Tuesday, November 26, 2013

It Hits Unexpectedly

First of all, I am in no way comparing my grief to the grief of those who have lost a child that they held in their arms. Although I think we can relate to each other in some way, it really is two different kinds of grief.

Having had 8 miscarriages, I have learned that grief can sometimes overcome a person at some of the most unexpected times, like in the middle of Target when you are Christmas shopping, or when a certain song comes on the radio, or at a nice restaurant on date night, or when your three year old is crying with a tummy ache and you feel helpless at making him feel better, or standing in the rain at the gas pump, or even lying in bed next to your husband, who is grieving in his own way (and others often forget).

It's a feeling that runs deep in your bones. It become part of who you are. Yes, things get better over time, but you never forget the one who left you. You never stop thinking about what could have been- what was supposed to be.

Others make pregnancy and birth announcements, and while you have joy for those families, your heart breaks once again as the memories come flooding back like a raging river. The grief never completely leaves, and it's hard, but I have also learned that God takes care of His own. Although we sometimes feel alone, He never leaves us, even when we don't know how to pray. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Thank You

"Thank You" just doesn't seem to be enough.
Those two little words seem so little compared to all the prayers that have gone 
up for us, the sweet cards and notes that were sent, 
the food that was prepared, and the hugs that were given
in our time of grief...again.

If I tried to list everyone who has encouraged us in the last week,
and even in the last couple of years,
I would surely leave someone's name off, 
but please know that your kindness has not gone unnoticed.
We appreciate everything.
The prayers are felt, 
and we ask that you continue them.
Sometimes, it's hard for me to pray, 
so your prayers are what help me make it through. 
Tonight, a good friend asked me how I was doing,
and I told her I was doing okay, that I am tough.
She sweetly reminded me that I don't have to be tough all the time.

I guess I forget that sometimes, 
but I have learned that God truly doesn't give us more in this life
than we can handle.
Sometimes I think he has just a little more faith in me
than I have in myself.

Friday, October 25, 2013


This photo was taken moments after we said "I Do", 
which was incredibly almost eight-and-a-half years ago.
Our wedding wasn't over the top, but it was nice enough, and we both had a good time. 
We were just happy to finally be together. 
We had bought a house, and we were excited to start our new life as husband and wife.

Our life together hasn't always been easy. 
We've had a lot of rough times and a lot of heartache, 
but the good definitely outweighs the bad.
I couldn't imagine spending my life with anyone else.
This man is my rock.
He has seen me at my best, and he has seen me at my worst, 
and he has stayed beside me.
That alone speaks volumes. 

Most of the time,
it doesn't really matter what we do,
as long as we can be together.
That's why, when I found this a few months back,
I had to get it.
It hangs over our bed as a reminder of the promise we made to each
other before God, friends, and family. 

Linking up with...


Friday, October 11, 2013


I'm just an ordinary girl from an ordinary family. I married an ordinary man, we bought an ordinary house, we both have ordinary jobs, we have an ordinary son, and we live an ordinary life.

You get the picture.

However ordinary my life may be, God wants my life to be extraordinary, and if I lean on Him, there is no reason that it can't be.

You see, He has given me gifts and talents, and He expects me to use them for His glory. Do I always do this? The simple answer is no, and when I stop and think about it, I am ashamed. Sometimes I have a bad attitude and I complain about things rather than soaking in all the blessings that He has bestowed upon me.

I really need to just stop and reflect more on the wonderful things in my life, and I know if I do this, that I will realized all those ordinary things, they won't seem so ordinary anymore.

Linking up with 
Lisa-Jo Baker at:

Friday, September 20, 2013


She is a beautiful, brave, and strong woman. She works hard, she loves her husband and kids, and she thinks her grandsons hung the moon.

She sacrifices her own dreams and wishes over and over again to make sure the ones she loves are getting what they need.

She's stubborn and opinionated sometimes and is known for telling it like it is, whether others like it or not, but she will do anything for anyone. She's got a big heart

She and I didn't see eye to eye about fifteen years ago, because I, too, am a little stubborn, but now she is like my best friend. She's one of my biggest cheerleaders.

She selflessly keeps my son while I work and refuses to let me pay her for it, even though I know her part time job on the weekends doesn't bring in a lot of money.

She laughs with me, cries with me, and teaches me.

She prays for me.

She is a blessing in my life, and I am so thankful for her. 

I am becoming more and more like her everyday. Fifteen years ago I would have denied it and even been offended by it, but today I am proud to call her my mother.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Looking Back on 9/11

My sister and I (ages 18 and 20 at the time), had the privilege of visiting New York City for a couple of days approximately five weeks before the tragedy of September 11, 2001. She had just graduated high school a few weeks before, and I was about to enter my junior year of college.

The music person that she is, it had been her dream for a long time to visit a Broadway show. This didn't interest either of my parents in the least, but because it was something she really wanted, they paid for half of her expenses as a graduation gift. As the older sister, and the only one of the family who had ever been on a plane at that time, as well as the only one who was remotely interested, I was elected to join her on the trip. (No one had to twist my arm on that one, though!)

