Thursday, January 30, 2014

what i've learned from my wedding

wednesday was our 3 year anniversary. i know 3 years doesn't really seem very long to a lot of people, but i'm so proud of us and where we are.

marriage nowadays seem so wrapped up around pinterest with giant diamonds, a lace mermaid dress, and one heck of a reception. while none of those things are bad necessarily, i think women are getting so caught up in a dream wedding and forgetting about a dream marriage. because when all the decorations are gone, when the dress is boxed up, when you get back from an exotic honeymoon, you have to dive in to marriage. and that could be weird.

on our first date blake and i had dinner at a delicious mexican restaurant (my fave) where the server dumped a pitcher of sweet tea in my lap and purse. then a spider fell in my food. after i told him i thought going to a movie on a first date was ridiculous to me (which apparently was his plan) we decided to just drive around. we talked about everything! i will never forget when he said he believed that a relationship should be a man always pursuing a woman the way jesus pursues us. and if that ever stopped, you'd have a problem. i fell in love right.that.instant. we have not been perfect, but choose each other every day. we choose to be in love, to respect each other, to do life together in complete honesty.

our wedding was not perfect by any means, but it was perfect to me. and at the end of the day, i married the man i always knew was out there but never thought i'd get.

my man leads with dignity and integrity. he is always on my team. he listens to every crazy thing i have to say and sets me straight most delicately when i need it. he always knows what to say to make me laugh, he sees my strengths, and encourages me when i feel like i can't do anything right. his smile is my favorite thing to see, his laugh my favorite thing to hear. he knows every side of me and loves me the same. if there were ever a person to love me the way jesus does, it's him. he is my safety, the most comforting place i know. i could never imagine my life without him and every day is better because he's in it. blake is my absolute best friend and if he weren't, there is no way our marriage would work. it hasn't always been easy. yes we have struggled. but we love each other through it all while keeping our eyes on christ and that has made all the difference.

happy anniversary to my babe. you have made me a better woman, i am so grateful for you!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

snow in georgia!

so in the south, we're just a big ol' joke when it comes to inclement cold weather. it'll drop to like, 35 degrees and every grocery store within a 30 mile radius will be out of bread and milk. it's hilarious.

naturally, when sweet little glenn burns mentioned snow in the forecast this week, i scoffed in response. yeah right, buddy. keep dreaming. but when my mother in law ran upstairs to tell us it was indeed snowing, i had to see for myself! and i grabbed my camera, of course. wyatt was about to go down for a nap so he was a little less enthused than emma. she was so excited! she asked me to make a snowman, like olaf from frozen. there wasn't a whole lot on the ground yet so we scraped some off the tahoe and made a mini version, then fed it to callie ;)

it's REALLY coming down now! there are very few times when i love to be wrong, this is one of them! it's so gorgeous! the roads are dangerous, but the snow is a dream! i can't wait to take wyatt out in it when he wakes up! more pictures to come. here's what i snapped so far! hope y'all are staying warm and safe today!

coming down snowily but surely (see what i did there?)

just casually chatting about their first snow experience ;)

the prettiest pup i ever did see! she loves the snow!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Some days

Some days are just hard.
You know the ones I'm talking about.

The ones where you fight yourself all day, the ones where you just want 2 minutes alone, the ones where you kind of count down until bed time. If you don't ever have them, then bless you, because I sure do. And today was one of those.

The day started out great, had my 20 week ultrasound. Everything went awesome. I come home and Wyatt was the fussiest he's been in a long time. He cried the second he wasn't being held. Emma has also been in a stage where she says she "can't" eat dinner. So that's awesomely frustrating. 

So as I try to go pee (which needs to happen every 37 minutes apparently) with 2 kids at my ankles, I realize I'm just done for the day. I'm. Just. Tired. And I also realize the ridiculous me issue I'm having. Y'all babies are needy. This is nothing new. Wanna pee, or do anything else in privacy? Chances of that happening are slim to none. And guess what? That's okay. That's right. It's okay.

And it's also ok to get frustrated, but don't let it affect your parenting. And most importantly, your joy. Satan likes to creep into those moments where you're pulled a million directions and tell you that you can't do it. You aren't good enough. 

You can't. You aren't. But Christ in you can, and He is. Let him sustain your joy.
Some days are just hard. But there is always something to be joyful about.

I was reminded of this as I sat in a living room laughing with friends over some duck gumbo (which was phenomenal).

There is always room for praise.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

emmisms and booboos

emma is at that age where she says the craziest, most hilarious things. i'm trying to keep them written down so she can have them one day.

the other night i was showing her my belly and telling her about the baby in there. then i noticed a piece of skin in my belly button (too much info? sorry...) i was scratching at it and emma started hollering "mommy!? are you trying to get your baby out?!" blake and i died.

