askew. And while I feel a little bad for that kicker’s mama, STATE BEAT FLORIDA IN THE SWAMP, so, you know.

    Ever since I waited in line for 35 minutes behind 3 people to buy toothpaste and a box of diapers, I haven’t stepped foot in Walmart. I’m too scarred.

    Hail State and all that jazz.

  29. I am becoming my grandmother who would warn TV character of impending doom… when I read that you-

    I said out loud, “Stop, no, no, no you will not get this chance again. Skip the potting soil, I beg of you!!! “

  30. So proud of our DAWGS!!!!

  31. I so enjoy reading your spot-on take on being a bulldog fan. You NEVER get your hopes up! Which, I think, makes the victories even sweeter!

  32. I was so happy on your behalf when I saw the score!

    My team lost, again, 34-10. We left the game at halftime, which we never do, but Husband is recovering from knee surgery and we just couldn’t take the pain. We also cheer for the Aggies because my FIL went there. So more sadness. BUT. My Texas Rangers won on Saturday and now the series is tied at one game each and we are going to take the Yankees down!!!

    Target has no lines at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, or at least not this past Saturday. One of the Walmarts in our town is always busy, regardless of the time of day. I avoid it. A new one opens next week and I am hopeful that it will have a Dunkin’ Donuts.

  33. being a bulldog fan? i think i understand that. because i am a gamecock fan. i’m sure you saw/heard about our meltdown this weekend.

    i am so thankful to msu, though, for beating florida. at least we are still in the lead for the sec east. on second thought, it’s not always a good thing for us to control our destiny. we seem to do better at totally shocking even ourselves. i don’t know. i’m still recovering. saturday was a hard day.

  34. I am a Bama fan and I can tell you that the fall from the top is painful. There were tears after the SC game and my whole groove is off because I can’t bring myself to listen to Jox and Finnebaum or read any of the news articles because the comments just kill me.

    Glad you beat those Gators though :)

    I have found that the shortest line or the no wait line is just the gateway to disappointment. That whole “if it seems too good to be true, it probably is” thin

  35. Ohhh, the agony of all Hog fans on Saturday. We were having a birthday party for my cousin and had the game on while she was opening her presents. Several times we had to be reminded we were celebrating her 50th birthday party and not at a sports bar. It was almost enough to bring a person to her knees, pulling out fistfulls of hair wailing, “Why? Whhyyyyyy??? ” Almost. I like my hair too much.

  36. How about those Dawgs??? I understand completely your agony over the game; it gave me heart palpitations! But, it was definitely worth it!!!

  37. LOVE Home Goods!!! I may have to sneak there this week now that you mentioned that heavenly place…

  38. GO CATS!!! (We look forward to playing ya’ll soon)
    Glad you beat UF–I’m a “gator hater”! ;)

  39. If it makes you feel any better, I watched the Baylor game almost exactly the same way. Except that my newly minted 11-year-old daughter was hosting 4 of her very best friends for a sleepover. Apparently the little jig I danced when we won was not appreciated by previously mentioned ‘tween. Though I would venture to guess her friends were slightly amused. :-)

  40. trixiefan says:

    My team got screwed by the SEC refs. Not a good day for the Hogs. Our Heisman hopeful quarterback missed 3/4 of the game with a concussion, but our replacment quarterback did awesome!

  41. Not a college football fan (the shame of it!) but I just have to stop and say you crack me up like nobody’s business! Thanks for the hoot and I can’t wait to hear the story about your dog. : )

  42. I do not watch football at all, but when my husband casually told me about the win, “BooMama” is the first image that popped in my head. How funny is that?

  43. As a die-hard Gator-hater, LOVED the MSU win! But I did LOVE the Auburn win just a tad more!! My Tigers give me extremely high anxiety every Saturday September through December myself!

  44. Well. I sorta acted like an obnoxious jerk a week ago when Bama lost, and then I felt terrible, so I didn’t even watch anyone this week.
    Seriously, I got *so* tired of a few obnoxious Bama fans that I stooped back to Jr. High and acted like an obnoxious Auburn one when they lost. Booooooo. My penance was missing a BUNCH of great games this weekend. Boooooo again! ;)
    I’ve learned my lesson though, and I’ll be sweet from now on.
    Well.. at least until the Iron Bowl. ;D

