Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Welcome, 2014....

2013 has come and about to go....

2013 has been a year full of blessings.  Today, I guess in leu of 2014 approaching I have been super reflective.  And as trying as 2013 may have been, it has been packed full of surprise blessings.

Let's recap.


Here are some photos from the year.  Rett turned 1.  He traveled to New York, Pennsylvania, and Florida this year.  He was last year's New Year baby.  He learned so many things.  He learned to walk, sleep through the night, talk and make fish faces.  He was Batman for Halloween.  He went swimming this summer.  He loved the sand.  Rett had a good year.

My dad retired this year.  It has been 3 years since he has lived at home here in GA.  It will be exciting to get to see him more and be able to share more memories with him with Rett.

We got to visit with much of our family this year too.  We got to see our PA family many times throughout this year and have so enjoyed that.  We always love to go north and always welcome visits to GA!

It's been a good year.

I am not always one to be excited for the New Year.  I don't normally get all into the ball dropping and stuff.  It's never been a big deal.  And I may only make it to midnight tonight long enough to give my honey a kiss and sneak in and give Rett a kiss and then go to bed but if 2013 is a precursor to 2014 - I am super excited.  I am just looking forward to 2014.

Right off the bat, we have a youth trip planned.  Then, we head to Atlanta with some very dear friends to Passion ATL.  Then, it just gets better.  Spring comes.  In April, we get to go to PA for a short trip to see Kraig's sister get married.   Our 5 year anniversary is in May.  My life group girls I had since 6th grade are graduating.  Rett turns 2.  We have a retirement vacation planned for my dad this summer.  We have another youth trip this summer.  And I am sure we will make our way to PA in August for Givens' family vacation.  Next fall looks calm for now but I'm sure it will be great also!  I am just excited to watch Rett grow and learn.  These past few months have been so fun!

I'm excited to get fit in 2014.  I am anxious to continue my cooking skills.  I have come a long way this year.  I have learned new meals and I am ready to challenge my ability even more and try to be more healthy and creative for us.  I am ready to clean out my house and make it more organized and toddler friendly.  I just need to declutter.  I have made new goals for our family and myself.  The past few weeks I have been really trying to figure out ways to be better in 2014.  I guess I just thought - "The Lord has more for me as a wife and mother,  I know I tried my best this year but there is always room for improvement."  My pastor spoke last week about an attitude adjustment....that whole day, my attitude was horrid because I knew he was right and I didn't want to admit it.  It just hit me square in the forehead.  The Lord had that message just for me.  So, I am going to seek the Lord and hope my attitude changes on many things.  I have to learn many things.  I know I can be better, I just need His help.  I am ready for a new attitude and I am hopeful.

I am just anxious to get going.  :)

I sure hope you all had a great 2013 and I pray for blessings for a 2014.

Happy New Year!  Hope you all make it to midnight.  Heck, I hope I make it to midnight.  It's crazy how things have changed since Rett came along.  WHO KNEW!!!  :)

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Getting ready for Christmas - a Christmas wreath

Due to my anxiousness, Rett and I have been busy the last couple days.  We have shopped 'til we dropped, semi-finished our tree, semi-cleaned the house, wrapped some presents, and made a Christmas wreath.

Nothing is really complete except the wreath but hopefully by this time next week (when Kraig's parents arrive) we will be complete with everything.  FINGERS CROSSED

But today I got my craft on.  I rarely craft, mainly because I don't feel confident in my skills.  And I am not creative.  Plain and simple.  But I have some friends who are and give me inspiration.  Here you can see my friend's Cindy gift box wreath.  She is super crafty and I love reading her blog.  Please check it out.  My friend Stacie makes cool wreaths a lot too.  She made a awesome pink frame and made it a wreath...I tried to find a picture of it and came up empty handed.  Take my word for it - so cute!

Well, here is my go at my Christmas box wreath...