It was a pretty big adventure for two young ladies from the country to board a plane, plan out our own trip without anyone's help, and navigate the big city on our own, but we did it, and we had a fabulous time in the two-and-a-half days we were there.

We saw Phantom of the Opera live on the Broadway stage, rode the ferry out to the Statue of Liberty, risked our lives twice by riding in a NYC taxi to and from the airport, visited an authentic NYC coffee shop and the Hard Rock Cafe, walked around a small portion of Central Park and Times Square, toured Radio City Music Hall, 5th Avenue (including Tiffany's!), and St. Patrick's Cathedral, and we even saw the famous "naked cowboy" on the street corner. We opted to ride the red double-decker bus to China Town, the Empire State Building, Wall Street, and of course the Twin Towers, because those were some of the main things we wanted to see, even though we didn't have the time or money to actually tour them.

It was the trip of a lifetime, and so, when I came out of history class just a few weeks later and heard all the buzz on campus as I made my way to the post office for my shift, it all became so surreal.

I think I grew up a lot that day. I remember praying like I had never prayed before. I remember attending a candlelight memorial service on the drill field that night- so many emotions swimming around me. Because we were a military college, we knew it meant that a lot of our young men and women would probably be leaving in the coming weeks.  I remember thanking God that my sister and I weren't there when all these events unfolded. I remember praying for the families of those who lost loved ones, as well as those who were brave enough to risk their lives to save the lives of others.

It's a day I will never forget, just as many across our nation will never forget, and that is why today, even though it has been 12 years, I wore my red, white, and blue proudly. God Bless America!

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Five Minute Friday: Red

Our bedroom sports a red tray ceiling. There's a story behind it all.

Brent and I were getting married and we finally found the house that we wanted to make a home. It was in good condition, but we wanted to do some minor renovations to make it our own. Thankfully, my parents offered to help us out. Because of their work schedules, they could sometimes work during the day at the house, so we gave them the extra keys. Honestly, I don't know how we would have gotten it all done in time without their help.

One day upon arriving at the house after work, my mom greeted me at the door saying, "If you don't like it, we will repaint it." I had no idea what she was talking about, but after living with her for 24 years, I knew she had something up her sleeve.  She led me down the hallway to our future master bedroom where my Daddy was painting the ceiling red.


I couldn't believe it.

It's not something I would have thought of on my own, and Brent certainly didn't understand why anyone would want a red ceiling at first,  but over 8 years later, I am so glad my Mama stepped out on a limb and went for it. They say red is the color of passion. Maybe it is, and maybe it isn't, but I love my red ceiling, and red comforter, and red sheets....

Friday, August 23, 2013


He is my firstborn.

Never, in a million years did I dream that he might be my last, too. We waited and prayed for him for a long time, but once he got here, we thought our troubles were past.

We were wrong.

It's not that he's not good enough.

He is perfect.

It's not that he doesn't make my life better.

He does.

It's that my heart seems to have an empty place, a void, and I can't help but wonder what could have been, what might be. But, sometimes I feel so alone.

For now, I wait, and I thank God for my little man.   

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

It's like she took the words out of my mouth

... except the part about the Christmas lights! If you are a teacher, you have teacher friends, or you are a parent of a child who has teachers, I encourage you to read this.


Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Last Saturday

It's the last Saturday before I officially have to go back to work. The endless days with Chandler will be over. Monday morning is not going to be easy for me. Yes, Chandler will be with my Mama, and I won't have to worry about him for a minute, but I will anyway. I will miss him like crazy. I will probably cry as I drive away. This is the last year he will stay full-time with his Grandmama and Nana during the week. He and I are both a little spoiled to say the least.

Today, Brent and I planned to take him to a really neat (and FREE!) event we heard about in Gainesville called Touch a Truck. Kids can explore and ride in/on all kinds of trucks and tractors. It's the kind of event that has Chandler's name written all over it! We even discussed the possibility of taking him for a boat ride out on the lake since he's been asking to go.

The problem was, those were our plans.

Unfortunately, Chandler woke up at his regular time of 7:10 a.m,  and soon after, the diarrhea came. We were a little disappointed at first that we were staying in, but it ended up being a blessing in disguise. We accomplished more around the house than we ever would have if we had gone out today, and we still got to spend lots of time together.

I even got some extra snuggles since he wasn't feeling so great. He really wanted some spoiling, and I was glad to give it. I think I held him and carried him more today than I have all summer. It was good for my heart.

Now, Chandler is all snuggled in his bed, and he'll soon be asleep. He seems to be feeling better, and we are hoping it was just a 24 hour bug.

I am so thankful for this summer I have had at home with my sweet little man, and I am so thankful for today. God knew exactly what He was doing. Our plans may not always work out, but His are perfect in every way.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Five Minute Friday {Lonely}

I've been reading posts of friends who have been linking up with Lisa-Jo for a while. The idea is to blog for 5 minutes about a topic that she posts each Friday. It's not about fancy wording or trying to impress others. It's about writing from the heart.

