Tuesday, May 7, 2013

MAY we be... steps of Joy and Gratitude!!!

today is a day of JOY and Gratitude!!!!!!

For those of you that know Greyleigh's story you will know why, but for those of you that do not I will offer a recap.

When I was pregnant with Greyleigh and we went in for our BIG ultrasound we had some issues, the Dr's we unable to get a visual of Greyleigh's spine and believed she might be missing half of it. I was then sent to a specialist(a week later),and  they too couldn't provide answers and I was then scheduled for a heavy duty ultrasound examination however the 1st available was 2 weeks away... for a mom that is worried thats a really really long time. We didn't tell many people simply because I didn't want to vocalize it and give Satan authority over my joy for this child, but I can tell you there was a huge battle going on in my mind. would Greyleigh ever walk? what would this mean for my childs future? and many other things were constantly running through my mind. It was a long waiting period full of many tears and it had me on my knees a lot! thankfully the day of the big ultrasound I got up prayed got myself ready and headed to my appointment. I had a huge overwhelming amount of peace come over me once I got to my appointment and when they hooked me all up to the machine the first thing we saw was a BEAUTIFUL AND PERFECTLY FORMED SPINE! praise the Lord!

I know what you are thinking, why is she telling us this; well I tell you this because today I experienced something that I once thought wasn't going to be possible, but thankfully God knew it was possible!


I cannot tell you the Joy this brought to my day! who knew the sight of your child walking could make you cry? who knew it could make you jump for Joy and laugh? who knew it could make you so grateful? well I can now tell you, I DO! I know cause thats exactly what it did to me :)

 I am overwhelmed and humbled by these small moments in Greyleighs life... but more then anything I feel pure Joy and Gratitude! Thank you Lord for showing me how BIG you are in my moments of weakness. thank you for loving us through our season of waiting, thank you for putting people in our life to encourage us through that time, Thank you for teaching me to trust you in ALL things, Thank you for bringing this precious child into our life, and thank you so much for the Joy you have placed in her heart! she radiates your love with every smile and giggle and I know that Greyleigh is even more important to you then she is to me! I know that she will be someone you will use to love others, encourage others, and teach others all about you! She was indeed formed by Your hands, dreamed up in Your heart and  placed in this world for purposes I cannot wait to witness!

so today in these moments I am thankful for many things, but more importantly I am thankful for the Joy of this child!

MAY we be Grateful and full of JOY

Friday, May 3, 2013

MAY we be.... Grateful for friends!

today our focus is Grateful!

I have been busy busy lately and I feel like every second of my potential "me time" is full. so when my friend Becca called me yesterday and asked if she could watch my kiddos today I was so grateful!!! I was able to go eat lunch with my friend Stephanie with no mouths to feed but my own :) wow, who knew eating lunch could be so enjoyable when you aren't busy cutting things up into small bites and you can actually enjoy a CONVERSATION!! I had a terrific time with Stephanie and really enjoyed talking and spending time with her since it isn't something we get to do too often. Stephanie is a working mom, and can I just say she is awesome! I am so proud of her and I try to remind her of that every chance I can, because lets face it, being a mom is a hard enough task, but when you throw a whole separate job into the mix that makes it much harder! Needless to say she is doing great at both and I love her and I am so proud of her! She is a huge blessing to me and I love spending time with her whenever I can! She totally defines the word "classy" to me and handles life and everything else thrown at her with a level of love that is bound to encourage anyone! She is one of those friends that always goes out of her way to Hug you and bless you with her sweet smile. and both her hugs and her smile are the best out there! shes fabulous and I loved my time with her today :)

