God Moves


God Moves

I’ve lived in Omaha for almost a year now, and I am just getting to this post. I’ve been wanting to write it because it is such a great testimony to what God has done for me and my family.

Me and the kids usually came to Omaha for a month or sometimes the whole summer when we lived in San Antonio.  It was a great way for us to beat the heat.  I am not much for hot days with no breaks for months.  Omaha was my saving grace from a few things.

It is where old friends and parents live. When hot days existed it wouldn’t be long till it cooled off again.  Loneliness wasn’t a factor when coming back ‘home’.  I enjoyed the cool mornings sitting on the deck with my mom with hot coffee.  Chatting it up and planning where we were going to go eat that day.

The long 2 day drive by myself with 3 little ones ,and one whiny chihuahua was worth it to find the comfort I needed.  It was also one reason it took me a long time to drive back home. Driving with 3 kids solo, is not something I enjoyed, it was exhausting.

God Moves

Heading by to Texas

Last summer was the turning point for my family. We stayed the whole summer.  Leaving just in time to make it for school to start. While we were here, the house next door to my parents was for sale.  Every day, mostly many times a day, my daughter, Lydia would say “Let’s buy that house!” Of course I had to constantly remind her that it wasn’t going to happen. For a couple reasons, it was a tad out of our price range and daddy would never agree.  This conversation went on many times during the summer. It actually went as far as calling my husband, Chris telling him my parents bought us the house next door. He didn’t fall for it.

The day came to pack and head out.  Finally 2 days later we were back home!  Shortly, after returning home, I had a bad attitude.  Instead of being grateful for what I had, I focused on the wrong things. Our house was old and needed some work.  I had about all the ‘broken things’ I could handle. I prayed many times asking Him to help me in some way.  It wasn’t long after that, that I got bolder in my prayers. I knew to always thank God for what I had, and I did that along with asking Him to move us to Omaha.

It was the beginning of September, my mom called me and told me that the house next door went off the market.  I was a bit sad.  I knew that there was no way we could buy a house in the state our finances were in.  After I got sick the first time (2012), it nearly bankrupted us, so saying money was tight was an over statement.

Then my mom went on to tell me that my dad walked over to ask the owner if he had considered renting.  Tim had mentioned that he and his wife were actually in the process of dealing with applications. I am not sure, but I think I remember my mom telling me this was it, and try and get Chris on board with moving.

The problem, they wanted renters in by Oct 1st.  It was already the end of the first week of September at this point.  Ignoring the little voice in my head saying “whatever, you can never get him to agree”, “you can’t afford this”, “you’re dreaming” “it is too good to be true and you don’t deserve this”.  I ran to the office and told Chris about the house up for rent and asked his thoughts.  Of course, there wasn’t much positive coming out of his mouth, except for “yeah ok”, and that was sarcastic.

I am not really sure what happened for a few days, but I ended up telling a dear friend of mine about selling the house.  She told me her husband had just recently started flipping homes. She was going to talk to him.  I got excited! I ended up then going a bit further. I talked to a realtor friend of mine.

The thing with our house was, it was in a prime location on almost an acre!  It was in an older neighborhood, and hidden in the trees.  It super close to everything.  Six Flags was merely a mile away! Awesome shopping to places like Nordstroms, Neimen Marcus, Tiffany’s and other amazing places I barely went to.  Well, I did go into Neimen Marcus once to just breath in the riches, when my 2 year old, Lydia had a complete meltdown in the store.  I was asked to get her to calm down or leave.  With my tail between my legs, we walked out and went to Walmart.

The location was our saving grace.

A few days passed, and my good friend phoned me and said her husband and business partner were coming over to look at the house. At this point, I am not even sure I told Chris all of this stuff. I mean, I barely believed it had gone this far.  From that moment, I knew we were meant to be in Omaha. I knew God was moving.

I believe a couple days more passed and they made another visit, and an offer! We sold our house in 3 days, without it going on the market. Chris did know at this point, we were moving. He had mixed feelings, but I was over the moon.

It was a cash buyer, so we closed in 3 weeks!

