Top of the World

We traveled to the mountains this past weekend to spend a few days soaking up the scenery, refreshing our souls, and spending good quality time with my parents, brother, sister-n-law, and little niece, Johana.  Thanks to my great-aunt letting us use her place every year, this is quickly becoming an annual tradition that my family is loving.

When we arrived, Kinsley got out, looked out over the town and the mountains, and said “I am on top of the world.”  I bet to her little self it did feel that way seeing this view:

She loved grabbing the binoculars and looking out…she even found a retreat center that is huge and has towers like a castle and kept saying “The princess was inside and would come out soon.”  Oh the fun of having girls.

We loved getting to relax, play games, run around the mountainside, and spend time with family.  Kinsley loved holding and loving on Johana and did such a great job of being gentle and taking care of her.  Emerson did a good job most of the time as well, but spent more time sitting in the middle of Johana’s play mat with the toy dangling over her head than playing with Johana.  We also took Kinsley down the mountain to go tubing in the snow at this place they have set up.  She went down twice, got freaked out when she hit the wall at the end (bumpers set up like a wall), and resolved not to go again (at least this year anyways…she is already talking about wanting to go next year…oh how the tune changes so quick).  In the meantime, Emerson was playing in the snow on the edge of the tubing track and ending up face planting in the mud.  Seriously, mud everywhere.  This momma is not a be-okay-with-your-child-playing-in-the-mud momma.  I think its good for them, but my I-hate-mess self has a serious issue with it!

This was BEFORE the mud.  It is so fun to see the different personalities that the girls have.  Both are super sweet, but Kinsley is much more in-your-face look at me and wanting attention, whereas Emerson is funny, but not in a in-your-face way.  If you watch her, she is always doing funny things.  Like the sitting in the middle of the playmat with toys dangling around her, or pushing her Little People in her stroller, or putting pants on her head and towels around her neck for no apparent reason.  Seriously, she is quite funny to watch when she doesn’t know you are watching.

I am also loving seeing the girls play together, interact with each other in a sweet and fun way, and enjoy being with each other.  Check out this sweet picture Ed got of the girls – AND this was not something we set up or made them do.

The girls loved being in the snow but it was like an old hat to them after all the snow we keep getting.  Here are a few pics from our last snowstorm.  It came on so quick (the first pic was taken after only 45 minutes to an hour of snow and gave us enough good snow to make a real snowman this time.

Needless to say, I have longed for the snow like we always got in Kentucky, and now, after a few snowfalls, I feel like I am back there and am now ready for spring!!  Bring on the warm weather!

The day I was almost kidnapped

Remember how I said when you blog, crazy things tend to happen to you. Case in point…..

I, along with Samantha and Jenny (two women from my team) and Sandy (staff with the Impact Movement and a good friend!) were driving home from Womens Retreat the day before the big snow was set to hit.  We stopped to use the bathroom in the middle of nowhere NC and when we saw the gas station, we knew right away there was NO WAY we could use the bathroom there (if they even had bathrooms).  So we looked around for another option and settled on going to Walgreens.

We entered Walgreens, took turns using the bathroom, and looked around a little bit, grabbing a few snacks for the road.  While in the food section (on the candy aisle), an older man who was whistling stopped and made the comment “Gotta get stocked up for the snowstorm”.  I looked at what he was carrying and he had 3 Hershey’s chocolate bars.  I, being the southern-talk to everyone-don’t meet a stranger person I am, commented back “If you have chocolate, you don’t need anything else.”  I kept walking down the aisle, looking, when he came up to me and asked if I had a good sense of humor b/c he loved to see people smile.  It wasn’t at all weird or awkward so I responded “yes, I think so.”  He then said “Well I have a joke.  Can I hold your hand?”  I gave him my hand and then he said “Do you feel the electricity?”  I said no.  He said “Oh man, my battery must have died a long time ago.”

Not funny.  At all.  But I did laugh.  He was amused and then I called Sandy over for him to tell it to her.  He did the same thing and then Sandy and I both left him laughing and went on our way.  A few minutes later, I was on a different aisle when he came up to me again.  He quietly asked “Can I ask you another question?”  I responded sure, thinking – Oh, here we go again.  He then leaned in and whispered “Have you ever been kidnapped?”  I said no (and was really unsure where he was going with that).  He then said “Do you want to be?”  I said no and immediately walked away, not looking back.  I went out into the open, found my friends, and hurried them to pay and let’s get out of there.

Okay, seriously, who says that?  And why would they say that?  I am still super creeped out by it and don’t know what it was about, other than he was crazy.  But I am thanking the good Lord that I was not kidnapped on the day I was almost kidnapped.

a week of the unexpecteds

This week has been nuts!  The craziness started EARLY Friday morning when I returned from the gym.  I walk in the door to Ed saying “You better call the babysitter.”  The babysitter that was supposed to be coming in less than two hours.  The babysitter that was coming so that Ed and I could go to staff meeting.  So back to what he was saying.  “You better call the babysitter.  Kinsley just threw up.”

