Friday, November 29, 2013


thanksgiving has passed and i'm still thankful
heck, i might even be more thankful

i've been MIA from the blogworld for about a week-it's the end of the semester. 
for that, i'm thankful.
after december 11th, i'll be back in the swing of things.  ...until the next semester.

thankful doesn't seem like the right word.
grateful seems less frivolous, less superficial. (i don't know)
i'm grateful for more things than i have time to list.
my life on this earth is good. in fact, it's great. unnecessarily great. undeserved great. 
thanksgiving day was spent with GTs family and was excellent!
full of women in the kitchen, conversation on lips, and grub in bellies. 
a perfect day.
for which i feel overwhelmingly grateful.
why i was given so much, i have no idea.
but, i tell ya what. 
i'm gonna be thankful and spread it around.
the Lord has been good to me and my family.
in spite of these Taylor siblings.
i mean ESPECIALLY because of the Taylor siblings.
they're pretty great.
this turkey.
for him, i give thanks.
lots of thanks.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: I am Secont

typically, i add a lot in the way of words on my wordLESS wednesday posts.
today, i'm holding true to the title of this post and letting the video do all of the talking.

in case it hasn't hit your Facebook newsfeed yet, here it is.
good, good, good people
and an even greater God.

I am Second: the Robertsons

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

sweet girls and my son

last night was our first girls bible study
some of the girls in the youth group at church are coming to our house once a week for a devo and some girl time.
pretty great, huh?
i'm basing our bible study on this plan
which I love

so, my mom kept Judson down at her house for a while while i got the bible study started then brought him up to our house for bed.
when she brought him in our house, he saw those girls and went into full out bashful smile (tilted his head to the side and a sheepish grin!) and show off mode for these girls.
Y'all, it resembled a flirting smile, what!??!
he is one year old.
this is way to early. 
who am i kidding, i'm never going to be ready for him to look at any girl like that (besides me, obviously)!
perhaps i'm over reacting, but whatever.

this, of course, got me into overdrive thinking about raising my son.
what kind of man he will be
how he will treat girls and then women
how we will talk to his friends about girls
how he will talk to ME about girls

even at the age of 1, he knew a room full of girls elicited a different response than when the room is filled with his dad and his Pa and his uncles.
he knew it.
everything that we do influences his actions and reactions to situations.
it is not too early to start training him in how to react to and treat others.

perhaps i'm over thinking this small interaction.
but, i don't think so. insignificant encounters teach us lessons all of the time.

it taught me that i have got to start NOW in being intentional about raising my son.
raising him to be a good man
because what i teach him now, will become what he does then.
what i say now, will become what he says then.
how i choose to treat others now, will influence his interactions then.

that's what kind of mom i want to be. and NEED to be.
if i am not intentional in teaching him how to treat others, especially girls, someone else will be.
and heaven forbid, he disrespects a girl a someday!

i do know that he will sin.
he is human.
but, i will do my best, with the help of the Holy Spirit and Gods teaching, to teach my son how to love and respect others.

and i'm begging those of you who have influence over my son and future children to do the same.
i'll do it for you.

Monday, November 11, 2013

12 months

so, maybe you're 12.5 months now, but....1 year, wowza!
you are sweet, spunky, silly and so so so much fun!
little Judson Ray, I can't imagine life getting better than it is with you, because right is sweet!
you are officially no longer a baby
my emails that I get weekly usually say, "Your Baby This Week", but now they say "Your Toddler This Week". So, i guess it's official...ha!
you toddle around everywhere and are really looking so much like a little boy

you are into everything
you touch anything within your reach
and grab whatever you're not supposed to
very, very curious
and agile
and coordinated
and determined
this combination is not always desireable. 
we attempt to barricade anything that would lead to injury

you can walk just about anywhere
and you can stand up from sitting or squatting without any problem, at all
which is always exciting! 
also, you love that little toothbrush

you try to climb on anything and everything

you still love to "read" and are starting to do so more independently 

you love to sit in daddy's chair and always look so proud when he catches you
but sometimes, you just like to kick back

you are ALL boy and like to tackle
get dirty
drive anything that has wheels
(thanks to our family, you now have a parking lot full of ride-on toys)
and like to knock things over

you make everything more fun and do not lack in the personality department

the logistics:
you have 4 teeth and i think getting two more
you are in the 90th percentile for height and weight
your hands are HUGE! 
your doctor verified that they are really large, it's not just my imagination

you eat anything we eat....and lots of it
your favorites seem to be maple flavored oatmeal, grapes, eggs, fruit bars, butter beans, chicken salad, spaghetti, yogurt melts. well, actually.....anything! 
you refer to all food as "nan-ah"

you can and do point at what you want or who you want
you can walk anywhere
you really only get fussy when you're tired
so basically, it's not hard to figure out what you need or want

you sleep great (knock on wood) for naps and at night
it takes you a little bit to wake up, which i completely understand
sometimes i just rest my chin on your crib rail and talk to you while you look around and slowly wake up. i'm thankful that we're rarely in a rush to get anywhere. i understand that we have it pretty good and for that i'm overwhelmingly grateful and refuse to take it for granted. 
you, my dear Judson Ray, have got me
all of me
your dad, too.
we are honored that we get to parent you in this thing called life.
you and your spunky little self are going to make this a pretty fun and good (and most probably challenging) gig.

