Friday, November 25, 2011

Giving back.

This holiday I got to thinking... what am I doing to give back? Grant and I do our usually charities, and ones that come along the way.... but, what are we doing for families in need right now? What am I being called to do for other families in need?

The other day I was driving, and I came to a light and gave a man money. He said God bless you to me as I gave him money. His sign said, "hungry, please help". I know that there are LOTS of people out there that have signs and reasons, but I felt for this person. I got tears in my eyes. I have lots of food, a nice car, a warm home, people I love, and that love me, etc. I always have a home to go to. Then I started thinking... what are the families that are having a hard time getting by going to do for food this holiday season? I began to sob. My heart breaks for the people that are working so very hard in this world and still not making ends meet. I knew I needed to do something.

I called my church on Wednesday. How can I help? Can I help at the pantry give away? Can I donate a meal to a family... But, I was too late. The meals were already collected and passed out. This was NOT good enough for me. I called another church. A church closer to my home and asked how I could help. Same answer. No one was present, and the food was already donated.

I began to think. Then it dawned on me. Rescue Missions! Women's shelters! I called the Long Beach Rescue Mission. They said that they were serving dinner the night before Thanksgiving, and serving a breakfast on Thanksgiving. The dinner would be served at 3pm. I didn't have enough time to get a whole dinner to the mission in time so I decided to supply a breakfast.

I went to my local grocery store where I bought my makings for our Thanksgiving dinner and picked up breakfast makings. This was the least I could do!

I donated 5 dozen eggs, 4 boxes of pancake mix, milk, and orange juice. I know it can't feed an entire city... but, I know this will help many families! I also dropped off clothes, a baby bath, baby blankets, and much more to the Lydia house. The women's shelter.

As I pulled up there was a line around the corner. People waiting in line for there Thanksgiving meal. I began to cry. I began to thank God for all that I have. I'm so lucky. I made a vow to myself right then and there. I told myself that EVERY holiday I would do for either my church or mission. I have donated food, school supplies, clothes, etc... but, never have I gone to a home and dropped it off. Jake was with me. He of course had no idea what was going on... but, I will make sure my boys go with me. They will see how to help others and to be thankful. The people thanked me. It took everything in me to not cry in front of them. They kept saying, "God bless you", but I said it right back. I will be praying for those people.

This Christmas I will be in Boise. I am calling our pastor to see how I can help there. Whether I work at a shelter, or supply food. I will be doing something.

I pray that other's donate time or food if possible. I encourage you to do more.

This year, Grant ran the Turkey Trot here in Long Beach (Jake and I went along for support... and of course Grant ran is pretty darn quick without even training), went to a local restaurant for breakfast, and then I made our Thanksgiving fest while Grant played with Jake. It was relaxing, and one of the most fun holidays! I love my little family! Later my brother and his wife came over and we had dessert. Lots of pies, cookies, and ice cream. It was very nice to see them. Ashley is due with their first baby girl this December. Madison will be the first girl grandchild, and my grandma's first great granddaughter! So cool, right?

Tonight we are having a friends dinner. I'm so thankful for the people that surround us!

Here is my little man on Thanksgiving (It's so hard to get a picture of him nowadays):

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Month of Thanks... week 4

This Thanksgiving I'm feeling so thankful! I'm thankful for everything in my life. My growing family, my parents, my husbands family, and our friends. We have a wonderful circle of people that surround us. 

This week I'm thankful for the 2 1/2 men in my life! Grant, Jake, baby boy #2! They're what makes my heart beat. They make me so happy! 

I'm glad I chose Grant to spend the rest of my life with, and that he chose me. He understands me. He knows how to make me happy, even when I'm sad. And loves me unconditionally. It's so nice to have someone that is caring and thoughtful in your life. I love that no matter how stressful his day is he walks in, kisses and hugs me, and grabs our son. I love that he kisses me and hugs me like we are still dating. I love the moments we spend as a family, and our date nights. He is my best friend. I'm a lucky lady! 

God has blessed me with 2 little boys. My little monkey that is 14 months old, and my unborn lil monkey that is only 23 1/2 weeks along. Watching Jake grow from a newborn, to an infant, into a toddler is amazing. They grow so fast. Seeing how they discover new things, and learn is so cool. I love that he kisses and hugs me during the day. I love that he is the sweetest little boys I know. 

