Celebrating Mom


This is a very delayed post but I felt the need to blog about for the sheer purpose of having it documented somewhere.

In May, we celebrated my Mom’s 65th birthday party.  My sisters and I had such a great time planning it and it turned out exactly how we hoped it would.  We wanted a dinner party with her closest friends and family.  Something special but comfortable enough that she would just be able to enjoy being with all these people that love her.

We decided on a theme of coral, blush and gold.  Italian food.  Champagne cupcakes.  And lights.  There must be lights.

There was a moment just before Mom and the guests arrived, when Erin, Kathryn and I were squealing that everything turned out better than we could have hoped.

I want to remember how fun it was to plan.  But I also want to remember what everyone said about her.  We gave people the opportunity to say something if they wanted to.

I told her how grateful I was to have a mother who modeled what it looked like to love Jesus and to love what Jesus loves.

A neighbor talked about how my Mom cared for her when she was sick.

Another neighbor thanked my Mom for caring for her after surgery.  That she didn’t know what she would have done without her.

Erin thanked her for her heart of adoption.  For loving children that weren’t biologically hers which then instilled in her children to do the same.

Kathryn thanked her for time that Mom has spent with her.  For being there for Kathryn when she was really hurting.

A couple from church that doesn’t live near either of their families told her that they think of her as their Mom to which my Mom promptly responded that she feels the same way.

It was such a special time!  Here are a few pictures to prove it! (you can click on each photo for a better view)

For the record, the gold birthday candles were my favorite detail 🙂

bday9 bday1 bday2 bday3 bday4 bday5 bday6 bday7 bday8

The Cups


I can’t tell you how much I love these cups.  I am a person who loves words.  I love fun type and script,  I love seeing my name in writing, I love seeing fun phrases, I love when a word stands alone.

I first had the idea to stamp cups for my Mom’s 65th birthday party that my sisters and I planned.  I loved the idea of adding this personal detail but when it came down to it, it was one of the projects that I had to drop, for the sake of my sanity.

I had purchased some white paper cups online for super cheap and decided to just play around with them.  I loved the result!

I use them myself but I have also loved giving them away.  I went away for the weekend with a bunch of girlfriends and we were supposed to bring a gift for each of the other attendees. I stacked up a few cups for each, wrapped them in twine and called it a day.

I’m already planning to make some for the month of December with some Christmas themed wording.  Am I out of control?

Oh Happy Day Cheers Joy cups Mornin'cups



Taking evening walks and LOVING the fact that Spring is here.

Making the most of a slow season in the office by gathering my co-workers to take the online quiz:  “Which Golden Girl are you?”

Planning a party for my Mom’s 65th birthday.

Planning several trips for the summer.

Especially loving The Mindy Project.

Getting ready to watch season 3 of Call the Midwife.

Celebrating the fact that I have finally matured in my coffee tastes. No more flavored creamer for me.  That is truly a miracle.

Looking forward to making (and eating) this over the weekend.




This iced coffee has become my summer staple.  I was originally put off by the idea of the sweetened condensed milk because 1) it just didn’t sound appetizing and 2) I was imagining the mess of pouring it out of the can and then having to figure out how to store the rest.  However, Trader Joes came to my rescue and offers it in a squeeze bottle.  It’s genius.  No mess, easy to store and it is the perfect sweetener.  Who knew? 

A Sprouts Market just opened in Petaluma and I’m obsessed. I’m going to sound like a commercial but their produce prices are amazing!  I get oddly excited when the sale paper comes and then I just start exclaiming “What?!  49 cents a pound for peaches?!  Blackberries for a dollar?!”  

Making this grilled veggie/goat cheese sandwich…a lot.  I highly recommend it. 

Just finished a summer study going through Undaunted by Christine Caine.  The tag line for the study is “Daring to do what God calls you to do.”   The Lord used this book to point out to me that I like my comfort zone way too much.  When it comes to helping/serving people I am all for it, unless it’s uncomfortable.  These words were convicting to me, in reference to the Good Samaritan…”The only difference between the Samaritan and the religious people was that the Samaritan actually crossed the street…Compassion is only an emotion – until you cross the street.  Compassion means action.  You go to them.” 

Walk/Jogged a 3k with my friend on July 4th.  It was such a fun race to be a part of.  Apparently, it’s the oldest race in California.  It was in the gorgeous town of Kenwood and we were jogging through the vineyards and past adorable houses that all had flower boxes, shutters and horses.  Everything was super festive and patriotic.  We were keeping pace with this man who was at least 70 years old and I kept thinking that I would be happy if I could just beat him.  Well, that didn’t happen 🙂  Next time.

A whole bunch of random


I’ve had a lot of joy-filled days/events/moments this month:

The wedding of two friends.  Jen & I went to Uganda together in 2009 and Chris is part of the ministry team that we were there to serve alongside. Well, 4 years later, after having to jump through many, many hoops to get Chris to the States, they are married!  I loved everything about the ceremony.  Half in English, half in Luganda. The ring bearers carried little African drums down the aisle. Chris’ mom played the drums and let a worship song in Luganda. Yummy food and a fun table of friends at the reception.

Jen & Chris

Courtney and I went to see Brian Regan.   He definitely doesn’t disappoint.   Courtney originally left the tickets at home and when we went back to get them, she realized she didn’t have her keys. Instead of being helpful, I took pictures.




