Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Kristen Day: Twas' the Night Before Christmas - A song for Sand...

 Twas' 11 days before Christmas, around 9:38,
when 20 beautiful children stormed through heaven's gate.
Their smiles were contagious, their laughter filled the air.
They could hardly believe all the beauty they saw there.
They were filled with such joy, they didn't know what to say.......
They remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day.
"Where are we?" asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse.
"This is heaven." declared a small boy.
"We're spending Christmas at God's house."
When what to their wondering eyes did appear,
but Jesus, their savior, the children gathered near.
He looked at them and smiled, and they smiled just the same.
Then He opened His arms and He called them by name.
And in that moment was joy, that only heaven can bring.
Those children all flew into the arms of their King.
And as they lingered in the warmth of His embrace,
one small girl turned and looked at Jesus' face.
And as if He could read all the questions she had,
He gently whispered to her, "I'll take care of mom and dad."
Then He looked down on earth, the world far below
He saw all of the hurt, the sorrow, and woe.
Then He closed His eyes and He outstretched His hand,
"Let My power and presence re-enter this land!"
"May this country be delivered from the hands of fools"
"I'm taking back my nation. I'm taking back my schools!"
Then He and the children stood up without a sound;
"Come now my children, let me show you around."
Excitement filled the space, some skipped and some ran;
All displaying enthusiasm that only a small child can.
And I heard Him proclaim as He walked out of sight,
"In the midst of this darkness, I AM STILL THE LIGHT."
Written by Cameo Smith, Mt. Wolf, PA

Dr. Phil and Robin Read a Very Special Poem

Monday, November 26, 2012

We Have A New Student! Except, She is an Elf!

I am so excited about doing the Elf on the Shelf this year with my kiddo's!! Since my children aren't young anymore, this helps me create more fun memories.  Today, we started back to school after Thanksgiving break and there was a letter waiting from Santa! It was very encouraging and he has asked the children to help teach his little helper all about the love of Jesus and how to listen well in school. 

So, our next step was naming our elf.  Because I have an overwhelming number of boys, I purchased a girl elf.  The children picked six names to vote on.  They came up with Lollipop, Lucy, Jet Ski, Flower, Whisper and Glitter.  Now wouldn't you know that the boys voted overwhelming for JET SKI!!! Oh's their elf.  Hehe

So our next task was to spot Jet Ski.  Wouldn't you know she was hanging out in the reading loft with a good book.  She had helped herself to our "Kiss Your Brain" jar and grabbed her a pack of Skittles to snack on!

Oh I can't wait to see what she does tomorrow!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

30 Days of Thankfulness: Days 19-25

Day 19 - I am thankful for my step-son Johnathan and my step-daughter Paige.  Even though they have been kept away from us, they are still a big part of our lives.  Their photo's hang on our walls just as all the other children we have.  Their ornaments hang on our tree......their birthday's remember.  I know that God is bigger than any situation and that He will move and reunite my husband with his children.  I have no doubt and I have placed all my faith in Him.

Day 20: Today I am thankful for all my facebook friends.....those whom I've known the majority of my life, former classmates, Farmville and Sims friends. You all make my mornings much better and my days bright! So thankful to have you as friends.

Day 21: Today I am thankful for those few days that I have to myself. That alone time. Time in which I can use to relax, focus on God's Word and do a little heartfelt crafting. It's a time to replenish myself.
Day 22: Today I am thankful for the food we have to eat. So many in our own country are dreaming of a slice of bread or a warm bowl of soup. Today as we feast on all the wonderful things we will be sharing with our families, may we remember to pray for those less fortunate. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!

Day 23: Today I am thankful for the joy and excitement of Black Friday! Having the chance to help others fulfill their Christmas wish list is such an adrenaline rush!! I might feel as though a tank has driven over me but it was all worth it!!!

Day 24:  Today I am thankful for CHOCOLATE!!! Oh lord, how would I live without it???

Day 25: Today I am thankful for music. It soothes my soul and makes my world such a better place! Whether it's encouraging music from artist such as Third Day or Mandisa, preschool songs such as 5 Little Monkeys or outstanding soundtrack music from hit movies it makes my heart merry and bright! I wouldn't be who I am without music. It's a very big part of ME!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

30 Days of Thankfulness: Days 15-18

Day 15 - I am thankful the entertainment and The Twilight Saga!!! Yes, the crazy vampire/wolf movie.  Stephanie Meyer did such a wonderful job with the books and the books were super as well.  Today, I am spending 12 hours with friends watching all the Saga movies and the premiere of Breaking Dawn Part 2! I can't contain my excitement!!!

Day 16 - I am thankful for coffee!!! Without it, I would not have been able to go to work today after only 4 hours sleep.  Breaking Dawn was epic!!! (I'll have to make a separate post on it!!) I have never been a morning person and I depend on my coffee to get me going in the mornings.  Thank you lord for that wonderful bean full of caffeine!!

Day 17 - I am thankful for my grandparents, those that have passed and my Mamaw that is still with us.  They have been a huge part of my life.  My second and third set of parents.  Some don't have the privilege to know such joy.....I have been very blessed and I am thankful that God continues to allow them to watch over me.

Day 18 - I am thankful for God's saving grace! Without His grace, we would be nothing!!! He loves us even when we know we are unworthy of his love.  The greatest give I've ever been given, besides my children, is the love of God and his grace and mercy. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

30 Days of Thankfulness: Day 14

Today, I am thankful for my sister, Robyn.  We are six years apart so growing up, we weren't really that close.  During the past 7 or 8 years though we have finally gotten that close sisterly bond.  She has been through struggles just as I have and we have always had each others back.  She is one of my best friends.

My grandmother use to always tell me the story of how when Robyn was first brought home from the hospital I knelt by her bassinet and prayed to God thanking him for blessing me with a sister.  It's funny that I can remember them sneaking me in the hospital to see her......back in those days you had to be at least 12 to visit anyone.

So, I am thankful that God blessed me with such a true gift....the gift of a sister.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Day 13: 30 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for my cricut! Yes, my cricut!!! It's the best gift my parents ever gave me.  It has given me so much enjoyment and been so useful in my classroom, as well as keeping me busy with holiday projects.  I love the art of scrapbooking.  Check out some of my creations at my other blog:  Heartfelt Creations by Rhonda

Monday, November 12, 2012

Day 12: 30 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for my husband.  We have faced many obstacles together, grown closer and found each other once again after many years.  Yes, I do believe in fate and I do believe in soul mates because I have found mine.  His compassion and love towards me is everything that love should be.  He tolerates my crazy Twilight addiction, supports my passion for my job and allows me to be ME.  It's the little things that he does for me that blesses me so like the sweet little note written below. 

