Shannon Falls, August 2012

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


I'm having a rough day. Maybe it's because David had to go back to work today. Maybe it's because I'm off my routine. Maybe it's because I'm having to put Christmas decorations away. Maybe...

I know what it is, and it's absolutely, without a doubt, completely me being superficial. Hayden had a fantastic Christmas, no doubt. I had to go buy some storage containers today so we could pack up all the little pieces so they don't get lost. When we move in six months, I'll need a way to safely transport his toys until we get settled and buy something like this:

What does that have to do with anything you wonder? Well, I'm in the middle of putting away all of the Christmas decorations and trying to somewhat organize them because we are taking only those absolute keepsakes with us to Vancouver. Do you know how much stuff you can fit in a 2200 sq. ft. house? I do. And althought it's just STUFF, it's somewhat heartbreaking to look around and realize, "Wow, I have to buy 'this' and 'that' when we move, and those aren't going."

This move is the perfect opportunity to update some things in our house as it would cost us nearly triple to ship it as it would to just replace it. I'm going to have to part with quite a bit of stuff and it shouldn't be so hard, but it is.

Please don't think less of me after reading this. I know how superficial it sounds; I'm ashamed. But on the plus side, I can't wait to finally burn or trash a ton of junk we've just held on to. You know those bits and pieces you stick in a box and either plan to use later or get to later and never do? Yeah.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Breakfast with Santa

Normally, Santa comes earlier to Hayden's school, but this year, he came on the 23rd. We had talked and talked about Santa's visit, and Hayden was super excited...until he actually arrived! As with most children, he was fine with Santa from a distance, but once it came time to sit on the red guy's lap, we weren't so sure.

David tried to convince Hayden it was fine; Santa waved and was very patiend. Hayden was second to last to sitting on his lap out of the children in his class. Once Santa got him talking about Michael (our elf), Hayden was ready to go!

After he finished, Hayden had to repeatedly make his way back to Santa to high-five him!

We decided not to take Hayden to the mall to visit Santa there because we didn't want to confuse him. Hayden told us as we left school that Santa had gone to the North Pole, so we let it go. Not the greatest picture we could have gotten, but one of the directors also took shots and we'll get a copy of that later.

Merry Christmas, all!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Whistler, BC, Canada

Here is just a sampling of pictures from Whistler, BC. Due to the very short length of our trip, we didn't stop to take any pictures in Seattle or really in downtown Vancouver. We simply had too many people to meet and too much to see. So these are from Whistler, sight of Olympic Village for the 2010 Winter Olympics. These pictures do not do the place justice. It's gorgeous!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Dog tired

I'll keep this short and sweet. It's been an insane three days. I'm in love with this place. I can't wait to see Hayden's reactions to Vancouver. It'll take some getting used to being a hockey mom instead of a pee wee football mom, but this is exactly where we're called.

Today we ventured way up the mountains to Whistler. Google it. It's the sight of Olympic Village. David went up this summer when everything was green, but today it was all white. And Christmas-y! It was cold. And I was out of my element. But it was wonderful. I'll put pictures on FB when we get home.

Tomorrow is a long day of airports and flights to get home to a little mister. I can't wait. We leave for Seattle at 3 am. G'night!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Dark early morning

I am writing this using my phone as I sit propped on a fold out bed in Conrad's apt in Coquitlam, BC, Canada. If there are errors, forgive me! I'm tired and even though it's already 6:30 am, it's still pitch dark. At home the sun is up, birds are singing, and Hayden would be informing me he needs breakfast!

I'll try to give a quick rundown of what we've done. We basically landed in Seattle at 2 am Saturday morning. Conrad picked us up and we all crashed in a nearby hotel for a few hours. I could've slept half the day but I couldn't wait to see the Pacific Northwest, so we go up and moving.

We toured Seattle for about an hour looking for a great local breakfast. Finally we just decided to start heading north and find food on the way. So much for local. We ate for our first time at Panera Bread! Good. Ate lunch food for brunch. On to Canada!

After a gorgeous drive, Conrad took David through a different border gate. I've never been so it's my first border gate! Of Canada, that is. No major wait, shockingly. The line headed south was at least an hour's wait. Our border agent looked like one mean joker, so we were honest and made eye contact. No big deal.

Since we had had less than five hrs sleep, David declared he need coffee, so Tim Horton's it was. I got a white hot chocolate. So yummy! Then we drove to Conrad's place, freshened up and sat for a min before heading out to look at future residences. In case you don't know, it's super expensive to live here. But we've seen a few options.

We had supper at Nando's, an awesome healthy chicken restaurant, and talked forever. Conrad took us to the mall that's within walking distance. Well, just about everything's within walking distance. I saw new places and sights, but much the same from home. That's reassuring. We called it an early night. Oh, and it was completely dark at 4:30. In the summer, though, it'll be light forever.

Today we share at a few local churches how God has called us here. We will make a few other stops and tonight is the community Christmas party. Tomorrow is probably Whistler. I've yet to take a picture! As of last night, we'd only be here for six hours. I'm blown away.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Running out of days

With everything going on as David and I prepare to take a five-day trip to Vancouver in less than two weeks, I am quickly running out of days.

I have spent the afternoon speed-cleaning my house, as next weekend is our church's "Singing Christmas Tree," Disney on Ice as a suprise for Hayden, and packing and labeling everything for our trip and for Hayden as he stays here with family and friends. School is quickly drawing to a close and I have a ton to do there, too. I have not had the time to do the holiday baking I like to do every year, Christmas presents have really only been bought for Hayden, and I still need to make Hayden's "gifts" for grandparents and teachers. I'm tired!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thanksgiving/Black Friday

I do not have any pictures from yesterday...FAIL. Not really sure what happened, other than we hosted (again; 4th year) and with all the activity and babies/toddlers/children running in and out and making sure food was set up and flowing, I forgot. I realized it about six o'clock last night, but by then everyone was gone or leaving and it was pitch-black dark. Oh well.

We had a good day. I'm a fanatic about my house, so hosting is always a little stressful for me. With Hayden "helping," it took me 2 1/2 days to clean, shampoo carpets, work on food, organize, etc. So you can see why I like my house to stay clean when it's clean. Plus, David and I leave for Vancouver 3 weeks from today, and I do not plan to devote any serious time to deep cleaning. I have to maintain (which is oh-so-easy with a toddler!).

