Monday, November 23, 2009

I remember my days of long skirts, bandanas, smoking cigarettes like I was a bad@$$ & my fascination with everything "Hippie", but today I remember vividly the first time I came face to face with them. It started with a phone call to Brad about meeting up for lunch, and it ended with most likely one of the most life changing events in my life.

{ I fell in love with Brad the day I met him, but I remember being very afraid when I realized he wanted to be in the Air Force and serve his country as a doctor. I was afraid, but because our love was so strong I never hesitated & knew I could make it through anything. My family would be in the military...seriousely I way-I never would have imagined it. I didn't have anything against the military, but I will be honest and say that I really had no idea... being "military" isn't at all what I thought. I've always supported our troops even in times I haven't necessarily supported the wars they were fighting, but for some reason I had some negative association with our military. To me they were all these big war hungry gung ho guys with weird haircuts walking around with guns and saying 1,2,3,4...boy was I wrong. }

Back to my day----Brad and I were meeting up for lunch at BAMC(Brooke Army Medical Center) which is the army hospital. Meeting Brad for lunch is a common thing. I walked into the cafeteria and grabbed my tray as I normally would, then I preceded to gather my lunch and find a seat. I walked all through the cafeteria deciding on what I'd eat, then paying, then grabbing my drink & utensils, then finding my seat and then this is the part I'll never forget. I started to sit down, and then I looked around. I became completely numb...I knew the true meaning of weak in the knees at this point...I know I was staring. My eyes scanned the entire room as I took in each of their faces...most distorted from burns, missing ears...noses...limbs. Some had no limbs left, and those that did had been burned badly or were full of pins and stints. Almost all of them were in wheel chairs. I remember one guy...he was probably 18 or 19 years old, and he had a rectangular skin graft across his neck. I don't know how long I stood there, but it felt like forever. I felt a knot in my throat, and then my eyes started to feel with tears. I kept telling myself I couldn't cry here in front of all these people. I sat down, and Brad said, "I was waiting for you to notice." I couldn't speak...I had absolutely nothing to say. Here I was completely helpless and falling apart, but they were all going about their day. After all they were here to eat lunch. Some had family members with them visiting, sitting, eating and laughing. They had gone to war, and now they were back and conquering another battle. Most would have to learn to walk again, how to eat with their left hands, and find themselves fighting through battle after battle for the rest of their lives. I was speechless and my heart broken.

I left the cafeteria that day changed. I now had the upmost respect for our troops that I ever would. I had come face to face with their sacrifice. I will never forget them or all of those who are still serving our country. I know today is not memorial day, but on the day that we celebrate our independence, I want to thank every single troop and all of those who support them for serving our country guarding the independence that we enjoy.

Thank You & May God Bless You!!!!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Picture Perfect!

So my mom is turning into this fabulous photographer! Here are some pics she took in New Orleans! I'm so proud of her!
***a little history moment....
My grandmother on my dad's side came from Sicily to New Orleans when she was a little girl. Her dad owned a barber shop in the French Quarter(actually on Royal St.), and her family lived upstairs. So, my dad grew up in New Orleans, and I grew up going to visit my grandparents there. New Orleans has always had a very special place in my heart...I feel some sort of overwhelming peace and freeness when I'm there. It's just as special to my parents too as they still visit often even though my grandparents aren't around anymore. People think I'm crazy when I say this, but I would really love to move back one day, and if all the cards play out right I will have a home right near Audubon Park where my kids can come home and feed the ducks in the afternoon, walk to St. Charles Ave. for Mardi Gras, ride their bikes with me down to Whole Foods, visit Hansens on every hot summer afternoon that they want, & know the non-tourist side of the French Quarter. What a dream...I guess we'll see what God has in store for us :)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

oh my sha baby

My mom had taken these back when Jack was ust a little guy....they melted my heart, so I wanted to share! Time goes by too fast!

Friday, November 13, 2009

good morning

I started stirring around 4 am this morning. Thats been pretty normal for me lately. What was I stirring about? Usually more than one thing....I can't sleep on my stomach anymore, so that makes sleeping a little more tossy and turny for me. I also can't stop thinking about what to do about the new baby's room, Jack's room, the curtains I want to make for my bedroom, the bedside tables we sooo desperately need, the twin beds & if I feel like refinishing them, the day bed-should I sell it on Craigslist or use it in little Mady's room(oh by the way we are almost positive we are having a girl, and she will be named Madeline Grace or Madison Grace *we haven't decided yet-the names are our same girl name options from when we were waiting to find out if Jack was a girl or boy), the couch pillow covers that I'm tired of, how I want to go flea market shopping*I wonder if I'll be able to do that with two kids..hmmmm, what baby bedding I want for our little girl we are almost positive we are having, if I feel like painting her room, if I should move Jack into a big boy bed or buy another crib....sheesshh! No wonder I can't sleep!

