Tuesday, May 31, 2011

AWESOME, amazing, powerful song.. definitely worth your time to hear this story/song.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Kiley = Slacker!

I’ve been slipping with the blog recently and I’m sorry.  No time to catch up now because I really need to catch up on my sleep!  But, I must say that my heart goes out to everyone who has been affected by the tornadoes and horrible storms.  I can’t begin to understand how that must feel but I have been and will continue to pray for those families.  The weather was bad here tonight but nothing like it’s been in other states across the US.  I need to remember how blessed I am to have all that I do.. including these cuties and an AWESOME family!

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Love & blessings!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wednesday – wordless & wee bit.

I used to do ‘wordless Wednesday’ before I came across the fun wee bit Wednesday questions.  I thought today I’d do both.  So here is my photo for wordless Wednesday

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Wee Bit Wednesday

{one} do you watch the history channel? if so, what’s your favorite program?

sometimes – I really like American Pickers and Gangland.

{two} what is your favorite thing to do on a rainy day?

before kiddos I would say curl up on the couch in a comfy hooded sweatshirt and just ‘veg’ – now as a momma I would say hang out with the kiddos eat grilled cheese and soup and smell the rain!

{three} what does your dream house look like?

oh dear, it changes all the time.  I think I’d love something with a nice country style – similar to this..


{four} what state were you born in?

I was born in Pennsylvania.  Steven was born in Louisiana.

{five} do you have a change jar? if so, what do you use it for when it gets full?

I have a small change jar but I don’t add to it often.  I like to use change when I’m paying for things on a daily basis.  Steven has a pretty hefty change jar; he is saving for motorcycle parts.

{six} what’s the first website you look at when you get on the computer?

sadly, it’s usually facebook.

{seven} what is your favorite breakfast?

home fries and pancakes.

{eight} what’s the most memorable trip you’ve ever taken?

my trips to Traverse City, Michigan and my wedding/honeymoon in Hawaii

{nine} do you prefer your coffee black or with cream/milk/sugar?

I am not a coffee drinker. yuck!

{ten} have you ever done a professional photo shoot?

yep – senior portraits, engagement photos & wedding photos.


Last night I had the privilege of attending my little brother’s (in-law) college graduation.  I enjoy calling him my little brother because I have no little brothers in my family! [I was heart broken when I realized the battery in my camera had died.  It wouldn’t even turn on anymore so I had to default to my silly little point and shoot which failed me miserably.]

It was a nice evening with family!  My husband couldn’t go because he had to work and was very upset about that.  I was able to get sitters for the kids (THANK YOU PATTY, AMANDA, ALY, BRYAN, JORDAN & NEVAEH!!!) so I didn’t have to drag them to Harrisburg and expect them to sit through a two hour ceremony. 

I hope Mike knows how proud Steven and I are of him!  This can be a scary, nervous time in a persons life and I want him to know we are here for him, no matter what =)  Mike – take pride in what you have accomplished.  You are a wonderful man with a humongous heart!  You played a huge role in reconnecting your family and for that I am forever grateful to you.  You are a super fun uncle and a very loving brother!  We are all blessed to have you in our lives.  I LOVE YOU!  (and you better keep those balloons I gave you!!)

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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

another wee bit Wednesday & #14.

{one} what profession have you always admired?

I can’t pick just one - Soldiers, nurses, police offices, firefighters, teachers, there are so many!

{two} what would the title of your memoir/biography be if it was written today?

oh dear, probably something like “Let God Lead” – I guess it would be a story of struggling with what I thought my life would be like and surrendering to the life God has planned for me

{three} how far do you commute to work?

it’s about 10 miles/17 minutes each way – not bad at all!

{four} are your earlobes attached or detached?


{five} do you eat the unpopped kernels of popcorn at the bottom of the bag?

yuck, no thanks.

{six} what is the strangest gift you’ve ever received?

my parents gave me money one year for Christmas in a shot gun shell box.  The money was nice but tearing off the wrapping paper to discover a shot gun shell box at 7 years old was definitely strange!

{seven} what is one tv show that you wish hadn’t been cancelled?

