Saturday, December 5, 2015

I've found...

Contentment lies not in what you have. It lies not in what you have accomplished. It lies not in what others think of you.

I have found that as the years go by, the things that once filled my heart with joy, now lie covered in dust. I've found that my mind focuses more on relationships, rather than how I measure up. The world around us is crumbling faster now than ever, and I see chaos all around.

This morning, as is with every morning, the darkness lies on the earth, and all is calm. Each morning Gavin stirs, and I get the privilege of scooping him up from his warm bed, and wrapping him up in a blanket to rock and cuddle. It is those moments - they have crafted a little piece of my contentment.

Some mornings, like this one - there are extra blessings. My sunshine boy wanted extra cuddles, the sunrise was a perfect blend of bright blue sky, with ribbons of purple, orange, and pink clouds. If that wasn't enough to fill my mama-cup, a jam session ensued. Of course he had to include to his favorite worship songs. He listens and drums on his "trap set". How full can one's heart get?! To me it is a set of candles, and two glow-sticks. To him it is his most prized musical instrument. I have said it before, but I will say it again - there is something special with my sunshine boy. Something that deeply moves me. Maybe it is that we share the same love-languages? Maybe it is his deeply sensitive side - not a sissy sensitive, but a caring and sincere awareness of others. I think the biggest part is that God created him unique - not a single person on this earth has been, or will be like my Gavin.

I would be a fool to not mention one of the biggest crafters of my contentment - the man who took me, and made me his wife. He is a hard worker, and a handy man. He puts our needs before his own. I am torn between pride, and being ashamed that he is a WAY better cook than I. He makes us meals, and is always the last to sit down. He takes on extra tasks at home when I can't, and knows when I am pushing my limits. He is the wrestler extraordinaire, and can get the best laughs out of Gavin - there is nothing like their bond. He has pressed on when obsticles have faced him, and worked through situations when most would wave the white flag. And oh, his embrace - it creates contentment. The times we get to spend in conversation are my day-makers.

The giver of this contentment isn't found in these two men, it is in the one who gave them to me for this short time on earth. He has provided me with all I need - and so much more! Through Him we have experienced the highest high, and the lowest lows - but he rode those waves with us. I know there are stormy seas ahead, I know life isn't always going to be cuddles and sunrises. But I am confident that He is going to ride the waves with us. Contentment is something I have always struggled with, and something I ever expected to find. That beings said, I am FAR from achieving complete contentment, one trip into Target shows me things that I "need to have", and a look through our neighborhood shows me that we may not match up, but for now - for today - this moment, my heart is full!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Be held.

Last week a cold front moved into our area, and with it came some strong winds. The kind that shake the house. My sunshine boy is becoming more and more aware of the things around him - and unfortunately it is an awareness of things that scare him.

Now, he has never been a fan of the wind, but I had no clue how sincerely scared he was.

I woke to "Mommy! I scared. I scared!" He sure was - as I crawled into his new full-sized "big boy" bed, he clung to my neck like it was his life-line. I could feel his little heart rapidly beating through his footie jammies. When he let go, his eyes were as wide as quarters. Every new sound sent his eyes darting across the room, and he reached for my hand. I knew then that my sleep would have to take place next to him for the evening.

The crazy thing about this thing called motherhood is that I WANTED to be awake until he fell asleep again. I wanted to know he isn't laying in fear, holding his breath for the next gust of wind. We laid there for quite some time, as I rubbed his back and he held onto my arm. The wind picked up and he started to whimper, I asked what was wrong - he said "I scared, I need to cry". My heart broke for him - you see, I know that we are safe in our house. I know that it is just the wind, but to him it is a very real fear. So I scooped him up him my arms and sang his favorite songs to him, adding a few of my own. As he started to relax, I could see the worry leave his face.

Before we knew it morning came, and the fear was momentarily gone for my sunshine boy.

