Thursday, September 22, 2011

Thursday?

I couldn't think of any better title, so that's what you get "Thursday?" Creative, huh??? ;) This is going to be random...

Thank you all for your sweet words on yesterdays post. Keep praying for Amy and her husband. I know they need all the prayers they can get to mend their broken (assumedly) hearts.

I am getting sick, BLECH!!!!!!! :( I work in an office environment and people come to work sick, when they shouldn't be here (I don't mean a simple cold. I mean hacking their lungs out), and then spread their germs to everyone else (AHEM! Me! :( And it really drives me insane because we work in a pretty flexible environment where most of us can work from home, if need be. Anywho, enough complaining! :) I'm getting sick, it stinks, and next week is month end and we are going to be S-L-A-M-M-E-D so hopefully this cold runs its course and FAST! Hubby has been working later in the evenings all week (except for date night :),  is helping a guy from church around his house tomorrow and Saturday (because the man and his wife are moving to TN and need to sell their home), so I'm solo with the kiddos (I don't know how single parents do it. I REALLY don't! My kudos to all single parents out there!!!! :)) My mom is taking Manuel to see The Smurfs on Saturday. Mia and I will probably just lay low, especially if I'm still sick. Then after their done at the movies we're supposed to go to the local Amish market. Should be fun! :)

I might be MIA for the next week or so as the end of the month comes and goes. But I promise to still read and comment on your blogs! :) I'll leave you with this beauty...

And for good measure...

A month or so ago we had a playdate at the park. I didn't know my friend Lauren took this pic of Mia, until she texted it to me the other day. I LOVE it!!! :) 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Saddened...

To those people that don't blog, this would probably seem so crazy and "weird" but to my fellow bloggers, I know you'll understand...my heart for the blogging community is huge. I include you all in my prayers each day, and some of you, who I've really connected with on a personal level, I pray for specifically. When you are rejoicing in a wonderful moment in your lives, I rejoice too. When you experience heartache, my heart aches for you as well. Grant it, to some it might seem strange because we are "strangers" but that's just the kind of person I am. Once you've taken a place in my heart for whatever reason, my heart keeps you in it! :)

For some reason (not sure why because I have never had any dealings with adoptions) but I am drawn to adoption blogs. Whether it be the birthmoms, the parents the child is placed with, etc. I am just drawn to their stories. I find adoption fascinating). I am also drawn to infertility blogs (again, not something I've ever directly dealt with), but I just read these blogs, the hope, the fear, the sadness, etc. and it makes me realize what a blessing my children are, how lucky I am to have them, and how I should NEVER take them for granted, EVER! I love when an infertile couple announces on their blog that they are going to be parents (no matter how it happens...naturally, adoption, IVF, etc.) But as we all know, life isn't always full of rainbows and sunshine!

Today I am beyond sad...I have followed Amy's blog for quite some time now and she is SUCH an inspiration. Her Faith is amazing. Her love is amazing, and she and her husband seem like the cutest couple EVER! :) They are on their journey to parenthood and it has not been easy for them. A few days ago Amy announced on her blog that a young girl had chosen them to parent the baby she was pregnant with. I was ECSTATIC! (it's so crazy how you can be SO genuinely happy for someone who you've never met and perhaps they've never even looked at your blog! :) but I was thrilled for them!) Amy and her husband were cautiously optimistic (understandably so. They've been through their fair share of heartbreak), but hopeful! I just smiled as I read each of Amy's post and just knew in my heart that this baby would be theirs. I've been praying for them EVERYDAY. Unfortunately, Amy just posted that it was all a lie. Not Amy's account of the last few days, but the young girl on the other end of the phone had made it all up. My mouth dropped as I read the post and my heart broke. How does this happen!?!?!? How do you believe that God has answered your prayers that you will become a Mommy and then it's gone?!?!?! How does your heart recover from this?!??! I don't know, but Amy's beautiful heart made it obvious that she will forgive and her faith in God will not waiver. How amazing is that!?!??! Please pray for Amy, her husband and their family.

