Category Archives: Milestones

30th Anniversary of The Challenger Disaster

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We were either traveling to or from Tampa 30 years ago today.

I can’t remember which. What I do remember is that I loved when we were traveling on shuttle days. From Highway 75 in FL you could see the little dot of the shuttle as it took off and arose into space.

This day was no exception, I was watching intently from the back of the old paneled station wagon and I saw the dot, only it wasn’t a dot it was more like smoke and it had stopped rising.

My heart dropped and even being only 15 years old, I knew what had happened.
A quick turn of the radio to any station confirmed what we knew, what we saw. The shuttle had exploded.

It was an incredibly sad day and impacting day in my young life.
I never looked at another shuttle launch the same again.

It is hard to believe it was 30 years ago.

http://www.history.com/topics/challenger-disaster

Crafty Me! Ruffle Pants Outfit for baby girl!

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I kept seeing these cute ruffle pants outfits on Etsy for $40+ dollars and knew that I could make one myself for baby girl.

Well, let’s just say last weekend, it didn’t go so well. First, the pants I made her were 2 sizes to small. Second, the dress I made was way too big at first so I altered it. And then…. it was way to small. Plus, I sewed my sewing machine needle through my finger. (By the way, don’t do that… it hurts!)

But, I am a determined person and there was no way I was letting a plastic machine with a motor get the best of me. Despite the fact that the ONLY thing I have ever done with my sewing machine, up till now, was make a quilt for my nephew. I dug in again today and I am proud to say, I beat the darned sewing machine!

Here is my handiwork!

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Loving Timehop

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Does anyone else have the Timehop app on their phone? It is an app that looks back on your Social Media posts and reminds you of things or pictures you posted on this day in the past.

I absolutely love this app. Today it reminded me that five years ago on this day I had 7 eggs harvested for In-Vitro fertilization. It would be our 3rd try and out of those 7 eggs, I got my beautiful baby girl! Who is now 4 years old and about to go to Pre-K.

Priceless!

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A Photo Journey – The sleeping child

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 As I took a picture of my daughter last night I realized I have this bizarre addiction to taking photos of her when she is snoozing.

As a newborn she had jaundice so she slept so much that many of those pictures are sleeping. But as she has grown the tendency to take sleeping pictures has not diminished.

So I thought I would present to you my daughter the first 3 years!

The day we came home from the hospital!

The day we came home from the hospital!

          

My little bundle

My little bundle

Can a face be any more perfect than that?

Can a face be any more perfect than that?

After a hard day on the beach

After a hard day on the beach

Too much jumping!

Too much jumping!

 

Grocery Shopping is hard work

Grocery Shopping is hard work

Eating is hard work!

Eating is hard work!

I am sick!

I am sick!

  

Chocolate makes me sleepy!

Chocolate makes me sleepy!

She is getting so long!

She is getting so long!

 

Tired out from a wedding!

Tired out from a wedding!

I hope you enjoyed the journey of her growing up through sleepy pictures!

I am sure my obsession is not over and there will more clicking in my future!

Hardcore Mommy

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So last night began my adventure in Hardcore Mommy!

Let me bring you up to date…
My dear 3 year old daughter has a set type of food she will eat. Such as… Pancakes, Eggs, Waffles, Oatmeal, Yogurt, cheese, black olives, pickles, Any fruit that was ever grown, sliced carrots (this is important), corn, macaroni and cheese, peanut butter, jelly, bread and sometimes but very rarely I can get her to eat fish sticks or chicken nuggets.

Now just looking over this list it may look like she eats pretty good, but as you start to really dig deeper you can see where the issues fall.
First off the carrots, she will eat sliced carrots, but I gave her some baby carrots a few days ago on her plate and she would not EVEN TOUCH them because they looked DIFFERENT.

In her vegetable eating there is a clear lacking of green vegetables. I can make green beans or peas and she may eat 2 or 3 at the most. Leafy vegetables are just not even going to be tried! I will say that she THINKS she likes celery because this is one of the few items that she will pick up over and over and take a bite of then spit it out. Not sure what she wants it to taste like but something about it makes her think it’s yummy every time she sees it!