As I drove to work the next day, I realized how much the experience was like my walk in faith. There are so many times when I cry out to God to rescue me, to take away the burden of a loved one, to calm the fears in my mama-heart. And so many times I try to take it all on my own - holding my breath, eyes darting around for the next mountain to crumble.

Strangely enough, today marks the point in pregnancy when Gavin entered this world. I will never forget that day. The fears, the unknowns, and oh the joy of seeing him. I would be lying if I said that the experience we had with Gavin hasn't placed some unwanted fear in my heart. I have been waiting for this day since the beginning - 33 weeks, 6 days. We are here! By the grace of God, we made it!

What am I trying to get at? That through the fears, through the storms - I was calmed in the arms of my heavenly Father. I will admit there were times that I cried out in anger, and I know there were times when I cried out in sheer desperation. But when all is said and done, my Father is a good, good Father and He watches over me.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Sunshine boy

I will never forget the way you came into this world. Quiet, so small. And then all at once, the sound of your cry - it was weak, but it was proof - you had arrived.

Since that day, I will never cease to be amazed with you. You have changed my world, turning it upside-down and inside out. The endless dinosaurs, cars, and trains. And oh your imagination! What a gift that is, it will take you farther than any movies or video games can ever go.

You are proof are that boys aren't all rough & tumble. You have a deeply sensitive soul, and aren't afraid to cuddle with your mama. You took all my fears of being a mama to a boy, and made them the stuff of my dreams.

Each day I see you changing, growing. I see the hairs on your legs that weren't there before. I hear you say "I love you!", before I prompt you to do so. You are a social boy through-and-through, and I love that about you. You refuse to listen to anything but praise & worship music, and will burst into "Oh, I need you" at a moments notice.

I also see the little 4 lb 8 oz boy that came into this world - so many parts of you haven't changed, and in my mama heart, they never will. The way you love when we make mistakes (hint...there are more to come---sorry). How your face hasn't changed when you sleep - pouty lips & chubby cheeks. Your love for music - especially "You are my Sunshine".

There isn't much I don't love about you dear boy. You are the reason I get to bare the title "mama", and I have no doubt you will make the greatest big brother in a few short months.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Things a Pumpkin Spice Latte can't fix.

The past couple of days I have been off.

Ok, more than a little patience runs thin (tissue paper thin). I find the smallest things annoy me, and the big things make me cry. I reach for my cash to pay for the Pumpkin Spice Latte, yet this empty ache throbs inside. I would love to blame this little girl growing inside, but friends - it goes deeper.

This heart of mine has been wandering through forests full of self. I tend to look inward, seeing only what I want. All the while there is a little boy who only wants to build a tent with his mama, and Facebook is calling my name. Again. A husband who takes the back seat some (most) days to said little boy. And sadly, my Savior who is finding Himself pushed back even further - the last place He belongs.

You see, not even a Latte (pumpkin or not) can fix this. I feel myself drawn back to my Lord, and to His feet I cling. I need Him every hour. I can only tread these waters of worry, doubt, selfishness, and fear for so long. My lungs heave and my legs go numb, but this morning I felt Him pulling me out. Out of those waters that I waded into on my own. Foolish. I never lost my Faith, but at the same time I wasn't putting Christ first. He needs to lead me. Lead our family. Lead my entire life.

How many times does one learn this lesson before it sticks? I feel like a child who can't seem to keep their hands to themselves, grabbing away others joy, and not reflecting the One who we were made to praise.

Lord, may this lesson stick for me. If not for all my days, then for longer than the last.

Praising HIM today that only He has the Power to redeem this sinner.
"Rejoice, oh child of God. Lift your eyes to see, with every morning light, again we are REDEEMED!"

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Second time around

Many have asked if this blog has ended. The short answer is NO!

Funnily, I have started many entries, and they just don't come together like I want. So whether this one comes together, or not---it is getting posted! (my apologies in advance)

Some of you know that we are expecting our second baby the end of this year! What an exciting time this has been, and also full of more emotions than I could have expected. I have had plenty of pregnancy symptoms - which came as a surprise because Gavin's pregnancy was fairly calm in the first 20 weeks. It was after those first 20 weeks that it all started to fall to pieces. The numbness in my heart turned to fear, and out of that fear I found my faith more deeply than ever.

