Archive | September, 2011

Remembering the little things

12 Sep

The older I grow the more earnestly I feel that the few joys of childhood are the best that life has to give.  ~Ellen Glasgow

It was one of those moments that made me stop in the middle of Target and simply smile. Last night Breanna came into my room elated because her first progress report from school was posted online, and for the 1st time, she has all A’s. I know this is probably not a big deal to many parents, but for me, it was a huge moment. She is an amazing kid, but education has never been her strong point. The girl studies her butt off and really has to work for good grades where with her twin sister, it just comes naturally, so when Bre has all A’s, it is a BIG deal. I decided that I needed to make her know that her accomplishment was important to me as a mom.

I was in the music section looking for the Cody Simpson CD for her, when is dawned on me… my mom used to do this exact same thing for me when I was growing up. Whenever I would get a good grade on a report I worked hard on, or landed a singing part in the school play, she would do something special for me as a reminder of her love for me and to show me she was proud of me. Sometimes she would buy me something and leave it for me, or she would surprise me at school and take me out to lunch, but my favorite thing of all is when I would come home to my room re-arranged and spotless. To this day there is nothing that gets me like a clean room in my house. Guess you could easily say I am very OCD, but it simply makes me happy, then and now.

I never have forgotten what those moments felt like, which is why as a mom, it makes it extra special to make sure my daughters have the same memories. I want them to be able to do the same thing I did today… give their children what my mom gave me… a special memory. It doesn’t have to be something big, in fact, most of the things my mom did were small but because she did it with so much love, it made the biggest impact on my life and on the kind of mom I want to be to my kids.

I am thankful for a life full of special memories created by a woman who made sure I knew she loved me and no matter what.  I pray that I leave that with my girls and they look back at certain times in their life, as I do, and simply smile because they remembered something that made them feel special just because. We all deserve that, but our kids need it. In a world filled with negativity and mean people, we need to make sure we are not that in our kids lives. We need to be our children’s biggest fans. My mom was certainly mine and I will never forget it.

An Amazing Mother… In Law

1 Sep

They say you can tell a lot about a man in the way he treats his mother, but I believe, you can tell more about the man in the way his mother treats others.

It is never easy meeting your boyfriend’s parents for the first time. There is always the fear that they will not like you or you will not click with them. I was a single mom bringing my twin daughters along with me and trust me, that alone can be a deal breaker. I made sure that Erik told his parents I had kids and that they were okay with meeting them when they met me for the first time. From the minute I walked into the Elliott house, I felt at home. All the butterflies that had positioned themselves in my stomach on the 2 hour drive up to Manhattan Beach, had disappeared the minute I met her.

They greeted me and the girls with a giant hug and warm smile. We all introduced ourselves and it felt like I had been in this house with these wonderful people before. I had to remind myself  (and more importantly, my children) we were at a guests house, and must be on our best behavior. Before I knew it, my girls were in the pool and Erik’s dad was on the 2nd story balcony ledge jumping into the pool with them. This gave me some time in the kitchen with Erik’s mom, Twila. Immediately I was drawn to her. She was so kind and asked me a lot of questions about myself and my daughters. We hurried around the kitchen getting things ready for dinner and never once did I feel out-of-place or uncomfortable. As the afternoon led to the evening I almost had to pinch myself to see if this was real. How could it be that I met this amazing guy but more importantly, an amazing guy with amazing parents.

As we drove home that night I was so thankful for the opportunity to meet the Elliott’s. It was very early into my relationship with Erik so I had no idea what the future was going to hold, but I could tell by the way his mother was and how she treated my daughters and I… I had a keeper.

It did not take long before the 3 of us were apart of their family. We started going up to Manhattan Beach more and Twila and I began developing a relationship. In August, Erik myself and his parents, went to Hawaii together were I became Erik’s fiance, and Twila became my soon to be mother in law. I am still not sure which I was more excited about … (babe if you are reading this… sorry but it is true.) But when you meet this amazing woman you cant help but be drawn to drawn to her. She is infectious.

It was during a conversation I was having with my sister yesterday that it hit me what it is that makes my mother in law so much better than yours 🙂 She is a giver and she treats everyone, no matter what they look like, where they come from, what they have done, exactly the same. She makes me want to me more and more like that. It is so Christ-like it is scary. I know one other person who has the same qualities and that is my sister. It is not everyday that you are in the presence of a person like this.

I know that I am blessed. I adore this woman. My daughters adore this woman and my entire family can’t get enough of her. She would give the shirt off her back (literally) for a stranger in need. I only say this because I have witnessed her in action. Wherever we go people are drawn to her sweet and genuine spirit. People know when other people are fake, which is why everyone loves her. She is so real and I know she makes Jesus proud. She imitates him in the smallest of things.

What I have learned from my mother in law is simple… Give without ever wanting anything in return, because when you do… that is when people see Jesus in you. Twila Elliott may never be a name in the history books or have stadiums or monuments named after her, but what she has done with her life this far, far surpasses any of that. Her children love her and call her blessed. Strangers remember her kindness. Friends desire her company but more importantly Jesus looks down on her and says, “Well done my good AND faithful servant. You have represented me well.”

Twila, thank you! Thank you for loving me and my daughters as your own. Thank you for reminding me everyday how lucky your two little granddaughters in my belly are to have you. Thank you for treating my mom and sister the way you do and for welcoming them into your amazing family. Thank you for showing me what I need to become and setting such a beautiful example. I love you more than you know and you really are an angel here on earth. My life is better for having YOU in it.

With all my Love,

Your daughter in law

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