Saturday, December 31, 2011

Practice makes.... Better.

I think my focus in 2012 will be practice. I struggle with this. I've always just wanted to get it right the first time and be done. But I'm learning more and more that it just doesn't work that way. I've got to learn to practice. Practice art techniques. Practice perspective. Practice patience. Practice truth. Over and over again. Hopefully getting better each time.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011



Friday, December 23, 2011

Thursday, December 22, 2011

the rest of the story

So, some are wondering what the heck fire is goin on around here. Its always something. :) Since the end of September my daughter Cora has been sick. Just sick. always sick. ear infections, throat infections, bladder infections, and most recently kidney infection. She was born at a normal weight but we noticed that she started dropping off the scales a bit. This week she was diagnosed with failure to thrive. I cannot begin to tell you how much I HATE that phrase now. Seriously hate it.
My daughter is joyful, sweet, smart, fun, emotional. She is crawling, trying to talk, pulls up. She has met every age-milestone. Shes just tiny. Teeny Tiny. She barely weighs 14 pounds and is 9 months old. Now, there are petite people out there that wouldnt mean much of anything to. But Cora belle started out normal and then stopped growing.
She isnt failing to thrive.
trust me, she THRIVES. but shes little and has been sick. so, weve been on a quest to figure out whats going on. This week we did an ultrasound of her kidneys, fearing perhaps a problem there. BUT thankfully, we got great news:

Now, we have to visit with an imunologist to check her immune system. Then to a gastrointernologist.
We will figure this out. And Cora is beautiful, funny, smart and THRIVING. Her body just needs to get the memo. :)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


I am not good at waiting. Not good a-tall.
Today we wait. Wait as doctors confer. Wait for the radiologist. Wait for answers. Ugh. I am not good at waiting. A peak at my daily todo:

Monday, December 19, 2011


oh, and if you are traveling,

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

His star

I love this verse. I get chills every time i hear or read it. This Christmas I am doing more over a longer period of time to make my house Christmas-y. I am also preparing for a Christmas show to sell some of my creations, and I made this one, but, it might have to stay here...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

down a ways

for the past 15 years Ive been passing by this abandoned service station

and if you know me, you know I cant resist. I had to stop and nose around a bit. I found that the price on the pumps was 31c/gallon.

and the place looked like someone had simply walked out and locked the door behind them eons ago. Not disturbed by anyone except rot and decay. the outhouse out back, falling down. the old ford pickups, sinking into the ground and a tree growing right up through one of them.

I began to feel a tug at my heart to know the history of the old service station. (read, uh-oh. here i go into the rabbit hole)
so i talked to a few of the residents of this old tiny rundown abandoned once railroad town. The conversation went a bit like this:
Hi, Im Tara Suel and I just love this old service station down the road, do you know who owns it??
Well, it looks like Melba Ray owns that property.
ok, can I call her?
sure you can. she lived here all her life.
(i eventually find the number)and call her. THAT conversation (rabbit trail) went like this:
hi, may I speak to Melba?
whos this??!
Im tara, Im seeking information about the old service station I believe you own?
No, i dont own that service station. Thats LLoyds. LLoyd. with 2 lls. he owns that. Now, I dont know him, but we lived here all our lives, and hes 65. Im 53. hes 65. dont quote me on that but he is. 65. yep. he got gray hair. He dont live here no more. He moved hisself down the road a ways. Hes takin care of a inlaw. I dont know him you see, but we lived here all our lives, and i seen him bout 2 months ago. down the road. hes livin there. he aint got no phone. he left that service station property some years ago. he lived in the house behind it. those are his trucks. hes one of the original families from here. jus like me. you might could call the boyts. hes kin to them. they live down the road a ways. thats not spelled like ya think. anyway, if they dont know, you could call lloyds service station in cameron. they kin. they might know. i owned a service station too. mine was better that lloyds. but i got sick of those bastards charging me all those damn taxes so i teached them a lesson! I plowed that service station into the ground. ha! no more taxes.
Ok, thank you for your information and kindness. Have a nice day.
and I hang up gently.
now, i want to know the history, and quite honestly, Id love to see inside the place, take more pictures, but at this rate. Im not sure thatll be possible. Cause Lloyds livin down the ways. And he aint got no phone.