First - I got the supplies...I just took a stroll around my kitchen and found boxes with things in it that could be placed in baggies :)

Then I got to work.  I did glue the lids together on the boxes just because it made it easier to wrap them once I got started.

During Rett's nap today, I wrapped the presents, placed them where I wanted them and hot glued them all down and to each otehr.  I felt there was still something missing so I got to thinking and conversing with a friend and we came up with the "g."  Well, this was tricky mainly because I was impatient and I couldn't find our box cutter.  So, I found a knife Kraig had in the junk drawer and cut the best I could and then shaped it up using scissors.  shhhh...don't tell my mom or Kraig - they are very adamant about me not using knives because of a recent cut to my finger....another story, another day.  :)  I don't suggest using the knife though at all but again, I was impatient.  :)

 Then - this smiling face woke up so we took a snack break.  Isn't he precious.  He had a busy morning with helping me trim the tree and making homemade apple butter.  When Kraig got home, he was super excited to show off all of the ornaments on the tree and look at the lights.

After I cut out the "g" - I went searching for my red paint.  And guess what - it was no where to be found so I just spray painted it black and strung a ribbon through it and called it a day.  I still feel as though the Christmas-y colors are missing but for my first try - I am pretty pleased.  Next year - I will have the red paint and possibly green!  Now, it sits happily on our front door waiting to greet our guests.  

Now, to find a tree skirt and topper before this weekend!  And monogram our stockings.  O and stocking holders for the fire place....still so many things to do but I at least have the tree mostly done and I have a wreath, and some presents are wrapped...have to stay positive, right?

Monday, December 9, 2013


Christmas is approaching.

I feel anxious and overwhelmed because I don't have all the "kid-friendly" things for Rett to experience.  I have been on a crazy hunt for all the fun things that I feel like we should do to celebrate Christmas.  Such as a Nativity scene, an advent calendar,  and we need stockings and just fun decorations.  I can't find any of the things I want.  I may be too picky though because I don't want some of the newer versions of things so I have been searching Ebay and thrift stores.  I told Kraig that we probably should have been collecting these fun and kid friendly things over the years and we have failed.  At least we have our tree up, right!  It doesn't have the ornaments on yet but we have lights!  We hope to finish that tonight...fingers crossed.

Rett is now 17 months.  Growing so fast.  We have been going to the doctor every month or month and a half since he turned 1.  So, update on that.  The doctors have been concerned because he hasn't been gaining weight like he should be.  Well, talk about nerves being shot.  I did do what the docs said about feeding up extra calories, we did milkshakes, and just feeding him all day long - I felt like anyways.  Some days, I felt like he was a bottomless pit.  He ate all day.  So, every time we would go get weighed and there was no change, I was very discouraged.  Then to hear that something could be wrong with him was even more discouraging.  However, if you have met Rett, within minutes you would realize he is very healthy, happy, and thriving.  He can say words, sign words, and express what he wants.  He doesn't stop moving.  So, to say the least, I was conflicted because he seemed to be doing so well but the doctors were still worried.  Needless to say, Kraig and I prayed and just waited it out.  Well, this past Friday we had to go back to the doc for a check up from his sinus infection and of course to check his weight.  Guess what!!!!  He gained a little over a pound.  That is the most he has gained since before he turned 1.  The Lord answers prayer.

We are getting ready for Kraig's parents to come visit for Christmas too!  We are so excited about them heading south.  It is going to be a special time this year.

Well, update for now is complete.  I hope to be making a wreath later tonight while watching the "Sing Off" and part 2 of "Bonnie and Clyde"  We shall see how that goes.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Rett is growing...

It's been a while.

Sorry for my absence.  NO excuses.

Here are a few pics...from the past few weeks....

We had some fun with shaving cream.

Loved the wood chips at the park

First football game of the season...cheering on Evan!!!

I think he is precious....

Fun day at the park

My little south far anyways...

He loves riding on Daddy's shoulders

That face....

