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October - Enjoying the Fall Weather 

I said I would touch base in September, but it’s already gone! How did that happen? Time flies when you’re having fun. Or in our case, busy as ever.
 
Getting Settled
We got all moved and are settling in nicely to our home and job in Pocatello. (See the August post on website if you missed the “move” update.) I spent 2 months fixing up the yard to the rental property we moved into. We had a hard rain the weekend after we moved and I refused to deal with a mud-pit (front and back yard) this winter soooo, I did a little work on the place. Let’s just say our landlord is very happy with us, but my lower back doesn’t like me anymore. lol. That being said, Daisy is very grateful to have a nice place to potty in her old age.
Thank You for prayers for Daisy
Speaking of Daisy, thank you for all of your prayers and support as she deals with this disease (Degenerative Myelopathy, similar to MS or ALS in people). She is doing okay, but each week we see a decline in the strength of her back legs. It looks like we may be less than a couple of months from the sling and the doggie-wheelchair. She’s in better spirits about it than we are. It’s so hard to see her go downhill like this. We went to the mountains on Saturday and let her limp around for awhile. Look at that smile! She loves the mountains.
I'm Volunteering at Mass
In addition to being Daisy’s Hospice caretaker, I have been busy helping Pete with masses at St. Johns Student Center, on ISU campus. Yes, he and Fr. Hugh recruited me to lead the Music Ministry Team each Sunday. It has been a privilege but also a huge learning curve for me as I have never directed/been in charge of the music liturgy at a parish before. I appreciate everyone’s patience as I continue to learn and grow in this new role. I am so excited to be able to work with the students over the next few months and to add more awesome musicians to the team at St. Johns. Go Bengals!!!
 
Advent Concerts on the Horizon
I have been booking Advent concerts close to home (with Daisy being sick, I’ve kept my travelling ‘long distances’ to a minimum). All of the Advent Concerts are in Idaho, so keep your eyes on the website calendar to see if I’ll be in your town.  I plan to put the Places/Dates/Times in the November’s newsletter and, of course, on the website. Keep checking back. 
 
If you would like me to do an Advent concert at YOUR Parish (must be in Idaho), please contact me through the website contact page. I have a couple of open dates.
 
Booking Concerts for 2015
-Lenten Musical Presentation (Available Feb 19-March 31)
-I have Friday evening open in Texas Houston Area (January 17th).  Email me if you want a concert in your parish.
 
I pray you all enjoy the Fall season. Thank you for continuing to support this ministry.
 
Jaime  

August - Transitions 

August. The month that most kids dread (summer is over) and one that most parents start to see that light at the end of the tunnel. Happy August everyone. I hope you had a great summer.

Moved Again?  Yes we are Gypsies
Although I’m not going back to school, or have children returning to school, Pete and I are enjoying our own little transition this fall.  As many of you know, this past June, Pete was called back into ministry. After much prayer, he accepted the position of Director of Campus Ministry at St. John’s Catholic Student Center on Idaho State University in Pocatello Idaho. That’s Right!  We moved…..AGAIN.  We are coming up on 16 years of marriage at the end of this month and we just moved into our 11th home. July 26th we loaded the truck and moved 1 ½  hours East of Twin Falls, to Pocatello, Idaho. 
We never thought we’d live in Pocatello. In fact, Pete at the beginning of his ministry said that he would go wherever God called him to go, with 3 exceptions.  He would never live in the Southern United States, he would never live in Utah and he would never move to Pocatello. Well, so far we’ve lived in Tennessee, Salt Lake City, and now Pocatello. Don’t tell me God doesn’t have a sense of humor. Pete told me that the next time he had this little chat with God, he’d say the following… “Lord I never want to live in Hawaii, Alaska or the Basque Country.” I will keep you all posted. Lol. But I’m pretty sure God will pick up on the sarcasm this time.
Pete is excited about this new adventure. I, on the other hand, am taking a little time to adjust. But you have to give me some credit because I only had 3 weeks to get used to the idea before we packed up and moved.  Not a lot of time for things to sink in.  We had just moved back ‘home’ to Twin Falls a year ago and I was just getting settled into enjoying being back Home.

Comfortable?
Maybe all of this moving around is a good thing because it prevents us from getting comfortable. And while all of this moving around may not be for everybody, it reminded me that as Christians we should always resist being comfortable in our faith. And we shouldn’t become comfortable in this world if we are truly followers of Christ. We are surrounded by injustice and hate. Comfortable should be the least felt emotion in this life. But we weren’t made for this life…we were made for eternal life with Christ.
 
And to quote Forrest Gump… “That’s all I have to say about that.”

Check out the website below for Pete’s new Job and a great article. I’m one proud wife. He’s so gifted and amazing. It’s so fun to see how God is working through him. I’m blessed to be married to this man and I can’t believe it’ll be 16 years August 29, 2014. Woohoo!
 