ER & Crossing Jordan

{eight} what is something that you are saving money for right now?

our beach vacation in July

{nine} what hobby would you like to take up?

well I would definitely like to grow my photography hobby.. I feel like I’ve lost my ‘touch’ over the past couple of years and it’s very very frustrating. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if my D-SLR actually worked.  =(

I’d also LOVE to learn how to sew.  I’d love to be able to go to the craft store, pick out a beautiful fabric and make something fun with it =)  [Maybe one day when my kiddos are older!]

{ten} how many times a year do you get really dressed up?

well, I dress fairly nice for work most of the time but if we’re talking ‘Prom dressy’ then never!

truth #14: This one is tough to admit.. I have a major jealousy issue and I’m not proud of it.  I am jealous of people’s relationships, cars, houses, money, jobs, physical appearances, artistic abilities, creativity, will power, intelligence, pretty much everything.  It’s terrible, embarrassing and such a waste.  I feel like I go through seasons when I don’t allow it to bother me too much then there are seasons when all I want is what other people have.  I’ve been praying a lot about this and have been trying to rid my life of this evil for good.

“A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” – Proverbs 14:30

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

truth #13: church

[I just ordered my ring =)  I am one happy gal!]

truth #13: I think I’ve finally found a church that I (and my children!) can call home. (Praise God!)  Over the past several years I’ve bounced around from church to church which has really been very difficult for me.  Maybe I was being too picky.. maybe I was searching for something that was just unrealistic.. maybe, I wasn’t opening my heart to where God wanted me to be.. maybe I was trying to make my own plans without listening to what His were for me and my children.  I had begun my ‘church search’ at a ‘mega-church’ and kept comparing all the other churches to that one because the music was so incredible and I am a true sucker for music.  Nothing compared to this ‘mega-church’ but I still didn’t feel at home there because, well, it is MEGA huge!  When I was very little my mom took my brothers and me to a Methodist church.  The church I went to this past Sunday was a Methodist church.. a nice, traditional, not too big but not too small, lovely church.  I felt like I was at my old church – and it was great – so great I cried. [not surprised, I know.]  I didn’t need the fancy band with the guitars, drums, saxophones.. I didn’t need the fancy digital presentations.. I didn’t need the crazy clapping and throwing my hands up. (not that there is anything wrong with these things in a church.. it’s what I thought I desired in a church, but for me personally, I was wrong.)  I did need an organ, a choir, a few meaningful hymns, some beautiful stained glass, reciting the Lord’s prayer.. exactly like it was when I was a little girl.  Everyone was so warm and welcoming – the sweet little lady in the pew behind me couldn’t get enough of Gage.  I can’t even tell you how many people said hello to me and spoke to my children – and it all felt genuine – not forced.  I felt like we belonged there – and I was only there for an hour.  Of course I had fears of being judged – as I do almost anywhere I go – but that won’t stop me from going back this weekend and the weekend after that.  That won’t stop me from getting to know people and allowing them to get to know me and my family!

One major bonus to this church is that my brother-in-law Chris, sister-in-law Christy and their best friends Travis and Natalie go there.  Travis grew up in this church and could probably tell me anything and everything I want to know about it.  Sure, it’s a 35 minute drive but I’m willing to make the drive if it means finally having what I’ve been searching for for years.  I’m willing to make the drive if it means a youth group for my children down the road!  I’m willing to make the drive if it means special family time before, during and after church.  I’m willing to make the drive if it means worshiping God with family – old and new.

THANK YOU Natalie, Travis, Christy and Chris!  I am SO grateful to the 4 of you – for allowing me and the kids to join you at church, for all of your help with the kids, for just being awesome people =) 


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Monday, May 9, 2011

seven months old.

yea, crazy right?!  Gage David is already 7 months old!  I’m just as shocked as you are =)  He is such a cutie patootie but can be one crabby man when he wants to be!  (my husband would say he gets that from me!) I am so excited to watch him grow and continue to learn new things. DSC_0447 DSC_0454 DSC_0458 DSC_0483 DSC_0486 

