Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Love of Music

Watching my oldest son’s passion for music leaves me simply amazed. He is certainly following in the footsteps of his father and his young talent is awe-inspiring. His love for the art of music and his ability to absorb melodies comes to him as naturally as breathing. At a very young age, he realized that the ABC song and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star were the same melody. While most children are marveling with superheroes or fascinated with the newest toy fads, my eight year old son collecting Beatles songs to add to his musical library.During a shopping trip with the family he navigates himself to the CD section, while most children are screaming for the toy aisles. His Christmas list consists of guitars, concert tickets and itunes cards. His love for music is something very special indeed.It’s a unique gift that I believe is passed down through the generations, tightly sewn into this family tree like a woven tapestry of music fibers flowing though their very core. To my oldest son music is a way of life. It’s just not an option to go through the day without it. It feels like such an honor to be a witness to the growing talent within my young son. From his very first talent show as a first grader, to whatever adventure this love for music leads him on, I find this talent of his such a beautiful blessing upon this family. I don’t think my heart will ever get tired of hearing him lift his voice in song to share with others. He is truly a very special little boy in my eyes !

video
Carter singing "I Saw Her Standing There" by The Beatles in his 2nd grade talent show

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Clever and Fun Children's Costumes{DIY}

I searched the Internet for a few DIY costume ideas for children. There are so many fantastic ideas out there. I just keep wondering where all the fabulous creative juices come from that these people have, because I want some of it. Anyway folks... I thought I would share some my favorite costume finds of the day. I would love to see some of your creative costume creations(All costumes are fair game:pets,adults,children, and babies,)….I may even have to feature them on my blog or hold a little costume contest(depending on how many emails I receive) here on Inside My Head. So if you have an awesome costume creation you would like to share email it to me at insidemyheadblog(at)yahoo(.)com before Wednesday October 8th .

5 Totally Phenomenal DIY Children’s Costumes


Photo credit and idea to Disney FamilyFun

1. Unicorn: transform your little darling into a fairy tale land with this mystical and unique unicorn costume. Made with felt and a hoodie this is sure to be a hit with all her friends, and the good news is it's fairly simple to pull it all together before the costume parties and trick or treating begins.

Photo credit and idea to Disney FamilyFun

2. Crocodile Wrestler: this adorable little getup is sure to satisfy even the most adventurous of children. The costume is created with simple Khaki color clothing, and handmade with soft Styrofoam , a crocodile, binoculars, and a safari hat.

Photo credit and idea to Lizette Greco

3. Mario mustache and all. This is one adorable little plumbing hero from Nintendo Mario Bros. game. The costume is manageable to pull together with over-sized overalls, red turtleneck, white gloves, red hat (painted or sewn on M symbol), and don’t forget the all important mustache. Add in a few accessories, and you are good to go save Princess Peaches!

Photo and idea credit to Quick&Simple

4. Pink Poodle: I just fell in love with this little puppy. Made with pom-poms and a sweat suit, this little costume is going to melt a few hearts into handing out the good candy bars.

Photo and idea create to Pera Chapita

5. Circus Folks: this is always a great last minute cost idea because it can work for boys and girls of any age range. You can transform your children into the whole circus ringmasters, mimes, lion tamers, trapeze artist, and of course the all time favorite clowns. With clowns you can dress them as crazy and wacky as you like, and it’s one time you don’t have to worry about matching. With any of these circus character costumes your imagination is the limit...let it run away with you at least to the circus!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Autumn in Tennessee{fun Fall activities}

Autumn is upon us. Autumn is a time of harvest and gathering together with family and friends. I always think of this time of year as perfect marshmallow roasting weather. Autumn brings the loss of the bees, butterflies, and long summer days, but in return Autumn brings a kind of flower itself as it turns the leaves an array of reds, oranges, and yellows. Autumn also brings in the mellow breeze of a perfect day for family adventures and couples retreats. With this in mind, I thought I would compile a list of fun Fall activities in Tennessee. There is entertainment for all ages, groups and budgets scattered all over the beautiful state of Tennessee this Autumn.



