Monday, May 20, 2013


Day 20, Monday: Get real. Share something you're struggling with right now.

It's easy to answer this prompt. My grandmother passed away yesterday (part of why I took a break from the challenge for the past few days). She had a stroke late Thursday evening and was not responsive. Fortunately we already had plans to go up to Atlanta this weekend to see my niece for her birthday. We went up as planned and visited my niece on Saturday. The whole time we were checking for updates from  my aunt and grandpa. Saturday morning I was told they were going to take her off life support. At this time they left the ventilator in, but allowed her to breathe on her own. The ventilator was there in case she needed it. The doctors determined that the whole left side of her brain was irreparably damaged from swelling. This means she was paralyzed on the right side of her body, she was unable to speak, and would likely not remember or recognize any of us. She did wake up on Saturday and was somewhat responsive, but the damage was still too much for her to sustain life on her own, and she was under a lot of pain and stress. They decided to fully remove life support Sunday and move her to hospice. I'm very thankful I was in Atlanta because I was able to go visit her on Sunday afternoon. She was asleep, but was not in pain. She didn't know I was there, but it was good for me to see her one last time and say goodbye. We headed back home yesterday afternoon with the doctors saying she could last anywhere from a couple hours to a couple weeks. We got the call last night around 8:30 PM that she passed. 

My brother ushering Grandma to her seat at my wedding. 2009

To be honest, I was strangely calm through most of it. She was such a good, strong Christian woman. I have no doubts that she is in Heaven now. And that thought was comforting through the whole ordeal. While she was not terminally ill prior to the stroke, she had been suffering from a very painful spinal condition and was destined to live the rest of her life in pain, with limited mobility. I know she was hurting and often frustrated by her condition. And I felt such peace thinking that all that was over for her. 

But then I started thinking about everyone else. And that's really the hardest part. I'm not really sad for Grandma, I'm sad for everyone else. I'm sad for my Grandpa who said goodbye to the love of his life for the past 57 years. I'm sad for my dad and aunts who said goodbye to their mom. It hurts to see others hurting. And of course it makes me think of what it will be like to lose those people in my mom, my spouse... And I go to that place that no one really should but I think we all do when someone dies...regret. My Grandma and I were never particularly close. I'm not really sure why. It's not that I disliked her. On the contrary, I loved her. But we didn't talk much, even when I visited. And now I'm sorry that I didn't reach out to her more, that I didn't try to get to know her better. I know she was an awesome woman from all the stories I've heard about her, like living in Africa on mission trips for years. And I hope she knows I loved her, and didn't misread my distance for something it wasn't. 

Last night all these thoughts came rushing at me and I couldn't stop crying. What really broke my calm was having my brother call me to ask what was going on...he had only gotten bits and pieces through it b/c he doesn't have a cell phone right now. I had to tell him she had passed away. He was shocked and upset. After that I didn't stop crying for about an hour or so. 

Today as I go through my workday, I feel like there are tears waiting on the other side of my eyes...just threatening to break through at the slightest prompting. Even though I wasn't super close with my Grandma, and I certainly didn't interact with her during a regular, routine day, I feel like the world is a little emptier without her now. I feel like I'm walking around with something missing. The world definitely lost an incredible woman last night, but she is now with Jesus, no longer in pain, probably dancing or jumping or something she hasn't been able to do in a while. And that makes me smile and keeps those tears at bay. And for that I'm thankful. 

Friday, May 17, 2013

But First...19 Weeks!

Yes, I am taking a break, but I wanted to go ahead and post my 19 weeks pictures while I'm on the computer!

+ FINALLY feeling Grayson move! Turns out I had been feeling it for a while, but wasn't sure. When I saw him move around on the ultrasound while feeling the little pops, I knew for sure it was him! :)
+ He's in the 74th percentile for weight and size...measuring 5 days bigger than his due date
+ Still no cravings
+ Gained almost 10 pounds since beginning of pregnancy
+ Got a prescription for my heartburn so hopefully that will help
+ Feeling some round ligament pains when I cough (which is a lot since I have a cold) or when I roll over too quickly. The med student who was seeing me yesterday was impressed that I knew what that was. She asked if I was in the medical field! Boom! Nope, I just read a lot! :)
+ I definitely feel pregnant now! But overall I'm still feeling great!


