Tuesday, February 28, 2012

They walked, I rolled... all for the MDA

This weekend we celebrated life
We walked and we rolled
We raised awareness for the Muscular Dystrophy Association
The MDA provides research, medical care, support and most of all HOPE.

I was surrounded by my friends and family.
These girls are true friends.  We have been together since our first borns were babies.  We have been through more ups and downs together than most people go through in their entire lives.  Back in 2008 we walked in the breast cancer 3-day together and here we are 4 yeas later in the exact same location.

My twin sister and I

There was laughter and tears. 
On the way down to the walk I was thinking about how all of these great people were taking time out of their day to come down and walk with me.  It made me realize how important family and friends are to help you get through any situation.  Having something like your health taken away from you teaches you so much.  It teaches you what you do have and what you can do.  You quickly learn where your strengths and abilities are.  You learn your limitations and you learn to say no.  You learn to listen to your body and you learn to appreciate what you have instead of what you don't have.

We walked {rolled} 3.1 miles.

My dad and I took turns giving the little ones rides.  Grandpa provided a better view.

I am so grateful for each of these people that showed their support on Sunday.  
The total amount raised from the San Diego walk
 was $144,000!!!
Thank you to each and every one of you who were able to donate.  We couldn't do this without you.
Thank you North County Fire for your generous donations.
Thank you Mom for being one of the top fundraisers for our team.
Thank you to the walkers.
Thank you to the friends that have provided meals, house cleaning, phone calls, e-mails and most of all love.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

making mornings manageable

I love mornings, I always have.  {Saturday and Sunday mornings are my favorite.}  It's a fresh start to a new day and I have control over how much time I want to spend enjoying it.  All I have to do is get up earlier and there won't be any rushing around.  BUT if you don't like getting up earlier {which seems to be getting tougher to do} then you have to plan ahead.  My husband laughs at me because I always stress about getting out the door on time.  His words were, "You are seriously getting worked up about this?  It's the only thing you have to get done today."  True, however, he has NEVER had to do the morning routine so he really can't judge.  Over the years I have listened to other moms on how they do it and I have recently started implementing these suggestions in my home.  *side note, I only have to get both kids to school one day a week and for whatever reason, this is tough.  Wyatt goes M,W,F and Alexis goes T,W,Th. {home schooled the other days} This does mean that 5 days a week I have to get dressed and leave the house before lunch time.

Here is what I do to make it easier:

1} Have the kids pick out their clothes the night before.

2} Make their lunches the night before.

3} Clean up the house at night.  Make sure the dishes are washed and everything is put away so when you get up in the morning you don't look at a big mess and start your day off frustrated.

4} Have the kids backpacks and school projects, signed papers, etc. ready to go and placed in a visible spot.

5} Give 2 {easy} choices for breakfast or eat left overs from dinner.  I know some people think that is gross but in our house it is a breakfast staple.

6} Sit down and eat with the kids.  Talk about the exciting things everyone will be doing for the day, pray, tell stories...

7}  While the kids are finishing eating {they take much longer than I do to scarf their food down} get up and clean the dishes.

8} Gather their lunches and backpacks, make last call for the bathroom and head out on time.

All really simple, easy things to do... you just have to plan ahead which is something I don't do often.  I prefer to fly by the seat of my pants but dread it in the morning when I am trying to multitask and keep the peace.

Leave a comment below to share how you make mornings a little more manageable.  I would love to hear your tips :)

Monday, February 20, 2012

recipe.. I call it "dinner"

It was about that time that we started getting a little hungry so I scoured our pantry and fridge for a good meal.  To my surprise, I created a successful dinner.  In our house, successful means 4 out of 5 will eat it.  (You should know that the child that didn't eat it will ONLY eat bean and cheese burritos)

If you don't like to follow exact recipes then this is perfect for you.  There was no measuring involved in tonights dinner.

Gather supplies:
gluten free corn pasta
ground turkey
taco seasoning
frozen chopped spinach 
black beans
pinto beans
enchilada sauce (I used half of the can in the picutre)
some salsa
chopped olives if you want
(I didn't add any but some plain greek yogurt would be great... it taste like sour cream)

*boil water and cook the pasta
*saute onion
*brown meat
*add spinach 
*add taco seasoning
*get a large rectangular dish and add the pasta, add the meat mixture, add all the beans and enchilada sauce and throw some cheese in there.  Add whatever else you want that sounds good.  Mix it really good and top it with more cheese... I'm talking handfuls here.
*stick it in the pre-heated oven at 375 for about 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly

Our end result... "Dinner"

Friday, February 17, 2012


When the pain becomes too much to handle, when the emotions get the best of you and you fall apart.  You cry in the shower, you cry when changing the sheets, you cry when making breakfast, and you cry alone.  Alone because you have no one to turn to.  No one to understand where the tears are coming from.  Not even completely sure yourself where they are coming from, but you know you are hurting.  Something or someone is causing an extreme amount of pain and heartache.  But why?  Why can't I figure out an answer?  On my knees I plead with Him, because He is the only one I can turn to.  He is the only one who knows, who listens and who answers.  But waiting for the answer takes faith and patience.  Why God, why?  Why me?  Why now?