Another big issue is that she won’t eat meat! Like I said I can occasionally get her to eat a piece of fried fish or nugget but baked chicken, fish, pork, steak, and everything like that she will not even taste. Who knows she may actually like something but she won’t put a darn bite in her mouth to even find out.

She won’t try Pizza. Seriously what kind of kid on the face of this earth will not even try a bite of pizza?

So here is where hardcore mommy comes in.

She is 3 years old. She is smart and talented and she is old enough to reason with. So here it goes.

On most nights I am a short order cook. I make dinner for me and my husband and then I make my daughter something I know she will eat, usually macaroni and cheese and some fruit or veggie she will eat.

The plate of food that is going to break one of us.

The plate of food that is going to break one of us.

Last night I made cheeseburger casserole for dinner. She would not even try it. Not even put one noodle with cheese on it in her mouth. So she went to bed without dinner. But here is where the really hard part comes in. When she asks for breakfast this morning it is going to be cheeseburger casserole and if she won’t try it for breakfast then she will get another chance at lunch.

I told her earlier that she was going to have cheeseburger casserole for breakfast and she said. “I don’t want it. I want to be hungry all day long!” If  she is smart enough to talk to me in adult sentences, she is smart enough to try at least try a bite of the food I make for dinner.

If she would just try it I would be fine. If she tries something and truly does not like it then I have no problem giving her something to eat that she will like. I just get so frustrated that she won’t even try something. Things I know she would like if she would just try them.

So today I am not sure who is going to break first, her or me. But we will find out.

Have any of you guys had to go through this “Picky eater” stage? If so how did you change it?

Attacking my Bucket List

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I apologize to those followers out there who have not heard anything from me in the past couple weeks. I assure you this is not a pattern only clearing up some final items with my late mother’s estate and focusing on writing my novel.  I am winding down towards the end of it and the momentum of the last few chapters are keeping me moving and writing.

But on to today’s Post….

I am well on my way to completing #11 on my bucket list!
Walk in the 3 Day Breast Cancer Awareness walk

Yesterday I signed up to walk the 3-Day – 60 Mile Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Walk here in Atlanta in October.

For years I have wanted to walk in this walk. But it seems like whenever it came around I had something else going on, a sick parent or I was pregnant, or I had a baby girl and couldn’t leave her. But this year it is all lining up.

I don’t have a Breast Cancer story because we don’t have any Breast Cancer in my family.

But we have unfortunately been touched by other types of Cancer, my mother lost her battle with Lung and Brain Cancer last September and my Grandmother died with Lung Cancer last month.

Both of my father’s parents died from Cancer before I was married and I had a 12 year old niece die from Brain Cancer 20 years ago. She would have been a lovely young woman now.

I believe that if we can find a cure for ANY kind of Cancer it is a WIN.

So I have signed up and now I am just going to have to get to work training my body to be ready to walk 60 miles in 3 days, and that is only 7 months away.

I will need to raise a total of $2,300 to walk in October. If you are interested in donating to help me fulfill my goal to be able to walk it would truly be appreciated.
Every $1 donation will help me reach my goal.

And if you have anyone in your family that is fighting, lost or won their battle with Breast Cancer and you want me to Add an Honorary button for them please let me know and I will be happy to do so.

Donate to help me walk the 3-Day.
To donate for me you will click the little pink box above the thermometer that says “Click to Donate to Shelly in 2013” and it will go into my account. None of the money comes to me personally it all goes to the foundation.

Happy Anniversary

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Young Love 21 Years ago today!

Young Love 21 Years ago today!

Today is a big day for me.

21 years ago today I stood in the back of my church as the ushers rolled out a white carpet. I walked down that carpet with my daddy by my side. When we reached the front of the church he lifted the veil off my face and gave me to my future husband. I stood there as nervous as I have ever been. Knees shaking, heart beating, but knowing that this was the man I was supposed to spend my life with.

When we embarked on that journey over 2 decades ago we had no idea what life would have in store for us. But we knew that no matter what we would take it in together. And we have.

