Monday, January 23, 2017


A few days ago, I read something that I had written three years ago.  I hardly recognized that girl.  It is nearly unbelievable how much life has changed in ways I never expected.  I wish I could say it is so much better, and in some ways, it honestly is. But in others, it's overwhelmingly worse.

Do I sound negative?  If someone were looking at me, my life probably wouldn't seem like that.  My marriage is better than ever.  Mason definitely challenges us, but we love him so much more ever day that we literally just might burst.  We are connected with our church, and both love our jobs.  So what makes it worse, then?

It's me.  It's my head, my emotions, and my entire state of being.  I realized this week that I'm my own worst enemy.  My own thoughts are what bring me down and discourage me.  It's all internal.  And that also means I cope by blocking things out.  I block out Jesus and I lose my tenderness.  Little by little, I become hardened, and three years later I don't know who I'm looking at in the mirror or how I've gotten here.

I thought about all of this.  All the emotions that have changed since three years ago, and how I have such a different outlook now.  Though I'm less tender, I could offer that I'm also less entitled, which isn't entirely a bad thing.  But can I ever get back to my three years ago self?

Do I want to?

The outlook I had back then, and the things I believed, were so awesome.  My actions and my beliefs were aligned, and it was great.  And as I unknowingly let this misalignment creep in these past three years, it's just really been hard.  And I don't know what to do or who to be.  And that's kind of where I'm at.

I usually make quick conclusions but not this time.  I need to ponder a bit more and use this time to figure out this alignment.  And it could take time.  But I know deep down that He who began a good work in me will see it through to completion.  This is just the middle.  The messy, messy middle.

Monday, January 16, 2017


So it's actually been a really long time since I've been here, huh.  My (poor) excuse is that my computer was (is) nearly impossible to use since it's so old.  It crawls.  But we have plans to change that.  I guess I have just missed writing about my life so I showed up again.

It's January.  In a new year.  And actually we're halfway through the month already.  I can hardly believe it.  Today my little babe is five and a half, which is a milestone I never imagined, quite frankly.

I made a few resolutions.  I don't know that they are for the year, necessarily.  In my head I think of them as January resolutions, so that when February comes, I can build on them or tweak them as necessary.  My first is to cut back on coffee, which I'm still in the process of.  I'm doing great, thanks. I was drinking a ridiculous amount of coffee before. Ridiculous.  My ultimate goal is to get to just one cup a day (and save anything more for special occasions).  Maybe by February.

My second is to drink more water.  I do well at this during the week when I'm at work and in a routine.  Also my coworker helps me.  But at home, I'm still working on it.

Final goal, I'm working out.  I really needed this.  I wake up at 4:30 (yeah, I know) on weekdays and trudge downstairs, but always emerge feeling energized.  Weekends I am a little less regimented but I still try hard to prioritize this time.  I was feeling so chubby.  Outside of pregnancy, I'm definitely my heaviest self.  And I was feeling even more lazy.  I was running out of energy and I desperately wanted that to change.  So even though now I have the same bedtime as many toddlers, I feel a lot better.  I'm hoping this continues into the months to come.

Byron is in the think of working on the bathroom in our basement.  This is the last major project we have to complete (though small projects never end around here!).  He is able to do a little bit just about every day and it's moving us closer to a finished space.  We cannot wait!  It will be especially hand for me, now that I've got this early morning workout routine, to have a shower that's not two inches away from where people are sleeping.

We have had an extremely long period of silence and waiting, but we are still hopeful in our journey to adoption.  By now, everyone that I've known or met on this journey has started and ended their own adoption journeys and we're the last kids on the bus.  I know that in the end, everything will make sense, but I am not going to lie - it's been hard at times.  I know I probably have self-imposed fears, but I constantly worry that I'm a disappointment or failure to others.

I missed writing about some big occasions last year (trips to Phoenix and Disney World!) and I found that I just hardly pick up my camera anymore.  And that was so fun for me.  So although I never know what the next day will bring and how I might change my mind, I would like to come back here and visit every once in awhile.

Monday, March 21, 2016


Christmas Eve was fun.  As Mason gets bigger, he is able to do more fun "big kid" stuff.  Like stay up late.  And go with the flow when the usual schedule changes.

I had to work in the church nursery during the Christmas Even service.  Which really only means I didn't get the obligatory mom picture of Mason at the candlelight service.  Next time.

After church, my family came over to our house for snacks/appetizers.  It was super simple.  I went a little crazy, and bought poppers.  Who does this?  It was probably too much money for something that lasts 3 seconds.  But, memories.  They were also super hero themed, because that goes with Christmas.  Basically, I went nuts, but in the end we still had poppers.  And the whole point of this ridiculous story is just to introduce the picture, which is us in our crowns.  You're welcome.  (Sadly our Uncle Matt was working.)

