Happy 9th Birthday Ethan!

This is one lucky kid. We are celebrating Ethan’s birthday in Hawaii! Since I was late posting his birthday post last year, I wanted to make sure that I posted on the day of his birth this year.

I can’t believe my miracle baby is already 9 years old. He’s changed my life in so many ways.I love you to the moon and back and then back again, buddy.

Happy Birthday Ethan!IMG_4929

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My favorite boy in the whole world



What Ethan Taught Me: Not To Judge A Book By Its Cover

Being a parent is an awesome, amazing, frustrating, joyful, never ending experience. It’s also scary because you’re just flying by the seat of your pants, learning as you go. And while we all work so hard to teach our children life lessons and how to be good people, we sometimes forget that we are learning from them, too.

While I learn something from them everyday, sometimes they teach me something that really hits home. That amazes me and teaches me a lesson that maybe I’d learned before and forgotten about. Lessons that make me a better person.

Mia and her sixteen cents taught me the importance of slowing down and appreciating the important things in life.

Lila’s lesson was all about the importance of a sincere apology.

Each of my kids has taught me many things, some lessons more important than others. This is one of those very important ones. Ethan recently reminded me to never judge a book by its cover.


Last week, the girls went to the Father/Daughter Dinner through the school. So Ethan and I decided to head out to BJ’s Restaurant, his favorite. We sat down, and after ordering, we chatted while we waited for our food.

As we waited, a young couple sat down at the table next to us, and I see Ethan looking at the girl. I turned to look at her, and I’m sure the look on my face was one the girl had seen many times. She was a pretty girl, but she had this penny-sized black mole right above her lip and off to the side a bit.

I’m not going to lie, it was ugly. She wasn’t, but the mole was. I’m sure everybody looked at that mole with the same look that I gave her, one that said “ewww.”

I am far from perfect myself, and we all have things on our bodies that we don’t like. I have a birthmark right down the center of my forehead. You can really see it when I’m really cold or angry. If you met me, you probably wouldn’t notice it, but I see it every time I look in the mirror. I’m self conscious about it, even after having it for 40+ years and trying to have it lasered off. I’m sure she feels the same way about her mole.

And yet, when I looked at her mole it made me think Thank God I don’t have that thing on my face. Because I’m shallow. And human. And wasn’t thinking.

I could hear the couple talking, and they decided not to eat but to just go to the bar for a drink instead. After they left, I told Ethan “It’s not polite to stare at people. I know that mole was ugly and it’s sad that she has it on her face, but you still shouldn’t stare. Just be glad you don’t have a mole like that on your face.” Mother of the year, right there wasn’t I?

And that’s when Ethan said “I don’t think it’s sad, I think it’s unique. It made her face look interesting.” We talked more about it, and he told me that she is probably very nice to people because so many people aren’t nice to her. He told me that having one thing on you that’s not pretty doesn’t make you ugly. He told me he thought she was pretty.

I was blown away by my son, and at the same time I felt to be about two inches tall. I leaned over and thanked him for reminding me not to judge books by their covers. I had to explain to him that was a way of saying not to judge people by what they look like. He nodded his head and said “You taught us that mom” and I thanked him again for reminding me how important it is.

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I may not be Mom of the Year every day of the year, but I must be doing something right if my kids are learning – and sharing – these lessons. Thank you Ethan, for making me a better mom.

My Life In Pictures: January 16 – 31, 2016

Back in October, I started what I thought was the best idea EVER: To share my Instagram pictures a couple of times a month since I can’t seem to find time to write! I decided to call it My Life In Pictures. You can see all of my previous posts here. So here’s what I’ve been up to the last couple of weeks.

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It’s time to get back on the workout wagon, so when I found this shirt, I had to have it! To say that I don’t like burpees is a HUGE understatement. I’m more of a yoga/pilates girl myself. I started Chalene Johnson’s PiYo Workout, and it’s not easy but I’m really enjoying it.

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I set up my Valentine’s Day mantle, and I love it! Even my husband says that he likes I’m changing up the mantle for all of the different holidays/seasons.

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Our little hummingbirds are back and making their nests for the spring.The kids like to think that this is the baby hummingbird that we took care of last spring when Mia decided to take the babies out of their nests and play with them. Luckily, this nest is too high for the girls to reach.