Taking a Break

I'm taking a break from the May Blogger Challenge. It sucks because I was doing so well! But I was out of work today and yesterday with a cold (I'm starting to feel much better though), and today I found out that my grandma had a stroke and she is completely unresponsive. We were going up to Atlanta this weekend anyway to see my niece for her 4th birthday, so fortunately we'll be nearby and can hopefully visit, or be there if things progress in either direction. Please be praying for her and my family.

In other news, everything went great at my doctor appointment yesterday. I got a prescription for that pesky heartburn, so that's a relief. We had our anatomy scan and everything looked perfect. Grayson is doing so well! And he's measuring almost a full week looks like the odds are good he might be a little chunk! I'm just praying he's not a 10 pounder like my husband was! Remember, I'm having a natural birth!! ha!

Anyway, I hope you are all doing well and I look forward to catching up on your posts and getting back to the challenge next week. Thanks for the prayers.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

A Day in the Life...

Day 15 is a day in the life...

Well, I can't promise this will be very thrilling. 
First of all, sorry there aren't more pictures, but it hasn't been the most eventful past few days.
Secondly, sorry the picture quality is not good. I was using my old camera b/c I happened to have it in my purse!

So, here it is! A few snapshots of my day (between today and yesterday).

How I start every day. Breakfast and the Bible. :)
Multiply this picture by 8. That's what my workday looks like. 

And maybe a little of this...

After work, I exercise. I either go to the gym or do a video at home.
Yesterday I did prenatal pilates.

And then I have a snack

I wish I could capture how delicious this meal was...
turkey nachos with cheese, black beans, jalapenos, and Greek yogurt. YUM!
And that's about it! In between all that there is lunch, more snacks, some guilty pleasure TV (Grey's Anatomy, Parenthood, Vampire Diaries...take your pick!), and falling into bed at night because I'm still exhausted despite being in the 2nd trimester.

Wish I could have included a bump picture in the mix since I'm 19 weeks today, but I was running late this morning and didn't have time. And after work I will be sweaty from the gym, so it'll just have to wait until tomorrow. Tomorrow is more exciting anyway b/c I have another doctor appointment and my anatomy scan ultrasound! Can't wait to tell you more about Baby Grayson! :)


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Happy Little List

Day 14 is 10 Things That Make Me Really Happy.

{This list is in no particular order}

  1. Worshipping God through song. I love dancing/jumping, raising my arms, cheering, clapping, or, sometimes even better, being so overwhelmed that I have to stop singing because I’m choking up with tears and all I can do is bow my head and pray.
  2. Hanging out with my husband. It really doesn’t matter what we’re doing. I like the nights where we just listen to music and sing/play guitar, talk, or play games. But I also love going on adventures like camping, hiking, snorkeling, or riding thrill rides at Disney World.
Exploring Atlantis in the Bahamas

Waterfalls in the Great Smoky Mountains

Old Timey Photo in Gatlinburg :)

Just hanging out after Thanksgiving

Great Smoky Mountains
3. Holidays. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays, anniversary, Easter, 4th of July…I love them all! I love decorating the house, buying scented candles to go with the seasons, and eating and drinking whatever goes with that particular holiday (hot chocolate for Christmas and sweet tea for 4th of July…). I just love being festive and celebrating with friends and family.
Peter Pan & Wendy from Halloween 2012

Christmas decor
4. Seeing my baby on the ultrasound videos. So often in this early stage of pregnancy I feel like being pregnant is just about the symptoms and less about the actual baby I am growing. But seeing him on that screen makes my heart race and I cannot stop smiling! I can’t wait until I start to feel him move.

