Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Power of Prayer

My kids have two people that they specifically pray for with their daddy every night before heading to bed. These two precious people are battling cancer. Both people have recently had some good news to share about their cancer. It is so great to see our kids' eyes light up and to be able to tell them that their prayers are working. That prayer is powerful and to never stop believing or giving up on prayer. The bible tells us to have faith like a child. I can see the faith in their eyes. It is amazing and awesome to see. What a testimony of what prayer can do. Never give up, always believe.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Very Merry Christmas

Christmas was great this year. It really was just nice to have Joel have some days off and to just play! Play with the girls, play games, watch movies and sled! We made some great memories and it was fun to have some cousin time with Will here. The kids played well together and had a ton of fun. I am not ready to put all the decorations away just yet. I love the lights on the tree at night. It always go by way too fast!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Picture Perfect

It began snowing last night. Huge beautiful flakes. I woke up, the kids got dressed for playing outside and I began baking while they played. I then joined them and we did some sledding and built a tiny snowman. Nevaeh called it a midget snowman but I am thinking that is not really PC... so let's just say it was a little snowman. Then I came inside, and began playing some Christmas music while baking away. It is so perfect and feels so much like how Christmas should be.... I am expecting Bing Crosby to walk in my kitchen to tell me to count my blessings instead of sheep. :) I am trying to enjoy and savor every single moment with my girls these next few days while Joel is working. I love this time of year... just wish someone would clean up my mess in the kitchen... and I have run out of sugar... who can bake goodies without sugar?!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Awaited-1- Baby Love Crashed into the World_12-19-09

Love this song. This is from a church here in Cincinnati.

I will fight..... and give it my all.

We have recently had to explain some things to our kids that we never thought we would have to explain to them. I hate having to tell them the hard honest truth about life. About how people's poor decisions effect those around them. About how our choices can lead us down really crummy paths.... but I would rather tell them the truth and talk openly about these things, than pretend life is great and perfect. I want more than anything for my kids to learn from others mistakes, instead of making awful ones on their own. I am not stupid, I understand that they will make poor choices and will have to learn things the hard way.. but I also want them to know, that bad choices can be escaped. We don't have to watch them go down a path of destruction. I want more for my kids. I will fight with them to have better lives and to make good choices. I know Joel and I will always love them but with that love, I hope to God that we will be open and honest and tell them straight forward if they are out of line or if they are destroying others and themselves by their stupid choices. As Joel was talking with the girls last night about what happens when we make bad choices, I couldn't help but be extremely thankful that Joel and I are a team, working together for the good of the girls. We will make mistakes but I know we can honestly look at each other and our kids and know that we have given it everything we got.

On a lighter note, Christmas is 5 days away. This week will consist of baking with the girls and wrapping a few last gifts and watching endless hours of Christmas movies. I can't wait! :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

what a week!

It has been a crazy week. Crazy in a good way. I can't go into details quite yet but I am thankful that God cares about details and that He cares about the desires of our hearts.

So, our church is doing an adopt a child for Christmas. The girls wanted to take part in this and I was so happy. We picked up the info on our child and went shopping for them. I love that my kids love to give and I hope that they always see the importance of it. Nevaeh said that she thinks he will love what we picked out for the little boy and that we should adopt our own little boy on Christmas because she wants a baby brother. Wow. Not sure what to think of that yet.

December is quickly passing. I am trying to savor each day. We got some snow last night and I think we are supposed to get quite a bit more tonight. YIPEE!! I love it as long as I do not have to go anywhere and I would really love a White Christmas! :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Friday, November 26, 2010

Another year, another photo shoot

Here are two of my favorite from our photo session with our good friend Jonathan. We have done this three years now and it is always a blast. I love my family and I am very blessed!

My First 10K

I woke up on Thanksgiving morning to the sound of massive rain hitting our roof. I was tempted to roll back over and snuggle up with Joel but decided to get my butt up and get on my running shoes. I am now glad that I had to prepay almost $50 to run this race or I have a feeling I would have rolled right on over to go back to sleep. After drinking my coconut water and eating a banana I headed out to the Bengals stadium. It was raining so hard that while I walked from my car to my stadium, I was completely soaked and once again wishing I was snuggled up in my bed. I walked into the stadium to find myself surrounded by thousands of people.. all trying to stay dry and prepare and stretch for the 6.2 miles ahead of us. We finally headed outside to the starting line and so it began. The rain had stopped by then and I was now surrounded by all kinds of people, from many walks of life, of all shapes and sizes, ready to cross the finish line. Many people were there to cheer us along the way. We ran through the city and then crossed a bridge into Kentucky and eventually made our way over another bridge back into Cincinnati. The rain held off most of the race. I could not help but hold back tears as I crossed the finish line. It was not easy for me but yet easier than I had thought it would be. It is such a great feeling to know that I have set my mind to something I thought would be impossible for me, and to push through and do it. I felt great the rest of the day. I came home to find my husband working hard in the kitchen to get Thanksgiving dinner ready to go. We sat down, just the four of us, and had a great time eating together. Then we all rested and took naps and then headed to the Hensley's house. This is a dear family we met from our previous church. We played games and laughed and had such a great time that Nevaeh has been begging me all day to go back. Even though we were not with our families today, it was truly a great day filled with love and thankfulness. It even ended with the rain turning over to snow. It was a good day indeed.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Two days until Thanksgiving. I am ready.... a bit freaked out for my 10K that morning but am trying to tell myself it will be a good experience and that I will not die :)
the house is completely decorated for Christmas. I can't wait until after Thanksgiving to do it. I am too excited to savor every moment.
We are getting our annual family photos this Friday. I found outfits for the girls no problem but now am faced with the huge challenge of what to wear myself. UGH.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

my second 5K

I beat my time! It was a beautiful morning.. almost 70 degrees that day. It feels so good to accomplish something I never thought I would be able to do. Now I am signed up for a 10K on Thanksgiving morning. It starts at the Bengals stadium and we will be running downtown and over bridges.. I am super nervous and have already told myself it is okay if I have to walk some. I am only halfway through training for a 10K but I am wiling to give it a try, knowing it is okay to walk some. Not much, but some. It is supposed to be cold and rainy.. should make it interesting!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

"Because of Your Love" by Phil Wickham

I LOVE THIS SONG. and Phil Wickham.

Monday, November 15, 2010


Sometimes I think my nine year old has more wisdom than I do. That is either saying a lot about me or says a lot about her. I hope it is just saying a lot about her. We were getting ready for church yesterday and we headed to the car. Jesslyn started to cry and said she didn't have friends at church and that she wanted to go to her old church. We have recently changed churches and the transition has went very well for my kids. Better than I expected but yesterday was a different story. I did not know how to handle it and did not feel strong enough to even try so I went and sat down, throwing my own kind of fit and fighting tears. Nevaeh walked over to me and said "mommy, if Grandma and Grandpa were here they would tell you that Jesslyn does not get to be the one to make the choice. We need to go and she is going to just have to deal with it". She was right... and I thanked her for it. This is also the girl who told me that if I made her go to another church, she was going to get up on stage and yell how much she hated it! I am thankful the transition has been easy for her. It is never fun to have to change something that was once a huge part of our life. Thank you Jesus that you are faithful and that all is going well with this change, except for a little snag here and there.

I hope both of my girls are full of wisdom. I know that there will be times when they do not use their best judgement but I hope that they are at least seeking right things.

Monday, November 8, 2010

30 Things I am Thankful For

Some of these things are meaningful and some are pretty shallow but are still things I am thankful for :) In no particular order. :)

1. a husband who does not play video games all day and sit in his boxers. He works hard, thank you Jesus.
2. two healthy kids.... I am learning daily to not take this for granted because it could change at any moment.
3. parents who are my best friends. They are full of wisdom and strength for me.
4. a house that keeps us warm.
5. running water and electricity......
6. not living under a dictatorship... having freedom.
7. the chance to go visit my family often. THANKFUL
8. Skype.. this helps me be able to talk to my sister's family.. face to face.
9. a church where the Bible is preached and the teaching is relevant to my life.
10. Mark Driscoll and his ministry.... I have learned so much from his teachings.
11. the chance to stay home and teach my girls.
12. Target :)
13. coffee
14. technology...
15. my hair straightener
16. my Uggs.. keeping my toes warm all winter :)
17. good and faithful friends
18. a large extended family.. I do not see them much but am thankful for all the memories as a kid.
19. my own health and health of my husband... we take this for granted.
20. the health of my parents... they can never die. I will not allow it :)
21. being raised with balanced parents.. letting me make my own choices within reason.... and not being legalistic.
22. my phone... sad, but not sure what I would do without it.
23. my deck.... being able to sit out and read in the warm sun.
24. Trader Joe's... a good place to work and great place to get groceries.
25. coconut and chocolate together... mmmm.
26. fall... pumpkins and leaves.
27. peppermint... I love anything peppermint.
28. laughter
29. my running shoes.. and my running app.
30. Jesus

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My girls have my heart.

