Author Archives: Melissa

I think I am officially done here…

This blog was my go-to place to talk about anything and everything in my ever-changing life for over 4 years. I started spilling my guts to the internet in January of 2009 and finally slowed down in 2011 and 2012. In those years I talked of boyfriends, animals, vacations, best friends, bra sizes, kiddos, crafts, pregnancy, babies and all things in between. I still get some traffic here, mainly from pinterest, and mainly to the blog about my grandmother’s blueberry cobbler recipe!!

This blog introduced me to some amazing  people. Several of these I now call friends, though we live in different states and most I have never actually met in real life. This blog reinstated my faith in people and in friendships with women. The internet is full of wonderful, beautiful, inspirational people and I am a better person for meeting them.  Please make sure to visit Brooke, Katie, Amy and Emily. (and Dana!!! I left her off of my original list, but she’s one of my favs too!) These women kept me laughing and sane during the ups and downs of the past several years. They continue to inspire me keep me giggling now.

Part of me wants to just shut it all down and make this site private, but I haven’t made that drastic decision yet. There might be more people out there that need my grandmother’s blueberry cobbler recipe!!

So, instead of shutting it down, I am just going to direct you to my new blog home away from home: Melissa Gay Photography

With a lot of inspiration and encouragement from a couple of the ladies above, I have become part of a blog circle group made up of photographers.  I spend each week inspired and in awe of this group and I want to grow up to be just like them!!

I hope that you will come visit me and join me in my new venture. I am hoping to grow in my photography knowledge and produce beautiful photographic memories for my friends and clients.


The Gay family genetics!

(Just found this in my draft folder? not sure why I never publish it!)

I have come to the conclusion that the Gay genes are strong in my family. And yes, I know how that sounds… but what are you to do when Gay is your last name!?

I often see Brian’s genes shine through in Beck’s facial features and expressions, but more often then not I see me. and my papa. and my dad. and my brother. I see my brother a lot, probably because I knew him as an infant.

I was talking to Becky about it and she said the next time we went to go see grandmother and papa, she was going to dig out the photo of my dad as a baby. I was flabbergasted when I saw it! It’s so neat to see how babies take on the traits of their parents… and grandparents… and great grandparents!

My dad, 6-8 months or so. 1956

Me, 1 year and some days. 1980

Me and dad, i was probably 3-4 months old

Me and Beck 02/2012

Beck, a crappy iphone photo, 07/2012

Papa and his mini-me 07/2012

i just thought it would be neat to compare these photos!


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a smattering of my recent life (in photos)

here’s a photo update of my life as I know it over the past few months…

I have a camera full of photos at the moment that I really need to go through and get saved to my computer, but Beck takes up 99% of my time. The other 1% is when I get to shower. Also, This reminds me that I really need to document more of his everyday life. It’s the little moments that pass by so fast and I want to remember them.

03/14/2012 sleepy boy
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03/17/2012 at the park
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04/08/2012 all of my kiddos on Easter
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04/22/2012 piggy face boy
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new goals for 2012

I am having an extremely hard time finding the time to come here and blog. I do miss it so, but my day to day life is so full of my job, my kids and everyday chores that I very rarely open my computer once I am home to type a word. I have recently purchased a used Ipad and hope I might use it to come here on a semi regular basis to document my life.

I have been doing a lot of thinking and rearranging in my mind of the things that are important to me in my life. I have started watching what I put in my mouth, filtering what comes out of it, pinching pennies, planning for fun and preparing for the zombie apocalypse. (I wish I was kidding! ha!!) Having a new, small, innocent person who can not protect himself has turned me into a paranoid, careful, prepared, crazy momma! I considered deleting this blog since I have put so much of myself and my family out there into the world with it. But, I  can’t bring myself to do it yet. I don’t make it here to write very often, but I am giving myself new reason to try.

