Our Little Family

Our Little Family

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What's in a Name?

This week I am 22 weeks pregnant. 18 weeks to go! Sometimes that sounds like a long time. I mean, I still have FOUR MONTHS to go! Four months from Saturday is my due date. But then I think about how quickly that time will probably go by. I mean, doesn't it always seem like one minute school is starting and the next minute it's Christmas?! Christmas will be crazy around here this year! I'll have to do my Christmas shopping early...which will be the first time in my life. Haha!
Anyway, we still have four months left, so I'm really not freaking out about this, but....I cannot find a name that I like! I mean, I have a couple that I kind of like, but nothing that I hear and think "that's it!" When I was pregnant with Drue, I knew that I loved that name. It wasn't Drew Barrymore that inspired me...believe it or not. ;) I had seen a character in a movie that was a girl named Drew years earlier and fell in love with it. Her dad and I both agreed that this would be her middle name and she would go by it. We would not spell it D-R-E-W, because that's how boys spell it. We would not spell it D-R-U, because that's kind of thuggish...like Dru Hill! Haha! No, we would spell it D-R-U-E! Perfect!! ;)
However, we could not agree on a first name for her. I loved Kaylee. In fact, my friends and I all called her Kaylee all the time! Her dad didn't like that name, though. He liked the name Kirsten. But I didn't want that to be her name. We avoided the problem for awhile. For so long that she didn't have a name for 3 days after she was born! On Day 3, we finally got down to 2 names: Gracie (which by the way, I had suggested MONTHS earlier and he didn't like) and Elizabeth (my middle name). He left the final decision up to me. I knew as I looked at her precious little face that day that she was Gracie Drue. :)
This time....I've got nothing! Where is that name that I'm looking for? The one that I hear and fall in love with? I cannot find it! Justin thinks I am so picky, but come on...it's my CHILD'S NAME! He thinks it's weird that I have an association with every name suggested. But I don't want to hear a name and think of some one elses's kid or that kid in elementary school that ate glue...I want to think of MY kid! Does anybody else know what I'm talking about at all?? I just need a good place to look for names. And a website with an A-Z listing of names is not working for me. Anyone have any good ideas? :)

Monday, September 6, 2010

Oh, I have a blog?!

Well, here I am. Yes, it has been almost FOUR MONTHS since my last post! :( Geez! There have been several attempted posts, but none successful. My summer was crazy busy with work! I was sooo glad to see it come to an end. Along with the BRUTAL 100+ degree temps! BUH-bye!!

With the end of the summer came the beginning of my year with a...gulp...3rd grader!! What in the world?! Can I just say that it scares me that my child is now at an age that I have vivid memories from? I mean, I remember 3rd grade like it was yesterday! I could probably tell you most of the people in my 3rd grade class. And I am probably friends with most of those people on facebook! ;) I mean, it's true that I have somewhat of a freakish long-term memory, but I bet that lots of people have memories from 3rd grade! So it just kind of scares me that the things that happen this year could have a lasting impression on Drue. Of course, she could be left with a ton of wonderful memories! But she also might retain the not-so-wonderful ones.

Like, you know HYPOTHETICALLY, of course ;)...

...if she were to not get the multiplication tables absolutely 100% right one week and had to miss out on the ice cream sundae the ones in the class with all correct answers got that week. Which is so crazy bc I was really...uh, I mean SHE is really good at math!

...or if there was this boy that she and her best friend both liked...so of course she HAD to write a pretend note from the boy to the best friend letting her know that he did not like her! I mean, what other options did I...er, SHE have in that situation??

...or if then the best friend figured out the note wasn't real and told everybody in the WHOLE THIRD GRADE! Geez...it was just a little joke. Ahem...

Thank goodness those aren't real situations though! They could be traumatic...