Fun day hiking at Cloudland Canyon

He has to move the seats at the volleyball games.  He's so strong.  

Silly boy!  Love that curly hair.  I never want to cut it.

He's teething.  His molars have come in and he's moving onto the set of teeth.  He had his well check up a few days ago.  He's a little over 20 pounds and 31 inches tall.  He's happy and healthy and loads of fun.  He loves to go on walks and be outside.  He loves dogs and animals....and loves to be around people.  He loves to play.  He can sign "please" and "more"  We are working on "thank you"  He can say "ball" and "dad"  and sometimes "dog"  He's just a smart little guy.  We are having so much fun learning from him and figuring out parenting.  It's been a blast.  It's hard but we are loving it.  

Just wanted to give our out of town family an update on Rett!  He's a bundle of joy and loves life!  :)  

Love you all!  Miss you guys!  

Tuesday, August 20, 2013


Well, it's been a busy few months.

We went to New York with Kraig's family.

I started working my summer job.

Rett turned one, started walking and became a little toddler all in one week it seems like.

We went to Florida.

My parents sold their house in a day, moved to an apartment and have yet to find a place to plant their roots.

We saw some very dear friends off to China.  We got to visit with some more dear friends from Alabama.

It has just been one thing after another.  And I feel like I don't have a thing to show for it except a messy house and a walking baby boy.

And I'm pretty positive I wouldn't want it any other way.

I am very sad our summer camp is coming to a close... BUT I am so excited about the new school year and being home with my now 1 year old.  It's crazy how a kid will change things and perspectives.

I was talking with a friend yesterday about lists and we suggested we make a "blog bucket list."  We wanted to make our list, do it and write about our experiences.  Then, my mom gave me her list/goals for her new school year and although one of her's was directed at my sister and I (new grandbaby...hint hint) she had some big things to accomplish this year.  So, with those two conversations fresh on my mind - I figured I'd make a "blog list" for this year with Rett and being at home.  So here goes!

             1 ~ do more hands on things with Rett with learning and teaching him things.  I want him to try more things and see things.  We will get out more.  He is such a blessing and I am so thankful for him but I can easily say that last year was probably one of the hardest years ever.  It probably stemmed from my mental state more than anything but honestly - I didn't want to do anything.  So, this year....I want to do...I want to be more present in his life and show him the world.  He's precious and so full of life and I want to experience that with him instead of being borderline depressed.  I have no reason but to love life with him and I am so excited for that this year.

           2 ~ my girls in my youth group want to get "FIT"  So, we are working out 3 days a week.  Talk about a commitment.  I already struggle with time management and not seeing my family, so to commit to do something with the girls when time is so valuable, well to be honest - it was a hard decision.  But long story short - I came to realize they are part of my "family" too and I need to be present in their lives too.  And I want to be present in their lives.  So, again...I am going to get fit while hanging out and investing in my girls!  I am pretty excited about this too.

          3 ~ I know I say this all the time but I want to cook.  I remember growing up and my mom cooked probably every night....ok at least 4 out of the 7 nights.  And she's a great cook!  I only to aspire to be like her, she is amazing.  Anyways - I want to cook - I want to have a family-sit-down-at-the-dinner-table-dinner....So, that means things will have to change.  I will have to prepare, menu plan, go to the dreaded grocery store, and make the plan for the food to be ready when Kraig gets home.  So, I hope to tackle that this year.

        4 ~  we have lots of little things we want to accomplish this year too like just being more involved with our youth, doing more family things and getting more things done/fixed/changed in our house....just the random day to day things but I guess the big thing is I want to be more proactive and live rather than just "trying to survive."  Which is how I am pretty sure I spent the whole first year of Rett's life.  :(

We will see...I hope I can place big fat check marks beside each of these but let's be real...I can't do these alone.  So, we will see.  I hope I can get that energy from the Lord and get this going and not sit back and let life happen.  I want to live it.  I want to make memories with my family.

