Monday, March 31, 2014

More TED Love...

I know. I KNOW.
 I haven't posted anything since Christmas.  And here I am, posting a video!
It's worth it.  Watch it!


Now, I am off to find more on Maysoon Zayid and Maysoon's Kids...

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Gratitude, and Perspective, and Preparation for the Holidays...

Today I need to just sit and be thankful.  

Christmas is coming, the New Year approaches 
and I am stuck with a big fat dose of feeling sorry for myself.  That has to stop.  

2013 has not been the nicest of years for me and I'm, quite frankly, glad to see it go.  However, since I was not great at blogging this year most of the rotten stuff 2013 hurled didn't make it here.  {You're welcome.} Some bloggers do a year in review.  There's not much on the blog to review, but I will do a little review anyway.  Even if I have to cheat and consult Facebook to do it!

A fresh start, a new year, and a whole lotta BUSY-ness.  I was just getting into the swing of things with my new direct sales business, South Hill Designs.  I reconnected with several old friends through the powers of Facebook.  Two of them--Travis and Lora, who were high school classmates of mine and are now married--shared a truly inspiring story of how they are following God as a family doing missionary work in Honduras.  Check them out at their blog/webpage, HERE

Speaking of reconnecting, January is when two very special people reconnected in Heaven.  We miss them both but are so thankful they have each other again. 

February is February. The fair is over {where the kids always have a blast}, football is over {and while my affection for football has waned over the years, I quite enjoyed the internet memes poking fun at the Harbaugh boys this year}, but winter {at least up north...} is not yet over.  Here in South Florida it's barely shown its face.  But there are some pretty sights:

Oh, and in one of my classes I was struck by the closing lines of Ode to the West Wind by Shelley:

Like wither'd leaves, to quicken a new birth;  
And, by the incantation of this verse,  
Scatter, as from an unextinguish'd hearth  
Ashes and sparks, my words among mankind!  
Be through my lips to unawaken'd earth  
The trumpet of a prophecy! O Wind,  
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?

March was World Down Syndrome Day, my new tattoo, Papaw O'Leprechaun, and lots of love.

APRIL 2013
In April, my parents celebrated their 40th Wedding Anniversary.  We had an amazing time at the Color Mania 5K with my sister, brother-in-law, niece and nephew {and maybe thought we could make a habit of such things...but we didn't}. And started thinking about summer.

May is the month we celebrate Mari!  She turned 5.
And also, we reached the end of the school year for all of us and were so glad to get started on summer!

June is the month we celebrate Katie!  She turned 10.
We also took an awesome road trip to Indiana and had a wonderful time with family and friends!

July is our annual trip to the Down syndrome clinic at Hope Haven, where we get lots of great ideas to help Mari.  And July brought a celebration of 11 years married to this guy:
although I have to question whether we ever looked this young.

August already? Back to school, Kyle got his learner's permit, Katie started Swim team, and of all the things to be thankful for in August I think I am most thankful for the fact that my friends no longer have to wonder who killed their loved one and why.  The answer was not a good one, but it has to be better than never knowing.
Rest peacefully, Jason, we love you.

September is forever families! We celebrated 4 years home with Mari this September.  We also started strengthening our faith as a family, praying together more, going to church together more, and started to focus on making our forever family an eternal family.  :)
Photo Copyright Becky Stockman, Completely Captivating Photography

October, as always, is the Buddy Walk!  We love having our family and friends join us for this super fun event every year.  And, of course, Halloween! Kyle was too cool for Halloween this year but the girls had fun!

November was pretty silent here on the blog. But Katie was selected as Swimmer of the Month on her swim team and  in our family we always celebrate the world's best Daddy in November.
Photo Copyright: Becky Stockman, Completely Captivating Photography

So here we are, December.  The month I finally completed my BA {with honors, thankyouverymuch} and the was admitted into the Graduate College to complete my masters...and eventually my PhD.  The year's almost over, but before it's gone we celebrate Kyle.  He turned 16 this month.  Where has the time gone? I can't even believe it. 

But I am thankful. 

Looking back on all the good things 2013 has brought with it I guess it really is easy to say I Am Thankful for all of my blessings and all of the wonderful joys God has given me.  It's not without its challenges but life is good.  

And now I am ready for the holidays.  

Monday, October 21, 2013

Yesterday was our Buddy Walk!

We LOVE the Buddy Walk!
{Don't have team pictures yet...will have to edit those in later.}

This year was MARI'S FIESTA!

And today, poor little Mari came home from school sick.  

Guess it was too much excitement.  

Still 10 days left in Down Syndrome Awareness Month...How are you celebrating?

Monday, October 7, 2013

On Faith and Doubt

Words of wisdom from Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Happy Birthday, Isabella! {and a JDRF Fundraiser!}

If you would like to support Isabella and help fundraise for JDRF you can order your locket HERE between now and the end of the month!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Kat left her water bottle in the car when I dropped her off to school today.  I noticed it after I dropped Mari off.  {And said a quick prayer of thanks as I took a drink.}  I decided to drop it off to her at school so she didn't go through the day hot and thirsty.

When I got to her school, there was a mass of kids, another parent, and a couple of staff members huddled at the front desk, weirdly quiet, and looking out the front door I had just walked through.  It took me a minute to get out of my own paranoia and realize what they were looking at.  

The flag.  

At half staff.  

At about that same moment I realized they all had their hands over their hearts and I fumbled to get in position as the crackle of the loud speaker alerted me that it was time for The Pledge.  For the first time in who knows how long I was standing there saying The Pledge of Allegiance.  Or trying to, anyway.  I was sniffling, stumbling over my words, and blinking my eyes over and over trying to keep the tears from spilling.  

When it was over the voice on the loud speaker announced a uniform check--directing all the students to stand and all the teachers to make sure that the students in their classrooms were in uniform--wished everyone a lovely day, and snapped to silence.  

It took me a second to realize all the frozen, weirdly quiet, bodies around me were milling about again. I did what I came to do and left.  When I got back into the car the rain started and I couldn't help but think it fitting.  On a day like today the rain only seems appropriate.  On a day like today, I hate to admit, that I almost forgot. Almost ignored.  

I remembered.