I just wanted to wish my adorable amazing husband a Happy Anniversary!

A letter to my Pastor

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I wrote a letter to my pastor today and I realized when I was done that it was more than just a letter to him. It was my testimony and it deserved to be shared with all of you. So here it is:

Pastor Rick,

I just wanted to write you and tell you how much I appreciate you and Tonya. I have been telling my husband “I rebuke his thoughts” for years when he says stuff like. “I am getting sick.” “We are never going to get out of debt.” “We are never going to have a child.”

Your declaration sermon this past week really hit home. Tony (My husband) is better now. He doesn’t talk the way he did in the past but sometimes I hear those negative words coming out of his mouth and I rebuke them.

To tell you a little about us:

I was raised in a FIRE AND BRIMSTONE — HELL AND DAMNATION Church of God. And while I do admit I got saved because it literally SCARED THE DEVIL out of me at a very young age. I found it tiring and mentally exhausting to go to church every Sunday. I then went the opposite way and changed to a United Methodist Church (where I graduated high school) the sermons here left me lacking and wanting more. In the Church of God the Flock was at least lively and active. In the United Methodist the Flock simply sat staring and the man talking on the stage. Occasionally you would hear someone whisper an “Amen.”

My husband on the other hand was not raised in Church at all. It was a loving home but not a Godly home.

When we got married at the tender age of 21 I simply quit going to church. I was not happy at church at that time and Tony wasn’t used to going anyways. It was easy to justify not going to church. I mean I watched Church on TV on Sunday that was good enough, right……

When we got married I said that GOD was going to be my birth control. My mom had come close to getting Cancer from Birth Control Pills and I didn’t want to take that chance. A few years into our marriage and we wanted to have children and it just wasn’t happening. We went to a specialist and eventually found out my tubes were blocked. GOOD JOB GOD! That is one way to apply birth control. But now Tony and I wanted children. The only problem was in order to fix this we would need In-Vitro. This was in the late 1990’s and coming up with the $100 it took to go to the doctor was a hard task for us, much less trying to come up with $40K for In-Vitro.

We went back to our lives, knowing now that God really was our Birth Control. I prayed every day that God would open my tubes and give us a child. Tony began to drink. He escaped into the world of alcohol and gave up on the thought of a child. Maybe it was the woman in me but I could never ever give up that thought. I knew I was going to have a child even if that meant adoption. I WAS MEANT to be a mother. I KNEW it as well as I KNEW my own name.

Years passed 1996 turned into 2006 and Christopher Reeves (SUPERMAN’s) Wife died of Lung Cancer. She was not a smoker but a heavy drinker. Something inside Tony Clicked when this happened and he put down the Alcohol. Cold Turkey. DONE.

Things began to change; we started to work towards getting our finances in order with DAVE RAMSEY. In July of 2008 we were able to move out of a home that was eating us alive in payments and buy a home that was almost double the size and half the payments. GOD WAS GOOD.

In October of 2008 my company changed insurance plans. They are based out of NJ and when I read through the new plan at first I thought. This can’t be true……But it was. In NJ it is mandatory that you get the option of full coverage IN-VITRO and all other infertility treatments in your insurance plan.

I remember when I realized that this was true and about to happen. I sat down on the stairs of our new home that GOD had given us and cried like a baby tears of happiness.

It wasn’t easy. Satan threw things at us along the way. In 2009 while I was getting my tubes removed in preparation for In-Vitro my dad was in the hospital going through Kidney failure and in the process getting kicked out of their home (a small trailer near the lake – they said they didn’t want him to fall and sue them…). My parents moved into my living room.

They had told us that my tubes were THE ONLY thing wrong with me so getting pregnant should be easy. The first time it failed. I was devastated, HEARTBROKEN. I wondered WHY God had opened all these doors for us only to shut them in our face. The second time it failed again. We tried a 3rd time this was going to be the last for a while. I was tired. In case you don’t know IN-VITRO is hard work. There are bi-weekly doctor’s appointments multiple self given shots in a single day. It is a physical and emotional rollercoaster. But when I saw that word “Pregnant” come up on a home pregnancy test I have never been happier in my entire life.

