Justis Family Website & Blog - Thoughts to sift through the insanity that is our family.


Still Alive

written by Wendy Justis

Hello all, we are still here and still alive. I am sorry I have not posted in a while. We have had a rough month. We went over a month without A/C not fun but survived it. Kiki has turned 3 and Gabe is about to be 1. I’m not ready at all. I am now official on staff at Gateway Church which is wonderful but it has been a transition with our schedules.

Rick and I are taking Financial Peace University which is amazing for sure. It already has helped us in ways we could not imagine. Without it we still would be with out A/C. Rick has started a new web page with some friends. It is rather good considering the topic. Game-nite.net It is about video games soI am not a huge fan, but it is very well done.

Mom will be here in a month and I can’t wait to see her. Things are crazy and we have been trying to have another yard sale for over a month but just can’t get it done. Fingers crossed next weekend.


Thoughts for the day

written by Wendy Justis

So today in well I guess a little bit of frustration I shared our losses with our oldest son. This is something I probably should not have done, but I was trying to get him to see the big picture. He was pushing me hard about why I (we) don’t give up more for him and why doesn’t he just get everything he wants. Then when he went into the fact that he is made at me because I won’t make a five year old play like a ten year old and that it is my fault he doesn’t have siblings closer to his age. So I told him.

I told him about the two beautiful babies that where born into heaven. And my heart started breaking all over again. I told him that we had tried to have kids closer to his age but that it just wasn’t in the universal plans.  He asked me why I lost them and I told him I don’t know, it could be a lot of reasons but until I get to heaven I have no idea. Over all again I probably should not have shared this with him, but in a why it was a bit of a release because I’m not sure I have fully morned the loss of my babies because we didn’t want it to ever impact him. So in the middle of my pain and loss I put on a happy face, went to the soccer fields, went to the pack meetings, went to the school functions. I went to it all with a secrete in my head and a loss in my heart that most of our friends don’t know about. A while back I went to a celebration session for families that have had their babies born into heaven and it was good, but I still feel in a way like its something I should hide from the world. That I must have done something wrong.

I never wish my children to ever feel grief, pain, or sadness but I think when we try to protect them from it all they don’t have a way of putting things into perspective. So what they see as the most horrible thing that could ever happen is like a Sunday stroll inreality. Maybe we should share more of the big hurts so that they can see that their little  hurts though important and in need of attention are not as bad as they may think. Certainly there is the right time and place but I’m beginning to see that we have sheltered our oldest a bit too much.


Night Terrors

written by Wendy Justis

As I lay in bed last night listening with a pain in my heart to my youngest daughter endure another night terror a thought came to me. I know that night terrors are hereditary, but is the content of the terror hereditary as well.

My whole life (that which I remember) I have had horrible nightmares (terrors) about abduction and being separated from the ones I love the most. As a child I remember having these dreams about being kidnapped or my family being removed from me in some way either death or leaving me. As an adult before having children my dreams shifted to being abducted and tortured or killed. Then after having children the worst dreams of all started. Dreams of my children being taken and tortured.

In a way I have blamed my mom for my nightmares because of, what for a long time I assumed to be, an obsession with bad things happening and always warning me of these horrible things. And preparing me for the worst things that could happen. So I thought these things were lodged in my mind because of that. I do know that my mom also suffers from nightmares (terrors) and that most of her dreams are very similar in that of abduction and torture of herself or loved ones and not being able to save them. I know understand with my own children the desire to warn and guard them from the horrible things that circle my head.

As I lay there listening to my sweet baby girl cry and scream about missing her family and not being able to find them (us) I am wondering why on earth this is what her terrors are focused on. The other odd thing is that my older daughter when she had regular night terrors and the occasional ones she still has are focused on the same thing. Since my children are not away from me or a family member at any time we have not focused on the whole stranger danger thing. So it’s not like we have talked to them about kidnappings or anything like that. Can the subject of nightmares be passed down from parent to child by nature and not nurture.

