Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Digiscrap Love!

I know it's been awhile, but I think it's about time to share some Digiscrap love. :)
Here are the latest pages I made and I'm pretty proud of how they came out! (And P.S. These are just in Alphabetical order by their title.)
Ben's5thbirthday:
Kit Used: Let's Party (Leaving a Legacy Designs)
CondorPark:
Kit Used: Thank God for Kids (Boomersgirl Designs)
Template Used: Clip It Sampler (MemoryClips)
H&WCP:
Kit Used: Shabtastic (Just So Scrappy)
Template Used: Tuesday Template Week 40 (Designs by Megan Turnidge)
JacobKinderAward:
Kit Used: Schools Out (Crazy 4 Monograms)
Template Used: Clip It Sampler (Memory Clips)
Love&lightsabers:
Kit Used: Love Notes (Crazy 4 Monograms)
Template Used: Unknown (TimeOut Scraps)
You probably noticed the first and last layout are new... But the middle ones are old. I decided to spend some time scrapping the old photos from before I got into Scrapping. Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Sisterchicks in Gondolas by Robin Jones Gunn

Out of the 6 books I've read in this series, this was by far my favorite...
The book centers around Jenna & Sue. Jenna is invited on an all expense paid trip to Venice to be the cook for a small group. She asks her friend Sue who has been through a rough patch to tag along. Neither of them speak very good Italian so "listening" to them struggle to talk to the locals in hilarious. Through all the moments of sigh seeing, cooking, shopping, and gelato eating they also spill the moments they've needed to talk about the most. They grow closer both to each other and God through the tears!
Robin Jones Gunn does a great job setting the scene. Most of the time you feel you are sitting next to Jenna & Sue in the Cafe or on the Gondola!
As I stated above I have read all of the books in this series and I highly recommend them to other women. Christian or not, these books will uplift and inspire you; your walk with Christ or friendships will grow stronger.
I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Thank you :)

Sunday, January 18, 2015

D.O.N.E.

Today is one of those days. The days where I am just done.
Done dealing with people who are rude or judgmental.
Done with people who don't or won't understand.
Done with the constant never ending pain.
Done with the phantom itches that cause me to scratch my skin raw.
Done with being exhausted even after sleep.
Done with people who lie.
Done with it all.

The only thing that keeps me sane on days like this is looking at me kids. Looking at their smiles; listening to their laughter. Spending time outside in the sun and listening to nature all around me: the cats, birds, dogs, and cows. And of course the main thing is my faith. I don't even want to think of what dark place I would be in if I didn't have Jesus by my side through this all.
So many nights I have lied in bed and just cried and prayed myself to sleep. I have left so many burdens on His alter because I didn't have the strength to carry them anymore.
I am beyond thankful for my Church family. Their love, hugs, compassion, and unwavering support never ceases to amaze and astound me.
My family too. Without them I'm not sure where I would be. They have always been there even when they really didn't want to be.

Please don't get me wrong, I am not writing this from a pit of depression. That's the point of writing to not let myself get to that point. I am writing it hoping that there is someone else out there going through this same thing. Maybe just maybe there is someone who needs to read this. Someone who needs to understand their heart isn't the only broken one. We all have struggles. We all hurt. We all need someone to lean on from time to time.
Do the world a favor. Tomorrow morning look for the bright spot of the day. Look for something so beautiful it just takes your breath away. And then share that with someone else. Make someone else smile. Smiling is like yawning. It's super contagious, but enough people don't share it.
And maybe pray for one another.... You never know how your prayer can effect someone else.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

December Highlights


Well most of the highlights. I'm giving Christmas it's very own post... Because let's face it. Christmas always deserves it's own!! :)
The very first photo I took in December should make you laugh... Ben decided my pillow case was a shaw!