Nevaeh- I love your tender heart. Please always stay that way. Everytime we watch a sad movie, you end up in tears. You are giving, sensitive, and are literally the best big sister ever. There are so many times when Jesslyn irritates you so bad that you should just punch her (sometimes you do) but for the most part, you know what to do to make it right. You follow rules and know your own boundaries. Please stay like this. It will keep you out of a lot of trouble as you get older.

Jesslyn- you are still little to me.. but have always been independent. You make me laugh. You love to sing and dance and carry around a microphone. You are developing a love for reading which makes me so happy because your sister still hates it :) You love to help me crack eggs when I'm baking.. and you are pretty good at not getting any shells in. You are still little enough to need me and to cuddle on me.. maybe you will always want to do that. I sure hope so.

Yesterday, I was feeling a tremendous amount of love for my kids. I love them everyday but there are often days that I take for granted as a mom. Times when I just get irritated, times when I just can't wait to put you in bed. I am not sure why, but yesterday was one of those days where I felt so much love and so much happiness to be your mom. What a great calling and what a great mission for my life. To parent you, to mother you, to help you grow up to be the women God has called you to be. Love is a funny thing. It is strong, it is unbreakable and often unexplainable.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

I made bread and pumpkin pie today. My house smells like my Grandma Betty's. I am certain the bread and pie are not nearly as tasty as hers, but at least it smells good in here. Man, I sure do miss her even more this time of year.

Sister Wives

Is anyone else extremely fascinated and at the same time greatly disturbed by the new TLC show, Sister Wives?
I got caught up watching it yesterday. It is one man, married to three women, engaged to one. (I think they might be married by now). Between all of them they have like 16 or so children. Small all the way to teenagers. When he decided he wanted to court his fourth wife, he sat the family down and asked their thoughts... One young boy shouted, "go get em tiger!" Disturbing. Then while the one wife was having a baby, he said, "it feels a little weird to kiss my girlfriend while my wife is in labor." Then, the women constantly say how more is merrier, but at the same time they talk a lot about jealousy issues. I could not live like this. I could not share. It is like the man gets tired with the last wife so finds a new one to "court" and then adds her to the mix. No thanks. And do they really have a right to be jealous? Seriously? I don't think they do.
I have come to the conclusion..... women might be able to share recipes but not MEN. :) at least that's what this woman says.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

ART CLASS.... and more

Wednesdays are the days my girls go to art class for an hour and a half! YES... it is awesome... I get to go have breakfast with a friend and they get to learn things that I am not smart enough to teach them. PERFECT.

The weather is getting colder. I love it but this means I make more fattening foods and feel like sipping on hot chocolate all day long. It is not as easy to be motivated to do much more than read a book or watch a movie when the weather is cold.

I listened to a podcast of Driscoll today on religion. It was so good. I am so thankful that I do not have a DO THIS or DON'T DO THIS list. I am thankful for freedom and grace in Him. I am guilty of having my own to do list and of convincing myself that if I do those things I am better or if I do not do those things I am worse. Thank goodness for grace and that He looks at my heart. There is nothing I can or cannot do to change His love for me. Thank you Jesus, for I am unworthy and hopeless without You.

Monday, November 1, 2010

My sweet superheros

Trick or Treat was a blast this year. We started off the day by heading to church. The kids wore they costumes and then afterwards we had trunk or treat. They got TONS of candy. Then we met up with some friends to hit up some neighborhoods at night. We went through several houses for two straight hours. My kids have SO much candy. They got several huge king size candy bars and many other huge things... and they had a blast. Lot of fun memories were made. I love this time of year. We are making memories that will last my girls a lifetime and for that I am forever thankful.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

What does a Christian need to know about Halloween? | The Mars Hill Blog

What does a Christian need to know about Halloween? | The Mars Hill Blog

I am only posting this because facebook sparked the conversation. This blog is exactly how I feel. So well said.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Daylight Savings

I am beginning to hate that the sun is coming up later and going down faster. I really love this weather and this is my absolute favorite time of year but this is my first fall as a runner. It makes it difficult for me to be able to get out in the sun to run.. or better yet, in the daylight. I just began this training program to get me running a 10K and I have been doing well with it and don't want to fall behind... so, I woke up and was out the door at six this morning. My lovely husband bought me some reflective gear but it isn't the cars that worry me... I am just a little skeptical of freaks. ( I admit this fear may be just out of the fact that I watch too many CSI's and too many scary movies to run without thinking some man is going to chase me with a cloth soaked in some substance that will knock me out enough so he can drag me into the woods)... yes, my mind goes there. Every leaf that ruffled across the road freaked me out... and for some reason I could see two, and sometimes three, of my own shadows. So, I was constantly feeling as though I was being chased... good thing it was only me doing the chasing. It was a great run. I am feeling so good and it is getting easier. I am running a better pace and running up to 4 miles seems to be a breeze. I am up against the challenge of the sun though and will be doing most of my running on Joel's days off which lately have been few and far between.
All I know for certain is that I am loving running... just not so much in the dark.

Friday, October 22, 2010


I am realizing how important it is for me to make traditions for our family and my kids are the ones who reminded me of how much I love certain traditions. My kids are loving it too. As we enter this time of year, I am realizing just how many traditions we already have as a family and my kids LOVE these traditions. We carved pumpkins last night while watching The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown.... they had a blast and said they wanted to do it again tonight. I had to say no to the carving but maybe we will watch Charlie Brown again. I am always up for some Charlie Brown. Now they are begging me to put up the Christmas trees. Yes, you read that right. They can't wait to put them up, decorate them, drink some hot chocolate and watch endless hours of Christmas movies. Some of our favorite- Home Alone and Christmas with the Kranks. I love that my kids have these things that they will carry with them for many years. I love that they have things like this to look forward to and I love that the memories of doing these things last year brings back happy and cozy memories for them. I want to continue to do these small things.. and do them every year. I hope we can add to these things and that they will take them and remember them for when they have their own families. This time of year brings me a lot of joy and a lot of smiles to me and it is such a joy to also see my kids loving this time of year and loving everything this time of year brings.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


I love Thursdays. I think it goes all the way back to my childhood. My dad always had Thursdays off so I think that is why I loved and still love this day. I remember him taking me to the "round store". It was a store by our house that was shaped like a carnival tent. We would go there and he would let me pick out some candy. I loved that store. It is pretty run down now but man did I love that place as a kid. For some reason, Thursdays just make me smile.

So, I am now officially training to run farther than a 5K. I added the 10K app to my phone and have done two of the workouts... wow. I have not been this sore in a LONG TIME. Feels good to be adding some distance to my running though. I truly never thought I would ever be able to run 4 plus miles. Makes me proud of myself.

I am thinking tonight is also a good night to carve some pumpkins. Joel never got to do it while he was growing up.... so now that I am in his life, we do it every year! ;) and we always roast the seeds.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Me, a bully?! wow.

I have been called and accused of many things... but never of being a bully. Apparently there is a first time for everything. If I told you the story you just simply would not believe it. I will spare you the silly details.
I hate it when people make it their life cause to be controversial and to state their opinions... but the minute you state yours, they just can't handle it. Oh please oh please NEVER let me be that ignorant or annoying.

and this is all because of me saying my feelings about a show... yep, not anything big like abortion or anything like that. Just a simple tv show.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I am learning that I do not handle my own mistakes or my own stupidity very well. I hate messing up and I hate it when I do stupid things that are a waste of energy. I am often harder on myself than I should be and instead of just realizing my mistakes and letting it go and becoming better, I often hang on to what or how I wish I would have handled things differently. I need to get over it. I am not perfect and never will be. I will make mistakes. I will do stupid things. I need to be okay when people may be disappointed in me because I cannot be perfect all the time. I never saw myself as a perfectionist but am starting to believe I am..... I hate to think of people upset with me and I hate to think that I may have just screwed up. Clearly it is unrealistic. I will never be perfect.... never.

