Monday, August 6, 2012

I have to sign the first baby human up for....HOLD THE PHONE.

Hello morning…. I….

-made my coffee

-took my vitamins

-remembered my ADD medicine

-feed the baby humans a balanced breakfast

- made my own breakfast while keeping in mind I have to call Alissa and report my eating later, since I used the past week of being sick to be a total slacker resulting in a bowl of chocolate ice cream one morning and pasta every night….with the end result of me feeling like I gained some of my hard worked weight lost off and no amount of food is worth that…so yeah, I have to hold myself accountable:  egg whites and a banana it is

-had the notion to retry potty-training Eli today….I will not go into great details but let’s just say FAIL.  He is simply not ready, despite my wanting him to be

-made a list of my photo jobs that need final wrap up’s despite the fact I struggle to stop editing even when there are 50 perfect pictures…lol……….. my grad school odds and ends business that needs to be taken care of so I can begin……. and sign up Trae for 5K………..

-STOP and cry.

Yeah, stop.  That stopped me.  Cry?  Stop and cry?  Really Nan?   Yes, really Nan. 

I was the first grade teacher than anxiously waited on my students the first day of school and assured parents their babies would be fine with me day in and day out as I loved them and made my lifes goal to help make them the best little humans possible.  I felt sad for the crying ones, but I KNEW their kids would FLOURISH and GROW so I would always think, “They should be THRILLED for them!  Our days ROCK in here… they would learn to LOVE books and reading, they would learn confidence in themselves and how to solve issues with others, they would learn to work on their weaknesses and ROCK OUT their strengths.  I got this.”

That was Nan the teacher.

Now, I am Nan the mommy.

Mostly, the tears I shed this morning were for gratefulness.  I am so thankful I walked away from teaching for a little while to be a stay at home mommy.   MOST of my friends, family, church family, band mates, and even my co-workers and boss understood whole heartedly and gave me sound advice.  The best advice I ever received then was the following from a beloved co-worker…. “You will never regret being poor, but you could regret not having this time with them.”  Especially since I had THE LONGING.  I never expected it, but I did.   So, I gave up the big new house, the new awesome car, the coolest and newest of everything…. We downsized and went without.  We got by, miraculously.  Now, I realize, all the advice I was given was right….I have no regrets of being poor…there is money still to be made, work to be done, stuff to buy still….my first baby human is five.  No getting that back. 

As many of you know, I was the girl never that NEVER expected to have my own babies. Physically or otherwise.  Plus, I can’t fail to mention…..I had major germ issues and actually had hosed my niece off with the water hose while babysitting her as she had a dirty diaper one time.  Yeah, not a baby person.

After Trae was born and put into my arms I looked at him, looked up towards heaven, busted out crying and said, “GOD PLEASE DON’T LET ME SCREW HIM UP TOO BADLY!”  Laughable, but straight up truth.  I was terrified.  My friends and family laughed at me as I became the expert reader on “how to” parenting books.  I read THEM ALL.  Like EVERY aspect of my life, I was terrified to fail.  I even bought my family books to read so they would know my “philosophies”.  I am SHOCKED Elaine (my own mom) DID NOT SLAP ME!  Lol.  She probably should have….lol.

Back to the tears of gratefulness….

Long story short…In regards to that “to-do” list and Trae starting school…..I am so thankful I have been able to be with my first baby human as he has grown.  I never imagined how difficult being a stay at home mom would be.  I had big plans to be making clothes, baking homemade treats daily, and having everyone reading Harry Potter size books by the age of four.  Yeah, that did NOT happen.

I had days of crying and simple feelings of worthlessness….days of going to bed worried they watched too much tv, didn’t get enough fresh veggies or fruit, or analyzing why they were making a bad choice at the time and frustrated I couldn’t fix it.  I vividly remember the day it took a friend pointing out Trae was so super close to the tv for me to realize he needed glasses…only to find out it was in a MAJOR way.  I had suspected it, and was so sad it took someone else pointing it out for me to take action.  Days of coming to a point of “checking out” and just getting by to make it through the day.

I had days of fear….scared to leave the house because I knew I didn’t have the patience to deal when the 2 year old meltdown may come or the potty training accident would happen at the worst moment possible.  Day’s I wasn’t sure if I was breastfeeding him properly and would panic text my friends with questions at 2am.