And lastly, I'm thankful for those little kicks. Even the kicks in the middle of the night. The kind of kicks that startle you because there so strong. I'm thankful for those. A little reminder that life is growing! I pray for his health and happiness. I pray that I'm the best mommy to these boys. I will do everything in my power to make sure they are happy and successful. That is my purpose.

I hope everyone is thankful for all they have. Happy Thanksgiving friends and family! :)

Monday, November 21, 2011

23 Weeks

This pregnancy seems to be flying by. I remember with Jake each week too forever! I read every book I could get my hands on and worked on my registry like it was a second job! jk. ha ha. Now, I'm just going along with the flow. I know I'm so busy with Jake so I don't have much time to think about what's going on. I am keeping my eye on the prize. That's my due date! ;)

So far, I've gained a total of 5 pounds, and I feel good! Just tired. I'm not much of a sleeper, and when I'm pregnant I wake up for a few hours in the middle of the night. I'm usually up around 2am. I have good nights and bad nights with sleep. And the heartburn is back. So, does that mean the wives tale will be true with baby #2? Will he have a full head of hair as well? ;)

Baby number 2 is measuring 2 weeks ahead! The due date is a true date as well. I went in when I was only 4 weeks, so my doctor isn't going to change the date. So, either my little man has either had a growth spurt or he's going to be a big one! Either way I pray for a healthy baby boy!

On Saturday, Grant said he was going to take me out. He asked what I wanted to do and I told him jokingly, "I'd like a massage". Well, the first stop on our night out was Burke Williams. My favorite local spa. We went in for massages, and then we went to one of my favorite local restaurants, Mahe. I ordered lots of cooked rolls, and even had a veggie roll. It was for sure one of my favorite dates we've had! So relaxing! It was awesome. I appreciate my husband so much! He always does little things like this to make me happy! Oh... and I've been sleeping through the night since Saturday. Looks like I need to make sure I'm getting pregnancy massages every month...  (hint hint babe). ;)

I'm eating lots of Thai/Chinese, Mexican, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. When all less fails I eat the peanut butter and jelly. Chicken is NOT something I want with this pregnancy either. I drink lots of water and cranberry juice! I LOVE CRANBERRY JUICE! And the sweets. Oh the sweets. I've been doing a little browsing on Pinterest and found some great recipes. So, I will continue to make the things that look yummy!

Jake has been such a wonderful little guy! He's getting so big. When I hold him he's half the size of me. When Grant holds him... he still looks like a baby. I love being a mom. I can't wait for my second son to get here! I know it's going to be crazy with 2 boys under 2, but I'm looking forward to the challenge. I have a feeling that Jake will be an excellent big brother!

Here is an updated picture of me. I wore this dress when I was 6 months pregnant last year! Next week... I'm 6 months! I can almost start the count down!


After my last post about Pinterest, I thought I would post a picture of my creation! My chocolate chip cookies turned out AMAZING! They were sooo good! I can't wait to make more this week! Here's a quick pic!
Here is the recipe:
Chocolate Chip Cookies on Pinterest. Click on picture to get the recipe!
I did half chocolate chips, and half white chocolate chips. :)


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Month of thanks... week 3

This week I want to thank my mommy friends. The mommy friends that I do things with during the week. I don't really want to say names, but there are a few girlfriends that I spend a considerable amount a time with and have become very important to me. Liz and Danielle. You ladies are like sisters to me. God has really blessed me with such wonderful women to be around. It's hard enough being a mommy, but a stay at home... 24/7 mommy... can be quite challenging. I'm so thankful to be able to spend time with you ladies during the week... and sometimes weekend! ;)
Our munchkins back in Jan. Looks how little they were!
We all know that being a mom can be challenging. Challenging when you went from working full time since you were 18 years old, to being home. Challenging when you don't have ANY family around to relieve you. Challenging when your husband travels often and your alone with a busy toddler, and not to mentioned pregnant. ;)

There is also a lot of fun that comes with being home. Watching Jake do everything right in front of my eyes! Knowing that I'm home if there this little monkey ever needs me, playing at Gymboree (love you Noelle Kailey), and playing and learning all day long! Personally, I know that I would be very uncomfortable if I wasn't in the know of what Jake was doing all day. Guess, that's part of who I am.

