Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Let Freedom Ring..

I love Independence Day! It's a wonderful time to reflect on what an honor it is to live here in the United States. We spent the day with family and friends, swimming, eating and making sure kids don't run in the street!
A lot of changes are going on and will talk about them later.. but for now here is some of our life through pictures.

Somethings I've been working on...

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


In May I was able to attend a photographay workshop held in Arizona. I was fortunate enough to be able to go out early and spend some time with an old friend Ruthann. Which ended up being a blessing for so many different reasons. She uplifted me.

For this workshop my friend Megan D. (the other Megan) from crew was also able to come! I learned a lot about my camera, photo shop and lenses and much more! I still have a TON more to learn but here are a few pictures I've been working on.

McKinzie graduated from Kindergarten and after the 'ceremony' she amused me and let me practice on her.

Now I know what Love is..

Since I have finally sent out all our announcements to family and friends about our sealing, I thought I would share some pictures. It was a beautiful, wonderful, sweet, romantic, spiritual, emotional, uplifting, gratifying moment. I am so grateful Cony is my eternal companion and love.


Charity and I have a conversation almost daily in regards to people we come across that have the attitude of entitlement. I've tried to write my feelings on the subject, but thought Charity did a great job. So I'll share her writing instead....

I say these things as a work in project, myself. I don't claim to be free of having a sense of entitlement, though I do try to reflect daily on my actions and see if I, too have been guilty of them.

If we look at our grandparents, and how they interacted, lived, and taught, we're given a wonderful example on hard work. Earning what you have. Sharing what you don't, anyway. They worked hard for their dollar, extremely hard. For instance, both Derek's side of grandparents had simple jobs. One was a contractor, one was a highway patrolman. But, at the end of their lives, they retired comfortably. In fact, more than comfortably. I would say they have more than they could ever spend now. Why? Because they saved, worked, and were smart with their money. Society gave them nothing. They earned it, and now they're entitled, rightfully so, to the fruits of their labors.

Today, however, what is the world, or rather our nation, saying about owning a house? It's our "right" as a citizen. It is only their right to get a job, work hard, save, and pay for it honestly. No one is entitled to be a home owner. However, that's not what we've heard from so many, and thus our housing market is now suffering. Those that couldn't afford a home five years ago got one anyway. Why? Because they were entitled to it. Well, now we're all feeling the ill effects of their decisions.

I was reading an article the other day about a woman who said "society owed her" for having so many kids. Owed her what? Free food. Shelter. health care. Yes, now she thinks that I need to work for her because she has too many kids.

Teenagers are entitled to cell phones and ipods, because all of the kids have them. Their parents owe them that. So the parents put it all on credit, because they can't afford it in the first place. In fact, they put everything on credit, including the fancy new car they purchased, because their neighbor has it, and if their neighbor can "afford it" well then they're entitled to it, too. Which is funny because the neighbor probably charged it, too.

It's the leading cause (in my opinion) of the pride cycle. Like I said, our grandparents didn't deal with these issues. It is our society fallen victim to this vicious cycle. I'm guilty of it at times, too. The new jeans, the cute shoes, stylish dress. I want them, too. However, I'm gaining perspective, and trying to improve.

The man who cut me off yesterday driving down the road? He, in his mind, was obviously entitled to my place on the road. He was more important than I. The woman who cut in front of my sister at the post office a few weeks ago, after Chelsea waited in line for nearly 45 minutes? Yes, the woman obviously was entitled to that spot in line that Chelsea worked for.

The celebrity who doesn't have to do time because of how much money they have, or who they are? They're entitled not to go to jail, because of their social status.

I could go on.
Start noticing it. You'll be surprised. And probably annoyed :)

Derek read a book yesterday (in one sitting, it was so good) and he kept stopping to share thoughts with me from it. It was so good that I am reading it today, I'll go finish it in just a few minutes. It's called The Noticer, by Andy Andrews. It's a wonderful book on perspective, among other things. Perspective is another word I use almost daily, "it's all about perspective" I say, when I hear something and start to react poorly to someone else's actions - perhaps that man that cut me off in traffic was going home to his wife in labor, or the woman who cut in line at the post office had her elderly mother in the car - it's all about perspective. However, on that note, it's still all about kindness.


(And since I share our life mostly through pictures.. I had to add one with Charity in it..)

Friday, June 5, 2009

While the cat is away..

I decided it was time to update the blog. For a couple of reasons but mostly so I can keep track of our life! Seems like life has been a whirlwind of events, emotions and laziness. We are still treading water (really just me) until I figure my life out and how I would like to make money for our family. Which is okay. But some days it's really not okay.

Cony decided to go on a camping trip for 4 days with the Young Men from church. They have been going all over North Georgia and surrounding states. This is what's on the agenda for them.. water skiing, caving, white water rafting, gun shooting and I believe that horse back riding is in there somewhere too. I've been trying to be productive but have failed miserably.. but does it REALLY matter? Nah.