5. Karaoke. There is just something so freeing about singing at the top of your lungs and it being totally okay, even encouraged, if you’re not really that good!
Singing karaoke when I was an orientation leader at GSU
6. Rainy nights, snuggled up on the couch with a good book or a movie with my hubby. I find the sound of rain to be so relaxing.

7. Sitting outside on a beautiful spring or fall day when it’s sunny but not quite hot. I love smelling the trees and flowers in the breeze and feeling the sun on my arms and face. It just makes life feel simpler.

8. Helping people. I love serving others. I love talking with others and really listening to them. I guess this is why I have a counseling degree! And it’s also why being an Academic Advisor will be such a great fit for me.

9. Hanging out with my best friend Hayley. We have been best friends since we were 7. Yes, that’s a really long time. Our relationship now is different but still so much the same. She is the love of my life...other than Jesus and Scott, of course! :)

Lovely, huh? This was way back in 2004
10. Animals. I love spotting wildlife and I like watching birds and squirrels hopping around in our yard. Our neighbors have ducks and I like to make quacking noises at them until they quack back. Our old neighbors had chickens and I may have done the same thing with clucking noises…and of course I love our cats and I like dogs and I even like fish. I love going to aquariums and zoos or even just watching Planet Earth. All of God’s creation never ceases to amaze and excite me!

The chickens. They were very entertaining!


Freedom...our mascot :)

And these are just a few of the things that make me happy! I can't wait to read your lists! :)


Monday, May 13, 2013

I'm Sorry...Look at Pictures!

Day 13 is to issue a public apology. Well for starters, I'm sorry that I haven't devoted much time to this post and that it's 3 PM and I'm just now writing it.

But here's my real answer. I'm sorry that I don't post enough pictures! Especially recent ones. I know that is the appeal of most blogs. I finally got a nice camera (no exchangeable lenses, but still fancy with lots of settings!) back in November, but I haven't done much to learn to use it properly. And I don't often lug it around with me. So, anyway, I'm sorry!! I'll try to be better.

Let's start that, shall we? Enjoy some pictures from my weekend! (Clever how I managed to squeeze this weekend review into today's prompt, huh?) ;)

My handsome hubby graduated with his M.ED

Shaking hands with the dean

Love him!

with his parents

With his sister

Us with his sister and cousin

Hands in the air and smile! (Flight of the Conchords reference!)

Jump! I was faking it b/c of the baby...In fact I think we all faked it, except for Erin! Ha!
They all graduated recently. I bought them those silly headbands. They were such a hit! :)


Showing off some of their graduation gifts! haha! first Mother's Day present! :) Scott's parents bought it for me. 
Scott graduated and we housed 5 extra people and a dog at our house for a long weekend. It was crazy, but it was SO much fun!! I was sad for the weekend to be over. Although I'm happy my house is back to normal now. We had a wonderful time celebrating graduations and Mother's Day. We were also surprised with lots of fun baby gifts when everyone got there. I guess people just can't resist adorable baby clothes at the store! :) I can't blame them!!

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend! And sorry again for the lack of pictures lately! ;)

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Day 12 is something or someone you miss.

I've actually written about this prompt before in the 30 DayPhoto Challenge a couple years ago. I wrote about my brother. That is still true, but I’ll pick something else for some originality!

In fact, I think I’m going to go a less serious route this time. Because there are so many people and places I miss, especially not having any family close by, it is too difficult to pick just one! But this is an honest post, nonetheless.

I miss The Sing-Off.

In my opinion, it was the best vocal competition show on television. Those singers had to perform every song with NO accompaniment (in case you haven’t seen it, it’s an a capella group competition). That means every note had to be spot-on! They had to create their own music with their voices. Not only that, but they created their own arrangements and chose their own songs (with the exception of a few judge’s picks towards the end of the competition). And the judges were legit, too. There was no…oh, let’s choose crazy judges who will be at each other’s throats every episode so more people will watch (ahem, American Idol!). Ben Folds knows pretty much every musical technicality that is out there, so he could really judge the performers on the quality of the music. Shawn Stockman was in BoysIIMen, so he can rock the a capella. And Sarah Bareilles was in an a capella group in college and is an awesome singer/songwriter. So, there! Oh, I should mention that Nicole Scherzinger was one of the original judges and I was pleased that she was replaced. And Nick Lachey was the host. He is terrible. But NOT as bad as Carson Daly. (PS-Nick Cannon is my favorite competition show host!) Just sayin’.

