FAMILY: Profile Photos

Here are some profile shots of my belly getting progressively bigger. I will post more as the pregnancy goes along.

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How`s my pregnancy doing?

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Okay, so I recently started to sew, and I love it! I am making things left and right! I made this cute little dress for a toddler (it fit my niece Jaina, who is 3), and I am now selling it on eBay. Please, go take a look!

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FAMILY: Ethan Goeken

I am putting this under family because I don’t consider this to be work.

A while ago, I was approached by Ky’s brother, Troy, to take pictures of their family. I was very excited at the prospect and grabbed at the chance. He said they wanted to have pictures done outside, somewhere in the mountains. I thought that was fine. He just needed to let me know when and where, and I’d try to work it out. We decided to go to Rocky Mountain National State Park on a Saturday morning.

That was a lot of fun, and the pictures turned out pretty well. So when he called me to have me take some of their three-week-old Ethan, I knew I couldn’t turn him down. I went to the fabric store and got some black fabric and headed over to their house.

Troy wanted a specific type of picture done, so we began there. We worked inside with little light, so it was very difficult to get a good picture. My shutter speed was quite slow, the highest being 1/20 without being TOO dark (although they will all have to be lightened up), and since they’re portraits, I didn’t want my ISO to be anything but 100.

I’m working on getting a photography website up for myself, so I will update with a link as soon as I do. And, if Troy and Suzanne let me, I will have a few of Ethan’s pictures up to showcase what I captured.

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POLITICS: President #44

As I sit here and watch the Inauguration of Barack Obama, my heart sinks as the idea of him being president sets in. But more than that, I am really going to miss George Bush as president. I know he is not favored by many, but I really like him. I really do. Especially compared to what I have to face on my TV now.

However, the Carter Clews newsletter I got today points out something that I hope Obama does:

“At 11:00 today, Barack Obama will take the oath of office as the 44th President of the United States. At that point, ‘the government shall rest upon his shoulders.’ As will the weight of the world.

Also at that point, the new President will be forced to make a critical decision that will determine not only the direction of his administration, but his place in history, as well. Not only the First Hundred Days, but the next four years. And time immemorial.

Today at 11:00, Barack Hussein Obama will be forced to decide whether he will follow the dictates of the disparate groups, often on the fringe of society, to whom he appealed when he ran for office. Or, whether he will be the President of all the people.

As a candidate, Barack Obama pointed with great pride to his pedigree as the most liberal member of the United States Senate. As President, he must ever bear in mind that he now represents a nation equally divided between conservatives and liberals, Republicans and Democrats, all of whom now look to him to lead them back from the economic abyss without stifling individual initiative, or plunging the nation into irretrievable debt.

As a candidate, Barack Obama denigrated the War in Iraq, declaring the now-successful ‘surge’ a failure, and promising to immediately withdraw American troops. As President, he must now don the mantle of Commander in Chief, honoring the sacrifice of American troops who fought and died for Iraqi freedom, and accepting the charge to ‘support any friend and oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of liberty.’

As a candidate, Barack Obama demonstrated an insensitivity to white Americans that sometimes verged on callous, repeatedly skirting Jeremiah Wright’s racist tirades and ridiculing ‘typical white’ people who fear black crime. As President, he must rise above his own internal struggles and demand of Blacks and Whites alike a new commitment to full equality of responsibility, as well as rights.

In his paper on Lincoln’s Imagination, biographer Noah Brooks told of one day being asked by the somber wartime President to quote him the lines of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s stirring poem, The Building of a Ship. Mr. Brooks did so, proclaiming with a flourish the famous lines:

Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State!
Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
Humanity with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
Is hanging breathless on thy fate!

Upon finishing the recitation, Mr. Brook’s looked up to find that the President’s eyes had filled with tears, his cheeks were wet and stained. According to Mr. Brooks, Mr. Lincoln did not speak for some minutes, then finally said, ‘It is wonderful to stir men like that.’

With many of his words, Mr. Obama has stirred men and women alike — rich and poor, old and young, conservative and liberal, Black and White. At 11:00 today, he must decide whether his deeds, like his words, will transcend the temporal bounds of narrow interest and seek the timeless ties of national unity that alone can bind the nation together anew. And today, like Longfellow, millions of Americans say as one:

Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears,
Our faith triumphant o’er our fears,
Are all with thee, are all with thee!”


God, I pray for Barack Obama, that he can listen to the side of politics that he so easily could ignore, that he listens to and works with the right side along with the left. I pray for George Bush now that he is out of office, that he is kept safe and out of harm’s way. And Lord, I pray that I can accept what has happened, what is happening, and what will happen as Barack Obama makes his decisions as the President of the United States. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

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POLITICS: Freedom of Choice Act

This has laid really heavy on my heart right now, for fairly obvious reasons. I signed the petition, and if you are also against the Freedom of Choice Act, I would highly encourage you to do the same. As it says on the website:

“FOCA would wipe away every restriction on abortion nationwide. This would eradicate state and federal laws that the majority of Americans support, such as: Bans on partial birth abortions; Requirements that women be given information about the risks of getting an abortion; Only licensed physicians can perform abortions; and Parents must be informed and give consent to their minor daughter’s abortion. FOCA would erase these laws and prevent states from enacting similar protective measures in the future.”

