Friday, December 20, 2013

The Season

I know it has been awhile since I posted again but we have been in a very difficult season of our life. 

My mother in law was been very ill, she has been in the hospital since Dec. 3rd and in ICU since the 9th. We already know that we will not be having a normal Christmas. We have already celebrated Avery's 3rd birthday without her and it has been so difficult on all of us but especially my husband. 

My kids have stayed with my parents more than they have been home. Rich has practically run himself into the ground  staying by his mom's side. And I have tried to work and support Rich. As you can imagine we are exhausted. In fact the girls stayed at Mom's last night and I slept 11 hours and haven't done much today. I did finish Christmas shopping with my final run to Target. 

At this point we have no idea what the future will hold or when life will get back to normal. We don't know when Jackie will get better and that is the hard part. This is supposed to be a season of family, friends, and fun but I feel as though we have had none of that. 

I am grateful for my Mom who has helped me beyond measure and done everything in her power to make this Christmas Season special for my girls. She has done their Elf in a Shelf with them, bought and done their North Pole Communicator everyday with them, she has taken them and picked them up from school countless times, she attended Winter Concerts, and has helped us decorate our house or Christmas. I could never have made it through all this without her. 

Probably won't post much until our life is a little calmer and back to normal. In the meantime from our family to yours we wish you the happiest of holiday seasons!!!

Saturday, November 30, 2013


As usual for me my post is several days late, for this busy working Mama late is far better than never. 

This week I reflected on all I had to be Thankful for with Thanksgiving being on Thursday.  And that is when I realized I am blessed beyond belief. Here are just a few of the things I am so thankful for this week and daily. Hope your Thanksgiving as full of family, friends, and terrific memories. 

What I am most Thankful for:
My Husband. My Daughters. An amazing family. My parents - they truly are the best. My freedom, it is awesome to be an Americian. Great Friends. Health. A steady, well paying job. The opportunity to be a female leader in a Fortune 500 Company.  Our home. Spending the holidays with family. Living a life with minimal regrets. Love. Hugs and kisses from my girls. Time to spend with the girls. My husband's support. My recovery from my surgery. Spending part of Thanksgiving with my MIL. Cool weather. And a million more things that would take forever to continue to write. 

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend, go out and enjoy it with family and friends!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

The end of the softball season...

So today was the last day of our fall softball season. I have to say it was a great time. Jolie made a ton of friends and learned so much about softball. Our girls improved and did amazing all season. I made some amazing friends as well with some of the other mom's and we even have a huge Mom's weekend coming up in two weekends, I am so looking forward to that. Here are a few pictures. 

Tis the Season

As you can probably tell by the number of post I have written this week I am back at work and I has been so incredibly busy. I will give you a little recap of the week Monday was a meeting with a Publix District Manager plus normal catch up. Tuesday was a trade visit with my regional VP. Wednesday was supposed to be another trade visit but they ended up elsewhere. Thursday was my one normal day of the entire week. Friday was deal with opportunities and problems leading into the holiday season and a meeting until 6pm. It was a wild week to say the very least. Now it is super early Saturday morning and I am up and getting ready for softball, pretty thankful this is our last game for the season. This Mama is just ready for some quiet in a season of craziness. 

Next week both Rich and the girl's will be home and will be sleeping in and finding fun Thanksgiving/Fall things to do as this very busy working Mom finds a way to lead and motivate a sales force to drive sales and in outlet execution. In other words this is one of those times of years that I totally wish I wasn't in my power career and could be off and stay home and play with my kids and enjoy the season. But I know the girls will be happy and having a ton of fun with their Daddy as well as my parents. 

Hope your holiday season is going well thus far and I will try to keep posting regularly. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Last Day of Vacation

Why is it when you are on vacation and not working the week goes by so fast?  Yet somehow when I am working the weeks feel so long. I think it might be one of the great mysteries. 

Today was officially the last day I am off for 2013. Well except for Thanksgiving and Christmas but those are holidays not vacation days. But I digress and get off topic.  

Today I went to Jolie's school for her pizza party that celebrated all the children in the school that were on Principals Honor Roll and Honor Roll. From all the information I had received from the school I thought I was just going to be there for her 30 minute time slot, sit with her, celebrate with her, and then go home. However, I knew better. Things are never that simple when it comes to the school. 

