A Cherished Chapter- Remembering Mom

Mother’s Day is coming up soon, and during these times is when I especially reflect & remember my Mama. I had written a blog a couple of years ago when this amazing event in my life took place. I thought I would share once again in it’s original, personal form. I want to wish you all an early Happy Mother’s Day! And for all who have had a child or Mother pass on, I encourage you to continue to celebrate the time you had with them by cherishing memories. May you get inspired to share your joys & sorrows and reach out to someone else.
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I have just been reunited with my family! Now, believe me this is a huge deal. I had been curious & been searching for my Grandfather for as long as I could remember. This weekend we met for the first time ever!

But for right now.. let’s rewind a little bit so that you can better understand the full story…(you can add those fast, high pitched..sound effects here: “ziiiiiiipzooopzam zam”)….


My mommy… Gloria Zodiacal, was born in Los Angeles to Offelia and George Zodiacal. Gloria was the middle child with a younger sister Yolanda & older brother Johnny… They all then relocated and were raised in Anaheim. When Gloria was about the age of 3-5 yrs old..my Grandparents (George & Offelia) split up. The kids, “traditionaly”, ended up staying with their mother. All that had been “known” was that their dad had been gone since they were small. The faint memories that my Aunt Yolanda and my mom held were short visits riding around in a car with their father, George. They were very young, mind you…

Forward>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 1983

My mom and her family moved quite a bit all throughout Anaheim. The three of them stuck together. My mom fell into the role of the eldest sibling, the nurturer. At the age of 15 years old she attended Anaheim High School. There, she met a handsome “kool kat” named, Armando, whom was also raised in Anaheim. The two fell for each other hard and quickly. Their courtship was a serious one from the start. In the back of Gloria’s Mind she still had questions and thoughts of her Father. My grandmother was ambiguous about her estranged husband (my mom’s Father)…Simple translation: She wasnt sayin’ too much.

Fwd A bit>>>> 1984

Upon a year and sum months of courtship, Gloria & Armando decided to Marry! (Insert Wedding bell sounds here.) Gloria was just 16 yrs of age at the time. She was given away by her older brother. Three months later they went on to become pregnant with their first born.

FWD a lil’ bit more>>>> 1985

A glorious event occurred! (Insert Angels singing here: “AAAAAAhhhhh”)Priscilla was born! One divine blessing to all of you! lol. They went on to have another child in 1989,….Jaquelyn (newborn sound effects:”waaaaaa.” Smack*)

Couple of yrs more>>>>>>>>>>>>>>1992-3ish

Armando & Gloria moved into a large house in Anaheim on West Street with my sister and I, and my older cousin. My Aunt Yolanda & little cousin came to stay with us temporarily after we moved in. The house sat on a half acre of land. One windy November night, we all came home after a prayer meeting/ bible study at a family members house. We all ended up sleeping together slumber party style in the living room that night. I remember we all cozied up and recall being warm and snuggled in between layers of blankets. That is probably why I enjoy “camping out” like that with my own family to this day. We had the fireplace going as we always loooooved to….. I fell asleep slowly & comfortably, nestled against my mom. I vividly remember listening to the sounds of her breathing as I lay on her stomach. Everything was about to change unknowingly to me————————-
I woke up and felt something cool and hard against my temple. I opened my eyes and realized that I was leaning up against a window. I was in our van outside of our house. Everyone was in the van with me and all were sobbing. I was groggy and confused. Then I looked to my left and saw a sight that made me realize exactly what was going on, yet have so many questions all in…one….very…..slow…..second. Our home was on fire! The entire house was blazing with enormous flames. Sirens flickered & fitefighters rushed to the scene. I started to scream and cry. The memory seems to be as if it was all in slow motion and silence was all I heard. My daze was interrupted by my dad opening up our van door as he tossed in our large German Shepard, Peanut. The one funny memory I have from all of it was that we were all sitting in our van, calmly crying & talking. Then out of no where we smelt something horrible. Peanut farted! We all bursted into laughter. We had to let him out for a while. The American Red Cross put us up in a hotel for a week. Then we went to stay with family who graciously opened up their home to us for a while. I find it interesting that the land where our home use to exist is now a Church and parking lot.

