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Sweet Sunshines

Updated: 2018-03-06T11:03:52.221-06:00


Kalli's Special Day


Yep, you guessed it......Kalli is officially two. It is hard to believe that she is already two. Time has gone by so much quicker with her. In some ways it makes me kind of sad. However, the joy that she brings to Wayne & I cannot even be described. Her sweet little puffy cheeks, the way she squints her eyes when she smiles, how she replies "too" when we tell her that we love her, the sound of pitter patter when her sister is chasing her....these are just a very few reasons why she makes OUR hearts go pitter patter. We love her so much and enjoy watching her grow, learn and love.Her birthday party was frog themed and we celebrated with a few friends and family. I officially made my first ever birthday cake and kind of enjoyed doing it:) She received plenty of fun gifts and is still enjoying playing with her baby dolls and stroller. I look forward to many more fun filled birthday parties with both of my sweet little stinkers:)Oh, and just in case you are wondering....we did take her "paci" away and three weeks later we are still struggling without it. I hope the saying is true.....that 30 days will make a habit and she will learn to live without her sweet little soothie.[...]

Push Forward


Yes, I DID! I finished my first Half Marathon yesterday in Los Colinas. It was physically and mentally one of the most challenging things I have ever set out to do....but I can now check that off of my 2009 to-do list. WOO-HOO!! Here is a little tid bit of how my day went.

  • 4 a.m.-jumped out of bed, got dressed, ate two slices of wheat toast w/ peanut butter
  • 4:35-left to meet my running partner at her house
  • 6:45-arrived at run location & picked up our bib numbers and chip timers
  • 7:00-nerves are getting the best of me....streched out & tried to breathe
  • 7:15-really needed to go to the bathroom but the line was really long & I thought I would be sweating everything out soon enough anyways
  • 7:30-Race started....I crossed the starting line at 7:31
  • First Mile-I am thinking I have this thing....going to be a piece of cake
  • Mile 3-I have literally almost wet my pants every step. I finally give in and stop at the next porta potty & then on my way again
  • Mile 4-Scenery is beautiful, feeling pretty good, sure glad I stopped at the bathroom
  • Mile 5-Getting a little winded, by myself, and wondering if they mistakenly measured two miles in between miles 5 & 6...sure seems wrong
  • Mile 6-grabbed some water & powerade & pushed on
  • Mile 7-starting doing my 6 minute runs and 1 minute walks that we had trained to do
  • Mile 8-literally thought I was going to die. Thought about collapsing, but remembered my husband telling me to put one foot in front of the other and keep going.
  • Mile 9-mad at my husband that he gave me that advice, but I keep going. I keep telling myself if the Biggest Loser participants can run a marathon, surely I can do a half.
  • Mile 10-Okay...this is serious business. My legs are like jello, I just passed one of my partners and she looks like she might be on her way out, my hips are throbbing, but I keep going anyways
  • Mile 11-Seriously what have I gotten myself into. I still have 2.1 miles to go and I cannot feel my legs
  • Mile 12-People on the sidelines yelling "Good Job", "You can do it", "You're almost finished".....Yeah right people, wish you could have just ran 12 miles with me:) I can see my other friend just a little ahead of me and she is walking. I think to myself I am going to catch her
  • Mile 13-Almost there, did'nt quite catch my friend
  • Mile 13.1-I DID IT! I crossed the finish line in 2 hours, 30 minutes and 6 seconds. I am so happy, but cannot stand another minute (literally). Would really like to cry an uncontrollable cry but resisted. So happy that I finished and accomplished another one of my new year's resolutions.
I cannot begin to describe the feeling of satisfaction you feel when crossing a finish line after that hard of a run. I can tell you that everyday most of us get up thinking about dreams and goals for our future and what I will tell you is to push on. Don't stop. Never give up. I carried w/ me a special trinket that had a special verse on it, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me". God pushed me through to the end. He is my strength when I am weak.

Your finish line does not have to come from a 13 mile run. It could be getting an answer to a prayer, or maybe a job promotion. Whatever it may be, I hope you make God a part of it.