What else? Oh, Pentatonix! 

They were the winners last time the show ran (2011, I think). So amazing! Check out their video:

So, yeah! It was an awesome show. I may have a weird fascination with a capella (LOVED Pitch Perfect!!), but I still think it was a show of true talent, unlike many of the competition shows out there. The judges were worthy of actually judging someone’s singing ability. And there was no drama like all the other shows. It would come on in the fall and around Christmas time and Scott and I would always watch it all cuddled up on the couch, drinking hot chocolate and our house smelled like spiced pumpkin plug-ins. That may have a lot to do with it, too! : ) But anyway, I miss it. Clearly. 

10 Words

Day 11 is to sell yourself in 10 words or less.
The best way to sell yourself is with an attractive picture.
But pictures are worth 1,000 words.
This is probably the hardest prompt yet! What is the context? Who am I selling myself to? Potential friends? Employers? Readers?

I guess since this is for the blog, and the link-ups are causing more reader-traffic on my pages, I should try to sell myself as a blogger. So…here goes, I guess! Here are 10 words that tell you what you can expect from my blog:

Jesus, baby bump, honesty, humor, love, everyday happenings, and cats.

I originally tried to make it a sentence, but the rules don’t say I have to. And all my sentences sucked.
Enjoy your weekend! : )


Friday, May 10, 2013

Most Embarrassing Moments

Day 10: Most Embarrassing Moment(s)

I’ve never had a true Seventeen Magazine embarrassing moment where I was talking to my crush and a pad fell out of my purse. But I suppose I have had some moments that made me blush or want to run in the opposite direction. None of which had to do with my period.

Thanksgiving 2012
This photo pretty much has nothing to do with anything.
Except that Scott and I had a graduate class together last year,
and one of the groups did a presentation on social media.
They were trying to show how it can be used against us
and we should be professional.
They pulled pictures from everyone's FB in the class for their powerpoint.
This is the one they used for me and Scott.
Honestly, I wasn't embarrassed.
If I didn't want people to know how crazy we were, I wouldn't have posted it. :)
The summer after 5th grade I wrote the boy I liked a letter and mailed it. I figured it was a good time to do it because I wouldn’t have to face him at school for the whole summer. He didn’t reply, so I wrote him another letter! (No, I couldn’t catch a hint!) Finally, after weeks of silence, I had my best friend call and ask if he liked me. He told her he would rather just be friends. Awkward.

In 6th grade my stepdad pulled aside my boyfriend (who happened to be in the 8th grade. Totally inappropriate!) and had a serious conversation with him. Something that went along the lines of you better not touch my daughter and definitely had the phrase I’m very fond of my daughter in it. Of course this guy told all the other guys in my neighborhood and it became a running joke. They would come up to me and say “I’m very fond of my daughter!” and laugh. I was humiliated, but looking back I totally don’t blame my stepdad. That guy was bad news and there is no way I would have let him near my daughter.

There was the time I had surgery on an abscessed hair follicle in my arm pit when I was in the 8th grade and one of my friends decided to make me a get well soon card and have everyone, and I mean everyone sign it. 
When I got back to school, all kinds of people who never knew me before suddenly knew me as the girl who had armpit surgery.

