Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A Toast To 2008...

I just thought that I would write a quick post about the year. There have been many ups and many downs, many trying times and many memorable moments. So let's run through some highlights...


My little boy turned 4 years old! Where has time gone?! And Brooklyn turned 6...which means in 2009, I will have a 7 year old and a 5 year old. Aren't I a little young for that? ;) I love looking back and seeing how far they have come from the year before. Wil started preschool this year, and is doing amazing! Brooklyn had a rough time to start with in 1st grade, but has come so far and is doing so well now. My babies are officially no longer babies.

I got married!! After being with Seth for almost 9 years, we finally exchanged wedding vows and made it official. It honestly was a perfect day and nothing went wrong. I got to share it with my closest friends, and they made it even more memorable for sure. It's a day that I will never forget and hold close to my heart for years to come.

I have learned more about myself in so many ways. I've learned a lot of my weaknesses and why I have them, and I've learned how to grow from them instead of letting them hang over my head. I've learned that I'm much stronger than I give myself credit for sometimes. I've had a couple of friends who have stuck with me and taught me to keep looking forward instead of looking backwards. They are always there for me, no matter how dumb or small my problem may be. They help me keep things in perspective, and to let go of the things that I have no control over. You know who you are, and I appreciate and love you. I'm so glad that in this past year we have grown closer and have come to depend on each other. Thank you :)

In retrospect, 2008 has been a tough year. I am not going to dwell on the bad things that have happened, and just continue to look forward to the good. I'm excited to see what 2009 holds for myself, my family, and my friends. So bring it on 2009! I'm ready!!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

The Story of Brooklyn Faith Allen

My daughter never ceases to amaze me, so she has inspired a blog post. Wil's shall follow soon as well. I've already told you the reasons why I love her so much, so here is her story and how she came to be.


I remember the day that I found out I was pregnant with her. I was working at a gas station at the time with Seth's sister, and also one of my best friends, Angel. I hadn't been feeling well for a couple of days, and she told me I might want to take a test. I wasn't even late yet, but I thought..why not? And it was positive! I was in shock, but in a good way. I knew where I was at in my life was not a good place, and it just kept going downhill. I was not on a good path, and before I found out about Brooklyn, I had no intention to go heading back the right way. But this was my chance to make things right, and to turn myself around back to where I wanted to be. Seth took it a little harder than I did, but got excited quickly.

When we were talking about names, we narrowed it down fairly quickly. Seth chose Brooklyn, and I agreed. I wanted her to have a name that wasn't as common as Jennifer, and something a little different. Faith is a powerful word, and was proven to me when God gave Brooklyn to me, so it only made sense for that to be her middle name. And she has definitely lived up to every part of it.

My water broke at 5:15am on June 14, 2002. Seth took me to the hospital, and then the waiting began. Here is one of Seth's favorite stories to tell of that day: All I could have was ice chips and popsicles, and I was loving them. I asked Seth to go get me one, and he asked what flavor. I said I didn't care, whatever they had. Now if you REALLY know me, you know that I HATE banana anything. And Seth totally knew that, but for some reason brought me back a banana flavored popsicle. I thought about throwing it at his head, but he quickly realized his mistake and went back for grape instead ;) Of course he totally embellishes my reaction and you would have thought I had some sort of satanic being inside of me that day in his version.

After 14 1/2 hours of labor and 15 minutes of pushing, Brooklyn Faith was brought into the world at 7:39pm. She was 6lbs 8oz and 20 inches long. She has been the light of my life ever since. We were always together, 24/7. And as she got older, Seth always wondered why I could never leave a room without her crying. To me, it made my life....just knowing that someone else loves you that much and feels like that they need to always be with you...it can be annoying, yes. But also the greatest feeling in the world.

Brooklyn was such a serious baby. You REALLY had to work for those smiles and giggles. But as she became a toddler, her silliness came out and she was always so much fun to be around. She was also a great, easy going person from day 1. She rarely cried, even when she didn't feel good. I just knew when she was going to be hungry b/c she was so easy to keep on a schedule. And to this day, for the most part, she's still really easy going. She can be a bit high strung as well, but what 6 year old isn't?

I just really admire Brooklyn's carefree spirit. She just wants to have fun wherever she is, and she wants everyone else to have fun with her. Yesterday, Seth's mom and her husband came over and we all played bowling on the Wii. This little girl does gymnastics while she bowls, and usually gets a strike or spare out of it. It's just so funny and entertaining to watch, and she knows it. I'll have to take a video for everyone to see. But anyway..my point is that she is still so innocent and trusting and caring. I just wish that she could take that with her forever.

So there's the short version of Brooklyn. She's an amazing kid with so much going for her, and I can't wait to see where she goes in life.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Trying So Hard....

So I'm standing at the opening of my "hole", and I'm fighting crawling into it. After the last few days, that's where I want to go and shut the door. However, it's Christmas time and I can't do that. Actually, I could do it...but I WON'T do it. It's not fair to me or anyone else. I'm not going to dwell on the bad, but look to the good. But in order to do that, a great friend gave me some advice - "Empty your burden of thoughts." So that's what I am here to do.


As I mentioned in my previous post, Seth has been having a rough time. He did not get that job due to the "Economy", and has been beating himself up ever since. I told him that it's ok, don't worry...everything will work out, just like it always does. But he blames himself and doesn't feel like a "man" b/c he doesn't feel like he is providing for us. I am trying SO hard to be the positive one, and I can do it in front of him without problem. But when I get alone, and all I have time to do is think, it gets to me. I want to be strong for him, but sometimes I just can't do it. And I was really looking forward to these 2 weeks off, but now I wish it weren't here so that I could work and makes things not so stressful. However, being management means that I get a week paid, and then I can always go in and do other things. So we'll be fine; I honestly believe that.


On another note, I feel incredibly sad and guilty and grateful. I know, a strange mix of emotions for sure. But a friend of mine lost a child yesterday, and it is SO surreal and sad. This was an incredible little girl; a true fighter. She was born with a heart defect, and has been fighting for her life ever since. She had multiple surgeries and overcame many obstacles. But in the end, I guess her little body was just tired. She was only 2 years old. But her mom is an amazingly strong person. Throughout all of it, she always said how blessed she was to have Reagan and to learn from her. She was always so thankful for God giving her that little girl, even when she almost lost her on several occasions. So it is so bittersweet that she brought her into this world, and was holding her when God took her back. So please keep Debbie Kring and her family in your prayers; they need it right now.


Sometimes...do you ever just feel like a failure? Like there is more you could do and you just don't? I can't really explain my emotions right now, but sometimes they just hit so hard that I feel like the wind is knocked out of me and I'm down on my knees. Here is something that I had written back in my writing days, and it captures somewhat how I feel:

A fire still burns
It licks at my heels
It singes the edges
Keeping me moving at a rapid pace
Never letting air come between us.

If I slow
It engulfs me
To the very core of myself
And it takes hold
Squeezing until the rawness burns with numbness.

When I fall to my knees
I am completely defeated
I press my cheek to the cold earth
Trying to embrace all that I have lost
What I can never get back.

The flames slide over my body
Forcing me to scream in absolute anguish
To release any emotion inside of myself
To haltingly rise to my feet
And begin the endless cycle of life all over again.



This was basically my way of reminding myself that no matter how hard things are, there will always be harder things down the road. Life can be difficult, but don't close yourself off and don't hide your emotions. Let them out or they will burn you up inside. Dig down deep inside of yourself and find that strength to keep going. I guess I just needed that reminder.

Thanks, Ash. I just unburdened my thoughts.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

For Something Bad, There Is Always Something Good...

This is what I keep telling myself. There is no reason to not feel blessed or thankful right now. All the things that are not going my way are little things, insignificant things in the grand scheme of things, but honestly...they are still pulling me down. But every bad thing that happens, there are always good things to follow...


My laptop got all moody on me a couple of weeks ago, but talked to the company and they said that there is a default in that series of notebooks, so they will fix it for free. Today I get a call that there is nothing they can do and to take it to a 3rd party. Seriously?! So I'm in the midst of convincing them that they are wrong and hopefully they will see that and take pity on me. On a good note, my mom has let me borrow hers for now. I'm not sure how much longer, but I'll take whatever I can get.