For about a year and a half I have been working on my “101 in 1001″… I knew I would end up ditching it and creating something new. I should have never done something that lasted for sooooo long. I am about 5 months from my finish date and my goals in life changed drastically the moment I found out I was pregnant! I have revamped my list into something I can work on for the remaining months of 2012. From there I hope to create a new list each year and complete as many items as possible. With a growing baby boy, my hopes, dreams and ideas change almost as often as he does!

So, my new set of goals… includes about 20-25 from my original 101 that I had not completed yet. I trashed 10-20 goals that are just no longer ideal or obtainable at this time in my new life as Mommy. Please go check out my new list and check back, as I hope to blog my progress for the rest of the year.

This new life of mine has fulfilled my heart and soul in such a way that I can’t even describe. The days aren’t long enough  and my house is normally a complete disaster, but life is full of laughter, happiness and love. There is nothing else I need!


Beck: a photo update

Do you remember this little boy? My 8lb 3oz, 20″ long, one day old little boy?

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well, check him out now! all 5.5 months old, 15+lbs of him (sitting up, eating baby food, rolling over, giggling and “talking” up a storm)

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though my hair is not fixed (and I look like an exhausted mommy) and Beck was super sick, this photo makes me so very happy! (photo by kim)

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oh that sweet boy makes my world go round. It has been the most amazing journey so far and I am excited every day to see where our life is headed.


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2 months later and I am back, i guess

So it’s been almost 2 months since I have been here to write. Honestly, I am so sleepy and still need to shower and it’s about an hour and a half past my bedtime.

My last post was sort of a goodbye to my dad. When I began writing it, I was waiting to get Beck from my aunt, get him to daycare and go back to the hospital to say my final goodbye. Within a few minutes of hitting the publish button, I got the phone call that my dad had passed away. It made me incredibly sad to know he was gone. It made me incredibly happy that as he was leaving this world, I was writing about him, remembering the good things and looking at that photo of him and Beck.

The two months that have followed have been busy, crazy, sad, wonderful, amazing, sleep-deprived and tough.

The week of his death was a whirl wind. With funeral plans to make, family to see, phone calls, texts, emails and facebook messages to answer and a baby to take care of… it was exhausting. This isn’t the first time I have lost a parent. And thankfully it will be the last time. As awful as it is to say… At least I don’t have to worry about my parents dying anymore.

With the time-consuming nature of caring for Beck, and with Tori moving in with me the same week as dad’s death, my world has been busy, busy, busy. Which is absolutely the best thing for me. I have found, over the last 2 months, that down time for me just means I end up sobbing in the shower about things I can’t control.

I miss dad. A lot. I really didn’t realize how much we talked each week until he wasn’t calling me every other day anymore. I had a couple of moments of “oh, I need to call dad and tell him…”, which were followed by some tears and a few deep breaths to regain composure.

I know I have blogged quite often about my mom and how her death has effected my life. I don’t know that I will have the same things to talk about with dad, just because we weren’t as close as I wish we had been, and I did have some bitterness towards him due to his choices in his life. Of course, because I am how I am, that bitterness never made me not love him, or have any hate toward him. Just irritation and sadness. I truly believe that the birth of Beck made him want to get better. Unfortunately it was just too late for his body to heal. At Christmas he really spoke like he was going to get better so that he and Beck could do fun Grandpa/Grandson things. Most of my breakdowns about dad being gone are for the things that Beck lost out on without him here.

It’s been hard to sort through his things (as few things as there are) and decide what to keep and what to donate. I have found a few things that I am saving (a ziggy fireman ashtray that he has had since I was a little girl and his fireman boots and badge for beck to have when he’s older.) I have also held on to some of his clothes that he wore all the time so that I can attempt to make a “Grandpa quilt” for Beck to have when he is older. I wish I had done this with mom’s clothes.

It’s taken me two months to even begin to sort through his life. I still have more to do and the procrastinator in me is a very persuasive girl.

I know I have said it a million times since that week in January but, Thank you to my friends, family, and random people who commented on my blog for all your sweet words, offers for help and love. I am one lucky girl to have the support around me that I do. Without you people in my life, I don’t think I would have much of a life to live.


