Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Nine Years

This photos was taken 9 years ago today. I was so excited to marry this man, but honestly, I still had those tiny twinges of uncertainty. What if he's not actually perfect? But then I would remember the way he treated his mother and sisters, those in authority over him, and those at his service, and I knew he was a good man.

Truthfully, our marriage hasn't been perfect. We are two imperfect people, and we have had a few trials and tears along the way. But because he has shown me what it looks like to be humble and ask forgiveness (for both great and small offenses), our home is rich with joy and laughter.

He is gentle and strong, firm and gracious, patient and hard working, smart and just the right amount of nerdy. He does dishes, makes lunches, changes diapers, and gets up in the middle of the night to rearrange blankets for small people. He cares for me tenderly all the times I am sick or unwell. He reads to, dances with, sings with, teaches, plays with and tickles our children. He loves learning, exploring, and adventures, as well as quiet evenings at home. He laughs easily, forgives quickly, loves fiercely, and hates what is evil. He is faithful, wise, generous, thoughtful, kind, and a better man than I ever hoped for.

He is a good man.

Happy anniversary, Bryan. I am so thankful that God saw fit to make you my husband, and I look forward to growing old together. I love you so much.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Number Four!

Baby number four is due in April! We got this lovely little surprise a few weeks ago.

This morning we got our first look at our beautiful baby #4! She (chances seem likely that's it's a girl) is 8 weeks today, and about the size and shape of a gummy bear. Official due date is April 14. I can't wait to meet this little person in seven months!!!

The first thing I noticed was the beautiful little heart, flickering away on the ultrasound screen. What joy to hear the wonderful wumpa-wumpa of a strong hear beating about 162 times a minutes.

The little white ring is the yolk sac, and next to it is our tiny baby, laying on it's side. You can see the head, an arm, and there's even a tiny little butt.

Monday, August 31, 2015


Today I harvested some fruit and veggies, and grabbed a couple of eggs from the hen house. So amazing to have food just growing in my backyard!

Friday, August 21, 2015

I Must Speak

I must speak. Not because I think that I'm so important that my words will change anyone's mind; I know the internet is a lousy place for real discussion. But because truth is worth proclaiming, whoever the audience. And what I must say is this:

Abortion is the slaughter of an innocent child. Religion has nothing to do with that definition.

I know those that are pro-choice like to sadly smile and claim that no one really loves abortion, but a women must have the right to choose what happens to her body.

I call BS. We don't get to "do what's best for us" at the expense of others. Imagine if I left my young kids at home alone for the day and went out to get a manicure, sip fancy coffee, and do some shopping. My body, my choice, right? Or what if I didn't want them to suffer neglect while I was gone, so I just lined them up and killed them in a way that ensured their bodies were still good for medical research. Planned Parenthood would have us believe that would be the best choice for me to make.

Parents aren't free to cut their children's faces open and donate their brains (with monetary reimbursement, of course) simply because they don't want to be bothered with the responsibility of potty training, or middle-of-the-night drinks of water. But my body, my choice, right? I would argue that children are an inconvenience to a parent's body, whatever the stage of life. Perhaps less so with time, but the sacrifice of one's choices doesn't end when the umbilical cord is properly tied and cut.

Have you seen the sobering undercover videos? They are not meant to fear monger politicians into taking away women's rights. They are being shown to expose murder, and hopefully to save future lives. We now know that babies are being dismembered and sold for parts in a barbaric manner. But the real horror is that they are being killed in the first place.

Please don't get angry and claim that we would all be adopting children if we really cared. So many of us that are pro-life are using the resources we have to help orphans and widows in ways that we are able, and loving the kids that are in our lives at the same time. My heart aches for those women and children, and I have wept for a child murdered that we once invited to be a part of our family.

And so I say again, abortion is the slaughter of an innocent child. Size, reasoning ability, planned existence, lung capacity, or body fat percentage do not qualify if a child should live or die for someone else's convenience.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Hair Cuts

So we did the bangs in May, and then shortly thereafter Elaina starting asking me to cut the rest of her hair. So we finally did.

At the last minute, Chloë decided she wanted a hair cut too!

I think they look so cute and sophisticated!

Norah is still working on her baby fuzz, no official haircut for her yet. But she's one now, so I need to put those pictures up at some point.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Failed Plans

People who know me know my love for a good plan. Especially my siblings. They give me a hard time about the way I ask "so guys, what's the plaaaaaan?" If something needs a plan, they'll joke about just letting me be the one to make one. Because I'm a planner. I find comfort in knowing what to expect. I like being able to anticipate what will happen, and have learned that I actually don't like huge surprises. Some friends threw a surprise party for me for my 22nd birthday, and I actually was irritated at the whole situation!