About 2 weeks after the fire my mom started with a frequent cough. We assumed it was an insignificant side effect from all of the smoke. But it kept on. She went to the doctors and they told her that she may have Bronchitis. My mommy went for further testing because of continuing symptoms. She was diagnosed with cancer of the cervix. She had surgery and regularly received radiation treatments. The cancer was gone—– But a few months later… We discovered that it was back! It had hid and come back stronger than before. It had spread everywhere. She went through chemotherapy. She continued to praise God every step of the way. Everyone who came in contact with her was surprised at her demeanor. She seemed almost upbeat. It didn’t make sense. She was a very young woman, with 2 small daughters, a husband, and she was sick with a potentially fatal disease! It was her spirit. She did have a hard time with thinking that she might have to leave her babies. However, she maintained a peace that most people could not understand. Open & honest age appropriate conversations were attempted f sister and I were “prepared” if anything were to happen. You can never be prepared for something like that. However taking what I can from this experience that is now apart of me, what I learned is that I could choose to turn sorrow into strength, painful struggles into victories, and experiences into building blocks of faith.

The doctors told her that she didn’t have much time, no more than a couple of months. She exceeded it! My mom tried to search for her dad. She tried all resources available at the time. But she could not find him. During this period she set out to spend as much time together as a family & make as many memories as she could. We went everywhere. We even spent an entire day at a Head Shots studio. My dad had it arranged so that we could video record during our time there. She lived on. She went to family parties, church, and in and out of the hospital. But everywhere she went, she greatly touched someone. In late January, doctors told her that they had been doing all that they could for her. She was going to permanently return home and stop all treatments. At this time they were only wearing her body down without any positive effects. Her hospital bed and necessary things were moved into our home. One night she went to bed in her room. My dad made chili dogs for my sister and I. The three of us went to sleep once again slumber party style in our living room. Later that night my dad heard her calling him and woke up. He went to her room and asked her what she needed. She didn’t say anything. He went closer to her and saw that she was stiff. She was breathing but her heart was beating rapidly. He asked if she could see him. No response.

This is from a memoir that my Dad wrote:

“… So then I told her Gloria, this is it. You’re going home with Jesus. He’s going to take you home now. In just a few minutes when you look around you will be in heaven, with the Lord. I love you!!! I opened the bible to Psalm 23 and read:

The Lord is my Shepard; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in Green Pastures, He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in the paths of righteousness for his name sake. Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of DEATH I will fear no evil! For you are with me. Your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

I gave her a kiss… Gloria Baby you made it. You made it. You fought the good fight, you kept the faith, you won the race. You were a very awesome example of what we should be like. You touched so many people with your life. Now you will touch even more with your death. I promise you I will take care of our beautiful daughters with the Lord’s help. He will strengthen me just as he strengthened you. You were so gracious. I just pray that I can be half as good a testimony that you were. You made it baby. I love you.”

On February 8, 1994 Gloria Torres entered into the kingdom of heaven.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>2 weeks ago.

