Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Book recommendation

I picked up "1000 gifts" by Ann Voskamp from the library recently and have been enjoying it. The poetic writing can lose me unless I am paying close attention to what I am reading, but the challenges hidden there have changed my way of thinking.

Her main focus is being thankful in all things. Taking time to notice, to be thankful brings about joy. All nice and easy to say, altogether another story when we try to walk it out in the frustrations of the day, in the mundane of daily routine, in the difficult times we face.

I have been practicing thankfulness. I really have. And as life happens, I was challenged this weekend by the attitudes of teenage girls. This time, it was not my girl, although in hindsight, that would have been a LOT easier!! I had to correct the team captains on the soccer team and it was very difficult. However, the resulting backlash was much worse because the parents chose to stick up for their child's disrespect and bad attitude instead of supporting my authority in the situation. Thankfulness momentarily took a back seat.

I have recovered, things have been smoothed over and I am back to practicing thankfulness ... again.

I am considering starting a public list ... we will see if I get that far ...

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Beach trip 2014

Thankful that we were able to get away to the beach this past weekend. Leading up to the weekend, the weather looked very iffy, but we decided to go ahead and risk it. So glad that we did, because we had 2 good days at the beach. The first day was nice and sunny. The second was cloudy, but still very nice.

I really like this shot - my family in the water with the beautiful clouds and sand.

Beach hair!! Ha!

This is a remake of a much earlier picture to compare how much the kids have grown.

We don't eat in the rogue, so John is enjoying his McD's fries outside. The rest of us don't eat McD's - he is the only holdout :)

I have been reading a very good book called "One thousand gifts" by Ann Voskamp. I highly recommend it!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Long overdue post ... hoping to get back at it ...

It has been a long while since I have updated the blog. The bad thing is - we miss it. This is a fairly easy way to document what has happened in our family, and it is fun to look back and reminisce. I am planning to attempt to get back into it - for our sake.

Brief update:
John: He recently switched software jobs and is enjoying the new challenges. He is now in a contract position for Alabama Power and enjoys his colleagues and his new work. He also continues improvement projects on the house. He has been teaching the kids (and me) how to play tennis. He and Hadden enjoy playing frequently while Savannah is at soccer practice.

Me: My time is divided between homeschooling, helping run a home school co-op, taxiing Savannah to soccer practice and working with clients. Occasionally, some house cleaning happens. I acquired my personal trainer certification earlier this year and love helping people become healthy. 

Savannah: She is a full-fledged teenager! She continues to play competitive level soccer, but is on a new team. She is working hard and becoming a better player. We went to a tournament in South Carolina over the past weekend and her team won all 4 of their games to bring home the medals! She had 2 assists in the last game. We made some fun memories and had a fun time together.

Hadden: He is growing up! He is enjoying helping John with projects around the house and enjoys playing tennis. He also still loves his legos. He is currently taking a break from baseball (fall ball) and I am not sure if he will play in the spring or not. He had a miserable all-star season a couple of years ago and hasn't really recovered his passion. Really stinks that adults can't just let kids play ball. (That could be a few blog posts, but I will spare you.)

Newest addition:

After almost 15 years of marriage, John and I ventured into new territory ... car shopping. He did an amazing job researching what we might consider. We test drove a couple and ended up settling on the Nissan Rogue. And, he was kind enough to let me choose the color I wanted - red!! I love it!

We have 6 now. Not sure where we left off last time. They continue to eat a lot, but bring a lot of joy. John and Hadden built a nice fenced area for me to park so that the dogs can't scratch the Rogue.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Spring season sports wrap-up


Spring soccer has finished for Savannah’s team. They have learned a lot this year and have improved drastically from last fall. They won a game this spring and scored several goals in other games. Last fall, they only scored 2 the whole season, so definitely improving.


Spring baseball season finished last weekend. Hadden’s team won the tournament championship! Hadden was on the winning tournament team last year, as well, so he has 2 in a row!!  We have started the allstar season, so we are busy with practices for that.


Family photo celebrating Hadden’s win! John was the assistant coach, so he had a big part in it, too. Love my family!!

Monday, April 15, 2013

2 “Half”s make a whole, right?

When it comes to marathons, I hope this is the case. I am not sure I could ever run 26.2 miles all at one time :)

Last Saturday, I finished my second half marathon and I survived. This time, training was sketchy and I didn’t feel as prepared as I had for the Mercedes Half back in February. My time reflected that I wasn’t as prepared, either, because I was 3:52 behind my last finish. I still finished under 2 hours, which was my goal for the day. My final time was 1:58:11.


