February 16, 2015

June 16, 2013

Our Daddy, Our Hero!

Early on in our relationship, Xee was given a shirt that quoted the following, "To be a winner, all you need to give is all you have." Through the years and many washings, it is literally starting to disintegrate, but I won't let him throw it away.  It has always been, and will ever be the truest testament of who he is and what he stands for.

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December 25, 2012

The Reason He Came...US

Need to chat?
Get something off your chest?
Broken hearted?

Wonderful Counselor

In a Panic?

Mighty God

Let Down?

Everlasting Father

Wound up...
Can't keep up?



Stressed Out?

Prince of Peace

"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16

November 20, 2012

October 9, 2012

Flying Elephants and I'm Back In the Saddle Again...

Hi Strangers!  Yeah, yeah, I know.  Its been eons since you saw freshly typed words around these parts.  Some of you faithful few may recall that I didn't start this blogging thing 'til Phoebe was at a "manageable" age.  Now our family has blossomed and well, twenty-month old boy....need I say more?    

So don't you get any ideas about this being a regular occurance. We'll just see about that.  I'm living moment by glorious moment dancing in the kitchen, giving piggy-back rides, singing our ABC's and teaching baby sign language again!  We've been swept up into the world of Betsy Tacy, while sewing blankets and curtains and designing clothes for a stuffed toy (I mean, genuine member of our family) named Valentine.

And cloud gazing.

We live in the most ideal place for that.

Have you ever seen a french poodle diving into a pool of of marshmallows?  I have. How about a volcano erupting white chocolate lava?  A giant dinosaur baby holding a rattle, or perhaps a host of elephant angels?

When was the last time you something as outlandish as that?

I sure hope it was just this morning! I hope it happens on your way home from work, while walking your kids to the bus-stop, sweeping the back porch or mowing the lawn.  I pray you see it.

Do you see it?

May 18, 2012

Still On A Blogging Hiatus

The new number one reason, at least as of a couple months ago, is that we moved.  Still living in gorgeous Ko Olina, new location.  The word "exhausted" doesn't begin to describe my condition in the process.  Pooped, worn out, burned out, wiped out... okay, you get the picture.  Blessed!  Now that's a good word.  We're still getting this placed unwrapped, but loving our new location.  We're blessed and we know it!  (Hey, I might just have to altar the words to a popular kids song tomorrow during worship.)

The list of events I have yet to log is piling up, but please see numbers one through ten on the previous post and know that numbers five, six, eight, nine and ten remain quite valid.  So, months keep rolling by, pictures are yet to be downloaded and stories are left untold.  My sweet boy, Ezra had a birthday, my sweet girl, Phoebe had a birthday, my dear mom came to visit (yay!).  And we moved.  Yep, life is much louder in real time and these moments with my computer are fewer and farther between.  

I kind of like that way.

Yet, I miss you all.

There are thoughts left to share.

But not today.

February 9, 2012

Top Ten Reasons I'm on a Blogging Hiatus (in somewhat chronological order)

1.  At this very moment I am picking the laptop off the floor to continue with this post.  Three seconds ago I was helping Phoebe aim for the bowl next to her on the couch.  Throwing up stinks.

2.  This morning I woke up with food poisoning (or a stomach bug?).  Phoebe didn't show symptoms til about  4 o'clock this afternoon while playing with friends outside.  Poor thing came running down the street to tell me how she was feelin'...she didn't have to say anything.  I'm thankful for good neighbors, who pull hoses from garages and spray down the street while I stroke the hair of one very sad (and embarrassed) little lady.