On a side note, we watched Secretariat at the movies last night. Great family movie. Totally one of those feel good, great family movies. We loved it. Go see it! :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Coffee with Eminem

Last night Eminem was on 60 minutes. I have to say I totally enjoyed the interview and wish I could have coffee with this man. First off, I would like to give him a hug. He needs one I think. He grew up poor, with a single mom, in Detroit and moved schools two or three times a year. He was bullied, pushed into lockers, called names, etc. He now makes millions a year on his records and has millions of fans. I know that his music is crude and saying it has tons of profanity is probably an understatement. Regardless of that, he has talent and is able to rap faster than any other person out there. He said a few things that I thought were interesting- he said that he does not allow profanity in his house and also was asked about his father and if he wishes his dad would come track him down for them to meet each other. Eminem said that if he had a child out there, he would go wherever and search forever until he found that child. I admire that. He may be a bit wacked in some of his thinking but he hit the mark on some things, in my opinion. He sees a man that does not desire to know his child as week and I could not agree more. He has overcome prescription drug addiction and is trying to make his music a bit more positive. Imagine if this man met Jesus. Oh how I wish I could have coffee with him.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A trip to the Orchard......

Have I mentioned that I love this time of year? If you know me even just a little bit, you know how I love fall. A trip to the pumpkin patch and apple orchard is by far my favorite trip to take with the girls. I hope they always love it as much as I do. We headed down to Evan's Orchard like we did last year but this year we got to take the school tour. We joined our good friends and we were able to see how they make cider and they talked about the importance of bees and the life cycle of an apple tree. Then we took a hayride touring the orchard.... then we ate lunch (shredded pork sandwich that had been cooked with some of their fresh apples) mmmmmm..... and then the kids got to play on their amazing playground. We also got to go to the petting zoo and see lots of goats and a zebra and some other fun things. Then the afternoon ended with a fried apple pie topped with ice cream... Again, mmmmmmm. We took home some apples, a pumpkin, a coloring book, and an apple shaped cup for the kids. Nothing like some fresh air and some good farm fun.

I love Evan's Orchard. They have pretty piles of pumpkins laying all around the property.

One of the many reasons why I love this time of year.

They spent most of the day playing on this cool tree trunk.

The girls on the hayride with their friend Spencer

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Christians and facebook

Dear "Christians" who are on facebook:

Sometimes you drive me nuts and honestly, I have hid many of you. Can you just for once write about doing laundry and getting groceries? Must it always be about God? I realize that this must sound terrible but I am trying to be plain honest here. I love Jesus. I love scripture but I also like real life. I understand pastors putting these things on their facebook more than just average posts, but sometimes I just think people can start to go overboard. I do not want to read about how you feel Jesus is your lover and you love when he picks you up and dances in the field with you. First off, that is creepy. He is not my lover and never will be. He is my savior.... and I would rather bow at His feet than have Him twirl me in flowers.. that just creeps me out. Some things are just meant to stay between you and Him.... please! I am also certain that even those posts that say- "even though most will not repost" this does not give me my ticket to hell. UGH. I love facebook but sometimes people drive me nuts. And again, this is why I blog.

Monday, October 4, 2010

As I have already said in earlier posts, I have been following a blog of a dear family whose child was recently diagnosed with cancer. I wait anxiously each morning to wake up and read her latest post.... simply because this story touches my heart and I am always eager to hear how her son is doing. This is the first paragraph of her blog today-

When going through something like this I’ve learned that at times you will feel crazy. And at times, people will make you feel like you are going crazy… and tell you things like you need medication. But somehow… if you are strong enough, you pull it all together… get all the little voices out of your head, refocus, and find your way back. It can take something as simple as taking a drive, screaming your lungs out and just taking 30 minutes to be alone, to bring your strength and sanity back. Game on, cancer. You have pushed me down but I will not stop fighting back.

I love this. I love her real and very raw words. I have had some people tell me I needed medication or know of many who depend on it. I am not saying I am against it at all, I know it has its place, but this mom inspires me. She is real. She is strong. She is not afraid to let it out or get things off her chest. First off, those I know taking meds seriously have no problems in comparison to what this family is going through.... not even close. Thank you Maya for sharing your blog and being so real. I am seriously encouraged to live me life differently. Nevaeh was in art class the other day and there is one boy in there who complains all the time... Nevaeh spoke up to the class and said, "You are complaining about not wanting to draw what the teachers tells you, I know a little boy who has cancer and is fighting it every day.... you should not complain over something as small as a picture you are asked to draw"
I was proud of Nevaeh. She gets it.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I finally did it!

Most of you know that I did a 5K in July. I had a blast but then went home for the month and then came back to hot and humid weather. I cannot run in that heat and I refuse to. So, needless to say, I basically had to start over with my running. It was like starting ALL over again... which was extremely annoying. BUT..... thanks to FALL, I am so super excited that I am back in the game again and loving it more then before and also I am pushing myself farther every time. I just got back from 4 miles! I am proud to say that.... and am so glad that the weather is cool and nice. I am not sure how things will play out when it is dark by 5 and freezing outside. I guess I will cross that bridge when I get to it!

Monday, September 27, 2010

What a great weekend. We went to the horse races again. The real life jockey and the acting Jockey in the new Disney movie were at the track so the girls got to meet them and get their autographs. Nevaeh was on fire again with picking the winning horses but no actually bets were placed this time.... mainly because Joel didn't quite know how to work the betting machines :) haha...

It is ten in the morning. The girls are playing... the school books are ready to go on the kitchen table. I will give them a few more minutes and then we will dive in. We have a lot to cover today since the rest of the weekend is getting full with field trips, art classes, gymnastics and a play date with a dear friend tomorrow. The weather is fantastic today. 66 with a little rain which we desperately need.

Friday, September 24, 2010

He Leadeth Me by The Martins (acapella)

Another old one but so beautiful.

They may be old, but these songs are GOOD.

How Great Thou Art
Lyrics ~ Carl Boberg, 1859 - 1940

O Lord my God,

When I in awesome wonder

Consider all

The works Thy Hand hath made,

I see the stars,

I hear the mighty thunder,

Thy pow'r throughout

The universe displayed;

Stanza 2:

When through the woods

And forest glades I wander

I hear the birds

Sing sweetly in the trees;

When I look down

From lofty mountain grandeur

And hear the brook

And feel the gentle breeze;


Then sings my soul,

My Saviour God, to Thee,

How great Thou art!

How great Thou art!

Then sings my soul,

My Saviour God, to Thee,

How great Thou art!

How great Thou art!

Stanza 3:

When Christ shall come,

With shouts of acclamation,

And take me home,

What joy shall fill my heart!

Then I shall bow

In humble adoration

And there proclaim,

"My God, how great Thou art!"


Then sings my soul,

My Saviour God, to Thee,

How great Thou art!

How great Thou art!

Then sings my soul,

My Saviour God, to Thee,

How great Thou art!

How great Thou art!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Just call me Richard

I am so much like my father. My mom tells me this all the time but now I am really beginning to see it for myself. Even down to the little things like mixing cereals. I do that too, just like he does. We think the same. We have the same type of thoughts and same ideas about things. I also think we are not great listeners. I hate to admit that but I am afraid it is true. I try and listen while someone is telling me a long story but I often drift off to other thoughts. I am certain my dad does the same thing. It drives me mom crazy :) I am also not really into sitting around with a bunch of women and telling them my feelings. My worst nightmare is a church class just for women or a women's retreat. No thanks. My dad is the same way about men functions. No thanks.
My mom has often asked me what I think about a situation and I answer and she usually says, "that is exactly what your dad said." It is quite funny. Thank goodness I love my dad. He is great. A little quirky but great :) I guess that makes me quirky too but I am totally okay with that.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Fall.... where are you?!

