Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Update...

Well, you're getting warmer... 
No more than a week after I ordered our Christmas cards with THIS blog address, I'm moving our family blog.  

Come on over and join us at and check out our Christmas update!!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Barret Taylor Shields
February 27th, 2013
7lbs. 14oz.

Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from him.  Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one's youth.  Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.  Psalm 127:3-4

Thursday, January 24, 2013


My mom came and picked up my daughter this morning...
My husband is sleeping after working the night shift...
I have a new office area in our finally (almost) finished basement...
Hot raspberry tea...
David Crowder Band gracing my speakers...

All of those things make for pretty awesome work vibes. :)

The plan was to go straight to the office once my daughter left, but I quickly decided that feeling fresh and put together sounded appealing.  So instead of working with a greasy face, rat's nest hair, and in my stretchy pants, I showered and (kind of) fixed my hair and slapped on some makeup, and some bling.  I may still have stretchy pants and house shoes on, but I'm 33 weeks pregnant. Enough said. :)

Friday, January 4, 2013

No... I'll just make a batch of blondies and almost make myself sick on the four large finger-full bites of dough.  Nothin' but common sense around here I tell ya.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

2012 Year in Review

Well, here we are.  The ending of another year.  A time to reflect on the past twelve months.  The joyful times and the painful moments.  The times of growth and learning and experience, and the times we've been still and allowed life to happen for a while.

We started off 2012 with Chris working at Hawker Beech.  He had been laid off from July 2010 to June 2011, so we continue to be grateful for work.   Little did we know that he would be laid off for a second time in May.
{beginning of the year ~ 16ish months old}
{end of the year ~ 24 months old}
In February, I (Ginny) went back to work at the Pregnancy Crisis Center for about 12 weeks to fill in for a gal who was on maternity leave (who had taken my place when I resigned and had Emmalyn).  It was so much fun to be back with the "old gang", but I was glad it was a temporary job and was ready to be a full-time mom again... I missed this crazy-silly little girl! :)

{Mommy left the bathroom for literally a minute, and I just couldn't wait to get in the bath! I had a poopy diaper too!! :) }
We welcomed girl #4 on Ginny's side of the family on March 7th - hello Annabel Marie!
{Cousins at Easter - Ginny's side of the family - Emmalyn, Ellie, and Ava}
The Pioneer Woman came to town in April, so my good friend and Cooking Club* partner Becca and I went and enjoyed meeting and laughing with Ree. :)  *Cooking Club consists of three (sometimes four) of us gals who get together every other month or so, take turns hosting and coming up with a unique menu that we then cook and enjoy a meal together.  Most of our meals have been fabulous, but we also laugh at the flops and go with the flow ("No propane for our grilling night? No biggie!")  :)
{Mom had just run the Emma Creek 5K, but I deserved all of her strawberries}
In May, I (Ginny) decided to sign up to be a consultant for Thirty-One Gifts.  This was probably one of the best decisions I've made in 2012!  Little did we know that when I signed up, mere days later Chris would be laid off (again) from Hawker.  God knew what he was doing. :)  I get to stay home with my kiddo, but also get out and enjoy some girl time, and be my own boss - the best of both worlds!!  I've loved it so far and look forward to what 2013 will bring to my business! 
{The white tiger at the River Festival ~ May}
{Helping Dad mow what little grass we have}
Chris turned 30 in June!  I attempted to throw a surprise party, but leaving an invitation where he can see it kind of ruined that plan.  C'est la vie! :/  It was still a great time with friends and family though!
{Watermelon "Popsicles" (slices of watermelon on popsicle sticks) were a huge hit!  I think E ate 4 or 5 pieces}
 It was crazy hot and humid for the birthday party, but that didn't stop us!  Barbeque and cold drinks make even the most hottest of days a little more bearable.
{doesn't matter if we're at the lake or at home, this girl loves her life jacket :) }
Also in June, I decided to donate my hair to Locks of Love.  It took a while to finally bite the bullet and do it... I'm glad I did (I think), but I'm also ready for it to grow out again. :) 

The last weekend in June, the three of us made a road trip to Kansas City for me to run/jog/walk/crawl in The Color Run 5K.  I'd recommend it if you ever get the opportunity!  At every kilometer mark, you get pelted with colored powder, so you are a beautiful rainbow by the end of the race. :) 
{My sis-in-law Megan was there too!}
 Oh, if you do ever run one, I'd suggest maybe putting some kind of protective barrier (petroleum jelly maybe??) on the places you sweat and don't necessarily want to be "stained" for the next couple of days... Hello pink mustache.

We started July off with a bang (in more than one way).  Partying with friends and family on the 4th...
{July 4th}
{July 5th}
Yep, that's right.  The day after our 4th of July party, we found out that our family would be expanding! 
{Date with Mommy}

Emmalyn loooooves the water!  We have to watch her constantly because she will jump in without anyone there to catch her.  I'm glad she's not scared of the water, but a little caution in her wild and adventurous heart would be nice. ;)
{Miss Fearless going down the slide... I would set her a couple of feet up the slide, then she would slide down to Dad}

 My Grandpa (Dad's father) passed on August 6th.  This picture was taken in 2004... He gave me one of his shirts because I really liked it... It's still hanging in my closet.  Can't wait to see you again Grandpa!

