Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Three posts in one day...

This whole "blogging world" really is a neat thing to be a part of. It initially started out where I followed a few blogs that I came across through reading various Caringbridge/Carepages sites. Then it sort of starts a domino effect...you see a blog about mommyhood or parenting and you click on, and so on and so forth. I created a blog so that if I randomly commented on peoples posts they could click on "me" and match a face/story to the comment I've left. I felt like that would make it less creepy that I was reading about total strangers! :) My point is, it's so amazing to see God's hand in all of this. You are brought into peoples lives and stories, that you don't even know, will probably never meet and some that live across the country from you, but yet you feel led by God to care about these people and pray for them.

It is so amazing, God is so amazing!

Wordless Wednesday





















Hubby's 30th


Collage I made for my hubby ***






***The picture of him in the center of the collage, making an AWFUL face is priceless. Here's the story...every year the women in my family get together to make cookies. Needless to say I am NOT Betty Crocker or anything remotely close to it! :) The cookies I made called for baking soda, 1/4 tsp to be exact, and I put in 1/4 CUP! I didn't make my hubby aware of this and photographed his reaction to my DELICIOUS (sarcasm! :) cookies! :) ***

My husband turns 30 on June 26th. We will be soaking up some sun at the beach (with our kiddos), so I decided to throw him a surprise 30th birthday party. Now, if you knew my husband (and me) you would understand that this a HUGE undertaking! He catches on to EVERYTHING, and we can never surprise each other. We are like two little kids when it comes to surprises and secrets! :) Our first Christmas together I think we opened our gifts from each other 10 days early because we just couldn't wait! :) So yeah, this idea of a surprise party was going to be tricky, but I was up for the challenge! I came up with the idea of telling him that we were going to be going to my mom's house for an early Fathers Day cookout (to "celebrate" my stepdad). He bought it, hook, line and sinker. And boy oh boy was he surprised....he even cried. I mean he would NEVER do that! ;) My husband has SOOO much to be proud of at the age of 30. He spent a huge portion of his life not honoring God, not honoring himself, and just not making the best choices AT ALL. He decided to turn his life around, live for God, live to be a role model to his children and I really couldn't be more proud of him. Manny, I love you! (not that you'll EVER read this because you don't know it exists, but just know that I do! :)





















Monday, June 21, 2010

Sad

I have been following sweet Cohen's story for some time and my heart is SOOO sad! :( Please go and visit Megan's blog and send their family prayers for peace and comfort during a time that a parent NEVER wants to imagine having to go through...

www.inthiswonderfullife.com

Friday, June 18, 2010

Show Us Your Life: Proposal Stories

I absolutely LOVE Kelly over @ Kelly's Korner (http://www.kellyskornerblog.com/). I don't know her, but from following her blog ever since the birth of her ADORABLE Harper, she just seems like one of the sweetest people on Earth! :) Every Friday she does a segment called "Show Us Your Life" where she chooses various topics and has people post about it. I've never participated (or at least I don't think I have), but todays topic I just couldn't pass up...Proposal Stories. Here is mine...

My husband and I had been acquaintences for several years. We shared several mutual friends. In March 2005 we started dating, and got fairly seriously, fairly quickly. Then came June 9, 2005 when we got the shock of our lives when I found out I was prego!!! (I know, unwed, this was before I became a Christian and started living to honor God. So PLEASE forgive me!!!!) We were determined to make the best life we could for our child, even though we had only been together for THREE months! We had no intentions of rushing in to a marriage. We knew too many people that had gotten married because they were pregnant and the outcome hadn't been good. We knew we wanted to be together, we knew we were going to love our little surprise, but marriage wasn't something we wanted to rush! Fast forward to Thanksgiving Day 2005...I was pretty prego but feeling good and happy with where life was taking us. It is tradition in my family that every year we go around the table at Thanksgiving dinner and say what we are thankful for. It's usually a "tear fest"! :) I was SUPER nervous that year because it would be my boyfriend (at the time) first time having to speak in front of my entire family. "What would he say?", EEKKKKKKK, I was nervous! So it was his turn to go, and I wasn't really looking at him (because that's what I do, when I get nervous or feel "awkward" I just kind of turn away! :) He begins talking,

"I just want to say that I am so thankful to be a part of this family. You guys are really wonderful and have really made me realize what family is all about. I am thankful for Christina (that's me! :). But what I would be most thankful for is you would spend the rest of your life with me Christina..." My mouth drops, I turn to my left to look at him and he has a ring pulled out, waiting for my finger! :) Everyone is crying. Of course I say yes! And as they say, the rest is history! :)

Here we are, 4 years later, two beautiful children, great relationships with God, active in our church, and TRULY happy! God knows what He is doing at ALL times! Even when we think, "Really??? Why is this happening to me????" :)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I want...

