Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Liebster Award

I was SO surprised to wake up to a comment on my Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes post, from Ileana @ Simply Inspired Me nominating me for a Liebster award!!  I have never "won" anything for my little blog so you absolutely made my whole day really!

 If you are like me and are new to the Liebster award, it is awarded to new and upcoming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. The award is passed on to other bloggers in the same category to help spread their names around and support one another!

If you receive this award these simple rules must be followed...
  • The nominated blogger has to post 11 random facts about themselves
  • Answer the 11 questions the person who nominated them asked
  • Create 11 new questions for the those the blogger is nominated to answer
  • Choose 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers to nominate and link them on their blog post
  • No tag backs!
11 Random Facts about me:

{1} I was born in Houston but other than a quick college searching trip & house hunting trip, I have not been back since I was two.  We are moving to Katy, TX {a western suburb of Houston} just after the New Year!

{2} I adore vanilla tootsie rolls, but the only time you can get them without having to pick through the variety bag is at Christmas, so I stock up!!

{3} I have always always always wanted to work with kids and have a bazillion kids.  I used to tell people that I would work either as a kid doctor, kid nurse, or daycare worker. I would drive a van or bus.  Yes, I now work with kids but no I will not have a bazillion kids. That would cost too much.

{4}  I probably give people too many chances.  Therefore, I get hurt.  But, I like to see the good in people & sometimes the good in people that's not really there.

{5} I cannot stand to do laundry, but there is no better feeling than the moment when all of the laundry is done...even if it is just for a split second.

{6} My favorite sound in the entire world is baby laughter.  After that, children laughing in general.

{7} I hate chunky meat. My coworkers (with the exception of one with similar eating habits to my own) make fun of me for my odd eating habits.

{8} I despise citrus. I hate the smell of oranges.  I think it's because it almost instantly gives me a migraine, but I can smell it all from a mile away.

{9} I love shopping, even if I know I am not buying anything. It is therapeutic. Call me addicted, whatever.

{10} I am pretty much tired all.of.the.time.

{11} If I wasn't a nurse practitioner, I would likely be a K-2 teacher.  I just love kids, what can I say?!

The questions Illeana asked:

{1} Why did you start blogging?
Honestly, because I am so far from my family and I thought it would be a neat way to document life for them.
 {2} What do you most enjoy about blogging?
That you can create books to keep your memories alive!
{3} What did you want to be when you were a kid?
Oops. I answered this above.  I always knew that it would be something with kids... doctor, nurse, or daycare worker! We did this leadership retreat in high school & I remember saying I WILL BE A PEDIATRICIAN!  I wasn't toooo far off... Pediatric Nurse Practitioner!
{4} What is your favorite day of the week? 
{5} What is your dream vacation? a hut on the water.
{6} Think back to high this what you imagined your life would be like?
No, it's better! I am married to a man who sacrifices himself and his needs for me. He would do anything for his family, is SO hard working, & motivated.  I see nothing but great things ahead for our family.
{7} What is your favorite movie?
This is always so hard. I truly have several.  Remember the Titans, The Notebook, & The Help
{8} Who is the biggest inspiration in your life?
My Pop Pop.  He was a small town doctor who cared SO much about his patients. He took the time to learn them, to know them. He cared not only about their illness about them.  I really hope that I always remain that kind of practitioner.
{9} What is your favorite candy? 
Hmm, there are so many choices!
{10} What is your guilty pleasure?
Sitting in my sweats, eating a snack & Diet Coke, and vegging out to Desperate Housewives of Orange County
{11} What is your love story?
Kyle was at Clemson visiting his high school friends for the Clemson/Carolina game. I was in my dorm after the game in my sweats talking with my {now SIL} friend Ash.  Kyle's friend Jeremy walked by, followed closely behind by Kyle.  So I said...hi Jeremy.....hey! who's that?!  So...the night began.  We all hung out, exchanged information & began dating shortly after.  He went to the Citadel, so we began our long distance romance that was just a glimpse into our destiny.

