Wednesday, July 8, 2015

A Child Shall Lead Them

It was one of those days. I had plenty of things to cross off of my to-do list, and was anxious for a nap but a certain toddler had no interest in taking one. Apparently, his 20 min snooze while riding with his Papa was just enough to keep his busy little self going. A drive around the neighborhood made his sister nod off, but he chattered away in the backseat.
The afternoon flew by with preparations for a trifle I was supposed to take, and a devotional I was asked to give at a combined baby/bridal shower for my sisters-in-law that evening. After bathing, dressing and combing the children (and myself), I gathered sippy cups, gifts, notes and my dessert. In the middle of it all, the kiddos escaped outside and started playing. I was so irritated! The last thing I needed was dirty children that needed a change of clothing! I hollered at them to come get in the vehicle, impatient to get going. I knew I wasn't being kind and I felt sorry about that, but frustration ruled. We got loaded up and headed back the lane to pick up a sister-in-law, while guilt plagued my mind. I knew I needed to make things right with my children for how I mis-handled the last few (frustrating) hours. I told them that I was sorry for how I spoke and asked for their forgiveness, which they readily gave!
Everything went smoothly at the shower, and before long we were on our way home again. Somehow, the subject came up again and Hadassah said "You shouldn't be frustrated! That isn't a good mother!" Her words were like a knife to my heart. I knew it was true, and it hurt deeply to know that my actions hurt her! But I wasn't prepared for what happened next. She volunteered to pray for me "right here in the vehicle"! And she did. It was the sweetest prayer, asking God to bless me and help me not to be frustrated and make me a good mother. She said something silly and then giggled, while I sniffed and wiped some tears from my eyes.
God met me there that night, in the heartfelt prayer of my child. Sometimes, He uses a child to lead me.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

10 Things I Learned in May

1. My husband earned himself several brownie points for getting me these gorgeous hanging baskets!

 2. Walmart gets a few things right; they nailed it with these comfy skirts!

3. Sometimes, when it is the hardest to create, the finished product is the most rewarding.

4. This baked oatmeal recipe - featuring apples, pecans and craisins - is one of the very best

5. This little guy is crazy about riding the lawn mower. It has doubled up as his naptime more than once!

6. Watering the flowers is an important job around here.

7. Watermelon is the sweetest when you eat it in the hayfield.

8. Home Goods is one of my happy places. I'm still mad at myself for not buying one of these pillows!

9. Strawberry picking with the kiddos is a great way to make memories, as long as you have someone along to chase your busy toddler!

10. Flower crowns are adorable. So are the little people that wear them.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

10 Things I Learned in March

1. Housecleaning is one of the jobs I dread the most, but I also get the most satisfaction from. This year, it seemed to take so.much.longer. than I remembered! Are we done yet?!

 2. Winter eventually loses the battle. Hallelujah!

3. After several days with sick children, I developed a whole new level of appreciation for the Curious George show. Anything I can enjoy watching along with my kids gets my approval!

4. The creation of photo books can become an addiction, especially when you have entire years of photos that haven't been printed yet! But I'm making progress, and that's what counts, right?

5. Short people have a hard time running as fast as tall people. At least, that's my excuse!

6.I am a work in progress; He isn't finished with me yet!

7. My kiddos are my entertainment. They say some of the funniest things, and I can't help myself: I just laugh uncontrollably! Does that make me a bad mom?

8. Life has no guarantees. Recently, a mama only two years older than me passed away suddenly, leaving 4 little children behind. I have today, and that is all I am promised.

9. Sometimes - even though it pains me to admit it - husbands are right. Like the business conference he suggested we attend, which was absolutely life-changing! (And yes, I told him he was right.) 

10. The statement "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels" doesn't apply to homemade cheesecake.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

10 Things I Learned in January

Yes, it's almost the end of February, and yes, I'm just now writing a post about what I learned in January. Maybe "not to procrastinate" will be on my February list but I'm not making any promises! I feel like I was in a funk for the last month and just couldn't find anything worth writing. Today, I was inspired. So I wrote.

