March 7, 2018

Heaven Is Here

I recently finished re-reading Heaven Is Here by Stephanie Nielson. The first time I read this book was four years ago, before I had Bubba. I loved the book then, but I feel like I loved reading this book even more now that I am a parent. If you are looking for a heart wrenching and touching read, I highly recommend this one. It is a very powerful story.

March 4, 2018

Nursey Redo Before & After

We purchased our first home about a year and a half ago and we have done a ton of work to it. I was adamant that we not unpack our boxes until we finished painting the entire house. When I first came home from the hospital with Bubba, most of our things was still in boxes-- it was a bit stressful at the time. I thought it would be fun to show what Bubba's nursery looked like before and what it looks like now.

 *Note: The before photos where from when the house was for sale, I downloaded them and cannot take credit for them. And, Bubba's name is not Wyatt.


We pulled the trim board that goes around the middle off the wall down. The former homeowners not only nailed it to the wall, but glued it as well. When we pulled the trim board down it really damaged the sheet rock. Andy did A LOT of work to fix it and then he painted the walls and the ceiling. We also ripped out the unfunctional shelving in the closet and built our own shelving-- it's so much better now! We also had the carpets replaced just before we moved in.


We bought this book case used for $10. We sanded it down, repainted it and anchored it to the wall.

We picked up the toy block used.

The rocking chair and octopus came from Target. The blanket was gifted to us.

The mirror is old, it is from Ikea.

The clouds came from Target.

I love the deep shelves.

We bought the crib and mobile at a garage sale for $15. The mattress was gifted to us. The bedding came from Target.

The giraffe came from Hobby Lobby.

We bought the dresser used for $30. We sanded it down, repainted it and replaced the rails.

This print came from Hobby Lobby.

The sign was gifted to us. The elephant came from Hobby Lobby.

The sound machine is from Amazon. The bird is old, it was a gift. The lotion is our favorite it comes from Melaleuca.

February 28, 2018

Tender Mercies

I recently finished reading Heaven Is Here by Stephanie Nielson for the second time-- it is one of my all time favorite books. In her book she talks about tender mercies and I loved the way she defined them. Unfortunately, I didn't mark the page and it is too big of a book to go looking for the quote. In essence though, she said that tender mercies are moments where you can see the Lord's hand in your life. Tender mercies can come in the form of protection, strength, assurances, guidance, loving-kindnesses, consolation and support.

Recently we have experienced a few of these tender mercies ourselves.  Finances have been tight for since we went from a two income household to a one income household. Bubba has been growing and he needed some bigger clothes. One day a received a message from a friend online and she wanted to know what size Bubba was, she gave us a large bag of hand-me-down clothes that were the perfect size for him.

A few days a large package showed up on our front porch. An extended family member sent us a large box of summer hand-me-down clothes.

Later that same week we received a large medical bill in the mail. I went online to pay the bill and it showed that we didn't owe any money to the doctors office-- this seemed strange to me. I called the doctors office and they confirmed that we didn't owe them any money. I'm not sure how this happened but I am grateful to the Lord for this blessing and the blessing of clothes for Bubba.

God is there, He is real and He will bless us.

February 27, 2018

A Heavy Heart

My heart is really heavy tonight, Bubba, it is taking a lot to hold back the tears. My Nana isn't doing very well. In fact, she hasn't been doing very well for a long time. She is in a lot of pain and our family suspects that her time on Earth will be coming to a close soon.

The tears are streaming down my face now...

Nana has been like a mom to me for the past 15 years. She is someone that I look up to, admire and seek advice from. Saying goodbye see ya' later will not be an easy thing for me. I know that it is for the best that she is relieved of the physical pain she is in, but it doesn't make saying good bye any easier. I suspect that she will be close by me throughout the rest of my life and that brings me comfort. I will always hear her voice in my head saying, "Love you my girl." It is more comforting though, to know that I will see her again. I am go grateful for the knowledge I have of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, specifically that families can be together forever.

I'm glad that you were able to meet Nana last year. I hope that you will have a relationship with your Nana and Papa like I have with my Nana.

I suspect that you can sense I am upset because you cuddled with me this evening for nearly two hours and didn't want to leave my side. Or maybe it is because you fell and hit your head/face really hard in the neighbors driveway and you need to be held as much as I do. Either way is fine with me, I just love you. I hope someday you will understand how much I love and care for you.

February 21, 2018

Bubba At 15 Months

Each day you learn and grow, it mind blowing to think about how much you have changed over the last several months. It was almost as though you went from baby to toddler overnight.

You are a very busy and active little boy. Nearly everyday, you pull the DVDs off the shelf and empty out my lower kitchen cupboards and drawers. You are fascinated with spice bottles, they are your favorite! You love taking the lids off, filling the bottles with treasure (your wooden blocks) and putting the lids back on.

