Monday, February 27, 2012


I hadn't plan to blog at all this morning - but here I am, writing my second blog post. Guess my heart is just feeling full and since I got a few extra minutes this morning, why not write?!

16 years ago, today, I was hurrying to the hospital to await the arrival of my first nephew, Steve! I still remember the day like it was yesterday. My sister calling - Mike skipping classes for the day - Me dodging out of work - driving 1.5 hours, hoping to get there in time. Little did we know we'd be there ALL day long. Steve was quite content inside his momma's tummy. I think he didn't want to leave the closeness of her heart - and the deep love he already knew - little did he know that her love would become even deeper as she held him that day - and every day as the years have gone by (gone by too quickly, I might add!).

I also remember that on that day, was Mike's Nana's visitation - and he forgot his suit, so he had to go and buy a new one on the way to visitation. I remember he went to the visitation in the evening, and yet, I did not go, as I could not leave that hospital until I saw my new nephew and knew my sister was well. She had a really long labor, that eventually ended in a c-section after much pushing going nowhere. My sweet 'baby sister', I have always loved you so much. And your kids are just an extension of you, how can I not love them ever so deeply too?!

The funny thing I remember about the day is that when we finally got to leave the hospital somewhere after 10pm - within 5 minutes we got pulled over - the officer wanted to make sure Mike wasn't drunk (my husband?! ha! never a day in his life!). I guess it was a long day for both of us - and we were tired - and glad for the 'wake up call' from the officer to safely drive back home.

I am so very thankful that Steve was born! I have so many sweet memories of these past 16 years. Unfortunately we had to move 4 months after he was born...waaaay to far away. I've never been there for even one of his birthdays. And that makes me a bit sad. (okay, maybe more than a 'bit' sad - since I just found myself wiping away a tear that decided to sneak out and down my cheek!). But for all the memories of all the times we have shared in between, I am thankful.  I look forward to seeing what amazing things God has in store for his life as he becomes 'all grown up' on me!

Imperfectly Me

This is one of those mornings that I am fully aware of all my imperfections as a mom. One of those mornings where after the girls leave, I cry - because of all the things I feel I did wrong.  Yelled too much, was too short with them, too harsh, and did I really say to them, "just go out to the bus early 'cuz I really don't want to hear it anymore?!" ugh.

I try to remind myself, no one is perfect. Give yourself some grace. Forgive yourself. It's okay. Really, it is. You get to try again. But it still hurts. And I hate it when I find myself in these moments. And I'm once again thankful that God accepts me in all my imperfectness. He gives me grace.

And then there is the other fact. The girls, they aren't perfect either. They are kids - growing kids - who don't always get it right either - who push boundaries, 'cuz that's what kids do - who are selfish at times - 'cuz that's what humans do - and who fight and argue for who knows why.

So here we are, sharing life together in all our imperfectness. And I know I wouldn't trade it for anything. I just like the sweet moments so much better!

Update: So about an hour after I published this post, I come across this on another blog, "She didn't have to be perfect, because she was perfectly loved. I John 4:8" Oh for truth - Lord, I thank you! 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Weekend Replenishment

A weekend with Mike is just what I needed!! It's amazing how sweet the short time can be and what a replenishment it is for my soul! Between the girls' attitudes lately (that have been pushing my limits of patience) and processing some deeper things going on in my life...I really needed a break away. Glad we put this on the calendar over two months ago!!

Our weekend getaways always include these rules. No computer. No television. and Limited Phone and Clock (on for emergencies and reservations).  For us, those 'rules' help keep us focused on reconnecting and on the important things of life.

I also stock up on Groupon Deals. Getting away for even less is always the best. Our first deal was BOGO night free at Chateau on the Lake...I like the banners lining the drive on the way in.
Then I got the half-price ziplining deal. It was a smaller zipline operation - and now we are both ready to try a bigger one!
Long walks exploring new trails...over three hours of meandering in the woods. Was this really winter...felt more like Spring! (Here's our attempt at balancing camera on a tree branch in the middle of the woods!)
Of course we went to Andy's (twice), and ate at Reeds Spring Pizza (again half price), and caught this sunset at the hotel on our way out to a nice dinner...
And I even talked Mike into a Chic Flick - "The Vow" - of course I cried, so that makes the weekend complete, right?! ;) I'm thankful for all the little moments this weekend I had to just pause and cherish the marriage I share with Mike and the amazing life we get to live!

OH and my quote for the weekend...You never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory!

psst - and special thanks to our amazing neighbors who took care of Daisy and for Darian and Beau who always insist on keeping our girls for us! We are so thankful!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sweet Valentines

Just had to post a couple of photos of the girls' valentine cards this year. 

Sarah made this cute Post Office Box for her valentine mailbox and for her valentine's for her friends she put hearts on crazy straws and wrote "Have a sip-pity do dah day!"