It was in the 90's today and will continue to be through Friday. I am ready for cooler weather. Joel, on the other hand, absolutely loves this weather. I am ready for my air conditioning to be turned off and ready for windows to be open. I am ready for sweatshirts too and also ready for sipping on a pumpkin spice latte while the weather is cool. I see some hope in my near future... if I can make it to the weekend, the next ten days after that start to cool off. Also on a side note, since moving out here to the midwest, I have come to realize that people here actually have winter and summer clothes that go in bins and are stored and switched out as seasons come and go. I do not thing people do this in the northwest... in fact, I know they don't. In the northwest, you always need your sweatshirts and jeans nearby. Putting them away in a bin for the summer would never work... and that is one more reason why I love the great northwest! :)

Monday, September 20, 2010

a quiet night at home....

I just put the girls to bed and Joel is working an all-nighter. I am currently listening to the latest Driscoll podcast (no surprise there) and it is on Mary and Martha.... just started it.... I am thinking I am going to learn a lot from these two women.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Night At The Races

What a night! Friday night we headed out to dinner and then to Target to get the girls some pipe cleaners. (they have been begging for some so they can be crafty with them)..... and then we headed to Turfway Park.... where they have horse races. We walked in.... straight into a cloud of stale smoke :) It was packed with people. People placing bets, reading up on the horses, and of course people smoking. Welcome to Kentucky! So, we watched from inside then headed out to see a race while standing right at the track. Joel golfs with the guy who does the announcing... and he even does the announcing for the Kentucky Derby and has for many many years. Joel texted him to let him know we were there and he spotted us through his binoculars. He waved us on up to his special booth in the top... and we got to watch him announce two races. It was awesome. He practices before the race, looking at each horse, saying their names over and over again along with their numbers. He showed us how he determines the odds.... he sets the odds for the night too... and then he even walked the girls down to place a bet. We bet two bucks on horse number #3 to place first, but the horse came in second! We would have won about $10 if the horse would have took first. I am amazed at all that goes into horse racing. It is amazing and awesome to watch. The girls are hooked too... they wanted to go back last night. I have a feeling we will be going to Turfway Park any chance to can get!

Friday, September 17, 2010

My little artist

I wanted to post this. Nevaeh drew this picture. She was inspired by a lady who was drawing a similar picture of her own daughter when we went to tour the facility where our art class is. For nine years old, I think it is brilliant. I hope she continues to grow this passion and keeps drawing and learning!

100 days till Christmas?!

Another morning spent on my deck. Coffee in hand, study Bible on my lap, kids still snoozing away, and Joel out on the golf course. I can hear the bugs and birds making noise in the trees, and the weather is just perfect. Actually a little chilly this morning, but that is perfect for me. I can hear school buses making their rounds, people leaving their houses for work, and can finally see some leaves starting to change to their amazing vibrant colors. I love these mornings. I love when I have time by myself in the morning. Time when the kids are still sleeping and I can get myself charged for the day. It is in these moments that I again realize the favor of God on my life. My life has had its ups and downs as we all have, but God has remained true and faithful. He has given me the desires of my heart and He continues to plant things there that I am hopeful will one day come into play. I believe and am starting to prepare for those things. Some would say I am digging ditches... ready for the rain to come... ready for His promises. I am thankful that I have walked my life with Jesus by my side. I am certain there is no other way to walk this life. It is too hard, too sad, and too depressing to walk it without the hand of Jesus. I simply could not do it.

On another note, I heard someone say yesterday that Christmas was 100 days away. I can hardly believe this.... but am getting that sudden urge to start preparing myself. Making lists, picking up gifts here and there. I am ready. I love it. My girls love it. Baking, christmas songs, shopping, and the list goes on. BUT- I will make sure to enjoy the fall and to take in every thing I can in the next 100 days.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Lord help me to always be thankful.

Here are some things I thought about today that made me super thankful....

*Nevaeh is a fantastic foot rubber. She grabs the lotion and rubs my feet for me and it is honestly better than any foot rub I have ever had. She is one talented little girl.

*I went for a run tonight and took a shower once I got back home. As I was finishing up in the bathroom, I could hear Joel playing around and wrestling with the girls. They were loud, they were laughing, and having a blast. I am so thankful my girls have a dad that loves them, kisses them, and lives with them. I am so thankful. Thankful beyond words for this.

*my dad has been calling me almost every afternoon while he is doing the laundry for his carpet business. I love his calls. They are usually short but always nice to get. So thankful for a father and mother who love me and love each other.

*we had some rain today. I am super thankful for rainy days for two reasons- we need rain and rainy days make me smile.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My girls had their first art class today. It is a homeschool 2D class and I am super pumped for them. They loved it. Nevaeh could not stop talking about it after I picked her up. They learned the primary colors and how to mix certain colors to make all the other colors. Then they talked about famous castles in the world and then began to draw one, and then later next week they will paint it. I am so thankful for classes like this that allow homeschooling moms to be able to offer more options for their kids. It also makes me feel so inspired and so great when my kids get a chance to learn new exciting things, things that I really could not teach them. I think we will be taking many art classes in the near future and once again I am reminded how much I LOVE being able to homeschool my kids.

A Perfect Day at the Zoo

Thanks to a good friend of mine, we were able to go to the zoo yesterday for free! My friends told me about this teacher's workshop that we signed up for and we were able to get in for free, free parking, free snacks, free drinks, free zoo tote, free handouts, and some free amazingly good cheesecake. Get the common word here? YES... FREE! We walked around the zoo, saw most of the animals, got to see and touch some of the animals, and just had a great time. The kids learned a ton and were so tired when we got home. It really was the perfect day at the zoo!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I heard this at church today- if we think that being a Christian is sailing along on a quiet little ship, we are dead wrong. Being a Christian is being on the battle field. Recognizing that the devil is here declaring war, wanting to destroy us, our family, and wanting to bring us to death. We are fools if we think that he is not working to destroy us. We must always be ready for battle. Active, responding, and fighting.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

It is Saturday. This means no schoolwork, not really any responsibilities.... and it just started pouring down rain. This makes me smile. We have not had a day of rain in a very long time. Sure, we get a scattered storm here or there, but a rainy day? Oh how I have missed them. So, here are a few things I am looking forward to in the next months:

*football games. I love them. My favorite sport to watch.
*pumpkins. I love them. I love them sitting on my porch. I love going to the patch to get them.
*the trees. The pretty colors.... love them.
*caramel apples. I don't really care to eat them, but love watching my kids make them.
*cooler weather. Sweatshirts and my Uggs! Oh how I have missed you!
*having the windows open... fresh air flowing through the house is always nice.
*pumpkin spice lattes. MMMM.
*running in cooler weather. I have ran almost every day this last week. Now that the 90's are gone!
*baking things- such as pumpkin bread and things... also soups. I love making soup... there is nothing like having a big pot of soup on the stove :)

I am sure there are many more reasons I love this time of year.... but for now, I am going to enjoy this rainy day. (too bad Joel despises weather like this). We couldn't be more different.

On a side note, I went to the doctor and had my "numbers" checked. Cholesterol, bad ones, good ones, Triglycerides, etc..... all my numbers were really great! Now if I could only get that weight number to go down :( Maybe all this running will finally start paying off.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

just a random thought.....

I find it almost funny when people think they are "cutting edge" or "thinking outside the box" or "breaking the mold" ..... when really.... they are just like everyone else. Just as narrow minded and judgmental as the rest of us. We all judge to a certain extent. It is hard not too.... and honestly, those who freak out about others judging them, usually are the ones who judge the most.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Oh Fall, how I love thee.

The fall weather is slowly making its way into my life. I know it will hide again and then pop up again but I cannot wait. Is it way too early to set out my fall wreath and decorations? Maybe I will wait until after Labor Day :)

I went for a run this morning. My kids stayed the night with friends last night so I had an evening to myself until I had to pick Joel up at the airport. My run was great. This cooler weather makes it so much more enjoyable so I don't have to catch my breath from all the humid, sticky air. Now I have a bit of time to myself before heading to get them..... I must say, it is kind of nice. :)

I finally watched Shawshank Redemption the other night- I know, I know, a totally old movie... but I finally watched it. Very good, I must say.

Well, I must go... my time alone in a quiet house is slowing ticking away. I must make the most of it!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Really Negative Women in Proverbs | The Mars Hill Blog

Really Negative Women in Proverbs | The Mars Hill Blog

Lots of great things and good points in this article.

