Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Our Christmas Day

What a day we had!! Food, Family and Fun. We started the day with just the Esparzas and the FitzRandolphs. We opened presents then had a breakfast birthday party for Jesus. We forgot to take pictures of breakfast...I guess we didn't have enough coffee in us to be that functional yet :D Then it was time to get dressed and start cooking...oh, the turkey got into the oven late but it was probably a good thing; it was ready pretty much on time...I think. People started arriving and setting up the tables and chairs for dinner. Thank you to everyone who helped. Christmas for us couldn't happen unless there is alot of help. I'll start the pics.

Opening presents Esparzas and FitzRandolphs:

We don't have pictures of the cooking (read full kitchen) but we do have pics of dinner...the adult table anyway

We actually had a table for little kids, a table for the big kids and then a table for the food. There were 20 adults and 19 kids. We had some special guests, friends of my Dad. They are very nice and I was so glad to have them join us.



After dinner the tables come down and we open presents...oh my word, may I say chaos??? It is a fun time though, a good lesson in patience because we start with the youngest and go up to the oldest. This year we did do something we haven't done before (a suggestion of my Dad's which I hope we continue) we sang carols together as a family. Andy played the guitar. The next time Dawn and Matt are here it will be Andy and Matt playing together, right Matt?? :)

Jag and Geeta's little girl opening her gift

Mom and Dad made stilts for all little boys. Here are others trying them out...

...including Brad, I just happen to catch him at a bad moment. He really is quite good at them :)

Toward the evening, after some people had left, we played games. I made a mistake while reading something and we all laughed so hard. Some of us harder than others...I think we were a bit punchy by that point. It was so fun. Autumn is the one to encourage playing games...I'm so glad she does that. I love playing games but don't think about it. Thanks Aut.

And last but not least a picture of Papa and Elijah. I think we all felt this way at the end of the day. I love this picture!!

I hope all of you had a wonderful, God glorifying day, full of happy memories. I did, I think I agree with Erik...It was the best Christmas ever :D

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


I pray for each of my readers that they would remember why we celebrate today. The food, family, decorations, presents and all that go along with this celebration are fun and exciting. If it were not for the birth of Jesus the Messiah we would not have a reason to celebrate. If you know Him praise Him for His glorious gift and sacrifice...even leaving His Father to take on flesh was a sacrifice without even mentioning His ultimate gift, the giving of His life for you. If you don't know Him or have a personal relationship with Him, find Him and trust Him with your life. He is worthy!!!

Jesus-I thank you for coming to this sinful and sin-full world. I thank you for living a sinless life, for perfectly keeping the law that I can't keep. I thank you for then giving your life for mine, so your Father would adopt me into your family. You are amazing. I praise you!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Some people will do anything to get their Mom to post :D

my hair is: auburn with some dark brown and gray roots (time to go see Glynn)a bit longer than shoulder length, layered and wavy/frizzie
my nails are: are in need of a manicure, but I tore one today really short...ouch
my clothes are: pink and black jersey pjs :)
my mood is: bored and a bit depressed
my spirit is: calm
my big To Do is: finish christmas shopping and grocery shopping
my fitness level is: better than it has been in many years
my worst habit is: avoiding what I know I need to do(copying Aut...maybe she learned from me...sorry Aut)
my house looks: okay, glad we aren't having company anytime soon (I will vaccuum tomorrow though)
my marriage is: at a point of growth
my car is: a salsa red 2005 toyota sienna...I love it
my children are: a great blessing to me, I love having all of them in AR even for a short time
my local weather is: cold
my dream destination is: heaven

Aut, Thanks for the idea and encouragement to blog...I need that!

Thursday, November 22, 2007


My heart is so full this day. It should be everyday, I know. I confess it I don't take the time, like I have recently, to look at the blessings in my life and be thankful. In last Sunday's sermon I heard (though I knew...reminders are very good)that "unthankfulness is characteristic of unbelief." (thank you, Pat!) I don't want unthankfulness in my life. I want to remember everyday to be thankful. If I were to put my mind to it I would never run out of things to be thankful for, none of us would. Here are the words to a song that express my heart today and I hope everyday. You can hear a small portion of the song here (remember I don't know how to do links, sorry) (btw, I really recommend this couples music)

"My Heart Is Filled with Thankfulness"
Words and Music by Keith Getty & Stuart Townend
Copyright © 2003 Thankyou Music

My heart is filled with thankfulness
To Him who bore my pain;
Who plumbed the depths of my disgrace
And gave me life again;
Who crushed my curse of sinfulness
And clothed me in His light
And wrote His law of righteousness
With pow'r upon my heart.