Friday, October 14, 2011

from the fires to the floods

I have been very busy. Sorry for my sporadic and rare posting. Im hoping to get into the rhythm of the year soon. September is always crazy for me. I travel all over doing really random jobs. I recently left Texas:

and flew to Massachusetts to work:

Then to Roundtop to work:

to home again. while I was gone my kids got really sick. and we found out one is EXTREMELY allergic to tree nuts and now an epipen is our best friend. like I said, life has been crazy.
Now, Im getting ready to do another random job-ish. Im selling some of my creations in a show.

those are a few of the things Ive been putting together for the show. One of these days, my life will slow down. Ill sleep through the night. There wont be weekly trips to the hospital, Ill sit on a porch and have an entire cup of coffee before it gets too cold to finish. one of these days....

Monday, September 19, 2011

ah, Sunday...

Sorry its been so long since Ive posted. My computer quit on me. Its still dead. I am hoping enough prayer and chanting will resurrect it but the outlook is bad. So, because I dont have my computer, and have just hijacked my husband's in order to post, I wont be posting any pictures this time. Sorry. However, I DO want to share something with you that I believe your imagination will suffice.
It turns out, that having three kids is very different that having two. or one. You see, three is MORE. It doesnt seem like alot more but let me tell you, it is. Here, I'll give you a glimpse of my yesterday.

Sunday was busy as all Sundays are. Church seems to do a number on my kids and they are cranky and tired when we get home. It lasts the entire day. day of rest. HA! and yesterday being Sunday, means it was a long tiring day. About dinner time (aka football time) I was begging Tim to help me feed the boys. They had begun to gnaw on the walls. Tim was right in the middle of watching a football game and was distracted to say the least. He did jump up to help as I was busy with the lovely but fuss bucket Cora. Tim scrounged for some food and found some staleish chips. Thats ok, the solution was throw them in the oven for a second to crispy them right up cause grocery shopping is out of the question.
Tim loads the chips up, puts them in our super high powered over achieving oven and heads back to the game.
I take the screamer to change her diaper. When i come back, the kitchen is covered in smoke. I start hollering and tim comes running and flings open the oven door and the flames come shooting out. All hell breaks loose, fire gets put out and the boys were thrilled. go figure.

Tim redoes dinner and puts the food in front of the boys and...... yep, heads back to the game. I am standing with Cora, waiting for the boys to finish. Next thing I know, Harris is at my legs grabbing me and panicking. My arms are full of Cora and being that I was standing on tile I didnt feel I could just put her down. I realized Harrison was choking and right about that time he turned to take off running. He was in a full panic. I grabbed him by the shirt with my one free hand and began screaming for tim while dragging him towards the room tim was in. When tim rounded the corner and saw mayhem he too panicked and began searching for benadryl. He thought my allergy baby was having an anaphylactic reaction. I hollered no! hes choking! and tim grabbed him and hit him resulting in the freeing of the object. All the while, poor Cora, had been along for the ride.

Three is harder but I am learning....

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wall Map

I had a great idea one day. I would decorate the boys room with old wall maps. yeah right. i perused ebay, etsy, craigslist... only to find it would cost me quite a bit- those old maps we hated in elementary school that the teachers pulled down and pointed to with a long "i-am-the-teacher-and-in-control power dowel rod", well, who'da known, they'd be so expensive later in life. to the tunes of a couple hundred bucks! for ONE!
well, i decided Id make my own. My way. i figured chalkboard, eraseable. so I could quiz the boys. and add my notes, trips, hometowns... you get the idea.

here's what I came up with:

the white outline of the united states and the state lines are permanent. Everything else is chalked in and can be erased. and I am thrilled with the results. I decided to add them to my etsy shop.
Ill make anyone a fabric chalkboard map custom sized and detailed. Want the states labled? sure thing. Want a map of your state? ok. want it smaller? or larger? Ill do it.
you can find them here:

Monday, July 18, 2011

I journal

I have journalled as long as I can remember. I think it started as a way for me to sit still. In school, when a teacher was talking I had the hardest time sitting there doing nothing but listening. I doodled in order to listen. When I draw, paint, color... i listen better. It may not make sense, or it may look like bordom but it wasnt. It was focus. That understanding always helped me as a teacher. I had kids that listened better standing. or drawing, or fiddleing. I tried to understand behaviors before I jumped to conclusions. But now as an adult, I rarely have to sit and listen to speakers (except church- and yes, brian, i am drawing AND listening!) but my kids love to draw and it could be laborious if i wasnt joining in on the fun. I cannot leave a 3 year old alone with markers so when we haul out the art supplies, i get excited because I get to draw. or paint. or sketch. or glue. or cut. ok, getting excited and i dont get to draw today. :(
I have found that journalling helps my quiet times. I just cannot sit still quietly. unless i am drawing or writing. I write my prayers, or my scriptures. it helps me sit and listen.
I have journals galore. I have a prayer journal for each kid. i just write my prayers for that child and it over the long run creates a memory journal. my fears, hopes, cares, challenges, all recorded. One day when they are being a BUTT and Ive had it, I'll show them that Ive prayed for them all their lives. :)
my journals from this year:

