Monday, April 18, 2011


This pretty lady turned TWO yesterday!!!  And she was the light of her birthday party!
She really knows how to entertain all of her guests!
She's such a peach!
I just LOVE all of her silly faces 
and I suspect you will see her adorable face frequently over the next couple of months. :-)

Happy Birthday, Princess Logan!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Let me just start off by saying Brad and I have some amazing friends.
We have received so many offers from friends to help us with this new life change
& quite a few people have offered me to move in with them while Brad is off to Chicago.
We couldn't be more blessed!
I was thrilled when our friends Jeff & Amanda offered to have Damon, Lizzy & I for the duration of Brad's leave & I'm so excited to spend the next couple of months with them.
They're so much fun & it will be so nice to have company and not come home to an empty house every night.
Such a generous & selfless couple they are!!!

So, in preparation for our 2 1/2 month sleepover, Brad and I have been trying to get everything packed up around the house. 
It's amazing what two people can accumulate over the years. 
You don't realize how much STUFF you have until you have to move it.  It's all so overwhelming. 
But, my favorite part about going through our belongings is finding secret treasures throughout the house.
Over the weekend I was taking all of our decorations off the walls.
They haven't moved over the past four years, so when I pulled this picture off the wall, I found a nice surprise behind it...

Warren Kimble was my mom's favorite artist.  His paintings covered her walls.
When she passed away, I inheritted the Warren Kimble collection.
They're a wonderful reminder of her!
My mom loved to document memories.  I must get this from her. 
I write little notes on the strangest things so that I never forget the most important moments of my life.
When I pulled the painting off the wall it brought back wonderful memories:

Everyone came up that weekend just before I started my senior year of college.
This was only weeks before my mom was diagnosed with cancer.  She told us on that camping trip that something was wrong.  We never thought Lymphoma would be the diagnosis.  Honestly, I didn't even know what Lymphoma was then.
I am not surprised my mom documented that trip on the back of this piece & I'm so glad she did.  It's so nice to find little reminders of her around the house & her handwriting always puts butterflies in my belly.

The fall of 2003 was a mix of emotions for me.  We found out about mom's cancer, I was starting my senior year of college & my second year as an RA & not long after this camping trip, I would meet Brad.  Who would have known my life would change so much in 8 years.  2003 was life changing for me in so many ways.  That year sure made me who I am today.

My family loves to camp.  Living in Vermont always gave us a great excuse to sleep under the stars.
We always have the most wonderful time playing UNO, building fires & roasting s'mores. 
We haven't had a camping trip yet that wasn't amazing & there isn't a better time to catch up on life than in the woods of Vermont.
I think I'll miss our family camping trips most when Brad and I are on the West Coast.
I wish I could pack up my family and move them with us so we could camp whenever we wanted!!!
This move will sure be bittersweet for me!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

in the navy


That's all I've been saying for the past 15 hours, or so...

brad and i have been working towards getting him a full time career for a VERY long time.
after a lot of unsuccessful attempts, I finally gave in and let him fulfill his LIFE LONG dream of joining the navy.
last september, he swore in for a job on submarines...
...a job that intrigued him, but just wasn't thrilling enough for my dare devil.
for the past 7 months we've been on a roller coaster ride... up & down... fast & slow as he trained and worked oh-so-hard for a new contract with a new job
{we're very used to this roller coaster and fully expect it to continue throughout our lives}

over the seven months, we watched a bunch of guys, who we've become close friends with, ship off to boot camp
& brad still wasn't getting word of a contract for himself.
trust me when I say it has been an emotional journey for both of us... constantly feeling as if we were at a stand still.

yesterday i took the day off from work because he was assured he would have his contract in hand & i wanted to be there to celebrate when he finally received the big news
{and they were calling for a foot & a half of snow... talk about april fools when we only got a couple of inches}.

we sat in the federal building ALL day when the official call was made around 3pm
when the head honcho peaked his head out of the door and said, "how does may sound?"
we were all in disbelief.
i kept stressing "THIS MAY???  AS IN 2011... NOT 2012????"
they reassured me they did in fact mean a month from now!!!


we have SOOOO much to do before then.
we NEVER expected a month's notice {even though we kept saying if it was offered, we wouldn't pass it up}
but, another guy just got a contract to leave in september.  i thought we would be pushing another winter, for sure.
i was so grateful to be there for that moment with brad!

words cannot express how excited we are, but boy are there a lot of people on the east coast we are going to miss.
it will be a month of visiting and celebrating some wonderful friendships.

as for me & damon, it's still up in the air where we will be for the 8 weeks that brad is gone.
sometimes it is not fun to be an adult with responsibilities, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do
& the entire time brad is gone & i am doing whatever it is i've gotta do,
i will be dreaming of this place:
& we expect all of you to start planning your next family vacation to the west coast! :-)

Let the packing begin!!!