I finally got my new car today! :) No more family van! yay.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Dear Kate Plus 8 lady-
Why in the world do you wear hooker shoes and shirts where your boobs are falling out while taking your 8 kids on tours of New York and while taking plane rides? I simply do not understand this. It bugs the heck out of me. I think your claim of "doing whatever for your children" is phony. You are too into yourself. :) Sure, it is fine to look nice, but seriously- stop it.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


So, in less than a week, I sold my van and Joel's motorcycle. I am pumped. I had no idea they would sell so quickly but I am not complaining. The first people to look- bought! YES. So, now we are on the hunt to find me a car. Let the real fun begin.
So needless to say, this week has been full of signing, phone calls, emails, notarizing, making trips to the county clerks office (which always makes me want to slit my wrists) and now my life consists of spending hours on

School is still going well. I just signed the girls up for an art class that I am excited about. Not only will they be learning all kind of things about painting, drawing, and famous artists, but I will have an hour and a half every week to chat with my friend whose boy will also be in the class. I am thinking I could get used to that.

I was reading in Romans today and came across this verse- Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
I love it. I know a lot of people really facing some hard things. I pray that each of them can find the strength to rejoice in hope and to be patient and to constantly be in prayer. The Word of God completely amazes me. It truly is water for my soul and a lamp to my feet that often have no idea where they are going.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Lots going on these days- first off, I am no longer the owner of a family fun bus, otherwise known as a minivan. She was good to us but she had to go. She was sold in less than 4 days! So, now I am on to find something else. I am leaning towards an Accord- good, nice, safe, dependable, doesn't break the bank, and will last a long time. Now I just have to be patient enough to find the right one. SIGH.

The weather is getting cooler here. Running is so much more doable, thank goodness!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Jesslyn has lost two teeth in the last two days. The first one was hanging by a thread, so she finally let Joel pull it after he had been begging her to for about a week. The next day, I was at the computer and she and Nevaeh were taking a shower together. I heard Nevaeh say, "oh no! Go show mommy!" I thought to myself- oh no... what in the world just happened. Just then, Jesslyn runs to me dripping wet with blood running down her chin. She had lost her second bottom tooth in the shower and it had went right down the drain! So funny. I thought she would be freaking out a bit but she was not. She thought it was funny and was probably already thinking about what she could spend her tooth fairy money on. She loves to spend money..... who doesn't?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hillsong - I Will Exalt You - Faith+HOpe+Love - With Subtitles HQ

Love this song.
I think my nine year old is FINALLY loving school. Well, not really loving school but I see her being more anxious to learn and especially to write. I bought her two binders and she has been carrying them around for the last 24 hrs. I gave her a list of spelling words to put in the binder and she was grinning when I told her she had to write them a few times and have them done by tomorrow morning. She already did them and said now she wants to write a book. (with pink notebook paper and she wants to cover it with flowery wrapping paper). I am really looking forward to this year for homeschooling. I am focused and determined and am getting to spend my day with my two main girls. Teaching them about life as we learn how to read and write and count, etc.
We have already gotten into a pretty good groove and with gymnastics starting up again on Fridays and with art classes coming up next month- things are looking fun and full.

On a side note- I cannot seem to get this family out of my mind. This family who has been smacked with the realty of cancer in their sweet little boy. I am hugging my kids and loving them more now. You never know if things could change at any moment. I know this family is going to make it through it but it stills seems so unfair that their journey has to go down this hard road. Don't ever let a day go by without loving your family or kissing and hugging your kids. They are the biggest blessings from God and if you don't cherish them, shame on you.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Today has been good so far. Kids are writing letters and spelling words right now. I also decided to delete my last post. It sounded incredibly dreary- and even though I felt down yesterday, I realize that what I am feeling and dealing with is far less terrible than what I know others are going through. This is just a minor bump in my road. Life is still good. My kids are healthy and Joel has a job. Those are all very special things to be thankful for.

Here is the address to a blog about the little boy I mentioned in an earlier post. His mom is documenting this journey they are on with cancer and her three year old. Be warned- you may want some tissues. It is very hard to imagine what that family is facing.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Perspective..... it's what it is all about.

Sometimes I wish I could write a blog that no one could read- just to vent.. just to be totally completely honest- without people being able to actually see in writing my troubling thoughts ;) I guess that would be like having a diary with a big lock on it so that only my eyes could see it.

So, completely off the subject, but in the last two days, I found out through facebook that a girl from my hometown got the horrible news this week that her three year old little boy has stage 4 of neuroblastoma, which is a kind of cancer. It is so amazing to me that one day your life can be fine, your children can be seemingly healthy, and then the next day they are headed into surgery while looking down the road filled with treatments of chemo and possibly more surgeries. I can't seem to shake thinking of this family. I can't seem to even begin to imagine putting myself in their shoes. To see my child laying there, feeling helpless to fix it. It is in these times that faith plays a huge part... and also in these times that I am reminded of what really matters in life. Money, things, chasing after that moment of happiness,etc.... those things no longer seem to matter. I waste way too much time with silly things. I am now challenged to love on my kids more.. to appreciate and count my blessings and to thank God for their health. Last night I let Jesslyn paint my toenails and fingernails. They look awful and I am pretty sure that I have more polish on my skin than on my nails. But I do not care. Her eyes lit up when I agree to let her paint them. She took such pleasure in painting them for me. I took ever greater pleasure watching her do it. Why do we lose focus? Why do we get so caught up on the stupid things around us that really don't matter? I hope this is a lesson I don't have to keep learning. I hope it sticks. I hope I love more, forgive easier, and just plain enjoy my kids to the fullest. We take too much for granted. We spend too much time worrying about stupid things instead of counting our blessings.

So here is a short list of things I am thankful for:
*healthy kids
*healthy family.... parents are well! family members are well!
*a roof over our heads
*food in the fridge
*a job for Joel
*the chance to homeschool
*cars that work
*a marriage that is still together
*parents that love me and pray for me
*a knowledge and hunger for God
*mental health- without the help of medication- thank you Jesus!

and the list goes on and on.........

What are you thankful for today?

Friday, August 13, 2010

Meteor Showers

I had heard that last night was the best night of the year to watch some meteor showers. So, my entire family was fast asleep while I headed to the back deck... it was probably still close to 90 degrees at 11pm and the sound of bugs in the trees was almost overwhelming and actually a bit of a constant buzzing that could have easily gotten really annoying... but I persisted and sat there, gazing up into the night sky. Can I just say that I have not gazed at stars for many years. Sure, I look up from time to time but I just sat there, head up.. staring. What an amazing thing. What a gorgeous view. What a great and huge God we serve. It overwhelmed me actually. What a mystery. What wonder. I sat there for a few hours... it was nice (minus the bugs.. which I do believe a bug bit me in the butt). Anyways, as I sat there, I was amazed... in awe.... what greatness... I felt small... but then remembered that even in my smallness- He knows every hair on my head, every thought in my mind, every word before I speak it... every desire of my heart. WOW.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Math books are out .... pencils are scattered along with some crayons on the kitchen table. I am so excited about this school year. I am looking forward to my kids learning... and hopefully having lots of fun in the process. I am so blessed and thankful that I get this opportunity with my girls. I hope I never go a day without being thankful that I have the right to homeschool, a hard working husband who makes it possible, and family that is supportive (well, most of them are.)
I took the kids swimming yesterday. It has been so hot here. In the 100's with humidity. The pool is a perfect place to be and the kids swim like crazy and get worn out quickly.
I also watched the movie, Book of Eli last night. I enjoyed it. Joel fell asleep due to his two days in a row of migraines so I watched it alone- but really liked it. I think a lot can be said about it. First off, I hope I treasure that Book the way he did. It really is full of power and I can't start my day without reading from it. I would like to say that I have the entire thing memorized like he did at the end- haha! I better get reading and memorizing.
So back to the subject of Joel's migraines- he went to the doctor yesterday and he put him on a pill that is preventative and should be taken daily. Come to find out, it is an anti-depressent. That freaked Joel and I out a bit but it obviously can be used for other things than depression. We are hoping it helps but really are leaning towards going with some natural preventative medication- anti-depressents scare me a bit! I have heard too many horror stories :)
Well, now that math is over and my blog is done, it is time to open up the language arts books...
Oh, and if you are reading this Uncle Andy, I want you to know that math is our favorite subject so far! ;)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

some things I get annoyed with:

*people who hum or whistle in public.
*people who try and "make it rich" quick instead of working like the rest of us.
*people who never grow up.
*people who destroy everyone around them.... those kinds of people should go live on an island and leave the rest of us alone. They can destroy the lives of the people who destroy other lives- it's a perfect plan.

