Monday, December 13, 2010

since may

seven months.
roughly 196 days of breaking.

a brief sketch of jarring moments that have taken place in the last 7 months...
well, moments that have moved me to places
i have not been in a long while.

  it all began when we left our beautiful home...
1. we moved away from dear ones who knew my deep places and still called me friend.
2.  we downsized.
3. i crumbled.
4.  we waited for an adoption to come through.
5.  we waited to find our next place of permanence.
6.  we watched as some close friends gave up everything they had
to sustain their sweet family.

7.  we sat with our dear friends as they watched their daughter die.
stood beside them as they buried her tender body.
grieved with them that her presence is missed every day.

8.  we were startled with news that i may have lupus, alongside ms.
9.  we were shattered by news of cancer in ben's mom.
10.  we grieved 6 years of missing our son, jack benjamin.

in the past 196 days,
i have searched for significance in each of these events
and others that have taken place.

 i took some time away from my ordinary, extraverted life.
 a sabatical of sorts.  i fumbled horribly through this.
and, if it were not for good friends, the understanding kind,
i probably would not have any friends left.

i had to put time and space into this.
i needed these events to make sense-have purpose.
i wanted to learn from different because they took place,
not just wallow in the list.
i want to teach my olivia about them.
about giving-and loving...

i find her not wanting to give-because it is too hard.
and, it is.  it is too hard to give. 

i think that is what God has been asking me to do all along.
give up my home.
 my comfort.
 my potterybarn idols.
my sense of justice.
my equations.
my unrealistic picture of what physicians can and should do.
my hopes & dreams...

because He longs for more in me...
more of Him.
He is my ultimate comfort.
He will bring justice.
He will make all things right.
His hopes and dreams for me far outweigh mine.

*if i could just let go-am i willing to believe that His dreams for me are bigger than mine?

this in no means sums up the last seven months into
a pretty package that will sit under my tree this year.
it only opens my eyes to see the beauty that came from the most devastating ashes.
because each friend or family member that has/is experiencing tremendous loss
of their dear ones, or health, or home had every right {in my book} to fall down
and not get back up again...

and yet, i have seen each one rise.
out of ashes.

and the only sense that i can make of it?
they must be holding on to the One who gets you back up.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


our daughter is turning five tomorrow.
five...I was grocery shopping earlier today
and saw some teenage mind wandered
on 5-10 years from now. I started picturing
my little girl being 10, 15.
hadn't these five years gone fast enough?
but in her mind, nothing has taken longer than waiting to turn five.

i'm so nostalgic around special holidays/birthdays. i try
to remember what i was doing...where i was at at that exact date and time.
today brought me back five years and 12 the first day
that we brought our beautiful baby girl home from the nicu.
she was so tiny...such an amazing package.

i've kept a journal in my kitchen of the last five years of olivia's life.
things she would say or do...announcements she would make..prayers that she shouted.
phrases that were repeated-the kind you don't necessarily care to have repeated. :)
they are all in there. one of our favorite things to do is pick up that journal and re-live these moments together. olivia gets so surprised each time we read it. and i just have to laugh because we've read it so many times.

as much as i would love to slow our time down...
i am reminded that it is sadly impossible to do.

so, this year, i want to be present
for this fancy five year old daughter of mine.
i want to drink in the non-stop moments of chatter,
the never-ending imaginative narrative that plays in her mind...
and the soulful child that i pray will always be a part of the person she is to become.
i pray that she finds Jesus in every circumstance and that she believes that He accepts and loves her right where she is at...and, that no other love would look better or entice her more than the sweet, sweet love of Jesus.

happy birthday songbird.
you are finally five!
love your mama.

Monday, November 8, 2010

kitchen island

  everything about this island appeals to me...
it doesn't even bother me that i would be giving up
a lot of storage space.  
it's different.
and saucy!
now that we have been living in a rental for a few months,
i'm learning to live without many things
that i thought i could never do without.

i don't ever want to go back to accumulating so many unnecessary items.

this beauty would keep me on my toes...
remind me of keeping things
s i m p l e.
gotta love that!

Salvaged Wood Kitchen Island

Thursday, October 21, 2010


my MRI was yesterday... the technician tried easing my mind as he clipped this cage around my head and neck...
i felt panicked, this is not your usual xray. 
 it's loud and there are annoying noises that continue for an hour.  
you are placed in a long tunnel and  told not to move...all the while every itch needs scratched, 
muscle needs stretched...body needs OUT!  
and then it hit me-how many people i currently know who have recently had this same scan.

sweet baby josie who was in hours before me... was being prepped for brain surgery to remove a tumor.
johnny the brave-has had numerous MRI's at the age of 8-also with a brain tumor.
my mother-in-law having similiar scans-looking for cancer.

