Monday, June 28, 2010

prayers needed.

I was surfing Facebook tonight and came across a cause that I was invited to join, titled,
Hope for Alex.  When I read further, I remembered the mother (of Alex) from childhood and learned that her son was diagnosed with Leukemia this May.  To imagine this little one dealing with such uncomfortable pain, breaks my heart. Imagining this mother's agony over her son's pain, shifted my entire day from frazzled, busy, irritated mother, to I couldn't ever hold my own children enough.  It is a tender position we fill as mothers.  A fine line we walk as we rear, fall-apart, celebrate, teach, learn.  It is a give and receive that I couldn't imagine having taken. 

May the Lord cradle this baby as he toughs through this illness.  May God comfort his family and keep them strong and courageous.  This sort of thing never makes sense, but prayers soothe, comfort, and strengthen.  Prayers heal.

Last night one of Husband's business partners had a stroke.  We learned today that it was pretty severe as he's torn an artery in his brain.  Last we heard, the doctors weren't sure how to go about the operation.  They haven't a protocol for this sort of operation.  They are stunned that Dwinnen is doing as well as he is.  He hasn't lost any mobility, speech, memory.  A miracle.  Truly.  Prayers heal.

Today I also learned that a beautiful blogger's test-results came back cancer-free.  Prayers heal. 

I believe God yearns to hear our prayers, and He's waiting to be asked for miracles.  Of course His reasoning surpasses our plans and wishes.  Regardless, He is a healer and the granter of miracles.

I believe in prayers.
I believe in miracles.


Saturday, June 26, 2010

A wish list {part 3}

homemade ice cream

2010 Motocross Championship in Washougal, Wa.
The very place that Husband took me on our first date
five long years ago.

enjoy a coffeehouse reading

a Long Beach, WA 4th of July.

give this childhood play furniture
(stove, fridge, table, etc. included) an overhaul.

credits 1, 2, 3, 4

Click here to see the first and second installments of this
wish list of things to do before my 28th birthday.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Coming up for air

I can hardly believe that it is Thursday night!  I believe this is the first time that I've been on Blogger all week, even to read!  The days have tumbled by since last weekend as we were busy with various engagements.  Saturday night, Husband and I met with Husband's siblings in Portland.  After quite a bit of city walking, we cozied in for a late dinner at On Deck, a sports bar & grill in the Pearl District. Sunday night, we attended a 30th birthday party which included a limo, good friends, good eats and drinks around a grand piano at a great restaurant overlooking the city. 

We even had a rainbow view of the city that day!

 Thanks to Jeremy.

We have the best friends.

{Tiffany & Brandon}

{Husband and I}

{Birthday Boy Ben}

{Melody & her brother Shawn Lewis--better known as the front man of Hyper Static Union.
This man can rock.  And so can she.  She sang at my wedding.}
{Brittany & Jeremy}

{Ben & Mel}

And then the week took over.  I've been working like I've never worked in my married life since I've had kids!  Yes, I am a stay-at-home-mama, but I also take care of the books for my husband's general contracting business, and write.  But this week was different as we have hired a specialist to teach me a thing or two about my Quickbooks and help me get some things more organized.  So, time gets tight around these parts, and this week--well there's hardly been time for a break!  Husband could hardly take me seriously when I told him that I was feeling burned out earlier tonight.  I'm used to a whole other kind of work--the kind that involves hugs, kisses, meals and baths, not nine hours in front of a computer and sorting files.  He's used to working twelve hour days if need be, and dreaming work in his sleep at times.

On top of this brain-puzzling stress, the sun has finally shown up in this region!  I was afraid we were going to have to wait till next year!  To be inside all day is a bit unfortunate, but is the small price I pay to be the wife of a successful business owner, whom I am immensely grateful! Plus, it is nice to be needed. 

Now, I will wind down with the memoir I am reading called, Please Stop Laughing at Me by Jodee Blanco.  It's a memoir of peer abuse, and I am excited to find out how she overcomes her ordeal.  Tomorrow is one more day hard at it and then I'll do like all the other hard working people and kick back and enjoy the weekend--more than ever.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Then there were two...

Brooklynn: "It's okay if he wears them," she says helping him into her pajamas. 
Me: "Oh, good.  That's so nice of you."
Brooklynn: "Asher you want a hair clip?"
Asher: "Yeah, hair clip."
{Impressed with Minnie}
Asher: "I go show Dad."
Me: "Okay.  Let's go," I say following him down the stairs.
And we are in the clear.
He's out cold.
No one gets in trouble tonight.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Metropolitan Goodness

Last week, my sis, the kiddos and I drove down into Portland for some metropolitan fun! We took the kids to Powell's, "the largest independent bookstore in the world," and let them search around for a minute in the kiddie section. Afterward, we went across the street and drooled every bit of the store, Anthropologie. I have since signed up for their catalog and am enamored that I can have their eye-candy delivered to my mailbox free of charge! Go here if you are interested, too.