So I plan when I can, and try to adapt when I can't. Huge decisions like buying a house, having kids, and even planting a garden definitely need a plan. I know in my head that ultimately God is the One that really has The Plan, but He obviously gave me a brain for planning, so plan I shall.

I love being a mom. Some days are crazier than others, and these years of raising little ones are usually pretty crazy. Usually my daily plan consists of feeding everyone at least five times. Breakfast, Second Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Bedtime Snack. Sometimes I even get other stuff done. Sometimes I even get other stuff done, but life is pretty intense right now. Chloë turned 5 in June, Elaina is 3 1/2, and Norah just turned 1 in July, and still enjoyed nursing several times a day and night. Bryan and I felt led to add one more child to the mix, but I had it all figured out that we would wait until January to get pregnant. My last pregnancy and post-partum recovery was so hard. I needed some time to mentally prepare for 8 months of the stomach flu, and whatever post-partum anxiety and depression was likely to follow.

Then I woke up one morning a couple of weeks ago, and figured I'd better take a pregnancy test. Just to be sure that drinking a beer at my brother's wedding a few days later would be fine. Bryan was about to leave for work, but I told him he should stay a couple of minutes. Just in case.

But instead of seeing one line on the test, there were two. I've taken about a hundred negative pregnancy tests, but have only ever had three positives. And this one was definitely positive. I felt my hand covering my mouth, and wondered why that's a thing. Hot tears started streaming down my cheeks, but I quickly brushed them away, hoping their absence would bring clarity to my emotions. "Babe, it's positive," I whispered to Bryan. We both almost didn't believe it. We couldn't be pregnant. Could we? Apparently we could. The tears kept coming, and I still didn't know why. Bryan hugged me. "I'm not ready," I heard myself saying. Memories of my last pregnancy flooded my mind. Not being able to get off the couch to get my girls a snack. The migraines completely flattened me. Throwing up until I needed IV fluids. My legs buckling under me from the pinched nerves in my hips. The anxiety that robbed my family of me after Norah was born. I wasn't ready to be thrown into the year that suddenly lied ahead.

Bryan knew what I meant. He remember it all too. "I'll take care of you and the girls," he said, still holding me. "Everything will be okay."

Bryan had to leave for work, and I tried to putter around to get things ready for my out-of-town siblings that were coming to stay for our brother's wedding. But my head was spinning.

When people anticipate a hurricane, they prepare. We may not have had much warning before the morning sickness hit, but I jumped into scramble mode to prepare before it did. A little deep cleaning, some extra food in the freezer and pantry, and all the laundry. Plan or no plan, I'm growing a baby, y'all!

The fact that this baby was a surprise has no bearing on her value. She (because it would seem that chances are likely) is loved and wanted, despite our inability to plan our future. Her personhood is not determined by our inability to plan her existence. She is our poppyseed sized child, and we will fight with all that we are to preserve her life.

I know some women ache for the chance to have a child. When Eve was cursed with "sorrow and conception; in pain you shall bring forth children," I know God wasn't just referring to the pain of contractions during labor. I know there are so many wonderful women that pray for the gift of pregnancy, and this isn't meant to make light of that in any way. My trials may appear insignificant to some. I'll never understand the ache that comes from years of praying for a baby. Instead, I feel an odd sense of guilt for being pregnant without trying. Tears of frustration at the unfairness have soaked my pillow. Not for any unfairness towards me, but for the empty cradles of others. God, why give me four babies when so many have none? And then I remember that every good and perfect gift is from above, and thank God for his blessings on my life, and pray again for those still waiting.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Norah's First Birthday

Norah turned one on the third! And we celebrated with Bryan's family yesterday. She's such a sweet little grown up baby.

Thursday, May 14, 2015


Elaina has been asking me for bangs, so I finally gave her some today.

And then of course Chloë decided she wanted some too.

I have very mixed feelings about it.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Cocoa in a Tea Pot

Elaina got a sweet little tea set from Mr. Dan for her birthday. She loves having little tea parties, and sometimes we get to have hot cocoa for a special treat. One morning last week, Chloë was at school and Norah was napping, and we had such an occasion.

Saturday, February 28, 2015


On Monday I was stroking Norah's head while she was whimpering in her crib, fighting sleep, when my dad came over from next door. He brought over a little plate with eggs that had just been cooked with caramelized onions and spinach, and brie melted on top. "Here, you eat these, I'll be with Norah," he whispered. It was almost 11 AM, and I hadn't eaten a thing since last night. I gladly took the eggs to the table, and slowly enjoyed my little breakfast. I could hear Papa lifting Norah out of the crib, and her fussing stopped. When my eggs were gone, and I quickly took a much-needed shower, and then peeked into the girls' room. Two of my favorite people were asleep, likely rocked there by each other's breath and beating heart. Norah was finally content and quiet, except for her gentle snoring.