Friday, March 23, 2012

Sweethaven Summer- Inspiration in a Book

I am a person who looks for the beauty and magic in everyday life.  Sometimes it just happens out of the blue and sometimes I have to search.    I did not have to search very hard for beauty and magic when I read A Sweethaven Summer by Courtney Walsh.    I love to read and have since I was a little girl.  Reading a book that combined several of my personal passions was so fun and exciting that I read the book in less than a day.   This was at the detriment of everything else I had to do at the time but it was worth it.   The book incorporates scrapbooking, faith, photography, friendships, and many other inspirational themes.  All of that plus a little bit of mystery and suspense into who is the main character's father.  Needless to say,  I adored the book.    It is available here at AmazonA Sweethaven Summer

The book and Courtney's blog Telling Stories  inspired me to examine why I scrapbook.  I created this layout to better tell my story.     The journaling reads:

Moments fade and new ones are created almost instantly.   I scrapbook to capture the important, crazy, silly, lovely, romantic, meaningful, traditional, life changing, everyday, funny, sweet, beautiful moments. 

My hope is to have my children look at their books whenever they need a reminder of who they are, where they came from, and how much they are loved and adored. 

I enjoy the feeling of sticky fingers, textured paper, and cut photos.   I love the look of the gorgeous patterned paper, embellishments, ribbon, buttons, and bling.  

 The pages of the scrapbook show that the moment was important enough to be captured and that a piece of art was created solely for the purpose of celebrating that moment.    

Blooper Reel--Do you see what is wrong.? 
Hint:  The A is Capture is backwards. 
Chris of course caught this and made fun of me:)

Friendship is a very huge theme in the book.   I have already expressed how important my friends are to me in a previous blog.   This past week I talked to one of my "forever friends"... since third grade anyway.  She helped me put some stuff in perspective and as usual we picked up where we left off like we always do.   Thanks, Brooke Derry.  Here is a page I created about us.  The bottom says, " Friends are Flowers in the Garden of Life"  Proverbs. 

Love--  I would not like a novel if love was not a significant theme.    Here are couple of layouts I created inspired by my true love. 

Sorry for the quality of the pictures.  We were taking pictures of the layouts because we do not have a 12x12 scanner.  I think I need a tutorial on how other people get their work online.  The pages are so much cuter in person. 

I hope you all read A Sweethaven Summer, even if you are not a scrapbooker, it truly is an amazing, sweet, fun read. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Confessions of a Super Awesome Busy Mom

*******  I wrote this post awhile ago and have edited it a lot.  I took out a bunch of stuff.    The stuff that may be funny to me and my family but not so funny to people who do not know us.  The Hubbers read it and was concerned that I was "pulling back the curtain" into my life as a mom a little too far.  Then he reconsidered after he thought about it and explained that while he is very private, he recognizes that I have always been an open book.  He also said that is why people like me.  I took the compliment and after a lot of thought of what to do... I decided to go for it.    Hopefully, I only make you laugh and not question my sanity. Hopefully, if you are mom, you will relate to my confessions and feel not so crazy because you know that you are not alone in this journey called motherhood. 

Now you have to wonder about all the stuff I did not tell you.  I am sorry, but I can tell you that no Barber boys were injured in the writing of this blog.   Also please keep in mind I love my boys more than I ever thought possible.


Recently my niece had her first Reconciliation.  I am told this is kinda like a confession.  I am not Catholic so, I researched it, ie asked someone.   In honor of my niece Ainsley, I am confessing these Mommy sins here today. 

  I feel like Chunk from Goonies....  One time, I was at the movies and I made a puking sounds like this...blahhhhhaaahahaha and everyone started freaking out..  Ok not the actual lines, but a classic scene.  Anyway, here goes.


When I am I tired, I will read Jacob a shorter book.

 I have let Grady eat food out of his car seat and off the floor.  (If he drops it)  I do not feed him on the floor.    Only at my house and only his car seat :)  I do have some standards.

 Some days I look forward to their 7:30 bedtime more than Christmas.  ** Ok, almost everyday.

 I told Jake I would get arrested if I left him in the car while I grabbed milk at the store.  I told him he would get arrested he if he ran in the store with the cart.

 I told the Pre-school teacher that Grandma is the one who taught Jacob the bad word.

 When the boys are taking a bath, I sit on the floor in the bathroom and relax.

 I secretly keep trying to get Jacob to make up dances with me to perform at family functions.  He will not participate. 

