It’s my birthday!

Well at least for another hour (when I started writing this) it is. I turned 32 today and surprisingly with everything going on, I had a successful last minute get together, was able to finally get my pedicure, had waaaaay too much cake ended up getting some mangonada, actually I got waaaay too much mangonada and now I feel overstuffed, oh and I was treated to breakfast and coffee while I had to do school work, got a couple of pairs of new sunglasses, and my dear William gave me a duty free day and took care of Kobi all day (to include diapers, feedings, naptime and bedtime rountine)! All I did was play with her, hold her a few times and push her in the cart. It was an extra added surprise! 

I’m 32, married, have a beautiful little girl I get to help raise and one in heaven, I own my home, and I pretty much have my Master’s degree and yet I am just now beginning to believe that I am capable of the things I can do, and I am just now starting to let my light shine because hiding has been hard and tiring and I’m done with it! I’m ready for this new season, this God season, with all its grace, favor and love! I’m ready to walk into all that God has for me; like for real this time! I’m ready to be free and relax a whole lot more and worry a whole lot less. It’s going to be a new adventure and I have an exciting expectation! 

Thank you for all the well wishes today, and many blessings to you!!

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Happy 1st Birthday Kiwi Hannah!

I woke up today and kept wishing my baby a Happy 1st Birthday because all I could think about was how wonderful it must have been to not only wake up in heaven but to celebrate with Jesus! 

It’s been exactly one year since my Kiwi Hannah was born and passed away to be with Jesus and I have no idea where the time has gone! It really did seem to fly by even through all my grief and pain.

 Thank you so very much to every person who has prayed me and my husband through this year! I definitely know that our healing has been in part because of the prayers you’ve prayed. Thank you for letting me vent, and cry, and share the journey to healing with you all. It’s not always been pretty but it’s been as real as I could be at the moment. So thanks for listening/reading and sharing your encouraging words.
I had been thinking about what we could do to celebrate Kiwi’s birthday and I came up with the idea to cook something new together. I wanted to do something that was low key, fun and could be continued once the other kids arrive. We decided to cook an Indian dish that Kiwi and I got to experience during our time on the mission field there. We made butter chicken (thanks for the recipe Heather) with rice and we had naan. And for dessert we made a pumpkin cheesecake! We had a few friends over to celebrate with and there were a few gifts (mostly flowers) and the celebration was just perfect. 

I did spend the day with Jesus listening to worship music and praying and I went and got my nails done in the colors that Kiwi’s nursery was going to be in (purple and orange). But overall I really did try and make it a day of celebration because everyone only ever gets one first birthday! 

   

The butter chicken ( i forgot to get a picture on a plate)

    

Happy Birthday Kiwi!

  

Thanks for the gifts!

 

10 Years Later

Today is my baby Cylis’ 10th Birthday!! Every year I reminisce on all the things that I never got to do with Cylis because he went to heaven too soon… but this year for the first time I’m happy that he’s there because that means that my baby Kiwi Hannah was greeted by him in heaven when she first got there and I’m sure they continue to hang out now!

I’m so incredibly sad. Words truly aren’t good enough to express the sorrow that I’m feeling today but knowing that my two babies are together in heaven puts a smile on my face through the tears and makes me a bit jealous that they get all the fun with Jesus and all I get is His still small voice.

Happy Birthday Cy!!! I loved you from the moment I knew you existed. Thank you for showing my baby Kiwi around heaven… I look forward to celebrating in heaven with you one day.

30 Before 30

Here it is finally… My 30 Before 30 List!!

I have exactly 6 months to accomplish my goals (my birthday is July 8th)!! I have already accomplished a few and am on my way to accomplishing a couple more within the next few weeks. They are in no particular order and I will try to post a blog with pictures when I have completed my future tasks…

  • Go to a wine tastingĀ  (I did this with Val and Jessica in NC)

    It was just after we took this picture we found the wine tasting!! And it was so awesome!! I learned that I like muscadine wine and Duplin is a good brand as well as Rock of Ages!

    It was just after we took this picture we found the wine tasting!! And it was so awesome!! I learned that I like muscadine wine and Duplin is a good brand as well as Rock of Ages!

  • I want to go see an Indy Film (Saw Dear White People)

    We went to the Belcourt Theatre in Nashville to see this movie and it was so great!! If it comes out on DVD I'm getting it for sure!!

    We went to the Belcourt Theatre in Nashville to see this movie and it was so great!! If it comes out on DVD I’m getting it for sure!!

  • Go to a painting class (Painted Monet’s Water Lilies with Crystal)

    This is our finished product! It was so much fun and inexpensive thanks to a deal I found on Living Social!

    This is our finished product! It was so much fun and inexpensive thanks to a deal I found on Living Social!

  • I want to partake in a fancy dinner
  • I want to dress up in fancy clothes for said dinner
  • I want to have a Girls Night Out where we’re all dressed up
  • I want to rock a Body Con dress at some point
  • I want to dye my hair at some point
  • I want to complete a Pinterest Project that’s not food
  • I want to actually print pictures
  • I want to play a whole song with melody on the piano
  • I want to hold a conversation in Spanish
  • I want to pay off debt
  • I want to recreate an outfit with only thrifted clothes
  • I want to finish William’s Blanket
  • I want to paint more and actually learn techniques
  • I want to finish the Dance Ministry SOP I’m working on
  • I want to get a job that I like
  • I want to start a group for women
  • Book a speaking engagement
  • Go to a beach
  • Go to a new city
  • Become a thrifter
  • Go to networking events
  • Rent a house or cabin with friends
  • Step into what God has for me
  • Become a mentor
  • Go to North Carolina
  • Go to Ohio
  • Go to Texas

*My just because is to apply for a job out of country*

Happy Birthday Dearest Friend!!