I encourage you to make goals for the new school year.
I hope you will do more and make things happen.  And enjoy life.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Rett is the limb I never knew I had

When Kraig gets home in the evening, sometimes I go out and run errands or take care of some stuff that didn't get done during the day.  

Sometimes, we all go out together and that's a big help...Kraig is a wonderful help.  But sometimes, when I go, I don't take Rett with me or Kraig.  They get to stay home and spend some time together. I'm so thankful that Kraig loves to hang out with him and be a positive example to him.

But I have noticed, especially that last few times that I went out...I miss Rett.  I miss lugging the diaper bag and the stroller and everything else that comes with us when Rett goes out.  It has really been frustrating me because sometimes I just need a minute to refresh myself and have time to recoup from the day.  So, why am I missing him?

I am a minimalist...I like to think that anyway.  I like things to be made as easy as possible.  I like to carry as little as possible.  So, to miss all of that stuff was real aggravating.  

Then, I got to thinking...well...all of that STUFF that we tote along with Rett is important to making life easier when we go out.  We need snacks, diapers, extra clothes, stroller...we need it all or else it would make for an unhappy time if we have an unexpected situation.  All of those things are a part of my body when we go out.  They are extra "limbs" to make things easier.  I don't know if this is making sense.  But to me...this was a huge breakthrough.  

Although sometimes, I do just need a minute.  I miss my extra "limbs."  I miss Rett coming along and getting to experience what I am doing or meeting new people.  

Again, this is big for me because for a long time, I didn't want to experience all of the baby-dom...I enjoyed the quiet life we lived.  So, to add a baby to all of this has rocked my world.  And as much as I have enjoyed being a mom and figuring it out....I am really experiencing it now.  I am starting to take it all in.  I am realizing that I need all of those extra things sometimes.  I know Rett will make life hard sometimes but at the same time...he makes life fun and exciting...along with all of the things we need for him.

But...this is a big BUT!  When I go out...I can also understand where I could be identified by all of those "limbs."  I think to some degree that is why I miss those things.  And that is not what I want at all.  I am loving this age right now...and where we are in life....but I do not want to be identified by Rett or what we do.  I don't want to have to have all those things with me for people to take me seriously or treat me differently because I have Rett.  Again, I don't know if this makes sense....but what I do want is to be identified by what the Lord is doing in my life.  I want people to see His love and grace through me and how Kraig and I raise our son.  

I realize we are only about 10 months in and I also realize this will probably be a struggle for years to come but my prayer is that I can see the difference in the limbs that make things easier and rather seek to live in the teachable moments for Rett, that he can experience Christ rather than things, that he won't seek "limbs" but to seek what's important through Christ.  I pray that both Kraig and I can be patient and learn how to be the best parents, that we won't need the extra limbs to be important but to lean on His love to figure out how to do this whole parenting thing.  

I really don't have this parenting thing figured out but for me...this was a great breakthrough.  I am now aware of this desire to be identified by Rett and now, I can work on focusing on being identified by the Lord.  

Monday, May 6, 2013


Who needs some Mary Kay!?!?

In lieu of Mother's Day coming up, I am getting rid of some of my stock!  I don't have much so this is how this will work...

If you want something that I have, it will be 25% off (plus tax) and I will deliver by Friday.  Or mail by Friday if needed.

If something needs to be ordered then it will be 10% off (plus tax) and I will place the order on Monday after Mother's Day.  I'm sorry it won't be here by Mother's Day but you will still get the sale and it will be here shortly!

So, this is what I have in stock that is 25% off....

I have 2 sets of the Trial Size of the TimeWise Miracle Set regularly $44.00.  
I have 3 sets of the Satin Lips regularly $18.00

I have some different shades of the Matte Wear Luminous can let me know what shade you need and I can let you know.

I have a few sets of Mary Kay for men shave gel, body spray and after shave!!!  
P.S. Kraig loves it!  So  does my dad and brother-in-law.  

