Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Feelling < Inspired

Every time I sit down to write a post, it seems like all the thoughts of inadequacy flood my brain. I become overwhelmed by all the things I'm *not* doing.

It's stupid

and I'm tired of it.

When I look at my life, as a whole, I feel overwhelmingly blessed. Blessed beyond measure. 

This blog is meant to be an outlet for me. It is intended to be a place where I can update family, share my heart and grow as a person. As long as those things are being accomplished, I don't need to worry about what other people "think" of me (or my blog). Opinions are like [butt] holes. Everyone has one and everyone thinks everyone else's stinks.

My grammar won't be perfect. I may not have award winning photography. 
But what I will have are memories. My memories. Our crazy life documented. 

As time marches forward, I hope to become a better writer and photographer. 
I desire to be a good story teller and inspire people through the things God is teaching me. 

For now, this is ME. 
And I'm okay with that. 
Take it or leave it.

To top everything off- my sweet Lilly hit a soft spot. Water works ensued.
 Tears of sweet, sweet Kairos joy.
She kissed my cheek. Not an open-mouth baby kiss. 
An, I-love-you-mama-closed-mouth-mwah! kind of kiss. :)

and I'm eating it up.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

2 Weeks

2 Weeks of sickness. 2 weeks of less sleep. 2 weeks of coughing, fevers, snotty noses, etc. 3 kids and 1 mama feelin' pretty terrible for TWO. WEEKS.

Middle of the night on Sunday, I'm shutting down. I don't understand how much longer I can go without sleep. Frustrated. Tired. 

complain. complain. complain. 


Feel sorry for me :(

M. in the er w/ a 104 temp Sat night :/

When I woke up the next morning- with a splitting headache and sore all over- it was to my emerging girls, sick 2yr old boy and husband. Immediately upon their feet hitting the floor, my girls came over to scream in my ear let me know they wanted their milk. NOW! Did I mention exploding head splitting headache? Yeah, not fun. 

Also, not the point of this post.

Today, I want to give a big shout out to the man I said, "yes" to 4 years ago. When all this sickness junk crept into our home a couple of weeks ago, he was out of town. In a way, I am thankful because he has yet to come down with this bloodsuckinglifezappingcoughyourlungsup awful virus. Wholeheartedly, I am full of gratitude that he came home the day after I came down with "it"... and had a 4 day weekend nursing job. This man cooked, he cleaned, he shopped, he had empathy, he comforted, had his faced coughed in, he medicated and loved on, massaged, he even looked up (and implemented) home remedies for coughs (you know it's a desperate situation when this man turns to google for answers!)... and then praised God he had to go to work today we were feeling much better today. 

No words could really express how blessed I feel to have this man beside me. He is so good to us! MMC, I love you! You are my favorite and my best! Don't know what I would do without you!

My encouragement today?
Sometimes I just need to say,

"Thank you!"


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

My unfortunate day...

Throw in some cold meds, ibuprofen a little tylenol, shivers and body aches and you about have it covered. Thankfully, some sleep will also be involved thanks to my dear friend that brought me all that medicine AND took my kids out of the house. Another beautiful friend that brought me some cold medicine as well, walked into my house to find me a blubbering mess. She was gracious enough to heat up some soup for me before she had to leave.

Whoever says, "good friends are hard to find," is really the unfortunate one because I have a much different experience. Praise god that he provides for all our needs! Blessing continue to overflow even when I feel like a bus ran over me, backed up and ran over me again.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to take a shower and climb in bed.........

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


* Stars or Mud *

"Two women looked through prison bars. 
One saw stars.
Source: Pinterest

The other saw mud."


Recently, I sat down with two index cards ready to categorize my circumstances/life into positives and negatives. It isn't really possible for me to list every single circumstance in my life on two index cards but still, the lists were revealing... 

For as much good as there is in my life, I complain far too much.

 Interestingly, the negatives weren't all that easy to list because every time a negative would pop into my head, my brain would go, "but if it weren't for that, you wouldn't have this and you wouldn't trade that for the world." We are very blessed at this point in my life, to not have tons of adversity. I mean we aren't wealthy, but God provides. He always provides. My kids have been sick with one virus after another the past couple of months but I know they will get better. I have a friend who's son ends up at John's Hopkins every time he gets a cold. My house may be a challenge to keep even picked up (much less clean) but I can thank God for a roof over our heads and little hands to make messes. I just know I truly, truly love my kids and family and no matter how many sleepless nights I endure or # of times I get puked on, I wouldn't trade this life for anything!  Not a single thing. 

Most certainly there are days that I miss my "freedom" w/o children. I miss taking a shower whenever I want to or even just regularly- haha :) Many days I wish the piles of laundry would wash themselves or even just to have a washer and dryer in my apartment. Days I wish that tonight would be the beginning of the end of being woken up by one of my kids in the middle of the night. And every single day after being bitten by my girls while they were nursing, I wish they wouldn't have and wouldn't ever, ever again. I might even add that my son just put a banana peel in the trash toilet- certainly a negative I could do without. The list could go on


I have a husband that loves me. I mean he really, really loves me. And he loves Jesus and he loves our kids! He'd do anything for us. THAT is worth it all. But that isn't all. I have a sweet boy that loves his mama and his papa. And knows he is super, super loved. He is funny and sweet and has the most gorgeous, big brown eyes and shaggy hair. And then there's those little genetic duplicates. Two of the most adorable blessings to date. Little toothy smiles that melt your heart. Cuddles from my little monkeys and sleeping babies on my chest. Not to mention all the friends we are surrounded with that truly are more like family. 

When I set my eyes on Jesus' love and righteousness, there is hope and peace and JOY. Honestly, without Jesus, I'm pretty sure I'd mostly see mud. I know that is true because in those times when all I see is the junk around me, it is usually because my eyes are myself. When I'm looking to Jesus, I can see the stars like on a dark night in the middle of nowhere and it is beautiful.