You know I'm really trying to find my place in this "stay at home mom" world. It's a little overwhelming and oh so wonderful at the same time. Daunting in a way....just imagine all the things I can do each day! Daunting for me mainly because I'm SO indecisive. We usually wake up, have coffee, then breakfast, then get ready & go workout, then its lunch time, then nap time, then Brad comes home, then supper time, then bathtime & beddy bye! Sometimes in the morning we go places rather than workout....I need to start being more ambitious though...I could do so many things...but usually I end up doing my same old routine dreaming about the fabric I'll go buy or walking aimlessly around Hobby Lobby never deciding on anything. Perhaps I need a friend, one that will be better about decision making & have the same tastes as me, then she could tell me what to do when I'm standing in an aisle for 40 minutes trying to make up my mind.

Jack has been amazing lately...well he's always been, but I just LOVE him so much & I'm always thinking about how lucky I am to have such a great little boy. He's so EASY...laid back like his daddy. He really just goes with the flow and let's me do whatever I want....except spend too much time on my computer. He actually can't stand it when I'm on the Santa is bringing him a kids laptop for Christmas and I'm hoping he'll play on that while I play on mine :)

I'm also asking myself what made me so get to stay at home & do whatever I want. Brad goes to work everyday and he works really hard, I work hard too---between caring for Jack, cleaning, being our financial planner, paying & managing all of our expenses, cooking, and..and..and...well actually my life rocks. Everyday is a new day and I pretty much get to decide how it goes. If I don't feel like doing laundry, well I don't. I don't get to decide if I feel like getting up in the middle of the night with a crying baby though...even if its 4-5 times a night. Hopefully our next bundle of joy is a better sleeper...or perhaps I not be such a sucker as far as nursing whenever that little pumpkin wants to, even if its every hour :)

I've also felt this STRONG STRONG desire to work on my religious focus...We are Catholic and love it. I just have been feeling like I'm not being as "Catholic" as I should be. God has given me soo many gifts in my life, and I need to be better & focus more on living more for him rather than me & what I want.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Big Boy Haircut!

Yesterday I finally broke down and cut Jack's hair. It was a tough moment for me, but I did it for the sake of my child who is constantly called a girl even though he's always dressed like a boy. He did great through the whole cut! In fact he was very serious about posing for this first picture...okay not really...he is more interested in the lights on the camera and touching the lense if he can get his little sticky fingers on it!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Thursday, November 5, 2009


I have a picture of myself around Jack's age painting a cardboard box, and if you've ever seen the picture you would notice how focused I was! I've loved art from the very beginning, and it looks like Jack does too! My mom bought him some paints when she kept him last week. They painted everyday, and Jack loved it! He was so focused the whole time...check out the look on his face! I wish I had a scanner so you could see the picture of me painting when I was his age...we look identical!

Monday, November 2, 2009

What a wonderful week!

Brad had a week off for vacation last week, and after much debating on what we should do we decided to spend time in Lake Charles with our familly AND take a mini trip just the two of us. We headed to Lake Charles for a couple of nights, and then Brad and I left for New Orleans for 3 nights while our parents kept Jack for us. It was so great to be back in the city we love so much. We ate and ate and ate! One day we ate at Commander's Palace where I had the best bread pudding souflee I've ever had! Then another night we ate at Muriel's which I have to say was fantastic! We also hit up all of our neighborhood favorites too! Other than eating we just hung out...we went to the bookstore and coffeeshop which are two of our favorite things to do. We still make a point to still do them, but I have to say its much more relaxing for me when I can just sit in a big comfy chair with a few books and magazines and read rather than chase a little munchkin around :) We also spent a lot of time hanging out in the French Quarter making sure to enjoy my oh so favorite beignets and coffee...mmmmm. It was so nice to just relax and be with Brad. I do have to say that I missed Jack ALOT. I was very happy to get away and just as happy to get back to him!

When we got back to Lake Charles it was time to start thinking about Halloween! Jack dressed up like a cowboy, and I just know he was the cutest cowboy around! We've been reading Halloween books and we even practiced trick or treating so he was completely ready for the big night. He absolutely LOVED it! He understood what to do too! It was so cute watching him walk up and hold his bucket up for people to put treats in it, then he would look inside to see what he precious! (*most of my good pics are on my mom's camera so there will be more pics to come)
Trunk or Treat with cousin Marianna!

Oh did these babies love suckers!!!

Brad wearing Jack's hat because Jack wouldn't keep it on!

Playing basketball...have I mentioned before that Jack LOVES LOVES balls. He throws them overhand and pretty far!