Thankfully God didn't leave me in that fear. As we approach 20 weeks I can't help but look back at the life that God gave us. Not just Gavin's - but Jason & my life together. We have grown, learned, clung to hope, and drawn closer together as a family. We have leaned so hard on our faith that it seemed the well would run dry. Praise the Lord, our story is not done, the little one kicking me from the inside is proof of that.

This week we were on vacation with Jason's family and it was such a wonderful time away. Before others would wake, I found myself on the front porch facing the rising sun and lake shore. Bible in hand, I dug into the Word. Deeply yearning to find my Savior in those moments. He didn't disappoint, I found him there, I found him in the calm of the morning. I found him in the rocking boat. I found him in the laughter of cousins playing while sandcastles were built. He was, and always is there - if only I was constantly on the look-out for Him.

The morning of August 24th is the awaited ultrasound, and with little hesitation I say that "It is well, with my soul". It isn't that I fear any issues that arise - for God has proven Himself more than faithful. My first pregnancy I found myself awake at 3:00 am, Googling answers to the unknown. This time around, I can truly say "It is well".

One earnest concern I had when we started considering adding another life to our family, was Gavin. I feared that people would question why we would even "risk" having another. And while there have been a few of those questions presented to us, it hasn't been as bad as I anticipated. My mama heart fears that Gavin will think he was a burden that we had to carry. Oh my son - you are the joy in my heart - the big reason I can say that "it is well", is because God showed himself faithful in YOU. Not just the medical road you have bravely traveled, but the way your heart is so in-tune with others. Your concern for others at such a young age boggles my mind, and warms my heart. While the road has not always been easy, I would travel it again, and again, and again to be with you.

I will leave you with a song that has become my heart cry:
"So let go, my soul - and Trust in HIM the waves and wind still know His name. IT IS WELL, WITH MY SOUL".

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

My Prayer for Tonight

Some days are full of the Lord's whispers. They are my lifeline. He whispered today.

As I meet more and more people on this earth, I am made more aware of the unknowns. The unexpected diagnosis - the kind that knocks you out cold, and when you are stirred wake all you can do is pray that it was a dream.

The friends that drift out of our lives when our own lives get hard. The ones that were supposed to be there in the hard stuff - not leave.

Cancer. Growing up it was a foreign word, yet as I spend more time here I find it is such an ugly word. 3 years, 33 years, or 77 years - it doesn't care what age or stage you are in life. It comes - tearing down many in it's path.

Recently I have become a part of a group of mamas. Mamas of 2-year-old boys who look completely normal on the outside, yet inside a storm is raging. Mamas who could rattle off more medical terminology than you can learn in your 4-year degree. My heart is connected with theirs.

For all my friends, family, and acquaintances going through a storm, here is my prayer---

That today there will be a sunbeam in your heart. That hope will rise once again.
Oh Lord, be with them and hold them in your MIGHTY hands. For the tears that fall, and for the ones trying to hold it all together - please protect them.

My prayer is that I can be the visible invisible. If you know our story, you know that we have had storms of our own. But while there is calm, I pray that I can be the visible invisible to the wave riders - the ones in the eye of the storm.

More than Rubies has a beautiful song "Visible Invisible" and a portion of their lyrics state
"We are, we are the visible invisible. We are the flesh and bone of Your redeeming love. We are, we are your Kingdom unshakable. Jesus Christ alive in us. The visible invisible.
And the Love of God will rise, rise in us - rise in us. And the light of God will shine. Shine through us."

Lord - may it be so today. 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

My Sunshine

So I had to share this sweet little video he made for his cousin, Drake. He sings these songs quite frequently around the house. However, when I try to record him he stops singing. He will do anything for Drake - so he sang his heart out for him.

