Monday, December 9, 2013


My girl got the WOW at school.

She turned four. We celebrated at the pumpkin patch once again. (She chose Spaghetti Warehouse for dinner)

We went for a hike in the woods.

A beautiful sunrise. God's glory, His faithfulness, emmanuel, always with us.

Selah twirls.

My boy who's almost nine.  Always mine, I love him so.

Gabe learns to read. So proud of my little man.

My little brother had a baby. She's perfect….little Sophia.

Thanksgiving at our house this year.

The tree is up. We love singing and reading there most nights before bed.

Merry Christmas!


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Regret It

So, this little lady starts preschool in less than a week.

I'm all kinds of emotional about it. I'm excited to see where this year takes her.

I know she's ready.

But I have to admit, I'm a little heartbroken over my baby taking this next step. The next step in her independence.

For so long she's been my little sidekick while the boys are at school.

My shadow.

Thankfully it's only two half days a week. So thankful for that.

I remember when I thought the whole "crying it out" method was a possibility when my babes were teeny. I remember standing outside Isaac's bedroom door and praying he would fall fast asleep on his own. He didn't. I stood there in agony as his little cries got louder and louder. I waited maybe fifteen minutes before I went in and scooped him up in my arms. I could always try again another day. Or never. I wondered if there was something wrong with me. Maybe I was a little too sensitive. After all, mamas I admired used this method and it worked wonders! I wondered if I would regret it. Regret going in and rocking him until the tears and whimpers subsided and he took that first tranquil deep breath. I could feel his whole body just relax as he inhaled my familiar safe scent. The scent that brought him comfort since the day he was born.  He sank into the crook of my elbow, his legs dangling.  I was all he needed. How could I not let him know I was right there.  "Someday", I thought, "he won't be able to fit in my lap." Those legs will take him farther from me. Those arms will spread their wings and he'll fly in a new direction. I pray the comfort my kids have from me being right there allows them to soar. That they know we will always be there cheering them on, their biggest fans.

Isaac started third grade this year. How is that even possible?

It goes too fast. It really does seem like just yesterday he was building a garage for his toy cars and trucks out of building blocks.

And Gabe started kindergarten. A post all of it's own is needed for that.

Just look at those cherub cheeks! How can he be six already and loving kindergarten? What an honor it is to watch these little ones grow. I pray I won't let it slip away in the madness of being too busy. I pray I won't be so hurried that I miss out on all the little things.  The things that change so quickly like the silly faces they make or how they went through their silly phases. The week they ran through the house in dress-up firefighter uniforms.  The summer they wanted to play Scrabble every morning during breakfast. The times they wanted to scoot their beds together to make forts out of and watch Ice Age on the portable DVD player. It goes on and on. And I don't want to forget any of it.

And ya know what? I don't regret running in and holding them in my arms. I don't regret nursing them in the middle of the night. I don't regret it. I thought I was setting them up, that they'd never be able to self sooth. Now they all sleep through the night. They don't need me to come dashing into their rooms at the slightest cry. They are growing up. Now I look back on those times and think about it fondly. I have a slew of precious memories locked up in my heart that no one, not a soul is privy to. No one was there to witness those heavenly moments. The moments I felt the very most like a mama. The times I knew I was doing what I was put here to do. Those memories are all mine. What a gift it is to be a mama. May I never forget that.

These babies are my joy. I pray they know that no matter where life takes them. They are loved. Every last bit of them.

So, yeah, next week starts a new chapter for us. I can't wait to open it up and read the pages inside.  It's gonna be great.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

There's a ton I could write about. It's been so long since I blogged about our life in its current state...let's hope the words come easily.  

Let's talk about right now for a minute.

Like how much I love little feet blackened by pavement on late summer evenings.  Even if it happens after bath time.

Or how I feel a little bit on fire for wanting to get a group of ladies together to serve meals at Target Dayton, a homeless shelter nearby. I can't wait. We will start meeting once a month to serve people in uncertain circumstances. I am so looking forward to this. I'm looking forward to getting to know these women better, growing in Christ together.  I also love how there's no such thing as being "a little bit on fire." It's all or nothing.

I'm looking forward to seeing how God is going to change me through all of this. I'm looking forward to taking my kids when they are old enough to go along. We get to be the hands and feet of Jesus. That's just downright incredible....and what an honor!

Other things I'm in love with right now....

