My Valentines ❤️

The night b4 Valentines I dug through my craft totes ( which are still packed away in the garage ) to see what all I had. Turned out I had quite a bit to work with.

First I helped Cameron make his Valentines box for his school party the next day. Police car is what he was going for. He did good and he was happy! Then he wrote all his classmates names on their valentine cards. Making sure to write Maddalyn’s name extra nice and drew a butterfly on hers. He’s just the sweetest.

After dinner and both grandkids were asleep I fixed up there bags. I made one for both of my grandkids, my niece and nephew. I love stamps, so I decorated little brown paper bags with valentine stamps. Filled them with goodies, wrote out my cute little camping valentine cards and tied them up with red ribbon. Kels, our daughter that lives with us, I got a box of chocolates and a pink rose.

Valentines Day Jason dropped Cameron off to school. He was excited for his party. Kels worked 8-5 that day so I babysit Kenleigh. We had a normal day of her playing and napping and me cleaning up. Cameron was super excited when he got home from school and showed me his box was full of valentines.

Jason came in from work sometime after 5. He had picked up a beautiful bouquet of roses in a mason jar for me from him and Cameron. I am Blessed with the greatest guys!

My parents stopped in for a visit, then Kels came home. We decided on chinese takeout for dinner instead of going out to what I’m sure were going to be packed restaurants. I love takeout. Especially the crab rangoons.

It was a good day! But as Jason says “any day we spend with both grandkids is a good day”

Hope everyone had a Happy Valentines Day ❤️

Books & Writing…

I love to read! My first chapter book was ” Little House in the Big Woods ” by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I have the old original book either my mom or grandma gave me as a girl, my memory gets the best of me sometimes, which is worn from reading it so many times. I also have the complete box set that I bought many years ago.

I have one book “The Alchemist” that my daughter Kirsten bought me, it stays in my purse. I have been reading it in the school car pick up line. Not much longer and I will have it finished. Then another sets beside my bed, for when Jason falls asleep early and I can’t sleep. “Three cups of tea” is next on my list to read.

I have a small built in bookshelf in our house, which besides my big beautiful windows, is my favorite thing. I have a range of books, from fiction to non-fiction, historical, romance, sci-fi, Christian fiction, old children’s books plus my grandson has a nice collection started. Karen Kingsbury has to be my most favorite author. The Baxter series is a must for anyone wanting a Christian fiction series.

Joel Blaine Kirkpatrick was the author of the family. My Mom’s cousin. He has had several books published, mom has all his books and I have noticed them in bookstores and on amazon. Each of his books has something in common, Angels. He never had a specific genre, he just loved to write. My Great Uncle Ed was also a writer. He would do family news letters. First in letter form then onto emails. They are both gone now, but mom keeps onto the letters and books.

I have loved keeping a blog. Journaling our family life. I keep up with it so it’s obviously my favorite. I love memories. So being able to look back on my blog with pictures is wonderful.

I also write, have been doing so for many years. I have written a few short stories in my teens and here and there over the years. Mostly fiction, but i have kept notes over the years for maybe one day a non-fiction how it is book. But fiction is where my heart is. Last year one of my short stories turned into over 200 pages with still more to keep continuing on. Will I ever publish, who knows, probably not. I do it for me, something I enjoy. Like painting, which I haven’t done in years. I am sure I will write more when I have time, along with painting. A passion you love stays with you forever.

My best friend Eileen use to write beautiful poetry, but hasn’t for years. She is all about crafts the last few years and is very good.

The mind is a beautiful creative space that is yours alone, where you keep hidden the things you hold dear and the things you long for. I keep a lot to myself, I like being an original, not a copy.

Reading and writing are such wonderful things that so many share. So many stories to be written and things to learn. So I will always love both. I mean, who doesn’t love a good author.

Right now I just enjoy each day with my husband, the days with our grandchildren, keeping a journal and camping!

Life is good when you find joy in each day or a good book!

45 and 1…

As I set here enjoying the rain, I reflect back on my birthday week. Whom I now share with Kenleigh Maye, our granddaughter.

What a week it was. Full of laughter, road trips and even tears.

On the 2nd we joined our dear friends the Farmers on a road trip down to Arkansas. First stop as usual was in Bentonville at one of our favorite coffee shops, Onyx Coffee Lab. We usually go during the warmer season while on camping trips, but when I stepped out of the truck I was freezing so hot coffee was just what I needed. I had never had the onyx delight hot b4, just always cold. Well it is my new favorite coffee! The coffee art was worth the picture…

Mark & Tammy are always introducing us to new places. So pizza was for dinner. Down in Old Town Rogers Arkansas sets a delicious pizza joint! The Rail – A Pizza Company. Oh my stars it was amazing! The Alfred is what Tammy and I shared. Alfredo sauce, sliced italian sausage, chicken, mushrooms, onion, spinach and sun dried tomatoes on a woodfire crust. I’m ready to go back! They write something new on their welcoming sign each day, and I just loved it.