You love to read! If I am not reading to you, you can often be found looking at a book on your own. Your favorite books right now are I Love You Through & Through, Five Stinky Socks, Piggy Paints, The Very Hungry Caterpillar and The Dinosaur Dance.

I love those little curls in the back.

Each day you look forward to feeding the chickens, watching them eat and collecting the eggs. Often you grab the egg basket out of the cupboard and run to the sliding glass door in anticipation of going to see the chickens. We frequently find you looking out the sliding glass door watching the birds.

You love dogs! Every dog is a puppy in your eyes, your face lights up each time you see one. You like to bark at them and pet them. You are super gentle with dogs.

You enjoy going to the park and climbing up the base of the slide and playing with the garbage can. You still have a strong dislike for the swings, maybe someday that will change.

You like to help Mommy and Daddy with anything and everything, you just want to be a part. When I sweep the floors, you carry the dust pan around. You throw everything including my books into the garbage. You like to help rotate the laundry, you put clothes into the washer and dryer. You are such a good helper!

Foods are hit and miss right now. One day you will love something and the next day you will not even touch it. You usually enjoy: bananas, apples, oranges, strawberries, gold fish crackers, olives, pickles, pancakes, eggs, macaroni and cheese and grilled cheese sandwiches. Each morning you look forward in anticipation to helping me drink my green smoothie and or freshly juiced greens.

Your favorite songs right now are Old McDonald and Popcorn Popping.

We sure love you, Bubba and are so blessed to have you in our lives!

February 19, 2018

Mister Explorer

It has been snowing on and off for the last day and a half. While the snow hasn't accumulated, it has felt almost magical watching it fall. It doesn't snow very often in Oregon, when it does though, it is simply beautiful!

As you may have guessed, the weather changed on us. That nice warm weather we were enjoying has all but disappeared. I'm cuddled up with a fleece blanket dreaming about hot chocolate and warm summer days.

This past week was full of all kinds of new adventures for you, Bubba. The week started off with you learning how to unlock and open the dishwasher. The next thing I know you have learned how to climb up onto the door of the dishwasher and have figured out how to pull the top rack out. Gone are the days of doing the dishes while you are awake. I grabbed some painters tape and taped the dishwasher shut, it will have to do until I can pick up some locks for it.

Not too long after the dishwasher incident, you learned how to open the oven. I think I will be picking up locks for it too.

And then, you discovered you could use the pillows in my room as a ladder and you climbed up onto the chest in my bedroom. You fell off twice and I caught you, but you still cried.

You are quite the explorer. I'm dreading the day you decide to try and climb out of your crib.

Mom, I can't get my shirt off.

We went on several walks through the neighborhood. Each time we got near the park, you would scream with delight-- you wanted to play and like a good mommy, I let you. You aren't a bit fan of the swings, you still cry when I put you in them. You love the slide though, you squeal with delight each time we go down it together. You also enjoy pushing the garbage can lid open and closed-- you are a funny boy!

One day there was another little boy at the park playing, you thought it would be fun to pet his head like a dog--he was confused. I thought the whole scene was super funny!

Yesterday Daddy had to work so you and I went to church together. For the most part, you did okay. I decided to take you to Nursery second hour so you could play. The ladies serving in Nursery let me take you in as long as I stayed with you. You absolutely loved it! You played with toys, ate snacks in a big boy chair pushed up to the table and we sang some songs. You really enjoyed being around other little kids your own size. I think in a few more months when you are allowed to go to Nursery all by yourself, you are going to love it!

*Note* The red mark on your nose is an owie. You fell face first walking down the neighbor's driveway. 

February 18, 2018

Here Goes Nothing

One day while chasing Bubba up and down the aisles of the library a book called out to me. It said, "Pick me up, take me home and read me." Okay, maybe it didn't really talk to me, but it felt as though this book were calling out to me. Naturally I picked up the book, read the back of it and I decided to take it home and read it.

The premise of the book is there is a girl, her husband and a baby about Bubba's age. They have been living in Guatemala for the last several years. While in Guatemala they have been involved in some form of humanitarian work. They are getting ready to head back to the United States and they are nervous about adjusting back to the American culture.

The people that this young family has been working with give them a profound piece of advice. They remind them that the first great commandment is to love God and the second great commandment is to love your neighbor. They advise them to go home and learn to love their neighbors.

While it might seem like silly advice it had a profound impact on Kendra (the mommy in this story). Kendra is an introvert by nature and does not enjoy interacting with others. Upon returning home she decides to take the advice to heart. Each day for thirty days she finds some small way to step outside of herself and serve her neighbors. She includes some scripture (note: NIV version of the Bible) and a challenge to the reader to step outside of themselves and serve their neighbors.

I thoroughly enjoyed this read. While the scriptures passages were worded in a way that is different from what I am used to (I use the King James Version of the Bible) the overall messages were wonderful. I found myself examining my own life and looking for ways to serve and lift those around me. If you have been feeling down lately, I highly recommend this book.