you're going to be a big dude if your feet and hands are any indication.
so, i better get my bluff in early before you're towering over me.

equally your personality's dose of crazy, is your hairs dose of crazy
what we are doing with it is beyond me.
cutting it last week, not this week
combing to the right today, combing get the idea
i guess we'll just see. after all, haircuts aren't hanging around our house these days.

happy 12 months little booger!
we love you so much more than i could've imagined.
and you're off!

because we love them

i have White Christmas playing while i work on homework and Judson naps.
such an extraordinary movie!

i can't help but watch the performance of this song at the beginning and towards the end with a bit more emotion and regard on this day, Veterans day.
although this scenario is way more theatrical than real life, the sentiment is the same.
these guys wanted to honor a man they respected and one that led them in the battle.
today, some honor and remember one man.
some honor a troop.
but most of us honor the entire militar, past and present. 
we remember those who gave their lives and those that are giving up their life with their family so that i can enjoy mine. 

I don't really understand what it means to serve in the armed forces, or have a close one deployed.
but, i can be grateful 
honor them
cherish my freedom
and be a good steward of my freedom
and my country

God bless America!

and we'll tell the kiddies we answered duty's call
with the grandest son of a soldier of them all

Friday, November 8, 2013

Friday interweb round up

cheers to a good weekend!
i'll be face down in the books and hands on the keyboard, typing away at a paper.
in this actual moment, i'm procrastinating (shocking!) and doing some internet browsing.
i call it "taking a social media break"
my mind needs those every once in a while. maybe it doesnt and i'm just an internet junkie.
i'm not going to try and figure out the answer right now. 

so, here are a few things on that there interweb that cause me to pause and take a longer peek:
this beautiful photograph
is by photographer Jenny Lewis and stirs up a serious craving for some horses in my life

if you're on the hunt for an Advent calendar for your family, search no more.
this is the one for you
by one of my faves, Jessi, over at Naptime Diaries

i'm trying to talk GT into building this chicken coop
he's been on board for building one for me, but then I threw in plans that involved pouring concrete. 
he informed that I had taken it too far.
i don't think i agree.....
(p.s. Ashley, a woman, built this one. so maybe i should just bust out my tools?)

this Instagram feed, based on this blog, recently turned book, is sooooo interesting 
a fascinating way to take a very small peek via a photo and small comment into other peoples lives (that appear significantly different than mine) 
i really love to study other cultures, how other people live, why they live like they do and generally how others do life.
these photographs and small narratives give us a glimpse

that's all folks.
back to the books.
enjoy your fall weekend!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Thursday highlights

it's Thursday!'re almost there! 
unless you work weekends, then.......
carry on.

it's a pretty good day around here
i had my practicum for my health assessment class yesterday and I passed. so that's rather encouraging.
and by that i mean Holler at ya boy!!!

now to finish a rather lengthy and tedious paper that is due by Monday midnight.
in the meantime, i'm 'bout to put a soup on and soak up some of the fall-esqueness that is 50 degrees and sunshine.

on an important note:  i made it through Halloween without eating one piece of candy.
the day after, i ate 3 mini Snickers
eh, you win some, you lose some

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: the story (and crying)

i haven't listened to this ditty in a while
but back in the day, say was my jam

i watched Safe Haven the other day. i don't know. i just did.
moving on.
Nicholas Sparks, stinkin' gets me every time. 
I try to avoid his books, but somehow have read each one.
as cheesy as they may be, they are quick reads, good little stories and always leave me an embarrassing puddle of tears. 
which, i reckon, we all need every once in a while.
so perhaps i read his books/watch the book-turned-movie to get a good cry in.
a good, cheesy, sappy, ugly cry.

yes, yes, where was i?
oh yes! Brandi Carlile.
she had a song in the film...Hearts Content, i do believe.
it was good.
but, it reminded me of this beauty.
i feel this song. like, feeeeeel it. 
and don't mind an occasional sing-a-long with my lonesome in the car.

so, if you're in need of a good tear-jerker...grab some Nicholas Sparks (stop judging and do it).
if you're in the need for a good belt-out tune, grab this one.

(obviously, this post is geared towards women-folk. or men. whatever)

0:56- get it.