Speaking of 8th grade, something that everyone is always shocked to hear—I was sentenced to administrative detention and in school suspension for two different incidents of sexual misconduct/harassment. Yes, it’s true. I’m more embarrassed about it now than I was at the time. The ISS was because I made a crude comment to a boy on the bus and he told on me. Not only did I have to do ISS, but I also had to attend bus safety classes, since it happened on the bus. And the worst part was going to lunch. All the ISS kids had to walk in a silent, single file line to the cafeteria to pick up our food. I passed by one of my old teachers (who saw me as the angel I usually was, before and after the 8th grade year of terror!) and she pulled me aside and asked why I was in ISS. That was not a fun one to explain! The detention was for writing a note to my friend Hayley which included a sexual comment a boy in class made to me. The school tried to force me to file sexual harassment, but since I knew what it was like to be on the other end of that, I chose not to. But I did have to do detention for writing notes in class and having inappropriate conversations. I don’t think I made another sexual comment or engaged in anything remotely sexual for like 3 ½ years after all that!

There was the time(s) working at Kroger where I complained or made fun of a customer only to find that they were somehow standing behind me again or that the man in the next line over was with said customer. The trusty “oh, just kidding!” line is only so convincing…

I have never been good at History, and I distinctly remember how my 11th grade teacher always played quiz games with us 1-2 days before tests. Not only was I not good at it, but I was the type who waited until the night before to study for the test. So, of course, I didn’t know the answers the day before! You would think the embarrassment of not knowing what appeared to be really obvious answers and having other students laugh at me or groan and get angry that I was dragging the team down would entice me to study earlier. It did not. I just continued to be really embarrassed and awkward during those games.

I had several nights in college that I drank too much and did and said some really stupid things, only to feel completely humiliated and spend the whole next day calling everyone who I may have interacted with and apologizing. Usually they did not want to hear it because apparently I’m the type that also apologizes profusely when drunk. So, they had all heard it countless times the night before. I won’t go into detail about any of the really embarrassing things I did during those times, but let’s just say I’m glad that season of life is behind me!

These are really all over the place and I feel like I should be able to think of better ones, or at least more recent ones. But I guess I don’t embarrass that easily. Or I’ve just been fortunate enough to not have a lot of awkward situations happen to me, or at least to block them from my memory entirely. I hope you are all posting embarrassing moments today too so that I’m not alone!


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Sweet Moment

Day 9 is a "moment" in your day.

Well, my day is going to consist of sitting at my desk at work until 5 PM, going home to finish tidying the house before Scott's family arrives for his graduation (which is tomorrow!!), and then probably sitting around in PJs with everyone until we are too tired to stay awake (which for me is around 9 PM!). Not only does none of that really seem photo-worthy, but I forgot to pack a camera today, and I do not have a smart phone so phone pictures aren't even an option. SO...I'm cheating. I'm going to share a moment that happened  almost exactly a year ago. But it was so sweet! Definitely a moment I will remember for a long, long time.

Okay, let me explain. That is my niece Kyli, and we were visiting her last year for her 3rd birthday (I can't believe she is turning 4 next week!!). Anyway, we were all watching Lion King, and Scott and I were sitting next to each other. I was leaning on his shoulder, and I think he may have had his arm around me. He got up to use the restroom and Kyli walked up and said, "Can I cuddle you?" I didn't really know what she meant, but I said sure. She hopped up onto Scott's place and instructed me to lay down on her. I gently laid my head on her lap and she started rubbing my back! :) It was so, SO sweet!!

The second picture is when Scott came out of the bathroom and saw that his spot had been stolen! You can see us both looking at him and me laughing. :)

That's my moment for the day, though it didn't happen today! I'm sure I'll have many current pictures after this weekend with Scott's family in town and graduation! I can't wait!!


Wednesday, May 8, 2013

18 Weeks

+ Still feeling pretty great
+ I feel like my bump is exploding in size!
+ Did a pretty awesome prenatal workout video this week that made my quads and inner thighs 
burn like crazy! Getting prepared for labor, baby! :)
+ Really excited about Scott's graduation this weekend and his family staying with us. 
They will definitely spoil us with lots and lots of bad food. Sorry, Grayson!
+ I thought I may have felt him moving last weekend, but I haven't felt anything since so I'm not sure...
+ I'm loving the weather this week and spending the evenings with our windows open. (okay, not pregnancy related)
+ Still no cravings
+ Still lots of heartburn. I have it currently, in fact. 
+ I think that's about it! Grow baby, grow!! :)


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