The Apple Blossom parade. It’s tradition. It confirms that Sebastopol really is the quirkiest of towns. This is my roomie walking with her nieces in the parade.


My Mom’s pic she sent me and my sisters of her lovely breakfast.
She wrote “notice the mint in the ice water”


Erin sent back this pick and said “I see your mint and I raise you an orange slice” 🙂


This print.  I absolutely love it.  I have an empty frame that I’ve been wanting to fill and I think it will be perfect!

Twenty Thirteen


A few goals for this year. I’m keeping it short and sweet.

Incorporate more non-TV time in my evenings
Make recipes from my Smitten Kitchen cookbook and don’t just let it sit on my shelf
Run in another race (of any length)
Go to an estate sale
Keep my car someone presentable at all times (Because when it breaks down and someone has to come get you and drive your car and there’s trash and Starbucks cups everywhere and a filthy windshield, its kind of embarrassing)


I started keeping a “Gratefulness Journal” this last spring because I wanted to document things I was thankful for. Not just the biggies like my family and friends but all the little details of life that I have to be thankful for. As 2012 has come to a close, I wanted to share some of the things that I’ve been thankful for this last year.

Tulips on my dresser
Fresh Herbs
A car ride with my Grandma
Birds chirping outside of my bedroom window
Discount Movie Theaters
Saturday mornings at the Farmer’s Market
My 30th birthday dinner party
The pain of training for a race because it means I’m ABLE to run
Having my family stay in my home
My anthropologie mug
Being able to witness the miracle of childbirth
A working heater
Red leaves scattered on the sidewalk
Singleness – it allowed me to devote my time & energy to a friend in need
Friends who offer to bring me supplies when I’m home with the flu
Christmas caroling with my Faith Christian Church family



I kind of forgot that I have a blog.

A few updates…I finally jogged that 5k.  I can say that it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done…not the race itself but the 9 weeks of training beforehand.  Through the whole process I definitely came to realize that I am a quitter.  If I hadn’t made a public declaration and asked for sponsors to raise money for my friend’s adoption, I would have quit…every day.  BUT the feeling of accomplishment that I had when I FINISHED was absolutely amazing.  Not because I finished with a good time (Because I definitely didn’t) but because I finished something that was hard for me. 

I realized that I need to challenge myself more…so I signed up for a Spin class.  Oh my word.  It. Is. hard. I have not been able to say the words “I started going to a spin class” without immediately following it up with “It’s so, so hard.”  The first 3 classes, I seriously spent the whole class thinking, “I can’t do this, I can’t do this…” which was all the more reason that I knew I needed to stick it out.    

I helped put together a Craft Fair for my adopting friends as another means of helping to raise money for their very expensive process.  It was so great!  I am still on a high from the whole thing.  I was amazed by the generosity of people,  I love seeing the Body of Christ at work.  We raised twice as much money as I had prayed for AND I bought a bunch of cute items.  Such as this:

Isn’t that the best?  The weary world rejoices!!

What else?

I finally got my first smartphone

I’m in love with Instagram

I have the cutest pumpkins on my front porch

I love the anticipations of the holidays

I am looking forward to seeing my family in TWO DAYS!

Almost There

  • Complete my March, AprilMay & June Project Life spreads
  • Reach my savings goal
  • Come up with a scripture memory system that works for me.  
  • Make something with my thrift store picture frame.  .
  • Renew my library card
  • Have company over for dinner
  • Plant an herb garden
  • Clean out all the unused clothes in my closet
  • Learn how to use Skype…and convince Erin to do the same 
  • Jog a 5k with Erin

1 biggie left.  Jogging that darn 5k.  We didn’t do it at the end of May because we weren’t able to find a race over the weekend we were together BUT we are signed up to jog the Simi Valley Days 5k in September.  So, I won’t be fitting that one in before my birthday but it will still happen. I.am. terrified. 

I have something that might make my training and the end result a little sweeter.  My friends, Brooke & Thomas, have decided to pursue an international adoption which I am SO excited about!  I am so passionate about adoption and orphan care and I immediately wanted to do what I could to offer support.  Adoption can be EXPENSIVE and they are not currently in a financial position to take on the large cost that international adoption requires but they aren’t letting that stop them.  They believe that the Lord is calling them to pursue this path and that He will provide the funds. 

Erin & I decided that we would love to use our September race to raise funds for the Kline family and their future child! I’m including a portion of their prayer letter so you can get a feel for who they are and their heart behind the decision.


For many months now we have been discussing the possibility of growing our family through adoption.  Only recently did the Lord bring us to the same place and lead us toward international adoption.  Through much prayer we both believe very strongly that the Lord is calling us to take literally and seriously James 1:27 and the many other commands just like it in God’s Word, to take care of the orphans.  For those of you familiar with the adoption process, it can be long and costly to bring an orphan into their “forever family.”
We need quite a bit monetarily to even begin the two to three year process of bringing our child home.  We completely believe that the Lord will provide all the funds we need and His timing will be perfect…”   

Would you be willing to partner with me??  Would you be willing to sponsor me in this run??  I would like to take pledges now and I won’t collect on the pledges until the race is finished.  I look forward to hearing from you!