October 24, 2016

Pumpkin Patch
























I have been wanting to go to the pumpkin patch so bad all month!  But it's rained almost everyday this October and I didn't really want to go out when it was really wet and it was super important to Nick that he was there too.  So when we had a break from the rain for a few days, we took full advantage and headed out to Sauvie Island and spent a few hours at the pumpkin patch!  I think everyone had the same idea, because it was so packed.  When we were leaving there was a line of cars over 3 miles to get into the parking lot!

It was still pretty muddy so we were careful to watch Addy while we were out in the pumpkin field.  The line for the hayride was super long, and even though we thought Addy would like it, we also knew there was a good chance she may not even care or understand.  So we opted to walk out to the patch instead.  We were practically chasing Addy and holding her hand so tight so she wouldn't fall in the mud- which she only did once ;).  She went crazy over the pigs in the petting zoo, and lately she is obsessed with airplanes so whenever one flew by we had to stop and watch it.  I just love this stage that Addy is in- she is so fun and talking so much more and we are loving seeing her little personality!  I love how these pictures capture how goofy and sweet she is.  We are absolutely smitten. :)

Anyway, it was a really fun day and I'm so glad we were finally able to do something Fall-ish.  :)
Happy Monday! 

xo
Jenn

October 4, 2016

October Goals

Aren't you thankful you live in a world where there are Octobers?!  I mean seriously, who doesn't love all things Fall and being able to bake, drink hot tea, go to the pumpkin patch and anything else that just totally screams "Hello October!".  Life has been slightly chaotic lately with Nick traveling nearly everyday of the week through the end of the year.  We get to see him on weekends (and a weeknight or two if we're lucky!), so we adjust life so that we can make the most of it.  It leaves me feeling incredibly grateful for our time together and watching him love on our sweet Addy girl.

Because we don't get to see him that much, in the time that we do get together we are trying to make the most of it.  Be intentional.  Intentional is a word I've been heavily thinking about lately.  Making the most of each moment, not waiting until it's too late.  This includes health, reading, rest, parenting, marriage, finances, the list could go on.  So with that, here are some goals I have for this beautiful month.

October goals:
  • Finish Addy's baby album
  • Read His Needs, Her Needs + 1 novel
  • Have a weekly date with Nick
  • Take Addy to the pumpkin patch
  • Continue weekly family Sabbaths
  • Host a dinner
  • Workout 3+ times/week
  • Phase grains out of diet
  • Catch up on Addy's baby journal
 Make it count dear friends!

xx,
Jenn



October 3, 2016

Seasons of Change


I just love this time of year.  Cool, crisp mornings, pumpkin spice, baking, apples, leaves changing, decorating, football, pumpkin patches, and the anticipation of the holidays right around the corner.  It's such a cozy season, full of excitement and change.  And because this is a time full of changing and shifting, I've decided to change and reintroduce this little blog.  I have felt prompted for a couple of months to really start diving into blogging again.  However, I was feeling unsure why or what to write about, so I decided to pray about it and not start anything until I had a clearer vision of what I want to say.  Or rather what I'm supposed to say.

I have undergone change in my personal life like you would not believe in the last 6 months.  I suppose trials and challenges will do that to a person.  I am continually reminded that God does not give us more than we can take and never presents us with something until He knows we are ready.  And He always, ALWAYS provides a safe place to land amidst those hard times.  I am unsure as to how in detail I will go on the internet with some of the things I have dealt with, but I do know that I want to be real with you.  I want to be me.  I want to share what is on my heart.  It will not always be heavy.  But it will be real.  The real journey of what it's like to be a mom, a wife, a woman in this world, a child of God, basically whatever is on my heart and what I am learning.  I want to share those things with you.   I may include my new favorite recipe, what we are doing and learning as a family, maybe my current workout routine, or our little family adventures.  Whatever I choose to write about, it will be a reflection of true life and hopefully something you can relate to.  

I do think I have a story to share.  My life is not exciting, but I have had some fun adventures.  My life is not depressing, but I have been in the deep valleys too.  My life is full of hope, loaded with laughter, spent serving my daughter, husband and King, plenty in friendships, and yet probably looks pretty ordinary.  But you guys, it's enough.  I would not be who I am if I did not have past experiences, and I would never trade my sweet, simple life for any other one.    

As seasons change, life shifts, and things happen, let's share and encourage each other.

xx
Jenn
 

May 10, 2016

On my mom's journey...


