Thursday, August 28, 2014

A post in photos...

My newest goal is to capture more of our everyday moments as a family. Here are a few from the last couple of days.

Jonathan took Noah off my hands tonight when he was being super clingy and within minutes, they were both asleep!

The girls were at mom's all day, so it was just me and Mr. Man. He was eating up every second of being an only child.

Enjoy this RARE photo. I had to beg her to sit still and let me take her picture. She's always too busy to let mommy take pictures.

This was not staged! We were eating lunch together and Madelynn reached over and hugged her sister. They love each other so, so much.

Monday, August 25, 2014


Inspired by Kristen from When at Home, I'm writing a Currently post. 

I am currently...

Thinking About...God. I have spent so much time thinking about God lately. How much He loves us, how clear His expectations of us are and how so very important it is to raise my children in the ways of the Lord.  Also, about how little of myself and my time I'm giving to Him. I spend brain numbing hours on social media or watching television and I can feel that I'm in a funk. When I immerse myself in His word, read soul reviving material and spend less time on the computer, it's so good for my soul. And good for the people around me because reading His word reminds me of how I should be acting and treating others. It reminds me to extend grace, patience, kindness and love. It reminds me of what is truly important on this side of heaven. Madelynn is asking so many questions about Him lately and she's so observant of His creations. It's wonderful answering her questions about God or hearing her newest observation about something God made or does. Annabella is starting to say her own prayers at night and my ears have never heard anything more precious. (Besides Madelynn's heartfelt prayers) I am so incredibly blessed, this entire life with my husband, children, family and friends is such a gift. I don't want to waste it anymore. And I don't want to waste time anymore. I'm learning to give it all to Him.

Listening To...I wasn't listening to anything besides Christian Rock on Pandora and Taylor Swift (thanks, girls!) but after reading Kristen's Currently post, I was introduced to Gungor. And I am so in LOVE! 

Reading...I'm reading a daily devotional called The Essential Jesus and Women Living Well: Find your Joy in God, Your man, Your kids, and Your home. I need to choose a book in the Bible to work on by myself as well.

Thankful For...I don't even know where to start...God. My hardworking, loving and supportive husband. My amazing, individual, creative and wonderfully loving children. Our home. Modern conveniences that we take for granted, really don't need, but deeply appreciate. And so much more...

Photographing...Nothing. Zip. I take a camera pic every once in a while, but I haven't gotten the camera out nearly enough lately. These days are so precious and the kids are getting so big, so quickly, that I want to photograph them as much as possible, I don't want to forget a moment of this season of life. Below is a photo of Annabella after ballet with Noah, while we were waiting on Big Sister to finish her tap class and Madelynn sitting on top of this huge structure she climbed at the playground. She was so proud of herself. 

Writing this kind of post on a Monday morning has really started my week off on the right foot. If you have a blog, I encourage you to do the same and if not, journal your currently. Have a great week!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Noah Is 6 Months Old!

It always sounds so cliche, but I can't believe that my baby boy is 6 months old already! Even though we spend every waking (and sleeping) moment together, the time doesn't go by any slower. It seems like we were just having these photos done and marveling over how precious and tiny he was. 

(7 weeks old)

Noah is currently:
  • Sitting on his own
  • Talking/smiling/laughing
  • Sitting with the girls and "playing" with them. He always has to be in the middle of their antics
  • Army crawl/dragging himself everywhere
  • Sleeping very well, half of the night with us, the other half in his pack and play next to the bed. We have no plans to put him in his room any time soon.
  • He weighs a whopping 20.3 pounds and is 27 inches long!!

August 1

August 6

August 9

Look at him in all of his glorious chunkiness!!!  I'm so thankful to be his mommy. <3

Wednesday, August 6, 2014


This afternoon Annabella fell right on her face in the kitchen and when she stood up, screaming, her mouth was pouring blood. I went into mommy survival mode, checked her teeth, got her cold juice and a wet paper towel and started assessing the damage. Her lip was busted and her frenulum was ripped. I had no idea what to do with a ripped frenulum, so I called Jonathan and then I made a doctor appointment for that evening. (Surprisingly their pediatrician is open until 7:00 on Tuesdays) Jonathan met me there and once we were assured all was well, we left and went to Chick-fil-A for a "feel better dinner."  

After the girls ate, we packed up and went into the play area. They had  Even though the restaurant was packed, there were only two other little girls in the play area. Madelynn has never met a stranger, so she immediately initiated play and conversation with the other two girls. Annabella followed her sister and before I knew it they were all four having the time of their little, precious lives. After a while, one of the mothers came in to get her daughter and while she was letting her have "one more round" she and I started a conversation about pre-k. Immediately we realized we had two things in common: our faith and our plans to homeschool our daughters. She invited me to step outside and speak with her because it was so incredibly loud with the girls squealing. I had the opportunity to invite her to our church and get her phone number to make a play date for the girls. It's RARE for me to be able to speak so openly to someone else and actually have the courage to ask for their information, but this particular mom and I had so much in common and the girls were having so much fun that I knew I had to. She was finally able to get her little girl to leave and as we waved good bye, I went back in to sit with Jonathan. That's when he clued me in that something was going on with the other little girl, Emily.