Despite my silly concerns, I'm sure my Drue will do great in 3rd grade! She likes school and loves her new teacher. We have been very blessed with wonderful teachers so far! Anyway, here is my beautiful, 8-year-old 3rd grader....with braces!! This is our first day of school pic...a few weeks late! She really is getting so big!! And so beautiful! I am so proud of this little girl! :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

A Lesson In Love

My friend, Katie, got married at the end of April. It was an absolutely beautiful wedding! And she was without a doubt one of the most beautiful brides I've ever seen. I got the honor (along with my friend Lindsay) of doing the guest book and programs. I'm so happy for Katie and Andy and wish them all the best in the world!! But this post isn't about the wedding...it's about what happened to me on the day of the wedding.

I am ALWAYS late. It doesn't matter what time I get up or what time I start getting ready...I can't seem to be there as early as I planned. Well, I thought on the day of Katie's wedding, that is NOT going to happen today. Today is Katie's wedding and I am going to be ON TIME. Hmm...I need to be there at 4:00 for pictures, so I'll need to start getting ready around 2:00. Proud of my decision, and determined to be on time, I actually decided to go ahead and get started a little early...maybe 1:45. The first item on the list...paint my toenails. No problem!

I hopped up on the counter in the bathroom and pulled out my brand new bottle of Maybelline Express Finish polish. It's supposed to dry in 50 seconds...score! I am sooo gonna be on time today! Pink Shock...love the color! I couldn't wait to get started. I unscrewed the lid and moved the brush toward my toe. I stopped though, quickly deciding to go grab a paper towel from the kitchen to put under my toes. I mean, I didn't want to make a mess. I would hate to get nail polish on the vanity. I replaced the brush and scurried off to the kitchen. I had left some food out on the counter from lunch, so I decided while I was in there, I'd go ahead and put that up. One distraction led to another and my quick trip into the kitchen to grab a paper towel had become more lengthy than I had hoped.

I started back to the bathroom without my paper towel, remembered it when I got to the bathroom door, and turned around once again to retrieve it. Upon my return to the bathroom, I hopped back up on the counter and got ready to resume the toenail painting process. However, due to my kitchen distractions, I forgot that I had not screwed the lid back on the nail polish when I went to "grab" a paper towel. I attempted to pick up the nail polish by the lid, instead hurling the entire bottle of brand new, 50-second-drying, Pink Shock nail polish to the floor of my bathroom where it shattered. Oh. My. Goodness!!!

I wonder what I must have looked like in the seconds that followed. I could not decide what to do first, so I ended up just kind of running around in a circle for a few seconds. Oh my gosh! What do I do? What do I do? Should I get a towel? Is this all going to dry all over the bathroom in 50 seconds? It was everywhere....on the counter, on the tile, on the rugs, on the door, AND on the carpet of our bedroom. Holy Moly! There was a lot in that bottle! There was also glass everywhere. I quickly realized what I would have to do. Gulp! I was gonna have to tell Justin so he could help me. I really really didn't want to tell him. The reason? I am so hard on him sometimes for little mistakes...telling him he should have just been more careful or that he should have known something. Now here I was. I SHOULD have been more careful and I SHOULD have remembered about the lid, but I didn't. And now I would have to endure whatever came my way. I mean, I have just RUINED our bathroom. Sigh...Justin! I need you! Please help me!

He came into the bathroom and I'm sure I was on the verge of tears. I'm so sorry! I didn't mean to! I dropped a whole bottle of fingernail polish in the floor! And what did the man do? He jumped into action immediately! He didn't complain one single time. He quickly got busy trying to get it out of the bedroom carpet. He pulled 2 brushes out of the closet that we use to scrub the tub. He asked me for fingernail polish remover. He poured it on the carpet and scrubbed it and it worked! While he did that, I was trying to scrub the tile. I was spraying Clorox Clean-Up and scrubbing so hard. And all the while, HE was comforting ME! He was telling me that accidents happen and not to worry about it. He told me how we are SUPPOSED to help each other. He sat there scrubbing along side me, helping me clean up my mess. The fingernail polish remover ran out. And I still had to get ready for the wedding. He sent me to Walgreens to get more remover and more nail polish. When I got back, he told me to get in the shower and he would keep cleaning since I now only had an hour and 15 minutes until I was supposed to be there...and I had not even painted my toenails yet.