Amy, if you ever read this...you are AMAZING! I will pray EVERY.SINGLE.DAY for your heart, your mind and the baby(ies) that will call you, Mommy and DW, Daddy when God places them in your arms.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My, my, what a difference 3 days makes! :)

Hello friends! Life has been SO busy since I posted last Saturday (mainly at work), and when I actually had a few moments to catch up on blogs so many things had happened in blog world...one of my fellow Maryland bloggers had given birth to her beautiful baby girl, a couple who's blog I just adore has found out a young girl has chosen them to parent her child, and so much more. You miss a lot when you're gone for even a bit! :)

I'm certainly not going to complain about how busy work is, because this is the same place of employment that I was about to be laid off from a few months back, so I take my stress/overwhelmedness (not a word, I'm sure! :)) and thank God that I have it! :)

A week or so ago I entered a contest on Facebook that our local radio station was having to win tickets to a pre-screening of the movie Courageous. I found out on Friday that I won, and Manny and I are going on a date tonight to see it. I can't wait!!!!! :) Our church showed the trailer for the movie a few weeks back and ever since then I've wanted to see it. It's from the creators of Fireproof (AWESOME movie!) and Soul Surfer (although I haven't seen it, my husband watched it and couldn't stop raving about it!) so I'm excited to see it. I'll be back tomorrow (hopefully) and let you know how it was. Manny and I haven't been out, just the two of us, since June 10th (my friends wedding), so we are in desperate need of some "us" time. Don't get me wrong, I love my children more then the world, but hubby and I don't spend nearly enough "us" time together. We need to work on that! :)

We had a great weekend, even though my Ravens lost :(

And for good measure...
 My sweet, beautiful babies :)
 Walking to help Daddy get the groceries :)
 Always has to be self pics :) (Hubby isn't a fan of taking pics for me, because I usually make him take the same pic about 10 times! ;))
 The best self pic I could get of the 3 of us, LOL
 She has in pigtails! :) (she only took them out 15 about 3 times and then I would just put them back in and she'd leave them alone for awhile! :))

Saturday, September 17, 2011

30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 17



Hello Friends!

I'm slacking, I know! :) No excuses, just life :)

Day 17: Regrets

There are many people in this world who can say, "I don't have regrets. Everything I've done I've learned from, so no regrets." I am not one of those people. Although I did learn from everything I've been through, I do wish there were things I hadn't done, or things that I did do.

My regrets in life are all connected. My first regret is that I begged my mom to let me change schools the summer after my 10th grade year, get a boundary exception and go to high school with my best friend. She was popular. All of her friends became my friends and life was GREAT (or so I thought). Before I changed schools I was an "outcast". I was shy, awkward, overweight, and had only a few GOOD friends (little did I know, a few friends is all you ever need!!!! But when you're in high school, being popular is SO important). I had never touched a cigarette, never thought of drinking a beer, and certainly would NEVER imagine doing any sort of drugs, EVER! I transferred schools, had a TON of "friends"(or more like acquaintances, but I was popular so that's all I cared about, sadly!) I was hanging out with people who drank, had been smoking weed since middle school, and partied like no other 16 year olds I had ever known. My junior year, I stayed pretty good, and dabbled here and there in drinking a beer or smoking a cigarette. But needless to say that all went downhill and fast, my senior year! Which leads to my next regret...doing all the drugs I've done. I honestly wonder, quite often, how much different my life would be had I not spend the majority of my life from age 18-age 24 doing drugs. How much different would my brain be? How much different would life be? I realize that each step of my life and journey has happened because that's what was meant to be and had ONE thing not happened, it could have changed the entire course of where I am today, but I just wish I had never started doing drugs, EVER! You see friends, I wasn't someone who just dabbled in smoking weed every once and again or drank a beer once in blue moon. Oh no, unfortunately that's FAR from the truth. For the span of those years, on a regular basis (at least weekly) I did some sort of drug(s). I smoked weed (regularly), did ecstasy (regularly), ate acid (regularly), smoked crack (a few times), took prescription pain pills (regularly) and snorted cocaine (regularly) (there, I said it. Don't judge, please!) I would go for weeks at a time drinking pretty much EVERYDAY! Going out EVERY NIGHT! It disgusts me, literally, as I sit here and type all of that, but that was my life (sadly!) Although I can't say for sure, I'd be willing to bet that had I not found out on June 9, 2005 (7 days after my 24th birthday) that I was pregnant, I probably would have ended up dead. That's how bad off I was! The day I found out I was pregnant EVERYTHING stopped and I have not touched a drug since then (I have drank and smoked a cigarette since then). And then my last regret which is also linked to transferring schools, and doing drugs, is the fact that I never finished college. Clearly all the drugs and partying didn't allow time for schooling and studying! :( I have no doubt that I would have done big things with my life, had I never changed schools, and started doing drugs. I would have gone away to college, I would have gotten a college degree and made a career for myself. Instead, I stayed local, partied with my friends from high school, went to a local community college (I am NOT putting down community colleges AT ALL! So please don't misinterpret that statement. I just knew from when I was little that I would go away to school) and stopped going just credits shy of earning my AA in Mental Health and Human Services. Regrets, regrets, regrets.