Today's word is lonely. It grabbed me.

I am not lonely in the sense that I have no friends and family. The complete opposite is true. I have lots of people around me that I love and care for very much. They love me, too, and it's all good and wonderful, except sometimes I do feel so different from everyone around me, so lonely.

Since April of 2008, I have been pregnant 8 times. I have one sweet, precious little 3 1/2 year old boy who completely has my heart. I am very thankful for him, but I ache and yearn for the babies that I never got to see and never got to hold. When people hear of my story, they have sympathy. Most of them are even good listeners and check on me from time to time, but I have never known anyone in real life who has gone through the same thing as me.

I would love to find someone who has had the same diagnosis as me- Robertsonian translocation. Being a part of an online support group is good, but it's just not the same as chatting face to face with someone who really understands it all...

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

My Little Blessing

I have been striving lately to really take in the small moments of my life. At 3 1/2, Chandler is growing up way faster than I ever dreamed he would. It took forever for him to get here, and when he finally did, someone hit the fast forward button, and all I want to do is slow things down a bit. I just want him to be my baby for a little while longer. Time is moving way too quickly for my liking. It's important for me to slow down and enjoy this time with my son.

He is such a sponge. He has a large vocabulary that sometimes surprises me. (The other day he was talking about his "coworkers" while he played, and you can count on him being able to name all the equipment and vehicles we see on the road from excavators, cranes, backhoes, and dump trucks, to Mustangs, Jeeps, Toyotas, and motorcycles.)

He pays attention to details and remembers things that happened a long time ago. In this way he is like me.  (He still remembers that Brent took his truck to the Quality Food parking lot when he was trying to sell it, and that was about 13 months ago. He notices what people drive and what people are wearing.)

He loves and pretty much thrives on routine. (If you do something once with him, you better be prepared to do it over and over again. He doesn't forget!) He has a sense of humor and he laughs a lot. (He has lots of his own silly phrases and songs, as well as a few he has picked up from others. Ask him what his name is, and depending on the day it can vary from Ernie Bob, to Fred, to Jackson or Sam.)

He asks a million and one questions a day. (Who is that, Mama? What are they doing, Mama? Why are they doing that, Mama? What is that, Mama? Where are we going, Mama?) Sometimes when I don't know the answer to his questions, it's not good enough for him, and he tries to figure out his own answer. (His teachers will either love him or hate him for this one day!) 

He loves to help do things, and he's quite good at it, too. (He regularly helps me load and unload the car when we go somewhere. Tonight when we stopped by Ingles on the way home from church, he insisted on putting everything in the cart, and he helped the checkout girl, too. Then when we got home, he couldn't wait to help me take everything in.)

He likes for things to be in their place. He can make a big mess with the best of them, but he notices if something is not where it should be. He has been known to move things back to where they belong. (Brent usually rolls his eyes when he does this. The poor guy is probably going to end up having two Type-A personalities in his house!) 

He's a little bit stubborn. (I think he got all of that from his Daddy for sure!) He's a lot sweet. (He prays for everyone he loves every night, and he still gives lots of hugs and kisses.) Most importantly, he is mine, and I love him more than I ever knew I could love someone. I am completely smitten.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Shake Your Booty!

Lately, this phrase has been coming out my 3.5 year old son's mouth at least five times a day. And, no, I didn't teach it to him. He has good timing, too, like in the middle of Sunday School, or when I am shopping at Ingles.

It's cute at first, and a little embarrassing for sure, but I guess he could be doing worse things, so for now I try to ignore it as much as I can, and hopefully... this too shall pass!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Thankful for Big Changes

It seems that this is the week of change at our house. Sometimes change is nice! 
Here are some of the changes taking place.

Chandler is officially wearing big boy underwear!
So, he's almost 3 1/2 years old, and "stubborn as a mule" as my Granny says. I finally took the plunge and just started putting him in underwear for good on Monday. After talking to several other moms of boys, I came to realize that Pull-Ups are just a gimmick to get us to spend more money. (I wish I had all that money back!) Maybe they work for some kids, but Chandler just used them as an excuse not to go use the potty. Now that he's wearing underwear, he has to stop what he is doing and go.

I've had to clean up some accidents, including one pee-pee accident on the couch the first day, and I've had to wash several loads of sheets and underwear, but I am proud to say that he has been dry for two days even during naps, overnight, and out on the town.

Chandler is getting a big boy bed.
On Monday I ordered a twin bed with a matching dresser and night stand which will be here tomorrow, and I purchased a brand new mattress set for Chandler's room. I took advantage of a sale going on at Hobby Lobby last week, as well as an awesome sale at Pottery Barn a few weeks ago, and I got him some of the cutest things for his nautical-themed room, which we are thankfully not having to repaint. I know he is going to love it! We have been telling him about his big boy bed, and he has been telling everyone he sees. We have also been using it as a kind of bribe for potty training. Is that horrible?