Brooklyn has a couple of Christmas programs coming up, and they have asked that they wear white, red, or green. I was thinking well, great...she doesn't have anything, and I'm as broke as I can be right now. BUT...one of my kids at work gave me a $20 Target gift card yesterday, so sweet! I go today, but all they have in her size (or even remotely close to her size) was a black shirt with white snowflakes. Yes, it's cute...but she asked for a red one. I had to get it anyway. I know Brooklyn won't care, but it still makes me sad for her. But the good thing here is that my daughter knows that I try my hardest to make everything possible, so she'll just give me a hug and tell me that it doesn't matter to her. She's pretty awesome like that.


Seth has finally run out of work. That last couple of weeks have been pretty stressful, and honestly...we still have so much to get for X-mas for the kids. Everyone else is just getting some homemade goodies. The good news is that he put in an application today and they said they would be calling him by the end of the week.


So there...I was able to find something positive for everything. And Willie's Christmas program was SO cute this morning! I got some pics, but those will have to wait. Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season so far :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

To Forgive & To Forget...

Is it possible to really do both? 2 different concepts that are expected to go hand in hand. I truly believe that both are possible, I'm just not sure that it is possible at the same time.

In every situation in my life (and I mean major, not minor) that I have had to forgive someone of something, it definitely does not mean that I forget it. Sometimes it is easier to push it aside and forget about it, but other times...not so much. Sometimes the consequences of some one's actions are brutal, hurtful, and deep. That means that every time you think of that person, those actions and the pain that they caused, pops into your mind and plays right in front of your eyes. It can be so overwhelming that you can't even look at that person...well, at least for me. I'm just saying that it is a lot to ask of someone.

It's true that the pain can dull and subside. We only know that it's what we hope for, so that the healing process can begin. Sometimes it is a long road back to where things can be good again. It will never be the same, unfortunately, but it can be something new, and if you are REALLY lucky...something better.

I am not the type of person who holds grudges. Actually, I can't stand the thought of someone being mad at me. And I am willing to fight for my friends and the people that I care about. But it takes 2 people to be friends, and if you are the only one fighting for the friendship..what's the point? Why should you put everything you have into something when the other person isn't willing to do the same? It means that there is no friendship there anymore because something was lost along the way. Trust? Honesty? Maybe something else? Who really knows...it doesn't really matter what was lost. The point is that it WAS lost. Period.

As a good friend said to me, "Actions speak louder than words". That is so true. The road back is long, hard, and frustrating. The walls are back up, and rightfully so. Part of the consequences to the actions, if you will.

So is it possible to forgive and to forget at the same time?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Things That I Am Thankful For....

1. My fabulous family! I never imagined that I would have a family like this when I grew up. I never had understood what unconditional love was until a few years ago. I have an amazing husband who loves me no matter what stupid thing I do, and then can smile about it later. My kids are seriously the coolest people that I know. They are loving and well behaved, at least for the most part. ;) And I won't go any further than that, b/c it would be a really long blog post.


2. My friends. Wow, I have met some amazing people over the last couple of years, and I feel like I have made some lasting friendships with them. And even the ones that I have drifted apart from. Sometimes we can't understand why that happens, but it makes us stronger people for it. But the thing is, I just want you all to know that I appreciate you and the little things that you do. You know who you are, and I couldn't ask for more considerate, kind friends. Thank you :)


3. All the good things in my life. Yes, there are hard times and it's frustrating and I wonder why. But in the end, I know that it just makes me appreciate the good times even more. We have to go through the bad to get to the good, and it is so worth it. It gives us strength and endurance, and makes us continue to grow as people.



So I could continue on and on and on, but I think #3 pretty much sums it up. I hope everyone has a fantastic Thanksgiving and enjoys the time with your families! :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Just A Little Something...

So I found this, loved it, and thought I would share it. And I feel that it holds a lot of truth to it. So enjoy!


"Realize now that when your heart breaks, you got to fight like hell to make sure your still alive. Because you are. And that pain you feel? That's life. The confusion and fear? That's there to remind you, that somewhere out there is something better, and that something is worth fighting for."


Just because your heart is "broken", it does not necessarily mean just by "breaking up" with someone. Little pieces of our hearts get broken daily because we are women and we're sensitive. We hold back our emotions a lot, or at least I do, and it takes a toll on us. We deal with disappointments and problems by locking them away, and that, in turn, eventually breaks our hearts, little by little.

Anyway, I think the message is that life is hard and cruel at times, but we still have to keep pushing through and digging deep to find that strength. There is always something positive to make up for the negative. We just have look for it. The pain is there to remind us to keep moving day to day, and the it will lessen and ease. And sometimes we are lucky enough to forget it all together.

Monday, November 10, 2008

From The Heart...

So I've been doing a little soul searching lately, and thinking about who I am as a person. I've thought about how far I've come since I was a teenager, and how much further I want to go. I want my character to continue to grow, and I want my children to know that you can never stop growing as a person. You are always who you are, but you also always have the ability to change and be who you want to be. That's one of the reasons God gave us free will. Our options are limitless, and it is all up to us.

So I thought I would share a little bit about myself as a teen, which is not an easy feat for me. I am a very private person, but as I have said in previous posts, I want to be more open whenever possible. As a teenager, I was very depressed and I isolated myself a lot. It wasn't because I had a bad childhood or anything like that, because I didn't. I was taken care of and had anything that I needed. But my parents were busy people. My mom was always working or going to school, so she never really had time to spare. My dad also worked a lot, but tried to spend time with me whenever possible. But my parents weren't happy people, and I guess that kind of rubbed off on me. My mom spent her evenings in the living room, watching soap operas she recorded while she was at work. And my dad stayed in the bedroom, watching Nick At Night reruns. They never spent time together and we never really did things as a family. So in turn, I stayed in my room listening to music. And that's where I discovered an emotional outlet. I learned that writing was a way for me to get all of those emotions out without actually saying anything. I began keeping diaries and writing poetry along with short stories. I was a mad woman; any chance I got, I poured my heart and soul onto paper and hid them away.

Shortly thereafter, my dad moved out. It did not surprise me; I had seen it coming for years, even before they did. So fast forward a few years - I'm probably 15 or 16 by this point. I had a lot of resentment towards my father by then. I won't go into specifics, but a lot of things had hurt me and I never talked about them to anyone. My mom was engaged to man from England and he was staying in the States for awhile. By this point, I was sharing some of my poetry. My mom had read it, but never really said anything about it. She never really said anything about anything to be honest. But when he read some of it, I can remember him saying to my mom, "You know, Jen has a lot of pain and hurting inside of her." And my mom says, "No, Ivor. It's just fiction. It doesn't mean anything." But man, was she wrong.

All through high school, I had a lot of my writing published. My English teachers always told me to hold on to my passion and my talent. They said to use it and not waste it. But unfortunately, after high school was over, I did lose it. I hit a writing block and I just could not overcome it. Just recently, in the last couple of years, have I been able to even think about it again. I just assumed that maybe all of my hurt and pain was gone, and with it went my gift. But now I realize that it is not true. I associated my writing with my guilt and introverted ways, but it doesn't have to be that way. It is my passion and something that I love. And it's like an old friend, just waiting to be called upon and embraced once again. It's part of who I am and something that can continue to help me grow. It held my hand through all of the bad times, and it can do the same for the good times if I let it.

So yeah...I rambled about a lot of nothing. And I honestly don't think I even said what I came here to say :) But that's ok. Thanks for getting through the randomness of my post ;)

Here's a good quote for you:

"Because, sometimes, you have to step outside of the person you've been. And remember the person you were meant to be. The person you wanted to be. The person you are."

Thursday, November 6, 2008

So Many Thoughts...

My head is literally spinning right now. I don't know what it up or down, whether to look left or right, whether I should be thankful or break down. It has been quite a long day.

I got home from work tonight around 6:30pm, and about 10 minutes later my phone rang and it was my stepmom. She was concerned about my dad, so I asked to talk to him. But he refused, which is not like him at all. So I asked her what was going on, and she said he was having symptoms like he did before he had his heart attack a couple of years ago. So I tell Seth and head on over. My dad is in the kitchen, crying and shaking, swearing he's fine and refusing to go anywhere. So I called my mom, who is a nurse, to see what she thought. She asked some questions, but I had to tell her that I just didn't know b/c my dad wouldn't tell me anything. But he was forgetting things that he had said 2 minutes before and couldn't remember how to do simple things, like start the microwave. Yes, he's getting older but that's just not him. He got like that once before, again around the time that he had that heart attack. He literally wouldn't know where he was or what was going on. My mom said that it was probably due to his brain not getting enough oxygen b/c his heart wasn't pumping like it should.