I have a couple single tubes of Satin Hands which is regularly priced at $10.

I have lots of mascara!  The prices range from $10 to $15 so let me know what you are interested in :)

I have lots of samples that we can play around with...

If you need anything else just let me know and I can get it for you.  

Check out my website here

Look forward to working with you!  And Happy Mother's Day!!!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The Monsoon of 2009

This time roughly 4 years ago - Kraig and I were married.

We got married May 2, 2009.

I don't know if you all remember that like we do.  Granted, it was our wedding day/weekend so we won't forget but it was also the weekend the monsoon came through Chickamauga.

Much like this weekend.

On Thursday before the wedding, we got word that the weather was going to get really bad.  Now, we (I) wanted to get married outside!!!  We didn't buy flowers or things to decorate the church with because we WERE getting married outside.

When we heard how bad the weather was going to be...we had to make the tough decision to move the wedding inside.

It poured all morning long, much like let up long enough to get some pictures outside but not much.  Once we left and headed to our Bed and rained the rest of the weekend.

Here are some wonderful pics from that weekend!  I loved how it turned out.  I was pleased with everything.  Even without flowers and big decorations.  We had a blast.

My Gran and I at the reception.

The full wedding party.

Leaving before the rain started again.

The church decorations.

Last but not least...the MONSOON...

They say if it rains on your wedding day, you'll have a blessed marriage.  I don't know about that but 4 years in and I love him more and more everyday.  I am so thankful that the Lord chose Kraig for me.  

He is my favorite.  :)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Just a little update...

I guess let's start out with who you really care about :)


Monday, Rett was 10 months.  Where have the days gone?!

He's gotten so big.  I love it but I sure do miss the days where he would let me snuggle him to sleep.

So, let's see...

We had to go to the doctor for a followup from his 8 month checkup.  They were concerned he isn't gaining weight like he should.  Talk about stressing a Mommy and Daddy out.  Well, he's fine.

He is healthy and active.  But he's still not gaining weight.  In 2 months, he didn't even gain a pound.  SAD!  And it's not for lack of trying.  I am still nursing but I have added in baby foods at 2 meals and lots of snacks so either he's just going to be little like his dad and mom OR because he's super active, he's just burning quicker than I can feed him.  Either way, he's not on the unhealthy range...just in the "keep an eye on" range.  We are thankful either way for a fun and active little guy. We have to go back again next month to see if he's gained or lost., on Monday...HE SLEPT THROUGH THE NIGHT!  He has for the last few nights now. (last night not so good but we won't discuss that)  I'm hoping that it catches on and he will continue to do so.  I feel like a brand new mommy - getting all that sleep!  I have forgotten what a full 8 hours will do for ya!  He also cut his 8th tooth Monday.  He's had an eventful week.

He crawls!  EVERYWHERE!  He can pull up and will turn around, stand and then fall to the ground.  He can walk along the couch or surface he's holding on too.  He can high-five.  He can wave when he wants too.  He is all around a happy baby.  He'll go to anyone unless he's tired.  I guess we should start practicing stranger-danger!  Maybe later.  He's just a friendly little one.  We are still quite smitten with him.  He definitely keeps our attention.

Well, if you can't tell, I'm touching a horse in this picture.  Rett didn't want anything to do with him.  I still don't think he ever touched him.  I guess he'll stick to dogs.

We got a new water bottle for him.  He likes to chew on it more than drink water.  That's ok.  He gets some and that's all that matter.

He knows where the tupperware cabinet is and loves to play with them all at the same time.

Since it's been so nice, we go out and sit in the sun.  He hates the grass.  But likes to eat it...go figure.

He's helping his Daddy study his History.

We got to go visit some friends at Gordan Lee for their proms.  Rett loved all the shiny dresses and pretty flowers!!

We love bathtime!!!

He likes to sit backwards in his stroller!  I guess he likes to look at me!  :)

Let's see what else....

