Friday, May 20, 2016

Five on Friday V4


It is always so interesting to me when a group of mamas get together and start talking about their kids and what works for them. The passion that we women have about our babies and what is right for us and our families is inspiring. Following my instincts in mama-hood has been one of the most rewarding things for me and at the same time listening to, observing and talking to mamas gives me lots of tools for my mama-belt.  Hey Mama, Yes you reading this.....listen and believe in your instinct, you know your kids best. You know what is best....and when you don't because sometimes you won''s always good to have a group of mamas that get together and talk with open hearts.


We are a homeschool family and any homeschool mama will tell you that housework and homeschooling are at odds with each other all.the.time. Phrases like "lower your standards" and "just let it go" really don't work for me. The messes give me stresses and that is not good for anyone in my home. Recently, on one of the homeschool forums that I am on, a couple mamas gave some really practical advice about how to keep the house up and I am so grateful that she spoke up. I am finishing up The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo and am ready to take on the project of my home and all the spaces. Purging and minimizing to keep only what we really need and what brings us joy is my summer plan.  I am writing out my goals for this today and will have a space/room/category each week until August to take on.  If you are a minimalist and have practical advice on home keeping I'd love to hear it!


We live in Ohio and I LOVE the all.the.parks around here! We could visit a new park every week and still not visit them all.  Having little kids that need to get out and discover, run and play, enjoy free time with friends and I get down time (mostly) too...really it's a win-win! Thanks Ohio!!!


I'm dreaming of this...toes in the sand, sunrise walks on the beach. Days of listening to the surf and relaxing.  We don't have a beach trip planned for this year...but a girl can dream.


Pretty life all.summed.up.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Wordless Wednesday V2

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Monday, May 16, 2016

Hope & A Crib

Ed and I started trying for a baby one year after we were married.  After trying for a year we met with a fertility specialist only to be diagnosed with unexplained infertility.  I was then put on a variety  of medications and shots and underwent a few very painful procedures. During this initial year of trying to conceive my sister sent me the crib and changing table that her children had outgrown.  I was grateful for the furniture and excited about the day that that small bed would be filled with my own children. Little did we know it would take us over five years to finally conceive. During that five year span we moved to three different duty stations (one being overseas) and the baby furniture moved with us. In each house it was stored in an extra room or large closet waiting the day that we would bring a little one home. The crib became a symbol of hope and heartache for me. Walking into the room where it was stored or opening the closet and seeing it, would bring me to my knees  somedays.  Going to a doctor after enduring shots, emotions caught up in a hormonal mess and the frustration of my own body "not working the way it should" and be told that the next appointment should be one of listening to a heartbeat and "everything is looking great you should be pregnant next time I see you" nothing...time and time and time again, is heartbreaking.

I still kept the crib though. I had a hope. I tied a knot on the string that I was clinging to and held on with all my might. I had dear friends who prayed with, cried with and hoped for me.  And then it happened. The two lines showed on the stick, we were having a baby...The joy of that hope fulfilled was indescribable. And now, three times over that crib has held my sleeping babies. Three different mobiles have hung over the bed, three different blankets and colors sets have adorned the sides of that crib.

This weekend I dismantled it, I cleaned the last set of crib sheets and wiped down the rails. As I was working on it I cried, I thought of the hope that felt so heavy and almost unbearable to me at times. I thought of my friends who answered my calls when I couldn't face the day on my own and invited me to sit on their couch and they mourned with and prayed with me.  I thought of my husband who stood beside me through the long years of infertility, he cried with me and hoped with me and was strength for me.  I thought of God's faithfulness and the hope that he had given me.  And while I know that we are done with babies for our family, I still mourn the ending of these chapters.

I packed the crib and changing table into my car on Saturday and dropped them off at a friends house.  A friend who adopted a baby give her a life full of hope and the promises of Christ.

Infertility is a part of my story. Moving an unused crib from duty station to duty station is a part of my story. I hope if you are experiencing infertility that you reach out to friends and hold tight to your hope string, let them comfort you when you mourn and let them pray with you.  I am certain that my story would have held more heartache if I had not opened myself and my hurts to trusted friends.

Friday, May 13, 2016


Follow my blog with Bloglovin .... I've just discovered  Bloglovin' and am excited to have a place to read and visit blogs that I follow (I know it's been around a while but I am a busy mama).  And there is a Bloglovin' App....and I triple heart useful apps! I hope you find me on there and follow me and my handsful of life!

I'm trying out something new and adding Bloglovin'. I hope you add me to your reading list!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Ren & Sam TKBTB V3

Do you ever feel like when you are talking to one of the guys in your life they are just not listening or fishing for an answer that will get them off the hook so they can go and do whatever it is that they were doing? That's my experience for The Kids Beyond The Blog Q&A with Ren and Sam this month.  I don't know how they know "the guy answers" maybe it's in their DNA.

Ren- my lil PeaPie is growing up!

  1. What is something I always say to you? Yes and I love you.
  2. What makes Mama happy? (Looking around) When I leave you alone and I'm playing electronics. That makes you happy and me happy. Can I play on the iPad now? (Guy Answer)
  3. How do I make you laugh? By doing silly things when you check for eggs.
  4. What do you enjoy doing with me? Going out on dates and getting ice cream.
  5. What is my favorite thing to do? When you do your stuff for MOPS...I don't know...what is it really though?

Sam- So-So-Silly Sam

  1. What is something I always so to you? Not to turn on electronics. (Guy Answer)
  2. What makes Mama happy? When I give you kisses and I'm not whining. (Yes...not whining least I now know that he knows...and I LOVE his kisses!)
  3. How do I make you laugh? When you are doing funny things. (Guy Answer)
  4. What do you enjoy doing with me? Going to the bowling ball place. (Guy Answer)
  5. What is my favorite thing to do? I don't on your laptop?

June's questions are all about their Daddy in honor of Father's Day...I can't wait to hear what they have to say!

Monday, May 9, 2016


This past Sunday afternoon was a perfect weather day.  The skies were just overcast enough and it was cool and inviting outside, all day.  I have been eyeing my backyard flower beds and staring down the weeds that just seem to grow faster than anything else.  I grabbed my gloves and headed outside to enjoy the day.  My Ren came outside after a while to see what he could help me with why I was not inside and then promptly went back inside to get me his Weeds book. "Here Mama, read this so you know what is a weed and what is not."

This kid never ceases to amaze me. I asked him to look through the book and find the names for some of the weeds we have.  He was walking around flipping through the book and matching the pictures to weeds.  Isn't that the way it is sometimes? We need someone else to point out the weeds in our lives. The character in our heart that needs to be refined. For me, mama-hood is just that; my weed identifier.  Here I am thinking that I am doing ok with my heart, my life, my character and then...up pops a weed: an attitude, anger, resentment, frustration, yelling...all the things and all the ways I do not want to be.  I have to sit and pray and ask the Lord to pull these things out of me and fill the space with the Holy Spirit. I wish it was just that pull and done. But it's not, the roots are crazy deep and wind every which way. Sometimes we don't identify the weed and it is allowed to grow and spread it's seed.

The good thing is that God is faithful. He searches our hearts and he knows us (Psalm 139) and he loves us with an unfailing love (Zephaniah 3:17).  Even when we have weeds growing too fast in the garden of our life; he is there. I am forever learning to let God garden my heart. For him to search me and know my heart. To be more like Jesus in all that I do; that's my goal. 

Linking up with Stephanie and these Tuesday Talk Hosts...