I had always wondered who my Grandfather was. I had always wanted to at lease meet him. It was also something meaningful to me because it was something that my mommy did not get to do before she passed. A couple of weeks ago on Saturday, October 28th, there was a huge fire 2 houses down from ours. I wrote a blog about it and my dad was in the newspaper. It brought back old memories of the whole experience I had with our home burning down, and now that I have my own children it came back full circle for me. It was a bit of a scare, but by the mercy of God we were not affected in anyway! Later that day I started to think on things. I thought about my mommy. Then I thought about her dad. I had looked before using the internet and through search tools for that sort of thing. Nothing. My dad said that he was probably dead. But, I knew in my heart that he was out there somewhere. I always imagined that he was alive and that he probably had a whole other family. I always said that I was gonna find him one day, “just watch!” Being intrigued with my family history & roots in high school I had always asked Pacific Islander friends about the last name Zodiacal. It is a very rare name. I knew that if someone had it… They had to be related to me. A thought popped into my mind to just search his name on Myspace. I had never thought to before. It didn’t make sense that an older man of his age would even know what myspace was. However, I reasoned that just maybe there could be someone related to him with the same name. I searched George Zodiacal, and 2 in all of myspace came up. One 12 yr old boy in the Philippines & a man in California. I looked at the page of George Zodiacal in California. He almost seemed like he could be related to us. He also had 2 sisters. I thought about it, “….hmmm…. ehhh… he’s 26. Too old to be his grand child. Too young to be his son? Ehhh forget it.” I walked away. Later that night I went back to it. It wouldn’t hurt. I’m gonna write him! I wrote him this message:

“Hey this probably sounds really weird… and its probably a long shot… But I know the last name Zodiacal is a very rare Filipino name. My mom, who passed away when I was 8, hadn’t seen her dad since she was little. I was just always curious to know who he was. His name was George Zodiacal. He was full Filipino. I don’t know anything about that part of my family at all. So I was just wondering if you knew someone, OBVIOUSLY OLDER THAN YOU…lol… with that same name… jus puttin it out there… doesn’t hurt to ask. Peace.
Thank You for your time.
Sorry if this is a bother.

Two days passed and I never got a response :'(.. Then… I found two messages on my myspace from the guy that I wrote to:

“hey im sorry i didnt see your message sooner but thats so wierd, im the 4th. my dads name is george z and his dad was george too. my dad is 59 and his dad past away a few years back in samoa, yeah he was Filipino. just hit me back and let me know. hope to here from you.”

Then the next:

“P.S. My dad had 2 daughters, Yolanda and Gloria. What city was your mom from?”

My heart started racing! I started crying and my hands were shaking uncontrollably. I read it like 3 more times. After making sure that I wasnt retarded or delusional… I ran half way down the stairs and started yelling at Robert “It’s HIM! It’s HIM!” Robert asked “WHAT?!” Then we repeated the same cycle about 2 more times. I couldn’t help but cover my mouth and try to catch my breath. I finally spit it out that It was my Grandpa. I had found Him! Robert had to help me to think straight…lol. I called my aunty Yolanda and had to explain to her that I had even contacted the guy. She couldn’t believe I had found her dad. She just said, “Oh my God…My dad is alive?”..Lizzy… my mommy’s sister called me after I contacted them back with info. She said that they all had always been looking for my mommy and siblings. He had told them about my mom and aunty and uncle. He used to visit his kids after the split. He would drive around in his car with them. He lost track of their where about’s in their process of regularly relocating. He learned that he found us… ALL of us. But also that his daughter had passed away.

>>>The weekend of 11/10/06

They drove all the way from San Jose. We all met. It was very special, amazing, surreal, fun, and unbelievable! We went everywhere, talked and shared pictures! I now know my family. I discovered more about my roots & learned that My grandpa is actually from America Samoa and some of my family lives in Hawaii. It is so amazing. I would have never thought that anything like this would happen to me… I feel very humble and proud that I was actually able to do something for my mommy. She wasn’t able to find & meet Him. But I did it for her. I think I always knew that he was out there and never thought bad about him, because I believe my mommy felt the same way in her heart. When they all left… I was saddened. It hurt. I was not expecting that… I think that I was trying to prepare myself in case it went sour. Or in case they turned out to be weird or something lol. (Hey for all I know they could of been anyone)…But we all connected! They were great! And they now have a very special place in my heart! I know that we were brought together at this specific time for a reason.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>The Unknown Future>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Some may wonder why I would even share all of this. Why I would share such intimate parts of my life. It is because one: It is such a rare, you would believe only happens in the movies type story. But mostly it is because I need to! What good is it if I do not share it? It would all be just hurt and pain from my past if I do not at least attempt to touch someone else in some way, whether it be big or small. I miss my mommy incredibly. Yes, I wish she was here right now. Yes, sometimes I try and imagine how my life would be with her. I wonder what she would look like. I wonder how she would dress these days and how close we would be. I imagine where we would live and picture what our lives would look like. And most of all I imagine how in Love she would be with my babies! Time has passed, bit It still hurts. Yet, I have strength. I can say that I am proud of who I am becoming because of where I have been. I know that everything would be different, but I would not change anything at all. I am so in love and grateful for my own children!