  • taking a guess that you weigh about 20 pounds and are 29 inches long!
  • You are eating like a pro – fruit for breakfast, veggies for lunch and meat and fruit for dinner – with a few bottles thrown in the mix =)
  • You are still in 6-9 month clothing but will be making your was into 12 month clothing in no time
  • You love love love your paci!
  • When you are fussy Mommy will sign Twinkle Twinkle Little Star or You Are My Sunshine and you [usually] calm down =)
  • You are CRAZY about Gabby and Gavin – they make you smile all the time!
  • Your hair is almost blond and I love it!
  • Rolling is lots of fun for you.. until you roll yourself under the table and get stuck.
  • You’ve been sleeping completely through the night for about a week now – before you’d wake up at least once or twice and want your paci.
  • Bath time is still a pretty mellow event for you.  I’m waiting for the day when you kick it into high gear and just go crazy splashing and kicking!
  • Your swing is still the go to nap spot but that’s not going to last much longer because you’re getting to big!
  • You said ‘DADA’ for the first time on Saturday, April 23!
  • Everything you get your hands on goes straight to your mouth
  • I may be ginxing myself here but one funny fact – you’ve never peed on me – you’ve peed when I’ve given you a bath but never when I’ve changed your diaper.. THANK YOU! =)

You are a blessing in many ways Gage.  I cannot imagine my life without my sweet, snuggly little peanut butter =)

a very special birthday card!

I came home to a card in the mail.  Those who know me well know that I love getting mail and I love cards!  This particular card today was from my dear friend Katie.  A little background –> Katie is a friend from high school.  She was the “new girl” in 9th grade and introduced herself to me and my group of friends during science class.  From that day on she and I have been friends.  Katie is a STRONG woman of God.  I admire her faith.  When I told her several years ago about my renewed walk with Christ she sent me an entire shoebox full of Christian books and music.  She is one of the most dependable, thoughtful, loving, fun people I know.  She is a true friend.  When my Grammie passed away Katie was there for me.  Katie knew the deep relationship I had with my Grammie.  Katie came to my Grammie’s viewing and stayed through the service as a support for me.  She even made a beautiful slide show of photos and music for myself and my family – it’s a treasure I will always keep close to my heart.  Katie participated in the Alzheimers Association’s Memory Walk with me and my family in 2009 and is doing it with us again this year!  Katie is on the far left next to my niece Shayna.

memory walk!

My surprise card today was from Katie.  It was a birthday card – a very sweet birthday card with a lovely message inside.  The card and the gift left me speechless and in tears.  I was so touched..

Katie is buying me the ring I want to order in memory of my Grammie.ringchunkywide

The ring will read “Let It Shine!”

Katie - you are who I hope my daughter will grow up to be like.  You are one of the most selfless, most beautiful women I have ever known.  You remind of my Grammie in so many ways.  You will never know how much your friendship and your kindness mean to me.  You display the love of Christ in ALL you do.  THANK YOU from the very depths of my heart =)

Friday, May 6, 2011

getting paid to brush my teeth :)

I am wicked proud of myself this week.  I felt like an ‘extreme couponer’ and got some super great deals!!  For example:

Colgate toothpaste at CVS: $2.77 [$2.77 extra care bucks with purchase] - $1.00 manufacturer’s coupon = + $1.00 credit (it’s like they paid me $1.00 to buy it!)

Oral B toothbrush at Target: $2.94 - $1.00 Target coupon - $1.50 manufacturer’s coupon = $0.50 for a toothbrush

So I basically got paid 50 cents for buying a toothbrush and toothpaste!

GO ME :)

Now back to cleaning and preparing for tomorrow!!  I am hosting a Thirty-One party and we have lots of friends, family and co-workers coming over – can’t wait – it’s going to be tons of fun!!!


and just because it’s one of my absolute favorite photographs (not b/c it has anything to do with brushing my teeth – although this photo does make me realize how big my 2 front teeth really are..) – oh well, SO thankful to my husband for this beautiful photograph!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


oh my, I had set out to do 30 truths in 30 (or so) days and the last truth I posted was at the end of March – and I had only gotten to #7 – and #7 was lame.  So – here goes!

Truth #8:  I am in a total blogging ‘funk’ that I can’t really explain.  I guess I just feel so behind with all that I’d like to share it seems overwhelming so it’s easier for me to just not post at all.  I worry about sharing too much sometimes.  I worry about sharing too much about one child and not enough about the others.  I worry about someone stealing my photographs.  I worry about someone taking something I say the wrong way.  I worry about being judged or misunderstood.  I know some of these things are silly but it’s the truth.

