Friday, July 1, 2011

Summer lovin'

It has been the busiest summer yet ... well, since I graduated from High School ( a lot of years ago) and went on many many many many exciting adventures, including: Australia, Hawaii, Washington, Idaho, Las Vegas, and Safford (Arizona).
We haven't exactly traveled outside of a 20 mile (probably more like 10 mile) radius yet this year... but, it seems as though summer is in full effect with days filled with water activities and exercise.
The kids are both terrified of the pool, well, swimming. But, they love to play in the water.
I have had many, MANY unpleasant experiences with Lucy and swimming and am quite certain that either she will end up being one of those women who "curse like a sailor" during pregnancy/labor or will just end up becoming a sailor. She doesn't know any {curse} words (yet) but by the sound of her voice and her body language.. I am pretty certain what she is trying to tell me. It's not pretty. at. all.
And, it hurts my heart quite a bit, because all the other kids are like little fish.. and I know she will be too, but she's going to need her own time and it is a challenge for me to sit and watch her watch them. I just keep thinking to myself... good gracious girl.... you don't know what you are missing and your going to LOVE it when you finally do decide to do it.
{patience}... I know.

We are still anxiously awaiting the sale of our sweet home here in Charleston... patience, I know. I know.

We are busy busy busy and trying to enjoy are time together when Ben is home from his 4-5 day weeks in Houston. We are planning our trip out to San Clemente and Carlsbad at the end of the month to spend time with family and for Abbey's Baby Shower! Then it is off to Seattle for a much needed vacation with my other sister Jenevieve and the Barker's! It will have been a whole year since we have all been to Sea-town and we sure do need our fill of our WA families!

I will post more soon.. for the few if any that check this poor neglected blog!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Number Four {4}

It was a BIG weekend!

We started with our Fifth Anniversary on Friday, Lucy's FOURTH Birthday on Saturday, and then Easter on Sunday.

I saw this cake a few different places, and finally hunted it down for the
BIG #4!

I like how it turned out. It was a labor of love, but pretty easy considering I am NOT a cake maker/decorator. The colors are my favorite. So vibrant!

I still can't hardly believe she's four.
She is growing so quickly, she has such a cute personality. Her pre-school teachers tell me that she's funny, like got a good sense of humor and can tell a joke really well-funny. I know. She is. Funny.
She is also sweet as can be, and when she wants to be, she is a lover. The most sweet, tender, gentle ,nurturing, compassionate little girl who can give some good Love.
She thinks her daddy can do everything, he is the tallest, the best, can fix anything. He is her hero. It melts Ben's heart. And she looks at him with the most adoring blue eyes you have ever seen. And I look on with pride and sometimes laugh inside a little. Someday, she is going to break his heart, I just hope it isn't for a really long time. There is a very real meaning to "daddy-daughter" I see it now more than I feel it with my own. It is lovely.

She got a big girl bike from Grampa Ricky and she can ride it like a rock-star!
We had a chill day with just us this year. No big party. I liked it that way, and so did she.
Lucy Ann.

We love you so much sweet girl.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Number Five

It's been
( almost always happy)
years and we're still having fun!
Happy Anniversary

February 2006 (Ben's first time to Disneyland- or as I like to say "a Disney-virgin!")(engagement pictures March 2006)

He still gives me that "look"( April 2006- Maui, our honeymoon)

and sometimes I send him naughty text messages.

So, it's fair.

We really do love each other. We try everyday to find the good and appreciate the not-so-good. We are both very determined and set in our ways, but compromise beautifully- most of the time. He says I married him for "flight-benefits" I say I married him because he's got killer dance moves. He says he married me for my independence, I say he married me because of my ghetto booty! (it's true)
We have created 2 beautiful amazing children that are all ours and we do our best everyday to help them grow into what will hopefully be strong, independent, funny, creative, happy, well-grounded, loving, in-depth people.
He used to be patient, and now I have the "one-up"
I used to be spontaneous and now he is.
I like traditional, he likes contemporary.
We both love our families and each others.
He let's me talk, and talk, and talk and talk andtalkandtalkandtalk.
Then he says, "Kristen, get to the point already, and stop using your hands so much (just like my daddy)

We are a pretty good mix of a lot of things.
Mostly: love, hard-work, determination, compassion, and fun.
Mix it all together and you get us. And "us" is pretty awesome.
We're looking forward to the next 5 years and then eternity.