Have you ever met someone who changed your life forever? Who opened your eyes to the wonders of the world? Who let you be your absolute self no matter what it did to your social life? Who stood by you through all the good, bad, and awkward situations? Well that person for me is my Jeni-bean RED!!!

The Best Friend A Girl Could Ever Have!!!

 

I met her in high school, in English class then we played volleyball together!! It was magical! I mean she was so awesome! She was such a great writer with words that instantly drew you in to exactly what it was she was trying to convey! She had the biggest smile and the whitest skin which I adored! We had so much in common yet she was still herself too!!

She did everything I wanted to do but never could. She could sew, play softball, draw, swim, and drive! She was and still is sweet, funny, giving, sensitive, creative, kind, caring, loving and she has this uncanny ability to make everyone feel welcome and included; even on her birthday!!

Jeni’s Birthday is today and I so wish I could be with her to celebrate the day she was born because I cherish her more than she may ever know!! I guess that’s what happens when we grow up and move away… but I still want my dearest friend to know that I am thinking about her all the time especially today! I picked out a few pictures (all from Pinterst) that reminded me of her…

This just reminds me of our friendship!!!

This is one of her favorite characters!

simple yet beautiful!

 

wonderful colors just like her soul!

She’s always so mysterious yet inviting!!!

To me this just screams Jeni!!!

Out of everything THIS DESCRIBES MY JENI PERFECTLY!!

 

Happy Birthday Jeni!!! I love you so much and I hope you have the most fantastic fun-filled day!!

Love You My Jeni!!!

Why I Love Birthdays!!

An invite to a cake and ice cream party… that’s all it took for me to finally make the connection on why I absolutely love birthdays!!! I always just thought it was the way God made me… which I am sure in many ways it is… I mean I don’t know of anyone who holds on to memories the way that I do and makes them into something entirely different according to the current situation… not to say that my memory changes it’s more like I adapt a past memory into something that allows me to find the good in it… I hope that makes sense… so anyway back to my memory…

Cake and Ice Cream Parties looking back on them were the equivalent to a white person’s birthday party for not-so-rich black folk… (sorry if I’m stepping into offensive ground I’m just trying to be real) anyway, they mostly consisted of family members only; all the cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc… there was never anything special about the day, you might have gotten a new outfit or maybe just some new shoes (that you saved for school days) you more than likely already had your gifts or were still waiting for them there was never a designated open your gifts time… sometimes there was food and sometimes not if there was it was always hotdogs and hamburgers and you mostly spent all day playing outside with all your cousins… if you got anything from the ice cream truck earlier that day you made sure you didn’t get it on your new outfit (before the pictures were taken) otherwise even on your birthday you’d still get whooped…

When the sun set it was time for cake and ice cream… you already had dinner so there really wasn’t anything else to do… and then and only then could you MAYBE invite a friend or two over… not a minute sooner and they had to be kids your mom already knew and had been invited into the house on previous occasions… don’t think for one minute you’re gonna get to invite the new kid over because your mom didn’t know them and they were NOT coming in… in fact you probably already told the friends who were invited earlier and were going around the apartment complex knocking on their doors telling them it was time for the cake and ice cream and to hurry up…( actually it went more like this ,” Ms so and so I’m getting ready to have my cake and ice cream now can so and so still come over?)

Once everyone was inside you gathered around the kitchen table where the few decorations were (a few balloons and MAYBE some streamers) and everyone sang happy birthday to you as your mom came around the corner with the cake and all the stick candles in it (WE NEVER HAD THE NUMBER CANDLES) and that’s when the pictures were taken… in order to get a piece of cake you had to have the same plate you ate off of earlier… (everyone had their own identifying mark… initials, stars, hearts, an X etc) and only the few friends got a new plate which you probably went out of your way to give to them as to not make a big deal when everyone seemingly had a plate out of nowhere because they were told to go get their plate which was in a designated holding area.

After you ate the cake and ice cream… the day was done… you and all your cousins walked the few friends back to their door then all the family started to disappear (most with plates full of leftovers) but they never left without giving you a hug and kiss and telling you happy birthday… most of the time you just stood by the door as to not miss anyone… that’s when, IF you were getting anything from anyone you’d get it… rather it be a card, or a few bucks… BUT it wasn’t expected nor was it an obligation to give anything because you just had your gift which was the cake and ice cream… and truly that was enough!!!

You rarely got a chance to feel special, especially if you had siblings so to get theĀ privilege of having a cake and ice cream party was the highlight of the year! I absolutely loved them whether they were for me or my brothers or sister or a cousin… because although you didn’t get too many things you were truly surrounded by all the people who cared about you the most and maybe even a few friends who made the cut!! We had cake and ice cream every year for our birthday even if we had nothing else… and we (the birthday boy or girl) always got to pick what kind of cake we wanted (at least in my family we did).

And I guess that’s why today I absolutely love birthdays and I refuse to let anyone be alone on theirs or go without acknowledging it… because if I and many other not-so-rich black folk can love and be excited and grateful about our birthdays on the simple basis of cake and ice cream then surely you can find something to be excited and grateful about on your birthday!!! So just know that when I say happy birthday I really mean it. Whether it be via Facebook, text message, voice-mail, card, or a prayer you may not know about…. if I know your birthday please know that I am thinking of you on your most special day of the year!!!