What a special man. Even as I sit here typing this, it makes me tear up. Why am I so quick to chastise him and he is so forgiving? Obviously I had something to learn from him that day. He gave me a lesson in love. It has left a lasting impression on me. I am so lucky to have him. I hope that I can show love to others like Justin did that day....especially to my family. It's not about telling others if they're right or wrong. It's not about making someone feel bad for something they've done. It's about loving others. And showing others the love of Jesus! It's not about me, Lord...it's ALL ABOUT YOU!

If you're wondering about the bathroom, we got almost all the pink up! We did lose the bathroom rugs in the fiasco, but that's a small price to pay considering everything that the nail polish tried to claim. I don't think I would allow myself to get down in the floor and look for pink now, but it looks good as far as I can see! Haha! Oh, and I was only a LITTLE late for pictures that day... :)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

A Happy Mothers' Day!!

Adorable Mothers' Day balloon and beautiful flowers!!

I love Bath & Body Works for Mothers' Day!


My precious Drue

I had a wonderful day! We started out at church for a wonderful service. Then we went to lunch with my parents and my brother's family...so much fun!! :) I am so blessed! And so thankful for my family! I am so happy to be the mother of such a wonderful, loving, caring little girl. She makes me so happy! :) Happy Mothers' Day to all of you Moms out there!!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Blessed by...

This week's "Blessed by..." is one of the big ones! I have been soooo blessed throughout my life by...Kathy Cate, my mom! What a woman! :)

Like many kids, I didn't fully realize the greatness of my mom until I was older with a daughter of my own. Let me tell you, when I was growing up, this woman HAD IT TOGETHER. But I had no idea...

I had no idea the amount of energy she used when every week she worked AT MINIMUM 40 hours a week. I had no idea that when she then went to the gym several nights a week, she was really putting forth effort....and she was buff! :) I had no idea what it took for her to be able to do these things and still cook dinner often for us. I had no idea how draining it was for her to stay up so late helping us with school projects...posters, reports, shadow boxes (remember those?!), etc. I had no idea how frustrated she must have gotten when she still had to pick up after all of us constantly, yet she did it. I had no idea how AWESOME she was when she was playing softball and volleyball in addition to all the busyness of life...and btw these are some of my very favorite memories. Yep, she had it together alright. If only I could have appreciated it during the time it was all going on. Man, I want to be like her. I'm still baffled how she could do it all when I struggle so much myself with less than this.

I had no idea how lucky I was to be raised in a Christian home. I had no idea that the godly woman I call my mom was setting such a good example for me that I would carry with me forever. I had no idea that when she and my dad were "making me" go to GMAs or SWAT, they were helping to instill a faith in me that was so deeply rooted, that it would surface years later as I fought my way out of a dark place that I struggled in for a VERY LONG TIME. I had no idea that she'd never give up on me even when it probably seemed I was a lost cause. I had no idea that one day I would want to be like her...because I thought she was just a silly PARENT that didn't know anything...at least not as much as I did. :) Nope, I had no idea how lucky I was...and still am.

I had no idea when I was little that years later my mom would be diagnosed with Parkinsons and Dystonia. I had no idea that I'd have to watch that strong, athletic, busy-bodied woman have to go through such tough times. I had no idea that I could hurt so much for her and not know how to express it. I had no idea that the crazy woman would try her best to keep up a strong front for US in her increasingly difficult battle. Then years later, I had no idea that my mom would be diagnosed with Uterine cancer on top of everything else. I had no idea how hard it would be to watch her go through surgeries and feel as if she were so fragile.

HOWEVER....I also had no idea how STRONG I would discover my mom is. I had no idea that when she got sick she would be such a fighter. I had no idea she could still be a ray of sunshine in my life. I had no idea that she would remain faithful to God and continue to be a good example for me and everyone around her. I had no idea she would still be so devoted to her family and making others happy. She is one of the most unselfish people I know. I had no idea she was sooo AMAZING! But. She. Is.