Oh, and he promised that if he ever leaves me, he'll take me with him.
Pretty sweet deal I think.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Birthday BOY

Celebrating the
He has been ours for
wonderful years today!
Happy Birthday
Peter Ryan.

I stayed up till the wee hours of the morning with Holly and Katie to pull this little number off! I am so happy with it... it is even more "super-hero-ish" and less "dracula" in person. And although Peter hasn't seen it yet, I am certain it is going to bring him much joy.

(Thanks for posing Superman)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


...a bit technical-logically more understanding, and dare I say savvy?
I find pride in things that are easy when I thought they would be hard.

I always knew there was a way to get my photos off my cell phone and onto my computer, but I didn't know how.
I set out on a determined journey to accomplish just this, yesterday... didn't happen. I was annoyed, but not frustrated.
So, I tried again.
About 2.5 years ago I left my coveted Blackberry on an airplane in Washington D.C.
I cried. A little bit of my "life" was gone.
I reported it to the proper "authorities."

But have YOU ever dealt with US Airways customer service? It is a funny thing. Sometimes you get a cheerie little voice and it sounds so hopeful, sometimes you get what is what you think to be only seen on T.V but in real life. Ah-maz-zing, Truly baffling. And then sometimes you think... how did {this} person ever make it through an interview let alone get through the hiring process....? I could teach a few things to that company. {starting with the increase in pilot salaries} I know that's NOT humble... but I am confident in my abilities to be able to make a difference sometimes!
No surprise that I NEVER saw or heard from my beloved Blackberry.
I was devastated. I had pictures on that pretty little baby that I will never recover. That hurts. It still, 2.5 years later hurts really bad.
So here I am finally getting my pictures off of my new ( and not so fancy) phone and I feel proud. I feel good that I have backed these pictures up and hopefully will retain for forever.
Thank you for obliging me sweet technology. I am a process but I am {Becoming} more understanding and with a deeper appreciation for you.

And here is the proof :

Krispy Kreme when my Dad came to visit last September!

My baby!
( I remember he was a little mad a me @ this moment!)

"hot dog" donuts from Spring Hill Bakery.. thanks to the Walbeck's!

The only picture I have of Halloween!

there are few things sweeter than my sleeping babies

We were driving last summer and I saw something in the road... this was it.... "It is not what it looks like." The one on top was trying to get over the other and well... this is what ended up!

these ones are for you Jenny!

I am so sad that her "gap" has closed so much since this. So dang cute!

The last 2 Sunday's right before going to Church... sending off love pictures to Daddy is a daily occurence and I like the way these came out edited from my phone.


Thursday, March 10, 2011


Today's highlights included:

*Rain- lots of awesome, feel good, spring is here, and so are my tulips -RAIN.

*Superman- Ben text me with his upcoming "tentative" schedule... 6 weeks just got cut in half, followed by a 2 week sabatical! WAHOOOOOOOOO!!!!! (company scheduling conflict- not his abilities!)

*Zumba- 2 times in one day... Makes a girl happy. My feet and knee disagree with my heart tonight though. ( cool down was to Air Suppy's I'm all out of love- awesome!)

*Lunch- had lunch today with a friend.. NO kids made it really enjoyable.

*Target- found a (50-200mm) telephoto lens at Target on clearance for $79.98 that didn't have a box and they graciously gave me an additional 20% off. SCORE!!!!!