Thank you God for blessing me with a wonderful and loving husband!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Day 11: 30 Days of Thankfulness

Today, I am thankful for all the brave men and women who serve our country.  Not only our armed forces, but our law enforcement, fire fighters and paramedics.  Without you, we wouldn't have the protection that we need.  To my father, my grandfathers, my husband, and all others who have served our country....THANK YOU for sacrificing your lives and time each and every day for us.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

30 Days of Thankfulness Days 1-10

So I am quite a few days behind on the 30 days of thankfulness so I'll just sum it up as fast as I can! It's been pretty busy around here since Halloween.  I'm hoping to keep up for the rest of the month!

Day 1: I am thankful for my four legged friends who make me laugh, listen to my rants, give me lots of love and bring joy to our family.  I am so thankful that God gave us animals.  I would be lost without my pets!

Day 2: I am thankful for my parents.  My mother who has taught me so much about life and my father who is a hero of his own.  I am so very fortunate to have such wonderful and loving parents.

Day 3: I am thankful for my oldest son Ronnie. He blesses me with his musical talent and I love the person whom he has turned out to be.

Day 4: I am thankful for my youngest son, Brandon. His integrity, compassion and leadership skills make him one remarkable young man. One day, he will lead this country, no doubt.

Day 5: I am thankful for my middle son, Brady. He is one of a kind. He always makes me laugh and is so protective of his mama.

Day 6: I am thankful for my first born and beautiful daughter Brittany. God has blessed her with such talent. Not only is she my daughter, she is one of my best friends and a carbon copy of her mother!

Day 7: I am thankful for all the wonderful children that I have had the privilege of teaching. Watching their little minds grow blesses me and makes each one of them feel as if they are my very own.  Seeing those who have moved on to higher grades out in public just tickles me! The way they light up and run to me to give one of their precious hugs! I love all my students and I praise God for giving me the opportunity to lead them and minister to them through education.

Day 8: I am thankful for my step-son Joshua. He is bold, speaks his mind and a go-getter. He is so much like his dad and I am so proud to call him one of my own. Love you Josh!

Day 9: I am thankful for the every day things that we take for granted at, shelter, warmth.  On days that I feel down and find something to complain about I need to remind myself that life could be so much harder and that others are struggling far worse than we do at times.

Day 10:  Today, I am thankful for West Virginia University and the WVU Mountaineers! I learned a lot at that university.  I may have changed my degree from nursing to education, but I learned so much that if I ever have that desire again to change my occupation it is because of all the great medical education I received there.  And what university is complete without their sports team!! Let's Go Mountaineers!!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fall Fun

I cannot believe that the end of October is upon us! It seems like school just started last week! We have been so busy working on fall projects and now I must begin preparing for Christmas crafts.  Parents so look forward to all of them.  This week, we did paper mache'! The kids loved it! We painted them and cut out little faces to make our very own jack-o-lanterns.  Here are just a few.

Things have been busy around the house as well.  I had several cards to make for upcoming family birthdays and my mom needed some things crafted.  Josh has been enjoying the hunting season (although I am totally against killing Bambi!!), Brandon is buried in the books and all the others are enjoying college or work life.

My list is getting so long of all the things I have to do before the holidays.  I must get started on making ornaments and Christmas cards within the next few weeks.  Hope all my blog friends are doing well! Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Enjoyable Week-end

It's been such a calm and relaxing week-end.  On Friday, my husband and I strolled the streets of Mayberry at the Autumn Leaves festival.  I love homemade arts and crafts!!! There were so many beautiful fall decorations displayed.  All in all, we had a wonderful time.

Our son, Josh, arrived Saturday evening for a few weeks.  It's always nice when he visits.  Although I have to admit that he is just like his dad.  It's like having two of them in the house! LOL   I am still praying for the day that all of our children are together and we can spend a day together as a complete family.  I have placed all my trust and faith in God.  I know He will provide.

Today I spent a few hours shopping alone.  Yes,!! LOL  I needed to start stocking up on Christmas supplies for card and ornament orders.  I also had to grab my Breaking Dawn Part 2 merchandise that was just released.  I still can't believe this will be the end! :o( 

Enjoy the fall season everyone.  It's my absolute favorite! Have a great week.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

There Must Be A Reason.....

I woke up around 12:45 am with a startling nightmare again! I jumped up in a panic and of course, turned immediately to snuggle in my man's arms.  The bed was empty!!! So I got up to get a drink of water and low and behold, he was laying on the couch.  I guess Fat Boy was trying to kick him out of the  But he knew the second I walked into the living room that something was up.  I am so blessed to have him understand what I've went through.  He doesn't tell me to get over it or preach that it's over.  He just listens and holds me tight.  Thank you God for such a wonderful husband.  We have our moments (but they help us grow).  I'm a firm believer that if you don't have struggles in a relationship then you are not growing together.

It took me quite a while to give in and succumb to sleep again.  Even though he was holding me and reassuring me that it was just a bad dream.  I didn't understand this startling nightmare.  It just seems as though for some reason my subconscious wants to remind me that he will always have some kind of control over my life no matter how hard I fight it.  He's present in scenarios that I should be comfortable and happy though he's stalking me with that evil eye of his to hover fear over me. 

I'm not afraid of him anymore.  But I don't enjoy the anxiety that these nightmares are putting on me.  All I can do is pray God's protection over my dreams and that it doesn't put any fear back in me. 

Well, it's a three day week-end for me.  Our son Josh is coming to visit for a few weeks.  That will be enlightening and I'm sure full of surprises as well. 

Time to snuggle up with my wonderful husband and watch the VP debate now.  Supporting Ryan all the way!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Dreary Monday

I kid you not, it looks like it could snow outside! Just last week in was in the high 70's and now we are down in the low 40's.  I think we are going to skip fall and go straight into winter!

It's always challenging to function on a Monday but with the cold, rainy weather it's made everyone around here a bit lazy.  The house smells of delicious chili on the stove top brewing for dinner.

The week-end wasn't so bad after all.  After telling myself that I wasn't going to dwell on my dreams, I focused on using that energy elsewhere.  You guessed it, Mountaineer football! Ray was busy working on his truck most of the week-end.  I talked to Brady via Skype.  I just love that program.  It is so wonderful to be able to see our children as we speak to them.

I thought I'd share a photo of Brandon during Spirit Week.  He is such a handsome young man, if I do say so myself!

