Short Stories

Of a Wife, Mom, Sister, Daughter, Aunt and Friend

Happy Birthday Ebin!

Posted by kerenmelissa on October 19, 2009

This year has just FLOWN by!  Ebin learns more and more each day about the world around him.  And, even more than what he is learning, is what I am being taught by him.  I am truly, truly blessed to be the mother of such a spectacular child.  The road to parent-hood is paved with MANY MANY bumps along the way, but the bliss of being a mom is uncomparable to anything in the world!  I thank God for my sweet little man.

We really went all out for Ebs 1st birthday!  On his actual birthday Jason and I picked him up from school and took him to the zoo for the first time.  We had a blast!  But, I think Jason and I had more fun than Ebin!  Then we had a big birthday bash for our family and close friends.

Here are some shots from his birthday extravaganza!



Posted in Family, Motherhood | 2 Comments »

Family Portraits

Posted by kerenmelissa on September 7, 2009

my best friend erin- – did me the honors of taking my family’s portraits.  here are some of my favorite shots.  she is SO very talented!!







isn’t she amazing?!

Posted in Family | 1 Comment »

seriously too cute!

Posted by kerenmelissa on August 22, 2009

my best friend erin is a very talented up-and-coming photographer.  she was in town this past weekend, and as a HUGE favor to me, she took some family shots of Jason, Ebin, and I.  she also took portraits of ebs.

click on this link below for a sneak peak of her session.  she is SERIOUSLY talented and ebin is SERIOUSLY the most beautiful baby EVER!!!

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Two Cool Websites

Posted by kerenmelissa on August 19, 2009

I don’t feel like blogging, and I’m totally cool with it.  These days I like my thoughts left in my head.  But if you are bored and need some cool websites to ch-ch-check out, try these:

These are my 2 very good friends who are very, very talented!

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A prayer for my son

Posted by kerenmelissa on July 10, 2009

I read this prayer on my favorite Pastor’s blog.  It really touched me!  It’s a prayer that I hope to pray each day as I’m raising my littlest man.

Giver of life,

My heart is melting with joy in the gift of a son whose every breath comes from you and whose days were numbered before time. You have entrusted to me the soul of this life, and I pray by your grace I will steward it well by shepherding him with a passion for the supremacy of Christ. Father, I ask that you will use me to fan into flame this litte fire that he may burn hot and bright with a zeal for your name. I ask that you create in his affections a jealousy for your glory that cannot be quenched by small victories for your kingdom. May he never be satisfied with merely the benefits of the gospel, but I ask that he might be overwhelmed by the glory of God in the face of Christ. Lord, I want him to see you with with eyes of faith that behold the beauty of Jesus and cannot help but be changed into His likeness.

Father, there are peoples who have yet to praise your name, people whom you promised would one day fall before the feet of Jesus with tongues to sing of his infinite worth. I pray Ebin will be an instrument in your hands to bring about the desires of your heart through the in-breaking of your kingdom as the reign of Christ advances in the faithful proclamation of your gospel. May he love your church, the bride of Christ, and give himself in the cause of her purity and progress. Make him one who understands and embraces that dying is gain only when in living Christ is all.

Spare him, merciful Father, from the errors I have committed and cause him to be exceedingly more useful in your service than I could ever dream. When he encounters frowning providences, may your smile gladden his heart. Whatever it is you have in store for him, I ask that you will be his portion and delight so that none rivals, no idols, no other lovers can put out that fire deep down in his soul. Do it, O Lord, I pray for the sake of Jesus and His fame.


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I’ve been absent…

Posted by kerenmelissa on July 5, 2009

.. from the blog world lately.  A lot has been going on, but it seems like I can’t ever find the time to blog.

Here’s some pics of what’s been going on lately:

We went canoeing –

We celebrated Jason’s first Father’s Day, but we missed his Dad soo very much:

july  other 102

july  other 105

I went to see New Kids On The Block in Concert with my girls:

Ebin starting making SERIOUSLY funny faces:

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Everythings a toy

Posted by kerenmelissa on June 7, 2009

Everything is a toy these days to Ebin, here are some examples:

A plate


Door stops

Wooden spoon

I LOVE his age RIGHT now, I wish I could press pause!

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Saying NO

Posted by kerenmelissa on June 7, 2009

Ebin has really started to come into his own these last few months. I LOVE the age he is now! Anything and everything is a toy, he is somewhat mobile which makes his curious self very happy to explore, and he recognizes SO much of his surroundings. Of course, I say I love every age .. but this one is seriously adorable.

With all this new-found independency, Ebin has begun to get into a little trouble. Not fundamental problems of course, just playing with things we don’t want him to play with, or pitching little fits that I think are ridiculous.

Jason and I have started saying ‘no’. We say the word in a firm tone, make eye contact, then correct the issue, and then move forward. It has been VERY interesting to see how he responds to his first little glispe of our parenting. It’s been interesting for me to actually parent a little instead of mother (mothering to me is the feeding, diapering, changing, ect. parenting to me is correcting and molding him into a good person)

What have I noticed during this beginning phase of parenting? He responds to the word no. Sometimes he will stop what he’s doing, look at me for explanation, then go about his business. Other times, I say no and he looks at me for explanation then goes RIGHT back to the ‘no’ task at hand. When he does that I say no once more and we move on, I don’t press the issue, bc DUH, he’s 7.5 months old.

I am a pretty laid back mom. I don’t care if he gets dirty or gets into things, he is exploring and I enjoy watching that curiosity in him. I just want him to learn to stay away from things that will hurt him, and I think saying no is where that foundation is laid.

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From ‘swimming’ to ‘army crawling’ … Ebin is ALMOST crawling!

Posted by kerenmelissa on June 7, 2009

About a month ago Ebin graduated from rolling everywhere to ‘swimming’ everywhere.  He would streeeeeeeeetch out his left arm and kick with his right foot, then streeeeeeetch way out with his right arm and kick with his left.  All the while his head is flopping back and forth, back and forth.  It was a struggle for him, but he got where he wanted.  It was SOO cute watch him swim!  I have it on video, but I haven’t figured out to get videos on this blog.  Anyway, we knew he was on his way to crawling because every day he ‘swam’ more and more.

