Sunday, August 31, 2014

And Something Blue by Paige Timothy

This is the first book in the Mainstreet Merchants Series by Paige Timothy (aka Tristi Pinkston).  It is being published by Trifecta Books.  Here is the Facebook page for this new series!

The blurb for the book:

Bridal consultant Laurie Fletcher spends her days helping others prepare for the most special day of their lives. Will true love ever come her way, or is she doomed to watch others get their happily ever after?

My Thoughts:

I have super high thoughts for this series, since it starts off with a map of 32 "stores!"  That means a long series, right?!?  Since I love "Say Yes to the Dress," this book was right up my alley!  Laurie is amazing at her job, so it's no surprise that she gets rewarded for her efforts.  Logan is a bride's brother.  Poor Laurie keeps falling at his feet, even when she really doesn't like him due to his pride.  She tries to date another guy, but things aren't working out, but when Logan shows up sparks fly!  She gets amazing news and it all works out in the end. I have to throw in here that I was having a terrible week with lots of bad news and I still took the time to read and I enjoyed every minute of it!  It was a great distraction from death and sickness!  I laughed a lot, which was fantastic!

You can learn more about Paige and her series here

Buy it!

Disclosure:  I received this book for free for my honest review, no compensation!  This is my affiliate link for the book though!

Hearts in Harmony by Raine Gillespie

I had the opportunity to read this first book in the Love Notes Series to review.  Trifecta books are amazing, and you can check out more about the clean books they put out!

Here's a blurb for the book:  Elahna Nezario gave up her musical dreams to help run The Queen of Hearts, her mother’s chocolate shop, after her sister’s sudden death. After an unfortunate run in with Elahna’s childhood crush, owner of The Dolce Theater, not only do her dreams surge back to life, but so does her heart.

Tim and Elahna are great together!  Elahna crashes into him, and it goes from there.  I cracked up at some of the descriptions- "chocolate voice?"  Since, I'm not a chocolate fan, it didn't mean quite the same thing to me.  Technically, she didn't like chocolate much either.  :)  I love how things worked out!  Who knew that there was a mystery involved!?!  That was super fun!  It may have been a little obvious right before they figured it out, but I think that was done on purpose.  I love how talented Elahna was!  And that Tim was okay with her awesomeness!  I love a good happy ending!

This may be Karen's first foray into romance, but it was very well done!  You can find out more about her on her page.  You can also follow her on facebook!

You can buy it on Amazon for $2.99!

Disclosure:  I was provided this book free for my honest review and was not compensated.  This is my affiliate link for Amazon though!

Bad news

I'm sure all will be well, because Heavenly Father has a Plan!  It's been a sad week though!  Tuesday Dad found out that he has ALS.  I had to be at work all day long knowing.  Then Kira had a band meeting, so we stayed even longer.  I cried with mom as we talked that night.  I'm sad to lose my dad, but it's nothing compared to losing a husband!  And it's usually a terribly slow and painful process to dying from ALS.  I really do love all of the bucket videos though!  So many people supporting the cause!  I still have high hopes that someone will figure out something that will help!  My poor Dad!  I talked to him on the phone a couple days later and he's just working hard to make sure that she'll be okay after he's gone.  I don't want to think about it, but I'm taking it a step at a time.  We're going down every Saturday to help them out with whatever they need.  Right now we're just working on getting rid of stuff, so they can sell their house and downsize to a smaller one story house.  Dad has a hard time on those stairs, and it worries me watching him!  He wants to be able to do everything and he can't, so it's super hard on him!  Then his niece died on Friday.  She was a super awesome lady that just got her son married off and her daughter off to college.  Plus we found out that his sister has breast cancer and will be having surgery Tuesday week.  It's fast moving too, so we're worried about her!
I made it through the first full week of school, and my first nasty gram (a student was having a bad day and took it out on me).  I didn't want to let it effect me, but with all that's going on, I couldn't help but wonder if any of it was true.  The student was tons better the next day, so that was good!
Kira is doing so well!  She's already given up her walker and is doing fantastic!  She even did okay on the stairs at my parents' house (we visited yesterday)!  My kiddos all were pretty excited to see their cousins that were up to visit too!  We took a few pictures, with my phone.  It was great visiting!  I sure do worry about my dad though!  I'm super excited that my parents are coming up for Grandparents' Day at school on Friday!  They're going to take pictures, have treats, and make a craft together!  Since my Dad's diagnosis, my mental pictures have changed and I'm going to work hard to make sure I have an amazing idea planned for the grandparents that come to my class!  You never know what might happen and what becomes a treasure!
In the meantime, we're loving the three day weekend and my poor cold-ridden children are slowly getting better!  Hurray!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Busy again!

