Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

Headed to Chula Vista for Christmas Eve... A few photos of brunch with the Brady bunch... Lol. Also known as the McDonough mix/clan. Enjoy the photos!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


This year we went to Riverside for the big night to hang out with our small group and go trick or treating with Kellen's buddies. Well, Kellen wasn't all that interested in wearing a costume... or going trick or treating. (I'm pretty sure he was the only almost 4 year old on the planet not interested. He decided to hang out at the house and pass out the candy to the other kids that were dressed up. And since his costume was given to us and we don't really hype up Halloween we were all for it. What am I suppose to do, punish my kid for not wanting to pretend to be someone else?
It was such a joy to watch how excited he got when he would see a group of kids come by. "Here they come mommy!" And when they would leave he would ask, "Are there more kids coming to get candy?" There sure were. Some of the awesome ladies in our small group made little bags of candy with a Sandals church information card in them. There were over 100 and we ran out! Added bonus, none of the Gilliland's will have to worry about gaining the candy pounds...
When the other kids came back from trick or treating Kellen and his friend Cayden played in the bounce house. Yep, they set up a bounce house in the front yard and kids would stop by to jump and then be on their way. Kellen had a blast. And passed out on the way home of course. :-) I was really proud of him, how many kids do you know that would do this???

This second photo is of Kellen and the pumpkin he decorated at school. They used material to glue decorations on them, Kellen decorated his like a puppy. He posed with it in the car when I picked him up. He likes to pop his head through the sunroof of the car (when it's parked of course.)
I'm pretty sure he has no idea what the point of Halloween is (neither do I really) But we sure had a great time hanging out with our friends.

Friday, October 26, 2012

May Book Review... and June and July

OK, so I took a little longer than expected to finish the book that I started in May. However, I have finished three books so I'll write briefs about each of them.

Ruth Graham's latest book, "Fear Not Tomorrow, God is Already There."
This was more like a devotional book... it took a while to get through, because it was deep. I recommend this book, it was very encouraging.
Nicholas Spark's book, "The Lucky One." Fiction, it was entertaining. I finished it fast.

Ann Voskamp's book, "One Thousand Gifts."This book was a great reminder to live each day on purpose and reminded me that the simple is a gift. I highly recommend this book, and I will probably read it again. There is a blog and an app to go with this book and you can make your own list of 1000 gifts.

Kellen Favorites

(Kellen, sitting by the fire he helped Daddy make)
Today was Kellen's first "Favorites" interview... it was kind of fun to ask him all his favorites to see what he would say. Here we go:

Kellen what is your favorite...

Color- Blue

Movie- Veggie Tales

Animal- Dinosaur (I would have never guessed that, he owns NO dinosaurs)

Food- Noodles and strawberries

Drink- Water

Book- Good Night Construction Site

Friends- Kayden, Landon, & Brandon

Song- Pirates that don't do anything

Letters- this was cute, "K-E-L-L-E-N"

Sport- Soccer, (this was suggested by daddy)

Car's Character- Sheriff

Toy- Blue Race Car (still at the store, he's saving to buy one... only $6 of chores left!)

That's all folks... this was too much fun.

Sunday, August 26, 2012


Attention Sandals Church!! If you are or have been interested in taking the Financial Peace University course the fall class is coming soon! Here are the details:

What: Financial Peace University
When: Begins Wednesday, September 12, 2012, for 10 consecutive weeks
Time: 6:30-8:30pm
Cost: $99- WELL worth it!!
Where: Sandals Church 150 Palmyrita Ave, Riverside, CA 92508
Why: To learn how to manage your finances God's way and be blessed by it in ways you never thought possible!

Sign ups will be done on Sundays in the Lobby or you can sign up by email 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Fast Easy Budgeting...