The buyers still had a few days to cancel the sale, so I went in my room many times a day praying, and claiming that house was ours. Then we were given 3 days I believe to pack and move. Three days! Who does this in 3 days?  Luckily, I had already begun packing some things, so it wasn’t as bad as it could have been, but still bad. We had also sold a few things, so that helped with money, and not hauling everything up here.

I had to try and find a home for one of my dogs, which was almost more than I could handle. Omaha is a bit different here than in San Antonio.  They have some pretty strict animal police. In Omaha, you can only have 3 dogs in a household.  I had 4.  So, who would I chose to stay behind.  A friend mentioned, it was like Sophie’s Choice.  Boy was it! How can you do that?  I had sought out friends to help.  Momma was the pick to stay behind because she hated collars, leashes, and would never even go for walks. So how in the world was I suppose to get her to go potty on the long drive?  I prayed hard for this as well. I decided to walk by faith and bring her. I knew God would help, and boy did He ever. She did so awesome! She was very stressed out, but she handled it so well.

So, how do I get by with that stupid Omaha rule?  My parents offer to take in one of my dogs.  We took Cleo and Momma over to her house, and Cleo was the one who got along better with her other dog.  So, Cleo stays with my parents, and I get to see her everyday!

What could go wrong when you are moving out of state?  Oh man, were we hit with some doozies.

We hadn’t sold our Rainbow Playground yet.  We had many people look at it, a buyer fell through, and everyone wants everything for nothing. It was only a few months old worth a lot. I prayed that we would get a certain amount out of it, two days before we move, it sold with the offer we asked!

Rainbow Playground

In the process of moving, we lost one of my cats, Rupee.  He was not an outside cat, and only went out when I was on the porch with him. He did not like being out without anyone.  I was surprised to find that he got out when we were moving the big furniture.  I looked for him for a long time, but could never find him. It was heartbreaking for me! I’m really hoping he found a great home.

The night before we are suppose to leave, Dane gets a tummy bug. He’s up all night doing the two P’s (pukin’ and poopin’) It was awful for him.  Needless to say none of us got much sleep.

As Chris is loading up the finishing things on the truck (we have to be out that morning), I run to get coffee and a few errands. As I return home, my van breaks down! We have to be out of the house that day, and my van breaks down. At this point I was chuggin’ my coffee and laughing.  I was laughing at all the crap the devil was trying to throw at us. He was not stealing my joy or God’s plans.  So, after talking to a mechanic and reading forums on what it could be, it looked like a major repair with days before we could get it back.  What do you do?  Head to Carmax and buy a new van.

Finally, making it to our new home, Omaha.

Chris getting a run down on how to drive the Behemoth

Chris getting a run down on how to drive the Behemoth

Cleo and Momma in kennels under Annabelle.

Cleo and Momma in kennels under Annabelle.

After all that was said and done, no one can convince me there isn’t a God.  It doesn’t happen often that a house, that needs work, sells in 3 days without it going on the market. Which, by the way, was the amount of time I asked God to find us an owner, and the price we needed to cover costs.





One Year Already?!?

As a parent, you are aware of how slow the nights go, but how fast the years go.

It’s pretty unfair if you ask me.

I have to say, I LOVE repeat clients!  So, you can guess how eager I was to shoot Alessio’s milestone…his 1 year photos!

Some of you may have remember my first session with the Terraza’s Family.  It was Candice’s maternity shoot.


Then came Alessio




It brings us to now…1 year later






As always, it was an honor to work with your family, Candice!

365Project Day 66 and 67 ~ Beauty and the Beast

I think I have just come to the realization that the weekends are just gonna have to be a combo post.

 Our weekends are usually full so editing photos and posting seems to be too much to do…otherwise it would be done.

Here is my beauty.  This is her playful ‘I’m gonna act like I don’t want my photo done, but I really do.”


AV, f5.6 1/125 ISO 500 28-135mm @ 85mm

This is my Beast.  Not that he is beastlike in appearance, but he is beastlike in his physical ability.

Chris is racing the University Oaks Crit.

Here he is (the 3rd one) in the breakaway from the pack.  He ended up getting 2nd place.