3. A last-minute trip to the mainland for Xee's dad's 65th surprise birthday party which included one overnight flight into L.A., a drive to Fresno, where we stayed for two days, headed back to Orange County, said goodbye to Daddy, a pinch or two (or a hundred) of baby drama, lots of hugs and kisses, one very surprised sister of mine (gotcha!), precious time with my Mama, and one very hairy second week, which included.... one night of throwing up (Phoebe again), THE nastiest virus on the planet for all but my mom (thank you Lord for my Mom!), bilateral ear infections for Miss Phoebe (SERIOUSLY!!), my first (and likely last) solo flight with the two kids, one week-long sinus infection for me....deep breath.  Sigh.  We're home.

(Until today, this was number 1 on the list.)

P.S. Xee's dad was incredibly surprised to see us and moved to tears.  It was a priceless moment and worth every effort to be there for it!!!

4.  Still unpacking, reorganizing, and recovering (see number 3).

5.  Four half-written posts and another dozen in my head but lack of time, creative juices, or more often than not, an inability to ignore my body's command to sleep have kept me from completing any of them.  I rarely argue with my body these days.

6.  The gravitational pull on my eyelids.  Did I mention sleep is a priority?

7.  We finally finished putting Christmas away (see number 3 again).

8.  A good book awaits.  Three actually.  I tend to have more than one good read laying around the house in places that I might steal small doses of a paragraph or two when a moment presents itself.

9.  My real life is happening in real time and I don't want to miss a thing.  Magical baby milestones are happening at every turn and though I desperately want to chronicle them all, I'm just having so much fun being smack-dab in the middle it.  And time alone with my husband?  Also rare (see numbers 5b and 6).

10.  I've had the strongest desire to go dark lately.  While I find my modern conveniences quite enjoyable, in our world of facebook and smart phones, and Apps for everything imaginable, technological advances are happening at warp speed, flooding into nearly every waking moment, and if I don't put a cork in it, I might miss something really great.  I might miss an opportunity to be still.  To be quiet.  To focus.  To breathe.  To be real.

Really real.

In my mind I sometimes imagine that I have a modern gal on one shoulder-happy to be juggling multiple projects, texting on my cell, running around with the kiddos, and uploading videos to YouTube...and a little Amish girl on the other-one who longs for a quiet walk in a wide-open space, and has never seen a television or a computer.  Okay, maybe Amish is a bit of a stretch.  I think I'm somewhere in the middle of these two little ladies.  I suppose I kind of like it that way.  Still, I long for a forced simplicity.  I may have more to say on this later, but for now, see number 6.

December 29, 2011

Birthday Blunder

Okay, before I post any current updates or pictures, can I just note that Phoebe turned five over seven months ago and for the first time since starting this blog, I did not post pictures.  Why?  Because there are none.  Well, there are some.  Okay one.  I mean, maybe two.  Yikes!  What happened?

I had intentions to plan a birthday party in the month of May, for a May birthday.  The party actually happened in June, which really, is pretty impressive that it happened at all with a new babe in the house.

So, Phoebe turned five!  And we had a great time celebrating at the box car races.  Somehow I managed to throw this thing together and still nurse a baby and rock him to sleep in his carrier, but the pictures??  Oops.

Can you believe my baby is five?? Actually, five and a half!  May is just around the corner.

December 22, 2011

No Pictures Please

I need a manager.  All rock stars have managers, right?  And while we're at it, how about a driver?  I need one of those too.  Yep, I'm a rock star alright.  I even kind of resemble one in the morning.  Ask my husband.  When I get up, my eyes are half-open and I've got a bit of messy Billy Idol-ish mohawk thing goin' on.

And you?  Many of you reading this are rock stars.  You make up beds and patch boo-boos, wipe bottoms, do dishes with one hand while eating with the other, bake cookies, fold the laundry, and chop the veggies. You grade papers, take out trash, keep the plants alive (sort of), and so much more, all while entertaining the masses.  You're a star.  American Idol.  Don't feel that way?  LOL.  Well, you are.