I am personally VERY against abortions, but even if you’re not, this should NOT be a federal issue. Period. It should be decided within each state.

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FRIENDS: Isolating Myself

There are many reasons I feel very lonely right at this moment.

  1. Extra hormones in my body because of the baby that are making me feel very tired and reclusive
  2. Winter, dark (need I say more?)
  3. Living in a basement with virtually no natural light, so I feel like I need to be hibernating
  4. Looking at pictures of my other friends out there enjoying life

There are two people who moved out of state recently whom I find myself missing a lot. We hung out with these two the most. We never felt judged around them, we always made each other laugh, and we just had a lot of fun. I miss that. I want that again. If I can’t get it from them, I want to find someone else who can be like that. I want friends who are slightly older than us so they are more mature, but not so much so that we can’t laugh and tell jokes and have a good time. I want friends who know our boundaries but still try to push us to them and then some. I want friends who won’t judge us for our mistakes but rather be by our side to help us discover and correct them. I want friends who will call when they say they will call. I want friends who will return a message as soon as they can instead of ignoring and deleting it.

I want friends….

Maybe it’s me, maybe not, but since said couple has moved away, I have been unable to find the friends I am looking for. I see my old friends being friends to others the way I want. I see friends I’ve known for a long time and am sad and feel guilty for not having the connection I used to with them. I have friends who have damaged our relationship to almost irreplacable measures. I have friends I am terrified to see because I’m too scared to tell how I really feel and don’t want them to see it in my eyes. I have friends I am constantly on eggshells around.

For years, I have danced around what being a friend really means. Based on my knowledge of what being a friend is, I am a horrible friend. I am one of the worst friends in history. I was in the wedding of one of my best friends growing up a few weeks ago, and I felt completely out of place. All her other bridesmaids were girls she had not only known for less time than me but people she sees all the time, hangs out with, goes on road trips with, takes tons of pictures with. They were all incredibly involved in the planning of the wedding, right up to the moment she said I do. And me? I sat in the corner of the room and watched, waiting for someone to give me something to do so I wouldn’t feel so out of place.

Ky is my best friend. I love him and can spend more time with him than I can with anyone else I’ve ever known. And most days, that’s enough. But right now, in this moment, I want something more. I want to go on adventures, get lost, go through challenges, and have a million stories to tell because of it. I can’t help but be a little bitter when I hear people talking about the fun they had on their mission trips, or the fun they had driving to Moab, or all the awesome stuff they did on their trip to Europe.

I am a social disaster. I need help. If there is anyone out there who is willing to help me, please speak up. It will be miserable. It will be like pulling teeth…from a T-Rex. I will not be as willing to be helped as I sound right now. I will fight the social reformation. But deep down inside, I want to change. I want to be less socially awkward. And I want to have friends.

Please. Help.

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FAMILY: Build-A-Bear

Ky and I spent a very long two days at the mall. Well, it seemed like we were there for two days straight, but we really only spent about six to eight hours there.

Yesterday, we took Bella to the Build-A-Bear workshop as promised from Christmas. We must have spent about two and a half hours just trying to decide what she wanted and what was in our budget. She did really well. And although she wanted more than we could afford or allotted for her, she didn’t complain when she couldn’t get them. We told her we just couldn’t afford a lot of things at that point and said we might go back later, and she was very understanding. That was very cool.

She ended up getting a brown bunny with a Hannah Montana shirt and jeans, some white bows for the ears, and a life-like beating heart, which is actually kind of creepy. But she loves it, and we really enjoyed the day together.

Today we went with Jaina. She is so precious. She sang a song, not sure of what the actual title is, but it goes “Deep and wide, deep and wide, there’s a fountain flowing deep and wide” the whole way there. That’s all she knew of the song, and she just kept repeating it over and over again. Very cute, especially in her high-pitched, three-year-old voice.

She didn’t have that much trouble picking her stuffed animal. After seeing her big sister’s bunny, she knew she had to get the same thing. And that was okay with us. We did talk her into a different outfit than Bella’s, though. We knew it would cause problems, and we didn’t want any confusion between them. She instead got a pink Hello Kitty shirt and a little pink mini skirt with pink bows on the ears, a pink collar, and the same life-like heart.

We took each of them to dinner as well, so we got more time with them than just shopping. It was nice to sit down and talk and interact with each other. Bella is such a great storyteller. She loves to tell stories. And Jaina is such a goofball, she just likes to have a good time.

We really enjoyed the days with the girls, and although they were long and somewhat tiresome, I wouldn’t mind doing it again someday.

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