Becca has really been a great friend to me, and I have really loved getting to know her! In the small time we have known each other I feel our friendship has taken great strides and I love it! She is one of my first calls when I need advice, and someone who always makes me laugh (bleh) ;). If I am with Becca I can always count on the fact that I will have a GREAT time! I feel like every time we are together we find out more similarities, I am kinda shocked at how alike we are... must be why I love her so much ;).  this friendship was definitely put in my life to challenge me and encourage me! she is one of the most authentic people around! Becca is someone I would call a natural leader, I can already see her years from now leading young moms to Love the Lord and raise Godly kids! she is pretty amazing, and I am really grateful for her! she is one of those friends that you can always count on to lift you up when you need it. In fact I remember a day I was having when my 2 year old turned into a monster. She was having meltdown, after meltdown, after meltdown, and I was so worn out and feeling extremely defeated... Becca called to ask about something and in the midst of it gave me a pep talk, encouraged me, and assured me that, yes today might be challenging, but I am doing a great job! that was just what I needed to hear that day. it is friends like this that help make the hard days do able! I am so thankful for her. She is a beautiful person inside and out and I am positive we have many years of being great friends in our future. I always admire her and I love her even more.. she is a huge blessing to me and I am so grateful for her influence in my life :) she is pretty fantastic. I mean what friend calls to ASK you if she can watch your kid so you can have some time to yourself? not many... thank you Becca for being such a great friend to me! you are one of my favorite friends and I am so grateful for your friendship and encouragement in my life! you have made my life more enjoyable with your laugh, sound effects ;) and sense of humor and I love you oodles!!!Thank you so much for giving me some time to enjoy Stephanie today, It was fantastic to get a break!

if you haven't noticed it yet, I have some pretty amazing friends! we are only 3 days into May and I have many more friends to go...

How do you tell your friends you love them?
how do you show your friends you are grateful for them?
How do you let them know what they mean to you?

I myself don't have an answer to these questions, but I can tell you I am working on it, and hopefully by the end of this month Katie, Stephanie, and Becca won't be the only ones that will know just how much I love them! :)

and today I am really Grateful for my friends 
Stephanie and Becca!!! :)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

MAY we be ... KIND

Today we are focusing on KINDNESS    

We have a little old lady next door named Louise. she is a widow and she has 2 sons in the area that if I am being honest could use a lesson or 2 in how to treat their mama.  if you followed our 12 days of kindness she was our day 12 and that too will give you a little back story to her... last week we had plans on friday night and due to rain they got canceled so I knocked on her door and said "come on we are taking you on an ice cream date" she was so excited and rushed to grab her shoes and we were out the door... on the ride there she told us in the car "sorry I'm not wearing a bra" to which my husband quickly replied with... "its ok I'm not either", I on the other hand couldn't stop giggling ;) while we were getting ice cream she talked a little about wanting to move back to FL since her sons clearly don't want her here. Selfishly I clearly do not want this to happen because we love her! Gentry LOVES her and we have taken her in as her adopted grandma. so today we decided was the perfect day to show Louise some kindness and love on her a bit more. Gentry colored her some artwork and told me what to write on the card and I transcribed it... the card was clearly direct out of the mouth of a 2 year old, but the most precious thing ever.  it showed me the pure love in her heart that she has for Miss Louise... I don't remember it word for word, but it was pretty close to this...

"I love you. You are pretty. thanks for neighbor, I love you all pretty. you are my friend. I love louise, yes I love louise. I love you, love Gentry"

I wrote Louise a little something too and then we put some Hugs in a cute bag and we went to go deliver it. Gentry was full of smiles and so excited to give it to her. Louise was shocked and said "you just made my day" with tears in her eyes. Gentry gave her some real hugs we took a picture and came back home.. and then gentry said "I do that again" :)
I don't think she knows how much she made Miss Louise' day, but I do, and I know it was the perfect medicine for a lonely little lady to be loved so much by a silly little 2 year old. Watching your kids love someone you haven't even prompted them too is so special. truth of the matter is, I probably wouldn't have reached out to Louise much if it weren't for Gentry. Gentry has taught me a thing or 2 about being a good neighbor. She is always outside waving to our neighbors, providing hugs, and blowing kisses. Its kinda funny how that works out considering shes a kid and I should be the one setting the example in that area, but either way I am thankful for the Lord using my daughter to help wake me up and show me how easy it can be to love your neighbors and work on developing relationships with them. I know the Lord placed us in this house for many reasons and loving on Louise is definitely one of them! We are thankful for her and love her so much, and while yes sometimes she may drive me bonkers, and show up at the worst time to talk, I know that the Lord is using us to help mold the life and heart of Louise, so I have and will always drop everything to show her how much she is loved!

so here is my little take away today:

the Lord blessed you with a place to live and he put certain people around you, so how are you showing them kindness? How are you showing his love to them?How are you reaching out to them?

Your neighborhood is your biggest potential mission field out there, so turn off your TV, stop running inside to make dinner, and leave time in your life for God to use you (or your children) to love your neighbors... if you aren't doing it who will?

