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Posts tagged ‘blessed’

2018 in review

How is it that there are 10 days left of 2018? This year, as nearly every year since becoming an adult, has flown by. I am reflecting upon the past 355 days, as I tend to do every year around this time. What a year it has been.

January – My grandma and one of the dearest people in my life passed away. Business was slow.

February – Business picked up some. Court ordered a G.A.L. be appointed.

March – I did my first wedding of the year, along with several other sessions. I was prepping for my daughter’s second birthday party. I met with the G.A.L.

April – My daughter turned two! It was fun celebrating her birthday! I did my second wedding, got it last minute, on my husband’s 30th birthday. He had a fun celebration with friends and family.

May – My mom turned 60! Business kept coming. I photographed my first 50th Anniversary party. My hubby & I celebrated our third wedding anniversary. Three years in!

June – Business was fairly busy, with three weddings, a family session, etc. We wanted to get a camping trip in and then never got the chance. I had to take my son to summer school that was over an hour away every day he was with me and it made for long days.

July – I had to get my son to summer school some yet. He nearly failed the one class, but I got him to turn things around. I worked with his teacher to figure things out and got him to study. I had two more weddings. Court for placement wasn’t fun. I asked for an appeal. I did a couple weddings.

August – I did a wedding and a lot of sessions. We made time to go to the parks and swim over the summer. Too bad we didn’t make it camping though.

September – I think this was my busiest month for business. I did three weddings, a Quinceanera, a Sweet 16th, senior pictures, etc. My son started sophomore year. Hubby drove a lot of Uber hours. Life was so busy.

October – We celebrated six years together as a couple. It was a busy month for business too, two weddings, four senior picture sessions, etc. I got to go to Florida and ride on a plane for the first time ever, witnessed my cousin’s wedding. It was an incredible experience!!!! We took the kids trick or treating. I finally got to see the otter exhibit at the zoo. It was prep time for my son’s 16th birthday party.

November – My son turned 16!!!! He had a lot of family and friends come by. It was crowded in our house. 😉 He had a great time! Business was still fairly busy, but wedding season was finally over, except for the editing part. The appeal for court went fairly well. I get placement over the summer and should all go well then, there’s a good chance I get to keep it into the school year. I am PSYCHED! We have been fighting for this for years! Here’s hoping!!!

December – I turned 40 a few days ago. I have had quite the month so far! My hubby took me to see Lindsey Stirling and while away, I also got a spa package at the amazing hotel he booked a room at. It was a wonderful time all around!!! I got to see my friends this past weekend and that was fun. I got to sing karaoke! I started bowling every other week with friends. I did Santa mini sessions in my studio, for year number three. I wish I had booked more. I am finally making a dent in my editing.

There have been some struggles throughout the year, largely financial, but we keep plugging away. God helps us keep going. The kids are healthy, we all have one another, a roof over our heads, plenty to eat, clothes to wear, etc. We are also surrounded by family and friends. As stressed as we have been, honestly, things could be a lot worse. I think we are actually fairly blessed. 2018 hasn’t been great money wise and we have lost people we love, but it hasn’t been a BAD year. A lot of great things happened. I am looking forward to seeing where 2019 takes us though!!! 2019, here we come!!!!

 

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Life is….

Life

Life is many things to many people. Essentially, it’s what we’re given from the moment we are conceived. But, what it means to us is individualized; it’s personal. What is life to you?

To me, it’s many things…..

Life is being alive, giving, helping others, being kind, friendship, family, breathing, crying, laughter, passion, compassion, faith, beauty, heartache, struggles, sorrow, peace, prayer, art, music, adventure, loving, being loved, truth, lies, deception, the past, the present, the future, thoughts, dreams, ambitions, goals, hope, fear, pain, loss, gain, nature, appreciation, compromise, misunderstandings, fights, manipulations, victory, encouragement, cause, effect, food, nurturing, darkness, light, wondrous, haunting, grudges, forgiveness, emotional, real, and it is unique to each beholder.

Life is full of so much and to experience even half of what it has to offer is an incredible gift. It’s not always easy, but it’s a beautiful thing. To know the wonderful parts of it means one also has experienced the dark and depressing as well. I have wished, more than once, to not be able to feel anything, to be numb to it all, when going through particularly painful things. But, I am glad God never granted that request. Truthfully, I’d rather feel everything than nothing at all.