I am going to end this post here. But I hope to go write another post on the heels of this one to update you on my sweet boy.





goodbye daddy-o

I am keeping my brain busy while waiting to go back to the hospital to say goodbye to my dad. Waiting on my cousin to bring my sweet baby boy to me so I can drop him off at daycare for the day.

I have so many things I want to say, but my brain is blank and my heart is sad.

We took my dad off of the ventilator yesterday and it’s been a waiting game since then. His vitals are dropping and it is very likely he will be gone sometime today.

When I woke up yesterday I had no idea this is where I would be today. He’s been sick, but I thought he might pull through again.

I wanted to come here and share this photo. I took very few photos at Christmas. It was hard to juggle my camera and the baby throughout the day. I am so thankful I took the time to snap a few of Beck and his Grandpa. It’s the last one I will ever have. I only have a couple of them together and this one is the best by far. It has reminded me why I love photography. It has reminded me to enjoy the moments, and to document them as often as I can. I wish I had more photos of my parents. Especially more photos of me with my parents. But I can’t go back in time and I have to cherish the ones I do have.

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I lost my mom 7 years ago in February. It was hard and changed me forever. Losing my dad will be the same. I know though that he will no longer suffer and that gives me peace.

goodbye daddy-o. I love you and I know you were so proud of that boy.


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my 101 (an update)

This is what is left of my 101 in 1001. You can click the link at the top of the blog to see the full list and the things I have already done. I would link it here, but I am lazy:)

The new year has renewed my want to knock some of the things off of this list. As I read over what is left, I know that a good bit of it won’t be accomplished, but I also see so many things I can do. (And this week for that matter!) I have about 9 months or so to see what I can get done. Last year I grew a person in nine (ten) months… surely this year I can meet a couple of measly life goals! Some of them are laughable because there will be no way in hell I can get them done, but others are super simple and will be easy to mark off. Some I am in the midst of doing now. My sweet little man takes up 100% of my time and I am ok with that. If nothing gets done on this list, I think I might be ok with the failure!


  1.  Buy, or help buy Tori a car
  2. Pay off at least half (or all) of my debt
  3. Go on a cruise
  4. Finish current cross stitch projects before starting new ones (excluding the dragon)
  5. Wash (done 1/3/2010), Frame, display, and/or sell finished cross stitch and other crafts
  6. Get my passport
  7. Complete hard back collection of Anne Rice books
  8. Read all unread Stephen king books/stories
  9. Read Dark Tower Series
  10. Lose ten pounds (can I count baby weight loss?? I think I should be able to!)
  11. Lose ten more (By fall of 2012 I will be below my prepregnancy weight. by atleast 10 pounds. maybe!)
  12. Tahiti
  13. Have mom’s sapphire earrings reset in white gold, to match my ring and necklace she gave me
  14. Organize and set up a craft room/office
  15. Re finish sewing machine furniture
  16. Decorate bedrooms.(Beck’s room done 09/2011)
  17. Display more pictures of family in the house
  18. Finish organizing recipes in binder
  19. Visit Vegas
  20. Return borrowed books to correct owners. (BMFK, Kenny, Bonnie, Lee)
  21. Have $3000.00 in savings by the time 1001 is up
  22. Finish transferring cd’s to itunes
  23. Have date night one night a month
  24. Spend a weekend in Nashville, being a tourist
  25. Take all the kids to the beach for longer than one day!
  26. Have spa day with tori
  27. Add 5 states to my list of states I have been to. (MD, PA)
  28. Donate money to a charity each year
  29. Learn another language (sign language, I think)
  30. Get another tattoo
  31. Take my dad to dinner. or on a trip
  32. Put flowers on/visit mom’s grave at least once a year (this involves a 4 hour drive, or I would do it more) (done 2010) (Failed 2011)
  33. Go camping. like in a tent. ha! (this may be the least likely of all of em!)
  34. Scan in and back up pictures of family. (especially mom)
  35. Celebrate mom’s life, instead of mourning her death, by planting a yellow rose bushes.
  36. Attempt to keep said rose bushes alive! (I do NOT have a green thumb)
  37. Eat lunch away from my desk at least 2 days a week
  38. Cook each recipe in my family recipe book/blog recipe (minus the pickles…)
  39. renew my library card. and use it to help with #11
  40. Have my rocking chair repaired. (and painted possibly)
  41. Spend a day/weekend being a tourist in my town… Vulcan, Museums, etc
  42. Complete Scrap book of letters and cards from mom
  43. Take one picture a day for 30 days. and post them
  44. organize post cards from 2009 trips into a photo album
  45. finish Disney scrap book for Tori
  46. Visit mom’s friends Kat.
  47. Learn to drive a 5 speed vehicle
  48. Learn to knit something more than scarfs
  49. have my car professionally cleaned/detailed
  50. Love my job
  51. Paint something and display it in the house. even if it looks like a 4-year-old did it!
  52. Donate $5 for each unfinished item to charity of my choice
  53. make another 101 in 1001 list when this one is complete