You are my Sunshine was thee song that I sang on repeat when I would rock him in the hospital. When my brain was worn, and no other songs would come to mind - I could count on it. One night I remember that song turning into my prayer. His oxygen sats were low, and his body temperature dipped to 96 degrees. His heart rate kept dropping, and in an attempt to warm him up I held him skin-to-skin. While I held him I kept that song on repeat - and prayed "please don't take my sunshine away...please don't take my sunshine away...please, Lord, don't take my sunshine away".

I am so thankful that my little man can now serenade me with this song. He will forever be my little ray of sunshine.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Bitter Sweet

This weekend we get the privilege of speaking at the University of Minnesota Children's Hospital Dance Marathon. It is an amazing event, where the students at the U raise money for the hospital. Last year we went, and had a blast! A huge bonus was meeting a dear friend and her son. More on them in a later post.

I can't get over how much I have grown, and learned since Gavin came into our lives. I will surely never be the same. Lessons of love, heartache, joy, anxiety, faith, and gobs more. As I think of what to share this weekend, I spent some time reflecting on our little boy's life. It has been a crazy ride, and I am thankful for every moment - yes...even the hard stuff!

 All the "normal" moments in his first year. The milestones, the first words, and all our cuddle time. It helped my mama-heart grow and flourish.

 For moments that seemed so hard, and all we had to cling to was our Lord. Those moments taught me to trust, and have faith that Almighty God has us in His hands - always.

 Seeing life through different eyes. For most, fans and lights are a means to see in the dark. To us they are that, and so much more! I can't get over the joy that he still gets when he is near a fan. Lord, may he always keep his love for little things.

 Tests that tried our patience, and yet grew it at the same time. We are so grateful for our hospital - the University of MN - without it, I can't help but wonder where we would be.

 Nebs - oh the nebs. God must have known that I needed an abundance of cuddles. They are still my favorite time of day. We get our cuddles in the morning and at night - and a couple added times if he is sick.
 His heart radiates through his eyes. He has always been told what beautiful eyes he has, and no doubt the mile-long eyelashes help, but to me it is the sparkle in them. The fiery little soul that brings me and so many others joy.
 We have learned to find joy in times when it was hard to find. It isn't about having it all - the cars, clothes, and cash can only get you so far. At the end of the day, I'd rather have Jesus, my men, and my family than all the things this world can provide.
 I thank GOD that He saw me fit to be the mama of a boy. I always felt bad for moms of boys - the dirt, wrestling, and noise they bring. Oh how I needed that in my life! I never saw myself having a boy, and man am I glad I didn't get to write that part of my life! He is the answer to my mama-heart prayers.

As I look back I can't help but get a little emotional, wishing for a few of those moments back. As great as those days were, I am so thankful for each day the sun rises and I get to be a lone woman in my house of men.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Sweet words

There are so many things that I know I will unintentionally forget about Gavin's toddler years. There is simply too much to remember from day to day.

Where has the time gone?

That being said I don't want to forget:

that he calls his dinosaurs 'Di-no-nos'

the way he speeds through Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star - only a very few could pick up the tune, and I am thankful that I am one.

when he is hungry he still says 'nuga-nuga' (translation: I'm starving). No clue where it came from. It was one of his first words, and it stuck.

how he started saying 'cuddle' after his surgery when he was in intense pain. Now it is his signal to me that he really just needs a hug from mama, and I never miss an opportunity to cuddle.

whenever someone toots, or even makes a sound like someone tooting - he ALWAYS says "Daddy toot (insert giggles)"....sometimes daddy isn't even in the house and he still gets blamed! Sorry honey.

how he says "Jason -- come -- HERE!" in a low gravely voice, while he points to the floor where he wants him to go.

he has "nuther puppy", "cuddle puppy" and "fluffy puppy". Cuddle puppy & nuther puppy are tied as his favorites. Fluffy puppy is the softest, most adorable puppy that was gifted to him by our small group before his spine surgery. All spend the night in his crib.

his crazy obsession with fans. Anything that can be made to go round-and-round, he will get to go round-and-round. When he leaves a room with a fan he has to yell "bye-bye fan!" at the top of his lungs. He has always been a fan-lover, and I thought by now he would have lost interest - think again mama!

