Monday, May 30, 2011

Goodbye Jennifer

How can it be that you are gone? I still don't think I have my mind wrapped around it completely. The news hit me like a brick wall. I am sure it was the same with everyone else who knew you. How? Why? My mind was flooded with questions and I couldn't think straight. I still have many questions. But one lesson that grief has taught me is that asking why is futile. We will never know. Only Jesus can answer that. So, while I feel so deeply right now that there can be no good reason, I will chose to trust in Him, knowing that He has an answer and that He is good.

But that doesn't make me miss you any less. Jennifer. We may have known each other almost our entire lives! I am guessing we met for the first time before we were even aware of it! However, I have plenty of memories of childhood that do include you!
See that picture! This was in 1983. You, me, Gretchen and Ryan all bundled up on your Grandparent's porch swing! By the way we were dressed you would think it was a blizzard - but why is there no snow on the ground?!?! ;) A great deal of my memories from Terril have you in them. And your grandparent's old house.


This is a favorite picture. You, me, Kayleen at the Legion Hall in Terril - Thanksgiving 1988. Did we put on a show for our extended family that year? I can't remember. I just remember a lot of laughs and squealing. I think we ran around outside a lot this Thanksgiving because the weather was so nice. You were always so fast!!!!

************* Yet another photo of us together in Terril, all 3 of us circa 1992. By this point we were into boys...was this the weekend of the sesquicentennial? Did we end up going to the street dance in front of Legion Hall? I can't remember. But I do remember another dance we attended together. It was likely the next summer or that next year. You came and spent some time with me and my family in Hampton for awhile. I remember getting out the gymnastics mats and messing around in our side yard! What goofs!


Sadly, this may be the last picture I have of us together. My wedding in 2002. How can that be? You even lived and taught down here in KS. Why did we not spend more time together? I remember the time we set you up on a blind date with one of Jeff's friends and we went to an Italian restaurant! Afterward we came back to our house and I think we played games?!?! Jeff's friend was head over heels - he thought you were amazing! Because you were! But you two never spoke again - at least not to my knowledge!! ;)


When I think of you Jennifer, I think of a person who was bursting with energy and positivity! Your beautiful smile was always on your face - it could light up a room! You always seemed to have such a strong sense of who you were and you were so confident. Yet, you were never arrogant - quite the opposite. You were a fun-loving girl who was up for anything. Adventurous, vibrant, gorgeous, intelligent, kind, driven, a lover of family and life. You will be deeply missed by so many dear cousin.
Much love.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

More May Photo a Day!

May 22nd
Are these 2 not the cutest?!?! We attended a baby shower for our friend Stephanie and Jeremy. It was a very fun time! Quinn and Alijah are finally getting old enough to show some interest in each other. Quinn kept trying to grab his was pretty cute!!! BTW, Alijah was born the day before Quinn!

May 21st
Soccer!!!!!!!!!!! I love this action shot of Kennedy's kick! This week's match up was fairly even - other than the fact that the pink was super aggressive and physical! After getting shoved and pushed numerous times I told Kennedy to go ahead and shove the girl back! But luckily she didn't need to! Only one game left!

May 20th
Jeff's office had a "Carnival" to raise money this Friday! They really went all out and had a great set up! There were MANY carnival games like spin the wheel, balloon darts, rubber duckies, ring toss, face painting, tattoos, fortune telling, a cake walk and more!!! Kennedy even played a game and won 3 goldfish (which is an entirely different story!). In the photo below, Kennedy had just won the cake walk!!!!! She chose a chocolate Kahlua cake! She actually tried the cake walk again later and won a 2nd time! But I think the best part came later in the weekend. We didn't tell her at the time, but she had won 2nd place overall for number of points from the games. She ended up with $100 in winnings! We had been watching about the devastation in Joplin from the F5 tornado. When Jeff told Kennedy she had won all that money, he asked if she would like to give some of it to the people in Joplin that had lost everything. She enthusiastically said "Yes!!! All of it!!" What a girl!

