Saturday, October 31, 2009


As leaves are falling and the air is crisper, I'm reminded that everyone goes through seasons....not the obvious Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall....but seasons of life! Have you ever seen "Rent" on broadway? It's fabulous....but that's beside the point....talking about seasons just got me humming that song from Seasons of Love from "Rent". Anyway back to seasons! The seasons of life I'm referring to are....changes, adjustments, good times, not so good times, learning, growing, faltering, stumbling, pausing, etc., etc., etc., etc. I know many people who are in a "season" if you will....of life....unfortuntately most of the folks I'm thinking about are not in necessarily good "seasons", but there are some who are in good "seasons"! When I looked the word "season" up in the dictionary, I found the following idiom:
for a season, for a time, esp. a short time
This is good if the "season", you are in, is not so good; but you may wish the "season" were a little longer if things are going really good. Nonetheless....we all experience different "seasons".....good, bad, on pause, winter, spring, summer or fall! I think the important thing for me us to remember is that it's just a "season" for a short time!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Let The Countdown Begin

Okay so Halloween is Saturday....
talk about spooky....
where has time gone?
I enjoy Halloween lots, BUT....
I adore Thanksgiving!
Yes I would say that I have a crush on Thanksgiving,
because it's one of my favorite holidays!
So I'm counting down to Thanksgiving....
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to rush Halloween!
I would never do that!
But I do ADORE Thanksgiving.
For reasons like this....

....I get to spend the entire week of Thanksgiving with my kids!

I get to spend the entire day of Thanksgiving with family and friends!

I get to take a picture of my children with their cousins on our slide!

I get to spend the late night hours of Thanksgiving

and the wee hours of post Thanksgiving morning

shopping with my best friend. I ADORE Thanksgiving!


....the food ain't so bad either!

BY THE my calculations, there's 58 days til Christmas!

Shut my mouth and slap me silly...FIFTY EIGHT DAYS PEOPLE!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Each year our church hosts Trunk or Treat,
it's a fun filled evening of eating, bouncing and indulging....on candy! The group photo of most of the kids that participated this year!
B and her friend Audrey!

Drew and her friend Reagan (Audrey's sister).

Npayne, Cal, and Elli....trunk or treating!
Addi and our friends Maddie and Macie!
The girls wanted to be Super Heros this year. They like to have a
theme....and they always try to choose something that we can easily make a t-shirt for Cal to wear. He doesn't wear costumes, so we usually have a t-shirt for him. Unfortunately his
"Super Callahan" tee didn't arrive in time. BOO HOO! Here are the girls' capes....self designed by each little lady.
Making silly and super hero faces!!

I'm not a Super Mom, but I try!

Friday, October 23, 2009


I have posted before about treasures and how much I truly treasure certain moments or experiences. I experienced a treasure with Cal the other night. The girls were all snug in bed, and Cal was waiting for his daddy to get home from Bible Study. He is extremely routine at bedtime and NPayne is part of his routine. So if NPayne is not going to be home at bedtime, he has to tell Cal that he will not be home and that mama will be part of the bedtime routine that night. Cal always happily agrees, BUT the other night....I don't think NPayne told Cal that he was not going to be there at bedtime. So instead of trying to coerce him into his own bed.....I happily let him lay down beside me while he waited for NPayne. As we lay there all covered up, he took my hand and held it lightly. A few minutes later I looked over at him, and he was fast asleep....still holding my hand. I continued to lightly hold his hand until NPayne came home and put him in his own bed. Moments like this are such treasures to me, and I hope to relive one like this again very soon!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Fabulous Blue Door, A Stunning Boy, Blue Eyes, Plaid Shirt, Cute Little Toes, and An Adorable Hat!

Everybody could use a little plaid!

Cute Little Baby Toes!
Fabulous Blue Door and Those Blue Eyes Ain't So Bad Either!

Everyone needs some wellies!!!
Thank you Bowen for being such a great sport!!! You are one awesome and handsome 2 year old!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Just to....wet your whistle, make you gasp, and stop dead in your tracks....just a preview!

Remember that photo shoot that I had tonight?
The one with the beautiful boy with the beautiful blue eyes and the adorable hat....
here's a sample minus the hat but plus that fabulous blue door that I absolutely adore!
Heaven help any girls who stare into those eyes.....

Howdy Pardner!

