Monday, July 29, 2013

9 months

Judson Ray
or wild man, as many lovingly call you
you are so excited about life
that makes life with you extra fun

each week you are developing a new sound, expression, skill, temper! or taste.
although you keep us moving and busy, we are truly having so much fun
(have i said fun yet?!)

your little personality is peeking through more and more
you seem to inquisitive, adventurous, busy, fearless, happy, sneaky, excited, high-energy, joyful, fun and sweet
we just love you to pieces

Nothing scares you. In fact, you like to be startled.
You love the vacuum cleaner-running or not. You'll sit on the floor and intently watch as i vacuum or follow it around.

3 things are guaranteed to make you happy (sometimes...ha!)
1."riding the horse" on your daddy's knee
2. riding on his shoulders

3. "driving" our car

People often say "he's all over the place, he's constantly moving, he's so busy, wiggle worm, etc.
into everything that you're not supposed to be in

You have 0 teeth but are getting better at gumming different foods.
You only nurse once a day, in the morning when you're still kind of sleepy, the only time you're somewhat still. The rest of the time , we chase you around with a bottle. (this was written last week, so things have changed...we'll talk about it later.) 
To say I'm not sad about this-would be a total lie.
 But, you're healthy and will eat and drink almost anything, so its all good. I guess.
(Why am I so emotional about this? Can I still blame hormones?) 

You are all muscle.
Seriously, you have great calf muscles, quads and deltoids. Not much fat on you. You are so crazy active, I'm not surprised. Sometimes we call you cat squirrel
you are in the 95th percentile for height
50th for weight
so, tall and thin.

You are hilarious. Always making ridiculous faces and noises.
currently you make this noise that sounds like you're clearing your throat. no idea.

when i get home after working, you will squeeze my neck and often do this when i get you out of your crib. it's the best. 
sometimes, you give people a shy little side smile and lay your head on my shoulder when they talk to you. 

if we keep having kids like you, we're likely to have 20.
or less.
you continue to shower us with joy.
you make each day more fun and interesting.
your dad and I often talk about what kind of boy, teenager and man you will be.
we are eager to watch you grow into each of the ages and know it will be fun and challenging.
accepting the challenge and delighting in the fun!
we love you with every ounce of our being.
no matter how many times a day i say, "Judson Ray, stop!" or "Judson Ray, come back here!" or "Judson Ray, where are you going?", i wouldn't wan't my life to be void of this!

here's to the last quarter of  your first year.
you're the best Judson!

i video everything and upload it to YouTube, so if you're bored or here

Friday, July 26, 2013


This season is drawing to a close, although we are yet to hit the hottest days of August. Even though summer doesn't mean the same thing to me now as it did 10 years ago, I still bask in the glory of hot afternoons, balmy nights and the long days. I hate to see a summer go. So many memories, new and old, that make the days of summer so so sweet. 

From Jessi's post today over at Naptime Diaries

"If you feel like it's running by too quickly, don't stress.
Look around and soak it up. Drink it in.
The work is in the watching and the being.
Our Father made the seasons with perfect purpose and that deflated, tired, fulfilled, warm feeling that washes over you on a summer afternoon - that's from Him.
Soak it up."

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Drive

Some motivation to start off hump-day
No more excuses
Pretty incredible, huh?
GT showed this to me after seeing it on ESPN while running at the gym. 
He admitted to holding back a tear on the treadmill. 
Bless him.
He also kills animals.
Had to throw that in there in case I just jeopardized his man-hood. 

Oh, you want to see him kill a bobcat? 
Check out this weeks Buck Commander.
Or here Outdoor Channel
Saturday 9am CST
Tuesday 1030am CST
Wednesday 4pm CST
Saturday 1am CST

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

celebrating, honoring and remembering

one of my very best of friends since birth, Jenna is celebrating her 28th birthday today.
she is now a mom of the cutest twin girls you have ever seen.
seriously, they are.
she is in her prime and doing a beautiful job of raising sweet girls
(apparently, i am fond of obnoxious head-gear)

She is celebrating it by spending time with family.
not that she wouldn't do this on a normal birthday, but today is different.
Today, they also buried her granddaddy, her dad's dad.
Just 5 short weeks ago, we buried her Mamaw, her mom's mom.
so much loss.
in such a short time.
but there is hope, hope in the ressurection of Jesus.
this gives her family peace, in knowing this world is not our home.