[with instructions to candy land] "mommy these 'structions say you not drink dat sun juice" (capri sun)

"come on mommy. time to go home. my daddy is gonna be so worried about me"

[sitting on the floor with callie, grabs her face] "callie you're a genius!"

she seriously keeps us laughing!

yesterday was too gorgeous here to stay inside, so we went to the playground when wyatt got up from his nap. we haven't been since it's gotten cold and wyatt has been big enough to play. despite all of the fun things to do, the man was obsessed with wood chips... i thought i had cleared his hands but when he was crawling on the playground he slipped and shanked himself in the chin. he started bleeding and screaming! i tried not to freak out.. turns out it was a big show for a little scrape. but it was his first legit booboo! i haven't been present for any scrapes or bang-ups with emma. strange right? my poor mother in law...

hope y'all are having a great tuesday already!
i'm wrapping this up due to the 2 tiny people hanging on my legs demanding my attention.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

the accidental mama

i joke around with blake a lot and call myself "the accidental mama". i know that could potentially come across offensive, but here's what i mean by it!

i never thought i'd be a mom. i was never one of those girls who dreamed of a wedding, a husband, or kids. i didn't play with baby dolls. i guess i just didn't think i had it in me, honestly. i babysat for 3 kids under 3 for a while and loved them. still, i love those children dearly. but i just never had a strong desire to have that of my own.

then blake came along, and from our very first date i could see my future. i remember going over to my best friend's house after our first date and telling her that if i didn't marry him that i was sure there wasn't anyone out there for me. i saw in him, a reflection of who i wanted to be. blake and i haven't always made the most biblical of decisions, and our fair share of lessons we have learned. but what i do know is that God chose to bless us tremendously though we failed him.

we learned i was pregnant on new years day of 2011. and the strange peace i felt about it is a feeling i don't think i'll ever forget. the fear is also a feeling i'm not sure i'll forget. i was embarking on a journey i did not think i could be successful in. unchartered waters. terrifying. but i knew that blake and i could and would get through it. so flash forward to later that year, as i'm lying in a hospital bed with stupid high blood pressure, blind sighted by the fact that i would not get to go into labor as i had planned. deeper unchartered waters. more fear. but you know the 2 things that remained constant? the peace of God in my soul, and my unwavering husband. i know y'all have read this from me before, and plenty of times at that, but God really knew what he was doing when he gave me blake. i am truly better because of him. the moment emma made her appearance, i knew, like strongly knew, i had finally fit in to where God had wanted me all along. the unfathomable love and joy that flooded over me confirmed a purpose in me i had never thought i'd ever know. i was a mama. and i was made to be one.

the more babies we bring into our family, the more they grow me. it is so crazy how much you can learn from such tiny people. they have changed me more than words could ever describe. they have given me a confidence and a comfort that only something God himself could work through. i am a blessed woman y'all.

i call myself the accidental mama because i kinda stumbled into this, blind and afraid. but when God leads you to it, he leads ya through it. and as cheesy and trite as that sounds, it sure is the truth. 

our quiver is occupied by 3 arrows. all different. all blessings. emma is 2, wyatt will be a year next month, and our 3rd is due in june! God making me their mama was definitely his calling on my life, and i am so grateful for the opportunity to love such sweet littles.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Making memories

Blake and Emma went on their first (of many) daddy/daughter date! He took her to see "frozen". So in preparation of any time you go out with a good lookin man, what kinda mama would I be if I didn't take her to pick out an outfit?! I asked her what she wanted to wear and she said "a purple dress like Sofia!" Well she has an actual dress up Sofia dress, but she insisted "NO, mommy. Purple dress LIKE Sofia". So I took her to target for her to pick something out on her own. She was so excited the whole way there and fell asleep last minute! So I put her in a cart and strolled around while she napped. When she woke up, she got to work picking out what she wanted. And she did GOOD. 

I love that Blake is dating our daughter. I want her to know what to expect in a man and to me he is such a great, Godly example of that. He was so precious too. The excitement and pride was radiating out of his face. Proud mama right here y'all. 

Anyways, I feel like an issue in girls nowadays is that they settle on a guy because they think they're expectations are too unrealistic to ever be met. So I pray that by Blake taking Emma out, listening to her, and showing her Jesus in him, that she realizes that it's ok to set the bar high. Because it's supposed to be! The bible says a woman on Godly character is worth far more than rubies. I hope we always raise her to believe His truth.

I'm looking forward to being able to take Wyatt out once he's a little older too!
Do y'all do special one on one outings with your littles? 