Truth #9:  A couple of the blogs I follow have recently shared they are expecting and it has made me realized that I am sad I will never be pregnant again.  For those that don’t know, my hubby had a vasectomy at the end of March so I’m pretty sure my never again really is never again.  Obviously I know that’s what is best for our family and I definitely don’t regret the decision but it’s a little sad to know I will never experience pregnancy and child birth again.  I don’t miss the heartburn, the gaining weight, the weird skin, the pain and discomfort, the uncontrollable hormones, the frequent doctor appointments, the fear of something going wrong.. I do miss the baby kicks, the comfy, stretchy clothes, the nice hair and nails, the extra attention, the overall excitement, the amazing experience of child birth.  I know many of you think I’m crazy but a little piece of me is sad.

Truth #10: A very dear friend of mine was killed in a car accident in September, 2000.  He was a very intelligent, sweet, funny, passionate, stubborn 17 year old who is missed by many.  Several classmates and I went to the scene a couple of days after the accident and I found a piece of the Ford Probe my friend was riding in.  I picked up that piece of red plastic and put it in the door of my car.  I’ve had 3 other cars since then and today it still rests in the door of my car.  I’m certain it will rest in every car I have until I see him again in Heaven.

Truth #11: I am a reality TV junkie.  Amazing Race, Survivor, Biggest Loser, Dancing With the Stars, 16 & Pregnant, the list goes on!  It’s terrible – I wish I could just disconnect the cable and never watch tv again but I know that will never happen!

Truth #12: I have a serious love/hate relationship with food.  I love eating but hate food and all the complications it can bring.  I’ve always been a picky eater and it stinks.  I have never really been a ‘healthy’ eater which also stinks.  I’m a terrible cook and an even worse meal-planner.  If we could all have cereal for dinner every day I’d be one happy gal.  Please, if anyone has any food/meal planning websites, blogs, books, anything, I am all ears!

Okay, time to get my butt in gear and do something productive around this house!  I will leave you with some cute photos :)

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[Gabby hated the Easter bunny, so momma had to join the photo!]

Wednesday –> Wee Bit

Wee Bit Wednesday again!  I still can’t figure out how to add her adorable button so the link will have to do!

{one} when was the last time you used a pay phone (if ever)?

Oh my, I honestly can’t remember.  I’m sure I haven’t used one since I got a cell phone, which was Christmas of my junior year in high school (1999) – THANK YOU AUNT CONNIE :)

{two} did you ever fail a subject in school?

nope!  I think the lowest grade I ever got was a C and I only ever had a couple of them.  I’m very proud to say I was a great student.  I’m not incredibly smart but I worked really hard.

{three} where do you go to get your favorite hamburger/cheeseburger?

I actually don’t order burgers very often.  I guess I’d say Fuddruckers but if I’m going for something cheap and quick, I like Wendy’s.

{four} have you ever served jury duty?

yes, winter of 2005 – in West Chester – the trial lasted a few days – it was definitely an interesting experience – hope I never have to do it again!

{five} how old were you when you moved out of your parents’ house?

I ‘moved’ in and out a few times while going to college but I officially moved out after Steven and I met.. I guess you could say the fall/winter of 2005.. so I was 22 years old.

{six} what is your favorite color to wear?

my wardrobe is pretty boring – I like brown, tan, gray, black and navy blue.

{seven} do you have a pair of shoes that you wear all the time?

I don’t think I wear one pair a lot more than another.  I have work shoes, my running sneakers and my regular sneakers, that’s about it.

{eight} do you enjoy talk radio?

I don’t hate it but I’d much rather listen to music.

{nine} if you could turn one unhealthy food into a healthy one, what food would it be?

pizza or soda. oh I would love to be able to drink a Mountain Dew whenever I wanted and not worry about the sugar and calories :)

{ten} who is the best speaker you’ve ever heard in person?

Joyce Meyer!  I saw her at Creation 2009 and she was phenomenal!

I’ve got some other posts in the works so hopefully they will be up soon :)