When I am having a concert in the car, it annoys me when this happens,
 "Mom", "Mom", Moooommmmm"....... 
" What Jacob?"
 "I want to drive a Jeep when I am older".
"Ok, Honey that sounds great. What color?"
I am really thinking this...  Seriously?  You interrupted my Broadway worthy version of Defying Gravity to tell me about a car?  Someone needs to teach this kid to recognize raw talent and to have manners.  Oh... wait.  My job.

 I have bribed the kids to eat a little tiny bit of veggies .. with an ice cream snickers bar.   

I told Jacob that I wrote the ABC song and Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.

Jacob pronounces the L sound as a W and I do not correct him because I think it is cute.  Bonus points because he calls my mom, "Grandma Wiz". 

I secretly throw out McDonald's toys, even if they are still in the package.  

I feed my kids McDonalds.

I go to the store before I pick the boys up from the sitter.

One time I spoke in a British accent all night because I was bored. 

When Jacob beats me at fruit ninja it is not because I let him win.  I actually try really hard to win. 

I take at least one bite out the boy's cereal, sometimes more.  I buy unhealthy cereal because I like it and despite the fact that Chris and I got into one our biggest fights over unhealthy cereal when Jake was two.  Guess, who only wanted to feed him healthy cereal?  Me.  *hangs head in shame.

  We still make Jacob take a nap even though he is 6 and I know he does not always sleep.  I usually just need a break.
I allowed Chris to put this picture on Facebook and I tagged myself because I think it is funny.

and seriously,  he really does look like Chris Farley.  

I gathered up two laundry baskets full of toys and brought them to my mom's so she would, "have fun things for them to do".   It was all the toys in the house that drove Chris and I crazy. 

We have never had play-doh because I think it smells weird and makes a huge mess.

I have watched Good Luck Charlie when I was alone in bed. 

When there is a cuss word in a song I turn the radio all the way down and then turn it back up after they say it.  Girl, can't listen to the Blues Clues CD one more time.

 I often wear my pajamas, including my slippers to drop off Grady at the sitters.

We use paper plates to cut down on dishes. Sorry trees.

These confessions are sadly not all the poor choices I have made as a parent.   I am sure I have scarred the boys for life more than once and will most likely continue to do so as they get older. 

While we are on the subject of confession here are all the things that have come out of my mouth that I never thought I would say. Here is a short and very shocking list.  I am afraid that there are more out there in the ether, but here is what I remember today.

1. "Get out of the tub Jacob, Grady pooped in it again"
2. "Wait to take out your private until you are actually in the bathroom"
3. "Wow, I love your minivan"
4. "Please stop riding the dog, he is not a horse"
5. "Sorry, I can't come over that cuts right in the middle of naptime"
6. "Call me on my brother's phone, Grady put mine in the toliet"
7. "Seriously, it is not okay to eat food out of the garbage" --- See standards, people.
8. "Stop, playing with your private, it is not a toy, and no it is NOT a guitar"
9. " Hold on a minute, Grady is on top of the Kitchen table and he is eyeing the light like a trapeze"
10. " Excuse me, I just peed my pants because I sneezed"

On a more serious note...  these kids have made me laugh so hard and truly bring joy into my life.  We have been blessed with two very happy boys who have the best huge Barber smiles and whole lot of my spunk.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Sometimes you just need your Mommy.

I have had to take a break from writing due to an illness in my family.  Usually when Chris or one of the kids is sick I do my best to make them feel better.  The problem was that the sick person was me.   Last Monday I went to work with a tiny bit of a sore throat.  By 1:00 I started getting warm... you know the warm when you start asking everyone around you if they are hot too?  I had to stay home from work on Tuesday, went to the Dr. and I was diagnosed with Strep throat. 

Wednesdays I work at home, I was so sick I had to call off from work even when I can work in my PJs.  That is when it I knew it was bad.  Real bad.  I called to let my Mom know how terrible I was feeling, and that I was not any better.  A real whine fest.  When I asked her what she was doing she told me she was making cookies for me and bringing them up to me.   She made me homemade chicken noodle soup, homemade bread, and my favorite chocolate chip cookies.  This was accompanied with the mandatory 7-UP and saltines crackers.    There is nothing better than having your Mommy take care of you when your sick.  The only thing that is up there is having your Mommy take care of YOUR kids when you are sick.  She got Jiggy off the bus and walked down to pick up Grady from the sitters.  