Yes, I had those days.  But I had many, many, many more GREAT ONES!

Days and memories of Trae on my lap reading his dinosaur books, days of fighting pretend enemies with light sabers, days of building Lego villages, days of trying new healthy foods, days of accomplishments and celebration, days of picnics and new experiences, days of playing with friends, days of walking down to the pond hand-n-hand on a crisp morning….days and days filled with a million hugs…kisses…laughter!  Days FULL of life, PRESENT in the moment, moments of sheer LOVE and thankfulness!

In the end….No doubt…..The good outweighed the bad.  I learned to loosen up and pick a dirty pacifier off a floor and pop it in my mouth to clean it if needed.  I learned to change a diaper on the wing of a jet plane flying through the sky if needed.  I met my goal of breastfeeding him to a year old, which was in itself a full time job.  I did some stuff right, no doubt.  As for the rest, I learned to wing it.

Now my first baby human will now be something that seemed light-years away when I pleaded to God in his hospital room to help me do this….that little baby human is now a little human.  Wow.  A little school aged human.  A glasses-wearing-Star-Wars-obsessed-sensitive-funny little human.  Wow.

I will be the weepy eyed mommy watching him walk in.  Each tear filled with memories, some rough and most great.   

Back to the “to-do” list.  One thing is for certain…despite it “all”….the good days and the bad….the moments of accomplishment and failure….life goes on….and I have to head up to school to register a little human.  Tear free (for the moment).

*yes I had to post mine and Trae's song.....Indeed.  It captures my whole experience as his mom...from the second I learned of the miracle of him growning inside of this morning when crawled in my bed as I was listening to music and played "our song".

Saturday, August 27, 2011


Yes, yes it is rare to find me speechless.  Sometimes life is just so overwhelming (as in this moment for me) that the following quote is about all I can hang on to.  Just know:  I need more time in the day, more energy to do it with(don't we all), and more brain cells to figure it all out.  I'm trying to simplify life a bit to make it all "doable".  Let's see how that works out for me...  :)

"Where words fail, music speaks." ~ Hans Christian Anderson

Thanks to Hans for that amazing quote.  Since music is such a major part of the fabric of my being and I am in one of those I really don't want to talk about it moods I will just sum my feelings up with what else?  Music (complete with youtube links). 

About being a grown up human....

Simple Plan - "Perfect"
"Perfect" video on Youtube

Pearl Jam - "Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town"
"Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town" song and lyrics

Fleetwood Mac - "Landslide"
"Landslide" video

About loving the baby humans...

Creed - "Arms Wide Open"
Creed "Arms Wide Open" on Youtube

Trace Atkins - "You're Gonna Miss This"
"You're Gonna Miss This" song

About LOVE....

Country Strong soundtrack - "Give In To Me"
"Give In To Me" clip on Youtube

Adele preforming "Make You Feel My Love"
Adele on Letterman

About my faith....

Tenth Avenue North - "You Are More"
"You Are More" on Youtube

The Afters - "Light Up the Sky"
"Light Up the Sky" video on Youtube

Third Day - "Tunnel"
"Tunnel" on Youtube

Now off to listen to music and work on my portfolio and a million pages of reading and assignments that have piled up (and it is only the second week of school).  Not to mention raise three beautiful, independent, and kind baby humans.  And oh yeah, I still need to ahhhhh, you get it?  Yeah.  Hugs and Kisses.  You can always e-mail me at