Have a blessed week everyone!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

A Restless Night

Well, I guess the nightmares have decided to come back again.  Last night was so excruciating.  I was exhausted before going to bed and had no problems falling asleep.  Much to my regret, that didn't last long.  I woke up around 12:30 feeling uneasy and was a bit hesitant to go back to sleep.  I guess my conscious must have been warning me ahead of time.  But I rolled over and cuddled up with Stitches and fell back to sleep.  I woke up around 4 a.m. with such a pounding migraine and emotional mind frame.  I knew he was present in my dream.....his evilness, his controlling attitude.  I took a few migraine pills and laid back down but never really submitted to sleep again until around 7ish.  Once again, he was in the midst of my dream. 

It puzzles me how I can go weeks and sometimes even months at a time without the evil one weighing on my mind and creeping in to invade my sleep.  It's like a reminder that what he did will always be there and he refuses to allow me to move on from it! Like he still has control over some part of mind via my dreams. 

I have so much prep work to do today for upcoming fall projects today and right now I just want to rest.  I feel anxious about the idea of even lying down now.I just have to give it to God and trust in Him.  He has helped me make it this far.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Christina Perri "A Thousand Years" Music Video - 'Breaking Dawn' Soundtrack

I LOVE this song!!! And I can't wait to hear Christina's second part of the song in the upcoming movie!!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Got My Breaking Dawn Tix!

I'm super excited today because I picked up my Breaking Dawn part 2 tickets.  The girls and I are going to the Twilight Marathon!! I can't wait!!!! It's going to be such a fun time.  Last year, we laid around all afternoon watching the Saga with our blankets and pillows waiting for the crowd to entire for the Breaking Dawn premiere.  I'm sure it will be even more fun this year.  The only down side is that this is the end of this terrific series.  :o(  What will we have to look forward to next year around this time???

Monday, October 1, 2012

Rainy Monday

 It has been one of those depressing rainy Monday's. School was fun though because we had the local fire department visit and share fire safety tips with the kids.  They even got to get in the fire truck.  The boys absolutely love events like this.  It was a hard day to keep them occupied though since we couldn't utilize the playground due to the rain.  Indoor play on a Monday with a special event always equals

Brandon seems to be doing better.  He still needs to be covered in prayer though.  He is such a compassionate young man.  He will just have to take it one day at a time and deal with his grief as it arises.  I wish I could just wave a magic wand and make his hurt disappear.  But only our Heavenly Father can do that.

Praying you all have a blessed week!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

WVU Football - To Become a Mountaineer

Emotional Week

It's been a pretty emotional week for my family.  Brady and Brandon lost a close friend on Tuesday afternoon.  Brandon is taking it extremely hard.  As a mother, I'm struggling to explain why someone so young would be taken from us.  But that is so hard to do when I myself do not quite understand why these things happen.  I have been so overwhelmed with grief for this family.  I remember watching Trey run around the baseball field as if it were yesterday.  He was a very talented and intelligent young man. 

It's situations like this that make us all appreciate life more.  At least it should.  It also makes me hurt for my husband because of the struggles he's had with his ex over his younger two children.  That, in itself is a completely different post.  He is so thankful to have his son Josh in his life.  But he deserves an opportunity to have a relationship with his other two children.

I don't know why so many parents use their children as weapons during or after a divorce.  I am very thankful that I have never put my children in that situation.  But I do believe that those who have used their children as pawns are only hurting their children more.  No matter what their age may be.

Like I said, that's an entirely different post and if I post about it right now, I'll just get angry.  I guess the point I'm focusing on is that I'm not sure he'd even be notified if his son or daughter had something bad happen to them.  And to me, that is selfish and inconsiderate.  We never know what our lives will hold from one day to the next.  We may laugh with our children today and be placing them in the ground tomorrow.  It's sad.  But it's reality in today's world.

I am so thankful that God is a forgiving God.  You don't know how I pray for his children and ex-wife each and every night.  As well as Josh's mom.  She has struggles of her own and doesn't know Christ.  I feel obligated to lift her up because Josh is a part of her and without her, we wouldn't have Joshua in our lives.  But that goes both ways.  Without my husband,  his ex wouldn't have Johnathan or Paige in her life.  She wouldn't have the blessings from her children that she has had the opportunity to share with them over the years. 

Okay, I gotta stop because I don't want this post to be about anything else other than Trey and how much he meant to my boys.  It's going to take a lot of prayer to help them get through their grief, especially Brandon.  But it's going to take more prayer to help his mother and family to be comforted through this tragic loss.  We shouldn't have to bury our children!

Tell your children each and every day how much you love them.  No matter how old they are.  Hug them when you have that chance and cherish every moment you have with them.  Not just those happy times.....but the arguments as well.  Be thankful you have them to argue with.  Be thankful for what you do have and that God entrusted you with them.

I heard this song by Big Daddy Weave this week while I was listening to their new CD.  It spoke to what we have went through this week. 

Sorry for my rant, I am just emotional and frustrated.  And I just want everyone to have an opportunity to love their children.

If You Died Tonight

I don’t have it all together
Sometimes I find myself asking why oh why
But I know we don’t have forever
So I’d be a fool to let this moment pass us by
So at the risk of sounding crazy let me ask you
If you died tonight, where would you be
Where would your soul spend eternity
Jesus gave His life
If you’d just believe it changes everything
If you died tonight
You can call me narrow minded
But I believe that in your heart there lies the proof
And if you look down deep you’ll find it
An empty place that is pointing to the Truth
You can hear His voice inside you
Gently asking
Say I need You
I can’t live without You
Come and fill my life with Your glory, God

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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Happy "Late" Birthday

 Yesterday was a very crazy Monday and I didn't get half of the things on my to-do list accomplished.  I had a doctors appointment after work and of course, they gave my the wonderful flu shot and did blood work.  More needles....great way to start a week! 

Yesterday was my husband's birthday.  We had a nice dinner but plan to celebrate this week-end because I have bronchitis......which is why I'm blogging this morning because I ended up missing work today due to a slight fever and coughing all night.

I love celebrating my husbands birthday because it reminds me of when we meet and first got together.  It was around his birthday in Germany and that's when I realized, well we both realized, we had found our soul mate.  We have our ups and downs but that only makes us stronger! He is my very best friend.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Tuesday.  This chick will be veggin' out on the couch recuperating so I can get back to work tomorrow. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

What A Week-end!

This week-end has just flown by. I got so much accomplished for the upcoming month and even some housework.  But my week-end didn't start out very well.  Friday was my enemy for some reason.

To start off, I knew Friday would be a little difficult because it would have been my grandmother's birthday.  Her and my grandpa are always on my mind but special occasions just seem to be a little more emotional for me anymore. 