My mom is literally one of my most favorite people in the world.  She does so much for her kids and grand kids.  Jacob absolutely adores her and his face lights up with such a pure love when he sees her, he always yells, Grandma and races to give her a hug.    She comes to his hockey games, school parties, performances, the works.  The fact that she adores my kids *she is obsessed with the Grady Baby too but he does not do much in the activity area, just makes me love her more.

This is not the first time that she has dropped whatever she is doing to come take care of me when I am sick.   My mom will always come to my rescue whether it be to help decorate the house or take care of my boys.

So being sick made me once again truly appreciate my mom and the fact that God has blessed me with her and her silly sense of humor, outgoing nature, and a flair for the dramatic.  Once when I was bed ridden with a foot injury and all my friends were going out dancing she read me an entire day by day motivation calendar as if she was a very emphatic preacher.   Picture my mom, but with a voice that sounded like Martin Luther King Jr. or another famous orator.  It cheered me up and made me giggle so hard I forgot about being disappointed for little bit.  

If I was sad or hurt, she was the first person to try to cheer me up.  She is always on my side, but not afraid to tell me when I am wrong. 

She has a knack for getting meaningful gifts for everybody, not just me.  I remember at my wedding shower I started crying and no one knew why I would be crying over an engraved cake server and knife.  They did not see that they had been engraved with little sayings from my pets.  My beloved pets.  I mean if they can talk they can order gifts right?  By the way, they had weird voices too.   One of my most favorite, gifts was made by my mom and my Pat for my birthday just this past year when I turned 29. (Ahem 34)   They made a slide show of my life and set it to music.  It stopped when I married Chris or they "gave me away".  However, as you can tell by this post and many other posts they never really got rid of me, they gained a son and two grandsons.  It makes me cry every time I watch it. 
Trying to figure out positive things about being sick is pretty hard.  It did make me settle down and rest.  It made me appreciate my husband for allowing me to be off duty when he took care of the boys every night when he got home from work. Usually we take turns.  He offered and did not even complain.  I did hear a lot of spraying going on and have not kissed him in a week.  So far Chris and Jake have been spared.  Grady was unlucky.  Poor kid.
Being sick also made me appreciate being generally a healthy person.  I still have pain when I swallow and I am quite certain that this is some alien form of Strep that is uncommonly painfully .. or maybe I am just being a bit dramatic.  What can I say,  I learned it from my mom.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Pretty in Pink!!! Cindy's Baby Shower

Pinterest paid off!!  The girls and I threw Cindy the cutest baby shower with lots of ideas that I learned about on Pinterest. It was fun to plan, craft, and create.  Here are the invitations that I handmade.  Each and everyone.  My mom actually helped with some of them, but one of them was so ugly I sent it to her because I was too embarrassed to send to anyone else.  All the invites were different but here is an idea.

The decorations were just so cute!!!  The activities included making Baby Paul a headband and a super cute mad lib poem.   The food was over the top amazing and I personally went way over my weight watchers points. Like.... enough to feed 3 of me points.  I was binging on food and pink, I am pretty sure I could not have had a better day.    Here are some of the pictures.


Wendy made all the flowers and bows in the basket.  There were different sizes and designs of elastic.  Each person could pick a flower or bow and design a headband for baby girl.  There were little tags we could attach to the headband so Cindy and Baby would know who made each headband.  It was so fun and cute!  I did not come up with this idea.  I saw it on Pinterest and pinned it to my Baby shower board.  In the interest of giving credit, where credit is due ..... here is the link. Inspiration from this shower.

This tulle pom pom was made by Wendy Kretsinger and I think she convinced her husband to help out too.  You can find directions anywhere online.

I made this little nugget.  It says Please Donate to Princess Paul's College Fund and there is the little piggy bank.

I decorated the white pail.  I used my Cricut to cute out the Thank You on vinyl and then I used my sticker maker on the ribbon for the inside.  I tied some ribbon to the handles and it was finished.  I put some pink tissue paper in the pail and the thank you notes.  In the frame next to it there is a little saying about helping out the parents to be by self- addressing the envelopes for the thank you notes. 

The center pieces were mason jars filled with fresh flowers.   We tied ribbon around them and put a piece of scrapbook paper underneath.  Flowers and mason jars were supplied by mom.

 The favors were supplied by Katie Spirtosanto and her daughter Tess.  The pink glasses with tulle wrapped candy on some super cute napkins. 