So I called his cardiologist and left a message for him to call me back. When he did, I told him what was going on and he told me to get him to the ER as soon as possible so that he can check him out. And after I told my dad that, he agreed to go. By that time, my sister, Michelle, and her husband, Raymond, were there. I was SO torn. I wanted to go and be with him, but at the same time, I couldn't be stranded in Nashville b/c the kids have to go to school tomorrow and Seth can't get them there in his truck. So I hugged him, told him I loved him, and thank you for letting us help him.

So now here I am. Once again wondering what the outcome may be and should I have gone anyway, just in case? I mean, I honestly looked him in the eye and asked him if he wanted to die. And he could not look at me and tell me no. I love my father SO much, and cannot imagine my life without him. I can't imagine telling my children that their Pa is gone. And I don't want to.

I guess now is just a waiting game. I made my sister promise to call as soon as they got him in and settled. I can't even begin to describe everything that I'm feeling, but I just had to get this out. I can't talk about it out loud b/c I cry and get so emotional. So blogging is the next best thing. There are so many details, so many little things to say or ask or wonder about...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Just Another Tuesday...






Just a few pics for you. Brooklyn is practicing her baby holding skills and Willie pretending he is playing XBox LIVE like his daddy ;) And the kids spent their Halloween evening playing with cars since there was no trick or treating for us.


FINALLY, the kids are feeling better. Brooklyn went to school yesterday and did great. I kept checking my phone at work to see if they had called, but they never did. I kept Wil home again yesterday b/c his tummy is still bothering him a bit. Today is much better, but we'll see. I just don't want him to have any problems at school. Today they are both home since it's election day, and I'm thankful for it. My mom watched them while I worked this morning, and then we all had lunch. Now I'm just waiting for it to be time to take them to my dad's house and go back to work for 3 more classes.

Brooklyn's parent/teacher conference was last week, and I was a little afraid. But Mrs. Bailey is an AWESOME teacher, and had nothing but good things to say about my princess. She said that ever since that day she had called me, Brooklyn has been acting like herself again. She's really coming a long with her reading and math, and I'm so proud of her.

I feel like I haven't had time to do anything lately. And I know a lot has been going on, but it's only going to get busier with the holidays coming up. Just take it one day at a time, I guess :)

Tomorrow my sister, Michelle, is having her ultrasound and we get to find out if I'll be having a neice or nephew. If it's a girl, her name will be Abigail and a boy will be Aidan. I had a dream when she first found out she was pregnant that it was a girl, so we'll see how right I am. Also, one of my good friends, Jamie, is being induced tomorrow and Jackson Cash Owen will make his first appearance. I won't get to see him until he gets home, though, b/c her doctor is in Columbia. And then my SIL, Angel, will be having my nephew, Grayson Ryan, in December. There are babies everywhere for sure :) It makes me want another one, but at least I'll get to see all of them quite often.

I hope everyone is having a fantastic week so far :)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Crappy Halloween

Soooo, yeah. Halloween sucked over at my house. I think most of you that read my blog already know what happened, but I'll recap anyway for my own good for later on down the road.

On Thursday, I went to Barnyard Kids in Shelbyville, just as I always do. I go every week and really enjoy it, although I don't care for the drive much. Brooklyn ends up getting sick at school, and they called Seth. So he went to go pick her up and get her some medicine. Then I have to call my dad to see if he can pick Wil up from school b/c my mom had to take my grandmother to the hospital. My dad says no problem and goes to get him. I called him back around 2:30pm to make sure he got him ok, and he says that Willie threw up in the hallway as soon as he came out of his classroom. But Seth has everything under control, so I stay at work.

That night, poor Brooklyn could barely swallow, she was wheezy and had a terrible cough, and a lowgrade fever. Then she says her tummy hurts. By 11pm, she had thrown up twice and I knew I was in for a long night. And bless her little heart, I was right. She continued to throw up all night, and phenergan did nothing for her. However, Willie had an uneventful night (thank goodness), and that was fine by me. I called the doctor first thing Friday morning, and we all headed over there at 9am. After waiting, seeing the Dr, getting a breathing treatment, getting chest x-rays, and Wil having an accident, we find out Brooklyn does not have pneumonia, like the Dr originally thought. She has strep throat instead, and Willie looks like he has the early stages of it. So we get prescriptions for antibiotics

I give it to my kids, they handled it very well. And the grandparents have made up for them not getting to go trick or treating. So Saturday we all have a "Take it easy" day. I was supposed to go to a "wrap" party last night, but something told me I should just stay home since the kids had been sick. And it's a good thing I did b/c Willie was up all night throwing up and the other part that comes with it. It was so sad, but he's feeling better this morning, except he's not eating. Which is pretty ok with me, b/c if I don't have to clean up anymore vomit, my day will be awesome :)
So there was my weekend. Hopefully everyone will be back at school and work tomorrow, and we're done with the sickness for awhile. hope everyone else enjoyed their Halloween!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sunday...

Well, I'm sad that it's Sunday again. My weekend has flown by and I need it to be at LEAST 3 more days until the new week starts. I've been sick this weekend, but can't afford to take off work tomorrow. So alas, I shall suffer through it :) I'm pretty sure I can manage.

So here are the things that I plan to look forward to in the coming week:

1. Halloween!!! It's one of my favorite holidays actually. Family and friends come over to our house and we make our round with the kids through the neighborhood and get lots of goodies. And yes, mommy and daddy get their share too when the kids are asleep. Don't act like you don't do it too! That is WAY too much candy for them to eat by themselves ;)

2. Brooklyn's parent/teacher conference is on Wed. Let's face it...that should be pretty interesting. She has been doing better behavior wise in the last week and a half, but she's also been grounded. She just got done with that on Friday, so we shall see what happens this week at school.

3. I'm sure there is some reason I should look forward to work. It really depends on what the lesson plan is all about, b/c when it's boring, it tends to make for a really long week. Fingers crossed that it turns out to be super exciting! :)


4. I'm having lunch with some friends on Tuesday! That's always fun and makes my day a little happier.


Yeah, that's all I got. It was really pushing it to find 4 reasons. Oh well, at least I tried. Hope everyone has a great Sunday :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

It Is There...

I close my eyes
I reach out
Knowing that it is there
Sensing it, feeling it
But never touching it.

My fingers find nothing in the stillness
Yet I still reach out
And I keep my hope
Assuming that all is not lost
But feeling the panic deep down inside.

My soul fights for that hope
It needs it like my lungs need air
I need that little shred of myself
For without it
The nothingness consumes all that I am.

My eyes remain closed
Darkness is safety
Passion is power
Dignity is what keeps me whole
And I will continue to float in oblivion.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Day Off...

So I decided to take the day off today. I've been super tired lately, and figured it would be a good day since 1. MTSU is on fall break and I could get subs for my classes, 2. Willie is still on fall break, and 3. I didn't have a babysitter anyway :) In a little while we'll be heading over to a friend's house for playgroup, so it really couldn't be a better day.

I finally got my meeting with my boss yesterday. When I walked out of his office, it seriously felt like a HUGE weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I feel positive about my place there now, and plan on making the best of it. So hopefully things will continue to get better there.

Seth has been a bit moody lately, and it's been driving me crazy! I know that I'm his wife and I should want to do things with him and for him, and I honestly do. But I need a break every now and then too. The last couple of times I've had plans with someone, he's acted like a baby and I've backed out. Well, today...my first day off during the week since August....he calls and asks if I will bring him lunch at 11am. Well, playgroup is at 10:30am and it's been forever since I've been able to see my friends. So I said, "Well, I've already got plans but if you can wait until a little later, I will be glad to do it." He then proceeds to try to guilt me, and I'm standing my ground! Maybe that's selfish of me or maybe I should always drop everything to do something for him, but I disagree. We do have a life together, but we also need our own lives so we don't drive each other crazy. So there. He will get over it, and if he doesn't...I will proceed to remind him of all the times that I have dropped everything for him and that I needed a little me time today (along with Willie time:) ). At the very least, it's not worrying me and all will be fine.

I got all the laundry caught up yesterday too, so that makes me happy. When I get home, I'm going to clean the kitchen and bathroom and chill out the rest of the day. Hope everyone has a wonderful Tuesday b/c I know that I will be!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

A Little Update...

