A Face Behind the Name

Ta-Da!!! Mommon Sense is back with the new improved 3.0 version! A lot of changes have taken place since last Friday…a lot. And if you weren’t familiar with the old look, well here’s a glimpse…

Visually, it’s a whole new vibe…one that I can have a little more flexibility with and tweak here and there. (I’ve told you about my need for tweaking!)  And my favorite part is seeing my girls in the logo!  Makes me smile =).

Technically speaking, I think you’ll find the new Mommon Sense to be much more user-friendly. Let’s take a gander, shall we? (In Vanna White-like fashion) To my upper right (you may have to scroll =)), you will find links to facebook, twitter, and a rss feed. If you like, you can pick one to receive post updates! (Hint, hint) =)

Okay, moving on down…skip my face for a moment…we’ll get back to that! There are “Favorites” as well as posts broken down into “The Many Sides of Mommon Sense” (Class Clown, Domestic Diva, Off-the-Cuff Creator…why am I telling you this? Obviously, if you can read what I’m typing here, you can read it there!) Anyways…you’ll also notice at the end of each post and page, ways to share Mommon Sense with others! (And I added a printer-friendly option…thought my mother-in-law might enjoy that one! Looking out for you, Mama B! Us technically-challenged individuals have to stick together!)

There are more changes, but don’t let me bore you…take a look around! But before you do…I told you I was going to finally show my face on Mommon Sense…and I did.  That’s me over there on the right.  But if you want, you can head over to facebook and see some random pictures from the last few years or so…as well as what my handsome hubby looks like! =) Oh, and while you’re there, you can “like” our page and begin receiving post updates!

Okay, I’ll seal my lips for now, so you can peruse a bit! Oh, wait! One last thing…Thank you! Thank you so very much for taking the time to stop by Mommon Sense. It has become a very special part of my life as it allows me to reflect on so much…the joys, the struggles, the great blessings I have. And because of that time and opportunity to reflect, I truly believe it is helping me to “become a better mom…one whoops at a time!” Love and hugs to you all…



A Little “Redecorating”

Okay so I admit it…I have commitment issues!  Not so much with my responsibilities or family relationships (although I’m horrible keeping up long distance friendships), but aesthetically speaking!  What I find pleasing to look at today, totally annoys me tomorrow until I change it, tweak it, move it!  So why would blogging be any different?!

A few months ago,  I did a little makeover on Mommon Sense, but it was more out of necessity.  I won’t bore you with the technical-schmecnical details, but basically it had to be done and done quickly.  I didn’t really have a whole lot of time to think about what I wanted the overall look and feel (visually) to be.  Hence, another makeover, but this time more for pleasure than necessity!

I want Mommon Sense to be a better reflection of my personality and writing.  When I began brain storming, I was all OVER the place.  Remember, commitment issues! My tastes are varied and ever-evolving which have resulted in some very poor hair style choices (hopefully not in the present).  So stripping away all of the trends (the big fanned bangs, the perms, the clunky shoes) and anything with a short shelf life in my little world of aesthetic beauty, this is the conclusion I came up with that through the decades  has remained…I’m a straight-laced kind of gal…but with spunk! I like classic, timeless things, but a little punch, pizazz, attitude here and there.  Kind of like Christmas Eve in Sarajevo…musically classic, but with an unexpected pow!  How that translates into a blog design I’m still figuring out, but I’ve made some progress and here’s a little of what to expect…

Visually- Simple, classic, but with a little twist, a little humor.  Due to my need for aesthetic change every now and then, it will be a template that can receive slight seasonal tweaks, but maintain it’s overall look and feel.

Content- the same kind of informal, blah, blah, blah-ing that I do, but hopefully ever-improving

And the big shocker?…the big TA-DA?…I will be showing my face to the world!  When I first started blogging last summer, I was scared.  I was entering a world I knew literally NOTHING about (and I still have a LONG way to go!) But for no concrete reason, I didn’t want to show my face at first.  But then I realized something…as I began reading other blogs, one of the first things I wanted to know was what the person looked like.  Being able to picture them, their smiles, their expressions made me feel more connected to them as a reader.  So…”Grab the camera, Babe (my husband, in case you needed clarification)! We’ve got some pictures to take!”  Just don’t expect glamor shots! (Remember those? Are they still around?!)  Anyways…

We’ll be back next week!  Hopefully with a new look!  Have a fabulous weekend!