If this is the case I am so sorry for blaming my mom but I guess if it is hereditary I still get to blame her right. Hahaha. It just breaks my heart listening to her cry and when we try to comfort her it just seems to make things worse and makes it go on for longer. I pray that this will end for them in childhood, but I have a fear they will be plagued with this for their life times, like my mother and I. The brain is such a crazy thing, I don’t think it will ever be understood. But maybe other minds like ours bring us the best horror movies and books.


To resolution or not to resolution?

written by Wendy Justis

I have struggled over the years with resolutions. I often think they are put into place almost guarantying failure. Then by a few months into the year you feel disappointment, frustration, and well failure. I think I am resolved not to resolve this new year and just hope and work hard. The only thing I want out of this year is to feel more in control.

In control of my life, my house, money, and our family’s time. I often feel that I am always playing catch up, tripping over everything and no I don’t mean just the mess in my house. I trip over my words, my actions, and more than not my emotions. I know that I have allowed others to control how I feel and that is not they way one should live their life. I’m starting to purge many things in my life. Some are materials (big yard sale coming up), some are emotions and demons from my past, and some are people. Yes I am going to purge people and their control over my life. I often have a negative outlook on the day from the moment I get up because I am anticipating a war in one way or another.

I have an amazing life but I am not living it to my potential. I want pure happiness every day. I want to flirt with my husband ever day. I want to hug my kids a hundred times a day, and I want to love myself more than I ever have in the past. That one should not be hard sense I have not loved myself much over the years. I know if I can love myself, I can accept true love and friendship from others. Life is good and I need to remember that every moment of every day and I need to find the good in the bad, the beauty in the ugly, and the happy in the sad.

Happy New Year to all of you!


A Poem for Today

written by Wendy Justis

Bella at just a few months

Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth,

Empty the dustpan, poison the moth,

Hang out the washing and butter the bread,

Sew on a button and make up a bed.

Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?

She’s up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.

Oh, I’ve grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue

Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo.

Dishes are waiting and bills are past due

Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo.

The shopping’s not done and there’s nothng for stew

And out int eh yard there’s a hullabaloo

But I’m playing Kanga and this is my Roo.

Look! Aren’t her eyes the most wonderful hue?

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,

For children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow.

So quet down, cobwebs Dust go to sleep.

I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.

Author: Unknown


Update on My Goals

written by Wendy Justis

I love this picture of Rich

It has been one month sense I set some goals for myself. I am ready to do an update good and bad for each goal that I sat.

Goal #1 – Make a meal plan for the week.

This one went perfect for the first two weeks. The third week I started to struggle a bit and then well gave up completely with Bella and Rick being sick this week. I am determined to get back on track. I will be setting my meal plan for next week today or tomorrow. One thing that will make it a bit easier is that my father-in-law gave us some Elk meat that will help with the meal planning. Down side I am still not great with cooking wild game meat unless it is ground.

Goal #2 – cook ahead and have meals ready at the drop of a hat and use my crock pot more.

I have not even started on this. I still want to do my cooking co-op group maybe this one will have to wait until after the first of the year with the holidays and everything coming up fast.

Goal #3 – cut our weekly grocery budget in half.

This one has been frustrating because I do super well then in the middle of the week I have to run to the store for something small and I am always tired and hungry and tend to impulse by. I have worked hard this week to revamp and put us back on a budget. I am going to try this week to use the envelope system. When Rick puts his check in the bank I am going to ask him to take x-amount out and we will use envelopes this week. If the money is not in the envelope we don’t need the item. So this is my plan and I hope to stick to it. I will say I may not have cut the budget in half, but I did reduce it some.

Goal #4 – for the next month save at least $10 per week.

Yep this one didn’t happen at all

Goal #5 – spend 20 min every day doing sometime of exercise.

Started out first week of deciding not to get up. Next two weeks did great worked out every day some of them over an hour. This last week I have done nothing. So going to work on this one a bit harder.

Goal #6 – spend more time playing with the kids each day.

Doing rather good at this one.

Goal #7 – make some time for me at least once a week that does not include the grocery store.