TV mode, f5.6 1/2500 ISO 400 28-135mm @ 135mm

365Project Day 14 ~ Spring is here…

Well, in all reality I am in South Texas, so Spring only shows up for like a week.  Since we have hit a few 90 degree temps, I’m gonna say Summer.  It’s tricky because the weather bounces from the 80’s-90’s now, so maybe it is Spring.  I dunno…it’s getting warmer which means the ungodly heat is coming soon.  Ugh, I need a summer home in Alaska!

When we moved in this house, this bush was already planted.  I remember finding out what kind of plant it was awhile ago, but now I have no clue.  I even tried to google purple flower bush in Texas, but I didn’t see it in the pictures.  Maybe I should try Bing, they have more photos right?  Of course, any kind of research I do, is never detailed.  I give myself a good 5 mins and if I don’t find what I am looking for I get bored and move on.  Or, recently I am interrupted and then lose interest.   Either way, I never found it.  If you know it give me a comment and let me know.

Butterflies love this bush!  One of the reasons I love it so much.  We almost lost it a couple of summers ago when we had that awful drought, which I think is still in place.  Luckily it came back last Fall (which is kind of our Spring).  Just within the last week it has started to bloom.  One of these mornings I will get a photo of a  butterfly on it, but that requires stalking, and I don’t get to do that right now.  Let’s face it, it takes me a good couple of hours just to get a blog post written.  You can say, Sophia makes me work.  Right now she is sitting besides me feeding Momma Dog and taking a few morsels for herself.  She’ll have shiny hair and tarter control teeth…whenever she gets those in.


AV mode, f3.2 1/160 ISO 125 70-200mm @ 70mm

I played with my white balance on this one, which was fun to see all the different shades you can get with that.

All comments and likes are much appreciated.  Thanks for stopping by.

Wildlife Ranch Texas

The family went to Wildlife Ranch Texas for the first time. We have lived in San Antonio for almost 14 years and we still had never been.  It was a spur of the moment decision.  We were in Gruene for Tour de Gruene.  One of Chris’ clients was doing the tour ride, and he wanted to show his support.  This is more of a photo bomb than a wordy blog post.  These first photos are of the kids as we were killing time while Chris was talking to his client after the ride was over.  We had a great weekend and will go again, hopefully soon.

Peek a boo

Please, no more photography!  Ugh, the mammarazzi is everywhere!

Now for the animal portion of this photo bomb.  These were really fun to photograph.  My favorite animal was the Emu.

I find the second point pretty funny, but I’m not the one beating my horn in desperation either.

This guy was huge!  This picture does not do him justice.    He was the one that scrapped up the van.  He was coming through if we liked it or not.  He was intimidating.

This sweet girl was not shy at all, and very sweet.

This would have been the perfect photo bomb if Sophia had stayed looking at me.

Mommy and baby

We didn’t test that theory.

The Emu.  He just walked by me without a care and wasn’t interested in me. I dared him to start trouble.

He didn’t and so I called him chicken.  He took offense.

Luckily I am a talented photographer/window operator while he tried to peck me!

The people in front of us tested the Zebra biting theory

Such beautiful animals

Next we have the petting zoo. Now I want a goat.

Oh, and this guy.  I could put him in the garage.

This guy would be welcome as well.  I really wanted to take him home too.

Of course you can’t leave it’s mate

I’m sure I could find room for him, somewhere.

She didn’t want to let go of that bag of goodies.

Oh and this baby, yep, he could come home with us too and Chris wouldn’t have to worry about mowing ever again.

This girl liked me, and the feeling was mutual.

One thing I noticed was how beautiful these animals looked.  All of them had healthy coats and looked very well cared for.  We will go again soon.

To all the pregnant ladies

And, to the ladies who are thinking about getting pregnant.

I decided when I was pregnant with Sophia, I was gonna enjoy it.  Unfortunately, the only way I enjoyed it in the later months was to eat.

And eat.

And eat.

I was finally at my goal weight before getting pregnant with her.  I decided that I had some room to let myself be free.  I told myself  “I’ll worry about it after she is born.”  and “I’ll focus on nursing more with her, so the weight should just melt away.”