For everything there is a time, a season, and a purpose. We do not always know what the purpose of our experiences are until it is time to use them. I don’t have all the answers. But I know I do have THE answer. It is Jesus. There are so many problems and hurt in everyone’s lives. But through it all he loves us. He wants to bless us, free us, and make us victorious! My daddy raised me and my sister the best he knew how and he did a very good job. However, we still did have struggles. But that is another testimony in itself. My point is that when I tell ppl about God, it is coming from the life of someone who knows & has experienced the mercy & goodness of God firsthand. It is coming from someone who has been through it and come out the other side because of God’s Grace. I am not perfect in the flesh, but I am perfect in the spirit. I am always growing and striving to be closer to God. To everything there is a beginning and an end. There will be an end. What will yours be? There is no time to waste playing around. Yes, still live… enjoy your family… succeed in business. Family, Jobs, and friends are all things that are for us to enjoy while we are here & through them reflect the Christ in us. But we need to remember that those things are what we do, not what we are. We are God’s people! Every single one of us were meant to live the life He planned for us, and if we are not, it is because we chose not to. I am saved by His Grace. And for that I am thankful. It does not matter what you have done, how you look, or where you have been. Now it is time to just give yourself up to HIM. Accept HIM and let him save you. I did not write this to preach to anyone… but this is the route this went. This stems back from the desires of my Mother for her children.

My mom wrote a memoir in one of her many journals of her last words and I will leave you with this:

My last Word. I can rest in peace in Jesus. Don’t miss me, Just keep loving me as much as I have loved you all, with all my love God has given to me.

Always keep close to God to the bitter end. Even to the end of your death bed. Don’t ever exchange your life for anything except Christ. Without Him I would have never made it. And I can say, NEVER MADE IT.

Thank You All. I Love You

My tears to my girls.

And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with it’s passions and desires. If we lived in the spirit, let us also walk in the spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

Galatians 5:24-26

Our weekend meeting 2006

Final months of her time here with us 1993

What’s behind that pretty picture- Truth bomb

I am very grateful for my life and share those aspects of it regularly. The purpose is not to attract ooh’s and ahh’s, but my intention is that it may help others realize the shiny lil treasures in their own that they may be overlooking. I am a stay at home mom. When my coveted “position” comes up in general conversation with fellow moms/women who hold a position outside their homes, I usually receive the general comments such as, “You are so lucky!” or, “You have a dream job.” ….HA! *giggle, giggle

My sarcastic, introverted laugh is not to say that I dont enjoy my life or take for granted the arrangement in our family. (Because it is in actuality an “arrangement” that we have chosen in order to create the best, although not always easy, structure that we desire for our family) Rather, I chuckle to myself because of the picture they may imagine. They must think it’s all sweet as homemade pie, lounged, kicked up feet, fresh daily batches of cookie makin’, empty minded, simple thinkin’, leave it to beaver’s mama, smooth sailing UP IN HERE! It’s not. πŸ™‚

For these guys it is.

