When Basketball Makes Me Nervous

Well, I’m sitting here watching the State / Ole Miss basketball game. Blogging seems like a great idea right now, but if the game gets too heated in the second half, I will no doubt have to take a vacuuming break. For the good of the team, you understand.

Anyway, this may be a little bit disjointed (right now we’re down by 8; however, somehow I am managing to type words while also screaming at the TV), but there are a few really-not-at-all-noteworthy-but-somehow-important-to-me items that I would like to mention.

1. Apparently American Idol started tonight. I had no idea. And like I mentioned on Twitter a little bit ago, my lack of awareness about this season does not bode well in terms of my viewing commitment.

2. Remember a couple of months ago when I mentioned that I was trying to cut back on Diet Coke? Well, y’all won’t believe this – but I only drink one or two A WEEK now. And unlike other times when I’ve tried to quit the Diet Coke, I have not in fact replaced it with, oh, Diet Dr. Pepper. Or Diet Mountain Dew. And I have to say: cutting the post-lunch caffeine out of my life (I was drinking 3 or 4 Diet Cokes a day) has made a huge difference. More than anything else, I’m sleeping a whole lot better and waking up a whole lot easier. So yay.

3. We’re down by 6 with a little over 7 minutes left, and somehow I am remarkably calm. I haven’t even pulled out the vacuum yet. It’s like I barely know myself anymore.

4. This afternoon the little man and I stopped by the bookstore, and I DREADED taking our stuff up to the cash register because I knew I was going to have to endure a sales pitch for the store’s discount card. I don’t fault the clerks because they’re just doing their jobs, but OH SWEET MERCIFUL HEAVENS the up-sell drives me cuckoo. It makes me feel like stores don’t appreciate the fact that I’m handing over my money unless I hand over LO, EVEN MORE MONEY.

(Aaaaaand I’ve officially turned into my daddy, it would seem.)

5. We’re down by 5 with 1:47 left. I feel that it’s my duty to keep you updated on these critical basketball matters.

6. Earlier today I decided that my iTunes is in a little bit of a rut. I have a tendency to play the same songs over and over, and today I realized that I’ve burned myself out on my current rotation. Do y’all have any good recommendations? Anything that you’re listening to right now and loving? I like worship music and singer/songwriter stuff the best, but I am not opposed to a good country song. Oh no ma’am I am not.

7. The Bulldogs lost. Maybe I should’ve vacuumed after all.

8. I will now go console myself with some quality DVR’d programming. And perhaps some sort of cookie.

9. Hope your Thursday is a great one!

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  1. I am no help with the iTunes. Right now I only buy songs if I think it will motivate me to keep running on the treadmill. Congrats on your decreasing consumption of Diet Coke, but I am sure that Coca Cola is feeling the pinch between that and me (mostly) giving up Coke. Let’s hope the economy of the South doesn’t completely collapse as a result!

  2. Heather M. says:

    I love that you maintain such a commitment to basketball, my favorite sport. And I am down with the mid-game vacuuming though my stress buster of choice is orange-scented Pledge. As for new tunes, my favorite right now is David Nail. His new album, The Sound of a Million Dreams, is excellent. Caroline digs Taylor Swift and I have to say her live rendition of Train’s Drops of Jupiter is a pop-turned-country blessing. It appears I will have to dig through my January playlist and make you a mix tape. Caroline can pass it off to A in the hall.

  3. I have been needing some new tunes lately too. I am hoping to get some good suggestions here. Sorry about the b-ball loss. I only do football, and I am sad that college football is done and our pro team is out of the play offs! Good job on the diet coke. I could stand to do the same thing.

  4. Ginger Newingham says:

    I’m currently playing Jake Ousley and Andrew Ripp quite a bit. I think they were both iTunes Genius finds, actually.
    I’m also digging Jamie Barnes and Brooks Ritter (they’re part of Sojourn). They have a shared EP – Mercy Seat/War. Their worship music is rich with good theology and just good ol’ deep stuff.
    What are you playing on repeat? Might be new stuff for us!

    • Wow Ginger, may I take this moment to commend you on your excellent taste in music. I am actually listening to Andrew Ripp’s She Remains the Same album as I type this. And I love Jake Ousley and recently donated to his Kickstarter campaign so that I can enjoy more music from him in the near future.

      It’s always fun to randomly stumble upon other people who share your particular musical tastes. :)

  5. I am so enjoying God Who Saves The World/ Gabriel Wilson, The Living One/ Billy and Cindy Foote, Let the People Be Glad/ John Sherrill, and Sing My Love/ Kim Walker.
    Except I couldn’t get Gabriel Wilson on ITunes so went with Lakewood Church which was the only one offered. Oh, Great I Am/ Jared Anderson is also one.
    Enjoy your posts. Debi from San Antonio.

