Moms This One’s For You.

The other day (which I guess has been more like the other month) I was doing my morning devotion- thank you Jesus for sneaking back into my life and reminding me that I needed to put you first or I wouldn’t have been doing a morning devotion. And afterwards I did just one of the things my devotion recommended, write on a sticky note that said, “bad moments don’t make bad moms.” There were also a few other quotes to write down and post around your house as constant reminders. Well, I did just that. Then I put that sticky note on Instagram and Facebook. I was blown away by the amount of love and support I got from it. Read More

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Need A Little JOY!!!

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One of the best lessons I learned a few years ago was the process of learning how to build margins in to your day. I know, I know, we are all super busy. We go from one place to another, shuffles kids from here to there and wonder how we will get through the days sometimes. I wish there was a way I could explain to you how important this is. Not filling your entire day with stuff, leaving room for the neighbor that needs sudden help, the teacher that needs an extra hand, the kid that needs a little more attention. Or if you are lucky, the aunt that needs someone to go to the concert with her. Read More

That Didn’t Go The Way I Thought.

Have you ever experienced something and then thought to yourself, well that didn’t go the way I thought it was going to. For me, I usually think that just about every time I decide I want to cook something with Jackson. I always see the cute little picture of us baking in my head and in reality it is a disaster in my kitchen; I have egg in my hair and Jackson is done after the first two steps. I have said it many times after a project we did together and I end up doing most of the work. Or times when I think this is going to be a really cute picture and then Jackson sticks out his tongue or makes a silly face. Yup, that didn’t go according to plan.

The other day we were struggling with some things with Jackson’s behavior and I thought to myself, again, well that night didn’t go the way I thought it was going to go. And right in that moment I heard God say to me those same exact words, “Well that didn’t go the way I thought it was going to go.” Jackson and I were in the car when it happened and I said to Jackson, do you ever hear Jesus talking to you? He said, “No, not much.” Of course he did, he is only four and doesn’t quite get the concept of the Holy Spirit. Oh, but did I hear Him in that moment. I just smiled and thought more about what Jesus was trying to tell me.

How many times have you tried to fix something on your own? Or completely do something on your own without consulting with Jesus first? I cannot tell you how many times I have done and have looked back on those times and thought to myself, well that didn’t go the way I thought it was going to go. Hmm… I wonder why.

Or how many times I have thought to myself my life hadn’t gone according to plan. Well of course, that was my plan. I was going to have two car seats and a minivan way before I was 30. That was my dream. That was my plan for my life. Jesus had a different plan. A plan that included suffering, pain, hurt and longing to be a mommy. And a subtle reminder that my life had already been planned out, long before I came along. A reminder that no matter what plan I came up for my life, there was something better that lied ahead. It may not come the way I had imagined it or thought it would go but somehow in the end, it always ends up better than I imagined.

Now imagine Jesus saying it to you. Well that didn’t go the way I thought it was going to go.  Talk about conviction. I wonder how many times he has thought that about me? Probably too many times to count. Well guess what? It is a good thing he doesn’t keep track of my mistakes or failures. But even better, He quietly reminds me that I need Him more than I think do.

Listen for Jesus’ quiet and soft reminders today that your life is in His hands.

Happy Gotcha Day.

2019-02-27 10.55.14Ya’ all. I cannot believe this day has come and gone again. It seems like not that long ago we were anxiously awaiting our court appearance for a judge to tell us he was ours. I am not sure if those memories will ever fade (with age it seems things get harder and harder to remember!). I was so thankful the Judge asked JJ what it meant to have Jackson as our son. I wouldn’t have been able to say a single word, I was crying so much. For those of you who don’t know, JJ is a man of the least amount of words spoken! I love that about him. Maybe because I talk too much! When he spoke those words in court that day, I couldn’t have been more proud to be his wife and share this parenting journey with him. He spoke from the heart. He reassured me, the judge and everyone in that courtroom that it didn’t matter that Jackson was born to another woman, but that we would love him as our own. Oh, I just get all teary-eyed thinking back to that day!

red love balloon

I shared with you all, what we did last year for Jackson’s gotcha day in a three part series– you can check it out here in case you missed it. But now he is learning more and more about being adopted. Still, the other day he told me he wasn’t adopted. I don’t know if it is him trying to figure out who he is or if he is in denial, but he most certainly was adopted! He just doesn’t think so!