David and I split up and hit Black Friday sales. The only thing we were really after was a GPS as we are shortly moving 41 hours away to a city we do not know! And our little backroads here are nothing to what we're about to encounter. So David got in line at Target, and my mom, sister, and I headed to the outlets in Gulfport. My brother-in-law kept all the kiddos at my mom's house and Hayden and Gabe (cousins) had a "sleepover." However, I found out later this morning that Hayden didn't really go to sleep until about 2. Then my sister called at 5 (after we got home after 3) to say Hayden was up. So I ran up to my mom's, grabbed him, and we came home and slept off and on until 8. A nap is in the near future.

Thankfully, Hayden's Christmas is done. We even started the "Elf on the Shelf" tradition with him today. He named his elf Michael. We'll see how that goes. Oh, and definitely check out! You can personalize a message from Santa specifically for your child. It was fantastic to watch Hayden's eyes grow and hear him say, "Wow!" This is a great age!

David and I (and the family in general) are going very low-key. We have to think about everything we buy, as our living space is about to be a 1/3 of what is currently is.

The next month is going to be insane. Holiday gatherings, 3 weeks of teaching, Vancouver, family pictures, Christmas, purging, etc. I'm already tired! But that could just be the overnight shopping talking! It was great not to be "after" anything. No tv's, no Xbox, just a GPS with free map updating. I am also very cheap. Hayden needs clothes, but even at the outlets, I was still going to be paying $8-11/piece. No thanks. I like my Children's Place $1.97 sales (and yes, we have stumbled across many of those!).

So Happy belated Thanksgiving and Merry early Christmas!

Saturday, November 19, 2011


Last night, as I lay passed out in bed (after one exhausting week teaching and trying to control 7th graders), my husband came running in to change the channel on the tv I'd left on. You see, we are HUGE Alabama fans, and currently our team sits at #3. many people probably witnessed last night, Iowa State beat Oklahoma St. (#2) in 2 OT's. Jeepers. So out of a dead sleep I came. As I settled back into my "spot," I began thinking about all the cleaning I need to do before we host Thanksgiving Thursday for my family.

It's not just hosting Thanksgiving. And it's not the cleaning that had my thoughts churning last night. It's the huge fact that we are in our last months of anything in this house. This is the only home Hayden has known and in about 7-8 months, this house will no longer be a part of our lives. I'm trying to take as many pictures of stuff we do around here for him to remember where he spent (by that time) his first 3 years. We won't have this furniture in 6-7 months; we are going to update our rooms as we move; we are getting rid of just about everything. Hayden can do so much in this house, but when we live in Vancouver, our time will be spent outdoors.

It really is bittersweet; we are so excited to be going, but yet, it's hard to look around at the stuff (that's all it is really) that won't be with us any longer. Though, as an organizer, it's nice to know we will be getting rid of boxes of papers and junk!

This is a crazy process--church planting. Well, maybe it wouldn't be quite so crazy if we weren't moving 40 hours away! Regardless, it's all worth it.

Just a thought: Has anyone else ever had trouble cleaning knowing you were moving? I'm at this point, but I will not live in filth!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Simpler Season

With everything taking place in our lives this year, and specifically downsizing for our move to Vancouver, we are going much simpler this holiday season. This has been both great and difficult.

I LOVE Christmas-time. And with a child who is enthralled with it all, it's even greater. Hayden is fascinated by the Christmas trees, the decorations in the stores, Santa. I can't wait to take him light-seeing! David could take it or leave it, but I love to drive around and see the decorated houses! Hayden's at a great age to really enjoy it this year.

We are primarily talking to Santa and giving gifts from Mommy and Daddy. I'm sure we'll get something for our parents, but that's about it. I'm not even sure what David and I are doing for each other honestly! We are having to get rid of a ton of stuff, so why fill our home with more junk? And for Hayden, we're doing smaller gifts that travel well like books, puzzles, etc. Santa may or may not be very interested in a train table, but we'll have to see!

It's very difficult not to get caught up in all the commercialism and buy just because of the "awesome" sales. Tomorrow my mom and I are probably going to Christmas City; there will be a ton of stuff that screams at me, but I'll have to look and just keep looking (just like at the Peter Anderson Festival in downtown OS last weekend). I'm really learning how must stuff I can truly live without.

Happy early Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Fall Funk

It's officially here: the Fall Funk! I got that lovely title from my superintendent; nice, huh? It's that stretch of the school year (once in fall, once in spring) where you can see a break looming in the far distance, but there's nothing at the present. I realize we're just 8 school days away from Thanksgiving break, but it's been quite the stretch since our one day break in early October. And between Vancouver, a sick kiddo, and life, it's been quite the whirlwind! And since I get so preoccupied with myself, I tend to forget to check on friends. I'm not a good friend!

Tomorrow, I begin in earnest something that's going to require quite the discipline and focus. With the holidays here and student celebrations, I'm really going to need to zone in on my goal. I'll share more details later once I see how I fare. Any encouragement is welcome!

Keep your heads up and stay out of the Fall Funk!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Mouse in the House

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Grinch

Hayden brought me "The Grinch" (with Jim Carrey) to watch tonight! With the cooler temps and fall colors, I'm ready for the holidays. It did get fairly warm this afternoon, but no where near the 100 degree heat we were fighting mere weeks ago. The cold temps in the morning (and darkness) have made me want to curl up on the couch with some good Christmas films. My favorite is the old Miracle on 34th Street. Oh, and White Christmas! David and I were very fortunate to see this at the Orpheum Theater in Memphis (for free; box seats!) about 4 years ago. David isn't as into musicals as I am; I was in love!

Things are progressing with Vancouver. I had been planning to sit down with my boss soon, but someone decided to put a bug in his ear. I'm not sure who, and I guess it really doesn't matter. He's a Christian, and he has known me for about 15 years, so he's well aware of my faith. The talk went well; I just wish we all really kept out mouths shut when we tell people, "I won't say a word. Promise!" But that's human nature, I suppose. I'm just as guilty of this trait, so I really should be pointing fingers at myself more than anyone.

Age 2 1/2 has hit hard this week, just this week. Hayden hit at school, he hasn't wanted to stay seated, etc. He's still polite and respectful, but he's pushing boundaries. But right now that all seems as if it's in the distant past as Hayden lies on the couch next to me with his head on my lap soaking in the movie. I can't wait for Christmas this year with an almost 3 YO! It's all so magical!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Enemy

When David and I began earnestly seeking whether Vancouver was God-breathed or David-and-Jamie-desired, we discussed the very real likelihood that satan was going to do everything in his power to stop us if this move was designated from God.

Sure enough, it happened. The last month has been one of the most difficult I've ever faced. Sleepless nights, drama, uncertainty, illness, you name it. All of these symptoms were connected to serious issues with some of the people closest to us. It HURT. Badly.