2 years later, we were engaged.  I graduated the following spring & moved to Atlanta to work and start grad school.  He started working in Greenville, SC.  The long distance romance continued..

We got married 2 years later in Delaware, the state where I did the majority of my growing up.  We "Settled" into our home in SC & were finally together! 

Along the way, Kyle has traveled to China for 2 months, I have been in the hospital @ UNC for 3 weeks, & now Kyle is already making our home for us down in Katy, TX.  I think it's just God's way of making us even stronger together!! We will soon make it cross-country to be together in the great state of Texas. 

Please continue to follow us along on our ride!

The questions for my blogger award recipients!

{1} If you could have any career, with money no object, what would it be?
{2} Hands down, what is your ONE favorite mom blog?
{3} What kind of car do you drive & why did you pick it?
{4} What is your favorite feature about your significant other?
{5} What is your favorite Christmas song?
{6} Do you know any blog friends in the Houston area?
{7} What has been your proudest moment thus far as a mom?
{8} Do you prefer to shop online or in store.  Why?
{9} How many kids do you want & how far apart in age do you want them. Why?
{10} Money no option, would be at the top of your "Grown Up Christmas List?" 
{11} Other than Christmas, what is your favorite holiday?

And now..drum roll nominees are:

{2} Leslie @ Eat.Pray.Love.Run
{3} Elizabeth @ The Storch Family
{5}Amber @ The Daily Dose
{6} Kelley @ 3 Cowboys & A Mommy
{9}Ashley @ Momma on a Mission

I am seriously looking forward to reading through all of your answers, ladies!! Have fun.

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


"One thing in life is certain & that is that things will continue to change."  

I feel like that is our mantra lately. My husband and I posted about our upcoming move to Texas here & since then, life has been a bit of a whirlwind.  Kyle moved to Houston & is living in a furnished, corporate apartment.  Kinsley Anne & I are trekking along at home.  My last day of work is Dec. 21.  It is all bittersweet.  I am excited out of my head to have my family of 3 together, in one home. 

I am jumping for joy about starting a new adventure, with new things to go see, new places to go, new fun trips for us to take.  I am actually thrilled to go house-hunting! BUT, I am also scared out of my mind to be 13 hours from our closest family member.  I am anxious about finding the perfect job; one that fits me & my family, where I can make a significant impact on my patients. I keep wondering are we nuts?  Then, I remember who's been upstairs orchestrating this whole thing.  It is almost as if this has been a heaven sent mission for us.  Everything has fallen into place, every piece of the puzzle matching up perfectly.  Who am I to question it?  I have also stopped often to think of those wives/husbands of deployed service-people and wonder, "who do they do this for so long?!"  I am so lucky that during the 2 months of utter chaos in my life, I can have the comfort of knowing where my husband will lay his head down at night....on a soft & plush bed, under a hardy roof, with heat [or AC...he is in Houston, after all]. is the plan:

1] Kyle has started work. He started November 5th.  He will continue along with a trip up to see us for Christmas.

2] Kinsley goes to school & I go to work until Dec. 21.

3] The 3 of us get to celebrate Christmas.. the birth of our mighty savior one place!

4] Kyle will go back down to resume work & I may go to unpack our things into a new home for a few days child-free if we have closed on one by then.

5] Shortly after the New Year, Kinsley Anne, Bowen, Avery, & I will make the 16 hour [turned 3-4 day] road trip to Houston, Texas!

Of course, everyone wants to know, how Kinsley Anne is holding up with Daddy gone.  She has truly done amazing.  Kids are resilient   More than once, Kyle and I have said "oh, the innocence of a child!"  When I cried leaving Kyle off at the airport the first time, she said "Mommy. Top it. You OK. No Crying. Daddy Airpwane. Texas."  Well said, Kinsley Anne. Her wisdom is beyond her years and she has her moments of needing mommy or daddy, but she's making it.  Her school has been remarkable, as well.  They love on her each and every day. On days when she needs extra hugs, she gets just that.  She's allowed to have her moments of breakdown & then they scoop her right up and help her to move on.  I am forever thankful for that. It's taking that extra stress that much easier.