The twins are obsessed with our coat closet, among other things, but they really LOVE the coat closet because inside there's not only coats, but......HATS of all kinds. They tend to always choose a cowboy hat, sometimes even a pink cow"girl" hat! They also are obsessed with Addi's drum set and our piano.....they LOVE to pound play both of these things!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


PHOTO SHOOT TOMORROW EVENING....woohoo!!! Cute little boy with beautiful blue eyes and a cute little hat.....coming your way.....get ready to stop in your tracks, have your breath taken away, gasp and ooooohhhh&ahhhhhh.....I mean he is CUTE!

Announcement coming....about another adventure!!!

AND....can you believe it's almost Halloween? Good Night Nurse....I nearly fell over when I read in the church bulletin today that Trunk or Treat was next Sunday!!!! I'm flabergasted, completely thrown for a loop, shocked and completely unprepared for dressing up....well maybe not completely....there is a plan in just needs to be implemented!!!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

If I Had It My Way

1. I would have an old pick up truck but get around on a scooter with a sidecar.
2. I would live on a lake in the country and grow wildflowers and have a huge garden.
3. My children would be homeschooled and all have their own horse.
4. I would have had at least 7 or 8 kiddos and adopt a few too.
5. NPayne would work really close to our house at a place he loved, so he could come home for a picnic lunch with us every day.
6. We would always have 3 day day to do our chores, one day to rest, and one day to play....but all 3 days would be spent together.
7. We would never use an alarm clock again.
8. I would make my living by being a photographer.
9. All of my family and friends would live in the country nearby me....ALL OF THEM....including my pastors!
10. We would have a huge rock garden.
11. We would go fishing every day.
12. All of my children would know how to sew and play at least one musical instrument.
13. My afternoons would be spent sitting on my porch swing watching my kids pick flowers and berries and play baseball in the front yard.
14. We wouldn't watch TV....except maybe a football game here and there....and would read and listen to music all the time.
15. We would own absolutely everything we had.
16. We would spend our summers at the beach!

BUT....really's not about me getting my's about what God has planned for me and for now....His plan, although unclear at times, is for me to be doing what I'm doing. And although most of those things above are true desires and wishes, I am blessed in my everyday life. I am thankful for my life, and for His guidance. I've been praying for guidance a lot lately and will continue to do so. And now....after receiving some guidance from someone else....I'm praying for balance! Thanks Pastor Ken!

Thursday, October 15, 2009


I have to admit that I am a rule follower by nature....I always have been. I never liked or wanted to get in trouble and always thought about long term consequences in decisions I made. As I've gotten older, had a family, and continued growing my relationship with Christ....I have gotten much more laid back in how I approach rules. Don't get me wrong....I never speed, always have my car inspected, and fill out forms in black or blue ink; but I also started believing that if you follow the two main rules (commandments) that Jesus tells us too....everything else falls under them.

MATTHEW 22:37-39

37 Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] !

It's been a challenge not to set up rigorous rules in my household, because as I said....I am a rule follower....hence I need rules to be a rule follower; however we actually don't have tons of "rules" persay. We do have types of behaviors that are not acceptable and choices that are not acceptable, and we do have limitations and responsibilities; but really we have 2 main "rules" that we enforce, if you will, to keep order in our house.....BE KIND and BE HONEST! My children know that if they make a bad choice, there will be a natural consequence; but if they make a bad choice and are not honest about it....there will be a natural consequence and another consequence decided upon by NPayne and myself. We have tried to teach them and are still teaching them that being dishonest is a bigger offense (to us) than the bad choice was. We know that everyone makes bad choices and suffers consequences for those choices....including NPayne and myself.
As for being kind, I have never really seen a reason for anyone to be anything but kind....I know that may be hard at times....believe me I have struggle with that; but when I think about it and I see my children living also makes me realize that being unkind not only hurts the person you are unkind to but also hurts you! Iwill say that NPayne has rubbed off on me significantly in this area....he is truly one of the kindest people I have ever met. I am not saying that we don't get angry, irritated, frustrated or upset with each other in our house....what I'm saying is that we are trying to handle those feelings in a kind, responsible, productive way....instead of lashing out, hitting, being condesending or disprespectful. As I've gotten older....I have made a conscious effort to take a step back, take a deep breath, and try to resolve a conflict with kindness....I'm not always successful, but I am trying to be. I have this frame (pictured above) in my kitchen, and it holds a picture of my children. It is such a good reminder....everyday when I look at it....which is why it's in my I see it everyday. It has the following saying under their picture....

