Thursday, September 27, 2012

Alexa & Alivia

My family came to visit me this last weekend!
My brother Phil and his new bride Jessy and my sister Jessica and her girls- we had SUCH A BLAST, playing kinnect, shopping, chatting, going to church together, watching the vikings game (or red zone) and just catching up on life- it was so amazing. They all got a glimpse of my life here in Iowa.
But, as always, 
our time together came to an end far too quickly.
Fortunately, I have some pictures to always remember the weekend.

A&A's Photoshoot!

Alexa and Alivia

 have one thing in common

 their last name!

Other than that they are such opposites in appearance and personality.

Alexa 

is blonde and blue eyed- a female replica of her daddy without a doubt! 

And

Alivia 
has big brown eyes and light brown hair and if you ask me she looks like her mama-especially the shape of those eyes:)
Alivia 
is curious and brave. 
She is so witty(no pun intended ; )
 and such a cuddle bug! 
She is always trying on shoes and loves dress up and  doing projects with Alexa
BUT
she is not afraid to play with the boyz 
in fact often times she prefers it.
Her mommy always jokes about how much she is just like her Auntie Tasha
always getting into mischief!

Alexa Marie
is very sensitive 
and thoughtful to others feelings!

 She has such a big heart!

She very smart 
and has a memory to be envied! 
She is very honest, detailed,
 and is a perfectionist.
She just turned 6 this year and is doing amazing in kindergarten
SHE IS ALREADY READING CHAPTER BOOKS!!
She loves to spend time with people and talk 
and do projects together.


God has such wonderful plans 
for these little angels!!


I LOVE MY NIECES TO PIECES!!!

We had some fun bonding time! 
I had the girls paint on their own canvas'. 
They LOVED IT!
Now they will always have something to remember their weekend at uncle JP and auntie Tasha's house.

We read books and watched cartoons
before bed.
 And the next morning the girls came and woke up John and I we cuddled and giggled and  
OH MY,
 WORDS can't even express-
it was the sweetest, cutest thing ever! 
 
A few weeks ago just Jess and the girls came to visit and I loved spending some quality time my big little sister Jessica. 

She.Is.So.AMAZING. 
So giving and thoughtful. 
So easy to talk to.
I can talk on phone with her for hours and it seems like minutes.


I ADORE ma girls- 
Jesca, Lex & Liv!

Hope you ALL 
have a 
Fabulous Fall ;)