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Now go link up with Women Connect '12.  This is a great opportunity for female bloggers to get to know each other!!!

Monday, November 26, 2012

My Grown Up Christmas List..

As Christmas nears, I frequently get the question..."What do you want for Christmas?"  I usually say, nothing. But let's be serious. We all want something.  I need nothing but that doesn't stop a girl from dreaming.

1) A new The North Face fleece.  I have this one in black & they have a new color out called Weimaraner Brown.  I love it. Such a great neutral and it upholds to my day-to-day wear.  It is freezing in my work office and I wear it constantly.  Small, please!

2) Uggs. I have a pair of Bearpaw Abigail boots in Hickory & although they are a great, less expensive option, the sheepskin foot bed sometimes balls up under your foot.  I love & always have loved the Bailey Button Triplet boot.  They have some new, very fun colors. I particularly love the Rose Clay & Dove Blue colors. FANTASTIC. Size 9, please!

3) Michael Kors Grayson Large Logo Satchel.  Such a classic looking bag, large enough for all of your essentials.  In some retail locations, this bag even comes with a detachable shoulder strap - great for a mom on the go!  I absoultely love the Vanilla.  It goes with everything & is casual enough for day-to-day use but dressy enough for an evening out! In comparison to some of Michael Kors' competitors, this bag is at a reasonable price point as well.  This really should sit at the top of my list!

4) A beautiful charm with a chain to represent my little girl.  This charm can be personalized with name & date on the back for an extra special touch!

What are your top wants?  

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Disclaimer: I was not given any of the above products for review prior to this post. These are only my personal opinions.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mission Possible!

Kyle's dad got us all in the car one Saturday & we headed to Charlotte. The car arrangement is important, so here is who was in each car:
  • Car 1:
    • Kyle, Kinsley Anne, and myself
    • Kyle's brother Ryan & wife Ashley
    • Kyle's brother Clay & fiancee Tory
  • Car 2:
    • Kyle's mom & dad (Kinsley Anne's Nonie & Poppy)
We were all chatting/doing work (our hard worker Ash)/watching Charlotte's Web, when all of our phones either vibrated or rang. We started reading a text message that read like this:

Mission Possible....
Behind Clay in the right pocket of the red bag, you will find an envelope for each passenger of the car. Your mission is to use the contents for yourself only and you must use the total contents and will have one hour to do so. Your time will begin once we finish lunch. Again, total contents. On Yourself. Something you would NOT normally do.
Mission Possible!

Chaos ensued inside of the vehicle after that, because we realized that there was a $100 bill in each envelope, for each of the passengers of the car, including Kinsley Anne. The questions were...what do I want? Do I need anything? Do they have a store with ___? I got on the store directory for SouthPark Mall and started searching. 1 hour in a big mall is not much time.

Our plan was to head to Cheesecake Factory for lunch but with a hungry 2 year old & a group of 8 (+ a toddler), the wait was going to be 1 hour. So, we decided to hit up the Southpark Mall Food Court & start our mission!!!

The race began as soon as we ate. Nonie took Kinsley Anne & I went off by myself.  First, I was on a search for a purse. I wanted a new crossbody. However, all of the ones I liked were north of $400. Plan B.... Boots. I wanted riding style boots and a pair of black boots with dark brown up top...similar to these. But if you click on that link, you'll see that they are nearly a grand...NOT happening. So, Plan C.. Jewelry. That's when I found the store that every girl loves...Tiffany's. I purchased a beautiful piece wrapped up in that gorgeous blue/green box. I have worn it every day since.

