Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Laundry and Dishes and Floors! Oh My!

Alright. I'm about to lay some truth on all of you. I suggest you grab a paper bag to breathe in and sit down.

Check out this picture.


**GASP!** I know. It's bad. Want to know something? This is actually an improvement!
The good news is that it's all clean laundry. The bad news is that it won't fold and put itself away no matter how many Accio, Evanesce, or Mobiliarbus spells I try (see Harry Potter).

If I'm honest, I don't like cleaning. I don't organizing. But, I also don't like messes or losing things. My daily life is a conundrum

We are a busy family. We have church and AWANA and sports and school and piano and reading and play dates and the list goes on. The last thing I want to do is add to the list of things.

Some really awesome moms in my life gave me the following signs/canvases for my home and they are my encouragement.

Being a good mom doesn't mean having a clean house. Being a good mom is all about loving your kids and teaching them truth. I want my kids to know that they are wanted and loved and like they can take on the world. And they do. Our home is filled with loud noises, warmth and comfort, silliness, and fun. You may need a tetanus shot when you leave, but at least you will walk away feeling loved

Now, I will say that we do clean, and we do organize, and we attempt to keep the house somewhat presentable. But, I know that we can do better, and I hope that we will all grow in this area.

My kids help me load the dishwasher (whenever I get around to doing dishes). They help me get the dirty clothes to the laundry room, and they help me get them back to their room (folding is an entirely different story). They love to vacuum. I sweep because they're the worst at this. They help pick up the outdoor toys. They sometimes even pick up their indoor toys. If you ever stop by our home, you will see unfinished projects, at least one laundry basket overflowing with clothes (clean or dirty, maybe both), books and toys everywhere, and probably a dish or two where they shouldn't be. But, there will be a place to sit, and we will give you coffee!

Ultimately, God bless this mess that is my life. 

What are some tips and tricks you can share with me and your fellow readers? Leave your ideas in the comment section (keep them simple, my kids are chore-illiterate). We will try a few of them and then give you and update in a month or two... or whenever I get around to it. 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Family Photos 2016

I'm back! 
And with pictures!!!  
What, What?!?!  
I know, it's been a while. 
I hope to be more faithful in my blogging for 2017... until then, I hope this ties you all over!

**Scroll down to avoid a sappy story/small catch up**

My parents are the best. For real, you can't find better. I know they have some stiff competition, I've met some of your parents. Anywho, they paid to have a photographer come and shoot our WHOLE family over Labor Day weekend. TBH, I wish that I had the money to do family photos every year.  We were super blessed to have some out of state family join us.

Tangent - Fun story about my crazy emotions that holiday weekend real quick: I knew my Aunt Molly was in town, and that my sister, Mary, and niece, Allie, were coming. Brandon and I (and kids) had a wedding on the other side of the state the same weekend (Friday/Saturday). Due to some unsolicited drama in my life, I was feeling crazy defeated. Saturday night, we were gathering at one of my (many) sister's homes for a grill out. I was frustrated and angry, and my poor hubs and kids were getting the mean end of it. I wanted to crawl into a hole and cry, and I couldn't wait to get to my mom (she's the best greatest advice giver). I was walking to the back yard - all booty hurt - I see my Aunt Molly (first time in a long time), and I feel all the feels. Then... I see my big brother - from Florida, who I hadn't see in far too long, and had no idea would be there. I could not stop crying. I kid you not, I'm crying right now remembering it. All you little sisters out there who live more than 10 hours away from your big brother know what I'm talking about. I hugged him, he hugged me, I called him a jerk, and all seemed right in the world again. It was a great surprise.

Catch up: It's been .... 3 1/2 years since I blogged? Not funny. I've had so many blog ideas, and a lack of willingness to commit/time. New family photos did however, give me a desire to refresh. Also, I have discovered that I can be super ADD about things, and therefore, my writing style isn't what you would call professional level blogger status...  Brandon has switched jobs a couple times. Each time it has been God-blessed, and great for our family (he doesn't travel for work anymore!!!!). I no longer work, and get to stay home with the kids (this was a financial sacrifice for us, which I plan to talk about more in a later post). We moved into our first home! No more renting! Asa has switched from Iowa Christian Academy to Olmsted Elementary School in Urbandale. He is smarter than me (not really, but smarter than I was at that age). Emmett has started Kindergarten at the same school, and is doing well, thanks to some very awesome and devoted teachers (also, a later post). The girls are homeschool-preschool and sassy. Brandon says they get that from me, I don't see it. Our cat died. We got a new one. Van died. Got a new one. And much, much more

I will not share ALL the photos, because #time and there's too many to choose from. But I will share some of my little family, and a few group photos. 


Nellia was a Mama's girl that day. Little did I know that the boys were up to no good.

Emmett looks like he's up to something.

Asa and Emmett executing their nefarious plot, while Mom is distracted by Nellia's puppy.

Any moment now,...

Bracing for it...

It was dud, act natural.

Emmett, I said act natural, you're going to give us away.

Poor Nellia lost her puppy for a picture or two.

She was NOT having it.

All is well again.

Our hearts are full.

Aurora lost a sandal. 

These four are either best friends or accomplices... I can't tell always tell which.

Would it kill Emmett to be normal?

Hey, 3 out of 4 smiling ain't bad!

Coming up on 7 years with this stud.

I like him. A LOT.

ALL the siblings

They put the pretty one's on the ends to make us all look better ;)

There's always that one awkward pose.

The Brady Bunch

It's pretty obvious who the good-looking ones are...

I LOVE Grandad's face in this picture!

Would you believe me if I said this isn't our whole family?

The Original 6 (in age order - left to right)

The Pyramid

Jon & Mary comparing bellies

I can only assume my brother made some smart ass remark

Mom's 7 (in age order - left to right)

He was flippin' heavy, folks!

So, we did what any good sisters would do... we dropped him.

 ^^^Haha, he probably deserved it.  Love you Jonny! **PS, he HATES being called Jonny**

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Coming Soon!

Um, no, I'm not pregnant. Let's get that one out of the way quickly!

It's been 3 1/2 years since my last post, and a lot has changed.

I will be writing a new post SOON!  I PROMISE!