Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wordless-ish Wednesday :) v.2

Forgot to add this one to my hurricane post :) All dressed up to get blown away! :)


These 3 looooove their bath!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Joy comes in the morning ?? (Irene leaves a mark on the eastern shore)

This was the night before Irene moved in... the sky was beautiful and those clouds were already turning... Maybe some very outer bands of little miss hurricane.

The girls stayed in jammies most of the day... I mean there wasn't much to get dressed for :) Apparently the phone was for Ava :) Seriously, these have to be the most adorable kids I've laid eyes on :)

There was a ridiculous amount of water pouring from the sky! The 3rd photo in the middle, those clouds were spinning- it was crazy! The rain was coming down in sheets!

Yep, I'm the crazy momma that let her son play in the hurricane. Don't worry,  he had a blast and we came in when the wind started getting so strong that the rain felt like a high pressure blast on our faces :)  We were drenched after about 20 seconds.

And then came MORNING!

Found this little guy in the plant the morning after Irene slammed the east coast- can't believe he didn't blown away!

Blue skies, beautiful temps- absolutely gorgeous day to follow such an ugly storm.

(pic 1) The church was unharmed but beautiful :) (pic 2) The streets were littered with all kinds of leaves and sticks. (pic 3) There's all kinds of fungus growing- Ew. (pic 4) Make sure to thank these hard workers that gave of their time and have been working their BUTTS off to get things back to normal!

Truly, joy does come in the morning. Experiencing Irene was kind of anti-climactic but I think I'd prefer it that way. We did not lose power for more than 10 seconds and were blessed to not have any damage to speak of in our neighborhood. Many in the area and along the east coast were not so... there are roads washed away, food spoiled, homes and cars crushed, lives lost. Thank you, Jesus that Irene was not a category 2 or 3 storm (as was predicted) when it made landfall- the devastation could have been much, much worse.

Little Word of Encouragement:

For us, its mostly back to life as normal but for many this storm has left them homeless, empty and lost. Please keep those who have lost the most in your prayers. Also for those that are working hard, who have sacrificed their time to get things 'back to normal', be gracious. Say, "thank you." Extend a hand of gratitude. Maybe this is easy for me to say- because my food isn't spoiled and I can turn my lights on but I really believe these guys are working hard. Emergency workers were out in this storm working to keep us safe- the least we can do is say thanks :) (for most of us, it could have been worse...)

Okay, off my soap box. Back to your regularly scheduled program :)

Really though, enjoy your day and for those of you still in the dark, I hope you are restored very, very soon! ♥

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Embrace The Camera: Mama & Lilly

Embracing my Lils ♥. She was looking totally adorable with little pig tail clips in her hair but you can't really see them here. I'll post pics of them soon :) Until then, enjoy looking at her adorable little face ♥

So, are you ready to embrace the camera?
here's the nitty gritty:
1.  take a picture with you and your kids/spouse/family member/friend/whatever.
2.  blog about that picture and include a link to our blog, or grab our button.
3.  link your blog post up on the link tool here (@ the anderson crew).
4.  visit the other embracers...give each other lots of compliments about how good we look with our greasy hair andsweatpants velour jogging suits on.  cause yah, we need a little boost when it's been days since our last shower.
5.  have fun!

Who's YOUR Daddy???

Daddy comes home today!!! Makes me so happy :)

That is all. :)

oh-and here's another way to follow my blog... I mean if you into that kind of thing :)

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wordless-ish Wednesday :)

Our park/beach day

Mastering standing
Make-up-less Date Night

Summerfest w/ cousins

Ice Cream!
Standing in the bath
Looking way too cute after their bath :)

Lilly & Ava
Ava being a sweety
Open Windows in August :)

His "race car helmet"


We're missing Daddy while he is on a work trip but we're making the best of it and have had a GREAT week so far! Hope you enjoy!

**these are all cell phone pics so please excuse the low quality ;) **


Today I felt an earthquake. I live in Maryland and I felt the earth. quake. Aren't I on the wrong side of the continent for this? Never in my life did I dream that I would feel my house move. Never did I conceive that I would be waking my children from naps to have them close to me because I really didn't know what in the world just happened or if it would happen again and be worse. Now, don't get me wrong, I wasn't freaking out... I really wasn't afraid. Today more than ever, I have seen the power of the Almighty. To see the affects so close to home- knowing, there was absolutely nothing I could do the change the situation, gave me a new perspective of how big my God really is. Here is the really cool part: the Bible says this,
 14For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, 15from whom every family[c] in heaven and on earth is named, 16that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
 20 Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
His power is at work within me! If you are a believer, it is at work within you as well!!! That same power that designed this earth, the power that is greater than the strongest earthquake (and lets face it, the one we felt today was weak compared to what this earth is capable of), that power is at work in me.

His power is my strength. His power works in and through me. Not because I deserve it. Not because I have done anything to earn his favor. Simply because He loves me. He loves you too. Nothing- get this- NOTHING can separate me from his love. That, my friends, is a good word. That, my friends, is the Gospel- the Good News. Jesus loves me and saved me and nothing can ever steal that away. I am His forever and He is mine.