Love to all



I found a piece of paper that I had scribbled some words on back in 2004, back before I was pregnant with Ava. The words read "God never takes away except to give me something more. I must be brave enough and determined enough to wait because it often takes God time to turn a painful situation to good. I must embrace my pain and not resent it for a blessings is coming". Romans 8:28 followed, "And we know that in all things God works for those who love Him and have been called according to His purpose".

I am thankful for finding this because it reminds me of some very difficult pain. I will never forget going through four years of suffering with infertility. I will never forget the two miscarriages that I suffered through even after seeing a heartbeat. I will never forget the meds, shots, blood draws and 6 IUI's that I endured for three of these years. I will never forget the thousands of dollars and hundreds of times that I took a pregnancy test only to find that it was a negative. I will never forget the song that my husband wrote for us right after our first miscarriage. I will never forget my husband holding me like a baby when the tears consumed me so much that I could not see to walk. I will never forget wondering if God would ever bless me with a sweet child. I will never forget all the prayers, love and encouragement shown to us during these times. I will never forget my sweet nurse, Teresa, who coached me through all of our treatments.

As you can see I could go on and on. However, two things I will never forget, that is above all of the others, are the precious little girls that I have running around my house every day. They have opened my heart up so much and I love so much more now than ever before. I endured some pain but God did not fail me. God is faithful. Even when we doubt, even when we question Him, His love always prevails.

Thank you Lord for not allowing me to forget my pain. Thank you for giving me two sweet girls to remind me of how much You love me. I will never forget.

Sea World 09'






Sea World 09'

On July 30th my family and I ventured off to San Antonio. On that Thursday we traveled most of the day and then settled into our hotel suite. Ava & Kalli were so funny.....they loved being in a hotel. I liked it also because they could take splash water in the bath tub and eat food in the living area without me having a care in the world!

On that Friday we got up and went straight to Sea World. The first show that we went to see was "Viva" and the girls were just in aww. They loved everything about that place!! Shamu is always amazing and Ava was actually tall enough to ride the Shamu ride in the kiddie park. She actually rode it twice and could not get enough of it. Kalli had fun splashing around on top of holes that would randomly shoot out water. Twice she was looking into the holes and the water sprayed out right into her face. It was hilarious!!

Saturday we got up and decided to go to Sea World again and then from there went to the Dallas Cowboy Training Camp. Wayne was pretty excited about that and, truthfully, so was I. We really had fun, but I think our favorite part was seeing Shammy (as Ava would say). We had a great time and headed back on Sunday.

While away on vacation Kalli's vocabulary really broadened. She is saying sentences and her personality is starting to come alive. Ava was just so much fun because she is not a baby anymore:(, she is my little girl.:) Enjoy the pics and hopefully I will be better about blogging in the future.