I will not divulge the details or their names. But I am rejoicing today because those issues have been resolved. I wish we'd never gone through the pain we ALL went through, but I am very happy to say that I think we all feel a new peace this morning. I was very concerned some relationships were going to be severed...forever. Praise the Lord for His goodness!

On a completely different note, here are some things Hayden is up to lately:
-he knows his shapes, including octagon! (That blew my mind!)
-he knows the months of the year (Again, mind-blowing!)
-he can say anything he wants to and honestly is just incredibly smart
-he loves a red and white jacket our friends Dustin and Rachel got him for his last birthday; every time he puts it on he thinks he's going to a football game! It's so funny!
-he's a whiz at puzzles, especially 9-piecers
-he remembers EVERYTHING (and I love when people tell me, "He'll never remember that." And then he blows their minds!)
-school buses are not as much of an obsession, though we still go on a hunt every morning and afternoon!
-he loves music and will dance with me
-we have started a new fear of monsters; so far, it's a fear that's only a day old, so we'll see where it goes.
-he loves this particular rhino shirt and the snow episodes of Caillou
-he loves to draw snowmen (Thanks, MeMaw!)
-he can't wait to move to "Bancouber!"

I know there's more, but now that's I've bored you with those details of my 2 1/2 yr. old, have a great weekend, everybody!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

All Signs Point North

It's time to let the cat out of the bag about the big changes taking place for our family.

When David and I met 6 years ago, I learned one thing about him very quickly: he has a heart for missions. And as we dated and got married, I learned that he had a heart for missions in a particular location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

David has been on 4 and led 1 mission trip to Vancouver. Over the past 6 years, we have talked about the very distinct possibility that we could find ourselves as Canadians....someday.

There is really no way to describe what the past 4 months have been like. For years we've talked about something, and over the past 4 months we have watched door after door swing wide open. So the long and short of this entire post is this: we are actively pursuing our calling as church planters in Vancouver. We would be working with a church plant our good friend Conrad has begun. We shared our plans with our church body this morning and received nothing but positive support and encouragement.

It's so nice to finally share what we've been wrestling with. Of course, there are so many other variables we've contended with, but some of those are better left unspoken (and some are just boring!). As of right now, we look to be heading north next summer. It's going to very different than living in south MS--a place I was born and raised and the only home our son has ever known. We appreciate your prayers, and as the year progresses, look for updates here about our process and progress.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Keep Coming Back

I've come back to my blog page repeatedly today, only to shake my head and venture to another site. Why? Because I'm overwhelmed with a few things, and I'm honestly not quite sure who reads my blog, and if I expressed how I really feel on a few things, I'm not sure if I would make a situation better, make it worse, or make it worse then better. Whew!

David and I are working through some major changes for our family and life, as you've all read for weeks and weeks now. I'm sure you're sick of me mentioning that and not sharing what it is! I know, and I'm sorry. However, there are just some things that can't be shared...yet. God is doing HUGE things in our lives, things that are going to take us away from the comfortable and normal. We've seen open windows and open doors, walked through many of them, are preparing to walk through so many more I can't even begin to describe my emotions, and we've hit a major roadblock.

This roadblock has upset me for many reasons. When God is just laying things before you and you approach the person/people you think will be the most supportive or willing to do anything in support and you get a "no," it makes you sit back and reflect a minute. (And if you're this person reading this, I'm not sure how you're feeling having seen those words.) On one hand, I can see why it was a no; however, in our quest to be obedient, what we asked of these people was a sacrifice on their part and not a decision we came to lightly. I guess that makes it hurt worse, then, because it was the most humbling thing we've ever asked. And truthfully, that was the 2nd time we've received a no (3 years apart and in different situations).

I'm having to go with the promise that God has a better plan then. I don't know if His plan is what we think it might be or if it's something even better. I've prayed some crazy prayers since yesterday morning!

On a lighter note, we attended a welcome home bbq/football-watchin' party yesterday for a friend of ours who just returned from 13 months in Afghanistan. It was great to get out of the house and be with great friends, food, and fellowship (I love alliteration!). Hayden really showed himself (in a good way), which prompted someone to say, "He really is like what you say on Facebook!" Why, yes, ma'am, he is!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Answer #1

Tonight we'll have answer #1 to our biggest issue. I'm honestly not sure which way this answer might go; I could see it leaning either way. Maybe once we have this answer, I can share what the next step for our family is. We've been waiting on this answer for at least 3 weeks, so we'll see what happens next!

Monday, September 19, 2011

You Can Have Me

David and I will never live the "American Dream." We're completely fine with that. Wait a minute, I'm sure everyone reading this blog is like, "What?! You have a home, you have a husband and son (future linbacker!), you have a JOB, you have the dog," etc. But we're called to more. And hopefully we're getting a little closer to revealing what that more is for our family.

We know most people, especially family, are not going to understand when we tell them. Oh well. We can either STEP FORTH (hence the title of this blog) or we can be disobedient. I'm not so keen on the latter!

I was sent this video today. This is how we feel as a family: He can have us. It's going to mean leaving a lot. It's going to mean upheavel and change. It's going to mean a huge step of faith. But...He can have us, all of us. (Go to the link below and watch this video. Seriously. Do yourself a favor.)


Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Hayden has graduated from "Finding Nemo" to "Toy Story 3," a change that doesn't bother this momma!

My entire reason for this quick post is this: if/when we have a little girl, I sincerely hope she looks just like Bonnie from this movie! I'm not even kidding.

Monday, September 5, 2011


Having a long weekend with my boys has been wonderful, yet having so much time to think now that the house is clean, chores are caught up, and everything is ready for the week is not good for me. My head is spinning with all the possibilities of the next year to two. Shoot, I'm stressing about the next 6 months!

We are waiting on some answers that will help steer our next few months-year. I know it will all fall into place and God knows the direction we need to go, but there are going to be big changes. For those of you that know me, change is not something that comes easily to me. Once I adapt I'm fine, but until then, it's very difficult. I have quite a few improvements to make to myself, my surroundings, and my personal life as we prepare for the months ahead.

I worry about Hayden and how he'll adjust, but I've been closely watching him the past month or so. He goes with the flow. He's so smart. He has such a tender heart. He's hysterical. As long as we do everything as a family (and we are), he'll be fine. And he's going to probably be my constant companion as we meet new people and places.

I can't wait to divulge where our lives are taking us. While we have a general idea, I'm only positive about today at this point! Well, that and the fact that I'm under contract until May. Please be in prayer for us as we take giant leaps of faith. I'll admit-I'm worried. Because we're leaving what's comfortable and familiar. But it's all for the best. Here's to a future of His leading!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Leap #1

Yesterday we took the first HUGE leap toward the next direction in our lives. And sorry to say, until I have an answer, I'm not sharing what that step was!