Thanksgiving Recap

With the Thanksgiving festivities over and the Christmas commitments already filling up the calendar, I figured I better make a few Thanksgiving Day notes to myself before I forget…

Note to Self #1: Turkey- not bad, but last year’s was better.  Next year, due to your inability to cook and talk simultaneously, buy one of those snazzy thermometers with an alarm.  One like…Note to Self # 2:  You like corn casserole! In fact, you like it a lot! Get Mama B’s recipe (okay, so it happens to be Paula Deen’s recipe plus an egg).  After receiving recipe, claim incompetence so Mama B will make it for you!

Note to Self #3:  Chocoflan just may be your new favorite dessert.  Do not get the recipe.  Repeat DO NOT get the recipe!  You are likely to make it and eat the entire cake yourself!

Note to Self #4:  You must learn how to make your mother’s sauerkraut before she’s too old to cook.  (Ma, if you’re reading this…I didn’t mean it!  You’re a spring chicken!)

Note to Self #5:  Invite the Harpers over more often.  They bring presents!…and enough cheese and crackers to feed two football teams after a game in overtime! =)

Note to Self #6:  Going around the group and saying what you’re thankful for?…not too shabby!  Plus, it’s a good way to find out what Pop’s thinking. (That’s my father-in-law.) But next year provide tissues and have a few smart aleck remarks prepared!…You and your sentimental sappiness!…You just can’t help yourself!

Note to Self #7:  Don’t bother vacuuming beforehand! A couple crackers into the party and you’ll realize the time was better spent with Sean and the girls! =)

Note to Self #8:  In case you don’t remember due to the food coma (psst…it’s not the tryptophan in the turkey!), thanks to fun family and fabulous food…it was a pretty GREAT Thanksgiving!

And finally, for your viewing enjoyment…


Okay, so tell me what you learned this Thanksgiving!  Any pointers, things to remember, things you’re thankful for?…

Related Posts:

Thanksgiving Countdown Day 7: A Boy

Thanksgiving Countdown Day 6: The Missus & the Mister

Thanksgiving Countdown Day 5: A Family Portrait




Thanksgiving Countdown Day 7: A Boy

Day 7: Tomorrow is Thanksgiving!!! Woo-hoo!  Bring on the turkey!

But before I dig in, I can’t let this Thanksgiving pass without giving my gratitude for a boy that was placed in my life eighteen years ago…my husband.

We met in junior high at church and enjoyed all the wonderful things that most eighth graders enjoy…political debate, religious debate…really anything and everything was a debate with us…  Okay, so maybe that wasn’t what most eighth graders enjoyed, but that was us!…at least at the time.  I would get fired up and he would somehow maintain composure and have the nerve to laugh at my frustration.  I wanted to smack him and marry him all at the same time!

Though both of our lives took many twists and turns in high school and beyond, we somehow ended up right back together.  But the second time around it wasn’t just a friendship I held dear…it was a love I knew I never wanted to lose again…a love that began when I met that boy so many years earlier, during a time that I didn’t know whether to hurt him or hug him.  Suddenly one day the answer was clear…I wanted to hug him!…for the rest of my life.

Sean Gordon,

Today I am thankful that with you…I walk a little slower. I linger a little longer. I laugh a little louder.  I think a little harder.  I love a little stronger.

I’m thankful that with you…I cut the pumpkin pie two days early =). I love you!




*Side Note to Family:  Don’t worry…there’s another pie! =)



Thanksgiving Countdown Day 6: The Missus & The Mister

Day 6: Yesterday I attended a funeral. It was the funeral of a dear, sweet woman that lived to be 90 years old. I met this woman and her husband about 4 years ago. I was pregnant with Layla and not feeling the greatest, but a friend from church asked if I would be willing to take an elderly couple a meal. I went in the hopes of a being a blessing to them, but rather I was the one to receive a great blessing that day.