During all this my mom was diagnosed with Cancer (She died September 2012) and my dad would die in 2009 when I was only 13 weeks pregnant. Bittersweet heartbreak but I knew the child I was carrying was my reason for living. She gave me hope again.

Our sweet bundle of Joy that we named STORMY was born on APRIL FOOLS DAY! After she was born Tony and I both agreed that we had to thank GOD for what he did for us, what he gave to us. We took our baby girl to my mother’s church (The HELLFIRE AND BRIMSTONE Church) and had her dedicated to Christ. We knew this wasn’t the church for us so we began to search for ours. We went back to the United Methodist Church I graduated from and although I love the pastor and he had good messages, the congregation was so sullen. It felt like they were just going through the rituals for getting to church on Sunday morning.

My best friend’s mother-in-law sweet Gail Yarbrough had been trying to get us to come to Bethany for years. Too bad we waited until she was gone to do just that.

I remember that first Sunday sitting in the parking lot and watching everyone I MEAN EVERYONE come in wearing jeans. I remember being judgmental and wondering what we were doing at a church who didn’t bother to dress up for God. This was how I was raised in BOTH churches after all.

But once inside I knew. I had the answer. They weren’t dressing up to please the other members; they were going to church in WHATEVER they had to worship and LOVE God. To simply hear the WORD of GOD. The GOOD NEWS…. Live life and HAVE GOOD Days.

I am so Thankful for you and Bethany and mostly to MY GOD who placed us there.

18 years after we were married and made that vow that GOD would be my birth control, I had my daughter. Truer words have never been spoken, “God’s ways are not our ways.” But I am so thankful that he is a GOOD GOD. And by DECLARING those words “I WILL BE A MOTHER.” For so many years, it came true.

I am sorry to have rambled for so long but I thought it was time I shared our story with you and thanked you for what you and Bethany are to us. Home.

Filled with God’s Blessing even in the darkest hours,
Shelly & Tony Taylor (& Stormy too)

Don’t Be Jealous, but we Potty Trained in 3 Days!

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Yes, you read that correctly. Baby Girl was potty trained in 3 days…

This is both #1 and #2.

A couple weeks ago one of my brother’s baby mama’s (he has 4, he could be on Jerry Springer) was talking about how they had potty trained their 18 month old.  She said something to the effect that they were in a restaurant in panties and I almost said “Bite Me” to her. Don’t worry I held my tongue.

But I thought then and there that I had to stop being lazy and start focusing on Potty Training. We had tried back in April when she had turned 2 and it had worked briefly but either because we slacked off or she wasn’t ready we digressed and stopped trying after just a few days.

This time around I knew we were going to keep on until it was complete.  She is almost 2 ½ and I am seriously tired of spending so much money on diapers. So last Thursday we began…. Out of diapers and into panties. Peeing on the potty came very easily. It seemed like she was just waiting on us to push the point. By Saturday we had no pee pee accidents and still have not yet.

I always heard that #2 could take a long time. I was prepared for it. I was hoping she would cry for a diaper or something so that I would know she had to do #2. The first day she just pooped in the panties twice. By the second time she didn’t like it very much. Day #2 and she pooped in the panties again that morning but then no more all day, not in the panties, not in the potty. She had decided that she didn’t want to do it in her panties, she didn’t want to do it in a diaper and she really didn’t want to do it in the toilet. So we were on our way to constipating ourselves.

As day 3 rolled around we still had no poop and the end of the day was fast approaching. I thought I would try something. My child is goal oriented. For pee peeing on the potty she could have either a sticker or a quarter for college and she picked quarter for college many times. So I thought to get her to do #2 I needed a bigger prize. So I found some small presents and wrapped them and put them on the back of the toilet seat. We told her that when she pooped she could pick a present and open it. 

I won’t say it was easy because the fear and panic she went through to get out that first poop was very traumatic for her. But it was all worthwhile when she got to pick and open a present at the end of day 3.

Day 4 and 5 were just about as traumatic as day 3 but there were no accidents.

It is just one week later and using the potty is second nature.
I am so very proud of my little girl!