Happy Fall Y'all.

Today is officially the first day of Fall and I love it. The weather is delightful. 74 degrees, sunny, and a nice wind blowing. I've got Pumpkin candles lit and windows open, near perfection. In celebration of this day I'm going to tell you some of my favorite things about Fall.

1. Pumpkin Waffle Candles

2. Okay, everything Pumpkin scented

3. my mom's pumpkin rolls

4. Cooler weather

5. Open windows

6. Perfect hammock weather

7. Bon fires

8. Making S'mores

9. Apple cider

10. Apple crisp or Apple blossoms with vanilla ice cream

11. Cozy sweaters

12. Hoodies

13. The color of changing leaves

14. The smell of fires

15. Boots and leggings and my favorite flannel shirts

16. Lots more snuggling

17. Festivals

18. Chili

19. Casseroles

20. Holidays-Halloween and Thanksgiving

Maybe I'll keep adding to this list. What are your favorite things about Fall?

Create In Me...

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." -Psalm 51:10 Lately I've been in a pretty deep funk. I have the love of my life, an amazing son, a wonderful family and more material goods than any person ever really needs. I try to keep a positive outlook on life and find something daily to be thankful for (that's not hard) but sometimes it's hard to keep the negativity of others at bay.

This morning I was zoned out, thinking so deeply about life that I forgot where I was going and about turned into the gas station instead of taking my son to school. I caught myself before I turned but then quickly realized that I was too consumed with things that didn't matter in that moment and not focused on what I was doing. Growing up my mom always said to me "No matter where you are be 100% in that moment. If you're sitting at church don't be thinking about what needs to be done at home." I realize now that I've not been 100% in any moments in life lately. It's tough to juggle all that we do sometimes as moms, fiancées, wives, daughters, sisters, etc. but that doesn't give us an excuse not to. It's time for me to step up my game and be in the moment and also to be a better person in general.

I've developed this "you don't do things for me so I won't do things for you attitude" and that's not the way I was raised. If there's one thing I admire about my mom (and there are actually a lot) it's her selflessness. Sometimes it's to a fault and I have to remind her that it's okay to take a step back and focus on her but she's the most generous and giving person I know. I want to be more like her, I need to be more like her and that's why the scripture above really resonates with me. This morning it was stuck in my head, out of no where and I believe it was a message from God because I need him, because I'm not perfect but He loves me anyway and only He can help me.

There's another scripture that is sticking with me lately and it's this; "Her mouth speaks from that which fills her heart." -Luke 6:45.

The things that come from my mouth aren't always kind or even lady like all the time. There are times I'm not even sure who I am. It's time to change this too because I see my reflection in my son's behavior and actions and I'm not sure I like that at all. Yes, we're entering the pre-teen years (another reason I need God) but I want him to be a happy, loving, generous person. One habit we're going to work on breaking is talking about others. The Bible teaches us that if we spend our time judging others we have no time to love them. That's true and granted, there are people who are no longer in our lives but that doesn't mean I don't wish them well. It simply means I've moved on.

What I'm learning is that sometimes being happy means more than just finding something to be happy for daily, it means making changes and being present in the moment and loving people no matter how they treat you. It's not my place to judge anyone but it is my place to just love them.

A Day of Rememberance

Today is a very somber day. The weather feels it as does my heart. It's very bright and sunny one minute and dark and cloudy the next. My heart feels that way, too as I sit here and anxiously await 3:00 when I can go pick up my son from school then go to my parents house and wait until 4:30 when my Fiance gets off work. Until then I'll probably feel empty inside and worried, too. See today marks the 13 year anniversary of the attacks on our Nation. I sat glued to my t.v. in the 9 o'clock hour, waiting and expecting to see another attack like 13 years go but hopeful that it wouldn't happen. It didn't, luckily, but I still feel a sense of unease. Maybe it's because the President just declared us to go back to war, maybe it's the threat of ISIS, maybe it's a leader I can't trust. Whatever the case may be, I know that today is a very important day, not just in history but in the present as well. It's a day I have witnessed for myself, not just by learning about it sitting in a classroom, reading a text book.