We were reviewing our apple unit this week at school and we were having an apple tasting during snack.  Well wouldn't you know I ended up slicing my thumb instead of the dang apple! None of the kids noticed.  I just nonchalantly got up and walked out of the classroom into the office.  My director was flipping out because there was so much blood!! She  kept telling me to stop squeezing it as I ran it threw cool water until she realized I wasn't even touching it!

Luckily, there was a parent in the building that is a nurse and she came to answer the question we were all wondering.....did I need stitches?? Thank goodness I did not have to get stitched up. She bandaged it up for me and told me to apply pressure and a cold pack. 

Now, on top of that, I am allergic to latex so I can't use regular bandages.  I usually carry my own with me but only had two with me (who would have thought I'd need four or five!).  I bleed for about 3 1/2 hours.....soaked half a roll of paper towels and kept on working!

My director called me Friday night to check on me and just couldn't get over the fact that I continued to work the remainder of the school day.  Yes, it hurt and it was messy looking, but I didn't amputate the thing....why not work?

It is still pretty sore and completely black and blue.  I guess I have to wait for the skin to fall completely off.  Needless to say, I will not be using a knife in the near future!!! After seeing all that blood splatter everywhere it reminded me once again that dropping out of nursing school was definitely the right decision.  I think seeing the blood actually made me feel worse than the cut itself. 

So, I'm hoping that tomorrow will be a much better school day.  I do have my six month check-up with my doctor tomorrow afternoon.  I can't say I'm looking forward to that.  The last thing I need is more life challenges. 

Tomorrow is also my husband's birthday so I have to find time to do something special for him.  Right now, I believe he thinks I forgot! How could I forget the love of my life?

Well, off to relax in a warm bubble bath.  Have a super week everyone!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Ways to Love

Hope that everyone is having a wonderful week! I saw this and just had to share.  It speaks volumes and if we all lived our lives according to the Word of  God, we would be happier.  

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Happy Sweet Sixteen My Sweet Son

Wow! 16 years ago today I gave birth to one of the most amazing young men that have ever known.  He is my sweet Brandon.  All of my children are wonderful in so many ways but Brandon just has such a maturity about him and he is full of so much compassion and love.  He is way too much like his mama though! He bores if he has too little to do and must have his plate overwhelming full to function.....yep, just like his mama! :o)

I've been joking with him that he won't be 16 until this evening though.  And on top of that, California time! Hehe

God has truly blessed me with healthy and talented children.  Brandon has his goals set high and I know that he will achieve them.  He desires to defend our country and one day lead it.  I have no doubts that he will succeed.

Happy birthday baby boy! You'll always be my little Stitch!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Just Flippin' Mad

Oh how I wish it was a holiday week-end and I could head for the hills of West Virginia! I am so irritated with my husband right now I could just scream.  In fact, the past few days, we haven't spoken a word to each other.  I just don't feel like wasting my energy and oxygen if I'm not being heard.  And of course it's all over something stupid. 

For some reason, his family thinks that we are blessed financially to just pass money out to them anytime that they ask for it.  If that were true, we certainly wouldn't be living here and would have a nice home on the beach somewhere or in the mountains! Every time they are in a bind or need anything, they call him.  The good thing is that he doesn't make decisions without consulting me first.  But when it comes to explaining it to him as too why we can't help them's like having to explain to a three year old why they shouldn't take a toy away from a friend.  I have to state the reasons in five or six different scenarios for him to even come close to getting it! And then, I don't even think he does.  Actually, I don't think he WANTS to understand the real reasoning that we aren't a flippin' ATM!

I love his sister, don't get me wrong.  We get along well until it comes to something like this because she flat out knows that I do not like her sneaking behind my back to get my husband involved in such things.  She doesn't work, her husband only works when he feels like it and they use what money they do have coming in for recreational activities that I do not approve of.  If they paid their bills, even TRIED, and acted responsibly it might be different.  I just don't see why my household should be living on the edge and go without to support them. 

The only ones that I feel we should ever have to help out are our kids.  We've helped Josh out several times and he's paid us back.  He's our son though.  It's our job to help support them.  My poor daughter Brittany is too much like me and refuses to ask for help or take a hand-out.  It just amazes me what folks expect you to do for them.  We aren't wealthy and we live within our means.  In fact, we JUST live within our means.  The economy sucks and some weeks are tighter than others.  But if one of our kids called us this evening needing financial help, I'd bend over backwards to try and help them.  Whether it be Brittany, Jonathan, or any of our  seven children, I'd do what I could.

I guess I am just tired of folks expecting a free pass in life.  Yes, they may say they'll pay it back, but if you're $800 behind in rent because you want to go blow every dime at the local flea market, how in the world should I trust I'm going to get my money back???

To top it off, after they call and ask him for "a loan" and he tells them he has to discuss it with me first, he dumps it on me to have to call and tell them no! Hello??? Did they call and ask me? So after about 4 hours of him stewing around he finally called to tell them no.  Now, all is silent here because he feels bad for them.  I can't say that I don't, but as I said, if they treated their money with responsibility it MIGHT (and that's a very strong might) be different. 

I don't have a problem being the bad guy.  Actually, I'm the responsible one and my hubby can't have a dime without wanting to spend it.  He's like a kid in a candy store when it comes to that.  I'm the strict one and make sure bills are paid first and we always have a little left for something fun or extra. 

Wow.....I have to admit that stroking the keys of the keyboard to vent has helped quite a bit already.  I'll just wait for the storm to pass and for them get over themselves.  It hasn't helped that work has been stressful the past few days either.  But yet, I will praise Him in this storm as well.

Hope all my blog land friends are having a much better week!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012


Well, the first week of school has been challenging but full of smiles! The children are adapting well and making new friends.  I simply love this time of year!

The weather has been the only downfall thus far.  Rainy days are always the hardest during the school year....especially for the boys!  And since my class consists of 22 boys and 8 girls, they need that outside time!

Brady is doing well and I have enjoyed learning how to use Skype to keep in touch with him "visually."  Ray began working at a new job site this week.  For now he has normal hours but he feels OT lingering just around the corner.  

I spoke with my Mamaw on Saturday and the poor thing cried most of the time.  She misses being in her own home so much.  It just breaks my heart to hear her so down and depressed.  But she also knows that it's the best thing for her. 

Brandon has actually found a class that is too challenging for  They changed curriculum on his Algebra II AP Honors this year and from what he says, the teacher's don't even understand it.  He'll get through it.  He's never found a single thing to defeat him yet.

