Monday, August 31, 2009


So at about 3 months Reagan started sleeping through the night! I was so glad cause this girl was up sometimes every hour hungry!

So then at about 7 months she was able to roll over on to her belly in the crib. Now most people say their babies slept better on their bellies. This is not the case with Reagan.

For the last 2 months she has been waking up multiple times in the night. Once when she rolls over and other times cause she can't get comfortable with her head position.

I have tried to let her cry through it and sometimes she does. It is so hard to just let her cry. Other times she will cry for 30 minutes. So I go and get her (immediately stops crying when I pick her up) and rock her back to sleep. And then she usually wakes up for good about 8 or 8:30 am.

So last night I let her cry through it at 1:30am and then got up with her at 5:30. She went back to sleep and to my excitement slept til 9:30!!! She got 11 1/2 hours of sleep! And I got about 8!

My concern is more for her than it is for my own sleeping habits. I know she needs her rest so she can be healthy and develop properly! So tonight I am praying that she will sleep through the night!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009


So last week we were having some technical difficulties and I wasn't able to post. This week...well, let's just say this is going to be short and sweet because I may need to make a run to the bathroom at any minute...that's how the last day and a half has been. (sigh)

So...onto my topic...Obsessions. I don't get it really. What is so awesome about video games? I've decided that my husband, Scott, is seriously obsessed with playing video games. And I just don't get it. I mean, I can understand playing them as a young boy up through college maybe, but I just find it so interesting that he still loves to play....and it's not just him either....there are at least a handful of guys who will play online with him. (thank you XBOX live) The boy would play for hours on end if I let him too. Lately he's been getting in some really good playing time because I have been completely worn out, will come home from work, and crash in bed...and then of course there are the days when I'm horribly sick and not even getting out of bed except to go to the bathroom. I sure hope he's enjoying this time of game playing because once Baby O comes, well, I have a feeling it's going to be a different story. Can anyone else relate?


Friday, August 28, 2009


I made a quick trip into the CVS near my house last week to buy two ridiculously overpriced Sprites on my way home. As I grabbed them out of the cooler by the register and stepped into line, I thought I saw the guy checking out in front of me palm a little pill keeper keychain. I stood there for a moment second guessing myself as he walked out the front door and got into the passenger side of the gleaming white Mercedes that was illegally parked in the handicapped spot closest to the door. I had noticed the car there as I walked in, taking in the shiny, entitled-looking, twenty something driver and thinking the scene was a little sketchy at the time.

My nickname at work is "Worst Case Scenario Mary" because my brain will automatically generate the worst possible outcome for any given scenario. We laugh about it, and it's actually beneficial to my job, but in the rest of life it's more than a little taxing mentally. I was definitely living up to the nickname as I quickly scanned the register area through the glass doors before walking in, just to make sure a holdup wasn't in progress. Everything passed my mental checklist so I went on about my business. I've actually been known to just turn around and leave a gas station, store, whatever, if I got a bad vibe. I can't turn the radar off, so sometimes I just have to listen to it.

After the guy walked out, my mind was reeling with "what to do" as I tried to intelligently answer the checker's questions about my day and my CVS card. My brain was on overload and when he asked if I wanted a bag I looked at him blankly, paused, and then said "Oh...bag. Yes. Bag." It was a very intelligent moment. He probably thought I was high. I finally shook off the fog and I asked him if the guy in front of me had paid for one of the keychains on the counter, which of course, he hadn't. I told him that I had seen him take one and offered to pay for it for him - I felt like that was the least I could do since I stood there dumbly and watched it all happen. The checker thanked me and said that wasn't necessary. He said that unfortunately that type of thing was built into cost and he'd be sure to report it as a loss. I felt terrible though and wished I had said something. It happened really quickly, and I just totally froze in the moment. I know it was just a $4.99 keychain, but stuff like that fires me up. I mean, who are you to take something that isn't yours and walk out like you're a bad-A? And on top of that, maybe my Sprite wouldn't cost so much if people stopped stealing them.

I was watching some reality show about female policewomen later on that evening and they busted a guy for selling $1600 of crack. He claimed he didn't do it, until they told him the guy he'd just made the sale to was an undercover cop and it was all on tape. As they put him in the car the policewoman turned to him and said "That's what happens when you get cocky", and I immediately replied to the TV, "No, that's what happens when you sell crack, moron". But thinking about it today, there's some truth to the cocky thing. You get away with stealing $4.99 keychains long enough and I imagine you move on to bigger things, and eventually you probably do get caught because you were cocky enough to think you're that good. It's a safe bet that $1600 of crack was not that guy's first sale.