Rodeo, Run & Fun


Riding her pony "Fancy"Ava feeding the little goats Popo, Aunt Ell, Ana, Reid & Ava right before leavingSunday was such an interesting day! Immediately after church we took Ava to my parents house so that she could go to the Rodeo with Popo (my Dad) and Aunt Ell. Every year the two of them take the older kids. They are getting pretty out numbered so I am sure pretty soon they will need another adult. They all looked so cute. My mom had bought the kiddos pearl snap shirts to wear & they were so excited.After dropping her off the rest of us went to eat some Italian food and then Wayne, Kalli & myself came home for a nap. My nap was quite quick because I was meeting my friend from church for a run.We had such a great run. This was our first actual outdoor run together. I started off thinking, "there is no way I will be able to finish", but after about 10 minutes I was good. We talked and talked the entire time which made it go by really fast. I found many reasons during this run that God opened this door for me. You see, Wayne & I have really been struggling with disciplining Ava, we feel as though sometimes all we do is spank and spank and spank with no better results than what we started with. God knew I needed someone, another mom, a trained and experienced mom with an extremely stubborn, strong-willed child. My friend began talking about her oldest daughter and some of the experiences they had with her. As she was spitting out details of stories from when her daughter was three, I felt as though she was talking about Ava. She had no idea that at this very moment in our lives we are dealing with some of those exact same circumstances. God blessed me so much, beyond my wildest imaginations, with her stories and outcomes. I told her how hard I struggle and she assured me that I need to keep pushing forward. I really needed that. I needed encouragement and did not know until that run just how bad I needed it. She is a blessing to me and I look forward to our next run. Her daughter is now eight and extremely sweet, caring, polite and respectful. I know that I have these moments to look forward to, but I needed an extra push. To go for a run, talk and come home feeling so motivated and encouraged is all I could have asked for. So, I got home and Kalli was up from her nap and we played and played. It was so nice to get some much needed one on one time with her. She laughed and talked and wanted so badly to jump. It was really cute....she thought she was actually jumping but her feet were not coming off of the ground. I had so much fun with her and I think she had fun also.After we put her to bed, I worked on my homework and then about 9:45 Ava got home. I was so excited to see her and love on her and kiss her. She talked for 45 minutes about all of the things that they got to see and do at the Stock show Rodeo. She was wired!! However, after much talk and many questions, she actually looked and Wayne & I and said, "Ava's really tired." So without any problems, we put her in bed with Hannah Montana Music and she went sound asleep. It was truly and blessed day. Enjoy a few pics from Ava's Rodeo adventure.[...]

West Family Update


Wow!! I looked at the last time that I posted and it has been way too long. I wish I could blame it on something but I can't.

Wayne has been really busy with the start of a new year trying to keep his sales up in a down economy, but so far business is staying pretty steady. Many people have been laid off with his company, as with so many other companies. Some days I get a little worried, but it is in those moments that I must give it to the Lord because my worrying could eat me alive. We have been trying to save more than normal so that means not as much shopping. If you know me that is hard because I love to shop & find those great deals for my girls. Wayne has been staying healthy and today sanded down Ava's new bed for me to paint.

Health wise, both girls have been well for 2 weeks straight!! If you have read my prior posts that is a major accomplishment. All of the sudden I have noticed Kalli has started doing less rambling and more words. Maybe having her ears clear makes a difference. She is playing alot more independently and sleeping so good. I am so excited to see all of the changes occuring in her life right now. She & Ava have been doing more things together. It is really neat to peek around the corner and see them bonding.

Ava is going to have a new bedroom look by the end of this week. We are going with hot pink and black zebra print. I cannot wait to see the finished product. I will post some pics once it is complete. Her bed will be painted a bright pink and I have already bought most all of her wall decor. I sure hope having a new bedroom will do wonders for her sleeping routine. Right now, Wayne & I are really struggling with her getting out of bed. I would say if it was just a couple of times a night that would not be a big deal, but it is more like ten times a night. Seriously!! We are not going to let her win this battle, even as heartbreaking as it is sometimes. Tonight, she actually has done better so far. Wayne came up with a genius plan to put Hannah Montana music on his old Walkman and I guess that sung her to sleep. At this very moment I can hear her snoring logs. She has only been averaging about 8 hours of sleep at night & that just does not cut it. If she does not get atleast ten hours she is a bear!

As for me, I started a new semester of school. I am taking two psychology classes. Human Growth and Dev is one of the classes & I can't wait to get further into it. One of the books I have to read is titled Raising a Strong-Will'nt that just fitting after reading my last paragraph.LOL. Seriously though, I am looking forward to this semester and the new knowledge it will bring me. Please pray that God will open my eyes and ears to all things that will better equip me for my future career as a teacher. These are two of my final four classes needed to graduate. So graduation is still set for this December.

Today I stayed home majority of the day and cleaned like a mad woman. I have been sticking to my new years resolution and just letting some things go, but today I needed to get some things accomplished. I also went to the gym and ran 4.6 miles and lifted weights. Me and a friend from church will be running a half-marathon in May so we are getting started on our training.