But I do know that had one thing not happened, I may have never found God (I mean REALLY found him!), I may have never been as happy as I am today, and most importantly, I may not be staring at the two beautiful faces sitting in front of me, eating their cereal (Manny is helping my uncle move, or else I would have said 3 beautiful faces! ;))

Regrets are hard, but God ALWAYS knows what He is doing! : )

Have a great weekend friends! :)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Don't be jealous...

Of the AWESOME quality of these cell phone pics! ;) Here are a few pics I've taken with my phone over the past two weeks or so. I just LOVE these two! :)

Happy Thursday Friends!

 This "heart" caught my eye the other morning when I was getting ready for work. It made me smile :)
 These two make me smile
 Adorable! (my children AND my porch! ;) I LOVE Fall decorations! (once it gets to actually be Fall, I will add my haybale, real pumpkins, cornstalks, etc :))
 She's quite the multi-tasker :)
 My sleeping angels :)
 We try to make it a point to leave the house each morning together (Manny takes Manuel, I take Mia). Manuel likes to pop his head in the car to say bye to us :)
Giving Manuel's Build-A-Bear lovies :)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

I LOVE good customer service!

Okay, so this isn't my typical post, as it has nothing to do with my family, my job, or anything along those lines, HOWEVER, I could not pass up an opportunity to give credit where credit is due! :)

Maybe you've been a lucky individual who has never dealt with poor customer service (if so, consider yourself L-U-C-K-Y!) but sadly, most of us deal with poor customer service way too often. It's a vicious cycle...the consumer is annoyed for something that may or may not be related to said product/company. Said company is contacted to remedy a situation, customer gets even more annoyed, customer service rep gets annoyed, and everyone USUALLY leaves unhappy and annoyed! ;)

I'd like to highlight a blog AND company that are just awesome...
Everyone knows or doesn't know and doesn't care that I LOVE entering giveaways! If I come across a fun blog who is giving away something I like, then I enter. (I've actually found some of my favorite blogging friends through giveaways they've had on their blogs). I've won a TON of free, awesome things from these giveaways (mostly for my kiddos). There has only been two instances where I've won something and never received the prize. In both instances I contacted the blog owner (who held the giveaway on behalf of a company) not to expect anything in return, but just to make them aware that a company their promoting is not following through. In the first instance the blog owner tried SO hard, for weeks to get me my prize, with no luck. The company provided her a tracking number (that wasn't even real!) and needless to say I never got my super adorable shirt for Mia! :( I chalked it up to a loss, was very thankful that the blog owner tried so hard and moved on (I need to bring myself to "un-like" the company on Facebook because every time I see their posts about how great of a store they are, I want roll my eyes and want to post something snarky, but I don't! ;))

But this post is about GOOD customer service! :) Back in July I entered a giveaway on the super sweet Amy's blog, Just Another Manic Momday for some good Blue Bunny ice cream (what can I say, I'm a sucker for sweets! :)) I won. Several weeks passed and I never received my "Bunny Bucks" in the mail. I decided to contact Amy and let her know that I wasn't expecting anything, after all, it's just ice cream ;) but I never received my coupons, just so she was aware. Amy responded immediately to my e-mail, apologizing greatly, and letting me know she was going to contact Blue Bunny and see what she could do. I thanked her, but again explained that I wanted nothing in return! :) A short time later, a representative, Janelle, from Blue Bunny e-mailed me, apologizing repeatedly, explaining that the coupons had been sent, but must have been lost in the mail. She told me that they were going to send me more Bunny Bucks along with some extra "goodies." Well friends, talk about a surprise, a super sweet gesture and all around great customer service when I opened up the package today (just a few days after my initial e-mail to Amy) and not only was there 5 Bunny Bucks (each good for a free carton of Blue Bunny products) but there was also two adorable ice cream bowls, an ice cream scooper, a Blue Bunny bean bag stuffed animal and an insulated lunch bag/ice cream carton holder. I thought this was all just SO sweet! Here I am, NOT a paying customer, a simple giveaway winner who was treated SO wonderfully! If you're in the market for some ice cream, check out Blue Bunny! They have a huge array of ice cream, ice cream novelties, and even a "lighter" line of frozen goodies!