Monday, August 15, 2011

Death and Dying

So, amidst my week of reflection this just had to come out... Warning: this is not my usually light hearted take on life but it is honest.  I'm not sure why I need to say this now, but here goes....
In college I took a class with an older gentleman professor, Dr. Parker, which was unlike any other class ever.  The class was called “Death and Dying”.  We learned about the stages of grief, reflected upon our experiences with death, and stages of death for a terminally ill person.  It was the best and most eye opening class I have taken ever.  Since this time (10 years ago), the beloved Dr. Parker himself has crossed over.  A man of great faith and character his legacy lives on.  My own reflection for the class had much of the following in it, but in the past 10 years I could add a couple extra chapters to this story…
I have been around death my entire life.  As a child I remember going with my preacher man dad quite often as he prayed with someone who was dying.  As a teenager, I vividly remember sitting in the room of a lady I loved deeply and as my dad walked out of the room I felt death so strongly it might have well been a man sitting in the room.  I’ve had many people give me advice before they left this earth or offer perspective on how to live my life.  This has been an ultimate honor to share with them in their final months, weeks, or even days.
I’ve sat with my grandmother and pretended to rub her legs like she begged me to, when they were already amputated.  I’ve had the opportunity to read and reread the last texts and save forever the last voicemails of two of my girlfriends that were taken too soon, both from separate unusual circumstances trying my best in my own way to hold onto them.  I have mourned the loss of people that have taken their own lIves, only to yell at God later about why it couldn’t have been prevented.  I have sat with my friends in silence as they have lost a parent or sibling.  I have met death and I have seen the aftermath of its possible destruction.  I have also seen death as a means to bring people together and allow them a message that would otherwise they would have been blind to for the remainder of their own lives.  I have seen the loss of children (babies, young, teens, and adult children) and the unbearable grief on their parents. 
 All of my beloved grandparents are passed and many, many more people who I looked to as my own grandparents.   I am beyond blessed to have both of my parents alive and with me.  My dad, being a former alcoholic and now severe diabetic has multiple health issues including kidney failure.  He has told me on more than one occasion that when he passed to know that he will be with Christ, his great love and salvation, and that he will be with me whatever way possible.  Now that I am a mother I understand the most intense love and with that the unimaginable fear of ever losing one of my precious ones.  This fear almost paralyzed me at times, afraid to even leave home on several occasions.  My friend assured me, “Fear is not of God.”  That helps me to go on and trust that his love and guidance will lead me in not living a life in fear.
It is no secret I believe in the fact that by surrendering to the love and grace of Christ I have truly made a vow of commitment that will eventually lead to a life of eternity with him.  This goodness has spread as a seed in my heart to a fire that I wish I could share with all I love.  This unquenchable peace has given me a love for all people, something that could never be explained by human nature.  It is appointed for every man to die.  We will meet death one day, and having the assurance that I will be walking hand in hand with the most perfect love possible gives me the peace that I need to face my own mortality. 
As far as my own grief over those I have lost and aiding others in their grief I can only say that death is a part of life.  I truly believe in how we deal with it by remembering our loved ones and how we live our lives to honor them is a testament to them.  An example of this in my own life is honoring the life of my friend April in the way that I treat my friends now.  April always had an open door for everyone.  She listened to each person with an open heart and offered them her best insight, always staying down to earth and never judgmental.  With her passing I have examined myself as a friend, taking the best traits of her and trying to honor her by doing the same.  Her life has made me a better person.  I hope that one day someone can say that of me.  Every time I wish I could go to the phone and call her my heart breaks yet I know she would tell me that she knows and “get on with it” per say.
Exactly.  Those of us left behind have to “get on with it” – trying to live a life that would make those we miss proud.   We cannot change the lives of the ones gone before us, but we can change our own and encourage the ones around us.  Constantly seeking our spiritual purpose, knowing that one day we will feel the presence of death like I did that day in the room.  The goal of meeting it not in fear, but with a heart full of love and peace for the life we have lived. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

This says it all.... almost

In my summer school session I have been happening upon some cool and easy-peasy Web 2.0 tools.  Here is one I made about "our Family" in 1 minute flat... This would be cool for a cool assignment (kids can print it out and take it in).... the website to make yours is

Wordle: family

Monday, July 25, 2011

The stuff that keeps me going,.,,,


Of course, this does not mean I am perfect.  It does mean I try, try, TRY to live a life based on the teaching of Christ.  It does not mean I am religious.  It does mean I can feel the love and light of Jesus and I have peace.  The peace of Christ is unlike any other.  Rocks my world and helps me carry on in it.

The Five Love Languages

People ask me all they time what makes our marriage work and so happy?  It's not like we walk around smiling all day and spewing rainbows.  We have issues just like the next household.  We do work at it, and we seek counsel of others as well as read things that make our lives better.  We read this book over 8 years ago and this book is still one of the best.

So, it should be a rule.  If you are getting married read this book.  If you are married, read this book.  If you are married and you haven't read this book, how are you still married? 

This book is an easy read.  Just read it and learn to love your mate the way they need it. 

Love and Logic            

This parenting style most closely aligns with my own beliefs on parenting.  Bonus:  it works.  Here is a link for more info... a good resource for teachers also. 