So the past few weeks have been really tiring and trying for me. Work has continued to stress me out, so much to the point where I just want to give up. I think I have decided that I'm really good at being some one's assistant, but not so much at being in charge of things. It seems as though things keep falling short of what they should be, and honestly...I just hate feeling like I'm not good at something. Plus, my family is more important to me and I refuse to take time away from them for certain things. Anyway, just think positive thoughts for me on the work front. Hopefully it will all work itself out.

I am also oh so very tired. Physically, emotionally, mentally...I just need some time off. And not just from work, from everything. If I had the money, I think I would just take off for a few days on my own and work some things out. However, I would also just love to take the fam with me and enjoy some time together. I think I need to talk to Seth about that. We are by no means in a financial situation to do so right now, but maybe soon. Seth's work has slowed down again, but mine has picked up so we're breaking even right now. I can't complain about that b/c it's WAY better than being in the hole.

The kids are on fall break, but unfortunately we have not been able to do anything fun with them b/c of work. But they are just happy to be out of school. Brooklyn has been having some behavior problems lately, at school as well as at home. It's so frustrating to me b/c I don't know where it's coming from or what to do about it. I've tried some different tactics, but nothing seems to be making a difference. I feel like a pretty bad mom right now b/c I can't figure it out. But she has parent/teacher conference at the end of this month, so hopefully I can hold out until then. But if it gets worse after fall break, I'll just having a meeting sooner. I had Wil's parent/teacher conference the week before fall break, and it was awesome! He is doing SO well, and the teacher says he is at the top of the class for sure. She's even doing more advanced stuff with him to get him interested. I'm so proud of him.

Besides a few other things going on, that's about it. Hope everyone else is having a great week.

Monday, September 22, 2008

A New Day...

So a few days ago I posted a blog that was extremely negative and questioning of myself. It wasn't up for very long, so if you missed it...consider yourself lucky ;) If you read it, I apologize sincerely! The thing is that sometimes it's hard not to focus on the negative things in life. Especially when it seems as if that is all that is happening to you, and there are no positives to give you a little hope. But once it is all over, once you've had a chance to breathe and reflect, things can be seen in a whole other light.

Yes, I will admit it. I was having a pity party for myself. I had a few bad days and I just wanted to curl up in a ball and dwell upon it. However, when you're a mom...there is just no time for that. So Saturday after my week from hell was over, I let myself relax and enjoy time with my family. And then Seth and I had a date night that was perfect. And then life just didn't seem so bad. You have to remember what is important and what makes you happy. My family does that for me, and I refuse to let anything tarnish that in any way. I will no longer allow my job to put me in such a bad mood that I take it out on my kids. I will no longer run myself ragged and have no energy left to spend on my family. They will come first, and if I ever lose sight of that, I hope someone smacks me and tells me to wake up!

So, there. I said it. I am planning on taking a few steps back at work in order to focus more on my family and my life. That may not be taken too kindly, but it doesn't matter. There are other jobs out there. If someone cannot accept that, then it is their loss. No matter how discouraged I feel, I KNOW that I am good at what I do, and I love it and have passion for it. If I have to find another channel for it, I will. Tomorrow is a new day. Life will go on, and a new chapter will open. I will embrace it with open arms and wait patiently for it all to unfold.

Monday, September 15, 2008

What Is The Point?

What a loaded question that could cause lots of speculation and discussion. However, I believe that it is much more simple than that. The question REALLY is "What is the point of all of this? Of life and death and everything in between?". It's different for every single person out there. What one person gets out of an experience could be the complete opposite for another person. But that's what is so great about people. We learn from one another, take in what someone else has seen or experienced. It's one of the great things about life.

Life is a precious gift, and one that should not be taken for granted. We should use it and experience it to the best of our abilities. We should not abuse it and waste it because it is definitely not something that we get a second chance at later on. Don't make stupid decisions when you know better! Embrace everything beautiful and wonderful and cherish them. Make your life something you will not look back on and regret. Achieve your dreams and help others achieve theirs. Thank God everyday for everything that you have and the people in your lives. And make sure they know that they are loved and appreciated. Don't hold grudges because they are stupid and honestly, nothing good can come from it. Have a forgiving heart, although we all know that forgetting is a little harder. Be sure to treat others as you would want to be treated.

Experience love to the greatest extent. It can be the most amazing thing, yet the most painful as well. Understand what passion is in every way possible. Find it in your work, your hobbies, your family, your significant other, and in life in general. Something is not worth doing if you aren't going to give it your all and believe in it. Have faith in yourself and in others. It really is true what they say, you know. No one can love you until you love yourself. Take pride in who you are and what you stand for. Don't be afraid to be yourself! No one can tell you that you are not worth it because you are! If you were not worth it, God would have never made you. Figure out who your true friends are and hold them close. They are few and far between, and you need every single one of them. Kids are beautifully honest and unconditionally loving. Try not to taint them too quickly and let them see that the world is beautiful, and without ugliness, for as long as possible.

I don't know what the point is in all honesty. The point is that there is a reason for everything, no matter how good or how bad. Life is bumpy and sometimes unfair. But the road evens out eventually, and letting friends and family be your support system will help that happen even more quickly. Just remember that there is ALWAYS a point to it all. It may not always be blatantly obvious, but it is there. Have a little faith.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Amazing!

So I had the coolest experience today! I went to my grandparents house for dinner, and my Pepa was super excited. Ever since I was a little kid, my grandparents have always put out hummingbird feeders. My Pepa would set up a video camera and tape them for hours. But never would they let us get close to them. But today my grandfather was in awe. For the past couple of days, there have been about 10 of them flying around the feeder and fighting for a spot. Normally around this time of year, hummingbirds are heading south for the winter. So I suppose most people have already put their feeders up, except for Pepa.

He said, "Jennifer, it's amazing! I took the feeder to fill it up, and I saw them all flying around the window like they were watching me. And when I took it outside, they were all around me!" I thought to myself, "What a great thing to happen to him." And then he told me to go outside, stand still, and see what happens. I was skeptical, I'll admit it. But I had no right to be.

I stood by the feeder with Brooklyn watching through the window inside. I heard something like a loud bee, and out of the corner of my eye I see a hummingbird. Then all of sudden there was 5. And then seriously, about 10 of them! I've never heard them chirp before, but you could hear them talking to one another. And the wind off of their wings was incredible! They were flying around my head, stopping to check me out. And I could feel their wings fluttering across my cheek and forehead. They were beautiful and cute and just plain awesome!

I've just never experienced anything like that before. They were in no way aggressive, just curious and hungry :) I've been feeling a little down the past few days, so this was kind of a pick me up that I just had to share. My mom tried to get a few pictures, but not sure if they turned out or not. If they do, I'll be sure to post them. Hope everyone had a fantastic weekend!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

2 Years Ago..

I can still remember the day like it was last week. It was September 10, 2006 and I was throwing a baby shower for my best friend, Tiffany. I got a phone call from my manager at work in the middle of it, and that's when it all happened. My good friend, Courtney, had been in a car accident early that morning. My first question to Leslee was, "Is she ok?" And that's when I learned that she had been killed. The pain and hurt is still there, and probably always will be. However, what they say is true...time does heal wounds, but the scars are there forever. And the emotions grow numb over time, but you still feel those painful twinges every now and then.

Courtney was an amazing person. We worked together, which is how we met. But we just clicked so quickly, and we became fast friends. We would go eat lunch at Marina's on the square, chat on the phone, and hang out whenever we could. I honestly never saw her angry or mad. She had an amazing quality of always smiling and letting the negative things roll off her back. I can still remember how she would laugh things off and say they were not worth worrying about. I wish I were like that, and I try to be. But it just doesn't come easily to me.

I still wonder why someone so young and who still had so much to experience could be taken away so quickly. I know God has a plan and a reason for everything, but it still sucks. She was 2 months away from being 22 years old when it happened. She was in her last year of college and she had big plans for the future. I could go on questioning it forever, but I won't. I just try to accept it and know that she is in a better place.

I still work with Courtney's best friend, Erin. We were not close and did not really know each other when Courtney's accident happened. But she talked to me about Erin and talked to Erin about me. And so in the aftermath, we became friends and we share that bond. Erin is also an amazing person and we have just as much in common. And it's like I told her today, Courtney brought us together and because of her, we have a special kind of friendship. We talk about her a lot and we've visited the cemetery together. And I can't speak for Erin, but it makes it a little easier for me knowing that she knows exactly how I feel.