So I found this cool link to help anyone out that may be interested in the Dave Ramsey program, Financial Peace University but still hesitant. I am going to leave the link on the side of my blog page so people can get to it easily whenever they want. :-) Happy Budgeting!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

My shutterfly book of Alaska

Here is a small book of what our trip looked like... there were 1558 pictures to choose from. I narrowed it down to 20 pages of pictures.

Shutterfly allows you to customize your photo book just the way you want.

Friday, June 1, 2012

First trip to the dentist

Ahh the Dentist... technically it was the third visit, but it was the first time he had his teeth cleaned, and the first time he actually had more than just his teeth looked at. 

A few weeks back Kellen bonked heads with his cousin at grandma's house and a previous injury to his tooth started to bother him. We took him to our dentist, Derek Hauser, and they took an x-ray of the tooth. He recommended a kid dentist in Temecula, we call him Dr. Mick. Unfortunately there hasn't been much they can do for his damaged tooth, however, keeping the rest of the teeth clean is obviously a top priority. 

He had his teeth cleaned and did pretty well. Here are some photos of event. He was a little nervous, with the usual fingers in his mouth. They let him sit on dad's lap to complete the cleaning.
He quickly calmed down and let Dr. Mick look at his teeth. As you can see daddy is trying to coach him with his mouth open too! Ha ha!
Dr. Mick has a dental hygienist that cleans the kiddos teeth, just like we have Erin at Dr. Hauser's office. Kellen was quick to let her take a look at his teeth like a good patient. 
They were kind enough to make sure that the light didn't shine in his eyes. :-) He also liked it when they moved the chair down. Colin may fall asleep!
 She quickly got to work scraping and polishing. He liked the water and suction tube too!

 The whole thing was done really quickly... making me less nervous too. :-)
 After his cleaning they took some old school x-rays. Kellen was very still. Apparently the old style x-ray is better to get a good look at kids teeth. That or Dr. Mick likes the old school one because it is cheaper than buying a new one so he can use all his extra money for fishing! Ha ha, if it ain't broke...
It was a successful visit. Kellen got two "prizes," toys from the toy box, and we scheduled an appointment to put a Serum on his back top molars. Those are the hardest to keep clean on a kid, and he has deep groves in them. The serum helps prevent cavities, since he will need to keep those particular teeth for another 9+ years. We scheduled both that appointment and his next cleaning in November. The whole process was very quick. 

** His second appointment went real well. They were not sure if he would sit through the entire procedure, placing the serum on his teeth, sucking all the extra stuff out, using the laser light to dry them, and then repeating on the other tooth. It was just Kellen and I for that trip and he didn't even have to sit on my lap. And, the whole procedure was super fast!! 

All in all some great visits to the dentist with little Kellen Lee. Hopefully helping to make him not fear the dentist, and to take good care of his teeth (so that he doesn't have to visit for anything other than cleanings). Good Job Buddy!

Monday, May 21, 2012

ROC- Ridiculous Obstacle Challenge

This past weekend we participated in the Ridiculous Obstacle Course Challenge at the Del Mar fair grounds. This was a 5k race with 18 different obstacles throughout the course. We participated with a large group of people (43 to be exact) that were all wearing similar outfits. Our team was called, "The Victorious Secret." Of course our outfits were pink. The ladies wore pink tank tops with our team names on them and wings on the back, with pink tutus. The men wore lighter pink tops with the team name on them as well. My dad and Marci came with us and hung out with all the grand kids while we ran. We stayed in Chula Vista with them the night before so the drive wasn't as long, and because we love to spend time with Abuelita and Grandpa. :-) As you can see above Kellen was not a very happy camper before the race. But he perked up later.