Kelly decorated Cindy's chair, with the hot pink tulle I scored at Hobby Lobby and some of the tulle pom poms the Kretsingers made!!

Josie brought this banner. We all signed it and they can use it when they bring the baby home.

 Some of the finished headbands.

Josie made two diaper cakes.  One is a bassinet

Cindy opening gifts.

 Josie and Tess.
 Me with a weird pose.
 Tess, Katie and Josie


The group... minus a couple who were cut out.

I fell in love with some marshmallows pops I found on Pinterest.  I took the idea and then went out on my own with it to make it more of a Katy creation.    I think they turned out great and very delicious.

Finished product. 
Strawberry Marshmallows
White Chocolate morsels
Mini-semi sweet morsels

 Cut a hole in the marshmallows and insert the cookie straw.
 Freeze for five minutes to set them together.

 I crushed up gram cracker, mini morsels and thin mints for topping. 

  After they are set, melt the white chocolate for 30 seconds, stir, 30 more seconds.  Depending on how much you put in the microwave do this until melted.
Dip the marshmallow pops in the white chocolate and quickly roll into whatever topping you want. 

With the left over white chocolate I made these pretzel rods with hot pink glitter. Super easy, cute and most importantly delicious.

 I had such a good time making all these fun and glittery projects for the shower.  The best part was doing it for someone I love and adore.  

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Think Magnificently of God: A Book Review of Lord Teach Us To Pray

I was asked to do a book review of Lord Teach Us to Pray and was sent a copy of the book by Kingsely Press.  The book was written by Dr. Alexander Whyte and was first published in 1922.    Dr. Alexander Whyte (1836-1921) was widely acknowledged to be the greatest Scottish preacher of his day. He was a mighty pulpit orator who thundered against sin, awakening the consciences of his hearers, and then gently leading them to the Savior. He was also a great teacher, who would teach a class of around 500 young men after Sunday night service, instructing them in the way of the Lord more perfectly.

In the later part of Dr. Whyte’s ministry, one of his pet topics was prayer. Luke 11:1 was a favorite text and was often used in conjunction with another text as the basis for his sermons on this subject. The sermons printed here represent only a few of the many delivered. But each one is deeply instructive, powerful and convicting.  The book is a collection of his sermons.

The overriding theme of the sermons is (Luke 11:1)  "Lord, teach us to Pray" which also happens to be the name of the book.   Prayer is something that is deeply personal and different for each person.  Each of the Sermons that are in the book discusses different aspects of the life of the prayer.  The importance of prayer in the first chapter which is titled The Magnificence of Prayer and how prayer can change a person's life in very meaningful ways.     The book was intellectually stimulating and made me personally have a deeper thought process in regards to prayer and the importance of praying to God.   This book is not something I would read aloud to my boys because it was not meant for teaching children to pray.  It is not  light reading, but sometimes, I like to be challenged and intrigued in learning about such an important topic.   If you are in the mood to open yourself up to a deep and intellectual discussion in regards to prayer itself this book is perfect for you.     This book is the perfect gift for a person whom is studying to preach the words of the Lord, is currently doing so, or is someone with an interest in the deeper side of prayer. 

Read a sample chapter Here

You may order Lord Teach Us to Prayfrom Amazon or directly from Kingsley Press.  Or Win a Copy here at any of these other blogs that each wrote a review or enter to win a copy on this blog!!!  Good Luck.

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Friday, March 2, 2012

I get by with a little help from my friends...

Friendship is like having free therapy all the time.  There are tons of quotes, songs, and books that talk about friendship.   Most people remember who their first friend was and the lucky people are still friends with that person.   I happen to be among those lucky few!  I still talk to my friends I grew up with, we still talk and make time to hang out, and  we were in each other's weddings.  They say a true friend is someone who knows all your secrets and still loves you anyway!   Oh... do they know my secrets.  Here are some of my friends I have loved forever.

As much as my life long friendships mean to me and are such a blessing, it is as equally important to me to make new friends along the way in the life journey.   This year I have been lucky enough to win the friendship lottery.   I have met and made a ton of new friends that I hope I get to have in my life for a long time.   How do 30 something working moms meet new friends???  Through old friends!!  This way works out great because they are pre-screened of course.  You have to figure if a person who you love and adore is friends with them, then the chances are that they will have the same qualities you look for in a friend.  This plan is not fool proof of course, there have been many a gathering of group of girls where there have been a couple of crazies in the mix and it leaves you wondering how your beloved girlfriend could possibly get along with, let alone love that person.    This often happens in wedding parties.  