A cute, fun blog that people actually read! :) I have always wondered how a mommy, blogging to keep her family updated about her children goes from 2 readers to THOUSANDS of readers overnight. Grant it, I don't have anything nearly important enough to say that would capture the attention of thousands of readers, but still! :)

Maybe I should tell my family I blog. I know they would read! But if they started reading my blog would I be as open and honest in my writings as I am now??? Who knows?

Oh well, just some random thoughts for the day.
But a post wouldn't be complete without adorable pics of my babies ;)


Friday, June 11, 2010

I'm going to be an Aunt again!



*The triplets memorial stones. The triplets garden that "holds" their stones and other beautiful flowers and trees.*
*This post is all over the place, just an FYI....*

I can FINALLY make the big announcement that my sister and her hubby are expecting baby #5! They not only got their miracle baby with the birth of Spencer in September 2009, but now they are expecting ANOTHER baby! :) I'm thinking that the baby is going to be another boy, but we shall see!

My sister and Mike have certainly experienced their share of heartbreak and tragedy and I am SOO happy that God is blessing them with another pregnancy!

They tried every avenue to get pregnant (IVF, AI, etc.) and experienced several miscarriages. Then they got pregnant with the triplets and we were all over the moon excited!!! Then we found out that they were all 3 boys, and we were in shock (THREE boys!!!!) and SOOO excited!! Then it all changed. (see the Caringbridge site I created for them starting in April 2008...www.caringbridge.org/visit/brannockfamily) All 3 boys went to Heaven. My sister and her husband were broken. Broken is an understatement.

Then in December 2008 her and Mike got their "Christmas miracle" (as we referred to it :) They were pregnant again. No "outside" help, no procedures, NOTHING, just naturally. For the first time Amy was pregnant naturally. The entire pregnancy was nerve wracking, understandably so, but Spencer was born full term, healthy and SOOOO adorable in September 2009. And now, here we are today, and Amy is 11 weeks pregnant again, naturally, with another miracle baby.

Thank you God! Thank you God!

Mateo, Ian and Anthony, our 3 angels in Heaven...you are loved and missed EVERYDAY! Watch over your new brother or sister in Mommy's belly! Make sure he or she grows big and strong before making their grand debut in late December/early January. We know that you are 3 guardian angels making all of this happen. I know you are having the grandest time in Heaven with PopPop and all those who have gone before you! We love you and miss you! :)

Love,
Zia Christina

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Turning over a new leaf (or at least trying to!)

I like to think I'm a "good" person (everyone has their own definition of that word). By good I mean...kind to others, strives to be her best, loves God, is a caring wife, loving mother, etc. but of course I HAVE MY MOMENTS! Those moments where I would probably shrivel up in a ball and die if anyone had actually seen me do what I just did. Whether it comes to getting angry with my husband, overreacting towards something my son does, etc. You know, those "not so proud moments" (we all have them, RIGHT!?!?! :) But again, for the most part I think I'm a good person. Our pastor has mentioned, on a few occassions, how when you go about your daily life you should envision God walking with you. Would you be saying and doing the things you are if God were standing right there??? I'm going to come out and say I know I wouldn't do and say half the things I do and say if God were right next to me.

We are in a "Why?" series at church...why do people suffer? why do we need to attend a local church? why do we need to participate in the Lords Supper? etc. Our church only does the Lords Supper on occassion (no more then once a month) and this past Sunday was that day. As we were waiting for the cracker and juice to be handed to everyone it was our time to "reflect" to ask for forgiveness for our sins, to start fresh and "clean". As I was sitting there it hit me like a ton of bricks. Now is my time to "start over." I need to work on being a better Christian, a better person. I started teaching Sunday school again that day and realized that I needed to be a better representation of a Christian. Again, I'm "okay" outside of work, but really, in the office environment I should be ashamed of my words and actions. I cuss, I gossip, I talk poorly about people, etc. I know we all do it, but really I don't want to be that kind of person anymore. So I came in the office yesterday with a new attitude and I must say it's really helped my outlook in general (even on a Monday! :) Do I get frustrated? OF COURSE! Do I get annoyed? Absolutely! Do I go to type an IM to my friend about someone that just annoyed the heck out of me? YES! But instead of sending it, I take a deep breath and delete it. I know I won't be perfect and I'll fail, but I'd like for that to happen less and less each day. I want to be proud of my words and actions at work, and certainly, as it stood, I was not. I'm really hoping to have turned over a new leaf! :)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