I went to Moe's a couple of weeks ago with my friend Rachel. That was where Courtney also worked, and I have not been able to set foot in there since her accident. But I felt like it was time and I'm glad that I did. I've learned the details of Courtney's death since it happened, and it gives me some peace. I miss her daily b/c every time I drive to my dad's house, I have to go by the spot where she was killed. And every time I think about her and say a little prayer. I am a stronger, more positive person b/c of Courtney. She taught me some life lessons in the short time that I was privileged to know her. I just hope that someday I can look back and smile instead of feeling such sadness on this day.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Weekend

So here I sit, procrastinating on a Saturday morning. I REALLY need to get ready and start my errands for the day, but instead here I am...enjoying my coffee and wishing it could be a lazy day. I guess I'm just annoyed with myself mostly. I can't straighten my hair b/c of my stupid arm, so now I am protesting for some stupid reason. It just goes to prove my point that I need a live in hair dresser. And if I were rich, I would totally hire my sister Michelle for the job :)

So I'm throwing a baby shower for my friend Jamie today. She's having her 3rd boy in late October/early November. His name will be Jackson Cash Owen, which I think is adorable and fits into their family perfectly. She tends to have big babies, so they will probably induce her around 37 weeks. Her last one was over 11 lbs, and that was at 37 weeks too! So anyway, her shower won't be anything fancy, but it should be fun and it will be nice to hang out with everyone. And then I get to turn around do this AGAIN next month for Angel, my sister-in-law. But that's ok b/c she's having my nephew, Grayson Ryan Smith. And in a few months will come Michelle's baby shower, which hopefully will be for a girl ;)

Speaking of Michelle, she's about 11 weeks along now. She's not getting quite so sick, but it's still there. And man, those hormones are raging! I just feel bad for her. And Raymond is gone for a couple of weeks, so she feels lonely on top of it. So we're gonna hang tonight, maybe watch a movie or just have some dinner. And *fingers crossed* hopefully she'll feel better.

Wil learned something new at school yesterday and it's adorable! She sent home their daily report and it said to ask him another word for "big crash". So I asked him, and he said, "Monumental crash". It cracked me up :) Brooklyn is doing awesome in school as well. She has yet to bring home a bad daily report, and she's doing well on most of her work. On the things she is not doing well, it's b/c she's not taking her time. My friend, Rachel, and I seem to be having that same problem with our 1st graders on this. But she's getting better about it, and the teacher is working with her on it as well.

I hope everyone has an awesome weekend :)

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Bummed & Confused

So I've hit another funk in the last couple of days. I think it basically just stems from so many things going wrong and things being out of my control. Yesterday I slipped and put my arm through our glass storm door and it cut it all up. So I had to miss work and they were not happy about it. I understand that, I truly do. And we've been having a lot of problems with people not showing up and calling out for stupid reasons lately. But it wasn't my fault! It's not like I did it on purpose. So I went by there yesterday afternoon just to prove that it wasn't something that I made up.

So today I was supposed to go to Shelbyville to start teaching again, and although I was not looking forward to it b/c of my arm, I was going to suck it up and do it. So I took the kids to school this morning and came home to do a few things before I headed out. Ms. Mandy (Wil's teacher) called to say they had found a little rash behind his left ear and it was either a form of chicken pox that is going around or ringworm. Either way, I had to go get him and take him to the doctor to find out. Grrrrrrrrrrreat. Not that I minded picking him up, but that meant no work. So I called one of my bosses, who was not happy, and I don't blame her honestly. But again, it was completely out of my control! It's not like I told Wil to get sick and make me miss work for the 2nd day in a row. *Sigh* I just hate it and I felt SO guilty about it...but honestly, my family comes before my job. And it would be the same way if it were my bosses' kid that got sick. I was in tears when I talked to her, but there was nothing I could do.

So now I'm at a crossroads. I love my job and what I do, and in all reality, my bosses are pretty great too. They've helped me out countless times when I've needed it. I just feel like I can't do this job to my full ability right now. Maybe it's time to move on and find a job where I work during the day and can be home with the kids when they get out of school. I just don't know or how to figure it out. I think I'll just set up a meeting with my boss and talk to him about it. And I've had these thoughts before, but then something would happen and change the circumstances and make things ok for me there. I just don't think that's going to happen this time.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Reasons Why

So Seth is still asleep and here I am. My mind started going this morning and would not stop, so I decided to do something productive and blog. I've had a pretty good weekend, but I am SUPER excited that I still have one more day to go. YAY LABOR DAY!!!!! Ok, now that that's out of my system.... ;) I decided to blog about my hubby. I blogged about my kids awhile back and the reasons why I think they're so awesome, so now I'm going to do the same for Seth.


He makes me a stronger person. By nature, I just avoid confrontation and pretty much let people walk all over me. But when Seth came into my life, he showed me that it is ok to stand up for myself. And it's not ok for people to take advantage of me. So over the years, I've learned to say what I think (in a tactful way, of course) and to not be that person.


We balance each other out really well. I'm a hopeless optimist and he's a hopeless pessimist. I try to see the best in people from the start, and he sees the worst. I like meeting new people, he would rather hang with people he's known for awhile. It's not about who's right and who's wrong, although we both do enjoy being right, lol....it's about what makes us comfortable and what makes us who we are. We force each other out of our comfort zones, and I think that's good for anyone. It makes you grow as a person as well as your character. And you discover that you can do things that you never dreamed you could do before.


He loves me more than I thought anyone ever could. I used to have really low self-esteem when we first met. And I still feel traces of that these days, but nothing like it used to be. But Seth has always told me that I'm beautiful and to never compromise who I am. And after years of being with him, I finally was able to accept that and see that things just aren't as bad as they seem. And I'm SO thankful for this b/c now I can teach my daughter how to love herself from the beginning and hope she never has to go through that personal hell.


The other day he told me that he appreciated me and everything that I do. What woman doesn't love to hear that?! And yes, Seth and I have had our hard times. We have hit rock bottom together and struggled through when we saw no light at the end of the tunnel. But the point is that we made it through and here we are standing at the end together. We're married with 2 beautiful children and the vast future in front of us, full of all kinds of possibilities. I support him through everything and he does the same for me. I am truly blessed with my family, and I make sure that I thank God for that everyday :)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

What I Would Rather Be Doing...

What I would rather be doing on this boring Saturday night is hangin out with some of my girls at TGIFriday's. Yep, it would be WAY better than being bored at home. But it's all good, right? We can't always get what we want; it's a simple fact of life. So instead of whining and complaining about my evening, I'm going to steal an idea from my friend, Rachel, and just post some random facts. It's always interesting and fun to see what people will put :)

1. I need a hobby. I think if I had one, then I wouldn't think about work so much at home. The only thing is, I have no idea what a good hobby for me would be. And I'm not talking boring either. I want a hobby that I can be good at AND also benefit from, know what I mean? I'm not very crafty, I'm no good with photography (although I LOVE looking at it), and I don't have the patience for scrapbooking. So please...give me some ideas!!

2. I am by nature a very shy person. Sometimes it still gets the best of me, but I seriously force myself to be outgoing on a daily basis. I'm actually really thankful for my job in that department. It forces me to step outside my comfort zone and grow as a person.

3. I never really liked kids until I had my own. I never babysat, never had any younger siblings or cousins. So I was just never around them. At one point I was pretty sure that I didn't even want kids. But that wasn't God's plan, I suppose. Now I can't imagine my life without them. They are truly amazing, and I'm blessed to have 2 awesome ones of my own. And my job...wow. Yes, sometimes I want to pull my hair out, but I love it. It is so rewarding in so many ways. But I think I'll save that for a blog post in and of itself.

4. When I was growing up, I always wanted blonde, silky hair. Instead I got this frizzy brown thing stuck on my head. However, these days I don't mind my hair so much, but I do still wish it was more silky. But my best friend is a straightening iron, and that's as close as it will ever get :) As for the color, well...I'm pretty content with it these days.

5. Sometimes I wish that I wasn't so tall. I think that short, petite girls are so lucky. Can I explain this? Not really. But those of you out there that would love to be tall...think of it this way. At least you don't tower over everyone in the room! And you don't always hear, "Wow, you sure are tall for a girl." It's annoying, trust me :)

6. I've really gotten back into cooking new things lately. My summer schedule has been super nice b/c I've been getting off work most days in time to cook dinner. I didn't realize how much I had missed it. So now I'm kinda bummed b/c this will be my last week of being able to do it. It will be back to cooking on Wednesday and Friday nights during the week.

