Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Proud Momma

I am going to bed tonight feeling a little extra proud of my two babies for many reasons! 

The most obvious was as a result of the 2nd grade awards ceremony at school today. Both my sweet babies were honored! Both girls made the A/B Honor Roll. Keagan also received one of 5 Outstanding PE student awards and a spring reading award for the library. Riley also received one of 6 PLAID awards for demonstrating PLAID behavior. I was SO proud of both of them! But what put it over the top was what Coach Sohrt said when Keagan thanked him for the PE award after school. He told her the reason she got it was because everyday she has a positive attitude and she works harder then anybody in there! Now that is amazing! If she was to be praised and recognized for anything, I'm so glad it was that! 

For Riley I was just as proud to receive a text the other day from Mrs Brown about some awesome behavior as I was about her award today! Mrs Brown sent me this picture with the explanation that one of Riley's kindergarten friends that she plays with at recess was very upset and crying. That is when Riley went to her to hug and comfort her and be a good friend! This made me so happy and so proud! 

And just yesterday I got another praiseworthy text for Miss Keagan from the awesome Mrs Yancey! She wanted to share with me her excitement over Keagans incredible progress this year! Again this is where that positive attitude and hard work paid off! So proud! 

And to be quite honest I was a little proud of myself yesterday! Not only did I finally tackle and complete cleaning out the garage but while doing so I let the girls and Campbell go totally nuts and have a shaving cream fight! They used every last drop of 12 cans and had an absolute blast for almost 2 hours! Afterward we had a fantastic time breakin in Miss Taryn's new grill with the Fosters for Mrmorial Day! 

I know pride can be a downfall but trust me I still have a firm grip on reality! I'm just happy for my girls and thrilled that they are making very good choices to do things like work hard!  I guess there is still a chance that I am actually teaching them something worthwhile and that they are actually listening! But it probably has nothing to do with me, these girls are just awesome! How could I not be so proud of them?!
Saturday, May 27, 2017

The MAYhem!

The MAYhem is real my friends! Our May has been CRAZY so far! So many of our comings and goings lately probably deserve their own blog posts. But in all the MAYhem the condensed play by play will have to do! 

By far the thing that has dominated our May schedule and really our hearts lately was the 1st Annual Mahaffey Talent Show. Keagan wanted SO badly to be in the show and she pulled it off in beautiful style! I am incredibly proud of Keagan, Riley and their friends Lauren and Avery! They worked hard on this and it showed! They set a goal. They worked and practiced a ton. They put their selves out their and took a risk to try out. And best of all they didn't think twice (and neither did their sweet mommas) about including a differently abled little girl! Riley was SO thrilled to be included! She truly had the time of her life!

We stayed after school many days to practice and it took Mrs Taryn and I a whole lot longer then we had planned to make the costumes, but it was all so worth it! They performed once for the kids in the morning and again at night for a PTO fundraiser dinner and a show. They did an incredible job singing and dancing to "Count on Me" by Bruno Mars at both shows. Keagan was seriously so awesome! She was so precious with all her cute dance moves and belting it out in her pretty voice! And Miss Riley was just amazing! She did all she could to sing in her microphone and keep up with the moves! I loved every bit of both their efforts and that they were both confident enough to get up there in front of so many people and do their thing! They both just beamed on stage! Meanwhile my heart just about burst with thankfulness for the incredible little girls I get to call mine, for the fantastic opportunities we have and for the amazing fan club that came to support us! Sa, Todd, Gamas, Miss Taryn, Hudson and Reagan all blessed us by coming and were the best cheerleaders ever!
Although that has been the highlight, so much more has been happening! I had an absolutely fantastic birthday! My friends at work treated me with a special lunch and a beautiful cake the day before my big day! I truly cherish the friendships I have made at Mahaffey! Then I had an incredible and almost indulgent day thanks to the girls dad and Taryn! A massage, a nice lunch, a pedicure and then the night off as Taryn took my kids for the evening was just all absolutely amazing! Not sure I deserved that all but I sure appreciated it! 

Riley has been working hard in therapy and made some good strides! She has a new brace for her left hand thanks to Miss Wiltse that we are slowly getting her to wear. I also had her annual ARD meeting with Team Riley and am looking forward to the things we have in store for her next year! 

Keagan has been extra helpful lately which is totally my love language! I can neither confirm or deny that her increase in helpfulness and decrease in whining about it may be the result of a total mommy meltdown on the subject! 

Last weekend Miss Taryn introduced the girls to Star Wars for the first time. I don't think either one of us realized just how well that was going to be received! It lit a little Star Wars fire in my babies hearts! Literally all they wanted to do all weekend was watch it! By the end of the weekend we had made it thru #1-5! Pretty impressive! We are working on the others. I texted Taryn this picture and said..."what have you done?!"

Keags and I have had a little bit of precious one on one time lately after Riley has gone to bed. One night we had to run to the grocery store late and I felt so thankful that she still wanted to hold my hand while walking thru the new HEB! Another night my crazy girl was randomly craving hard boiled eggs and I totally caved into her request after bedtime. Darn it if she didn't eat 5 whole eggs as we giggled and chatted. I don't want to forget times like that! 

We loved celebrating Gramas birthday and getting to hold LaBelle of course! 

Even though school is almost over we are still working hard! Riley helped make an outstanding art project for a school auction and Keags worked on creating a new product and a persuasive commercial for it. It was a first for me that her and her friend Audrey collaborated over FaceTime for that. 

We have also been jump rope crazy at our house this week! The Jump-a-thon in PE has sure got BOTH girls inspired! At one time Keags held the 2nd grade girl record and I am SO proud that Riley is now jumping!!