Thank you Amy and Blue Bunny for making me realize that good customer service is not a thing of the past! :)

*I took a picture of my goodies, but can't find my camera cord. I'll share it soon! :) *

*The above reviews and opinions are my own. I was in no way compensated for this blog post. I only did this post because I was SO pleased with the customer service I was provided!*

30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 13



So clearly I've been slacking on these but I do want to make an effort to participate when I feel led to write and today is one of those days! :)

Day 13: Favorite Quote or Bible verse

Hands down, my favorite Bible verse is Ephesians 2: 8-10
"For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them."

Love it! Very fitting for myself, my husband and for many others I know!

And the following are not quotes or Bible verses, but song lyrics that I LOVE...
And I have touched the scars upon His hands to see if they were real

He has walked the road before me, he knows just how I feel
When you feel that there's not anyone, who understands your pain
Just remember all of Jesus's suffering
-Jeremy Camp, "Healing Hand of God"

One of these days we all will stand in judgment for
Every single word that we have spoken
One of these days we all will stand before the Lord
Give a reason for everything we’ve done
And what I’ve done is
Trust in Jesus
My great Deliverer
My strong Defender
The Son of God
I trust in Jesus
Blessed Redeemer
My Lord forever
The Holy One, the Holy One
-Third Day, Trust in Jesus

And there is SO many more, but right now I am drawing a blank! :)

Visit Katie and link up!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Magic Moments: Popcorn Party

Today I am linking up with Shell for Magic Moments. Click on the button and link up too! :)



I decided to go out of my comfort zone on this fun contest...clearly magic moments in life can be a range of many things...birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, etc. But the picture I'm linking up is none of the above. Honestly, the quality of the picture is pretty poor, however, it is definitely a "magic moment" I'm glad that I caught on camera! :) I am, many would say ;) an uptight parent. I don't like messes. I'm not a fan of Play-doh. You'll never catch me giving my children a container of sugar and flour to "get creative" with :) but this moment is one I will NEVER forget, and neither will Manuel (or his friend Alex). Manuel actually still talks about this day, almost THREE YEARS later! :)

Alex is one of my best friends sons. He came over to have a Power Ranger Sleepover with Manuel (not for any reason, just because :)) We put on a movie and popped some popcorn. The boys were sitting quietly, eating the popcorn when Manny (my husband) decided to take the bowl of popcorn, throw it up in the air and popcorn went EVERYWHERE! It was raining popcorn! :) My inital reaction was to get mad, because HELLO, it was a MESS, but the boys LOVED it! A moment I will never forget! :) And nothing the vacuum cleaner couldn't clean up! :)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Never Forget! 9/11/01

10 years ago, I was a young, naive, college kid who focused on not much outside of "my world". I remember driving home, listening to a local radio station and the first plane hit. I immediately called my mom and said, "Is this a joke?" I rushed home, and watched TV as the second plane hit, as the first tower fell, as the second tower fell....in total shock. I left my apartment and headed to my friend Kelli's house where we watched the news for hours on end. To think back, 10 years ago, it still seems SO unimaginable!

I'm watching the old footage on MSNBC this morning, from that day, and I still can't wrap my brain around it all. 10 years ago I wasn't a mother, I wasn't a wife...what a difference these feelings are as a mother and wife. God bless those lives lost. God bless those families who still mourn their loved ones EVERYDAY! God bless the USA!

We will NEVER forget!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

An update

Hello friends :)

Thank you all so much for your kind comments, concerns and suggestions on my post from yesterday. It was weighing SO heavily on my heart, and even more so after Manuel came home and told me about ANOTHER incident between he and Billy (UGH!!). Someone used the term squeaky wheel yesterday and that's exactly it...I didn't want to be the annoyingly overly involved mom who needs to relax, HOWEVER, after Manuel telling me about day #2's incident, I had to e-mail his teacher, and I am SO glad that I did!!!

She was SO receptive to my concern and of course, as I figured, had no idea that any of it was happening and was actually quite surprised because she said Manuel and Billy seem pretty inseparable. At the beginning of the day she thanked me for letting her know, and told me that she would keep an eye out for anything, as well as talk to both boys (because as I had explained in my initial e-mail, I understand that there are two sides to every story). I was pleased beyond words when I got this e-mail from her a few hours ago (*names have been shortened to protect everyones privacy ;))

"Hi Mrs. Gomez,
No worries!  Helping the students learn how to get along is part of my job :) Mrs. D (our school counselor) was in today and she spoke with both of the boys.  She talked about how to problem solve and about being respectful to each other.  They have done a pretty good job doing that today.  The two are pretty inseparable.  Mrs. D was surprised that they were having issues since they are always together.  Maybe being together all the time is not always the best thing. :) They were “swinging arms in pretend hitting” today, so I did separate them in line.  Please do not hesitate to contact me if you see or hear of any other issues.  Thank you again for your support of Manny.
Mrs. B"

*Please note: Manuel will be spoken to about "play hitting"! ;)*

I feel happy, relieved and SO grateful for how receptive she was.