{this is customer service.
a customized email later that day from the salesman at Tiffany & Co. thanking me for my business}

When I met back up with Nonie, Kinsley Anne was crying for sassy. She was tired from only napping <1 a="a" above="above" all="all" amp="amp" an="an" angels="angels" any="any" be="be" came="came" car.="car." charlotte.="charlotte." department="department" didn="didn" even="even" for="for" from="from" had="had" he="he" hen="hen" her="her" hey="hey" high="high" hr="hr" href="" in="in" into="into" it.="it." kids="kids" low="low" money.="money." music="music" nbsp="nbsp" nordstrom="nordstrom" now="now" o="o" of="of" on="on" out="out""" perfect="perfect" picked="picked" que="que" removed.="removed." ride="ride" said="said" sassies="sassies" sassy.="sassy." sassy="sassy" searched="searched" she="she" spend="spend" store="store" stores="stores" t="t" tag="tag" that="that" the="the" through="through" to="to" toy="toy" up="up" upon="upon" wait="wait" was="was" we="we" went="went" whining="whining">Abby Cadabby
doll and a pair of light up Skechers boots that SHE picked out all by herself. I put her in front of the shoes (since she only had 1 pair that fit at home, and let her go to town).  She investigated all of the Tom's.  Then, the boots, until she came across this pair.  She wouldn't stop stomping her feet for ~2 days straight to make them light up! She loves each of her purchases. I have taught my girl how to shop early. 

Amongst other purchases in the group were a purse, athletic gear, boots, sports coat, belt, milkshakes, etc. However, most importantly was the fun had by everyone. This was SUCH a fun game. It was expensive for Randy, but we had a ball & Randy definitely gave me a souvenir to remember our family by. As you can see, my necklace is an infinity knot. There is a lot of meaning behind this. I hope that all of our family realizes that our love for them never ends. This also represents that there is no true "beginning or end" to our story. I can't help but think often of the song by Semisonic, Closing Time, that says: "Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end."

Thank you for the great memory!  We still have time to make more & that's exactly what I plan to do!

Until Next Time..
Love, Jen

Friday, October 26, 2012

Leavin' on a Jet Plane...

Dear Family,

   We wanted to write a letter to our close friends and family (and I consider my blog readers to be part of that category) to let you in on the newest adventure in our lives. As you may or may not be aware, our “little family” is at a crossroads and will be relocating to Houston, Texas over the next couple of months.
   Kyle has been able to break though some of his struggles at work over the past year. However, the next step for him would take us out of town on a long-term assignment, likely without a promotion. Realizing the likelihood of relocation since Fluor was not giving Kyle the right opportunities at this time, one of Kyle’s contacts asked for an updated resume to pass along. About five weeks later, Kyle received a voicemail from WorleyParsons showing great interest and requested a phone interview. After much discussion and research, the phone interview went great and a face-to-face interview was scheduled in Houston, TX. The interview in Houston was intended to be a one day trip, but turned out to be quite the roller coaster and extended for another day. Kyle interviewed with his potential manager, Tom, first and was told they would be putting together an offer soon. After a few other interviews, Kyle found a project he felt would be a great fit on as a Project Engineer, given his experience and interests. This is a great career opportunity to step into project management, so after a week of negotiations, we are committed and Texas bound!

   Jen has also been struggling for quite some time regarding her career desires. She has been praying about what she should be doing to better provide for her family, but also not “give up” on her awesome NP career. She has been blessed with amazing coworkers during her time in SC, but she is very interested in getting plugged into a hospital system that is dedicated solely to children. She feels that although her current hospital system does a stellar job caring for the children in the Upstate region, there is a difference between a dedicated children’s hospital and a children’s hospital within a larger hospital. Jen looks forward to finding a part-time pediatric NP career so that she has extra time to spend with Kinsley Anne and better keep up our home.
   Hopefully the above information helps explain the ‘career’ reasons for our decision, but it is only one piece of the puzzle. We have been praying for God’s guidance in our life, specifically asking for direction in where we should be going geographically and how we can better serve. We have had a strong feeling inside of us that we are not doing all that God has called us to do in life. Through the process of considering Houston, both of us have had an extreme sense of peace and feel like we are being led in that direction. As much as we would like to say we can simply follow God’s calling, we have still struggled due to the fact that we will be leaving the family and community that we LOVE. We have gotten fully involved in the local church, we have Kyle’s family here, Jen’s sister nearby, and let's be honest - everything's familiar. However, we understand that life comes in seasons. All of our families have gone through seasons away from ‘home’ and we feel strongly that the next season of our life should be spent in Texas. The Upstate of South Carolina still holds a large piece of our hearts and given the right opportunities and time, we feel that our time in Houston may prepare us to come back to you in a better situation.
   Thank you to all of you for the love and support that you have given us throughout our life. Although you, like us, may not be excited to say goodbye, we appreciate your understanding and support during this season of our life.