If some of you are like me (and I know you are!), you're very curious as to what's going on. All I can say is, "Stay tuned!"

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tossing & Turning

Ever have so much on your mind that you don't sleep well? That's me. I'm tired. And not with it. For example, I woke up today thinking it was Saturday! SATURDAY!! So you can imagine my disappointment when I realized my alarm was going off because it was Tuesday. Bummer.

Hayden has been very well behaved lately, but he did give himself a semi-black eye with one of his little chair to his little table. Nice.

And today was just a day of incessant questions, emails, and "Mrs. Ainsworth" 's!!! (I'm not even sure how to write that!)

I would love an early night; we'll see how that works out!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Inner Battle

I thought about sharing a FB status about an inner battle I feel right now, but to be honest, I didn't want oodles of unsolicited advice from individuals who think they know/understand. Thus, I knew that the folks who actually take the time to read my blog would get it. All of that said, I'm at quite the disadvantage because there's only so much I can share. So you're probably wondering why in the world I'm even bothering to write, right?!

I struggle with jealousy...immensely. I also struggle with making friends. How do these two play into one another? Well, as shallow as it sounds, I was looking at pictures on FB earlier, and I did get a little jealous at a group of college acquaintances. This group is tight; they even went on a cruise together. My group of college friends is all spread out and we have not been as diligent at keeping up with one another or meeting together. I'm guilty for not spearheading anything, as well. Don't get me wrong, we have very close friends here in OS/Biloxi, but David and I think differently about quite a few issues. And as some of you read in my most recent post, we are feeling called to a new direction (much more details to come at a later date). All I will say now is, I'm not sure what our lives will look like a year from now (and for any nosy rosy's---our marriage is fine. In fact, it's probably stronger than it's ever been.). These "issues" keep me from fully plugging in sometimes, but I've gotten much better!

I am also very selfish. I am a mommy. A mommy who works 40-50 hrs./wk. A mommy who works 40-50 hrs./wk. and still manages to cook and clean and be involved at church. But even though I'm involved, I have not committed to anything major this fall at church. Why? Because after being away from my precious, hysterical, growing-way-too-fast son, he and I typically take Sunday afternoon/evening to nap together and snuggle and play. Do we have Saturdays? Yes. Is it enough for this mommy? NO. Because I still have housework and grocery shopping and you-name-it to do. Do I often feel bad that I am not doing a Bible study or helping with AWANA or some other ministry on Sunday nights? Yes. But I REFUSE to lose any more time with my son. And as our new adventure in life begins and soars, I am going to have even more responsibility at home.

I also have not been back to our Wed. night group since school started. Why? you might ask again. Well, because my son has just spent at least 9 hrs. at school and will only have about 3-3.5 before bed, so I CHOOSE to spend those few remaining hours with him instead of throwing him in a room again with other toddlers/young children to play. Don't get me wrong; Hayden is very flexible, he adapts well, and he's happy. But I don't want my child spending more time with other people than he does me or David. Does it mean I miss out quite a bit on community and fellowship? YEP. But this leads me to another point: the reason I chose not to commit to teach every Sunday in the children's wing this fall. 1. I needed a break. 2. I desperately needed to do life with other young parents with young children. When we have a fellowship, our children will be involved. Maybe not always, but I would dare say more the majority than the minority of the time they will be.

So perhaps you can maybe, just a little, feel my struggle. I feel I should be more involved, especially as I'm working desperately to be the support system for David as he is involved (and he's been wonderful about saying "no" and working to be more available for us). Why do I quote/unquote "allow" David to be more involved than I am? Because I know this is what God is calling him to do right now; it all plays into our new "adventure"! Also, because my ministry is Hayden more than it is to committing to being at church every time the doors are open. Are there families/mothers who can do it? Absolutely. Am I one of those? Not right now. I love my job, and I try to give everything I do 110%. Sometimes I feel judged for not balancing even more than I do currently. If I didn't work it would be quite the different story.

I'm not sure how to wrap this up; I think I said more than I meant to. Maybe you learned something about me that you never knew. I wish I had more under control. I wish I was more involved. I wish, I wish, I wish. But I've made decisions. Decisions that allow me to be more mommy than Super Church Member. Is that wrong? Maybe to some folks. But David and I agree that Hayden needs me more right now. Could I learn to balance a few more things? Sure. Will I? Maybe. But I'm definitely learning that being Mommy is the most important job I have, especially to that sweet, sweet 27 month old sleeping on my bed right now.

Friday, August 12, 2011

New Direction

Our lives are likely about to take on a new direction; as I have more details (and the go-ahead to share!), I'll let you all know! Just be praying for us to have guidance and wisdom as we make decisions.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Good Exhausted

Well, I survived the first 2 days of school at a new place. I'm a good exhausted. Looks like it's going to be a good year. I'll be happy when we settle into a solid routine. It's been hard not being able to pick Hayden up until closer to suppertime, but he's also not the first kid there this year (yes!!) nor is he even close to being the last. And now that I have longer to plan each day, I shouldn't have to stay as late...once the bus situation gets figured out, at least!

So here's to a MUCH better year!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Gotta Pray

I'm daily amazed at our son. We are striving to set a solid, Godly example for him, and it must be working. Tonight as I was putting Hayden to bed, I was in a hurry since our back-to-school morning routine starts bright and early. We had read our Bible story, were in the process of changing the diaper, and on our way to grabbing a book (he reads on his own before he sleeps). I told him, "C'mon, baby. Let's go. Get in bed so Mommy can cover you up." So he climbed on the bed but refused to lie down. He firmly, but sweetly, reminded me, "Gotta pray, Momma. Gotta pray." I honestly had completely forgotten we needed to say our prayers in my haste to get him to sleep. I love that he already WANTS to talk to Jesus!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

New Year, New Room

Hey, are a few shots from my new room. The colors are much better in person and Hayden spent the morning "helping."

Monday, July 25, 2011


I didn't know what else to title this post. And I'm not honestly sure what the topic is! Makes for a wonderful blog to read, right?

David arrived home yesterday from Vancouver. Even though I didn't go with him (this time), I feel like I was there from what he shared. I am so excited about what God showed him this past week. I know he is having "withdrawals," if you will. Ever just felt burnt out where you are? That's where we both are; I don't want to go too much more in depth than that. Honestly, it's almost to difficult to explain and very dear friends read my blog, so I'm not sure how to say what I'm thinking. But I think we've both realized just how much God is calling us to more. And if you're family reading this, please don't read more into those lines than what's stated. I repeat, all I'm saying is that we're called to more, whatever He designates that more for us as. Got it?