So what would you have done in my position? Would you call the guy out in front of a line of people when you only had a split second to determine what was happening? Now I wish I had, but hindsight is always a little easier. I'm interested to hear some feedback on this one.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

staying home

So, this week has been kind of different for me because all of my teacher friends started back to work this week and for the first time in 6 years of working in education I am staying home. My hubby and I have have always known I would stay home when we had kids, so this is a very intentional decision and really, I have been so grateful for the opportunity to stay home with my baby- I love it!
It is funny, though- there are so many misconceptions about being a "stay at home" one being, that you get so much time to relax and rest because you are home...yeah, right! That couldn't be farther from the truth- in fact, I feel like I work harder in this job than I did as a Kindergarten teacher. I feel like I am constantly on the go with taking care of Allie and trying to help her with her development, also, working in my house and running errands keeps me busy, too.
I am realizing it is a thankless job that doesn't get sick days, promotions or pay raises- however, it does have its intrinsic values that come at the most random for those priceless moments I am so thankful!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

An Acquired Taste?

Does anyone actually like beer the first time they try it?  I always hear people saying, "It's an acquired taste."  But what's the point if you have to acquire a taste for it?!  I have never liked the taste of beer.... but that's just me.  But can anyone tell me why you would want to acquire a taste for it?  Just curious!  :)  I know many people have their reasons (my husband included), but we were discussing it today in the car... so I thought I would ask you.

Monday, August 24, 2009


So I have blogged about my daughter and my dogs so I will blog about the most important person in my life, my husband John!

This December we will have been married 9 years! It is hard to believe we have been married that long! I love him more and more everyday! We met at Dallas Baptist University during my Junior year. We dated for 1 1/2 years and got married 2 weeks after I graduated.

John is hilarious! One of the many things that attracted me to him! He has such a quick wit about him. He keeps me laughing all the time.

John loves, cares and provides for our family! He tries to put our needs before his own.

I am blessed to have a husband that truly loves the Lord and has a deep passion for God's Word! We have served together at 3 churches and currently are serving at FBC Maryville! He has 2 Master degrees from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. This week he began his PhD
from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. I am so very proud of him for his accomplishments!

I am so thankful that he works hard and allows me to stay home with our daughter! He is an amazing father and it is so neat to see him in this new role! Reagan's face lights up whenever John walks through the door!

I thank God everyday for my wonderful husband!

I love you John!!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

A Friday Mystery

To give you a little background, my boss is very anal-retentive and also fairly self-righteous. Not always the easiest combo to deal with, as I'm sure you can imagine. Well he just happened to run out of gas on a very busy highway on his way home from work yesterday. This is completely uncharacteristic of him. As he was telling me the story this morning I had a good laugh, and then I commented on how priceless it would have been if one of his employees had driven by to see this spectacle. This office runs on mockery and that story could easily live 10 years around here.

And that’s where this gets good – one of his employees actually did drive by. He drove by, saw the President of the company walking down the side of the highway, and just kept on driving. Even better still – this employee actually called my boss (after passing him) to ask if he was having some car trouble. When he explained that he had run out of gas, the employee said something to the effect of “Wow that stinks, see you tomorrow.” While this is somewhat hilarious, it’s also pretty ballsy, and not very nice. I mean who hasn’t daydreamed of that perfect opportunity to stick it to ‘the man’…but how many people would actually do that when it came down to reality? Am I just na├»ve?

So the mystery is that my boss won’t tell me who it was. He gave me a hint – because he enjoys holding things over my head – but it wasn’t too helpful. Whoever it was told him they were on their way to "have a bite or lay down on the couch”. Wow. Nothing like taking that extra jab. As a clue though, that didn’t do much for me. I definitely don’t know that much about the post-workday habits of everyone around the office. I assume word will travel eventually, but I just can’t imagine which of my co-workers would actually do that.

This whole thing reminds me of a moment I shared with my lovely Beth back in high school. We had the same lunch period our senior year, and we would hop in Beth’s car most days and exercise our oh-so-grown-up off campus lunch privileges. I’ve always preferred to blend into the crowd, so the day that Beth’s little car sputtered to a crawl directly in front of the school as dozens of our classmates drove by, I died a thousand deaths. And oh was I mad! I clearly remember yelling “Who runs out of gas???” What a mean girl. Embarrassment has always made me a wee bit irrational. The good news is that the last time this story came up in conversation I discovered that Beth didn’t even remember it. That’s probably for the best…it clearly wasn’t one of my finer moments. I have yet to run out of gas myself, but the day I do, Beth gets dibs on mocking me!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Addicted to pregnancy?

I was watching the Today show on Tuesday and there was a lead in on a story that asked, "Are some women addicted to being pregnant?"
Something about that statement has stuck with me the past few days...partly because of the negative vibe the question seems to send out, and also just the idea of an addiction to being pregnant-huh?
My first thought is, well, what does that really mean? That you like having children...what a concept???? An important one that if there weren't enough people open to that concept we might not be here.
That's all I have for today- short and sweet! See you next Thursday...