I did find one helpful thing to corral all my pens, pencils, markers, etc... this was a diaper bag at one point for me. now, its a journal bag. it keeps everything easy to find, organized and "stashable".

here are a few of my journal/art/doodle/sketch pages.

one guess whats on my mind here:

I think everyone should have a journal. When you are gone from this fleeting life, how wonderful would it be for your kids and grandkids to have a record of your thoughts, prayers, hopes and dreams? I would love to hold my grandmothers hand writing and read what was on her heart.
So, if i love you, and i give you gifts on a regular basis, and it is always a new journal, just know, that i treasure your words and thoughts and dreams. And i believe your family would too. Sure, you may get a journal from me for EVERY SINGLE GIFT FOR YEARS, and no, its not because I'm dumb and forget what i give the year before. its because i hope someday you'll pick up that journal and just write.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

My Ikea Idea

I only have time for a quick post this morning but I just had to share. I call this an Ikea hack but not sure if it truly qualifies as I didnt necessarily modify the item, just re purposed it.

This is a magazine file/holder. It came from Ikea (thanks Aaron!). I love it because it isnt paper or plastic. Its wood. It can be painted, stained, colored :), whatever. I didnt do anything to this particular one because, well, it IS inside my cabinet.
I added the Command Velcro hanging strips to the back (you could screw it in if desired but Im lazy) and stuck it to the inside bathroom cabinet door and voila! curling iron storage.



Monday, June 20, 2011

the fort

We did it. we finally build the boys a fort. and by "we", I mean tim. it was a beast to put together. it took five full days in 102 degree heat. we arent going on a vacation this summer and i have a new baby so we were desperate for something for the boys to play on and keep them busy. they absolutely LOVE the fort. we've added a bucket and pulley system. batman and the blankets ride up and down in the bucket all day.
so far, the fort has been a coffee shop. a toy shop. a pirate ship (this is the case most often). the imagination and play time is endless. perhaps i should book an advance reservation at the ER.
I soon will add a pirate flag and a sign. i think it'll Say, "find your inner pirate". its for the adults. the boys have no trouble finding their pirate. its us adults who struggle. enjoy the progression:

Monday, June 6, 2011


in these economic times DIY has become THE trend. its all about the do-it-yourself and save money.
A while back i saw a great memo board that I like that had tear off paper. It was in one of those super high end magazines and when I saw the price my eye began to twitch. no way was I paying that much! I can make it!
i didnt want to spend a dime but i wanted a great product. heres what i came up with:

this is a piece of scrap wood that i had. I soaked it in a tea bath to get an older vintage look. then I took two old rulers, screwed one to the top and one to the bottom. they hold the paper in place but the bottom one also serves to tear a clean line. I robbed an iron towel rack i had and added the iron bar to the top. the paper roll is from lowes. its the paper in the paint isle. i added string and a sharpie. and i love the results.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

mason jar matches

i like things to look pretty and organized. right now, that is NOT my life. however, i did do one small thing this week that made me feel much better.
I took this match box from the hall bathroom (dont ask why its in there (hint: house full of boys) or why it looks like a rat has chewed on it....)

and I took out the matches, stuck them in this beautiful old jar

then cut off the strike strip and added it to the back of the jar with glue dots. (they work well!)

and voila! it works and look sooo much better.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

now back to your regularly scheduled program...