Thank You!
A HUGE ‘Thank You’ to all who helped us load the truck in Twin Falls and unload it in Pocatello. It was a great ‘send off’ from TF and and a wonderful ‘welcome’ to Pocatello. We couldn’t have done it without all of you.
Bye for now. I’ll touch base with you in September with more concert dates and ministry news.

Blessings,
Jaime

 

Happy 4th Everyone!  

I’m so happy to live in this country and proud to call myself an American, but I also realize that we have our share of problems that need to be covered in A LOT of prayer.
 
As we celebrate this 4th of July (Independence Day), let’s remember to pray for our country, the people in it, as well as those who are leading us.
 
For the past 6 years, I have publicly taken a stand to help protect our unborn (the most vulnerable of all Americans). And as I read the first few lines of the Declaration of Independence, I am reminded that “Life” is listed first. But that’s no surprise, right?  “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness”. After-all, we can’t have Liberty and Happiness without first being given the chance at Life. The Declaration of Independence says:
 
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are Created Equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain Unalienable Rights,
that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."


My hope and prayer for this country is that we will put our focus back on Life and realize that when we deny someone the chance at Life, we also deny them the chance at Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.  As Christians, who are to be living the greatest commandment… “LOVE”, shouldn’t it be our desire to try to help facilitate LIFE, LIBERTY and the PURSUIT of HAPPINESS for all of those around us?
 
Let us continue to pray that ALL LIFE will be valued… not just those WE deem good, worthy, healthy, or wanted. No one should be denied the right to Life, the right to Liberty or the right to pursue Happiness in this World.
 
Happy Independence Day.

Blessings,
Jaime
 

Happy Father's Day Weekend 

I want to wish all you Dad’s out there a very happy Father’s Day and I want to thank my dad for all he did for us growing up. He was a very hard worker and always provided for us kids. In fact he continues to help us out as adults if we find ourselves in a bind. Thanks Dad! We appreciate you and love you tons.
 
I’m going to do the same thing I did with my Mother’s Day blog and share a special story and encourage you to share stories of your Dad’s as well in the comments section below this post.
My “DAD” Memory (Fishing... “Unknown Creature Lurking Below?”)
My Dad is not the kind of person who sits around the house a lot. As I look back to my childhood, I honestly can’t remember him just sitting around the house except for his 20 min powernap and of course watching the evening news. Occasionally he would watch a football game or a Bill Gaither concert if it was on. But for the most part he was out doing stuff (a project around the house, helping a neighbor with a project at their house, out at the airport with his flying buddies, flying his airplane, taking us kids fishing, snow and water skiing or pulling us on a sled behind his truck during the winter). He was very active and still is. In fact, he just ran a 5k last year.  
 
There are so many stories to share, but the one I want to share with you is about a special fishing trip he took me and my brother (one year younger than me) on one summer. I was 11 or 12 at the time. Dad had just gone out and bought brand new fishing poles so we could all fish together. I LOVED fishing! I also loved cleaning them out and chasing my sister around with the eyeballs. Awe the blessings of being the little tom-boy sister.
 
Dad had also bought and installed a new fish finding device. This device also had a depth finder which tells you how deep of water you are in.
 
It was a beautiful sunny morning. Since dad liked to troll fish, we had everything set up with each of our poles in their holders, lines in the water baited with lures and dragging out behind us as the boat moved slowly forward through the water, the little device beeping every time we would pass over fish. It was very exciting!  Another perk was the depth finder. We would watch the little screen as the lines went up and down telling us how close we were to the bottom.
 
At one point, we were clear out in the middle of the lake and it showed that we were in very shallow water. Rob and I asked “Dad, why does it say it’s so shallow if we’re in the middle”. My dad, always joking around being the comedian that he was, replied “I don’t think that’s the bottom. I think that may be something else….(long pause) maybe a Sea Monster.” He began to laugh. Just then both Rob and my poles almost bent in half and dad yelled “GRAB YOUR POLES”! Rob and I both screamed and grabbed our poles while dad tried to slow and turn the boat around. Our hearts pounding so fast, the images of sea monsters going through our minds, Rob and I unable to hold on any longer,  and not realizing we could release the line with the bail (The bail is the part of the reel that opens to let the fishing line release from the spool) leaning over the edge of the boat, arms stretched as far as we could reach, we dropped our poles into the water. All of you fishermen out there are like…”WHAT? YOU DROPPED YOUR BRAND NEW POLES?”  I know, I cringe to this very day just thinking about it and I thank my dad for not throwing us both into the water with the mysterious sea monster (which just happened to be a shallow part of Salmon Dam Reservoir that our lines had snagged on).
 