The 6th I turned 45! So far I have enjoyed all my forties and look forward to my 50’s. Crazy I know, but at this season in my life I do, let’s see how I’m feeling 5 years from now, lol.

During the day our family spent saying goodbye to Aunt Linda, 71. Yes her funeral was on my birthday, it’s life. And I didn’t mind sharing it with her at all. It was a good service and the rain held off until the end of the graveside service. Before she had a brain tumor 12 years ago she worked at our local University for many many years. She was a very kind and smart woman. She will be missed. After the service, my Uncle Friz (Lindas husband) took me for a birthday dinner. Jason, myself, cousin Tammy and my Uncle enjoyed good conversation. That day was hard on him, they would have been married 49 years this valentines. So I believed it helped him taking me out for dinner. Company is always good for the soul.

That evening my parents and sister with her kids came over for cake. Strawberry Jello Cake with Whipped cream icing! It is my favorite and my mom always makes it for my birthday. This year my 93 yr old gpa helped her and also sang happy birthday to me over the phone. It’s the little things I hold dear.

I set Kenleigh right up on the counter top so she could try to blow candles out, she didn’t, but she was definitely into the cake!

Cameron helped me the day b4 put her birthday present together. He is the best helper!

And she loves her car…

On the 7th we celebrated her 1st Birthday with her parents, family and friends. Still can not believe she is already 1. And walking all over the place. She is such a happy little girl.

On the 8th Cameron had his school program and Carnival. He had a blast! They sang baseball songs, every classroom had games set up and of course the bounce house is his favorite. We spent most of the time there.

On the 9th we babysat Kenleigh while her momma worked. Her and Papa caught a few zzz’s

Then that night my sister in law Marjorie and I set out for a sister date. Something we have been planning and are hoping to do throughout the year. Her health has gotten somewhat better and with her not working anymore she needs out and about, honestly we both do.

We went to Neosho to her friends for a bit and enjoyed good company. Then dinner at Red Hot & Blue, bbq in Joplin. I hadn’t been there in years, their burnt ends and red beans and rice were aaaamazing!

Then back home where we watched a movie with our husbands and laughed a lot.

I am thankful each day where I am and for whom all I have in my life. So my 45th birthday week and Kenleigh’s 1st was a good one.

Now I am going to make some hot tea and enjoy the rain while Kenleigh naps and b4 I pick Cameron up from school. Parent/Teacher conferences today…

Wish me Luck!

Know your Circle

Your circle is important in life, we all need those who

encourages us,

listen to us,

laugh with us,

cry with us

and are there when we need a hug!

Keep close to those who share your beliefs in God, those are the ones who share your faith and who will help you stay on the path we are all heading towards. An everlasting life with JESUS.

And always remember to welcome others into your circle, because everyone deserves a good circle of Faith & Friendship.

Who we spend a lot of time with reflects on how we tend to act ourselves.

So be careful in this world, build each other up not down.

Let your light shine and let them see Jesus in you…

My Day…

I have enjoyed today, just a normal, non crazy day! Most days our house is full of crazy lol. A good crazy!

Our youngest daughter and her 11 month old baby girl have moved back home for a little while. So myself, my husband, our 6 year old grandson (whom we adopted when he was a baby) our daughter and newest granddaughter all in our new home (which we downsized to a smaller home) that I still haven’t had time to unpack everything and just one or two things on the walls. My days have just been that full, exhausting but so enjoyable all at the same time.

I started my morning with a trip to town with Kelsie (youngest daughter) and we ended it with a stop at the new local coffee shop. The Crazy Lama Coffee! I love coffee shops and well I just really enjoy coffee!

The afternoon we picked Cameron up from school then off to a quick meeting. Then we drove around Joplin for a bit checking on the progress of a couple of historic homes in the Murphysburg district that are being restored. I just love the architecture of the historical homes in the local mining towns.

We grabbed takeout at another local favorite Hackett Hot Wings, then headed home for movie night with my brother and sister in law.

Now everyone’s asleep and I thought I would enjoy the quiet of my living room. Something about sitting in the dark looking out my big windows to the beautiful night sky is so relaxing. Reflecting on my normal non crazy day that I enjoyed so much and catching up on some of my favorite blogs and maybe finding some new ones.