  45. Sallie Belle Howell says:

    Sophie-our oldest ran cross country in Fayetteville this weekend. We left early Friday morning to return late Saturday night. Might I add that is a long way from here to there….for an hour run for the sweet daughter. (I wouldn’t have missed it for the world!) We toured campus. You may be an SEC traveler, but my SEC highlights have been The University in God’s country and visiting Yogi Bear in Oxford. Arkansas has a nice campus. Their stadium was beautiful. I even was caught stalking the ZTA house for a twighlight picture, which brings me to mine and hubbies revelation. We want to go on an SEC tour….staduims and ZTA houses. Doesn’t it sound grand! Of course, I know that I’ll be a little Dorthy like…”there’s no place like home!”. Speaking of home, it is a long way back home…realize I’ve said that, but needed restating in case anyone thinks it would be a great weekend get-away. Hubby brought the new XM radio-smile! The game kept us on the edge of our car seats! Sorry any Arkansas people who passed us thinking we might be killing one another…the yelling was at the Gator announcers that we had to endure. Our young children really were safe with us. They even wanted to stay in the car one potty/gas break because it was so close. Nothing was finer than hitting the MS stateline in time to find Jack and Jim announcing that missed field goal then wrapping it in maroon and white. Thanks for your post! They keep me smiling.

  46. Jennifer Tucker says:

    My AU Tigers are sitting pretty for right now. Went Sat to the game and loved every min. Letting my LSU fan spouse go Sat to the game w/ a friend. One of us is not a good loser or a good winner….and that is me!! But for this very minute things are GREAT on the plains! Subject to change ’cause you know LSU… well they are just sometimes too much. WAR EAGLE !!

  47. The BADGERS BEAT OHIO STATE! #1 Ohio state, to be exact. They won! It would have been a perfect football weekend, except the Packers lost. Blegh.

  48. It was a perfect football weekend for me. My sweet 10-year old played his first year and his team topped off an undefeated season by winning the 5th grade league championship on Sunday. I LOVE football and was so excited when he decided to play this year. It only took me a couple of games to get over that fact that it was MY baby out there getting hit. I’m sad that the season is over already, but very excited that we don’t need to rush to practice or games every weeknight.

  49. I love your stories! I could sit in your living room (or at the table) and listen to you carry on for a long time!
    I went to Target last week for a birthday present for my son’s friend. I got the present, and a few other things: a sweater for me, some lamps that were on sale, some cereal, a soap pumper, some hangers, and a few other things, I’m sure. Well. I got to the check-out and my Discover was denied. For everything else there is a MasterCard, so I looked…alas, I had no other cards with me. If I were a Boy Scout I would have gotten a big fat FAIL. I left my stuff with my name and told the lady I’d be back later in the day. I had to get that present, for the next day after church.
    I went back seven hours later. I realize it was a long time…but I SAID I WAS COMING BACK. Two ladies looked for my stuff, and finally one of them told me they must have put it all back away. I was so bummed. I went back and got about half of what I had before…the lamps were nowhere to be found. Boo. I was a big baby about it on the inside.
    But, later I thought it must have been God’s way of keeping me from spending money I didn’t need to spend. Sigh. Lessons are hard, no?
    There is my story. But you asked for it! :)

  50. Sophie…thanks for throwing/hosting a baby shower for my lil’ sis! Hope you all had a great time:)

    P.S. war eagle:)

  51. potting soil is only $2.48 at wal-mart?

  52. My weekend sounded kinda like yours… my friends were giving me a baby shower at my house, so Friday night they all came over, cleaned and decorated. Saturday we did the baby shower thing. Then we settled in for the UK game. And lets just say that it was AWESOME!! And there were loud cheers in our house! Down to the last second I tell ya!!! Those kinds of games are just so much fun…when you win:)

  53. I was thinking that maybe the reason the podcast was unsuccessful might have something to do with your views on the Missouri / A & M game!! sorry, but I am Mizzou fan and we were so happy to stimy the 12th man!!!

  54. Sophie, I know this comment is late, but I just got back into town from a little anniversary trip with my hubs. Our rental cabin in the Georgia mountains boasted satellite TV, so I thought for sure I’d see my beloved Gators play last Sat. night. But apparently, there’s a satellite plan that gives viewers mostly all shopping networks and no ESPN! So I did not see your time of triumph in The Swamp. However, one of the first things I thought after hearing the score and game story via phone from my daughter was ” I bet Sophie is just beside herself with excitement!” Couldn’t wait to read your blog about it. Congrats to you, Coach Mullen and MSU. When I arrived home tonight my Baylor alum daughter informed me that Baylor has less losses than Florida. Never thought I’d see the day that happened. It’s been and for sure will continue to be a wild college football season.

  55. LOL — Tippy-toe around the rankings. You, my dear, are a true MSU fan. It takes one to know one! I long for the day when we can be as confident as UA fans and just assume that we’re gonna win. Go Dawgs!

    Class of 1985

  56. Me and my family are really so pumped up about this particular seasons black friday discounts. Actually, am I nuts for doing this? I really actually walked out and purchased a fresh outfit to put on just for black friday. I would like to be comfortable for all the sprinting around! : )