Well, off to spend time with my four-pawed babies.  Bella just sits by my side most afternoons with that look on her face that says "is it time for me yet?"

Thanking God for all my many blessings!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Off To A Great Start

The past two days have been full of excitement for everyone.  The kids are adjusting well and I only had one that shed a few tears.  My assistant and I have been slap out exhausted though once the school day is threw.  It's all worth it in the end!

I'll admit that I've crashed a bit early the passed few nights.  I'm usually the opposite! I am NOT a morning person!!! It drives my husband crazy because he wakes up energetic and ready to go and I don't want to be bothered for the first 3 hours! He, in return, wants to turn in around 7 and I've just gotten my second wind! Thankfully, hubby has been working late so that has helped give me a little more quiet time for myself.....hehe

I saw this adorable pic on FB and just had to share with all my dog lover friends out there.  Enjoy your week dear blogland friends!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Let the School Year Begin

Well, I finally got my classroom all set up! I forgot how much labor went into  I am so pumped and ready for the kids to arrive tomorrow! Meet & Greet was a great success and I have some wonderful children that I am looking forward to working with this year.  I posted a few photo's of the things I made for the classroom on my other blog.  I still have several to post.  There's just no time!

Brady is doing fine adjusting to dorm life.  He's really lucked out with his class schedule and has no early morning classes.  Brandon is enjoying the fact that his brother isn't around to annoy him anymore.  I keep telling him that will change and he'll start to miss him at some point.  He stands firm that he will not....boys!!

Well, I still have quite a bit of lesson planning to work on.  Have a wonderful week!!!

Monday, August 13, 2012

College Bound

Well tomorrow isS the big day! Brady is headed off to Fairmont State for his first year of college.  Things are very bittersweet here.  So proud of him for achieving him so much but have those "mommy jitters" as far as letting him go. 

We've been busy packing him up and tying up those lose ends.  He'll be living in the dorms so that does make me feel a bit better. 

Hope everyone has a wonderful week out there.

Saturday, August 11, 2012


Okay, so my night was a difficult one.  I am trying to make some sense of it.  I woke up around 12:41 a.m. completely soaked in sweat from a NEW nightmare.  It still involved my uncle, but it was in my grandmother's old house in West Virginia! Is my sub-conscious trying to tell me something?? I woke up with such fear that I truly can't relate any other nightmare I've had to this particular one.  Usually, they are from real events that happened to me back in 1987.  I don't want to sit around all day with it on my mind because I know that I will be fearful to sleep tonight.  I just don't know what this means....and it may mean absolutely nothing and just be a plain old bad dream.  The one thing I didn't need in my life right now was more confusion.....

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Let The School Bells Ring

Good evening my blogland friends.  I hope that everyone is doing well.  Tomorrow is Wednesday so we'll be half way through the week.  School begins here tomorrow in the great land of Mayberry.  I can't believe that I only have one child left in high school!! Where does the time go? It seems like it was just yesterday that the kids were itty bitty and we were living in Germany.

So, Brandon begins school and I head back to work.  Our students don't begin for another 10 days so that gives us all a great deal of time to make our classrooms shine.  I'm super excited about my new theme this year and hope to post pics soon once everything is designed and complete.

Well, I know it's just a brief post but I miss blogging after so many days.  I feel more connected with you all coming here every few days.  And I wanted to share the latest photo of Stitches.  :o)

Sunday, August 5, 2012


Just dropping before the upcoming school year swallows me up.  I saw this on FB the other day and immediately spoke to me.  Hope that each and everyone has  a wonderful week!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

From Leah to Stitches :o)

Just dropping by for a quick update.  I have actually been focused and busy working on curriculum.  It's hard to believe that school starts next week!! I'd like to know where the summer has gone....especially the month of July.

Brady is due back in a few days and Brandon is in Michigan for the week attending NCOA.  I am so proud of him for all his leadership skills and his passion for scouting! He seems to be enjoying himself, but of course, mom here misses him.

I decided to change little pups name from Leah to Stitches.  She has begun perking her ears up and she looks just like the cartoon character Stitch! Brandon, my youngest, LOVED Stitch growing up (actually, he still does) and I just couldn't pass the name change up.  And with her playful personality, it matches her better.  Now, if I could just get her to stay still long enough to get a new picture.

Hope everyone has a splendid and blessed week!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Happy 18th Birthday Brady!

It's hard to believe that 18 years ago today I gave birth to my wonderful son, Brady Michael.  God has blessed me with all of my children, my step-children as well.  I am so very proud of what Brady has accomplished already and I know that he is going to go even farther.

In just a few weeks I'll have to say good-bye and send him off to college.  Where in the world does the time go? One moment they are learning to roll over and the next they are driving a car!

Brady is spending his birthday at Yosemite National Park hiking with his dad.  I'm so glad he has this opportunity to spend some time with his dad before heading off to college.

Anyhow, I just have to share a few of my favorite baby pics....hehe
Brady's 1st birthday in California
Brady's 2nd birthday in his little BDU'S before our PCS to Germany

Football in the fourth grade....such a tough guy! :o)

High School Graduation June 2012

Monday, July 23, 2012

Moving Up the Mountain

The week-end is over & it was much more relaxing and positive than anyone could ever expect.  My mind wasn't lingering on the "what did happen" moments and was actually enjoying the "this is life now" moments.

My husband is one of the most amazing men.  We have been through many valleys separately and together as well.  We have remained together no matter how difficult the battle before us.  And it seems as though the littlest things he does for me mean the most. 

We had such a great week-end just lying around, watching movies and munching junk food together.  :o) My mind was a million miles away from where my life had been 25 years ago.  I am just blessed....

Thanks for all the wonderful & supportive comments that you have left for me lately.  I know that a big part of me surviving this past week-end was because of you all.  Your encouragement, your prayers, they all mean so much....

Have a terrific week everyone!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Leah Gives Camera Kisses :o)

So I promised to share a video or two of the latest addition to our family.  I figured that today was a perfect time to do so.  She brings me so much joy, just like the rest of the pack.  I am so thankful that God has given us animals to share our lives with.  They are there when we weep, laugh, or just need someone to cuddle up with.  Our home is full of love everywhere you turn (literally...haha).  Add 7 wonderful kids to that (mine & hubby's combined) and all my is all around.


Will it?

Last night was difficult.  Tossing and turning..... Another nightmare.  Will they ever go away? I can go weeks, months even without any horrible thoughts and then all of a sudden, there "he" is.  And it's not the same reoccurring scenario.  It's always in my every day life.  Will it ever stop? Will that image ever disappear?