Now, I'm just over a week from a new school year. I'm excited and anxious. Being a "new kid on the block" once again is difficult because I have to give up planning time to attend new teacher meetings and learn new school policies. At least my classroom is able to be used; that always makes me feel better. I hope to post pictures of it later this week.

We're taking family pictures tonight; here's hoping for good ones (and ones that make me look skinny!) :)

Happy Monday!

Friday, July 22, 2011


So I've come to a conclusion: my son will go pee pee in the potty for just about anyone but me! He's gone 3 times--twice for my niece and once for a worker at church. I mean, seriously?! But I'm quite thankful that he's just going. He's not consistent yet, but that'll come. I've had to start acting like I don't care if he ever learns to go potty (reverse psychology works amazingly on Hayden!). About the time I started that (I wasn't overly pushy to begin with, but this has helped), he began telling other people that he wanted to go potty. He's just over 2; I have to remember that he's fine. I'm very thankful that his teacher at school will help encourage him, but she won't push. Going back to school will probably help immensely as well, especially since his best bud there is potty-trained. Do you know how hard it is not to compare your child?!

I'm trying to enjoy my last few days of freedom before school kicks into high gear. Can't wait to put up pictures of my room! Once David gets back from Vancouver with my camera I'll get some pictures going. Here's to just two more nights of single mommyhood! I'm so ready to see my man!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

So Close Yet So Far

I typed that title with an original subject for this post in mind; then I realized to just how many situations in our lives right now this applies.

For example:
-My classroom: I started on it today. Thanks to my niece keeping Hayden, I was able to get quite a bit accomplished. I would LOVE to knock it out tomorrow.

-New job: School begins in 2 weeks. 2 weeks from tomorrow. Yikes! Brand new environment, all new people, new classroom, new pacing get the idea.

-Future: God is showing David and me so much right now. Which brings me to the original topic for this post.

David is in Vancouver (as if I haven't talked about that enough?!); I got the greatest email from him this morning (none of which I'm sharing yet; sorry!). I am continuously amazed at the man he is. David desires nothing more than to fulfill God's purpose in his and our life/lives. God has been showing me just how powerful and provisional He is through the Bible study I'm doing with some ladies on Thursday nights. It's called "Walking By Faith," and over the past month we've had to do quite a bit of walking by faith! I know there was a reason David is leading this trip and I'm here with Hayden. God is using these days to reveal more and more of His will for our marriage and life to David; in small ways here and there God is affirming these plans before David even tells me what God has been speaking to him. I love my God-fearing husband!

Monday, July 18, 2011


Every year I am super anxious to get my classroom set up. I like to have everything I need to set it up from the moment I set foot in the door. This is just not possible, however, because I always forget something or discover I need something else! Thankfully, Wal-Mart is thisclose this year to my new school. I already have a small list of stuff I need to get there, as well as Big Lots. Not much, just odds and ends. And until I see my room tomorrow, I'm not sure about a few things I'll need. I'm sure you guys really don't care to read all that; it's just my thoughts going haywire!

I love my classroom--it's bright and cheery and I've really been able to get lots of good stuff for it over the past 3 years. I have these cool lanterns and lights and flashy colors. Some of them are starting to show their wear and tear, but with just the right placement, no one ever knows!

I may be asking for trouble, but I'm taking Hayden with me tomorrow. I have someone to keep him Wed. and Thurs., but with him having to go back to daycare so soon, I'm unwilling to give up every afternoon with him. Oh, and give me some feedback---I've been looking at daycares in Ocean Springs; there are 2 I think are the best in the city, but I've been drawn back to where Hayden was last year. PROS? It's cheaper, he loves it, his friends are there, he knows the routine, we all know his teacher, and I get 2 weeks to keep him home without paying whenever I so choose. CONS? It's a little out of the way now for me and I'll definitely have to make sure not to run too late leaving my school. However, I have nearly double the planning period, so surely I shouldn't need to stay too late each day, right? Especially not if all the English teachers are planning together, right? I don't know; I just can't see uprooting him more than I already have; he thrived at this daycare. He learned like crazy and was happy. That counts for something, I'm sure!

Anyway, the beginning of school is just around the corner. And I want new school clothes! :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Answered Prayer


And I didn't have to wait until Friday to find out. I got called about an hour ago. What a relief! God does provide. I'm joining a GREAT team at Ocean Springs Middle School and feel like I'm going to have an awesome year ahead. I have to get my butt in gear and finish cleaning my house and get a classroom set up and ready to roll!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


My interview with another local middle school was this morning. Overall I feel it went very well. I answered the questions honestly, and even those that would technically be considered "negative" responses, I was able to spin positively. Hey, gotta make myself look good!

I think one of my greatest "selling" points may have been my writing test scores. I don't know how much sense this will make to most of you, but I had a 2.4 out of 4. That's 60%. I wasn't exactly thrilled with that when I was told the other morning, but I figured, "Hey, it was just my first year with this test, so I can definitely beat that next year." During my interview, I was asked about my scores. When I gave my individual score of 2.4, a sort of gasp filled the room. I was, like, "Great. Fantastic. I'm done for. I must really suck." But no! Apparently, the district score (where I interviewed, that is) on the test was a 2.5. Now they did raise their score by .3 points in one year, which is AWESOME! So to be a 2.4 when their entire district was a 2.5 and have them tell me I had apparently done a great job, especially my first year, made me feel amazing!

I won't know anything until Friday, so I'm waiting very anxiously. I don't know the next step if this isn't the place for me. Guess we'll have to wait and see!

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Weekend Away

Hayden and I got to Destin last minute after all! David called Thursday night and said, "Get your butt over here!" His boss Scott decided to get us a room and we even stayed through this morning. I still played single mom the majority of the weekend, but at least we had much more to do. It also meant I didn't get as many pictures but it's fine.

Hayden loved the pool but he was everywhere! The beach was not a success; it was also 11 AM after an hour in the pool and Hayden was tired and ready for lunch. After 2 wipeouts by the waves (and we were sitting near the shoreline), we boarded the tram and headed back to the hotel. Hayden acted like he owned the hotel by this morning. He knew his way around and even which buttons to push on the elevator. We stayed at the Grand Sandestin so we were just a stone's throw from Baytowne Village.