(1) Nestled away in the quiet, but bustling little town of Cookeville, TN is Hidden Hollow State Park. The park is located on Mt. Pleasent Rd and is considered a family friendly park in Middle Tennessee. This year the park will host Haunted Hollow, a kid friendly family fun zone with hayrides, haunted forest, carnival games, mazes, and maybe even some live music. The fun happens every weekend in October starting the weekend of October 8, 2010. $

(2) Looking for something a little more on the romantic side this fall and maybe even something indoors? You might be interested in "She Loves Me" a play by Joe Masteroft, Jerry Bock, and Sheldon Harnick showing at Cumberland County Playhouse in the adventure theater. "She Loves Me" has become two movies "The Little Shop Around the Corner" and "You've Got Mail". This big-hearted musical with a small, but talented cast runs November 18, 2010- December 18, 2010. $$$

(3) Honeysuckle Hill Farms in Springfield, TN is more than just a pumpkin patch. It's a whole discovery of family fun down on the farm. Honeysuckle Hills features a 6 acre corn maze, hillbilly pig races, pedal cars, steer roping, spider slide, petting farm, farmers market, The Kiddie 500 ( tricycle race), jumping pillow, and the new pumpkin train. Wittiness a family feud between the Hatfield's and the McCoys. Better take cover we hear those Hatfield's have a giant pumpkin cannon. Also, don't forget after all the fun you have to take home your very own pumpkin. You will find a super assortment in every color, shape, and size. $

(4) There's an absolute Spooktacular event coming to the Nashville Zoo. Ghouls at Grassmere, a family friendly Halloween event designed to appeal to families with children 12 years and younger. The event helps raise money for the upkeep of the zoo. This year there will be several new treats, along with all the old favorites including many treat stations, kid's costume Parade, gypsy maze, monster mash dance floor, scary-go-around, and so much more. The ghoulish fun begins the weekend of October 15-17 and continues the weekends of Oct 22-23, and Oct 28-30(not open Halloween night). The Nashville Zoo opens the gates at 5pm and closes them at 9pm. So put on your costumes and come out to the Nashville Zoo and join the fun! Hint...Hint, you can purchase tickets on-line in advance to avoid long lines and get a discount. This year is the first year that a Ghouls at Grassmere(GAG) total access pass will be offered. Don't miss out! $$

(5) Join in the Costume fun at one of Tennessee's most popular aquariums. The Fall 2010 Aqua-Scarium Halloween Party is October 29th beginning at 6:30pm and ending at 9:30pm hosted by the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga, TN. The event includes the ever popular costumed divers. You can also mingle with the lovable mascots donning their own Halloween costumes, dance the night away, and if you dare touch the unknown at animal encounters. Did I mention you can when prizes and gather lots of yummy treats.
Nonmembers $$$ (includes ticket to the aquarium) and Members $

(6) Dollywood's National Gospel & Harvest Celebration located in Pigeon Forge, TN. Four weeks of Gospel music beginning October 1, 2010. Your not going to want to miss Dollywood's fall celebration with music, crafts, and food located in the breathtaking smokies, nor are you going to want to miss Dollywood's signature fried green tomato's. $$$$

(7) Chester County BBQ Festival, Henderson TN September 30th- October 2nd 2010. The festival will feature arts, crafts, children's area, and the main attraction, BBQ. Enjoy Barbecue cooked with patience, skill, and experience in an open-pit barbecue producing "real barbecue" for all to enjoy. The first barbecue will go on sale by 10 am, September 30th. Admission to the event is free, but some cost will be required to fully enjoy the family friendly festival. You can contact the Chester County Chamber of Commerce for more information. $$

(8) Looking for personal treasures? Now is your chance to find them. September 30 - October 2, 2010 is the 25th annual Roller Coaster Yard Sale with stops at Glasgow KY, Tompkinsville KY, Albany KY, Celina TN, Livingston TN, Byrdstown, TN and many more stops along the way. A three day, 150 mile stretch of crafts, quilts, southern style foods, antiques and second hand treasures of all kinds. Detailed driving directions available on-line click HERE. FREE