Thank you again for all of your support. I'm not sure I would have written her had it not been for all of you encouraging me to do so. Thank you for making me realize I wasn't being crazy! ;)

Happy Thursday!

I hope to be linking up again tomorrow with Katie's 30 day challenge :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Pour Your Heart Out: Did I make you this way?



Once again, I'm linking up with Shell to Pour My Heart out. Goodness knows, I need it today!

As I mentioned earlier in the week, last Wednesday Manuel started Kindergarten. It was a huge step for me, in allowing my sweet, golden hearted, curly haired, orney little boy to start the process of growing up. I cried for days leading up to it. I cried the morning of. I cried as the bus pulled out. However, when I heard how much he loved it, my heart leapt with joy. You see, Manuel is a unique little boy in many aspects...he's shy (in new situations, even if it's a situation he's been in many times before, I mean even if it's "new" for the day), he doesn't make friends easily (although he is an absolute sweetheart!) because of how shy he is, he's not really into sports (even at 5, apparently that's frowned upon if you're a little boy). I mean I guess that's not necessarily "unique" but he's not the outspoken, go get 'em, leader of the pack, type of child. So for him to rave about how much he loved school, just made my heart smile. I was scared his transition was going to be awkward, hard, and at times, even heartbreaking (for him). Even two children from his preschool class, Billy and Paula, were in his Kindergarten class so he knew somebody, YAY!!! :) Each day passed, and he continued to love it. As I mentioned in my earlier post this week, his teacher even took the time to tell me how well he was doing and what a smart, fun-loving child he is. I couldn't ask for more! Until yesterday...

Manuel was talking about his day and in the midst of the conversation, as if it was no big deal, he said, "Well Billy (the same Billy from preschool) is my only friend. But he told me that I'm not good at anything  I do. That I don't have any friends and everything I try I'm bad at. And well, he's right. I'm not really good at anything." UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! (I'm crying just typing that!) How in the world has he been ranting and raving about school, and how much he loves it, yet he's made no friends and the one buddy he does have is a complete meanie!?!??!?!?!

My initial reaction is to say, "You know what you tell Billy? You say, "Well Billy, at least I wasn't the one crying the first day of school when my Mommy and Daddy left!" But I know, that's stooping to their level, and very immature of me to even THINK that, but it's true, Billy did cry (A LOT!) and did Manuel ever think to make fun of him for that?!?!? NO!!!!!!!!!!!! Of course I didn't tell Manuel that, I told him to just ignore Billy and try to make other friends. Why do kids have to be SO cruel?????? I know it's the world we live, but honestly, it breaks my heart a teeny bit more each time I think about it.

And you see, the reason my post is title, "Did I make you this way?" is because growing up, I was Manuel...I didn't have many friends, I got made fun of for being overweight (Manuel is NOT overweight at all), for the AWFUL way I wore my bangs (Manuel has awesome hair! :)),  for not being good at sports, and really the list could go on and on. It wasn't until I transferred schools my junior year of high school and attended school with my popular best friend, so I  had "ready made" friends to welcome me, that I stopped being made fun of (and started hanging out with the popular kids and doing drugs, but that's another post in itself)

***AHHHHHHHH! Apparently I'm not supposed to be Pouring my heart out because I just had so much more posted and when I tried to add pics, my computer froze and it was all deleted!!!!! :((

Anyway, let's try and remember what I said...

I'm not asking for Manuel to be Mr. Superstar, Great At Every Sport, Homecoming King, All Around Mr. Awesome Extradorinaire. I'm totally fine with him being himself (whatever God has in store for him to do), however, I am praying that he is able to find his "niche" and doesn't spend the next 12+ years of schooling being made fun or being made to feel less than ANYONE else!!!!!!! He dealt with it at summer camp on occasion, but we were hoping it was just because he was surrounded my a majority of older kids, but now it's happening again, by his peers!!!!! I know Manuel is a very smart child and will excel in academics, I would just hate to see his academics suffer because of his social experiences. He is a cute kid, with a sweet personality, he dresses nice (NOT that the materialistic things matter, but lets be honest, in school, it does!) and all those things that you would THINK would help keep the "teasing target" off his back, but I guess that's not the case.