He told me that while I was gone, she was talking to him had a very sad story. I watched the girls play, squealing and running, playing hide and seek and seeming not to have a care in the world. The lady that was with Emily came to get her for ice cream a little bit later and Jonathan had the chance to tell me what the little girl had told him. She opened up about how her mommy was sick, but she was getting help. So while she was getting help, she was going to live with a foster family, but it was ok because they had a really big pool. And when her mommy got better, she was going to come and get her back. She talked about how she didn't have anything anymore-no clothes, toothbrush, or anything. And the lady she was with was a social worker who was letting her have a fun night tonight because she was going to her foster home the next day. After Chick-fil-A, they were going to go shopping and buy her some new things, including a new bathing suit for the "HUGE pool!"  She was 9. This beautiful, blonde hair, blue eyed, supposed to not have a care in the world little girl had just been taken away from her mom. She had just had her world shattered. But she was there when we were, she felt comfortable talking about it to Jonathan and she enjoyed the company of my 4 and 2 year old little girls like it was one of the happiest play dates she'd ever had. My outgoing, never-met-a-stranger little girl reached out to Emily and allowed her to have a carefree, fun night. Because Annabella fell on her face and ripped her frenulum, we ended up at Chick-fil-A on a Tuesday night which never happens. And to add to the coincidences, how often is the playground not crowded?!  It always has a ton of kids in it. But tonight, it was a small crowd with a loving daddy who had a listening ear and two little girls who invited Emily to play during one of the hardest moments of her life. 

Even though Madelynn is only four, I am brutally honest with her. I want her to know how blessed she is and I need her to understand how others go without the things and people that she has in her life. I explained Emily's situation to her and I asked her to pray for Emily in her prayers. I cried for her while we were in the restaurant and I cried again as I was telling Madsy her story. It breaks my heart to think of the pain that little girl has experienced at such a young age. So put Emily and her mom on your prayer list. They desperately need it. 

Emily's story inspired me to make sure my kids know how much I love them. I don't want them to feel like I take them for granted. I want them to know how much they mean to me by reading to them when they ask, taking a little extra time to patiently answer their never ending questions, teaching them the importance of loving each other and strengthening their faith in God. I want to show my love by spending quality time with them and being more patient with them and dropping everything when all they want is me-just me. And we'll be doing a lot less of buying them gifts that they'll outgrow and forget about. Because whether a child is motherless or sees their mom daily, they all want the same thing: their mom's (and dad's) love and attention. They all need our full attention-not our distracted attention. They need us to intentionally spend quality time with just them, playing their silly games and wearing a fleece blanket as a cape with a crocheted scarf as a hat in the middle of summer. (True story, happened this morning) 

Jonathan was inspired to do some research about how to help kids in the foster care system and I hope that together (and as a family) we'll find an organization that we can volunteer our time and love to. And maybe down the road, even become a foster parent. (Both of us have always wanted to adopt a child.) All of this because Annabella ripped her frenulum. God sure does work in mysterious ways. :)

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Let Me Catch You Up

It has been far too long since I updated the blog. Life is crazy, but I wouldn't trade this life for anything. As a follow up to our "We're selling the house" post, we've decided NOT to sell the house. Apparently everyone else in the neighborhood decided to jump on the bandwagon, which was not a good look for potential buyers. It was getting so stressful trying to keep the house "show ready" and at this stage in our lives, I just don't think it was the right move. As much as we wanted it, it wasn't what our family needed. Let me give you an update, person by person, to get caught up from the past couple of months.

Jonathan:  Not only is Jonathan doing an amazing job at work, but he's also in the process of getting a promotion!  He's been moved into a new department and has the title, but will be fully functioning in the position by the end of the year.  He's also in grad school and just passed his first class with a B!  I'm so proud of him!

Me:  Madsy Bella is thriving on Etsy and locally. I just did a photo shoot with a local photographer to cross promote our businesses. The kids got to model my items, so we got to have adorable photos of both the kids and my products. I am so blessed to be able to contribute to our family financially and know that the reason my business is thriving is ONLY because of God. He has blessed me and I'm so thankful. Madsy Bella is a creative outlet for me and it's so rewarding to see parents dressing their little ones in my creations. I have dressed so many little girls for their first birthdays and other special occasions and holidays, and I can't wait to see what else God has in store for Madsy Bella.

Madelynn:  So much is happening for Madelynn right now.  On September 2nd she'll have her first day of pre-k.  Our church has started a private pre-k program that's 4 days a week, only 4 hours a day and I'm so excited to send her. She's going to love it!  She also starts dance class next Wednesday. It's a combination ballet and tap class. We got her dance clothes yesterday, so we're just anxiously awaiting her first day. It's a full year long, unlike her last dance class, and she'll have a recital in May. She also moved into the big kid's class at church!  So now she gets to learn, play games, and sing songs all about God. Prior to this she was just in a nursery and all they did was free play. I love that she's old enough to participate and actually start learning and retaining more information about God. She has so many questions and she already has so much knowledge (for a 4 year old).  Oh!  She also got her ears pierced on Saturday!  She'  I can't take it. 

Annabella:  Annabella is potty training!  Well, she's pretty much potty trained.  She wears big girl panties everyday and anytime we go out and she very, very rarely has accidents, even when she's sleeping. She's so proud of her accomplishment and Madelynn has been such a great encourager. She's talking soooo much and has an excellent understanding of what's going on. She follows directions very well and has developed quite a feisty little personality. I am so proud of my big girl.

Noah:! He's 6 months old and is outgrowing his 9 month clothing. He's also teething, starting to crawl, and trying to pull up on things. He's still exclusively breast fed and judging by his size and development, he's getting more than enough just from nursing, so I have no plans to feed him solid foods anytime soon. He is so in love with his sisters and would rather be playing in the floor with them than anything else. Well, except for eating. He's a precious little boy and so full of joy. He's by far the easiest baby we've had, so we can take him with us pretty much anywhere without any problems. He rarely cries and constantly asks to eat or wants to cuddle. It's so sweet. :)