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Random Blog of Mini Blogs

This may be my most scattered one yet...

"The Line" on Facebook - so do you ever have a comment or status that you would like to put on facebook but just can't bring yourself to do it?  Maybe because the "friends" who knew you in first grade wouldn't necessarily 'get' your sarcasm or humor... or because your mom or your husband's cousin's brother might see it?  Please tell me if you have never had this thought, because I'm betting we all have.  I say we just forget it all and post whatever we think... within reason.... see, back to "the line."  Oh well.

Cutest kid - Is there anyone out there who doesn't think their own child is the cutest kid in the universe?  Better yet, is there anyone out there who thinks they have an... UGLY kid???  You hear so many parents talking about their child being the most beautiful, etc., but have you ever heard anyone say their child is ugly?  Or that your child is cuter than their child?  Now I don't claim to have the most beautiful children in the world or anything, but they are pretty darn cute.  I just remember when Aidan (my first) was born and we thought he was the most beautiful thing we had ever seen.  And then we looked back at his newborn pictures a couple of years later.  At the time of his birth, we really did think he was the most beautiful thing we had ever seen.  But then when we looked back, he really did just look like one of those ugly, squishy newborns.  He is a very handsome boy now, but will we look back in a couple of years and go, "Eesh??  What were we thinking?"  I don't think so!  But I have a question for some of you older moms (including mine), and be honest!  Even through those awkward years, will I still think my children are so beautiful??!!

What's your number?  - So do you have a number in your head that you just can't stand if your e-mail account reaches?  Mine's 100.  Before children, I was a very organized person.  I still am quite organized, but there are certain things that have lesser priority than they once did.  So my e-mail account falls into this category.  I can barely keep up, and I don't even get that many e-mails.  I read them all... it just may take me a while to respond, especially if the response requires any thought and more than a sentence or two.  And if it's a really long forward or video... well, that may just never happen.  It's at 93 right now, and I really need to spend some time going through it.  It just really irks me when it hits that 100 mark.  Used to, it probably would have bugged me just as much when it hit 10.  Oh, and facebook really complicates things, because then I get a message in TWO places - my facebook inbox AND my e-mail.  And that I really can't keep up with.  So what's your number?  Or am I the only weird one with a number?  :)

Animal Print - What is your favorite?  Or do you like any of them?  I think my favorite is giraffe print, and then next in line would probably be zebra print.  However, you will probably never find anything considered decoration in my home to be of any animal print.  Some people, however, pull this off very well.  So are you an animal print person or not?  I found the cutest little giraffe print dress for Emerson on clearance at Kohl's the other day.  I've really been wanting one for myself, and Staci was so kind to call and tell me there is now one at Target.  I'll have to check that out.  And now I might not have to squeeze into Emerson's Size 4T dress next Spring.  Lucky me!

Shut the front door!!

Since I've been home on maternity leave, I have tried not to sit around watching TV all day, and I think I've been generally successful. But one show I have started watching pretty much every day is "What Not to Wear." Stacy and Clinton are smart and funny (a little mean sometimes, but they're just trying to help), and the people always feel at least a little (and usually a lot) better about themselves at the end. I'm not one to think that a person's looks or clothes is an indication of their value or intelligence or whatever, but you can't deny that first impressions are important; plus a great new haircut or outfit can lift the spirits, and when you feel good about yourself, it's contagious! Anyway, it cracks me up to see what some people consider age-appropriate, professional, flattering, etc. It also makes me very curious about what Stacy and Clinton would think about the contents of my closet - maybe I'm just as delusional!! Can you imagine having all of your clothes tossed out and starting completely over? Sure, $5000 seems like (and is) a lot of money, but I think in reality it would be very difficult to purchase sufficient clothes and shoes for every need or occasion with that amount, especially if you are buying quality garments. I think I would be one of those people who would struggle to spend all that money – I hardly ever buy anything that isn’t on clearance!! Overall, I find the show inspiring; it actually makes me think a * little * harder when I get dressed. I’m still not wearing dresses and kitten heels to run out to the grocery store or anything, but I do try to step up my game every once in a while. So, thanks WNTW! Hopefully I won’t ever be nominated to be on your show, but keep up the good work!

p.s. "Shut the front door" is what Stacy says when somebody puts together a great outfit and looks fabulous. It makes me laugh :)

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Annoyance that is Walmart...