I found this idea on Pinterest, and we are going to try it out before we order expensive bed rails. Has anyone done this with little ones? I will let you know if they work, and I will definitely be posting pictures soon.

The master bathroom is getting a makeover.
Tomorrow morning Brent and I are putting on our work clothes and painting the master bathroom while Chandler goes and spends some time with Nana. We are also updating the light fixture and mirror (another Pinterest project!), and the yucky hard-to-clean shower door is being replaced by a pretty curtain. I took advantage of a sale and some Kohl's cash and got some new towels and candles, too. I'm pretty excited about this much needed update. I just wish we had the money to pay someone else to do it!

The master bedroom got some upgrades, too. 
On the same day I got all the bath items on sale at Kohl's, I found some discontinued pillows and shams on sale that match my already existing comforter. It's nice to have something new and simple to freshen up the room. My favorite part? Brent has actually made the bed each day this week! Look for before and after photos soon.

Brent will be working less overtime
We may miss the extra money to a certain extent, especially since it's almost back to school time for me,  but I couldn't be more excited that he is going to be home with us more, at least for a little while. Chandler and I both need him.


Friday, July 12, 2013

The Top 10 Things NOT to Say to Someone Who Had a Miscarriage

Since I just experienced my 7th miscarriage about a week and a half ago, I consider myself somewhat of an expert at this. Never would I have dreamed that Brent and I would face such heartbreaking trials, but going through them has definitely changed me, and I think they have made me stronger as well. My hope and prayer is that I can help someone else in some way by sharing my own experiences. 

So, here we go. Here are some actual comments that were made to me at some point during our journey. If you are the one who said it, or you have ever said something similar to me or someone else, don't feel bad. I am okay, I promise. Just keep it in mind if you are ever in the same situation with someone again, whether they have had one miscarriage or ten, that you are treading on tender ground when you speak to them on this issue.  

1. Well, you can always try to have another baby!  
       While this is true in most cases, it really is a stab in an already wounded heart. When a woman
       miscarries a baby, she yearns for THAT baby. Yes, most women who have a miscarriage are 
       able to move on after a few weeks or months of grieving. However, there is a lot of "secret" 
       emotional baggage that comes along with a miscarriage, not only for the woman who obviously
       goes through both physical and emotional turmoil, but for her husband, too. It can even extend 
       out to other family members to some extent. The general public never hears about or understands
       the roller coaster ride of emotions that a miscarriage can bring. No matter how many
       miscarriages a woman experiences, and whether she has another baby or not, she never forgets
       each and every lost baby. 

2. You could always JUST adopt!
    This is also true, but take the JUST part out of it. If you or anyone you know has ever gone  
      through the adoption process, you know it's not as easy as it sounds. It requires a lot of time,
      money, commitment, and paperwork, not to mention the potential for additional heartbreak if
      an adoption fails. While I believe that adoption is a wonderful choice, and it is now on our radar, 
      it is certainly not the easy way out. Adoption may be right for one family and not another. Each 
      family must make that decision for themselves.

3. At least you have one child (or more) already!
    I think this is the one that bothers me the most. Yes, I am so thankful to God for my sweet little
      boy. He is a miracle and a gift. I love him more than words can express. However, having him 
      does not take away all the pain of having miscarriages. I don't care if a woman has ten children. 
      If she miscarries one, her heart is going to ache for THAT child that she lost. 

4. You are not alone. It happens all the time.
    Again, this is also true. However, when a woman is experiencing a miscarriage, she often
      feels like she is alone, even if she has the love and support of her family and friends. In my case,
      I have found the most comfort from others who have gone through trials of their own, varying
      from miscarriage, to infertility, to cancer.

 5. You'll feel better if you talk about it.
     I am pretty open about my experience. I don't mind talking about it. My hope is that my story  
       can help someone else. I have found comfort in talking to my husband, mom, mother-in-law, 
       and a few friends. However, some women may prefer to keep their feelings private. I think  
       it should be the decision of the woman who has experienced it, and not someone else. Don't push
       the issue. If a woman wants to talk about it, she will.

6. Not talking about it will help you forget about it.
    This goes in the exact opposite direction as #5, and it is completely false. Whether a woman 
      decides to talk about it or not, and whether or not she has other children (biologically or adopted)
      she will never forget a miscarriage, and if she has had more than one, she will remember each
      of them. Yes, the pain gets more bearable as time goes on, and it doesn't sting quite as much, but 
      I guarantee she thinks about it, sometimes more than others.

7. Why do you keep trying?
    This applies mainly to women who have had multiple miscarriages. When people have said this 
      to me, it has usually come along with a comment similar to the one in #3 above. In my case, I had
      4 miscarriages before I found out what was happening (two before having my son, and two after).
      I have a genetic issue called Robertsonian translocation.  I am fortunate in this aspect, because 
      many women who have  suffered multiple miscarriages never know why. In the past, I have   
      chosen to keep trying because my genetic counselor and my doctor both agree that it is safe to
      continue trying. My chances of having another healthy, full-term baby are very good, but my    
      chance of miscarriage is also much higher than that of most women. Basically, in my opinion, 
      it's no one's business but the couple who is trying to conceive unless it's life threatening.