Have a nice day ;)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

It is a lazy Saturday morning here. It is now August and the weather is hot and humid. Jesslyn hates it cause her underwear sticks to her butt. That really irritates her. It irritates me also. I am ready for fall. I am ready for football, orange leaves, sweatshirts, apples, ciders, and pumpkins. I am also craving some schedule in our lives. The school books, pencils, crayons, scissors, and glue have been purchased and are sitting on the shelf waiting for us to dive into it. I am ready. I can officially say goodbye to summer with no turning back. I am expecting a great school year... lots of learning... and hopefully lots of fun. Jesslyn will be officially in kindergarten this year and she is super pumped. I hope her excitement never wears off.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Fact 524 about me. I cry when I'm angry and once the tears are turned on- it takes way too long for them to turn off. Ugh.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I need to learn to respond to God instead of reacting to life.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

It is Sunday morning, well actually Sunday afternoon. Another Sunday we did not make it to church. We are still trying to make it back onto East Coast time. I am now sitting here at our counter, listening to a podcast by Gini Smith, Judah Smith's mom. She is preaching out of Proverbs and Psalms... really good stuff.

One of her first points was on Learning by Listening. I love this. This is one thing I am trying to teach to my kids. I want them to listen to the advice of others and to stay away from bad choices because of listening to the wisdom of others.... instead of them just making all kinds of crazy stupid mistakes without seeking advice. I hope they cling to wisdom. I hope they hide the word in their hearts. That they know what it says and that they love what it says.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

I have been back from Longview for two days now. I spent time with family, friends, and got to do a lot of fun things while home. I am so thankful for my family and for friends who love me. I am glad that seeing family does not stress me out and that it is a pleasant and positive thing. I know many families don't even like to be around each other. That is not the case for me. In fact, going home and being around family and friends challenges me to be a better person, to live better and to be a better wife and mom. Might sound strange but it is true. I always feel refreshed when I return.... (aside from the awful time difference). I also feel loved, usually get some great life advice and just appreciate things more. I am so blessed..... not deserving of anything but still am blessed beyond what I can even imagine. Thank you Jesus for life, love, family, guidance, real friendships and for having those in my life who I can seek advice from.... those you love me. Man, I am so thankful.

Here is a pic of my friend Katie and I after we finished our 5K! :) yay! that water tasted so good!

Monday, July 19, 2010

The things I love about coming home to Washington

* visiting the farm. My kids have a blast and it is always good conversation.
* Uncle Bob's lemon cookies. He makes me a batch every time I come!
* having a much needed break from my kids. I love them but breaks are good. My parents love to give me that much needed break.
* I love Longview's original restaurants.. such as: Pancake House, Taco Time, Nips, Cap'n Yoby's, Bruno's and Papa Pete's.... just to name a few.
*I love just hanging out with family. Seeing cousins and having my kids play with my cousins kids.
* I love taking them to my old elementary school to play on the playground. Many memories there.

I am finding that I love this state more than ever and I appreciate it more now than I ever have in the past. I love the mountains, the trees, the weather (for the most part). I love the memories.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Maybe it is because absence makes the heart grow fonder, but I am in awe today of my husband. I am certain we are the perfect team. I am thankful for his discernment and his perspective and also for his support.

Monday, July 12, 2010

I am so behind on posting! So first off, I DID IT! I ran a 5K. RAN! well, maybe more of a jog. but NO WALKING! yay. I can't believe that I did it! What a rush. What an experience and what a feeling! Total strangers cheering for me! I loved it and hope to keep running in races and keep pushing myself to run further!

I have been in Longview for over a week. It has been a blast. We have been busy! The boat, the beach, a baseball game (where Nevaeh got slammed in the head with a fly ball!) She was a brave little trooper and handled it well! It was scary!

I am looking forward to the rest of my time here. It is so nice to have my parents around to help with the girls. The girls love them and they are the best at giving me a break from mommy hood and at pouring into my kids' life! It is a win win thing for sure!

I am currently hanging out with my mom- listening to Driscoll. ;) yes, she is loving him too. :)

I will post more and add some pics towards the end of my trip here. I need to soak up every minute I am here.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Joel and I are at a time in our lives where we are facing some decisions that are pretty important. I am really praying for wisdom that the right and best choice is made. It is not going to be easy.

My sweet husband told me I needed to leave town and visit family. :) haha. Sounds a bit harsh but he was really being sweet. Things have been a bit rough for me lately and he kindly and smartly suggested I get away and go see my family. He knows they are important to me and a nice distraction from things here that I am going through.. these things are nothing big, nothing that needs medication to fix... just a season of my life with some tears and struggles. Really, these seasons are the best usually. Sorrow can be a great thing. Not something that needs to be managed.

All that to say, I am super pumped to see my family.. and for the girls to be with grandparents. I love that my husband sees the importance of this in my life and in Nevaeh and Jesslyn's life. It will be a time of refreshing for me. I time to have friends and family around to help with the girls and to give me a much needed break from my seemingly monotonous life. I can't wait. I am also really hoping for some nice weather to get out on my dad's boat. Fingers crossed!!

My first 5K is coming up too fast!! Just three more days! I can't believe it!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

this is what it's about

I woke up early this morning... planning on running. I kept hitting snooze and really was wanting to just go back to sleep. I opened up facebook and saw that I had a message... after reading it, I felt like getting up, getting on my shoes, and starting my day. It was encouraging to me.... it was just what I needed to read to start my day the right way. It was a note from a guy I went to high school with... and here is what it said....

I've been meaning to message you. I just wanted to let you know that I really appreciate you trying to help me find jesus and god and get into religion. I know it didn't make sense to me back then, but it has now. I have been going to church every sunday for awhile while. And i have been reading the bible religiously. I have found god and it is awesome I cant begin to tell you how he has been so great to me. I finally understand why people can be so enthused about jesus and god and how he works in such great ways. I really want to say thank you so much for thinking of me back then and what you did for me. You were the first person i thought of when god started working in my life and its great. So I hope all is well with you and joel and keep in touch I will be in longview in sept and we should defiantly get together. Thanks again

This is what life is about. This is what encourages me.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Just one more....

"You shut up, you put your pants on, you get a job and maybe one day you can love a woman. It is for men, not for boys."

Oh Driscoll, how I love your straight forward, honest, and raw preaching.

One more fave Driscoll quote!

"There is a strong drift toward the hard theological left. Some
emergent types [want] to recast Jesus as a limp-wrist hippie in a
dress with a lot of product in His hair, who drank decaf and made
pithy Zen statements about life while shopping for the perfect pair of
shoes. In Revelation, Jesus is a prize fighter with a tattoo down His
leg, a sword in His hand and the commitment to make someone bleed.
That is a guy I can worship. I cannot worship the hippie, diaper, halo
Christ because I cannot worship a guy I can beat up. I fear some are
becoming more cultural than Christian, and without a big Jesus who has
authority and hates sin as revealed in the Bible, we will have less
and less Christians, and more and more confused, spiritually
self-righteous blogger critics of Christianity."

-Mark Driscoll, The Panel. "7 Big Questions", Relevant Magazine, issue
24, Relevant Media Group.

some people

Some people will never get it. Some people will only live life to please themselves. Some people never consider others, only themselves. Lord please let me never let me be 'some people'. Better yet, don't let my kids be this way. If so, they will destroy many others in their paths. This is not what I want for my girls.
Joel and I just celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary. I cannot believe that I have been married almost as long as I was in school! CRAZY... and my oldest daughter is about to turn 9!

On another note, my family fun bus, also known as my uncool mom van, has been in the shop for over a week now. It is an easy fix for the most part but the parts were the thing holding us up. I gotta say, not having a car is terrible in many ways, but is also freeing in many ways. I am forced to stay home. Forced to get some much needed things done around the house. I currently have 8 garbage bags and two boxes full of things to be given away. Clean closets and painted rooms is what happens when my car is out of commission! I'll take that.

and soon, very soon... this mom is going to get something better and nicer and hopefully cooler than my mom van! Any suggestions?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

This is a statue that belongs to a church up north from us about 20 miles. It faces the freeway and is known as butter Jesus or touchdown Jesus. It is huge and you can't help but see it while driving past. Well, last night, a huge thunderstorm rolled into town and lightning struck it and it burned totally to the ground. I think it is a bit sad considering how much money was put into it but also find it a bit disturbing anyways. A big image made.. manmade image... what for? A waste of money to me and just something to distract people from the real reason for worship. I guess you can say I almost feel it could be God's sense of humor. It was all the talk this morning on the news.. the story even made the Drudge Report!

