Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Next Generation

I am in Philadelphia spending time with my wonderful family.

Yesterday I took my niece & nephew, Sarah & David, on a quick photo shoot.

These two are complete delights to my heart: they are fun, happy, connected, funny, love the Lord, love each other & love the family we are all blessed to be in ...

I just wanted to share some of the pictures of the two that are leading the Next Generation of our family.

I head back to Louisville tomorrow ... can't wait to see my girls!!!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

39 & Thankful

It's that time again ... my birthday!

This is the last year of my 30's.  

Hard to believe -- when in my mind, I am still just a cheerleader with dreams of kids & a mini-van.  
Well, my dreams have come true & I have so much to be thankful for!

What a blessing to be alive, have health & peace from the Lord that surpasses all understanding ...
despite the difficult circumstances of life.

This weekend I am going back to my roots for a quick trip to Philadelphia.  

Or maybe it is that I am going back to Philadelphia to get my roots done?  

Actually, it's both.

Here is one of my favorite pictures from our trip to Idaho ... 

It looks like I am trying to strangle Hannah.   

So much for working so hard to keep her alive ... it looks like I am attempting to undo it all!


Psalm 34:4-10
I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.
those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.
This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.
Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him. 
Fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing!
The lions many grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing!

...The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Our trip to Idaho was wonderful!!  Wish it could have gone on forever.

It is just feels wrong that we live so far apart from Auntie Mom.

God knows & He truly works out all things for His good. 

Even distance, when I don't understand.

I am so blessed with my two daughters and we will all forever treasure the memories we made on this trip.

Here's a glimpse at our week:

Fishing ... Lily caught a fish!!!  The weather was PERFECT out on the lake!  We fished, laughed & ate our way through a perfect day!

Love this picture of Uncle Kevin helping Lily "reel it", as she says.

Kim helping Hannah fish. This was Hannah's first time out on the boat since before she got sick in 2008. There was a precious sweetness about this trip to the Lake ... Hannah missed so much while she was sick. We certainly laughed enough to make up for lost time!!

The landscape is breathtaking in Idaho.  So incredible to be outdoors & enjoy beautiful weather on the Lake!  I remember all those days in the hospital room when we didn't get to experience weather --it was air conditioning 24/7 no matter what the weather.

Yes, I am wearing a hat.  Leave me alone, people.  My hair is shy.
Just plain ol' good times!
Lily loves to drive the boat with Uncle!! 

One day Kim & I drove with our girls to McCall, Idaho.  The scenery on the drive was so incredible!!  This is the lake in McCall.

Hannah & Katie.  Thank you, "T", for being a wonderful example to my girls!!!  We love you!

Kim is Auntie Mom to Lily & Aunt Kim to Hannah.  She has walked with me through some very dark days & is always here for me no matter how many miles are between us.  Thank you, Lord, for my treasured BFF!

Idaho is so beautiful!  To the left in this photo you can see the traffic stopped on the main North-South Idaho highway.  A big change from California!!  There was construction so we all got stopped.  We got out & enjoyed the scenery by the river.  A perfect place for a photo shoot!

In Boise we went to a farm.  A working farm, I might add.  It was working all right & my shoes are still covered in dirt!  The girls loved picking a pumpkin. 

Lily could have stayed on this swing for days.  Loved it!!!

This child knows how to have some fun.  Joy & happiness ....  what a blessing she is!

Love you Auntie Mom & Family ... "Foreber"!!!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fall Photo Shoot

This afternoon the girls & I went on a "Fall Photo Shoot" ... both were in good moods & did very well!  I am so happy with a few good shots of my precious girls. 

We really had a lot of fun playing in the leaves & enjoying the Kentucky Fall weather!

We leave tomorrow morning for Idaho to visit Auntie Mom & family!!  It will just be me & the girls since Jim has to work but Hannah has the entire week off for Fall break.  This trip is my birthday present ... so excited!!! 

Here are my beauties today in Kentucky ...

We are off to Idaho in less than 14 hours!!!

All God's best, 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


God has been so good to us.

Hannah pulled through some very tough times. There were times when I wondered if Hannah would make it home.

She had her blood counts checked on Thursday and THEY WERE ALL NORMAL. Her platelets have finally caught up to the Red & White blood cells!! The platelets hit the 150,000 mark this past week and I just stand amazed at how the Lord has healed my precious Hannah!