(9) The Blue Man Group is coming to Tennessee's Andrew Jackson Hall in Nashville, November 16-21, 2010. The Blue Man Group theatrical show combining music, technology, comedy, and a touch of mystery to each show. Since there is no spoken word during the performances, The Blue Man group crosses over boundaries of all kinds, including age, cultures and language barriers. You are guaranteed to be left wildly entertained by this unique and visually stunning performance. Special note if you sit close to the front you may not want to wear clothing you value. Casual attire is welcome and encouraged for this show. $$$$

(10) Maybe you are looking for some adventure this Fall season. Well, your sure to find it at Fall Creek Falls State Park. For starters they are offering rock climbing workshops November 5-7, 2010, among many other events this fall. Enjoy any of these events while taking in the beauty and wonder of the Fall foliage and atmosphere. Fall Creek Falls is situated on the Western edge of the Cumberland Plateau in Pikeville, TN. The Park is Tennessee's largest state park with much to offer it's visitors from camping, hiking, fishing, bird watching, and lets not forget the beautiful waterfalls. This state park even offers top rate lodging for those who like indoor private plumbing areas. Cost of this adventure will vary depending on your agenda. $-$$$$

Cost Key
$$$$ Above $30 Each
$$$ Above $20 Each
$$ Under $20 Each
$ Under $10 Each
FREE

Special Note this article also appears at Cookevilletimes.com

Monday, September 27, 2010

Hayes Foundation{Shining A Light On SIDS}

Sometimes we come across stories in life that are both heartbreaking and inspirational. This particular story is just that, a story of sadness turned into something very beautiful by the courage of one mother.

This story starts with the tragic loss of a very precious 4 1/2 month old Oliver "Hayes" Hitzeman. Hayes, a very healthy little boy, was lost to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) in June of 2002. His family was just getting to know him, figuring out what his cries meant, loving his laugh. He filled their lives with a happiness and light that has now gone dim due to his loss.

While this story is truly one that pulls heartstrings until they break, it also does not end with a life that was indeed cut too short. Though his family will never regain the presence of their precious little son, they are now on a mission. Hayes now shines a whole new light on the very real subject of SIDS all around the country, a pretty big legacy for a tiny baby boy to have left behind. His family is helping carry on that legacy.

They continue the mission to educate the public and aid in the research to better understand this terrifying silent killer. While most parents and caretakers have heard of SIDS or maybe even been handed some basic reading material on the issue, it still remains a subject at which we all shutter and little to no discussion about SIDS is taking place.

That is where The Hayes Foundation comes into play. The Hayes Foundation was created in loving memory of sweet baby Hayes by his Mother Kyra, family, and many loving friends. The purpose of the foundation is to create programs, support services, public awareness, and award grants for further SIDS research. One such campaign is "This Side Up" started in 2006.

The goal of this campaign is to educate parents and caregivers by distributing friendly T-shirts/Onesies that remind them to put babies to sleep on their backs. Studies have shown that placing babies on their backs lower their risk of becoming a victim of SIDS. "This Side Up" campaign has reached California, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Alaska, and Florida.

The Hayes Foundation, with campaigns such as "This Side Up", are doing an astounding job to raise awareness and get America talking about this very real danger of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. Be apart of the campaign and let's reach the Hayes Foundation's goal of a future where no one experiences the loss of a child to SIDS!!!



Find out more about SIDS at by clicking HERE and how you can help by volunteering, donating, or even just educating yourself on the guidelines to reduce the risk of SIDS


Special Note: This Story also appears in the Cookevilletimes.com

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Sunday Snippet{Family Fun Facts}

We have come to the final Sunday of Family Fun Facts series. Today's family fun facts are about yours truly and written by today's guest writer my darling husband. To be honest this took a tad of bravery on my part. =)