If you are still reading this extremely long post, I hope your day is great and you are enjoying this cold weather.....I know I am:)

Here's to a New Year


As 2009 is off to a great start I wanted to put a few things down that I am wanting to accomplish this no particular order:
  • To play more & work less. I have a bad habit of cleaning too much. Sometimes I never stop & I feel like I may miss out on those "moments" with my girls
  • I want to work hard and be able to complete the 13.3 mile marathon in May
  • I want to spend time with my husband digging deep into the Bible
  • I resolve to be an obsessive coupon clipper & cut my grocery bill in half
  • I hope to be graduating in December if all goes as planned

Okay, so I hope I am not over-doing it. If I fall I hope to get right back on track.

Also, Wayne & I are starting this year off right. We are going on a date night this Friday to Wayne's favorite restaurant, Japanese Palace, and then to downtown Ft Worth to stay over night. I am so excited to get some alone time with my hubby. Thank goodness that Nana has agreed to watch the girls. All couples need this kind of time & I can't wait.

Ava just came running to me wanting to get a few more minutes of play time before bedtime.

Sleep tight!!





(image) Today my family & I ventured out to have a family birthday celebration for Ava. First stop was Red Lobster, the birthday girls choice. Then we went to Build-A-Bear because Ava & Kalli both had gift cards to spend. We had alot of fun! It was our first experience there and boy do I wish I would have thought of coming up with an idea like that. What a great place for kids to go.
Ava chose to get a (you guessed it), Hannah Montana Bear and Kalli got a pink Monkey with the help of her sister. Ava had more to spend so she got two outfits for her bear with some shoes and Kalli got one outfit for her monkey. I will post some pics later of the girls with their dressed up animals. They both had fun, but got really tired of being in the store because the stuff line was a little long. All in all a great experience!

We finished the day off with a stop at Marble Slab for some birthday cake ice cream. Yummy!

Ava's Rock Star Birthday







Ava will be turning three, tomorrow, December 29th. It is hard to believe! She is growing into such a little lady. We celebrated her birthday on Saturday in Rock Star style with cake, ice cream and a pink bounce house, which was every bit worth what it cost.

I just want to list a few things about my little 3 year old that I love.
  • I love that she loves to sing and is not afraid to express herself
  • I love how she sings at the top of her lungs "Hosanna in the Highest"
  • I love that she wakes up every morning with such sweet hugs and kisses
  • I love how her tongue sticks out when she is concentrating really hard
  • I love to hear her pray and love that she can't wait to go to church every week
  • I love that she gives her all in everything that she does
  • I love to watch her dance
  • I love when I catch her kissing Kalli on the head just because she wants to
  • I love that she loves to read and brings books to me and Wayne to read to her
  • I love that she teaches me new things daily
  • I love that God chose me to be her Mommy

She is truly an amazing child and I look forward to watching her grow. She was everything we wanted and more, and without a doubt, worth the 3 1/2 year wait. Thank you, Lord, for choosing us, thank you for making us wait, she has blessed us beyond imagine.

We love you sweet girl with our "whole hearts"!! Happy 3rd Birthday!

Christmas in a Nutshell


Wayne & I had so much fun with the girls this Christmas. Ava really got into the whole celebration of Christmas. Kalli really just wanted to eat the paper and climb all over her presents. They each have such unique personalities. My heart was filled with much emotion as we got up on Christmas morning. Ava's most favorite present was her Hannah Montana guitar. For those of you who do not already know, she "is a Rock Star". The stage really is her friend and exactly what she received that evening from Nana & Popo. Yep, her very own Hannah Montana stage. So now she has two favorite gifts her guitar and her stage. If you have not figured it out yet, she loves Hannah & Miley.Kalli liked it all. Especially that which was not hers. However, if I had to pick one gift that she has been crazy about it would be her miniature four wheeler that she got from Nana and Popo. What can I say....I guess grandparents really know how to spoil them:) She enjoys riding on it backwards. Yeah, I have not quite figured that out, but everything she rides she usually does it backwards. Anyhow, we did our annual pajama gift opening on Christmas Eve and we all got a new pair of pj's to sport on Christmas morning. That is a favorite childhood memory of mine that we have carried on even now. I love Christmas....everything about it....the spirit of the season, seeing family, eating lots of yummy food, opening gifts and most importantly celebrating the birth of our Savior, Jesus. My prayer is that my children will grow in the Lord and celebrate His birth, death and resurrection every day, not just at Christmas.I could add so many things about Christmas but I wanted to just give everyone a little tidbit.I hope everyone enjoyed Christmas and having time off with friends and family.[...]