After crying so hard for so long you finally stop.  You get that feeling where you can take a clean breath... maybe it is out of complete exhaustion or maybe He is comforting you.  It is time to let go of the why's and let Him lead.  Maybe the tears were because you wanted something you thought you should have, but He is telling you no, I have something much better for you.  Just wait.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

how it all began

It was a beautiful spring evening 11years ago as my friends and I got all dolled up to head 45 minutes north to the Stampede, a country line dancing bar.  We were gearing up for a night of dancing, flirting, and fun.  As soon as we got into the bar, one of the girls I was with saw some friends she knew.  One happened to be a very tall guy named Mark that after chatting for a while, asked me to dance.  You should know something about me... I don't have an ounce of rhythm.  I can't dance to save my life, never have been able to even after my mom put me in dance classes (that I quit after a month).  It's that bad.  2 stepping is something I can kind of do but not gracefully but I accepted the dance with Mark anyway.  We were having a great time when he started waving to someone.  I looked over to see who and that is when the world stopped moving.  Everything was in slow motion as the most handsome man I have ever seen walked through the bar. {I realize the word "bar" isn't very classy but if it makes things any better, it was not a dive bar} He looked somewhat familiar to me so I asked Mark what his name was.  He told me his name was Anthony.  Anthony hmmm, I thought if I didn't already know him, I knew I needed to.  I'm not sure if the song ended before I skipped out and made my way over to this Anthony guy.  Sorry about that Mark. {Remember, the girls and I were out for some fun so being bold was totally acceptable}  I sat down and told him he looked really familiar to me which he responded that I looked really familiar too.  Great line, right? We spent the entire night trying to figure out where from, which was a great way to get to know someone because I now knew every place he had been in the past few years.  {We figured out months later that we had a class together at the junior college for about 3 weeks~he was the hot guy that sat in the back}  At the end of the night I had a napkin with a phone number and he had the key to my heart.  We were getting ready to leave when the theme song to the Dukes of Hazards came on.  I turned around and asked if we could stay just till the end of the song, it was one of my favorites so I started singing along.  At that point, he knelt down on one knee and asked me to marry him.  Of course I said yes but we decided to date a couple of years before getting married.

And they lived Happily Ever After...

Monday, February 13, 2012

first time

I went to church yesterday... for the first time.  Ever.  I have been a believer my whole life, always known God and always had a relationship with Him.  As a child we didn't go to church and after I got married, we (as a couple) did not go to church.  After having children I found a wonderful group through the church where we meet twice a month for fellowship.  I still didn't attend Sunday's service.  I had many excuses but then I realized fear was what was holding me back.  I knew I wanted to get there but being the insecure person that I am, I didn't want to go alone.  I tried many times to get my husband to go but it never worked out.  So today a good friend of ours, Jessica, came with me.  It was awesome!  My only regret is that I wish I would have started going sooner.  It was a beautiful service, the music touched me, the pastor is wonderful, the message spoke to me, and best of all I left feeling full.  Today's message was love.  One of my favorite!

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; loves does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things.
1 Corinthians 13:4

My sister and I read this at my brothers wedding 12 years ago without really completely  knowing what it all meant.  We were 21 at the time and I was still in the stage of figuring out who I was.  I thought I knew love but the love I thought I knew was not the love this verse speaks of.  Having true love and experiencing love from deep within, I get it now.  It is not lust, a feeling, it is love, a lifestyle.  I can honestly say for the last 11 years with Anthony, it has been the easiest relationship ever.  I am in a happy marriage because we are patient with each other; we speak kind to each other; we are not jealous, instead we encourage and support each other's accomplishments.  We know we are imperfect; we act and speak with love and gratitude towards each other; we know that with God, all things can be worked through with a good result.

We also touched on the 5 Love Languages.
~Words of affirmation
~Quality Time
~Physical Touch
~Acts of Service
~Receiving Gifts
I read the book a few months ago with really high hopes of learning how to speak directly to my husband in his own love language.  When I finished the book I was actually more confused.  I thought I knew my language and I thought I knew his.  It turns out we both have 2 equal languages but not the same ones.  We both need to learn each other's language.  Learning a new language as an adult can be difficult but the end result is so worth it.

I got lucky with this guy I married.  I thank God everyday for providing me with such a blessing.
Tomorrow is Valentines day, a day that gives us another reason to celebrate our love for each other.  I know a lot of people feel like the day is overly commercialized but we look at it as an extra special day to make a point of expressing love.