In my life, I have experienced so much incredible and horrifying things. When asked if I would change any part of my life, I have considered a few things I might. Not being molested or having had to be in the foster care system, yeah, that was at the top of my list. Having a better relationship with my parents and them having a better one with each other, it was right up there too. Mistakes I have made – lies, stealing, and some truly awful things, yeah I have sometimes wished I could take back the horrible things I’d done. Oh and let’s not forget about some of the poor choices I made when it came to friendships and dating! Save myself some heartache, oh you bet! There are so many bad things I’ve dreamed about “fixing”.

But then I’d think about it and realize what changing even one of those things could mean to my life as it is now. There are many wonderful people I wouldn’t have met, including my husband – which then means I wouldn’t have my daughter. If I hadn’t jumped in elbow first with my son’s dad, my amazing boy wouldn’t be here either. If I hadn’t signed those papers in 2005, would I have grown the way I did, the way I needed to? If I hadn’t been friends with the wrong people, would the right ones have come along? There are so many what ifs and questions I don’t want to think about. So when asked if I would change anything about my life, the honest answer is no. As painful as some parts of my life have been, it’s all led me to where and who I am now. The butterfly effect, well, it’s not something I wish to mess with. Instead, I am grateful for the life I have now and am excited to see what it will become in the days ahead.

What about you? Feedback? What are your opinions of life, what it is, what it means to to you, and would you dare to change anything about yours?

Starting Over….

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Those of you that have read my blog quite a bit know that I have a 12, nearly 13, year old son. We’ve had our challenges, but he’s beginning to grow, mature, and discover who he wants to become. For a 12 year old, he’s gone through more than most of his friends have.

It’s become quite common to live in split households, something that wasn’t common when I was growing up. And, it’s also not so uncommon for someone to have step-parents, which he now has in both homes. I have a step-mom. But, that doesn’t make it easy on someone, just because you know you’re not the only one out there going through it.

His dad and I have been at odds from the beginning and for awhile, it was very bad. I had to get a lawyer, there was mediation, and court dates. Our son was caught in the middle of it all and that should never have been the case. His dad and I do get a long a lot better now, as we too have grown and matured. Though, we still have our moments when we butt heads, but overall we are able to work together, along with our spouses, to give our son a good life.

Zach has had to adjust to all of that and since June, a baby brother that his dad and step-mom had. He’s been quite jealous, as is understandable as he’s been an only child for nearly 13 years. He’d reverted to a young child like state for awhile. He’s beginning to come around. Now, he’s going to have to go through the same thing in our home as well.

I found out nearly three weeks ago that I am pregnant. By the time our child is born, my son will be 13 and a half. This will be completely new territory for my husband, as this will be his first child. He has nephews and now a young niece, but that’s not the same thing at all as having your own child. And for me, this will be starting all over again. One could say it’s like riding a bike, you don’t forget how to deal with babies, but the truth is, every child is different. I have no idea what our child will be like and yes, while it looked like “the end” was in sight per say, I am quite excited.

I love my son more than life itself. But, I do sometimes feel very badly about not giving him the life I’d once sworn I would give my children. When I was growing up, I told myself that things would be different when I became a mom. I would fall in love and be married to my best friend first and then together, we would raise our children. Life would not be perfect, this is something I’d learned early on. I knew there would be struggles, sad times, and there would be moments when I’d wonder how things would work out. But, with my partner, I knew I wouldn’t be alone and that we’d face it all together.

Well, that’s not how my story went. My son’s father and I didn’t even date. Heck, we weren’t even friends really. It was sex and nothing more to him. For me, I can’t say that it was love either, but I did have feelings for him that went beyond lust. I still can’t really put my finger on how I felt about him. It was strange, I just felt oddly connected to him, like he was supposed to be in my life. Well, God knew Zach was to come into our lives, so it doesn’t really matter now what either of us were thinking or feeling. What happened gave us our son and I don’t for a second regret that.

The situation has changed for me this time around. Now, this time I am married to my best friend and partner. This time, I won’t be at odds with my baby’s father, won’t be fighting with him about who gets to see our child when, and this time we’ll be working together from the very beginning. I think this will make a wold of difference. This child will have a better life, one that I wanted my son to have, one that he’ll never have. But, I mustn’t beat myself up over that. The life my son has now may not be ideal, but it is not a bad one either.

My son has not only two parents that love him, but two step-parents that love him as well. And from there, he also has a lot more family who has welcomed him and who love him like we do. He has a lot of support and I am truly grateful for the life he has now. Things were rough in the beginning, but things have turned around. A child doesn’t have to live in a home where their parents are married and happy to have a good life. I used to think that way though, that I could never have a good life because my parents weren’t together and because my life was so broken. The trick is to find ways to put those broken pieces of who you are together. You may not be who you were, but perhaps someone better, someone wiser, someone stronger, and someone happier.

