Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Grateful Times - Things I Am Thankful for Right Now

I work hard to practice gratitude every single day. Life is such a gift, even in the darkest days, and I am incredibly thankful for so many things! The following list is just a tip of the iceberg, really... 

The very fact that I get to be their mother, being with them, watching them do their activities, listening to them talk to each other, the stories they tell, their laughter, all the skits, plays and WWE moves they perform, the kind and generous hearts they have for other people, the compassion they possess, the ability to laugh at themselves and to be quick and witty, their try, their blue, blue eyes, their long, long legs, the pride they have in behaving for their teachers and coaches, the respect they show to others, the unconditional love they still have for me even when I mess up.

Husband/Best Friend
The love and support he gives, his voice, his blue, blue eyes, his long, long legs, his ability to always be positive no matter how tough times may be, the kindness of his heart, the way he calls throughout the day, the amazing strength he has to push through when he is in pain, his deep and abiding knowledge that he must live a clean and sober life for us, the way he can dream so big and then make it happen, the special inborn quality he has to sell anything, his lasting and true friendship, the way he is my rock, heart and soul.

My fabulous childhood and the way they spoiled me but still taught me gratitude and appreciation and how to work hard, the western heritage and lifestyle they gifted into my life, their ability to always do the right thing even when it's hard, their faith in me when I don't have it in myself, the long phone calls in between visits, the teasing, the knowledge, camping with my little B's, all the stories, the Catholicism they introduced into my life, the faith they have, the unconditional love they have for everyone, the comfort of knowing they are always there for us, their ability to bounce back from adversity, the love and care they show to us all. 

The introduction of "beloved" into my life, the way she thinks we are perfect even though we aren't, her pride and joy in our lives, the stories that are told with such flair and drama to hold our interest time after time, her devotion to her faith and church even though it isn't the same as ours, the way she can find the most quality item hidden in any thrift store in existence, her excellent taste in clothing and home decor, the star quality she passed onto my daughter, her beautiful face and sweet heart.

Friends new and old, the ones who care and who make time and show us we matter to them, coaches who give so much time, encouragement and life skills to my children, preparing them for the twisted road of life, teachers who care so very much and give more than they should have to give because they know it is the best and right thing for their students, priests who live the amazing life of faith and service, giving endlessly, doctors who go the extra mile and care more about their patient than the broken system, family members who love us and think we are special in spite of what others think, our equine vet who is so kind and knowledgeable and about more than the bottom line, Veterans and all the military who protect us every day, strangers, athletes, singers, actors/actresses, celebrities who share their gifts and are generous with their abundance. The lesson givers, for they help us grow. People.

In pastures, alive and healthy, slick in the spring, furry in winter, their sweet breath and all-knowing eyes, a head on my shoulder when I need it most, a nudge in the back if they need more attention, a nicker to say they are hungry, their willingness to give their all, the comfort and friendship they offer just being there.

The very fact that I am so very lucky to have all of them, the freedom they afford to accommodate the little B's schedules, being able to use my college degree, the total love, admiration and respect I feel for my bosses (so glad I don't have to work for a mean person!), the amazing opportunities I have to learn and grow in all aspects of working. 

The incredible freedom we all take for granted, the ability to choose the life we are living, choices, excitement, clean water, healthy food, good roads, nice vehicles, the million things Americans take for granted every single day, the heroes who ensure our freedom, the patriotic spirit we are born with - God bless America!

The pride and deep-seated knowledge in my soul that it is the religion of my heart and the first church started by Jesus, the comfort and compassion that comes from ritual, expectations and prayer, the incredible freedom to believe, forgiveness, like-minded people, the bonding nature Catholics feel, Hail Marys and the protection I feel from The Mother of God, rosaries prayed in times of desperation or celebration, novenas, all the overwhelming signs we see everyday that God does exist.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Brailey as Lana, WWE's Ravishing Russian

Halloween 2014- Annual Blog Post

Sometimes I forget I am blogging to document my little B's lives as they grow up - I used to have so much more time to compose my posts. At times, I feel guilty for taking the time to write them, but I was reminded this weekend just how important pictures are, and so here we are, revisiting Halloween 2014. It was another fabulous year, even with my B's growing up like they are. Brailey, as you can see, was The Queen of Hearts. She and her friends had a theme this year - they even met for a special shopping trip to get the details of their costumes figured out. They were truly adorable! I'm so glad they can still enjoy Halloween at this age and that they weren't "too cool" to dress up for school. The only disappointment was that there wasn't a Halloween Costume Contest - last year, there was, and they thought there was one this year, too. Oh well - she received tons of compliments, and it was a fun day for her and her friends.
Below is Brailey with Alice, her "best bestie." They are so sweet and kind and cute, these two... I love them so!
Once again, Britt didn't have school on Halloween. The school district always seems to plan Parent Teacher Conferences around Halloween so they don't have to have a party. I mean, God forbid they have a HALLOWEEN PARTY! It might offend one or two people, and oh the time it would take! An entire hour! Sorry... I'm a little jaded about my kids not experiencing the same parties I did as a kid. But that's an entirely different blog post, isn't it? So Britt and I had a fun lunch date, and he dressed as his favorite WWE character, John Cena. We even made sure to get his hair cut for the occasion, and he does bear a remarkable resemblance to the guy, doesn't he? I mean, look at those swimmer muscles!
You can't see Britt (above)! And below, we finally found time to carve their pumpkins. They opted for WWE themes, this year. Brailey's says, "Bray Mode," and Britt's "H.L.R.," which stands for John Cena's "Hustle, Loyalty, Respect."
I am embarrassed to post these pictures, due to the table full of junk in the background. That is Brady's "office." Even though he has a table of his own for his work business, it always seems to find it's way to the kitchen table. Oh well - I love my messy husband! This is real life, right? My house doesn't always look perfect. In fact, it NEVER does! But I sure do have a couple of sweet little pumpkins, don't I?
Ready for trick-or-treating! The traditional "before" and "together" pictures. Brailey looks so much taller than Britt in her high heels!
John Cena's signature salute, right there!  The pumpkins actually looked really cool, but I couldn't get a good picture of them. Still, as is the tradition, I had to include a picture of them. Another Halloween in the books, and as is par for the course, they already have their costumes picked out for next year! Of course, that always changes, but it is still fun to hear them talk about the future. Love my fun B's!

April - Here and Gone in the Blink of an Eye

It seems crazy to think Easter Sunday was on April Fool's Day this year, but it totally was. We started our Easter at mass with our fa...