On a side note, I took my kids to McDonald's for lunch today. I do not ever really do this but we needed to run some errands... and it is what they picked.... it was awful. The guy at the register totally got told he was on "lockdown" for leaving his register... he looked confused the entire time I ordered... and every mom that walked in the door reminded me of the Kate plus 8 lady. Loud. Bossy... LOUD. Ugh. I wanted to leave right then when the cashier looked at me like I had three heads and made me repeat my order three times. We stayed. The kids liked it and now they have some Shrek toy that will go in the trash later today.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Here are just some random things on my mind:

*I am getting closer to the date of my first 5K. I really am excited for that t-shirt to prove it!

*I often dream about vacations in Sunriver. It is my favorite place to be with my favorite people in the entire world.. my family.

*I am going to be married for ELEVEN years on the 18th of this month. WOW. I love my husband more each day. Seriously.

*I really wish I was growing my own tomatoes. I love home grown tomatoes. There is nothing like it.

*It is humid here. Seems more humid than years and summers past..... I do not like it humid.

*People come and go.. friends come in and out of our lives.... those who are true and who really mean a lot, seem to stay forever. I think those people are few and far between. Nothing bad about that, I think it is just how life goes. Seasons come and seasons go.....

*I feel as though I am constantly changing. My desires and wants change. My thinking changes, my attitude changes.... is this good?

*I really wanted to go white water rafting today...... isn't going to happen.

* We saw the new Karate Kid at the theatre the other night. I loved it. I love those movies where you can feel good about someone not being able to do something, but working hard to accomplish that one thing. Being dedicated. Good triumphing over evil. I love that!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

I am in a funk. Hoping it passes soon. Life seems great and I am blessed, but life also seems hard and monotonous right now. Every day feels the same... and the days seem rather long. My girls seem like they need some new things or some excitement or some change. We are almost done with our schoolwork. A few more math lessons to go and one book of language arts left.... and lots of reading to be done over the summer. Not sure how to shake things up or to make life more exciting at the moment...... I guess this is normal. Life has its season.. this particular one can just be over with as far as I am concerned. I am done with it.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

My kids love this show. As soon as we start watching it they get out the playdough, rolling pins, knives and whatever else they can find to use for good "cake making" tools. Nevaeh is actually pretty great at making flowers- and can make quite a nice little replica of a cake. It is a pretty fun show- makes me want to be Italian and have a fun, loud and chaotic Italian family.

Today seems like the longest day to me. Not sure why. Just a long one. Not good. Not bad. Just long.

Monday, June 7, 2010

lovin this song... and lovin my deck.

I keep playing this song this morning. Love it. Hillsong never disappoints me. I woke up this morning, went for a run, and have been on my deck for over an hour. Letting the girls play while I read and drink my coffee in the warm sun. THIS is the best way to start the day.

And our hope is in
The Saviour’s love
You gave it all

Let all Earth sing
To Christ our King
Be lifted up

For Your name
Shout in all the Earth
Great above our lives
Light of our salvation

Nations rise
Sing of all You are
Holy is Your name
Lifted high forever

For Your name
Shout in all the Earth
Great above our lives
Light of our salvation

Nations rise
Sing of all You are
Holy is Your name
Lifted high forever

Saturday, June 5, 2010

I'm tired..... I'm weary. I'm in need of family around. I'm feeling very isolated. Weary- that's the perfect description. Things are bothering me but there's nothing I can do to change it. I just have to deal and make the most of it. I'm afraid I'll never be able to do that. I'm trying but it's making me weary. Exhausted and emotional. I hate being emotional. This is why I blog. It helps. For a minute, anyways.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

a season for change... ?

I feel like change is coming... and I hope it is. Well, if it is the change I want ;) no really, I really am just ready for something new and different. Not totally certain what that means.... but I feel it.

I am starting to plan Nevaeh's ninth birthday party. I don't really like planning these things... at all. Should be easy though- just three friends staying the night... and watching the new Toy Story in the theatre! Should be fun. Still lots to do to get ready!

I woke up this morning and went for my run.... and now it is a little after ten and I feel like I sure could use a nap!!

Monday, May 31, 2010

We went to the Independence, KY Memorial Day parade today. It was great. The kids got candy and I got to get all emotional about those who served or do serve our country to keep us safe. I found myself fighting tears the entire time...... so thankful... so so thankful for those who serve and have served. What an amazing thing. I am so thankful my family taught be to respect this country and this day... to have it really truly mean something to me. It truly does. My grandma Betty loved America, the flag, and all the holidays that bring recognition to it. I want my girls to love this country and to love freedom. Sometimes it is hard to remember or to imagine what life would be like if these brave men and women had not done what they have done for us.
Summer holidays depress me.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I have learned a lot about myself in the past few days. I hate looking back on things and situations and feeling like I should have known better or should have guarded myself better.... but I do know that from these times, much can be learned. I learned what true friendship really is and should be. I have learned how I am a good friend and also how I am an awful friend. I need to love people more. Especially those people who are not really on the top of my list to try and love. I want friendships that are true. Not shallow. I want to use wisdom in what I say. I have felt this week the pain of looking from the outside in. Wanting to be a part of something but knowing there is no way I can or ever really truly will be a part. I now know how many others feel. None of this may makes sense to you who are reading this, but it makes perfect sense to me. I have been a bit of a fool. I hate that. It makes me angry. Now I need to learn from this. I am in the process of learning those lessons but have been more to walk through.

Did I mention how badly I am ready to move? :)

Friday, May 28, 2010

I am so ready for change. SO ready.

I am currently waiting for dinner to be done. Trying two new recipes. Pineapple salsa chicken and coconut mango rice. The rice smells amazing.. I hope it tastes as good as it smells.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I am totally mad at myself for not getting up to run this morning. Joel woke me up but it was still dark outside and I think I said to him- "I don't have any reflectors to wear." ummm.... what?!

Oh well, I will work out with Jillian- for them millionth time.

Man, these summer days sure make me miss my family. I dream every day of Sunriver and of being on my dad's boat on Mayfield Lake.... too bad this hot KY weather is not in Longview right now... Although if it was, I would really be wishing I was there. I am a broken record about this..... but no apologies here.

The girls and I finished schoolwork early yesterday and I told them they could spend the afternoon in the sprinkler- I was sitting out on our top deck and they were down below. I heard many laughs and loud giggles which was fun to listen to... but then I hear Jesslyn say she has to go potty- well, two seconds later I see her spreading her legs by the side of the house, peeing. With her swimming suit on and everything.... oh well, at least she did not track wet grass into my house. :) and she took a bath last night so no worries.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


SO... I have been running! Joel has been waking me up in the early hours of the morning and I have been running! I love it. Well, it is a love hate thing but it does feel oh so painfully good. I tracked how far I have actually been going and I am going 2.2 miles already! I can hardly believe it! I hope to add a little each time... and to really get my endurance up. I am happy that I can do it. I feel strong!

On another note, I think summer is officially here. High 80's all week.. and not much rain in sight anymore. We have had a lot of it this Spring.. but some good storms too so I will not complain. I don't mind the heat but wish we had a boat and a nice cool lake. That would make it a bit more exciting.

Friday, May 21, 2010

I am feeling an overwhelming sense of thankfulness and love today. My kids have been challenging today but I remain thankful for them and am amazed at how awesome being a mom and wife really is. I really want to love my husband and kids in a way that cannot be shaken or broken. It is sometimes easier than others but I really am trying. I have so much to be thankful for. So much.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

another rainy day....

I am proud to say, that I ran yesterday... not just to the mailbox... but on an actually run.. a run where my heart was pumping fast, my armpits were sweaty and smelly.. and my face was bright red. It was amazing. It was a misty rainy morning. It felt great. I am not exactly how far I ran, but I do know that my legs are sore this morning... so it must have been somewhat of a workout, right? I really have always wanted to be a runner (insert hysterical laughs here)..... but I seriously do. I don't have the chance to run often, but am now going to take every chance I can get.