Ok so in an earlier blog post Amelia talked about Walmart vs. Target. Now I am definitely a Target person, but in Illinois we have no Super Targets, which is where I used to get my groceries when we lived in Texas. I cannot stand Walmart, but to grocery shop I really don't have much of a choice. Case in point: Last week I went to Walmart to get groceries for the week. Of course I went during the day and had Reagan with me. So I got all my groceries and proceeded to the checkout counters. Now, Walmart has like 50 checkout lanes. So why in the world would only 2 lanes be open and at the complete otherside of the store. Why I ask when there are at least 10 people with a cart full each in each of the 2 lanes. It isn't because they don't have enough employees working. Since there are about 5 or 6 just standing at the front of the store talking and laughing. So here I am with my already fussy baby waiting behind all these other people. You would think a manager would notice that the lines are long and open another one. But no the manager just walks by. And of course I am in the lane where the checkout girl wants to have lengthy conversations with each person and has to get help from a manager for something. So I spent longer in the checkout line then I did getting my groceries. This would never happen at Target. If the lines get too long at Target they always open up another lane. Oh Super Target please come to Illinois!!!!!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Oh Snap...I'm going to be a Mom!

Yep! You read it right. This little blogger is going to be a mommy. I still can't believe it. Scott and I have known for about a month and decided to just tell immediate family and some close friends at first. I had my first appointment earlier in the week and they officially confirmed what I already knew, though nothing really prepared me for seeing my sweet baby on the monitor and hearing his/her heartbeat. That was a bit overwhelming! Scott sent me a text at one point and asked, "so, are we pregnant?" I was like, "um, yeah." I think he needed a doctor to confirm for him before he really got excited. Then he asked me, "twins?" And why would he be asking me that...well the entire week/weekend before my appointment I was ridiculously sick and supposedly when you're really sick it means you may be having more than one baby (who knows how accurate that is, but that's what we read). Honestly, I've never been so sick in my entire life(thus my reason for not blogging last weekend) was all stinking day...nothing wanted to stay was HORRIBLE! I had already decided we were just having one kid by that point because if I had to go through this type of 'morning' sickness every time I would die. Maybe not really, but it sure felt like it. Fortunately things started looking up this week, and I haven't spent near as much time with the porcelain devil as I had the week before. THANK YOU GOD! I still got some nausea drugs from the good doctor though, just in case. So, anyways, Scott and I are really excited about Baby O (the little one's nickname for now) and can't wait to find out the sex. So far everything is looking good, and I'll do my best to keep you posted as things progress. We would appreciate your prayers during this exciting time in our lives.

Momma O : )

Friday, August 14, 2009


I don't know about you, but I could use a little mindless fun today. There is some serious awesomeness going on over at Threadcakes (*. If you're not familiar, Threadless is a website that sells t-shirts (some really fun, some really strange, there's a little of everything). Threadcakes is a competition website set up by Threadless, and the idea is to create a cake based on a Threadless t-shirt. There are literally thousands of entries, but I have to show you some of my favorites from what I've seen so far:

You should really go check out the rest, especially if you're looking to kill a little time online. But be warned, if you like this kind of stuff you'll totally get sucked in.

* Sorry for the link issues. I'm trying to work out some kinks and I haven't been able to get them to post right, even after the tutorial my dear sister so kindly gave me.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Thirty Flirty and Thriving...

It seems like most of my friends these days have turned 30 or are about to...and the reactions to this turning point in their lives has been somewhat mixed...some have been excited, glad, sad, indifferent, in denial, etc...
So, I was thinking about how my year being 30 has been for me. I have LOVED being 30 and have felt such a great confidence in knowing who I am and who I am not. It is a beautiful thing to have lived a little life and see the bits of wisdom worth hanging on to from those experiences.
Friendship has been sweeter. I have found in my friendships -that God has been so amazing to bless me with- that there is more security in the friendships and not a sense of competition or chaos. I have have enjoyed the differences and strengths of my friends and have been enriched because of them. It has been a beautiful thing!
Also, walking with the Lord has been even more precious- because I have been able to see God show me over and over again how trustworthy HE is and when trial comes...fear is not my first reaction, but yet trust and KNOWING God is working out the details is what comes to mind. I would be far fetched to even be implying that I have "arrived" and have got it all together...far from it, but I think it is just knowing who I can rely (God) and how to take direction and wisdom from Him in my decisions. I'm not sure what the future holds, but I KNOW it is nothing outside the range of God's grace and power...
I read this scripture, the other day and I think it sums up what I am trying to say perfectly..."But we have this treasure(God's power) in jars of clay(Us) to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us." II Cor 4:7
Hope your 30's are flirty and thriving!!