Her granddaddy, Mr.Owen, was in the military and served his country for 25 years.
My Papaw Shack was also in the military. He was a marine.
Both men served their country and loved it with all of their being.
As we honored Mr.Owen at the graveside service today, I remembered my Papaw.
I thought about him as the service men fired off the 3 rifle volleys, as they played Taps and as they handed Mrs.Owen the flag, so beatifully folded. With such honor.
I also remembered him as I stood next to his grave.
The two men are laid to rest, right next to eachother.
i don't believe there is anything more sobering than hearing this played by men in uniform.

today, we honored Mr.Owen and said good-bye to his earthly body.
I remembered my Papaw as I stood next to his grave.
and we celebrate Jenna and her 28 years.

there is a time to celebrate
a time to honor
and time to remember

it's humbling (and rather emotional) to do all three in one moment

Sunday, July 21, 2013

On the road again

Headed home after another great reunion in Quanah. 
We visited, bingo'd, ate, popped fireworks, ate, drank lots of coffee, played games, ate, played in the red clay of the Red River and ate some more
And it was good

Now for the 8 hour drive with antsy-pants McGee Judson Ray. Should be fun. 

Friday, July 19, 2013

come monday

sweet, sweet Seredipity
GT and I were set up a Jimmy Buffett concert
We were married on a July 3rd

Jimmy Buffett was scheduled to play in Shreveport on this July 3rd
Our 3rd anniversary 
the grand opening of the Margaritaville casino

what, what!
it gets better
the peeps over at Margaritaville contacted GT, wanting Willie to come to the show
so, we tagged along. Naturally
and called it an anniversary!

Thanks JB!
p.s. he is a little dude. little bitty.
and just as jolly as you'd think.

We were all brought on stage to sing his encore song guessed it...Maragaritaville.
i was not prepared
i had always dreamed of this moment (not Marg'ville, per se) but, my on stage- rock n' roll moment.
with a tambourine in hand. always a tambourine.

then, it happened.
and i froze
they even handed me a tambourine
i might have squealed when it was given to me

i always thought that i'd rock out with that tambourine.
shake it in a big circle then beat it against my hip along with the drums
well. given the opportunity and i did anything, but that.
 i just did the closed-mouth smile and left-together right-together dance move, lightly tapping the tambourine against my leg.
(Update: I did harmonize(this term is used graciously) with Mac Mcanally. I'll call that a win!)

in all our glory

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

wordless wednesday: michael jordan interview

i can't even breathe when i watch this
ugly laughter over here
Kristen Wiig is brilliant. 

i probably oversold it at this point, but i'm still dying.
i hope you get a fraction of the enjoyment i did when i viewed it over and over again.
my jaw is cramping

thanks to my bro, Josh-a true MJ fan, for sharing this gem.
we kind of like this "taller" version of MJ anyway

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


if i'm being honest here
1. i'm ok if you judge me for letting my dog lick my kids face
it's worse at times
and i think this picture is one of the best moments i've ever captured on the iphone

2. i've quit following some people on instagram that i don't know (who i just followed creepily to look at their awesome grams) who make me jealous
jealous of their perfect homes
their super cute kids
their incredible photographic skills
their super fun day-to-days
their outfits
you know.
i just quit.
i had to. i was wasting my time
time wishing i was cool like them

3. my new favorite tv show to dvr is Trisha's Southern Kitchen on the food network
yes. Trisha Yearwood.
yes. that's the one.
i love it.
she sings accapella
she makes me laugh
she has good, easy recipes
there you go.

4. after Judson goes down for his morning nap, the extent of my laziness is astronomically embarassing.
some days i am super motivated and can clean the entire house, organize our mail and built a pyramid in those 2 hours.
other and Trisha

5. i haven't blogged so much lately because i don't have a reliable computer.
im on hand-me-down numero dos.
mine bit the dust, moms bit the dust, now i'm on brother-in-laws.
it's great...but slow, so i have to gather up some crazy amounts of lazy energy to upload pictures and write about them on the ole blogosphere.
you feel sorry for me, don't you?
i thought so.

happy tuesday fine folks,
that's all i got.


Monday, July 15, 2013

food, fun and fireworks on the 4th

and lots of photos, so hang on.

lots of food
lots of fun
and plenty of fireworks
and fellowship with 
lots of friends
and lots of family

lots of lots
we are blessed

lets get past all the wish-wash that are words and get to the goods.
Judson Ray loved his bandanna. as predicted.
it stayed on for a mere 4.9 seconds (long enough for a pic)

we celebrated the 4th at my cousins with an smorgasbord of food
the Daraja Childrens Choir joined us and were so sweet
they loved playing on the water slides and even sang a few songs for us
it was a very special 4th for our family

the Daraja kids stayed the entire week out at Camp for a little retreat from their busy tour schedule.
Judson, Bella, Korie and I went out on that Wednesday and had dinner with them and visited with their leaders and played a little with the kids.

one of the Ugandan teachers is named Peace
when we arrived at camp on Wednesday, she scooped Judson up before I knew who took him.
he loved her
he spotted her across the table at the 4th of July dinner and instantly started reaching for her
it was pretty sweet

 their little moves and voices left us all cheering and grinning

after letting the pyros loose, the fireworks began!