*Kids- were so awesome today. No threats from me, just lots and lots of love all the way around. These days feel so good.

*Dinner- it was left-overs from last night... but I MUST say, The Pioneer Woman has got mad skills for some super Yummers Enchiladas! I am a sucker for Mexican food. And when you get some GOOOOOOOOOOOD homemade Mexican recipes... there is happiness, lots of ridiculous happiness in my belly!

Looking forward to a Happy Friday!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

the goings on

It's been a whole week since Superman flew to St. Louis.
First night he was in a Tornado... whoa!
We talk more than we normally do when he is home.
It's the reason our relationship ever became what it has.
That's how we started and what we did for the first 18 months of our relationship.
We've got it down.
Skype would be a nice feature, or the new IPad... ( won't be long 'till I do a little convincing!)
But we've survived not having Daddy face to face.
Although... Peter has replaced "daddy" with Ben's tape measure. He walks around holding it, insisting on taking it in the car (although I don't let it out of the car) and shows people whenever he can, "dad-da."
It is really sweet and sad.

Ben told me the other night that he is "bored." I feel deep anguish for him. NOT.
I am however glad that he is "bored" rather than overwhelmed.

The snow showed up this morning. I must admit I did a double-take when I looked out the window this morning. I stand by statement that West Virginia is the "bi-polar weather" State. I think they should add that right into the state slogan.

"Wild, Wonderful, Bi-polar Weather, WEST VIRGINIA."
Has a nice ring to it.. no?

Our friends, The Walbeck's, showed me how to "fix" our computer.
Thanks to them for running out on Friday night and meeting me with 2 crazy babies at Best Buy to buy an external hard drive.
It is safe to say that I am challenged when it comes to the inner workings of technology.
Our photographs are neatly organized and "backed-up" onto our cute little but HEFTY new hard drive. And now I have a quickly functioning computer again with ample space! sigh.

Monday, February 28, 2011

The Bachelorette

it's going to be a fun 6 weeks.
The only thing is, I am not going to be dating/kissing/sleeping with 25 guys. (dangit- mostly on the dating/kissing part.... I can do without the sleeping with part... I like sleeping alone!)

It's day ONE and so far so good.

It is pouring rain like nobody's business and I LOVE IT...... spring is just around the corner. I am psychic like that.... well, and my tulips are gracing me with their ever so beautiful-ness.
It is going to be a good spring. My tulips will be proof of that.

Ben sent me a picture of his room last night and the area where he is keeping all of the snacks/food I sent with him... he says that it would make a small country jealous. I agree.

We went on a date Saturday night... I had it sort of planned out, but it didn't turn out quite like I dreamed of... although we did go bowling which we have never done before.. why?
Well, I figured out why at the end... I won both games. BOO-YA!

My Grandma is pleading to see the babes while Ben is away and according to the Phoenix weather... I just might. Flying with 2 kids, 2 and 4 years is going to be a challenge! We'll see, especially since now they think they are entitled to "fly the plane" themselves!

Here's to a fantastic Bachelorette-dom.

(It makes me laugh to see how his hair blends in with the cabinets!)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Pace Car

My pace is changing.

I have been doing a lot of thinking about my "pace cars," you know, those people whom you look to for strength, for the "okay" to keep going, or stop. or turn, or U-turn.
I am realizing though that my pace cars are/ have changed. Or maybe I have. Or maybe both. My pace is different than those I used to look for.

Life pace is so different from other comparisons. It lasts longer. It is more significant.
I am independent and drive my own car, but I also am cautious. I always have been.
I am sad though sometimes when the other pacers change direction and we aren't going the same places anymore. Not any better or worse, just different. It makes relationships change.

I do like new pacers though. Sometimes they are really fast and I just want to keep up cause the ride is super fun and exhilarating. It's how we choose new adventures, expand capabilities, and grow. I like growing. Lucy asks me almost everyday if I too am growing. I always say I am. Although she means it in relationship to my body, I say yes because I am growing, in a less-literal sense but still I am. She tells me that she doesn't want to grow. I don't know why? But I always respond with, "you can stay this size for a while."