 Next he progressed to his interpretation of an ‘army crawl’.  I say his interpretation bc an arm crawl is mostly arm movement and your head and neck in the up position.  Well, sweet Ebin’s head is so big (95 percentile to be exact) that he was struggling to keep it up.  So he would dive with his head first then kick his feet as fast as he could and then use his arms to propel himself.  I have that on video too, it’s super cute.  But this form of transportation for him was taking a tole on his face .. what with all the diving.

 Finally, this past week he realized his head and neck go in the upright position and his legs and arms should move together instead of independently flailing.  So it’s totally a coordination issue – which makes since bc I’m his momma, and if you know me, you know I am NOOOT coordinated-  He ‘rocks’ a lot…where he gets on his hands and knees and rocks to the front and back about to take off … but then he puts his tummy back down and scoots.

 Needless to say all this progression was over the course of a month, so I think I’ve got about a week maybe 2 weeks until I have a 100% crawler.  But be clear, Ebin’s interpretation of crawling keeps him in PLENTY of trouble. Right now he’s trying to get in the fireplace … which will bring me to my next blog about saying ‘no’

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So that’s it, it’s settled, I’ve joined a church.

Posted by kerenmelissa on May 19, 2009

So since I was .. mmm .. I’ll say about 7ish-8ish I have been a member of a large Baptist Church.  I remember the very first time we visited on Sunday morning.  The grand staircase seemed to swallow me it was so large.  The sanctuary was filled with rows and rows of pews.  I’d never seen a church so grand.  Slowly and surely my family carved ourselves a little home in the BIG church and there my membership stayed for 20 some odd years.

 Since then a lot has changed.  That church that felt so large outgrew that building, built a new facility and moved, and then sadly split a few years back.  This church is where I met Jesus for the first time, it’s where I was baptized (first group in the new sanctuary, thank you very much)  it’s where I participated in choir, mission trips, bible studies, camps, vbs, youth group, disciple now, world changers, g.a.’s … the list just goes on and on.  This church is where my spiritual foundation was laid.

 But, things change, and I’ve changed, and that great big church hasn’t really met my needs or the needs of my husband for years.  And what’s sad is, it was SO big, I don’t think anyone really noticed when I left. 

So, we began to ‘church shop’ as many young couples do when they are starting their family.  We would go from church to church trying to find our niche.  This church would be too small, that church much too large, this churches music is too old fashion, that churches music is too loud.  It got to a point where I think we began to look for ‘the perfect church’ and we were disappointed week after week.  Well guys, I’m here to tell you, THERE IS NO PERFECT CHURCH!  Church isn’t about the music, it isn’t about the activities, or even the charisma of the preacher, church is about JESUS CHRIST, plain and simple.  I got so caught up in ‘finding the perfect church’ that I was missing a sweet church family that was right in front of me! 

With butterflies in my stomach, a few weeks ago, I walked down front and joined a small Baptist Church that is a little off the beaten path.  I know it was God that urged me to join, because this church is FAR from something I would expect myself to join.  I NEVER thought I would go to a small church, I think I secretly found comfort in the large church. 

 The people in my new church miss me when I’m not there and there are so many opportunities for me to serve and grown, and it’s perfect place for Ebin to grow in the Lord.  But it was a big step from a LARGE church with 20 + years of my membership to a tiny church with no years under my belt. 

The first step is always the hardest, and every week that goes by I am so happy that I joined my new small church!

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Mother’s Day and Baby Dedication

Posted by kerenmelissa on May 17, 2009

Moms treat our messy, crayon drawing like it belongs in an art museum giving it a place of honor on the fridge.  Moms celebrate the first everything… first tooth, first steps, first love.  Moms tell us we can be anything we want to be, and they actually believe it. Moms wake up for 3 AM feedings and later stay awake to make sure we don’t come home at 3 AM.  Moms hold our hands through dark days and jump up and down on exciting ones.  Moms give us a tangible reminder of the fruits of the spirit… love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.  So Happy Mother’s Day to all you Mom’ out there!

“After the boy is weaned, I will take him and present him before the Lord and he will live there always.” – 1 Samuel 1:22

Ebin was dedicated at church during the morning service on Mother’s Day.  The dedication is a ceremony where Jason and I promise to raise Ebin in a Christian home.  I think it’s so special that my church had baby dedication on Mother’s Day! Very fitting!

 Here are some pics from that day:

my mother made this outfit for my little brother in 1983, I thought it was very fitting for Ebin to wear it 26 years later


the service


me and my mom

me and my littlest man

“Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children are a reward from Him.” –Psalms 127:3

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It finally happened!

Posted by kerenmelissa on May 3, 2009

Well, I NEVER thought I would actually get to write this blog, BUT I think it’s safe to say EBIN IS SLEEPING THRU THE NIGHT!!!!  This has been a constant struggle since BEFORE Ebin was born. 

I stopped being able to sleep thru the night at around 6.5 months pregnant.  The sleeplessness was a combination of having to go to the bathroom all night and just being miserably uncomfortable.  I think that restlessness is God’s way of getting a woman ready for the long, tiring task ahead of her, so I really am grateful for that.  However, after 9 months of living sleep deprived, you start to go a little insane. 

For those of you that don’t have children, or are blessed to have a child who slept well from day 1, I know it’s hard to understand what it’s like living in a haze of sleeplessness.  Having an infant has been the single-most exhausting thing I have ever done in my life.  I have 3 full-time jobs.  The first with patients 40 hours a week, the second as a wife, mom, and house-keeper 50 hours a week, and the third as a night nanny 78 hours of the week.  It’s the single most exhausting, yet rewarding, thing I have ever experienced.

But, after all those hours logged as a night nanny, tending to a child that just wouldn’t sleep all the way through the night, I am MORE than ready for Ebin to just SLEEP.  My emotions have gone from hopeful he will sleep, annoyed that he won’t sleep, and then resigned to the fact that I will be tired for the next 18 years.  It’s funny, bc it seems like once I gave up the idea that he would sleep anytime soon, that was exactly when he started sleeping.  It’s been a week now, but he is keeping it up.  Last night he even slept from 10pm to 10am.  OH MY GOSH that was great!!