I don't want to contact the teacher just yet, because I don't want to be "that parent" who's meddling already, when it could have been one isolated incident, BUT I'm not letting this continue. I will not sit back and let my child be bullied, made fun, etc. I know some of you might be thinking, "It's only been a week. Give it time lady!" and you could very well be right, however, when it's your child, it's a different story.

This whole parenting thing is not for the weak of heart. Unfortunately, I wear my heart on my sleeve and when it comes to my babies, I can't help but hurt when they hurt. Cry when they cry. Feel defeated when they feel defeated.

Praying for guidance, answers and most importantly resolution and peace for my sweet sons heart.

Thanks for listening friends! :)

And for good measure...
(Just to be clear, these are Manuel's pajamas. He's wearing them in the car in the bottom picture because we had just left my sisters cookout after a long day and he wanted to be in his "comfies" :))

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 5 & 6

Happy Tuesday Friends (I almost said Monday! :))

I hope you all enjoyed your wonderful, long holiday weekend. The Gomez family did, and now it's back to work, school and Linnie's for us! :)

I am once again linking up with Katie for the 30 Day Challenge. I did not post yesterday, so today is Day 5 & 6....



Day 5: A picture that makes you happy

If you've been around for awhile, you've seen this picture MANY times! :) It was our Christmas card pic from 2010. These two faces are my absolute EVERYTHING! And although it's totally cliche that I posted a pic of them on this prompt (instead of something original and creative like a picture of a Chili's restaurant (YUMMO!!!!! :) I can't help it. I love them! :)

Day 6: Movies
I'm going to be super honest here and say, I am NOT a fan of movies AT ALL (gasp!!! I know, please don't un-follow me! ;) I think it's just because the idea of sitting still for 2+ hours when I know there are a million and one things I could be doing, just drives me crazy. It's funny though, because my husband LOVES movies. He would spend all of his "TV time" watching movies if it wasn't for how much I do not like them! ;) He (along with everyone else) thinks it's so crazy that I've never seen such "classics" (I use that term loosely) as "There's Something About Mary", "Dumb and Dumber", all the Chris Farley movies, etc. I'm just not into it! ;) With that being said, I two have two all time favorite movies that I would watch over and over again. They are...
Chances Are Poster

I have LOVED this movie for as long as I can remember! Grant it, I was only 8 years old when it came out, but I'm pretty sure I've loved it ever since then. And the songs in the movie, AHHHHH, to die for. Who doesn't love a little Cher and Peter Cetera, "Afterall"???? I know I do! :) And some Rod Stewart, "Forever Young". LOVE it!!! If you've never seen it, you should!

Life as a House Poster

Life As A House is also another fav. It's a total tear jerker, but SUCH a good movie! Check it out! :)

So yeah, that's really the only movies that I LOVE LOVE LOVE! :)

But, with that being said, our church showed the trailer for the movie, "Courageous" that's coming out soon, and I am SO excited to see it. I MAY actually even go to the theater for that one!
Courageous Poster

Have a great day friends! :) 

Sunday, September 4, 2011

30 Day Blogger Challenge: Day 4



Good Morning Friends and Happy Sunday!

I am once again linking up with Katie today for Day 4 of her blogging challenge: Family (I didn't participate in Day 3: Your Job). Honestly, after how crazy the end of last month was, and how draining it was on me, I just didn't feel like talking about work! :) I work for a mortgage company. We have branches all up and down the East Coast. I started there on November 1, 2006. I've always worked in the Pricing Department (pricing up loans and locking in interest rates) until a few months back when I was going to be laid off (the mortgage business, in case you haven't heard ;) is quite volatile) and instead of laying me off they kept me on as a Pricing Analyst, but primarily I'm the Funder (once a loan closes and the recission period passes, I am charge of getting all the funds to the title companies). I LOVE the people I work with! But, remember, I wasn't going to talk about work ;) so on to day 4, my family....

