1 Year!


We made it!  Friday morning, at 6:04 a.m. to be exact, Riley Faye completed her first year of life!



You have had quite the year.

You started like this in Frankfort KY…


You have moved homes twice in your first year and even changed states!

You have learned to crawl, and crawl quickly!

You are pulling up on everything you can find.

You have smiled more than I ever thought possible for one little girl.

You have brought lots of love and sweetness into our home.

You entered the world almost 11 pounds, and at the close of your first year you’re right at 30 pounds.  You get it girl!

You have tasted a lot of different foods and haven’t found any that you don’t like.

You sleep like a champ!

You have 10 TEETH!

You love people, nothing makes you happier than having a friend by your side.

Your brother loves to play with you, and typically plays right on top of you.

You are pretty patient…sort of.  We all have our limits.

You ended your first year like this…




It’s safe to say, you love your sweets!  You fit into our family perfectly!

Your Yaya, Pops, & Gammie celebrated your big day with us.



Your Mimi & Poppi had plans to come but something crazy happened…

It snowed on your birthday!  In Georgia of all places!



Riley, our courageous and big hearted girl.  We love you!  Thank you for a FULL year and for embracing the adventure with us.  We wouldn’t want it any other way!

Your crazy family…Dad, Mom, & Colby






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Greatest Christmas Present…Ever!


Gold, frankincence, and myrhh.

In our family, we have decided to use these three gifts as a framework for our Christmas shopping each year.  Gold, something special that you wouldn’t get everyday.  Frankincense is a perfume, so like perfume is for the body we purchase something for the body; clothes, shoes, etc.  And myrhh was an annointing oil, so we choose something “spiritual”; devotion book, Bible, music, etc.

These three gifts have been great to keep us from going crazy shopping and also gives us a few fun categories to choose from.  Most years I feel like we have come out pretty even in the giving realm.  I give Trey something good, he gives me something good.  Not this year.  This year my man hit it out of the park!

The best gifts are those you don’t see coming.  Not the ugly Christmas sweater kind, but the “you really understand me!” kind.  My gold this year…it was one of those kind of gifts to me.  Do you want to know what he got me?


If we are friends on Facebook you have probably seen me post a thing or two about DWTS.  Let’s just say I’m kind of a fan…

Dance + Reality TV + All the Feels = Fabulous Monday Nights!

So, Christmas morning when I opened up a box of tickets to see some of my favorite dancers, LIVE, you can imagine I freaked out a bit.  And I freaked out even more when I learned we’d be doing this New Years Eve!

That’s right, Trey and I dropped the kiddos off at Yaya & Pop’s house and we headed to ATL on New Years Eve!


We had an awesome dinner out, just the two of us, and then headed to the theatre!  Y’all, I was a wreck of excitement.  I saw Backstreet Boys when I was in the 5th grade and I felt that excitement all over again!  I told Trey on the way in if I went a bit “fan girl” when they came out on stage I was sorry in advance.


And then it happened!  The lights dimmed, we were told to take our seats, the show was about to begin!  And out they came…Sharna, Lindsey, Val, Artem, Emma, Gleb, Kio, and even Laurie (Olympic Gymnast and DWTS winner!)  I didn’t even know what to do.

We took Colby to see Daniel Tiger Live a few months ago and he just screamed and goofy laughed for like the first 2 minutes of the show because he just couldn’t understand seeing in real life what he’d watched on t.v. for so long…that was pretty much me at the beginning of the show.

A few minutes in I caught my breath as Trey told me I was going to have to sit back in my seat, ha!  And the show continued.


I took a few pictures that turned out like poo…


But, because I was there the pictures trigger those memories for me so I’m posting them here for reference in the future.

There is nothing quite like watching a show live in the theatre!  I love everything about dance.  Not because I’m a dancer (if you saw my sisters and I Zumba on Facebook you already know this, haha).  Because it does not come “easy” to me, I have such an appreciation and respect for those who can do it and do it well!

And let me tell you, the dancers we saw on New Years Eve were awesome!  If you watch the show, can I just tell you how much better Sharna & Val are in real life?!  I’ve never actually voted for anyone during the season, but I may just have to start this year.

