all this for a 10 day trip!?!

As I rummaged through a closet looking for our snorkel gear to pack for our trip to Costa Rica (we leave tonight! WOOHOO!), I found some of our Europe “travel gear” and had to laugh. I thought that y’all might also find this entertaining.

Contents of my backpack for a 3+ month trek around Europe:
5 shirts, 3 skirts, 1 pair yoga pants, 1 pair sandals, 1 bathing suit, 1 ziplock bag of toiletries (including just the barest of essentials, not even conditioner made the cut), 1 guidebook, 20 packs of instant oatmeal (we didn’t realize what lifesavers these would be and had Jen bring us reinforcements when she met us in Spain!), a few protein bars, a raincoat, and a first aid kit. Seriously.

Contents of my Costa Rica bound suitcase: My snoogle pillow (it’s six feet long, but helps the prego back pain enough that I can actually get some sleep), pilates bands, five paperback books (deadweight in every “how to pack light” article I’ve ever read), five hardcover books (even worse!), two boxes of Hostess 100 calorie cupcakes, other healthy and protein-filled snacks to help with the Itsy Bitsy's development, all sorts of extraneous toiletries including three different types of sunscreen (no ‘washable 5’ sarah and jen- haha!). Also, there’s a notebook for making lists, my Bible, journal and travel journal. And two beach towels. And possibly snorkel gear. Oh yeah, and I tucked a couple of swim suits, sundresses and a pair of flip flops in Adam’s suitcase.

So I guess there is a similarity in all of this: I am totally fine with leaving the country for 3 months (or 10 days) with only a few things to wear! It’s good to know that I can travel light if I so choose. And maybe even better to pack an entire suitcase of non-essentials just because I can.

Though really, the most glorious part of all of this packing (and comparing) is that the countdown until we lug my brimming-with-extras suitcase to the airport is just 11 hours. Sunshine here we come!


dr. g.- soon-to-be master of the platinum grill

I'll be honest... I just wasn't sure that I'd ever get to say this. But yep, it's true.


This wild and crazy, swirly, twirly four year path has led to the dental campus three miles from our house.

And in the 'glorious middle' of this journey, the Lord has taught us about stewardship, surrender, patience, trusting Him, His provision, more about patience, and more about trusting Him. I can honestly say, I wouldn't trade the last four years of limbo for four years of control and our own way... not for anything! We are going into this next adventure with thankfulness and knowledge that, even though NONE of this 'makes sense' by worldly standards, the Lord shows His glory and His provision best in these circumstances that just don't line up with the way that seems most logical. We've seen it before, y'all. And we can't wait to see the Lord's hand in the next steps of this surprising, detour-filled journey.

And now the best news of all: if you have been waiting for the opportunity to get your very own diamond studded platinum grill, you can start your countdown. Dr. G., master of the platinum grill, will be making his grand entrance into the field of dentistry in a meer 4 years. It'll take you that long to finance one, so start saving your pennies.


empty etsy!

Sometimes I'm not the most forward thinking girl in the world (maybe moreso since I've been pregnant? Though, this has always been the case, so it's not entirely that). And so I have designed, created and listed a bunch of valentines on our etsy shop without thinking, "Oh yeah, I won't be able to ship those to people who buy them past february 2nd because we won't be in the country."

In order to empty etsy of all of these valentines in the next 5 days, I am having a 3-weeks-before-Valentine's-Day-Sale. Even with shipping, each card is only $2.50 (hopefully cheaper than your local stationary store or Target). So, if you were planning on buying a valentine for your darlin, maybe the kojodesigns' etsy shop could be your source this year???
***If you've never used etsy before, just click on the link below "my etsy shop" on this blog and it'll take you to the place where you can see the valentines available. You can make your purchases from there using paypal (and perhaps also money orders???) Oh, and if you live in denver and want to just pay cash, I will be more than thrilled to hand deliver the cards next time I see you! :)


beachy books?

*UPDATE: After Saturday's adventures, I now have in my possession quite the stack of books to pack in my Costa Rica suitcase... however, I'm still always looking for terrific book recommendations. So if you have any, be sure to let me know! :)

On Saturday, I am headed to Aurora Public Library with the mission of finding a few (or perhaps more than a few) beach books to tote along to Costa Rica for our babymoon next week. Some of my favorite beach books in the past include: The Wedding by Nicholas Sparks (thanks Jen!), Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin (thanks Trish!) and Can You Keep A Secret? by Sophie Kinsella (thanks Kiji!). I am also not opposed to more serious books (think Secret Life of Bees or Kite Runner)… And, actually, a few years ago I took the Francine Rivers Mark of the Lion series as a trio of beach reads to Mexico (though, the relentless teasing from Adam about the cover of A Voice in the Wind was enough to make me regret it… I tried and tried and cannot find a picture of this winner of a cover online, so apparently he wasn’t the only one who thought the ‘romance novel-esque’ portrayal of Atretes was a little much.)

