RESET – Sometimes you have to.



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Project Life – Week 28 & Mia’s Babybook

This past week I started to back track and worked on Week 28 and started my new baby Mia’s baby album. Today she’s 8 weeks old! These past 8 weeks she’s been giving little glimpses of the personality that dwells inside of her. Every time she gives me that crooked little smile and her eyes light up I think to myself….there she is. There’s that sweet little soul who will one day be running around with her sisters, or going on a mommy/daughter date with me. I soak up the moments of screaming and snuggling and nursing and rocking, because I know that inside of this precious little body is a little person who is growing every day. This all will pass, and I’ll be looking back missing these early days with her.

This is a huge reason why I’m so grateful for Project Life coming into my life. I look back on the past years and it’s all a blur, because I haven’t been documenting everything and I don’t have my pictures in albums to look back on. THAT IS CHANGING!



 Week28 Layout

Here is the Left Side

Here is the Right Side

And this….this is my little Mia’s beginning to her baby book. I am so excited to work on this while she’s in her first year! I hate that my other kids it will be me going back and trying to remember. Shame on me!
First Page

The Mom Creative

Project Life – 2013 Week 29

Pictures give me anxiety…

absolute anxiety.

I take them…I take a lot of them, but then I do NOTHING with them. They sit on my computer, get shared on facebook & instagram and don’t even get printed to be put up in my home. AND I’M A PHOTOGRAPHER! Such a situation.

I’ve been searching for a way to start recording our family memories without feeling like I have to do a million scrapbook layouts. SO I came across Project Life. I’m addicted. Absolutely addicted. I feel like I have an answer to my prayers with this. The paper way of Project Life seems amazing and beautiful and SO much fun. BUT I’m a technology girl, and things are easier for me if I can do them on my computer….so I’m doing Digital Project Life. I haven’t decided if I’m going to order a Project Life binder and just stick my 12×12 layouts in a page protector or if I’ll just order a hardcover book of the year. For those of you who do digital I’d love to know your thoughts on this.

I decided to start with the current week which was from 7/15-7/21 {Week 29} and I’ll just continue to go forward while I start going backwards as well and eventually will be totally caught up with 2013. Once that happens I’ll start tackling prior years.

Here is my first Project Life layout ever.

Week29 Layout




You can learn more about Project Life {HERE}

And the winner is……….

I am so happy to say that we have raised $775.00 for this family!!!  Thank you to everyone who has helped make this possible.

The winner of the giveaway is…..

Out of 246 raffle tickets, #59 is the lucky winner!!!  Brenna Guderian, CONGRATS!!!!

I will email the winner and she has 3 days to respond :)


A HUGE signed book giveaway for Elliot

Sometimes the unthinkable in life happens.

This happened recently to a very dear friend of mine’s sister.  She lost her baby boy in a very tragic accident only 2 short months of her husband had a very horrible accident at work leaving him paralyzed.

When you hear of stories like these you rush to your children and squeeze them tight.  As a parent this is a very unfathomable thing – I just can’t even begin to imagine what emotional heartache they are going through.

The financial burden from her husband’s accident has now been intensified with funeral costs of having to bury their baby boy :(  I wanted to help in any way that I could, so I have contacted some of the best of the best indie authors who I love and adore so much to see if they would like to donate a signed book for a raffle that I’m going to hold.

To win ALL of these signed books you can purchase a spot in the raffle that will take place on Sunday, September 30, 2012:

1 Entry: $5.00

3 Entries: $10.00

5 Entries: $20.00


I want to thank all of the authors who are donating books to help this family out.  My heart is just absolutely crushed for them, and your generosity means the world to me and will to them as well.

You can see sweet Elliot’s memorial facebook page here


A little perspective oh…and I’m writing a book!


I don’t think I compared myself too much to others before, because their life wasn’t publicly put into my face – daily. There are so many beautiful benefits to the internet, and keeping in touch and being able to follow along with your friends and family is top of the list. One of the downfalls is feeling as though you aren’t good enough in the things you do, because Sally over here is doing it SO. MUCH. BETTER.  Well, newsflash….she’s not – she’s doing it her way, and your way is perfect for YOU.