  6. I just learned that I actually have iTunes on my computer which I have been using for over a year, so I am probably not the one to help you with anything related to that issue. I also think you could come over here during your stressful games; there is plenty to vacuum…two birds with one stone! :)
    P.S. Sorry about the loss.

  7. ohlookaduck says:

    For music, anything Phil Wickham. Once when I was driving, I got to worshiping so hard I missed my road home–now that’s some awesome goodness!

  8. Try Esterlyn. Worship based band out of Boise, Idaho. Free music at noisetrade.com/esterlyn

    I love noisetrade. Download free stuff there all the time.


  9. sorry that sounded spamish, lol. I promise I’m not a bot, Oh and with the diet coke thing-that’s so great! Quitting soda is definitely hard, but it pays off in the long run!

  10. I just found a *gem* of a singer/songwriter gal (no longer living, unfortunately)… Eva Cassidy. She has a gorgeous arrangement of Over the Rainbow unlike anything I’ve ever heard. Available on iTunes. For country, how about Scotty McCreery’s album? He was the AI winner last season… there are some great songs on it. We probably have a lot of similar worship stuff on our iTunes. I did get some free downloads from iTickets this week. If you register there, they give out at least one free song, sometimes 2, every week.

  11. What I’m loving on i-tunes:
    Christian – Indelible Grace, Daniel Renstrom, Sovereign Grace’s Risen album
    country – the Band Perry, Lady Antebellum, the Civil Wars

  12. Oh me-I so dislike the bookstore sales pitch too! I’m like, “Please, please, don’t even start.” Of course I don’t say that, I smile and listen politely, but is what I am thinking. And I bet they hate saying it as much as I hate hearing it.

  13. I have recently discovered Allie Moss (thanks to Pandora), and I really like her music. Singer-songwriter stuff and lots of good love songs.

    Too bad for the loss. I’ve got two basketball players in my class this semester, and now they’ll be all depressed and distracted during class today!

  14. For making me think differently about God, I love Audrey Assad. Her voice is gorgeous and haunting too. If you like hearing actual instruments that sound folksy/country/authentic, try Bruce Springsteen’s album of Pete Seeger songs. As a bonus, some of them are funny too — your little man will love Froggy Went a Courtin, and there are others that are classic American songs we all should know, like The Erie Canal. (I didn’t know it either, before this album!)

    And for the sweetest, most liquid voice evah, try Dianne Reeves. She’s technically a jazz singer, but not in an annoying way.

  15. Kim Walker/Jesus Culture or Ricardo Sanchez!

  16. “A” to the “men” about the sales pitch. A couple of weeks ago I got the “upgrade your membership” pitch at Sam’s, neveryoumind I already pay $40 to shop there. You’d think after years of patronage, I’d get offered a free upgrade. After the third try the kid said, “It’s just $12–$12 isn’t a lot of money,” to which I replied, “It’s 3 gallons of milk, and that’s a lot in my world.” Of course, what I really wanted to say was, “If $12 wasn’t a lot of money, you wouldn’t be asking for it…or you’d knock $12 off this bill so I could pay for that upgrade.” Sometimes I wish I could harness my inner Liz Lemon and say such things.

  17. Check out Jesus Culture worship music….love them. Also, Kari Jobe.. Gateway Worship.
    Way to go with Diet Coke! I quit years ago, and was quite a junky for it. Felt much better after quitting.

  18. My daughters’ dance studio does a January recital of all praise music and one of the songs they are using is called Hold Me by Jamie Grace Feat. It is the cutest song and I cannot quit listening to it.

  19. I’m thinking it’s about time for an ipod rehaul for me too, but some of my favorite repeats right now are:

    Audrey Assad- Restless
    Brother’s Keeper- Take Me to the Cross
    Franscesca Battistelli- You Never Are
    Jamie Grace- Hold Me
    Needtobreathe- Washed By The Water

    Please let us know what some of your top repeats are right now :)

    • I have to agree with this playlist. Very similar to mine. Throw in some Third Day and Kari Jobe and you’ll be set. Can’t wait to hear your new selections.

      On a side note, you should have vacuumed. I am ashamed to say I could not watch or look at Twitter for fear of what happened anyway. Oh well, we get them again, at the HUMP.

      Go Dawgs.