Linking up where my cup is 1/2 full

Friday, February 10, 2012

energy, it's a funny thing

Every so often I get these surges.  Huge bursts of energy where I feel as if all of the sudden I have ADHD and my mind and body are running all over the place.  These bursts are very welcomed and I take full advantage to get all the "things" done.  They usually last for about 1-2 hours and then a big crash.  After some rest I will get another burst.  I feel as if I'm on crack, or meth.  Actually I'm not sure because I've never used either one of those.  But you get the point, my thoughts are all over the place because I am so excited for the amount of energy I have.  I usually get about 2 great days out of it and then... my battery becomes drained. It's ok though, I know there will be more good days in my future.  The only problem is trying so hard to contain myself so I don't start running on empty.  Once the battery starts running in the red zone, there's no coming back until it has sat on the charger for it's full charge. {we are talking about my body here}  When I start running in the red zone, everyone around me suffers.  Lots of messes are left undone and mama just can't keep up.  The kids have no idea why everything was hunky dory a few hours prior and now I can't keep my eyes open past 6:00 p.m.  Having these days full of energy is very promising.  It gives us so much hope that we can have so many more.  I have no idea why I get them or where they come from.  I am guessing some kind of hormonal fluctuation just because it sounds like a reasonable answer.  I'm pretty sure any medical doctor would agree with me.  If they don't, then I question their education.  Must not have been from WebMD.

So, with my extra energy I took this guy to the beach.  We go to the beach in February but only because June is usually way too cold.

My goal is to use my good days and fill them with fun.  It totally wiped me out going but was so worth it.  A very good friend of mine came with and while the kids played we chatted.  I loved every minute of it.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


I get inspirational readings sent to my e-mail and today's was so good I wanted to share:

"Today, be grateful.  Be grateful for your favorite music, for movies that make you feel good, for your phone that connects you with people, for your computer, and for the electricity that lights up your life.  Be grateful for air travel that flies you everywhere.  Be grateful for the roads and traffic lights that keep the traffic in order.  Be grateful to those who built bridges.  Be grateful for your pet, for your child, for your loved ones, for your eyes that enable you to read this.  Be grateful for your imagination.  Be grateful that you can think.  Be grateful that you can speak.  Be grateful that you can laugh and smile.  Be grateful that you can breathe.  Be grateful that you are alive!  Be grateful that you are You!  Be grateful that there are two words that can change your life.
Thank you!  Thank you!  Thank you!"
~Rhonda Byrne

"We are not proponents of long life.  We are proponents of joyful life, and when you find yourself in joy, the longevity usually follows.  Although we do not count the success of a life by its length; we count it by its joy."

Another great start to a great day!

Friday, February 3, 2012

getting crafty

I could keep my house decorated with Valentines decor all year long.  "Love" is my favorite theme.  Only problem is that I can't find anything in the stores that would look good in my house.  So, I got a little crafty thanks to pinterest.  I took some fabric I already had, cut hearts out of the red and sewed them onto the canvas squares.

I am heading back to pinterest to find some more crafty ideas to decorate with love.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

donuts and blood tests

This little guy of mine was quite the trooper today.  He came on a 3 hour voyage with me just so I could use the carpool lane.  We dropped Alexis off at school and headed straight to UCSD for some blood work (for me, not him).  He was so excited about going but after 4 minutes in the car he was already asking if we were there.  The sun was shining and felt so warm on my face but for him it was absolutely horrible.  The next hour was spent listening to his sob story about the sun melting his face off in between the awe of all the bridges.  A great breakfast was promised for coming along with me.


We arrived without burns thankfully and went straight to the lab.  At this point, it had been 30 minutes since Wyatt's last snack and he was STARVING.  Just a quick blood test and we'll eat, I kept promising him.  Of course, "quick" and "test" don't belong together when it comes to my health.  We sat in the lab for a bit while they tried figuring everything out.  Luckily they put us in a large room all to ourselves where Wyatt was able to use my cane as a vacuum cleaner.  Turns out they don't do these tests very often.  There was a special way the test had to be taken, stored, and sent out.  Sitting next to me on the table was a stack of papers, some that needed my signature.  I looked over it and saw "dx" written 3 or 4 times with some large words following.  I asked what that was and the lab tech said it was my diagnosis.  Now I'm thinking they might either have the wrong person or someone isn't telling me something.  Unfortunately I don't have a photographic memory and of course I didn't write anything down so I'll just assume that all is well.

We walked right over to the cafeteria to get the wonderful breakfast I kept promising Wyatt.  Well... the lab took a little longer then expected and the breakfast was done.  Gone.  I quickly began scanning my eyes through the cafeteria to come up with something before Wyatt realizes there's no food.  I found donuts!  Thank you God!!  The man we paid said hello to Wyatt and gave him great advice to stay in school.  He said otherwise he'd be doing what he was doing.   (I think Wyatt was thinking his job was pretty darn cool)  The mister was quite kind and asked if I was his sister.  Wyatt laughed at that one.  The man told me to keep doing what I'm doing with my look.  This confused me since I showed up with out make-up, wearing sweats and unwashed hair.  But if that's what is hot, I'll keep it up!  We sat down to our donuts and juice to hold him over until we got home.  3 minutes into the drive... are we home yet?  Why don't we live down here?

If we lived in the city, we wouldn't have rides home that looked like this everyday.  Much better than stop lights and traffic, in my opinion.
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