Thankfully we have amazing family that lives nearby!  Monday and Tuesday my Uncle met me halfway to pick up my kiddos to take them to my mom while Kira was still in the hospital, so I could work!
Kira got out Tuesday afternoon and Scott picked up Samuel from me, so I was able to get a lot more done!  The kiddos all got to meet their teachers and have hot dogs, chips and popsicles!  I seriously love this school!  They have rallied around us to help me get my classroom ready and they were praying for Kira! They were so excited to see her, even though she's in a wheelchair at school!   Then 12 of my 14 kiddos' families came!  Awesome!
I got the rest of the school supplies for my kids-over $100!  Moneywise, life is stinking.  Between gas this past week, school stuff, groceries...  And first paychecks take a while.  But, we're mostly healthy!  That counts for everything!  Then our old ward gave us gift cards, so we were able to buy gas, groceries, and a couple small things for our new place!  We are very blessed!
Wednesday school started!  I LOVE my students!  I seriously have an amazing class!  And most of them love math!  Woohoo!  My kiddos all love their classes too!  Ben's only complaint is the preciseness needed to open a locker!  That's it!  He especially loves his Chromebook!  I can see my kids playing occasionally when I glance outside, and Kira's recess is the same time as the 3rd graders.
I really do love this school!  I love the small town and the great people!  Fantastic!
I about cried on Wednesday when we got home and it was still daytime, Scott had unpacked the kitchen and made dinner!  Amazing!  Every night I've been unpacking more, so it keeps looking better!  In a month we should be completely unpacked!
Today we went to our new ward and sat behind a family that we knew the parents when we were dating!  Crazy!  The ward is gigantic!  But, it was amazing having the Temple President and matron come speak to us!  Very cool!  The people here are very friendly!
Kira's doing better everyday!  She used her walker at church, and not much here!  I'm so glad she's doing so well!  My allergies have kicked in (or I have a cold), but still making it fine!  We're all right!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Terrible week!

On Monday I got to go to work!  I got to do a little in my classroom.  After work I had a message that we got the house in Leavenworth!  Hurray!
On Tuesday we signed the papers and started packing.
On Wednesday we moved, with a little help from Sam and Matt and our kiddos.  Kira wasn't able to help much due to her hurt hip that she's been limping on the past few days.  We got all of our stuff in the house and then had Sam's bridal shower.  That was fun!
On Thursday at 2:30 in the morning, Kira woke us up to tell us she was hurting so bad that she couldn't sleep.  Scott took her to the ER and they got back as I was getting ready to go to work.  Then I left for work and Scott took her to the Pediatrician where she ended up being transferred to Children's Mercy.  I left at lunch to be with her!  Then I went to Sam's Endowment, straight from the hospital, in my work clothes.  Luckily that wasn't a problem!  It was great to feel the peace of the temple!  It's such a beautiful building that helps me feel so much closer to Heavenly Father!  Kira was in surgery as I was in there and about 30 minutes in I could feel the peace that Kira was going to be okay!  It was great!
On Friday I didn't go to work either and Scott and I swapped off being with Kira and the kids.  We had the Reception set up and Scott got the utilities in our name and the paper turned in to the office.  Kira isn't any better yet.  And getting out soon is not an option.  I also found out that my Dad very likely has ALS, which is a terminal disease.  I'm a mess right now.
On Saturday was Sam's Sealing and Reception.  We all sobbed at the sealing!  It was awesome though!  We visited Kira in between and bought tons of food, a balloon, and some flowers for her to enjoy!  I got a picture of everyone together!  I forgot my camera, so I didn't get very good pictures, but I was able to use mom's camera to get some pictures!
Today I woke up in the middle of the night not feeling well, and I was feeling a little sorry for myself.  It's hard to not have my other half available!  I went back to sleep and when I woke up I felt all achy, but better.  I took an ibruprofen and went back to sleep.  I felt so much better!  I feel very blessed in the midst of all of the trials!  The Lord is my Shepherd!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

My sister's getting married!