I've been wanting to write this for a while.  Even now as I sit here I don't know where to start.  Yet my heart feels like it's beating a million miles an hour and is going to pop through my chest at any moment.  What I have to say is probably one of the hardest things I've ever written. 

When my mom was diagnosed almost a month ago, my world was rocked.  I distinctly remember the phone call from my dad that brought me instantly to my knees in a cold sweat as the tears flooded my eyes and drenched my face.  There's nothing like answering the phone to your dad as he tries to tell you through his own tears that "they found a mass in mom's brain."  I can never shake that off.  Since that call, I have experienced emotions I never knew before.  For one, fear on a whole new level.  Confusion, frustration, questions, FEAR again, sadness, anxiety, the list goes on.  My mom is a very healthy woman.  She eats well, does crossfit 3-5 days a week, doesn't have high stress levels, and she is involved in so many things.  I'm still processing how this could possibly happen to her.  My mom.  My best friend.

This is truly my worst nightmare.  Hell on earth.

I often pray and ask God for his complete healing.  I know a lot of people are praying that prayer.  I do believe that God is hearing our prayers, regardless of what the answer may be.  We have seen massive miracles that even the doctors are surprised by.  We were told that mom may never speak to us again, but definitely wouldn't be speaking for at least 8 hours after surgery.  Within 6 she already had told us she loved us! I tell ya, when I heard that I knew I never needed to hear anything again from her.  I'm thankful to hear her voice and laugh everyday.  We also were told that she could be paralyzed or never move her right side again.  Today she is a walking, talking miracle.  She still struggles sometimes, but never have I seen fire or determination in someone as they move forward to conquer something in the way that she is doing.

My questions remain though.  How can I encourage her best?  What am I going to do if I lose her?  I'm not ready, I need her.  What if I have a question (like so many times before) about how to best care for my baby girl in a specific situation?  Will I make it through this?  Am I strong enough?  How do I take care of my mom, my dad, my husband and my baby without melting down every 5 seconds?  I hope she can watch my babies grow up.  God, will you please save my mom?

I honestly don't know the answer to most of those questions.  Hence the phrase we've adopted (we've adopted many!)- "ONE DAY AT A TIME."  I wake up every morning in the hopes that this is over, that it was a terrible nightmare, and life is good again.

BUT.

I'm coming to the realization that this is actually a gift.  Yes.  There I said it.  I am actually seeing how this terrible, awful brain cancer is a gift.  Every morning I get to do my mom's hair.  When we are doing her hair, sometimes we will talk and other times we will listen to worship music.  One morning last week, we were talking and it struck me again how much life has changed.  Not just physically and in ways you may think, but like spiritually too.  My perspective on life will NEVER, EVER be the same again.  Each day truly is a gift and whether we choose to see it that way is up to us.  We aren't guaranteed a single moment.  I've realized that when I wake up in the morning, the things I look forward to most that day are so drastically different than what I used to look forward to even 5 weeks ago.  Priorities have really changed.  I'm thankful for that.  We are enjoying simple moments with lots of laughter, some tears, still some fear, and an abundance of prayer.  

I want to remember the simple moments.  Reading Scripture together in the mornings, drinking tea in the evenings, stretching and going for walks, watching the birds on the bird feeder, watching my mom worship the Lord, playing cards together, laughing at memories, looking at old photos, talking about dreams, picking out plants, planting the garden, getting her water, covering her with a blanket, watching her watch Addy, seeing her tell my dad "you're my favorite," watching him care for her, praying with her before every pill.  I don't want to forget any of it.  


Every day mom reminds us to trust God.  To pray and not cease on knowing his goodness.  Praying without ceasing.  Whew, I tell ya.  If I thought I knew what that meant before any of this, then I was wrong!  It takes on a whole new meaning when you realize it's all you've got that can truly save someone's life.  I'm not sure how we would make it through this without Jesus.  He is our hope and our strength.  I ask him every morning for strength and peace just for today.  For wisdom in what avenues to pursue for treatment.  For healing over my mom.  For more miracles.  For good doctors.  For simple treasures in the day.  For grace as I mother my 8 month old little girl.  For Him to be my everything.  I'm beyond thankful to know that eternally my mom and I will be together.  Regardless of what happens, I'm thankful.  And I'm thankful for today, because truly you guys-

THESE ARE THE DAYS.

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