Friday, March 27, 2015


I ask my kids these questions every year on (or near) their birthday. These were Julianna's answers last year when she turned eight.

1. What is your favorite color? yellow
2. What is your favorite toy? kitten
3. What is your favorite fruit? kiwi
4. What is your favorite tv show? pokemon
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? jam sandwich
6. What is your favorite outfit? green satin dress
7. What is your favorite game? monopoly
8. What is your favorite snack? oreos
9. What is your favorite animal? cheetah
10. What is your favorite song? Call Me Maybe
11. What is your favorite book? Pokemon Adventures in Unva
12. Who is your best friend? Emilee
13. What is your favorite cereal? Cinnamon Toast Crunch
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? shoot bow & arrow
15. What is your favorite drink? Cheerwine
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Harry Potter
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? jam sandwich
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Fire and Sticks
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? vet for dogs

Here's her answers this year as she turns nine.

1. What is your favorite color? Turquoise
2. What is your favorite toy? Tablet
3. What is your favorite fruit? Pomegranate seeds
4. What is your favorite tv show? The Thundermans
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Steak
6. What is your favorite outfit? Green Christmas dress
7. What is your favorite game? Mario Kart 7
8. What is your favorite snack? Nabs
9. What is your favorite animal? Cheetah
10. What is your favorite song? Blank Space
11. What is your favorite book? The Lost Hero
12. Who is your best friend? Avery B
13. What is your favorite cereal? Cookie Crisp
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Read
15. What is your favorite drink? Cheerwine
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Pillow, book
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Eggos
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Fire and Sticks
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Teacher

Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Nine is eye rolling.
Nine likes to wear make-up.
Nine makes choices that get her grounded from electronics every once in a while.
Nine says, "Eh" a lot.
Nine loves to read big books.
Nine no longer eats kids meals. Ever.
Nine doesn't like the teeny tiny gap in between her front two teeth.
Nine is pretty good at multiplication.
Nine is already aware of exactly how much sleep she needs and when to go to bed even without parents telling her to.
Nine is learning piano.
Nine doesn't interrupt.
Nine loves to wrestle with her brother but still helps him on occasion.
Nine is memorizing scripture.
Nine loves Hershey bars and pomegranate seeds and tacos.
Nine is good at the monkey bars and can easily run two miles straight.
Nine wants contacts and a cell phone.
Nine makes being a Mama easy.
Nine has my heart.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


"Would you rather smell stinky feet all day or have brain surgery?"
"Easy! Smell stinky feet all day! Because I love stinky feet!"


"Dad, did you know Nick Jonas is hosting the Nick awards and it's live!?"
"Josh, that is great. I'm so excited."
"Dad, you're being dramatic aren't you?"
"No, Josh. It's sarcastic but you're really learning."


I overheard Josh say, "Ewwww rotten easter eggs!" I looked over to find the eggs and it turns out he was just looking at the cover of a Martha Stewart Living magazine with eggs dyed with natural dyes,


Climbing rocks at the park Jonathan suggested Julianna turn her foot a different direction. Her response was, "I can't! I don't combobulate that way! "


In the car with several kids I hear, "A milkshake used to cost two cents. "
"Yeah and a bike cost like 50 or 60 cents."
"A car was $60"
"I think my mom and dad paid a little more than ten thousand for this car."


Monday, March 16, 2015

nine year old birthday party {+ giveaway winner}

For Julianna's birthday this year we invited a few of her closest friends to spend the day with us. We did exactly what Julianna wanted to do (well, with the exception of ziplining... but that can wait for another time).

We went ice skating,

picked out treats at a local bakery,

and ate dinner at a Japanese steakhouse.

I think my Doodlebug had a pretty good birthday celebration and I think these were fun activities for nine year old girl's. Julianna's actual birthday isn't another week or so and we'll celebrate with family then.


Congratulations to the giveaway winner in this contest. Suzanne B, I hope you enjoy your copy of the book!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

the best birthday week

Last Thursday was my birthday and it was one of the best birthdays I've had in a while.  All of the snow and mixed up schedules we'd had for the two weeks before it was really making me crazy and then to have my birthday thrown in a week where we seriously had too much to do... well, it wasn't looking too promising.

On Monday I had an incredible amount of fun at the social run with Fleet Feet. I got to eat some fabulous food with friends at The Porch. Tuesday I was relieved of Jury Duty and then had another wonderful 6 mile hill run with my training group that night.

On Wednesday I had my weigh out for my Diet Bet and I just barely made it. Then it was the only night we had free so we celebrated with friends and family at my favorite restaurant for dinner. That's all I ever want for my birthday... a good meal with family. One of my friends wrote out 37 reasons she loves me which was incredibly sweet and made me smile from ear to ear.

It was gloriously sunny and 68 degrees. On Thursday they were calling for snow and freezing rain again but I didn't mind.

My husband and kids had entered me in the WBFJ radio station birthday contest so they announced my birthday on the radio that morning. I was already at work so I didn't get to hear it but the kids did and they were so excited.

We had done the same thing for Josh in October and when they announced his name they incorrectly pronounced it Josh Too-Ker so when Josh told me they might say my name on the radio he said, "We'll enter you as long as you don't mind being called Too-Ker."