Sunday, January 12, 2014

no fear in love

here's the thing about fear. it truly has he power to cripple you. to make you feel weak, unworthy, like your words don't matter. fear creeps in to your confidence, the things you think you could do, and magnifies all of the what-ifs until the possibility or chance you wanted to take becomes so overwhelmed by anxiety of failure that it is no longer an option.

i am the type of person who wants to be good at something the first time i try it. do you realize how unrealistic that is? it also gives fear the biggest crack to settle in. but here is what God tells me about fear:

"there is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear" 1 john 4:16
ultimately the love of God and his grace through Christ lives within me, squashing out any trace of fear. God tells me that i am enough, because he is more than. and he lives in me, in my choices, in my ideas.

i have been praying for quite a while now to be used in some form of way as an encouragement, for others to see God in my life through the little things that i see him in. i feel that he is slowly but surely unveiling his plan for me.

as blake and i sat at dinner saturday evening, just us two, i shared with him what i had been holding in about what i felt God was leading me to. all of the things i firmly believe God was lining up lately to show me where he wants me. i shared my deepest fears of failure. and as he sat and listened, i noticed the look on his face. not so much a "look" as much as it was the smirk. then he shared that all of the things i was telling him, were things that he had been praying for me. talents he saw within me, my strengths that he thought i downplayed, he prayed that i would notice and find confidence in. he was so encouraging, and in my husband's typical fashion...brutally honest. but he wasn't mean in the slightest. sometimes we need the person we love the most to tell us the things we're afraid to hear so it is addressed and we can grow. God sure did know what he was doing when he gave me blake. i am forever grateful.

so, here is to an improved and meaningful blog!
this is what i feel God is breathing into me. through his word, i have found purpose. and i want whoever reads this to feel that!

"children are a heritage from the Lord, offspring a reward from Him. like arrows in the hand of a warrior are children born in one's youth. blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them. they will not be put to shame when they contend with their opponents in court."
psalm 127:3-5

our quiver is full! and i am so excited to do life with y'all!

Friday, January 10, 2014

less is more

so i feel like God has been doing some major work in my heart lately about living with less. and on less.

blake and i have made a lot of financial changes lately to be in a better position in the future. and it has not been easy. and we are learning that despite our efforts, what we need the most growth in is discipline. while we hold each other accountable, we can't seem to make ourselves do the things we really need to do repetitively. it's something I'm praying hard about this year.

God has been speaking through things in my life to get my attention about living with less. a couple of weeks ago our pastor mentioned a thing we all do when we get married. we look for a house, and we find out whats the most we could afford in a house. and we go for that. but what if we cut that number in half? what if we looked for a lot less and were able to really impact the kingdom with the extra? it hit me. and it hit blake too. we haven't started looking of another house yet, and i feel like we aren't ready yet. i feel that looking right now will only make us discontent in where we are right now. and i know for sure that is not what God wants from us right now. do i miss having my own home? of course. i miss decorating, and having my own cabinets of my own dishes. shopping for my own groceries, and cooking our my own dinners. but that is nothing compared to the blessing we are receiving by being able to stay with my in laws right now. we may never have an opportunity like this again, and it is truly helping us. so with improvement, comes sacrifice.

i've felt so strongly about living with less clothes, less toys, less "stuff" in general. now this doesn't mean i won't buy new clothes, or toys or decorations for my home. it just means that with the new, the old will be phased out to those who have none. and i don't really believe in giving people the old that is filthy, stained, and torn. just because they're in need doesn't mean they deserve our worst.

i'm so excited to see what God is going to do in our family this year. i feel a stirring and that is always SUCH an exciting thing. to know God is near and working. it's what i pray for daily. he listens and wants us to want him.

what are some ways you would like to grow this year? do you live with less? could you?

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

christmas and new year!

is it sad i miss christmas already? because i do. it's just always such a sweet time with family. we spend all of our time together (only slightly interrupted every now and then by duck hunting). there is nothing i love more than just hanging out with blake and our littles. we had some family pictures taken by simply sarah for christmas! despite the weather being absolutely awful, and my hair looking a hot mess, i think they turned out beautifully.

wyatt LOVED christmas! he was so excited by the whole experience, and emma helped him unwrap his presents. emma was so overwhelmed by the fact that she actually got what she asked santa for. it was so precious. we tend to try not to over-do christmas for them because i think it gets wasteful when you get your kids so much stuff that they can't even play with it all. but they were both so precious and excited.

then new years happened and the flu came to visit. first it hit emma, and blake was out of town, so i stayed with my parents for help. she was so pitiful. wyatt got it about 2 days later. luckily we were able to get them to the doctor in time for it to be taken care of with medicine. so our new years eve was spent at home with 2 sick babies. we had serious cabin fever so we loaded up in the car and went to get milkshakes. when that didn't work out, we headed to sonic for snacks and drove around downtown where they were doing the nugget drop, and then we came back home. we celebrated with a kiss at midnight as the four of us snuggled all together. despite the circumstances, it will always be one of my favorite memories! blake and i constantly thank God for blessing us through each other and our kids, and our families.

i tend not to make resolutions as much as purposes or goals for each new year. last year i prayed to be more merciful, so i could love people more. i feel like God is growing me in that area more and more. this year i want to be healthier, for myself and my family. i want to be a good steward of my health. also, i want to just be more aware of God's presence. to be still and know he is always near, so i should stress less.

happy new year from my family to yours!