Last but not least, before when he would pray he would mumble something that I couldn't understand. For the longest time have been trying to figure it out. Now I recognize that he says "Abba-dada". For some this may sound like jibberish, but for me I immediately recognized abba, meaning heavenly father - an intimate word for God, as father" and dada - well that is his daddy he is speaking to. Not his earthly father, his heavenly one. This may seem common-place, but we have never used the term in our home, not that we don't approve of it, but it just isn't a commonly used word. So for him to have said that on his own - blew me a way and brought me to tears. He LOVES to pray, and even when we talk about someone needing prayer he will stop what he is doing - put his little folded hands to his forehead and say their name. Thank you Lord for the work you are doing in my sweet boy's heart!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

MRI 3/4/15

Many of you who have followed our story from the beginning remember Gavin's little "bump" he was born with. It was a form of Spina Bifida. In a nutshell the spinal fluid went through an opening in Gavin's skull. He had surgery to remove the bump, they placed a mesh barrier to allow the skull to grow closed. Last February we had an MRI to make sure the hole had closed, but it was still the same size.

This is what the bump looked like before surgery: 

Tomorrow we go in for another MRI of his head and spine. It will determine if he will need surgery to close the hole. They will take a bone composite and fill in the opening and that will fix it permanently.

I know a lot of you have been praying for us, and I ask that you specifically pray for him tomorrow. He will be intubated and sedated for the 3 hour MRI. He usually is great with sedation, and we are praying that tomorrow is no different. Pray for his patience - no food after midnight. Pray for the results. We have been praying that it closed. If that is not the case, we praying that we would be content and confident to face another surgery.

They will also be examining his spinal cord. He had the tethered cord released at the same time that they repaired his bump. The last MRI showed fluid in the spinal column. It should have disappeared after the surgery, but that was not the case. It is possible that the scoliosis was contributing to the problem, and since the spine fusion surgery corrected the scoliosis, we are praying it also corrected the fluid. The last conversation we had with neurosurgeon, he indicated that most people don't need surgery to correct this, but it does need to be monitored.

I apologize for the long list - but we are grateful for all of our prayer warriors!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

All I know about the terrible twos

I find myself in a position I swore never to be in - at the beck & call of a two year old.

Before you think that I am just another mama who lets their child rule the roost - think again.

I have Googled more articles than you can shake a fist at - and believe me, I feel like shaking my fist when the whining and "no's" begin. Have mercy, Lord.

Faced with so many decisions that I can't even decide where to start. There are so many view points out there, and we all fall on one side or the other. (and honestly - sometimes switch views after finding one didn't work).

Do time outs. 
Don't do time outs - they'll throw your child straight into a tail spin of insecurity.

Confront the situation head-on.
Ignore the child so they don't see you buying into their shenanigans.

Make your toddler eat your crab-stuffed shrimp topped with a side of "no".
Slap PB&J on some WonderBread and call it a day! (I do love my PB&Js)

Avoid using the words "No", "Stop it", and other words they may use against you.
Try to out-do them, and tell them "No" more times than they can say the same ugly word.

While some of these are NOT any advise I was given, I want to drive home the point that there are a tank-full of tips from a host full of mamas, and whether their tips worked, or didn't work - your child is yours. A strategy that worked on Monday - will probably back-fire on Friday.

Deep breath, sweet mama.

I have learned however that my attitude can help the situation immensely. After all, I can only control where my own heart is at.

If I am rushed, he feels that as well. I can't tell you how many times I have told him "get your coat", only to have to run back to my room to grab my purse...then back for earrings...then quickly fill my coffee, add creamer, make my lunch........ good grief, Charlie Brown! You can only imagine by the time I am done running around, that he is fully engaged in playing with a toy and has NO interest in getting out the door. 