I won't give in.....

Monday, July 16, 2012

Walking Through

It's been a pretty busy week-end.  Sleep has not been much of an option because little Leah wants to wake up and play every 3-4 hours.  But it's all worth it.  I know that will all end soon and it's a very welcoming distraction.  The second my husband gets up for work, I hand her over to him to watch as I try to get a little sleep. 

The week-end has been damp and rainy.  We've gotten a break from the heat, but the humidity is just as bad.  It's challenging for me to be outside of an evening.  I've found myself identifying with sweet fragrances in the air and going back to that place and time 25 years ago.  It's funny how we can smell something and it causes us to time travel. 

I just need to get through this week.  Stay as busy as I can and continue to remind myself that I'm a survivor and that survivors move forward one step at a time.  I don't want to dwell on the horror of my victimization.  I want to flip it around and celebrate the fact that I am a survivor and that I didn't lose everything that summer.

It may have taken years, many years, but I gained strength from my victimization.  I developed the courage to stand up for myself and face the evil one that destroyed my life on so many levels.  All my high school years, my early adult years.....taken because I couldn't be myself. 

Today, I am just thankful that I have a support system.  I have dependable people to confide in and even if they don't quite understand, they at least listen and pretend that they do to help me tear down whatever wall I am focused on knocking out of my way. 

I prefer not to go out much this week.  My luck, I would run into the monster that stole my innocence 25 years ago.  I'm sure it's all in my head, but still, the thought is there and the second I would let my guard down and not be weary, over my shoulder he'd appear.  God knows he appears in my dreams whenever he feels like it.....taunting me, reminding me, hurting me, victimizing me.

But I will find a way to walk through this week with my head held high.  I have too.... I won't let him win.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Our New Baby....

Leah Emory

Well, my husband unexpectedly brightened my day yesterday.  We went over to my sis-in-laws to see her dogs latest litter of pups and the next thing I know, Ray grabbed this little gal up and said if you want her, she's yours.  At first I laughed thinking surely he couldn't be serious! Like we need another dog in our pack.  But I found out that he was serious! 15 minutes later we were headed home with her. 

Usually I have my dog names already picked out just as if I myself were the one having a  I used up all of my Cullen names from the Twilight Series so because this pups color is so puzzling, I decided that Leah would be a great name....even though I'm not a "Team Jacob" fan.  And it fits her well.

Her middle name, Emory, is after a very dear student of mine.  It means powerful & energetic,  Something that Leah most definitely is! She is one of the most playful pups I've seen in a while.  She runs from one dog to the next chasing their tails and trying to wrestle around with them.  She is a great addition to our little family. I can't wait to post some videos of her!

I also love the name Leah Paige but since my step-daughter's name is Paige, that was definitely ruled out.  Paige is just such a beautiful name and if Brandon had been a girl, his name would haven certainly been Paige! :o)

So, even though dark clouds have been looming over me this past week, this little burst of energy brightens my day.  Not to mention she is helping me keep my mind off of "the evil anniversary" that's around the corner next week,

I hope all is well with each of you and that God is sending tons of blessings your way.  Your comments and support mean so much to me. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Hold On....

I saw this today and it spoke directly too me.  No matter how hard our days seem or how bright they may get, God knows what He is doing and will not leave us or forsake us.  Good night friends.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Storms All Around

Well I finally got my motivation up to work on some classroom decor and wouldn't you know the second I plugged in my Cricut a storm decided to hit.  The thunder was so loud that it shook the entire house and even Meadow, our biggest dog, came running out into the living room a bit nervous.  The next thing you know, you see lightning bolting everywhere and your surge protector resets itself.  Time to unplug everything and head to the basement!

What has made it even more difficult is the fact that our cable company dropped our local news coverage TODAY so we have no way of getting local weather alerts/storm warnings unless it's via Twitter or Facebook (a completely different topic to blog about in itself...better not get started on that one!)

So, I call my husband and tell him that I'm unplugging everything in the house and heading to the dungeon (AKA the basement).  But before I can secure myself down there, I have to find a way to get all ten dogs down the stairs on my own.  Not too hard to do with the little one's, but Meadow??? Let's just say that if there had been a tornado or something there is no way I'd make it to that dungeon in time! I seriously think my husband needs to work on putting in a doggy elevator.....

So now all is quiet for the time being.  I'm exhausted and haven't accomplished anything  today other than escorting our lovely dogs on a field trip to the dungeon....

"I'm exhausted......"

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Up Way Too Early.....

I've been up since 5:30 this morning.  Tossing and turning, unable to rest.  So many things on my mind. Some that aren't worth stressing over and others that I know are just there to try and steal my joy.  Thankfully, my husband has been working all week-end.  It sounds harsh but it allows me time to deal with my thoughts without feeling on edge.  Last night was an off night for me.  Why can't men understand that you can also have mood swings and that you tire out just as easily as they do? I mean, they take everything personally instead of just doing the simple thing......listening.  Sometimes I just need to be able to say that I am just tired and I feel snappy.  I'm pretty good about reading myself and know when I am being "ill".  I'm also pretty upfront about stating that I feel agitated and I'm good about asking for a bit of space to "deal."  It doesn't have to be caused by anything that anyone has done.  Sometimes I believe men are harder to raise than children.

I'm hoping that today I will be able to throw my emotions and thoughts into doing some housework and even some preschool crafting.  By the time my hubby gets home from work, maybe I will be more content and less stressed.  It's nothing that he's's a difficult month for me.  Memories resurfacing, pain intensifying.  Yes, I know that I am in control of whether or not I allow them to control me.  And I know that God is merciful and that He is by my side comforting me without having to speak a word to Him.  Hmm....if only others could understand our pain the way our Father does without us having to give an hour long explanation.

25 years ago this month...... The only one besides me that experienced every detail of the events that took place then is my God and I know that He will once again carry me through.

I think I may try and rest a bit..... keyword:  TRY

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Old Burdens Brought To Life Again

The past day or so, old burdens have begun hovering over me once again.  Whether day or night, the things I want to erase from my life are there to haunt me.  I have told myself that I am not going to give in and succumb to what the enemy wants to remind me of.  Every time I think I have fought the battle and defeated it, it finds its way back to me......

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Seek Him

Fun Fourth

I had such a wonderful evening with my sweet hubby watching the fireworks at Veteran's Park.  It was nice just to be out and about and having the opportunity to spend time together. ALONE! No dogs, no teens.....

Hope that everyone had a fun fourth!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

9/11 God Bless the USA

Even though today is a day of celebration for our country, we must remember those who have served not only in the Armed Forces, but with their lives for our country.  God bless each of you and your families.

