Thursday, May 7, 2020

There was a little girl

There was a little tiny girl with a round bald head, big bright eyes and smile that would light up the room.
She was independent, strong, determined, smart.
She lived to please God, her parents and her teachers.
She was full of joy and silliness.
She was perfect to me.

There is a young woman – tall, beautiful, a dancer and bubble blower.
She is brave enough to chase her dream and move to NYC, smart enough to be graduating with a degree in a major she is passionate about that we didn't see coming, she is still independent and stronger than she knows.
She still has the warmest heart.
She is still perfect to me.


She has grown into a woman I do not recognize because I still see the little girl in her holding my hand tightly.
I have loved her every single day of her life including before she took her first breath.
She is a divine child of God, perfectly made and watched over by her Daddy and the Angels.
The world needs a million of her yet she is one in a million.

Today is her birthday.
And we are all better because she is here.

Happy birthday Brittany!!!!

Wednesday, May 8, 2019


Things I have learned.
1. You love your children with your entire heart and soul every      
    moment of your life.
2. They will leave and your heart will drop.
3. As you watch them on their journey through life their joys will 
    make your tears flow with pride.
4. And you will love them every moment of your life with your 
    entire heart and soul.

Brittany Michelle turns 33 today.

I tease her and call her my cut and gut baby because she was a c-section.

This child had the biggest smile and the kindest heart.
She was smart and silly.
From the time she was little chose 'independence' as her mantra for life.

#tbt to only wearing pink Part 2. I'd like to shout out to my mom @amberkincheloe for this sweet, pink sailor suit.

She has loved Abby since she was born.

She is really fun and well....

This is my shoutout to @flatheadned asking for an upgraded dinosaur costume. It's been discussed and you said no. It's time.

She is beautiful inside and out.
And the world is better because she exists.

It's still her #birthday for another hour.

4 1/2 years ago Brittany flew off to live in New York to follow her stars. I taught my children....'Say yes to life', go live your dream. Hopefully one day find your way home. I followed her through the glass till she was gone. I am so proud of her, she is strong & brave & amazing.

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Today is Brittany's birthday.
I will love her with every breath I take every moment of my life.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

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Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday. 
It is simple, only about family, friends, food and gratitude. 
And it is 7 days away.
Actually 6 days, 9 hours, 8 minutes, 30 seconds away.
If you are a woman, you are already in plan mode.
If you are a working woman like me, well God bless you, you've got a shit load of stuff to do.
It would be so nice if everyone just ate slower.
I mean it takes days to plan, hours to cook, and more hours will come for clean up.
Come on people, sit, savor, look at the food with lust, lick your lips, moan a little.
About the food of course. 
All that work is worth it when there is smiling faces asking for more.
We dream of the perfect day, fallen leaves, a warm fire, laughter and love.
Sort of Norman Rockwell.
Like this....

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But, oh no.
What fun is that when you could have dysfunction galore?

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Then there is the turkey. 

This is what we think of....

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Yeah, I'm going to ruin it for you.

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I used to work at Armour turkey processing plant.
Worst effing job of my entire life.
Gawd, I hope this is photo shopped.

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We imagine the roast turkey coming out of the oven just like this, without a drop of sweat on our forehead. 
Just look at that clean pan.
Fresh herbs and berries.
Golden brown glisten.

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I don't think anyone would object to bacon turkey.
Maybe the pig would.

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How about boob turkey?
Everyone seems to like the breast meat.
Two lemon halves with the stem end tucked under the skin.

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Deep fried turkey?
This would be me.

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Finally, Tom says....

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Saturday, May 10, 2014

To my 3 children....
Tomorrow is Mothers day.
The 33rd one for me.
I am so very grateful that I was blessed with children.
Not everyone is given the chance to love a child.
I think being a mother is something no one can begin to fathom
     until they actually experience it.
It changes you as a person.
I love each of you more than I ever imagined was possible.
I have cried more tears than I thought I had and smiled with more
     joy than I knew existed.
I watched you grow and learn and shine like stars.
I saw the tenderness of your hearts and souls.
I have prayed on my knees for each of you more often than you
     will ever know.
I prayed that you would choose well in your life, that you would
     keep your faith and be blessed by God.
I prayed that I would be given wisdom and strength to raise you
     the best I could.
I loved your little arms around my neck and the smiles on your
     faces when I came in the door from work.
I loved reading stories at bedtime and the sound of your giggles.
I just really loved being your mommy.
You are all adults now, choosing your own path in life.
I think about each of you every single day and I miss you with my
     whole heart.
I still pray for you every day, I always will.
It has been my pleasure loving each of you.
Choose well, this is your life.
Happy Mothers day because I have been blessed.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Fantasy Dinner Party, Who Made the Cut

It is a fun question that has been around for a while....