So I will continue to work with him and keep him on a schedule and hope and pray that he keeps this up.  It’s strange, because I am SO sleep deprived that this week, even when he gave me a full nights rest, I would wake up exhausted.  I think my body doesn’t quite know how to catch up on 9 months of sleep.

Posted in Motherhood | 1 Comment »

Free to be me

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 19, 2009

I simply LOVE the lyrics to this song!   It comes on klove about every day, so tune in and I’m sure you will hear it.

Free to be me, Francesca Battistelli

At twenty years of age
I’m still looking for a dream
A war is already waged for my destiny
But You’ve already won the battle
And You’ve got great plans for me
Though I can’t always see, ’cause…

I got a couple dents in my fender
Got a couple rips in my jeans
Try to fit the pieces together
But perfection is my enemy
And on my own I’m so clumsy
But on Your shoulders I can see
I’m free to be me

When I was just a girl
I thought I had it figured out
See my life will turn out right
And I’ll make it here somehow
But things don’t always come that easy
And sometimes I would doubt, ’cause…

And you’re free to be you

Sometimes I believe
That I can do anything
Yet other times I think
I’ve got nothing good to bring

But You look at my heart and you tell me
That I’ve got all You seek
And it’s easy to believe, even though…

And you’re free to be you

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Month 5

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 19, 2009

This month mommy really realized how fast you are growing up.  Mommy celebrated her 27th birthday this month.  You gave her a sweet bracelet that said “God sends an angel to hold our hand through life and He named her Mom.”  You said your first ‘word’ the day after mommy’s birthday ‘da-da’.  It was the sweetest thing I’ve ever heard!  From that babble on you haven’t stopped talking.  You talk from the moment you wake up saying ‘da-da-da-da-da-da’ to the moment you go to sleep saying ‘da-da-da-da-da-da’  It’s music to our ears!  We moved your bed down to the lowest position this month, and that’s when it hit me how fast you are growing!  You had your first Easter this month and got paci’s, bunnies, formula, baby wash, and a lot of other neat presents from the ‘Easter Bunny” aka Ka-Ka and Nana. You sit for about 30 seconds unassisted by the end of this month, which sometimes ends in bonking your head.  But you’re a tough little dude, and don’t seem to mind it all that much.  You love every type of baby food that we give you, you aren’t picky at all!  We are looking forward to everything that month 6 has in store and we wonder when you will crawl!


Before we moved your bed down


You are a very happy baby!  Everyone that sees you or meets you (even strangers) say how happy you are!

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Some Easter Pics

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 16, 2009

Here’s some pics from our Easter:


His first Easter basket


Checking out the goods


pose, pose


playing with Daddy


Ebin and Mommy


His ‘fru-fru’ easter outfit


Aunt Leah and Ebin


Aunt Misty and Ebin


CJ, Ashleigh, and Maci our nieces and nephew


Ashleigh and Me


The clouds before the storm came in

Since there was storm we weren’t able to take Ebin’s pictures outside … so we did that this week … here’s what we took:





With Ka-Ka (my mom)

cutest baby ever!!

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The Dogwood Tree

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 12, 2009

In Jesus’ time, the dogwood grew
To a stately size and a lovely hue.
‘Twas strong and firm it’s branches interwoven
For the cross of Christ its timbers were chosen.
Seeing the distress at this use of their wood
Christ made a promise which still holds good:

“Never again shall the dogwood grow
Large enough to be used so.
Slender and twisted, it shall be
With blossoms like the cross for all to see.
As blood stains the petals marked in brown
The blossom’s center wears a thorny crown.
All who see it will remember Me
Crucified on a cross from the dogwood tree.
Cherished and protected, this tree shall be
A reminder to all of my agony.”

I know that poem may be based on myth or hear-say, but it has always been one of my favorite things about Easter.  When the Dogwood Tree’s begin to bloom they are always a reminder to me of how my Savior died on the cross for my sins.  I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the Dogwood blooms every year during the Resurrection weekend.  No matter what month Easter is in.

In honor of this resurrection weekend, I took a few pictures of my little man under a dogwood tree.  Thanks to Ashleigh (my friend who is a pro-photog) for the idea of putting the baby in a basket.  I thought that was fitting since it’s Easter.



“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed.”- 1 Peter 2:24

Posted in Motherhood | 2 Comments »

Please Pray

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 8, 2009

For my sister-in-law Dena.  She is having some test run.  Thanks

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Words to Live By

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 4, 2009

As seen on my bff’s blog.


1. Don’t be a jerk
2. Don’t take anyone for granted
3. Enjoy the moment
4. Be honest, always
5. Be humble
6. Be kind
7. Respect other people’s wishes
8. Allow endings
9. Fail openly
10. Have an amazing haircut

Thanks Erin, I love that post and think a lot of people should listen to your top 10’s.

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In case you need a reminder of how friggin’ cute Ebin is..

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 4, 2009


Hope that makes you feel better Leah 🙂

Ebs is rocking a mohawk … his name does mean ‘rock’ ya know 🙂

Posted in Motherhood | 1 Comment »

The fog

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 2, 2009

It was super foggy a few weeks back.  Here’s a pic I took on the way to work


Posted in Random | 1 Comment »

Trying a sippy cup

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 2, 2009

Under mixed reviews I have decided to start Ebin on a sippy cup.  He has been working very well with his bottle for about 2 months now.  He struggles to get the nipple in his mouth because the bottle is too long for him to manage.  My thinking was I’ll just try a sippy cup and see how things go.  Well, he LOVES the cup and he manages it with ease.  I know he’s only 5.5 months, but he is ready and he likes holding his own cup.


I would like some thoughts though.  Am I jumping the gun?  I don’t want to mess him up orthodontically, BUT all the books say ‘judge when baby is ready’ and I’m telling you he is.


Here’s a pic of the first time I gave him a sippy cup with a little bit of water.


Posted in Motherhood | 3 Comments »


Posted by kerenmelissa on April 1, 2009

Such a simple little phrase, you wouldn’t think it could warm your heart to hear such a little babble.  But, let those same words come out of the mouth of your sweet 5 month old baby boy and nothing could be sweeter or more precious!!  Hearing those little babbles the day after your birthday makes for the most cherished birthday present ever.

