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Thirty Years of Throwback ~ 2012-2015

June 18, 2016
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1985-1992
1991-1995
1996-1999
2000-2002
2003-2005
2006-2008
2009-2011

2012

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Mer n’ Chip’s Wedding

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The brief engagement of Keith n’ Jess!

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Becoming a family unit!

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The Fine Lookin’ Sanders Gang- Mom and Dad turned 50!

 

2013

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2013 makes me miss my long hair!

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Five Iron Frenzy Reunited!

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Keith n’ Jess actually got to go on dates this year!

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Adry still thought I was cool!

 

2014

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Dancing in Bicentennial Park

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Being enormously pregnant with Ella Bella…

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…at the same time as Jamie!

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Game Night Girls

2015

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First year as a Family of Four!

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Baby’s First Halloween

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Mommy-Daughter Times

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The Sanders Sibs- perpetually children reprimanded by Mom!

 

I’ve had an enormously rich and blessed 30+ years of life!

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Thirty Years of Throwback ~ 2009-2011

April 10, 2016
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1985-1992

1991-1995

1996-1999

2000-2002

2003-2005

2006-2008

2009

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Adry’s first birthday party!

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Didn’t everyone have a pair of those navy sneakers for a minute?

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This is a photo from the scavenger hunt that Dave and Ginny hosted. I believe Matt, Alexz, Mer, and I called ourselves “Team Awesome” and we did not win, haha.

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This is one of my favorite photos of young Reese and Baby Adry.

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I loved being a stay-at-home momma with Adry this year. I will forever feel grateful I had those couple of years with my baby boy.

2010

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Another young Reese and Baby Adry. I can’t resist posting these pictures.

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Our bowling party! So much skill displayed that night.

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A very Sanders Easter. I believe this is the year I put edible grass in Adry’s Easter basket. Jamie came over later that night and we all sat around in the living room laughing and joking ’til our abs hurt about who-knows-what-probably-something-really-immature and obnoxiously eating the Easter grass ’til we got sick. I actually really miss random hangouts like that.

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Adry, Dad, and I did a TON of biking with the bike trailer and Adry’s bike buddy Charlie the frog that year.

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2011

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The year Nick and I decided to spend an entire season in a High School Throwback and he was kinda my 2nd best friend for a minute. It was good for us, though. Well, it was good for me at least; I can’t speak for him.

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I fell head-over-heels for ^^THIS^^ guy! It was a whirlwind adventure and I fell hard.

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Tay, J, and I at the theater for the last Harry Potter movie!

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Little Bro J and I spent a lot of time together in 2011. We roomed AND worked AND hung out as friends together. People used to marvel at how well we got along. They’d say, “If I spent that much time with my [sibling] we’d fight all the time, but you guys are like best friends!” I am thankful for the year I had with my littlest brother.

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Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Ella’s First Birthday Party

December 6, 2015
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Baby Girl’s very first ever birthday party was last month.

My Birthday Pumpkin!

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with Aunt Becca

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Aunt Rebecca shared a special moment with Ella during which Ella said “hi” back to her for the first time. It meant a lot to her, especially since she’s an SPL grad student, and in turn it made me very happy that Ella has her Aunt Becca in her life 🙂

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This is my momma’s One Year of Ella project!

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Aunt Alexz made this adorable and delicious pumpkin cake with cream cheese icing! Another amazing auntie in Ella’s life… she’s a very lucky girl.

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Time for opening presents!

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playing with Tara

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one of our attempts at a group photo, haha

Here are a couple of other attempts for fun!
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Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Celebrating Three Years!

September 26, 2015
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Three years of partnership. Commitment. Friendship. Learning. Adapting. And loving without condition.

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Three years ago I made this man pinky promise me
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that our partnership would be his first priority, he’d be open and honest with me about everything, and that he’d never settle for complacency no matter what.

This year we celebrated a bit early with a weekend getaway. We stayed at the Renaissance Hotel downtown for the rooftop pool.

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Some friends joined us for a few evening hours of poolside cocktails and hot tubbing.
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(not pictured: J and Rebecca)

we also enjoyed sleeping in as late as we wanted in the mornings! You know- like 8am. Keithy brought me Starbucks fufu and breakfast-in-bed each morning, and we took a stroll through the city on our Saturday afternoon.

