“You’ll miss the best things if you keep your eyes shut.” – Dr. Seuss

Well, I am back from Florida feeling very refreshed. I feel like I needed that spontaneous mini-vacation. My life feels like a whirlwind right now. I am honestly not nearly as busy as some people, but just mentally bogged down. Not only are Comprehensive Exams peering around the corner, but for even my regular classes I feel like all I do some days is read and study and write – repeat! It is easy to feel mentally drained when I am not only trying to learn another language and crossing my fingers that the resulting grade won’t endanger my Scholarship…. and another thing entirely to study alongside that new language the theoretical pedagogical principles of composition, as well as the complex intricacies of the 15th and 16th century English culture which include assigned texts that are written in Middle English.

Try reading 100 pages of this over and over and see how your brain copes:

Forrþrihht anan se time comm
þatt ure Drihhtin wollde
ben borenn i þiss middellærd
forr all mannkinne nede
he chæs himm sone kinnessmenn
all swillke summ he wollde
& whær he wollde borenn ben
he chæs all att hiss wille.

Yeah, I thought so. 🙂

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Anyway! Needless to say my time in Florida was refreshing… There were many great talks, funny shows, scrap booking, BABIES, yummy foods, new friends, friends that feel like family, coffee – coffee – coffee, pumpkin patches in 80 degree weather, extra time with Jesus and more… It was wonderful. 🙂

Highlight of the entire trip was Judah saying my name! On the last day before I flew out, I went into his room to get him up from his morning nap and he began hopping up and down and saying my name over and over…  music to my ears! 🙂

I didn’t take nearly as many pictures as I had planned on taking, but here were some great ones from my trip…
He seemed SO BIG since the last time I saw him just a few months ago!

He looks so old in this one. 🙂

Bath Time with Aunt Tasha!
I love how the camera captured the flying water droplets!

He loves chewing on things. haha
This one came out a tad blurry, but it was too cute to pass up. 🙂

Not the best picture of me… no make up and all that jazz… but I had to share one of Judah and I together.

Beautiful Kimmie…. Holding her 12 month old and incubating her 18 week old.

Okay, I LOVE this picture. Judah wasn’t sure what to make of the Pumpkin Patch at first, so he just kind of stared at it for a minute. Haha

He does this adorable thing were he tucks his bottom lip under his top one. 🙂

This is one of my favorite pictures!! He found this little waist-high hay bale covered in tiny Pumpkins and loved it! 😀

With his Daddy Ryan… 🙂

Those eyes!!

Now he is having fun! 😀

He has such an intense look on his face! I love it!

Family Photo Time….  even though Ryan is looking at Judah instead of the camera, this one was my favorite because Judah is making the sweetest face….

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These really are priceless moments you can’t afford to miss out on.


A to Z

Got this from a blog I read… it seemed like a fun thing to do at 2am! haha
You should put this on your blog/Facebook too! If you do, comment your blog here, or tag me in your Facebook post!

A. Age: 28
B. Bed size: King. We can still snuggle in the middle, but if someone needs/wants the space it is available. Love it.
C. Chore that you hate: Folding laundry and Cleaning the Bathroom
D. Dogs: My favorites are Huskies and Corgis. We don’t have any right now because I don’t want that high maintenance of an animal. 🙂
E. Essential start to your day: Right now if it fits the budget: A Grande Nonfat, with Whip, No Sprinkles Pumpkin Spice Latte. Every other time of the year: Delicious brewed coffee with 1 Splenda and Hazelnut creamer. 🙂
F. Favorite color: Pretty much any shade of green you can imagine! I love green! I am also loving Teal lately, as well as Coral. 🙂
G. Gold or Silver: Neither. White Gold?
H. Height: 5’7″
I. Instruments you play: None.
J. Job title: Personal Eyewear Consultant for Lenscrafters, Student, Wife, Homemaker….
K. Kids: None… yet…. but I seriously can’t wait for when it’s my turn! 🙂
L. Live: Kansas City!
M. Mother’s name: Debi
N. Nicknames: “Tash” by my good friends, “Tashie” by my best friends, “Darlin” and “Beeb” (inside joke) by Chad…. I think that’s it?
O. Overnight hospital stays: Besides when I was a kid, I have only had one overnight hospital stay so far and that was this past April 2011.
P. Pet peeves: Bad listeners, stuck-up people and the feeling of being “picked on”
Q. Quote from a movie: “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.”
      AND: “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.” – Dumbledore (Harry Potter movies)