Miss Louise and Gentry


Wednesday, May 1, 2013


helloooooooooooooooo MAY! we are glad you are here :)

today we are focusing on JOY

when you think of the word JOY, what comes to mind???

well I can tell you the first thing that pops in my head is a person! you've heard the saying Joy is Contagious and I am proof of that thanks to a fantastic friend of mine :) She always ALWAYS brings me joy! she is the most positive person in my life hands down! she always speaks from the heart and her words echo in my mind days beyond being said. she is wise and she is someone who cheers me on when I am weak and affirms me when I am in doubt. whenever I am with her I leave feeling blessed and loved! she is gentle, and kind, and  she never has a bad thing to say about anyone. She is always equipped with a beautiful smile and a sweet spirit. She really is one of my FAVORITE people on this earth! in the time that I have known her I have been so encouraged to be a better mom and wife just by watching her. If you haven't figured it out yet shes pretty much amazing! I am so thankful for her friendship in my life and the thought of her always puts a huge smile on my face and Joy in my heart... If I had to count the joys in my life, she would be close to the top of my list! and it should come as no surprise that she even has a blog called Counting joys and if you go there you will see a small glimpse as to why I adore her :)

So today I want to highlight Katie Kafoure, someone who always inspires joy in my life and is a true reflection of joy from the Lord! You are loved, adored, and cherished as one of my favorite friends and I am so grateful for the witness of Joy you have been to me :) love you oodles!

what brings you real  JOY???
Do that!
Be that!
Share that!
Spend more time with that!!
Gravitate to Joy!!
whatever it is, get more of it and pass it on to those around you.. BE JOY!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013


I know its not May just quite yet, but lets face it may starts tomorrow and in my mind it might as well start today ;)

Anyways, if you had a chance to read our last blog then you know we are starting a new Family Challenge this month centered around these 3 things
MAY we be kind
MAY we be grateful
MAY we be joyful

today we are starting with GRATEFUL

this year I have had the privilege to be involved in an amazing ministry at our church called Mom to Mom. it has been an enormous source of encouragement and Joy every Tuesday over the past year. I have been so blessed by the leaders who have poured into me, prayed over me, and even sent sweet notes when I am having a crummy day week (can you say the great Vaseline disaster of 2013) ;) it has also helped introduce me to some of the greatest friends that fill my heart with JOY, and love on me constantly! and as if that wasn't enough I always leave there refreshed and energized ready to take on this crazy job I have called parenting ;)

Each week while I am busy being encouraged to be a Godly mom, my children are cared for by some of the greatest childcare workers ever! They love on my kids, greet them with smiles and hugs, and always tell me "they were great" even when I know sometimes they weren't ;) Being a mom and seeing people embrace your children and love on them is one of the greatest feelings. and I am so encouraged when I hear Gentry tell me how much she loves going to church on Tuesdays and how she can't wait to see her teachers and friends.

So today I am Grateful for Mom to mom, not just for what I get out of it, but for what my kids do too.

 Since today was the last day we decided we wanted to give some gifts of gratitude to our teachers, mine included. Gentry helped me make flower pins and we attached a cute little note to all of them that said "thank you for helping me grow". we talked last night all about how we were going to take them to church and that she would be able to pass them out to her teachers. now if there is one thing you need to know about my child it is that she loves to sleep.. and I often have to wake her up in the morning when its about 8:45 and shes still snoozing. so today when she woke up at 7:30 I was a tad confused. I went in to get her out of bed and she said "I  too excited to sleep" then she ran out of her room and grabbed the bag full of the flower pens and was ready to go. hahahaha.  when we got to chuch 2 hours later she passed out the flower pens to all the childcare workers with the biggest smile on her face!

can I tell you something. I didn't realize it until this morning, but man there is a lot you can learn from your children. Gentry loves to give!!!  it always encourages me to witness her pure excitement and joy that radiates from her while she does it. I am proud of my child for waking me up physically and mentally to show me how exciting it can be to give to others,and  I am grateful for the gift of this small little life that inspires me daily to be a cheerful giver! :)

MAY we be Grateful... and today I am :)

Friday, April 26, 2013

MAY we be...