people have been asking me how i am doing. have i recovered? how do i feel? adjusting?
well let me start with,, I'll get back to you on that one...
feeling? I feel so much better. I am healing wonderfully. I had FIVE. 5. ef. eye. vee. eee. FIVE weeks of full time mother/mother-in-law help. it was a glorious thing. i am so blessed to have as much help as i did. my church friends delivered meals. my friends helped with the boys and i slowly regained strength.
The surgeries were rough but what took the longest to get over was the blood loss. It took about 6 weeks just to rebuild enough blood that i wasnt anemic(read EXHAUSTED) all the time.
I recently had ANOTHER blood test and heaven help us it was normal. (the only normal thing about me).
So, my energy is back, ive been up, working, cleaning, cooking, laundry-ing, creating, gardening, and generally just trying to keep everyone alive.
I have never been so humbled, so amazed, and so thankful to everyone who helped my family get through this. complete strangers prayed for hours for me. my friends begged God for my life and it has humbled me to the core.
thank you all for everything. and i do mean everything you all did to get us through this.
here are some fun pictures of the days we spent in "recovery-mode"

Friday, May 13, 2011

ideaphoria and dollhouses

so, I have something called ideaphoria. strange, I know. I was "diagnosed" with it in high school at a testing facility in dallas. This is one definition of ideaphoria.
Essentially, I have tons and tons of ideas (of things to create) that inundate my mind constantly. Most of the time its something I manage. But when I am sick and laid up in bed and unable to hop up and create something Ive dreamed up in my head, boy, does it get to me. if this afflicts you at all, DONT visit the website pinterest. and whatever you do, dont search for things you like. dont do it.
Ive been flooded recently with ideas and because Ive been so sick and unable to do much of anything... its killing me.
So, I had an idea. :)
I thought maybe if I focused on posting one of the things I created my ideaphoria would subside.
its worth a shot.
This is my childhood dollhouse my daddy made for me and my sisters when we were kids.
I found it in the attic. this is a close up of the grodiness that i cleaned out of the precious dollhouse.
Then, my ideaphoria went into overdrive and I realized it would make a great book/nicknack shelf in coras room until she was old enough to play with dollhouses.
I think it works.
I also made the shelf its sitting on from parts and pieces I had around the house. The front green trim was the trim we salvaged ages ago from my great-grandmothers house. I couldnt bear to paint it so I left it the original color.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


The most common question in my life right now is: WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED??!

So, I thought for the sake of this being a journal of sorts to store memories and stories of my life and for all those who have wanted to know exactly what happened, I thought I'd write it up here.

forewarning, this may get long.

I have been pregnant with my third baby. My little girl. We have been waiting with much excitement. All in all my pregnancy had been uneventful. I will not say easy because who are we kidding?? Its NOT easy. But nothing out of the ordinary. I even went to work at my very active job at 38 weeks pregnant planning to come home and deliver 3 days later. the entire time I was working I had no trouble. I felt fine. pregnant, but fine.

I came home on a Saturday after being at my job (staying the nights there) for ten days. Sunday morning I didn't feel very good and Monday morning I decide to call my ob/gyn. Just to have a check up. I was scheduled for the Csection on Wednesday (two days later) but I just wanted to be sure everything was ok. I had a feeling.

Sure enough, I went in at 11am to just get checked and the doctor said my blood pressure was too high and she wanted to go ahead and deliver at 1.30 that very day. So she sent me straight over to St Joes, to get ready to meet my baby girl. It was unexpected but we were ready and happy to go ahead.

At 1.50pm Monday afternoon my doctor delivered my baby girl, Cora Lea Suel. She was 8 lbs 6 ounces. and she was as healthy as she could be. They held her close to my face and I wept. She was gorgeous. They finished my csection and Tim went with Cora to take pictures/make announcements/be the watchful daddy.

They took me to recovery and a few hours later I was in my room waiting to see Cora. That night Tim went home to stay with the boys and my mom stayed with me in the hospital. It was a long, terrible night. I was in terrible pain. My mom did everything she could to make me more comfortable and I tried with all my might to suck it up- this WAS my third Csection- but by 6am I was in tears. I couldn't hold back. Not a wink of sleep, nothing was helping my pain. I thought I was in hell. The nurse on duty was ok but kept saying, "Well, csections are painful"... I KNOW! I've had a FEW! but this was far worse. I couldn't believe that I had become such a weenie. Why couldn't I handle it?

At 7am a new nurse came onto her shift and she walked into my room. I was gripping the bed rails and had tears flowing and she came to my bedside and spoke a few words. She asked me about my pain, took a general look at me and quickly left the room.

Now, from here on out it gets a bit difficult to tell the story but I will try. Most of what happens next was told to me by nurses, family, doctors, and friends who were there. I was out of it. Here's how it unfolds as I am told:

The nurse left my room to call my doctor. She gets the doctor on the phone- who has the reputation of being the very best ob/gyn around- she tells her that I was in considerable pain and crying. I am told my doctor responds with, "What? Tara's upset? she is tough! no, something must be wrong". My doctor then high tails it over to the hospital. She's by my bed in minutes. She does a quick exam and decides something IS wrong.