Much Love!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

All the Things a Toddler Does in a Day


As a confirmation to my last post 'Curious Since Tot' this letter from my mama was a perfect compliment! Lord, have mercy on John and I - I hope to not have a toddler like me! Hope you get a few laughs out of this!
~~~
{Proceed with Caution:photos are not as they may appear}
Hey Babe,
I know u r always up for a chuckle or 2 so I thought I would share some words of mine that I found in a journal while going through old books.
ALL THE THINGS A TODDLER 
DOES IN A DAY
{My big sis Jessica and I posing for my mom's friend who is a professional painter}
February of 1987 Natasha's two years old

*Throws food off tray and smiles a big huge grin (I believe it)
*Dips her play glass/cup in bathroom stool and takes a drink (Well, why was the lid open?)
*Writes on telephone with crayon (It probably looked better after I added my artistic touch)
*Snacks on Angel the cat's food (Well, why was it sitting out?!lol ;)
*Takes left-over garbage from under the sink and takes a bite! mmm yummy! (Again, whats the garbage doing under the sink- was this before child locks were on cupboards? lol)
*Has a wonderful time playing in the household sandbox; the litter box (How could the let me do this!?)
*Pulls ALL the kleenex's out of the kleenex box (What can I say, I find my own fun=easy to please :)
*Got in mommy's purse again and puts on some lipstick on her mouth, around her mouth and in it. But, she did however manage to put the lipstick back it its compartment and found some 'other interesting' things in the purse (Really, there is no other place more interesting than mom's purse-except maybe her jewelry armoire)
*Pulls out all the canned goods of the cupboard when she has her 'own' fake toy groceries to play with (Well, real is always better than fake)
*Pulls Angel the cat around by the tail and pulls her hair to pick her up (Okay this is awful, but I was two- and AngelAshley was no angel)
*Takes all the shoes out of the entry closet and put them on and waltzes around the house... who does 'that' sound like? Livie? (My niece Alivia is 3yrs old- a collection of her escapades is currently being written-shes my lil clone! :)
*Pulls all books down from the shelf and doesn't read or look at any of them- well, maybe just one (Yea, that sounds 'bout right)
*Turns off hot water heater so we can't take a hot bath (How did I find the hot water shut switch- shear brilliance ; )
*Loves to get into mom's jewelry to try on treasures (YEP)
*Raids big sister's 'purse' for gum, candy, hand lotion and lipgloss (Naturally, its in the little sisters job descript)
*Learned to powder her face a the young age of 22 months AND her hands AND her clothes AND and legs..etc... (Its a beauty treatment- I am way ahead of my time)
*Took diapers and 'jammies' off in crib after mommy already put her to bed for the night (Well, Im a night owl. I don't like to go to bed early- this is merely an act of my independence)
*Proceeds to make a work of art with an ink pen on her pretty pair of pink pants (Young fashion designer at work ; )
*Takes a make-up lesson in eyeliner... only it ends up as a mustache (Hmm.. not really sure what to say)
* Removes her diaper then proceeds to smear it all over the sink, stool and her potty chair, then wipes off her bottom like a big girl :} (Oh, my... I will deny this till I die!?)
*(3 days B4 3rd Birthday) Stills loves love loves trying on different shoes and on the wrong feet! (Still true-but on the right feet ; )
{Easter- the most important holiday of the year- next to Christmas of course!}
{Great grandma Vione- WE  will always LOVE HER!}
{This was my all-time-favorite doll, I played with her until her head hung by a thread- she was almost bigger than me~!}
 {This was my earliest memory- I was barely two and I grabbed my easter basket, hid behind the couch because I was afraid they would take it away from me or limit my chocolate intake- and I DEVOURED as much chocolate as I could find my basket! My mom found me behind the couch with a choco-moustache}

My chocolate obession started early!!!


{Can you believe this angel did such things?! LOL}

I thought you might get a kick out of these pranks a little girl named Natasha was up to. 
 :D Love you Toots!
Love, Mom

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Curious Since Tot

Are you one to always be trying new things?
I sure am! I have always been curious and wanting to explore new things. I guess that goes hand in hand with my love to introduce new things to people, and inspire them. 
Sometimes I will even take a different way home just to see new scenery or possibly discover someplace I didn’t know even existed, though sometimes it gets me into trouble! 
 Like a few weeks ago, I did just that!
I decided to try a different way home and got lost in a maze of road construction. I ended up driving over a metal slab puncturing my tire! After waiting for hours on the side of the road with a flat tire,
(all the while having episodes of America's Most Wanted flashing through my mind),
the tow truck finally came to rescue me.

On my way home

 I asked myself “Well, was it worth it Tash?” 
The answer?
A big fat NO.
Yet still the drive to explore new things and see new scenes beckons me.
~
There are a few firsts in my LIFE
so far this year:

I took a sewing class.
I haven't created anything with my new sewing machine I got as a wedding gift.
So, I decided to take a sewing class. 
 I was surprised to find that I already knew some of the fundamentals of sewing thanks to my Grandma DeBord. She introduced me to the sewing machine at age 10.  I made a quilt for my doll, though not without flaws, I was still so proud of it. 
My grandma made many different outfits for my mom and her siblings when they were in school, and I will never forget a very special dress she made for me when I was young.
 It had  puffed sleeves,
Just like Anne of Greene Gables : )
 it almost touched the ground, and you could pretty much twirl till you'd float : )
  So anyways, while the sewing instructor was teaching others how to thread their needle, I pulled out my bag of ‘fix it’s’ and sewed some of my clothes that needed a little fixin’. 

I sowed a pillow case.
One main objective in taking that sewing class was to learn how to make ruffles. The instructor informed me about the ruffle foot, soonest chance I got I went out and bought one.


A ‘ruffle foot’ replaces the foot which is the base of where the fabric meets the needle and holds it down. It looks very intimidating, but its actually is complicated in order to  make it easier for you! Make sense?


I LOVE ruffles. They are feminine, beautiful and timeless.




I liked this project
 but I discovered I have NO desire to be a seamstress.*