Happy Birthday America!

Praying everyone has a safe and wonderful holiday!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Passing Of A Legendary Icon

Images: Andy Griffith (1926-2012) | WXII Home - Entertainment was sad to wake up this morning and hear that Andy Griffith had passed away this morning.  I immediately called my dad to break the news.  Andy Griffith was on 24/7 in our home while growing up.  I remember how our dog, Fred, would sit in front of the television and tilt his head off to the side during the whistling song.

My dad followed in Andy's footsteps.  In fact, Barney, Don Knotts, is from Morgantown, West Virginia.  He has been to the home I grew up in many years ago.  My dad's office has pictures of him and Barney (Don) everywhere.  In fact, my parents dog, T.T. bit poor old Barney. 

As I was watching the news this past hour, they have already stated that there have been a record number of visitors at The Andy Griffith Museum here in Mount Airy.  I imagine that Mayberry will be packed this July 4th week-end.  It is nice to stroll down Main Street on any given day.  Mayberry is just like home to me. 

RIP Andy.....

Monday, July 2, 2012

Trying to Survive the Heat

 I am so thankful Brady & I returned from West Virginia just before they began having their major storms on Friday.  I spoke with my mom today and she said that so many folks still have no power and several gas stations are even closed because of it.  I guess the Nursing Home has an outage but thank God for generators.   I know it has to be hard on those folks, especially the nursing staff because their normal routine is out of sync.  It was extremely hot last week as well, but minus the storms. 
The wind was horrible here on Friday evening.  Ray & I was lying in bed and it just overpowered everything.  Our yard was full of limbs and branches the next morning.  Scary stuff!  It was 104 degrees here on Friday.....I don't believe it's ever been that hot.  Even the poor pups don't want to go outside to play.  And when I do allow them to go out, it's not for more than 10 minutes.

Other than having sticky, humid, yucky weather, all is calm in Mayberry.  I really need to start focusing on the upcoming school year and start getting my decor in order.  Hope all is well where ever you are and that God is keeping you safe! :o)

Friday, June 29, 2012

Home from Wild, Wonderful West Virginia

Brady & I finally made it home from our wonderful trip back home.  I feel bittersweet right now.  A big part of me wasn't ready to leave and the other part of me really missed Ray and the pups.  We were fortunate to get to see all of our family and we got to spend every day with Mamaw.  She is slowly adjusting but it is so sad to see her outside of her home. 

We finished up all of Brady's orientation/registering for FSU.  I was surprised to see how much they have added on to the college.  Well, university now.  He registered for 15 hours so hopefully it won't be too much for him.

I enjoyed the glorious ride into West Virginia.  The beautiful mountains, the famous River Gorge Bridge.  All in all, it was a good trip.  Ray said that Bella was lost without me.  She definitely hasn't left my side since my return home.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New Breaking Dawn Part 2 Trailer!

Wow! I can't believe it's almost here and the end is near.  This movie is going to be even more amazing than the other four.  Only 148  more days!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Fifty Shades.....

Well, I told myself that I wasn't going to get addicted to another trilogy.  How premature of me! I've jumped on the bandwagon with several close friends and began reading the Fifty Shades of Grey series.  I'm only on book one and all I can say is WOW!

I love the Twilight Saga and Hunger Games trilogy.  Excitement, adventure, vampires :o)  But I am finding that this new book is growing on me.  It's definitely different.  It's not written on an extreme level such as Stephanie Meyer's books or even Suzanne Collins.  It's an easy read so far. 

The last thing I needed was to become addicted to a new book before going back home for vacation! Once I start a book, I want to sit down and read it within the first 2 or 3 days and then move on to the next one. 

My plan was to read The Host over summer break, but since quite a few of my friends kept chatting this one up, I had to see what all the commotion was about. 

So how many others out there are jumping into this next trend? If you are, leave a comment below.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Happy Monday

Happy Monday everyone! My week is going to be full and busy.  Housework, packing up to head for the beautiful mountains of West Virginia, getting the vehicle ready for the trip, etc.  I am really looking forward to Brady & I's "pre-college" road trip! It will be great to see my family and spend some time with them.  It's hard not always being there for them when you want to be.

Brady officially got his driver's license on Friday.  Another big milestone in his life within the past week.  I cannot be more proud of him.  Wow, it's going to be tough to send him off to college.  It seems like it was just yesterday that we were moving to California and celebrating his first birthday.

Our sweet Jasper had surgery on Thursday....(you know, the BIG one where they take his poor little manhood).  He has been recovering well.  Poor guy wants to play so badly but we are restricting his exercise and movement for the next 10 days.  Each night, he sits at the end of our coffee table and watches my husbands every move.  He waits, intensely for Ray to move toward the table and pick up the laser light that he loves to chase.  He his so addicted to it!!! It's funny how he knows the precise time to go sit and wait for the fun to begin.  I'll have to try and get some video footage of him one evening.

Well, I guess that's it.  Have a wonderful week!

Friday, June 15, 2012

My Father...

I LOVE this!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Heavy Hearted Days

So today is one of those days in which I sit around with a heavy heart.  I spoke with my Mamaw last night on the phone and it truly crushed my heart.  She was so sad and broken over the fact that she cannot go back to her home to take care of herself.  That is the only thing she has ever fought remain in her home until she ventures into the gates of heaven.  Her voice was so childlike and she sounded like she has just given up on enjoying life.

Today, I know my mom is fighting her own emotion and grief as she takes Mamaw to her new living quarters.  My Mamaw knows that she needs to be where she is going and she accepts that in her mind, but in her heart, she is torn and shattered.  She just kept stating how she lived in that home her entire married life (over 75 years) and now she has to leave. I can only imagine what it must feel like for her.  I know that my mind is racing with wonderful memories created in that beautiful red brick home my mother grew up in.
Mamaw, Brittany & I back in February
It will be hard to see her next week when I go home.  I'm afraid that just the nursing home environment will bring back sad and hardened memories for me of how neglected my grandmother was treated in the home that horrible monster placed her in.  Those wounds are still open and fresh.  I know that my mom has done an excellent job of finding the right care and proper environment for my Mamaw though.  And I know that she will be checked on daily and not just disposed of to live her last days alone.

Such a heavy burden........keep her in your prayers please.  That she will adjust, find hope in the quaint activities they may provide for her and that she will see that she can live another ten years if that is God's plan.

