Monday, February 24, 2014

Weekend Roundup

Let me just start off by saying Praise Jesus for the weekend.  It has never come at a more needed time in our lives and we just took it all in!  
We enjoyed our Saturday outside.  Always good for the soul to breathe in some fresh air and especially when it is warm fresh air.  I love summertime.  Just throwing that out there.
Sunday's are one of my favorite days of the week.  A refueling for the week ahead with other believers.
We had a Sunday filled with faith, family and friends.  All of my favs.  The girls had a tea party  for one of Alyssa's friends.  Well, let me rephrase that, Alyssa had a party and Belle Boo came along for the party and just included herself.  She lived it up.
Alyssa and one of her sweet friends.  
Told ya!
Such a beauty inside and out.  She had a blast.

We also celebrated my grandma's 79th Birthday on Sunday as well.  I am not sure I could love this picture more.  This lady is a beauty from the inside out and she will leave a legacy of faith and strong values in our family.  I could never thank her enough.  

Thankful for a weekend of Jesus, family, and friends.  That's always a good combo!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Weekly Happenings

Our week through the trusty ol iphone. 
I mean really?  This dog!!  Have you seen anything cuter?  Let me start by saying I am not really an animal lover.  They just have never really been my thing.  I know...heartless.  But, we caved and got the girls a dog for Christmas and she is seriously the sweetest thing ever.  This girl has just made herself right at home in our little family and we (yes, me too) absolutely adore her.  She is an amazing breed (King Charles Cavalier) for children.  Bella...enough said!  She tolerates her well!!:) 
A date with this man always makes my heart skip a beat.  He's my rock and my best friend and life with him is wild and adventurous but I would have it no other way!!
Little miss is just getting way too big.  Full of life as always and sweeter than ever!

When on when did this happen?  I have not gotten older so how is it that my daughters have?  Weird I know!  She is such a Joy and has the sweetest heart.  She is such a beauty on the inside and out.  
Little miss flexible.  She DID NOT get that from me!  Thanks aunt Chels.  You rock!
Someone snuck in the little bit in her bed.  Sooo sweet.  A girl and her dog!
My days with this girl are so special.  In a few months she will begin Kindergarten and be away every day. I am cherishing our time together and so thankful I have been able to stay home with both the girls.  It is something I will forever cherish and be thankful for.
Dinner at their fav.  Mommy never complains either.  Rivertown is just always delish!!
The company is great too!!!
We did Preschool at home on Thursday and Bella loved it.  We do a lot of work from home, but she wasn't really feeling too hot so I kept her home (revert to previous paragraph about school next year) and we did worksheets from home.  This girl would seriously do these all day long. 

Have a super weekend friends.  Enjoy the beauty around you in whatever form that may be.  God's so good and his blessings are abundant. Take them in!

Friday favs.

Happy Friday Friends!  Here are a few of my favorite things this week!  
Ok, let me just start our by saying, the Pioneer Woman is just amazing.  There is not one thing that I have ever made from sweet little Ree that I have not loved.  My love for these delicious rolls is something I can not explain.  They are perfectly good every single time I make them and so easy.  They freeze well so I can pull them out on Saturday mornings for a treat.  They are covered with a maple frosting (you are not blind...these are pre-frosting)  that is divine, but you can frost with your choice of glaze.  I used to make them only at Christmas and give them away.  That was just crazy (not the giving away, but only making them at Christmas) so I pretty much keep them in my freezer at all times.  Delish!
I love Aldi for many, many reasons.  But one reason being these little yummy nuggets.  They are so yum and the perfect little snack.  Go to your nearest Aldi and get yourself some.  You can thank me later.  If you don't have a Aldi near you..Sorry.  
This Salad.  It's one of my all time favs.  Merel's in Alma.  You do this thing right. Every time.  Thanks.
A Chicklet machine.  I don't pass them up too often.  Love them.  Need them.
I love this cute little wristlet that my momma got me for V-day.  It's so perfect to run in to a store with your keys and cash or debit card.  Less baggage, literally..:)
I am in love with these cute Toms sandals.  It is not quite time to be pulling these babes out yet, but we have had a few warm days this past week and it is getting me soooo ready for spring and summer.
This shampoo and conditioner is seriously one of my favs of all time.  I have tried so many different kinds and this is just SO good.  It leaves my hair soft and shiny, but also with so much body too.  Often, the two don't work together too well!  Try it.  You will love it too!!

What are some of your favorite products and things you are loving right now?  

Thursday, February 20, 2014

The chase

As I was doing my quiet time today I stumbled upon this little exert from a website that was under construction and had not been updated since May of 2013.  As I began to scroll through the site this is what I read.

 Permanently Under Construction.

I like that the Proverbs 31 woman, 
above all else, 
is a woman who feared the Lord.
I don’t like seeing in me a stronger desire to do what she did 
than to fear Whom it was she feared.
She feared the Lord. 
Her focus was on Him,
 her actions were simply a response of her heart.
I’m encouraged by her example. 
Fearing God,
she left no room for the opinions of others 
or the whims of her heart.

I couldn't help but think about the sovereignty of God and the fact that I came across a a website that had changed their domain name and He had something for ME.

Something that I needed.  Encouragement that this life is not about pleasing others.  It's about living in absolute abandonment of what He has called me to do.  I can't rely on the "whims of my heart" to guide me.  I know my heart and I know it can be yucky and misleading. 

Being a wife, a mother, a friend, and just a woman for that matter can be exhausting.  The daily tasks that are thrown at us sometimes don't allow a lot of time to ourselves.  God has gifted women in such a way that allows us to carry this load, but not without His help.  He wants our focus to be on Him and his ability to strengthen and His ability to bring grace when needed.  But too often, life gets first place and our focus becomes on other priorities and it isn't until we feel our heart about to fall apart that we stop and realize we have been trying to do it all on our own.  In our own strength and we end up overwhelmed and heavy hearted.  