1. Black bean brownies are edible, but they just don't taste like the real thing. I joined a friend in a "sugar fast" for the month of January, and that pushed me to make some changes in our diet, and find healthy alternatives for my sweet cravings. My husband really liked the black bean brownies with milk, but I wasn't crazy about them! Spinach berry smoothies were one of my go-to foods. Serious yum!

  2. IKEA is still one of my favorite places to shop at. I love that we've made it a yearly tradition. It's quite obvious when I see my bill. (gulp) And getting to find places to put all my treasures?

3. Old barn wood has so many fun uses! My Dad salvaged this piece for me and I used it to make an inspiration board. The best part is getting to change it up whenever the mood strikes!

4. Nothing beats the taste of fresh sausage and bacon. 

5. Sometimes the best gift you can give someone is just letting them know that you care, and that you are praying for them. 

6. Bath fizzies can turn the worst day into the best. My friend and I bought some at this adorable shop in Savannah, and they will change your life. Or your day. Or both!

7. Ballerina classes were one of the most precious things I've ever seen. Hands down. And my little ballerina's enthusiasm was contagious. She LOVED it!

8. January can actually be one of the most insane months of the year. This one was! 

9. Feeding baby calves is a form of entertainment when you live on a farm. 

10. No matter how difficult and painful life can be, I know that God has a plan. And that plan is GOOD.

What did you learn in January?

Saturday, December 20, 2014

My Christmas House

Welcome to a virtual tour of {part of} my home, dressed up for Christmas!
I don't get too fancy,
but I do have fun using what I have to make it cozy
and festive.

First up is the dining room.

I created my first wreath ever at a party a friend had,
and I had so much fun that I think it will become a yearly tradition!
You just can't go wrong with fresh greenery.

I love my bottle trees, and think they are especially cute inside a glass cloche!

I used more greenery and some antlers I robbed from my man's stash to decorate this old door.
He's got enough to supply the neighborhood! (antlers, that is)

I stuck some evergreen in an urn and then decided the berries would add some color.
The poinsetta was from my man!

 More antlers! What did I tell you?

I had the platter for years and it was originally red, but I was in the mood for some gold.
Spray paint to the rescue!

 On to the kitchen!
This room feels like Christmas year-round, with the red counters
and the darling Roman shades that my Mom made for me out of Ikea curtains!

I added a pot of greenery,
along with some cookie cutters that have been passed down from Eddie's grandmother.

The living room is where we put up our Christmas tree.
I had fun adding some gold tinsel that I found on clearance last winter!

The mantle is a collection of things I had on hand, except for the stockings!
I finally got some to hang for the kids :)
I made the tree out of a cereal box after seeing this tutorial.

I needed some art to display, so I lettered this one evening while I was watching a show.

After seeing the comments of quite a few moms whose children loved this Little People nativity set,
I decided to go ahead and get one for the kiddos when it was 50% off!
It is adorable, and perfect for little hands.

 Hadassah has had fun playing with it, 
while her brother spends more time  pushing the pieces off the table and dragging them around the house! (that's his preferred method of play in general) 

My chalkboard, with the message my heart needs this Christmas.

Thank you for "touring" my home...all three rooms!
Happy weekend, y'all :)

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Thanksgiving Art & Giving Thanks

With Thanksgiving less than 3 weeks away, I wanted to share a simple art project that I created for the season.
It involves feathers, a piece of paper and a frame.
That's it!

I've been finding these gorgeous blue jay feathers in my yard,
and they inspired me to create some art.
I ended up using some feathers in neutral tones and just hot glued them to a sheet of white paper.
A patterned paper would add some fun to this,
but I decided I liked the look of crisp white.
I think it makes the feathers pop!

Then I added some lettering to finish it off, because I can.
Besides, I needed the reminder.
Especially this month, when I felt like I've been pushed to my limit.
When it feels like a constant struggle to just keep my head above water,
only to get hit with yet another wave.
And I wonder if it really is possible to give thanks in everything;
in the times of struggle, pain and disappointment.

As difficult as it can be to utter those two words,
I'm slowly learning that giving thanks is what pulls me out of that pit of self-pity.
It lifts my eyes to the One Who has not only saved me,
but continues to redeem every difficult and painful thing in my life.

So today I'm thankful for His patience in teaching me,
and for that piece of art on my wall to remind me,
in everything
Give thanks.