I am not complaining, nor is this a whine. I just want to clarify. Currently, my windows are wide open because I am disinfecting and shocking the stuffy cloud in my house with crisp outside air (it makes sense in my head). Once again my house is in shambles (organized piles of disorganized mess that I am sorting out) because I have started something that I may not be able to finish in the course of one normal day, but that’s what I get for being “overly optimistic”. Additionally, it’s minimum day, so that cuts things even shorter for my time crunch. Yet, the glory in all this is that I am getting better at managing myself within challenging situations, these days! God’s work in my life and my past personal struggles with anxiety & anger are being overcome! My days are filled with chaotic moments, struggles, juggled schedules & mistakes, just like anyone else’s. But at the end of the day I can genuinely say that our life is abundant, blessed, happy, & full of love.

Even as adults, we can sometimes lose sight of the blessings in our lives and fall into comparing ourselves to others if we are not mindful of who WE are because of Him. With the bombardment of social networking, status updates, photos & other decorated glimpses into the lives of our peers, there can live discouraging illusions. My personal goal in sharing parts of my life, as is my goal in my writing, is to reach and relate to others. Mattew 5:16 says, “Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light standβ€”shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. BY OPENING UP TO OTHERS, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.” As a believer in the life changing word of God, I desire to share pertinent truth and answers. What I have realized is that my personal journey may be similar to that of another and therefore my victories, experiences, & revelations can encourage another! Basically the “If I did it, so can you” mantra.

I started this blog on my birthday as a sort of gift to myself. I had only been “dreaming” of writing this blog and sharing what I feel I have to give for too long without acting on it. Writing is an outlet for me. This was something just for me. However, when you get the revelation of who you are in Christ and who He is inside of you, things usually turn out to be more than you imagined.

I continue to write and share out loud knowing for now there may only be a handful listening. But I will continue to share and build this into the vision I hold onto, believing that there is purpose in it. In my humor may there be joy for another, in my boasts may there be glory to God, in my experiences may there be wisdom shared, and in all I do may God’s will be done through me. I encourage you all to step out in faith, respond to God for he desires much for you, and always share of the great things he does in your life. Keep focused on Him and he will direct your paths!


Took these snap shots with my panorama setting on my phone.

Breakfast, Kinect play time, movie surfing, dancing & ring-around-the-rosie with Samson. But Rob got tired of the last part, so the kids took over. We are one kid short this morning. She stayed at grandma’s for the night. Continuing, but still not done with spring cleaning as you can see. Crate is in the middle of the living room, because we (I) are running on neutral. Trying to get it into drive so I can finish up and move on about my day. But watching the sideshow going on is slowing traffic πŸ˜‰

Daily Victories at silly struggles

So I was writing a post that was “of the moment”. I was all into it. Usually, it is hard for me to allow myself to be interrupted and walk away. Something I have taken notice of and been working on. However, I just got the opportunity at a spontaneous mini date compliments of Hubs! To be completely honest, as happy as it made me, I had a bit of an internal struggle to step away in my OCD state of mind. In the end, I have made the decision to run a tight ship with my priorities and snapped myself back to the right mindset. So I scrapped my post, jotted this lil rant of my personal victories instead πŸ˜‰ and am eagerly off to enjoy a thoughtful lil date he has planned!……………………

I’ll post about it later πŸ˜‰

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6th birthday delights

My lil’ growing young lady is such a delight. She wears her sweet little heart on her sleeve and you will never have to question how she feels. We used to think she was shy, but as she has grown, we are discovering that is very much not the case. She knows she is special & likes to be treated that way. This year for her birthday she was really looking forward to sharing her special day with her class & taking full advantage of the recognition among them πŸ™‚ She had it all planned out. Girly cupcakes were to be brought to school, she was to wear her favorite new shirt, she would wear her hear down (because it’s very rare that mom allows her to wear it that way to school), and she was to have a magic pointing finger for the day, meaning we had to oblige her every (reasonable) request! After a special day at school we got ice cream & went to the park for none other than a lil mini photo shoot that was all about the birthday girl, duh!

Makaila enjoying her ice cream & her crown just as much!

Modeling her birthday outfit of choice.

Spinning & twirling.

She opened some of her presents early that morning (because she refused to wait til we went out for her birthday dinner) and got the Jesse doll she wanted.