So where's my entourage?  We seem to be a bit short-staffed around here lately.  Me-the-chef and Me-the-maid just walked out again (they'll be back).  Meanwhile, Me-the-writer and Me-the-dancer are MIA, and the rest of us are afraid if we don't find them soon we might end up in an asylum...or at the very least, self-medicating with unspiked eggnog and an obscene amount of chocolate.  Darn!  That's right, chocolate doesn't agree with the baby.  Well alright, plain ol' vanilla ice cream then.

At lunch time today I kept trying to find some leftovers that I had put in the fridge.  I couldn't even find the container, but figured that my husband had taken them to work.  Hours later, I went to put tonight's leftovers in a tupperware container from the cupboard, and surprise!  The leftovers! That lack of chocolate has some serious side effects!  Like I said, I need a manager.

December 20, 2011

The Power of the Subconscious Mind

Ever heard of a Freudian slip of the fingers?  I cannot tell you how many times I have gone to email someone our IP address and typed in w-w-w dot happy her T-R-I-A-L-S dot blogspot dot com.

Alright Dr. Freud, you may have been onto something after all.

November 24, 2011

Thanks Living

Count your blessings.  We all know the saying.  Have you ever started counting and gotten all the way to a thousand?  What started as a friend's challenge for Ann Voskamp led to her best selling book, One Thousand Gifts.

Since I haven't actually read the book, this isn't a recommendation.  I'll add it to my long list of reads I may or may not get to this year (or next for that matter). But I love the concept behind the book. My friend sent me the video clip below, and it really resonated with me because it so eloquently echos what I have been experiencing in my own personal walk with God.  Slowing down.  Opening my eyes.  Waking up.

Phoebe and I started a blessings journal.  We haven't gotten to a thousand yet, but we're working on it.  This life is a gift.  This life is beautiful.  Bountiful.

So I am thankful.

I am thankful.

I am thankful for dirty dishes because it means I am fed. I am thankful for laundry because I have clothes on my back. I am thankful for dust because it means I have shelter.  I am thankful for toys and wet towels on bathroom floors.  I am thankful for sticky fingers and chocolate milk mustaches. I'm thankful for raindrops on flowers and puffy, white clouds.  I am thankful for peanut butter cookies and purple tennis shoes.  I'm thankful for music and laughter and dance, for squishy babies and rainbows and marriage and sunset after glorious sunset!

I am thankful.

While you scurry to get the gravy in the boat and the bird cooked just right,  the kids won't sit still while Grandpa says Grace, and the life that you live seems like a colorful blur of madness...STOP.

Look right.

Look left.

Do you see them?










November 7, 2011

The Martins

Recently we had the privilege of seeing our dear friends, Don and Linda Martin.  This dynamic couple came into our lives when Xee helped them with a Marriott transaction.  They hit it off and soon after, I got to meet them too.  Every year they come to Ko Olina for a vacation and we get together for dinner.  Xee was out of town this year during their visit, so he missed them, but Phoebe, Ezra and I were so blessed by their visit. Phoebe was especially thrilled to have Auntie Linda around for some fancy tea and a shopping extravaganza in her royal bedroom.  What a pair!  We love you Don and Linda and we can't wait to see you next year!!!

October 12, 2011

The Boy

Here are some recent videos of our little Ezra. He is such a joy!

September 22, 2011

Photo Ops

Well folks, with our days filled to the brim with giggles and wiggles, play dough and poopy diapers, there is only so much time to squeeze in a little blog time.  Here are a few more pictures of the last several months around here, though not in chronological order. I am loving being a Mommy of two amazing kiddos.  Ezra is beginning to show us more and more personality, and Phoebe...well, you all know she's got plenty of that!  We are enjoying our time as a family and loving life in beautiful Hawaii.  We are incredibly blessed!

Sissy Love
Ezra's napped almost exclusively in the baby carrier for his first several months....eating was a bit tricky!
Ah, teething...

Nice day for a dip

His first rash guard
Looking so fancy in a crown...
The Bumbo didn't last long with this guy, who definitely lives up to the title, "Bouncing Baby Boy"! You should see me try to wrestle him into his pajamas every night!!