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Coach Cal delivers the 1-2 punch to Memphis

Posted by kerenmelissa on April 1, 2009

Coach Cal. Delivers Memphis the 1-2 punch


I’m not a huge sports fan, I’ll be the first to admit that.  I halfway follow the Florida Gators and the Memphis Tigers because it gives me something to talk to my husband about J


But, every year when basketball season comes around I cheer for Memphis.  They really are the pride of this crappy city and that basketball team has given our city a lot of hope over these last few years.  Coach John Calipari really refined Memphis’ basketball program.  He brought Memphis together as a city in a way not very many people have in decades.


Sure, we only made it to the sweet sixteen this year, but next year was going to be ‘our year.’  We had the top recruits in the nation coming to play for Memphis next season and 2010 was setting up to be the best in Memphis history.


Then, this week, Coach Cal delivers the 1-2 punch.  #1 He’s leaving to coach at The University of Kentucky #2 He’s taking all his recruits AND our best players with him. 


The shock of this news has been all over every media outlet and our city is just REALING from the news.  I think most people in Memphis feel like they were slapped in the face.


Here are my issues:

  1. He ‘loved’ Memphis and was here to stay (never believe a salesman folks .. about the only thing those types of people are good for is selling, and sell Coach Cal did)
  2. The fact that he didn’t address the City of Memphis himself.  I realize UK probably didn’t allow him to address our local media, but we are really getting a raw deal here and him speaking directly to us MAY have lessoned some of that blow.
  3. This isn’t JUST about basketball people.  This affects our local economy.  No one has filled the FedEx forum like Cal did, so there’s lost revenue in that aspect.  Think about all the restaurants and bars from downtown to the ‘burbs that cash-in on game night, there’s lost revenue there.  It has a really bad trickle effect.  I wonder if Calipari thought about that.

 I’ll end by saying, I honestly don’t think that Coach Cal left because of money.  Memphis would have, and I think did, match his UK offers.  I think it’s was the allure of the position at a school like UK that has a basketball program steeped in tradition.  Alls I’m saying is, UK won’t be near as ‘cushy’ as we were here in Memphis.  Cal could do no wrong and was given a lot of grace here.  They will NOT sing his praises if he screws up.  He better stay on his toes, or he’ll be out the door before he unpacks his boxes.

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Month 4

Posted by kerenmelissa on March 28, 2009

This month has been a very fast paced month as far as your development is concerned! You have literally taken off and you roll ALL over the place. If there is a toy just out of your arms grasp, you will roll until you have it in your hands.  I expect you to crawl any day now (mom crawled at 4.5 months)You play with almost anything you can get your hands on. You are learning so much! You hit a lot of things -like faces-yours and ours- to try and figure out cause and effect. You have favorite toys like your teethers and a mickey mouse stuffed animal. You also love your ‘jumperoo’ bouncy seat.  Your verbal skills are really taking off too! You ‘talk’ from the moment you wake up. You are so happy, you smile and play all the time!  Mom and Dad are working very hard to get your sleep schedule down.  After Papa Bear died your schedule was thrown off, so we have been working hard to get you back to sleeping thru the night.  By the end of this month you were only waking up once a night at 4am.  You also started eating solid foods this month.  Your first vegetable was sweet potatoes just like Daddy’s first vegetable.  Then you tried sweet pears, carrots, squash, bananas and peaches.  There really isn’t a food you don’t love.

eating cereal for the first time at the beginning of the month


At your 4 month check up


4 month photo shoot


Playing in the snow


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Playing on his tummy

Posted by kerenmelissa on March 12, 2009

Ebin has been playing on his tummy a lot lately. J swear he is going to take off crawling any day now! He looks like a water beatle when he’s on his stomach. His arms and legs just flail about and he looks like he’s about to take off.

Anyway, here is a pic that our neice Ashleigh took of him playing on his tummy.ebin-on-tummy

Posted in Motherhood | 1 Comment »

This will make ya feel fat…

Posted by kerenmelissa on March 7, 2009

So the other morning I was ironing my FAV. Anne Taylor black work pants.  I’ve had them for about 5 years or so and they have been iron, dry-cleaned, starched, and worn about a million times.  While I was ironing them I realized that the booty was pretty worn and I thought to myself “well, this is the last time I will wear these pants.” 

I put the pants on and go about my day.  Lunch time comes around and I decide to go to my mom and dad’s to hang out with Ebin.  I get there and get down on the floor with him and play with him for a little while.  Then I walk into the kitchen to get something to eat.  While I was walking thru the kitchen my mom says “Ker, did you sit on something white?  There is something on your bottom.”  And I felt my booty and I realized my pants had ripped!!  OMG!  

They didn’t actually split, they sorta just frayed, I guess because they are just so aged and worn.  Luckily I wear a lab-coat at work all day, so I don’t think I flashed anyone, but there was a whole ripped right threw my pants!  

So, I ran out of the house and up to Marshall’s and bought a super cute pair of black dress pants from Limited for $14.99!  And got back to work with 2 minutes to spare.

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Some cute pics

Posted by kerenmelissa on March 3, 2009




Ebs and me have a good time 🙂

Posted in Family, Motherhood | 2 Comments »

Happy March 1 Everybody!

Posted by kerenmelissa on March 1, 2009

On Thursday it was 70 degrees.  Last night, it dropped down into the 20’s and a huge snow storm blew threw … well huge for us in Memphis! 🙂 

Here are some pictures of our ‘snow storm’ on March 1!


About to venture outside


It snowed THIS much


Ebin and mommy (it was bright and I have NO make-up on)


Our pretty cherry


Our house


Ebin saying ‘ooooooo’


Mommy, Daddy, and Ebin saying ‘ooooooo’


On the way to our house


It’s not that cold inside little buddy!


Our little Gerber baby



Happy Birthday and Snow Day to Karen and Ashleigh!

Posted in Family | 2 Comments »

Babies JUST don’t get any cuter!!

Posted by kerenmelissa on February 27, 2009


Posted in Motherhood | 4 Comments »

An addiction that was bound to happen

Posted by kerenmelissa on February 27, 2009

I come from a long line of addicts; this was bound to happen at some point in my life.  I’ve fought tooth and nail to stay away from this addiction, but it’s in my blood.  I hit rock bottom the week after my Father-in-Law passed away and I just can’t get away from this drug of choice.