Love- Stace

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Whirlwind.  That's what the past 5 days have been.  Nicole (Nikki) was one of the girls in a youth life group that I led a few years back.  She recently graduated from OU (I don't hold that against her!) and got engaged.  The wedding was this past Saturday, and she had asked Emerson to be her flower girl!  So on Friday afternoon, we went to the chapel to rehearse.  Emerson did a great job.  She threw those flowers up high, and we had no concerns about the next day.  We enjoyed a lovely dinner with Craig and Nikki's family and friends.  I have to say that I am so impressed with Craig and Nikki in their relationship.  They vowed to one another not only to stay pure until they were married but also to never wake up in the same bed.  They stood strong through temptation, and I am so proud of them for honoring one another and the Lord in their relationship.  I'm sure they are having LOTS of fun on their honeymoon now!  :)  Saturday also happened to be Emerson's third birthday, so what a big day it was.  When we got to the chapel, she just stood in the mirror in her pretty dress singing, "I'm not 2 anymore!" over and over again.  She got a little teary as I left the bridal suite to take my seat, but she still did a great job throwing her flowers.  And then the girl danced ALL NIGHT.  The ring bearer was 7, and he was such a little cutie.  He followed her around that dance floor, and he helped her up every single time she fell down.  I tried to help her up once, and she shook her head at me and then put her hands out toward Nick for him to help her!  He was quite the dancer, too.  I wish Aidan would have gotten out there to show off his moves, but he was done with being at the wedding after he finally got to have cake.  The wedding was beautiful, and we were so excited to celebrate with Craig and Nikki.  Here's a video of Emerson and Nick dancing.  I couldn't narrow it down any more than this, but be sure and watch toward the end.  As they got warmed up, they really got their groove on.  And notice how he tries to spin her several times, and she just doesn't do it!
We're working on how to say, "I'm three!"  This is not the way we taught her!  :)

So then came Sunday.  We rushed around all morning cleaning up for the next round of celebrations.  We set up the bounce house in the living room and had a great time celebrating Emerson!  My niece and nephew (Caitlyn and Teddy) were able to stay for a couple of nights with Chris' parents, so we had a great time with them!

Our adventure for Monday included taking the TRE (commuter train) to Ft. Worth.  We walked from the train stop over to the Ft. Worth Water Gardens.  From there, we walked a few blocks to catch a bus to the Stockyards.  We were trying to make it in time for the cattle drive they do daily at 4:00, but we missed it by just a few minutes.  The city bus ride was... interesting.  After waiting for a while at the bus stop in the heat, we were looking forward to going in to a few shops at the Stockyards to enjoy the air conditioning, but wouldn't you know it, the power was out!  So we killed time in the shade, and the kids (Teddy, Caitlyn, Aidan, and Emerson) took turns pushing each other around on the little carousel horses.  They are great at entertaining themselves!  Eventually, Chris brought his parents and Ivy to pick us up, and then we all headed to Joe T's for dinner.  What a great way to top off the day!  

On Tuesday, we went to the Dallas Arboretum, because it's only one dollar to get in during the month of August.  If you haven't been over there, I highly recommend it.  They have a storybook playhouse exhibit right now where people have built 10-15 different playhouses based on storybooks for a competition.  Those were really neat, and the kids enjoyed playing in them, but they REALLY enjoyed Texas Town.  This is an area at the back of the gardens that has a bunch of old, kid-sized log cabins.  They are stocked with bedding, dishes, etc., and the kids (ranging from Caitlyn - almost 11 - to Ivy - 16 months) had an absolute blast.  I wish we could have stayed all day, but then I surely would have melted into a puddle.  Oh, they also have a beautiful fountain area with these huge frogs squirting water.  Well, I would say bring your swimsuits if you go, because the kids wanted to get in there so badly.... and I just had to let them.  At least I could strip Ivy down to her diaper, but seemed a little less appropriate for the older ones.  Teddy, Aidan, and Emerson pretty much soaked their clothes, but it was totally worth it.
The kids were sad to see their grandparents and cousins head home, but I think they were too exhausted to put up much of a protest.  We had a great time with everyone over the past few days, and I'll probably be in my bed at 9:00 every night for the next few days to recover! 

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Summertime...and the living ain't so easy

I have lived in Texas all my life, so technically I should be accustomed to the insanely hot, usually humid weather that characterizes the months of April through October in the state. Somehow, though, every summer it takes me by surprise. And it’s not just me – it’s like a rite of passage for lifelong Texans to commiserate about the heat as though it’s something new.

Last summer I decided I was 1) not going to complain about the heat and 2) not let it keep me from doing things that require going outside. I did pretty well, I think. I can’t say I never complained, but I tried. And I kept up my walking/jogging routine, getting out in the blazing sun (slathered in plenty of sunscreen, of course) 3-4 times a week after work. I admit I didn’t actively seek out outdoor activities to partake in, but when it was necessary, I just accepted the fact that I would sweat and be somewhat uncomfortable and moved on.