Anyhow, I have been scouring the internet for lists of beach book recommendations, but haven’t come up with anything. Or actually, have come up with a gluttony of information… but I have no sifting mechanism to help me decide whose list to trust.

That’s where you, dear friends-who-I-can-trust-their-judgement, come in… what authors and titles should I be on the lookout for on Saturday? What are your favorite beachy reads? Like I said, I’m pretty much up for any chic lit, a serious book or two, and perhaps even a more cheesy Christian novel thrown in for kicks (one without a shirtless Atretes on the front, please). Don’t worry if you have ten (or more!) to recommend… I’d love to have a list for future snowy-with-cocoa days and poolside retreats (there will be tons of those this summer with a newborn in tote, I’m sure!) Thanks friends!


worship in "the middle"

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord taketh away, may the name of the Lord be praised.” JOB 1:21

As Adam and I have been reading through the book of Job this January, I have been so convicted and humbled by his example of unceasing worship in the most dire of circumstances.
I keep coming back to the first chapter and the way Job responded to the news that all of his wealth, and the lives of his ten children, were all taken in ONE DAY... he ripped his robe, shaved his head, and worshipped the Lord!
I, on the other hand, am such a grumbler! I petition the Lord when I’m worn out by long days at school, complain when the flip house doesn’t sell on my schedule, look toward heaven with sadness (or anger!) when our plans for dental school don’t fall into place exactly as I’d hoped. May these verses be deeply imprinted on our hearts, and may Adam and I respond with worship in each circumstance, regardless of how close or far it falls from our hopes or expectations.


double the fun

A first for us this weekend: we attended a double party. Not just a joint party where you celebrate two things (like a Jord/Kiji birthday celebration), but a party complete with two different honored guests, themes, decorations, everything. What fun! Kudos to Gwen and Heather for putting both of the parties together...
Party #1: Enchiladas, margaritas, taco bar, upstairs at Gwen and Tim's, a going away fiesta for Todd and Anna as they head to Atlanta (we'll miss y'all!!!)

Party #2: Pink cupcakes, downstairs, darts, win lose or draw (Josh's manatee udder was a sight to behold), surprise 30th birthday party for Jen, theme was "a few of her favorite things" complete with posters of her favorite food, restaurants, concert venues and even her favorite t-shirt hanging above one window.


grouchy teacher

I started this week with the best of intentions. Last week, I found out about some (more) discouraging, broken situations that a couple of my third graders are facing at home, and I resolved to offer a place of stability and safety for them in our classroom this week. I remember praying as I drove to school Monday morning that I would be able to be a voice of life, truth and grace for my students. Instead, my words have been characterized by grouchiness, I can’t seem to find any extra in my reserves of patience, and my kiddos have been making me nuts! Then, this afternoon, three of my students said the most endearing things.
R: “I made a prediction and it’s coming true! Your belly IS starting to float out past your shirt!” (Let’s hope that he means, “You’re starting to show,” not, “We’re getting a eyeful.”)
U: “Mrs. G, I am GOOD at coupons, huh?”
And then, at the end of the day, I had this conversation as I met with L to fill out her behavior form.
Me: “How do you think the day went?”
L: “Goooo-ooood.”
Me: “Yep, we did have a good day. I am so proud of you. You didn’t hit, kick, push, shove, poke or otherwise touch D all day long.”
L: “Yeah, because yesterday you told me it would be a better choice to stay away from him.”
Now I’ll be honest. I tell this darling 100 things a day, and usually all 100 of them leave my mouth and float out into the abyss, or somewhere, but certainly not into her memory. But if she’s going to choose one direction to listen to, staying away from D is a terrific one to choose. Better for D, better for her (he likes to retaliate in kind), better for the peace of our classroom, and better for those aforementioned sorely low patience reserves. Let’s just hope that she can remember this gem again tomorrow. And let’s hope that I stumble upon some extra patience and a more loving attitude. Because I much prefer the nice Mrs. G. to this grouchy one... and I'm sure my kiddos do too!
*Ok, this is too funny not to add. Today, one of my kiddos wrote, "I feel as spacktakeler as a monkey winning a trophy full of bananas." I can feel the grouchiness dissipating already...


hello world

I am in the midst of realizing, again, that the bulk of life happens in the mundane… life is made up of oatmeal with cinnamon for breakfast, cell phone chats with my sisters, Friday nights at home complete with sweats, a movie rental and takeout, funny things that my third graders say, and (for now) the constant fluttering, poking and kicking of the itsy bitsy in my tummy. I tend to be a person that loves to plan for the “big stuff”- trips, special occasions, the next step. But, I am s l o w l y learning that this culmination of in-betweens is much bigger, and much more important…

So, welcome to the chronicles of the little corner of colorado that I call home. Join me as I blog about the little surprises, detours, and quirks that make life into the glorious adventure that it is.