  20. Take A Back Road – Rodney Atkins
    Drink In My Hand – Eric Church
    I know! I’m classy!

  21. Kirk Franklin’s Hero album is a head bopping, hand clapping , raise the roof, AMEN album. I especially love ” Looking for you.” There is an old Commandor’s song, ” Jesus is Love” that is just wonderful. Brooks and Dunn have a song “Believe” that makes me cry.

    Adele has a beautiful voice. Katy Perry’s “California Girls” makes me car dance. Kings of Leon “use somebody” is kind of fun to try to sing along with. Maroon Five’s “Sunday Morning” is fun to try to sing along with as well.

  22. Maybe the jittery need to vacuum was less about sports and more about the caffine? Good luck on the Great Diet Coke Cut-back…I just gave up Diet Dr. Pepper/any soda…it’s not easy.

  23. 2 things:
    1. iTunes suggestions–you HAVE to check out the Civil Wars. I saw them in concert on Saturday night and they are incredible. If you like guy/girl harmony singer/songwriter type stuff, you will love them. They are nothing short of amazing, and, nominated for a grammy next month!
    2. Sad that you missed the idol premiere because that means you missed the heartstring-pulling story of the girl who is LIVING IN A TENT. She made it through to Hollywood, so it’s not the last we’ll see of her, but she is for real living in a tent in the woods with her boyfriend and dog. It was altogether sad and fascinating at the same time. She can sing OK too.

    • I second The Civil Wars. Remember Joy Williams… Christian singer 10ish years ago? She’s the girl. They’re lovely.

      Also, 1.) NEEDTOBREATHE- they’re Christians and singers but not all of their songs are “Christian.” And, um, they’re amazing.2.) Phil Wickham- “cannons” is a worship song that I play over and over. 3.) Lady Antebellum’s new album (“Own the Night”) for a country fix… or their old ones if you don’t have them already.

  24. I agree with Rachel on Civil Wars – LOVE LOVE LOVE them, and I’m normally a pretty much worship listener myself. Love the song Building 429, I’m not home fabulous. Building 429 is pretty great all around. I’m down to a couple of diet pop and a bit of the iced tea, so I’m doing well too. I’m sorry for your basketball loss. Perhaps I should get out the vaccum when watching my Boilers as well. Maybe that would help them sometimes!

  25. Becky in 'Bama says:

    Patty Griffin: Downtown Church – will get you moving and laughing and weeping and humming.

  26. I LOVE the Civil Wars…I’m also a teensy bit obsessed with The Avett Brothers – saw them live with my kids last October in Dallas and have tickets for a show in BR in March (surprising the hubby for his birthday). They are awesome! Also a big Needtobreathe fan – saw them in concert in November. (We’re empty nesters who’ve suddenly started attending concerts – at 50, we’re usually the oldest ones at any venue!)

  27. Any tips on how you have been able to cut back so much on the diet coke?? I have tried to cut back on my coke intake, but the more I try not to drink them, the more I JUST HAVE TO HAVE ONE!!

  28. Darcy Gray says:

    Eli Young Band is my newest favorite!! Good going with giving up the Diet Coke. I finally switched over to diet from the full sugar stuff, I’m working on getting rid of the diet now. I wonder if they make a patch for that.

  29. Scotty McCreery is great. For some super bouncy worship, try Jamie Grace. She is a 19 year old singer/songwriter (with Tourettes!) who is a bundle of the fun. My girls LOVE her!

  30. Dana Orsbun says:

    I think this is my 1st actual post to you. Our worship team at church just finished a project of Live worship that you can get on Itunes.

    Muldrow 1st Assembly of God is our church. you can download cdbaby.com and then Muldrow 1st.

    Hope you will be blessed by listening.

  31. Kelly Thompson says:

    for Christian music that I have recently found–Ethan Asters and Tenth Avenue North.

  32. Watermark – A Grateful People… the whole album. Incredible.

    Los Lonely Boys songs:
    Fly Away
    Staying with Me
    Loving You Always

    Love your posts!!

  33. Have you heard Claire Holley, who happens to be a Mississippi girl? Her Sanctuary album is excellent.

  34. Amanda C. says:

    I totally agree with all the people who mentioned The Civil Wars and Needtobreathe. Also, you should check out All Sons and Daughters, Gungor, and Green River Ordinance! They’re all SO good!

  35. I love your blog, and you really crack me up with the things you say. I know all about your love for your bulldogs, but I must say…..HOTTY TODDY!!!

  36. AI was really good. I’m sure the top 10 will be coming out of the crowd from Savannah.

    Glory by Michael W. Smith has soothed my soul lately. Good move getting off the diet coke. My doctor said not to use any artificial sweetener.