My birthday



*AWFUL cell phone quality pics of my b-day gifts from my wonderful co-workers!* :)

Yesterday, June 2, 2010 I turned 29 years old. Grant it, there is nothing momentous about this birthday, no huge milestone (like 16, 18, 21 or 30) but it really was an amazing day! Did I have to work? Of course! But as I was sitting at my desk it dawned on me that I had been given a gift that I hadn't ever been given in the past 28 birthdays, and guess what...it didn't cost a penny. What is that gift you ask? Peace of mind. My life has been a series of struggles. Grant it, it's not been anything huge, to some peoples struggles, mine would seem like a drop in the bucket. But life certainly hasn't been a "cake walk" either. And it dawned on me yesterday that for the first time I am truly at peace with where my life is. Could I be a better mother? Of course! Could I be a better wife? ABSOLUTELY! Could I be more active in my church? Sure! Could I make more money? Probably! (although that's up for debate being as though I don't have a college degree! :) But money isn't important in the grand scheme of things!) Could I own my own house? Certainly! (well, again that's up for debate too unless we save some money and work on getting our credit scores up! ;) But you get the picture...there is a lot of things that could be better, but when I lay my head down at night I am peaceful.

When I was little I always envisioned that I'd be married and have at least one child by the time I was 25. As I graduated from high school, and never really had a steady boyfriend or relationship, that "goal" seemed further and further attainable. Which I was totally fine with! (or so I tried to convince myself that I was). The early part of my 20's, from what I remember of it (SO sad, but true!), was spent just being, barely scrapping by. I was single, I was young, I was jobless (at points), I didn't attend church, I was not held accountable for anything, I stole from my mom, I made REALLY bad decisions, made some more REALLY bad decisions and was just very unstable (not mentally, just in general :). At the time, it was "fun" to me, I was just enjoying my 20's. Looking back, I literally cringe at the way I was living. I hope and pray and pray some more that my children never experience/experiment the things I did. At the time you think it's just what your supposed to do at that age, or at least I did. But I would give almost anything to have those years back and given the opportunity to make better decisions!!! Then 7 days after my 24th birthday I found out I was pregnant. Needless to say unplanned. Afterall, who gets pregnant on purpose after only being with someone for 3 months!?!? Not anyone with an ounce of sense! It was that day, June 9, 2005 that I realized it was time to grow up!!

Fast forward almost 5 years to June 2, 2010...my goodness how my life has changed. I lay my head down at night in a bed that's mine, in a townhouse I (we) pay the rent on, with a "decent" relationship with God (I'm working on making better by attending church regularly and getting involved), with a hubby who I love and trust, with two beautiful children who I adore more then life itself, with a job that I take pride in, and life, all in all, lived well!

Not too bad for 29, if I do say so myself :)

Oh, and a funny birthday story just for my own "journaling" purposes...my husband called me yesterday (my birthday) and told me that I had to get our son from school because he was working late. I angrily said, "Okay!" and hung up the phone thinking to myself, "He's going to work late on my birthday!?!?" and then it quickly dawned on me, if i know my husband, which I do, he's fibbing and just saying that so he can go home and finish my cake or something! :) So I go pick our son up from school (remember, he's 4), and as I walk on the playground to get him he says, "Mommy, did I miss your birthday?"

I said, "No buds! All day is mommy's birthday."

He said, "No, did I miss your party?"

I said, "Baby, Mommy's not having a party."

He said, "Well daddy told me this morning that Nonna, Poppy and Buscia were coming over for a party."

I stopped, smiled and said, "I don't think you were supposed to tell mommy that!"

He got this huge grin on his face and said, "Ohhhhh!"

I said, "But that's okay baby. We won't tell daddy you accidentally told me."

He looked at me and so seriously said, "But mommy, I can't lie to daddy!"

GOOD POINT! Now let's hope that sweet baby boy keeps that honest spirit forever!!!!! :) Needless to say I acted COMPLETELY surprised when I walked in the door and my hubby had a cake, dinner and some of my family there. He ended up finding out the truth from Honest Abe himself! ;) (yes, the same child who will just come out and tell us when he is put in timeout at school. We'd have NO way of knowing otherwise because it's never for anything serious, but it will be the FIRST thing out of his mouth when we pick him up!! :) Nothing like raising a child who is SOOO SOOOO honest! Even though I knew about the surprise before it happened it will still a very special day. And HOPEFULLY lesson learned for my hubby...you don't tell a four year old about a surprise party, EVER!!!! :)