Remember when you go into the world to keep your eyes and ears wide open. And be kind. Love one another. Take care of each other. Tell the truth. Always do your best. Listen to the big people and the little people. Explore new paths and have fun. Know that you are loved like crazy. Give thanks for all your blessings. Above all else, love and you will do wonderful things in this world. -- Rebecca Puig!

I pray that my family will always try to follow the commandments of Jesus....and that in doing so, we will be honest and kind.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Welcome to Wordful Wednesday....
Now sit back and enjoy a little story
about a 3 year old, her tutu and a train! Once upon a time there was a little girl named Elliot.
She loved tutus and trains, so her mama took her to the train station.
While at the train station, Elliot heard the whistle blowing.....
OH NO....the train is coming!!!!

So she started running as fast as she could!

Still a girl....which is quite poised and ladylike but very very fast!

Then she stopped and said...."Wait a minute, that train whistle was from the train across the tracks....this train is not chasing me after all!"

" I'm so silly.....what a silly girl I am!"

"I have to admit that I'm a little embarassed that I was running away from a train that wasn't even chasing me!"

"Okay....I'm over it....and not really embarassed at all!"
Actually it was kinda funny and really fun running from that train!

"But wait a minute.....I hear the train whistle again....
I think this time it might really be chasing me!"

For more Wordful Wednesday, visit Angie's blog!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Just What I Envisioned!!!

So as you can see, I got what I needed wanted to do my photo shoot of Elliot!

I had this vision, in my head, of the picture I wanted to capture. I knew what she was going to wear for the photos, and I knew the location of the photos; but I really really really wanted this cute little pink hat to complete my I went and got it on Saturday! To me, the best part of any photo shoot is when you....not only capture your vision....but you get a nice surprise by getting so many more great photos!
Of course it always helps when your subject does what you ask but also works the camera on her own. And it also helps when you have a very helpful 12 year old there with you to assist in getting the shots you had envisioned. I'll post some more photos later, because I haven't edited them all yet; and there are 132 to choose from!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

An Artist With Autism

I spent the day with my 3 oldest girls and some of our friends. We did something that we haven't done in a long time.....shopped.....well actually my girls and I mainly browsed. The girls all bought themselves a little something with their money, but I didn't buy anything.....except lunch and a few drinks from Sonic during Happy Hour.....and yes that Route 44 made me happy. One of the places we browsed was The Owl's's a really cute and unique toy store....a place that I use to sell my creations until the owner was recently bought out, but thankfully the store is still in business. It's just a darling little place. While we were browsing, I stumbled upon some fabulous art....framed art, t-shirts, bags....all by the same artist. Beside the art was one of those plastic cube things that holds pictures. As I flipped it around looking at the pictures, I saw the 8 year old little boy with autism. Then I read on another side of the cube a little about him....he began drawing when he was 4 and has an obvious gift. I flipped back around to look at his face again, and I noticed that his gaze was blank....he was just staring blankly at the camera....and then I noticed that there was some paper lying on the floor in front of him and he was holding a paintbrush, so they had probably called his name which had distracted him from his masterpiece to take that photo. Then I saw another picture of him with his mother, and he was grinning from ear to ear; and that made me smile. I read what she wrote about her son, and I could feel how much she adored him; and that made me choke back tears. I picked up a few pieces of his art and admired them with a quivery lip, then I called the girls over to look at it and read about the artist.....I knew they would enjoy seeing how this little boy....nearly the same age as their brother, affected with autism like their brother....was responsible for such wonderful pieces of art. And they did! I searched online to see if I could find a picture of some of his art, but I couldn't. If I do, I'll post some! It was amazing and really made my already blessed day even more blessed! Then I came home to my amazing son who greeted me with outstretched arms and a grin from ear to ear and again I smiled! Then my day was perfect!

Friday, October 9, 2009

A Picture Post Is In The Works

I'm way way way overdue for a picture post....okay I know I post a lot of pictures, but I mean a picture post....where I actually set out and plan to get a certain type of photo that I was shooting for. This picture post will be of my little princess Elliot....her 3 year old pictures if you will...although I never really keep up with taking my children's pictures at each birthday, because frankly I take their pictures ALL THE TIME!!! However I have a vision, in my head, of what I want....and Elliot is the subject of my affection attention....actually she is the subject of my affection pretty much all the time too, since I can't seem to stop kissing....caressing....rocking....tickling.....and so on and so on....her! Anyway, I'm waiting for one thing in particular before I do the actual photo shoot...hopefully I'll get it taken care of in the next few days. However it has been really rainy here....which puts a little damper on my plans(heehee...get it....rainy/damper....I crack myself up sometimes). And it's getting cold....well cold to us down South I may have to change up my plans a tiny bit, however....they'll be coming soon....very soon! Stay Tuned!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Wordful Wednesday

FRIENDS....better yet....GIRLFRIENDS!
This time last year, I was on a youth retreat with my daughter. As you can see, it's still warm enough...where we go to and swim in the lake.