I'm so lucky for these women. These women that go to the park, lunch, shop, talk, cry, laugh, share stories about our little ones, help babysit, give advice, etc. They are my sisters. They are Christian women that believe that our God doesn't give you more than what you can handle! I can share everything with them. I'm so fortunate for them. I can count on them!

It doesn't mean that I don't absolutely LOVE my other mommy friends or my other girlfriends... it just means, I spend so much time with these ladies, they need to know I appreciate them. I will be sending out lots of cards today. To the women that work, stay home, have been there to support, love, and care for us at The Stone house. Thank you.

Thank you all for impacting my life. Thank you for showing me I'm not alone. Thank you for sharing God's words with me at time of need. Thank you for sharing God's word not in the time of need. We are truly lucky to have all that we have.

My besties! Lexi, Kristy, Liz, me, Jewelz, Danielle, and Kerilyn. (Missing from pic is Katy)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pinterest Addiction

Yes, I have a problem. I LOVE PINTEREST. I'm pretty sure if your on it... you love it too! Not only have I found cool DIY projects, I have printed out LOTS of recipes. Mainly for baking. I'll have to post things as I create them. I love to cook. Baking is usually something I just stay away from. Not sure if it's because I'm scared to bake, or I'm scared that I'll eat everything I bake. Pretty sure it's the last one. ;)

This morning I ran to the store and I went in for a few items. I left with baking goods. I left my grocery list at home and wondered into the store... hungry and pregnant. I came out with the following (just a few items pictured):
So, I will be baking when Jake goes down for either his last nap, or when he goes to bed. I rarely can bake with Jake around. He LOVES to open the oven. And open any drawer or cabinet for that matter. I have childproofing on everything... but, the oven. I haven't found anything that looks like it'll work. I need to look into something for that. Anyone have something they prefer for oven proofing?

This week on Pinterest I made this:

Materials used
- Hole puncher
- 1/2" rings (I could only find the big ones at Michael's. I bought the perfect size off Amazon.)
- Christmas cards
- To make sure you punch them in the right spot every time I used the first card as my guide. Slide the rings on (I used 2 rings), and there's your book! :)
I had to combine 2009/2010. I had all of our 2009 cards saved, and only kept family cards/pics for 2010. So, I just blended them. It's a cool little coffee table book. I'm so glad I found this on Pinterest. I have lots of craft materials that I have bought for more projects, plus my Christmas wreath will be made the weekend of Thanksgiving. Thinking I might have a field trip to Michael's and then back to my house for assembly with my girlfriends. Please message me if your interested!

So far this week Jake and I have outside quite a bit. The weather is great, so we have been taking advantage of it. I LOVE OUR NEW BACKYARD! Jake loves the swing set. He points to it out the window everyday... so, I put him in it!
 I'm growing mint, rosemary, bell peppers, zucchini, and pumpkins. Here are a few pics:
 My little guy can be so serious. He is learning his ABC's. :)
 He still laughs like crazy at that dancing monkey I bought!
Make it a great day!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Month of thanks... week 2

Today I'm thankful for my grandmother. A woman that has been another mother to me. If you know me... you know that I talk to my grandmother about 10 times a day. I have since I was a little girl. I can always count on her at any time of the day to pick up and talk to me. She is an amazing woman. I love her so much.

My grandmother has always believed in me. She's always in my corner. She was one of my biggest supporters for my figure skating career as well. Going to the ice rink at 5am and then taking me right to school... for so many years. 
Growing up my grandma was always over. A few times a week. For sure every weekend. I looked forward to seeing them, and when I was really young I would cry when they left. I was so lucky to have grandparents that were so much a part of my life. 

I remember so many days in college, that my friends were going out and I decided to go over to my grandparents house to spend the night. My grandpa would make my favorite meal (meatloaf and a baked potato), and we would all chat for hours. Watch a little TV, and pass out. It was the best. I miss it. I miss my grandfather. I miss their house. But, at least I know we're only a phone call away. :)

My grandma doesn't go online so she wont read this blog post. However, that is why I'm writing her a letter thanking her for my 31 years of love and support. I love her so much and am so fortunate to have her in my life... and my children's lives. 
I thank God that I have grandmother that is healthy, and very active. She came out to help me when Jake was 8 weeks old. Grant was away traveling, and I'll never forget Jake started crying like crazy. I was doing everything I could, and he wouldn't stop. I was exhausted from many sleepless nights. My grandma took Jake from me, sat in my rocking chair and rocked and sang to him. He fell asleep immediately. I was shocked. I was so happy that she was there. She slept in the room with Jake and I while Grant was away. We had such a fun time together. Going to lunch/dinner, hanging out at our house, and watching movies.