  37. I’m too lazy to read all the comments. Sorry.

    I am loving All Sons and Daughters. It is a guy/girl duo that sings beautiful worship songs. I guess they get compared to the Civil Wars a lot. They are so good. Also, Gungor is great, although their album Ghosts Upon the Earth is fairly artsy and takes a few listens to really enjoy.

    I admire your calm demeanor during the game. My Mean Green were on a roll and we just found out two of our players are not academically eligible this semester. One of them was one of our leading scorers. It is disappointing, but I know the coaches and athletic/academic support staff did all they could. You can’t make a kid go to class at some point.

  38. Try Everly. I absolutely LOVE Everly! Girl in the Moon is my current favorite, but I also love their remake of We Belong. Both of these are included on their B Tracks, Vol. 3 – EP. If you like what you hear, grab their album Mission Bell, but most of their stuff is on short EPs that are all on iTunes.

  39. Read through the comments and since she wasn’t mentioned, I would recommend a listen to Lindsay McCaul. Her album just came out this week and she is a worship leader out of Chicago. I love her song, “Take My Hand”. The Band Perry has great harmony for a country vibe. Now I’m going to check some of these other artists. YAY!

  40. We just had a singer at our church named Chris Williams. He is from Nashville I think. He has this awesome blues vibe and he plays an amazing drum! My favorite songs of his are: Great Affection, Something Good, and Carry Me. He is awesome and different than my typical music.

  41. Ooohhhh…. Gavin DeGraw’s new record “Sweeter.” Just do it…you can thank me later.

  42. Ohhh Boo…you are a better woman than I. I just can’t kick the Diet Coke habit. School teacher issue maybe?? Most days it’s just all that will get me through. And when I find one with good ice…well, I’m just done for. If you find a way to make it happen, let a sister know!

    • I’m a teacher…my addiction is coffee. With cream and sugar. If I should happen to NOT refill my travel mug from my thermos for some insane reason my students notice…and comment. Yep, addict ;)

  43. Oh Sophie…save up your iTunes dollars until the new Passion CD comes out in March. We spent the week there with some of our awesome college students and EVERY.SINGLE.SOLITARY.SONG is FANTASTIC!!!!!! I can’t wait!

  44. I really like the “Joyful Noise” soundtrack!

  45. Try Brett and Emily Mills CD “Never Too Far” or the Andrew Heath Band–both on itunes. Good stuff! And agree that the new Passion CD will be amazing and also love Kari Jobe–her new one comes out Tuesday.

  46. Acknowledging that I am the dorkiest person on Earth and that these suggestions may or may not fit your criteria, here are a few of my favorites:

    Stuck Like Glue by Sugarland
    Move by MercyMe
    Holiday Road by Lindsey Buckingham
    If You Wanna Be Happy by ???
    Karma Chameleon by Culture Club
    Today is the Day by Lincoln Brewster
    All I Ever Need is You by Kenny Rogers/Dottie West, or anything else by those two
    Big Ball’s In Cowtown by Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys
    Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne
    I’ve Got a Rock ‘n’ Roll Heart by Eric Clapton
    Son of a Preacher Man by Dusty Springfield

  47. Gungor is a new purchase of mine. In general I’m in a soul phase. I have been listening to a Michael Buble station on Pandora and it has reintroduced me to Ella Fitzgerald, Etta James, Ray Charles, etc. even some new folks I haven’t listened to in awhile like Norah Jones and Adele. Plus it helps soothe my nerves when work gets stressful :).

  48. Check out the band REILLY. http://www.reillytheband.com/ Great stuff! I’m extremely ecclectic in my music listening. My favorites right now are Seabird, Passion Band (any old hymn), definitely Reilly, and a new guy we heard about Josh Garrels (loving his stuff too!)
    Sports I don’t know…cooking (HATE it)…but music…that I can comment on ;)

  49. My latest favorite is Marty Goetz – can’t hear his music too often, it is so good! Listen to both “Hope of Glory” and “Sanctuary” and I think you’ll be hooked.

  50. If you don’t have David Crowder Band’s newest (Give us Rest – a Requiem Mass in C, the happiest of all Keys), I highly recommend. Only a man with that kind of hair can blend latin with a banjo. And his very Crowder-esqu sound is still present. A 2 CD set, so plenty of bang for buck.
    To make up for all the extra drug store spending?
    Congrats on the Diet Coke victories. That was an addiction I picked up in college and I now – proudly – only drink at a restaurant where it is from the fountain (because everyone knows that fountain diet coke is superior to that of a bottle or can).