So I arrived at the school about 15 minutes early with a delicious low calorie of course Starbucks drink in hand. I sign in and head to the MPR. I get there and there is one poor Mom trying to set up plates, drinks in coolers, and cupcakes all by herself. If course I jumped in to assist her and we ready for the kids as they walked in. Jolie was in the first group of children as they started with K and 1st grade as they had the party during their lunch. The kids loved it and even got up on the stage and danced all around to the music. I didn't get pics of Jolie breaking it down but I did include a sweet pic of Jolie and I as well as one of here and her best friends. 

Once Jolie's group was done I found myself yet again pitching in and cleaning up and resetting up for the next group. Then it was happening group after group until I had been at the school for more than 3 hours. When I was finally finished I signed myself out and then made a trip to Walmart to kill the last hour Jolie was in school. While at the Walmart I purchased myself a yoga mat so I could really get into the stretching and relaxation parts of yoga, my surgeon suggested this as part of the healing/recovery process. Then I picked Jolie up some great little long sleeve Danskin dry fit shirts. In fact I think I need a couple that them for me. But I think I will be adding them to my Christmas Wish List as I am on a self imposed anti-spending spree. But again I digress. Once done with my quick WalMart run I went back to the school and got in car line. I was only about 10 cars from the front so once the kids were out I got her quickly. In the way home we got her a milkshake at Chick Fil A and me a Diet Lemonade. Once home we did a 20 minute yoga workout together. I have decided she needs a yoga mat of her own because she basically hogged mine when we did our workout. So Daddy says she can have one but I think I am going to give her the one I just bought and get myself a thicker one.

So that sums up the final vacation day. Now it is another Saturday at the softball field tomorrow, we only have 2 games left in the season. Tomorrow and one more. Then it will be quiet and low key the rest of the weekend as I gear back up for work next week. I have l two days of Regional VP's next week so there is no slow returning. 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Time with My Girls

I have been on vacation this week, which has been so nice. I needed the break. I love my job but it is hard and demanding so time off is totally necessary. While on vacation I have had the opportunity to spend some quality time with both of my girls. 

Monday Jolie and I spent the day running some errands and getting mani/pedi's. And had some lunch together. It was really fun to spend the time with her, she really is so grown up now. It was especially funny having lunch with her as she lost both of her top front teeth over the last week so she is adjusting how she eats with her big gap. 

Tuesday evening Rich and Jolie were at softball so Avery and I got to eat dinner out together. Avery wanted McDonalds and wanted to eat at the restaurant so that was fun. She ate so well and was hilarious. As we ate I asked her what she did at school and she told me she needed to eat first. It was too funny!  She ate well though and even got an ice cream as a treat. 

I have really enjoyed my time off and extra time with the girls. Tonight will be all about the family. I am cleaning the house now and then making a nice family dinner and then maybe we can play a game or watch a movie, who knows. Without the pressure of work it is easy to be flexible. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Oh a topic I struggle with yet know so much about. Since the age of about 12 I have struggled with weight. I have wished and dreamed for skinny genes but I just simply don't have them. So instead I have gone on and off diets since I was in middle school. In high school I was so athletic I didn't worry that much. Then I went to college and gained 45 pounds my freshman year. It was then I knew weight would be my life's battle. 

So all through my late teens and early to mid 20's I went up and down and dieted off and on.  Then I got pregnant with Jolie and that is where my weight just spiraled out of control. I gained over 60lbs while pregnant, it was an awful feeling to get on the scale at my OB appointments. I had this crazy idea that once I had her weight would just melt off and all of a sudden I would just be skinny again, needless to say when Jolie was about 3 months old and I was heavier than when I got pregnant that dream died.  Fast forward through another pregnancy (at least I only gained 35 pounds this time), several failed diets, one crash diet that somehow took off 60lbs (and I have kept them off for nearly 2 years), 2 hernia repair surgeries that gets us to today. 