Monday, November 4, 2013

remembering Janie

i never knew my dad's sister, Janie
oh, how I wish I did
i know she was good, good as gold. 
I know this because people have told me
i've written about her before and why I was named after her: here 

This year marks 40 years since her death.
after 4 decades, people still wanted to gather and remember her.
since 1973 a plaque and her picture has hung in the freshman dorm at Harding in memory of her.
this year, Harding created an event to remember Janie and rededicate this memorial to her name.

so many people came!
the turn out was remarkable and really demonstrated what kind of woman she was that friends would gather to remember her after 40 years.
it was so good to see old friends
in the midst of a sad remembrance was a lot of joy in relationship

many of my dad's and Janie's friends shared memories of her
things I heard:
she was perfect, beautiful, joyful, walked with God, kind

her best friend and roommate at the time, Joyce, read the most beautiful note that she had written about Janie.

it was the most precious time
so many wonderful memories shared
there were a lot of tears
mostly of sadness
but many tears of hope for our reunion in Heaven
what a day that will be!

we all sang When We all Get to Heaven, apparently one of Janies favorites

  1. Sing the wondrous love of Jesus,
  2. Sing His mercy and His grace;
  3. In the mansions bright and blessed
  4. He’ll prepare for us a place.
      • When we all get to heaven,
      • What a day of rejoicing that will be!
      • When we all see Jesus,
      • We’ll sing and shout the victory!
  5. While we walk the pilgrim pathway,
  6. Clouds will overspread the sky;
  7. But when trav’ling days are over,
  8. Not a shadow, not a sigh.
  9. Let us then be true and faithful,
  10. Trusting, serving every day;
  11. Just one glimpse of Him in glory
  12. Will the toils of life repay.
  13. Onward to the prize before us!
  14. Soon His beauty we’ll behold;
  15. Soon the pearly gates will open;
  16. We shall tread the streets of gold

thanks to Harding for remembering the life of a golden 19 year old girl.
what a great place!
my Mamaw Lou said she just wanted to thank Harding over and over again.
she said when Janie died, the Harding community wrapped their arms around Randy. 
"you get so much more than an education, you get a forever family".

I feel so honored to be a part of the Kirby legacy
What a great woman to look up to, even though I never met her.
Joyce mentioned in her note that she wishes me, Josh and Jake could've held Janie's hand....i do too. so so badly. I know she would be a great aunt.
i'm so glad that I get to hear others remember her and love on my dad and my mamaw.
sometimes I get mad that I got cheated out of knowing her.
i think that it's ok to feel that way.
but my hope is not in this world.
I will meet her one day
    • When we all get to heaven,
      What a day of rejoicing that will be!

  • Friday, November 1, 2013

    JRs barn bash

    calling all party (barn) animals!

    we celebrated Judson Ray turning 1 in our barn 
    with just our family
    all 50 of 'em
    and it was wonderful

    little buddy is so loved and he was showered with affection
    it was the perfect evening

    (of course, i documented and have waaaayyyy to many pictures to share. so, if you're not in the mood for pictures. move on. fair warning.)

    the barn provided the best backdrop for the party
    i really did very little in the way of decorating
    some balloons, table cloths, bandanas, pictures and cardboard.
    party on!
    and of course, our family...the best way to brighten up a space!

    i definitely did not pull this off alone
    my dad, GT, Garrett and my FIL helped clean the barn out (a huge task!) so my mom, MIL and I could decorate
    super shout out to Beth Anne!
    She is living with us for a few months while completing a rotation here for PT school.
    she helped do everything-bake, decorate, clean, take care of Judson, you name it. high five for her!

    dad was cleaning up until the party started

    i made a couple batches of deer chili and mom, the mamaws, my MIL Del, and Beth Anne all helped with the rest of the food. 
    our good friend, Rosemary, made the ADORABLE cake and cupcakes
    it takes a team for sure

    we feel truly blessed to be surrounded closely by our family
    they are so good at loving us
    especially loving Judson Ray
    oh my goodness, i love these girls!

    some kids at the kid table

    ok. the cake.
    although it was the cutest thing i've ever seen, JR wanted nothing to do with it!
    for a kid that gets into everything, he surprisingly did not like his hands getting covered in icing!
    who knew?!?!

    for however much he did not like the icing, he did like all of his gifts
    i can't blame the guy, they were some pretty great gifts
    he sat in our laps and looked at each one
    lots of love for this kid, i tell ya

    after we opened gifts, everyone hung around
    the kids roasted marshmallows
    we visited
    and previewed the Duck the Halls album
    a good time was had by all

    and JR took his new rides for a spin

    the parents of a one year old.
    all haggard.
    jk. extremely blessed and overwhelmed with the love for their boy.

    one of us just can't contain his excitement!
    and what a thrilling party it was!