Almost there!

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Really almost there! If you are wondering how I closed that distance in 0:02 seconds … here is the reason. Thanks to technology, the bib numbers have an electronic chip in them. There are strips on the ground that pick up my actual start time and actual finish time using the chip. The “gun” clock is what you see on the time clock, so my official time is slightly different because I didn’t cross the start line right as the gun went off. Hopefully, that makes sense.


Caffeine!!! On race days, I don’t drink coffee before the race, so I was enjoying a coke after I finished. This was a very well organized run – their inaugural event. The funds raised went towards Team 413 ministry and you can read about them here.

At this point, I am going to take a break from running and do some cross training mainly due to the heat increasing and the time needed to train for races. John took my bike to get a tune-up and I am hoping that we can get some rides in on the weekends. I do MUCH better running when the weather is cool, so I am hoping to train again next fall and winter for some more half marathons. I think I have the bug :)

Saturday, March 23, 2013

I know, I know – it’s been a while!!

I don’t even know where to begin to catch up. We have been doing life quickly, it seems.

John has been at a new job for about 6 months and is enjoying it. The transition has been a pretty big adjustment for all of us, as he now has about a 1 hour commute each way, so we see much less of him than we did. He has been getting up extra early to beat the traffic and has been riding his bike before starting work. So proud of him – some of the mornings have been pretty cold by Alabama standards!

The kids are growing up too fast. They continue to enjoy sports and being outdoors. They have added a new game to their repertoire – chess. They learned it during our last co-op session. Needless to say, I am not any competition for them.


Hadden enjoyed playing basketball this winter. We are hoping to get a basketball hoop so that we can practice in the off season. John helped coach during the games. The league was held at our church and it is very well done. Baseball season has started and we had some overlap between basketball and baseball with some tournaments. His team won their first tournament. The second tournament was played in snow flurries! John is also helping coach baseball!

Savannah continues to play competitive level soccer. She continues to improve and enjoys playing. Hoping for some success for her team – they are playing an age group higher than most of them, so it is extra challenging! We have had quite a few indoor practices due to all the rain this spring.

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I have spent a fair amount this winter and spring training for half-marathons. I ran my first half-marathon in Feb in Birmingham and I am scheduled to run my second on Apr 13. I think I will have to take a break for the summer heat after that. It was very cold race day with a starting temperature of 27 degrees – brrr!

The whole family got in on the fun when we ran a local 5K all together! So proud of all of them – they all finished until 30 minutes. I haven’t asked if they want to do any more :)


The dogs. Oh, the dogs! Remember the cute little pups? Well, the two we kept are no longer little, but I have to say they are pretty cute still. We were planning on getting rid of Happy (with my friend who does rescues), but we felt it wouldn’t be very fair to him because he just loves to run free. He just wouldn’t be happy cooped up anywhere.


5 of the 6 warming on the front porch. And the pups have made themselves rather comfy on the car. I can’t remember if I had said, but the goat used to jump on the car all.the.time. Drove me crazy! Somehow, since the pups don’t scratch the finish, they don’t bother me being up there.

I’m sure there is lots that I have missed. Who knows, maybe I’ll be a little more consistent with updates – ha!

How are you?

Friday, December 21, 2012

A fun advent season

Remember this tree? We always have “interesting” Christmas trees, usually nothing normal about them. Two years ago, we had a 19’ cedar tree that we put in the stairwell. Last year, because we traveled all of November and most of December, we had a tiny little pine tree that Savannah plucked on Christmas morning. This year, we were back to cedar, but ended up cutting two to make it appear full.

Sorry, I digress. This isn’t exactly about our trees, but it is about the 19’ tree. After we took the tree down, John sliced the trunk into disks. They smelled good, so surely there must be some use for them. (Welcome to my world :). This year, I got an idea off of pinterest to use them for my “Jesse” tree. John and Hadden painstakingly stripped the bark off and drilled holes in all of the cedar disks in preparation of painting on them.

Each day, the kids paint one of their cedar disks with a symbol that corresponds to the Bible character that we are reading about. While they paint, I read the story from the Bible.


Here are the first few days. They don’t want to hang straight, but I think that adds to the charm. Savannah’s have the red yarn and Hadden’s have the green.


They are hanging from an i.kea curtain rod that we had bought, but decided against using as a curtain rod. We hung it to display artwork that the kids have painted and it has the exact number of hooks that I need! It’s fun to see how they interpret the symbol that they are supposed to paint.

“Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Luke 2:10-12