I’ll even brag on Trey, what a trooper he was for taking me to such a “me” show!  He only checked the score of the games once!

We attempted a picture in front of the FOX sign after the show, and it definitely left something to be desired.  It was raining, cold, windy, and well you get it…


After the show we returned home to an empty house!


Lest you think we were party animals this New Years Eve, let me confess that we were asleep before midnight.  We may have had a great night out but lets not get crazy!

And, Trey, if you are reading this…you’ve raised the bar my man.  Cannot wait to see what you’ve got planned for next Christmas!


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Pick a Word Any Word


Stretch, a few short days into 2016 and I didn’t think my stomach could be stretched any further.

Stretch, if only my baby girl would be born so I could stretch down and tie my own shoes.

Stretch, would the stretch marks across my stomach remain forever after baby was born?!

This short simple word etched its way into my mind last year at the start of 2016.  Fast forward to a few short days after Riley’s birth as I sat in my car crying post baby tears and several other emotions to a dear friend on the phone.  Our family had just been approached about the idea of moving to Western KY.  As I processed what all the year might bring I said, rather sarcastically…

“Maybe my word for 2016 should be stretch.  I mean I’ve seen how far my belly can be stretched so maybe the Lord wants to stretch me even further…”

And for the next 365 days, the stretching continued.  The Lord showed me when I thought I had given all I could, I could give a little more.  When I was ready for certain newborn days to pass, He’d stretch me a little more.  When I was ready to “settle” into our Western KY home, he was ready to stretch me a bit further.  A simple word I carried with me throughout the year kept me alert and watching for the ways of my Father.

Nothing special about the word, but He used it to help me see.  Help me see more of who He is.  More of what He desires to do with His children.  And then, during the Christmas season I read these words used to describe what the Angel said to Joseph as he explained to Joseph that Mary was with child…

“– what is stretching Mary’s skin is God.  What is always stretching us is God.”

This was the perfect closure for me as I finished my year with the word stretch.  Each and every moment of stretching this year was God.  He brought the stretching, He prepared me for the stretching, and He carried me through the stretching.  What a good good Father.

I realize now as we have welcomed 2017 that the stretching is not finished for me (or you).  But, I do not feel like stretch should be my word for 2017.  In fact, a wise friend of mine advised I pick a word like “settle, happy, or easy…” for 2017. Ha!

While I’m tempted to take that advise, another word has made it’s way to the surface of my mind over the past several days.

A word that helps me remember where the Lord has brought me so far.  A word that gives me hope and expectation for the future.  A word that will help me to be right where I am today.


-hold (someone) closely in ones arms, especially as a sign of affection.

-accept and support something willingly and enthusiastically.

Let’s start with the first definition.  I desire to embrace others this year.  My handsome husband, my sweet (most of the time) babes, my family, community, etc.  I want to out love those who love me most.  I want my husband and my kids to think “shew, my momma (wife) is crazy about me!”  Because, I am!

And now the second definition, no doubt about it the stretching of 2016 has brought with it plenty of things for me to embrace.  Embrace the change.  Embrace our new normal.  Embrace our next season.  Embrace our new community.  But what I love most is when I embrace, it leaves no room for doubt, second guesses, shoulda coulda’s…

No, an embrace is done willingly and enthusiastically!


Even as I bring this post to a close, I am excited.  Not an unrealistic excitement that thinks I could eat brownies all day and never gain a pound (because wouldn’t that be the best?!).  But an excitement that looks forward to a new year, a continued opportunity to EMBRACE all the Lord has in store!

We’re only on the second day of 2017, it’s not too late to pick your word!


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Christmas Re-Cap

It’s been a few days, but the fog of Christmas activities and celebration is just beginning to lift.  It’s safe to say, we had a great Christmas season!  We celebrated Christmas morning, just the 4 of us, in our new home.


It was our first year to have a “kid” in our home at Christmas.  A kid who woke us up at 6 a.m. ready to rush downstairs and see what Santa brought.  (We are still working through what we are going to believe about Santa…)

Baby sister decided to sleep her normal routine this Christmas so we decided to exchange our presents for each other and let Colby open his before she awoke.


Not to worry, Riley was up in time for breakfast and smiles!


