About Me

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I am a Christian. I am a loving wife to my Army-National-Guard-Recruiter-Husband of 15 years. I am a stay-at-home-mother to our four handsome sons. I am a photographer. My blog is about as erratic, eclectic and random as I am, painted with rainbows of photos and words that are hills and valleys you travel; so lovely sometimes that they hurt you. These are the stories of how far we've come in the last 15 years as Christians, as a family and as individuals.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Jim (Papaw to the boys) picked up a nylon stringed accoustic guitar while vacationing in Australia to learn/practice while in Afghanistan. He has a nice guitar at home in Texas and promised to give his Aussie guitar to Seth when he was done with it. Seth knew about the promise but had no idea when the gift would come.

Monday, a large package arrived addressed to "Seth J. Logo". (I knew it was coming but didn't tell) He opened it with the help of his two very excited brothers and literally jumped for joy when he realized it was the promised guitar from his Papaw!

He immediately noticed the frets don't have stickers on them like his little Act One does, he also noticed headstock was different. That's when I pointed out that the strings were nylon, not steel! He sat down and started strumming to see if he could "hear the difference".

He could... the guitar was majorly out of tune! (probably from the transit) LOL! He had Tristen pull his guitar out so he could tune it properly (he hasn't developed the "ear" for that yet). Once it was in tune, Seth sat down and did his guitar practice for the day on his new guitar! I asked him what his favorite thing about it was and he said, "These letters, are they Australian?" pointing at the letters JLG on the back. When I explained they were his Papaw's initials he said, "Oh, yeah, that's my favorite part!" *awe*

Seth asked Garrett, "Since I have a new bigger guitar, do you want my old one so you can learn too?" Garrett accepted with a huge grin, then they all started strumming their guitars... Tristen, little teacher that he is, showed Garrett the proper way to do E and G, Garrett was ecstatic!

I guess Hayden felt left out because before I knew it, he had busted out his little toy guitar he got at Christmas! It was great, we all had so much fun!

Thank you Papaw, so much for the guitar and again to you and Nana, thanks for the lessons, I haven't seen Seth so excited about going since the very first lesson (before he learned that it required homework... practicing)! What a blessing this is to me! With all of my heart, thank you both!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

During the past ten years I've done my part in going to the dentist every 6 months as well as taking the boys. I've tried my best to get out of there without having to schedule a follow-up to fill a cavity or have any other abnormal work done. Today is that day! Good things really do come to those who wait! All four boys and I had perfect check-ups! Now that's something to blog about!

Our stash of goodies...
(this is blurry but good nontheless) Showing off their pearly whites!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

How great it is to be a stay-at-home, full-time parent who gets to enjoy moments like these!

As I was at the computer just messing around, Hayden came to me with a roll of paper towels and said "let's play Momma". I wasn't sure what game he wanted to play with a roll of paper towels so I just followed his lead. I had so much fun just saying "I see you" throught the roll to him as we took turns with it. He was just so adorable, I had to grab my camera.

After the paper towel game, we started chasing each other around the house playing tickle monster, that's the best exercise a Mom can get, let me tell you! Tickle monster turned into hide-and-go-seek and I had a hard time not giggling when it was my turn to hide because when Hayden counts, at the end instead of saying, "ready or not, here I come!" he says, "Not ready, I'm coming!" It's so adorable! I just love being at home with this kid, I know it's 2 years away, but I'm really going to miss him when he starts pre-school!

This was my favorite hiding spot he found -inside one of the cubbies on our coffee table, he was all curled up in there, I must've walked past him at least a dozen times before he called out, "I right here, Momma!"

Then when he got out I started chasing him to "get him" and he climbed up on Garrett's Castle bunk bed and sat on the far rim and laughed as he said "you can't reach me now, Momma!"