The morning of 9-11 I woke, just like every other day. I didn't have anywhere to go (I didn't have a kid yet), so I turned on the t.v. and laid in bed. The t.v. just happened to be turned to the news station when it came on so I saw the breaking news of the first plane hit the first tower, within seconds it aired live, before my eyes, the second plane hitting the second tower. I sat shocked and numb. I believe the rest of the day was spent with my mom in front of the t.v. watching the days events un-fold and re-play time and again. The images of those poor people jumping from The World Trade Center were horrifying and still haunt me to this day. I can't begin to imagine what they were thinking, what they felt and how they made the decision to jump. It's terrible. I like to believe those people knew God and knew they were going to Heaven no matter what happened. I didn't know anyone personally that was affected by the attacks but I felt as if I knew every single person involved. My heart hurt for all of them and their loved ones and it still does.

It wasn't until last 9-11 that I learned that my soon to be Father in Law was supposed to be on the flight that was hi-jacked and crashed in Pennsylvania. Luckily he wasn't but his family didn't know that at the time. My fiancée has told me the story of how that day un-folded for him, his mom and his sister (I'm not going to share that though, that's their story to tell). I'm glad he wasn't on that flight though because I can't imagine our lives without him. That's the closest I came to losing someone in all the terrorist attacks and technically I wasn't part of the family yet (my fiancée and I were best friends but nothing more at the time).

Thirteen years later I have a son and my fiancé and I can't imagine life without either of them. So before I took my son to school I sat on the couch and had a moment with God. I prayed to him to watch over this Nation, this State, and all the people I love. I prayed that he would keep my fiancée and my son safe and at the end of the day bring them home to me because I know that I won't be whole until we're all back under one roof, safe tonight. I also know that no matter what happens my God is bigger than any terrorist.

~Never Forget~

Heavy Heart

It's been a while since I blogged, a lot has happened. My buddy started 6th grade. That's our biggest milestone lately. It's shaken our world up a bit. He's having a hard time getting settled in. He's in all gifted classes, which is amazing and makes this momma heart proud. With that has come some struggles though. Some struggles of not making great grades and trying to get in the swing of things. He's been a lot nervous about it all. So nervous he's made himself sick. Last night he brought home his first progress report for math and while it's not great, in fact it's a failing grade, I'm giving him some lee way because this process is new to all of us.

Elementary school was a breeze, he never struggled and had teachers who helped him every step of the way. This year it's like the blind leading the blind with little communication between the parents and teachers. I know they're trying to teach them to be grown up and all that stuff but truth of the matter is they're not grown up. They're 11 years old and coming from elementary school. Middle school as a parent seems to be a bigger nightmare than it was when I was going through it myself, if you can believe that. The fact that I want to protect my "baby" or at least know he's with teachers who want the same things I do for him. It doesn't seem that way though but together we're learning the process and over coming fears. Of course I can't let my fears show in front of him because it only makes things that much worse for him. I'm having to act like a duck "keep calm on the surface but paddle like hell underneath the water." We're learning how to stay organized and how to do homework again. I'm learning that he NEEDS me more this year than ever before because it's harder than it ever has been.

I realized last night when he brought me his progress report that I need to be more involved. I actually need to check his home work for him and ask if he gave me everything he needed to. If I signed everything. I have been placing most of the responsibility on him because, in years past, he's been on top of it all. Never had a bad grade, never gotten in trouble for anything, nothing bad or negative ever! I know you think I'm lying but really, I'm not that's why this process is the hardest thing I've done up to this point. That includes college for myself and being a single mom for 9 years of his life. Thankfully we're a family of 3 now and together we're going to get through this. I just need a lot of Jesus, coffee and patience.

That being said something else that's heavy on my heart; another reason I need a lot of Jesus, coffee, and more understanding than patience on this subject is cancer. Yeah, that awful disease that makes my heart hurt every time I think about it because I've already lost my Grandaddy to it now my soon to be father in law and my soon to be sister in law are battling it. My FIL just had his surgery last week. My SIL will have surgery in December. My best friend just had biopsies because they think her skin cancer might be back, she gets her results this week. And our beloved Duke has had cancer for the last couple months. We just treasure every day with him. Some will say "he's just a dog" but to us our dog is as much family and as loved as my FIL, SIL and best friend. He was my Grandpa's best friend and in some ways we feel he's an extension of Grandpa. I know when Duke's time here on Earth is through he'll go to heaven and be re-united with Grandpa. We sure hope there's a wrecker truck and endless hotdogs in Heaven.

Top that off with the fact that my fiancée and son have both been sick with sinus issues and I'm one physically and emotionally drained momma. I need Jesus more than ever now.