What drug is it you ask?  Coffee. 

I can not longer go a morning without it.  I guess it doesn’t help that I have a 4 month old who still wakes up once a night.  Something happened to me over the last few months and I am just SO tired, life really makes me tired lately and I just need help in the morning to get me going.  I always liked the taste of coffee, but I never relied on it.

So, I get to join the millions of American’s that have this unhealthy addiction to coffee.  I hope to phase it out as soon as Ebin is sleeping through the night.

Posted in About me | 1 Comment »


Posted by kerenmelissa on February 27, 2009

I just don’t get it.  This is the South!  Aren’t we supposed to be known for our hospitality??  That’s what I’ve always heard and been taught.  So, WHY is it that people JUST don’t wave or acknowledge their gratitude when you do something nice??

EVEN though pedestrians have the right of way you STILL wave thank you or SOMETHING if someone is nice to you.  Don’t just walk blatantly in front of someone and not wave thank you!  If someone lets you over in traffic wave thank you!  They don’t HAVE to be nice to you.  It takes 2 no 1 second to acknowledge your thanks, so start doing it people!!

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My wife’s with Jody

Posted by kerenmelissa on February 22, 2009

This is the story of a lovely conversation I had the other day with a patient when I made reminder calls at my job.  You see, the day before a patient has an appointment, it is my job to call and remind them to come in.  Most of the time, I just leave a message, but that wasn’t the case this time ….


Me: Is this Mr. Smith, Timmy’s father?

Mr Smith: um, yeah – with a VERY red-neck draw

Me: Hello, this is Keren calling from you eye Dr.’s office, just calling to remind you of your child’s appointment tomorrow to get his eyes checked.

Mr. Smith: um, whaell, you will hefta talk to my whaife bout dat, she handles dat!

Me: Ok, ok sir, well do you think you could get the message to her and get her to call back up here to confirm?

Mr. Smith: Hell naw, my whaife’s na here, my whaife’s wit Jody!  You know who Jody is?!?  He’s her other dude.  He’s the dude doing her in the back door while I’ve got the front .. if ya know what I mean …

Me: silence…..

Mr. Smith: She tole me she was gonna go to work today, but I called her work and turns out she took the day off, I know where she is, she’s with Jody!!  She thinks I dunno what’s going on, but I do.

Me: ummmmm

Mr. Smith:  She’s been going out on me for at least 5 years!! She’s such a B*$(#, and I’m bout sick of it!!  So will I get her the message?!  Will I??  Does she even care she had a kid with me?!  I don’t know!

Me: Ok sir, I’m sorry for your trouble.  We will see you and Timmy tomorrow.

Mr. Smith: No, no, I won’t be there, but if she show’s up with Jody you best be callin me.

Me: Ok, have a good day


GEEEEEEEEES, How do I end up having conversations with these crazies!?

Posted in Random | 2 Comments »

Month 3

Posted by kerenmelissa on February 14, 2009

Papa Bear went to be with Jesus at the beginning of this month.  The day that he passed away you were SUCH a good baby.  You are normally very vocal, but that morning you had this calmness about you.  It was almost like you knew you needed to be still and quiet.  You woke up that morning at 3am, just wanting to hang out.  Turns out, that was about when Papa Bear began to get sicker.  You did a lot of movin’ and groovin’ this month.  You continued to roll over from your back to your belly and you began to roll over from your belly to your back.  The first time you rolled over belly to back it really scared you, so you haven’t really done it a lot since.  You also began to try and hold your bottle this month.  But instead of pulling the bottle towards you, you always push it away.  You LOVE standing up and you have very strong legs!  When you lay on your belly, you start kicking and we really think you are going to take off crawling!  You got your first cold this month, it was pretty miserable for you and Mommy (we had it at the same time.)  You also began teething this month, which was equally as miserable as the cold!  You ‘talk’ a lot more.  You especially love ‘talking’ to your cousin Maci.  You love doing different things and going new places and we can really see how much you are learning!  You enjoy watching ESPN. You get ‘mad’ at toys if you can’t figure them out.  And, the last of your ‘newborn’ hair fell out and new hair is growing in.  I’m excited to see what month 4 has in store.


wearing Daddy’s hat on your head.  (taken by my camera phone, so it isn’t so clear)


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On to Rice Cereal

Posted by kerenmelissa on February 13, 2009

Well, Ebin is 3.8 months old now and he is eating a lot more lately.  The normal 4 oz at mealtime isn’t cutting it anymore.  Mealtime gets stretched out.  I add another 1 or 2 oz at the end of each meal and he gets full for a little while, but then he is hungry again.

After talking to a few mom’s, I decided that Ebin is now ready for cereal once or twice a day.  The directions on the box say to start with a very soupy mixture of the rice cereal and milk.  But, after a few tries I realized the consistency is really throwing the little dude off.  So, I thickened it up a bit and he really likes it.  He grabs my arm with both his hands and helps guide the spoon to his mouth.  And, he seems to be a lot more satisfied after eating his cereal.




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Ebin Talking

Posted by kerenmelissa on February 3, 2009

I still haven’t been able to figure out how to download a video and post it on my blog.  My sister has figured it out though (and I’m hoping she tells me how to so I can post some more)  But for now, visit her blog to see Ebin ‘talking’ to her a week ago when she baby-sat him.

Posted in Motherhood | 1 Comment »


Posted by kerenmelissa on January 30, 2009

So over this past weekend Jason and I found a car that we LOVED!  It was a 2004 Acura TSX.  It was everything we wanted in our next car.  1 owner, still under warranty, low miles, super clean and very pretty!  We went ahead and took it home and said that when Monday came we would look for some good rates to finance it.

While I was at work on Monday, Jason was out ‘shopping for loans.’  He kept calling me telling me the details of this bank’s loans, and that bank’s loans.  He wasn’t really happy with any of the rates.  Monday winded down and we figured we would continue on Tuesday.