My heart is filled with thankfulness
To Him who walks beside;
Who floods my weaknesses with strength
And causes fears to fly;
Whose ev'ry promise is enough
For ev'ry step I take,
Sustaining me with arms of love
And crowning me with grace.

My heart is filled with thankfulness
To him who reigns above,
Whose wisdom is my perfect peace,
Whose ev'ry thought is love.
For ev'ry day I have on earth
Is given by the King;
So I will give my life, my all,
To love and follow him.

I pray your Thanksgiving is truly that...a day of giving thanks, especially to the One who deserves all praise and thanks.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

You must see these

Then you must go to Autumn and Dawn's blogs ( and ) (sorry don't know how to do the linking thing) and tell them how adorable their children are. I'm sorry I don't have any recent pictures of Erik and Hailey but they are adorable too :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Sovereignty of God!!!

I found this picture on It is an absolute picture of God's sovereignty. I know tornados are apt to skip houses, but fires??? I pray those people realize that is was the Lord that saved their home. So look and be awed by the Lord of all.

Friday, October 19, 2007

How did you spend your week?

I spent mine in the hospital with Hope. She had been sick for the week before with a "virus". We returned to the doctor a week after our first visit and were sent on the be admitted to the hospital with a pretty bad pneumonia. We were there from Monday evening until Friday afternoon. The staff were wonderful, the food and surroundings not so great. Hope actually did not eat one meal at the hospital. She would wait until someone from the "outside" would bring food. She still has pneumonia and will have IV antibiotics at home for another 24 hours or so, then go on oral anitbiotics for another 5 days. Hopefully that will clear it up. Here are some pictures from our adventure.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Home again

I am back in Arkansas. God graciously said yes to all my prayers for travel and my time in California. He provided peace the whole time prior to flying. I even slept soundly the night before, that has never happened before. The flights from Little Rock to San Jose were very smooth. I did get a little lost in the DFW airport only because I misunderstood where my next gate was. Let me tell you there is no Gate C34 at DFW :) I had plenty of time to get to the correct gate, grab a cup of coffee and call my mom and Richard to let them know I was in Dallas. From DFW to San Jose, I had prayed for a good seatmate. I sat next to a sweet girl (well, young woman) who was on her way back to CA. She had just moved there 2 weeks before and had been home to visit family and "walk the platform" to get her Master's degree in physical therapy. We literally talked for 3 hours. She comes from a christian background (a preacher's daughter) Some things happened in their family that left a really bad taste in her mouth for all things christian. We talked about the sovereignty of God and how he is in control of the bad things and they happen for a reason. Another great thing about sitting next to her was God used her not only to help me concentrate on something other than myself and flying but He also used her to prepare me for Dawn's reaction to my new self. I haven't blogged about it but I have lost alot of weight since January. B (my seatmate) told me that her dad had lost a lot of weight from one time she saw him to the next. She thought he was sick and she was concerned for him. Dawn knew I was losing weight but she was still overwhelmed. She cried. She said she wouldn't have recognized me...I have changed alot and she hasn't seen me like this in over 19 years.

My time in California was precious to me. Getting to know Judah, playing with him was all sweet times for me. I haven't laughed so much in I don't know how long. Matt is very funny and makes it easy to laugh and we seem to think the same things are funny. I am so grateful to the Lord for allowing me the time to be with them and giving me a husband who was/is willing to sacrifice for his family that way. Twelve days is a long time for a couple to be apart. (Autumn knows all about that, multiplied!)

My flights home were just as smooth at the ones out. I know most people aren't liking the really hot weather but it does make for smooth flying :) I got to see a lady lose it at the Dallas airport and security had to be called...interesting but sad.

