30 Days of Thankfulness ~ Day 3


Just yesterday, I took a load of summer patio furniture to my parents’ house to store in their barn.  Knowing I would be there, I planned to ask my dad for a little help with what we assumed was a blown fuse in my vehicle.  The radio had stopped working recently and along with it, the clock.

With the load safely unloaded, I asked about the vehicle help, and Dad was happy to help.  Between the three of us, we searched for the correct fuse, but couldn’t seem to find it.  A quick Google search later and it seemed we had located the right one.  Sure enough, a piece of it had broken off, and Dad just happened to have a bag in his trunk with new fuses like the ones I needed.

Today, I’m thankful for my parents’ continued help.  Whether it’s keeping our kids for an afternoon or weekend, storing our stuff, or fixing a fuse, it’s easy to take them for granted.  And too often, I’m focused on how exhausting parenting can be to realize the irony as I still turn to my parents.

Even more, the success we had with the radio fuse inspired me.  Low and behold, within the hour I was able to stop at an auto parts store to get new bulbs for the from reading lights, which haven’t worked in the 6 years we’ve owned the vehicle!!  It’s funny how something so simple can be so satisfying!  Thanks, Mom and Dad for all the help and for giving me the motivation I needed to complete an easy project!!


30 Days of Thankfulness ~ Day 2


As I look out the window and see the thin layer of frost blanketing the ground, I can hardly believe we were nearly sweating yesterday as we pulled the last of the annual flowers out of the gardens, blew out the leaves and mowed the lawn for what will likely be the last time.

Being together, hearing the kids laugh and squeal as they chased each other around trees I couldn’t help but think how quickly time flies.  I remember standing in the yard after school one fall afternoon, as Garth convinced me that bringing the edge of the garden out would be a much better idea than leaving it square and plain where it was.  Then, after we finished, we looked at just how much garden space we’d created and couldn’t really imagine what we would do to fill it.

A year later, with a toddler running around and my due date for baby #2 fast approaching, I worked hard to spread the truckload of mulch that was just delivered.

Yesterday, I looked at the the salvia we bought that first summer, along with the gigantic yellow mum that is in all honesty at least 4-feet wide.  I glanced at where the red lilies are planted and the myrtle from Mom and Dad Cornwell.  The honeysuckle vine from Mom and Dad Ewing, is still climbing the trellis in the corner.

It seems forever ago that we prepped, moved, added, pruned and gradually planted the flowers and shrubs that now adorn our gardens.  And yet, it was out of habit, that I pulled and winterized these garden spaces.  What was once so new, is now part of our routine.  I’m thankful for the opportunities we’ve had to make beautiful things ~ plants and memories ~ grow in this space!

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30 Days of Thankfulness – Day 1

One thing I’ve learned these past few years is that among life’s difficult decisions – deciding which college to attend, choosing a major, accepting a new job, finding your spouse, and buying a home – once you have children, deciding what to be for Halloween jumps to the top of the list!

Maybe it’s just our lovelies, but we often wait until the last minute to purchase or put together a costume, because it will inevitably change…many times!  Case in point – last Tuesday, Hubs and I had an unexpected day off and decided to put it to good use in going to get the kids’ costumes.  During the 15 minute drive, the kids changed their minds no less than ten times each.

But, I wouldn’t have it any other way!

While I hope to maintain my 30 Days of Thankfulness this month, there are a whole host of factors that may or may not make it a possibility.  Which is why, when I found the chalkboard image below, it seemed perfect.  Whether or not I record it daily, whenever I do, I’ll remember that for this day, I am thankful.


Today, as they attempt to send themselves into candy-induced comas, I’m thankful for the two beautiful blessings and the joy these kids bring to my life.  Being a mother is one of the hardest, and best things I’ve ever done.  On those hard days, those days when I wish we could rewind and start over, or those phases I wish we could fast forward through – those are the times when I try to remind myself that these children are the miracles I prayed for.  The tears I shed when it seemed motherhood wouldn’t be possible, give the tears I shed in motherhood a different perspective.