So the month of MAY is almost upon us and with this comes another month of fun around here... if you have followed our family blog then you know this past Christmas we did the "12 days of Kindness" where we focused on showing kindness to others! Gentry loved it and I did too :)  so I thought long and hard talked with my husband, and have decided we are going to turn MAY into a new fun challenge for our family!

this month we will focus on...
MAY we be kind
MAY we be grateful
MAY we be joyful

I feel like these 3 words have been layed on my heart a lot lately and I am excited to see how we are challenged this month to turn these words into actions! They say if you practice something for 30 days it becomes a habit and that is my hope, that it becomes a habit for us to be kind, grateful, and joyful in all that we do...

I am also going to try to blog everyday, maybe this will become a habit too ;) 

if you would like to join us on this challenge please let me know! the more the merrier :) use #Maywebe2013

Friday, April 5, 2013

We are NOT perfect!!!

 it is easy to look on FB and compare yourself to others and think that every mom has it together, with perfect children, in a perfect house, with a perfect marriage, and a perfect life, but the fact of the matter is, its just not true! not even close!

While I love FB, what I don't love is the fact that it paints a picture of perfection. It only shows people what you want them to see. they don't see the huge mess going on in your house, the temper tantrums your kids are throwing, the piles of laundry sitting around waiting to be done, or the fight you just probably had with your spouse. they see a "perfect" picture of your life...not your real one! its easy as mom to always compare yourself to others...I have struggled with it too and still often do. when we do this we are basically telling God, "hey you know all this amazing stuff you have blessed me with, well I don't like it and I want what others have instead". why can't we be thankful? why can't we change our attitude and be happy for others while also being thankful for what we have?

I have decided that I want to try to be more transparent with the ups and downs of my life.  I want to be more thankful for EVERYTHING! We have been so blessed. in the last few weeks I have removed the chains that once held me back of comparing my life to others.  that is a pointless thing to do, my life will never reflect that of others, because I have different people in my life and a different situation... when we are so busy comparing ourselves to others we don't leave any time to seek out the beauty and uniqueness of what we have been given. and why on earth would we all want to be the same anyways? why would we all want to live the exact same life? that would be BORING! I want to be honest, I am not a perfect mom, I do not have perfect kids, I do not have a perfect husband... the fact of the matter is the only thing in my life that is perfect is My God! I am a work in progress, along with my kids and my spouse. we don't live in a perfect house, we don't have it perfectly decorated, and my laundry is not perfectly folded and put back in its place after being washed. I AM HUMAN! we have great days in our house, and we have not so great days too. we have days of laughter, and we have days filled with tears. the only thing that remains constant in this house is that at the end of the day we love each other and we are thankful! We are thankful for everything, even the fact that nothing is perfect!

when we are so busy trying to be perfect then we lose our ability to be a relateable encouragement to others and let them know that hey, we have days like that too...

so here is my challenge to you; let down your gaurd, throw away that picture of perfection, admit that some days are rough, stop comparing yourself to others, start being thankful for what you have, and when we do this, I think we will all learn that we have a lot more in common :)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Love em up!

Feburary is upon us and I am using this time to be more intentional about LOVING the people who I come in contact with. you know the ones, your spouse, your kids, your friends, your family, the people who offer so much love to you and bless you daily.

Now I am not a fan of Valentines day, I have always thought it was a rather silly holiday. so instead of boycotting the holiday again this year we are taking a different approach. we are going to use it to love the people that love us soo much and bless us so much! we had such success with our 12 days of Kindness and I feel that Gentry really Got it and I have noticed how much I got it too ;) sometimes it takes seeing your kids experience things to move your heart in a way you cannot fathom. I still am learning things from our 12 days of Kindness and it didn't just last 12 days... it stuck with us! for this month I want to be intentional about expressing my love to others. I want to practice to make it a habit to love, not just during February, but in every moment. the best way to form a habit is to practice... so that's what I am doing this month. I am making it a point to practice how I love others, how I show love, how I speak words of love, and more importantly how I help remind people that they are loved. Not just by me, but by the one that created them.

My idea this month is to incorporate the conversation of love with Gentry and Greyleigh daily to help them understand, while also doing small gestures to appreciate and love them and others around us. some major things I want to focus on this month is God's Love for us, ways to show love, bible verses about love, and my hope is that if I start first by loving those in my house, then it will be so much easier to love others outside my house.  I can already tell the Lord is gonna teach me so much this month!

So here we go folks... this February is devoted to Love!
Loving my husband
Loving my children
Loving my parents
Loving my family
Loving my friends
Loving my neighbors
Loving my community
and using all of this Love to help people understand the Love of my Savior!

Love em up!!!

Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 
It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7