At that moment things began to change pretty quickly. The doctor informed me she needed to do another surgery to find out what was bleeding in my abdomen. My mom started calling my dad (who was staying at my house) and my husband and telling them to hurry and get to the hospital. They rushed me into surgery and opened me back up.

In the waiting room were friends, family, church members, love ones... all praying it would come out ok. We were initially told it wasn't a big deal, just a vein that was bleeding that needed to be closed. not the typical but not a big deal.

Alittle over an hour into the surgery a call came to the waiting room. It was my doctor. I don't know the exact conversation but it was conveyed to my dad and my husband, Tim, that things weren't going well. They couldn't stop the bleeding. They needed permission to do a hysterectomy and call in another surgeon to assist. Tim told them yes, do what they had to do. One of the possibilities to stop the bleeding and save my life was to break my pelvic bone to get to the bleeding vein.

At this time my mom had brought my boys back to my house and she said she just cleaned. She swept, mopped, did whatever she could to keep her mind off of the possibility that I may not be coming home. She was convinced the next call she was going to get was that I wasn't coming home.

Thank the Lord they were able, after much more time, skill, and difficult procedures, to locate a torn vein deep in my pelvis that had been bleeding. The Dr. said the vein was a strange vein in a location they just do not even go to during the original surgery and as she tried to tie off the vein, it would just disintegrate. The dr said it was quite a strange and very unpredictable thing. She said, "this is one for the books." rare, weird.

After the surgery I had troops of doctors, nurses, and anesthesiologists come to my room and were just overwhelmed I was there. They all said, "We are just so glad you are here!" I was still quite unaware of just how close it came but I knew by their faces and reactions that it had come close. They would come to my room and look at me (and I looked like a train wreck) and they would just beam. A huge smile would come across their face as they would say, "You are here. You are blessed. You were saved because your dr is the very best there is. No one else coulda pulled you through."

Let me say this: I am a so convinced that my doctor is the very best. That God saved me through her skill and wisdom. That God was sovereign over every detail.

In the midst of surgery I was given 3 units of blood and the next day I was given 2more units. I had just lost too much blood. Now, I thought when you are given blood that was all there was to it, that you got the blood and went on about your merry way. That's not true. The blood is given to prevent shock, death, and help healing. It dies shortly there after. You have to make your own blood and that takes time. Alot of time-weeks to months. Until then you feel like you've been run over by a mack truck.

So, now, I am recovering. Cora is gorgeous and perfectly healthy. She is a gift from God.

a few notes about things I learned through this:

1. God is so very sovereign. He is in control of every detail. I wasn't scheduled to deliver until Wednesday. My doctor decided to deliver Monday. A few days early because she just felt it would be better because my blood pressure was a bit high. Had she delivered wed. She would've been out of town Thursday (she had a scheduled flight out of town) and wouldn't have been there for the second surgery. Another doctor would've had to preform it. The nurse who discovered the problem wouldn't have been on shift- Thursdays are her day off. The other on-duty nurses missed the signs of the problem. Only when she come on duty was there a quick, necessary call from the hospital to my doctor.

2. When I was taken to the second surgery I was told, "It's gonna be ok. Just a vein we didn't get tied off. We'll get it and it'll be just fine." I felt fine about it. That they would quickly resolve the problem and I would feel better. I wasn't worried or panicked. NO ONE expected it to take the turn it did. But as they were placing the mask over my face to put me under general anesthesia, I felt a very deep stirring. In the past, when I prayed, I've prayed with my mind. I prayed what I thought would be needed requests or thanksgivings. This time it was different. As peaceful as I felt, my Spirit stirred and my Spirit began to pray. I don't know how else to describe what happened. But, not my words were chosen, not within my control, but the Spirit interceded and prayed fervently, repeatedly, with an earnest I didn't understand. The words I remember calling desperately from my soul were,"God, give them skill and wisdom. skill and wisdom" I don't know how else to explain it but to say the Spirit began to pray from within me and intercede and go before the Lord to ask for things I didn't even know to ask for. To pray and plead before the throne for God to be present over the surgeons. To fill them with HIS wisdom and HIS skill as the great physician. This has drastically impacted my view of the Spirit within me, the Spirit's role and relationship with the Lord. It was as though I wasn't there, that the Spirit and the Lord were communicating.I was just witnessing it. Its indescribable and I feel blessed to have experienced it.