I miss Judah and Elijah (Dawn and Matt too). For some reason though, I can't figure out why, I just cry when I think of Elijah's sweet face, smell, and the feel of his head when I kiss him. I absolutely fell in love with that tiny guy. I'm sure glad I don't have to wait to long to see them all again. We are helping them move into their new apartment in MD in September. How many days, Matt??? I leave you with this, enjoy :)

And this :) I couldn't resist. Big brother/Little brother

Thursday, August 02, 2007

The Esparza Grands

I am in California helping Dawn and Matt. Sweet baby Elijah arrived Tuesday, July 31 at 9:38 am. He weighed 7 lbs. 12 oz and was 20 inches long. Dawn is doing really well. She and Elijah will come home tomorrow. I should say Matt is doing well too as is Judah. Judah did seem to have somewhat of a melt down late this afternoon but he is teething and did have a bit of a fever on top of all that is going on in his life. Here are a few pics. Some are different than Dawn's blog some are not. Enjoy :)

Just a few hours old

Sweet family time

My happy Judah-man

Not the most flattering picture but his eyes are open :)

Elijah is so sweet. He has such a kissable head. His little mouth is just so tiny and well...sweet. You just want to kiss him. I will say though when it is time to eat you wonder how anything so small could scream the way he does. He has very strong lungs :D Today Judah touched Elijah without prompting for the first time. Elijah's toes were sticking out the blanket and I showed Judah. He very carefully touched E's little toe with his finger. It was very cute and would have made a great black and white photo...if a Nini had had her camera ready. I hope you all enjoy the pics. I know there will be more to come.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Bruckman Grands

I have been able to spend quite a bit of time with Autumn, Erik, Hailey and Noah. Some special time with Noah when he was in the hospital. He got some sort of virus and became pretty dehydrated due to a high fever. He was a good little trooper in the was Autumn :) Nothing like having your husband go out of town, then have a child go into the hospital all while you are needing to be getting ready to start nursing school. She is a better woman than I am. Here are a few pictures.

Yesterday we were at the pool. I shouldn't be in the sun so much but it is impossilbe to resist Noah when he says, "Nini I want you in the water!" It is in a cute voice. The BGs are getting so tan!!! I call them my brown babies. Yesterday BJ said that Noah looks chocolate compared to her :) Here are pictures of our fun yesterday.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Hanging out with my grandkids...

gives me good/funny things to post about. Andy and the kids came over for dinner tonight (Aut had met a friend from High School for dinner) We had chicken. Erik ate one and a half chicken breasts (shock) Later Erik, Hope and I were having a conversation about how much Erik had eaten at dinner...

Me: "Erik ate one and a half chicken breasts at dinner."

Erik: "Are those woman chicken b**bs?"

Sometimes it is really hard not to just crack up. I explained that it was different because they are chickens and not people. We had a good time. If you are interesting in the chicken it is Cranberry Chicken posted at Savary Sensations, link on the side under "links".

Saturday, April 07, 2007

March Madness part 2

Okay, to continue...After the Seventeen mile drive day we mostly relaxed, cooked together, enjoyed one anothers company and Dawn and I did some shopping :) Friday, Dawn made the cupcake cones and birthday boy cake. I have never made cupcake cones so I was curious how they worked. I imagined trying to stuff the edges of the cupcake papers under the lip of the cones, which in my mind would make a huge mess and wouldn't be worth it. But you don't do that you just set the cone on top of the cupcake paper filled with batter. Dawn was up very late making these. When she was finished she covered them with plastic wrap to protect them...we didn't think about it or know what would happen, but that wasn't the best idea:

The cones became quite soft and some of them bent over. It was quite funny. So we frosted them and then Dawn wrote the words on some of the cupcakes. You know the words "Happy 1st B-day" then the birthday boys name. Now Judah has been around for a year now and I know Dawn reads her Old Testement but this is what she wrote:
Again, it was quite funny. The "Y", in Juday, came off easily and she wrote an "H" in its place, but we (I) forgot to take a picture of the corrected
birthday "cake"! There was quite the spread for the party. We had little PBJ sandwiches, little pigs in a blanket (may I say, YUUUUMMMM),baby goldfish, pretzels(I think) cupcake cones, and punch. Oh, the punch is another story. We got the bright idea (I think it was Hope's) to get Sprite and put tropical punch Kool-aid in it. No one thought about the fact that if you put a packet of Kool-aid into a FULL bottle of Sprite that spewing type things may happen. Yes, the Sprite bubbled up and spewed. Sorry, no pictures of that one :) Matt had the brilliant idea of pouring half a bottle of Sprite into something else then adding the Kool-aid. He is sooo smart. The punch was good.