On another note- I am one proud mama! Nevaeh was chosen by her gymnastics teacher to move up into a more advance class that meets twice a week. She has kind of hit a wall in her current class and needs more challenging practices... we are still deciding if this is the route we want to take- it is a big commitment. We shall see.

My last post I wrote was about Ecclesiastes. I am now listening to the podcast of this book and already know I am going to learn a lot... I am feeling very much like this--- everything is meaningless.. everything is in vain. Every generation thinks they are the smart one to fix things... to fix all the world's problems. Everything has been tried before. There is no progression... it is all the same. Life is frustrating, hard, and is a crazy maddening circle where nothing is ever perfect and nothing is ever done. So, now that I have depressed you....................

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Sorrow is better? What?!

Sorrow is better than laughter, for by sadness of face the heart is made glad.
Ecclesiastes 7:3

Thinking a lot about this verse lately. I believe it to be true. My footnotes say - Bereavement, while painful, is a more effective prod to growth in spiritual wisdom and maturity than the elation one feels over a newborn child.- what a statement. Looking back on my life, I understand this completely. Those times that are tough, sad, and awful, are usually the times in our lives that we grow and are stretched the most. I am actually thankful for those times. Thankful to know that sorrow is actually better than a discontented heart. I hope and pray that even when life is hard or things really stink- that my sorrow helps me become better- and that my heart is never discontent.

I actually really love the book of Ecclesiastes. Lots of great stuff in there.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Friiiiday..... doesn't mean anything to us.

I am tired this morning. Very tired. So tired my eyes hurt. I went to bed angry last night (which I try hard not to ever do) but sometimes it just happens. Jesslyn had crawled in bed with me this morning and fell back asleep and was giggling in her sleep. That's a good way to wake up happy. I love it when she does that. It makes me wonder what she was giggling about. What does that child NOT have to giggle about?! :)

So right now the kids are slowly waking up and I am drinking a cup of coffee that is not hot enough. Time to pull an Edna (my mom) and put in the microwave for a bit! The day is just average... going to do some schoolwork then head to gymnastics. That is my alone time.. my time to sit and read.

I miss my family and would like a vacation. Thanks.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Angry.... and OVER it.

I am angry and when I am angry I blog.... stupid, I know. Some things just make me incredibly angry... I was having a great day.. and then SMACK.. once again, the one thing that really angers me happens again. UGH. I don't accept this.. it will not just be my way of life. Sorry. No way. No how. I am over it!


I love the book of Proverbs. I love that it is so practical. It is applicable. It is full of good advice.... I also think it is so strange how often the adulterous woman is mentioned. The strong warning to stay away from her.. how she will destroy your life. It is mentioned throughout this book... and from seeing the destruction this causes first hand, I can understand its importance in scripture. It really does cause massive amounts of destruction. I am thankful for this strong warning.... Proverbs 5:6 says "she does not ponder the path of life; her ways wander, and she does not know it." One who makes these choices clearly does not look ahead, they do not care about how it may effect their children or their spouses or anyone. It shows the complete selfishness and lack of looking ahead.

Also so much to learn about being a wife... and how to make a home happy. Lots to be learned. Lots of lessons to take away from here.

Proverbs 17:12 Let man meet a she-bear robbed of her cubs rather that a a fool in his folly.
Wow. Strong statement.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The day is nearing the end, kids are fed and relaxing with a cartoon, and I am sitting out on my deck. Listening to some music.... thinking about the west coast. There is nothing like the west coast. I thought a lot about Newport Beach, CA. This is where Joel and I honeymooned. I would give anything right now to take another trip there with him, now after almost 11 years of marriage. Now that we have marriage mostly figured out, and now that life just gets better and better.... it would be a perfect trip.

Jesslyn just had a bug on her shirt. Instead of wiping it away, she spit on it. Nice.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Hillsong - With Everything - With Subtitles/Lyrics

love this song.....

Open our eyes
To see the things that make Your heart cry
To be the church that You would desire
Your light to be seen

Verse 2:
Break down our pride
And all the walls we’ve built up inside
Our earthly crowns and all our desires
We lay at Your feet

Let hope rise
And darkness tremble
In Your holy light
That every eye will see
Jesus our God
Great and mighty to be praised

Verse 3:
God of all days
Glorious in all of Your ways
Oh the majesty the wonder and grace
In the light of Your Name

With everything
With everything
We will shout for Your glory
With everything
With everything
We will shout forth Your praise

Chorus 2:
Our hearts they cry
Be glorified
Be lifted high above all names
For You our King
With everything
We will shout forth Your praise

I posted the video too.... and have had it on repeat all morning.

Friday, April 30, 2010

I think every post of mine seems to be random thoughts

I hate that I worry.. and I really hate that I worry about stupid things. Things that I cannot control. Things that are not even worth worrying about. I need to work on this.

I read this verse the other day..... and have never noticed it before. I always read a Proverb a day but for some reason this verse has never stuck out to me like it did the other day.

Evil men do not understand justice,
but those who seek the LORD understand it fully.

I love justice (to a fault) ... and I am trying to work on not getting so angry when things don't seem to go in the way I believe that it should. I know it is not good for me to hold onto anger about these things.. some of the things probably shouldn't even get me as angry as they do.... I really am trying to work on this. All that to say, I love this verse.... not sure why. I just do.

Jesslyn got her ears pierced yesterday. She did not flinch, move, cry, or even make a peep. She is thrilled with them... they are pink little flowers... and the first thing she did this morning was clean them. She is one happy little girl.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Here is Nevaeh telling Mr Craig how to draw a daisy!

And so it begins.......

Starting the color on the daisy.

The end..... well, with a little redness and swelling.

SO- I did it. I am officially inked. I have been thinking about this for over a year and after two cancelled appointments, I finally did it. I am really happy with it... I am not planning on any more.. seriously..... once I got my nose pierced my dad said, "oh great! Now you will have a back full of tattoos!" I see his logic but promise that won't happen, even if for the simple reason that there is too much backfat back there anyways!! :)
So, I am 33 and happily married and love being a mom... but still hated having to tell my parents. They are not fans. In fact, my mom said, "well, I hate tattoos and always will, but I love you and always will". I know they do not like them and I honestly found it hard to do this when I knew they would not like it, but I also know that they will still love me and that it will all be okay! My parents are the greatest! They are thankful this was not a result of a drunken Friday night.. but a decision I made as a mature adult.

And yes, my kids went with me! Some may find this odd, but if you knew the shop and the tattoo artist, you would bring your kids too. He loves my kids, and they had so much fun there. They were little angels and Nevaeh kept telling me not to run away cause she knew I was nervous and anxious. We called it our homeschool field trip to the tattoo shop.

In case you can't see, it says "Laugh at the days to come" This came from Proverbs 31:25 which says She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Joel and I just recently signed up for Netflix... Nine bucks a month, one disc at a time, but tons of movies and shows we can watch straight from our computer at any time... and soon we will be able to get all the movies from using our Wii. I know this has been around for years- and why we never signed up sooner- I will never know. This is going to save us a ton of money and is so great! I watched Julie and Julia last night... which I loved. The kids can also watch all kinds of things. No more buying movies from our cable at six bucks a shot! Yay for great movies and yay for saving money!

Ya know, I just have to say, I am so sick and tired of politics. Here's the deal- know what you believe and why. Don't just hate everything George W did and hate whatever Hannity says... don't just listen to Olbermann and hate what he says or love everything Nancy Pelosi does... no what you believe and be educated. I am tired of people just jumping on a side- sticking to it cause they don't know what else to do... then those people judge the other side for the same things they do, just in support of the opposite side. It is so incredibly stupid. I have no idea if that made sense but it made sense to me and this is my blog so whatever.

On another note, my little Jesslyn is wearing my out. I can hardly put into words how challenging parenting has been with her lately. She wants her way.. all the time... and acts like she is two if she does not get it... and then I have to do the whole "life is not fair and over my dead body will you grow up to be a selfish adult who doesn't think of others and throws a fit when you do not get your way".. believe it or not I know many adults that way. Sad. I will not give up though. I will win this fight. I am determined to win. I know she can be sweet deep inside.... just got to get through all the ugliness first. You would think she would have learned this by now. Nope.

Well, it is a rainy day here in Kentucky... hoping to get lots of school work done with the kiddos. Perfect day for lots of math and reading.. although I am sure my girls would argue against that.

If you like lots of movies and want to save money.... go with Netflix!!!!!!!