You never know just how sweet it will sound until the words "Uh-Oh" come out of your child's mouth for the first time. Today, while at Wal-Mart, I clumsily drop several Christmas tins that hit the ground and unfortunately sounded like the whole shelf had come tumbling down. As I lift up, red in the face, certain the entire store is staring at me, Kalli stretches her neck out over the edge of the buggy and so sweetly proclaims, "Uh-Oh" and smiles with that big dimply grin. I forget to remember how embarrassed I am because in that very moment, my daughter, my sweet, sweet Kalli had just said a new set of words for the first time! My cup over floweth with joy!

I do not want these moments to pass me by.

As I look over at my Ava, she is pushing all the buttons on these dancing Santa's that are singing, "I like to move it, move it". (This just happens to be her favorite statement of the moment thanks to Madagascar 2) So yes, she has managed in the short amount of time, while Kalli and I are connecting on the word Uh-Oh, to push about 10 buttons one after another. I laugh and begin to chant with Ava, "I like to move it, move it!!"

These are the moments that I waited so long for. The moments I prayed so hard for. The moments that God gives to us all, hoping we won't let them pass us by.

no spaces


Yeah, I am unsure why the paragraphs did not space quite like I had them. My blog looks like a big blob. If anyone knows how to help me let me know!!

Santa Baby


(image) I am sitting here with the fire place going, old Christmas cartoons playing, and the smell of Cinnamon and Spice in the air, I am getting so into the holiday spirit!! Ava & I have been singing Christmas songs all day and I took the girls to the mall and had their picture made with Santa. Ava did so good....she jumped right up on Santa's lap and put her beautiful camera smile on. Kalli did was so cute when she turned her head to see who I had actually sat her on, her little lip started to quiver and tears started streaming, it was almost as if she were so shocked she could not make a noise. However, she is still fighting off her ear infection....we actually started a second round of antibiotics today so no smile from Kalli for Santa.
Also, I am just about finished with my classes for this semester. The hard part is behind me. Now I only have two test and one assignment and then I will be free for one month. Woo Hoo!!! I have only four courses remaining after this graduation is set to be Dec 09'! I cannot believe it!
I wanted to share a little bit about a paper I wrote this semester. It is on the act of foot washing. First, let me say foot washing was a customary act that was normally done by a servant or slave to cleanse feet prior to entering a home or eating a meal. Normally people walked around in sandals, no socks, so their feet were probably very dirty and stinky. In John 13:1-17 Jesus is within His final hour. He has surrounded Himself with all of the disciples that have followed Him on His journey. He is sitting, about to partake in the Passover Meal, when He gets up, takes off His outer clothing, wraps a towel around His waist and begins washing His disciples feet. What an intimate moment the disciples were able to share with their Lord. He was their Leader, their Lord, their Master, and He performed a selfless and humble act that only slaves would normally do. He showed to me that we are no greater than our neighbor, we are here to share and show His love and do for those as He would do. His love surpasses all that we can understand, but His love for His disciples in that moment is tear jerking.
I want to live the life of a servant! I want to do for those who are in need! I want to be an encourager, a worker, a do-er, a friend......I want God to work through me to show His love to somebody in need or whom is lost.
My post is getting a little long so I am going to end with this. There is no better time than now to start serving or Lord. Send a card, support an angel tree, serve food to the homeless, take cookies to someone who needs a little uplifting. Watch and see what God can and will do through you;)
Have a lovely evening!



Boy, has this been one tough week!!

Monday, I took Kalli to the doc for her 1 year check up. I find out she had an ear infection and she got 4 shots including the first dose of her flu shot. Now it all makes sense to me why she has been crying and clingy more than normal...and here I thought she was starting the terrible 2's early! However, she had a great check up and I praise God for that!