3. I definitely learned to not miss one moment to say, "I love you" to friends and family. I often take for granted I'll see my loved ones tomorrow. We don't know that so I want to remember to treasure each moment and say I love you. alot.

I have since visited my doctor for more tests and check ups. She smiled and hugged me when I saw her. she said, "you tried to die on us". I told her how very grateful I was that she was my doctor and how thankful I was for all her work. She said, "Tara, there was a moment in that surgery room where I had the thought, 'I CANNOT walk out there and look Tim in the face and tell him I couldn't fix her. I REFUSED to walk out there and tell him to take his three babies home and I couldn't save Tara.'" She looked at me and then Tim and said, "I couldn't do it. I had to do whatever it took. I wasn't going to face telling him I couldn't fix it." She truly is a hero to me. She has my forever recommendation and endorsement. She is the best and she faced a dramatic and fearful situation head on and God chose her to "fix" me. Thank you Lord.

There are so many other details that I can't even begin to include them all but I think this summarizes the majority of the story.

I do want to thank all those who sat and prayed in the waiting room with my family. and all those who have brought food, and served my family with any and every need. Church community is the best thing to witness. And I for one am so grateful.

Worth it all:

Thursday, March 17, 2011

whoa momma!

I do not like photos of me. I avoid being photographed. its because Im native american and itll steal my soul. its definitely not because every picture i see of myself causes an involuntary gag reflex.

So, unless you are my father in law with his stern voice on (hes a picture taking crazy man) you'll be hard pressed to get me to stand still long enough for a picture.

and that being said, the RAREST of all photos of me is the pregnant photo. there are a FEW floating around on facebook that my vindictive sisters post and tag me in. I remove the tags, they replace the tag....whatever. they think its funny. i think it steals me AND the baby's soul. :)

But i do realize this is my last pregnancy and i started this blog as a memoir for my family and kids so after alot of groaning and crying i decided Id post one pregnant picture for all my very distant family (your welcome dale!) and i also realize that one day ill look back and these photos will be the "gosh I was so young!" pictures.

I also want to encourage my pregnant friends out there. When you think you've heard every inconceivable comment about your pregnancy, consider these whoppers Ive had to smile gracefully through:

-what??! april 6th!! but youre enormous!
-well, I guess as long as you feel good it doesnt matter how you look.
-are you sure it isnt twins??!
-well, arent you a full load!

here's 36 weeks pregnant:

just a few short weeks left. :)

Sunday, March 6, 2011


I have some amazing friends.

I am about to have a baby girl. I know. a girl. Im getting more and more used to the idea.

Saturday my friends threw me a shower and I was really blown away by all the gifts. It was supposed to be a DIAPER shower, but my friends brought diapers AND gifts.

I feel so very blessed. and so very humbled. and grateful.

here are the cards that were attached to the gifts. I put them on a painted canvass and framed it. I like the idea that as Cora grows, on her wall she will see that there were lots of people excited about her arrival and anxious to meet her.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

please excuse our mess.....we're currently under construction.

I love my boys. I love my boys. I love my boys.

no, I am not trying to convince myself, its really true but there are days when I just want to hide. My boys were given to me by God for so many reasons, the one I am sharing about today is reason #7. to keep me humble.

my boys take it upon themselves to daily hand me my dose of humility.

when i was *youngER* and baby-less I would see moms in the super market, or at church, or at the doctor's office and I would mentally make a list of everything they should do to improve their lives and the lives of their children. man, i had an answer to it all.

then God smiled and handed me my two boys. I am convinced He then sat back and said, "show me, tara".

okay, God. I now know that I know nothing. nada. zilch. Im an idiot. please help me keep my boys alive and mentally unscathed for as long as possible.


oh, and to the precious women of my sons school and staff members that my husband works with at church, my 5 1/2 year old does not, "go to the boring school, the school of boring, who teach the language of 'blah, blah, blah' ". he really does love his school, he is trying to learn to make a humorous joke. On the way home, i discussed with him how it WASNT funny and suggested he start with 'why did the chicken cross the road?'

and walmart staff, i do NOT believe its appropriate, nor do i teach my son to pee in your fine parking lot.

apparently, this week i was low on humility.