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I feel very fortunate in this life to have the husband and the family and the love that I do. To be able to hold and be held, and to have someone to cry with and laugh with and lean on… to have small squishy cheeks to kiss and tiny hands to hold, and a future to look forward to.

I don’t have much, but I have everything
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and I’m so glad to have it with Keith!

 

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

THIRTY Years of THROWBACK! 2003-2005

September 13, 2015
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1985-1992
1991-1995
1996-1999
2000-2002

 

2003

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The Sanders kids used to think it was the greatest thing ever to get Coke in our Easter baskets. (I know I’m older here, but J was still a kid, so Matt and I still got Easter goodies.) Contrary to popular belief – probably an assumption based on the Sanders’ undying love of Coke – Mom and Dad did NOT keep Coke on tap in our childhood home. As a matter of fact, sugary treats such as soda, cereals, and candy weren’t brought into the home at all, as far as we knew, except on 3 holidays: Christmas, Halloween, and Easter. So when we got it we made that shit last!

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My two favorite pictures of me n’ Jamie.
We were both dating our future ex-husbands – Stephan and Ben – at the time. Unbeknownst to each other the boys each got the Snoopy and Woodstock shirts for me and James as gifts. Then Jamie and I, entirely unaware of the fact that we possessed these matching shirts, packed them to wear on the same day in Chicago. So of course we had to get corresponding facepaint at Ed Debevics.

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Mer, Dave, Ben, Les, me, Hilary, T.Matt, Jason, Kevin, Eric, Amber, J, and Mom the day I turned 18. Incidentally it was also the day OSU won the National Championship against… er… some other football team. So of course we had a party that was completely about me and not football at all!

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Throwback to Creation Fest days! And thrift store plaid pants, midriff spaghetti straps, dangly belly button rings, pigtails, band t-shirts, and MATT’S MOHAWK in its baby days.

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Throwback to J&Tay on the far right and their Best-of-Pals days. I miss those kids together!

 

2004 

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Jamie, me, and Jessie. Keeping it classy. Jamie is wearing a Jr. Asparagus t-shirt ~ throwback to Veggie Tales!

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The year I wore my mother’s wedding dress to marry Ben! It was a very happy day and I enjoy remembering it.

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Left: Me, Ash, Ryan, Mer, Pammy; Right: Les, Jessie, Jamie, Harriet.
breakfast with the bride’s maids.

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Throwback to the Alternative Christian scene with babydoll band tees, studded belts, and dickies.

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This was the year Pammy was diagnosed with Stage 4 Sarcoma and began an intense fight for her life. The girls and I stopped by the hospital to pamper her with a pedicure.
(Mer, James, Me, Pam, Ash, Jessie, and Harriet)

 

2005

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This was our last family-friend outing before Dave died.
It was the cookout for which we forgot spoons, so we got creative with plastic cups!
(Tony, Pam, Me, Dad, J, Matt, Les, Dave, Tay)

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Out for Tony’s birthday!
(Me, Ben, Matt, Mom, Les, Mer, Ash’s boyfriend, Ash, Tony, Ginny, J, Tay, Ryan, Ryan’s girlfriend, Pammy)

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Me ‘n Momma <3

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

THIRTY Years of THROWBACK! 2000-2002

August 2, 2015
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1985-1992

1991-1995

1996-1999

2000

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Matt, Jessica H, Jamie, me, Jessie, Steve, and Jacob– Jessie and Jamie’s last day as my backyard neighbors– neighborhood buddies gathered together to see them off to their new home for a few years in Dalton, Ohio. This was a very very sad day for teenage Jessica. (Also the summer T.Matt swung from a rope in shallow water while he, Steve, my parents, and I were boating in Alum Creek. Broke his tibia and shattered his growth plate and had to wear a cast up to his thigh the rest of the summer! And I still notice his slightly ‘off’ gait.)

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The night Ash entertained us by performing silly dances to 98 Degrees in my living room for my 15th birthday. Throwback to the the obnoxiously long bunny ear antennae on the TV set and the bookshelf full of VHS movies! Oh, and everyone’s stylin’ plaid button down over-shirts are lying about.