Facing adversity, we are left with two choices. Will you choose to wallow in selfishness, focusing on all the yuck??? Or will you choose joy believing that your savior loves you more than you could ever fully understand and will never leave you side? 

Some days I choose mud. 
Today, Lord, help me to choose to see your wonderful works.

**Stars & Mud quote taken from the book, Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Heart of a Fighter

Simply the most adorable little big chubby cheeks you've ever seen!

Today I want to share with you the story of my dear sweet friend, Amanda. Her family has been through some hard times over the past year or so and I wanted to take this post to allow her to share their story. Not so you can feel sorry for her but to introduce her to what we call, Rambo's Heart.

So without further ado:


Rambo was born in December of 2010. He is our fourth child. We were aware of his heart defect before birth (hence his nickname Rambo - a fighter) but were completely unaware of all the complications that would follow suit. To see all of his conditions and procedures you can visit our blog, Rambo's Rampageshere. The doctors say he's one of a kind and, boy, do they have that right. He keeps them guessing. After his birth he was supposed to be in the hospital for no more than 2 weeks with a surgery around 6 months to correct the heart defect. That 2 weeks turned into a 4 month stay with trips between the PICU and NICU too many times to count, 5 surgeries, countless infections, and several 'close calls'. There was also one really large miracle and many many more fun/interesting stories to be recalled. All of which lead to the fact that Rambo has lived up to his name in every sense of the word. I suppose after stumping the doctors for many months Rambo got tired and decided home wouldn't be too bad of a place to be after all. Which basically brings us to the present- a roller coaster ride in and of itself.

Rambo's Heart is an effort started by some of our friends to help raise funds for things that insurance does not cover and to help offset some of the expenses that come with this new found territory; ie: gas to doctors appointments, hospital parking coupons, etc. What has started as a way to help our family, we would love to see expand to reach other families. Families who find themselves in similar situations so that they know from the beginning they are not alone and continue to help them throughout their journey. What that will look like exactly we don't know. But, after having been there I know there are a lot of gaps to be filled and we would like to help do that.  Whatever/however God decides to use that is His plan and we are willingly along for the ride.   

For more specific information or to make a donation feel free to email me. 

Thanks for reading! I hope you continue to join us in our adventures with Rambo!


Click here to donate $1 for Rambo's Heart

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Couldnt send him a birthday card...

So he gets a blog post that he won't be able to see for 2 months :-) 
(unless of course, I print this off and mail it to him)

This post is dedicated to my brother, Charles, who's b-day was last week.

My "little" brother

Let me tell you about my oldest younger brother.

Awesome suspenders, am I right?

25 years ago, God gave me my first brother. 

I am about Malakai's age in this photo! This family made one proud Daddy to finally have his 1st BOY!

My memories aren't very clear that far back so I don't remember holding him as a little tiny thing but I'm pretty sure my 2.5 yr old self tried to squeeze him to death. Certainly, I didn't appreciate my little brother nearly as much as I do today but I know I loved him. 

Being blessed with 3 older sisters can feel like... less-than a blessing at times. The best of friends and the worst of friends, as they say :)

 We picked on one another and fought and screamed and yelled. We also had lots of good times- playing, laughing, learning and enjoying life together. 

This photo brings tears bc I cannot believe we were those children and now we have children!

Courageous family man. He is stepping into unknown territory to better himself, his family and his country.

Hardworking husband and a father of 2 beautiful boys :)

Ardent (I had to look this one up... thanks, Bekah! It's not a regular in my vocab but a good adjective for charles nonetheless). 

Ready to roll with the punches. He has been through some tough times but it is evident the older he gets that he is learning and growing and becoming a better person through all of it.

Leadership is a natural gift for this man. People are drawn to him. 

Excellence is his standard. If he's going to do something, it's going to be the "best." (Just ask him why he chose USMC over any other branch-haha)

Saved by grace.

How about those CURLS!

Acronyms are a bit cliche and over-used and a little corny but it was a quick way to describe to you the kind of brother and person he is. 

So, Charles, I love you. We are cheering you on from the side-lines (aka, here at home where we don't get to see or talk to you). Can't wait to see you at the finish line, a better & stronger man, husband, father & brother. The Lord has his hand on your life!!!

Love you MUCH!!! 

The people he misses the most!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Back to the grind

Happy New Year, my friends!!!

Our family had a fabulous time in Kentucky this holiday season. Exhausting as it may be, we love visiting all the people we love. 

During our visit, my nephews turned one and two, respectively (Yep, Irish twins!). Seriously, they are two of the most adorable kiddos. My brother that is in USMC bootcamp at the moment, also said hello to a new age :) (Special birthday post to come) My sister in-law is such a trooper! She is doing an amazing job of supporting her husband in this new military endeavor.  

Downside to visits, there is never enough time to see all the people we would like to see or do everything we would like to do. Of course, there is always next time because we know there will be a next time :)

As fun as our Christmas season was, it has left me with plenty to catch up on... blogging and in the life I blog about. My childrens' rooms look like a tornado tore through them. My living room looks like a storage unit and my floors haven't been mopped in weeks. On a positive note, I did manage to get the Christmas tree down this morning (bitter-sweet). Have you ever noticed how boring everything looks after Christmas? Back to just plain 'ole life. 

Wonderful news, my parents gave me a sewing machine for Christmas... HAPPY DAY!!! Now I just have to learn how to use it... where is my time again, I seem to have lost it... ??? :) Time to get crafty! Pinterest, ready or not, here I come! :)

I hope you have had a good start to your new year! Here's to a craftier, bloggier, adventurier (too much???) 2012!!!!