Look familiar?  This boy would suck one, two, or even three fingers at a time until
recently settling on his thumb.  Another self-soother in the family!
Thanks for the "Baby Legs" Melynne!
His first ride on the back!

Look at me sitting up all by myself!
This girl has an eye for fashion...

Hey, they can ride together in the Costco cart!
Another fancy accessory for the boy!
Just hangin'
He used to carry Phoebe like this too!
Phoebe likes to hike with Daddy.  This is the view from Diamond Head. She does this one on her own...mostly!
Having a "moment" on one of
their many adventures together.
Sunrise view from one of Xee's early morning hikes...gorgeous!

September 13, 2011

This Journey

I don't quite know when it happened.  When did she get so tall?  Has her face changed yet again?  Did I not just pull her out of a baby pouch and stand her on chubby, wobbly legs to roam freely in the grass?  I sit here alone in the living room and glance at the clean laundry sprawled out all over our sofa, but I cannot let this moment pass me by, for I fear that it may forever be lost if I do not write.  I must write.

Tonight I looked at your big, brown eyes staring up at me.  I stroked your wet hair as your naked form stood next to mine in the shower. You nestled your head against my ribcage while I rinsed away shampoo suds.  No longer a babe in my arms, but a little lady.  A baby still, yet no longer.  I take a deep breath.

We step out onto the mat and I look at your feet.  They've grown.  They are shaped just like mine.  You brush your teeth and I glance up at the mirror.  Who is this woman looking back at me?  I see myself, yet someone else as well.  A familiar face from my youth.  A mother.

You brush and floss your own teeth, and I begin to brush your hair.  You reach for the brush and say, "I'll do it."  I follow you into your room. You get into your pajamas, then you offer to read me a bedtime story for a change.  "Okay," I say.  We snuggle up close and I listen as you read me one of your favorite books.  I hear your tale, but in my mind's eye, I'm taken to another place...a vision of our journey together thus far.

I glance down at my swollen belly, then at the dirt road under foot.  Starting at the base of the hill, I cannot see the road ahead.  I begin the walk.

Soon I am swaddling a babe in my arms.  I keep walking.  The road is windy as we begin to climb higher and higher still.  We round the corner.  Now you are on my back.

Another turn up ahead.  I lean over as you grasp my fingers for support while your little legs scoot along.

I look to my left, and now you are reaching up to take hold of just one hand.  We walk like this for a long time, hand-in-hand, along the steady incline.  Sometimes I carry you.

We skip. We run.  We laugh.

You pout.  I shout.  We laugh.  We cry.

We walk.

We run.

We stop.

Another blind corner.

Slowly we approach.  Then we gasp.  It's beautiful.

We are at the edge of the precipice, overlooking the beautiful valley.

The edge of innocence.

Now the tough questions begin.

"Mommy, why doesn't her daddy live with her and her mommy?"

"Do some people not go to heaven?"  "Where do they go instead?"

"How do they make donuts anyway?"  Giggle

We stand like this for a bit longer, side by side.

We both look down.

It's a long way down.

A gust of wind forces a step back.

You reach up and clench my hand once more.

Both fear and excitement burn like fire in your eyes.

Shall we explore?  Or will we gaze out for just a bit longer, my Love?

Stay close to Mama.  Don't let go of my hand just yet.

Not yet.

August 14, 2011

Family of Four

Well, well, well... I am finally getting the chance to post some pictures! Hooray! When my sister-in-law was here with her kids back in February, she took hundreds of pictures. She always gets some great shots. She took some lovely pictures of our family. It took me a bit to go through and pick out a few favorites to share. Ezra looks so teeny-tiny back then. He's growing so fast. It really does go faster with the second! Now I just need to catch up on the pictures from the last, um, FIVE months or so! More to come...eventually.