Some things I know to be true:

He needs my FULL attention more often than I am giving it to him. Can I just say to any parents out there - PUT DOWN THE PHONE/IPAD/TECHY DEVICE - and be present with your child! I don't say this from a place of judgment, because I would be condemning myself right along with you. But when Gavin sees that I am only partially interested in his needs it sets him off like a firecracker.

Hugs - lots and lots of hugs! Today, in fact, I dismantled an emotional bomb in him by just putting his little body in my arms and giving him a big bear hug. Gently telling him that I understood that he was upset, but we don't need to talk like that/hit... To which he replied in his sweet voice "ok mama".

Grace for each of you. There are days (Mondays usually) that I find myself in a frustrated state. Not anything in particular causing my poor attitude, just an "off day". Kids have those too - heavens have we had a few this past weekend! We survived though, and allowing myself the time to spend with him one-on-one, reading books, cuddling, or playing with his 'dinonos', turned the situation around. Now did the ugly "no's", "stop-its" and whining cease to exist forever? I wish.

It has helped when I allow grace to flow, realize each day is new - each situation is different, and there isn't a single parent who hasn't dealt with this EXACT thing at least once in their life.

If you are a parent who has side-stepped this phase in raising a toddler, please let me know - I'll buy you lunch, while you bestow your wisdom on me! 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Preparing for Battle

This morning. Picking up my sleeping 2 year old, seeing the baby fade from his face - turning into a handsome little boy. So many thoughts race through my mama mind. Where did time go? How did God see fit to bless us with this little guy? What kind of young man do we want to raise him to be?

The last one weighs heavy on my mind today.

You see, this world will teach him all he needs to know about evil. Lying, cheating, stealing - look to your local TV news story. Want to watch people's lives fall apart on "reality" TV - look no further than the Bachelor. Before you write me off as a prude, listen to what Chris Harrison said “This season has it all. We’ve got a virgin, who spends a night in the vanity suite (cheers), a wholesome young girl with an x-rate past (more cheers), and two widows hoping for a second chance at love.”

I'll be the first to admit I have watched many a season, and have enjoyed watching the drama unfold. I don't know if it is having a child of my own, or simply my eyes being opened. His statement just hit home hard. I understand that a lot of what is said is for ratings, but for me, my purity was something I took seriously. I will never regret waiting until our vows were said, and my promise was made to love ONE for my whole life. To see people cheering as other's lives fall apart was heartbreaking.

I have heard of more Christian women reading "50 Shades of Grey", thinking that it must be harmless since it is a book. To me it is no different than a Playboy magazine. I wouldn't want Jason reading something like that, and I won't either. Period.

When TV shows like The Affair and Transparent are praised with Golden Globes and standing ovations, I have to fight off the urge to throw the TV out the door, scoop up Gavin, and keep him home for the rest of his life. I know that is not the answer. But in a culture that mocks God, and praises the immoral - I have to wonder what can I do as a mama to teach Gavin how to be a godly man in an ungodly world.

For now we will let love reign in our home. Teach him how to pray. Sing Jesus Loves Me before bed (a favorite of Gavin's) it may be simple, but he loves it. Show him a loving marriage, where mama respects dad and dad shows his mama love.

And we may have to seriously consider whether or not to even hit the ON button on the TV.

The bottom line? I want so desperately to bring Honor to Christ. The whole idea of raising a godly son against some pretty hefty odds, brings to mind David and Goliath. There may be a giant before Jason and I, but let me tell you something - we are strapping on our battle gear, and are preparing to fight his war.

Bring on the battle.

If God is for us - who can stand against us?

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Work in progress

Over the past few years, I have learned many things.

-The Huskers aren't what the once were, and the Gophers are looking better and better every year. Humility is being taught in this Nebraska girl's heart.

-Being a mama has, at times, been gut-wrenching hard and on the other hand the most rewarding moments have come out of it.

