Tuesday, October 23, 2012


It is official.... a little over a week ago we (I with the help of some AWESOME friends) packed up our house and headed west. Way west. Cory recently took a new position in his company and we relocated to the Phoenix area. Words can not express how hard it was to pack up and leave all of our friends, our church, and lets face it, the beach. God had truly provided us with an incredible community of people who shared our faith, values, and loved us and Marcus so much. He provided a family for us where we did not have any. He provided people who pushed us to grow more mature and live out our lives for Christ. He provided us with the most wonderful blessing in Marcus. It is so hard to believe that we are not there anymore! We are really going to miss everyone who has poured into us the past 4 years. 

That being said...on to a new chapter. I am trying really hard to be positive about this move, since it happened! So far we do like where we are living. We love our little neighborhood, it has a great park, we have already met more of our neighbors here in less then a week then we did in Columbia in 3 1/2 years, we found a new gym, and have already been to story time at the local library. The first weekend we were here our neighborhood had a block party...but it was more like a block party on crack. It was crazy. There were bounce houses, raffles, a gas powered train, and a petting zoo. They also gave out tickets for free pizza, a snow cone, and cotton candy. There were tons of people there. There were a lot of kids, but we are finding that a lot of people have children older then Marcus and are at the next stage of life (middle school stage). We did however meet a couple of families with younger children, got invited to a costume birthday party next weekend (really missing my creative friends right now), and met a family a few houses down with a little boy who is a year younger then Marcus.

We are trying to stay busy and learn the area and meet new people. I know that it will take some time to find solid friends like the ones we had in SC but I know that God is faithful and that he would not have brought us here and then just left us. He will provide for us. Please pray that we find a new church home soon and that God will build us up a new group of friends!  

Here are a couple of pictures from our trip. the desert/mountains really are beautiful...

We live near the KC Royals and TX Rangers spring training and fall ball facilities. 

As we were driving it looked as if we were heading straight for this mountain (with snow on top) but luckily right before we hit it we turned south.

Yes, those are giant cactuses. 

The view from the park by our house...the mountains seem so fake to me, like a backdrop! Can't believe that they are real and so close!

Cory and Marcus riding a train at the neighborhood block party.

Summer Overview

I have so much to catch up on, so I have been avoiding this post like the plague, but I am determined to get this done before the holidays...get ready for a long one! Also, sorry for the quality of most of the photos...they are either from my phone or facebook!

We had a CRAZY busy, but wonderful summer! Starting the last weekend in April, we had plans EVERY single weekend, most of which included us going out of town. Here is the breakdown of the summer...

Hawaii- Cory was blessed to have an awesome partner in work this past year. All of their hard work was rewarded when they both won Gold Cup and we all got to go to Hawaii together! Talk about an incredible trip!! Since our airfare was paid for, Cory and I decided to go out a little early and spend some good time together, it was our first time both being away from Marcus at the same time! Big shout out Thank You to my parents for taking him on for 10 days!!! Not only did they keep him in Omaha but they traveled with him all the way to Minnesota to go to my sister Dawn's graduation. Sad we couldn't be there, but Marcus was there to represent! We had a great time relaxing and I know he had a great time being loved on and spoiled!

Even though we had a great time just the two of us, it was wonderful to get back to Omaha and have him in our arms again!

Mothers Day- So thankful every moment (well almost every moment) that God chose me to be Marcus's mom. Even though he is wild and crazy and NEVER sits still, he is also incredibly sweet and loving and has a really fun little personality. I love watching him grow and explore new things, even though that means he is going to be testing me more and more!

Dawn's Visit #1- A few days after returning from Hawaii my sister Dawn came to visit us. We went swimming, strawberry picking, and also traveled up to Virginia for our cousin's wedding. It was fun to see family, since no kids were invited Cory and little man had to stay home, but that meant a girls weekend for me!