So Friday, Day 1, Kinsley vomited everything we gave her.  Saturday, Day 2, Kinsley vomited almost everything we gave her, though she did manage to keep a little more liquid down.  We kept watching for signs of dehydration and while some were there, we didn’t think it was enough to justify an emergency room visit.  See, this happens a few times a year with Kinsley.  For at least 24 to 48 hours, she vomits, gets close to being dehydrated, and then turns a corner.  The past two times, we took her to the ER and were sent home because she was only borderline dehydrated and not enough to warrant IVs – $500 and 3 hours later that is.  So this time, we were determined to wait it out as long as we could and felt it was safe for her.

On Sunday, Day 3, I was supposed to travel early that morning to Asheville, NC for a womens conference with Cru and while I could have canceled my trip, I felt bad because I had committed to set up and run the tech stuff and knew that there weren’t many others who knew how to do it.  I also really thought Kinsley would turn a corner that day.  Day 3 passes with me gone and Ed on his own with the girls and while Kinsley was able to keep a little more food and fluids down, she again started vomiting Sunday evening.  By this point, we were started to get concerned.

On Monday, Day 4, after she vomited multiple times by 8:30 am, Ed dropped Emerson off at a friends house and took Kinsley to the doctor.  I was pretty sure they would send him to the ER but they didn’t.  They said she wasn’t quite dehydrated and they prescribed her some Zofran to stop the vomiting long enough to get at least 4 ozs of fluid in her.  The medicine did work, she did stop, and she did get fluids in her.  Thankfully, by the time I returned, she was up and her usual self.


I originally wasn’t supposed to come back until Wednesday, but upon looking at the weather, our 4 day conference was smushed into 2 so that we could travel back before this HUGE storm that was coming.  Thankfully, we did arrive back before the snow started today.  And start it did.  An hour after starting, we probably have already gotten 2 inches.

So yes, it was a whirlwind of a trip for me and not at all restful even though I didn’t have the kids.  Between worrying about Kinsley and trying to decide what to do for her, running sound at a conference for my first time, and having to cut the conference super short, it has been a crazy week.

In other news, we redid the girls bedroom a few week ago after getting an amazing deal on bedding and bunk beds from a friend at church.  It is super cute and I love that it is not “little girl” and they can grow into it.  I made the chevron curtains and the chevron wall patterns (chevron doesn’t show up well in pictures) and I love the way they turned out.  What do you think?  I think my model is super cute!



January Challenge and Weekend Update

As I shared here, I am joining Crystal from Money Saving Mom for this 12 Months to a Healthier You Challenge.  At the beginning of the month, she’ll introduce the focus area and encourage you to set a small goal for that specific area and she’ll share her goals.  Then, every Friday, she’ll have a check-in post where she’ll encourage you to share your progress & struggles and she’ll share hers, as well. If you want to blog about your progress, she’ll include a link-up at the end of the post so you can share your blog posts on this challenge.

Like I said, and I was right, I couldn’t commit to blogging about it every week but I would love to give you a rundown of how I did in January’s challenge and to introduce February’s challenge.  January’s challenge was to exercise regularly by exercising at least 5 times a week.  How did I do?

I successfully did this every week until this past week.  We had a big snow storm in which travel was hard and the gym closed down one day.  Then, I went out of town early Friday morning for a weekend conference.  I had all intentions of exercising at this conference but when I got free time, I chose to nap instead (meetings and small groups with college students until 12 at night and up at 7 in morning but a strain on this momma who is not used to that).  So, I was okay with not making my goal this week.  This month wasn’t that difficult for me sine working out is a regular thing for me.

However, February’s challenge is to eat more fruits and veggies.  To make that a priority, I am committing to eating at least one fruit a day (yes, I know, its bad that I don’t) and eating a big salad at least 5 times a week.  Will you join me in eating more fruits and veggies?

Lastly, I wanted to share about where I was this past weekend.  I left Ed with the girls to attend a conference called Preview Weekend.  It is an all-expense paid conference (for the students) where we invite juniors and seniors on campuses throughout our MidSouth region who we want to join with us in laboring for the Gospel around the world to catch a vision for what the Lord is doing through Cru and how they can be a part of it.  While we heavily recruit for Cru, we also take to them about how to discern God’s will, what is means to serve Christ as a life-long laborer, and have discussion groups where they can process next steps with their friends and a staff member.

This was my sweet discussion group.

These three girls were from my alma mater, USC Upstate (which was so fun to reminisce about changes to the school and how the Lord has grown the ministry there that he used us to help start!).  I loved processing next steps and life with these girls and to see their hearts for the Lord, their campus, and the world.

As part of this weekend, I also got to work in my New Staff Coordinator role to answer questions about the new staff process and how they can join staff with Cru.  It was a busy, busy weekend but so fun and refreshing at the same time (can there be such a thing?).  Excited to see what the Lord does in these students’ lives!