Morgan made a locker for her mailbox and made these adorable robots for her valentines for friends, with rolos and mint patties. I still find it hard to believe that this was her last valentine's day party with school, how'd she get so big so fast? I will miss this tradition with her next year.

My Valentine: 1992-2012 (& counting!)

Happiness is sharing all these years with the same Valentine! In celebration, here are a few quotes I've enjoyed reading lately...

Monday, February 13, 2012

Look What I Won!

I have this boring, 20 year old ironing board...
...but this week I'm picking up my new ironing board cover! Look at this gorgeousness!!
Oh, I do think I will smile every time I get my ironing board out now. Sometimes it's the simple things that make the mundane tasks oh so much happier to complete! 

And you know the best part? I won this! Yes, this was custom-made for me! How fun is that! I entered a little contest on a blog I love...The Vintage Grove...and I actually won! You know what I love about her blog? It makes me smile all the time - she is a genuinely happy person - and it bubbles out of her words and her ventures - and you can't help but smile! And be inspired, especially if you like all things vintage (or have a red velvet obsession!). So, to the beautiful person (Danavee) who had this giveaway on her blog, Thank You!! 

And she has this friend, who was nice enough to volunteer her time to make this beautiful ironing board cover, who also has a cute blog called Spray Paint and a Staple Gun. Isn't it nice that there are still such sweet people in the world?!? In the past, a lot of the blogs I followed were by people I knew, but lately, I've had fun following some other blogs that are inspiring out there. And besides, you never know when some stranger might actually become a friend in the blog world. I like the connection and the inspiration the blogging world brings to my life! (And I love my RSS Feed that helps me not miss a single post!) 

And as long as we're talking blogs, and inspiration, I've so loved the growing friendship I've found with Heidi at The Good Stuff Guide. I've really been enjoying writing some articles there too! 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

9 Ways We Celebrated a 9th Birthday

Nine years ago, sweetness itself was born! Here are nine ways we celebrated Sarah on her 9th birthday...(she chose a mini-trip to visit friends vs. a party.)

1. Our birthday tradition of balloons and streamers hanging in her bedroom doorway when she wakes up
2. Donuts to school!
3. New hair for her American Girl Doll! Glad her doll made it safely to the American Girl Doll Hospital and back again into her arms!
4. Shakespeare's Pizza - shared with some great friends! (so worth the 3.5 hour drive!) Glad this is what she wanted for her big day!! How'd I forget a picture of this?!

5. Swimming at hotel pool with life long friends (whom we miss terribly!)
6. An amazing one-of-a-kind, birthday cake, made just for her by the one and only Darian!
7. Staying overnight at a hotel, just for fun! Made duct-tape flip flops!
8. Wrote her a special note in her journal.
9. Standing on her chair at dinner while the waiter wished her a happy birthday and gave her a mug of ice cream!

Thursday, February 9, 2012


I put part of this conversation on my FB page this morning, but I wanted to capture it here in my blog to 'keep'. 

Me: We are going to a special service at the New Nixa Campus tonight. 
Sarah: Why?
Me: Well, because we want to celebrate all that God has in store for North Point - Nixa. We want to celebrate the lives that God wants to touch with His love. We are glad we get to a part of God's plan to bring people closer to him, so we are going to celebrate!
Morgan: Mom, when you talk...(pause)
Me: Um, yay?
Morgan: You make things sound so interesting!
Me: How's that?
Morgan: Well I didn't really want to go tonight, but then after you said that, I really want to go now! 

So tonight we went and worshiped the One who loves us more than anything. And we celebrated that He has had his hand on this new church campus since before it was even a thought, and for all the lives He will touch. And we are thankful we get to be a part of it! 

This picture was on FB when we got home - the girls wanted to sit front and center (not my first choice, but they were excited!) 

Lastly, I was thinking about this coincidence. Nine years ago we helped as a new campus was getting started at our last church, and we missed the first 2-3 weeks because of Sarah's birth.  This time we are missing the first 2 weeks of the new campus, again because it's Sarah's birthday this weekend, and we are travelling back to Jeff City, and will be visiting the campus from 9 years ago.

We hope to see you in Nixa! The fun begins February 19th! 9:30 and 11:00!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Quote for the Day

I like listening to my girls have a conversation in the back seat of the car. They often forget I'm listening and talk freely. This morning, the conversation went something like this:

Morgan (to Sarah): Try to NOT look at the clock today, it will make the day go faster.
Sarah (to Morgan): No, it will not  make the day go faster, it will just make the day seem to go faster!
Me (chuckling to myself and thinking): Sarah is without a doubt her daddy's literal. It so sounded like something he would say to me, "You know, you can't make time go any faster..." Oh I love them both...and their 'literal'ness! And I'm glad Morgan talks/thinks a bit more like me, so I am not all alone! :)