When keeping the our eyes on the kiddos in the "hands in your pocket store" became tiresome, we hopped back in the car to head to my favorite and only cupcake shop that I have ever visited~

And it only took us thirty minutes to find the place which was a few blocks away! This was mainly because it is tucked in between blocks of homes and offices. We did circle upon circle and back and forth on the one way streets. By the end, my Sis and I couldn't help but laugh. All those streets and gas in the name of cupcakes! It was a tad tricky find, but well worth it.

{A Vanilla with Strawberry Buttercream, mmm}

{My Brooklynn}

{My oldest sis, Tammy}

{My Asher}

{Yours Truly}

{My nephew, Austin}

As you can see the Vanilla cupcake with Strawberry Buttercream was the top pick of the group. I, however, cannot get over the Vanilla cupcake with Toasted Coconut Cream. It is divine, and it is the cupcake that I can count on each time adventure takes me to this sweet little shop.

p.s. Did you know Saint Cupcake does singing telegrams?! How cute!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Big Question

If book is in the title, I definitely stop to read the post. I just made a jaunt over to the English Muse, and read her latest post, Which Books Changed Your World. The subject alone makes me swoon, because as you know, I love books. In fact, I love them so much, that last night as I added two more to my bed-side table, I wondered if I have a book-hoarding problem? Hmm...who really knows. Can one really have too many books? I think not. So there went that issue.

While I was over at the English Muse, I was excited about two things. First, have you heard about the Twitter stream #booksthatchangedmyworld? It is fun to scroll through to see what books have changed people, and which ones have significantly impacted people over and over again. Because, you see, I am always after a book that could do a number on me. You, too? The second thing that I was excited about is that I got to add the book that changed my world, that hadn't yet been listed, to the English Muse's growing comments.

I responded:

"It was almost ten years ago that Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard changed my life. I finally began to realize that all the questions I had concerning my life and the religious upbringing I had--were valid questions (of my own). She doesn't necessarily speak to much of this subject but she does illuminate the mystery that often fills in the gray space of our lives. Also she pays high tribute to the beauty and intricacy in our lives. I think I am in need of a re-read!!

p.s. Anything by Annie Dillard is a must."

So there you have it. Annie Dillard changed my life, and is the only author that I can say is my favorite thus far, for that very reason. I've read many books, but no one moves the way Annie Dillard writes. Have you read anything by her? I definitely recommend Pilgrim at Tinker Creek for your summer reading list!

In the spirit of life-changing books, and with my summer reading list in mind, I will ask the same question as the English Muse.

Which Books Have Changed Your World?

image via

p.s. I failed to mention it then, but I will now. The Bible tops the charts for me. It is in a category of its own, and changes lives. every. single. day.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Sister Adventures

My Sis and I are heading out for a day of


With no little ones!

I have two goals before I embark on this special occasion:

1) Only buy what I can't live without

2) Get some good deals!

I'm sure these are the goals of most shoppers, but I am no expert shopper. Mainly because I have very little time to do it, and especially to do so toddler-free! I'll be sure to let you know if I have success!

Friday, June 11, 2010

The winner of the Maya Angelou book is...


She said,

I have many lights in my life. It's hard to choose just one. I also have MANY favorite quotes, but here are a couple from Maya Angelou that I love. I bet she was amazing to see in person!

"Self-pity in its early stages is as snug as a feather mattress. Only when it hardens does it become uncomfortable."

"I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You've got to go out and kick ass."

June 8, 2010 7:55 AM

Keri, please send me your address to

Thank you all for playing! It was fun reading your comments about the special people in your life and the quotes that inspire you!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

And Still I Rise

This will be short. My family and I are busy having too much fun with my oldest sis, Tammy, and her four boys, who are here visiting from Montana. I will definitely be back to post updates on the adventures of our week. Hope yours is going wonderfully!

For those of you who didn't already see, I am currently hosting a
Maya Angelou poetry giveaway! Go here for the details.
You have until Friday at 12pm to enter.
Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Maya Angelou Sings

Last Wednesday, I joined two friends from my teenage years for a special occasion. First we met for salads at the delicious eatery, Pizzacato, then crossed the bridge into downtown Portland for an evening at the Schnitzer Concert Hall. There we were, along with 2500 or so others, waiting for the wise words of the "global renaissance woman," and Pulitzer prize nominee, who is

Maya Angelou.

As the Schnitzer curtains opened, an urgent hush fell over the audience. It's not every day that one can hear first-hand the words of such an experienced and accomplished woman. She stood standing as the claps creshendoed, plateaued, and then calmed.

she spoke poetry.

It's as though her words traveled down from the stage and up the balcony into my life, and it's as if I'd seen those very things she spoke of with my very own eyes,
because the poetry of
Maya Angelou
inspires such soul movement.

"This little light of mine...
I'm gunna let it shine..."

she sang unexpectedly.

Then she began to unfold stories of truth, promise and inspiration;
stories of her Uncle Willie, "black, poor, crippled," who had lived in such a way that even white men were encouraged by his words and had gone from being poor wee-ones in North Carolina, into the political world.

