Monday, January 17, 2011


being home has allowed me to feel as though living simply is getting easier in many ways.  i have enjoyed all that comes with staying home!  nash fills my days with joy in ways i never imagined.  being his mama is such an undeserved honor.  i never knew the depth of love that would come in being his mom.  i am ever so grateful!  here is a glimpse of the simplicity we've been enjoying lately...  enjoy!

nash and daddy's 1st fort

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

three years today

it was a moment unlike any i had experienced before.

i was to meet this man i had been communicating with face to face for the very first time.  our communication has begun only about a week or so beforehand and now he was driving to laramie so we could meet. 

the conversations had been thrilling.  i had enjoyed every piece of our moments from the very beginnings of our eharmony communications to the phone calls that had begun.  face to face simply seemed like so much more. 

would we find one another attractive, would our time together go well, would this work?!  it was all hanging on his arrival.  i found myself questioning the invitation i had offered.  was i crazy to open my home to someone i had not yet met?  was he who he really said he was? 

we were to go to the snowies for a day of snowshoeing.  i arranged a pair to borrow from a friend so i could introduce him to someone before we left town.  it was all for safety you see -- i did not want to find myself lost in the mountains with someone i barely knew...i needed a backup plan if you will. 

he arrived and i did the usual head to toe glance to see if i found myself attracted to him.  he was cute,  not exactly what i had imagined, but cute nonetheless (since then i've decided he is not only cute, but totally handsome! killer eyes you see!).  we loaded the car and headed to get the other pair of shoes.

once the shoes had been retreived we were on our way up the mountain.  conversation was small at first, but once we got used to one another it flowed freely and openly.  i found myself feeling very vulnerable while we were out and about.  he shared so much of himself with me that it scared me deeply.  i wasn't sure i was in for all of it.  thankfully we were out in the middle of the forest and i had no where to run. 

i'm a runner you see.  i hate confrontation and choose to run from the situation rather than fight through it.  as i learned more about him i began to see such a beautiful image of grace.  a grace unlike i had ever experienced before.  he had received grace in such a tender way and chose to be the receiver.  this had made him such a beautiful man.  a changed man.  a growing man.  a man desiring so much more for his life. 

a day of snowshoeing changed my life forever.  for the better.  i wish i daily embrace it as so, but i find myself forgetting the beauty that came that day.  he was a gift to me.  God was answering so many prayers.  i had met the man he had been setting aside for me.  he was not for the next girl to cross his path, but for me.  this was a gift unlike any i had ever received. 

i was blessed january 12, 2008 to meet the man of my dreams.  the man who would learn to love me as me and who would see the ugliness inside my life to the very depths.  he has chosen to walk beside me daily, not because i make it easy, but because he is an image of grace.  he is lovely in every way.  he desires me.  he chooses gentleness and mercy.  he has made a commitment and has remained faithful.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

i wish i have been as easy to be next to.  eric has faithfully stood next to me even when i have chosen to act out of selfishness and a deeply rooted critical nature.  he hurts so deeply sometimes because i continue living out of a critical nature.  this is something i wish would change instantly.  it hasn't changed in the three years i've been blessed to be next to him.  i need prayers....this 'bitter root,' has to go!  i cannot continue to hurt my best friend because i live in a place of judgement and criticism.  this is not who i desire to be nor who my Father in Heaven desires me to be. 

i need prayer.  please join me as i desire to see God move mightily in my life.  my help comes from the Lord, the make of heaven and earth.  i believe this to the FULL.  i also believe i need the support of my brothers and sisters.  hold me accountable.  ask me how i'm doing.  ask my incredible husband how he is. 

admitting my failures hurts.  it hurts deeper than words can express.  i don't write this empty heartedly; i write this because there's hurt.  my sin is causing the man i love to hurt.  this is not okay.  it will never be okay!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

3 years ago today, my life changed.  i desire today to be a new day.  a day in which baggage begins to lessen and bondage no longer holds me captive.  a day in which i can look the man i love in the eyes and say 'i love you' to the very depth of my being.

 i praise God for the 3 years i've had and look forward to those He will continue to give us. 

eric cooley, i praise my Jesus for you.  thank you for supporting your family to the full and loving me even when i'm incredibly unloveable!  you are a precious precious gift! 

all my love...