Who would you invite to a fantasy dinner party if you could choose anyone throughout history?

my kind of dinner party

I love the idea of an outdoor beautifully set dinner during sunset flowing into a night under the stars. 
Great conversation, amazing food, fabulous music, wonderful memories. 
I truly believe there is nothing better than family and friends around the table sharing life, laughter, love and food.

One of the sad things I learned while researching this is that most of the guests chosen by people were men. 
Then as I was compiling my list it became obvious that I was choosing my guests the same way....mostly men. 
Where were the famous women? 
The ones you want to get to know, women who have made a difference, those who have lived the edge of life? 
Which brings me to this....

There are plenty of absolutely beautiful famous women, but quite frankly they bore the hell out of me. 
I like women with depth and spunk. 
The ones who laugh out loud and wear their heart on their sleeve. 
Someone you don't easily forget.

I also know that an eclectic mix of people inspires the most interesting conversation, and a few 'wild childs' 
for a great party. 
We have 6 warm fuzzy guests, 4 people of power, 2 entertainers and us.
This is also the seating order just to mix up the fun. 
As they say....'Let's do this'.

Grandma Hicks - because she meant so much to my husband as a little boy.
Fred - my love, my heart and soul.
Me - I wouldn't miss this for anything.
Bill Clinton - fun, need I say more?
Carol Burnett - laughter is definitely the best medicine
Mr Rogers - someone who values everyone's simple uniqueness. 
Cleopatra - she was the last Pharaoh of ancient Egypt, and had Julius Caesar and Mark Anthony under her spell.
Santa - he is the very bestest, thanks Dezirae for reminding me.
Mary Magdalene - because of this - she was devoted to Jesus Christ, present at the crucifixion, the first person 
to see Jesus after his resurrection.
Freddie Mercury - so much talent and flamboyance. 
Marie Antoinette - 'Off with their heads'. 
Ghandi - a peacemaker.
Jane Goodall - she is gracious, compassionate, an environmentalist and Chimpanzee enthusiast. 
Napoleon Bonaparte - the short guy complexed conquerer. 

There is not a photo of Grandma Hicks available so this represents her...'Love'

Photo: A couple years ago.  






After this the first guests I would choose to join us for the fun would be my parents, my children, my siblings and 
their families.

CHEFS for the night would be Ferran Adria of elBulli in Spain who is the leader in molecular gastronomy, and yes, 
this is the type of food you can expect from him....


Thomas Keller of French Laundry in Napa Valley, demanding perfection.


They would get creative freedom with whatever I have choose for dinner....possibly lobster, risotto, asparagus, and 
heirloom tomato salad. 
Creme brulee for dessert with champagne. 
Cheese, fruit and wine, chocolates and champagne. 
Tequila shots throughout. 

Bob Marley 
Reggae is great for poolside barbeques, cleaning house leisurely and road trips. Dinner parties? Oh yeah.

The 3 Tenors
This is music at its passionate best, it takes your breath away.

The Rolling Stones
After dinner it's party time and now you get to dance your toes off with one of the best groups ever.
Yes, all the entertainers are men. Oh well.  

So, given the same challenge, who would be at your fantasy dinner party?

Friday, July 12, 2013

Faith, Hope and Love....A very blessed birthday

Today is my sons birthday.
Shea is 33.
He is also my oldest child.
And the one who taught me love.

I never thought about having children.
I was never really around them.
Being raised as an only child you play by yourself a lot.
At 22 I found out I was pregnant.
God decided for me that I would be a mother.
God always knows best.

My son was born at 32 weeks.
He was so tiny I cried.
3 pounds 8 ounces.
God is always by our side.

It is amazing how deeply you fall in love with a child.
You look at them and your heart actually feels like it is melting.
Shea became my whole world, my reason for each day.
He changed who I was as a person.
Nothing was about me anymore.
Everything was about him from the moment he was born.

I loved how much joy this little boy brought to my life.
I needed joy.
We played for hours and hours.
Shea was a total boy.
He loved balls and had a probably 25 or so.
He mostly loved to throw them over the short fence.
And then he would come get me to go around the house into the orchard and throw them all back.
Then we would start the game all over.
I miss that time so much.

A mother never stops loving her children.
We cradle them in our hearts.
We pray.
We trust in God.

I wish I could have been the perfect mother, I wish I had made all the right decisions, I wish I could go back in time.
But I look at my son today, the struggles he has overcome, the lessons he has learned, the changes he has made and is making, the man he is turning into, and I am so very proud of him.