I had carefully prepared chicken, roasted potatoes, and dill carrots…all with a little less salt than usual because the Missus was on a low sodium diet. My plan was to pop in and out.

About an hour or so after sitting on their beautifully vintage red sofa and talking like old friends, I realized I should probably let them get to their meal. I didn’t really want to leave them just yet. With the pregnancy sickness I had been experiencing, there weren’t many bright moments in my long days, but sitting and talking with this sweet couple was quite the wonderful distraction. But I left…with a hug, if I remember correctly, and I had a feeling I would be back.

Over the following four years, this couple came to be very special to our little family. They were like a third set of grandparents to our girls…or maybe more like great-grandparents =). We would visit when we could…not nearly as often as I hoped, but each meeting was special. He would begin a story, get half-way thru, she’d fill in the details when his mind drew a blank (which wasn’t very often…if only I had a memory like that!), and then he’d pull the story full circle, managing to take my husband and I back through time and return us to present day.

Meanwhile, the Missus would read stories to Layla or when Kenley was just a baby, cradle her in her arms. She’d take occasional glances over at her husband talking and give a smile. She loved him.

Almost a week to the day before her 90th birthday, she suffered congestive heart failure and ended up in ICU at the local hospital. After learning of her condition, I went to pay a visit one evening by myself. Even though I had been warned, I was not prepared to see her so weak…so frail…so unresponsive. My heart broke as I thought about the Mister.

I sat for a short while…gave her hand a squeeze and told her I loved her. I left that evening not knowing if I would have the privilege of speaking with her again or seeing her smile at the girls. And that’s where we come to what I am thankful for today…

After almost a week in the hospital, the Missus began to show some signs of improvement. She was alert, responsive, and though unable to talk due to a ventilator and feeding tube, she was writing notes down to communicate.

Monday rolled around…it was her 90th birthday. I wasn’t sure what to do. Wanting to be respectful of the family and wanting to be sensitive to her still being very ill, I was conflicted as to whether it would be appropriate to try to make a hospital visit. Was a card okay, but a balloon too much? I just didn’t know.

The night before we had prepared a card from our family, a painting from Layla, and photos we thought she might enjoy, but now it was the day of her birthday and I didn’t know what I should do with it all. But I packed up the girls, went and picked out a balloon, and headed for the hospital. I prepared Layla as much as possible that the Missus would look different than usual. Layla assured me she understood and also assured me that we would sing “Happy Birthday” =).

When we arrived, we ran into the couple’s daughter and I was relieved to see a balloon tied to her purse. It wasn’t too much after all. We were here to celebrate a wonderful woman’s 90th birthday!

Upon entering the room, I could see that welcoming smile in her eyes. Oh I was so glad to see those eyes! I was so glad for Layla to see them…and even though I know Kenley is too young to remember for long, I’m glad she got to be there too. We read our letter, shared our photos, and Layla proudly presented her painting. And, of course…we sang!

Our visit wasn’t long, but like all of our other meetings, special. Upon leaving, Layla said to me, “Mommy she didn’t look different. She looked like she always looks!” And with a smile on my face, I responded, “Good, sweetheart. I’m glad you think so.” I really was…I was glad that even if that was the last time we saw her, that Layla would remember her as she was during all of our cherished visits.

A week and a half later…the Missus passed.

I believe she’s no longer in pain…no longer suffering, but at the same time I miss her sweet smile, and my heart aches for the Mister. I imagine our visits will be rather different now, but I hope together we can enjoy her memory. I am grateful to have known her, even if but a short period of her ninety years. And how very grateful I am…so grateful…for that one last encounter…for me…and my girls.


What (or who) you are thankful for today?

Thanksgiving Countdown: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, and Day 5


Thanksgiving Countdown Day 5: A Family Portrait

So as we approach Thanksgiving, I’m taking each day to share something I have that I am thankful for.  Today I give thanks for some very special people…my fun, crazy, loving…did I mention crazy?…family!  I am so grateful for sharing laughter, joys, and triumphs with you, as well as the heartaches and struggles.  I love you!