Much Love and Thanks,

Kyle, Jen, and Kinsley Anne

Houston, Ima comin' to see you
Houston, has it really been that long?
I know I've been away
But I'm just callin' to tell you that I'm leavin' today

-Glen Campbell

Thursday, October 25, 2012

2 years old!!

What a difference two years makes...

Kinsley Anne, 
  Two years old. Is that possible? It doesn't seem so.  Your daddy & I have had the pure exhilaration and pleasure of carrying you & letting you carry us through uncountable trials and triumphs throughout these past 2 years.  From taking home a precious but fragile child from the NICU, to seeing you sit up for the first time in the pediatrician's office, to watching you take your first steps, to listening to you string words together in your first phrases, every milestone you have reached has been a true joy to be a part of.  

We can only imagine what mountains you will climb to the top of in life with the perseverance of an ox, stubborness of a mule, and that special heart of gold.  

At two years old, you are:

  • wearing 12 month - 24 month clothes and occasionally 2T.
  • wearing a size 4 diaper
  • weighing 25.5lbs
  • measuring 35in
  • talking up a storm.  You fool people every once in a while into thinking you're shy, but for the most part, you don't meet a stranger.
  • stringing words together into phrases/sentences
    • i.e. - No mama, no want it.
  • Running a little too fast. Your feet sometimes get tripped up on each other & you go boom. You tell the floor, table, or whatever you hit your 'noggin on that it was "mean, not nice!"
    • You were running in your Halloween socks in the kitchen at Nonie's the other night & hit the floor in a spread eagle. You had a fat lip for "Christmas pictures" at school the next day.  It was the first time you had truly drawn blood from an injury and it was not a pretty sight.  You could barely suck your "sassy" [paci] because your lip was so fat.
  • Still running with a "chicken wing." You don't like to swing your right arm at all when you run, unlike your left arm. This began when you first started running. Your pediatrician thinks it is more of a habit than a problem, but we will continue to keep an eye on it.  You use your right arm to color and stack things, you just don't use it to run.
  • Jumping [barely] off of the floor. Going to gymnastics and bouncing on the trampoline has helped with that.
  • Walking up and down stairs with alternating feet. You are good about holding onto the handrail or to mommy/daddy, but you have mastered this skill.
  • Loving to carry purses, bags, backpacks, etc. It doesn't matter if they are empty or packed to the brim.  You are all girl.
  • Loving your new Sketcher's light up boots, from a shopping spree at Nordstrom [a post in and of itself].  You got them in black & have worn them many times already.  You have traded in your beloved zebra squeaker boots for these...good thing, considering the zebras were no longer fitting!
  • Using manners exceptionally well.  You still need reminded for maam & sir sometimes, but you say please, thank you, yes maam/no sir, etc.
    • when the waiter the other night asked Daddy if he wanted more tea, you answered for him "No...thank you!"  He really did want more, but we were just so happy to hear your manners.
  • Loving on all of your babies.  It can be a tissue, a pack of cards, a stuffed animal, or a baby doll.  Everything is "sweet baby."  You give it all hugs and rock back and forth loving on it.  If it falls, you tell it "baby fall! it ok, baby. do not cry, baby." You put all your babies in your swing & say "weeee baby." I never hear you fussing at your babies, so I must not be too harsh with you! :)  phew!
  • Loving reading books. If you see one that you love, you tell us "favorite! book! favorite! kinsley! book!"  At this time, those include, Brown Bear Brown Bear, Pete the Cat, Llama Llama, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, & Talk Oscar, Please!
  • Singing.  Not necessarily anything in particular.  Sometimes parts of the ABCs, sometimes Ring around the Rosey, whatever it is, it is very quiet and to yourself.  If I try to get you to sing louder, you stop.