My dad, who could have yelled profanities and grounded us both, sweat a couple of beads, removed his hat, wiped his forehead, took a deep breath and said, “Well, I guess I’ll do a little more trolling while you guys watch”. Later, we laughed it off and dad taught us the importance of knowing what a “bail” was, so that this didn’t happen again.
 
Sorry dad for losing the poles you bought us. In our defense, YOU are the one who brought up the sea monster. Thank you for not always sweating the small stuff. We love you and appreciate all you did for us as kids. Looking back, we were very spoiled and blessed by having you as a dad.
 
Tell Us About YOUR Dad
Click on “comment” and tell us about your dad.
 
Exciting Things Coming in the Near Future.
I can’t give you any details yet, but we have a couple of exciting things in the works. I hope to disclose them soon. Hopefully by this Fall but at latest Spring of 2015. Wanted you to know that I’m not just sitting around twiddling my thumbs. “wink”. 
 

Happy Mother's Day 

I wanted to wish all of you mom's out there a Happy Mother's Day Weekend.
 
A special 'thank you' to my Mom, who showed us love, inspired us to love those around us and who sacrificed so much for us kids.

 
My "mom memory"
One of the things that my mom has done over the years is... she has always been there to “talk me home”.  Whether it was after a long recording session that ran late, after a concert, or even after a late flight... as I was driving down the road I could always count on my mom to talk me home when I got too tired. She was always there to answer my call.
 
I remember one specific time, when I was living in Nashville TN, I called her after a very late editing session for the “My Chance video". She spent 45 minutes with me on the phone to get me home. Thank you, mom, for being there for me in so many ways. Sometimes it's the little things that mean so much to us kids. I love you.

Share your "mom memory"
What is one of your "mom memories"? Share below. Click on "leave a comment" right below this line. I'm looking forward to reading about your mom.

Texas and Montana Tours! Thank you for your hospitality. 

This past month has been such a whirlwind and I have enjoyed every minute of it. 

I want to thank all of the parishes and events who invited me to share. Thank you for your wonderful hospitality and all of your hard work to make the concerts and events a blessing for all those who attended. Keep up the wonderful work. You were a blessing to this ministry and I pray many blessings will come to you in return. Thank you and I hope to be able to see all of you again.




 

Happy Easter Weekend Everyone 

I'm going to try and keep this short but wanted to share a little about what I've been reflecting on this past week during Holy Week.

This year I was on tour in Montana for most of that time but was able to share a Lenten concert titled "Reflecting On Our Lord's Passion". This is always a tough presentation to give but I am thankful for the opportunity to reach down deep and go to a place that isn't always easy for us as Christians. 

Why do we have Holy Week? Why do we put ourselves at the Crucifixion each year? Why do we watch movie's like "The Passion of the Christ"?
 
It's because it allows us to journey with Christ as He suffered. 
It allows us to look at HIS suffering
and know just how much He loves us
and understands the suffering in OUR lives. 


I know that most of us like to spend time thinking and focusing on Easter Sunday and the resurrection. The happy ending or should I say "beginning". But without spending time to remember that road He walked for us, the story loses most of its power. Remember that the price for our sins wasn't paid at the resurrection, it was paid for at the cross. Our Lord didn't choose a quick death. He endured a beating and was then scourged (severely). A crown of thorns was put upon his head. Then He had to carry a cross, walking that road to Golgotha. Falling time and time again he continued that journey to the place where He would be crucified. Every agonizing step He took was for you and for me.

When we forget about this part, or easily brush it aside and focus on the resurrection, we then tend to forget the magnitude of how much He loves us. He didn't choose an easy death. He chose to bear our burdens. And with the weight of the world on His shoulders He walked that road so we wouldn't have to. 

After taking time to walk that road with Him, Easter, then becomes a much greater joy. He didn't give up. He kept going. And because of that we have hope.

As I watched the movie 'The Passion of the Christ' last night (3rd time watching since it was released 10 years ago), I was reminded just how much He loves me. The last scene of the movie is an empty tomb. Thank you Jesus, for all you endured for me, a sinner. 
 
Matthew 28:6
He is not here: for he is risen, as he said.

 

It's Spring! Lenten Message, Concert Recap & Store Specials 

Hi Friends, I can’t believe that Spring is already here! It is so beautiful here in Idaho. We are enjoying the sunshine and the 55+ degree weather we’ve had lately. 
The Lenten season is in full swing and I am excited to be heading out to give several Lenten Concerts in Texas and Montana titled “Reflecting On Our Lord’s Passion” over the next few weeks.
 
As I have worked, this past month, on putting this presentation together, it has allowed me to really journey with Christ as He took the weight of the world on his shoulders and walked that painful road for you and for me. I must admit, as I was able to take time and meditate on what our Lord did for us, tears flowed several times. I love, and feel it is so important, that we spend each year not just celebrating Easter, but that we take 6 weeks up until then, to journey with Christ as he suffered.
 