Photo Credit to Kelli Trontell

20 Facts about Jaime

1. She sticks her tongue out when she coughs
2. Gets hooked on old TV shows that no one's ever heard of ... Usually sci-fi
3. Self-proclaimed Geek
4. Very Underrated as a cook
5. Fights sleep more than our 2 yr old, BUT
6. Would surrender fundamental liberties in order to sleep late
7. Loves Christmas
8. Hates Winter
9. Loves Reading
10. Hates Football
11. Loves Horses
12. Hates Driving on the Interstate
13. She is a brilliant writer
14. Is an incredible mother to our children
15. Dream Vehicle: Yellow Volkswagen
16. Teaches me more than she will ever know
17. Loves family in ways words can't explain
18. Favorite Flower: Yellow Roses
19. Double clicks on web links
20. Made perfectly for me

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sunday Snippet{Family Fun Facts}

Photo Credit Josh Marx

So I have been married to my husband for 10 years this past June. I started dating him when I was fourteen years old so we have know one another a long time. He is my best friend, the love of my life, a great father to our three beautiful children. He challenges me to be a better person, yet loves me to infinity! I am one lucky girl. Hope you enjoy these 20 fun facts about my dear old hubby! Oh and come back for next week's Sunday Snippet featuring guest writer Stephen Garrett with a few fun facts of his own about his dear old wifey! I admit...I am a little scared, but figured it was only fair.

1. He has more talent in his pinky finger than I could even dream about having.
2. He is a fan of the Chic Flick
3. He hates to lose at anything
4. He screams at the TV during football season
5. He often forgets the words to songs he wrote
6. He gave up his Coca-Cola habit
7. His brother and him often have hour-long phone calls
8. He does most of the grocery shopping
9 He has a wedding band tattoo
10. He competed in Southern Baptist Bible drill tournaments as a youth
11. He is loyal
12. He works very hard to support his family
13. He plays music by ear (sorry Aunt Maxine but he faked his way though piano lessons)
14. He started piano lessons at the age of 4, and played his first guitar at 9
15. When he smiles his ears move
16. He is an amazing Father to our three children
17. He is afraid of horses
18. He loves new gizmos: computers, phones, Ipods, etc....
19. Fantasy football is serious business to him
20. He spoils his wife!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Sunday Snippet{Family Fun Facts Series}

Rest in Peace Sweet Starr Baby
November 2007 - January 2011



20 Fun Facts about our family Pet, Starr


1. She was a Christmas gift
2. She was named after the star of Bethlehem
3. She has a patch of fur in the perfect shape of the letter P
4. She hardly ever barks
5. She loves table scraps
6. She was born in November
7. She is shy toward strangers
8. She loves attention of children
9. She peed on Nana's Christmas tree skirt, I think Nana still holds a grudge =)
10. She has survived an attempted flush down the toilet
11. She is a pacifier thief
12. She hates the water hose
13. She is hyper
14. She has been very ill once
15. She is a pure breed Beagle
16. She never got very big. She is very petite
17. She is very strong for her size...she is all muscle
18. She can't have puppies
19. She is a good traveler
20. She made a terrible house dog..she likes it outside much better =)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Few Of My Favorite Things

I recently found one of my old journals and as I was flipping though it, I came across a page where I had scribbled down a few of my favorite things. It's fun to see which of those things on the list would make a new Version of the list. Surprisingly, almost everything would still make the list. I would encourage you all to make a list of your own favorite things, those simple little somethings that can magically brighten up your day. Everyone has heard the song from the Sound of Music, you know the one where thinking about a few of your favorite things chases the blues. Everyone has favorite things and they really do have this wondrous way of making our hearts smile with happiness =)


These Are A Few Of My Favorite Things

1. Audrey Hepburn Movies
2. Unprompted hugs and I love yous from my boys
3. Garden full of blooming Iris
4. Old fashion hand written letters
5. The color Pink
6. Hot summer days
7. Book Stores
8. T-shirts and Bluejeans
9. Trying New Recipes
10. Dr. Pepper
11. Music that makes me feel something
12. Thunder showers
13. Victorian Style Homes
14. Listening to my husband sing
15. Yellow Roses
16. Zebra Boots
17. Japanese Steak Houses


What are a few of your favorite things?