Some people say 'everything happens for a reason'.
That doesn't make any sense to me.
We have free will.
God has mercy, forgiveness and blessings.
Shea has taught me 'Faith, Hope and Love'.
All three are true.
I love you Shea, more than you will ever know.
Happy Birthday!
I hope it is full of sunshine, laughter, joy, hope, and most of all peace.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Brittany....Happy Birthday!

This would be my cut and gut baby.
She gets the pun.
Slash and gash is another.
She was a C-section delivery.
Such a perfect face the moment she entered the world.
And a bald head that would last a year and a half till there was a bit of light wisps of hair.
I used to brush it and tell her how long and beautiful it was and she would beam with joy.
She was a charmer as a toddler, demanding the worlds attention everywhere she went with her blazingly happy smile and attitude.
She was the independent one.
So easy to raise, she lived to please God, her country, her parents and her teachers.
You couldn't really ask for more.
Except perhaps a bit less skin and a bit more clothing.
She is so gorgeous even now.

Her brother adored her, he proudly took her for show and tell at school.
And when her little sister came along, she looked out for her as she always would.
There really isn't a greater joy than being a mommy.
Sometimes I look at her and can't believe I made her.
She has made me so proud, her heart is sweet and warm, her brain is strong, her soul is held in God's hands.
She is a Good Human in a world that desperately needs her.

I love you so very much Brittany!

Happy birthday.

The photo is one of my favorites.
I believe it is from Aaron Meyer in Orange County.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Inspired Decor

I made almost everything decoration wise for our wedding.
Way less expensive & definitely more personal.
Not personal as in 'I made it myself', personal in the choice of colors & details, etc..
Like I have said before, it isn't difficult, find what you like & create your own version, just like an outfit.

You must be thinking....'oh my gosh, she is soooo creative, just amazing'.
Wrong, these were not MY ideas.
It is what I do best.
But yes, I am quite amazing otherwise.

I love glitter.
It makes everything sparkle.
It makes people feel happy, richer, in party mode.

Let me add....there has been glitter in our house for months.
No really.
Even on the dogs nose.
Oh yeah....that's not me.

Also, carrying the theme throughout keeps it so much more visually attractive.
We stayed with gold, black, white & a bit of silver for color.
And stars everywhere.

This was one of my inspirations for the vases.

diy glitter vases

They are not difficult to make & very affordable.
I bought vases bought vases at yard sales & Goodwill for $1 - $3.
If there is a water line stain it doesn't matter because it will be covered up.
I think glittering either 1/3 or 2/3's looks best.
Wash them well & dry, then use wide painters tape & tape a line around the vase leaving the water stain uncovered.
Tape newspaper to cover the rest of what you want to keep clear glass.
Wrap your arm with newspaper & shove your hand into the vase.
Go outside & spray the uncovered part of the vase avoiding just past the edge of the taped area & the base as much as possible.
Over newspaper, sprinkle your chosen glitter generously onto the tacky glass, shake off the excess & set the vase to dry for a day.
The next day, spray with a gloss sealer & let dry again, this will keep the glitter in place so you can lightly hold the vase & also because everyone will want to touch them.
Trust me.
You can also use a piece of trim from the fabric store & hot glue it around the vase at the edge of the glitter, particularly if while removing the tape you end up a bit uneven.
I did use a variety of gold glitters which I really liked
Two suggestions, do the spraying on non windy days, & the sealer is pretty stinky so let dry in a closed off room.
These are probably not for long term use, though they did last through a gentle wash.
I also think they would make lovely take home gifts.

And this is one of the ones I made at our reception, you can also see a bit of another one just to the left behind the candle.
We had a mixture of 3 vases per 8 foot table with loose white flowers.

I also decorated white glass pillar candles that I got at Target for $1 - $1.50 each.
I added a variety of trims from the fabric store.
But what I learned is that being tall & narrow, they are best used on a hard surface away from any people.
For the tables we used votives in glass set in low vases which gave off a nice double sparkle.
We did put the tall pillars in the restrooms & on window sills though.
No photos but I saw this version that I think is gorgeous.

gold and copper leafing

The inspiration....

hanging stars

We hung white fairy lights & about 250 gold stars on the back patio which is where the ceremony was held & after dinner for a bit of dancing etc..
Christmas made this so easy to do because stars are almost everywhere.
They are still there because they are so pretty.

Inside I strung about 150-200 gold, silver & white glittered stars that I got at Michael's with coupons or on sale & hung them across the room.

As always, much prettier in person.

And more to come next time.