On our way over Friday, I received a phone call from a local principal. I have an interview tomorrow morning at another middle school. We'll see how it goes. I'll keep you posted! Gotta finish gathering all of the paperwork today and figure out what to wear!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Single Mom

David left this morning for 4 days of work in....wait for it...Destin. Tough trip, right? Granted he's not getting to enjoy the sights like we do when we go on vacation, but still, really awful place to have to go for work! :) Us on our last trip to Destin, March 2011.

David will be back Sunday night, and then he'll leave Friday evening for Vancouver, where he's heading up a mission trip. We've known about this trip for months; Destin got dropped on him, but oh well. It's not forever. And Hayden's really a good kiddo, although we're having some issues listening this morning! But he did bring me Elf to watch--one of my all-time favorites to watch, especially in this blistering south MS summer!

It didn't work out for Hayden and I to meet David in Destin, which is a bummer. And all 3 of us are not going to Vancouver because there would be a few days I would have eto keep Hayden at the church where we sleep because the day's activities are not conducive to a 2 YO! Maybe next time.

*On another note: I'm back in the hunt for a job. I don't want to go into details or say anything I'll regret or that will come back to bite me in the butt. Just know that my services are not needed with the preschool and I just found out recently. Great I resigned back in May, huh?! But I'm doing lots of praying, and as my mom said, "Maybe this was the tool to get you out of your comfort zone." Many of you know last year was difficult, and I'm looking at a few different options right now--ones that are probably a trillion times better than I would have ever considered or dreamed. God sure knows what's going to happen, even if I don't!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Messed Over

I just got way messed over. I can't give details right now, but I'm very, very upset. Maybe things will work out in the end and obviously God has a plan, but I have no idea what it is. I am so beyond terrified at the moment.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A Week...

So, it's been a week since my last post and I wish I had something exciting to write about, but I really don't. For the past 2 weeks, I have been going room to room in my house and cleaning it top to bottom. I mean this literally...I dust ceilings, clean baseboards, wipe down light fixtures and get the picture. I've also been touching up trouble spots with some white paint since not only do we have WHITE carpet (that's about to get a visit from Stanley Steemer because my steemer just isn't strong enough!), but all of our trim is WHITE. Ugh. So you can imagine what a few spots look like after a 2 YO likes to run into doors and walls full speed. Oh, all our window sills are white as well. And let's just say--we have 8 windows alone in our bonus room, 4 in the master bedroom, etc. Again, you get the picture.
Hayden is definitely good at being 2, but he's also just hysterical. Please read my Facebook statuses to see what he's been saying lately. He can definitely say anything he wants...and he does!
I really need to get better about adding pictures here. Sorry, that's makes for boring posts, huh? Alright, so I'm off to clean blinds. Don't you wish you were me?!
Embarrassing confession: I really like Selena Gomez's song "Who Says?" Yikes.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Jesus is Sad

We must be doing something right in our home. This afternoon Hayden was actually (gasp!) playing in his room by himself while I was cleaning and he came out and said, "Mommy, Jesus sad." I said, "What? Jesus is sad?" He nodded his head and quipped, "Yep." Then he showed me his Bible that he was apparently reading (yes!!). (I wish I remember which story it was.) Then he went back into his room and shut the door. About ten minutes later, Hayden reappeared and said, "Mommy! Jesus happy!" and showed me a new Bible story. He definitely already has his favorites!

David said that at bedtime last night, he mentioned Joshua and Hayden said, "March!" He loves the story of the battle of Jericho, especially the picture of the soldiers marching in his Bible. Yea, yea, yea!!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Ground Turkey

I am so proud of David. He is very committed to getting back in shape; I have hoped for years we could do this together and now we finally are. It's a great testimony for Hayden to see us doing it together and as a family. Hayden eats superbly: fruits, veggies, you name it. Yes, he knows what cupcakes and cookies and pizza are, but we have limited his contact with those. US? Yeah, we haven't been as diligent in that task...until recently.

So how does my title incorporate itself into this post? We have purged our kitchen. I'm sure not every last little remaining thing is healthy, but for the most part, our pantry and cabinets and fridge are the "cleanest" they've been in our marriage! Our bodies are slowly stopping craving all that junk we've been justifying. Again, don't get me wrong...I'm not saying I don't splurge or eat badly every so often, but for the most part, I'm back to eating the way I did in college when I was able to lose 60lbs. Yep, 60. So you can see my unhappiness with sitting at my current weight. However, I was also working out 2 hrs. (min.)/day with a friend 5-7 times a week. After having a baby, a highly stressful job, and just not wanting to exercise, I gained a good bit of that back. I did lose 15 lbs. before school let out and that was just from counting calories.

Now David and I have a good system of going to the gym: he goes on his way home from work and then I go before Hayden's bedtime. I'm still not able to work out every single day due to other obligations, but I'm watching what I eat closely and I'm kicking butt on the elliptical! I've also added running back into my schedule. I was almost able to do a complete mile last night after having not run in pretty much 2 years. I was excited about that. Now the task is to keep it up! We're bombarded with food everywhere (those marketing folks sure know what they're doing!), and my personality is like the chick on the Yoplait cheesecake commercial where I justify what I can/can't eat: "I had tuna for lunch so a piece of cake won't hurt me." (that mentality)

Anyway, my title concerns the fact that I tried a recipe with ground turkey for the first time tonight. Yeah, so far not a fan. Maybe that will change!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

New Direction

I've tried to keep this under wraps, so to speak, until I knew for sure this was the direction God was leading our family. I will not be returning to teach this fall. As most of you have noticed, this past year was extremely difficult for a number of reasons. David and I had thrown around many options as a way for us to improve my attitude and get me back on track. This included things such as moving, pursuing children's ministry again, and even completely changing careers. The answer came from an unexpected source.

A former co-worker who had her baby last October and decided to stay home walked into my classroom one afternoon. See, she is planning to open a preschool this fall and I had inquired about a place for Hayden (again, for various reasons). Anyway, long story short, she looked at me and said, "So, you want a new job?" I kind of laughed at her. But she was serious! So I will be a director at Peace of Mind Preschool. David and I prayed about this and really talked it out before we made any decision. I'll be doing either tutorial or long-term subbing until we're ready to open, so we're hoping for an early open date! I'm praying things continue to progress smoothly and all the pieces fall into place.

We will be needing personnel and a food service manager. I'm very excited and anxious. I'm so thankful David is supporting this new venture. Hayden will get to be with me every day and I'll work fewer hours. For our family at this stage or our lives, this is the best thing that could have happened. The week that Jessica walked into my classroom was truly an answer to prayer, and other things have just fallen into place since. Pray for us as we embark on this new adventure!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Making it Burn

Ahhhh...the gym! I can't tell you how excited I am to be working out again. I hit the weight machines tonight after my warm-up and it felt amazing to see those muscles moving. Since I was there in the final hour before closing, I didn't get to do quite as much as I would have liked, but I ran upstairs to hit cardio and get the heart rate going.