7. I have some pretty awesome friends :) I would just like to thank all of you listen to me whine, cry, complain, and anything else I need to say. You guys rock my world!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Looking Up....

Life has been rather difficult lately. Seth lost his job about a month ago, and our stress levels have been out of control. I have been trying SO hard to be supportive and keep my mouth shut, but it's so hard sometimes! I must say I was successful at all attempts, but sometimes I would just get in the truck to go somewhere by myself, and vent. Yes, I would talk to myself but it got it out of my system so that I could continue to be a good wife. I've been doing extra little things for my grandmother to earn extra money, just to get us through the weeks. Thank goodness she loves me enough to let me do it :) And I know what you're thinking....don't you work too, Jen?! Why, yes I do! However, I only get paid twice a month and that's what we use to pay our bills. And normally, it's enough with a little left over. But this month has been hard b/c work slowed down for me as well. I was going to Shelbyville on Thursdays to teach gymnastics at a daycare center there, but they wanted to take the month of August off. And I also had Wednesdays off for the summer b/c that was SUCH a long day for me. And then they hired someone new for the office, so they took my Saturday hours away. A blessing and a curse at the same time. I really didn't mind working Saturdays, but then again it's nice to be able to sleep in. I just wish it hadn't happened when it did. Anyway, enough rambling...

Seth got a call yesterday to go do some work with a guy he used to work with to do some painting. So he calls a little while ago to say it may turn into full time work!!! THANK GOD FOR THAT! Hopefully it will happen b/c he HAS been looking for the past few weeks and doing side jobs when they pop up, but something steady is seriously what we need. My fingers are triple crossed on this one.

The kids are doing fabulous! Willie is loving preschool and looks forward to going everyday, and Brooklyn and also doing awesome in 1st grade. I'm super proud of both of them, as well as relieved. And blessed that I have such awesome kids who don't get in trouble at school ;)

My new schedule for work starts the first week of September, so I can't wait for that, even though it has been nice having some days off. But I'm subbing some next week, and that will definitely help out for the next paycheck. So yeah...things are looking up finally. Good thoughts and tons of prayers later...yes, I'm completely thankful, blessed, and happy :)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Something To Think About...

I found this on my old blog and thought I would share it. I loved it 2 years ago when I first read it and I love it now. I'm all about inspirational things, though ;) Anyway....read it, enjoy it, think about it.


After awhile you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul and you learn that love doesn't mean possession and company doesn't mean security. And you begin to learn that kisses aren't contracts and presents aren't promises and you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes ahead with the grace of an adult not the grief of a child. And you learn to build your roads today because tomorrow's ground is too uncertain for plans and futures have ways of falling down in mid-flight. After awhile you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much so you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers. And you learn that you really can endure that you really are strong and you really do have worth and you learn and you learn...

Thursday, August 7, 2008

My Pepa



So my Pepa is my hero. I've always had a soft spot for that man, and he has the same for me. I have SO many great memories from my childhood with him, and he's giving the same to my children. Unfortunately, in the last year he hasn't been doing so well. And I am not going to go into details about b/c call me crazy...I'm a little superstitious about things. I'm afraid that if I talk about it too much, the worst will happen. And I just can't deal with that right now. So instead, I'm going to blog some of my favorite things about him and some memories. And I also posted some pics of my grandparents from the wedding (pictures by Erica Foley).

1. First of all, we always had a special thing b/c our birthdays are so close together. And then Brooklyn came along, and all 3 of us get to have a family birthday party every year. My b-day is June 9th, Pepa's is the 12th, and Brooklyn's is the 14th. But as a kid, my grandmother would always try to have separate ones for us, but I would not have it. It was SO cool to get to share that with my grandfather, and he loved it too. Plus we liked the same kind of cake ;)

2. He can be kinda mean...to everyone but me. He won't take crap off of anyone, and can cut you down before you can blink. But never with me. He was always gentle and kind, and I LOVE the way he smells! Old Spice does not smell good on anyone other than him, I swear. But I would love to hug him just to breathe in that smell.

3. My grandparents owned their own business for over 20 years. We called it "The Shop". And man, I thought it was the coolest place ever! Whenever I was out of school sick, I would get to go to the shop with my grandmother. She was in charge of all the books and business side, and he was the repairman/boss. He would go out on calls and stuff, and work in the shop fixing microwaves, refrigerators, air conditioning units...pretty much any kind of appliance. Sometimes I would get to help take calls or load up microwaves when people would come to pick them up. I thought I was oh so cool ;) Anyway, so I would be sitting there on those days, helping Grandma do whatever or watching the little portable TV, just waiting for Pepa to come back from a call. I would watch the time b/c sometimes he would come in and ask me to go to lunch with him. He would clear out the passenger side of his truck so that I could fit in there. And his truck smelled great too. I don't know why b/c it was really nothing special, but it just smelled like Pepa. Actually, it still does. Anyway, he would eat at a place called Linda's (which is now known as Stones River Grill) b/c "They always cook my food the right way" he says. But we would sit there and eat and do the crossword puzzle from the newspaper. I loved those days.

4. He would do anything for me. I was in the 3rd grade and we were studying hummingbirds. Well, my Pepa is a hummingbird fanatic! So he scheduled me in one day and came to my class to teach us about them. He was in his work uniform and everything! And we also had Grandparents' Day every December at my school. All the classes would sing, and if you had a grandparent that came, you got to go eat some special refreshments after the program. He, again, would always be there with my grandmother and my Granny.

5. He has had an amazing life. I used to love to hear stories from his days in the Air Force. He even got to fly President Eisenhower once. He also had great stories from his childhood as well. But these days he says all of that is a little fuzzy for him.


I could go on and on about him, but unfortunately I don't have time for that. I've got to get the kids in the bathtub and get them ready for bed. Thanks for reading my memories :)

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Showin Some Love To My Kids, Part 2

Yesterday was crazy, so I did not get a chance to do Wil's blog. But I'm bored right now while Seth plays xbox with his friend, Matt, and also while I wait for it to be time to get ready to go out with my peeps. Anyway, so I freakin love this kid. He rocks my world, just like Brooklyn does, but in a different way. If you have more than 1 kid, you understand. And if you only have 1 kid right now, quit worrying about there being enough love for another one! There really is plenty to go around, and you'll love them just as much and in a completely different way :) OK, off my soapbox now.....

I love that he's so lovable. That kid LOVES to give me hugs and kisses, tell me that he loves me and that he thinks I'm pretty. And when he REALLY wants on my good side, he says, "Mommy, I think you're the best." He likes to hold my hand and lets me baby him every now and then. But recently he has started not wanting to give me kisses in public, and that really sucks. But he still gives the hugs out, so I'll take it and be happy with that.

He has a huge heart. He's not nurturing like Brooklyn is, but he can't stand to see anyone upset. I remember when he was a baby, probably a little under a year old...you would look at him and pretend like you were crying, and his little bottom lip would quiver and stick out b/c it would upset him. I know, I know. What parent does that over and over again for entertainment? Well, that would be me. It was so stinkin cute that I couldn't help it! And when I'm upset or crying and he sees me for some reason, he'll rub my back. I know, he's going to make some woman really happy one day ;)

He's smart. The kid taught himself the freakin alphabet! We got him one of those v-tech toy laptops a couple of years ago and it has tons of learning games on there. Well, now he can recognize all the letters, uppercase and lowercase, as well as his numbers. It's pretty crazy, and all that started when he was 2 years old. But sometimes I also think he has a photographic memory. But anyway, it makes me happy.

I love that he loves spending time with me. He loves going to Walmart with me. I guess it comes from the last couple of years of dropping Brooklyn off at school and then heading there for grocery shopping. But I would let him pick out a doughnut, and we would sometimes just look at the toys. And he definitely has his own on opinion on everything. He's not afraid to tell you if he doesn't like something ;)


So there's my Willie lovin post. He had a lot of problems as a baby, and bless his heart, he tried SO hard to be happy. But there was always something going on that was making him uncomfortable. Anyway, so I felt like it took me longer to bond with him than it did Brooklyn. Yes, even typing that out makes me feel like a horrible mother. But we're super tight now and that's all that matters. He's my little man :)

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Willie's First Full Day

So Wil had his first full day of preschool today. All day long I missed him and wished that I could go get him. They weren't joking when they said it would be harder for the parents than the kids. But I kept myself busy. Brooklyn and I chilled at home until 11am and then we headed over to CEC to play and hang out with some friends. Rachel, McAngie, and Melissa G met us over there and we ate pizza, spilled some drinks, and played some games. It was pretty awesome and thanks for coming out with us, ladies! Then we picked Seth up some lunch and ran it to him at work. After we hit up Krogers it was FINALLY time to get pick up Willie!