My two children will have very different lives, but one thing that they will both have in common is that their mother loves them with all of her heart and will do all she can to give them the best life possible. Also, my husband will be there for them both as well, giving all he is to making sure they have a good life. Our children will have family, support, encouragement, and so much love.

Here’s to starting over and here’s to a happy and healthy baby in May of 2016….

Checking In & Catching Up

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Life has been very busy as of late. In fact, I don’t think I have ever had so much going on at once before. The last two weeks, we have had something going on every single day/evening. For the most part, it’s good things. Work is steady, there’s our church membership classes and of course church services to attend as well, bowling league, wedding planning, and now to add to that last part…we begin pre-martial classes next month. And then of course, there is my son’s birthday, my birthday, several Christmas gatherings, a friend’s wedding, and such coming up. We do have a stressful situation concerning my son to deal with and it’s not likely it’s going to get any easier any time soon, but we’re committed to making things better for him and getting him the help he needs.

Overall, life is going fairly well and it certainly is nice to have such a fulfilling life, full of so much love and laughter. I have never been so blessed, so surrounded by so many wonderful people that are supportive, kind, and loving. And I love planning my wedding, not the financial part of it lol, but all the details that are going into our special day. I also look forward to the many wonderful events coming up, like my son turning 12 in about two and a half weeks. Despite all that’s going on with him these days, I can’t ignore his birthday. My little man is slowly, or perhaps not so slowly, turning into a teenager and soon enough, he’ll be an adult. I can hardly believe I have a sixth grader who is so intelligent and full of so many ideas for his future. I hope that his future is as bright as he’s dreaming it will be. I will do all I can to help him along the way.

Sometimes we complain that life is too hectic and I will admit it’s nice to have some time to read, write, work on things I have neglected for awhile, and sometimes just do nothing but relax. But, I will say that overall I am alright with how busy we are because much of what we have going on is enriching our lives, helping us grow, teaching us, and providing pathways to brighter futures for us as individuals, as a couple, and as a family. Though, I am happy to have some time right now to catch up on my blogging. I hope all is well in the land of WordPress. I sure do miss you guys and gals when I am not on for awhile. If you read this, perhaps share a story with me? Tell me, what have you been up to?

My Quest For A Fairytale Life

 

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I spent years chasing my fairytale

And dreaming of a love built to last

Hoping my prince would sweep me off my feet

Together then we would find our happily ever after

 

After awhile it seemed that love would forever elude me

Each relationship I entered into failed miserably

And by the end of each one, I felt more and more lost

Stuck in a maze of loneliness, doubt, and failure

 

I prayed that God would send my prince to me

That he would help guide me out of the darkness

I imagined him fighting through the maze to find me

He would face many foes and defeat each one

 

How was I to know that I was the greatest challenge of all?

As much as I desired to love and be loved in return

I held it and any real chance of stability at arms length

Fearing what would happen if I ever let them get too close

 

As the days turned into years, my depression grew

And the anger at the world and at myself festered within me

Lashing out, just so tired of an imperfect world and life

Hating who I was, not knowing how to overcome the demons within

 

God slowly began to show me a path that would lead me out

That would guide me towards the life I desired

Though it would not be an easy path to take

But if I was brave enough, I would see it would all be worth it

 

After losing countless friends due to the demons within me

And many failed relationships, I began to waken from my nightmare

As I began to see the light up ahead and find the courage to follow it

Things began to change all around and within

 

Some things lost were never to be recovered

And while it broke my heart to realize this

I saw that He was bringing me to new and better things

As I bid goodbye to the past, a sense of hope was kindled in me

 

Some friendships were saved and new life was found within them

Relationships with family members were strengthened

The roadblocks between my son and I began to crumble

And now we’re closer than ever, now that my head is on straight

 

As the hope within me blossomed, the clouds above me thinned

I began to make my way through the dark maze

Holding onto the rays of light that were trying to guide me through

And after many years, I finally found my way out

 

At the exit, there he was, waiting for me

Knowing I could do it without a knight to come to the rescue

As I turned to look back at the maze, I realized something

In one sense, I did it on my own and yet, I was also never alone

 

I had to find the courage and will within me to fight the demons

But that courage came from God

And when I thought I was walking alone

He was there beside me, guiding me every step of the way

 