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We have been explaining more and more to Jackson this year about being adopted and why he even has a gotcha day. He just thinks he gets a present. Maybe we need to work on his thankfulness! Just when I thought I got this parenting thing under control, we get thrown a wrench. Like, learning how to deal with him processing these emotions. Half the time I can’t even process them, can you imagine how hard it is for a four year old? Uftah, do we have a task ahead of us!

This year, we decided to travel down to Brookfield for Jackson’s gotcha day. Which also means, I had to work. Oh, this working mom stuff pulls on my heart strings every single day, but even more when I can’t spend such a special day with him. You know what though? I did get to spend the day with him. No, not the whole day like dad did, but the extra 2+ hour car ride there and the 2+ hour car ride home was 4+ extra hours I got with him that I don’t usually get with him. There is one thing I have learned in this life, it is that you take every and I mean every single chance you can get to spend extra time with your loved ones, no matter how small that extra time is. So was my heart breaking that he got to do all kinds of fun stuff with dad, yes, yes it did.

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It was also really cool that he got to spend the day with just dad. They too need to spend one on one time together. The way they both talked about their day when they picked me up was beautiful! Jackson was excited about all the cool experiences he got to do, Discovery World, Children’s Museum, getting his haircut the way he wanted, and of course a new toy! JJ was so excited to share with me their time together and explain how good of a mood Jackson was in and how well he did that day. I might have missed out on being there with them, but I gained way more watching them bond and talk about their day together than I could have had I been there.

2019-02-27 10.30.06Oh and this year he picked out his on gotcha day presents, dinosaurs. He has really been into them lately!  In fact, maybe that is a new trend we will start, he gets to pick out his gotcha day present. It is HIS day, after all!  He also got his hair cut just the way he wanted it, short on the sides and long on the top!

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And… this year he was the lucky recipient of influenza and strep throat on his gotcha day on the way back from Milwaukee. Parenting can result in some of the biggest highs to the lowest lows. Having sick children is absolutely the worst.

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Do any of you celebrate Gotcha Day for your children? We would love to hear about what your family does to celebrate!

We Can’t Parent Like You.

I have wanted to write and publish this post for quite some time. But fear crippled me from doing it. Fear of rejection. Fear of questions. Fear of being wrong. Fear of admitting the truth. Mostly fear of judgment, though. I do not have biological children, so I can only speak to what I know. And this is what I know. Read More

Puzzles, Are They Your Thing?

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I seem to remember as a child, my maternal grandparents loved puzzles. I don’t really remember if it was one of them more than the other but from what I can remember there was a puzzle on their dining room table all the time. As a child, I didn’t really care for puzzles as much as they did. They seemed hard and time consuming with little gratification. Just like everything else, with time, my view on them is different. Read More

Nothing to Prove.

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I have spent a majority of my life thinking I have something to prove. To everyone and to myself. It didn’t matter what I was doing, I felt I had to prove to myself for validation. I was focusing too much on proving my worth that I lost who I was. I was constantly focusing on proving that I was:

Worthy to be my husband’s wife.

Or prove that I was worthy enough to be my son’s mom.

Or prove that I can do hard things.

Or prove that I could run a marathon (which I haven’t yet!)

Or prove that I could do it all.

Or prove I could go to college.

Or prove I am capable of doing my job, a job, any job.

Or prove I was worthy of being a friend.

Or prove I was worthy to be called a daughter to the Highest King.

I was evaluating every situation to see if I would have to prove myself in it. Then one day I realized (thank you Jesus for the subtle reminders) I don’t have to prove myself to anyone. I don’t even have to prove it to myself. I am exactly where God wants me to be. I am capable of doing hard things, running a marathon or doing my job. I just don’t have to do it to prove to those people that I can do it. I can do it for myself. Because I want to do it, not because I feel I have to prove myself to anyone.

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Do you feel you have something to prove? Guess what, you don’t have to live a life proving yourself to anyone. Don’t hide behind a mask, you have nothing to prove. Be who you are. Be you. It is exactly how God wanted you to be, otherwise he would have made you differently!!!