Kraig and I are playing softball with the church league.  We are enjoying it.  :)

We are getting ready to go visit our family in PA at the end of the month.  Super excited!!!

We are gearing up for a busy summer.  School is almost out for Kraig so we are just finishing up school, baseball and a graduation this year!!!  WE are super excited!  

I guess that's it.  We have been pretty busy but nothing major has been going on.  We are just enjoying the weather and spending time together.  

Don't forget to get your Roo cup!

Go enjoy this pretty day!  We are about to go out and sit in the sun!  :)

Stay cool...
~Ashleigh and Rett

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Spring Break '13!!!

Wahoo....what a week!

WE have been super busy this week.  We had planned weeks ago to go visit some very dear friends in Alabama and go to the zoo.  We have been planning for weeks to see each other and things kept falling through.  So, we finally picked a date and we were going.  Then, it rained.  So, we cancelled the trip - I mean, the zoo isn't any fun if it rains, right?

Well, I get a kick in my step (is that the right phrasing?) Who knows...

I make a list.  It's a big list.  It's a fun list, work list, honey-do list, everything we (I) wanted to accomplish while Kraig is off of work.  I left little room for rest and school work, my bad :(  I am feeling real bad right about now.  Although, he did get to play golf one day and play basketball multiple times.  It's ok.  He's had fun.

Well, Monday rolled around and when we were supposed to be driving to Alabama, we get the word that our friends are coming here!  YAY!!!!  Nothing like a wonderful change of plans.  I was pumped!

So, I get an even bigger kick in my step and put our Spring Break list in to overdrive and we get to work.  The house was a disaster and the spare room needed an overhaul, well, let's be honest, the whole house did.  I also had a few projects I had started and needed to finish.  We started around 11 on Monday and didn't stop until we met our friends on Tuesday for lunch.  We got the majority of my list done on Monday.

I needed Kraig to help hang some family photos....

I finished painting my new storage box for under the T.V.  It also hides some ugly chords that hang under the T.V.  This was such an easy and practically free project.  Thank you Pinterest.

We finished painting my coffee bar area.  Excuse the bottom drawer - it is getting fixed and/or replaced.  

Sorry for the ugly glares from the lamps but this is a finished picture with the painted box (under the bottom shelf).

We also cleaned the whole house and moved furniture around and then we crashed for the night.  

Once our friends came, we were able to enjoy their company.  We also had some other friends in town and we invited everyone over for a taco night.  We had a blast talking old stories and laughing.  I cherish those moments.  I miss my friends from college so much sometimes.  I miss those times.  

On Wednesday, we had a big youth bowling competition.  The girls lost.  That's all I can say about that.  

Thursday and Friday was a blur of family times, running errands, getting stuff ready for a yard sale, more cleaning, golf, basketball, and keeping a teething baby happy.  

Tonight and tomorrow if full of more family and Easter festivities.  :)

Tomorrow though, I hope we can rest a little bit before Kraig goes back to school.  I have so enjoyed him being home this week.  I will surely miss him when school starts back.  

Here are some pics of Rett from this crazy week.... ENJOY...

O we also got a new car last week, Rett and I are playing in the mirrors waiting on Kraig while he test drove the new car.

Rett loved the play place at the mall...

He wasn't sure about the grass at all...right after this he started crying and wouldn't go back down on the grass....he had to stay in my lap (I didn't mind at all) 

Rett and his Gpa at church tonight.  I'm not sure Rett understood the message, we are still talking about it with him.  :)

At dinner, he played peek-a-boo with his Gpa across the table.  

Silly faces

Next week, Rett's Honey is on spring break, so I am sure she will come visit and we may make a new list...maybe a relaxation list from our spring break '13 list....are we tired, or what!?!?  

Hope you all enjoyed your spring break or hope it was very productive like ours.  Either way...we had a lot of fun and got a lot done.  I'm thankful.  I have a good man.

Now, if the weather would cooperate and actually be spring-y....