8. Are you trying/going to try again?
    This is no one's business but the couple and maybe her doctor. If a woman wants you to know, 
      then she will tell you. A woman may not even know what she wants to do, especially right
      after a miscarriage when hormones and emotions are still all over the place.  In my opinion
      this question is never appropriate, whether a woman has had a miscarriage or not. Yes, I have  
      discussed this issue with a few people, but only because I chose to (they didn't ask), and only    
      because I trusted them. It's not something I talk about freely with just anyone.
 9. Does it make you jealous to see other women who are pregnant?
     In my case, this has never been true. Yes, my heart aches sometimes, especially if someone is 
       pregnant with a baby or has a baby that would have been about the same age as mine, but I have
       never been jealous. I would never wish for anyone to have to go through the pain and loss that I 
       have endured, and I always rejoice with others when they have beautiful, healthy babies. They 
       are all sweet blessings from God. I have several friends who have multiple children, and I am
       truly happy for them. 

10. You work with kids all the time anyway. I'm sure that helps.
      Okay, so this is one I hear because I am a teacher. It doesn't apply to everyone. While I do work 
         with children, and I do love it, it will never replace the ache I have in my heart
         for the babies that I have lost. It would be like saying to a chef, "Well, you cooked lots of food 
         today for others, so I guess you aren't hungry!". 

Honestly, the best thing you can do for someone who has suffered a miscarriage
is to pray for them and ask them if there is anything they need.
Some women want to be around others, and some don't. 
Some women want to talk about it, and some don't. 
Take her lead in all circumstances,
and most of all, 
be her friend.
I hope you have found this helpful!


Monday, July 8, 2013

Just a Simple Morning

Here we are, in the fifth week of summer vacation. We've been super busy almost everyday (more on that later). This morning, for the first time all summer, Chandler and I slept late and haven't rushed out the door to go anywhere. We are on our own time schedule- not someone else's. We are both still in our pajamas and we've been watching "The Little Engine That Could". Now he's playing on the floor with his cars, making all the car noises that little boys make, and I am taking it all in.

These are the moments that help me remember how thankful I am for the precious gift that God has given me. Being Chandler's mom is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. He was prayed for, and God answered that prayer in a greater way than I could have ever dreamed.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Thankful Thursday

With almost two weeks of summer vacation already behind me (YIKES!), I feel like I have been on the go, go, go almost constantly. I am certainly having a blast, and I am loving being at home with my sweet little man! Here are some things I have been doing that I am very thankful for.

A Weekend Away
Last Friday around lunch, Brent and I packed up the truck and headed to Pigeon Forge. It was nice to have some time together without Chandler. We love him very dearly, but we have also learned that it's important to have time away together away from him occasionally. It makes us better parents.  We got half price tickets to Dollywood thanks to the Stone Mountain membership passes that were issued to us for FREE from Brent's work this past year, and we took advantage of the "arrive after 3:00 p.m. and get the next day free" offer at the Dollywood park, so we saved tons of money and had a lot of fun at the same time. You just can't beat that!
I tried walking and jogging (too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter, plus the jogging stroller and I didn't always get along), I tried the gym (I didn't like working out with men- no offense!), and I tried DVDs at home (it was hard to get motivated at 5:00 a.m. or 9:00 a.m. - the only times I could complete the routines without interruption), so I went back to Jazzercise about 6 months ago. I got an offer I couldn't refuse, and I am so glad that I went back. I need the accountability, and I love the encouragement and energy that the instructors and customers share with each other. I go 3-5 times per week, and I feel better than I have in a long time. I also appreciate that Chandler can go with me. He loves to stand at the childcare window and watch, and his impressions of my exercises later at home are quite entertaining! 

Swim Camp
My little man may be a dare devil on land, but the pool certainly isn't part of his comfort zone yet. As one of the youngest in his swim camp class this week, I hope he is learning from the other kids that it's okay (and even fun) to play in the water. I love how Coach John pushes him to do more than he thinks he can. I know he'll get it one day, and if he's anything like his Daddy, it will probably be coming very soon and I'll wish these sweet, innocent days were back. 


                                                        Linking up this week with...

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Facing My Fears

It seems that everywhere I turn lately, 
God is reminding me that I must stand up and face my fears. 
It was part of my morning devotion one day last week, 
and it was the focus of Sunday morning's message at church.

What do I have to fear, you ask?

Well, there are all of the normal things that lots of others fear, like roller coasters and mice, 
and I don't care too much for Atlanta traffic, either,
but there is one big thing in my life that scares me the most-


Now, before you think I am crazy, no I do not have a fear of babies themselves. 
In fact, I think babies are wonderful. 
Honestly, I can't believe that my little man is no longer
a baby, and I certainly adore 
holding other people's babies. 
They are so cuddly and adorable.
I still get very excited when I find out
that someone I am close to is having a baby. 
Babies are a gift from God. I know that as a fact. 
His Word not only tells us that,
but it is evident to anyone who has the blessing of being around
one or raising one. 