This summer is different. First, by the time it started getting hot (a bit later than usual this year), I was about 6 months pregnant. At first I didn’t let this stop me from walking (having put the jogging on hold); I’ve read that pregnant women are actually better able to regulate their body temperature than usual, so I didn't worry too much about the heat. Then I was put on bed rest due to early labor symptoms in my 34th week and didn’t leave the house for 10 days. As wonderful as this mandatory relaxation sounds, it’s actually somewhat draining. When I got the all clear to move around again, it didn’t take much to wear me out, so extended time in the summer heat wasn’t at the top of my to-do list. About a week after that I started having slight blood pressure issues and was advised to continue taking it easy. So, no more brisk, energizing walks for me! Which means that now that I’m not pregnant anymore, not only do I feel like I’m back at square one fitness-wise, but I have absolutely no tolerance for the heat…the relentless, cloying, oppressive heat. Adam and I took a 30-minute walk on Sunday afternoon and I felt like my eyes were melting. Awesome!

The worst part is that being on maternity leave gives me a good amount of free time that I could be spending outdoors (one of the things I hate most about my job is that I’m inside all day), and I can’t really get out. Oh, I realize it wouldn’t be impossible for me to get used to the heat again, but with Ash it’s a different story. Taking a 6-week-old out into 100+ degree weather…not happening. Most days the extent of our outdoor time is a foray to the mailbox around the corner, and even that leaves us sticky and wilted. So when this record-hot summer decides to draw to a close, you can bet I’ll have my jogging shoes and stroller prepped and ready to go!

Monday, August 10, 2009


This weekend I was reminded of how blessed I really am so I am going
to blog about what I am thankful to God for!

I am thankful that I can freely worship THE Lord and Savior.

I am thankful for an amazing husband who loves the Lord and works hard
to provide for Reagan and me! I love him more and more everyday!

I am thankful for a happy healthy baby girl! And that I am able to
stay home with her everyday!!

I am thankful for my mom and dad who taught me to love Jesus and who's
marriage is a good role model for me!

I am thankful for my sister who used to sit and play barbies with me
for hours and who has always been my best friend!

I am thankful for my brother-in-law who loves his family and can help
me tease my sister!

I am thankful for my niece Aubrey who is so cute and calls her Uncle
John "Johnny"!

I am thankful for my mother-in-law and father-in-law who love the Lord
and want to share it with everyone!

I am thankful for a sister-in-law who is hilarious and can help me
tease my husband!

I am thankful for my niece Haley who is a great source of entertainment!

I am thankful for my best girlfriends: Amelia, Cassandra, Erica, Mary
& Staci who love me unconditionally and hold me accountable!

I am thankful for my new family at FBCM who have welcomed my family
with open arms!

I am thankful that John and I are healthy!

I am thankful that John has a good job!

I am thankful that we have a beautiful house to live in and we have
clothing to wear and food to eat!

Thank you Lord for all these things and the countless other things not

What are you thankful for?

Friday, August 7, 2009

A Beautiful Life

It's been a rough week. My Grannie passed away somewhat unexpectedly last Sunday morning, and we laid her to rest Thursday. Her husband of 64 years, my Grandpa, died this past December, and my sweet Grannie was never quite the same once the love of her life was gone. They were madly in love, from the day they met at a USO dance until the day they each left this life. Even in their eighties, Grandpa was still writing her sweet, funny poems and bringing flowers to his sweetheart.

Over the last few years it really began to sink in with me how lucky I am to have had these two special people in my life. They were always my loving grandparents, but as I grew older I began to realize what amazing people they were too. They raised five boys together, my fantastic dad and my wonderful uncles, and they passed on a legacy that I see in each one of them, but I see in myself as well. Some of the things that I'm most proud of in myself began with them. They raised their sons to be honest, to work hard, respect others, give generously, to be kind and forgiving, to live by faith, put others ahead of themselves, and to be the best people they could be. They didn't just speak those words, they lived them. I can think of so many times that they went out of their way to make someone else's life a little easier. In losing them, I heard even more stories of their generosity, and realized again just how fortunate I am to have been a part of their lives.

They lived in the same home for all of my life, and it was always filled with love, laughter and kindness. There was always teasing amongst my uncles, and I can remember my Grannie playfully admonishing "Don't torment your mother" at just about every family gathering we had. She had a quiet way, but when she spoke, you listened. She was graceful, accepting, full of love, and so very special. As I got older I saw so much in her that I wanted to have in myself. As I would visit with my Grannie at family gatherings, I would spend time with her talking about life's latest obstacle, and I would always leave encouraged and reminded that all I have to be is who I am, and that is enough, no matter what life throws at me. I would leave knowing how very much I am loved, just as I am.