Tomorrow is my nephews 4th birthday. So today we (Emily, mom, Rachel and myself) took the kiddos to the zoo. The weather was amazing and the animals were out and about playing. Though we learned a great lesson today. If you are going to treat the kids to soft drinks or cotton candy, it's best to do that before you go walking around the zoo. We did it as we were leaving and it's just a good thing I took 20 to 285 so we weren't in the car for very long. So we went for a little dip in the pool to wear the kids out. Physical activity is amazing for SO many different reasons. My favorite thing in the whole world is freshly bathed kids in their pj's, cuddling watching a movie. It's heaven to me and I was able to have a little bit of heaven in my home tonight. It was wonderful moment for me to just relax and really enjoy my nieces and nephews. They all have such different, beautiful, sweet spirits and my love tank was over flowing for them all.

I know this picture is blurry, but I just couldn't handle how cute he is in his swim gear.

Birthday Boy!

She looks like she's having a great time, right?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Let's do an update

We've had a lot to celebrate in our family, which has given us a lot of opportunities to get together. I'm trying to improve my photography skills since I don't have any. However, I'm going to let the pictures do most of the talking..

Emily's Big 25th Birthday! We celebrated by going to an Atlanta Thrashers Game! I think the best part was the Marta ride. They always are adventurous.

Then it was time to celebrate Morgan's Big 5 Birthday! Something I didn't realize about her is how much she love horses. We went to Blackthorn Barn in Cumming (some good friends of ours from back in the day) to let the kids do some riding. Morgan was NOT happy when she found out she couldn't take Star home. Yes indeed, sad day.

This was my attempt to take some 'photos' of the kids. :/

And of course Cony and I were sealed on April 11th!!! It was the most perfect day. Everything about it was glorious. We worked really hard to make that day occur and when it did and we were able to exit the temple being an eternal family was so beautiful. I wish I could articulate how I felt. Since we eloped, we really wanted to celebrate this ceremony so we had a dinner with family and a few close friends. We were lucky enough to have Clairissa take our photos before hand and we love what we've seen so far.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Silver Star

Today we were able to attend a special service for John Ayers who died in battle in Afghanistan. I mentioned this back in July when we attended the services at the burial site. They were honoring him with the Silver Star. Which is a really big deal. There were many people from the Army who spoke about John, but what I appreciated most was the fact they showed pictures of his OP (Out Post) and his position compared to the enemies. They didn't talk in detail about what happened that day except he didn't give up. He had been shot in the helmet without any impact but stayed his ground. That's bravery right there people! He was the guy in charge of the machine gun. Today was a celebration for the lives he saved and what he died for. Our freedom. It's moments like this that remind me how blessed we are to live in this country!
Thanks to Natalie here's the article about it: AJC

We've had some sweet and tender moments in our lives lately. One of which happened yesterday when Cony went to the Atlanta LDS Temple for the first time. It's too special to talk about in detail. :)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

random love

I just love him.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Ol' Mississippi

This weekend we had a wonderful opportunity to head to Mississippi for yet another funeral. We were both a little apprehensive about going, but felt it was the reason we didn't head to Idaho for my mom's sister's funeral. See why I said, 'yet another'?

We didn't stay long, but it was long enough to really build some relationships and bend half broken relationships with Cony's side of the family. Even though I've been waiting ALL season for a snow day and of course it snows all day in Atlanta when we AREN'T here!!

We have a lot of exciting things coming up in the next few months and busy planning and preparing for them to actually happen! I am going to Phoenix in May for the photography workshop I mentioned before and am THRILLED that my friend Megan D. (the other Megan) is coming with me!! She is by far one of my favorites. Cony and I are preparing to go the temple on April 11th to be sealed for eternity. Since we eloped the first time we are having a little dinner after wards with family and some close friends.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


As I have mentioned before I recently added a new member to our family, my camera. I (we) love it. I want to learn more about it. I want to learn more about this medium of art! I've had my eye on this workshop for MONTHS and Amanda and Holly have finally announced a date. I'm super excited to attend but super excited to possibly win a chance to attend for free.. I mean hello.. who doesn't like free!?! Wish me luck!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Yesterday was dad's birthday so mom, Emily, Jordan, Cony and I headed up to Dahlonega where we spread his ashes. It was a gorgeous afternoon! It couldn't have been more perfect to celebrate the occasion and to take pictures. Since I've gotten a new camera, Cony and I both fight over it. The only solution is to buy another one...someday.

I couldn't resist posting this picture..

And we can't forget about Valentine's Day. I've always loved V-day. The colors, the hearts, the love and my favorite candy comes back. (cinnamon chewy hearts). It was our day to not have to do anything or be anywhere. So we went to the movies (Confessions of a Shopaholic) and Borders and read for a few hours. I love not having to be anywhere. We came home and watched the All-Star Dunkin' competition. I know.. that just screams romantic, uh?

Monday, February 9, 2009

30's a big number

This weekend we celebrated Clark's 30th birthday, although technically today's his birthday. It was so beautiful yesterday and I got a new camera so there is nothin' but pictures this go around..

He was so proud of his blue finger..

Can't forget about Max..

This was the view from my parents as we were leaving...