 Our team mates Crystal and Amber waiting to start the race... and waiting for John and Cassie to show up! :-) Ha ha, as Melinda George says, "That's how we do it." We were so excited to get started!
 Unfortunately Colin and I did not get an "after" photo. I forgot. :-( But they hosed us down before the big finale so I wasn't as "colorful" as I was during the race. Some how we still managed to have green powder stuck under our arms.
 Shelley joined us for the festivities, what a cool chick! I am glad that she is hanging out with us. Maybe next year her beau James will come with us? :-P
Crystal and Russell posing for the pic. Russell signed up last minute so that we could have the largest team! Thanks for doing that by the way, the $30 return (courtesy of Amber donating her return to the Gilliland family) will be put toward the $110 dentist appointment our son has tomorrow to get his molars sealed so he won't get cavities and can keep those baby teeth until they fall out in 9 years.
 The girls, wish I would have known Shelley was behind us because I would have grabbed her into the picture. Random shirtless dude, apparently "Photo Bombed" our picture! Ha ha!
At the start of the race they sent us through the horse race starting boxes and then blasted us with some sort of soap cream, I was slightly blinded for a moment. My tutu was covered in soap pretty much the entire race. Once we passed the foam/cream, we were attacked by gorillas and climbed across the monkey bars. For a complete list of the obstacles check out this link: My favorite was the GIANT slide towards the end. I am most proud of the tight rope traverse. I made it all the way across, even with the crazy dudes shaking the heck out of it. However, we should have went across the other one behind us because it was shorter. Poor Amber could barely reach, which eventually led to her falling in the mud. The ONLY reason she fell might I add. She's one tough cookie!

And then you have this cutie waiting after the race with us to check in on her mama and pops. SHE IS SO FREAKIN' CUTE!
Here is my sister finishing up the final rope swing, OWNING it!! All the way across and then a skip through the finish line holding hands with John and Crystal. I am hoping that there are some pictures of that later. :-)

 The aftermath, we don't look too destroyed. They did a number hosing us down so all the colored powder is gone. Our shirts are now tucked in because they hang down to our ankles, but we look pretty good! Thank you Crystal and Cassie for inviting Colin and I to be a part of this! We had a blast! OK Russell, now you have to start thinking of next years theme... ROC 2013 here we come!

April Book Review

Alright, I'm a little behind. I finally finished the book I was reading for the month of April, "The Wealthy Barber." I think it took me so long because I was a little bored. Maybe because the information was starting to become so redundant.

"The Wealthy Barber," is a simple how-to-build-wealth book. It is realistic and tells you straight up that it doesn't happen over night. Some tips that this book discussed that stuck out:

-Pay yourself first... 10% of your income goes straight to a mutual fund/money market account. You don't touch it, you don't even realize it's gone because it is an automatic withdraw whenever you get paid. Down the road 20-30 years, if you are employed the entire time, you have plenty of money to retire wealthy and you really didn't even have to try. Every book I've read, or Dave Ramsey program I've listened to says this is very important to start as soon as you can, they just disagree on when. Oh- and Dave says to do 15%.

-This book also mentions the importance of a Will, a living trust if you have stuff, and insurance-the right kind. Every person has a different need, so make sure you have the kind that is right for you.

-"A dollar saved is two dollars earned." This book talks about living within your means, and the fact that there is a difference between being cheap, and being thrifty. :-) Unfortunately, the chapter on that, is pretty short.

There were a few things I did not like about this book. It overlooked the huge impact that debt can be on a family. And made credit cards sound like no big deal. Some people may have zero debt, and maybe this book is addressing them. However, to assume that and not give any advice on how to eliminate debt just doesn't sound realistic.

This book also said nothing about giving. That just makes me sad. I would assume even the wealthy barber would understand the importance of giving.

In order to really gain insight from this book (or at least for me to remember it) you would have to take extensive notes. And the Dave Ramsey program already does that for me, AND gives me all the forms I need as part of the program. 

All in all, I probably would recommend another book to someone seeking financial advice. It had nothing unique to the book and if I had to choose between giving people this book and any of the other financial books I have read, I would give them any of the other ones over this one.