I'll be seeing her this Christmas, and I can't wait for her to see how much Jake has grown since she's seen him last. My mom and grandma came out for Jake's first birthday in September. Jake is 14 months, running around, and such a big boy! I have to send a picture of Jake to my family every day... If I forget to send one, they ask!

I'm sending my grandma's card out tomorrow morning. She isn't expecting it, and I know it'll make her smile. I'm so lucky to have her in my life, and I love her very much. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Heather L Myers Giveaway!

I have never mentioned a giveaway until now! Lots of people contact me in regards to them... but, I wanted to keep my blog more personal. However, when it comes to my good friends and their companies... that's a different story. My good friend Heather is a talented graphic designer, and she makes most of my invitations. When I saw she was having a giveaway, I thought my readers would be interested in her work. Her fabulous giveaway is now on her blog for her holiday card designs (valued at $30)! I have her button on the side of my page for anyone to click on at anytime. Hurry and check out her work before her giveaway ends (11/13 at midnight). Winner is announced Monday 11/14. Details are on her site. Good luck readers!
(click on Heather's name to go to her site)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Month of Thanks... week 1

Last year I did a month of thanks every Thursday before Thanksgiving (I know it's Sunday... but, I moved and just got the Internet hooked up today). This year not only will I blog about my week of thanks, but I will send a Thank you note for each blog post. Who doesn't like getting personal mail? I think it's even more sincere then text messages, facebook messages, and emails. This is a nice way of showing my appreciation.

Grant and I have had another great year. We have a lot to be thankful for. Not only did we celebrate our son's first birthday, but we found out that we were expecting again!

The person that I'm sending a card to this week is a very special person to Grant and I. I am going to send a thank you card to our pastor in Boise, Idaho. When Grant and I go to Boise we attend my parents church and make time to see their pastor. Pastor Tom is very special to Grant and I. He married us in 2009, prayed for us and even counseled us before we got married, dedicated our son Jake, and continues to pray for my family. He is a Godly man. A wonderful father, and a dedicated Boise State fan. ;) Pastor Tom is someone I can talk to and ask his advice. He is knowledgeable and dedicated to Christ. I look up to him and his devotion to our Lord. 
Our wedding - April 18, 2009
Shortly after Grant and I got married, I was told I might not be able have children. I was told by a doctor that I had been seeing for over 10 years. I was devastated. After finding out I had poly cystic ovary I saw Pastor Tom. I told him what the doctor had told me and I asked him to pray for Grant and I. I started seeing another Gynecologist (one that is also a friend) and I started taking Glucophage. A diabetic drug. Once I started taking that along with my thyroid medicine (my new doctor had also discovered that I had hypothyroid) I found that my body made it's way back on track. I was pregnant a week after I saw our Pastor and after taking the medicine properly. 

I called Pastor Tom immediately! Tears of joy. We prayed. I prayed. He continued to pray for us. After I had Jake and we came back to visit my parents I brought Jake into meet our Pastor. 

Over the 4th of July I knew we were taking a trip to visit my family and this trip Grant was coming with me. Grant and I talked over and over about who and where we would have Jake dedicated and the only thing that made sense is that Pastor Tom should do it. The man that married us, prays for us, and knows us personally. I called Tom 2 weeks before our trip and he said he'd love to dedicate our little man. WE WERE THRILLED! 
Later that trip we found out that we were expecting baby #2! What a miracle. Children are God's gift to us. Pastor Tom was alerted of baby #2 as well! 

We will be making our way to Boise for Christmas and I can't wait to attend Church on Christmas Eve. I've been going to Christmas there almost every year for that past 6 years. Cloverdale Church of God is a wonderful place that I can call home when I'm in Boise. I just wish we could go there every Sunday! 

Thank you Pastor Tom for guiding us in the right direction. For restoring our faith in times of weakness and being there for all the blessings that come along the way. I'm truly grateful for what you do and how you touched my family. You are a wonderful person and I can't wait for you to dedicate our other son in 2012!

Appreciation and many thanks!
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