Monday, January 10, 2011

You Capture; Top 10 of 2010

This year I took photo after photo after photo.  Choosing a top 10 was incredibly hard.  I am a photographer of people and have such a passion for the emotion that's captured.  Here's a small glimpse into 10 of my very favorite photos from 2010.  They are in no particular order.

Nash at 9 months sitting pool side in Coca, Ecuador.

Nash and daddy riding the ATV at Aunt Michelle's

Ellie and Patty -- a dear friend and her daughter from a photo session

Baby Aviah

There aren't enough words for this moment -- I LOVE these two and this shot captured them FULLY!

Aunt Sarah lovin' Nash

This is probably my #1 from the year -- I simply love the expression caught right after nap time!  My how he's grown in the past two months!

Nash experiencing bubbles for the first time

My gnome

This sweet boy is such a gift! 
2010 brought much growth to my photography skills.  I am currently the proud business license holder of SCPhotography.  I am averaging about 2 sessions each month.  In November, I began shooting manually only. This has been a big challenge as I'm still teaching myself all about lighting, aperature, f-stops, etc. etc.

I continue to draw such a passion from taking photos though -- so I will continue this path and keep learning as I go.  Be looking for doorways in the next YOU CAPTURE challenge.  I'm excited to seek some out this week!

here's to another year...

I can hardly believe that it's almost the middle of January 2011 already.  Time goes so quickly!  We had a wonderful ending to our year.  Spending time with family and friends brought many moments to remember and much joy to my heart.  I have continued learning and growing daily through parenting my incredible son, trying to be the wife I desire to be and growing as a daughter of the King.  So often I wish I had the words to express what a disaster I make of it sometimes and how incredible the growth in the midst is.  Eloquent speech is not mine, so there aren't too many words; simply a lot of feelings that cycle nonstop through my  mind.  Life is a journey and thank goodness for that!  I daily reflect on how incredibly blessed I am and stand in awe of how much more I'm given than I ever deserve. 

Nash is a bright eyed, often bushy tailed 14 month old and loves every aspect of his life (mostly).  He is daily growing like a weed and soaking all he can in from what's around him.  His newest love is to growl like a tiger and play chase with mama or daddy.  He was super blessed over Christmas by many and had a great time loving on his big brother Alac while he was in town visiting.  He started walking on Christmas Eve.  It was crazy to reflect where Nash was a year ago at Christmas time and to see him dive in fully for operation chaos with all of his cousins.  He has grown SO much this past year!  We are so grateful for his life and look forward to watching him continue to learn and develop!

This  year we got together with the Cooley clan for family Christmas.  Part of getting together means getting everyone in for a family picture.  There were many attempts and thankfully a few pictures that were worth keeping.  We were thankful to get everyone together for another holiday!  It's such a blessing when all can gather together and truly see all that they have to be thankful for!

The cousin shot was a bit more difficult than getting everyone.  We have some crack ups in the crowd, but thankfully we achieved what was desired...another memory!

The magical part of Christmas always has me feeling as though I live in a fairy land and that there is so much more beyond beautiful place settings and decor.  Christmas carries so many significant meanings in my heart.  I love that it becomes more meaningful for many through fanciful tables, ornaments and meals.  It allows my heart to truly embrace the FULL meaning of Christmas.  Christ loves us so completely that we get these moments of pure bliss...the moments that find you almost holding your breath because you can hardly believe it is your dining area that's been transformed for queens and kings.  Christmas is such a beautiful time!  I praise God that we get to be in remembrance of His birth during this season. 

Nash received the original 1972 Fisher Price Airport for his Christmas gift this year.  Eric and I love shopping flea markets and in November we came across this plane set in mint condition.  We just had to offer this to Nash this year!  He loves it and gets better at navigating his way with all of the pieces daily.  It was a sweet find because his Hallmark ornament this year was the FP airplane.  We couldn't have asked for a better find!

Along with his airport he also received many other gifts.  His dino tent was a huge hit.  He loves to climb inside with his blanket and books.  We somedays find ourselves living within the walls of his tent. 

Having Alac home for Christmas is always good.  We had a great visit and look forward to his next!  We continue to be so thankful for so much!  May your 2011 be filled with RICH blessing in abundance!