Friday, December 27, 2013

Our Christmas 2013

This Christmas was a great one! Agreeably the best one we have had in several years. Gabe and I just couldn't stop high-fiving each other due to happiness. Haha! It wasn't just the fact that we were over the moon excited to give our family our gifts, it was also just that it was a "smooth" season. I attribute most of that to the fact that we started our Christmas shopping at the end of November. That is SUPER early for us! Also, we have a two year old now that loved every little thing about the Christmas season. I feel like it just got really fun with her!!

We had such a great Christmas Eve with my dad's side of the family. We go there every year, and it is always a blast. We took cookie dough to bake for Santa and let Amara get in her new Christmas jammies. Gabe and I stayed up until about 4:30 am assembling toys and finishing our last minute wrapping. We made some turkey sandwiches for fuel and then eventually passed out. I was so excited to see Amara open gifts that it took me a while to settle before I could actually fall asleep. :)

9:30 am came quickly, and I felt as though I had been hit by a truck. Coming off of a head cold and winding down from pre Christmas day festivities really took a lot out of me. I was still so happy though! We went up to get Amara ( who was talking in her bed), and let her color on her cards for Grandma and Gigi. Such a sweet start to the morning.. doing something for the ones we love! We made French toast and bacon and mimosas and just opened gifts throughout the morning. It was so. much. fun!

Amara's reaction to Santa coming? "Wooooow!" "Look, Aunt Jess!" ( who was sleeping on our couch)
We finished off our evening by going to a friend's house and eating with their family while our kiddos played together. Amazing dinner! Great cocktails! Even better company. It was such a sweet time, and I am so grateful.

Not forgetting the real reason we celebrate this day.... Jesus' birth. I will never be able to truly fathom his birth, life, death and resurrection. I am so thankful for His love and mercy on me my whole life! Happy Birthday Jesus! :)

Hope you had a Merry Christmas and enjoy the rest of your holiday!!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

27 months!!

It is time for me to do an update on Amara. I feel like this last month has been full of so many new behaviors, sayings, emotions, and looks on her part. It has been pretty much the coolest thing ever to watch. We are praising God for her good health, carrying on conversations with actual sentences ( well, small sentences), getting lots of kisses from her without asking, and watching her a lot when she isn't looking. We are just soaking every bit of it up!!!

Some of our FAVORITE things that she is saying right now....I am not making any of this up!

"Come on, mommy!"
Oooooh, come on daddy..." ( as in "come on.... why don't you want to play?")
"I riiiiiiight back."
"awwww, thats's cute!"
"You okay?"
"mommy, I happy" ( that one is my favorite, and makes me want to cry happy tears every. single. time)
"what happened?"
"I okay!"
"It's warm." ( referring to food)
"It's cold outside."
"I likey shoes, socks, hair, bracelet,etc."
"You look pretty mommy!"
"Clean up...everybody share!" ( her attempt to sing the "cleanup" song..."clean up clean up, everybody do your share.")
"Daddy sing Toby!" ( referring to who daddy sings with)
"hmmmmm" as she taps her finger on her lips
" I love you too"
"Its baleeeeew" (blue)
" I see baby quick" ( when she wants to go see a random strangers baby and kiss it on the head)
"Awww, thank you!" as she bows after strumming a guitar or singing in her microphone

I am just so overwhelmed with how much she is learning and taking in. I am impressed with her social skills these days. She is so friendly and loves to talk :) I love her sensitive heart, her joyful spirit, and so much more. My cup is continually overflowing, and I am just so humbled by God's grace for me as a mom. I make mistakes every day, but I am so thankful that I am not doing this alone. I have an amazing husband also that puts in the time as a dad. We love those little moments that show us that the day of stress yesterday or the moment of correcting Amara and watching tears fall .....its all worth it when we see her sweet behavior come pouring out.

As, I end this post.....I just looked over to my left to see Amara pick up her baby doll and say "Hi baby,  I hold you?" Then, she proceeded to rock it and sing "God loves you, Amen!"

Thank you Lord....You are SO good!!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

New blogging journey

I have not forgotten about my little ole blog here. I have just been super ( and happily) busy with starting a new blog with a bestie of mine, Leah. We have been casually talking about starting a party/lifestyle blog for about 2 years. With life, excuses, and kids we just never took the plunge....

Until last week!! We have launched and I couldn't be happier. Please check us out!! I am still committed to keeping this blog going and even making it over in the Spring, however, all of my "crafty" posts will now be at Love & Lion. If you check in on this blog then you have already done so much for me. I love keeping a family diary on here, and your support has definitely grown me over the years. It got me to take this leap, and I am beyond thrilled to share our ideas with you! Check us out and tell a friend! Oh, and please comment! We love to know you and conversate! ;)

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


I just randomly came across an IG account today of a woman of four children, one of which was taken at the age of 2. I honestly couldn't even tell you what the cause of death was for this precious baby because I couldn't make it through her pics far back enough to possibly find out. Midway through, I had to retreat to my closet to just have a good cry. I just couldn't imagine, but at the same time..... I feel like I can feel that knot in my stomach the best that I can without having actually suffered the loss. Does that make sense?

