Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Chloe is 7!

For just under seven years, we've lived in this house and for seven years, my lion-spirited, big hearted, beautiful Chloe Paige has been in my life!  Chloe, I know there may be times in your life when you feel lost in the shuffle as a middle child, but know this sweet girl, there is nothing lost or second rate in my love for you!  You have blossomed so much in the past year, from a timid kindergarten graduate to a confident, outgoing almost second grader!  The way you question the world around you hasn't changed, but your questions are getting more interesting and I love trying to answer them.  Your love for make believe is still going strong, which makes us so happy!  The longer you can hang on to that joy, sweetie, the better!  You've made quite a reputation for yourself around the neighborhood this year, as the resident big sister.  Cece, Maddie, and Isla look up to you and wish you really were their big sister.  The way you play with and care for them has your mama beaming with pride!  But the little girl who adores you the most is your own baby sister, Autumn.  She follows you around all day asking to play baby with you (she being the baby, you the mama), and most of the time you are so obliging and patient with her.  You are so helpful to me just by being you, you're such a treasure!  Something I've learned about your personality this year is that you have a gift beyond your years for compassion towards others, especially those you love.  At the end of a long day, you often insist on giving me a foot rub with lotion and bringing me water saying, "you worked so hard today mommy, you need to rest".  Or sometimes you just sense that someone is sad and it makes you sad too.  You are so quick to feel and say sorry when you're wrong, but you don't just stop there, you want to make amends by doing something for the person.  You give the best hugs and kisses Snooie!  It's like I can feel your soul through them!  Happy birthday baby girl!  I thank God every day for letting broken me love you and lead you in this life.  Every year with you is a gift I treasure beyond words! xoxo  Mommy

Friday, August 09, 2013

And Every Boy Grows Up

I just had to write about how cute you were today Sawyer Michael!  We went to Walmart to get a few things and since preschool starts in a couple weeks, I let you pick out your backpack.  You were so excited about it, so proud of the one you picked, and when we got home, for the rest of the day you were wearing it and asking if you could pack it for school.  I had to keep reminding you that we still needed to buy your school supplies and that we have time.  You kept asking, "will it be when we wake up?"  To which I had to keep telling you it would be a lot of "wake ups", 16 to be exact, until your first day of school.  Emma read you your school supply list and when she got to the part about a spare outfit in a ziplock bag, the light went on that you could pack that today and so you raced to your room!  We labeled your ziplock bag with your name and carefully placed your folded undies, socks, shirt and pants inside.  You then put your backpack on the hook in your room and stared at for awhile, just happy you got to put something inside of it for school.  As the day went on, you asked if we could play school.  You wanted me to first be your mom and yell, "Sawyer, it's time to get ready for school!" so you could come out of your room with your backpack.  We did this and you came out beaming.  Oh sweet son of mine, if you only knew how much I enjoy your excitement about this new adventure you're about to go on.  You won't always be so excited about school work as the years go by, but it's my earnest hope that your excitement for learning will only continue to grow.  It's only natural that you want to get bigger, to do new things, to move forward.  But as your mother, I want to thoroughly savor these precious times when you're four.  Some day, you'll leave home and marry a wonderful girl, have a career, a life of your own, just as it should be.  But right now, your life is with me, pretty much constantly, and I'm loving it!  You are a gift, sweet boy, in more ways than you'll ever know!  So as you take this baby step in two weeks towards the growing up that every boy must do, know that in your mamas heart, you will always be this boy!  I love you!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Emma is 9!

Happy birthday Emma Grace!  I refuse to believe you are half way to 18, I just don't even want to think about it.  The last birthday in the single digits!  There I go, doing it again, wishing I could slow time down.  But it marches on for all of us, it's supposed to, so instead of being sad about the time passed, I will be thankful for the years given.  Sweet peanut, you've had a great year, complete with growing pains in your legs and lost teeth that have given you that wonderful, preteen snaggled grin:).  I'm so thankful for our relationship baby, you are so sweet to me!  You tell me all the time how much you love me and you continue to prove that your love language is quality time.  Your favorite mommy/daughter date is a trip to Mahalo to get frozen yogurt.  I love our bedtime chats these days, sharing our hearts with each other, hearing your burning questions.  You continue to love all things fashion and friends and your beauty continues to grow from the inside out.  You continue to be a wonderful artist and have gotten quite good at sewing as well.  It's so fun to see you creating and doing things you love. You are uniquely made and gifted and it gives me such joy to wear the title of "mom" to you. So baby girl, little beauty who made me a mama, here's to another year of loving you and a prayer that Jesus would woo you more and more to himself.  xoxo Mommy

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


I had some great plans before summer break started, plans for a morning schedule, a special activity each day, like the park or library or pool.  And those plans have been great, most days really helping us be more purposeful with our time.  I'd even say it has prevented fighting... some of it.  But today, as the kids were squealing through the house with a couple of their friends, jumping from one "game" to the next, without a thought to the time, the memories came flooding back.  I remember when a day seemed like a week, when my friends and I would be deep in make believe, maybe a boat out of TV trays, Little House on the Prairie, lost orphans, and the afternoon truly felt like an eternity in a good way.  The only adult thing I can compare it to is getting lost in a good book, becoming part of the story in your mind and not wanting to leave.  This is the stuff of childhood, this is the beauty of summertime!  I'm not sure when the clock starts to hound us and imagination gives way to responsibility, but I love getting to go back in time as I watch my kids be kids.  Childhood is a precious and fleeting gift, sweet babes, I hope I'm creating a home where you are making the great memories I have of my own childhood.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Autumn is 2!