Having finally settled their difficult decision, we had such fun last night watching our Spiderman and Cackling Witch run from house to house.  And today, I’m thankful for their warm snuggles in the morning, and hearing their creativity as they draw pictures of their candy and of leaves.

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Sister’s First Tooth

As I shared a while back, Seneca was quite excited to finally lose a tooth of her very own.  Knowing that she cut her teeth late, and that she is rather young for her grade, I suspected it would be a little later rather than sooner.

But earlier this month, on October 2nd to be exact, our sweet girl finally lost her first tooth!  Lying in bed while Daddy read stories, I worked on it because it was so very ready.  Daddy had to hold the book directly in front him so he didn’t see me working, or else he would shiver with the heebie-jeebies!

Finally, it came out and I think I could feel her tremors of excitement!  Tissue stuffed in her mouth, she ran to the bathroom to take a look.

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Big brother, having lost a total of 6 teeth already, was all over what had to happen next.  He got some paper and an envelope and I think he may have even written out her note for her!  We found her pink tooth pillow upstairs in her old bedroom, which is currently serving as the box room as we prepare to pack for the upcoming move.




As I tucked her in for the night, she couldn’t help playing with the gap, using each word as a reason to drag her tongue over the space and making her sound like the lispy toddler she was just yesterday!

Seeing her excitement and knowing how thrilled she would be to show her new look to everyone at school, I couldn’t help but think of how quickly she’s growing up!  We’re so happy for you, Sis!!  Thanks for letting us share in the joy of your first visit from the Tooth Fairy!

Fall Saturday

Today I woke up feeling every bit of the past two months hectic schedule.  I returned to full-time teaching seventh grade English, the kids are busy in first and second grade and my husband continues his assignment as seventh and eighth grade science teacher among his many coaching endeavors.

Between work and school, we are managing to squeeze in AWANA, Cub Scouts and cheerleading, physicals and appointments, so it seems like a clear day in our schedule is a rarity.  That, and the fact that we are patiently awaiting news on when we will close on the sale of our home!

This past week, we had parent-teacher conferences which went fabulously, but added a few more evening hours than we typically spend at school.  Today, I woke with aches and pains and willed myself not to be getting sick.  It felt like my body was finally feeling the full weight of all that’s been on my mind (and calendar)!  It was trying to tell me to slow down.

So I did.

In fact, I started slowing down yesterday afternoon as we selected pumpkins with the kids and I commented to a friend at the patch that I need to take more pictures of things because I’m going to wish I did someday.  When 6- and 7-years-old seems small, I’m going to wish I had photos that capture their toothy grins, and round faces.  So yesterday afternoon, we carved pumpkins, baked cookies and took pictures.  Today, we created bead crafts, and my girl and I have been gloriously enjoying our pajamas ALL DAY!   I’ve caught up on some pictures that have been far too long in the processing, and I’m so grateful to have the chance to relive some of the memories as I clicked through each image.  And, after having been out of the classroom last year, I almost forgot how quickly my students become intertwined into the memories of our lives.


I am so thankful for the opportunity to work with some amazing children in my classes.  Just last weekend, I witnessed some amazingly kind and selfless acts of service by these students.  A group of sixth graders and their parents were raking leaves, planting bulbs and otherwise beautifying our school grounds.  A colleague helped the students get started, and informed me they have another round of work they plan to do in the spring.  It was quite a sight to see as I headed out last Friday afternoon.

Then, on Saturday, I was so proud of my sweet daughter for conquering her fear and performing her mascot cheer dance routine at the Cheer for Charity event.  I had never attended before and as I watched the elementary teams, along with the middle and high school teams, I was proud of their athleticism and their spirit.  Yet, the most inspiring of all was the whole idea behind the event.  Hearing what the girls did to raise money for local animal shelters, national foundations, or families facing medical conditions – it brought tears to my eyes.


So, I will relish our clear schedule today.  I will seek rest in my body, mind and soul as I think, read, write and reflect on all the blessings in my life.  And I will awake renewed, knowing that I serve a mighty God who has a great plan in store for me, my students, and my family.