Life is a test. We are not present on earth to just exist; we are here to learn. Life is a lesson. Love one another unconditionally. Love thyself unconditionally. We spend our whole lives learning to do this. Some succeed and some never have a clue. I'm trying. Love my fellow man. Don't react and don't always have to be right. This is one I'll have to work on for the rest of my life. Appreciate each day and recognize positive and negative as a part of life's experiences. Look around me and see life at it's best. The joys of living come as you strive to achieve your dreams. Its the quality of each day that is important, not the distant dream once achieved. Teach and nurture my children. You can never give them too much love. -Randa Jex 1/1/94

Wednesday, September 30


Well the room is as empty as our wallet is about to be!! But it is exciting. They mapped out the cabinets today and they start on on them in the morning! I will take a quick video each day to show the progress!

Tuesday, September 29

Watch out-- they are on a roll!

Well today completes Renovation Day 2! They are moving faster than we ever imagined and the crew is so nice! Tonight we finished demo on the floor and I continued removing that darn grass cloth. It already looks SO different and SO good!

Hold on to your hats, it's gonna be a wild ride!

Thursday, September 24


My best friend Lisha and her family need your prayers today!!!! Her baby girl Elle is in surgery as we speak repairing her heart. This is the big open heart surgery that Lee and Lisha have been nervously and anxiously awaiting since the 5th month of their pregnancy when they found out Elle had a heart condition. Please keep Elle, Lisha, and Lee Lupher in your thoughts and prayers today. I know this has got to be the longest 8 hours of their life.

Wednesday, September 23


The renovation has officially started! WHOO HOO!! The contractors are coming tomorrow to begin removing the wall between the den and the kitchen and will build beams for the load-bearing wall. In preparation, we moved everything from the kitchen into the dining room. Then we started removing the terracotta tile from the floor. I use the term "WE" very loosely because I really had nothing to do with the tile removal. Zach definitely was the muscle behind that operation and I would follow behind cleaning up the chunks of tile. He is such a hard worker..... especially when it means saving some money! So here we are on DAY 1 (already sore and tired) about 1/2 way done with the floor removal and as excited as 2 kids at on Christmas Eve awaiting the first signs of construction!! Here are some pics of Zach hard at work. Also, we had to move our fridge into our pantry where we could keep it plugged in and it would be safe from debris.

Tuesday, September 15

A room fit for TWO!

I had the pleasure of meeting a really special person when I worked in the Marketing department. She is one of those people that you can talk with for hours about everything from what haircut to get to how to deal with a death in the family. She is genuinely interested in what you have to say and she was such a breath of fresh air! We had daily "vent" sessions in each other's cubicles and she got me through a lot of ups and down this past year. When I started working on the project teams I met another spectacular individual. He was the Business Analyst on one of my projects and I think it took a whole 5 minutes before we were cracking jokes about anything and everything. He has a great sense of humor and always knows how to lighten the mood when the projects are getting unbearable. So about 7 days after meeting him, I was composing an email and put his name in the "TO:" line. It then dawned on me that....whoa... his last name is Reeves...and so is my good friend in Marketing...hmmmm....I wonder if they are related. Sure enough these 2 were husband and wife. I sure felt like I rode the "short bus" when I realized how long it took me to make the connection. Brian and Dianna have become some of our great friends! Zach and I enjoy every time we get to hang out with them and cannot wait for their next visit to Natchez!

Now that I have introduced you to Bri and Di, I can tell you how excited I am about the upcoming birth of their twin babies Sophia and _________. (The baby boy has yet to be named but I think they still have a few weeks to decide). I just completed a nursery mural for them. It is a tree in-between the cribs. Above the girl crib there is a pink baby bird and above the boy's crib, a blue one. Then "carved" in the tree trunk are Brian & Dianna's names as well as Sophia and a space for the little boy's name when decided on. Before I finished Brian and Dianna had to go to the hospital. She will be in there for a little monitoring hopefully for no more than 24 hours. I cannot wait for them to return home and see the nursery.


Saturday, September 12

September 12, 2009: Julia Claire Jex is Baptized!

We were up bright and early this morning to drive to Jackson for Julia Claire's Baptism. It was a beautiful ceremony at St. Richard's. The priest said Jules is already a great Catholic because she slept through the entire ceremony, even when they poured the water over her head. She looked beautiful in her Christening gown and bonnet. Zach and I were in awe...she is precious and what a head of hair! I hope our children get the "Jex hair"...and the Jex height!

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Wednesday, September 9


I spent my evening in the art studio finishing up a drawing and I just couldn't leave before I made one of my favorite babies something special. I started a tradition back in March when Elle was born, that every time she has a surgery I would make her a little "Shay Creation". So tonight she gets a door hanger for her hospital stay this month when she has her open heart surgery. I hope it will make one of my favorite families smile!! The bottom of the painting reads: "dear God, please heal my heart. Love, Elle" I made the little dress and hair flower from some of my favorite fabric and sewed a heart on the dress. I love how it turned out..I hope the Luphers do too!

L,L, & Elle- our prayers are with you this month as you approach the surgery. You are in one of the top 3 facilities for Elle's heart...what a blessing!! We love you!

Tuesday, September 1


The second battle of the living room remodel took place Sunday afternoon and continued this evening. After 409 and DIF failed to impact the brute force of the grass cloth, we had to pull out all stops. Thanks to Mrs. Ann, the Mighty industrial steamer joined the fight. Although it is going to be a long battle, we are making more and more headway on the paper removal each day. The steamer works remarkably well but it really does take a lot of patience. (I can just hear my dad laughing as he reads that...Shannon...patience?!) We moved the living room furniture into Zach's study at the front of the house and for the next few months while the kitchen renovation is in progress, the study will be our family room. The girls love it because they can cuddle with us while keeping watch out the front windows for horse drawn carriages, mail men, and especially other neighborhood pups. I might be in the market for some new living room furniture because we both love how comfy- cozy the leather sofas look in Zach's "man room". This weekend, in-between college football games on tv and Zach's 10 year high school reunion events, we are going to tackle the top of the walls with scaffolding.
Prep is by far the worst part of home renovation. Zach and I often start sentences with..."Good thing we love this house so much"... as we complain about all the "not fun" prep projects. We cannot wait to get our paint on the walls! I put together a little video to show you our progress (don't get too excited because we have not made much). Enjoy..and be easy on me...this is my first try at iMovie.