What a load of poop!  I’ll be honest, I gained a whoopin’ 55lbs  (Just typing those numbers makes my skin crawl)!  The “room” to let myself be free didn’t last very long.  In fact, it pretty much vanished as if it were the assistant to a magic show.  Ya know, the person that goes inside the box to never be seen again.   Before I knew it, that evil scale at the doctors office kept getting higher and higher.  Not that I am a moron or anything.  I knew eating the crap I ate would catch up to me.  I just was in denial about it, until I passed the weight I was when Dane and Lydia were born.  I think I hit that number at month 8.  So, here is when I start preaching….

If you are pregnant, which I have a few friends that are expecting or planning on it this year.  Pay attention to these words.  Do not give in to your cravings ALL THE TIME!  Have some restraint.  I didn’t.  I told myself this was my last pregnancy, and I was gonna enjoy it.  Being 35 and not in the best shape, the aftermath is freaking HARD!  So, here is my lesson to you.  Work out!  Even if you are dead tired, do something.  Watch what you are eating, even when the cravings won’t subside.  Granted everyone is different.  There are a few ladies who can pop out kids and look like they did before they were pregnant 2 weeks after baby.  I have a name for those ladies…you can take a guess.  Seriously though, that is great and I am happy for them.  I am not one of those women.  I have to work hard to not be a blimp.  Controlling my food is a huge issue with me.  My sweet tooth can be uncontrollable at times.  It’s an addiction, for me anyway.  Alcohol, no biggie.  Cookies, cakes, ice cream…that’s my alcohol.

After my second was born, Lydia, I had decided to train for the San Antonio Rock and Roll Marathon.  It was 7 months after I had her.  I started training when she was 8 weeks old.  It was fun and it got me moving.  I also was wanting to keep PPD at bay.  I had that with Dane, and never wanted to go back.  So, since exercise proves to help with that, I was even more wanting to do this to make sure I didn’t develop that again.  I found some type of goal that worked for me. This time around I am going to attempt the  Survivor Run in Austin, Texas in June.  http://survivormudrun.com/locations/locations_austin.htm    Then if all goes well I will be going for the big one in October, The Tough Mudder. http://toughmudder.com/  It’s brutal.  I need something that will make me lift weights, be a challenge and fun at the same time.   I hate weights!  I mean,  I really hate them.  So, to make sure I get them in, I’ll do a race that pretty much requires it.  Hopefully come October I will be totally transformed.  So, if you find yourself looking in the mirror, and  you wanna scream and do not recognize yourself.  Get in the gym, eat right and find a race to do for some motivation.  For me, this is something I still have to force myself to do.  Especially, the eating part.  Finding time to go to the gym is not easy either.  Since, I am very “pro schedule”, I have to make sure the baby is getting her naps in,  etc.  Luckily, my husband is a trainer and he has been helping me.

To some people, this blog may seem like a vanity thing.  I do not think getting in shape and trying to be the ‘hot mom’ I know I can be, is about vanity.  I want to make sure when the kids get older, we can go running or ride bikes together.  I want them to know what a healthy lifestyle is, and just having 1 parent be that way isn’t going to do it.  I need to be on the same page as Chris, well, not to his extent.  I’m not looking to be competitive in anything.  I just wanna have fun and get dirty in my upcoming events.  So, why not look good and be healthy at the same time?

Not really sure if this helps anyone.  I’m not  sure if I had read something like this,  it would have made me get be more active.   I am stubborn…I mean really stubborn.  So, if I read some blog about some woman bitching about her weight post baby, I would have probably shrug it off and thought. “Well, that ain’t happening to me.” as I would scarf down another cookie.  To all those little blessings we bring into the world, we owe it to them and to ourselves to be the best mommies out there.  For me, this means to get into shape and get stronger.   My gym time is awesome alone time, but it is also more.  It is time I am improving as a person, as a mother and a wife.  The moment I put in my earphones, get my ipod set, I am not just a mommy.  I become a little bit stronger, slightly lighter and closer to the hot mommy I know that’s deep down inside me.

So, there are my 2 cents, and a wee extra.   Getting back to your old self or getting to a new and improved self is hard, and even harder if you go crazy like I did when pregnant.

Congrats and Good Luck!