We’re all traveling a journey of our own. I love that I can pick and choose aspects of my friends’ and families’ lives that would make mine a bit easier and implement them into mine, but I also love that the things I’m not a fan of I don’t have to acknowledge. When they are doing things that I sit back and think….how the heck do they do it?! I have to remember that it’s their journey. We’re all traveling on these curvy, straight, bumpy, rocky, and glorious roads, and when you’re on one road I might be on another – that’s the point….it’s OUR own journeys.

So comparing?  It’s a sucky, sucky, PRIDEFUL thing to do – and we as humans just can’t help it.

I’m trucking down a new road on my journey – I imagine it to be a little bit of bumpy, rocky and in the home stretch I hope to find it glorious.

I’m writing my first book.

I’ve got this bucket list that I’ve got to get to working on, and writing a novel is on that thing.  I’m excited.  I’m nervous.  I’m scared.  I’m thankful.  I’m so thankful, because there’s this REALLY amazing community of indie authors and readers that have been helping me and supporting so much.

I’m surrounded by some of the MOST amazing, successful authors like – E L James, S C Stephens,  Abbi Glines, Colleen Hoover, Tarryn Fisher, Tammara Webber – the list can go on and on and on.  I’ve watched them traveling on their own roads, and their own journeys and I admire them and respect them ALL – even the ones I didn’t list.  Their books and their friendships have all have had a VERY profound effect on me.  A lot of their books I still think about months after I’ve read them….. before I started reading Indie authors that didn’t really happen very often for me.

It’s hard to start on a book writing journey when you have so much amazing talent so close to home.  You can’t help but start to, well, PANIC, that your book isn’t going to be nearly as good as theirs, or as successful.  Those were the first thoughts I had when I made my author facebook page four days ago.  Right when I announced it was made I started to panic….and then the # of likes kept rising and rising and it all became more and more real.

I remembered in my public speaking class what my teacher told us  - it’s all about perspective.  You can take your nervousness and turn it into excitement.  After she said that, and my heart fluttered back to Andy Andrews book the Noticer, I realized she’s so dang right.  Life is all about a little perspective, and I am realizing VERY early on that all of this nerve wrenching, scared to death fear that has been going through me just needs a little perspective.

I don’t really need to be scared, because this is MY journey.  If I allow my nerves and fears and comparisons to overtake me, then I will push my dream away from me, and I definitely don’t want that.  It’s all about perspective and I’ll just be allowing the intoxication of it all seep into me and MAKE this a glorious journey….. because it’s MY journey.

I posted a preview of my book on my new {AUTHOR FACEBOOK PAGE}, but I’ll post it here as well.  When my facebook page gets to 300 likes (not very far away) I’ll be posting the prologue to my new novel…..and VERY shortly after I’ll be doing a cover/title reveal as well.  This is happening, and I am so grateful to everyone who is supporting me and pushing me towards my dreams.


We were fifteen when Dawson first called me Bay.

He grabbed my hand as we ran through my back property out to the lake. The type of swimmin’ we’d do never required any clothing; I loved my private property for that reason. That day I could hear all of the crickets chirping and there was a light breeze givin’ me the chills. Dawson held me in his arms and whispered in my ear, “Bay, I know that Liam was the first boy to ask you to marry him, but I promise you right now that I’ll be the last. I swear to God”. The tiny little bumps erupting over my skin had nothing to do with that light breeze and everything to do with Dawson James.

“You’re so beautiful, Lyla Bayou, that I can’t help but feel exactly as I do when I’m sittin’ on the dock of the bay.” He started singing the song; I always melted at the sound of his voice. “So, from here on out, you’re my Bay.”

After that moment, the only time he called me Lyla was when he was angry or hurt. I sure as hell didn’t like to piss that boy off and hurting him was the same as hurting me. I quickly grew to dislike the sound of my name escaping his perfect lips.


Where I raise my hand and say…..

As a mom it’s hard to raise your hand and say…. “Yup, I’m in over in my head.  Please help me!”