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The last-day-of-school shaving cream fights my mom used to organize for us. I’m pretty sure that’s Mark, Matt, Steve, and me in the back; I forget/can’t tell, I forget/can’t tell, Little J, and his girl pal in the front.

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High School Homecomings! pre-dance photos by the parents in my living room. Flashback to spaghetti strap dresses! The boys in the back: Clint (who passed a few years ago, RIP Clint), Nick, Steve; girls in the front: Amber R, me, Jessie, Jamie, Jessica H.

 

2001

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The year Matt, Ash, Steve, and I decided at the very last second that we weren’t ready to be too old for Trick-or-Treat. We tried to be strong and mature, but dammit we needed one more year to be kids! So we ran to my parents’ box of old Halloween costumes and threw on the first things we could find. Ash had on a witch’s dress I think and the bunny ears from my first Halloween Costume. I think Steve had a Frankenstein’s Monster head and a sword or something. Matthew is in the picture donning my Orville Wright goggles and a clown wig, and I have on a clown hat and vest… And we had ourselves a Marry Trick-or-Treat. We didn’t have bags to collect candy and I remember Steve eating every single piece of candy he received between houses. My stomach hurts just thinking about it.

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Throwback to High School Sweethearts and the lilac bushes my mother planted on either side of the front door of our house. ohmygoshimissthose, I remember that fragrance. It takes me back every time I smell it.

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(**The date on some of these pictures is totally wrong.)
Young Reese Pete! See, we once loved each other! He had to have been under one here because I believe 2001 is the year I bought him- I had just turned 16 when he was born. (I still love Reese, by the way. Just in a very I’m-glad-he’s-Jacob’s sort of way.)

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Me- with ears stretched to a 0 gauge- and Little J with green teeth!

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Ah yes. Dad snapped this shot as I was about to walk out the door to go, i dunno, lollygag teenage-style somewhere. I was ready for my day, and what else could a 16-year-old girl need for her day other than her rainbow tank, baggy pants, hippie hair twists, quarter machine jewelry (a loovely choker and Matt and I had matching rainbow Power Heart Kid bracelets), blue Hot Topic Soda shoes, and 2 Blowpops just in case. You never know when you might need a Blowpop, and ya’ gotta have a second one to share with a friend.

 

2002

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The Year of Greta! and lots of thrifting, concerts, festivals, Monty Python, and Home Schooled kid sleep-overs together.

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The Brothers and I at a little music festival. Little J is shamelessly rockin’ that massive spill on his shirt!

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Ben and I were dating. Throwback to iron-on patches and safety pins!

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J, Dad, and I were camping out in line for a CD Release and signing.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

THIRTY Years of THROWBACK! 1996-1999

July 25, 2015
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1985-1992

1991-1995

1996

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Throwback to church plays. Matt, Mer, and I are dressed up for our Go Go Jonah play. Matt was a Ninevite and got to chase Jessie around with a sword, which was appropriate. Mer was a Yeoman of Joppa, and I was Jess: the visitor of The Museum of the Bible. I remember Dad working his tail-end off to re-write that whole script in order to include every single kid who wanted a speaking part or solo, and he also created a great stage set-up complete with visual and sound effects for the ocean and storm. It was such a cute little play that we even got to take our show on the road and put it on for another church.

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Throwback to church Sunday School at DCN led by Dave. I’m sure Dave put in a lot of time and effort preparing lessons and discussions for us but my only clear memories of those days were his field trips to Krispy Kreme and having us take bets (like good Nazarene kids) on how long it would take for the donuts to be devoured by the congregation… oh, and his sassy jokes throughout haha. Thank you, Dave, for the memories <3

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Throwback to American Girl Dolls– back when there were only FIVE! Samantha, Felicity, Molly, Kirsten, and Addy- and Addy was brand new back then. I had Samantha and she is currently packed away in my parents’ garage with her school desk, bedroom set, tea party table, and several outfits… and Little Jacob is quite enjoying his tea party with her in this picture.

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The year I was a midget for Halloween. (Jessica Harris the Joker, Jamie the… spider-vampire-witch?, Little Jacob Spiderman, Matt the Pirate, Me, and Taylor the football player)

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The Brothers and I. Throwback to GIANT hair bows, Honey We Shrunk ourselves on VHS, and Matt’s buzz cut!