So, again on Tuesday Jason begins to look for a loan.  He tells me he’s gone from bank to bank and he just can’t get a decent loan.  We decide we don’t want to pay 16-17% interest on a used car, it just doesn’t make sense.  Sadly, we decide to take the car back.  I didn’t realize how attached I had become to the car.  I was sad to see it leave.  In fact, I didn’t ride with Jason to take it back, him and his mom went.

Wednesday comes and I get home from work and Jason is continuing his search for ‘the perfect car.’  I am as uninterested as I can be.  I told him I needed a little bit of a break from looking at cars. 

In the next few days to come Jason continues looking at cars and I continue to find stupid reasons why I didn’t like that car.  ‘It’s black, it will be hot’ or ‘it’s a 2.3 litre engine, I’m used to a 3.2’ or ‘the 6 disc cd changer gets on my nerves’.  I was trying my best to let the car go.

This afternoon, Ebin and I are laying down for a nap. – *Sidenote* I love snuggling with him, it’s the best!  And I surprised bc I never really understood what could be so great about snuggling with a baby, but it’s the best-  Anyway, I am laying down and this is what happened:

Jason – comes home from work, bust in the bedroom
Jason -‘Hey, you need to come outside and see what I did to my truck’
Me – ‘what?!?  Your truck?!?  Is everything ok?
Jason – ‘Well just come see!’
Me – ‘Did you get new tires? Did you wreck it?’
Jason – ‘Just come see for yourself’
Jason opens the door and this is what I saw :



AHHH!!!  Are you kidding me?!  He bought the car I thought we had to return!  He totally fooled me!!  I thought we weren’t getting this car!  I was in TOTAL shock!  It took about 10 minutes for it to sink in that I actually OWN this car!!!  YIPPEEEEE!!!!

What a sweet, sweet husband!  What a GREAT surprise!!

Posted in About me | 5 Comments »

My Hair is Falling Out

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 29, 2009

In clumps.  It’s a little alarming.  When I brush my hair it’s really concerning how much hair is in the brush when I’m done.  All I can figure is it’s a.) Stress – as far as life goes, this is the most stressed out Jason and I have EVER been.  We have NEVER faced anything quite as devastating as loosing his Father.  Apparently that could be taking it’s tole on my hair b.) Hormones – It’s been almost 4 months since I had Ebin, but my body could still be equalizing I guess.

Whatever it is, it’s FREAKING me out and I wish it would stop.


Posted in About me | 8 Comments »

Ebin’s teething!

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 27, 2009

So, for the last week or so I’ve been noticing that Ebin has been 1.cranky 2.restless 3.fevery 4.slobbery 5.snotty.  I’ve read in my ‘what to expect the first year’ book that teething can start as early as month 3 to 4 but didn’t actually think that Ebin was teething.  That was until I took him to his Dr. for a ‘cold’ and we noticed that the ‘cold’ was actually teething symptoms.  He has a tooth coming in on his lower bottom jaw.  He bites on everything and you can really tell at night the poor little guy is in pain.  I feel bad for him, AND for me bc he isn’t really sleeping anymore. 

Hopefully I will get a break between teeth so he can sleep a little.  How many teeth do they have anyway?  20?


The tooth on his lower left jaw is still cutting pretty bad and on his right side the same tooth is cutting.  Poor fella.

Posted in Motherhood | 1 Comment »

Like Grandmother, Like Grandson?

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 25, 2009

This is a picture of my Mom at 12 weeks old


This is a picture of Ebin at 12 weeks old


He looks JUST like her.  Minus the widow’s peak which is totally from me, he is a spitting image of my Mother!  Even his hair looks like hers!  Crazy

Posted in Family | 4 Comments »

A few pictures…

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 25, 2009

Here are some recent pictures:


The morning of Ebin’s first snow.  It only snowed a few hours, and it didn’t stick, but it was pretty!


Ebin, Roxie, and Jason all asleep while I rush around getting ready for work.



Cousins!  Just the littlest ones at least.  Maci, Ebin, and CJ


Isn’t he just the cutest!!


He’s a little chunky!  Almost 15 lbs!


CJ crackin up that he has 2 paci’s not just one!  One in his mouth and one in his hands.


Ebin holding his bottle!


Ebin taking a bath.


Coloring Maci’s hair.


Self portrait.

Me, Jason, and Ebin at Incredible Pizza … it’s so much fun there!

Posted in About me | 1 Comment »

Our Larry

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 23, 2009

This sweet poem was written and recited at Larry’s funeral.  We knew that ‘Aunt’ Ruthie wrote poem’s and were scurring around the Thursday after he died trying to make a list of things about him so that Ruthie could write a poem for us.  Little did we know, she had already prepared the perfect poem!  It was such a blessing!  In our frazzled states we tried to complete a list about Larry, but God knew we couldn’t and gave the words to Ruthie!!


* Our Larry *

Written by ‘Aunt’ Ruthie Harris

 If you knew our Larry,

Then surely you would know,

He left memories of laughter

Everywhere he’d go.


If you knew our Larry,

Then surely you still hear,

The stories from his childhood

And the tales he loved to share.


If you knew our Larry,

Then surely you re-call,

How much he loved his family.

They made him walk so tall!


If you knew our Larry,

Then surely you would find,

He was a sweet, compassionate man,

He was loving, he was kind.


If you knew our Larry,

Then you knew Papa Bear.

A gentle man whose grandkids

Always found a lap to share.


If you knew our Larry,

Then surely you would know,

He gave his life to Jesus,

Many years ago.


And if you knew our Larry,

Then surely there are no fears,

For he’s safely home in Heaven

With no more pain, and no more tears.