September began on a good note when Chris accepted a job at the Butler County Jail.  He is still there and enjoys law enforcement, but is still waiting on his dream job which is a road patrol position.  He has also continued with the Sedgwick County Sheriff Reserves, "working" at least one 12-hour shift a week (and more if his wife lets him be gone that much), and specials assignments when he can. :)  He's received praise from the higher up for the good job he does while on duty.  He has definitely found a career that he is passionate about!  He loves it just as much today (if not more) than when he went through the Sg. Co. Reserve Academy over two years ago.

Poor Emmalyn is growing up so confused.  Mom is a K-State fan, and Dad is a Nebraska fan... Weekends in the fall are full of "Say Go Wildcats!" "No, say Go Huskers!" :)
{Ready for football season!}
I threw Chris a mini-party (meaning it was just for him) to kick start the college football season with his favorite snacks.

Chris' parents treated us and his sister to The Lion King broadway musical! It was absolutely stunning and fantastic!! I'd see it again (and again and again)!
{waiting for The Lion King to start!}
We knew that Emmalyn would enjoy the State Fair - especially all of the animals!  We had a fun family day seeing all kinds of animals and eating fair food. :)
{The girl loved her some big tractors}
I don't think Emmalyn is quite ready for potty training... Or maybe it's just this tired Mama who isn't ready. ;)  She doesn't really show much interest unless she's being silly.  Apparently she was in the middle of cleaning when she needed to take a "break". :)

October held for us weddings and birthdays and surprises!

Chris' sister, Tera, married Brian on October 6th.  Emmalyn was the "Bell Ringer"... She walked down the isle before the bride and rang a bell... Well, kind of. :)  She was cute anyway!!  Chris' mother made Emmalyn's dress - she loved twirling in it!
{the stunning bride and pregnant me}

Emmalyn did NOT get off of that dance floor until the last song ended!!  She would only run off to grab someone and drag them on the floor!
By the end of the night, the poor girl was so exhausted but didn't want to stop, so she would have people pick her up so she could still "dance" but not have to stand. Haha! :)
{Bride and Groom, and pooped Emmalyn}
Emmalyn's Second Birthday party was the next weekend.  I went with "Seuss Inspired" decor.  You can see all of details here
{Yep, that means we're having a boy!}
We love spending time with our cousins!
{E with Annabel}
{E with Ellie}
We ended October with a trip to the pumpkin patch... Em loved the big slide!
{finding the perfect pumpkin}

Emmalyn was an owl this year for Fall Festival... And a pretty darn cute one at that. ;)  See her previous costumes here (2010) and here (2011).

{Helping Mom roll out pie crusts for Thanksgiving}
{Thanksgiving Day... playing with Ginny's cousin's kiddos}
{Emmalyn already knows how to tackle... She can teach her brother I guess}
This happened the night before Thanksgiving at about 10pm.  Our car was parked in the street in front of our house, and an intoxicated person hit our car and totaled it (the picture is deceiving... it doesn't look like much damage, but Chris later found parts of the transmission in the street. Yikes.)  Thankfully no one was hurt, and the guy had insurance.  But we are still in the process of looking for a replacement.  We are thankful for family (Chris' parents) who have a 3rd car that we can borrow while we find one that will fit our needs and our budget.  We have to shake our heads a bit... This is the third car of ours that has been hit in the last 16 months (thankfully none have been our fault and everyone has had insurance).  We're praying for an uneventful 2013 in the car department! :)

The weekend following Thanksgiving is always "Tree Day" for Ginny's side of the family.  E wasn't too sure about Santa this year, but was quick to accept a candy cane from him

Chris heard a crash noise and went to find this... Apparently she was saying "I sorry... I fix it" when he found her.  There's no way you can get upset at that cuteness. :)
Lately Emmalyn has wanted to send pictures to daddy when he's at work... "Picture daddy?" so I oblige. :)  Her speech has really taken off in the last few weeks.  She is constantly either 1) cracking us up at the funny things she says, or 2) has us thoroughly perplexed trying to figure out what sentence paragraph she just said (although we can probably assume it's something from Team Umizoomi, as that is her favorite show at the moment).

We went on a family date to the Lights on St Paul.  We waited in traffic for over 45 minutes and the entire display only took 5 minutes to drive through, but it was fun anyway.  Once we turned off the main street and into the beginning of the display, Emmalyn got to sit in the front seat on my lap.  She was too excited to look at the camera for a few seconds, so this is the best picture I got.
Our first snowfall of the season came on December 20th!  When I got her up that morning and opened her curtains and told her there was snow, she said "Snowflakes! Polar bears!"  Apparently if you have snow, then you have polar bears too.
{I can't put my arms down!!}
 The windchill that morning was 14 degrees, so we didn't stay outside too long, but we brought some snow inside to enjoy.

That is our 2012 in a (very large with a ton of pictures) nutshell.  :)

We pray that you have a wonderful holiday season, and that your 2013 will be overflowing with blessings from above!