When you put a group of girls together into forced fun and the only thing they have in common is the bride, tensions mount.  Think of the movie Bridesmaids.  Each person was chosen to be in the wedding for different roles they played in the brides life. Not because they all fit together harmoniously.   At my age, I have been to a lot of bachelorette parties, showers, birthday parties, etc so this is a phenomenon that I watched occur lots of times.  Not a lot of connections happening, and if they do, it is usually for just the weekend.  You make a new best friend and really never hang out again unless you are with the person that is the common connection.      In order to get through these times, I basically just go with the intention of having a blast.  If you are with all your own friends then just pretty much hang out with them and enjoy the opportunity to catch up without a kid on your hip.   What if you are with a bunch of people you do not know?  I pretty much get a long with everyone, the people I do not like is a very short list so I just go in with the expectations that I will have fun with whoever and then go about my life.    It is very rare that people leave these situations with life long friendship.  That is why I feel so lucky that it happened to me.  

I have been friends with Jamie Blackburn since I was in grade school.  We did not go to the same school, but we both took dance lessons and lived on the same block.  Proximity is the magic dust of friendship when you are little.   She saved me when my brother locked me in my closet and went to her house when he was supposed to be babysitting me.  We played Mary Kay in my basement and did little girl stuff.   In Junior High we started going to the same school and really just always stayed friends.  No matter what friend group we each went off into or how different our extra-curricular activites were we just always stayed friends.  She was in my wedding back in the dark ages of 2003 and now it was her turn, I was her bridesmaid.    One of the other bridesmaids is one of my longtime friends and we drove the 5 hours for the bachelorette  party weekend in a cabin on a lake.   I was just excited to have a girls weekend away from my boys, no offense to them, but as you all know, I need girl time.  What happened no one anticipated, well maybe Jamie. 

We all fell in love.  With each other.  Weird huh?  There was no fighting, no drama.  Everyone is so different yet wonderful.  We joked that all the best traits of Jamie were very strong in each one of us.  I must admit all of us are pretty outspoken and a little bit wild.  Talia is the super organized free spirit and a giving soul.  Kirstie looks like a super model, but does not act like it.  She is a mother of two and a wife, who needed a girls weekend as bad as the rest of us.  She is funny and tried to convince us all that she also does wedding hair on the side, she proceeded to give everyone teased rats nests beehives.  Jamie Goff is athletic and sweet. She is hilarious and her wit is matched with her charm. I could tell why Jamie loved her instantly.  Wendy is full of life and usually is the life of the party.  This is balanced with her love of God, her children, and her generosity.  Me well, you all know me, right?     

Jamie???  the girl who brought us all together? I could write tons about her... she is the girl who called to check on me when I was studying for the bar exam.  She knew by the sound of my voice I was heading for a breakdown.  Next thing I know she is at my door with food and a broom.  She cleaned my house and made me dinner.  Jamie helped me pack up my house to move states away because my husband had to leave before me.  She is the girl that you call when you need someone to hold you together and who has been my cheerleader since we were little.  She is also my partner in many a crazy night out that shall not be discussed in a public forum and many fits of tear inducing, belly hurts, can't catch your breath laughter.   The whole package.  I did not mention that she also happens to be fiercely intelligent, hard working, and drop dead gorgeous.  The kind of girl you would hate if you did not love her so much.

Anyway, enough of talking about her... this is my blog.  BACK TO ME.     The weekend at the lake was a blast.  We all went Talia's "cabin" by the lake which was more like a resort spa with gourmet healthy food.  We met her mother and aunt who happen to be identical twins.  We called them "the girls". The girls treated each one of us with such kindness and love it was like each one of us was their own special person.

I think what made the weekend so special is that we all left the lake house feeling a little bit better as a person.  We all learned something new about each other, about Jamie and ourselves.  Most importantly, how to properly take a jello shot. 

Are we still friends?  Absolutely.  Just last weekend we all got together and went shopping and had a sleep over at Kirstie's.  Wendy could not make it, but only because she was in Cancun, otherwise she would not have missed it. 

After this night it will be awhile until we hang out again.  Talia flew off to have adventures in Amsterdam and travel Europe.   Kirstie, Wendy and I will be doing our mom thing, and the two Jamie's are busy doing the most important thing they have ever done..they are both busy growing their first children.