God drew me in and brought me to His side...
under His wing i could concentrate-get away from the noise of this heavy, loud machine and pray. 
prayers for baby josie. prayers for johnny the brave. prayers for mom.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Benson Queen Bed

        benson queen bed $199 

             saddlerock counter set $199

                   tufted daybed $199

            jersey lounge lime $179

here are some of urban home's
newest arrivals!
everything i listed is under $200!

go have a furniture party! 

Monday, September 20, 2010


the hustle and bustle of either love it..or, you don't.
i happen to love the rush.  it can be cheery...oh, yes it can.  or, not so
cheery.  this morning was cheery.
i was olivia's cheerleader and i loved it.
once my little marathoner was buckled in, we were off.  i asked her if
she wanted me to teach her  a new song on the way to school...
knowing that she is my songbird, i knew she would be game.

so, i started singing, the Lord is good to me...doo doo doo do, doo do
doo...hmm.  how does that song go?  i know there is something about
apple trees...oh it's good liv, i wish i could remember the words.

olivia pipes up...well, mommy, while you are remembering those
good you want me to teach you one of my songs?  (:

absolutely liv!  sing away.

this was her song in her heart.

God, you are are amazing..amazing.
you can do anything we ask..make anything, everything.
you are amazing.  you can even make an umbrella if you
want to.  the clouds, animals, make them and
everything around us.
nothing can seperate us
nothing can seperate us
nothing can seperate us from your love.
we love you God.

  her song rocked mine.
her little theology, bundled up in this song.
it touched my heart.
my faith grew this morning...thank you songbird.
thank you Jesus for asking me to really listen.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

a little more of me in the mic...ahem. a little more of me.

the last few weeks, okay..months,  this has been my mantra...until this morning.
i was sitting in church and we started to sing
you are holy.
the line that started prying the "mic" out of my hands?
"you are my Prince of Peace and i will live my life for you."

oh, that's right...this life-that i label as "mine" really isn't all about me.
not about my plans, my agenda, my time-line on our next child, my never-ending lists...

as i pondered why those words so impacted me- to tears even, i thought back on my actions, my words, my inmost thoughts. they revolved around one

i really don't like giving up the mic...but, i gladly handed it over this morning to the Alpha, Omega, Beginning and End, my Savior, Messiah, friend.

thank you Lord for the gentle reminder that You being in control is where my Peace is.
there is none other. no, not one.
He is on the move for me..for you...
I just had to put my mic down in order to see it.

oh, my p.s....  i have been praying that God will place people in my path that will help lead us in the direction of where/what to do next in terms of our adoption story. last night i spoke with a sweet friend who has adopted a little one from tawain. she had such sound advice...what an encouragement to this heart of mine. and, this morning, He put me in the middle of 3 precious women, whom i greatly admire and respect...they spoke such affirmation to me as well.

also, our dear friends carrie & anthony shared their love story this morning. the beautiful. the messy. the indescribably painful parts of losing a child. my heart broke for them again.   it also went to familiar places as they shared some of the deep waters that God so gently is moving them through. david's precious little life is about so much more than we can come close to justifying this side of i won't even begin to try. but, this morning God used his life to remind me of what matters.
thank you, carrie and anthony for sharing your story.  it impacts many.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

simple love

i ran into this sight last night and thought i would give it a try...
2 minutes and viola!
try it for yourself and send me a link...
i would love to see your simple love!

Monday, September 6, 2010

stacks and stacks...


i'm still organizing.

what does this have to do with cards you ask?
even if you aren't asking...i'm asking.
i have stacks and stacks of cards.
cards that for some reason or another, i can't pitch!
so, i started to put them in piles-to file.
i ran out of labels for all of these special piled letters.
i can justify this because 
 it is rare to get these treats in the mail anymore.
i guess that is why these chersihed momentos have
taken over my desk of drawers.

my favorite letters and cards are from my grandma, olivia's gigi.
she is one of my favorite people on this green earth.
she always starts with, "hello sweetheart,"
it instantly makes me feel like i'm sitting in her kitchen with a cup of coffee.
she also tells me everytime how awful her handwriting is...which, i never agree.
i love her handwriting.  it's her.  i wouldn't change a thing about it.

here's a confession:
among my piles...are people's thank you cards.
yep.  i'm a thank you collector.

i collect thank you's from friends + family who articulate so well the gratitude that is inside.
i wish i could speak of my heart's gratefulness like they do.  
that is why i keep their thank you's so handy.
they inspire me.
 before i sit down and write one myself...
i browse through a few,
take a deep breath
and write!

chances are, if you are reading this, 
you made your way to one of my collective piles...
that are now filed. 
and, if i may, i'll send this thank you to you.
thanks for making me feel special,
taking the time to remember a special date,
celebrating my month of birthday bliss...
or sending a just-because.