Since we are currently facilitating another round of Financial Peace University, I am going to read a different topic for the month of May. My next book, which I just bought at the Women's Gathering last Saturday at Sandals Church is called, "Fear Not Tomorrow, God Is Already there; Trusting Him in Uncertain Times," by Ruth Graham. I am really looking forward to reading this book. Ruth Graham is a pretty amazing woman. She's real, and has had real trials just like most women. She's willing to share how God has changed her life and loved her unconditionally even when she has messed up. I'm sure there will be a book review on this one VERY soon, before the end of the month!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Crazy Busy!!

These last few months have flown by. This is our room mate Lori. We are pretty blessed. She is very sweet, easy to get along with, and has such an amazing giving spirit! 
Since our move we have: 
1. Completed facilitating our first round of Financial Peace University at Sandals Church.
2. Started the second group of Financial Peace University last night - as well as another group starting up Thursday that will be facilitated by graduates from the first group.
3. Colin's Soccer team won a Division 5 CIF Championship.
4. He had 4 days off and then started assistant coaching for the Girls Softball Team.
5. Eliminated the Wells Fargo Personal loan.
6. I am helping with the Women's Ministries at Sandals during the daytime, and some cool stuff is going to be happening over the next few months.
7. Kellen has successfully pooped in the toilet for the last week. (Yes, minor to most of you, but a HUGE step in the Gilliland house).
8. I completed another round of INSANITY... and will start Les Mills Pump in the coming days, and probably start running 4-6 days a week. I was running, but I've learned that when you don't feel good taking a few days off is better than being sick for a month.
9. I figured out how to use Instagram... but it's really slow on my droid. :-/

10. I have a pinterest... yeah, not sure what you really do, I just pin up cool pictures of things I like, and I think that is all you are supposed to do, but I am not sure why other people "follow," me on that. :-) Gilliland Pinterest Click Here
11. I have learned to make a few new yummy recipes, and I've taken pictures of them with my phone and/or camera but I have not blogged about them yet. :-(
12. Colin's sister Haley came to visit from New York for a whole week! Kellen instantly re-bonded with her and her friend Tyler. (So cute)
13. Easter came and went, and Sandals baptized over 300 people!!! The annual Easter Egg hunt and dinner with the Bardsley's was super fun. (Still need to post the videos!)

14. Kellen has now memorized John 3:16 and he is working on Genesis 1:31.
15. Colin has learned how to play Skipbo, pretty sure he is the first male in the family (in reference to the McDonough's) that has ever been willing to do this.
16. Bonus- Skipbo can be used as flash cards for Kellen to learn his numbers (at least 1-12)
17. Kellen is stuck on 3 books- he LOVES and must read his ABC's book every day, and his pop up book.
18. He also has to read his "Animals on the Farm" book while he sits on the potty... such a cute kid.
19. Kellen had his first "S'more" this month after he has become addicted to watching, "Sandlot." We made them with mini marshmallows on the stove. See Picture
20. Finishing up my April book, "The Wealthy Barber," and then I will write a review, and I will be on to a new book for May.

And that is all I can think of right now. I'm sure there is more, but then again, there is always more. :-)

Happy April to everyone!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Another One Bites the Dust

Well, we just paid off a student loan. With the help of our move, and our tax return, we knocked off over $4,000 in 3 months! :-) We are on our way! Only one loan left, it is large, but we have almost cut our debt in half since we started Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University less than 2 years ago!

Our next round of FPU starts the Monday after Easter at Sandals Church. We will be facilitating the class again. We were so blessed by those in our previous class, we are looking forward to making some new FPU friends and will have some help from some old FPU friends. Several people from the previous class were so impacted by the dramatic changes, that they wish to help others in their financial journey as well. I am a little bummed that Sandals was unable to get a preview video done to share with the church how much FPU has helped those that came to the class, but I know that we are still making a big impact in the lives of many families.