So my friends have asked me, why the attachment to facebook?  Well here are some factors to consider...
- I am a full time mother of three small children.  How often do you think I really "get out" without it being a major task or furthermore how many actual phone calls do you think I get without someone needing something?  I love "catching" up with the ones I love stress free.
- I love people.  I love my friends and family. I have friends all over the place, how often do I get to see their kids grow up or them at their birthday parties?  I love seeing pics of everyone's fun.  Makes me happy.
- I am a full time graduate student getting a degree in technical services.  Plus my degree is online.  I LIVE online.  How many hours can I stare at the USC site and a word document before I go insane from no human interaction?  Time for a fb break.
- It is fun to be in the know.  Seriously, you know it is fun finding out what is happening.  How many times have I gotten a great deal because it showed up on my news feeds or how many events have I been to because of fb reminders. 
- Because it is fun.  When it stops being fun, I will delete it.  Easy-Peasy-Lemon-Squeezy.

The Caring Bridge site for The Hewitt Family
Have you heard of the Hewitt family from Chapin that lost two of their babies in a car accident in Lexington?  Their story is heartbreaking, but what they have done with their pain is amazing.  They have honored the lives of their children by having faith unlike anyone I have ever seen.  They blog about it on this site….
They have inspired me to be a better mom.  When I am burning dinner and Eli is sitting on my foot screaming, Trae is wanting me to play Transformers (again), and Addie Lynn is screaming at him over taking her markers I stop and think about how grateful I am in that moment.  These hard moments (the ones that make you crazy) are a part of LIFE.  This family has written about their memories of their earthly life with their children, thus proving how special each moment with them is. 
For example, I read an entry awhile back that Crystal wrote about dancing in the rain with the kids.  Any day I can go out and do it (while it is safe) I do!  I honor their children, Parker and Haley, by doing this with my own.  What an awesome thing to do. 

The sitcom on ABC called “The Middle”
Listen, this family could be my family.  Chris (my brother) and I always said our family should be on a sitcom.  You have NO idea.  Now that I have kids, I realize this mom and I are so “there” with each other.  Funny stuff.  The main thing I like about it:  Don’t take life too seriously and love the ones you've got, because they are yours.


I know, I know.... some of you right now are snickering.  Yes, the guy is ubber famous and rich... for good reason.  He is cool!  I mean super duper cool!  I have seen him with my own eyes, heard his voice, he is probably the ONLY celeb. that has ever made me see stars.  The dude is cool bottom line.  Plus I can always put in "War" or "The Joshua Tree" I am inspired to do anything.  Done.

epic coolness, you know it!

For the mommies....

Find a "mommy blog" that you like.  I love a bunch.  It is great reading at the end of a long day and sure to make you laugh out loud when you realize your life is not the only crazy one.  Here is a link of some good ones!  Trust me, there is something for everyone

Final Thoughts...

There are a million other things I could go into like all the music, plays, books, movies, shows, etc. things that I just love, but that would seriously take all night.  My most favorite and most inspiring thing is sharing life with people.  I can be a real social person, and also a real anti-social person at times.  Either way, I love people and I think it is important to realize : We're all in this together.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

How to Really Love a Child....

I came across this today and it resonates with me so deeply.  I love each word.  I love the idea of letting kids be - kids.  As I am surrounded by stacks and stacks of school work, laundry, dishes, and a massive to-do list. I needed this reminder today. 

My "perfect self" is the parent described above.  Of course, I fail daily in one way or another.  It's anything from "I didn't even read with Trae today" to "I just lost my temper with Addie Lynn"  or "If Eli hides my cell phone one more time...." 

Things all that I can prevent from happening by simply putting my cell phone out of reach, calmly handeling my daughter's pushing-the-envelope antics, or even keeping with our normal night routine to ensure reading time for all of them is there. Yet instead of problem solving we get into a vicous cycle of blaming ourselves or caught in moments of "doing things" so much so that we forget to live.  We forget to just sit down and play with our kids.  We forget to laugh with them.  Really laugh.

I know as I have taken on this insane 9 hour graduate school summer from you-know-where I have lost a lot of my true self.  The kids are just not getting my best.  The mom they deserve. I know they "miss" me and I vow to do better, even if that means a B in a class or asking for an extension for a project.

 As a former teacher and as a fellow parent I do believe that in most cases parents do the best they can for their kids.  It is our job as society, as friends, as colleagues to be there to support each other and encourage each other as we raise our children. 