 

1997

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My Nutty Bar, Me, ‘n Ash the year that Mom attempted to force-feed me Nutty Bars any chance she could get because I was painfully underweight.

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Jacob with his little friends, Me, Ash, Matt’s friend Mark, and Matt. Matt and J are both wearing their super cool visor sunglasses, and Dad is organizing the wagon. We also each have our white socks folded in half several inches above our shoe line in proper 90s fashion.

 

1998

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My cousin Jack and I are standing in front of the chapel at The Naz (where we would both end up as students together several years after this) holding up the medals we won at BLAST. BLAST is essentially a 3-day Nazarene talent/skill contest. I assume we both entered in Writing Poetry and Prose, although Jack could have done something in music. Also, throwback to BIBS! which I think I loved and wore at least through 8th grade (not that pair). And I’m not gunna lie- I’ll be the first to hop back on that train if they come back in style because so comfortable that is all.

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James and I sharing a seat, and we are both in the awkward and uncomfortable throes of young adolescence as well as a more enjoyable and exciting blossoming best-friendship.

 

1999

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The Sanders Clan Oh-My-Gosh-We’re-All-Dressed-Up-And-The-Weather-Is-Nice Photo Opp in the Yard and are J’s socks pulled all the way up his shins!? Haha! I love that family.

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Yes. The year we were N’SYNC for Halloween, complete with several dance routines we spent months choreographing and practicing, and a fangirl. We won 2nd place in the Hilliard Parks and Rec Costume contest, losing to “The Millennial Girls” who wore matching sweatshirts and shook pom-poms with cutesy smiles on their cutesy faces AND THE INJUSTICE WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN, DO YOU HEAR THAT CITY OF HILLIARD!? Haha. James had to duct tape her boobs down to be Justin, Taryn was Chris, Ash was Joey, Jessie was Lance, and I was JC. We carried a boom box and occasionally broke out in dance along the neighborhood streets during trick-or-treat night, and ladies squealed and ran in to get their camcorders to capture us on video.

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Neighborhood buddies! Steve, me riding piggyback on James, and Matt in the van window

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This picture is the perfect throwback to the nineties. First, I must point out my high school “sk8er boyfriend” Nick’s wide-leg silver pants and skater shoes (he actually skated a lot. All the time. He was a legit skater boy), Ryan Parks’ forward comb hairdo and wide-leg painter pants, Jessie and I are both wearing all-white cloth shoes with 3-inch thick clunky soles, AND there’s a disposable camera on the table!

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Jamie, Jessie, and I! Throwback to Y2K and bringing in the new millennium!  And to all our friends’ families that stocked up on supplies in preparation for the end of the world. We all held our breath when the ball dropped but we survived! Haha.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

THIRTY Years of THROWBACK 1991-1995

July 20, 2015
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1991

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Little T.Matt ‘n Me. I just love this. We were so happy. We had a very blessed childhood.

 

1992

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Throwback to my childhood best friend  Nic and the old Nazarene campgrounds where we spent every summer together! And also some dude Mom made us pose with, but I forget who he is. I still remember the layout of the campgrounds like the back of my hand… And now I’m in the mood to get a group of girls together and recruit all the boys to spin us as fast as they can on the merry-go-round!

 

1993

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Snuggs with Little Bro J~ I just loved that baby! I love the dude that he turned into, but that baby was the such a sweet, good baby!

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Kristen and I played dress-up with Matt and J.
If you ever wondered why my brothers have always been comfortable with their “feminine” sides, now you know! This kind of thing may have happened on more than one occasion, with very willing participants I might add!

 

1994

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Me ‘n Momma!

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Okay, THIS right here was me, Matt, and J on Christmas morning before we were permitted to go downstairs to see if Santa had come. I just love this picture for so many reasons. First, Matt and I are both wearing my dad’s giant power tool shirts, and might I point out to you that mine says, “DO IT WITH A SCREAMER”. Second, Matt and J aren’t even looking at each other and are making the same face. Also, J-the only one fully dressed- is freaking adorable and he’s snuggled up with Big Dogon (the stuffed animal) which I think he still has!

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That’s me and my cousin Jack on our trampoline with Grampa just a few months before he passed away.