When I went for this second hernia surgery (about a month ago) the doctor had one of the most honest conversations about weight with me I have ever had in my entire life. The doctor flat told me if I did this repair and didn't want to be redoing it again then I had to stay the weight I was on the day of surgery or less the rest of my life. Wow, I have to say that scared me beyond belief. This dr was telling a girl who struggled with weight her entire adult life she couldn't gain a pound. This was crazy talk!  I was more scared about the weight then the surgery. I spent the month between when I met with the doctor and my scheduled surgery not worrying about weight. I figured I would give myself the highest number possible, just in case. So I had the surgery, was in the hospital for three days, came home and it was then that I freaked out. How in the world was I really going to do this?  How was I can make myself the person I wanted to be for so long but had failed at so many times?  I thought about and like any modern women would do I started researching from my iPhone as I laid in bed recovering. I knew at the beginning it wasn't going to be about some elaborate workout schedule, because I couldn't work out at least not yet and let's face it I don't have a ton of free time. So I kept thinking and researching. And then it came to me....I have my iPhone all the time, I use it for everything anyways. Why not make it a part of my journey?  So that's what I did, I started downloading every diet/calorie counting app I could find that was either free or offered a free trial. One by one I tested them out and I finally settled last week on the one to use. It is Lose It and so far I love it. It counts calories for me, it gives me a budget of calories every day while taking into account my goal, which at this point it is get under where I have to be. I tell it if/when I exercise. I can even look up food on menus at fast food restaurants and chains. It is perfect for me. I know someone else out there needs help with this topic so I am sharing my story one little tidbit at a time. You will never see me post actual numbers because frankly I am just not that open, my husband doesn't even know exactly how much I weight. But I will share some updates as I lose. I am down a few pounds since surgery, I will know for sure when I step on the dr's scale on Thursday. Below is a snapshot of the app I am using. Feel free to join me, having friends on the same mission makes these life hurdles seem a little easier!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veteran's Day

Happy Veteran's Day!  I have to say this year I have thought more about Veteran's Day than any other year of my life. I would like to say that in my old age I have gained perspective but instead I owe my deeper thoughts to my 6 year old. Jolie never ceases to amaze me, she has such a big heart and a forward thinking thought process. On Saturday morning as we got dressed for softball she asked me what our plans for the day were. I explained that we were going to softball and then bath at home and some lunch then a nap for her sister, then maybe we could play a game or watch a Netflix movie but we really didn't have solid plans. She proceeded to explain to me what she wanted to do for the day, this is where my Mommy heart swelled with pride and soared at the young girl she is becoming. She asked if we could go to Welo's house ( Welo is my 92 year old Grandfather) because she wanted to listen to his stories about the Navy and the war. She said it was important to know history and learn the stories of our veterans. It was then that I thought about Veteran's Day in a whole new way. Through my child's eyes I gained perspective on this important day. Today is about more than a day off of work or no mail service. It is about thanking the men and women that have sacrificed their lives to ensure our freedom. It is about listening to the war stories of a proud 92 year old and thanking him. So we didn't go to Welo's house kn Saturday, he had other plans, but we have him an extra hug at the softball field on Saturday morning and we will be calling him today. 

So please join me and my family in thanking a veteran today for all they have giving to make your life better!  I salute all members of the armed forces and their families today, thank you!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Let's Try This Again....

As I am sure anyone who has stopped by my blog can tell I have had several failed attempts at blogging on a regular basis. I have come up with a host of reasons why my blogging never works out. The reasons involve I am just too busy, I don't have that much to say, people don't care what I have to say, and frankly the list could go on for days. So I will just leave it at those reasons. The biggest reason being I just don't have time to get my laptop out everyday and sit down and blog. So I just stopped. Well, I figured since I have started using my iPhone for everything under the sun why can't I blog from it. Well, turns out there is an app for that, I know it's shocking!  Not really but it is making this post, and hopefully the post following this possible. So here I am, giving blogging a try again. I am not going to pressure myself to an everyday post or even every week but just posted when I feel like it for now. So stayed tune. 

So, in order to play catch up here is a quick update on the happenings around here. 
Jolie is 6 and in first grade. She is super smart and a little sassy. She is in gifted at an IB Primary Magnet School and has never brought home a report card with anything other than Principal's Honor Roll. Like her mother she is a bit of a perfectionist and a little dramatic. She plays softball for West Tampa and loves it there. 
Avery will be 3 in December. She is our wild child. She is full of life and says some of the funniest things. She goes to a little Montessori School and is working to finish potty training before her birthday. She has an incredibly large vocabulary she wants to be big like her sister and gets very mad if she can't do something. She is a fit thrower and can turn on the water works to get her way. 
Things with Rich and I don't really change like with the kids so we are pretty much the same as the last time I wrote a blog post. 

