Tuesday, September 24, 2013


The bad news: I used to be really good about blogging just about everything we (Eva) did and I've become horrible about it. You would think we don't anything anymore.

The good news: We still do tons! I just try not to bombard Eva & Jason with photos now that I am busy taking photos of actual clients.

In the interest of Eva's adoring fans everywhere (read: Grandma Peggy & Grandpa Bryan) I will really make an effort to keep the blog up, but no promises as the whole being present in the moment thing really does need to happen more for this mama.

So, for the update: we had an absolutely wonderful weekend. Saturday we took an epic family nap- we're talking me, Jason, Eva, Tyson and Jax all in the bed- for almost 4 hours. Then we dropped Eva off with Baba while Jason and I saw the new movie Prisoners. It was insane, the movie had me on the edge of my seat and totally messed with my head, which makes for the best kind of drama movies. Then we headed over to Buffalo Wild Wings to meet up with Baba and Eva for UFC 165: Jones vs. Gustafsson. The fight was amazing and Eva was a total doll all the way until midnight when we finally left. Anoka county parenting alert: My kid stays up until midnight to watch grown men bloody each other up and I don't even care!!!


Sunday it was church for me and Sunday school for Eva (does that make up for the UFC fight?) in the morning and then we picked up her best friend Sadie and headed to the gym. I took both girls swimming and finally had to drag them out when we all started to turn into prunes. I got the girls some ice cream at a local place right in Anoka and then we took Sadie home. Dropping Sadie off turned into almost another hour of them playing. You'd think they don't see each other enough... but they do, they see each other every day :)

Jason and I finished the night with the Dexter series finale. It has been one of our favorite shows over the last 8 years and while I was soooo very sad to see it end (and the way it ended) I'm happy for the time it gave Jason and I to unwind and just be with each other other the years. I'll miss you Dexter Morgan- you won't be forgotten!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Be Present

I am the first to admit that I am a total iPhone junkie. I have it on me all the time; it's my calendar, my alarm clock, my camera, my morning news paper, my social media device, it's... well, it's too much. I need to stop. The week that I spent up north over the 4th of July where I left my phone at home and totally unplugged was one of the best weeks ever. And while the whole not being at work- perfect weather- swimming and sunshine helped, I truly believe the no phone to distract me from being present was the biggest part.

So, I got this. It's a Be Present box. A handcrafted, beautiful way for my to literally put the damn phone down and live, because being on my phone isn't living. Living is being with Eva and playing hide-and-seek. Living is listening to Jason talk about his day. Living is reading a good book. Living is cooking and cleaning. Living is going on a walk. Living is laughing out loud in real life, not just texting "lol."

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough troubles of its own. - Matthew 6:24


Monday, September 16, 2013

Mid-Semptember, Where Did You Come From?!

I've been so bad about blogging lately; we've just had so much going on I don't even know where to start... I'll give an update on anything I can think of off the top of my head.

1. First and foremost in the Parks household is that Eva is loving kindergarten. Her teacher is just wonderful, she has already made new friends and been invited to a classmates' birthday party and she seems to be learning new things already. I hadn't planned on her coming home with any new knowledge this year in the year, but I was wrong.  Of the 41 sight words she is expected to know by the end of the school year, in order to be reading at grade level, she already knows 19. She also loves her nightly "homework." I don't tell her that it's not real homework, but rather addition and subtraction sheets I printed out and have her do. Shhh... don't tell her lol

2. Eva has moved up to the next level of gymnastics at Twin City Twisters. She is now in the highest level she can be for her age outside of the competition team and she is loving the move to the "big gym" for her classes. In her class are two friends from her Montessori school as well as her bff Sadie. I pick both girls up from school and get them to class on Tuesdays and you would think it's the greatest thing since sliced bread with how excited they are.
Disclaimer: Jen, I made sure she didn't have her strap behind her arm while we were driving-
this was stopped at a light when I turned around to snap a photo! :)

3. She swims! Swimming lessons at Foss have started back up for the fall and Eva is a swimming fool. In addition to weekly lessons, we try to spend at least an hour or two at the gym swimming in the pool every Sunday. She can swim the length of the pool- in water over her head- back and forth without stopping or needing my help. She is such a little fishy and it makes me so proud!