My Grandpa did many things in his life, he was a bombardier in World War II, he was an engineer in the oil fields, and later on he was a framer. He loved art, and there were always beautiful pieces with interesting stories hanging in their home. Some of my favorites were a drawing of the house my Grannie grew up in, a portrait of my Great-Grandfather, and another of my cousin as a child. Grannie and Grandpa were friends with artists and so many special things were captured by them. Grandpa's family was from Italy and Sicily, and I remember this huge piece he had framed that explained Italian Christmas traditions. I always loved that, and a few years back when I asked my dad where it was, he said Grandpa had given it away. That was just like him. If you said you liked a painting in the house, he was very likely to take it right off the wall and try to send it home with you. He also framed mirrors, and on the back he would write, "Life is beautiful, look and see." He truly believed that was where the beauty was in life - in each of us, in our potential to be good, and kind, and loving.

I took a few art classes at a gallery near their home when I was little, and Grandpa framed this one particular monstrosity I had painted after I brought it home feeling so proud of what I had created. I remember feeling so talented and so special when he said that it just had to be framed. Looking at it now, I just have to laugh. It was an abstract painting of a Mesa, and let me tell you, that thing was huge and not so pretty. But Grandpa told me it was beautiful and he framed it like a priceless work of art. For years, I was convinced I was the next Georgia O'Keefe. That encouragement and enthusiasm helped me to pursue something that I really loved doing, even if I wasn't the best at it.

Grannie and Grandpa were masters at the art of showing love, and they were just as good at letting you know they were proud of you. Life will be lacking something without them, but they have left so many wonderful things behind in the way they lived their lives. I'm proud to be their granddaughter, and I'm proud to carry on the good they brought to life. I only hope I can do it half as well as they did.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


Let me introduce you to my 10 month old, Allegra "Allie" Nicole Hollar.
Wow, I had no idea how much one little person could change your life in sooooo many ways...for the better, that is!
First thing to mention about Allie- is the meaning of her name. Allegra actually means "filled with joy"- which was chosen for her because at the time we found out we were having a baby our family was going through MANY hardships. A week after telling my parent's we were pregnant- their house burned down and the just a few weeks after finding out that our baby was a girl- we found out my sister had lymphatic cancer and just a month after Allie was born my dad had a stroke. Amidst these sorrows my family was facing, Allegra lived up to her name by bringing such joy to our family-she was a distracting force from the sadness we were all dealing with...and her nickname "Allie" came from her great, great grandma Allie Hollar. So she has a little heritage in her name too!
Allie's personality lives up to the meaning of her name- she is such a happy girl! Randy and I are blown away at how fun and sweet Allie is...we enjoy her so much! Lately she has started pointing at things or she just point in the air almost like she has an always makes me laugh...what a character.
This week she has started to say more words like "ball" and doggie-which sounds like doh, doh and she points at our dog, Coleman...funny! It's hard to believe that in 6 weeks we will have a one year old on our hands...where have the months gone? Parenting, although tiring at times, has been such a gift that has grown me more than I ever thought possible! We have been blessed with lil Al's (as my husband calls her).

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Shoe Lady

This may not seem weird to anyone else, but it does to me... and it's fresh on my brain, so that's why I'm writing about it.  I almost forgot it was my day to blog, but I will just chalk that up to an unusually crazy week.  

So six months ago or more, I was driving down the Main St. that we lived near.  I saw a lady crossing the busy street as I was at a light, and I noticed she had two different shoes on.  One of the shoes was a Croc type, and the other was an older tennis shoe with a decent hole in the top.  So that got me curious.  As I went through the light and down the block, I really felt like I should turn around and see if I could help her somehow.  She had gotten a few blocks off Main St., but I found her near the Library.  I pulled over and rolled down my window.  I think she thought I was a little crazy when I asked her if she needed some shoes.  I offered to get her some, and she just chuckled as she said something like, "Now why do you want to buy me shoes?!"  So I said that I had noticed she had two different ones on as she was crossing the street, and she goes on to explain how she had a surgery and has the holy tennis shoe because that's all she could comfortably wear at the time.  But she didn't really explain why she didn't have the other tennis shoe on the other foot... and she had a plastic bag (maybe just a book she was returning to the library?) and looked like she was possibly homeless.  But then she probably couldn't have afforded surgery, right?  I left feeling a bit confused and wondering if I should have just gone and gotten her shoes anyway even though she said she didn't need them.  Okay, so that was a little weird, but then I have seen her between five and ten times since then in random places.  I've seen her walking down the street.  I've seen her at the store.  And tonight, I saw her outside 7-Eleven as I was walking to my car.  It makes me smile every time I see her, because I just think it's so strange that God keeps allowing our paths to cross.  I have no idea if I'm supposed to do something for her (She did have two of the same, nice-looking tennis shoes on this time, but she looked a little lost.  She gave me a really nice smile, though.) or if I'm just supposed to slightly happy, slightly weird feeling every time I see her.  I don't know?!  