Jonathan delivered a big bunch of tulips to work for me.

We had a normal dinner Thursday night at home and then Jules and I had to head to Summit Runners at our church. They had a great shoe talk/demonstration that night with Keith Davis from Fleet Feet and then Jules and I ran 2 miles together in the snow flurries and freezing drizzle. It was so much fun to have that chance to do something so unique on my birthday and have the quality time with Jules.

I went to bed very happy.

Friday morning I didn't hear it but I went on a field trip with my classes at school and apparently they chose me as the winner of the Birthday Bundle on WBFJ. Jonathan and the kids were on their way to school and the kids were so excited to hear my name and then Jonathan's voice on the radio when he called in for me.

When I got back from my field trip they called me up to the office at the end of the day and there was Vern with a big cake from Ketchie Creek Bakery. He told me I'd won the prize pack and it included tickets to the ACC Tournament and a bunch of CDs and a T-shirt, etc. Everyone was clapping and congratulating me.

It was the great start to an awesome weekend and overall a fantastic birthday week!

Many thanks to WBFJ for the terrific birthday surprise, for the incredible music and goodies. Thanks to Ketchie Creek for the beautiful and delicious cake and to the ACC for the fun tickets. Thanks, friends, for being a special part of my life and for all of your sweet birthday wishes. I hope each of you have an equally wonderful birthday this year.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Prayers for Your Children Review [+ giveaway]

Disclosure: The links in this post are NOT affiliate links. I was not compensated for writing this post, but Family Christian provided a copy of the book for me to read and review and will provide a copy to one reader selected in the giveaway. All ideas included in this post are mine and the opinions are entirely my own.

If I haven't told you before about the maternal instinct I felt one time when trying to protect my son from our neighbor's giant malamute then you probably haven't ever talked with me about dogs. Fortunately, Josh was fine and we were all fine, but the truth is that I learned a lot that day about the mama bear in me.  In fact, when it comes to caring for our children there's not much that can match a parent's desire to protect their kids and provide for their child's needs.  Nothing can compare to the love that a mother feels for their child.

Family Christian sent me a copy of Prayers for Your Children by James Banks to review. I've been reading one entry per day for the last two and a half weeks and praying for my kids each morning. Each prayer is two or three pages and includes reference after reference to scripture and the promises that God makes to us in His Word. The short prayers guide you and empower you through Biblical stories and reminders of what God has done and can do. What more could you ask of God than to show you how to faithfully pray for, then provide for, and protect your kids?

The author of this book believes in the power of prayer.  He believes that his mom's prayers for him have both literally and figuratively kept him out of the bottom of a canyon.  He's written a collection of prayers "intended to point our sons and daughters to what Jesus alone can give them" and in just a couple of weeks I've learned how to better pray for Julianna and Joshua.

I've been praying for my children to know Jesus in hopes of leaving them a legacy of love and I encourage you to do the same. This book has helped me find time to lift up in prayer those dearest to me, my children.

Thanks to Family Christian I am able to give one lucky winner a copy of this book. Enter the giveaway with the widget below and I'll select a winner after midnight Friday.

Enter to win a copy of Prayers for Your Children (Ends 3/13)

Thursday, March 5, 2015

10 ways you know Spring is coming

ONE: You notice you're wearing your hair up every single day. Even though you still have on a scarf. And possibly a light sweater.
TWO: The daffodils are poking up, looking around confused. 
THREE: Your runs no longer require a jacket, gloves, and a hat. And they don't give you frostbite.

FOUR: Chick-fil-A has tulips on every table. You might get jealous a bit.

FIVE: People start planning their summer vacations. And count the days until they get to eat at Margaritaville again.

SIX: You use your free time to order tank tops and bathing suits. Then you try to stop thinking about those Girl Scout cookies.
SEVEN: You drink more water naturally. Because you're hot. In both ways. 
EIGHT: Basketball is still on your mind.

NINE: The farmer's markets start popping back up.
TEN: You get to work and the sun is already up. You're going to miss taking all of those sunrise pictures, but it sure will be nice to not have to get up before the birds.

What signs have you seen that Spring is on it's way?
What are you most excited about this Spring?
Leave me some comment love.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015


Jules: What's acceleration?
Me: Acceleration or Exhilaration?
Jules: A-C-C-E-L...
Me: OK, that's a speed boost, getting faster, increasing speed
Jonathan: shaking his head
Me: It's not? What is it then?
Jonathan: Speed is distance over time and acceleration is changing distance over time but increasing. Deceleration would be decreasing.
Me: Yes, that's what I said. Increasing speed.
Jonathan: Well, now what's velocity?
Me: A dinosaur.
Jonathan: I thought you were going to reference Felicity, the TV show from the 90s.


We were eating chicken tenderloin for dinner discussing what it was and Julianna says, "We can just get some duck tape (not chicken tape, duck tape) and put it back together."


"Why's it called a treadmill?"
"I don't know, Josh. We can look it up when you're done."
"I think that's because it's dreadful... although I'm still not sure what dreadful means."


"Graylyn S Tat, Graylyn S Tat, Graylyn..."
"What is she saying?"
"It's just something I'm going to look up on Google maps when we get home."


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