Any way, the count down begins. Our schedule to complete debt relief is 2016... I would LOVE to eliminate it much faster, and we probably will. Thank you to those that have been praying for us and encouraging us on our road to debt freedom!


Mindie Gilliland

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Book Review: The Richest Man In Babylon

Continuing with my goal to read one book a month (or more) I have completed the finance book called, "The Richest Man in Babylon," by George S. Clason.

I am already starting to learn a pattern between each of the three books that I have read so far. They all require life style changes in order to accomplish your financial goals, and not just "spend less money here-" fill in the blank. The setting of this book takes place in ancient Babylon when it was once one of the richest locations. The Richest Man was a man named Arkad, and through a group of tales the book takes you through different stories of men earning a living and becoming wealthy while following several principals for spending and making money.

Some of my favorite quotes from this book were:

"In those things toward which we exert our best endeavors we succeed."

"He who takes advice about his savings from one who is inexperienced in such matters, shall pay with his savings for proving the falsity of their opinions."

"Opportunity is a haughty goddess who wastes no time with those who are unprepared."

"Better a little caution, than a large regret." In terms of poor investing/loans.

"Where the determination is, the will can be found." This is a really great chapter about having hope and getting out of debt. This chapter is called, "The Camel Trader." It reminded me a lot about our situation- lots of debt, but working our way out of it.

Each chapter gave different principals (some more similar than others) on how to make and save money.

For example, one chapter had three guidelines:
1. Live on less than you earn.(Delayed gratification)
2. Seek advice from those competent.
3. Make gold (money) work for you.

There is a chapter that talks about Seven cures for a lean purse. Which then explains how to earn money, even if you don't make a lot. Another chapter discusses the five laws of Gold, following these will make you wiser (yeah, read the book to learn more). Another chapter talks about the rewards of hard work and blessings.

This was a much shorter book than my previous book, but I really enjoyed reading it. There is a little bit of Babylon history in the back of the book as well, pretty fascinating stuff. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in seeking out financial (and living) wisdom!

Financial Blessings and Health to you all!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Rose Mae Glenn

My Great Grandma Rose Mae Glenn just passed last week. I was unable to attend the funeral (it was in Fresno, CA). My uncle Tony Glenn put together a pretty cool video of some memories of her. She was almost 93 years old, she was married for 70 years, had 2 children, 3 grand children, 7 great grandchildren (I think) and 7 great great grandchildren (I think). She was a pretty amazing woman. The picture you see before the video starts is my Grammie with me (I think). Here is the video:
Thank you Uncle Tony for putting that together!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Book Review- "Good Debt, Bad Debt"

I have decided to read one non-fiction book a month (besides my Bible- I spend time with God each morning reading a chapter a day). Continued education doesn't require paying an institution in order to learn your entire life. Thank Goodness- I did enough of that. :-)
I read a book in January called, "The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant." Very simple and quick read with 12 basic principals for successful living.I highly recommend it.

Right now my focus is on eliminating debt and spending wisely, so what a better way to start than reading a book called, "Good Debt, Bad Debt" by Jon Hanson. (Thanks to my FPU buddy Josh Moreland- he is my personal finance education library!)

Each time I read a new book I would like to review it, briefly, and tell you what I learned and why you should (or should not) read this book. Though I doubt I will read many that I do not recommend, I probably wouldn't finish a bad book. 

This book talks about Good debt- debt that increases your net worth and value, and can be sold for a profit verses Bad debt that decreases your net value and is preventing you from taking control of your finances. Within the eleven chapters he talks about the effects of debt, spending verses income to determine wealth, delayed gratification in finances, retirement, insurance, real estate, why car debt kills, writing down your goals, why you and your spouse have to be on the same page financially and MANY other topics. 

These are some of the terms I learned courtesy of Jon Hanson and his book: 
Burn rate, Consumerati, Debtabetes, Econowise, McSpending, Reality income, and Wealth metrics. Sorry- you'll have to read the book to learn more about what they actually mean... hope those terms make you WANT to read the book. 