We got there and he ran to me and hugged me. It was one of the best moments of my life so far ;) I asked him how his day was and he told me it was great. Ms. Mandy said he had no problems and was an angel for her. Lucky lady! So we walked to the truck with Wil telling me about his lunch of a taco and chocolate milk and then about the songs they sang. And, "Oh yeah, mommy! We got to play on the playground too!" It made me laugh, but I'm glad that he loves it and looks forward to it. He doesn't go back again until Monday, and he'll go all day with all 20 kids for the first time. Hopefully it will all still be good.

This is my last Saturday working! They hired someone new in the office, so I'm working a little more on Fridays and get the weekends off! Can ya tell I'm excited??! And then on Saturday night I'm heading to Camino Real with some of my girls to get some time away from everything, and I can't wait! It's been way too long. That's about all that's going on right now. I'm gonna try to sneak in a blog tomorrow about the reasons why I love Willie, so stay tuned! :)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Showin Some Love to My Kids...

So I've decided to blog about my kids individually to let you all know what I love about each of them and why I think they're so freakin cool :) So let's start with Brooklyn since she's the oldest...

1. I love that she is so carefree. I can barely remember how it is to be like that, but sometimes I try when it is just her and I. It really sets off her personality, and I think it's awesome.

2. She's a hard worker. She's kinda like me in this way, and I never really noticed it about myself until Seth told me one day that it was something he loved about me. I LOVE to try new things, but I HATE being bad at them. So if I do something like that, I work really hard at it until I feel like I've mastered it. Brooklyn is the same way. She has been doing gymnastics since she was 2 1/2 years old. I always saw that she was decently good, but she's just so silly sometimes and just wants to have fun. Well, at the beginning of the summer her coach and I decided to go ahead and move her to the All Stars team to see how she would do. It's a lot of hard work, and at first she didn't like it. I didn't know if she would want to continue in it, or just go back to the regular rec class. Well, she has worked SO hard this summer! She's getting a lot stronger, and she now has her handstand as well as her splits. She's moving right along on bars and beam as well. I'm just so dang proud of her for proving me wrong :)

3. She is super honest, even when she knows it could get her in trouble. Now, there's a fine line of being honest and being nasty about it. And kids really don't know the difference until we teach them. But Brooklyn is not a liar, and even if she tries to be one, she can't hold it up for very long. She gives in and tells the truth, and usually unprompted to do so. I think that's going to work really well for her in the future.

4. She is a loving person. Brooklyn isn't one to shun people. If she is somewhere, and a kid is all alone with no friends, she will go to that child and play with them. She is by nature a caregiver, and it melts my heart.

5. She always tries to do the right thing. It's so hard as a kid to do that, and it's our job as parents to teach them right and wrong. Now she is only 6 years old, and sometimes can't help doing things that seem fun, even if she knows that she should not be doing them. But for the majority of the time, she really tries to do what she knows is right.

6. She's fun! Man, does that kid like to go and do things. She loves to do things and doesn't really like sitting still. So I know when I say that we're going to do something, she's going to be excited, no matter how small it is.

These are just a few of the reasons why Brooklyn is so great. If I kept going, the post would go on for days :) God gave her to me at just the right time in my life. I was on a really bad path that was taking me no where. She saved me from myself and the world around me. And that's why her middle name is "Faith". I've posted about why that word means so much to me, and everyday she reminds me of it. I cannot wait to see what kind of person she turns out to be. Hopefully she won't have too much of me in her ;)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A nice, quiet boring post for you....

I am SO happy to report that this will be a whine free post :) I just wanted to officially say that my funk is over!! I really think my hormones are just getting worse for about a week every month. It does make me feel like a big baby, though. But THANK YOU for all the encouraging comments, guys. It's always nice to know that you aren't alone.

So it's Sunday and we are all being completely lazy. I'm exhausted from the weekend! Friday night was Parent's Night Out at work, so Brooklyn and I didn't get home until almost 11pm. It was a lot of fun, though, and some easy money. Then yesterday we had to get up early b/c I had to work and Brooklyn had class. Then it was off to a birthday party for the afternoon and evening. There was a huge inflatable water slide, so the kids were exhausted by the end of it, even though it scared them a bit. Megan came home with us and spent the night, and then Seth and I watched some UFC. This morning I got up and made cinnamon rolls for breakfast, and then headed off to Walmart for groceries and Willie's school supplies. I can't believe he starts preschool next week! I'm really not looking forward to it, even though I know he needs it. Anyway, so now I'm hangin with the fam and waiting for it to be time to make my famous cajun chicken pasta. It's pretty yummy, and my family always asks for it.

So anyway, that was my weekend. Back to work tomorrow, and also a family meeting with Wil's preschool teacher. Hope everyone else had a great weekend as well! :)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

An admission to an addiction...

So obviously I've been a little down lately, no big deal. We all hit our funks, it's just human. However, there's been something on my heart a lot lately. It's something that's very hard for me to talk about or admit to these days. And it's definitely not something that I am proud of either. But I don't know, I just feel like it's something I need to get out. And what better place than here? If you read my blog, you're more than likely someone that I'm close to and care about. And friends don't judge, right? Well, we can hope anyway ;)

I've always struggled with my weight, ever since I was little. There were always these girls that were skinny and beautiful, and I just was not. I started to slim down in high school because I was really active riding horses and playing volleyball, but still not to my standards. And then there was the dating scene. I feel for my daughter when she hits this stage, and I'm going to do my best to help her get through it and not feel the pressure that I did. Anyway, so I graduated from high school in 1999. I was by no means in the popular crowd, but I got a long with everyone. I had known most of my classmates for years b/c I went to the same school from preschool until graduation. At 19 years old, I really don't know what happened. I got into some bad stuff, but no one really knew about it. I developed an eating disorder (bulimia), and thought that was the answer to everything. And you know what? It worked. I dropped some serious weight, and I kept getting told how good I looked. But I was ALWAYS tired. I really didn't get any of the other side effects, though. I felt like I had it pretty well under control. Then Seth and I split up, and things got really bad. My dad figured it out and made me go to the doctor and see a psychologist. This didn't do anything for me b/c he didn't even talk to me about my eating disorder, so I just stopped going. Fast forward a little bit, and Seth and I are back together. I'm still purging, at least when I was eating. And that wasn't happening very often either. Then I got pregnant with Brooklyn, and it stopped. And it also started up again soon after she was born. Then came Willie, and it stopped again. But started up after he was born as well. Then one day, I just decided that enough was enough. I had 2 kids that depended on me, and I couldn't afford to do something so destructive to myself when these 2 people needed me more than anything. And yes, I have relapsed a few times but I've been able to pull myself out of the hole without anyone knowing.

My point is that yes, bulimia is a disease BUT it is also an addiction. It's something you feel like you need, just like nicotine. If you eat something or just too much, you get in a panic and you need to get it out of your body. That's how I would feel anytime that I would eat. And that makes for a very unhealthy relationship with food. And I love to eat, I always have. I just really have to watch myself so that I don't get into that mind frame again. It's hard b/c I've never had a fast metabolism and my weight has always been up and down. And I guess the whole reason for this post is that my weight is a little up right now, and I'm trying to stay away from old habits.

Now...the big question is, will I tell Brooklyn about this one day? I will if she asks me. I will in no way give her anything positive about this, but tell her instead of all the emotional wreckage it caused in my life. I just don't want her to feel like it's the only way. And maybe I'll get lucky and she'll never even have an urge to do it and she'll be strong enough to stand up against peer pressure. I just pray that my choices will never affect her.

So thanks for letting me open up a little bit here. I'm going to try to do it more often because it helps me grow as a person and also gives you a little insight into what makes me the person that I am today. If I offend anyone, I apologize. But the truth hurts sometimes, and if our experiences can help someone else out, then offending one person is a small price to pay, don't you think?

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Things that have been happening...

