The Last 7 Years…

Since my son was born, I have found myself going through a lot of old photos. My intention of this was really just to see how much my son ended up looking like me. But as I’ve perused different photos, I found myself going down memory lane, and really thinking back to the last 7 years and the experiences that have helped mold me as the person I am today.

In September of 2014, I met an 18 year old boy in Spanish class. He was kind, polite and a little nosey. I didn’t know it then that he would one day be my husband. ❤️

I didn’t intend to meet my future husband in Spanish class. I actually signed up for the class so I could prepare for a mission trip to the Dominican Republic in February of 2015. This trip changed my life. I learned how to be grateful for the things I have, like an indoor shower, a floor and air conditioning. I also grew more in love with helping others and teaching children. 🖍

In the fall of 2016, I became a lead preschool teacher for 3 year olds. I graduated from community college in the Spring of 2016 and instead of heading straight to a university, I decided to take a gap year and gain some experience in my field. It was wonderfully challenging to say the least. Everyday was an adventure. From potty training, to positive child guidance, to sickness, to coloring on the wall, to giggle fits, to Disney dance parties; it was enjoyable and one of the best years of my life.

While planning my classroom that fall I also planned my wedding. Talk about a lot on your plate all at once. Charles proposed in August and we got married in mid November. A beautiful fall wedding that wonderfully captured our love for God and love for each other. 💒

In Spring of 2018, I decided to go back to school to further my education. I had already received an Associates in Early Childhood Education and an Associates in General Studies at community college. My next step was to a university for a Bachelors in Child and Family Development.

While studying for my Bachelors, I hit a little bump in the road and got pregnant. Though it wasn’t planned, we were excited and ready to venture into parenting. Sadly our first pregnancy came to an end at 11 weeks.

After my first miscarriage, I started writing my blog, and sharing my story to cope with my grief and help others. I had the opportunity to get published in a magazine, and start a blogging platform on WordPress and Instagram.

After my second miscarriage, I got involved in advocacy work on my college campus. Even though I didn’t agree with everything that was taught, I did learn the fundamentals of what it means to be an advocate, overcoming trauma and standing up for what you believe in

After many twists and turns, I finally graduated with my Bachelors in Child and Family Development. I may have graduated in a pandemic, which certainly wasn’t planned, but I was able to finish my education and start my new career.

Shortly after graduating and getting back into my field of teaching and child care, I decided to work on a new project. I wrote and illustrated a children’s book about miscarriage and grief.

In August of 2020, my mothering heart was longing for a baby. And though we had decided to hold off trying for a baby, we decided to try adopting and caring for a kitten. We went to a local cat cafe where we met Breadstick. This little 4 month old kitten worked his way into our laps and our hearts. We adopted him on a Friday afternoon, renamed him Rocky, and the rest is history.

On Mother’s Day of 2020, my husband and I decided to try again one more time. We prayed and hoped and waited for a baby. Our trying to conceive journey lasted a year and was full of ups and downs, negative test after test until finally we got out positive.

Pregnancy after suffering two losses was not easy. I worried constantly about the unknown, the past and things I couldn’t control. Thankfully with faith, prayer and encouragement I learned to be thankful for pregnancy and appreciate each moment as it came.

During my pregnancy, I mentally and emotionally prepared for my upcoming roll of motherhood. I leaned on other mom friends as well as my mom as I prepared for the journey ahead.

Giving birth was one of the most life changing experiences of my life. No things did not go as planned as I did not plan on being induced or being in labor for 3 days. But with the support of Jesus, family, friends and my medical team… I realized what my body was capable of and I had the strength to give birth to my beautiful miracle baby.

On January 2nd I became a mom, a mom earth-side that is. I’m not just a mom, but I’m a mom to two angel babies as well as one pretty incredible rainbow baby.


These last 7 years have been amazing, stressful, exhausting, entertaining, relaxing, memorable, wonderful, hilarious, beautiful and challenging. I love my life. It is exactly like and nothing like I had pictured. As a 19 year old girl, taking classes at a community college, to a new mom, with an education in children… I have to say, so far my life has turned out pretty great.