This is yet another book I wish I would have read in my high school years (it was published in 2007- so unfortunately I couldn't but I am sure there was something like it around back in high school). Here are a few things I learned: 

-A new car depreciates at a rate of $250 a month for the first 2-4 years. Buy used cars and get over thinking that your car defines you! 

-People spend on average 40% more when they use credit cards instead of cash. 

-2/3 of American's dream of retirement, yet only 1/3 actually take steps to move in that direction. (I wonder what the other 1/3 are doing).

-The 4 Effects of Debt = Loss of Freedom, Loss of Cash Flow, Loss of Time, Loss of Opportunities.

Some of my favorite Quotes: 

"There are more people with poor spending habits than we have poor people." Jon Hanson

"Debt robs a man of his self respect and makes him almost despise himself." - P.T. Barnum

"When we think we need to do as others do, many of us are afraid to stand alone." Regarding finances and spending recklessly to impress others.- Jon Hanson

"Real happiness is cheap enough, yet how dearly we pay for its counterfeit." Hosea Ballou.

This book was very helpful and encouraging. There was even some humor- including cartoon funnies to change it up every now and then. I need books like this to help remind me why we are sacrificing (even though some times it doesn't feel real hard). If you would like more information about this book please check out Jon Hanson's link:

Click here for the Good Debt, Bad Debt Website

Next on the list is, "The Richest Man in Babylon," by George S. Clason.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

New Look

I changed the look of my blog again... I think I like this one better. Today was the first day I didn't put up a picture frame or put a bed together or open up a box! We cleaned and explored the neighborhood. Kellen and I went on a 3 mile run, first run with the jogger since the beginning of January. There are a lot of hills in our neighborhood!
I'm slightly frustrated because I am missing three important items. My iPod, and sunglasses. I use these when I run. And our canon camera; we use this to take LOTS of pictures of Kellen. I have been taking some on my phone, but our camera takes better videos. Hopefully they will show up soon. They are probably somewhere in the garage.
Kellen and I went on a 1.37 mile walk on Monday (I tracked it on It actually had a little bit of jogging in it! Kellen was so cute. We would jog for a short time, and then he would say, "OK, we need to take a break." He ran about half of it. I know it's a little premature, but I can't wait till we can take "runs" together! Yesterday we went on the same course, but walked the dogs. Needless to say Kellen had a great nap yesterday, homeboy has so much energy!! I think we may need to make that a daily routine (walks).
Well, have a great week everyone!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

All moved In...

Last Wednesday, we had a pleasant and slightly nerve wrecking phone call from the property manager at the Rock Point house. I assumed they were calling to let us know they had some possible tenants that wanted to look at the house. However, the phone call was to let us know that a renter was all set up and wanted to know if we could be out of the house by Saturday. That way they could have it ready for the new tenants by February 1st. I was happy and freaking out at the same time! We would be moving on the date we wanted to, but we would have 3 days to do it! Of course as soon as I got off the phone with her, I called Colin to let him know. And then I started calling all the utility companies to cancel water, electricity, gas etc. And then I started packing right away! I had 3 days, and Thursday we would be gone for our Financial Peace University class, and Friday Colin had a soccer game. I figured, I get as much stuff packed as I could so that Saturday it was just a matter of moving everything.Saturday came quick, and Colin's brother Tymon (pic below)

and our friend Renee were GOD SENT!!! I don't know what we would have done without them! The photo of Renee is a photo of her wittiness with STUFFING a car with as much as you can. She had the massage chair underneath her while she drove, and I had the TV on my lap! Mind you since we only had 3 days to move, we didn't have much time to get boxes. The locations I usually hunt out to find boxes (furniture stores, grocery stores etc) did not have ANY boxes at all!! We moved everything in one day because of their help! Brian Henderson also showed up at our new place to help unload. It then took me about 4 days to get everything the way I wanted it.