Other than worrying about her and my mother, I have been glued to In Session watching the coverage of the Sandusky trial.  Last week, I was a bit distraught that they weren't going to televise it.  Last summer, the Casey Anthony trial consumed my days and I was hoping that this trial would help make my summer break go faster.  After hearing some of the details of testimony yesterday, I am glad that it isn't televised live.  I believe my angel in heaven was looking out for me on that one.

Just hearing the graphic details second hand of what happened to those poor innocent boys caused memories of pain and anger to flood back into my soul.  Granted, my wounds are still open from having to face my abuser last year.   It's amazing that when you think you are finally "somewhat" over something, or in my case, at least beyond that moment of being victimized, it attaches itself back to your every thought.  The edginess, the insecurity....the shame.  But then I remind myself that I'm a SURVIVOR....NOT A VICTIM.  I pray that those who are survivors of Sandusky will work through the devastating pain they have encountered and be able to stand and say that they are not a victim of his any longer but a SURVIVOR.  There is a very important difference.  It's a choice we make.........but yet, survival is not something that is focused on as much because the title of "victim" just seems to gain more attention.

The only way I can help those young men is to pray daily for them to be released from their persecuting pain and be able to live a life that is full of happiness and warmth.  I believe I've babbled enough for the day......

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Jasper Enjoying Chirpy Bird! :o)

Dogs New Craze

Here is one of the few videos I took today of our kiddo's.... We purchased Chirpy Bird for the cat, but poor girl hasn't gotten to enjoy it because the pups have taken it over.  They absolutely LOVE it!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Monday, Monday.....

It is pretty quiet around here with the boys at camp and not hopping about.  It's been the typical Monday....laundry, housework....dinner decisions.  I'll be honest and admit that I have played around with my new laptop for most of the afternoon.  Downloading itunes, all the extra software that I need for one program or another.  The good thing is that my sweet husband is pretty intelligent on technology so he does handle most of the software management.  My luck, I'd get a virus..... I'm still just super stoked because he invested in such a wonderful gift for me.

I tried to get into the Mob Wives: Chicago series last night, but it just didn't hold my attention the way Mob Wives.  Nothing like Big Ang to keep ya laughing.  I also finished reading Mockingjay this morning.  Now I have to decide whether or not I want to read The Host or Snow White and the Huntsman.  I'm also curious about Fifty Shades of Grey....decisions, decisions, decisions....
 Tomorrow I need to begin packing for my trip back home.  Mom needs me to craft several items for her so I guess I'm going to be taking most of my scrap supplies and equipment with me.  I did get to talk to my sweet Mamaw yesterday.  She sounded so down about not being able to live on her own any longer.  It breaks my heart for her to lose that little bit of independence she has had for herself.  But it is what's best for her and she truly does see that.  So I am hoping to really take some of the weight off of my mom's shoulders when I am there next week.

I also need to start getting all my materials and ideas together for the upcoming school year.  I know I want to do a sports theme this year so I just need to really finalize my ideas for centers, fun slogans, etc.  I am truly blessed and love my job.

Well, I guess I better start rounding up dinner.

Here's your wink for the day! Is this just not adorable?

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Love It When the Hubby Surprises Me

What a wonderful day it has been today...... Hubby and I went shopping and he pulled one of those special fast one's on me! :o) I ended up coming home with a brand new laptop! It's nice having someone recognize how hard you work and showers you with a gift to remind you of what a wonderful wife and mother you are. 

Just had to make a post! Super excited!!! :o)


 Yesterday, we celebrated my son Brady's high school graduation.  It was a day of great joy and I am so very proud of him.  He will be attending my dad's alma mater, Fairmont State, and will be playing tennis. He will also be walking in his grandpa's footsteps by pursing his degree in Criminal Justice and then on to the police force.   My heart is just bursting with pride and I still cannot stop smiling.

My wonderful son and I

The ceremony was beautiful! Over 180 students graduated. The weather was perfect, hot and humid in the 90's, but perfect! My children make me so very happy and proud.  They are my greatest blessing in life.  Without them, I would not be who I am. 

Brothers, not wanting to cooperate with photos! 

Brandon is heading off to work on staff with the Boy Scouts today for the summer and I know he will learn, experience and accomplish great things.  He always does.  I'm sure the moment he gets back he'll begin working on his Eagle Scout project again. 

Have a wonderful Sunday everyone!

Brady and one of his silly graduation gifts....see  Creations blog

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Mandisa- Not Guilty


This is one of the most powerful songs that I have heard in a long while.  How much He gave for US.....

Getting Reacquainted

I have had the best afternoon! I met up with my cousin whom I haven't seen for I know close to 24 years.  It was so good to see her and catch up.  The laughs were very therapeutic for us both I believe.  It amazes me how families are torn apart by drama..... It's destruction continues until someone is willing to step up and ask for answers "out of the horses" mouth themselves.  I've learned to never believe the worst in someone unless I have experienced it first hand.  Learning for yourself is the best experience anyone could have, whether negative or positive.  Family is the only real thing anyone has in's the best gift God blesses each of us with.  Hold on to each of them for as long as you possibly can.

I guess that I'll be working on graduation gifts for the remainder of the day.  I am so proud of Brady! It's really going to be hard to let him go though..... I know that he will succeed at no matter what he attempts.  All my children have made me very proud.

I've also been trying to update my craft blog.  If you get a chance leave a comment.  Hope that everyone has a wonderful week-end!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Adjusting to Summer Vacation

It has been such a challenge for me to adjust to summer vacation this year.  I don't know if it's because the school year ended earlier this year or if I'm just flat out bored (lord knows I have plenty to do to keep that from happening!) I have several projects I want to work on and I really want to begin posting more on my craft blog.  The boys are getting ready to head off to scout camp.  Brandon is working on staff again and Brady is busy preparing to go off to college. :o(  I guess I'm starting to experience empty nest syndrome a bit.  haha

 I'm really looking forward to going home and visiting my family in a few weeks.  Things have been a bit strugglesome on that end.  My 93 year old mamaw is starting to have some health issues and my mother has her hands full with decisions that need to be made.  I know it's hard for her.  I never imagined myself looking forward to going back to West Virginia.....but I am so homesick that it's crazy. 

It will be nice to have some time to myself.  Hubby has to stay back and work.  :o(  But I do need some time to reflect on everything I've been through this past year.  My health has also been an issue.  But I know that my God is much bigger than breast cancer.  I've been working on a new Beth Moore study and that is really helping me gain strength. 

I hope that everyone enjoys their summer break.  Stay safe and I promise to add some recent photo's soon.  The Cullen pups will be celebrating their second birthday tomorrow.... :o) And I need to upload photo's of Brady's graduation.  Love to all!

Monday, May 28, 2012