-I got this pic from Kim’s Blog, I thought it was pretty funny!-

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The Obituary

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 21, 2009

Larry Glenn Miller    
Larry Glenn Miller, 59, of Bartlett, TN was called to spend eternity with his Lord and Savior on Tuesday, January 6, 2009. This loving and humble man possessed a remarkable optimistic attitude, quick wit and resolute faith. Larry was a member of Mullins Station Baptist Church for 18 years and a Shipping Supervisor at Sonoco Phoenix for 35 years. Larry was a cherished husband, father, son, brother, grandfather and uncle but is possibly best known as an avid, enthusiastic storyteller. Larry is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 33 years, Pam Miller, and three adoring children, Eddie Miller and his wife Dena, of Marion, AR, Misty Parks and her husband Chad of Olive Branch, MS, and Jason Miller and his wife Keren of Bartlett, TN. He is also survived by his mother, Lavonne Miller of Millington, TN; three brothers, Gerald Miller, Ricky Miller and Steve Miller, all of Millington, TN; three sisters, Carol Risner of Memphis, TN, Cathey Warner of Bartlett, TN, and Judy Throneberry of Millington, TN; six grandchildren, Grey Miller, Terra Bryan, Ashleigh Parks, Maci Dean Parks, CJ Parks, and Ebin Miller; father in law, Don Grinder; sister in law, Donette Wallace and her husband Rob, and their children, Adam and Nicole, as well as innumerable extended family and friends. We will never forget the humor he brought to every situation and his huge heart full of love. The family appreciates your prayers and respectfully requests that memorials be sent to the Grinder Family Volunteer Scholarship Fund at the Wings Cancer Foundation, 1100 Humphreys Blvd., Memphis, TN 38119. Visitation will be from 5 until 8 Friday, January 9, with Services at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, January 10, both at Memphis Funeral Home Germantown Parkway Chapel, with burial following at Memory Hill Gardens. We love you Papa Bear.

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That Night

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 15, 2009

Tuesday 1-6-2009

That night was probably the longest night of our life.  Both our minds were racing and we kept running the entire day threw our heads.  It literly felt like time had stood still.  We knew it was night-time, the sun was down, but it didn’t seem like any time had passed at all.

We cried off and on that entire night.  We just weren’t able to beleive that Larry was gone.  How in the world could we get threw this?!?!  Why did this happen now?!

That night I had a dream.  In the dream we were all in the hospital very upset that Larry had passed.  A doctor rushed in and told us that there was a new shot that could bring people back to life and Larry had been approved for the injection.  They gave him the shot and he came back to life.  All I could see was his face, it was about 8 inches away from mine.  I could see his eyes, that crystal clear blue and that big ole smile on his face.  Then, I woke up for the morning.

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We still smile

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 12, 2009

Here’s a pic of my nephew CJ.  He has SUPER curley hair.  We decided to straighten it, just to see …




freaky, isn’t it?

Posted in Family | 3 Comments »

The Day Time Stopped for The Miller’s

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 9, 2009

For another version of how things are going. please see  My sister in law has blogged a lot as well and I’m sure she will blog about some of my stupid-ness that has made us laugh until we cry!

Let me warn you, my spelling and grammer seem to be the first thing that has left me during this trying time .. course I was never an English scholar!  So just ignore the choppiness if it’s there.


Tuesday, 1-6-2009

I know this is not the last time I will feel such loss and sadness.  However, it is most definetly the first time that grief has rocked my world so unexpectedly that we still feel as if we are in a dream, and a horrible one at that.

Tuesday morning 1-6-09 began for me at 3am.  It was a tad strange, Ebin woke up – which is normal- but he didn’t need anything.  He wasn’t hungry, he didn’t need a new diaper, nothing, he just wanted to hang out.  He smiled and played with me for 30 minutes or so and then went back to sleep.  So I went back off to sleep.  Jason and I were snuggling especially good when my 6am alarm went off.  He told me I better get up or I’d be late – I was still holding out for the ‘ice storm’ we might be getting.

605 Jason’s phone rings – we don’t recognize the number, so we don’t answer it.  Then my phone rings, a different number same area code.  I said to Jason that I would just answer it and see what was going on.  It was the Police Department asking for Jason.  She didn’t identify herself as Police, she just kept asking for Jason.  Then Jason’s phone rang and another unidentified police officer was on the line.  In stereo Jason and I heard his mother screaming and crying.  We that Larry had collasped and to come pick up his mother and go to the hospital.  We later learned that he had been sick since the night before.  He was experiencing flu-like symptoms.  He did not want to go to the hospital and by the time Ms. Pam convinced him that am it was too late.  He collasped while she was giving him his pj’s.  She called 911 and gave him cpr until they arrived.

That morning at 607 God blessed me with clarity and calmness like I’d never before experience.  Within seconds I got Jason and I dressed, got the baby in his car seat, fixed his bottle and we were out the door.  Thankfully no ‘ice storm’ came, so we were able to drive carefully.  We arrived at Ms. Pam and Larry’s and met the woman police officer.  We lock the house up and head to the hospital.  On the car ride there, Ms. Pam runs the scenario over and over in her head, what did we miss?!   Ebin makes no sound at all, and by 6 he is normally up for the morning.

We arrive at the hospital and are immediatly escorted to the Chapel.  It was like watching a movie.  I’m sorry to say, but the chaplain was creepy, he didn’t really say much and I knew that was it.  They don’t take just anyone to ‘wait in the chapel where it’s more private.’

5 minutes go by, but it seems like 45 and the ER Dr, Head Nurse, and Police Officer are ushured in.  I was on the floor with the baby, and the Dr. seemed so tall.  His white coat seemed to be 6 feet long.  He had glasses and buggy eyes, brown balding hair, he was skinny.  He explains to Ms. Pam that they worked on him for an hour -which is SOP- after an hour he continued to be non-responsive so they pronounced him.  It was more than likely a heart attack. 

That’s when time stopped.

I will never forget the look on her face, the confusion in her voice.  A what?  A heart attack?  He had no history of heart problems!  What do you mean??  My sweet husband looked like he had been hit by a mack truck, and his brother wasn’t much better.  Misty -my SIL– hadn’t yet arrived.

From then until now I haven’t really stopped moving.  I’ve been so busy with calls, hugs, cries, tending to all my in-laws, pacing, more calls, text … I’ve been so busy.

I called Misty right before we got the news.  I tried my best to prepare her by telling her we were in the chapel.  I hoped she would understand that this wasn’t a good sign, but I know a part of me hoped that he wasn’t dead.

Once we got the news we stayed together for awhile.  We waited on Misty to arrive.  She came in the room her bright, cheery self, she was optimistic everything was ok.  All we did was shake our heads and the shock began for her too.