I hope this encourages you today. No matter where you are in life, a mom, dad, sister, brother, friend, employed, unemployed, wealthy, poor, smart or... not... He loves you and there's nothing you can do or NOT do to make Him love you more or make him love you less. His Grace is sufficient. His sacrifice took care of it all. No more condemnation... just learning to let him love you and loving him back and the journey in between :)

Just for good measure... two of the most beautiful creations ♥
Ava and Lilly

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

And if the devil doesn't like it he can sit on a tack.

Today started rough. Actually if we rewind to yesterday, it started then. Okay so, maybe its been building for a while. My little guy is 2. He's smart (a little too smart sometimes). He's funny and even hilarious. He is a joy, a hugger, a jokester. While, he isn't bad and is far from the worst, he is definitely two! Oh boy is he ever 2. And I am definitely a mom of 3 under 3. Most days we get through the rough patches unscathed. Today, I wasn't so sure that would be the case.

So yesterday.

Really as I sit here writing this I can't even think of why it was so rough except to say that as I was laying in my little guy's toddler bed next to him praying, my heart was suddenly broken. And it still kind of is. Broken for the number of times I raised my voice to that cutie little face. Broken for the anger I felt at times towards him and his behavior. Broken knowing I hadn't been loving him like God loves me. Broken realizing that tomorrow when he wakes up, he will smile and be so happy to see despite my lack of care for his spirit. Broken knowing these were the memories I was building for him in his early childhood. Fearful that my lunatic screams would be all he remembers.

So what did I do? I prayed. I prayed for Jesus, the Prince of Peace, to restore order and peace in our home. I prayed for protection over my son's heart... protection from me. (Learned that one from my daddy) I prayed against chaos and fear. I prayed for our home to be a beakon of christ's love and grace and peace. I prayed for a gentle and quiet spirit. I just prayed.

Walking out of his room I felt like things were different. Like tomorrow we would have a new day, a new beginning, a chance to do it all right. And then tomorrow came. Boy did it come... And I wanted yesterday. He was on a mission. Maybe a mission for the most spanks in one day. Possibly a mission to see how quickly he could have his mommy committed. Perhaps a mission to just irritate the heck out of everyone in the house. (Or maaaaaybe just being 2 and testing every limit possible... just because that's what 2 yr olds do). Either way, the craziness was happening and it was leaving me defeated. And frustrated. And feeling like a failure. I was failing my kids, my husband, my God and myself. All before 10 a.m.!

Two things happened. Friends and coffee. I text my dear friend kelly to ask her to sit wth the girls while they napped so I could go to the grocery. And then I made coffee. By the time she came down, I had talked to the hubs and had 1/2 a cup of coffee in me. She suggested I leave the boy with her- thank you Jesus for good brave friends! I didn't hesitate! Who knew walmart grocery isles were the perfect place for alone time???

The remainder of my day was most certainly better than the start but it wasn't perfect. I tried not to raise my voice so much and I actually don't think he got any more spankings. As I sat down after the kids were all tucked away, I suddenly felt this overwhelming love. Love for that sweet boy I had just put to sleep while praying with him. Love for those 2 sweet sleeping baby girls. And I knew. I knew that jesus loves me. I knew that I had been blessed with 3...THREE of the most precious gifts a human being could ever receive. I was left speechless knowing that jesus loves me so much that even in my failed attempts at loving my children I was his precious gift and he reminded me that he still loves me- no. matter. what. He is who gives me the capacity to love. Wow.

When I got in the shower I realized 2 things... 

First, I can do nothing without christ. He is the finished work. I can, however, do all things through christ who strengthens me. 

Second, the enemy wants nothing more than for me to accept defeat and be crushed by my own frustration. The thing is:  I am not defeated-he is! I am more than a conqueror in christ jesus. No, get this, NO weapon formed against me will prosper!!!

We will receive peace in our home and reject chaos. I will love my family more today than I did yesterday. And if the devil doesn't like it he can sit on a tack.

Joy- I'm taking you back! I'm choosing to rest in jesus.

Nehemiah 6:3 "I am doing a great work and I cannot come down."

This thing called motherhood is a great work and is not for quitters. I will not come down. I will not be defeated. Lord willing, I'm gonna keep on building this wall.

**If you actually read all of this, God bless ya :-)
(The Nehemiah mention was not fully an original thought but was inspired by this post from another blogger over at Letters to Ames.)

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Pink lollipops

Funny little story.