Social media sites have a really fantastic way of making you look out to be like you have it all together.  Everything is perfectly lined up and slapped with a beautiful rose on top.  I didn’t realize that I myself sometimes come off like that until somebody from my husband’s work said to me, I don’t know how you manage to do everything and still have time for Facebook.  Um…..then I started thinking….does everyone think I have this perfect life and I don’t let the ball drop on everything?

I don’t.  Plain and simply I absolutely don’t.  I might have a lot of “jobs” that I do from home, but just because I’m a photographer doesn’t mean I’m out there every day doing pictures – heck, lately I’m lucky is once every couple of months I have somebody in front of my lens…honestly.  Scentsy?  I’ve had 1 home party – the rest, online.  doTERRA?  I’m JUST sharing what is working for me and hoping to be able to help lots and lots of people.  Is there a business side to doTERRA? Yes.  Do I care about the business side to doTERRA? No.  It’s definitely a nice little bonus, but my main goal from day 1 has just been to enlighten other people on a natural way to replace medicines and cleaners in our home.  That’s it.

And then there’s homeschooling, my school, and now my new found bookkeeping job that I’m going to take on.  Homeschooling and my school have 100% always been at the top of the important list….honestly, above everything.  I’ll let the house go all to hell before I skip out on these, because THESE are the most important.  My education is my family’s future, all of our goals and dreams are based around my education.  My children’s education is a whole other story…..

2 years ago I made the decision to homeschool Jayden.   I wasn’t one of those anti public school system people who was adamant that the government is ruining our children.  I just merely was not happy with the way Jayden wasn’t grasping things due to his communication disabilities, AND I didn’t like how kids treated him differently.  Since I was homeschooling Jayden I automatically figured I would homeschool Ella.  I started getting this sick feeling inside like I wasn’t doing the right thing by keeping my social little butterfly at home.  So after praying and speaking with my husband, we decided that while we would continue to homeschool Jayden, Ella needed to be in school.

Fast forward to the past couple weeks and once again I have this sick feeling inside like I’m not doing the right thing with Jayden by keeping him home anymore either.  I know that he is going to have different struggles in school, but I honestly know from within the depths of my soul that because of the doTERRA oils, Jayden will be okay.  He will be okay to go back to school, because first and foremost his ADHD is under control.  With his ADHD being under control he’s now being able to write his thoughts out.  I’m noticing him being able to focus so much better with school work, and I know without an ounce of doubt that this decision that we are making is the RIGHT decision for Jayden.  In regards to the social aspect, ever since Jayden has been using the doTERRA oils, his social skills shock me.  He isn’t so introverted as he once was, and is very social with other kids.  

Come 5th grade, Jayden WILL be back in school.  I will of course be VERY involved and the second I feel like it’s not working, we can decide what step to take next.  I feel as if I don’t try that I’ll be doing an injustice to my son.

If I wasn’t such a busy mom, I might be thinking about this differently. But I AM a busy mom, who doesn’t have the stay at home mom plan forever.  Yes, I know that stay at home moms are very busy too, trust me!  I’ve been there, I AM there – but I’m not JUST a stay at home mom.  I’m a full time student and about to have a part time job to expand my experience in the field I’m going into.  I am a working mom, and even if I am home, I’m working when I am here with the kids.  If I’m not working I’m doing school work of my own.  As much as I wish that I could be the all mighty mom that feels so passionate about homeschooling her kids, I’m honestly not.  I’m okay with the school system teaching my kids.  I know that just because I’m sending them off to school where there are influences, that we do a WONDERFUL job instilling values into them at home.  These are things that I know they will keep with them.  We are VERY active parents, and just because we are choosing to not homeschool doesn’t mean they are doomed.  Once I started homeschooling I started seeing the different reasons that people normally choose this way of life.  I don’t hold the same values in this as they do, and that’s okay!!  We’re all supposed to be different, and having different people in this world is EXACTLY what makes it go round.

So the end result is this: With everything that I have stacked up on my plate, I’m raising my hand and saying…

“I can’t do this all on my own.”

My heart started pounding, and I thought to myself…. what am I doing????