I LOVE YOU MOM!! You are so amazing and I am so proud to call you my mom! You are one of the strongest people I know. You have blessed me more than I could ever describe. Thank you.

These pics are from Easter. Drue LOOOVES her MeMo! :) The bottom pic is my dad and me with my mom. I love them. :)

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Our 1st Anniversary was this past Sunday, the 21st! Woo hoo! We didn't have any big plans. I only had one thing in mind that I wanted to do....I wanted to have cake and punch. I know that sounds dumb, but that is what I wanted! Haha! First of all, you must understand that I LOVE punch. Not like Mexican fruit punch, Hawaiian punch, or even Stoby's punch (which I do also love)...no no, I love party punch! :) The different kinds of punch that are served at birthday parties, showers, weddings....yuuuummmmm! AND we didn't even get to have any of our punch at our wedding...which I heard was delicious... :( Yep...I needed cake and punch for sure.

Well...we decided to have some folks from our small group over on Saturday night for a (rainy) cookout and some games. So our good friends--the Linkers, Nick, and Kati--all came over for some food and fun. Nick had asked me what he could bring. I told him what we were having and said if he wanted anything else he could bring it. Well, that didn't work. He asked again. So after MUCH more prying (or one more text asking me what he could bring), I finally gave in and told him my secret anniversary wish. He laughed at me...via text. But he told me he wanted to bring the stuff to make the punch. Yea!! I was very excited.

I told Kati the story, and she too thought it was funny. But I didn't think much else about it until a couple hours before she was supposed to be there. The text said "Hope you like chocolate cake" She had made a cake! So sweet!

We had such a great time with everyone that night. And I will say that I was not the only one that loved the punch that night. There were 6 of us there...I think only 5 of us were drinking punch...it was almost gone at the end of the night. Yeah, I'm probably going to have to do this every year! Also, congrats to Kati for setting a Farkle record...I've never seen anyone take sooo long to get on the board! Haha! We even gave her a sympathy roll to try to help her. And it was her first time playing....bummer! I really really hope she'll play with us again sometime!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Blessed by...

I was talking with a friend at work this week. His name is Ryan Johnson and he's a member of my church family. I have known him for awhile. He is good friends with Justin, although they don't get to hang out as much as they would like.

Ryan is a very godly man. I've had the opportunity to have some pretty good conversations with him. I was able to talk with him earlier this week at lunch one day. I started talking to him about how weird I thought it was that I felt busier and more overwhelmed with life since I've gotten married. I mean, come on...obvioulsy I should feel less stressed since I've gained a partner in life! :) Justin helps me with everything I need him to. And he is happy to do it. He will gladly pick up Drue if I need him to. He helps her with homework or AWANA verses. He'll even run to Wal-mart for the smallest thing we need without complaining. :) He is such a helpful husband. Why, then, do I seem to feel so much more overwhelmed these days?

See, when I was single, I felt I could do it all. I did everything I had to. I worked 40 hours a week, helped Drue with AWANA, did my Bible Study, helped with homework, stayed on top of what Drue needed for school (including costumes, stuff for parties, etc), paid the bills, spent lots of time with Drue, spent lots of time with my parents and my brother's family....the list goes on and on. So, WHY is it now that I feel like we're always in a rat race? Why is there never enough time anymore? I mean, I know everyone is very busy...but how is it that I had time to do all of these things before, but now there is no way I could possibly get everything done alone (sometimes we can't even get it done together)?

While discussing this with Ryan, he said something that has just blessed me all week long. He said "Isn't it cool how God gives us strength when we need it?" What? I had never even thought of it that way. He was absolutely right! I'm not "supposed" to be able to do it all. I haven't lost any of my ability or drive. I'm not a failure...haha! God gave me strength when I needed it! How AWESOME is that?! Wow! Even as I sit here, I am so humbled by God and how much He loves me.

Thank you, Lord, for loving me and providing for me. Thank you for giving me the strength and courage to do what I needed to do during that difficult time in my life. And thank you for allowing Ryan to bless me by reminding me of your love! "God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble." Psalm 46:1