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Throwback to childhood cheerleading days. And also The Era of The Flower Bangs (See: Jessie and Jamie) and The Side Ponytails! Thank you, ’90s, for those fashion gems! (I’m in the very back left, Jamie is in front me on the left, and Jessie is in front of Jamie.)

 

1995

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Jessie, and J being held by Courtney in the back; Jamie, Emily, and Holly 2nd row from the back; and Jenn and Ash were right above me. I believe this was the birthday party during which we danced to Ace of Base (which they now play on the oldies station and Adry is amazed I was alive when the album came out) and Holly told her famous plum story. God help me I can’t remember at all what the plum story was about, but it was a big deal, okay. Oh, and I am wearing my Hilliard Crossing Elementary School sweatshirt~ Represent!

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The brothers and I are in Kansas, dressed for Grampa’s funeral.

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See? J has always been this cool and chill.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Remembering 2014, Turning 30!

January 5, 2015
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January

I miss you. I miss your smile. I miss chasing you and fighting for kisses. I miss looking into your eyes and seeing the same love and devotion for me that I have for you. You are the perfect other half for me and I adore you. ~Keith

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I turn 29! …my last year in my twenties.

February

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We found out we were pregnant for a second time, this time with Eleanor! We weren’t really talking about it because we were still emotional about our miscarriage in December. I was so exhausted from pregnancy and working night shift that I celebrated Valentine’s Day in bed by myself with chocolates Keithy surprised me with.

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Adry was still enjoying Kindergarten.

March

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Adry turned 6!

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Adry also got glasses! We found out he had 20/200 vision in his left eye. A long road of patching and strengthening his eye to gain sight began. We are still working on it!

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We saw Ella for the first time via ultrasound and heard her heartbeat. We began feeling a bit more comfortable talking about our baby on the way.

I will never forget today. Hearing that heartbeat and how strong it was…it was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever heard. I will treasure that memory for the rest of my life.” -Keith, 3.27.14

April

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Adry and Reese on Easter Sunday

May

We found out our baby was a girl!

The message said everything looked completely normal and it looked like we were having… a baby GIRL. My jaw instantly dropped and a huge grin spread across Adry’s face. I was so glad to share that moment with him, just he and I. It was really special.

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Mom and I hung out with these crazy boys on Mother’s Day.

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We took a trip to Baltimore to see Alexz graduate with her Masters!

June

OKAY. We still need HEADBANDS. The kind with flowers. And SHOES. She needs white sandals. I like white sandals. And I think that’s all she needs. OH AND A TOOTHBRUSH. ~Adry

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We spent so many great Friday nights together dancing to music in Bicentennial Park.

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We took a Father’s Day trip to Yellow Springs with the fam.

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We got to see Ella’s profile and all her adorable little body parts during her anatomy ultrasound.

July

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Adry learned to swim!

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We enjoyed many fun game nights in 2o14!

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Keith and I had a lovely date in Park of Roses.

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And James and I did a lot of pregnancy commiserating!

August

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We got to get a peek at Ella in a 3D ultrasound!

I enjoy hearing Keithy daydream about his daughter. He wonders what she’ll look like, what kind of person she will fall in love with one day, what kinds of things she’ll do with her life… I like hearing all the possibilities and ‘what ifs’ rolling through his head.

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I wore a heart monitor for 30 days!

We also took a trip to Indianapolis Museum of Art for Dad’s birthday!

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Tara was born!

September

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Eleanor, I can’t wait to see you take your first breath and take you home. ~Keith

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I was given a lovely baby shower.

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I was so proud of my FIRST GRADER Adry!

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I was also proud of my Market District Gourmet Chef Husband!

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Keith and I celebrated two years of marriage <3.

October

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November

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I finally met my beautiful daughter.

And Keithy turned 30!

I love you very much and I hope you feel valued and celebrated today! I hope you have a wonderful birthday and an awesome 30s. I’m such a lucky girl to be able to spend it with you.

I turn 30 today. this morning I got to wake up to this and I was enraptured by these two ladies. The moment lasted for an eternity; golden, pure and clear.
I would have never considered my 3 decades of life lacking anything until this moment. ~Keith

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December

Becca graduated from OSU!

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We had a nice Christmas season and Baby’s first Christmas.