So, what scares me about babies, you ask? 

It scares me that Chandler might be the only baby I ever have.
Yes, I am very thankful to have him in my life.
He is a precious gift from God, 
and I enjoy being with him. 
It's a blessing to be his mama,
but it honestly scares me that he might be an only child.

It's not that I have anything against only children,
I know several- both children and adults, 
and most of them have turned out fine.

It's not that I am not thankful for the little one I have,
because I truly am. 
It's not that I won't be okay if I don't have another child, 
because I know I will be.
Life will go on, 
and God will continue to bless me
if I allow Him to.
I am very happy with the family God has given me. 
It's just that it breaks my heart
that it may have to be this way,
and that is not what I wanted.

It's not how my "ever after" was supposed to be.

If there is one thing that having multiple miscarriages
has taught me, 
it's that my plans are only that- plans.
God is the one who is ultimately in control,
and more and more each day I must learn to lean on Him.
His will and way is perfect, and mine is not.

I must remember to praise Him no matter
what His plans are for me and my family,
even if that means that my family is already complete.




Monday, May 20, 2013

Playing With My Son

This afternoon, I put everything down and played with my son. Yes, I had lots of other things that I could have been doing. It is the last week of school and things are very hectic. I had paperwork to do, award certificates to sign, and grades to post, but I decided those things could wait until after his bedtime. My little boy is only little once.

We went to his favorite place...outside. We threw the football, we ran in the grass, and we used our imaginations as we laughed and played together. I loved every minute of it!

I watched him later as he played in the bathtub, and again as we cuddled on the couch, his chin resting on both of his little hands, and I thanked God again for this precious gift that He has given me. I don't ever want to take him for granted, not even when the times are tough.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Not Knowing

I am the kind of person who likes to have a plan.
Give me lots of details and information, and I am happy.
I like to have things organized in my life. 
I like to know what's going on.
It's how I roll.
Throw in some uncertainty and chaos, and I have a hard time.

Sometimes when I pray, I don't even know what to say.
To be honest, not knowing the outcome scares me.
I know that God knows the desires of my heart.
I must  ask Him for those things specifically.
I have been struggling with this lately.
I am having to learn to give things over to Him.

Last night at Bible study I heard this quote more than once,
And I felt like God was trying to tell me something.
I think I need to listen.
Hopefully it will bless you, too.

"I don't have to know how or when, as long as I know WHO."

I think I am going to write this down and post it in my house.
It's something I need to remember on a daily basis.
I am not the one in control of things.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Fingernails on Your Toes

What? You don't know what I'm talking about? 
Welcome to the world of a sweet, although sometimes mischievous, toddler!

The other day, Chandler was playing with his feet at my parents' house
when he looked up with a serious face and said, "Grandmommy, I need to cut
the fingernails on my toes!"
She said she had to hide her face to keep 
him from seeing her laugh.

This evening after his bath when I was helping him get
dressed for bed, he laid down in the floor and pulled his foot up to his chest.
When I asked him what he was doing he replied,
"I'm gettin' the fuzz out of my toes!"
That boy cracks me up!

      I guess he has a thing for feet right now.


                                                                                                                               Easter Sunday

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Spring Break Review

Alas, Spring Break has come and gone again. It was nice while it lasted, 
but now it's back to the real world. 
It was nice to sleep a little later (yes, 7:00 a.m. is late!), get in a little retail shopping,
take Chandler for his first dental visit, 
play with bubbles and sidewalk chalk,
read lots of books and sing lots of songs,
 eat some yummy yogurt from Race Trac with my little man, 
and get a few things done around the house
like cleaning out the garage
in preparation for a future yard sale. 

We were also able to squeeze in a short and fun trip to Greenville.
Thursday was rainy and cold, but that didn't keep us from exploring the
awesome interactive Children's Museum downtown.
We all had fun climbing walls, pretending to be astronauts, construction workers, and farmers,
lifting ourselves with pulleys, and generally being silly together.
We even got to see real firemen and firetrucks 
when we had to evacuate the building due
to the emergency door being opened!

Drury Inn saved us from having to get back out in the cold 
as we enjoyed hotdogs in the lobby for supper
and a swim in the nice pool.
After we warmed back up,
we even had popcorn for a
bedtime snack!

Thankfully, Friday's weather dawned much fairer than Thursday's,
and we were able to venture out to the zoo and playground.
We all had a blast together, 
and we had time to see most of the animals
twice in the two hours we were there. 
The zoo and the park were both fabulous!
Not only is is a little smaller than Zoo Atlanta (which is great for little ones),
but it's also less expensive,
and the park is mostly covered, which would be perfect
for those hot summer days outside. 
We will definitely
be going back!

After playing hard,
we fed our tummies at Sticky Fingers
and headed home, glad to have had the chance to spend some time together
as a little family.
Chandler and I were so tired that we both slept most of the way home.
I'm sure Brent enjoyed the peace and quiet!

I am so thankful that I had the chance to spend 
Spring Break with the ones I love.
It was definitely refreshing!
These little breaks are what keep me going!


Saturday, April 6, 2013


Today, Brent and I spent almost 3 hours together cleaning out and organizing the garage. It seems like such a simple and mundane task, but I loved every minute of it. Why? Because I got to be with the man that God made just for me.

He has been with me in the good times and in the bad.
He has laughed with me and cried with me.
He has kept the promise that he made to me
before God, family, and friends
almost eight years ago.
I have learned not to take these simple moments together for granted.

Yes, he's got his quirky little ways, and so do I.
That's why we work together so well.
I think we compliment each other nicely.
Opposites really do attract.

My newest purchase from Etsy pretty much sums up 
our relationship, and it's now in its rightful place
over our headboard,
and I love it!

Sunday, March 31, 2013


Some of you undoubtedly saw my post on Facebook about not being able to find brown dress shoes to go with Chandler's nice new Easter outfit. Who would have thought it would be such a difficult task? I mean, every store we went in had dozens of dress shoes for little girls and barely anything for little boys other than tennis shoes.

About halfway through the hunt (that went on for several days and took us to about a dozen stores), 
I just lost it. I wasn't happy at all, and I had a very poor attitude.
I finally just decided that Chandler would wear casual shoes with his nice new Sunday suit 
on Easter Sunday morning.
I was angry!

My poor husband felt so bad that he treked out on his on Saturday afternoon and FINALLY found
some brown dress shoes at a store we had not thought about in Gainesville.
How sweet was it that he did this for me?
I felt very guilty about how I had acted. 

Then, I realized something...

I was making a big deal out of something that really wasn't a big deal.

I was depriving myself and my family out of the joy of Easter and what it really means.
Easter is NOT about the perfect shoes and the perfect outfit.
It's not about the candy and egg hunts.
It's not even about the family gatherings, even though they are nice,
and it's definitely not about the Easter Bunny.
It's about Jesus, my Risen Savior.

I had allowed Satan to distract me from this
with such a silly thing as a brown pair of dress shoes 
to match my son's Easter outfit.

But, you know what the best part of the story is?
My Savior also forgives, 
and for that, I am forever grateful. 

Here's my handsome little man on Easter morning! 


Thursday, March 28, 2013

A Teacher's View of Spring Break

If you know any teachers, have ever lived with a teacher, or you are or have been a teacher yourself, you know that the words SPRING BREAK are music to an educator's ears. I am no exception. It's no lie that most of us count down to the next school vacation we will have, sometimes even 
before the current one is over. 

 It's not that I don't enjoy my job, because on most days I really do enjoy my job. It's what God has called me to do, and I work hard to take kids to the next level. 
I love when the lightbulb finally comes on for a child that I have been working with, and there is certainly never a dull or quiet moment 
in my entire day. 

I am not only their teacher, but their nurse, their mama, and their caregiver...ALL DAY LONG!
I must constantly be aware of not only each student's location, but I must also be 
aware of each child's educational, social, health, and safety needs. 
They are constantly changing!
This doesn't even include all the interruptions that occur throughout the day. 