And I pray, I pray a lot. For my family and my friends. I miss my oldest daughter Kirsten who now lives in Denver. She hasn’t spoke to me in so long and I haven’t seen her in over a year. My life isn’t perfect, no ones is. We all have flaws, especially me. But I have a big God. Although I miss my Kirsten I am proud that she is following her dreams even without me in her life and I know God is watching over her for me. I love you Kirsten forever and always.

Our comedian son Cameron had a local comedy show tonight. I’m sure he did great. He loves being on stage. He is happy these days with a great job and doing comedy on the side, both which he loves.

So I have a crazy, sometimes dysfunctional, full of life and love family that I wouldn’t change for the world. For that I am Thankful Grateful and Blessed.

January

Boy Howdy! January is half over already and I still have a ton of boxes to unpack. Honestly it should have been done by now! I mean we have been in the new house about 2 months now. The holidays are now over and all the decorations are down. I think it’s time to get motivated!

I caught a cold that I have had last few weeks and which I passed it onto my granddaughter Kenleigh Maye. I am feeling much better but Kenleigh still has an awful runny nose. So she has been getting lots of extra love and attention from this grandma.

We have been doing movie night with Jasons brother and his wife every Friday night. Marjorie is a huge Harry Potter fan so we have started from the beginning. This upcoming Friday we will watch the 5th movie in the series.

Jason and I have already gotten out for a quick date night this year. It was a simple one, just grocery shopping and of course a stop for coffee. He has been working so much lately and I have Kenleigh all the time now while both her parents work over 40 hour weeks and of course we have our Cameron who keeps me on my toes every day. School is back in and he is enjoying 1st grade. So when my mom calls asking if she can have both of her great grandkids for the afternoon Jason and I quickly get out the door for quality time together. Nothing makes me happier than our drives, just the two of us talking, laughing and making plans of things to come.

We have been through so much the last year. Financially and emotionally. A failed business, partnership and to the loss of two of his closest friends and a beautiful niece all taken too soon. So many tears were shed and many lessons learned.

This year we are focusing on us! As our pastor said this past Sunday ” be intentional on who you keep in your circle, don’t dwell on the past good or bad, focus on today and those in your circle all while keeping your focus on God! ” That is our plan. Over the past year we have paid attention to the ones who truly love and care for us and truly want our lives filled with happiness, healing, laughter and love. I have poured my heart out and I have prayed and I am walking away from those hurt feelings from ones I thought loved me and walking towards the ones that have been there every step of our journey and still are there for us everyday.

The last few weeks I have been my happiest and I look forward to what the new year brings. Hopefully snow! Lol… at least the forecast is predicting it for this upcoming weekend. We shall see!

I pray everyone has a healthy happy full intentional 2019!!!

Christmas

Christmas always comes and goes so quickly! I’m setting here this morning watching my grandson play with his hot wheels garage from Santa and patiently waiting for my granddaughter to wake up.

We started our Christmas Eve by taking the grandkids to see Santa at the mall. Cameron has visited him every year since he was born and this was Kenleigh’s first visit. She was all smiles and waving at Santa while I was holding her but soon as I handed her off to him the tears started rolling. Santa cried along with her…

Once back home we entertained family throughout the day. Jason’s mom and Grandma Joyce brought candy, cookies and fudge for us to enjoy.

The kids decorated Christmas cookies for Santa and so did my big guys! Husband and son…

My mom started a Christmas Eve tradition many many years ago that is a favorite. We make her egg rolls for dinner every Christmas Eve. Even Rodney & Marjorie ( my brother & sister in law ) make sure to make it for dinner every year just for the egg rolls. I am all about tradition. I am old school and love it that way. My family always stays the night with each other so we can wake up Christmas morning together and celebrate Jesus’s birthday!

No presents are ever under the tree until the kids go to sleep waiting for Santa to visit. Once asleep all the adults start bringing out the gifts. Santa is a big deal in our household! We believe in the magic of Christmas and the joy it brings the young ones to believe. And we always tell the story of Jesus birth for He is the reason for this holiday season! Christmas is all about the joy in the children’s eyes and hearts!

My grandson asked Santa for a hampster this year for Christmas! The happiness on his face, priceless. He named him Z!

We all enjoyed our very early 4am morning! My brother in law is a fireman and had a 7am shift. So we were sure to be up early enough so he enjoyed it without being rushed.

Kenleigh loved her first Christmas 🎄

My parents got all the grandkids a huge swing for a big tree at their farm. Once it is up I will be sure to upload pictures

Cameron ended up getting sick while opening presents. A 24 hour bug it seems because he is much better today.

But he ended up sleeping most of the day away, he woke late in the evening for a bit to enjoy some toys before heading back to sleep.

I made a breakfast scramble of fried tators, scrambled eggs and bacon for lunch for everyone.

It was a relaxing wonderful Christmas day!

” For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. ” Luke2:11