I don't know if it's just me, but I love how he still calls me "Momma"

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Music is a love of mine, I don't know, maybe it's in my genes. I have always regretted not having learned how to play an instrument, in fact, for years I blamed my father for not being around to teach me but as I grew up I realize there's no one to blame but myself. It's not like I didn't have opportunities, I just didn't have anyone there to teach me the importance of music when it was crucial to my keeping with it.

I knew the boys learned how to read music and how to play piano at school (Tristen had asked me to let him practice on the keyboard my dad had given me forever ago) I just didn't know it had made any kind of lasting impression.

Christmas 2007 Seth asked for a guitar. I didn't even know he was interested! We bought him a First Act from Toys R Us (just thinking it was a phase). He jammed on that thing for months until one day I noticed he had put it away. When I asked "why?" he said he just couldn't make it sound right so what's the point. I felt horrible! I thought he just wanted it as a toy but come to find out, he was genuinely interested in learning the propper way to play! When I brought that up to my Mom on a visit in the summer of 2008 she told me to look into private lessons... "yeah right" I thought, "we can't afford that" but I called around anyway. I found a lady who's not too far away and who only charged $18.00 per session, Mom offered to pay for the lessons and then... what's the saying? "Monkey see, monkey do" Tristen
miraculously became interested in learning guitar too!

On the whim, Mom bought him a guitar and he was able to join the lessons too. The great thing is that we get two-for-the-price-of-one! Seth is growing out of his little First Act but Jim (Papaw) has a guitar in Afghanistan that he's bringing to Seth in May, the teacher says this one will work until then.

The boys were so excited until they found out they have to practice every day! It's amazing how fast they wanted to quit! I told them that quitting isn't an option for them right now, give it at least 6 months to a year and see where it takes us. They are only asked to practice 15 minutes a day. It has taken US (me remembering to remind them and them actually listening)4 months to get on a regular routine with practicing and it's really paying off. Mrs. Sandee (the teacher) says Tristen has improved 100%

and Seth's improvement is 75% better than before Christmas. She says Tristen has the self-motivation driving him to accomplish any goal she sets for him and Seth has the love of music driving him. The songs are beginning to sound like songs and not just random notes and they seem to enjoy it much more now that they can "make it work right".

Thanks Papaw and Nana for paying for their extended musical education! (They still pound the keys on the keyboard daily and visit the piano lab at school weekly, even Garrett is learning piano and loves it!) I love hearing the music fill the air, I can't wait 'til Garrett and Hayden are old enough to choose an instrument! Garrett already says he wants to play the drums and Hayden is a great singer!

I am so proud of my little musicians!
Jonas Brothers? HA! Logo Brothers!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Rozalyn Gonzales, what can I say about Rozzie? In December 2001 I met her as a bubbly, 13-year-old from next door the day we moved into our Victorville home, offering to babysit FOR FREE (otherwise she wouldn't get credit for her "community service" at school) and all I had to do was fill out and sign a form stating the times, duration and dates she babysat. The best way to describe her is a devine gift from God himself! We became very close friends despite our 11 year age difference and she has been a wonderful addition to our family: aka "Nanny Rafa". Over the past 8 years I've watched her grow into a beautiful young woman, she truly is one of the very best people I know!

Sunday, she presented to me the biggest, scariest and most flattering opportunity ever! She got engaged two weeks ago to the boy (now man) that she used to pine over when she was 13, yes, she's been in love with him since she was 12, and the wedding date is May 2, 2009. --The opportunity you ask? She wants ME to photograph the most special day of her life! I couldn't believe it! I'm NO photographer! I can't believe she trusts me with such a task! She has told me many times in the past I should charge people for taking their pictures (something I do often at kids' birthday parties, school skate nights and such) but I just thought she was being "nice". Apparently she has more faith in my abilities than I do. I'll take (and apreciate) any and all advise I can get from those of you who are photographers! I have just under 5 months to prepare, HELP!

Here's the best engagement photo I could muster in the five minutes before she was off to work yesterday (with no prior notice by the way, no time to prepare my mind for a pose).