Crazy kid... Then just a few days later, I was making dinner and dropped the knife. Instead of letting it fall like a smart person, I decided to try to catch it... OUCH!
(Here we are a month later, and I now have a scar on that finger. Probably needed stitches, but oh well!)
I picked up Sugar & Gingerbread Cookie dough at the store and Ben and I got into the cookie cutters and had fun while Jacob stayed the night with a friend:
The boys have really become huge Star Wars fans and I found Ben dressed like this to go shopping one morning (And yes, he even had a Star Wars shirt under the Darth Vader jacket!)
I sweet talked my sister into coming down on Friday and we had some beautiful weather. The kids spent a lot of time outside. And I snapped a few great photos of Ashlyn, like this one:
The next morning Kerrie and I took the kiddos to the Zoo to see Santa. They had him in the Butterfly house which was so cool! Ben got to hold one of the butterflies and it did not want to leave him! I think it was attracted to his bright shirt!
Ashlyn wasn't a fan of Santa, but I got a great photo of my boys with him:
And of course we had a great time looking at all the animals and having fun!
The day of the Children's Department Christmas Party arrived and we did a Birthday Party for Jesus. One of my helpers snapped this photo of me as I was re-hanging the banner for the 4th time!
And here's a shot of Jacob playing Pin Jesus in the Stable!
The RA group at our Church has been saving money all year for SA pets Alive and on the 22nd we took a trip to give them the check. We arrived before they opened and headed into the park for a little impromtu photo shoot! Here is one of the photos of my boys I took:
Just after Christmas Ben developed a bad cough. One night this is what found him when he was really feeling yucky:
New Years Eve was a nice day, although cold, and it became rainy in the evening. Ben, however, was excited to get out and do some fireworks!
Here's a shot and me helping the boys get their parachute man out of the bushes:
We have a tradition for 4th of July and New Years. We fire 2 parachute men off. Whoever finds them first gets to pick the first firework of the night! The boys love it!
Speaking of night, I love how this photo of Jacob came out. I have no idea how I got it, but I love the exposure!
And that was pretty much December in a nutshell.... Now on to 2015!!!

Christmas 2014!

I hope this post finds you still loving the way Christmas happened for you and your family. I loved ours this year, but then again, I always do!
Christmas Eve had all 3 of us siblings and our kiddos under the same roof. It was lots of laughing and fun to be sure! Here are some of my favorite Christmas Eve Shots:
All the grandkids posing for my Mom:
Mom and Dad gave all the grandkids these spinning lights. They make GREAT photo props which allowed me to get photos like this:
My guys in their new Christmas Darth Vader Jammies!
And just before Midnight my living room looked like this:
Christmas Morning had the most amazing Sunrise!
Jacob and Benjamin opened their gifts and then Chuck and I made a huge breakfast!
After breakfast (and warming up a bit outside) Mom and Dad gave their gift to the boys... They got Scrambler fixed!
Here's a photo of jacob enjoying the ride once again:
Benjamin had told Chuck he wanted snow for Christmas. Since we knew that this area of Texas probably won't see any we did the next best thing... Snow in a can! Here he is playing with it at the table:
Around lunch time GG and the Aunts came over for food and more gift exchanges. The adults in our family do a $5 White Elephant exchange. It's always a LOT of fun and laughing... Especially when your husband ends up with the girl-est gift ever!
Toward the end of the day I asked my Mom to take some family photos and here are 2 of my favorites:
  
And that was Christmas 2014! One of the best I think we've ever had. Now I look forward to 2015 and all the things God has in store for our family!!!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Spoonie Life

Have you heard of the Spoon Theory? Probably not... Unless you have a chronic illness. Here is a quick snippet that I found on Pinterest that explains it in a nutshell:
If you'd like to read the post that started the whole movement it can be found here.
Anyway, where I was going wit this is, I suffer from Chronic Migraines. Some days there is little to no pain and I'm great. Full of energy and ready to take on the world! These are the days I try to get as much for GAs, Children's Church, and my family done. I'm running and crazy and loving every minute of it.... And then there are days where I can not get out of bed. Where sounds, breathing, and even light make my head feel like it will explode! These are the days where it takes every ounce of my will and strength to take care of myself and the kids... And forget doing anything else!
Sometimes getting sick to my stomach helps, others it doesn't. Often the migraines make me unable to sleep and extremely forgetful. I loose track of my thoughts often and am in a bit of a "brain fog". It's incredibly frustrating to know that just walking HEB to do our weekly shopping wears me out. I'm 30 years old, not 80!
What really hurts the most though? On my worst days I feel so alone. There aren't many people who truly understand what I am going through and there are even some who don't care. They don't want to try to help. They just want to rub in their "normal" lives. I don't know if they do it intentionally, but it sure feels that way.
I just wanted to come and vent but, let's be real. I have a migraine right now and the light of my laptop is making it worse...