A Look Back at What I Wrote a Year Ago

One year ago, I wrote out a list. This list was how I hoped to see myself a year later. I thought it would be fun to take a look back at how my life was, how it is now, and if things turned out the way I was hoping.


Recently, I was doing some journaling and I thought, why not make a plan of how I hope things are for us this time next year… so I did. 

On this Day Monday April 26th, 2021, what our life looks like now:

Married to Charlie for 4 years

Live in a 1 bedroom apartment 

Own 2 cars 

Been at my job for 1 year 

Have had 2 miscarriages 

Spent a year of trying to conceive so far.

Have a 13 month old kitten named Rocky

Written 1 children’s book 

Published 1 children’s book 

Written memoir 

Not vaccinated with Covid vaccine yet.


How I hope to see our life a year from now…

Married for 5 years Yes!

In process of moving to a 2 bedroom apartment No, we are staying where we are.

Own one car Yes!

Been at my job for 2 years No, only 1 year and 9 months.

Have had 2 miscarriages Yes

Spent 16 months trying to conceive then finally got pregnant. No. We only spent a year of trying.

7 months pregnant No. My baby is almost 4 months old!

Have Rocky and another 10 month old kitten. No. We only have Rocky right now. 1 baby and 1 kitty is enough.

Published 2 children’s books No. Not yet.

Published memoir No. Almost!

Fully vaccinated Yes!

Starting the beginning steps of becoming a foster parent. No. Not at this time.


My life isn’t exactly how I thought it would be a year later, and that’s okay. In fact, I believe it’s better than I ever expected. ❤️

A Recap of 2021

2021 was overall a good year. There were some changes, some things that remained the same, some let downs, some celebrations and a lot of growth. The biggest thing that happen was God blessing us with the opportunity to start a family, and we are over the moon thankful. ❤️

A Recap for 2021

January
  • Published Mackenzie Goes to Heaven Coloring Book
February
  • My Hubby turned 25!
March
  • My Kitty Rocky turned 1!
  • Changed shifts and became an opener at my job.
  • I celebrated 1 year at my job as a lead preschool teacher.
April
  • Started writing my second children’s book.
  • Paid off my car.
  • Bought a new car.
  • Got Pregnant with our Rainbow Baby. 🌈
May
  • Started Growing Avocado Trees
  • Celebrated Teacher Appreciation Week with my fellow teachers!
  • Celebrated my first Mother’s Day pregnant.
  • We had our dating ultrasound and got to see Baby Bear for the first time.
  • Told my family and close friends I was expecting.
June
  • Made our Big Announcement that our Rainbow Baby was on the way!
  • Made it to the 2nd trimester in my pregnancy!
  • We had sequential screening done and got to see Baby Bear again!
  • Started craving lemons and pickles. Had a feeling we were expecting a Boy.
July
  • Started feeling Baby flutters
  • Won the Dustpan Award for the cleanest classroom at work.
  • Celebrated Rocky’s 1 year adoption!
August
  • Heard Baby Bear’s heartbeat using a Doppler for the first time.
  • Had our anatomy scan and gender reveal. We were excited to find out we were having a Baby Boy!!! 💙
  • I turned 26!
September
  • Went on a Fall themed Girl’s Getaway with my friends Alli and Andrea.
  • Told myself it was okay to start buying baby items.
October
  • Held a virtual Baby Book Party!
  • Honored my babies on Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day
  • Started Decorating the Nursery.
  • Made it to the third trimester!
November
  • Tested Positive for Covid, and had to be quarantined for two weeks
  • Got diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes and was bumped up to a high risk pregnancy.
  • Celebrated 5 years of marriage with my husband.
December
  • Packed our bags for the hospital and prepared for Baby Boy’s arrival.
  • Had our last ultrasound and discovered that Baby Boy has long thick hair.
  • Got diagnosed with thyroid problems associated with pregnancy.
  • Took a few maternity photos.
  • Went on maternity leave.
A Recap of My 2021 Goals
  • Publish My Memoir ❌
  • Pay off my Car ✔️
  • Receive my FLE Certification ❌
  • Lose 20 lbs. ❌
  • Buy a New Car ✔️
  • Publish a Second Children’s Book ❌
  • Read the entire Bible ❌
  • Start a Family ✔️
  • Pay Off My Credit Card ❌
  • Publish a Self Care Journal ❌