Here are some photos of the house. Picture number one is part of our bathroom. We have a nice size tub, with a shower, 2 sinks and a toilet.
This photo is the VANITY area in the master bathroom. I get a place for all my stuff!
I needed two pictures to show you how large the closet is! It's pretty sweet. We have ALL our clothes in here, including some extra stuff to store, and all our jackets that are usually in a jacket closet elsewhere. 
This is the bedroom. The drapes were already there and they completely block out the light at night time when we go to sleep. Pretty nice.
This is Rudy... Kellen's new best friend!

This is the kitchen, most of our stuff is in the 4 cabinets farthest in the photo. 

This is the office, all our stuff fits nicely... and there is an elliptical in the corner that Lori, our room mate, lets us use. 
This is a 3 car garage so the area for the third car is where we store all the things we don't need at the moment (some kitchen stuff, my scrap book stuff, Christmas decorations and our regular garage stuff.)
A closer view of the pool, I mean tub. Kellen takes a bath in it, and we barely fill it. I think because of the shape, we actually use less water than we did at the old house!
This is the living room, no TV in here, still trying to figure out how to arrange some things. Kellen eats his meals at the little yellow table, courtesy of Aunt Carroll. 
Kellen decided to get a work out in before breakfast this morning! :-) 
This is a picture of Kellen's room. He is sleeping very well, and usually wakes up around 7:30 every morning now. And his first question usually is, "Where is Rudy?" 
We have settled in nicely. Cheaper rent and already gazelle intense on our last two debts! (Plus, no utility bills, praise the Lord!) I also have all kinds of new terrain to explore! I am looking forward to some new runs. My first run was down to the shell station to return a Red box. It was the infamous Tuscany "Hill." The one you can see from the freeway (and just about anywhere in Lake Elsinore) It wasn't so bad, and I think the change in elevation is actually less than the hill at our old house. Thank you for your prayers and advice everyone! We'll keep you posted.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Today is my mom's 24th birthday... ok not really. Her birthday is on the 24th, but she is 54 today. I hope she doesn't kill me for saying that. She is not one that allows her age to define her though. This post is a birthday tribute to my mom.

My mom, Christie Lee Olson (Glenn-Blasingame) was born on January 24th, 1958. She has lived most of her life in Southern California, until she moved to Nevada about 10 years ago. She attended Mission Viejo High School, was the first female athlete of the year, was a runner (that is where I get it from) and an all around athlete. She is married to a great husband, Robert Olson Sr, and they live a simple life working and RV'ing many days out of the year. She enjoys camping and fishing, crocheting for EEEEVVVVERRYONNNNE, she loves to talk to people and is one of the most organized people on the planet. I'm pretty sure this could be a second job- seriously, people would pay to be as organized as she is. (Why do you think I love to vacuum? It's genetic people!)

Mom is a what I like to call a quality time gift giver. For anyone that knows my mom they know she makes incredible afghan blankets, booties, hats, beanies, covers etc. I call these quality time gifts because they take a really long time to make, they are the best quality I've ever seen and she gives them to all that she loves, and those that love those that she loves. Over my life time I have received and given so many of these crocheted gifts that I have lost count. She has an amazing talent and is so selfless in her time giving to everyone.

I know first hand how selfless she is. In high school, she helped with all my sporting events; went to every t-ball game, was at the finish line of every race, and screaming her head off at every basketball game (seriously you could hear her over EVERYONE!) She's been there when I've been hurt, and sad, injured, and happy.

She is just an incredible mom. I don't tell her enough how much I love and appreciate her, something I'm trying to work on. Happy Birthday Mom. This is just a fraction of how amazing you are.

Thank you for loving me, and caring for me (and my husband and son).

Thank you for helping me to be the woman I am today.

Thank you for your unconditional love, support and encouragement.

May you have many more birthdays to come, and may they be happy ones.