May 19th
Today was Field Day for the Kindergarteners. It basically entailed lots of silly relay races. It was super fun for me to watch all the kiddos try their best to skip, balance things on their hands and heads, scooter on their tummies and scooter backwards! It was a hoot!!! And the kids had a blast!

May 18th
Birthday Party!!!! Sweet Catie had her 6th birthday party at Zonkers!!!! Most of my photos didn't turn out so well, but you get the idea. That is Kennedy in the last car with Adam's little brother, Aaron.

May 17th
Do you remember the nest outside our front door? Well, there are babies! Can you see it's fuzzy head peeking out?!?!

May 16th
Kennedy's class has a bear that travels home with the kids and then they write about it. Today was Kennedy's 2nd turn to have Mr. T-Bear. She wanted me to photograph their fun together! We have many photos of T-Bear now...going down the slide, playing in the playhouse, hiding in the least it kept her occupied for awhile!

May 15th
Birthday Party! This time it was Lily's 6th birthday party! It was in the gym of her mom's school and they had an inflatable! Kennedy is the one jumping while some of the kids curled up on the floor!

May 14th
Babies!!!! This is mama bird and you can just barely see the baby's beak in front of her!!!


Well, its Memorial Day Weekend. We always try to get out to the cemetery to spruce up Sam's site. But we ended up going earlier in the week.

Tornados were all around the KC area this past week. On Wednesday, one touched down very briefly in Louisburg, where the cemetery is. Kennedy and I watched a news story about a man who was in his pick up truck when the tornado picked it up, spun it around and dropped it back onto the ground. The state trooper was being interviewed at the site and it was by the cemetery! We later saw shots of trees down on top of graves. So we decided we should head out there to survey the damage the next day.

Luckily, the weather held out! Thankfully it was a small tornado that didn't do much damage. There were downed trees, but I assume they must have been sick or weaker trees as many, many others were totally fine. But here are some them...

Sam's are was fine! No damage at all! So we changed out the flowers, took out some decorations that had rusted over the winter, put out a new pfag and weeded. We had a little picnic lunch, too. It was Quinn's first time to "see" Sam's site...which Kennedy thinks is very important! So here they are at the cleaned up spot!

We miss our boy so very much! May you all have a blessed Memorial Day Weekend!!!

Friday, May 20, 2011

More Photo a Day in May

May 13th
Soccer practice was rough!!! It was a super cold, super windy day! The girls had to bundle up and keep moving. Quinn and I sat in the car and watched. She played in the passenger seat for a bit while I organized coupons. Eventually she sat on my lap and pretended to drive!

May 12th
I guess I forgot to take a photo today! Oops!!

May 11th
We had a very fun afternoon with the Elliotts and Franklins at Deanna Rose Farmstead! The weather got a bit humid for May but it was still great! All the kiddos enjoyed feeding the animals, running around, playing on the playground and posing for photos. We stopped for popcicles at the barn and headed to the cars. As we hit the parking lot, the rain came! We timed it perfectly!

May 10th
Our last day of gymnastics for this school year. We have really loved our classes at
KGDC. And it is amazing that Kennedy was able to have 2 of her kindergarten friends in 3 of her 4 sessions! It was great fun for me to get to know their moms and grandmother better!

May 9th
Kennedy has always been a very affectionate girl. Luckily Quinn seems to enjoy it! I love that it appears Quinn is smiling....though I can't confirm that she really is! Sometimes it is hard to tell!

May 8th
Mother's Day! Jeff's family came over to our place to celebrate. We had some yummy food and spent some time taking photos of Baby Zia. When Kennedy and Elijah were little we took a photo of them sleeping next to each other on the living room floor and it has been a family favorite. So we posed Quinn and Zia for a similar photo....and Elijah and Kennedy had to jump into the photo!