Over the past 8-12 months I've been really struggling with my heart's desire to get baptized again. Like many, I was baptized at a very young age, before (I think) you were really required by the church to fully understand the process before they performed the act. Since attending HDC (High Desert Church) for the first time in the summer of 2003 I sporadically attended for 2 years before learning about their women's bible study opportunities. I joined SMILES (satisfied moms in life's every situation) with my baby sister, April, in 2005. We completed the Fall, Winter and Spring sessions, took the summer off (not like we had a choice) and although I loved it, I failed to return in the Fall of 2006, maybe it was because I'd just had Hayden but I don't like the idea of using him as an excuse. After an amazing road trip in the summer of 2007, I felt the need to get back on track in my walk with Christ.
I asked Fotima (who I'd only known as "Allen's Mom" from preschool) to join me and she was more then happy to accompany me. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship!
Did I mention that I stopped going to church when the Spring session of 2005 ended? Well, I did. I started going back when I rejoined SMILES in the Fall of 2007.
That's about the time I started feeling the tug on my heart to get baptized. There were so many services with baptisms that had me in tears and at first I couldn't understand why.

This year I vowed not only to get baptized, but also to become a member of HDC... I KNOW... I've attended this church for 6 years (off and on), the past 2 years regularly, and I'm not even a member! I've already taken the first (which I hear is most important) step, this past Sunday, the first Sunday of 2009, I went to the first of 4 "Ozone" classes to become a member and I have on my calendar the day of the baptism class I'd like to attend in March. As a member of the church, I'm looking into joining the worship team (or at the very least, the choir) as well. Can I get a "hallelujah!"?
Don't worry, I'll post baptism pictures when the time comes.

Friday, January 2, 2009

I get a little jealous reading others' blogs about how much fun they had celebrating Christmas and New Year's Eve with friends and family. It comes from the most loving part of me though and after praying about it I realize that I am being taken out of my comfort zone so I can provide guidance to others.

New Year's Eve found me inviting friends over to fellowship with food and games, it was nice although no one stayed past 9:00 PM. I'm surprised I made it past midnight (I'm not a night owl) but I did, and so did Brad, Tristen, Seth and Garrett. Hayden was the only member of my clan that was sleeping (but that's for the best). We watched 2 whole minutes of the ball dropping in NYC on the television and toasted each other with sparkling apple cider before cleaning the buffet of food left from our "in and out" guests. I was out by 1:00 AM and up by 8:00 AM! Needless to say, I spent the better part of yesterday in bed watching movies and snuggling with Hayden who was also somewhat phased by the previous late night. I'm almost back to normal now, I managed to get to the grocery store this morning and fold 3 loads of laundry in preparation for school to resume Monday.

Thankfully, since Brad had the whole week between Christmas and New Year's Eve (through Sunday, the 4th actually) off, we've been able to gradually take down and pack up (propperly) our Christmas decorations. We also rid our attic of items that have become unneccessary (let's be honest, it was to make room for new stuff) and now our home is back to "normal". It is bittersweet though, our tree is gone, the house no longer has that smell or glow from the front window as our front yard shines brightly, even in the dead of night. I love the Holiday Season so much, I just hate to see it all fade away. This year though, instead of a gradual fading, it seems to have just up and vanished! It's gone, move on.

I'm not really one for "new year's resolutions" because they don't seem to last. I will however continue to try bettering myself as a wife, mother, friend, daughter and sister; the one thing I'm adding to that list this year is to spend more time on bettering myself as ME. Some of you can relate when I say that I feel defined by the "hats" I put on. This year I want to know that I can become a better ME. There are projects that I've started and long to complete, classes I want to take, books I want to read and many more accomplishments to be fulfilled that have nothing to do with bettering myself as a wife, a mother, a friend, a daughter or a sister. Is that considered being selfish? I'd like to think not. People need to know who they truly are before they can share themselves with those around them, right? I just want to be the best "me" I can be. This year is all about continuing what I've started as well as adding to the workload. Who's with me!?