We sat in the Pediatric Hematology / Oncology waiting room for over 2 hours. The place was filled. Filled with very, very sick children.

What on earth do I have to complain about?

If you think you have something to complain about, just take a trip to your local Pediatric Oncology office. I can't think of another place a mother would least like to be with her child. Spend some time in that waiting room & your life will quickly get back into perspective.

In the midst of wondering where our day was going (because we were waiting so long), I was thankful ...

Thankful that Hannah no longer has to wear a mask.

Thankful that Hannah was waiting for a quick visit with the doctor & to have her blood work done.

Thankful that we weren't wondering if we should have packed a bag for an unexpected stay at the hospital.

Thankful that Hannah was headed to school after her appointment & then going to Girl Scouts right after school.

The normalcy of life is such a blessing.

I feel like I have won the greatest lottery in the world just driving around in my minivan with 2 kids in tow.

Truly, I have.

No amount of money could ever buy these blessings!

God is so good.

Psalm 105:1-3

Oh, give thanks to the LORD!
Call upon His name;
Make known His deeds among the peoples!
Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him;
Talk of all His wondrous works!
Glory in His holy name;
Let the hearts of those rejoice who seek the LORD!

P.S. ..

Thank you to so many people that have sent me kind messages about our sweet, sweet dog Joy. I still cannot wrap my mind around her not being here following me everywhere.

Many times during the day I think, "where is Joy?"

And then I remember.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Saying Goodbye ...

Our sweet little dog Joy quickly became very, very sick. 

She was the sweetest dog I have ever met.

The dog was perfection. 

She rarely barked.

Followed me e.v.e.r.y.w.h.e.r.e.

Brought happiness to Hannah when I snuck her into her hospital room.

Traveled with me across country.

She allowed Lily to yank her all over & never made a sound.

I don't know that I will ever have a dog that I love as much as her.

Hannah is already asking when we are getting another ...

Maybe one day.

For now, my heart is so sad to say goodbye to the best little doggie I have ever known.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

This, That & I Guess I Forgot to Blog!

We have been busy with life. 

All good.

Except not good is that my sweet dog, Joy, is becoming paralyzed on her back legs.  I have taken her back & forth to the vet ... breaking my heart because I love this little dog of mine!

Besides that (and "that" is not a little thing) -- we continue to enjoy the normalcy of life!

Tomorrow we go to the Hematologist to get Hannah's numbers checked.  When I asked her tonight what she thought her numbers were going to be she said, "What numbers?" 

She is so into school & soccer right now that those are the only kinds of numbers she is thinking about: test scores & soccer goals.  Such a gift to have her mind off of the "numbers" of her blood counts.  It's been a long road to get to this point.

Tomorrow is our last monthly check-up (if all is well!?!) and then we will go to quarterly visits to the Hematologist.  I don't know how I will do with 90 days between blood counts but Lord willing, I will be able to rest in God's peace each day. 

We are counting the days until our trip to Auntie Mom's house!!!!  The girls & I are going out there for Hannah's Fall Break.  She has an entire week off in the middle of October -- what a country!

I swear that I think about blogging a lot more than I actually do these days.  I guess it is kind of like working out for me .. I just think about it most days.  

At least I blog a little bit :-)

Here are some pictures of the last week or so ...

Park fun!!

 Hannah's first time back up on the horse all by herself.  She goes to riding lessons once a week & it has been awesome!
 Lily & I went back to the local place with all the animals.  This place is so close to our house & we brought a Costco size bag of carrots ... and didn't bring any back home.  Sure those animals were sorry to see Lily go!
One was being a bit too aggressive ... hence the look on Lily's face & her right hand pulling away.
 Did I mention that Lily dresses herself most days?  Yes, she is working the striped pants, polka dot top & flower design shoes.  The girl has s.t.y.l.e.!!  T & Sarah will be proud!!!
 "I'm back" ... blowing a kiss to her favorite, the zebra!
 Lily's replacement "Baby" arrived from ... and she comes everywhere with us!!
 Attending a Fall Festival at Hannah's school last Friday night.  Lots of games, bounce house stuff & Chick Fil-A for the family.  A great night!

 Hannah's artwork hanging in the hall at school.  Love it!

 I stopped into her school for the book fair.  I am the "official" photographer for her 3rd grade class.  It has been lots of fun to put together scrapbook pages for the teacher. 

All God's best from our HOME in Kentucky!!