Monday, February 28, 2011


The person you are trying to reach is not available....

oh how i wish I could have a recording of that playing on a loop everytime i hear, "momma. momma. momma!"

this week has been one of those weeks. and i. am. tired.

my boys' injury report this week:

a sore back from the slaps incurred from a precious friend saving my oldest sons life who was choking on mongolian beef. the beef came up. the back still sore. but he's alive so we are ok with a sore back!

a severely split lip and a jacked up tooth- good thing its a baby tooth

a pretty bad burn on a tiny finger that has a MONGO blister that looks really painful.

a bead up a nose

a bruised rib cage. on the bright side, the bruised rib cage was what caused the bead to come flying out of the nose. (this was all done in view of medical personel who now are baffled by how i make it through a day)

I want to learn patience and all, but its only monday.

if this continues, Im gonna fake labor pains so I can go to the hospital and get some rest!

Sunday, February 27, 2011


Yesterday was a great day for us. Saturday started like a normal weekend day. it was gorgeous outside and I had a tedious painting job ahead of me so I pulled up a chair and began painting. after a while harrison came up beside me and started helping me. we worked together for a while. brief conversations came up followed by silence and painting. it was nice. but then, the serious questioning began.

"mom," says harrison, "will Michael Jackson be in heaven?"

this makes me smile. you see, we had just watched "this is it" the michael jackson documentary. harrison has for years now had a fascination with Michael jackson. he wants to know all about him. why hes famous, all his songs, his dance moves, if he's really a zombie, etc.... while watching the movie, we answered lots of questions and explained to harrison that michael was a very rare, talented, gifted. individual. sort of a "elvis 2".

after a brief period of silence following the question, I said, "well, baby. we dont know. we dont know whether michael believed that Jesus died for his sins or not."

"but mom," harrison says in a very serious tone,"in the documentary, michael said, "God bless you. alot. he did. I heard him."

I smiled. I paused. I thought long and hard. I said, "yes, baby. he did. but that doesnt mean he knew Jesus Christ as his personal savior."

Harrison said, "well, i want to know if he'll be in heaven."

I said, "i guess we will see someday."

harrison said, "will I be in heaven?" I answered, "if you believe that God sent His only Son to die on a cross for your sins."

Harrison said, "I do believe that and I want to tell God."

I said, "why dont you go talk this over with your dad."

he went inside and a little later he and Tim came outside and wanted to pray together and my first born, my baby, accepted Christ as his Savior. what an incredible day.

I prayed for this day. I prayed for my son's soul. what a glorious day.

and who knew, Michael Jackson would insight just deep conversations.

:) thanks michael. hope to see you there.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Owl take it

So in november my husband made me this for my birthday:
He knows me very well. I have a serious fondness for most animals and it reaches a level of awe when it comes to owls. I can only guess its because I had an owl as a kid for a short period of time. My dad is a veterinarian and back in the day (oh my word. cant believe that phrase can describe my childhood) there werent many rehabilitation centers and veterinarians ended up taking in creatures of all kinds. one day an injured barn owl was brought in to the clinic so we became owl nurses.
Ever since that day I was in love. I have been fortunate to spot a few incredible owls in my life. There's a great horned owl that lives in the park near my house. And a couple that live on a friends land we frequent often. Ive seen plenty of Eastern Screech owls around my house and always stop everything to admire them. my sweet gorgeous husband took notice and for my last birthday - i turned 29 :)- ok, maybe not but its how old we FEEL right??- he made me an owl house. he researched how to make it specific to owls and worked hard on it to make it perfect. I was impressed.
I researched specifications on placement of the house and we hung it in december in our back yard. I was hopeful that in the next year or so we would have an owl family take up residence.
It didnt take near that long. It only took about 2 months for an owl to find this home perfect.
he sits for most of the day in the opening sound asleep. Occasionally when the blue jays are being particularly annoying he'll retreat inside the house.
Its been such a treat to watch him. Hes an eastern screech owl. his main diet is snakes, lizards, ROACHES (heck yeah!), and the sort. finally, a creature we get to take care of that CONTRIBUTES MORE THAN HE TAKES! my dog, contributes some but cant make up for the poundage of hair left on the floor, and my cats.... are well. cats.
they do whatever they dang well please. and eat tons.

when my husband gave me the owl house he said "happy birthday baby". when I called him a couple days ago to say an owl was in the house he said, "happy valentines day baby." ummmm.... I dont think so.... :)