Yaya & Pops headed further south to visit family this year and left their presents with us before they went.  The kiddos loved their horses this year!  And in true “Christmas morning” fashion the boxes and toys were opened quickly and put together, batteries and all.



Not long after our Christmas morning we loaded up the car and set off to join the Ballou side of the family in KY!


The weather was beautiful, the kiddos were angelic, and the roads were empty!  It was truly the perfect time to travel.

We made it to KY and the celebrations continued.


Colby and his “big kid” cousins enjoyed a Christmas movie night while the baby cousins slept and grown ups chatted.


There was celebrating and presents at Papaw D.L.’s house…


And more the next morning at Mimi & Poppi’s house.


Our hearts are full, and so are our stomachs.  Our kiddos (and us) are spoiled by all the love we received this year and now eagerly anticipating the new year!

In fact, Trey and I are hitting the town tonight!  I will be receiving one of my Christmas gifts as we bring in the new year…more on that later!

But before we do the countdown to 2017, I am also spending the afternoon getting my resolutions in order.  Are you?

Here are the categories I am thinking in:

Physically- Fitness goals. Eating goals. Etc.

Spiritually- Bible reading.  Prayer time. Etc.

Personally- “Me” projects…books I want to read, things I want to write, etc.

Community- Neighbors, Church, etc.

Family- Hubby, Kiddos, Etc.

I don’t expect a resolution to change me, the Lord is doing this daily.  But I am a firm believer that, “if you aim for nothing you will hit it every time.”  And well, in 2017 I plan to aim for something.


A word for 2017!

Check out some of my previous blog posts from January 2015 & 2016 to find out more on this.  I plan to post my word “next year”, so check back!  And pick a word for yourself as well!  I’d love to hear what you choose.

Happy New Years Eve!


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It’s the Holiday Season


It’s the last Wednesday before Christmas.  This time next week, Christmas 2016 will be a memory.  So, I have to ask you, how are you doing?

How are you doing controlling those expectations and finding joy?  How are you doing embracing the moment?  How are you doing setting your hearts on Jesus and looking forward with great anticipation to His birth?

I confessed in my last post that Christmas concerts and events were not on the calendar for us this year.  But much to my surprise, two nights in a row the Salter home has had Christmas activities…with their own personal flair that is.

Sunday night Colby and I enjoyed a date night!  A date night I had to ask him multiple times to go on with me.  We had a fine dining experience of cheeseburgers and chicken mcnuggets in the car.


As we had our dinner for two in the car my sweet boy said, “Mom, does it make your heart happy that I came on a date with you and you are not by yourself?”

Yes, crazy Colby, spending time with you makes my heart happy.

What was all this car eating about?  Well Colby and I attended the NewSong Christmas concert at FBC Woodstock.  I had very low expectations as to how long we might stay at the concert, but I was ready for some festivities.


Turns out, a room of Christmas lights and great music is enjoyable to a kid as well!  Oh and cookies, pretzels, pens, and notebooks help too!


This concert loving momma and 3 yr old boy made it all the way to intermission!  And we even took some time to ride the escalators before we went home.  To top it off, on the car ride home Colby told me when he gets bigger he is going to play the drums on stage and everyone is going to clap for him.  Maybe we will have a musician in the family after all!

The festivities continued Monday night as well.  We took the kiddos to Santa’s House!  Did you know Santa lives about 8 minutes from us and has Christmas decorations in his yard AND a drive in movie screen?

In our matchy matchy Christmas colors the 4 of us went down the road for an opportunity to meet Santa.  Being new to the area we were not prepared for the crowd that would also be ready to see Santa.  So…

After receiving a ticket with a number on it as to when we would meet Santa, we quickly realized the little girl in our family would turn into a grimlin before seeing the man in red.  So we returned to our house and dropped off daddy and grimlin, I mean daughter.  And another festive night occurred for mom & boy.



A trip to the porter potty, because when your little one says he has to go, you go!  Did you know Santa has Christmas lights in his potty?!


He also had elves who paint faces.  They were disguised as friendly high school girls working for community service hours.


And after quite a bit of anticipation we had one ecstatic little boy who stayed up past his bed time and met Santa for the first time ever.


It’s the Holiday Season y’all!  Don’t miss it, intermissions and all!

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