It really does take a village.  I am so blessed to have a great "tribe" of people alongside me that I can talk things out with, get new ideas from, and to inspire me to be the best mom I can be.  After all, we are not ever to be "perfect" parents but we are called to really love our children.  Let's make it fun.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Okay, I'm 30, so far I have learned.....

Ahhhh,   The wisdom of 30….

............on my 30th b-day with Katie, Kam, Elizabeth, Coy, and Eli
So, I am getting old.  30.  It seems lately every way I turn people I love keep telling me I should write a book.  Now to be quite honest I must say this is shocking to me.  I mean, I really know nothing about anything really.  I think what gets me along in life is a sense of humor (that more often than not most people don’t get),  a brutal honesty to what it means to live in this world, and a FAITH like no other.  Still, these kind words have had me pondering that surely I must have learned something in my 30 years on this planet.  Alas, I have found 6 basic truths on my life thus far and I have divided it up throughout the ages I learned such lessons.  Here they are for your reading enjoyment. 

Life Lessons of My Childhood:  Just be a kid, and take only the good from your dad and mom. 

My dad taught me to love Jesus.  He told me often what God had done for him.  I grew up as a preacher's daughter, not in the home of an alcoholic father, as he was before I was born.  Even thought I never saw that side of him, he told me about it.  I am so happy he did.  At my toughest times, his testimony sustained me.  I wanted to know the Savior he did.   My mom told it like it was and never met a stranger.   On the good side of this she taught me to LOVE all types of people, even if you didn't like them.  When we lived in Andrews I have memories of growing up with my best friend, Chrissy - playing on a playground that seemed the size of Texas.  Those were the best moments when life was great!   Of course, childhood was not always perfect.  I came out with my own sets of issues, I work through them and they made me the person I am today.  The key here is to go forth is that you must take the best and only the best!  Sure you can't forget all the rest, but keep near you only the best!

Life Lesson of my PRE-TEENS:  Honestly, you never fit in with anyone. ever. 
Okay, so everyone in middle school finds themselves staring in the bathroom mirror looking at this awkward person in front of them and thinks “Who am I?  Where do I fit in?  AND Does anyone GET ME?”  I’m here to tell you, NO.  Now I say this as a person who is blessed to have family and friends that loves me just as I am despite my many quirks.  Many of them do “get” lots of things about me – like the way I flush the toilet with my feet, or the way I put on lotion with my elbows, or how I always read the last line of a book first.  Still, I always tell everyone I know never to put your stock in people.  People will fail you.  I’ll be really honest here…..  I love my husband.  He does all he can to make sure I am happy and loved.  Still I know that although I can trust him, that he will fail me in one way or another.  He is only human.  The only love that is unfailing is the love of Jesus Christ.  That is perfect love, and the only place where I know I am truly accepted, loved, and celebrated for being ME!  This kids, is the main secret to my unequivocal happiness.  As far as passing time with people on this earth, choose people who make you laugh and who accept you as much as possible for who you are. 
 These are two of the people who helped me make through middle and hish school - Katrina and September... basically, they kept me grounded and loved me no matter WHAT!  Props to alot more people the list can go on and on, I really need to go through some old pics and scan but you get the picture... See what I'm saying about surrounding yourself with people that love you through all of your junk?  I mean look at me in this picture, I am wearing two diff. earings (on accident), exactly a great example of how I do stupid stuff without thinking, thank God I have people who put up with me.
Life Lesson of my TEENS:  Just because everyone else is jumping off the bridge…. Ummmmm
              Jamie always helped me aviod any "guy" issues... yet I still couldn't escape RJ and his charm (see example in the background of this picture)  lol  even though we tried our best "story"  ha ha
 Again, my "chosen" sister - September was always my rock, especially in high school.   She kept every secret, made me talk through my problems (I always prefered the silent treatment), and made me look at everything from every angle.  A real true blue friend.
I met my husband 18th birthday.  Actually we had been in school together for years but God knew just the right time for our world's to collide, a second sooner and it would have never, never worked.  We were and are opposites.  Again, God's timing.  Then, the boy would just not leave me alone.   I'm not kidding. Plus, I knew my genes would be totally dominate and the kids would look like me.  lol