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


So Reagan said her first official word Sunday. And of course it was dada. Now she just says it all the time. So cute. So now we are working on mama! :) She will be 8 months old in less than 2 weeks. I can't believe how time has just flown by! I have the privilege of staying home and taking care of her and love every minute of it! Before I quit my job people would tell me that I would get bored staying home. And this is definitely not the case. I have not had one moment of boredom! Reagan is such a joy and a blessing to both mine and John's life. She is such a good baby and always smiling and laughing. I could not imagine my life without her!

Mommy brain

So I had my first recognizable episode of the dreaded "Mommy Brain" yesterday, and it was a doozy! Here's how it went:

I had spent the better part of an hour gathering and organizing duplicate baby gifts to return to Target, which entailed finding gift receipts and attempting to match them up with the various items (this isn't really part of the story except that it does indicate my ability to perform tasks competently, which is comforting to me). Anyway, I loaded up baby and the returns and we went to the store. The returns went very well, I thought - they took everything back except 2 items. Hooray!

Things started to fall apart after that... Even though I had made a list of things I needed to pick up, I must have re-traced my steps through the grocery section 3 or 4 times. Finally I had everything, and lucked out in that a new checkout stand opened just as I was approaching this looooong line to wait. I made my purchases and headed for the exit. Then I decided to stop at Starbucks at the front of the store and get a treat. Yum! I was halfway to the car when I realized I had left said yummy Starbucks treat on the counter. I turned around and went back inside to retrieve it. The nice barista practically met me at the door. I laughed a "silly me" laugh and headed back to the car. As I unloaded the cart I discovered I only had the things that Target wouldn't take back, meaning I had left my new purchases at the checkout stand. Geez! So I headed back inside; halfway there I realized I might need my receipt, just in case. I had already put my purse in the car. Went back to the car, got the purse. Returned to aisle 7, retrieved my stuff, felt like a total moron, laughed some more "silly me" laughs to mask my concern (and the potential concern of others) that I was not all there, then FINALLY got in the car and left. Miraculously, I managed to successfully navigate home. I mean, I can only imagine what a confused goof I looked like going back and forth, back and forth through the store and the parking lot! Not to mention that I was prolonging my poor child’s exposure to the billion-degree heat, blazing sun, and super-bumpy pavement/thresholds with my lunacy as he lay strapped in his carseat in the cart, powerless to save himself (he slept through the whole thing, thank goodness; if he had been fussing and crying that would have added a whole new lovely element to the story)! I felt like I needed to do some of those mind-strengthening exercises when I got home. Pass the crossword puzzles, please!

The scariest part: I hear it just gets worse!!

p.s. from now on I'll be posting on Tuesdays since for some reason I can't seem to get my posts done on Mondays. Thanks for switching with me, Beth!!

Sunday, August 2, 2009


So yesterday Scott's 6-year-old sister came and stayed with us. We picked her up, went to Target for some groceries (and brownie mix and fruit roll ups), and then headed home. We decided to watch the movie CARS and even though she was getting restless, we made it through. Then it was time to make the brownies and Gracie wanted to help. So I got the ingredients together and she mixed them up. Waiting for them to bake was a long time...for Gracie and Scott. They decided to play some Wii while they waited. Oh, and by this time, I'm pretty sure Gracie had already had more than 5 Fruit Roll Ups! The brownies finally finished, and I let them have a small piece because we were getting ready to leave for dinner. And here's the conversation that followed:

ME: Gracie, get your shoes on.
HER: I can't find them.
ME: Well where did you leave them?
HER: Right here on the floor.
ME: Scott, go check under our bed.

Well sure enough, there was one of her shoes...all chewed up. I'm pretty sure my sweet Beckham saw his chance, grabbed her shoe, and went to town on it under the bed, because that's where everything ends up in our house. Luckily Gracie had some other shoes with her and we left. We went to Incredible Pizza in Euless and it was quite an experience. The food wasn't that great and there was a massive amount of people was pretty overwhelming. We made it through eating and then left...Gracie wanted to play more Wii. On our way home we stopped and bought Gracie some new shoes...ones that she said, "Oh, my mom wouldn't let me get these." And Scott says, "well let's get em." Good big brother. We headed home, played some Wii, got ready for bed, and all five of us (me, Scott, Gracie, and our two Yorkies) slept in a queen size bed. Um, not comfortable at all! It's barely big enough for me and Scott let alone one other person. At some point Scott headed to the extra man...and at 6:45 am Gracie was awake. We let the dogs out to potty and then I put them in their crates. I told Gracie I was going back to bed and she watched cartoons in the living room until we woke up at 9:00. And I'm pretty sure she had another fruit roll up for breakfast...I could hear the crinkling of the paper. We had a fun time hanging out with her, though I'm sure Beckham and Maverick would say otherwise. : ) We love you Gracie!