Sharing her spotlight with her new best friend.

Be Inspired Challenge: Spring

Spring is fresh! It is new, but vintage. It’s the mark of old things fading and exciting new beginnings. Spring is happy & bright, playful & whimsy, crisp & green. Spring is discovering beauty, character, & stories told within rusted wheelbarrows, wild flowers, and melted ice. Spring is the calm after the storm. Spring is the laughter of a child, the warmth of a mother, the love of a father & the kindness of God. – CurlyHeir

I got inspired to participate in a photography challenge asking, “what does spring mean to you?”. I am submitting this recent photo I took of Makaila which I feel perfectly envelopes just what it means to me! On a side note, upon random conversation, we have decided whom everyone in our family would be if they were an animal (I dont know why, we just have)… and ironically Meeka has always been known as the “bunny” among the rest of us. How fitting?! πŸ˜‰

I got to capture this picture thanks to divine, natural opportunity in our own, overgrown backyard, of all places! Yes, embarrassingly overgrown, however with the right view point it has been able to be used as a backdrop of something completely beautiful… and that makes me proud!

Feel free to check out more inspirations and challenges over at the Jessica Feely Blog!

Warm weather tastes like family sweetness

This week has brought forth some very warm days. While the heat can be uncomfortable at times, I enjoyed taking advantage of the opportunities that warm weather ushers in. The theme this week seemed to be food, family, outdoor activities, and did I mention food? πŸ™‚ It’s no secret I am a self proclaimed fan of food. It’s not only that I enjoy eating it, but I get inspired by the atmosphere we can create around it.

We spent much more time outside, at the park, & going for strolls than we had in the past few months! These summer-like days gave the husband, kids, & I an appetite for summer food. We had to get some good ol’ cherry chip & pistachio ice cream. We took a lil walk and happened to be near a new sandwich shop that had a pretty good special- Kid’s eat for a $1 with every adult meal. Deal’s always makes things taste that much sweeter! It was a nice change of pace for dinner. The subs were not only flavorful, but generously sized and they even make them with freshly sliced meats!

This week was also my mother in law’s birthday. We had a nice lunch at another recently established place. Again, delicious food & great specials. This Mexican restaurant serves lunch specials for only $3.99! Now, I expected a mini version of one of their regular dishes, but to my pleasant surprise, it was not only a very full sized plate, but amazing food! Ok… I’m hungry again :/

For dinner my mother in law specifically requested hot dogs! I think the weather got the best of most of us. So a home cooked dinner it was!

The kid’s played outside & went to the park for a little while.

While they waited around for dinner to be done they ate popsicles.

Rob cooked up some bacon wrapped hot dogs…

Coney Island style chili…

and of course… the onions (but, yuck for me).

Mom in law’s upside down pineapple cake was pure heaven!

Everyday Reign

It is a new week once again. I am very glad for it! For me, it comes with much excitement. It is a chance for a “fresh start”. I never quite get all the things I plan to get done the week before. So the beginning of a new week always seems like the perfect time to catch up and conquer all my goals… both past & present.

“I will get ahead this time!” I always tell myself.

This past week did not go at all as I planned. Just about everyday hardly went as I foreseen. Last minute plans arose, unplanned tasks got taken on, and almost-forgotten appointments had to be squeezed in. Yet, all in all, a new week rolls in and washes out the old. Time waits for no one.

With much trial and error, I am finally learning to welcome the tides instead of being knocked over by them. Many times as a young, married, mom of three children all under the age of seven, I had allowed life to overwhelm me. When rough days, unfinished work, & crushed plans piled up before me I dragged the heap with me.

These days, I am getting better at just letting go. I have figured out that I will forever be the emotional bag lady if I don’t. I have come to know that being a stay at home mom is in fact one of the hardest jobs a person can do. It takes much self discipline, self control, and drive that many working people do not possess. There is no stern boss to make you think twice about lagging on your work nor a training department to assist you with new job duties. Yet, the company inventory is priceless. My children will continue to grow no matter how imperfectly or greatly I handle the job. Life goes on regardless of my ups and downs.

