Hello Blog


It’s been awhile.

I practically feel like I’m starting a new blog!

So far 2014 has looked like this for me:

January- I housesat 14 days, we celebrated my parents 25th Anniversary (woot!), and participated in a Civil War reenactment across town.

February – I started leading our HighSchool worship team on Wednesday nights and went with Jordan to Pheonix for 5 days to participate in a Justice For All training and outreach.

March – Enjoyed fellowship around a bonfire, as well as at our Church picnic a couple days later!

April – Performed with a band in our homeschool group’s talent show and celebrated Joshua’s 7th birthday on the 10th along with my Dad’s birthday at the end of the month. AND we went to the Grand Canyon and stayed in a trailer (but that’s a long story for another time)

May – Choreographed Musical Bootcamp and taught 50+ teens in one week!

June – Left for the Dominican Republic on the 6th, Jordan’s 22nd birthday, and had an amazing 2 weeks there working hard, building a great team, reaching out, loving on children and sharing God’s love. I missed Father’s day with my dad, but made him this song. 3 days after arriving back in the states my Dad and I drove my sister to Kansas, her new home! She is now working as an intern with Justice For All!

And that brings us to July! The coming weeks are packed for me, so it’s likely I’ll disappear again, though not so long this time! Family coming into town and a lot of housesitting for my sister and me!

Hope that helps get this blog up to speed 🙂 I’ll be posting about a highlight from my trip to the Dominican Republic soon, so stay tuned…

❤ Riahjoy


PS How do you like the new blog look?


Daddy’s Birthday! – 4-29-13 {Flashback Friday}

Birthday sign

Delicious chocolate ice cream and cake with whipped cream, cherries, coconut and chocolate sprinkles for breakfast!!!

Delicious chocolate ice cream and cake with whipped cream, cherries, coconut and chocolate sprinkles for breakfast!!!

Presents Yum!

I’m so grateful to have such a wonderful Daddy! He’s loving, caring, thoughtful, a good listener, a hard worker, my teacher, and an amazing husband!

Thank you for…

…Doing {stuff} with me

… Driving {fast} with me

…Daring {far} with me

…Dancing {whenever} with me

…Dreaming {big} with me

I love you Daddy!

Great Papa’s Burial – 4-10-13 {Flashback Friday}


After a short and sweet celebration of Joshua’s birth, we met with our family and said goodbye to our dear Great Grandpa, but oh what peace it brings to know that it was only his old, broken body that we must say goodbye to and never see again; for we know that we will see him in heaven one day with a new, perfect body!

It was such a beautiful celebration of his life, love, and legacy of family, music, and dedication to the King of kings.


Saying Good-bye to Great Papa – 3-30-13 {Flashback Friday}

Soon after my Great Grandpa moved in with his daughter (my Gramma) because of his decline from lung cancer, we noticed his health deteriorate even quicker. It was time for a barbecue to spend some last moments with the patriarch of the family. It was bittersweet for all of us since we knew it would most likely be our last time with him, but we also knew how much he was eagerly waiting to be reunited with his dear wife in Heaven as well as meet his Savior whom he had served faithfully.


Watching Papa grill

Watching Papa grill

Lil josh

After Great Papa woke up we all got to spend some special time with him.


Daniel showing off the wordless picture book I made them from their hike on the mountain.



Now we couldn’t have a visit to my grandparents house without having the traditional egg hunt. No matter what time of year or what holiday we are celebrating we hide around 12-24 wooden eggs!


We also had some time to spend with my Aunt Becki and my dad’s cousin (Nate) and his wife (Sandra).


Plus we got to chat with my Aunt Kris to wish her happy birthday on Skype!



My favorite picture of the night… my Dad having his last conversation with his Grandpa


The beautiful sunset that night

We love and miss you Great Papa!

My birthday!

On the 17th I had a wonderful winter wonderland birthday party! For the special occasion my sister Jordan made me a dream dress, which was of course orange 😀

Sweet sixteen!

Sweet sixteen!

My personal designer ;)

My personal designer 😉



My wonderful family

My wonderful family

The beautifully decorated room

The beautifully decorated room

Sweet sixteen birthday wishing...

Sweet sixteen birthday wishing…

Silly cousin picture (the only kind there is, right?)

Silly cousin picture (the only kind there is, right?)

Of course, an action shot ;)

Of course, an action shot 😉

Chase the squirrel 2


Thanks to all who made my birthday party a huge and wonderful success!

One year older…

(I wrote this 12/17/12)

When December began I started doing something most people do the month of their birthday; counting down until the exciting day or in some cases the dreaded day of growing one year older. I continued to count down the days to my birthday until three days ago when tragedy struck our country. Shock, fear, grief and even anger grew in our hearts. Emotions swelled as we continued with the flow of the Christmas season. I wasn’t able to calm myself and actually wrap my mind around what had happened until the next day. And that’s when God took hold of me, gently by the hand, and pointed out some things I needed to identify. He made me question the way I had been living.


Why have I been given sixteen years of life? Why the months, weeks, days, hours, minutes that God has given me one more breath? The answer was clear: God has a plan for me. A broken vessel, a mound of clay. But the questions were not through.


Have I used those valuable moments to fulfill that plan? Have I been furthering God’s kingdom? Have I been bringing God glory? Have I been blessing His name in the hard times? Have I thanked him enough for His daily blessings, big and small? I began to plead with God that I would not take my life for granted. I want to live my life with no regrets and fully, no matter how long it lasts. I want to live my life for Him, counting the blessings, even if they come with pain.


So today I want to re-dedicate my life to Him, whether it be a few more days, months, sixteen or even eighty more years.

16 days until I’m 16!!

I can’t believe I’ll be sixteen in sixteen days! I was thinking I should post some pictures of when I was little for each day that I count down… What do you think? For now I’ll give you these:

My First Year!

First soda...

First soda…

Mo,Jo, and Cat


Trying my Uncle's Fireman pants on

Trying my Uncle’s Fireman pants on

(forgive the quality. They will get better as the years go on 😉 )

The Past 4 Months in Pictures – part 1

The set up for the Set-Apart Girl conference

The Set-Apart Girls!

Our Set-Apart Lunch 😉

Jordan’s Birthday Dinner

My VBS group of 2nd graders!

Skyping with Aunt Becki on the projector just because we could 😉 This is where the topic of me coming to visit came up… and then came true!

The beautiful flowers Mema and Papa (my mom’s parents) gave us after our Musical Bootcamp performance

Three of our chickens trying to lay eggs… Sausage in the way back, squeak on the side, and Pot Pie in the front who we no longer get eggs from since her death 2 weeks ago 😦

The pretty eggs!


I hope you enjoyed and got caught up a bit on my busy Summer! More to come 😀