Thursday, September 9, 2010

"I Miss You Mommy"



Sometimes in life there are moments that catch us a little off guard. Moments that make our heart swell up with a bursting love. Today, one of those moments happened to me. My 5 year old, now big boy kindergartener, has been begging me to come to school to eat lunch with him. I wasn't really sure why. I thought to myself, maybe he wanted to introduce me to his friends or show me what it is like for him at school. Sadly, I didn't give a whole lot of time or thought to the subject matter. Today, after dinner, the real reason came to the surface, and I felt horribly guilty for blowing him off. After dinner, he once again ask me if I could come eat lunch with him and my response was "maybe sometime next week". I shamefully didn't see what was coming next. He burst into tears, full on hardcore heartbreaking cry. I ask him why he was crying, and why was this so important to him. He responded by saying "I miss you so much"! The real reason he wanted me to come eat lunch with him was just so he could spend time with me. His little heart just couldn't keep that secret from me any longer. He missed his Mommy!!! He told me that he loves school, but at lunch time he thinks of me because we always use to eat lunch together and that makes him miss me. So of course, my eyes filled with tears, and I wrapped my arms around him to give him a great big hug. The truth is, I miss him too!!! He has no idea how very loved he made me feel today. He loves me despite all my faults and my flaws. He loves even though I yell way to much. He loves me on Tuesdays(even though we both hate that day). He loves me even when I don't have time to watch or play. He loves me simply because I am Mommy, and I love him simply because he is my sweet, big hearted Wes the Mess!!! How did I get so lucky to have three beautiful boys!!! I am oh soooooo BLESSED!!!!



Love is missing someone whenever you're apart, but somehow feeling warm inside because you're close in heart. ~Kay Knudsen

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Sunday Snippet{Family Fun Facts}

Photo Credit to the amazing Kelli Trontell


Cooper Monroe is the youngest of my three little monkeys. Cooper is a bright light in this family. He is totally cute and not afraid to use that against you. You have been warned. He is my baby, only he is not so little anymore. He never fails to make us laugh and smile!

20 Fun Facts about Cooper

1. He could sing Beatles songs before he could talk
2. His first word was Daddy
3. Everyone thinks he is older than he is.
4. He loves Mickey Mouse
5. Rough Housing is what he lives for
6. If he pees in the bathtub, he will not sit down in it (Smart Boy)
7. He will try any kind of food, but if he doesn't like it beware it's coming back out
8. He climbs and jumps off everything. He has no fear. (scares his mom)
9. He was almost a Leap Day Baby. I begged the Doctor for him not to be.
10. He recognizes The Beatles by sound and pictures
11. Every letter is the letter A, and if you ask him how many it is always 8
12. His favorite toys are blocks and drum sticks
13. He loves to be outside
14. He loves to be on the go
15.He still takes a pacifier....UGH (I am a big softie)
16. His eyes twinkle a little when he laughs
17. He thinks anything can become a drum
18. He adores his big brothers and follows them everywhere.
19. He has naturally curly hair
20. He is the only one of my three kids with a birthmark

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Road to Making a Difference

Biking Family Evan,April,and Owen


The National Multiple Sclerosis Society 2010 "Jack and Back" annual bike ride presented by Jack Daniels is being held October 2nd and 3rd this year. The starting line will formed at Paige High school in Franklin TN. The ride is a 150 mile, two day bike ride. Riders will be allowed to camp-out overnight at Motlow College in Lynchburg, TN before making the journey back to Paige High school on October 3rd.

This year, veteran rider to this event, Evan Baird and his newcomer wife, April Baird, are up for the " Bike to Jack and Back" challenge. Evan has been making this run for the past six years now. April decided to join her husband on the actual bike ride this year. She has been doing volunteer work along the bike route for many years now. She has enjoyed mingling with other volunteer's and riders that stopped at her refreshing stations. Many of the volunteers themselves are in various stages of battling MS and many of the riders ride in honor of someone they love. April has enjoyed her work as a volunteer and listening to stories about how people deal with this terrible disease is inspirational and unforgettable. One particular story about a rider she met along the way pulls at her heartstrings every time she thinks about his story. Two years ago, when April volunteered, there was this rider and he was the VERY last rider. She was working the 2nd to last rest stop and it was super hot that October. They got word he was about to be at their stop and they got water and snacks ready for him. He looked rough. His bike was old, he didn't have a jersey (just a cotton shirt with the sleeves cut off), and didn't even have cycling shoes. She asked him why he just didn't take the SAG (support and gear) wagon in...it wasn't a big deal. He told her that his wife has MS and he was riding for her. He would see how rigid her walking had gotten, how her hearing varied at times, how her speech had gotten worse and she couldn't drive anymore. He called her at every rest stop. He called her while April was standing there and she about lost it. He told his wife he was almost there. He hoped she was feeling okay, that he loved her, and would see her at the finish line. Such a moving story about the love this rider had for his wife and he wasn't about to give up on doing this for her.