Loaded up 3 kids to go to the bank. ( I know, I know, seems like I started off with the punch line) Malakai and I had the "lollipop talk" before I headed in with a double stroller and no monkey leash (left it in Daddy's Jeep). So we got to the door and a kind person actually helped me with the door (rather than the usual comment about how I have my hands full while enjoying their free entertainment watching me struggle with getting a stroller and a 2yr old in door- safely). I'll fast forward through the, "wow! Are they twins?" the, "Have you ever mixed them up?" and "Oh, you must be the big brother," encounters... SO we're now at the counter- Malakai is behaving pretty well. He asks for a lollipop. I remind him to wait until we are finished but I could pick him up so he could see them. He asks for a pink one. Ok, that's fine. Then we talk about what other colors are in the basket (I am working on colors with him right now bc he hasn't been interested in learning them before now). So as we're wrapping up, the teller offers Malakai to pick out his own lollipop. He reaches for the pink one (I was proud because this means we are making progress on the color identification) the teller apparently wasn't so proud. She actually attempted to take the pink one out of his hand and hand him a blue one! I was shocked at her attempt but humored by her stumbling over words/actions. When I took the pink one and handed it to him, she was like, "Oh, Oh? Well... ok?" She seemed so confused as to how I could let my son eat a PINK lollipop. No more watermelon for Malakai- that's a girl fruit. He's going to be sooo disappointed. HA!

Wow, people...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Naptime Diaries: Awesome birthday giveaway!

If you haven't ever come across Jessi's blog before, now is the time to check it out :) I only found her blog a few days ago but she has blessed my heart. Jessi is a godly woman and faithful wife and mom. To top it off, she owns a really cool business on etsy. You really should check her out and wish her a happy birthday!!!

Awesome Birthday Giveaway @ Naptime Diaries

Take a gander... you won't be disappointed :)


Thank you, Deb (over at mom2the6pack) for sharing this lime squares recipe! It sounded so refreshing and summery, I had to try it out! I've never made anything like this before and thankfully, it turned out super tasty! Lucky me, Malakai won't even try it (don't ask me why) so MORE FOR ME! :) We did share with some friends on Sunday when we had them over for lunch- the hubs and I made Jambalaya. Kind of a weird combo but whatevs- it was goood! :)

If you like sweet, sour, limes and all things that leave your taste buds asking for more, try this out. You won't be disappointed... well until there isn't any left and you're forced to make another batch :)

Monday, August 15, 2011

NINE: A dirty 4 letter word.

Today marks 9 months since my little girls came into this world. How did that happen?! They've officially been out here longer than they were in 'there'... I always struggle with these milestones. While it is awesome that they are here and completely lovely and bring so much joy to my heart, it still means they are growing up and the letting go... continues. None the less, it makes Mama's heart proud when they accomplish something new.

9mo 27.75in/ 14lbs 13oz
Ava Lynn- My funny girl ♥  She likes raspberries (by that, I mean the spitting kind). She has been doing this for a few months now and is still mastering the idea that this is unacceptable while she is eating. :) Smiles are (almost) always present on her face. One really funny thing is when she mimics sounds- especially crying- especially when Malakai is crying/throwing a fit. Really. Its too much! The past month our sleeping situation has been... interesting. As in, she doesn't always think she needs a full night of it. We are training her otherwise ;)

9 mo. 26.5 in/ 14lbs 6oz
Lillian Renee'- Chatter box! She is constantly making noise! She likes to sing :) When we are in church, she will try to match the sound during praise&worship so it is more like yelling but adorable still :) TAKE NOTICE!!! 2 yes, that makes TWO cowlicks on top of her head :) Daddy says they're from him :) This is a BIG positive considering they look more alike everyday, so it seems. She is also attempting to pull up. She has pulled up on our legs but not on furniture quite yet... any day now... oh joy ;)

Double cowlick

Both Sisters have been crawling since I guess June (which started officially when we were in KY visiting my parents). Bekah and I will get any baby on the move (we taught my youngest sister how to walk- you're welcome, Mom)... sugar is usually involved... haha. The crawl is still more of an army scoot but they get around just the same and they get into everything!!! My job has officially gotten harder? or maybe just more constant...

Playing is something both girls do quite well- go figure :) Some of their favorite toys include, the Winnie the Pooh toy that Nana sent home with us back in March. This little vtech learning center is a big hit! They love rattles and anything that sings/makes noise and can go in their mouth :) 

This truly gives blesses my heart! Love, love, loves his sisters
FOOD! Malakai was pretty much eating anything and everything at this point and a couple of weeks ago I realized little sisters hadn't really had any finger food to speak of. They love their baby food but are now eating anything that is put on their tray. The menu so far includes, eggs, chicken, ham, greenbeans, peas, strawberries, cereal, gold fish, waffles, sausage... I mean really anything that can be cut up small and easily crushed/mushed in their little gums :)

Chomp chomp... Speaking of things in their mouths- both Ava and Lilly officially have 2 teeth. Ava's showed up a few days maybe even a week before Lillian's but they are both in at this point. I think tooth #1 officially made its appearance around 7 months. They struggled more as far as fever and discomfort with the first one but tooth 2 did involve far too much of biting Mommy- OUCH! Good thing they're so darn cute! haha

Eating our 1st watermelon! YUM!

 My 3 littles and then there's me getting annoyed as this is like the 821st try at taking this photo :)

 Ava and Lilly (in that order) LOVING the swings :)

We are having a great summer and an absolute blast getting to know these sweet baby girls :) Twins are a lot of work but they truly are a DOUBLE BLESSING!!! My heart could burst :)

* I would also like to note that I should have started this post days ago bc it took me ALL day to get it finished! Go figure... remember that part about them being a lot of work? Yeah.