After that we began to make the calls.  I’ve made these calls once before, when Jason’s Grandmommie passed away.  As hard as it was in 2005 it was 1 million times harder to call that day.  I called Jason’s Uncle who was stunned.  I called Jason’s Pop who was uncontrolably confused.  I called my mom.  I knew I couldn’t deal with Ebin in this moment.  My job was to tend to Jason, his mom, sister and brother.

The entire time Ebin never really made a sound.  He woke up, but he was so good (and ya’ll, you read this blog, he’s vocal!)  What a blessing.  One of just the many many many blessings I will never be able to record them all.

After more calls were made we decided it was time to see him.  I’m not going to say much about that.  As I reflect, I realize it was about 2 hours before we saw him, so death begins to settle in.

My mother came up to the hospital to get the baby.  The SECOND she put the baby in the car he began to cry.  CRAZY how he stayed quiet until then.

After some time had passed Ms. Pam was ready to come home.  We were greeted with countless loving friends, more dishes than I can count, and so many open arms. 

Then the night came.


I’ll blog more later .. check

Posted in Larry | 5 Comments »

The Day Before

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 7, 2009

I heard this song for the first time the day before my Father-in-Law passed away.  There is no doubt in my mind that God gave this song to me to minister to me and to our family. 

It’s been amazing how God has taken care of us in the weeks leading up to this.  His plan is always perfect and it will all make sense one day.

Please continue to pray for all of our family, extended family, and friends.  Larry’s passing is the worst shock of our lives.  He was 59.


“Our Hope Endures” Natalie Grant

You would think only so much can go wrong
Calamity only strikes once
And you assume this one has suffered her/his share
Life will be kinder from here
Oh, but sometimes the sun stays hidden for years
Sometimes the sky rains night after night
When will it clear?

But our Hope endures the worst of conditions
It’s more than our optimism
Let the earth quake
Our Hope is unchanged

How do we comprehend peace within pain?
Or joy at a good man’s wake?
Walk a mile with the woman whose body is racked
With illness, oh how can she laugh?
Oh, ’cause sometimes the sun stays hidden for years
Sometimes the sky rains night after night
When will it clear?

But our Hope endures the worst of conditions
It’s more than our optimism
Let the earth quake
Our Hope is unchanged

Emmanuel, God is with us
El Shaddai, all sufficient
We never walk alone
And this is our hope

But our Hope endures the worst of conditions
It’s more than our optimism
Let the earth quake
Our Hope is unchanged


Larry with our dog Roxie – they had a super tight bond


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No words can express the sadness

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 6, 2009

My father in law just died.  Please pray for our family.


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I’ll be right back, I’m going to take a dump.

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 4, 2009

Do you really listen to people?  I mean, really listen to what they have to say?  Or do you have days that go by where everything and everyone you’ve come in contact with are just a blur?  I’ll be the first to admit, I’m bad sometimes about halfway listening!  Whenever I do this, I ALWAYS get caught!  For instance, if Jason is telling me a story about poker, I really do try and listen, but a lot of times I get lost in the details, so I glaze over a bit.  Then when he pauses and looks for a response from me, I follow with a comment that doesn’t go with the story at all.  Know what I mean? 

That brings me to this post.  It’s a pretty funny story about how halfway listening can get you in trouble.

Background – I chose to breastfeed Ebin when he was born.  There are a lot of pro’s and con’s to breastfeeding in my opinion but that’s another post.  So, when I went back to work I began pumping every 3 hours or so to keep up my milk supply.

Me – Ok donna, it’s time for me to take a break.

Donna – Oh, ok.  How long will you be gone?

Me – Well, I have to pump so it will probably be 20 minutes or so.

Donna – …whips her whole body around and looks at me like I’m crazy…

Me – Ohh, you’ve been out of the office since I’ve been back.  I’m breastfeeding, so every 3 hours I have to pump.

Donna – …her facial expression completely changes, from confusion to relief…

Me – Donna is everything ok?

Donna – Oh gosh Keren, everything is fine .. I just thought you said you were going to take a 20 minute dump!

How easily we can misunderstand each other when we fail to halfway listen.

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Month 2

Posted by kerenmelissa on January 2, 2009

Two months old! And what a month it’s been. You are starting to hold your head up really well at the beginning of this month, which is nice because I don’t have to worry about you flopping around as much anymore! You stay awake a lot longer during the day now. About every third night you will sleep 10ish to 5ish, which is GREAT! Your favorite thing to do is people watch. You are constantly studying people’s faces and trying to imitate their expressions. When you want to ‘talk’ you coo, but you also fake cough. At first we thought maybe you had a cold, but one day mommy coughed and you coughed back at her! We realized you had learned to control your coughing, so you use it to talk. Pretty funny!! You are always alert and I can tell you are learning a lot. You’ve also learned that toys ‘do’ things, and you always want them going.  Your colic seems to have disappeared into thin air, and we are so thankful for that! Mommy had to go back to work this month, and her heart broke a little. But, she knows you are in loving hands. We celebrated your very first Christmas this month and you went to church for the first time this month!


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Happy New Year!

Posted by kerenmelissa on December 31, 2008

Happy New Year everyone!! I hope that 2009 is a great year for you and your family!! Please be safe tonight if you have plans DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE!! Only idiots do that.

As for me, I am ready for 2009!  2008 was a little rocky for me and I’m ready for a fresh start!  I’ve never been one to make new year resolutions, but this year I think I might try.  I’m only putting a few things on my ‘list’ .. start small right? 

So here goes:

  1. Read my bible at least 3 times a week.  I’m bad about Quiet Times and that is the first thing I need to get better at.
  2. Eat better.  I love, I mean LOVE, junk food, and if I’m not careful it might start showing on my boo-tay, so that needs to stop.
  3. Exercise and loose 10 lbs and KEEP it off (I think #2 will help with #3)
  4. Be debt free.  Bc of the rockiness of 2008, I’ve got a little bit of debt to pay down.  I’ve NEVER had debt before, so it’s driving me crazy.  I want to pay that down by the end of the year .. which is totally do-able.

What about you … do you make NY Resolutions?  If so, what are they?

I’ve also decided to check back in at the end of each quarter so I can re-evaluate my progress .. stay tuned 🙂


Posted in About me | 3 Comments »