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The end of November...

The last couple weeks of November were kinda slow. There wasn't a lot going on so there aren't a lot of pictures.
However... This is what happened after my last post ;)
On the 22nd I snapped this silly shot of Moses stealing Ben's car seat!
And this photo of my boys together!
Now the 23rd was a pretty awesome evening... Jacob got up and sang in Church! Here are 2 of my favorite photos to document it!
Ben has gotten into his head that since he is the only member of our household who doesn't wear glasses, suddenly he needs some... And he says he wants these:
(Personally I think they make him look a bit too Harry Potter!)
I also got to take my camera out for some Fall Fun photos on the 26th... Here is one of my favorites! Love the sunset colors in the background.
Thanksgiving day found the family gathered around our house with my Dad's perfect Turkey:
And the boys trying to break a wishbone!
On Black Friday instead of shopping, I had Chuck pull the stuff from Storage and we decorated the whole house for Christmas! Here are the boys doing the tree

And our finished Tree! :)
I am vowing to blog at least once a week in December. I was going to try to do a Daily Document December project, but let's face it, I'm HORRIBLE at those.... And at blogging in general lately. I want to get better I do enjoy this blog. And I have so many things I want to write... See you again soon!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

November....So far

I know I said I was going to blog weekly in November... And obviously that didn't happen. I'll be honest, this month has been an odd one so far.
I'll catch you up and then I promise this time I really will keep on top. I want my blog to be active again. I want to start sharing some of my Scrapbooking creations, yummy recipes, and of course our lives again!
So here is November up to this morning:
On the 1st the weather was great so we had some fun outside and I took some great shots of the butterflies like this one:
And I made Jacob take a Selfie with me too!
On the 6th Jacob had his first ever eye exam where it was determined that he needed glasses. He loved getting to see all the cool equipment and the Doctor was great about answering his questions and explaining everything to him!
On the 7th I headed out to Leaky, TX for a Woman's retreat with our Church. The location is amazing! So beautiful! Look for yourself!
We were still there on the 8th Jen and I got up super early and walked up to the Blue Hole to watch the sun rise over the rived (and see the deer) before heading back to camp for the day.
I took a photo of my best friend, Amanda,  and me around lunch time:
and of our group before we left camp for home!
Jacob's glasses came in on the 11th and we headed to Walmart to pick them up... That's when I got this silly photo of Ben who decided he was going to drive us home! I don't think so buddy ;)
On the 12th Jacob's class had a PJ day for having Perfect Attendance in the month of October. The only 4th grade class to do so!! The class was very excited and the rest of the grade very jealous ;)
November 15th we had a birthday party for one of Jacob's very good friends and I snapped this photo of my boys waiting for cupcakes!
On the 17th Chuck surprised Ben and brought his "Big Truck" home for a few minutes. Ben LOVED getting to go inside and check everything out (and of course blow the air and regular horn!) Here is a photo of Ben and Chuck laughing outside before Chuck left again.
I think I might write more on this later because I have enough photos for it to have it's own post!!
I realized I never shared a photo of Benjamin's new fish, Robin, that he bought with the money he was given when he was Baptized. On the 18th I was playing with lighting and was able to get a good shot of Robin!
And despite the migraine that had been forming all day... On the 20th we took advantage of the nicer weather and played outside for a bit. Here are some solo shots of the boys:
And one of them playing and laughing together so nicely!
Oh P.S. Have you noticed my new Watermark? I have also started a Facebook page for my photography. I plan to go back to school (hopefully) in January and get my Photographers Certification to begin to do this professionally!