And the support of many that loved me was within me

Cheering me on, I just didn’t see them

My eyes were too focused on the difficulties to really see

But even in my darkest times, I was never alone

 

Now here I stand, still taking things one day at a time

I still have some rough days

But they’re not like before

This time, I know I will make it through them all

 

As it turned out, my fairytale wasn’t something I needed to chase

It needed to find me, when the time was right

When I was truly ready for it

When it was meant to be

 

My prince doesn’t ride upon a magnificent steed

And nor does he battle to save my life

Though he does wage wars with the demons inside my head

But together we fight them and we always win

 

When I feel like I will fall apart, he is there to help me

He balances me out, stabilizes me

But he does not control me

He lets me know that I can do whatever I set my mind to

 

I found within him not only my partner, but also my best friend

And I in turn, do all that I can to help him

As he walks with me, I walk with him each day of our lives

Helping one another through the bad times & together celebrating the good ones

 

We also remember to nourish our friendships

Not only enjoy our time together

But also our time apart

Enjoying all that makes us who we are

 

We are blessed, both as a couple and as individuals

We have family that loves us

Friends that adores us

Jobs, a home, pets to raise, and one another to come home to

 

Life will never be perfect

Not even in fairytales

But as I realized that

It was then I saw just how beautiful it is

Hello again!

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It has been awhile since I have posted. I have been quite busy as of late. Rest assured though, I have not forgotten about you guys and gals. I just have had a lot going on. I started a new job, had a lot going on with our puppy, got another new cat and we have had to get Onyx to adjust to yet another animal in “HIS” home.  And there has also been a lot of family stuff to attend to as well. It’s been a busy, but blessed past few months. I have missed you all though. I hope all is well with all of you. 🙂

Over the last few months, I have learned a lot about patience, compassion, and the rewards of hard work. Patience has never been one of my strong suits, but I am constantly working on it. Good things come to those to not only those who work for what they want, but also have the patience to wait for it as well. It’s often hard to wait for what you want, but many times it is necessary.

Things at work are going alright. I like it where I am. It’s a temporary position for now, but I am trying to make it a long term assignment. We shall see what comes of it. Things at home are going well. My family is so important to me. I have been trying to focus more on spending time with them, to cherish each moment we are given together. Lucy is growing so fast. I can hardly believe she is almost six months. She was so tiny when we brought her home. She was smaller than Onyx, but no longer. She is a bit too rough with him, but Onyx usually just goes to where she can’t reach him. Archer hasn’t taken to her yet, but at least Archer and Onyx get along alright now. It’s only been two days though, so I am sure things will get even better for them and hopefully drastically better between Archer and Lucy. My son loves them all, has bonded quite nicely with Lucy finally. It took months for him to warm up to her. He has always been more of a cat person, but lately he has been taking her on walks and playing with her. They wear each other out. 😉

I think perhaps that Doug is going to propose soon. I am getting anxious. I am trying to be patient, but it is hard. Yeah, that whole talk of patience is easier to talk about than it is to put into practice. He is my best friend, my partner. I just want to make it official, to be his wife. But, I know it has to be on his time. He had hinted that he would ask in the spring of 2014 though, so now that it is upon us, it has gotten increasingly difficult. (especially with the hinting he does lol) I love that man, so much. I can hardly believe how wonderful the life we have built together is. I dreamt of this kind of life often, but I had really begun to wonder if I’d ever find it. Now that I have, I find that it’s exceeded my desires. I thank God every day for him, for our little family, and for the future we are building….for us individually, as a couple, and as a family. My son and Doug mean the world to me. ❤

Life is good. I pray that it is going well for all who read this. I pray that you are cherishing those around you and making the most of each day. Each day is a gift. Once gone, it can not be replaced or relived. So, don’t waste the time given. ❤

Thank you so very much!

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Here’s to you all you weird and amazing people out there! Every now and again, I need to tell you how very grateful I am for the support you guys and dolls show me. Being a part of this really is such an incredible experience I am glad I get to have. I don’t always say anything, but I do read your posts as well. Thank you for sharing a piece of who you are with me and the rest of WordPress. Thank you for your stories, for your words of inspiration, for opening up to us, for just being who you are. And thank you for accepting me for who I am. Seriously, thank you so very much! I consider myself blessed to have been directed to this site and to have come across so many wonderful, talented, and compassionate people. Thank for not only your support, inspiration, and allowing me to do the same for you, but also for your friendship. I love you all! ❤

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