"How dare we not realize the power each one of us has?"

"How dare we say, I cannot be a light for you?"

"This little light of mine...
I'm gunna let it shine..."

she sang again, with the final word trailing.

Interwoven throughout her lesson on the power and the inspiration that each one of us withholds, whether we realize or not, were more gems of wisdom.

"Go to poetry,"
she said.
"It has saved my life.
We look to laptops and the Internet. What if they go down?"

She referenced Paul Laurence Dunbar's poem "Sympathy,"
and Daisy Bates as, "an American treasure."
She mentioned her Inaugural poem for President Clinton.

"Courage," she says,
"is the most important of the virtues.
Without courage you can't practice any other virtue consistently."

"This little light of mine,
I'm gunna let it shine..."

She closed with these encouraging words~
"If you are asked to do something good--always say yes.
Then pray."

"This little light of mine,
I'm gunna let it shine.
This little light of mine,
I'm gunna let it shine.
This little light of mine,
I'm gunna let it shine.
Let it shine,
let it shine,
let it shine..."

Applause and a standing ovation followed,
and then the curtain closed.

Because she's an American legend, and because
I, too, believe poetry can save lives,
by Maya Angelou.


To enter this giveaway you can do any of these things (in separate comments):

1) Tell me of he or she who has been a "little light" in your life and why in a comment.
2) Share with me your mantra or a favorite quote in a comment.
3) Blog about this giveaway on your blog and comment below.
4) Become a follower if you haven't already and comment below.

Good luck! I can't wait to read your comments!
Giveaway closes Friday, June 11, at 12pm.

Winner announced shortly after.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

a subliminal message

Notes from the baker:

If you should ever need fish cookies, do not start the process the morning of they are needed. Especially when they are needed at noon, for a party at a very nice restaurant, AND you've never used royal icing before.
Also, I'd like to suggest you have a sitter while you are creating such a mess in your kitchen and if you must deliver said cookies. Period.

And now the reason for the sweet treats--besides the fact that the party was Hawaiian themed, and that this family wants me to make sugar cookies for every possible occasion:

Dear Friend Since Second Grade,

I've made these for you today to remind you that there are plenty of fish in the sea. Well, mainly to remind you he's a douchebag, isn't cutting it, and never will. I know I've already tried to sugar-coat this matter before, when I gave you my copy of He's Just Not that Into You, almost five years ago, with some heart sugar cookies and lots of love--but it apparently wasn't enough. Wait you didn't lose that did you? I suspect one is in need of a re-read.

So here I've done it again--sending you sweet subliminal messages in cookie form, with hopes that your 27th year brings you a new school of fish to flounder around with, and finally a great catch!

Looking forward to a keeper!

Your friend forever,


Tuesday, June 1, 2010


I've put a new stash of treasures in the shop!
Also, one of my bookmarks is up for grabs today on the lovely blog
as part of her HUGE line-up of anniversary giveaways!
Skip on over to see how to enter.

{summer blooms}

{daisy duke}

{unconditional love}
HapPy ThUrsDay!

a young trainee

I hope you had yourself a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

We celebrated with a weekend at the beach. Unfortunately, we were rained in a lot of the time.
But the time that we weren't, we hit up some yard sales--it was Long Beach's annual City Yard Sale. I wish I had some pictures of our finds, but I don't right now, and the best pick is still at the beach. We didn't want to transport it in the rain.

We also engaged in some go-cart races, horseshoes, potato launching, fishing and crabbing without any catches, and quite a bit of teasing. The teasing--it's a McCully thing.
Well, actually all of it.

The make-up of a McCully man consists primarily of two things:

the outdoors and teasing (oh, and camo).

Here is a young trainee:

Asher with Uncle's lab puppies, Phoenix and Busco

This little man couldn't have had himself a better weekend.

New red rain boots, dogs, the outdoors--he was a happy little guy.

Even a little adventurous, too. While I was filling his milk cup, he decided to head for the beach without telling any one of twenty of us. My mother's intuition led me to the trail to the beach where I looked and didn't see anything. I continued to look around the driveway and the neighbor's while the others looked around the house and campers. Sure enough, a couple minutes later, in the distance, I saw him bobbing down the trail, heading home, crying, in his bright red boots.

I think it dawned on him that he should stick with mama.

However, I believe this is just the beginning.

He's started thinking he's a smidge invincible, and I have the feeling that he's not going to let up for another fifteen or sixteen years--if I am lucky? This might have something to do with the fact that his uncle has encouraged him to jump to him from every high point on the property i.e. the top of his car, shelves, from the top of the smoker. And the boy does so happily. I am not sure he has any fear? And his uncle--we're already planning all the things we will do with his child that is currently forming in the womb. We're going to do like he's done and bring his wee one coke and candy every time we visit.

Signing off-


“You must write every single day of your life... You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads... may you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world.” ― Ray Bradbury
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