We went to a really fun Activity Day Girls pool party to celebrate that it is almost summer! Such a darling bunch of girls who are SO sweet to Riley! 

On top of all that we had our normal crazy, I had the barfies, Nana had major dental surgery, and our one Stake or group of church congregations was spilt into two which is a pretty big deal. Just MAYhem people! 

There is now only 4 days left of May so we will just have to see what other MAYhen we have in store. Despite the craziness I have loved so much of it! But I am more then ready for it to be over and for summer to come! We are ALL ready! The countdown to summer begins! 
Sunday, May 14, 2017

I Really Just Want to Be a Mother

Many years ago I sat in a cold office in Hawaii. I was on my honeymoon with my ex-husband but he is from there and all his family is there. One of his family members had asked us to come meet with him in his office for a little chat about our future. When I was asked point blank "so what do you want to do with your life?" it quickly became a life defining moment. I had always known the answer but when I answered the question that day it was the first time it was written in stone. My reply? "I really just want to be a mother." When I said it, every part of my body agreed and the Spirit testified to me that it was exactly what my Heavenly Father wanted for me. That answer wasn't received too well but it didn't much matter because it was finally solid to me. 

After that my path to making that dream come true was more then rocky! We spent years trying to have a baby, and those years were tough. Lots of doctors appointments, medicines, procedures, money, time and heart break. I had 4 pregnancies that ended in miscarriage, one at 12 weeks. But it didn't stop me from still trying. Once I got pregnant with the girls I endured shots 3 times a week, preterm labor, fainting spells and hospitalizations all while my marriage was falling apart and within a year of my dad passing away. The girls were born much too early, much too little and much too sick. The drama in my life was unbelievable and my post partum depression was horrendous. The girls and I moved to Texas from Hawaii when they were 13 weeks old and all three of us BARELY survived the first 6 months! There were times over the next three years where Riley's 23 diagnoses slowly came in one by one that I didn't know if we would make it. But we did survive. By the grace of God, and Him carrying us thru, we survived! 

Now I am a single mom to the 2 most gorgeous 8 year olds I've ever seen! They are fun, smart, mischevious, beautiful, hilarious, busy, clever, sassy, kind and absolutely amazing! The mom I am and my path to motherhood isn't at all what a I expected it to be. But it is absolutely worth it all and absolutely incredible! Being a mother is the single greatest blessing I could ever have been given from my loving Heavenly Father! I am amazed that He knew I would be doing it alone and He still sent two such amazing little spirits to me! Nothing could ever challenge and exhaust me more. But nothing could bring me as much joy as being a mother to Keagan and Riley does! No matter how we got here, I could not be more thankful to be these sweet girls mommy! 

That is what I thought about all day today on Mother's Day. It was a quiet day full of the simple and pure love from two 8 year olds. My babies gave me the sweetest, most precious homemade gifts that money can not buy and let me take a nap on the couch! Todd cooked a great dinner for us all and we got to FaceTime with Sami for the last time on her mission. It was a beautiful, simple, love filled day. I'm SO thankful for it! 

Riley's precious canvas bag with her hand prints on it. After breakfast she went on her own and dug it out of her backpack and was SO proud to bring it to me!

Keagans "magazine" all about mom! She wrote some awesome stuff in her but my favorite is "my favorite thing about my mom is that she never gives up and she encourages people!" 


Keagan also made 4 handmade coupons for me. She insisted upon calling Coach yesterday and apparently they cooked this up! They are coupons for a day off! Seriously the sweetest thing ever! 

LOVED talking with Sami and can't wait til she comes home in 8 weeks! 

And this all comes after an INCREDIBLE couple days with these girls! Friday was Mahaffey 1st Field Day! Oh my goodness it was a ridiculous amount of fun! After a pep rally in the morning, the kids did stations for a couple hours, had lunch in their classrooms, cooled down and watched movies and then did the rest of the fun stations in the afternoon all wearing their grade color coded shirts that of course Riley is obsessed with! Some of the favorite stations were bowling, volleyball with a huge ball, the blow up obstacle course, the sponge game a definitely surfs up which was where they had to lay on a scooter with a frog on their back and scout along a path while the sprinklers spray them! Seriously just SO much fun!! I was SO thankful for Mrs Merillat and Mrs Akers who worked so hard to help Riley fully participate in the day! Mrs Akers even carried Riley all the way thru the obstacle course! And I'm also thankful for sweet friends who text me pictures of the girls asI couldn't be out there all day since I kinda need to keep me job! 

After Field Day Keagan was finally able to have her sweet friend Reyna over for a super fun play date and these two couldn't have been more thrilled! Please excuse the messy play room!

And on Saturday the fun continued! We had an afternoon of science experiments, Keagan's favorite and Kennedy babysat while I had a great early birthday dinner celebration with Lisa, Todd and Taryn! But the HUGE thing on Saturday was that it was our first appointment with Riley's Make a Wish volunteers! Thanks to Dr Clark and the amazing Dr Reed who both nominated Riley for her life threatening diagnoses, she is going to be granted a wish!! With the help of Nancy and Gary our great new friends, Riley selected to go meet Cinderella at Disneyworld! Both girls are incredibly excited and I'm amazed at what all comes with such a HUGE blessing like this! The girls dad will be joining us for the trip which will probably be the first week of January. I'm still a little in shock at such a blessing! 

So it was a weekend full of AMAZING! 

There was still lots of work, chaos and whining but it was absolutely wonderful! Which is very fitting because that sounds a whole lot like motherhood! It's like that cheesy saying that I love. "Yes my hands are full but you should see my heart!" 

I'm SO thankful to be a mother! It is my life's dream and a every wish come true to be Keagan and Riley's momma! Because...I just wanted to be a mother.