-Minnesota isn't all that bad. Yes it is freeeezing most days, but I am starting to grow roots here. It has taken a while to quiet the urge to move every 1-2 years. I feel our home becoming the place that Gavin will bring his buddies to, and where Jason and I can pour our creativity and sweat into.

-Worrying, despite all of my attempts to cling to it - is not a solid foundation. Not a real shocker, but it is something that has taken years to finally start grasping. I'm not there yet, but I do know that letting God take over is where I'll stay.

-One of the biggest lessons would have to be - hold the things of this world loosely in my hands. Had God not put us on the journey we have been traveling recently, I would have never noticed that. It is amazing what we learn through living life, isn't it?
Life can be exhausting!
I am sure the next few years will bring more life lessons. Ones that shape, mold, chisel, and make me who I am intended to be. I have made mistakes, but I don't have regrets. Hardships have shaped me, and I am grateful for that.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Essential Oils newbie

Before you click close, and write me off as a crazy all-natural hippie, just hear me out.

For a few months now I have been researching Essential Oils (EOs). I have looked up their uses, the best combos for illness/immune boosting, and have tried to gather all the info needed before starting this journey. One of my close friends has been using them for quite a while to help protect her and her son from illness, and she was kind enough to share a few blends with us.

Now I am not entirely sure that my husband didn't think I had gone off the deep end- but after using a blend of Eucalyptus & Peppermint, as well as Thieves, I was able to be symptom free after one day of a head cold that was coming on with a vengeance. Since then I have been gifted a set of EOs from dear hubby (maybe not as skeptical as I thought...) for Christmas and have been putting them to good use!

Lavender is my absolute favorite for bedtime routine. I have combined Lavender with Sweet Orange and found that combo to be an energizer. This is not to say I haven't made some mixing errors- let's just say that mixing eucalyptus, tea tree, rosemary, and lemon is a great combo! Leave out the tea tree and you have yourself going to work smelling like an 85 year old man with 50 year old cologne. Sorry coworkers...

Today I found a great wax diffuser at Target, and it has made it's home in our bathroom. I plan on diffusing oils during Gavin's bath and my shower. Tonight we did peppermint & eucalyptus - my favorite combo. I promise to branch out more as I learn more.
Note: the coconut oil is the "carrier oil" that you use to dilute the pure oils.

If only there was a blend to convince my bath-loving child to get out of the bath without a mild melt-down.

I am by no means well-versed in EOs yet, but I am working towards it! I have never been one who enjoys taking medicine, and I most certainly don't enjoy being sick - so I will do anything to combat this cold/flu season!

Pet tip: I went to check out an EO book at the library this afternoon and the librarian said she uses them on her dog who has anxiety. Apparently lavender behind the ears calmed him right down. There you go - a tip from one non-pet mama to you.

More on our Essential Oils journey to come!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

2015 - One word


Last year I decided against making New Year resolutions, and instead picked a word to focus on for the year. FearLESS was that word. While 2014 had moments of fear, the desire to put my faith in the Lord won.

As I think of the year ahead, my heart wants to be Brave.

I know it isn't a word many would use for a mom, wife, and administrative assistant. I am no warrior, and I am rarely in dangerous situations. However, I want to be Brave.

Brave when it comes to standing up for what I truly believe in - even if it isn't popular. Faith has become something that is looked down on, and I don't want to stay silent anymore. I believe in the one TRUE God. I believe that Jesus Christ rescued me from the darkest of days and brought me into the light. I believe in the Alpha & Omega, my Abba Father, the Savior of my Soul.

Brave for our family - in a culture where marriage is more of a hobby than a life-long journey. A culture that says it's okay to end it when the fairytale wears off. I want to show that marriage is a blessing - a blessing that each couple has to work for. I want to be a better example of a wife for Gavin - showing him the respect I have for his daddy.

Brave when it comes to life decisions for Gavin. Not just medically, but in all aspects of life. As he grows from a toddler to a little man, I want his daddy & I to be there to help him find his way.

Brave - a five letter word. A word I think I need this year. 

Here's to a brand new year.