Please enjoy my little version of a family portrait =)…

If you missed ‘em, here are Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, and Day 4!

Okay, your turn!  Tell me what you have to be thankful for and don’t think too hard! Just tell me the first thing that comes to mind! =)


Thanksgiving Countdown Day 4: A Modern-Day Privilege

For Day 4 there’s a little modern-day contraption I am very thankful to have! It allows me to capture some wonderful memories for my husband and I, as well as some keepsakes for the girls…our camera!

Dear Little Camera,

Although I get frustrated with you at times and have no clue how to really use all the many features you provide, I do not want to take you for granted.  You have privileged me with some beautiful moments in the life of my family to hold onto and cherish for years to come!  Thank you for not talking back when I express my frustration with you, and thank you for still taking pictures…even though you have been dropped on your head several times!




If you missed them, here are Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3!

What are you thankful for today?  Please share your thoughts! =)



Thanksgiving Countdown Day 3: Pokes & Prods

Okay, so I’m on Day 3 of things I am thankful for!  If you missed them,  feel free to check out Day 1 and Day 2… =)

Day 3: Tiny pokes and prods! In the last week, Kenley has added a new addition to our pre-naptime routine.  As I cradle her and rock, her baby blues peer over the top of her sippy cup and she stares intently at my face.  Sometimes I sing, other times I just smile and soak in exactly how she looks in that moment…simply beautiful!

This has been our routine for some time now, but as of a few days ago, as she finishes with her cup, she holds it out for me to take, and she begins to gently touch my face…a poke here, a prod there.  With each touch she grows more curious.  I can see her little gears turning, studying how my face changes and moves with each push, squeeze, and tap!  After a minute or two, her studious look turns to a sweet, gentle smile, as to say, “Okay, Mommy…I’m done!”

I don’t know how long this little phase will last…it could be over come today’s nap!  But that’s why I wanted to take note of it now.  I don’t want this to be one of those times in my life or hers that comes and goes and I have little or no recollection of it.  So today…this is what I’m thankful for…those oh-so precious pokes and prods.  How I love them! =)


P.S. Your turn! What are you thankful for today? I’d love to know, so please leave a comment!


Thanksgiving Countdown Day 2: Little Girl Hair

As a part of my Thanksgiving preparations, I’m counting down the last seven days with things that I’m thankful for.  I’m not typically an everyday blogger, but I felt that in the hustle and bustle that has already begun, it would be good for me to slow down and give thanks for my many blessings! If you missed yesterday, go ahead and check out Day 1. =)

Day 2: Little Girl Hair!  You know, its funny…with both pregnancies even though my husband and I waited to find out the sex of each baby, I was CONVINCED, for no legitimate reason mind you, that I was having a boy.  Not sure why, but I was…and I know I would have absolutely loved having boys. After all, I have six great nephews. But I didn’t have boys!  I had two beautiful baby girls! And one of the things I enjoy most about having girls is “little girl hair”.   I told you recently about my shock and awe with Kenley. You can see pics of her here! And here’s my other little one, Layla.

The time we spend together doing hair is special!  It’s a chance for her to look out the window at the fall leaves, be still, and just talk to me.  I love it!  And I look forward to doing the same with Miss Kenley!



Thanksgiving Countdown Day 1: Parents Who Love Each Other

So there’s only a week until Thanksgiving and in order to prepare my heart and mind I thought I would share some of the things in my life that I am so very grateful for.  So here goes…

Day 1: The loving relationship I had the privilege of seeing in my parents.  Years ago, a dear friend told me that he wondered where I got my idealistic views of love and romance, but after meeting my parents and seeing their love for each other, he said he understood! What a blessing it was for me as their daughter to witness their marriage, their friendship, their laughter.  It laid the groundwork early for what I would one day desire in my own marriage! I love you, Ma! And Dad, I so deeply miss you! (My father passed away a little over three years ago to cancer.)