I splurged on a pedicure recently. It might sound silly but looking down and seeing those pink toes just makes me smile.

Catching my kids playing nicely together. All on their own...even when it means making a mess.

I'm loving the way dress up has made a major comeback 'round these parts. One minute I'm being rescued by a drove of little firefighters, the next I'm dodging go carts driven by a pretend race car driver.

And then there's the pool. This is the first year it's been fairly easy taking all three of them by myself. We've been hanging out there for hours on end. My heart just about explodes watching my boys toss
the ball back and forth, meeting new friends. It's pretty great chatting poolside with other mamas.

And my girl at the pool? She's just the cutest little lady there in her blue and white polka dot swimsuit. She brings her babies and watches them fiercely. She cradles them in her arms and whispers sweet assurances in their ear.  Just like a real mama.

And my heart just can't take it. How did I get to live this life? When I was a girl my own mom worked full time, usually leaving her too tired to enjoy the pool in the evenings. So many women are in that same position nowadays. How did I luck out?

Maybe it's not luck at all.  It's all I've ever wanted. I need to remember that when my mind starts traveling in different directions and I feel like I need more.

I don't need more, I've got all I'll ever need.

I'm headed to Florida early Friday morning to visit one of my dearest friends. We will begin the drive back to Ohio together on Sunday.  I've got a list of deep questions I'm excited to go through with her. I love good conversations like that. It's gonna be great.

Until then I've got three kiddos to love on.  Right now they're waiting to snuggle up on the couch and watch the Berenstain Bears. That's just too hard to pass up. And it's definitely on my Things I'm Loving List.


Saturday, June 15, 2013

Anniversary Trip Day Two

Here we are mid-June and it feels like this anniversary trip was a looong time ago. I just downed my afternoon bowl of cereal as I sit here and think back to that very special four days. Just me and him, him and me.

Day Two:

We woke up, asked Siri for nearby breakfast places then walked to this adorable diner. That was one of my favorite things about our trip, being able to walk to everything!

We ended up at this great diner, you could order as healthy...or not as you wanted. And it was delicious...but then again, every meal we had was!

Then off to the beach for a little exercise.

This was taken after a beautiful six mile run. As you can see, it was overcast and a little foggy, it made for a great run.

Next up, showers and window shopping on Rodeo Dr.

Then it was lunch at Spago. People, we ate lunch side by side! No kiddo between us,  no crayons or kids meal menus splattered on the table. Just us.  I found it refreshing...and a little unnerving. This entire trip I felt like I was cheating on my little people! Like I shouldn't be having this kind of fun without them. I wonder if that's normal....

After lunch and more window shopping we happened upon Sprinkles Cupcakes.

If you don't have time to stand in line (the line was out the door!!) you could just walk up to the cupcake dispenser!  We weren't in any rush so we stood in that line and tried to figure out which flavor to try...a tough decision!

I wish I remembered what flavors we ordered. I'm guessing mine was red velvet something or other and Joe's was something chocolate peanut buttery...

I do remember them being very, very good.

More window shopping...well, okay, I did get to splurge a little on a pair of jeans. I've never done that before, bought a pair of jeans for more than what you find them at GAP.

My new jeans and my new fancy sunglasses! These were my two big purchases. I have to say, these jeans?! I loooove them. SO, SO comfortable, SO soft! The perfect stretch without stretching too much. I did find it funny that I grabbed the largest pair they had on the shelf. If I were to live in LA I wouldn't be able to gain any weight...there would be NO clothes for me!  Reason 1067 I'm an Ohio girl through and through.

After window shopping we drove around for awhile just to sort of get more of a feel for the area, look at those great big houses and pretend we were locals. Which of course was pretty hilarious.  The houses were huge, the lifestyle so different than what we are used to. I loved the scenery. The landscape being so unlike that of Ohio. The palm trees, the ocean, gorgeous.

After our little drive it was time for our dinner reservations at the Ivy.  This time at the West Hollywood location.

Again, I don't remember what on earth I ordered, maybe fish or a salad and of course some sort of chocolate-y dessert.

We then walked out to the Santa Monica Pier. 

We rode the Ferris wheel. 

and the roller coaster :)

Joe has the most hilarious video of us on the roller coaster. The kids thought it was pretty funny :)

Day two was pretty great.  To have endless hours with my best friend without the interruption of our normal obligations was so nice. Such a welcome change of pace!

Back soon with day three!