Memorial Day Weekend- a few days before the weekend Cory went to Dallas to interview for a job. While there he got to spend some time with his family and celebrate his Birthday with them. He didn't wind up getting that position because God had other plans for our family. Unfortunately he came home pretty sick, so we didn't do anything else that weekend.

The first weekend in June I traveled to St. Louis to celebrate my friend Elizabeth's wedding. We lived together for two years during college and it was so wonderful to be able to be a part of her most special day. Of course she looked radiant and I got to catch up a bit with a couple of other sweet friends and their babies! I drove the Jetta to STL and my dad met me there and drove it the rest of the way to Omaha for my youngest brother to have. This means I got to spend a day sightseeing with my dad and we to a new car! We upgraded so we can fit more children into our family!

Cuba- Cory traveled back to Cuba this summer. He was gone for a whole week sandwiched with both the weekends. We really really missed him, but are so thankful that he got to go and share the love of Jesus with others. He went with 3 other guys who also share his heart for the Cuban people and they played a LOT of baseball and did a LOT of driving around the island, but had an incredible time getting to see God at work there.

Two days after Cory got home Marcus and I left for Omaha. The following weekend Cory was in the wedding of one of his really good friends who lives in Des Moines, which is only a couple of hours away from Omaha so Marcus and I went early to spend some time with my family. We had lots of fun going to the pool, the zoo, meeting Christians girlfriend (an only child who traveled from Wyoming to meet our family), and hanging out with everyone. Even though traveling with Marcus by myself is tiring, it is always worth it when we get to see family! He is always the center of attention and really has so much fun playing with everyone. One of the things he learned this summer was the different parts of his body. He loved showing off his teeth! He is always worn out by the end of the trip! Of course the wedding was great too. So fun to get to see two good friends start their forever journey together, and of course Marcus owned the dance floor.

The last weekend in June we had a little bit of down time and got to spend time with friends in SC. We also got to catch up with our good friends who moved to CA last year. They were driving through on their way home from the beach! I think this qualifies Marcus as the ultimate ladies man...it was so special to get to see Susan, Bella, & Lily!!

So this sends us into July... we spent 4th of July weekend at the lake with some great friends who came into town from VA and their family. 

We traveled back to Omaha for my Dad's 60th Birthday party. It was great. More fun time with my immediate family, plus extended family and special friends came into town to help us celebrate. My Aunt & cousin from New York came bearing gifts for Marcus, including a Knicks t-shirt. They want to get him started cheering for their teams early! 

We set up our old tents for Marcus to crawl through...

got a technology lesson from my Dad (really watched YouTube Lion King vidoes)

And discovered his LOVE of trains (he literally played with them for hours).

Two days after we returned from Omaha we head out to the beach for a few days with some great friends. We had an awesome time with everyone, laying out, swimming with the kids, and just relaxing! Cory, Marcus, and I rented a condo and stayed a few extra days just the three of us. We needed some family time after the craziness of the summer!


We spent a fun weekend at a lake near Charlotte with some of Cory's friends from work that we got to know better in Hawaii. Marcus had a great time with their girls, especially their youngest daughter. They were so sweet together! We played in the lake, went boating, and had a fun time just relaxing by the water together!

My sister Colleen came to visit us. While she was here we went to the beach for a girls weekend with some incredible girls. It was so nice to just sit on the beach with NO children and catch up on life! We had some great conversations that ranged from "why gas station convenience stores don't sell Diet Dr. Pepper in a can" to "what does the Bible say about baptism".

To finish the summer we went to Texas to visit Cory's family for Labor Day weekend. Cory's parents had visited in April, but besides that we hadn't seen anyone since Christmas. Marcus and his cousin got along great. It was so fun for them to have someone their own size to play with and chase around. We all had a great time swimming. While we were there we also celebrated Nana's (Cory's Mom) birthday.

And my sweet, fun friend Raegan, who also lives in Dallas, and her husband Scott came to visit us and we played for awhile at the park, even though it was around 100 degrees out! They are troopers!

This is a picture of Marcus post-summer...exhausted. He slept so well after all of our trips!