It allows us time to look at His suffering and know just how much He Loves us
and understands the suffering in our lives.
 
This is why we have Holy week… why we put ourselves at Christ’s Crucifixion each year...and why we watch movies like “The Passion of the Christ”. It’s not an easy time in the church calendar but I feel it is very necessary time in order to understand His deep love for us.
 
Let us take time this season to stop, to think about His sacrifice and to recommit our lives to building His kingdom here on earth by loving and serving those around us.
 
Concert Recap
I had such a great time sharing with the wonderful people of Sacred Heart Parish in Boise on January 31st and also in Pennsylvania on March 1-3 (St. Joseph’s, St. Rita’s and St. Mary’s Parishes). Thank you to all who attended, for making me feel so welcome, and for blessing this ministry. I pray you were blessed as well and I hope to come back again in the future. Many blessings as you continue to love and serve the people in your community and beyond.

 Are You Enjoying The New Website?
We could use your help to make sure we don’t have any glitches. Just go to the website and click through the pages and let us know how everything is working? Are the songs, videos and images working for you? Sometimes websites can act differently on different operating systems, so leave us a message if you have any trouble so we can address problems and concerns. Thanks so much.
 
SALE In Webstore (Save 20%)
Great Easter Gifts. Great Confirmation Gifts. AND Mothers Day is just around the corner.
Jewelry, T shirts, CD's and more. 20% off March 27 - April 15.
 
Be sure to add the following Coupon Code in the Coupon Discount section at checkout.
DISCOUNT CODE: "SPRING"
Currently Booking Concerts and Parish Missions
We are currently booking concerts, events and parish missions for the remainder of 2014 and for 2015 Calendar.  Please contact us if you would like to discuss options. I would love to come to your community and share a concert at your parish or sing a few songs at your Pro-Life event (visit http://jtmusic.com/types-of-events to see available concert and event options).
 
My husband, Pete, and I are also booking a few parish missions (where we come and present together). Available dates are limited with Pete in school getting his Masters Degree, so don’t wait to contact us if you are interested. To read more about Parish Missions go to http://jtmusic.com/parish-missions. It’s always fun to travel with my husband and be able to share together.
 
Thank you for taking time to keep up with and to support this ministry. We couldn’t do this without your continued prayers and support.
 
Love,
Jaime

Welcome to the NEW Website! 

We are so excited to share the new website with you! We've added a lot of new things and can't wait for you to tell us what you think. Have fun clicking through the new pages. :-)

February is almost over and I am gearing up for a lot of concerts and travelling over the next 3 months. It's so exciting to see what God has laid before us this year and I feel so blessed to be doing this for over 14 years and counting. Here's to an Amazing and Blessed 2014.

Thank you so much for your continued support. May God continue to bless you in all you do for Him.

Love,
Jaime

Happy New Year 

 It’s A New Year!
Happy New Year! I hope that you had a wonderful Christmas and New Year. Other than me catching just about every kind of flu that was going around, ugh, I had a wonderful time during the Holiday season, enjoying time with family. It is so great to be living back in my home-town.  I know I’ve said that before and I will probably say it again.  I love being back home! 
 
Off to a Great Start
The year started off great! I travelled to Phoenix AZ, January 9th, and spent some time with Kurt and Julie Carrick of Carrick Ministries (who have taken me on as one of their artists). We had a wonderful time getting to know each other. They spent some time mentoring/working with me getting me all prepped for the exciting things that will be happening this year. They have been such a blessing to this ministry and I can’t wait to see what God has in store for all of us.
 
While I was in Arizona I was able to share with the wonderful people of Holy Cross Parish in Mesa Arizona. I sang for all 5 masses that weekend as well as shared a concert Sunday evening. It was a busy but amazing weekend. Thank you to Holy Cross Parish, Fr. Felt and Jaime Cortez (Music and Liturgy Director) for making me feel like part of the family while I was there. Blessings to all of you as you continue to share Jesus with those around you.
  
New Website On The Way
We are revamping the website so be on the lookout sometime in late February or early March. We have a new look and lots of new information, music, pics and videos for you, so check back in the next few weeks.
 
Calendar Filling Up
The calendar has been filling up so quickly that I’m going to move some of the “Ground Tour” plans until later in the year. Now, I’m really looking forward to travelling to so many different places. So far, I’m headed to Idaho, Pennsylvania, Texas, Montana and Wisconsin. If you would like to add your state or town to the list, give us a call or send us an email.  See you soon. www.jtmusic.net
 
Thank you so much for your continued support and prayers over this ministry.  May God continue to bless you.
 
Love,
Jaime
 
 
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