Not sure what the posts will look like or really what my plan is for the blog but here is to having some fun!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hard Day

Today is the three year anniversary of the day my Grandmother died, every year I dread this day, every year I think it will be easier and the pain will be a little less but it isn't, in fact I think it gets a little harder.  As each year passes there are more and more big things that happen in my life that I want her to know all about and the little things start to pile up too. Today I sent my husband a text that went a little something like this...."I miss Wel,it hurts right down to my bones.  I miss her more than even I realize sometimes.  I want her to meet and know Avery. I want her to see how smart, amazing, beautiful, and big Jolie has gotten.  I want her to know the women I have become. I want her to know that I have the same work ethic she instilled in my Dad because he too instilled it in me.  I want to be able to call her because I need a pair of pants hemmed or a dress fixed and know she will gladly do it.  I want her fashion advice that she always got from soap operas. I just miss her and want her back.". I cried when I sent that earlier, I have tears in my eyes now but Rich's response made me laughter...he said "What about my socks?". You see she gave him socks for every occasion and any chanc she got and now he doesn't have the supply he once did. But that's just it...she was kind and thoughtful, and such a part of my life for 30 years that the last 3 without her have seemed long and hard. I know this is all a part of life but a part I know I am not fond of. I will never forget the greatest lesson I ever learned from her and my Grandfather, and that is love, not just any love but forever love.  For 62 years while my grandparents were married he bought her roses for Valentine's Day and she loved it, they weren't wonderful and huge but he went out each and every year and brought her flowers. When she passed away the day before Valentine's day three years ago it was heart breaking to sit with him at the funeral home on Valentine's Day and pick out roses for her casket for Valentine's Day. It was then that I learned what love was, it isn't the little fights, or the date nights, or even the hugs and the kisses, it is the until death do us part and then some. It is going through everything together, the good, the bad, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and still wanting to bring home flowers to your love no matter what. It is the until death do us part...they lived it for 62 years and showed my entire family how to love and for that I will be forever grateful but not good memories, quite moments alone, time, prayer, or wishing have made this day any easier.  I sure hope she knows how much I live her and how much I miss her!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Long Weekend

After having a 3 day weekend this past weekend I found myself wishing every weekend was a long weekend, it is so much easier to get things done and still enjoy time with family when you get that extra day. We had a great weekend, it started Friday night with a happy hour event with Rich's co-workers, it was a nice time and I had so much funny putting names with faces of all the people he tells stories from work about.  The kids spent the night with the grandparents and it was nice to have a few cocktails, unwind, and have adult conversation with friends. Saturday we picked up the kids, hung out at home for awhile and then took the kids up to the mall for a little shopping, mall play area time, and a kid friendly food court meal. Rich and I waited to eat and did a little mini date night at home after the kid's went to bed. That was a great time too!  Sunday we did a little cleaning, grocery shopping, and PJ at home time. Then went to my parent's house for a nice Sunday dinner. Monday Avery went to school, Rich and Jolie played a round of golf at the little executive course near our house, she got a new club Saturday at the mall so she was thrilled to try it out with her Dad, and I got to have lunch and shop with my Mom. It was amazing to have some quality time with my Mom and we got some great deals!  All in all it was a fabulous weekend and makes me want TI have three day weekends more often!  Hope yours was fabulous too!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

A New Year

Just a couple of days ago we said goodbye to 2012 and hello to 2013.  Rich and I didn't have any wild NYE plans this year and even though the girls were on vacation with my parents. We did have a great time though with a great meal at home and the movie New Year's Eve.  I fell asleep early and didn't make it to midnight but in my own way I ushered Ina new year. 2012 was full of a lot of great memories for our family. Avery started preschool, Jolie gratuated VPK and started Kindergarten, Jolie lost her first tooth, Avery started talking....a ton, the girls got bigger and prettier and made their Daddy and I proud! I had a great year....started my job at Coke last January, finished an extension to the sorority house, and wonHouse Corporation award!

Now, I just have so much hope for 2013....I hope for love and peace for all of us.  I hope for the girls to be happy, have fun, and learn much. I hope for Rich and I to continue to build our relationship and find more ways to celebrate the small moments. My word of 2013 will be hope and with it I planto find myself even more in 2013. Happy New Year!