you inspire me to send more hand-writtens,
to stop hesitating and worrying about saying things perfectly,
and to buy more stamps for pete's sake!

long-live hallmark...and fresh ink!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


and so it begins...


i took the majority of the summer off
to spend with my sweet girl.
we had loads of fun...
but, summer is winding down 
and here i am-aspiring to get organized!

i found a few sites that are fabulously helpful
and so i thought i would pass them along.

this first blog has free downloads for you!
hop on her blog and take a look.

i was delighted to have this sort of organization just handed to me!
thank you jessica - you inspire me!

 i was also looking for some customization as well...

so, i ordered up a few of my own personal organizers from clean mama.
they are soOo affordable...and the color schemes are endless!
becky is completely prompt and precise!  i guess all of her
organizing has paid off. (:


Cleaning Kit - Weekly,  Monthly, and To Do Lists   CUSTOM and PERSONALIZED Responsibility Chart (up to 4 different charts)  
CUSTOM Fitness/Goal Log for the Week
customize and purchase your own here

cheers mamas!
let the organized chaos begin...

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

go SParKle...

Art Print Bird Go Sparkle

Tickled Pink Poster Print 8x10

Art Print I love you a bushel and a peck

Original Art Print Bird Embellished My Cup Runneth Over

Original Art Print Wise Old Owl

Original Fun Art Print Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy

i haven't found any prints
that i love as much
as i {Love-ov} these!
nicely done
SpARkle ON!

destination: my arm!

Glory in lemonade
glory in lemonade

Modular messenger in olive grey

NEW Bella in Apple Green --the drapery bag, so chic, large and elegant everyday purse with zippered closure and single strap--

Marigold in Grey --everyday purse--

 i love, love -LoVe- the slightly obsessed kind of love-
and marifet at the bayan hippo shop
knows how to make them in just
the right colors! apple?
could there be a bag out there handmade just for green apple design?
so, if i made this purchase...i could write it off, right? (;

and someone this amazing
WOULD make a skirt
THIS adorable too!
again...big love!

i didn't see this in her shop...i spotted it on her blog.
i bet she would make you one per special request!

Monday, July 12, 2010

this is lengthy...

so, our family of 3 has been through a whole lot of change
in the last 3-4 months...
we sold our house
we packed our things
we moved our things to:
parade house
2nd parade house
our rental
we moved into our rental
and started 3 weeks of parade of homes.

at some point, i will blog about our move...
it was a teary 4 weeks-and on any given day,
i think of one of my most fantastic neighbors...
and i start all over again *sniff-sniff.
we were beyond blessed to live where we did. 
to be with people who were real...genuine people.
the best kind of people.
{but, that is another blog entry}

the main question people are asking...
where are you moving?  have you started digging the hole yet?
good questions...they make sense.  
especially with ben being a builder.
we are waiting to see what God's best is for us.

and, it is soOo completely out of my
comfort zone to not have answers to these questions.
typically, you don't move unless 
you know where you are going.

this one is a adventure perhaps.

we are also waiting for our child.
in september of 2009, 
ben and i started the paperwork to adopt domestically.
we went through classes and our home studies.
our portfolio is finished and has been turned in.
all of the necessities were completed in may...
now, we wait and we pray and we wait.

we tried to keep the adoption from olivia
for as long as we could.  we knew the wait
could be long.  we finally told her in may,
once we turned in our portfolio.
she thought the adoption agency was a hospital
and that we would be coming home with our baby
that day!  oh, this already has seemed long for her.

i talked with our social worker last week...
asking if there were any birth moms that 
had made adoption plans yet.
her answer was, 
"no, not sorry,
things are unusually slow."

so, for a quick girl like mind started
racing.  well, if things are unusually slow...
how could i speed things up?
maybe we should change agencies,
switch to foster care, adopt internationally, 
poke holes in condoms at meijer...

at 11 o'clock, i started blurting out my ideas 
to my patient, yet quite sensible ben
he actually was tracking with me
for quite a while.

i think we landed though.
remembering that God has the best plan for our family.
and His timing is not ours.  
we could never regulate heaven's time. 
we worry about the age gap between liv and the baby.
that was on God's radar before olivia was born.  
He will take care of that.

He is asking us to wait.
to wait on our home.
to wait on our child.
to wait on growing our family.
to wait on Him.

as we wait,
 i am confident that He continues to move for us.


Sunday, July 11, 2010

sunshine on my shoulders...

it's the small things that make sunshine...
white plastic hangers
a good grey bag
an hour two hours in target
new flip flops
the song georgie girl
{my dad used to sing that to me when i was little}
the first sip of coffee
my little girl belly laughing
my husband holding my hand

it's the simples-and i heart them!