I signed up for a 5k!
 I have been running more, I am very excited about this next ‘official step’.


Started saving for Retirement.
That feels good! But its pretty far away, just a few years ; )


I bought a bike and new kicks.
I haven’t owned a bike since I first learned to ride one at age seven.
Strategic motivation to get me outside and kickin! Or pedaling! Lol



Added Kale to my diet.
Have you ever had Kale? This is a first for me!
Its a superfood-One of the healthiest foods on the planet!
Yet another attempt to be superwoman ;)

Add to your salads or sandwiches, its great mixed with greens like 
spinach and sprouts!

I cooked an artichoke.
 For my fave -spinach artichoke dip.
Never Again.
All that work for so little meat? Not worth it.

MOVED.

ALL our stuff.
This was the first time we have moved ALL our stuff together.
That was no easy task!
We finally have one room for all our clothes.
This is my new favorite room in the house :)

We had a ton of help!  Thanks to Masters Commission from Floyd,
 family and friends.
Wow, that job was not for sissys! Thank goodness we had help!

Launched my website!
http://www.sparklingreflectionsphotography.com/
 is up and running! I only spent months upon months critiquing it!
Session packages available for all walks of life and I am passionate about capturing those amazing moments. 
 

Married for two years.
Officially April 23rd, 2012
Has been so amazing! And I love being married to my soulmate John! These last 2 years went by so incredibly fast!
My confession is that I still get butterflies when I hear him pulling into the driveway after work and I still blush when he comes into my work with or with out two coffees in hand ; )
He's such a hard worker, a fantastic cook, and has an amazing heart, and super thoughtful. There is no one who makes me laugh like he does, he is most clever/witty person I know!!!
 Im so thankful God brought us together and Im excited for the years to come!


SOON TO BE A FIRST:
Missions Trip to Honduras with my HUSBAND!
I have been talking about this for months I know! I just anticipate an amazing connection with the kids and John. I know they will just ADORE him, they don’t have daddy’s or good male role models in their lives and I just know he will be able to fill a little if even a fraction of that void. And John, he LOVES kids!!! I know he is going to want to go back every year. All those sweet little brown eyes just capture you for life!!!


Half way through the year,
and there are more adventures to come! : )

Happy SUMMER SEASON everyone!!


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

3 Days Left! Enter to Win a Free Photo Session*!


In celebration of launching


 I am giving away 3 PRIZES!!
ONE FREE SESSION OF CHOICE*, 
AND a second prize of
 50% OFF ANY SESSION PACKAGE 
for any NEW booking,
 AND 30% OFF to 3rd place winner!!!!


 Heres how to WIN!

1.      Simply go to www.SparklingReflectionsPhotography.com
2.      Click the FACEBOOK link and like fan page
3.      Like as many pictures and comment to increase your chances of winning!
(1 comment per photo)
4.      Send a facebook message with your desired session and date!

How simple is that!!

CONTEST ENDS AT MIDNIGHT MAY 31st 2012

Thanks to everyone who peeked in the Sparkling* Reflections website and for all the comments and support!
                       
*Free session does not include wedding packages.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Milestones April 2012

The month of April 2012 was been the craziest month in my career
AND my personal life was just as eventFULL!

The LINK OPEN HOUSE

I had many events for the LiNK club in the month of April! And WOW, that was a lot of planning, prepping, organizing, shopping, budgeting, calculating, ordering, setting up, tearing down, writing checks to venders, and writing reports! PHEW!

 "Decorating Ideas" ladies luncheon with local designer Karen

Towards the end of April, a few members of the LiNK club went to Des Moines for a day trip on April 27th. We toured the Des Moines Art Center, the Iowa State Historical Museum, and had lunch at a fancy  restaurant called Barrattas. They had fab healthy and tasty food and a front row seat to the scenic downtown of Des Moines. With full tummies we then went out for dessert- aka shopping! Junk Jubilee is a hot new annual event in downtown Des Moines, vendors from near and far display their goods transformed junk into art and creative treasures. I was in awe!!! This place was beaming with creativity at every turn!

Junk Jubilee Des Moines, IA

After Junk Jubilee we had gourmet dinner catered at the Civic Center of Greater Des Moines before the Memphis Musical performance.


John {my hubs} was able to come meet up with us for the Memphis performance and he loved it! The Memphis musical performace left us all awestruck! The performers had the most amazing voices I have ever heard LIVE! The main actress/performer was especially amazing and seriously talented!
 I got chills throughout the entire performance and John was talking about their voices weeks after the performance! It was definitely the whipped cream and cherry on top of a wonderful day trip : ) 
~
Not only was April full of work related events but 
April also holds my birthday {now 27}
and on April 23rd our 2 year anniversary!

An eventful month indeed!

AND THATS NOT ALL!
 last month we found out we had to find a new place to live!
On April 5th our land lord informed us our house was sold and we had 30 days to be out!

I prayed. And prayed. God please help us, I trust you to open the doors. And boy did God come through in a powerful way.
We have just moved into the city were John and I both work. The president's daughter of the bank I work at has had their home on the market and they said we could move in! Its a nice updated home about 1 mile or so from work. No commuting, or wasting 20 minutes to and from work, savings on gas will be immense!
I just think about how if I hadn't gotten a job here 2 years ago who knows what would have happend. I am just amazed how God orchestrates everything in His perfect timing, He always proves Himeself faithful.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,
 who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

I am just  LOOOOOOOOOVING  the whole process of organizing and redecorating right now!  Unlike cleaning,  I just like the result of cleaning, but organizing? I enjoy the whole process and the result! Can you relate? Haha....
Thanks all for being patient on my lack of posting! The whole process of moving has consumed my life.  Do you ever feel like your life is in COMPLETE chaos until your house is in order???

More consistant posts to come after my house is in order and all blissfully organized : )

Pictures of our new home coming as sooon!