R. Right or left handed: right
S. Siblings: Brothers: Shaun (30) and Matt (26)
T. Truth or Dare:  Truth.
U. Ultimate Vacation: I’d love to visit Europe someday…. domestically, I would love to see Seattle….
V. Vegetable you hate: Mushrooms, Cauliflower and Sprouts
W. What makes you run late: Chad. lol 🙂
X. X-Rays you’ve had: Gosh…. Right Quad muscle, back several times, all my teeth and jaws, my abdomen (both regular and CT), my neck, my right foot….
Y. Yummy food that you make: Desserts of pretty much any sort…. and Enchiladas!
Z. Zoo animal: White Tigers

* * *

Side Note:

I get to see this sweet face starting Monday in Florida! 😀

Kansas City Art Fair – 2011

Last weekend Chad and I went to the Kansas City Art Fair down at the Plaza. It was an absolutely gorgeous day! Chad braved the crowds for me because he is a loving Hubby. He hates crowds! haha

As you can see, it was crowded!

As we were walking through the fair, certain displays caught my eye more than others. I am drawn to a lot of different types of art media, so there is a quite a range between the artists styles and expression. I wanted to document in this blog post the artists I found to be the more appealing, the most interesting, and the most talented…. in my opinion. 🙂

j i m  c.  b r o w n

This artist created his work in a way I have never even heard of! So unique and so beautiful!

He takes individual photos of trees, overlaps those photos together and then prints them directly onto plaster! The plaster absorbs the ink and it gives the trees a blurry haunted look. If I had $2,000  to spend on art work, I would have bought one of his in a second!

Example of his work:

I usually go to Art Fair to get inspired and see if I can mimic some of the things I find. However, I would have no clue where to start with printing multiple photos onto plaster, nor the equipment to make it happen. Bravo to jim c. brown for getting my vote for the most uniquely crafted works of art! 🙂

Steven Graber

This next artist does a lot of portraits and landscapes with a mixed media, including: acrylic, water color and charcoal. I just enjoyed looking at the soft curves and warm tones of his work.


He gets my vote for the softest and warmest art work at the Art Fair. 🙂

John Charbonneau

This artist used photography and art medias to make a social or political statement using surrealism. He takes human forms in human settings and gives them the heads of animals (usually birds)! Crazy! So neat and interesting to look at. They were fun to try and interpret the meaning behind his pieces… 🙂


He gets my vote for best use of surrealism, as well as best underlying statements in his work. 🙂

Xavier Nunez – Photographer

This artist blew my mind! He did absolutely no photo editing to any of his photos. Instead, he manipulated the color in them using various colored lights while leaving the exposure open! Awesome! In one of his photos, you could see a faint shadow of his arm holding up a light where he had accidentally captured himself in the work! 😀

Most of his work seems to center around urban setting, alleys and other various landscapes.


He wins my vote for best talent with manipulating light and color in a photo, without the use of editing software. (in a nutshell – haha)

Mr. Hooper

This artist, known as Mr. Hooper, uses mixed media of various sorts to create expressive pop/modern art. At the fair, most of his art had been created on pieces of smooth wood, rather than canvas. He has a very cartoon-ish style, and is also making various social or political statements in his pieces. A lot of the people perusing his display at the Art Fair said his art could be hung anywhere from an office, to a living room, to a little kids bedroom! 🙂


He wins my vote for best imaginative expression in art.

David Mayhew – Photographer

This artist captures the sky and the weather in a way that is breathtaking! He uses photo editing software, but places himself in situations that most weak-kneed people wouldn’t just to take the perfect photograph. His work is colorful and large and powerful. The following is the only image I could find online that was larger than a thumbnail, but be sure to check out his website where some amazing pictures of lightning, tornadoes, powerful weather and Chicago are displayed!


He wins my vote for having the courage of a storm chaser to beautifully capture the most powerful forces in nature.


Chad enjoyed a lot of the art we saw, but there were two artists especially that I wouldn’t normally be drawn to that he really liked. (They are extremely talented, I just wouldn’t normally gravitate to this style.)

However, they get honorable mention because of how much he likes what they created. 🙂

Aaron Foster

This artists created a lot of metal work sculptures out of antiques and classic license plates. His style was very rugged and “All-American.” He was very talented, and quite young considering his work was selling fast! (and for $1k+ a piece!) One lady offered him $500 CASH for one of his works, but he turned her down. He didn’t need to bargain. His work was selling for full price! 🙂


He wins Chad and I’s vote for the most metal-work art sold at the Fair! 😀

Dana Forrester

This artist also had a very All-American style. She worked mostly with watercolor to draw very life-like replicas of classic cars. She took custom orders too! Very detailed. Very cool. Perfect for any man cave. 🙂

She does not have her own website, but if you Google her name she comes up everywhere. 🙂


She wins Chad and I’s vote for the most detailed and accurate painting done with watercolor! 🙂