In less than a week, my sister will be married!  We did bridal pictures on Friday and then couple pictures yesterday!  She's so pretty!  I felt bad, because I totally took over taking pictures at the couple session.  But, I found out that her battery had died and I felt better!  Here's a couple of my favorites:

And these are without Photoshop!  They're so cute!  It was hard picking just 2, but I'll be putting more on my photography page!  I also took pictures of my girls!
 These are the dresses we made for the wedding!

Samuel didn't have as much fun.  Poor lil' guy!
I also signed my contract to be an elementary teacher!  I'll be teaching 3rd grade math this year!  The kids got to see the school and walk around.  We started looking at places to live.  The first day we got caught in a torrential thunderstorm and the lights went out in the apartment complex we were looking at, so we all got wet, and I lost a flip flop to the flooded street.  The next day we saw the next 2 places.  The first one was a house, had an interesting floor plan, and is 2 blocks from the huge jail.  The next one was an apartment and one of the kids spotted roaches and we just hightailed it out of there.  YUCK!!!  We put in our application for the house and still haven't heard back.  And I start meetings tomorrow!  Still in a state of flux.  Good times.  But, we're making it through!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

I got a job!

On Monday I saw some new teaching openings and gladly applied, I really didn't want to be a sub after being a teacher!  I was hoping to hear something quickly with how soon school is starting.  The next morning I got a phone call from a superintendent asking if I would apply to his school.  He had been a Principal in Augusta Middle School, and was talking to Principals down there, and two of the Principals had given him my name as a candidate.  Wow!  So, I said I'd get to work and get my info in to him.  I did, and then a little before five he called to set up an interview for the next day.  I was pretty excited, since this small town is only 45 minutes away!  We really wanted a small town and to still be close enough to visit!  I went to the Interview the next day not super nervous, since I have done so many interviews lately.  I should have been more nervous, because they asked some tough questions!  It was a 50 minute long interview, but I felt like they really knew me!  It was a really cute town with a pretty drive.  The school is all together-the elementary school is on one side, and the Middle School/High School is on the other side.  They share a cafeteria.  Seriously awesome!  After the interview and I had come home, I took all the kids out with me to get backpacks.  Toys R Us had the buy a backpack, get a lunch box free deal.  So, each of the kids got a backpack and lunch box.  They were pretty excited!  I had forgot my phone at home, and when I got back, I had missed a call.  The Principal called and they had a Board meeting to decide if they could hire me, and they can, as long as there are over 45 3rd graders!  Right now they have 49, so it should be fine.  I'm so excited I got a job!  Now we need to find a place to live!  With little money.  Good times!
I was so excited that we were able to spend time with friends and family on Thursday!  We went to Celebration Park to play and have lunch with friends.  Then we went to the dollar Summer movie-How to Train a Dragon.  Samuel's first movie at the movie theater!  The kids all did great!  Then we had watermelon at a Park and went to Deanna Rose Farm where we had tons of fun with family and even had snow cones and saltwater taffy!  Yum!  A super long day, but great time with awesome people!
On Friday, we drove around to see what places we should be looking at, and found a few.  We will be looking at places this week.  Fun times!  I have to get the kids registered for school too!  Goodbye money!  Hello new place!

 Friends at the park
 Watermelon after the movie
 Kids at the Farm
 This butterfly let me get super close!

 Snow cones!

 Watching a cow get milked!

 Josh loves the baby goats!
 Mom and I finished the girls' dresses!
 My awesome friend and I went to Olive Garden!
 Boys sleeping!
 Lunch at the park
 One room schoolhouse
 The kids loved it!

 Kira wanted to be the sad dunce