 Manny and I at Spencer's 2nd birthday party (9/3/11)
 Mia Grace, being a big girl in Spencer's bouncy house
My sweaty Manuel, also enjoying the bouncy house (Manuel HATES getting his picture taken! :))

My family is EXTREMELY close (meaning my extended family. So I can't post pics of EVERYONE or else it would take ALL day ;) so I'm just going to post about the semi-immediate ones :))
My mom (and Manuel, Christmas 2010). My mom is AMAZING! She worked SO hard to provide for my sister and I as we were growing up. She has definitely made us the women we are today! :)

My dad and I. As you can tell this pciture is old, but this is how I choose to remember my dad. He was a GREAT man, unfortunately he just had a lot of drug and alcohol deamons. To read more about my dad's struggles, you can go here, here and here. I love him and miss him terribly, but I know, without a doubt, he is whole, complete and healed in Heaven!
My sister, Amy. We are 19 months apart and have certainly had our ups and downs, but I love her to death and wouldn't trade her for anything in the world! :)
 Spencer, my nephew (Amy's son, our families miracle :))
 Vivienne, my niece (Spencer's sister)
The following pictures are pieces of a Sesame Street mural my sister had painted in Spencer & Vivienne's room. Each of their older angel brothers in memoralized somewhere in the mural. This is Ian's butterfly
 This is Mateo's butterfly
This is Anthony's butterfly. Altought my triplet nephews are no longer with us, and I will not see them again this side of Heaven, there is not a SINGLE day that goes by that I don't think about them! I held one, while he took his last breath. A moment I will never forget.
This is Nonna! :) My sweet, amazing, wonderful, fantastic, awesome, 86 year old grandmother. She came to the United States (from Sicily) when my mom was about 7. I nou not say enough wonderful words about Nonna. She is the center of our family and loved more than words can convey! :)

My family is amazing and I honestly couldn't ask for a greater group of people to be surrounded with. My aunts, uncles and cousins are all amazing too!!!! :)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Kindergarten recap (FINALLY! ;)

Happy Saturday Friends! I hope you all are enjoying this holiday weekend! :)

Today we had my nephew Spencer's 2nd birthday party. It was a blast (I'll post pics over the next few days). Spencer is our families little miracle. He's my sister, Amy and Mike's (my BIL) rainbow baby who was born about 15 months after my sister lost my triplet nephews, Mateo, Ian and Anthony. He brought back so much joy and happiness to my sister (NEVER replacing my nephews, but giving Amy a reason to smile again!) It was a great day!

Now, FINALLY a recap of Manuel's first week of Kindergarten (although it wasn't a week because of Hurricane Irene and power outages a Monday start was postponed until Wednesday morning).

Day #1: We had decided that Manny (my husband) would NOT be there to see Manuel off on the bus. Manuel has had really bad separation anxiety with Manny these last few weeks (out of nowhere. He's never been a child that's had separation anxiety but he cries EVERY TIME Manny leaves), but we knew that if Manny was there, Manuel would be a wreck! So I took Manuel to "C" (the daycare center where he goes for before and aftercare) and along with all of his other daycare buddies who are going to his elementary school, we waited for the bus. I had been a pile of tears on and off all morning, but had managed to keep it together "okay" while we waited. Then Nonna (my mom) met us up there to see her first grandson off to his first day of school. The bus pulled up, Manuel got on (he did not shed a tear, nor hesitate in the slightest) and off he went. I lost it! I sobbed and sobbed on the way to drop Mia off at Linnie's. It was just such a huge milestone for him! I was SO busy at work that I didn't even have time to worry about how his first day was going, He had a WONDERFUL day! He knew two children in his class (from preschool). He really liked his teacher, and couldn't wait to go back the next day. The only "problem" he had was the fact that in his locker (yes, they have lockers, but not ones that require combinations! :)) was an extra change of clothes that each child is required to have. The way Manuel's bag was sitting at the top of his locker, his underwear showed each time he opened the locker door (yes friends, those are the things that can cause breakdowns when you're 5 1/2! :)) So I sent his teacher a quick e-mail asking her to rearrange his bag (it was too high for Manuel to reach) so that his undies wouldn't show. Problem solved! :)

Day #2: The real test was coming...how would Manuel do with Manny dropping him off at "C" (daycare) in the morning? Manuel did not shed a tear when Manny left! NOT ONE! He was SO excited for the bus to get there and take him to school. Manuel had another great day! He really enjoyed technology class! When we got home I received an e-mail from his teacher, Mrs. B, who told me that she remedied the underwear situation. She also wanted to let me know that Manuel was doing wonderfully and "He is smart and fun-loving and a joy to have in class!" (what sweet words to hear about my sweet boy! I was very happy that she took the time to tell me this, when I hadn't even inquired about how he was doing because I didn't want to be "that parent" only 1 day in to the school year! ;))

Day #3: Another successful drop off with Manny...no tears! Manuel had Library on Friday and came home with his first school library book (we have to make sure Mia keeps her little hands off this one! :)) He loves school and is doing really well!

I won't continue to do a day-to-day update, but I did want to share about his first 3 days for my own journaling purposes :)

And for good measure...