before the Daraja group left for the night, we all sang together and released these lanterns
it was really really beautiful

video here
and loads of photos and more video here

we are free
free to love
happy 4th (errr..15th) of July

Friday, July 12, 2013

a quick photographic update

this actually serves as a personal reminder to elaborate on each of these in their own respective posts.
now....moving on.
in case i haven't mentioned it....this kid is cray cray
all over the place
trying to buy a phone the other day, i had to pull out the full arsenal, everything including the kitchen sink
he was super happy, just busy and so so so curious
as GT says, "we can work with that"
love his little spirit

i mean....
come on.
the cutest, right?
the nephews were in town last week/weekend and we lived it up.
more to come.

the nephews brought their parents with them, so we went out
they were taking the picture. obviously.

a little last minute trip to Huntsville a few weekends ago
i'd do it again
i don't think the g-parents would mind

celebrating the 4th
one of the best to date
(except for that time we watched fireworks from the Bahamas!)

uncle Joshy is kickin' it in West Money for a bit, awaiting his doctorate program to start in Dallas next month
we're pretty pumped about it
(he might hate me for this picture, oh well)

cheers to Friday!
i'm feeling overwhelmingly blessed today.
along with that....a little bit of guilt.
have you watched the news lately?
just the local news?
good grief.
im trying to balance my blessings with hurt of this broken world.
trying not to tip the scale too far either way.
how do you do it, maintain balance?

here's to a beautiful day
hope yours is the same

Monday, July 8, 2013

8 months

little Judson Ray
closer to 1 year than your actual birth
the last 8 months have been overwhelmingly good and each day gets better
 you are a happy baby
you get upset when you are frustrated because you can't go where you want to go
which is EVERYWHERE, especially where you're not supposed to be
 you are pulling up on any-and-everything
you try to let go to get to something else, but hit your bum then crawl where you need to be
you would rather get a power cord or tube of diaper cream than any of your toys
going outside/watching the dogs is the cure-all if you're bored or frustrated
you are starting to climb and i didn't realize this until i found you on top of the dishwasher
you climb up our bodies when we hold you
 you look SO much like your daddy to me
you love when he comes home and anytime you get to see him
you have grown pretty attached to your mama, but i suspect it won't last long.
i think that you are too busy and active to stay in one phase
(couldn't resist taking the photos in a footed sleeper. they might be my favorite) 
you make me laugh with your hilarious noises and ramblings
you say "dadadadada" and "bababababa" and not mamamama..........oh well
you know who certain people are when we say their name
you are very attentive and don't miss a beat
you have found your voice and like to make it known
you sleep great at night (roughly 12 hours) with a few off nights every now and then
you are taking 2 naps a day with the occasional 3rd if needed
you are eating meals with us now, consisting of whatever can be mushed or liquefied or gnawed on
you are pretty much over baby food and so am i, it seriously is really disgusting

you continue to intrigue us with your daily developments and hilarious expressions
you are so good to your dad and me
you give us a lot of rewards
you always greet us with a big smile and some type of corresponding noise with arm flapping
although, you are too busy for hugs once you actually get to us
a cuddly baby... you are not
but happy, excited, hilarious, sweet, full of life & most certainly are

you light up our life daily
you fill my cup hourly
we delight in your life and are thrilled to watch you share it with the world

happy 8 months sweet, crazy little Judson Ray

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

3 years

GT has been mine and mine only for 3 years today.
driving home the other evening, we had a nice chat about how good it is to be in this thing called marriage, together.
We both agreed that we're getting better at it and it is equally getting better for us.

i knew that I loved him when we said our vows.
i knew that i respected him
i knew that i was crazy about him

i still feel the same way
but, i appreciate him immensely more today
i understand him more
i seek him more
i delight in his company more
he fills my heart daily
he completes me (with a side of cheese, please)
no doubt.
july 2009

july 3 2010

june 2013

3 years doesn't sound like a long time
3 moves and 1 kid later we have a lot more tread on our tires than when we began
we have yet to learn lessons, cry tears, celebrate joys, navigate rough waters and share more dreams
but i know for certain, there is no one else i'd rather stand by through it all
mayish 2010

Monday morning, around 4 am, GT crawled into bed after spending the night with my mamaw in the ER (she is fine...don't worry!).
i told him how thankful i was for his loving me and taking care of my family
Without asking or even saying anything, he had left the house to go take care of her at midnight.
he said that it is just part of being family.
he told me that he loved me and wished he could show me how much
i replied, "you just did".
love made flesh in serving those i love

over the years-
we show our love in different ways
we learn to say things in a different tone
we grow in areas we never knew needed watering

i know the road won't always be smooth
i know the journey will lead us uphill and down again
i know that it won't always be this sweet
but, we are preparing our hearts for whatever life brings
we praise God for these times of His richest blessings

cheers to 3 purty dog-on good years!