A two year old is a toddler right?  Well even if so, Autumn is NOT, she is a baby, MY baby, and she always will be.  Oh sweet darling, you are such a gift to us!  I think at least one of us says daily how sad life would be without our "Nootie".  Your affection, your smile, your laugh, your humor, your dancing, your dresses, the way you love to be held, the way you think you can do everything your siblings do and are so indignant when you can't.  Autumn Mae, we are so thankful God gave you to us!  These two years with you have been such a present, truly, what in the world would we do without your sunshine in our lives?!  Happy birthday my baby fashionista!  We can't wait to watch you grow and for our love for you to grow more and more every day!
Love, Mommy, Daddy, Emma, Chloe, and Sawyer

Monday, February 04, 2013

My Stained Recliner

Whoever invented micro fiber furniture, boasting its stain resistance, obviously didn’t do any thorough research with a family of small children.  Let’s just say, our rocking recliner is now more of a magnet for messes than it is a repellent of them. But to be fair, we’ve probably allowed far too many snacks to be eaten in it, so I digress.  While I often cringe when I think of all I’ve cleaned off of this recliner, including multiple types of bodily excretions, this worn out, stain ridden chair has some lessons for me.

This past week, my youngest came down with a tummy bug.  She’s already a bit on the needy/snuggly side as it is, so when she’s sick, all she wants is to be in our arms.  And when she looks to me with the droopy eyes of fever, asking me to hold her, of course I swoop her up.  I’m happy to report that she’s feeling all better now, but my lower back is still feeling all the holding of the past few days.  And that’s where the stained recliner comes in.  As I was sitting there, rocking my sweet girl, trying to take the edge off her misery with my love, I couldn’t help but look around at all the messes that were not being tidied, going down the mental check list of all the tasks that needed doing that I just couldn’t do.  And then the whisper came, that this chair, this rocking, this girl is the  best task I can be accomplishing in any given day.  Certainly, there is a time and place for cleaning and creating a place of peace for our families, working together on those tasks.  But sometimes the greatest way we can create peace for the souls we love in our homes is to just sit still.  When Autumn was sick, when she needed me to just sit and comfort and stroke her forehead, something I do in snipets all the time, it made me think about how much my kids would love it if I did this more.  And this compulsion to keep working and doing and accomplishing, I’m learning something about my heart in it.  I think, if I’m really honest, I’m often doing those things to impress others, not with the simple motive of blessing my family.  Thoughts riddled with insecurity, equating my worth with the job I’m doing as the cleaner/organizer of our home, creep into my mind throughout the day.  But what if molding and filling hearts is more important than laundry and crumbs and papers in disarray?  What if cleanliness is really not next to Godliness as the saying goes?  I think my times of just sitting with my children, who long for those special times with me, reminds me that seasons are short, and children are little only for awhile.  But how do we really live for an audience of one?  How do we stop, in self-focus, always worrying about what others think of us?

I don’t doubt that we will always struggle with this in a world that likes to keep us busy, that tells us that moving and doing is the only work worth doing.  But we find some great encouragement straight from God in His Word that fights the world’s prescription.  Let us not forget that when we are still, to just be with and focus on the ones we love, we are following the example of our God, who longs for us to crawl up in His lap, to hear His Words, and to just be.  I’ll leave you with these verses that encourage my heart to enjoy moments of Sabbath in my days.

Luke 10:38-42 “As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”   “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
This passage always reminds me that none of the other work I have on my to do list is as important as sitting at Jesus’s feet.

Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
This verse reminds me that just as Jesus is my place of rest, I need to be a place of rest for my children, not the busy, frantic, “just a minute” mom that I can be.

Psalm 46:10 “He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” 
This verse reminds me to rest in God’s sovereignty.  Could it be that my stillness bring Him more glory than my busyness?

Matthew 22:36-40  “Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

And this passage, one we’ve all heard many times, is a good reminder of God’s priority for our time.  Giving Him the best of ourselves, and giving our best to others (children/family/friends).
None of these passages us tell us to be lazy, but rather to rest with purpose.  There are many scriptures that warn against laziness, working is good, don't get me wrong.  I think where we often get it wrong is when we see times of rest and being still as a hindrance to what we see as more important, the doing we have idolized.  Rest serves as a recharging for the work God has given us, it's needed fuel we often neglect.

Meditate with me on these verses today as we ask God how He might be leading us to slow down for the sake of what’s most important.