And since I'm working out in the evenings, the gym is nearly patron-free, so my self-confidence hits the roof and I go for it. Figured out a new machine on my own tonight that I had never seen before or tried, and I didn't feel weird trying to get it down because no one was watching! I would have like to do the circuit once more before heading home, but I was literally the final member in the gym (and the lights were off), so I went on out the door. I want to get (well, I'm not even exactly sure what they're called!) a monitor I can wear like a watch that counts the total calories I burn while exercising. This way I'm not just aware of what I've burned on the cardio machines; I can see the results of my lifting as well. I feel like a new person when I'm working out!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Still Here...

Yes, I'm still here. Life has just been incredibly busy. Summer and its outrageous heat has arrived. I just heard on the news that hurricane season kicks off in less than 6 hours; yuck.

I took Hayden to visit my sister who lives 45 min. away today; tomorrow I have to make a trip to Mobile, visit the grandparents, and speak at church; Thursday, we're going to the aquarium with my sister and niece and nephew and then Nana is keeping all 3 kids so the sis and I can go for a night away (the husbands have to work Friday, so Mom is keeping the kids for all of us); Friday is pick up Hayden and haul stuff to my grandmother's for our yard sale. Tired yet? And have I mentioned that I've been purging my house so it's an absolute wreck?! I've surfaced cleaned, but the deep cleaning is waiting until I can find my guest room and closets again.

Oh, I forgot to mention that we took Hayden to the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola this past Sunday. He loved it! I am waiting until after we visit the aquarium to post pictures from everything.

Hayden fun facts of recent:
-We don't eat pizza as much as some might think, but it's definitely Hayden's favorite food and he asks for it all.the.time!
-He can sing "This is the Stuff" by Francesca Battistelli with me (pretty much word for word!)
-This past weekend Hayden found himself all wet after playing in my parents' water fountain in their garden; my dad calmly told him, "No, no. Don't play in the water." This is all he's said since Saturday! Why can't he remember this well when we tell him not to ride the dog or throw toys?!
-He's fascinated with lining up everything he can get his hands on. My kitchen table is covered with rows of cars, trucks, and trains.
-He flirts unashamedly with pretty girls.
-He loves the letter U!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Infamous "THEY"

Who are the "they"? You know, the "They say...," "They thought...," mentality. I mean, really? Today I was confronted with the reality that "they" thought I had had a difficult year. Okay, yes, I admit I have. More than difficult, actually. But who is out there on my staff thinking about me?!?! And why? And yes, again, even though I had quite the year, I tried to be very careful in whom I spoke to about it. So who is running his/her mouth? Honestly, I really don't care because God has bigger and better things planned for me and our family, but this is really the first time I've been hit by the "they said..." group. Yikes.

On the plus side, I think I'll have some exciting news to share in the next few weeks (and no, it's not another baby!). I'm just not ready to post it here yet. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A&C for Toddlers

Hello, blogger world and mommies! If you know any ideas or where to get ideas of arts and crafts for toddlers, please message/email me. I'd love to do some things with Hayden this summer and he loves creating! Plus, it'll be a great way to fill blazing summer afternoons and those days we don't go anywhere. My creativity has all been about sapped with my 7th graders. Thank you!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

"I Tried"

I really need to just tape record my child 24/7; Hayden says the best stuff and I know I'll forget it all!

Today, 5/4/11, I picked him up from school. In the car I asked him if he had been good for his teacher, Mrs. Kristen. His straightforward response? "I tried." Guess I can't ask for much more!

I'm wracking my brain to think of other things he says. He likes to "fly," sing his ABC's, count to 10 in Spanish with me, and play outside. Maybe one day we can build him a treehouse and he can spend summer nights in it or something. Apparently, I'm the only one who can ever fix anything. Daddy is cool to play with; Mommy fixes everything---large or small, boo boo or toy or whatever. I love that when he gets excited about something (usually food/special treat), he jumps up and down and yells, "Yea! Yea! Yea!" I adore that he tells David, "Love you, man," every morning and before bed. He's fascinated with brushing his teeth. He loves to have his shoes on. He's best friends with Wyatt from school.

Hayden is one really cool kid, and I can't wait to spend summer with him. Even as much as he embarrases me and Dave, he's a dream for pretty much everyone else (aren't all kids?!). The owners of his school said they were talking about him the other day and about what a cool personality he's really going to have as he gets older. Oh, yeah, he must tell everyone bye as we leave--even strangers. And boy, does he know how to work those dimples and expressive eyes!

The last thing? He's 2---and he's very good at it! And while I'm tired of having my toes stepped on, getting headbutted, and being defied, he has a million more perfect qualities I have to focus on. I hope and pray that David and I are doing the best job we can with him.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Meeska-Mooska-Mickey Mouse!

Hayden decided he wanted a Mickey Mouse party for his 2nd birthday. Here are some pictures from the great time we had. For our first "official" toddler birthday party, it went very well! We had some very tired kiddos that night! (Sorry, they're out of order, and I'm too pooped to fix them!)
Daddy working hard on birthday toys.

Only one shot of opening presents; I have, like, 15, that I know you don't care to see!
Eating Mickey Mouse cupcakes. Yummy! Hayden can say "cupcake" clear as a bell.

The daddies playing with toddlers in the waterslide (or "bath" as Hayden repeatedly called it!).

Not too sure about the slide.

Ready for a little boy's second birthday!

Our MM birthday outfit (and a snack).

Cupcakes that my friend Rachel helped me make; time-consuming but looked great!

Daddy works/manages a print shop; lucky for us!


Monday, April 18, 2011


Ever have one of those days/nights where you have so much you're thinking about that one last little thing just annoys the mess out of you? That happened tonight. I wasn't necessarily worried; I just have a lot on my mind. We're within 20 days of the MCT2, Hayden's 2 birthday is this weekend as well as Easter, my house is a disaster, we're all tired, etc. I know, pity party. Anyway, this neighbor called to complain about our dog. Whoo. This neighbor had already called my mom at one point about an incident where Belle apparently "charged" her. I don't know; I wasn't there. Tonight she called me to complain about how while she and another neighbor were bird watching today, Belle came to the edge of our property, went stiff-legged, and barked. Hmmm. Belle was still on our property. Hmmm. You think Belle's possessive because she stood on our property and barked at those coming near. Hmmm. She roams the neighborhood like on this street when she's out. Did I mention she's an inside dog? I don't know; I'm sure it's not much a big deal to anyone else, but after everything else, it just bugged me. Yes, she's getting older and she is very temperamental nowadays. But Hayden can do anything to her, and she's never once gone after him. Whatever. I know in the grand scheme of things, it's minute. But when we're all leaving our house before 6:30, I can't track her down. 9 times out of 10 she's back in the house before David leaves. From now on, we'll just definitely make sure. Wouldn't want to have to worry about her biting anyone because in the words of our neighbor, "that would be really bad." Hmmm.