So Tuesday morning, at 2 a.m., have you, Ava woke up vomiting, hot as a pistol and crying that her stomach was running. Due to her being sick we made an exception and let her sleep in our bed. At 5 a.m. she again woke up fevery (sp?) and dry heaving. Nothing the rest of the day after that. As a matter of fact, she cried and begged for a hot dog at lunch time.

Let me pause here and tell you that Wayne has been sick for two weeks and for some reason will not go and visit the doctor. Anyhow....

Wednesday & Thursday are my work days and my girls stay with my mom. Both days she ran fever but it would quickly go away and was never higher than 101. I was attributing it to the flu mist that she had on that Monday. Also, I had made the doctor check her ears to make sure that there was no sign of ear infections....all was clear on Monday.

Friday was a pretty normal day. I went and worked out but noticed that most of my time there that Ava was not being her normal, playful self. So that night we went out to eat, drove to Cedar Hill to shop & about 30 minutes into shopping Ava went downhill. Her eyes started oozing green and she had big circles all the way around her eyes. I felt so bad for her. I called my sister and she said it could be pink eye but suggested I take her to the doctor the next day.

So here we are! It is Saturday. Before Wayne & I could even get in bed last night at 11 Ava woke up screaming that she could not see. Her eyes were matted together. Again, I get her up out of bed and take her to my bed. She tossed turned, coughed, kicked and eventually at 5 something she puked all over our bed. We had to get up change her, myself and the sheets and then get back in the bed for maybe another hour of sleep. With all that said, I did get up this morning, took Ava to the doctor and found out that she had a double ear infection and the right side was pretty bad. So she is now on antibiotics along with Kalli.

It is 9:30, I just finished up some homework for the week, I am stressed because I have two big papers due this week and now I am feeling the fever. My throat is extremely sore to swallow, I feel a little achy and my cheeks are flush.

I am sorry for making you read about our sicko week but I am telling you all of this because we need prayers!!

I covet all prayers for me and my family! We have not had a sick free week in 5 weeks and I am struggling big time. I still have so much that I feel I have to keep up with and school is a big part of that.

Please pray for Wayne & I and our sweet little sunshines, I know that God hears our cries. We need a better week this week!

Dear Jesus...


Okay, so I have to share this sweet story with you guys so that I do not forget. Last week I was really sick with an upper respiratory infection & ear infection. I was feeling REALLY bad but Ava wanted to jump and play. I told her I was sick and could not play and she said, "Let Ava pray for you". Here is her prayer:

"Dear Jesus-

Please help my mommy's tummy feel better. Keep her safe from all evil and all danger. I love you with my whole heart, Amen."

Then she looked up at me with that sweet smile and said, "Your tummy feel better now, lets play." (I do not know where she got that my tummy hurt LOL)

Anyhow, she displayed to me, at the young age of almost 3, that she already understands our God hears and answers our prayers. The only thing she does not quite have down is that sometimes they are not answered immediately. Sometimes I find myself wanting an immediate response from God also. Lessons to be learned. She opens my eyes more than she will ever know and fills my heart with such joy when I hear her talk to God.

Happy Halloween!





(image) (image) So this will officially be my first blog. I am so excited about blogging and keeping up with sweet memories!

Our Halloween this year consisted of a pretty pirate, lovely fairy and way too much candy. My entire family & I made our first stop at a Methodist Church in Cleburne to participate in "Trunk or Treat". This will be the third year we have attended and we love it. Each car has their trunks opened, decorated to a theme, and ready to hand out candy to the little ones. Next, we stopped off at another church to let our little ones jump in the bounce houses. As if this were not enough we headed to a football game to finish the night off. We were exhausted but had so much fun. Ava kept her entire costume in place the entire night and wanted to eat each piece of candy as it was handed to her. Kalli was interested in all the craziness but we did find out just how scared she can get. She is a big scaredy cat like her daddy!! LOL!

The next morning we woke up and Ava ask if it was time to go "treating" again. So will have to wait until next year.

We had the best time!!