Kinsley Anne, 
    What a bright little light you are in our life. You cheer us up on the worst of days. I know our family loves you just as much as we do & it is so nice to know that we have a "village" of people helping us to raise you.  Please always know that you are surrounded by the love of your family.  Also know that God is good, has always been good, and will always be good. We talked about this verse in Church on Sunday & I have been led to share it with you...
For you created my inmost being; 
you knit me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, 
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
how precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand --
when I awake, I am still with you.

Psalm 139: 13-18:

Just remember that Kinsley Anne. There is a God in charge of this crazy thing called life. He knew us before he formed us. He thinks about us more than there are grains of sand in this world. lot.

I love you to the moon & back. Always, always, always & forever.

Your mama.

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Kinsley Anne is 23 months old!!

One more month? ONE MORE MONTH?!

Every month I say it. Every month I mean it. Every month I wonder, where has the time gone?! This time next month, we will have a two year old...officially. I have actually already been telling people that you're two. It's just easier.... "yes, I have a 23 month old.." yep, that just sounds weird.

Anyway, enough of my rambling... Kinsley Anne, you are a gem. You are seriously the light in our lives. I know that my parents enjoyed Aunt Katy & me as kids, but there is no way to express the abundant love that a parent has for their children until you experience it. I pray that you will one day experience that love as well.

At 23 months, you are:
  • ~35.5in (~95%)
  • ~24.5lbs (25%)
  • wearing a very wide variety of sizes. anything from 6-12months (shorts) to some 2T (smocked bishops).
  • wearing size 4 Luv's diapers [we made this switch because they hold a large volume of Tee-Tee]
  • showing more interest in the potty. you talk the talk, but do not "walk the walk"...yet. 
    • we are not pushing it though. they will put you on the potty every 2 hours in your pre-2 class at school (starting next month), so we will hit potty training hard then.
  • mommying everybody. you love your babies. you give them their sassies, their baba, you push them in their stroller, put them in their car seat, you tell them "its ok, your ok" if they fall, you hold their head for stability when your holding them & pat their back with the other hand, sing them lullabies, cover them with blankies, etc.
    • i have never seen you discipline your babies, so I guess we must be going easy on you!!
  • still using your "sassy" at nighttime...we call them "pacies" but you call them "sassies"
    • when we went to UNC for my last GI appointment, we stayed in a hotel overnight & we told you that we "forgot them" at home in bed...[those "silly sassies"]...but that didn't cried hysterically for hours. so we gave in.
    • it doesn't bother me that you still have it, so who knows when we'll pull the plug.
  • doing gymnastics weekly. you love it. I tell you in the morning when I wake you up that it's gymnastics day after school & when I pick you up from school, "gymnastics" is what you keep saying over and over. You listen to "Miss Kate" very well & have learned to do a spider swing from the low bar, walk independently across the low balance beam, do a bridge, swing on the rings, jump in the pit, etc. 

these pictures were from the first week.. oh, how far we've come!
  • speaking like a little adult. of course you mispronounce things & that's ok. but your depth of vocabulary is amazing. 
    • on the way home from school, you love to give me a recap of your day.
    • you tell me who was "nice" & "not nice"
    • what you did while playing outside
    • what "prrrretty" art you made that day, etc
  • singing the "ABCs" in every restroom we enter [public or at home]. really, you just sing "B. C. B." most times, but will sing more if I prod you. it's the cutest thing. I don't know if you like to hear your voice echo or what, but without fail, you do it.
  • loving watching for school buses and airplanes on the drive to & from school each morning & afternoon.
    • as a treat some days on the way home, we pull into the little cut out at the airport off of the highway and watch airplanes take off & land. you get a serious kick out of it. 
    • if there are no planes to be seen, you tell me "airplanes are napping. silly airplanes."
  • watching Elmo [a favorite] or Veggie Tales [Princess and the Pop Star, specifically]
  • reading Pete the Cat or Llama Llama...or really, any other book.
  • becoming braver about the doctor. luckily, we haven't spent much time there. and therefore, you can get weighed, have the princess wand across your forehead (thermometer), the soccer ball put on your toe (oxygen sat monitor), they can listen to you (stethescope), & tickle your ear (otoscope) all without you throwing a fit!!! THIS IS HUGE FOR YOU!!!!!
    • However, when they look in your mouth...that's a different story. Next month, your vaccine & flu shot will be no fun either.
    • You love that they give you two purple "glubs" to wear. "TWO UB 'EM!"