Sometimes it takes me a while to adjust to new changes, and accept them. But it is always changing,... this life, my thoughts. The less drastic changes are easier and the bigger ones are where I dig my heels in a little more, but eventually I get accustomed to my new pace. And right now even though I am changing, I am in the comfortable part of the change. And I like it. It feels good right now.

So, to those of you whom I once looked at for a "pace" thank you. To those now whom I am looking to for guidance and direction, thank you. To those who will be my forever pacers, thank you the most.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

The lost city...

...well, let's start with this:
It is absolutely EVERYTHING that I expected it to be, and then some more....
a lot more.

I am a "picture taker" rather than a "photographer." I know very little about cameras or how to properly take photos, hence the world of "point and shoot" cameras for people like myself. (However, I did take a year of "photo" in 7th grade from Mrs. Morey, and she knew cameras.. and all that accompanies the camera world. And I did get an "A".)
So, as I was point and shooting around in the Bahamas, I captured some of the beauty this earth has to offer.

The ocean speaks to me.

It has always spoken to me.
As far back as I can remember, I have been a lover of water. When I feel that warm sun beating on my body and the softness that the sand below has to offer, and I look out upon the ocean, my thoughts begin to become clear and I begin to process differently. My breathing begins to pattern the flow of the ocean and clarity becomes part of me. It is wholly due to this that I believe my sweet husband encouraged and set it up with my sweet friend Cindy, for me to find my way down to this blessed place for a few days.

A while back I had what could be considered a "melt-down" which no doubt, scared Ben. I needed a time and place to get "lost", to get some clarity, and just be me. He delivered. Big time.
A small amount of guilt came with me leaving to such a beautiful place without my husband, but he is often aware of my needs before I can express them. He loves me. I know that. And I know that in a way that is far beyond sending me on a mini-vaca. Because even without any extra-ordinary-ness he still anticipates and is rarely wrong.

My lovely friend Cindy Patton and her husband Dave own the time-share where we stayed. Lucky me, to have such loving friends who invite me along on such outings!
We all had arrived by Sunday morning and first thing we did was go to church. Church was a wonderful experience. Same church, different people/culture. Still phenomenal. I swear I could have stolen a Bahamian baby, do you think anyone would notice? Nah.

Me, Juile, Chari, Cindy and Leslie
Leslie is perhaps the most hilarious person I have EVER met.

I couldn't resist this... hilarious!

The Harborside Resort, this is the Time-Share part of the Atlantis Resort where we stayed, this is only a few of the condos from the other side of the marina. Lucy was happy to know that we did stay in one of the Pink buildings.

Within the resort there are some ocean in-lets which allow you to snorkel and see some sea-life.

This was a really interesting statue/fountain of some flying fish.

This is me on the first night after arriving in the Bahamas, we walked the grounds of almost the entire resort... which is HUGE, like ridiculously huge. It was windy this night and quite chilly. However, that was the only night that was anything but perfect.
Here is a view of the main towers of the Atlantis Resort from the snorkeling area.
We were told that the "arch" between the two towers has a penthouse that Michael Jackson owned or still does? Anyways, it goes for $25,000 p/night with a minimum of 4 nights.
That is absurd.
I could buy someone a house- a decent house for that.
4 nights at the Atlantis is never worth that!

me in a bathing suit.

I spent a lot of time breathing.
I know I spend every minute of my life breathing. But I really let my breathing be more than filling my lungs.
It penetrated my whole being.
I cried.
I talked.
I listened.
I played.
I laughed.
I watched.
I grew.
I organized.
I loved.
I felt.
I sent out the negative into the ocean as it rolled away.
I took in all the good when the ocean rolled in.
I did very little.
I maximized.

I would do it again.
Exactly the same.