4. While I totally dropped the ball on my monthly "Eva's Book Review" series, we still read all the time.  Eva got her very own library card and I am happy to report that her favorite book right now is one I loved myself as a child, Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel.  Is is the story of how the Chinese came to give their children short, simple names. It may not be the most politically correct book anymore, but it sure if a lot of fun to read out loud.


5. Labor Day weekend we went to the Minnesota State Fair with Baba and Maria like we do every year. It was epic- perfect weather, great food, the bebes were wonderfully behaved and we even got to meet Senator Amy Klobuchar! Eva has now met both Senators at the great Minnesota get-together, how awesome is that? I tried not to bug everyone with my big girl camera all day but I did blog some photos (and my monthly Letter to Our Daughters) on my business page. Head on over to take a look- Rebeccah Parks Photography 

Whew... I think those are all of my updates for now. Jason and I celebrate our 3rd wedding anniversary this week, my dearest friend Jen is expecting her first baby any day now, Sunday School started back up for the fall and Eva begins Girl Scouts next month.
We are so very, very, very, very blessed #lifeisgood


Thursday, September 12, 2013

My Mom

I work for an awesome employer with a really kick ass wellness program. We have wellness "passports" that we fill out during the year and then turn them in for everything from cash to extra vacation days. Every month there is a wellness speaker and this month it was based on the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and Circles of Support.  The speaker asked each of us to pick a person in our life that filled one of 4 key roles. I honestly didn't go into it even thinking about my mom; I was sort of assuming my answers would be Jason or friends or something, but as the speaker read the description of each category, I found myself putting "mom" one after another.
Warrior: This person will fight for you to the end. They believe in your ability to do anything and everything you set your mind to and are the first to tell the world how amazing you are. The will fiercly protect you from anything that life might throw your way.
Nuturer: This person loves you unconditionally and tells you that often. They encourage your dreams and give you reassurance when you doubt yourself.  They are gentle and kind in all the ways you need them to be.
Spiritual Guide: This person helps renew your faith and is there in times of spiritual turmoil. They help you to see the greater message in things and to look beyond yourself.
Emotional Support: When you have had the worst day possible, and all you want to do is go home and cry, this is the person you want to cry to. When everyone else is either annoying you or annoyed by you, this person is your rock.
As you can see from my notes below, I put my mom for #1-3 and Jason for #4.
Jason pokes fun at me about being so close with my mom. "Oh hey, have you talked to your mom yet today? No, okay... well you will." Sometimes it annoyes me, I feel like he's calling me a baby or a mama's girl or needy. But, the more I think about it, the more I don't mind. I am very close with my mom- and that's okay. She isn't just my mom, she is my best friend, and I know people who would give anything in the world for just one more moment with their mothers. One more hug, one more piece of advice, one more "I love you"... so from this day on I vow to never be ashamed to love and need my mom and much as I do.  I can only hope that Eva grows to love and respect me as much as I love and respect my mom and if life and loss has taught me anything, it's to never be too proud to tell people how much you cherish them.
I love you mom, always have, always will.  You are my warrior, nuturer and spiritual guide. All that I am, I owe to you.  
As is the mother, so is her daughter. ~Ezekiel 16:4

Thursday, September 5, 2013


The big day finally arrived! Eva started kindergarten yesterday. I took the morning off from work so that I could bring her to school myself (versus going to the morning care program she'll normally attend) and by the time she saw other kids in her class arriving she not only wasn't sad to see me leave, she wanted me to leave. Her eyes all but said, "Mom, I got this- now go!" LOL

I didn't cry when I dropped her off like I thought I would, but it snuck up on me when I wasn't expecting it. When I went back in the afternoon to pick her up and she came walking out with all the other kids- looking so grown up and happy- I just lost it. Thank goodness is was nice and busy or I think more people would have noticed the tears.

All in all it was wonderful. She was so excited to go back today,and I just know that we made the righ choice for her. God is good, when? All the time!

Eva & Mrs Grant :)