As with motherhood, it is becoming more apparent how I must apply this same understanding to all areas of my life. There is too much to strive for, hope for, live for, move toward, to keep getting caught up in the things that do not go my way. Every time I choose to let go of something that I could have weighed myself down with, it is the opportunity to grasp something new and greater that will produce new and greater results in my life. I have realized that I can not control everything that comes along in my life. But what I can gain control of is myself. And as my Pastor put it, “If you can learn to control yourself, you will then be able to take control of everything around you.”

The key is a daily walk with God thru Christ Jesus. He created us to reign. He created us to have authority & dominion. We were created to rule. Rule what? Rule ourselves. If we rule ourselves, we will be able to reign in life. Most of the time people get frustrated because they have no control of circumstances in their lives. Most of the time it is circumstances that we have gotten ourselves into because of lack of control of  ourselves. (Mmmhmm, I said it. I know I have been there.) The great thing is that the Bible tells us that we were meant to reign.

Romans 5:17 says, “For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.”

What rules your days? Days turn to weeks, weeks to years of your life. Do new days come with dread and overwhelming stress or are you able to welcome them?

No Ace of Cakes, but sure was Sweet fun!

Finally sat down with the kiddos and had some fun trying out their new “Girl Gourmet-  Ace of Cakes” kit that they got as a gift from a friend of mine. She of course is talented enough that she makes real cakes, so it was a perfect and thoughtful gift coming from her. Thanks Cassy! 

After fumbling with the directions & some setup… we were good to go! Of course it only came with ONE mixing bowl so I gave them each their own…ahem, three kids who want everything equal :/
Just add water to the packets… easy enough. Right?

Jerm mixing & eating the blue fondant.
Lesseya preparing the batter to bake. Well actually, more like microwave for 30 seconds πŸ™‚
 This was our FIRST attempt at laying the fondant. Of course it kept crumbling.
So we kept trying to save it with more water…
and then more flour when it got too gooey…
and then more water… 
then more flour… 
Yeah… it didnt work out! lol
Tada… Our clumpy, holey fondant. {We just blame it on Jeremiah, hehe}
So after lots of laughs and getting lil Jerm off to bed, we decided to go for it again…
And finally… our better, our smoother, our less clumpy, less holey creation πŸ™‚
We decided it looks more like two funky decorated marshmallows, but proud regardless…
Makaila said, “Good thing its not somebody’s wedding cake!”
 And on that note….
…it was time to taste….
Uh, yeah… good thing it wasn’t somebody’s ANYTHING… cuz it tasted like play dough, haha!
But by far… a very fun time with the kiddos!
I want to try again πŸ™‚

Rustic-Vintage Wedding Invites

I recently had the pleasure of creating these unique & fun wedding invitations for my cousin, Sarah and her fiance Brian. She is putting together a classy and casual wedding that will include a touch of whimsy. It truly will be fun and memorable event that represents them as a couple.
She requested invites that would coordinate with her rustic-vintage inspired theme and that would includ a sepia version of one of her engagement photos. I got hold of her vision and knew I wanted to create something that was elegant but light and fun…. and something that would give recipients a sweet, small taste of what is to come.
Drawing inspiration from old Type Posters that were used in the Victorian era and for vintage circus’ I knew Typography was the way to go! I used varying fonts to reflect the eclectic & vintage elements of her wedding. I utilized a few of the wonderful free fonts over at KevinandAmanda.com
I chose three colors to use consistently throughout the design to tie the eclectic pieces together. The modern twist to this vintage & rustic theme is the color scheme: soft gray-blue, teal & cream are the main colors. However, rich chocolate browns and deep muted reds are being used as pops of color and complete the modern color palette. Blues and chocolate were my delicious choices.

My personal favorite touch is the hidden “S & B” that I used as a ribbon detail behind their photo πŸ˜‰