"When you called me to be a Mama, You didn't ask for perfection. But that with every breath, I'd point them to You."

Tuesday, May 31, 2016


"a portrait of each of my children, once each week, in 2016"

Jaden: I came down with a bad case of the hiccups last night while the boys were brushing their teeth before bed, and I did what I always do with hiccups - tipped my head back and held my breath for as long as I could to try and get rid of them. In the middle of holding my breath with my eyes closed, I felt his little hand come up and stroke my back, and when I opened my eyes, he had tears in his own eyes. I asked him why he was trying not to cry, and he said it was because he was worried about me holding my breath for so long. He didn't want me to die from it! He acts so tough and tries so hard to show us how old he's getting so much of the time, but underneath it all, he's still that sweet and sensitive little boy.

Brandon: We spent a day at the lake over the holiday weekend, and this one had his first boat tubing experience. He was eager and begging to do it until the moment arrived, and then he let his nerves get the best of him for a few minutes before - once again - showing us how brave he is and forging ahead to do it despite his fears. And sure enough, he loved it. It's one of the things I admire about him - how he doesn't let his fears hold him back from trying something he really wants to do - no matter how nervous he gets beforehand. We've seen so many cases of this in his young life. He's a brave and determined kiddo, and I believe he's going to soak all he can out of life.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Happy Things of Spring

I am writing this from my hotel room in Kansas City where I've been training a new hire in our new office that just opened a couple of weeks ago. This has been a long time coming, and I'm pretty happy that this will soon be off my plate. (Of course, new things keep piling on). I'm heading home to an extended holiday weekend, one in which I took even extra time off for. We have our first baseball game in less than a week, a kindergarten graduation in less than two weeks, the pool opens in two days and our seasonal passes have been purchased, and Blessed Beginnings just sent me the boys' daycare calendar for June - filled with all sorts of fun things on their agenda. Pool afternoons, Friday field trips, library visits - and a whole summer that's going to revolve around an Olympic theme for our kids and their friends. BB, we've missed you these last nine months!!

There's a lot to look forward to, and I'm trying to keep my mind in check. Mama guilt hits hard when I'm away from home. When I travel, I often let my thoughts deviate too far into negatives and comparisons, wondering if I'm doing the right thing for my family. But right now I am where God planted me, where He needs me and wants me to be, and so I'm doing my best. Some days my best looks like a trip away from home to be with colleagues who need me, some days my best looks like getting off earlier on a Friday to take my kids to a park after school. Sometimes it looks like an extra day of PTO just for me. Some days it looks like a bit of pure chaos and a whole lot of grace and coffee. I try not to compare to the moms who have summers off or the moms who don't work at all or the moms who never have to get on an airplane as part of their job description. We all try our best to bloom where we're planted.

Happy things that keep my garden watered...

//UNI's spring game and a tailgate and friends and football.

//Sunday BLT's on the deck after church.

//fresh lilacs from our own yard and a little boy who likes to draw them.

//surprise gifts for our eighth wedding anniversary. Lawn chairs from Mom and Dad (with a Disney touch of course - because - less than four months away!) and a new bath caddy from a husband who knows me well.

//brothers that are bonding over baseball and look so stinking cute doing it. Face paint from a benefit event for a friend. We miss you, Adam.

//impromptu Sunday afternoon family baseball games. Sometimes interrupted on account of puppies and babies in the outfield.

//4 Queens after baseball because of course.

//$5.00 pizza from the Hill every Tuesday night after baseball and a big brother getting his reading minutes in by reading out loud to his younger.

//how he looks in his uniform.

//new friendships growing and deepening and younger siblings that have just as much fun at baseball practices as their older brothers.

//team picture night and watching this one wear catcher's gear. I look out at the field as the sun dips lower and friends and kids and water bottles surround us, and it epitomizes everything I dreamed of growing up. These are the days.

//the three musketeers. And their parents.

//bubbles and superman.

//a new favorite downtown restaurant. Ginger Thai is my jam.

//Saturday morning Farmer's Market runs and treats by the band shell.

//food truck tacos eaten at park picnic tables.

//a day of adventure at the pits.

//Sunday afternoon slip and slides.

"Where you are right now is God's place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there."
-1 Corinthians 7:17