 Today, I got to take MY two year old to lunch, then the park, then kiss her to sleep for her nap time. I have a lot of days where I just wonder WHY I get to be the one to hold on to my baby just a little bit longer?? I hate how emotional becoming a mom has made me ( although I was pretty emotional before), but I am so glad for the reality it keeps me living in. I have many gifts. The gift of Amara herself, the gift of motherhood, the gift of TRULY getting to understand the meaning of "love" as best as I can on Earth. Ya know, "love"....the REAL kind that God talks about. It makes me so aware of how much God loves ME. Becoming a parent will really do that to you I believe.

Church has been such a lifeline for me in the last year. I am 28 years old, and I would say that I am finally beginning to understand what it means to "cling to Jesus". I am not perfect by any means, but I do know that I need Him desperately. I am not here to tell you what to believe, but I DO believe that there is a God that loves you, a Savior who DIED for YOU, and a place in Heaven for you if you would receive it. I know this is a heavier post for me, but I am just overwhelmed today with how much love I have been shown my whole life. I look at my whole family right now, and thank God that I could pick up the phone and call them if I wanted to hear their voices. That is a great feeling to feel around the holidays. This post isn't to make anyone who has lost someone feel worse, but for me to say to you that I hear your story, and want to love well because of it. I don't know what God holds for my life in the years to come, but right now I am savoring.

Hug your loved ones extra hard ( every day!)

Friday, November 1, 2013

And the owl says... "Whoo Whoo!"

Hope everyone had an amazing Halloween!! I am a little behind in posting pics because Halloween got "postponed" here in Nashville due to Tornado watches and stormy weather. Kind of a bummer, but man... I am sooooo glad that we got to celebrate tonight because it was beautiful out.

If I am being honest, I will tell you that I am not really into Halloween. I am okay not decorating for it, I  don't enjoy being scared, and quite honestly.... I don't really like giving out candy. I know! I know! I know! I am an awful person. I actually didn't even think I would enjoy trick or treating with Amara, but after the first house we went to all of my preconceived ideas I had of how our night would go were NULL. AND. VOID!!

You guys, Amara absolutely loved trick or treating. We did zero prep for the evening. I didn't even know if she could say the phrase "trick or treat!". So on our way to our friends' house I asked her to say it and she did. Then, she said it about 50,000 more times that night. She alternated between "trick or treat!" and "thank you!" on the way up the stairs before even getting to the doors and on the way down the stairs after getting her goods. One after the other.....she just talked the entire time. She dragged her bucket on the ground the whole way. I offered to carry it for her several times, but she insisted on carrying it herself. She is just so independent these days. Gabe and I just watched her with pride. She just seems more grown everyday (well, because she is technically), and while it makes me a TINY bit sad, it makes smile even more.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Clemmie Sue teepee for SALE!!

Hey there! We are selling our little Clemmie Sue teepee. It is just about the cutest thing ever, but Amara doesn't seem to take to teepees like other littles we know. It is just like NEW you guys!! It retails for $120, but we are selling it for $60. Truthfully, Amara has only climbed in it a handful of times. We tried! Email me if you are interested! I even have the cute little drawstring bag that it came in for easy storage!! Also, we have a yellow and hot pink feather set that we used instead of the light pink, so that is what it will come with!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


That last 2-3 weeks have been NON-FREAKING-STOP for this little family! Although, I welcome the craziness, my body is paying for it dearly. I am tiiiiiiiiiired. From parties, to all of the Fall festivities, award shows and dinners for my husband's job, and a toddler....whew! We are about a week away from my husband ( and us girls) going back to the "road life". Tour season starts, and I am just trying to get my mind in the right place. We are just soaking up each day together, I am enjoying an extra set of hands around the house, and I just love the comfort of him being home. We always trudge through each season, and come out the other side though!

Anyway....I have taken so many pics over the last few weeks and don't really even know where to begin, so here are just some random bits from our past couple of weeks.

We hosted a mini pumpkin decorating party for Amara and a few of her friends. Chili, cupcakes and some interesting looking pumpkins ;) So fun!

I helped my sweet friend, Holly, from high school host a mini class reunion brunch at her family's farm.

I have known these girls for over 10 years.....still blows my mind! 

We had a family photo shoot. Happy to check that off of the list! My old roomie and dear friend, Shara, took our pics! She is amazing!! I haven't gotten all of them back yet, but she sent me a few via text because she is awesome. I was DYING to see how they were turning out! These are unedited, but I wanted to share anyway. I know photographers hate that ;)

^^ Tour kick off dinner ^^

 ^^ Trips to the zoo ^^

 ^^ Tickles in the bed^^

 ^^ Painting....every. day. painting. ^^

 ^^ Swinging at the park... something she requests often. ^^

 ^^ attending birthday parties ^^

 ^^ My bestie had a baby^^

 ^^ LOTS of snuggles ^^

 ^^ Dove Awards. My Mother - in - law headed up an AMAZING show, and I was so proud of her! I didn't have a pic of my husband and I, so this one will do! Two ladies I love!! ^^

^^ We have watched Clark swim...fascinating! ^^

This about sums up our life photos at least. Hope you are having a good week so far! 
I am putting some final touches on Amara's room this week, and hope to have some pics of it up on the blog by the end of the week as well as some more of our family photos!