Little Johnny needs to ride a different bus home today than usual and he needs a note from the office, as well as an escort to the bus so he knows where to go. Little Susie has a sore throat and tells me about it every 5 minutes even though I have already given her a peppermint and she has already seen the nurse, and we have a water fountain in our classroom that she can go to freely.  Little Joey has problems keeping his hands to himself no matter how many times he is reminded. Little Sally picks up things off the floor and puts them in her mouth and/or sucks her thumb even though she has been reminded at least a hundred times how nasty this is. Little Timmy always finishes pretty much any assignment he is given in 2.7 seconds flat, while Little Leroy takes forever and a day to complete the same task.  Little Mary needs to go to the bathroom again right in the middle of my teaching time even though she's already been three times and it's only 10:00 a.m. Little Pete needs to go to the Counselor's office, but he doesn't know where it is, and neither does anyone else in the classroom, so I have to escort him there while another teacher watches my class for a few minutes. Little Bobby says something inappropriate and he and I have to discuss why we shouldn't say those words. Little Lucy decides it is appropriate to write on the carpet and/or her forearm with a marker. Little Nan fell and scraped her knee. Little Sarah has a papercut and she thinks she's dying. Little Betty came in late or is absent again, and I have to make sure I set aside time to catch her up on what she misses. (Little Betty doesn't understand that the world keeps spinning when she's absent.) Little Jimmy is upset because he and his family are having to move to a new house and he doesn't want to. Little Jamie didn't eat breakfast this morning and he's hungry, so I need to find him a snack.  Little Sam whines and complains about everything constantly and doesn't use his manners. Little Amy needs to go to (speech therapy/ESOL testing/small group/the office, etc...) and she'll miss out on part of our lesson, so I'll have to meet with her one-on-one later in the day. Little Carrie has asthma, so when she starts wheezing I have to intervene. Little Lisa misses her mama and needs some extra loving. I have a parent to call or a note to respond to in a child's agenda. Money for (yearbooks, fundraisers, etc...) are due. It's (Halloween, Christmas, Easter, someone's birthday, a special event, etc...), and I spend my own time and money to make sure the students get to celebrate in a fun and interesting way while learning something new. Due to (special school event, testing, a short week, required half-day meetings, being absent, whether planned or unplanned, etc...), my schedule is completely thrown off track, yet I am still expected to teach the students the same amount of content as usual. I am in the middle of teaching an important lesson and someone says or does something that gets me and/or the students completely off task for five minutes.  There are pencils, crayons, gluesticks, and jackets on the floor, but mysteriously no one knows how they got there. It's time to line up, and I am having to remind everyone AGAIN that we need to line up quietly and keep our hands off the wall and face the front.  I ask everyone to stop what they are doing when it's time to move on to something new, and at least 3 kids continue what they are doing rather than stopping and looking at me. The lunch line is incredibly long and slow, and I only get 20 minutes to eat my own lunch. Five kids didn't put their name on their paper and I have to figure out who they are. Four kids didn't understand the new concept I just taught,  or the concept that I just retaught, and I must find time during my day to work with them in a small group to do some extra reteaching. (Meanwhile, I must keep the other students, who are only 6 and 7,  on task and doing something meaningful while I work with that small group. ) We can't get too loud, especially when other grade levels are testing, yet we are encouraged to let our students think and work creatively. I must take at least two grades per subject area per week per student and put them into the computer, as well as sort all the papers appropriately and make necessary notes so parents can see them once I send them home on Monday (after I spend at least 45 minutes sorting all the papers and putting them in the take home folders).  Lesson plans for all subject areas have to be created and reworked constantly. There's homework and a newsletter to create on a weekly basis. Copies have to be made. The phone is ringing. An announcement is being made over the intercom. I have a meeting to attend right in the middle of my class time and a substitute will be with the kids for the next hour. My class is divided into three different groups for Art, Music, and P.E. so I have to get them all to the right place at the same time and I have to pick them up at the same time, too. Another teacher needs to talk to me for a minute about a student concern. There's a fire drill. Someone threw up. I haven't been to the restroom in about 4 hours and my bladder is about to pop. The office called and said I have a new student. Another student is moving away and I have to gather all of his or her things to send to the new school as soon as possible. It's library day, but three different kids didn't put their book in their bookbag even though they have been instructed over and over to keep it in there when it's not being read.  Pencils need to be sharpened, tables need to be cleaned, bookshelves need to be straightened, papers need to be filed. It's been raining and/or cold for the last ten days and we've had to have indoor recess, so I must get creative about how the students can burn up some of the stored up energy they have. It's nice outside and we can go to the playground, so I have to monitor them and make sure they are playing safely. This important student data is due today. Progress monitoring graphs must be updated. The curriculum is all new, and we are just now getting to dive in and learn how to use it. 

I think you get the picture.

Did I mention that I do it mostly by myself?
These kids are 6 and 7 years old, so they are still pretty needy. They don't always 
understand that I can't help everyone at once. 
If you have even one young child at home, you know
how needy they can be sometimes.
Patience is definitely not a strong point
for most kids this age.
You know how they don't always listen to what you say.
You know how you have to constantly repeat the same directions over, and over, and over again...
day after day after day after day. 
Now, multiply that by 18 (or some years up to 24).
And, remember, I don't have help most of the day! 

Yes, I know there are millions of people who also work 8 hour days just like me and they don't get a Spring Break. However, these little breaks are what keep us teachers sane. (Or at least a little more sane than we would be if we didn't get these breaks!) 
I can't just call in sick and leave it at that.
I have to make detailed plans any time I am out, even if I am sick as a dog, 
and it's almost impossible to make plans that allow a substitute to 
know and understand everything they need to know about your class when you can't be there. 
I have a notebook with a lot of necessary details, but there's no way to include everything.

Let me put it this way- I may get paid for an 8 hour day, but on average, I put in at least
a 10 hour day. That's about 10 hours a week that I get no compensation for, and no, I do not get paid for the hours I don't work. 

Teachers don't get paid for going to PTO meetings, getting to school early or staying late,
 and contrary to the belief 
of some, we also don't get paid for the summer. Our paycheck just gets divided 
over 12 months so our families don't have to go hungry in the summer. 

So, why do I keep doing it, you ask?

The smiles on their faces, the sweet hugs, notes, and drawings I get on a daily basis, the look in their eyes when they are in awe at something new I have helped them discover, the moment they finally understand something that has been difficult and the lightbulb goes on, the funny things they say and the meaningful conversations we have, the books we read together and discuss, the activities we do together and learn from, the field trips and events we attend together, the thank-yous from their parents when they begin to notice a difference, hearing a non-reader learn to read, the satisfaction that I have helped open the eyes of a group of students to something new.

It's not an easy job, but it's the job God has called me to, and as long as He wants me to, I will continue doing it, and I will do it to the best of my ability.