May 7th
This was taken after a fun hula hoop exposition! I cannot believe how old she looks. She is missing FOUR teeth!!!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Photo a Day May Take 1

Here we go for May!!!!!!!!

May 6th
We had the first of our 2 day garage sale . Kennedy and her friend Kennedy decided to have their own little sale! They got out 2 baskets...filled one with bottled water and the other with leftover Easter candy! They put prices on each basket and began "singing" and " cheering" for customers! They had tons of fun! But I think they only made .30!!!!

May 5th
Homemade babyf ood! I bit the bullet and started to make some of my own food for Quinn. It is so stinkin' easy I am kicking myself that I didn't do it for Kennedy! On this night I made carrots, apples and peaches. Wanna guess what is in the photo below??!

May 4th
My lil sweetie! See, she really is getting hair!!!!

May 3rd
A bird in the tree by our front door!!!!!

May 2nd
Quinn REALLY wants to crawl, but I don't see it happening anytime soon! She will sometimes get up on all 4s but then do nothing! She gets so frustrated!!!!

May 1st
We had both the Papas over for dinner. I love all the generations here....just missing Lou! He hates having his photo taken!

April 30th
Soccer! Kennedy is in the blue - blocking the ball!!!!

april 29th
oops! no photo today!

april 28th
This is Kennedy with her preschool teacher Miss Jenny and her brand new baby. Miss Jenny was so VERY special to Kennedy...and obviously Miss Jenny loved Kennedy too! We were invited to her home to see sweet little Reece. Baby Reece came 6 weeks early and has had some very scary days. But she seems to be getting better slowly. (Miss Jenny's dog loved Kennedy too!)

April 27th

Quinn sleeping! I love that her legs are up! The blanket was mine when I was a is sooooo soft!

April 26th

Play date with a super fun friend!!!! Dressing up is always a blast!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Recent Coupon Runs!!!

Just wanna post some recent deals!!!!

I made 3 grocery trips today - Hen House, HyVee and Price Chopper. By the last store I had had it....and I messed up a deal too! UGH! Oh and I hit CVS, too.

Anywhoooooo..... here is my first share: Hen House
Gotta love that they double coupons up to $1.00!!!

My items:
3 Life Cereals
4 Jello Tempations
2 Roberts Sour Cream
2 Roberts Cottage Cheese
3 Kraft Shredded Cheese
1 Kraft Chunk Cheese
Texas Toast Croutons
2 Taco Bell Seasonings
2 Taco Bell Salsas
2 Taco Bell Taco Shells
2 Power Bars

Grand Total: $29.57
Saved: $40.08 = 60%

Jello Temptations - $2.39 originally. Used $1 clipless HH coupon, $1 manufacturer coupon = .39 each!!
Cheap Celery - .99
Texas Toast Croutons - $1.00 originally. Used .50 manufacturer coupon doubled = free!
Robert's Sour Cream - $1.50 originally. Used .30 manu coupon doubled = .90


Next share: HyVee
2 Dole Salads
2 Dr. Pepper 6pk
Wheat Things
2 V8 Splash
Bird's Eye Frozen Fruit
2 State Fair Corn Dogs
Wholly Guacamole
2 Hershey Drops
2 Oreos
1 Farmland Deli Meat
1 Uncle Ben's Rice
4 Power Bars

Total: $38.68 (good but not amazing)

Dr. Pepper 1.99
State Fair Corn Dogs - 2.50 originally, used $1 manu coupon = $1.50
Dole Salad - $1 originally, used $1 off 2 manu coupon= .50 each
Oreo - 2.49, used $1 manu coupon = $1.49


The last share has no photos. We were in a huge hurry to get all the items scanned and put away and then run to soccer practice. (which was then canceled as soon as we showed up due to a downpour!!!)

Price Chopper
I bought 44 items.
Spent $88.58.
Saved $59.71 = 67%

This included $22 in meat!!!