Speaking of Wendy, this June I moved to the town where she has lived for 8 years.   I had met some of her friends at her house and always thought they were very nice and fun.  Lucky for me she already did the pre-screening.   Wendy had always talked about a group of girls who got together every month and went to each other's houses to cook dinner and exchange recipes.  It sounded like so much fun, and frankly I was a bit jealous.  While I am still friends with all the women pictured above, none of us live in the same town so organizing a monthly event would be hard.   They invited a bunch of other women to join and I was able to get an invite.  As it turns out, we have even had a Halloween party and a Christmas Party where the husbands all came and it got crazy.  Fun crazy, not creepy OMG what in the world crazy.   Here are few pictures of them when I hosted cook club.  You can't really see how gorgeous they all are, but I have a feeling we may be seeing more of these ladies.

One of the things I love about the Byron Cook Club girls is that we are all in the same stages in our life.  Everyone is happily married with young kids.  We all work really hard and enjoy life. Why not do it with other people.   I cannot pick out a favorite because I love them all so much.  There are a few that I have gotten to know a little better than the others, but there is not one that I can say I do not enjoy their company.  How fun is that?

There is more.  My friend Brianna. She is an attorney I work with and we have become good friends.  No one else has met her. She is just mine and I am just hers.  We are each other's "person".  You know the person you get to tell all your secrets to because they do not know anyone who would even care.  The person I eat lunch with everyday, go for walks with, and takes me to Target.  She knows what I am going to do every weekend and I know what she is doing.  I know all about her sisters, brother, husband and friends.  She knows all about mine. Even though we have never met them.   Brianna lets me talk about the boys and listens to all my kid stories.  We talk about her future children and pretty much everything. 

You know that husband of mine that I always talk about?  One of the best things about him is that he came with a bunch people included.  Before he was my crush, boyfriend, fiance, and then husband.  He was my friend Talarie's older brother!  Yep, I totally married my friend's brother.  He is the oldest of five and I often tell him I married him for his sisters.  Talarie and Kami, his sisters have ended up to be two of my very dear friends.  We even vacation together.   Then his brother's wife Stacey is awesome and his baby sister Mackenna, when we all get together is kind of obnoxious.  Loud and obnoxious.  Not much better.  Here are the sisters/friends.

Guess who is best friends with Talarie,  My Kelly!  It really makes my life easier that pretty much everyone of my friends is friends with each other.  Kelly is the person who never misses your kid's birthday party, always brings them a little something when she sees them, who is the first person to follow your blog :)  I have been friends with Kelly since we were little.  I have witnessed her be the rock for the people I love and she has been a rock for me.She is one of the best people I know.  Tonight we are going to meet her new boyfriend.  I have a good feeling about this one.   Here she is in the middle.  Pretty girls :)

How could I have a post about friendship and not write just a little something about Cindy. 
Graduation from University of Iowa.   Cindy was there.

Graduation from Law School.  Cindy was there.   Birth of my children, wedding, she was there.....  Since she puked on me the summer between our 7th and 8th grade years she has been a constant.  We have never gotten in a fight and would and could tell each other anything.  Not sure there is anything more I need to say because I am already getting a little bit teary.  She is having a daughter in April and I was not even jealous.  Just happy for her.  That is how much I love her.

Here are a couple of other amazing women who have been there for me whenever I needed them ... Good Lord I am a lucky person.
Melissa and Sharlene after all the times you both have picked me up and dusted me off you need to mentioned.  I could write a book about you all.  Who knows, I might. 
New friends, old friends each has their own special place in my heart.  Even friends that somehow I do not talk to anymore even though there is no reason besides time and distance.  Those friends still have a place in my heart.   I have made friends that I lost touch with that I never in a million years thought would not know my children or my husband.  But I have to figure they had their purpose and it was served.  We may not know each other anymore but I have to think that by knowing them I am a better person and for that I say thank you. 

To all my friends new, old, and lost.  Thank you for the laughs, support, therapy, clothes, advice, tutorials, gifts, and for loving me because of my crazy and not in spite of it.  Thank you for letting me be brave enough to reach for my dreams and picking me up when I fall.  Thanks for holding back my hair, wiping my tears and loving my children.  

If you are reading this and are not mentioned by name or not in a picture please do not think I do not value you or love you.  It may be because there are no words that could describe how much you mean to me or I do not have a good picture of us.  But know that I love you and as the Golden Girls theme song goes... Thank you for being my friend.