Friday, June 27, 2008


This weekend we are going to set record heat....just like a lot of the country I am sure but I am so ready for summer! Next week we are going camping over the 4th with our church and it should be fun and warm there too. Even though I am in class over the summer I am going to try enjoy the warmth and the weather. I will be bringing my books to the beach for sure:)

Tomorrow the girls and I are hosting a garage sale so we can earn money to go to CreationFest at the end of July. The girls are going to set up a stand selling Italian Sodas and Iced Coffee. Hopefully sales will be good since it is a nice day.....but then again everyone might be off at the beach too!

Last weekend we celebrated Father's Day for Mike since he kind of got missed the week before because of the graduation celebrations. The girls took him on a afternoon bike ride and then we made a special daddy dinner for him. This was a picture I took (with my new camera) right before they took off. I can't believe how tall the girls are getting just seeing them standing next to their dad. I will definately be the shorty in the family;)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

More graduation photos......

I am in that big crowd somewhere....there were almost 800 graduates from the UW Bothell campus but I think something like 12,000 UW students graduated over the weekend. They held the big graduation in Husky stadium on Saturday and over 40,000 people attended. Now that is a big graduation. I was excited to actually graduate at the Seattle campus since I started there after high school. Mike and I met when we were both students (he was the weekend cook at my sorority).....I ended up not finishing my degree in the 80's but will finally finish at the Bothell campus on August 22nd.

I actually got to sit next to my good friend Kristy. Our daughters have been friends for about six years now and she went back to school about the same time that I did.

The day really meant a lot to me. When I was a student out of high school I really didn't have any motivation for school. I was in a very BIG university and was completely lost. I was having a rough time back them with self esteem and school just made it worse. I wasn't doing well academically and this really made me feel like a failure (even though in retrospect...crazy thoughts). Deep down I wasn't career oriented but wanted to be married and a mom. When I met Mike my life completely changed for the better but I still was unhappy with school. I decided I needed a break....not realizing it would be that big of a break. My life turned around at that point for the better, marrying the man of my dreams, supporting him with his dream of earning a PhD., living in British Columbia for 7 years, giving birth to the most wonderful girls, moving back to Washington, starting a decorative painting business, volunteering for PTA, Girl Scouts and all those mommy jobs. The one area I still felt insecure about was my education. Since I was floundering back then my GPA was not that great, I was very motivated to prove to myself I could do better. I enrolled at a UW satellite campus three years ago since I didn't want to drive the hour it would take to go back to Seattle. Plus, the class sizes were much smaller and I knew this would be key to my success. I actually will be graduating with a degree and half worth of credits;) My first day back to school three years ago was SCARY....I literally prayed the whole ride there and I am surprised I did not throw up. I sat in the class just panicking and all those yucky self esteem issues came back. God was so good and encouraged me with peace and love. I made it through my first class and received a 3.9. I was totally shocked but ecstatic. Each class I was less and less nervous and I slowly proved to myself with work and determination that I could do this after all. I still have 3 classes to finish up this summer but my grades in the last three years have averaged out to be a 3.89. My overall GPA is much lower since they combined with my earlier UW grades but in the end I have put those ugly thoughts about not being smart enough to rest.

If there is something holding you back from fulfilling your dreams or a demon to conquer from your past....take it from can do it! And it feels so good when you do!!!!

With my grandma....

My wonderful family....Joe the youngest (who started Kindergarten the fall that I started UW in 1985) he graduated from Seattle Pacific University 6 years ago, my dad (another UW alum), me with my mom and finally on the end my sister, who graduated from Washington State University 9 years ago.....I still love her even if she is Coug;)
Reminiscent of our first kiss which I received from Mike at the very same campus (at the front door of my sorority) 20 years ago this coming October. The three people who put up with me the most over the past three years. My husband and editor man as well as the daughters who let me nap in the afternoons after pulling the all nighters.To put this all in perspective of how long this has taken me, I graduated with one of my flower girls at our wedding. Mikaela on the right was the youngest flower girl at 4 years old and her sister, Brittany, on the left was only 6 when we got married. I actually had Mikaela in one of my classes and that made me feel really old;)
Here I am with the same girls 17 years ago...Mikaela is the one with her finger in her mouth.
It was special for me to graduate but it really meant a lot that I could set this example for my girls. Now they know that they can do it too.....even if it takes until your middle aged.