  • loving on all of your family. In August, you got to love on Mema, GPop, GGmom, GGpop, Nanny, Aunt Katy, & Uncle Stephen for 2 weeks!!! She somehow kept track of everyone's names. 
Kinsley at her first tea party with mema
    • loving your jewels. you have a whole bag full of bracelets that your Aunt Fanny made (Nanny's sister). You love to put them alllll on at the same time.

  • loving your "baffs." You like bubbles...lots "ub 'em" & swim until your heart's content.  We drain the tub out when mommy & daddy think bath time should be over, but you will even swim in the bubbles in the empty tub. silly girl.

Kinsley Anne,
  You have been an incredible blessing to your daddy & mommy's life. You personality continues to explode & we have thoroughly enjoyed watching it develop.  We anticipate your 2nd birthday next month with bittersweet joy. Knowing how far you have come...from a fragile, premature baby with medical adversities to overcome, to a strong-as-an-ox toddler with a jubilant spirit and a loving heart.  We are extraordinarily proud of you, little girl. And always will be.
            We love you to the moon & back... always, always, always & forever.

Love, your mama & daddy

Monday, August 27, 2012

Be still, my heart...

Kinsley Anne & her cousin, Kade, are 12 days apart. She was actually born on his due date.  His mommy & my husband are 1st cousins.  We were blessed to spend lots of time together this weekend. 

after church, grabbin' a quick snack. Do they not look like siblings?

holding hands. all of those curls. pure sweetness. {pitter patter goes my heart}

Kinsley Anne, 
 Always cherish the time you have with family. Family are some of the many important people that God chose to put into your life for a reason.  Love on them. Spend time with them. Know them. Know their stories.  

Love always, Mama

Friday, August 17, 2012

4 years & going strong!!!

Yesterday was my 4 year wedding anniversary! Which means that Kyle & I have been together for 8 years this fall.  Where has the time gone??  We don't often talk or "reminisce" over where we've been as a couple, but it seems natural to do so on your anniversary.  

In the first 2 years of dating, we were carefree college students & ended up engaged! 

christmas 2006

Then, we were more conscientious of our future..together.  We were planning a wedding, I was attending graduate school, we were fixing up our soon to be home, & visiting each other ~once monthly.  

the night of our engagement 

clay's prom 

citadel graduation 

 clemson graduation

clay's high school graduation 

at our southern wedding shower 

Then, 2 years after our engagement, our wedding day finally came!!!! It was one of the best days of my life.  I had dreamed of this day for years & years (and years and years and years..) .  It was perfect.

having a blast at my cousin Jordan's bar mitzvah

Then, 2 years later, we welcomed the most precious little angel to this Earth.  Kyle and I so quickly fell into a groove caring for her.  And loving on her was so stinkin' easy. I mean who couldn't love this munchkin?!

worst picture but picture ever. NICU DISCHARGE DAY! 

We have been laughing this week about the fact that we have totally busted the "rule of 2 years" in our relationship by not having another child this fall.  Oh well, we are totally enjoying the sweet little girl that we have.

Here's to you & I, Kyle. I know without doubt that you are the man that God put on this Earth for me to marry.  We make quite a duo & together I'm not sure that there's much of anything we can't do.

I love you forever. I'll love you for always.