Merry Christmas 2021

Merry Christmas to all our friends and family! This is our last Christmas as a family of 3… and yes I am including Rocky in our little family. This year I was very hopeful that our Baby Bear would have a Christmas birthday but that just wasn’t meant to be. It’s okay. We know he’ll come when he is good and ready.

This year has been a little crazy, but Charles and I feel so blessed for everything God has taught us this year.

I unfortunately didn’t get to making Christmas cards this year because Christmas just kinda snuck up on me and I ran out of time.

From our family to yours, we hope you have a very Merry Christmas!

– The Rhames (Charles, Kaylee, Baby Bear and Rocky!

Happy Gotch-Ya-Day Rocky!

One year ago today, my husband and I adopted our fur baby Rocky! This little boy has been such a joy to have in our lives. He makes everyday an adventure, and constantly shows us unconditional love. About 6 weeks or so after we adopted him, we noticed he had a very crooked front leg. We took him in to see the vet, and all is good. It’s likely some sort of injury that happened after birth. It doesn’t seem to bother him or stop him from running, jumping, playing fetch and being his silly crazy self. We love you Rocky! Thank you for choosing us to be your family! 🐾

10 Signs You’re a Crazy Cat Parent

1. You Have Separation Anxiety When You are Away From Your Cat.

Do you worry about your cat being home alone while you are running errands or at work? Do you wonder if they will be on their best behavior or they will get lonely, if you are never there? If so, then you might be a crazy cat parent.

2. You Rearrange Your Schedule So You Can Spend More Time With Your Cat.

Do you sometimes stay home for no other reason then to spend time with your cat? After a long week of working, do you look forward to spending time with your cat on the weekend? If so, you may be a crazy cat parent.

3. You Talk to Your Cat, and Wait for Your Cat to Respond.

It is true that often times, pets are the best therapists. But not everybody has actual conversations with their pets and waits for them to respond. I am going to make a little confession. Sometimes, my kitty Rocky and I have conversations, and I indeed do wait for him to respond. If you also do this, then you too may be a crazy cat parent.

4. You Consider and/or Adopt Another Cat So Your Current Cat Won’t Be Lonely.

Do you scroll through pictures from your local shelters or pet ads from Petfinder, and consider adopting another feline friend? Do you do this because you have kitty fever or because you want your kitty to have another friend. Maybe even both?

5. You Spend More Money on Cat Toys, Treats, Food, and Pet Furniture Than You Actually Plan To.

Confession time again…. I spent over a $100 on Rocky this past Christmas. But he’s my only baby at the moment, so I have no shame. Do you also find yourself strolling down the pet aisle, or finding ways to adjust your budget so you can buy more things for your cat? If yes, then you too could be a crazy cat parent.

6. You Get Up Early or Stay Up Late Just to Play with Your Cat.

Do you get up early just to spend time with your cat? Do you just adore how loving your kitty can be when he is waking you up and begging you for food early in the morning? Do you jump out of bed, and join your kitty when you hear him bellowing opera kitty music at 2am? If so, then you may just be crazy, or a crazy cat parent.

7. You Rearrange Your Furniture So Your Cat is Comfortable When Looking Out the Windows.

Do you get your cat’s opinion on how to rearrange the furniture? Do you consider how he might want to watch his live tv of birds flying, squirrels gathering nuts, and dogs walking their humans? If yes, then maybe you are a crazy cat parent.

8. You Leave the TV on for Your Cat When You’re Not Home.

Do you worry your kitty will go crazy being in a quiet home for too long and decide to leave on the tv for them? Yes? Don’t worry… I do it too. I’m probably just as crazy as you.