I gotta say, I probably won’t do 53. I think I may try another approach to this. maybe 52/365? We will see.






because he’s so darn cute (goodbye 2011, hello new year!)

Here are a few  photos I took on the last day of 2011 of Beck. 2011 was an amazing year full of surprises and changes in my life. As always, I roll with the punches and come out on top and better than before. Beck has been one of the most amazing things to ever happen in my life and I am so lucky to be his momma.

With the new year comes new hopes, dreams and plans. I can’t wait to watch him grow this year and see all the changes he will go through. Looking at this little guy right now, makes me wonder what he will be like this time next year. It’s crazy to think that by 2013 he will be walking and talking!

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I have been obviously absent from blogging here. As you can see from the sweet face above, I have been busy loving a baby. I have felt a huge desire recently to jump back into this blog and make something of it. I have only a short 9 months to finish items on my 101 in 1001 days. I have transferred the remaining list to my phone in hopes that will motivate me to do a couple of items a week. There are several things I have completed and need to go mark off and there are quite a few I know I won’t complete. Also, with the addition of Beck, my goals have changed somewhat. I am not totally ditching it, but I have an idea that I will be completing some items that aren’t on the list, but have become more important.

The new year always brings a sense of wonder for me. It really does feel like a fresh of breath air gets blown into my soul and I know that I can do anything I want. My life has become pretty dang amazing in the past 365 days. I have gained a new perspective on my life that comes with having with having a small life to take care of. Things that were once important, no longer are and I am ok with that. Then there are the things in my life that I really didn’t realize how much I missed and needed. I am working on those too.

My main purpose in this life again has become my children. I really, really, really believe I was mean to be a momma. I was a momma for a long time to Tori and my nephews. But, I have missed the past few years of traditions with Tori and Hunter. I did my best to spend time with them and continue what we had before, but it was hard. Now that I have my own home again, we have been able to rekindle some of that “family” magic. I know from the outside looking in it’s a little wacky. But I have never really been normal.  I am excited for Beck to grow up loving his sister and cousin. Even though it’s not a blood relation, family is what you make it. I am also excited for Beck to grow up surrounded by all the people who love him, family AND friends.

OK. I got a little sappy there… This kid makes me that way sometimes!

Here’s to a wonderful, fun-filled, amazing new year


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my baby boy… 8 weeks old

8 weeks in and I have actually taken Beck’s one month and two month photos! Go me!

I wish I knew how to do a side by side comparison from last month to this month, but I am not that savvy with picture editing software. I swear one day I am actually going to obtain and learn how to use photoshop.

Here are the few that I loved.
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I love this one because I captured the head petting… this is the reason he has a bald spot on the other side of his head!
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2 month old Super Baby!

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I was also luck enough to have Kim around to take the ones of me and Beck (and mr. frog). They turned out better than my self portrait of us!

I can tell my little man is putting on the poundsand his little face and body is plumping up. A month ago I didn’t think Beck could get any dang cuter… but guess what? He did! Gah, I love that baby!