Goal #7 has been hard and easy. One thing I did when I realized that I am just not going to be able to make it out of the house once a week for me time, I have not been making the girls have rest time. I would love for this to be nap time, but I doubt that is ever going to happen. They go in their room for about an hour. This gives me time to blog (like I am right now), cook (this week I made cookies and bread), or just sit with a little bit of silence. If I can keep them in their room for a bit longer today I am going to try to clear out some of the clutter in the family room. Some stuff for yard sale and other stuff that has broken pieces are going to be trashed.

Even though I have not been great with all of my goals I do feel I am moving in the right direction. I am going to set one more goal for myself.

Goal #8 – I must de-clutter the house. I have to get rid of what is not important or useful. I feel like I am drowning sometimes with the amount of stuff we have. I have this horrible feeling if Hoarders (tv show) is still around in 5 years it will be me on there.  

I will follow up with this post one month from today! Those of you who love me please hold me accountable.


Baking Fun

written by Wendy Justis
Honey Oatmeal Craisin

Honey Oatmeal Craisin.

So I have been working on saving us some money by making things at home and trying to think of a way to send something to school  that will give Rich a little more substance and energy for the afternoon. So today I made some Honey Oatmeal Craisin Cookies that are super healthy and equal a bowl of oatmeal. To keep the sugar content down I used honey to replace some of the sugar.

first hour to wait


2nd hour waiting

I also figured out that if I am successful at making bread at home I can save us at least $40 a month that is $480 a year. It was not that hard just a bit time consuming. What I decided to do was do the main part when Gabe was taking a nap and the girls were in the rest time (which to them means play in their room). It turned out very very good! As long as I can time it right this will be a good thing for us. After I do the white bread a few times I will start in on the wheat. From what I have seen it is not harder just have to watch adding the flour in to keep it the right consistancy. And yes this was done without a bread maker. It was a lot of fun!

So worth the wait!!!


Our Best Friends

written by Wendy Justis

I started this post a few weeks ago and had to wait until I could scan a special picture before I could finish it. The other day my mom had to make a very difficult decision. It was time to allow her sweet dog to leave this earth and wait for her in heaven. This got me thinking about all the wonderful companions God has granted us in our lives. Obviously I can only speak for the ones that I have been lucky enough to be a part of their lives. So I am going to speak on Maggie first but the rest will be in no particular order. 

Maggie sneaking up on me

Maggie Dobson lived 12 wonderfully long years as my mom’s most trusted friend. She was loyal beyond compare and as head strong as any of us. She was pampered and spoiled but heaven help the person who she thought was a threat. She protected her family with every ounce of her being. There were more individuals cornered and backed up against a wall because she did not know them but she never once hurt anyone. No one  pushed her that far. My favorite story about Maggie is when Rick and I were getting ready to get married she did not like him because he was new to the house but one day Rick and I were sitting in the chair and Maggie desperately wanted to sit with me and rick was in the way. She passed and pondered how to get to me and she finally decided to go over Rick literally. She climbed up over him and stood on him for about 15 minutes in order to put her head on my shoulder. She not only protected her humans but she raised and protected several other dogs including saving Barney’s life. He was chocking out in the yard and Maggie tried to pull him out and when she couldn’t she got help. Maggie Dobson you are loved and I know you will be waiting and the gates of heaven to welcome each of us home. 


Gulliver McCarty was a red long haired doxin. He was the sweetest, little, big dog ever. However he did not like to be locked up and loved to chew there for leading the the demolishing of at least one door and several other items. He had this deep bark that would scare the pants of someone before they saw him. Golly was a cuddler and LOVED LOVED toes. He belonged to my Aunt and would sit and lick her toes for hours. It personally drove me crazy to watch but he my Aunt was a good match for him. Because he was a doxen he had the normal back problems but had such a gentle nature that you rarely knew when he was in pain. My most memorable time with him was in my mom’s new car. We were taking him to the vet and he had just eaten. He was sitting on my lap and out of no where start to get sick. I was determined to not let any of the mess to get on my mom’s car so I caught it all in my hands and just sat there no knowing what to do next. Finally my mom put the window down for me to toss it out. What we do for our animals. 