Too often I find myself chasing after God, and I neglect the opportunity to walk with God.  Walking with Him as he guides.  To chase after anything is exhausting and constant.  It never brings me to a place of peace, it always leads me to exhaustion and lack of fulfillment in my life.  A desire for more.  The reality is, what I am running after is right beside me all along and all I have to do is reach out and grab it.  But I choose to chase.  His desire and his plan is for us to walk with him.  In the pace that he sets for our lives.  
Too often, I race through my day chasing after my agenda.  My plan.  Marking things off My checklist.  I miss Him and I neglect His leadership in my life.  
I wonder how different my day would look if I woke up asking God each and every day, Lord what is it that you have for me today?  Don't let me do anything that is not on your list.  

Unfortunately this is something that I battle far too often.  You would think over time that my heart would always lead me in His direction and to Him in all areas of my life, but like the title of the blog I read, our lives are Permanently Under Construction and just like the song I learned as a child... He's still working on me.  

Though my heart and flesh may fail, God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.
Psalm 73:26

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

A wild winter.

As you all know, this has been a winter for the record books.  I try to embrace each and every season and I always love a good snow day.   Especially one that causes for a cancellation or two...or a few weeks of cancellations.  Snow is so magical and so mystical and I love to stand at the window sipping coffee and just watch the beauty fall.  There really isn't much better.  So amazing that Jesus of mine.  Now, I am a summer girl.  I love everything about it, but I am enjoying that we are actually having a pretty legit winter this year.  The Lord knew we all needed to slow down and breathe him in.

For whatever reason I have not taken a single pic in the snow this year.   I'm not real sure why, but I whipped out the "Real" camera (not the iphone version) and captured my cuties playing and having  a blast!
Memories.  Isn't that what life is made of?:)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Quiet Noise

The past few weeks I have gotten on here to update my blog and honestly have just felt a loss for words.  A void of words and a lack of anything interesting to share with you.  We have been busy.  Life has happened and continues to, but my words have been few.

I felt a couple of weeks back that I needed to take a break from all things social media.  It was something that was clouding my thoughts and taking up more time than it should in my life. I tried to limit myself to minimal amounts of daily use but that never seemed to be enough.  At the end of the day when the kiddos were in bed and the house was quiet, my mind was still running from all the noise I had allowed in that day.  Noise that was keeping me from being the wife and mother God had called me to be.
Sidenote: This is not a bash to social media.  I have had my fair share of browsing SM in order to scope out the life of someone else and quite frankly enjoyed it...too much...hence why I am writing this post. :)  This is just an area of my life I felt God was leading me to change...for me.  This is about my personal convictions...nothing more...nothing less.

Its amazing how much time I can waste.  Uh hmmm... That's the understatement of the century.  Because quite frankly I am pretty sure I could hold a record in losing time doing things that just hold no value.  Things that at the end of the day, or the end of my life for that matter..simply do not matter.
 I would catch myself getting frustrated at my girls because they needed to have "Patience.  Just have Patience.  Does it look like I am busy?"
Oh, because the pics on Instagram of all these mommas doing fun things with their kids while I sit and snoop into their lives is so much more important.  I end my "browsing session" feeling like half the mom they are because I didn't take my girls to the park to enjoy this glorious weather,  but instead chose to peak in on the lives of others around me while missing out on the life God placed right in front of me. BAM...can I have my face back??
The speck in my own eye.  I struggle to see that...far too often.
Or, how about not making eye contact with Matt while he spoke to me because by golly I can multitask with the best of them...and this text about what Susie (I really don't have a friend named Susie...I mean I could, and If I do I am sorry for not remembering you)  ( I do have a MNL named Sue but that's not who I am talking about) (Whew feel better)  is making for dinner and what all she did today is far more important that looking the love of my life in the eyes while he shared with me about something he felt was important enough to tell the Love of his life.
I had lost the ability to quiet my soul to the things around me and soften my mind to the things that really hold my heart.

Noise became my enemy.  Girls you are being too loud.  Matt, why are you talking so loud?  Does the TV have to be THAT loud?  Can we please turn down the radio?  Better yet let's just sit in silence.  Can we just whisper?
My life had been so consumed with noise from the outside, but by filling my life with and my time (both of which I can't get back) with a constant something...I allowed no room in my heart for the investments that really matter.  It wasn't until I took all those things away that I was really able to take in the silence...and enjoy the noise GOD had placed in my life.  Noise from my children laughing and playing together.  Noise from them fighting (yes they do that and yes it is loud).   Noise from a movie with my hubs and the sweet conversation we share together.  Gosh we miss out on so much by neglecting the sweetest gifts God has given us.

I am so thankful for the still small voice of the Lord and His ability to see things for what they really are, and a love that is greater than anything I can fathom.  Because by golly I am a mess of a person.  I mess up more than I care to share and my children and husband have seen sides of me I would never want them to see.  But, I am a real person with real struggles and raw feelings and I never want to portray a different person than the one I truly am.  I gain nothing from that, and neither does anyone else.  I want to be real and true and share from my heart.

  My greatest desire is for my children to live a life that outlives theirs and my hope is that Matt and I are a living example of that in their lives.

Last week I had a friend ask me if I had gotten off SM.  I told her yes and she said she had missed seeing pics of our family.  I told her thank you and she replied with, "It's so quiet without it, isn't it?"  It sure is.  She will never know how much that spoke to me and how the Lord used her in that moment to speak truth over me and affirm what the He was calling me to do.

Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you wont need to compare yourself to anyone else.  For we are each responsible for our own conduct. Galations 6:4-5