I woke up yesterday and knew something wasn’t the way it’s supposed to be.  I’m happy, I’ve got my goals in place, and even though life for me is not a mirror of perfection, it’s my life.  The mistakes I make are mine, and they’re mine to learn from and grow from.  I try so hard to learn from my mistakes and not get in ruts that continue on and on and on.

I’m struggling lately.  I’m struggling with homeschooling.  I am scared that I am making one of the biggest mistakes by homeschooling Jayden.  I also am scared that I’m making the biggest mistake in sending Ella to school.  See the dysfunction going on in my head??  It’s one of those damned if you do, damned if don’t things.  The bottom line is parenting is hard.  Like holy freaking crap HARD!  Well, scratch that…. being a GOOD parent is hard.  The majority of parents out there are good parents, and while they might have totally different views than I do, there main purpose is to do the right thing by their child, and that’s what makes a good parent.

I’m trying really hard to just figure out what my heart is telling me.

The scariest part of all of this:  it’s only going to get harder and harder as the years come!



I’m not even going to begin to tell you that this scripture journal was my idea, because Shannon over at {The Red Headed Hostess} is responsible for my inspiration in creating my first scripture journal.  I don’t know if Shannon has any idea how many lives she probably impacts with her blog full of a wealth of information – but she definitely has impacted me in my life.  If you’ve been reading my blog long, then you’ll know that I’m a QUOTE junkie….she inspired me with being able to mix reading my scriptures, to recording my quotes, to speaking to my children about things I feel are important.

I don’t know if you’re a Christian, if you like to read things re scriptures, and if you’re not I don’t want you to read this and start high tailing it the other way, because when I speak about my scripture journal and share with you the insights I’ve had, a lot of the time they’ll be on topics that even the non-Christian can possibly take something from.

Through  my researching and studying I’ve found myself shockingly more inspired with things to write in my scripture journal than I expected myself to.  BUT I also know that blogging always helps tie things together for me, I thought maybe I’d share one of my favorite quotes that I found and share my insights on what it means to me, and what I hope my children will get from it as well.  My insights and thoughts are 110% for my children and their children, and their childrens’ children – I want my words and thoughts and insights and questions to trickle down and inspire them.

The scriptures testify that the proud are easily offended and hold grudges.  They withhold forgiveness to keep another in their debt and to justify their injured feelings.

My life is a perfect example of this.  I am the QUEEN of injured feelings.  I’m easily offended, which is something that I hope to be able to overcome.  I don’t think I’ve fully grasped yet exactly why being offended makes you a proud person {which gives me a great path to research on my pride journey} BUT I do know that holding grudges and trying to injure others with holding out on forgiving them does.

I started researching pride yesterday for my first scripture topic and I’ve given myself all of today to ponder this topic – yikes I’m definitely a prideful person, and thankfully I’m able to be more aware on this trait.  I thought about difficult people in our lives that make it very hard to give forgiveness, and people who continually hurt us in our lives.  What are we supposed to do then?  I guess the answer to this question is we have to forgive them in our hearts and then turn around and protect our hearts afterwards.  My dad is a perfect example of this: constantly in and out, acting like he cares, then proving that he doesn’t.  I have held a grudge in my heart and no matter how much I want to forgive him, he will continue to hurt me with every time I try to allow him back into my life.  In situations like this, I think the best thing to do is pray that they might someday realize how their actions and their prideful attitudes hurt people who matter.  I don’t think it’s our place to try to get them to see that they are hurting you – but it’s your place to not hold resentful and negative feelings towards them.  The negative feelings of holding things like this towards anybody in your heart brings such negativity to your life, that it’s not even worth it.  In the end, being a prideful person is only going to hurt YOU.

Continuing on with having things offend me, and people’s words hurt me – I tend to be offended, but I also try to realize that sometimes people say things out of ignorance and they usually have their own issues that they need to deal with.  Racist comments, which I’ve heard a lot of lately, highly offend me.  Instead of lashing out and holding a grudge and being angry and bitter inside, I find myself telling myself that unfortunately there are very close minded people who have their own prideful issues within them.  Having a mindset like that is what I’m grasping is the opposite of being a proud person. It is not our place to point that out or fix them – all we can honestly do is pray for them.  Heck, if I grasped hate in my heart towards every person who offends me then I really wouldn’t have much left in my life.  As for the people who hold hate in their heart towards me, that’s really none of my business right?  I have to realize that that’s their own issues that they have to work through.