Dennis and Whitey

Dennis and Whitey

Whitey and Daisey Dobson were such a sweet cat. Whiteywas frequently very lazy and if given the chance would sleep the day away. His favorite things were chlorinated hair and long naps on anyone’s chest. He loved everyone and would go anywhere with whom ever he could . Many times if friends would be over at our house he was hitch a ride home with them without them knowing. Being a farm life cat he frequently had to catch mice, the funny part was he never liked to bite them to kill them. He would play with them until they would have a heart attack and that way it was never all that messy. When we were getting ready to move to Texas we had to give him some medication to make the trip easier on him. Well it kinda made him extremely loopy and when we put the harness on him he flipped out for real. He started jumping up in the air doing back flips until the meds kicked in and he went right to sleep and slept for 2 days straight almost. Whitey was so friendly and loving he made every day special. 

Daisey was not as sweet as Whitey, but she loved me! I was her pet, baby, and care taker all in one. She lived a long wonderful life and was my roommate the first time I lived alone. She kept the loneliness away and made me laugh. She was usually not nice to anyone but me. I will be looking for a picture to post of her. 

Samson is the little one and that is his sister delilah who is still keeping my brother warm on the couch.

Samson Dobson and Cody McCarty were brothers that could not be more 

Cody McCarty

 different. The funny part was when they were adopted Cody was the quiet sleepy one and Sampson was the wild crazy one. As soon as they got home they changed personalities. I had the wonderful opportunity to take care of Sampson frequently when Dennis and I were in collage. My cats hated him but he didn’t care. 

Jetta Dobson was one of the strangest animals I have ever seen. Looking at her you know God had a sense of humor. The top half was black with one type of fur and the bottom half was gray with poodle fur. She had teeth that stuck out of her mouth but you could not know a nicer dog. I don’t have a picture of her on my computer but as soon as I find a hard copy I will scan and post she is worth seeing.  


Bambie Dobson I tear up just thinking about her. I miss her so much. She was my best friend in some very hard times in my life. She was sweet and loving, yet if she ever felt the family was in trouble heaven help the person causing the trouble. Her name fit perfect because when she ran, she looked like a deer. Frequently it was easy to think of Bambie as a human because of how she acted and participated in life and never eat pizza around her if you were actually wanting to eat it. She could eat a whole piece that was in your hand without you ever knowing it. She loved and served her people so loyally that loosing her I think took a piece of me. 

There were many more that were not mentioned here, but they are loved and missed just the same!

We all have amazing wonderful animals in our lives and fear the day we loose them, but look forward to all of the companions God will grant us in the future. Thank you to all of those special animals that keep us grounded and protected. We love you all past, present and future.


If only

written by Wendy Justis

So if only I did not love and I mean LOVE bread and cheese. Loosing weight would be so much simpler if I did not crave cheese and bread all of the time. I have struggled with my weight my whole life and have tried just about everything. I have cut bread and carbs out, I have cut dairy out and in the end I am miserable and end up eating everything under the sun that was cut out. I have now decided that I am going to eat what I want but try to eat in moderation. I am not an extreme type person I don’t like the all or none attitude and don’t function well doing it. I am trying hard to work out and stay active, but I am just not going to allow myself to be miserable because I tell myself I can’t eat something. Will I still sit down and eat a whole loaf of bread from time to time, oh I am 100% certain I will, but I feel if over all I just try to make more positive choices and eat smaller amounts I will be happier and healthier.

Also I know one of my biggest problems is not eating breakfast. So I am going to try very hard to eat something every morning. Will I still have my coke in the morning, yep that will happen. But this morning I chose scrambled eggs with spinach, cheese, and salsa instead of frozen waffles. I don’t like being fat, but I would rather not make myself miserable and then yo-yo which has to be worse for you. So just my thoughts on it.


Who looks like who

written by Wendy Justis

After looking at some pictures of the kids I got to thinking how in a lot of ways they all look a lot alike but in a lot of ways they look sooo very very different.