For more Wordful Wednesday, visit Angie's Blog!


The Cross Made The Difference For Me!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Cursing or Cussing....

My son, Callahan, has Autism and Fragile X Syndrome. If you know anything about Autism, you know that each child with Autism can be very different and very similar to other children with Autism. One of the things that Cal has always done and still does is make sound effects. He can make the most unusual and actually cool noises and words. Cal has always had his own language that can be hard to decipher. He can communicate with us, and he has a fairly large vocabulary as well. He will also make quirky noises and ask his daddy to repeat it which of course he does,and Cal thinks this is absolutely HYSTERICAL and will laugh for days on end at NPayne for imitating Cal's quirky noises. He also says words that don't mean what they sound like they mean. For example, there are two words that he use to always scream say when he was mad....PITCH and SHUT....he only scream said them when he was really mad ! Now imagine with me for a moment....if you will....a fuming mad 5 year old boy with a very limited vocabulary....throwing a tantrum all the while screaming at the top of his lungs....oftentimes in a British accent (don't ask)....PITCH or SHUT, and then imagine if you weren't aware of him having a special need and saw us out in public....what would you think he was screaming? UH HUH....that's exactly what it oftentimes sounded he was calling me a very unkind name and yelling "poop" profanities as well. Now imagine with me for a moment....Cal's first few days of kindergarten....some of the worst days of NPayne's and my parenting experiences....being called in for a know where this is going, don't ya? Yes I was called in for a conference about a week after kindergarten started, now mind you Cal had the worst first few days of kindergarten that you can imagine. I mean really the worst. When every adult, that came in contact with him, called us and asked the following...."What do we do with him?" you know it's bad! Also keep in mind that when he was much younger, he was much more aggressive and often hit when he was upset. So I go to the conference, and with a smile on her face the first thing out of his special ed. teacher's mouth was...."Cal hit me and called me a @ITCH!" I immediately tried to explain...."Oh no no no he didn't, I promise, he didn't! He may have hit you (like that was acceptable), but he didn't call you a @ITCH, he was just yelling PITCH!" Utter look of confusion, and a little disbelief, on her face! Then I explained that he has his own language and when he gets mad....really mad....he yells PITCH and SHUT, and NPayne and I....well I....never use inappropriate language around him....and he doesn't even know what a @ITCH is or what SH#T is! And we have no idea where he got the words PITCH and SHUT from, and what he thinks they mean either. I think I completley overwhelmed her, but I also convinced her that what I was telling her was in fact the truth; and the next time he got angry and yelled.... she listened really closely and realized that I wasn't just making that up to bail him out. Now fast forward to a week or so ago....Cal hasn't yelled PITCH or SHUT in years....I mean years. His vocabulary has grown so much over the last few years. He still does sound effects and has his own language; but he is also learning to use appropriate words for appropriate if he's angry, he'll say something like "Callahan was very angry"....he refers to himself by name when describing his feelings. When he doesn't have an answer, he'll oftentimes say "I can't" or "I don't know"! Nonetheless it's sooooooooooooooo much better than screaming at people, or yelling PITCH or SHUT! Anyway about a week ago, we got his folder with his behavior chart in it; and on it his teacher had written...."Cal said SH#T today". She then had written that they talked about inappropriate words. That was all it said. So I emailed her and told her that he use to yell SHUT and PITCH when he was very mad, but he hadn't done that in so long; so maybe he was reverting to some of his former behaviors. She emailed me back and said that she just told him it was inappropriate, didn't make a big deal out of it, and moved on.....oh and by the way....he was laughing when he said it! OUGHT OH.....I thought, and then responded....if he was laughing, maybe he really did say SH#T. HELP ME HENRY....cursing or cussing is the last thing I need to try to explain to him!

What Can You Do With $1?