 

We ended the year at Les’ house. Family and friends enjoyed a taco bar and pinata and gathered in the living room together with champaign to watch the ball drop and kiss our loved ones. I welcomed 2015 beside my husband and snuggled close to my children.

Three days later I celebrated my own 30th birthday and it was really one of the best birthdays I’ve had in a long time. I relieved myself of mom chore responsibilities so that Ella and I could spend the morning and afternoon snuggling and dozing off together. Then for my birthday dinner I requested broccoli cheddar soup and sour dough bread. Mom made it for me even though she was so sick and stayed in bed the rest of the night. Keith’s dad made me a buckeye square dessert that I loved so much when I tried it at their house on Christmas. Dad got some other goodies, added chili to my dinner menu, and set the house up so that he, both my brothers and their ladies, Jessie and Jamie and their guys, and Keith, me, and Ella could come over for a little birthday hang out. We had drinks, ate my birthday meal, played Things and Spoons and had a Skittles tournament. I EVEN GOT PRESENTS FROM EVERYONE and it made me so happy! haha! I’m not really used to getting so many nice gifts on my birthday! I got money, gift certificates, a crafty home-decorated mug, giant Reese’s Cups, the most delicious chocolate buckeye pie, picture frames, a baby supply gift basket and the promise of a pedicure! So many things!

For 2015 and the start of a whole new decade (my thirties!) I am looking forward to more adventures with Keith and watching Ella grow and develop a relationship with her brother. That’s really about as far as my goals and ambitions go this year; I just want to love and enjoy these beautiful people in my life. I’m gettin’ older, keepin’ it simple!

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

The Birth Story of Miss Eleanor Joyce (PART III)

December 6, 2014
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After the grandparents had their chance to visit with Ella the rest of our friends and family came in to see her.

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I would like to say how incredibly thankful I am for all of the love and support we received on Miss Eleanor’s birthday.
First there were the troopers who came in the wee hours of the morning: Jamie (and Tori), Les, and Pam along with the grandparents.
My brothers and Rebecca came soon after.
The group took over and had one of the waiting rooms all to themselves while they took shifts coming back to the labor room to visit me.
My brothers came back during the honeymoon of my epidural. They discovered rolly chairs and played bumper cars with them which made me laugh. THAT’S when they also discovered that when I laughed it showed up on the contraction monitor so they began trying to outdo each other with who could make me laugh the hardest. They tried to time it at the height of my contractions so that my laugh would reach the highest point on the graph and they totally succeeded which goes to show how great I was feeling in the earlier parts of labor! Gotta love The Brothers.

ANYWAY. Back to after Ella was born…

After everyone had a chance to meet her they cleaned me up a bit and wheeled me to my postpartum room where she had her first bath.

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And Daddy did his very first diaper change.

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Ella and I got to enjoy some skin-to-skin time while Jamie and Ella’s BFF Tara joined us.

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Several other people joined us that evening to meet Eleanor including Alexz, Jessie, Keith’s brother and his wife, and Ash.

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As the evening was wrapping up we told Adry it was time for him to go home and to bed. It absolutely broke his little heart to have to leave his new sister. He crawled in bed with me and Ella, and I saw huge crocodile tears welling up in his eyes. I could tell he was trying to hold it back but the tears spilled over and he just couldn’t stop crying. Poor little guy. So much emotion for a 6-year-old! I just held him there for awhile.

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Jamie took Adry to his dad’s for the night. She stopped by the store to print off pictures of Ella for Adry to keep with him and look at when he missed her. (The next day he went to school and stood in front of his class to shared the pictures: A proud big brother!)

That night, after all our visitors had said goodnight and left the hospital, Keith and I enjoyed some time- just the three of us- to love on our new daughter (and eat up all the delicious chocolaty bark Alexz made for us!). Then I took everyone’s advice and tried to take advantage of the nursery to get some rest. I reluctantly handed Eleanor over to the nurse.

1.5 hours later I was in bed wide-eyed, anxious, and envious of Keith’s peaceful deep-sleep breathing I was hearing from the fold out bed on the other side of the room. So I did what any good wife would do– I woke him up and told him I needed my daughter! When she was back beside me I admired her a little longer before finally falling asleep.

TO BE CONTINUED

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal