08-31-17 Thursday Night Rambling

For the third night in a row I am letting the kids sleep in my room- the big kids on the floor and Baby E in bed with me. I’ve barely gotten any sleep with them there, because Baby E moves constantly, but I’m hoping tonight will be different. At least I don’t have to be at work tomorrow. I’m taking the day off because C and E get to meet their teachers. I’ll admit that I think I am more nervous than they are and I can hardly believe that my sweet boy will be starting kindergarten soon. I keep coming across old pictures and videos of him and I am astounded at how quickly time is flying. It seems unfair, really.

I’ve been fighting a headache all evening, but I absolutely loved the distraction of having a dear friend join us for dinner this evening. In the crazy busyness of our lives it is so hard to take the time out and connect with people, but tonight we did just that. I’m grateful for friends like her, our friendship is a deep blessing in my life. 🙂

So this year I am that mom… You know, the one that waited until the very last minute to get all the school supplies, so if you are out and about the county over the next few days, scooping up all the leftover glue sticks and number two pencils, you are going to have some competition! 🙂

08-30-17 Stinky Feet


At dinner this evening I asked the kids what their favorite Bible stories are. I think I was expecting to hear a few of the usual suspects, ‘Daniel and the Lions Den,’ ‘David and Goliath,’ or ‘Noah’s Ark,’ but I was pleasantly surprised when Big E piped up and said, “The one where Jesus died on the cross!” I asked him what that story was about and he told me it’s the story when Jesus dies for our sins. (I’ll admit, my mommy heart smiled at his answer. )

Then C piped up with, “That’s my favorite one too, but do you want to know what  my other favorite bible story is??”

“Sure!” I responded.

“The one with the stinky feet!!!” she giggled.

I wracked my brain trying to figure out what story she could be referring to and the only thing I landed on was Jesus washing his disciples feet. I thought this was a pretty specific story for a seven year old to latch on to, but maybe they had gone over it recently at church.

“You know, the one where everyone has stinky feet and there’s food falling from the sky…”

Now I understand her. In her storybook bible, when it gets to the story about the Manna from Heaven, I think it talks about the people grumbling and complaining. I guess in the drawing of the Israelites they must have stinky feet! I was so confused!

So yes, my kids love the story about Jesus dying on the cross and the Stinky Feet story.

Not to be outdone by his siblings, Baby E has taken to praying along with us at mealtime and bedtime. His prayer is pretty predictable and absolutely adorable…

“Dear God… (mumble mumble) Jesus!! Amen!!!” He wants to be included every time that we pray and it never gets old. 🙂


08-29-17 Living Letters

I’ve been thinking about this post all day and trying to figure out how to word it.

This past weekend Hurricane Harvey hit south eastern Texas, and as a result, the city of Houston has been inundated with flood waters. I’ve seen lots of pictures and videos of people being rescued, people risking their lives to help complete strangers, and a community coming together with a sense of unity.

Last night before bed I was scrolling through Twitter when I came across a post about Joel Olsteen’s response to the Houston Flooding. His twitter response was “Victoria & I are praying for everyone affected by Hurricane Harvey. Please join us as we pray for the safety of our Texas friends & family.” Now I don’t listen to Joel Olsteen. I’ve never heard a sermon. To be honest, he gives me the heebie jeebies, and when I see his saccharine smile plastered on the front of a book, I’m not enticed to pick it up. But I know that there are a lot of people that do listen to him. I know there are people that trust him. So here goes.

While I’m not a fan of the man, I thought the sentiment of his comment was kind and I wondered why there was such outrage so I clicked on his tweet and was amazed at the number of replies there were- and how many of them were negative. And since I know practically nothing about him or his ministry, I was surprised to learn that he has a 16,000 seat church in the heart of Houston. 16,000 seats!! That’s massive. And then I understood the problem… there’s a church with at least a 16,000 person capacity at the very center of one of the greatest natural disasters in our country in recent memory, and that church is sitting empty.

Instead of mobilizing their congregation and opening their doors as soon as possible, they set up a link where you could donate money through their church to help the people of Houston. (Sometime today, the church finally opened it’s doors, but it seemed to be more of a response to the backlash than a proactive response to the storm.)

That’s not right.

As I continued reading the responses I saw so many people voicing their disgust of Christians and Christianity. They made comments like, ‘this is why I walked away from my faith.’ Let’s get honest here, folks… In the bible Paul tells us that we are ‘living letters’ to be read by men, so when people were reading the living letter that is that ‘christian’ and that ‘ministry,’ they only saw greed and self interest- they saw an empty 16,000 person church and a $10 million residence. Outsiders, non christians were turned away from God because in their time of need, their local ‘church’ was not a haven of compassion or a physical shelter from a very real threat. We as Christians and our communities as churches HAVE TO BE IN THE TRENCHES. We cannot lead from behind. We have to follow Christ’s very vivid examples of meeting the physical and spiritual needs of our community, and even more so in times of crisis. Is that uncomfortable? Yes! Is it expensive? Yes! Is it a risk? Yes! And if we aren’t doing that, then maybe we need to be rereading our bibles and revisiting our doctrine.

I’m not just speaking about our churches as communities, but us as individuals and families as well. I’m speaking to myself (and my own family) too because we are very guilty of this. It is hard to see past our own lives, our own difficulties, and our own tragedies to notice the people near us in need. We need to do better. We need to bleed compassion and generosity. We need to give without regret and we need to show that God’s love isn’t just words, but it is ultimately action. So let’s do better.

We are living letters- let those letters reflect Christ!

08-28-17 “Life is a game…”

There’s a scene in the series Downton Abbey where the characters are playing charades. One of the guests at the house, an uptight, proud, angry gentleman turns to the elder matriarch of the family and asks, “Do you enjoy these games in which the player must appear ridiculous?” The woman turns to him and matter of factly states, “…Life is a game, where the player must appear ridiculous.”

I think about this quote often, especially when my children are in a silly mood, running around the house or out in public, honestly enjoying the very fact that they are children. And there isn’t a day that goes by that at least one person in our family isn’t appearing ridiculous. So it made me smile when Big E marched into the kitchen this evening while I was making dinner. Not only had he found his monkey costume again, but he had located some old snow pants as well. I’m not sure how he wasn’t completely burning up in his outfit, but he thought he looked pretty cool.




08-27-17 A Princess, a Monkey, and a Bumblebee

The kids were particularly quiet this morning as I was getting work done around the house. We had decided to stay home from church to spare anyone from any residual germs, and so we chose to continue our deep clean of the house. The kids were playing upstairs and when I finally went up I found C running around in a princess dress, while Baby E was half stuck in a bumblebee outfit. C asked me to help him get it on, and when it was finally over his giant head and the arms were where they were supposed to be, I realized that it was a dress. Oh well! It made me laugh. He went around the house buzzing for hours. Meanwhile Big E found a monkey costume that was three sizes too small, but he squeezed himself into it and it has become a new (old) favorite. I loved watching and hearing them entertain themselves sans screen time. Imaginations are the best!

This afternoon I took the two big kids to the grocery store with me, which if you know me, is pretty much against all my beliefs when it comes to grocery shopping, but like the awesome mom that I am, I promised them italian ice if they behaved. They did (for the most part) so they earned some dessert before dinner.

Tomorrow we begin our last full week before school starts. It is going to be so strange to have two of them in school, and I know I will be shedding some tears when the time comes! Until then I’m going to be squeezing in some extra cuddle time!


08-26-17 Birthday Girl

It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that our sweet girl turned seven today. I’m still not feeling great, so we didn’t get to do much celebrating, but we had cake and balloons at Naona’s house! We are home now and she has just over a week before school starts again. I have loved watching my sweet girl grow and I know she has the ability to do great things with her life, but my greatest prayer and wish for her is that she grows in her knowledge and love of her savior, values other people, and is selfless in her actions and attitudes. She is a wonderful daughter, dedicated student, and courageous big sister! So happy birthday to the girl who made me a mom!! I love you so much!! 😍😍😘😘

08-25-17 Collecting My Crazies

I took the day off of work today to drive to my parents’ house to be with my crazies. The kids all cycled through a stomach bug this week while they have been away, but I’m praying that’s all behind them and we will be done with that for awhile. I was so happy to see them, but since I’m still fighting a slight fever, we kept our cuddles to a minimum. I don’t want their stomach bug and they don’t want my fever. Ugh! Tomorrow is C’s birthday, so don’t mind me if I cry ugly tears that my baby girl is going to be seven!!

08-24-17 Cranky

It started the other day with a slight headache and a feeling of being tired. I chalked it up to being outside in the bright sun on Monday for the eclipse and figured it would go away. Tuesday I felt pretty much the same. And then yesterday I started to feel ‘off.’ I still had the headache, but I also felt like my chest was tight, like a panic attack, even though there were no triggers and I didn’t have any of the other symptoms. The best way to describe it was that I had the constant feeling that I had to yawn, but couldn’t finish the yawn.

I actually texted my husband before bed last night lamenting that I felt like a hypochondriac trying to figure out what was wrong with me. In the end, I decided a good night’s sleep might do the trick so I went to bed around 8:45 and slept 9.5 hours. I woke up with my headache and yawning sensation gone, but the fatigue still clung heavy on me. I stopped on the way to work and got a massive coffee in hopes to counteract the fog I was feeling. Besides feeling tired, I felt fine when I arrived, but after about an hour I started to feel cold, despite the fact I had turned the AC off in my office. And then my skin started to feel sensitive and sore, which is usually a sure fire sign that I’m running a fever. Without a thermometer, I had to ask people if I felt warm, and after a couple of confirmations, and an increasing amount of shivering I packed up and headed home and went straight to bed.

I woke up with a headache and a slight sore throat so I made an appointment at the urgent care. No ear infection and no strep, so hopefully this won’t stick around long. I’m just miserable enough to be cranky, so it is probably good that the kids are still with their grandparents! I’m heading to bed in a moment. Hopefully the morning will be better!


08-23-17 Missing my kiddos

My kids are spending another evening at my parents’ house and therefore my house is incredibly quiet. Molly came out of hiding when I got home and has spent most of the evening following me around and staring at me. I am actually going to take advantage of the quiet and go to bed incredibly early!

Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about the 1000th post drawing, I’ve just been really busy. I’ll take care of it soon! 🙂

08-22-17 Discipline

You might think this is a post about my children and the various ways we have decided to parent them, but it’s not. It’s a post about me… and it’s a tough one to write.

A few weeks ago I got an unexpected message from a friend. The message was calling me out on something that I said in reference to another person, and that what I said sounded disrespectful and needed to be corrected.

I’ll admit that when I received this message my knee jerk reaction was to get angry and indignant. How dare this person talk to me in such a manner? I stewed and stewed, mentally preparing a response, typing out what I wanted to say, and deleting it over and over again. As the hours passed I hit just about every negative emotion from anger, betrayal, and frustration, until I finally landed on sadness. I sat in the quiet, staring at the wall, trying to process what I was experiencing, and as I sat there, a strange thing happened. I began to see exactly where my friend was coming from. While I had never meant to be disrespectful, when I surveyed my own actions and attitudes I could easily see how it was read that way. I had been disrespectful. I had injured the other person, and they had no idea they had been injured.

And then I cried a lot. I cried and cried because I saw my actions for what they were, harmful and ugly. When I finally pulled myself together I contacted my friend to say thank you. I thanked my friend for loving me enough to do what they did. This friend risked putting our relationship on the line in order confront sin in my life.  Heaven knows it hurt to hear, but I needed to hear it.

Sometimes I fear that we as a church are too polite and afraid to approach our brothers and sisters in Christ and confront them for the sins in their lives, so instead we leave them to limp and hobble through life, from one self-inflicted disaster or tragedy to the next, ruining relationships and adding to their own burdens. We are so afraid of offending people that we are unwilling to guide them and teach them as Christ would. We’ve lost the art of intimate communication within the church, comforting ourselves with small talk and pleasantries.

What my friend did was BRAVE and my friend did it in a very kind way. This friend didn’t shout my shortcoming from the rooftops, they didn’t whisper about it behind my back, they contacted me directly and discreetly in a way to minimize my embarrassment, with a better chance of getting their message heard.

But even so, had I responded immediately, my pride would have irrevocably damaged our relationship. It was only when I allowed myself to get past those initial emotions and deal with the issue at heart, was I able to acknowledge that I had been in the wrong and take steps to correct it. I went to the person I had hurt and explained the situation. They had no idea at first what I was talking about, but I asked for their forgiveness and it was freely given. It was a very humbling experience, but one that taught me a valuable lesson about the damage our tongues can do and the importance of owning up to our sin.

Church discipline is important and within the confines of Christian friendship, it is a necessity. I think about my friend’s message often and I am so grateful to them for loving me enough to speak up. I hope I am a better friend because of it.


MATTHEW 18:15-17

15 “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.


Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.


The kids are visiting their grandparents and it looks like Big E had a long day. He wasn’t feeling well last night, but thankfully he is on the mend!