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I took this picture because it shows Ethan and Lila sitting together chatting. I always say they are enemies and BFFs rolled up into one. But when I posted it on Instagram, everybody commented on our new kitchen. I’ve tried to not post too many pictures since it’s STILL not done, but stay tuned! Before and after pictures are on the way.

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I had to share this gorgeous purple sunset. It’s the little things in life that are reminders of how blessed we are.

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I bought this book titled The Prime: Prepare and Repair Your Body for Spontaneous Weight Loss by Kulreet Chaudhary simply because I grew up with the author! I haven’t spoken to her since high school, however I’m still proud of her. Book review coming soon, but if you’re looking to change your eating habits (whether you are trying to lose weight or not) this book is eye opening!

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Ethan and I went to his Mother/Son Night with his school, and went bowling. We went to dinner at one of his favorite places, Macaroni Grill, where we had dessert for dinner!

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Mia is starting to do her homework with just a little bit of help from me! It’s exciting to watch her become more independent and self confident. She’s even helping Lila with her homework. This is both exciting and a little bittersweet – just one more reminder about how fast they are growing.


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Happy 8th Birthday, Ethan!

And just like that, Ethan is 8. I am a bad mom and I’m over a week late in posting this Happy Birthday for him, but it’s not because I don’t care or didn’t want to. It’s because we’ve been so busy!

With school starting, a kitchen remodel, and the birth of my 6th niece, things have been chaotic. Not having a kitchen is a real pain, let me tell ya!

So I’m sorry that this is so late, Buddy. I can’t believe my miracle baby is already 8 years old. You’ve changed my life in so many ways, and I  love you to the moon and back and then back again.

Happy Birthday Ethan!

Ethan meeting Baby Presley Lynn. I couldn't love this picture more!

Ethan meeting Baby Presley Lynn. I couldn’t love this picture more!


Self Confident




Minecraft Lover


My Favorite Boy In the Whole World

I Want To Stop My Kids From Growing Up!

It’s a fact: I have decided that I need to figure out a way to freeze time so that I can literally stop my kids from growing up. Remember last week when I told you I would do anything to spend one more afternoon at the park with my babies? Well now I just want to make them stop growing all together.

When Ethan was in kindergarten, I would walk him up to the gate every afternoon and say goodbye. I would watch him until he started walking to his class and I was so excited that he was finally away from the house for a few hours! It sounds bad, but most moms with kids that age (and two smaller ones!) probably understand what I mean.

We would get to that gate, and he would hug me and kiss me and tell me how much he loved me and never wanted to leave me. And it was pretty much the same thing in first grade. And I guess at the beginning of second grade, too.

Somewhere during the first and second trimesters of second grade (with the exception of the love note I wrote him), he decided that hugging and kissing and telling me that he loved me was not very cool. I would drop him off in “The Circle” (he did NOT want me walking him to the gate!), he would get out of the car, and I would say “OK! Have a great day! I love you buddy.” and he would look at me, scowl, and walk away. It really hurt me!

Want to stop your kids growing up? Me too! Here's why I'll miss their elementary school years.

My favorite picture of me and my favorite boy. Find out why here.

That was enough. ENOUGH. I wanted to stop my kids from growing up anymore. RIGHT.THEN.AND.THERE.

One night, I finally broke down and asked him to tell me why he wouldn’t say “I love you” to me when I dropped him off. He said it was embarrassing and that he didn’t want anybody to make fun of him. I told him that I understood, and that I wouldn’t do it anymore. It killed me.

The next morning, I dropped him off and told him to have a great day. I didn’t say anything else, but I did blow him a kiss. He gave me the scowl, and closed the door.

But then something wonderful happened.

He turned back around and looked at me and mouthed “I love you”.  He may or may not have surveyed the scene before saying it to make sure that none of his friends were around, but I was ecstatic!

And every morning since then when I drop him off, I say the same thing, and he shuts the door. And then turns back around to tell me that he loves me.

It’s official…he can stop growing right now. I can’t imagine loving that kid anymore than I already do, but every day makes me love him more and more. I don’t want those teenage years to come. At all.