After the ceremony my parents had a little party (also to celebrate Father's day and a few family birthdays).
It was actually my mom who did the beautiful party....busy day for her but she made it so special!!!

My sister (the Coug ....husky state rival) bought me the alum sweatshirt, wrapped in purple and gold and with a husky card. She said it was really hard for her to do but she made an exception just for me;)
The family pitched in and got me the most amazing present. This is the camera I have been wanting for a while now. They didn't even know I had been longing for this exact one but that is what they picked out. Totally excited!!! Hopefully this won't distract me too much this summer;)

My aunt Sue with my grandmother........
Even the biggest husky fans I know interrupted their Father's day fun to say hi and congrats....that meant a lot to me since Jay, on the far right (remember the wedding last summer) , was also my ring bearer at our wedding all those years ago.

Finally my dad......

....even though he had to share Father's day with me I think the graduation was a pretty neat gift for him too. I am the oldest daughter and only child for nine years. I was the first to start college but the last one to get her degree. I remember walking around the same campus with him as a little girl when he got his accounting degree from UW in the early 70's.

It is never too late:)

Monday, June 16, 2008

A day I have been waiting for.......

....more later but it is after midnight after a very long but exciting day!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Almost done......

My Senior Seminar Class on our last day of class

Last night I finished with my Spring finals.....and yesterday morning I turned in my senior thesis paper...phew! The paper I finished after three months of research, drafts and edits was on eating disorders and how the media's influence contributes to the problem. I researched prevention programs and highlighted a program on media literacy for teens called GO GIRLS! and discussed the positive and negative elements based on prevention research. I was so excited to do a project that was actually applicable to my life. In my ministry, I teach girls and moms about how the advertising industry changes how they feel about themselves and their bodies. I have struggled my whole life with body image problems and so this issue was close to my heart.

This coming Sunday I get walk through commencement at the University of Washington Seattle campus, where I started my college degree almost 23 years ago. I have a couple of classes to finish up this summer.....but I am almost done!!!!!!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Special Night....

Last night Hailey was baptized by her youth leader during a special youth baptism service at our church. It was so special to listen to her beautifully honest testimony and to hear that Jesus is the love of her life. I was completely blown away at her eloquence and sincerity. At times I just can't believe she is actually my daughter. She is so much more mature than I was at her age. I am truly thankful but I know it is her relationship with God that has made her who she is.

What are you waiting for? Get up and be baptized. Have your sins washed away by calling on the name of the Lord. Acts 22:16

We are so proud of her and can't wait to see what else God has in store for her life.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Fun Weekend for the Birthday Girl!!!

So.....Saturday was Hailey's birthday. The silly girl didn't want to have a party this year (what is mom the party queen to do?), I kept trying to convince her it would be fun but she wouldn't budge so I gave up. Also, one of her BFFs, Maddy, was having her birthday party the night of Hailey's birthday. Maddy and her mom even tried to convince Hailey they could do a double party since they have all the same friends. Well.....stubborn girl;) was adamant that Maddy have her own party and that she didn't want to take away from her celebration. Then on motherly sense could tell that Hailey really didn't want her birthday to go by without any fun with friends........... so at 9pm after a very busy Friday afternoon running kids from here to there and there and there and there and back again, I planned an impromptu surprise birthday breakfast for her with some of her closest friends. I was so thankful that most everyone could make it on such short notice. I ran into the $ store right before they closed and found some cute goodies and fun plastic Hawaiian plates. Mike was in charge of food and I did the decorating. Some how we were able to get all her friends into the house without her knowing on Saturday morning. Although, I did have to tell her we invited her friend (our neighbor) Britnee for breakfast so I could get her out of bed. She was totally surprised when Britnee brought her down the stairs and she was very happy to have her special day start out this way.My last minute table decorations and goodies bags.....
Totally surprised and enjoying time with her best friends......

Adorable shirt she got from Maddy.....

After the breakfast Hailey and I headed out for the mall to meet Nana for some birthday shopping, a make over at the MAC counter, and a delicious lunch.....After shopping I dropped her off at Maddy's party to celebrate Maddy's birthday with 23 kids from school and youth group.......great way to end the day!!!

Thank goodness this all occured last weekend since this week I have my last week of classes, finishing up my senior thesis paper, and finals next Monday......ok back to the books;)