During the summer, our children's pastor and SS coordinator gave all the children in our church (ages K-5) $1. They asked them to take that one dollar and do something to help someone else. Out of 89 children, over $600 was given back to the church for various ministries and causes that the church supports. Two little girls teamed up and used their $2 to make lemonade. They had a lemonade stand and raised $160. They split the money, and each child donated to the cause they were supporting. Some of the children donated their $1 to Operation Rowanda which our church supports. Operation Rowanda is an effort to raise about $12,000 to help reunite 2 parents with their children. Their parents left Africa for safety reasons, but their children have not been able to come over yet. There is the $12,000 cost and tons of legal documents that continue to hold them up. The children, 5 or 6 of them, are still in Africa staying with relatives. Drew was my only child to receive the $1 challenge. She took her $1 to The Dollar Tree....I love that store. Do you have one near you? If so, go there and go fast. Back on track....she went to The Dollar Tree and bought some cute computer paper. She then printed up fliers asking for monetary donations or clothing donations. She hand delivered these fliers to all of our neighbors, and by her deadline; she had received $40 in donations and 2 bags of clothes. Drew wanted to donate the clothes to The Slab which is a place, in a nearby town, for homeless people to worship. With the $40, she wanted to buy toiletries and deliver them to The Slab herself. We haven't made it to The Slab to do the delivery yet, but we will. The point of giving the children the $1 challenge is to help them take the focus off of themselves and to focus on what they could do to help someone else....even with as little as $1. What can you do with $1?

Saturday, October 3, 2009


I'm a SAHM....stay at home mother....among other preschool teacher, business owner, creator, caregiver of two sweet little twin boys (that aren't mine). I love being a SAHM....and I love my other jobs as well, but I've been thinking a lot about what I do as a SAHM; so I decided to write out a job description...including benefits, positives and negatives!
Here goes...
My main duties consist of providing a safe, nurturing and loving environment for my children....which is basically the job of all parents....working or not. In addition to that, I also....prepare meals, do laundry, pick up a lot, do dishes, clean toilets, wash floors, tickle toes, dance a lot, pick up a lot, play outside, get out and clean up watercolors, read books, check homework, give hugs and kisses, be firm but encouraging, pray, do devotions, pick up a lot, sweep at least 2 times per day, do more laundry, rock 3 year olds, kiss booboos, teach life skills and independence, drop off and pick up, manage the finances, keep track of who goes where on what day and at what time, pick up a lot, make sure certain children don't take peanut butter in their lunch boxes (since there is a child with peanut allergies in her class), give lots of hugs, kiss it and make it better, cheer them on, dance some more, change lots of diapers, clean up messes, give medicine when needed, pack backpacks, pick up a lot....did I already say that?...., sing songs before naptime. I'm guessing that many moms who do work outside of the home do most of these things as well.

With my SAHM job, I don't get sick days....that doesn't mean I don't get sick.... it just means I don't get the day off when I'm sick! BUT....I can squeeze in a nap 1-2 times/week. I don't get a salary! BUT....I do get paid with lots of love and moments that I might otherwise miss out on.
I don't get quiet time in the car, BUT....I get to pick my kids up from school. I don't get a vacation! BUT....I get to sit around in my jammies several days of the week. I don't go on business lunches, meetings, or trips! BUT....I do get to go on outings to the park and playdates!

My job as a MOM might not be glamorous, and it might not make me wealthy....but it's the most important job I've ever had, and it definitely makes me rich!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

I Wonder What She's Thinking.....

As I was sitting in the rocking chair singing to my sweet little Elliot today before her nap, I was staring hard at her face and her big blue eyes while I caressed her cheeks; and I couldn't help wondering....I wonder what she's thinking. I wonder that a lot. What goes through a 3 year old's mind when everything is still and she's listening to her mother sing to her? I know she is not thinking the same things I am, because she's 3; and I'm....well...NOT 3! When I'm singing to her and we're rocking gently back and forth....I'm usually drinking her in....I mean I'm thinking things like....Where has the time gone? Can you feel how much I absolutely adore and cherish you? I want to remember these times forever. I don't want you to grow up so fast. What am I going to do when you're too big to rock? I am so thankful and blessed! You own my heart!
She always looks at me so sweetly, and sometimes we're silly when we sing; but today she was just staring at my face too. I wondered what she was thinking....and I was dreaming that it was that she loves me more than anything and thinks I'm dandy; but then I figured it was probably something like....Get on with it, I'm exhausted! ;)