Okay, so I have always been coined a “leader” but in reality I am quite comfy being the follower.  I would be content just to sit in a crowd and have someone else direct me to greatness, IF that someone knows what they are talking about.  I have this habit of wanting to see the world from everyone’s point of view.  This can be an awesome trait, or in many cases this has lead to some of my least proud moments.  Living in the moment and taking part of something that goes against your moral compass is just plain stupid.  Trust me when I say I would get that voice inside that would tell me, “This isn’t you.  This isn’t right.  You don’t need this in your life.” And EVERY SINGLE TIME I went against my own intuition negative consequences followed, some that even haunt me today.  This is where my first crossing of depression met me.  It was terrible, terrible, terrible.  I hid it with a smile, but those closest with me knew it and helped me through.  This was also a the first time a doctor sat me down and told me that if I ever wanted to have children it would be a major deal, if ever.  I never fully gave it to the Lord I loved, I wanted to keep it and worry over it.  I have a bad habit of doing that....  Back to the trusting the voice inside of you - Here’s what I’m saying...... if you know it’s wrong and if you know it is not something that will make your life better and the people you love proud than just don’t be stupid.  Five minutes of pleasure is not worth a lifetime of regret.   I promise.  I also learned that sometimes we are called to be leaders, and if you feel that calling then you better LEAD!  Even if you would prefer not to, God will give you all you need to just get it done. 

Life Lesson of my EARLY TWENTIES:  Sometimes you just have to get over it and go on with it.
    My amazing Columbia College pals Katie, Casey, and Kim.  Not to leave out anyone, but these are the only pics I could steal off my old myspace account.  At our 5 yr. reunion and Master's graduation.
My early twenties were a bit of a mess. Just know college, friends, new love, and a whole lot of stupid mixed in.  During this time I learned a lot about myself and I really learned that stuff happens.  Sad stuff happens.  Bad stuff happens.  Good stuff happens.  Great stuff happens.  Regardless the only thing I can tell you is – life happens.  I got to such a point of dwelling on the world that my heart literally broke for it.  I felt like I had all the pain and sadness of the world on my shoulders…. My heart broke ALL THE TIME. Yes, there is a name for it: depression.  And it has reared its ugly head toward me several times.  Right after my 21st b-day it had a grip on me like no other and I allowed it.   Here is a moment:  it was a week before leaving for Korea.  I was overwhelmed with life.  This was my all time low point.  My soon to be husband was moving heaven and earth to "cheer me up".  I finaly got a name for all my physical issues polycystic ovarian syndrome - a definate hurdle trying to have children one day and in battling my constant battle with weight.  I had answers, but not the ones I wanted or needed.  I had just lost all of my grandparents to death.  The world seemed so sad, and staying in bed all day and not ever seeing the light of day again was a great comfort.  As I reflect upon this rough patch I'll just say - Thankfully, I survived that but I will never ever forget that feeling, nor would I want to.  I walked away learning some stuff:  Don’t be so busy dwelling on the BAD THINGS that you miss the rest of your life.  Don’t get so caught up into one friend’s drama or one person’s snide comment to you that you make it a big deal.  Yes, the world is a bad place, but God is still working in it.  He needs YOU to help do that. Just get over it, and go on with it.  Your life is NOT waiting on you.  Get up, go out, and LIVE IT.  God’s blessings are waiting on you. 
Life Lesson of my MID- TWENTIES:   There’s a light at the end of the tunnel for you!
   Yes, a cheesy cruise picture... what else would you expect?  At 25 I lived to travel and do whatever was FUN!

Major life change moment:  me and the hubby had been married for four years.  Our lives were not what we wanted them to be.  Don’t get me wrong – we were blessed by human standards – perfect house, perfect friends, perfect job, blah blah blah.  Why were we feeling this void?  What in us wasn’t filled?  We were not living a life in Christ.  We both loved Jesus but our lives were not a reflection of this during this time at all.  We went to a Bomber’s game one night and after the game Christian Rock artist Mark Shultz gave a concert on the field.  We were able to go down front and center.  I am going to tell you something right now I know beyond a doubt – GOD orchestrated the whole universe and everything and made that night, on the baseball field, with that band JUST FOR US!  That night changed our lives – we looked at each other with realization, forgiveness, and walked out of that stadium with a new approach to life.  Of course, we failed again and again but that was the start of the greatness – the seeking of God’s true will on our lives, the wanting to live by Jesus’s teachings, the drive to help and love others.  The call to be MORE than what we are – MORE LIKE CHRIST.  Then came a couple of more stupid decisions on my part followed by redemption in Christ yet again.  HE never fails, NEVER.  I had so longed for a baby,  and I tried to jump through the hoops of taking meds to help with the PCOS, but finally just quit them all and  I just said, “Lord, it’s in  your hands.” 