The party was at a park close to Dawn and Matt's apartment. It was a beautiful day(Thank you, Lord, for answering our prayers). As we reached the park we realized that both picnic tables were occupied. Yes, I said both. I couldn't/can't believe this park only has two picnic tables, but I digress. One table was occupied with just stuff, not people. So Dawn found the people who owned the stuff and asked them if we could use the table for the party. They graciously said yes and moved thier stuff.
So we set up. Doesnt' it look great:
Quite a few people came, including some of Dawn and Matt's neighbors. It was nice to see and meet the people Dawn and Matt have become friends with in California. (For those friends who might read my blog, thank you for loving Dawn and Matt while they have been there).
Soon it was time for cake. The tradition of letting the 1 year old dive into the individual cake. It is always much anticipated. The excitement builds and Judah....well he wasn't to much into this idea. Dawn actually had to mash his hands into the cake. This was all that he did to his cake. Actually that is what Dawn helped him do. After she mashed his hands in the cake he didn't attempt to eat it or touch it again. You can click on it to get a better idea of what he didn't do. has been so long since I started this post, I have forgotten what else I was going to say. Suffice to say we had a great time!! I need to post more often don't I. Now on to the rest of life...I will try to get up some posts on what we did in April and May but next will be a post of yesterday at the pool with the Bruckman Grands :)

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Kids say the darndest things :)

My sweet granddaughter Hailey...she makes me smile. There are a couple of people who blog the funny things their children say. I really enjoy reading those posts. Today I have a post of a funny thing Hailey said. I have some skin tags on my neck, quite a few actually. Hailey has often asked me about them. Saturday the children were here and once again Hailey noticed the skin tags, here is the conversation:

Hailey: What are those? (she is touching them)
Me: They are skin tags.
Hailey: They look like worms.

I'm smiling thinking about it. Autumn was standing there, I wonder if it was one of those "why does my child say things" momments. (I was not offended) I will say the skin tags are coming off though. I have thought about it for a long time, partly b/c Richard doesn't like them so much...neither do I for that matter, or the way they are removed. I just can't have "worms" growing out of my neck though!! :D

Monday, March 26, 2007

March Madness Part 1

No I'm not talking about basketball :) I'm talking about the FitzRandolph's March Madness. It began March 3rd. Hope attended her first homeschool spring banquet. She looked so pretty in her bubble gum pink dress.
She had a great time. They had the students make 5 minute "movies" and had a film festival. She and a couple of friends did a newscast. It sounds like they had fun making it. They didn't win but Hope said the group that did win deserved it.

Early on March 4th found us boarding a plane for a flight to California. Judah turned 1. My sweet husband blessed me, at Christmas, with a trip to California to celebrate with the birthday boy. Here is a pic of Hope as she waited for us to get our rental car in San Jose...does she look like she is used to traveling or what?
We had a good time visiting Dawn and Matt. Poor Richard had to work on a lecture almost constantly while we were there but he did take some time for fun. One glorious day we went on the "Seventeen Mile Drive". You pay $9 per car and drive around the Pebble Beach area. The houses are amazing but the shoreline is....well, it is God made therefore it is just incredible. Let me share the view with you!
This is a picture of a place where the waves go in three different directions. I think it was call "The Restless Sea". This picture is of a place called "Huckleberry Hill". Alot of the bushes were covered with small purple flowers, I assume they ripen into huckleberries. This picture is of the first beach we stopped at. I love the water, the sound and smell of the ocean. I could have stayed there all day except..... it was stinkin' cold and windy!!! As we traveled around "the drive" we came to "Bird Rock". There are birds all over that rock. The are quite big birds too. We also were visited by some little squirrels. They were fearless. Obviously they are quite used to people and being fed by them. Click on this pic of Dawn and can see Dawn's smile. I think she liked that the squirrel came to visit them. We continued on our drive and came to the Pebble Beach Golf Club icon. It is this tree. I didn't know they had an icon until Dawn told me. We also saw some wild life, other than birds and squirrels...Sea otters and Seals
Here are a few other pictures that I don't think need explanation. Coming soon parts 2,3,4...not sure how has been a mad, crazy month :)