9. You Look Forward to and/or Get Excited to Give Your Cat Catnip.

Do you want your cat to love you?… I mean really love you? Do you look forward to giving them catnip and anticipate seeing the cat be all consumed by catnip? I do.

10. You Consider Your Cat as One of Your Kids.

Do you? I do. My kitty is my baby.


If you haven’t already guessed, I am a crazy cat mom and this was all just for fun. I hope I made you smile and brought some humor into your life today. Well, I’m going to go snuggle my cat now.

Bye!

A Recap of 2020

2020 was a year many thought would be a fresh start. It was the beginning of a new decade and a year for clear vision.,, or so we thought. But instead we were all taken for a loop by this deadly sickness called the Corona virus. In many people there was sheer panic and anxiety, and not long after the way we once lived our lives was no longer. We went from having the freedom to socialize with anyone and everyone, to being instructed to remain 6 feet apart with anyone out side our household. We were required to wear masks everywhere, and no longer had the freedom to dine in restaurants. Students as young as kindergarten and as old as college were forced to complete their studies strictly online.

This year has been anxiety inducing, confusing, exhausting, unpredictable and unexpected. But despite all of that, we have all had the chance at putting things into perspective. With a variety of shut downs and quarantines we have had more opportunities to spend quality time with our immediate families. We have learned to appreciate the time and moments we shared because they are precious, and the future is not promised.

For me personally, this year has been rough, but I have been given a lot blessings as well. This was a big year for me despite the craziness. Today I would like to reflect on 2020, the ups and downs, the blessings and challenges and everything in between.

Recap of My Goals for 2020

  • Graduate with my Bachelor’s degree in Child and Family Development. ✔️
  • Pay off my Car ✖️
  • Recieve my Certification in Family Life Education ✖️
  • Get a Pet ✔️
  • Publish my Memoir ✖️
  • Move to a New Home ✔️
  • Get Certified as a Life Coach ✖️

Recap of 2020

January

  • I started my last semester of college.
  • Started taking Plexus daily.

February

  • I started revamping my resume and applying to various jobs for after I would graduate.

March

  • I started a new job as a Lead Preschool Teacher.
  • Covid – 19 hit the US and life as we knew it changed.
  • We moved to our new apartment.

April

  • I finished my last semester of college.
  • My state and pretty much the country was forced into an immediate say-at-home order.
  • I graduated with my Bachelor’s of Science degree in Child and Family Development.

May

  • I returned back to work after being laid off.
  • I redecorated my new apartment.
  • I celebrated my 2nd Mother’s Day and Teacher Appreciation Week.
  • I honored my Due Date for my 2nd baby.
  • Charles and I started trying again.

June

  • I went to the cabin with my best friend Alli.
  • Started swimming and enjoying the beautiful summer weather.
  • My husband got a new job.

July

  • I published my first children’s book, Mackenzie Goes to Heaven.
  • I adopted a kitten and named him Rocky.

August

  • I turned 25.
  • I continued digging deep and working on my memoir.
  • I grew 9 plants on my balcony.

September

  • I hit 6 months of working at my job.
  • Charles and discussed and decided to pursue adoption.

October

  • I reached 150 followers on my blog.
  • I hit 25 sales on my children’s book.

November

  • I was named teacher of the month at my Job.

December

  • I did some goal setting for the year ahead.

2020 was crazy and definitely a year of change. Moving forward I predict 2021 will bring it’s own set of challenges and blessings. 💕

Happy New Year Friends!

Grief & Mercy 4th Blog Post Round Up

It is time again for another blog post round up! The following are a list of recent blog posts that were not only popular but also a favorite to myself and many of my readers.

My Kitchen Reveal!

In late March, my husband and I moved to our new apartment right at the beginning of the Corona virus Pandemic. It was crazy, quick and overwhelming. Regardless of how we got here, we absolutely love our new home. Check out my kitchen reveal post to see how I decorated our kitchen.

New Edition to the Family!