Life Lesson of my LATE TWENTIES:  Nothing ever stays the same, but a change will do you good. 
After four years of marriage, I remember the ultrasound of the doctor telling me and my husband my cervix wall was paper thin, even if we had a healthy fertilized egg it wouldn't be able to stick.   Yet here I sat in the same ultrasound room months later blessed with a little baby human inside.  After worrying like crazy and doing progesterone treatments the first trimester, he was still there!  Then, alas, here came my healthy baby boy.  Just when I was at the top of my world it turned fast.  Unbelivably, a terrible bought of depression followed.  Here I was so in love with this tiny person.  That horrible overwhelming feeling of sadness took hold of me again. How could I bring him into this dark scary world?  Everything on the news seemed bad, bad, bad.  Nothing was good or right.  I was at a loss to be a bright light for this little person, I felt so dim.  The answer came to me via a radio show one night. A man was talking about raising children in this world.  He then said, “We raise our children not in FEAR but in HOPE.  Hope through Christ.”  I got it.  I prayed all night that night, for God to deliver me from this paralyzing fear and he did.  HE DID! 

Then he had a little laugh because then…. Here comes another baby human.  Major decisions had to be made.  I knew God had called me to be a full time mommy.   I was a great teacher, a great wife, a great mom – but not all at the same time.  After major prayer  we sold our new house, our new car, I think everyone is calling it “downsizing” (right before the market crashed).  I quit teaching and stepped out on faith.  That was almost four years ago, and surprise surprise – yet another baby human has joined the mix.   All this change was pretty dang stressful.   In the mist of all this God called me to a Christian Rock Band and I was blessed beyond measure to worship with them and grow as a child of God for the time I did.  I learned so much about humility and grace.  About forgiveness and love.  About hope and HEALING!  Nothing was the same, well God was – he always is – it is not HE who changes – it is US – we allow sin into our lives and that sin is what distances us from that perfect love.  I look at it like this – when I am thinking (as I do often)  “Nobody will see me do this…” I remember with each sinful action I am breaking God’s heart.  I am messing up perfect love and acceptance.  Earthly things change, change, change – possessions, friendships, relationships, careers, our bodies, our mind – God is eternal and Christ’s love is our direct link to that awesomeness.  It feels good.  As Bob Marley would say, “Baby don’t worry about a ting’ cause every little ting’ it’s gonna be all ri-ight!”  And with God on our side, who can be against us?  With Christ’s love, fellowship, grace, and forgiveness every little ting’ Is gonna be all right!  J

One little tidbit about being a mom....  it is no joke.  I have the duty to be the best I can be for my kiddos.  I am SO not a perfect super mom.  I make sure of several things each day - they have good healthy food to eat, they get read to, they get lots of hugs and kisses, I tell them "I LOVE YOU, I am PROUD of you.  God LOVES YOU!"  they are taughts right from wrong, and they are taught how to make it right when they do something wrong.  The rest is well, bonus.  From one of our favorite songs, Lead Me - "Father, LEAD ME, cause I can't do this alone!" 
  with my bandmates * I guess I should photoshop Phil in for sure!
          my life at 30 consists working full time for these three little baby humans!

Because I am a teacher, I feel the need to recap...

Life Lesson of My Childhood:  Just be a kid, and take only the good from your dad and mom. 

Life Lesson of my PRE-TEENS:  Honestly, you never fit in with anyone. ever. 

Life Lesson of my TEENS:  Just because everyone else is jumping off the bridge…. Ummmmm

Life Lesson of my EARLY TWENTIES:  Sometimes you just have to get over it and go on with it.

Life Lesson of my MID-TWENTIES: There’s a light at the end of the tunnel for you!

Life Lesson of my LATE TWENTIES:  Nothing ever stays the same, but a change will do you good. 

So... there is is.  I hope more than anything else you see the light of Jesus in me.  Some days it is hard to "shine" but trust me, it is there and it sustains me.  That's my secret.  I hope the secret is out!