Homestyle Mac N Cheese - $1.49 originally, used $1 manu coupon = .49
Yoplait - .39 originally, used two .40/6 coupons & bought 12 = .32 each
Yoplait Kids Packs - $2 originally, used two .75/2 coupons = 1.50 each
Palmeros Pizza = $2 originally, used 2 BOGO coupons = $1 each
Propel 6pk - $2 orignally, used $1 coupon = $1


I used to try to write out all my lists and coupon match ups on a small paper. It didn't work so well because I would always change things and scribble stuff out and make a general mess of it. So this week I developed my own little template and typed it all up! I still marked all over them but it kept me organized and I knew if my total was correct at check out or not!!! This is what it looked like when I got home!!!Oh, I also got paid to buy toothpaste at CVS! Gotta love it!
What deals did you get this week????

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

You Captue: Outside

This week's You Capture topic is OUTSIDE. And I had the perfect opportunity today!!!

Just outside our front door is a stunning pine! We spotted a bird's nest in it last week and have been keeping a close watch! I have seen the robin flying around quite a bit lately and was able to snap this shot!!!

I came back to check later and it was sitting on the nest! It has been there pretty much all day! Kennedy can't wait to watch and see what happens. She is hoping for baby birds!

I guess Spring really is here!!!

Monday, May 2, 2011

April Photo A Day Take 3

april 25th
Quinn is finally figuring out this feeder! It has a mesh bag for fresh fruit - she can mush it up with her gums and suck on it. When I fill it with bananas she devours them! I love this silly face!!!

april 24th
Such a cute photo of Quinn and Cousin Elijah! He was making silly faces and silly noises and she was just eating it up!!!! It looks like we will be spending lots more time with our cousins in the near future and I am soooo excited for the kiddos to bond more!

april 23rd
Poor Kennedy!!! She and I baked cookies on Thursday. I took one cookie sheet out of the oven and set it on the stove. I then got busy with something else. Kennedy went over to peek at the cookies and bumped her chin on the cookie sheet - she got quite the burn, poor baby! But she was super brave! (and wouldn't you know she had school photos the next morning?!)
Also, in this photo she is playing with her top, front tooth. It has been sooo loose! Kennedy was pushing it out and twisting it all around. I have some pretty gross photos of her tooth facing the wrong way and just hanging! She lost it the next morning!!!

april 22nd
I am not too proud to share a photo of this mess!! I have signed up with National Consumer Panel to track my purchases and earn rewards. Since I am such a coupon crazy and price watcher, it really just made sense for me to try the program out. However, when I make BIG grocery trips, it can be quite a bit of work! To save us the most money I usually shop at 3 different grocery stores a week and try to do it in one day, if possible. For NCP I have to scan each item purchased, enter price, choose if there was a sale price on the item, if I used a store coupon or manufacturer coupon, etc. That is for EACH item. So I had our purchases spread out all over the floor! Pretty silly photo but hey, this is our life! :)

april 21st
Just a normal day around our house today! My sweet girls spending time together!

april 20th
Happy Birthday Mema! This photo is really priceless! Mema with all her grandbabies (minus Zia who is still a bit too young to be near the cake!). She asked the kids to blow out the candles but they were trick candles that kept relighting. All 3 big kids are trying to huff and puff, Mema is cheering them on and Quinn is beginning to freak out!

april 19th
Kennedy's Daisy Scout troop were able to visit KMBC 9 News! I have to admit I thought it was super cool!!!! I had never been on a news set and I learned so much! The gals enjoyed themselves, though I don't know if they understood all they saw!!! Kennedy is 3rd from the left!

april 18th
Apparently this wasn't a very exciting day! This was my only photo - a trip to Target!!! But I must say it was a good trip!!! For all the items pictured below I paid $1.52!!!! Saved $12.36!!!!

April 17th
Beautiful Spring Day!!!! Kennedy has been wanting to pull Quinn in the wagon since Spring Break! She finally was able to today! Quinn ate it up!

Thanks for stopping by!!!!!
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