As many of you know, we did add a new edition to our family this year, and his name is Rocky. He is a gray, long haired domestic tabby. He is super smart, hilarious, and sassy. We love him so much and are so glad we adopted him.

Deep Fried Pickles Recipe

Since graduating from college, I have found myself in the kitchen more often. Part of this is because I have more time to cook, and it is also because I no longer have the luxury of eating meals at the dining hall. Check out my Deep Fried Pickles recipe, and other recipes I will be sharing this month.

What’s My Why?

What’s my why? This is a question that many influencers ask themselves. What’s the reason I write a blog? What’s the reason I advocate for this important cause? What’s the reason I do what I do every single day? This blog post talks all about why I do what I do.

Another Plants Update

This past summer was the first summer I had a balcony. I took full advantage of this balcony by growing many different plants. Check out my different blog posts this summer of my progress and fails in growing plants.

It’s Been 19 Years Since the World Changed

It has been 19 years since 9/11 happened. As I mentioned in this blog post, it is one of the first tragic terrorist attacks that I can recall in my life time. In this post I discuss my memories of that fateful day.

Happy Fall Ya’ll

Having holidays in a new apartment, means I get to try some new decorating ideas. For example, I have never had my own fireplace that I have been able to decorate. But this year, I plan to decorate it for every season. Check out this post to see how I decorated for fall.

Expanding Our Family… What’s Next for Us

This unexpectedly, was a super popular post. This was the post where I shared our thoughts on expanding our family. I also share a tentative 2 year plan as we prepare for parenthood.

Taco Baked Potato Recipe

I am such a huge fan of potatoes and tacos. So I thought, why not combine the two? In this post I share my recipe of a Taco Baked Potato.

Christmas Decorating 2020

Yes, I know… another decorating post. But I can’t help it, I love decorating and home decor. Check out this post to see how I decorated this year for Christmas.

A Look Ahead…

Breakfast Bruschetta Recipe

Our Love Story

Kid’s Corner: Color Sorting Activity

Training a Cat

Training a Cat is fun, but also takes a lot of hard work. I’m no expert, but I have trained cats in the past and I am currently training Rocky different commands and tricks. So, I thought I would share with you the basics on training a cat, based on my own experience.

When training a cat you need to be persistent, have patience and a lot of rewards.

Teaching a Cat How to Sit

I have taught Rocky since the day I adopted him that he needs to sit before he can get his food. At first he didn’t want to do it. Now he does it every time. Sometimes he sits on his own and sometimes he needs a little assistance.

First, I put my finger up and tell him to sit.

Then, I gently push down his lower back so he will sit. Once he is sitting, I praise him by saying “Good Boy” and rubbing his head.

I then give him his bowl of food.

I have done this process since day one and with a lot of persistence and patience, he’s come a long way.

Teaching a Cat How to Fetch

Recently, I started teaching Rocky how to fetch. He’s made some progress but still has a long way to go.

First, I waited to see if he was even interested in fetching. Meaning I would throw different toys and waited to see if he attempted to bring any back to me. Once he did this a couple times, I knew he was ready.

When teaching a cat to fetch, you have to get excited. If your not excited to play, they won’t be excited to bring the toy back to you.

I quickly learned that Rocky is particular when it comes to fetching. He likes to search for his toy. Meaning if I just throw a toy on the floor, he won’t get it. But if I throw a toy in a paper bag or on the couch, he’ll go find it.

First, I shake the toy.

Then, I throw it and tell him to go get it. I make sure his eyes are on me as I’m throwing it.

As he goes to find it, I’m quiet.

Once I see he’s picked it up, I say “Good Boy” and pat the ground so he’ll drop it near me.

If he does this, I give him praise by saying “Good Boy” and rubbing his head and belly. If he doesn’t do this, I don’t give him praise.

This may only occur two or three times before your cat gets bored. But over time, it should develop a habit for your cat to want to play fetch often.


Well, there you go. Those are my few tips on training your cat. If you need additional help, check out different YouTube videos.

Thanks for Reading! ❤️