I’m realizing that this topic of pride is HUGE.  There’s so many curves and roads I can travel on to press into this topic even further, which I just might do.

A different outlook, a new path – my life.

It’s very easy for me to allow life to get in the way of my faith.  Not a statement I’m very proud of, and definitely not a statement I enjoy being able to say.  But it’s a truth for me.

Today I finally took the plunge and went back to church.  I needed it.  I needed to hear whatever message would be awaiting me – and THANK GOODNESS I did.  Every message in every class was like this amazing breath of fresh air – the kind you didn’t know you really needed until your soul expanded with it.

My journey with church really hasn’t been a very long one.  I just can’t count my childhood experiences with church in my journey, because it wasn’t stable, consistent, nor did it have much of my thoughts and heart into it.  Back in 2007 when my family first started going to church I found myself molding very quickly in the “Mormon” form.  I think that I molded into what was expected of me so quickly that it just was too much for me.  I actually found myself being overwhelmed with it all, and when I’m overwhelmed I tend to want to turn around and walk the other way.

I started to compare myself to others at my church, realize that my thoughts will never be like theirs {funny I even thought I KNEW what their thoughts are}, and found myself not agreeing with certain aspects of the church.  I do 110% with all of my heart and soul believe in the Mormon church – there has never, ever, EVER in my entire life ever held one ounce of doubt on that being what I believe to be the church of Jesus Christ.  HOWEVER…. certain things that the church was putting energy into just really bugged and annoyed me.  One example: Proposition 8 – I don’t believe that our church needed to put forth so much effort in trying to stop gay people from getting married – I don’t share the same views on this as the majority of my church does.  I don’t see anything wrong with allowing them to be married, to be happy – who are we to stop that?  I didn’t like how I felt like certain members held themselves at a higher level than other people.  These were the things I struggled with.

I’ve had a lot of time to ponder things and I think it took me a while to realize that NONE of the above matters.  Those are things that are happening in not only my church, but a heck of a lot of other churches as well.  At the end of the day all that matters is my relationship with Heavenly Father and my example to my children.  I don’t need to worry about the social aspect of the church, the people of the church, some of the things the church does that I don’t agree with – all that matters is that I am there with my children to soak in whatever message Heavenly Father has for me and to give my children the values that I think are important.  And I have no problems with being ME while going to church.  I’m not perfect, I never will be – and I’m not going to change me.  I’ll continue to grow inside and keep the principles that are so important within me, but I’m not going to completely change who I am just to go to church.  I’m going continue watching R rated movies, and reading books that have hot as hell scenes in them.  I’m not going to stop doing the things I don’t have an issue with – and this is what I believe separates me from the majority of the members of my church.

So – I’m here at a new road in this journey, with a different outlook and attitude for it.

I feel so good about how my life is going right now.  Gino and I have been setting some amazing goals to tackle together and are continuing to just grow closer and closer together as a married couple.  Marriage is definitely not a walk in the park, but I feel overwhelmed with thankfulness that we are so blessed to be rewarded with happiness together for sticking with each other through all of the hard times.

The exciting thing about life, is we each have our very own; we each get to direct our own courses.  I love that what’s constraining for me might be an area of expertise on the people close in my life, and vice versa – I love this because together the people who are amazing forces in our lives are people who we can learn so much from.  I hope through my life’s journey I might be able to enlighten my friends and families on values and philosophies that I learn along the way just as I have learned from them – and continue to learn.

I am one lucky person to be surrounded by so many inspiring and selfless people on this journey in life that I am venturing on.  I love each and every one of you who have ever put any sort of profound effect on my life.  Everyone always enters our life for a reason, and Heavenly Father uses us all as tools to help Him do his work on this earth.  I want to be able to look back at my life one day and smile knowing that I was aware of the different lessons and attributes that each soul bestowed into my life.


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