I know to anyone reading this that it probably seems silly, but I really hope that we can continue this sweet little tradition in the future.  It was special for us, and that is what matters.  Maybe even the poppers, too.

Sunday, March 20, 2016


Around here it is spring break week.  So what am I doing?  Finishing up my recap of December.  As you do.

As we saw at Thanksgiving, Mason made great strides in his preschool program performances, and this December, he even received a speaking part in his school play.  It was a total shocker to us, as he hadn't said anything (I didn't even know to ask) and it happened to come out at church one day.  He would be playing the role of the innkeeper.  He nailed it, if you ask me.

Of course, here is where he is visually tells us the reading was too loud.  Actors are able to give visual cues.  Talent, folks.

"There's no room!"

Friday, January 29, 2016


I nearly forgot, but in early November, we were still having warm weather, so I dragged this family of mine out for a hike around Raccoon River.  Now, the bad part of the story is that we cot a little bit of a later start than I had hoped, so there did come a part of our trek when both Byron and I thought shoot - what if the sun sets on us out here?  So there was quite a bit of hustling out on the trail, but ultimately we made it around and had such a great time!  I'll definitely be dragging my family out there more often as soon as spring comes around.

Mason's preschool class had an adorable Thanksgiving program and feast that we were invited to.  In contradiction to last year's preschool finale, Mason did great!  He seemed to be a little embarrassed when he knew we were watching him, but his little lips were moving through every song they were supposed to sing.  The thing I can't forget is that this child, who we regularly struggle with at meal times, wolfed down his Thanksgiving feast all on his own.  In one swift move he had shoved his entire slice of turkey in his mouth with one bite!  It is so fun to see him in his class with his little friends.  He's different with them than his is at home, proof that he's growing up yet will always be my baby.

This Thanksgiving we had a bit of a first for us - we hosted Byron's family for Thanksgiving dinner. With such a big family, we chose a to have it a couple of Saturdays before the actual date.  Byron's mom has always hosted.  I imagine it's hard for most people to be able to fit 25-30 guests inside the average home.  But with our basement now finished (enough), and our wide open living space, we made it work.

Of course, it's not a holiday around here without something memorable happening.  About 30 minutes before our family is supposed to start showing up, we discover that our sink is leaking.  It was a huge mess.  We've been dealing with it on and off before, and thought we had fixed the issue, but I guess not.  I'm no plumber, so I don't know what the actual problem was, but it led to us only having half a sink.  Thank goodness we were eating on paper plates with plastic utensils or we would have been in trouble.

Additionally, Mason wasn't feeling super well.  And leading up to it, he hadn't been sleeping well or napping much, either.

Although he was so SO excited to see and play with his big cousins, he conked out on the couch right when we all started eating.  Bless his heart, he did still get some playtime with the big kids, but most importantly he got the rest he needed.

When I started to write this post, I really didn't think we had all that notable of a November, but now that I've recounted so much, it turns out, we did quite a bit!  And I can see how we've been quite blessed.  We have so much to be thankful for!

Thursday, January 7, 2016


October's highlight was most definitely Halloween.  For us, Halloween celebrations include the pumpkin party at Aunt Bebe's church and trick or treat night, nothing too overboard.  And it was so much fun.

I am the type of person who has giant pinterest-style ambitions for adorable costumes.  My track record with follow through is relatively low, but still.  The decision though is ultimately up to Mason. And when we asked him what he wanted to be, he mentioned a couple of super heroes (Thor and the Hulk) but ultimately decided on the dinosaur costume that still fit from the year before.  Maybe this is a story that only a mama will appreciate, but to me it just shows me how his little brain and personality work.  It was almost as if he thought Duh, Mom.  We have a dinosaur costume right here, what else would I wear? I'm hoping that this means he is a lower drama kid than his mama was growing up.  Fingers Crossed.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016


It's everybody's favorite time of year...back to school!  In September, Mason started his four year old preschool program.  It meets three mornings a week for two and a half hours, which is an increase in length and frequency from last year.  (I couldn't have written that sentence any dorkier.)  Keep in mind he did NOT want his photo taken this year!

We introduced a new school theme this year, though I couldn't manage to make a coordinating art piece this year.  The theme is "Listen and Obey."  It has since slightly been modified, but we now say it everyday as we leave the house - listen, obey, and make good choices.  The school year started off a bit bumpy, as it is hard for a certain little boy to remember to sit still, be quiet, and keep his hands to himself, but eventually we got in the groove and he has been doing great.  He loves his teachers, and he even has a little group of friends again this year.  They play Ninja Turtles every day during their group play time.  Mason is always Michaelangelo.

It's so much fun to watch him grow, and to see how he has changed from last year to this year.  I know we have several years of this ahead of us, but I can already see the years flash before my eyes.