Along with the beautiful and amazing people April and Evan meet doing this very touching event, they also ride this race to make a difference. They have a passion to help the cause this bike ride supports. MS or Multiple Sclerosis is an inflammatory disease that effects the ability of the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord to communicate with each other. At this point, there is no cure for this crippling disease. While MS is such a terrible disease, there is little public promotion to help raise awareness. There are socks, pens. shirts, notepads for many other terrible diseases, but MS, for the most part, just gets left off the list. This bike ride is an important way to raise awareness and funds for a disease that affects so many lives. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society not only raises money to fund future research in search of cures, but a percentage of the funds raised actually go to patients and families suffering from MS.

The combination of the challenge of the ride, the love of the people and the importance of raising awareness and funds for MS make this 150 mile, two day "Bike to Jack and Back" a 'can't miss' event for Evan and April Baird. This year the couple hope to complete each days ride in 5 hours. They also hope to raise their share of funds to donate to such a special cause. This charity bike ride raises an enormous amount of funds for MS and people come from all over the country to participate. Last year there were over 800 riders and each year that number increases. Find out how you can be part of the battle against MS and support the patients and families that have fallen victim to this disease. There are so many ways to help volunteer, sponsor a rider, and if your an adventurous biker, sign up to participate in the ride. No matter how you choose to help, be confident that you are making a difference.

Special note if you would like to sponsor Evan or April Baird click on their names anywhere in this article for a direct link on how you can become a sponsor and help make a difference. If you would like to volunteer or join the bike ride(must be 18 years of age to register) click HERE!


Special Note: This story also appears at Cookevilletimes.com

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The Art of Capturing Memories

Photography: the process of producing images of objects on sensitized surfaces by chemical action of light or other forms of radiant energy. That is the standard and somewhat boring definition of photography. I would dare to be as bold as saying photography is more than just science.

At least I would imagine that young freelance photographer Mrs.Delvon Stults would agree with me. Mrs. Stults has tinkered with cameras every since she could hold one and now she has owned and operated Modern Day Photography for over a year now. A business that is booming with a unique and creative force in the Upper Cumberland area.



Modern Day Photography serves mostly the Upper Cumberland area, but will travel outside the area if someone's heart is set on becoming a client. Photography, to Mrs. Stults, is an expression of one's very being captured on film. Whether it is an expression of love, a goofy moment, a specific look, or even just the emotions cast from the subject's body language, photography is about capturing raw and natural moments on film. It's like somewhat trapping time, turning moments into priceless heirlooms to be passed down through the generations. Modern Day Photography clients can expect honest, sincere services from this young, energetic, creative, artist behind the camera.

You can expect Mrs. Stults to listen to your ideas and incorporate them into original, extraordinary photographs. You have heard the saying, "A picture is worth a thousand words" and Modern Day Photography honestly believes that magic is captured in photographs. Mrs. Stults will cater to each unique customer with first class service, bringing her creative ideas, imaginative and expressive use of personalized accessories with her to each session. This results in a desirable piece of personal art captured through the lens of her camera.



Modern Day Photography finds inspiration all around her in clients, the world and in the uniqueness of each individual shot. Learning and growing, with each passing session, how to perfect the art form of photography about the people, for the people and bringing out the personalities of the people!

All photographs connected to this post are credited to Mrs. Delvon Stults of Modern Day Photography.

Contact information:
MODERN DAY PHOTOGRAPHY
moderndayphoto@yahoo.com


Special note this article also appears in the Cookevilletimes.com