Friday, September 2, 2011

30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 2

*I PROMISE that I will put up pics today of Manuel's first day of Kindergarten! :) His first and second day went AMAZINGLY well!!!!! :)

Now, on to the blog challenge...

Day #2: Tell Us About Your Blog

What is the meaning behind your blog name?

The name of my blog is obviously, "And for good measure" but if you notice my website address is http://mcgx2.blogspot.com/ that's because my blog used to be called "E=MCG^2" (a spin off of Einsteins E=MC^2) which I got because my husband and my son's initial are MCG, get it? Good! :) (this blog was started before I had Mia). At the time, when I did post, I typically would end my post with "And for good measure..." and post a pic. Time went on, Mia was born, and I would think to myself that I needed to change my blog name because it didn't incorporate Mia (and I didn't want her feelings to be hurt, as if she cared! ;)) So then I thought, "Hmmmm, I end my blog posts with "And for good measure" quite often and that would be a super cute name for a blog" (at least I thought so :)) so than I changed my blog name. And there you have it! :) I never changed my web address because I am NOT technically savvy and I wasn't sure if I did change my website to http://andforgoodmeasure.blogspot.com/ if my followers would be able to find me! :) So I just left my web address alone! :)

How long have you been blogging for? What made you start blogging?
I started my blog on November 18, 2008, but in the beginning I seldom ever blogged. I'd post something once in a blue moon, but I wouldn't call myself a "blogger" at that point in time. Honestly, I started my blog for one reason...so that when I was commenting on other peoples blogs, they could link back to mine and see that I wasn't some anonymous weirdo! :) I had a child (at the time, it was only Manuel), I was married, and just a normal wife and mom :) Yes, that's how my brain works...I wouldn't want people to think I was some psycho, weirdo stalker (although I do realize that doesn't make much sense because you can pretend to be anyone you want on the computer! :) But really, I am not some weirdo, psycho stalker, PROMISE! ;))
 
What are your favorite things to blog about?
I pretty much just blog about my day to day life as a mommy and wife. I'll occasionally link up to a photo challenge or something along those lines, but for the most part it's just rambling about life! :)

What is one tip that you would give a new blogger?
Oh my, I really don't have any business giving anyone blogging advice :) but I can say, TRY not to worry about numbers, followers, who comments, who doesn't, etc. BLOG FOR YOU! (ohhh, perhaps I should take my own advice! ;))

Have a great day friends! :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

30 Day Blog Challenge: Day 1

*I'll be back later today to recap Manuel's 1st day of Kindergarten (which was AWESOME! :)) but for now, I'm linking up to Katie's Journey and her 30 day blog challenge. She did this before and I absolutely loved it! I've decided to join up again. I can't promise I'll do all 30 days, but I'm sure gonna try! :)



Day 1: Introduce Yourself

Hi Everyone! My name is Christina and I love in the beautiful (albeit a tad "boring") state of Maryland. I am 30 years old. I work full time, outside of the home as a Pricing Analyst/Funder at a mortgage company. Although I'd love to be able to stay home with my children (at least part time) that's not possible right now, and I've come to terms with it! :)

Speaking of children, I have two awesome children, Manuel and Mia. Manuel was born 1/31/06. Mia was born 1/18/10 (so they are almost exactly 4 years apart). They make me smile everyday and sometimes make me scream and I can't imagine my life without them.
Manuel, my first born,with a heart of gold! 
Mia, aka "Miss Hollywood" This picture appropriately sums up my little ball of sassiness! ;)

I'm married to an incredibly amazing guy named Manny (also Manuel, but we call him Manny). Manny's life has been a struggle, to put it mildy, from his childhood straight on through to his mid-20's, but he stands here today as a 31 year old, AMAZING man of God, who is the TRUE definition of change and overcoming life's obstacles (to read more about it you can check out these story 1, story 2 and they both have link ups to more of the story, if you care to read :))
A tad more about me...I'm SUPER emotional (about EVERYTHING!-especially when it comes to my children) and although it might come across on my blog as being overly dramatic, that's not the case at all, I just have a really huge heart and take everything to heart (even if I don't know you in real life! :)) I'm Baptist and attend church regularly. For the last 2+ years I've taught Sunday school, but have decided to take this upcoming year off and hope to get involved in a small group. Have questions? Just ask! :) I love blogging and all the super amazing friends I've made through it! :)

Here I am...
Thank you for stopping by! Feel free to stick around awhile, if not, thanks for visiting and take care :)