So this past Wednesday was a HUGE day! My sister, Michelle, was engaged to a very good friend of mine, Raymond (affectionately known as Ray Ray). They were planning to get married in February, but something happened and they did this past week. I'm so happy for them because they are seriously 2 of my favorite people and I totally believe that they deserve happiness in their lives. How amazing, and lucky, that they can be that for each other! I really plan on sitting down with Michelle and talking about it, though. I learned TONS about Seth by being with him for almost 9 years before getting married, and it almost scares me the amount of things they don't know about each other because they've only been together for 4 months. I'm not saying that it makes me right and her wrong, but I don't want her to be caught off guard, KWIM? I just want them to be happy and understand that there are going to be hard times, but that it leads to an even better relationship if you persevere and push through it. You have to go through the bad times to get to the good...and there's no getting around that.

Well, as for me....I'm hangin in there. I'm still feeling lonely, and even a little left out at this point. I just feel like, "Ok, what do I do now?" I don't know if I'm just PMSing or what's going on, but it's not very fun.

And enough of the negative attitude. I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend, and I plan on trying REALLY hard to get out of my funk so my next post will be more upbeat :)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Feelings...random feelings...

Here's the thing. I am incredibly blessed in my life. Everyone that I have is incredible. My husband, my kids, my friends and family...I just can't ask for anything more. That's why feeling this way just seems so crazy and stupid. But it's still there...

I just feel so lonely sometimes. Why is that? I can't wrap my mind around it. There are plenty of people that I care about, and vice versa. But still...it's there. I'm guilty of being a hermit and not reaching out, that much I know. It's not that I don't care, I just don't want to bother anyone. And sometimes it feels like that's what it is when you call someone....a bother.

The thing about life that sucks is that people grow apart. You just never know when someone might move or have something drastic happen in their lives. You try to be there, but sometimes the distance is just too much. Our lives are busy with work and families, and priorities shift and change. And I think we just forget sometimes that we are parts of someone else's world too, not just our own. It's so easy to become comfortable with life and forget about the details. But it's the little things that matter; I'm a firm believer in that. So maybe what I'm saying is that we need to make sure we don't forget the little things...because that's what make people feel important.

So there are my 2 cents on that. I know I'm kinda rambly today, but at least I got it out of my system. Hopefully the next post will be better :)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Thoughts...

So all my wedding pictures are ready and they are FABULOUS!! I love them all and can't wait to get them printed. But looking at them all have brought back thoughts of the day and how perfect it was. There are a few things I would go back and do differently, like picking up my dress so I wouldn't trip going up the steps, lol. Anyway, I wrote something for Seth and was going to surprise him by reading it at the ceremony, but I was too emotional and knew I wouldn't be able to get through it. So I thought I would share it here with you :)


Sometimes I wonder how I got this lucky in my life. I never thought that God would bless me this much. He has given me someone who loves me for who I am and all that I am not. And with this man, He has also given me 2 beautiful, wonderful children. So I often wonder what I have done to deserve this. And then I stop wondering that, and I am just thankful for it.

The day that we met, I never imagined that we would be standing here almost 9 years later. You have given me so much in my life. We have been through many things, overcome obstacles and tribulations that we could not go around. But you taught me how to face things head on instead of avoiding them. And I know that I still do that sometimes, but I know that you will always be there to hold my hand and help me be strong. You have given me so many things and you have shown me how to be proud of myself. And when I feel that I just cannot do something and I am afraid of failing, you remind me of the faith that you have in me. And that’s when I know that I am stronger than I ever thought possible.

Our love and commitment have always shown through, no matter what anyone else thought. You know all of my strengths, as well as my flaws, and you still love me. I know that we are worth fighting for, and I’m glad that we have never given up on one another. We have stood beside each other through the years and supported each other, and I promise you that I will continue to do that. I will never give up on you, just as you have never given up on me.

Thank you for showing me how to be a better person and not be afraid to be myself. Thank you for always being an amazing father to our children. Thank you for walking through fire for me. And thank you for supporting me through everything. I love you, and I cannot wait to see where this life will take us.



Al so, if you are interested in viewing the pictures, you can see Erica Foley's at www.pictage.com/406114

And you can see Rachel Beasley's at www.lilachillphotography.com. Go to galleries, then sessions, and Allen Wedding. Password is: Meant2Be

Friday, June 6, 2008

Thoughts of my Granny...

So as most of you know, I am very lucky to live in the house that belonged to my Granny before she died. I have SO many memories in this place from childhood, and it makes me happy that my kids are growing up here. Sure, it's an old house and I complain about it sometimes, but in all reality I know how lucky I am to be here. Sometimes in the middle of the night, I'll wake up and the house will smell exactly the way that it did when I was a kid. I'll hear a train whistle blowing, or hear the owl hooting right outside the window. And then I can picture the house the way that it was when she was alive. I love it when that happens.

My Granny was a very spunky lady, and she died when she was 85 years old. You never would have known she was that old by looking at her, though. And she definitely didn't act her age either. She was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2000, and died soon after that. The last time I saw her was on my 19th birthday. Just a week before that, they said she wouldn't make it. She was unresponsive and her organs had started to shut down. But she pulled out of it. And I walked into her hospital room on my birthday, and there she was sitting up in bed. She was so with it, that she knew what day it was before I could even tell her. We talked for awhile and then I left. The doctors said she would be fine and released soon. I was busy with work and other things after that, so I just planned on seeing her when she got out of the hospital. She died 1 week later on June 16th, and I never got to say goodbye. It was my fault, I should have made more time. But hindsight is 20/20, right?

How ironic is it that 2 years later Brooklyn's due date was June 16th? However, she decided to come 2 days early, but still....ironic nonetheless. Here is something I wrote for my Granny that I read at her funeral:

Memories of you float back to me
Reminding me of my childhood
What I once was
Where I have come from
And what I am becoming because of you.

I remember the breakfast you used to make just for me
The vanilla wafers that we always shared
The card games you taught me when I was young
The kiss on my cheek you gave me before I left you each time.

I remember the way you used to let me sit on your lap
The television shows we used to watch
The way we would talk in bed at night before I fell asleep
All the times you were there for me.

I remember when you would pick me up from school before I could drive
The way you would always have a turkey sandwich waiting for me
The smell of your pillows when I'd wake up in the middle of the night
The smile you'd always give me when you were proud of me.

I remember how you never gave up on anyone or anything
The love and dedication you always put forth
The time you spent with those in need
The sacrifices you made.

I remember the strength in you that I always admired
The loyalty you had for your family and friends
The way you were there for every milestone in my life
The faith you had in your family and in God.

I know you will never truly be gone
But remembered always for the great woman that you were
The friend that never stopped giving
The grandmother that never stopped caring.

You are an angel from Heaven
Watching us, protecting us
Giving me the strength to say goodbye
Allowing me to tell you that my heart will never forget
But will always remember you
And blessing me with your presence.
I love you, Granny.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Just a little update...




Well, just thought I would update a little bit since it's been awhile. Last week I was off for the whole week and it was awesome!! I kinda hated going back to work yesterday, but once I got there it was no big deal. I do love my job, but it's hard now that Brooklyn is out of school for the summer. I would much rather stay home and take the kids to do all kinds of cool things. But what can ya do?

Brooklyn also graduated from Kindergarten last week. I can't believe she's about to turn 6 years old AND be a 1st grader! It absolutely blows my mind. It's hard for me to remember her as a baby, though. And that's just because there was no Willie when she was that little and it's hard to imagine life without him in it. Does that make sense to anyone else out there? I just can't imagine our family of 3 when it became a family of 4 just 22months later. Speaking of Willie, I got a letter the other day telling us that he got into the city school preschool program at Bellwood for the fall! He's SO excited about starting there and being in school just like his big sister :)

On that note, it makes my job plans a little different. As much as I love my job and all that comes with it, the hours kind of suck. With both kids being in school in the fall, the hours just don't leave much time with my family. It would be me picking them up in the afternoons just to drop them off someplace else for me to go back to work. Then I would get home right before bedtime, and the thought of that makes me really sad. I feel like I just wouldn't get to spend the time with my family that I need to and that they deserve. So I'm at a crossroads with this one. So I'm just praying about it and keeping my options open. I haven't talked to my boss about it, but I'm sure it's not going to be news he likes. So cross your fingers for me!

As for Seth and I, well....things are going pretty great :) People keep asking me how married life is and honestly, it's no different from before. I guess being together for almost 9 years before the formality makes a bit of a difference ;) Oh well...as long as life is good for the kids and for him, I'm good.

Here are a couple more pictures I've been sent by Rachel and Erica from the wedding :)