Monday, April 11, 2011

One of my greatest flaws...

One of my greatest flaws is getting excited about something prematurely. Thus was the case this week (yet again...sigh). I saw an opportunity to change teaching positions and become a volleyball coach. I thought the position was for the middle school/JV team, but instead it was for the high school team (which includes middle schoolers). That put things in a different light.

Since I have no experience as a head coach, I was obviously passed over. And I understand why. But...I love volleyball. I want to coach someday. But "someday" is not "today." Unfortunately. There would have been many logistics to work out with Hayden and our current work schedules, but I knew if that was where God wanted me, He would arrange the minute details.

Sometimes I don't know if teaching is the best job for me. Don't get me wrong...I love what I get to teach. I love trying to make English new and interesting. I love being able to love on students...especially those hurting ones. And those who need a listening ear or a hug or encouragement seem to seek me out. I've thought about girls' ministry; I don't know. For now, I feel sort of in a slump. Maybe a door will open right in front of me instead of me trying to barrel them down.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


I feel a change coming. I am uncertain if it's the one I have at the forefront of my mind, or if it will be something completely unexpected. I thank God that He knows. I'm not sure what all to say. It has been a very trying year work-wise. I'll let you know as soon as I do.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Audubon Zoo

Hayden had his first zoo experience yesterday. We had a late breakfast, then he slept on the drive to New Orleans, which made the day very pleasant. It was quite warm but not unbearably hot like it will be this summer. He definitely let us know when it was time to stop for lunch/break and then we quickly finished the animal viewing so Hayden could play while our friends took their time. Thank goodness for playgrounds! It refreshed Hayden and tired him out---wonderful!

He was able to touch a guinea pig and a turtle, but if I remember correctly, he refrained from experiencing the goat, sheep, and donkey. Maybe he did touch the goat. We did so much! He loved seeing the animals up close. We especially laughed when we saw the tigers because Hayden immediately said, "Boo!" with a thumbs down. David's been teaching him that so come football season he came boo LSU, Auburn, and Clemson, specifically. I'm sure we'll have all new words and signs for Florida, TN, and every other school Alabama plays! Anyway, here are some photos.

Oh, and we met a family that is interviewing to be on "Swamp People." If you saw my Facebook pics, I said that they definitely fit the stereotype. Interesting!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Airplanes, Pacifiers, Diapers & Animals, Too!

I journal to Hayden---here's an excerpt from my most recent ramblings:

On Saturday we went up to Nana and Papa’s. While we were there, the air show at Keesler Air Force Base (with special guests, the Blue Angels) began. Unfortunately, you have your momma’s ears, so at the loudness you came running, screaming, hands over the ears! Oh, it was awful. We immediately headed indoors since you couldn’t be convinced you were fine. Thus started two days of afternoons with you in Mommy’s lap, crying and screaming. Sunday night you fought going to bed like crazy. We thought you were getting sick, but no. We thought you were just fighting it, but no again. The best we can surmise is that you figured the airplanes were coming for you. Monday night went well. Tuesday is a different story, however. I had to lie on your floor until you fell asleep. I snuck out, but an hour and a half you were up and thus proceeded to stay up until 1, when Daddy went to the couch and you stayed in bed with Mommy. Then you began tossing and turning, sitting up, talking, etc. for another 45 minutes until I threatened to put you back in your bed. So then it was after 2 AM, and we all got approximately 3 hours of sleep. Last night, Daddy was at church because it was his week to lead Bible study. I started the bed process early because I expected a fight. Oh, and I forgot to mention what happened at supper! While strapped in your chair, the AC kicked on and you nearly tipped the chair trying to get out because you thought it was a plane! And the only way you’ll be outside at school is to be strapped into the high chair. It’s since gotten better, but my goodness.

So back to Wednesday night. You started screaming and running in the opposite direction at the mention of bed. So eventually I had to put the baby gate back on your door (which I hated because I felt like I was caging you in). Daddy had to do this Sunday night as well (when you screamed for over an hour). After 25 minutes, you crawled on your bed and gave in. Tonight went much better, but I’ll talk about that in a moment.

You’re still afraid to play outside, but at least we’re progressing. And now, to tonight.
Again, the mention of bed sent you running. And after asking at school if you were still using your pacifier at naptime and them informing me that you hadn’t used it in months, Mommy made a decision. So I cut the tip. Only I cut too much! But it worked! You put it in, pulled it out, looked at it, put it in, cried over it, and then I asked you, “Do you want to be a big boy and throw it in the trash can?” You looked at it, then at me, nodded, we said “bye-bye, paci,” and dropped it in. Then we went crazy celebrating. So we are now pacifier free! And in order to get you to go to bed, you currently have a puppy, 2 monkeys, and 2 elephants in your bed (you’re sleeping on top of the monkeys). You went right to sleep—no pacifier! And hopefully, while Mommy’s on Spring Break next week we’ll become diaper-free! YES!!!! Saturday we are going to the NOLA zoo. It’ll be your first chance to see the animals you love so much up close! We can’t wait to see your reaction and take pictures! Yea!!


It's been an interesting 2 weeks with mister. I can't believe he'll be 2 Easter Sunday. We know ridding ourselves of the pacifier was long overdue, but with the way life has been, I figured it was one less fight. If I had known it would be this easy, I would have done it months ago when I thought about it but didn't follow through! Now, just to get over this fear of airplanes and to survive potty training, and we're good to go!

Monday, March 21, 2011

500 or less

I need help. The hubs has agreed to eat better with me if I can find meals to fix us both. I've been eating 500 calories or less at dinner, so I want to keep our only meal of the day together in that range. If you know my husband, this is a big deal for him to agree to do this with me.

David has a very particular taste: he's a big meat and potatoes man. So how do I cook for us so that he's full (I've gotten much better at feeling satisfied with smaller meals) and so that he enjoys what I've made? I Googled sites for inspiration but most led me to books or magazine sites that I have to navigate through page after page each time. I need something easier to scour. If you cook "healthy," can you recommend a site or a book that I could invest in?

Again, I want to be that hot mom whose arms don't jiggle when she waves!