Monday, December 27, 2010

filled with Gratitude...

Send some rain, would You send some rain?
'Cause the earth is dry and needs to drink again
And the sun is high and we are sinking in the shade
Would You send a cloud, thunder long and loud?
Let the sky grow black and send some mercy down
Surely You can see that we are thirsty and afraid
But maybe not, not today
Maybe You'll provide in other ways
And if that's the case . . .


We'll give thanks to You
With gratitude
For lessons learned in how to thirst for You
How to bless the very sun that warms our face
If You never send us rain

Daily bread, give us daily bread
Bless our bodies, keep our children fed
Fill our cups, then fill them up again tonight
Wrap us up and warm us through
Tucked away beneath our sturdy roofs
Let us slumber safe from danger's view this time
Or maybe not, not today
Maybe You'll provide in other ways
And if that's the case . . .


We'll give thanks to You
With gratitude
A lesson learned to hunger after You
That a starry sky offers a better view if no roof is overhead And if we never taste that bread

Oh, the differences that often are between
What we want and what we really need

So grant us peace, Jesus, grant us peace
Move our hearts to hear a single beat
Between alibis and enemies tonight
Or maybe not, not today
Peace might be another world away
And if that's the case . . .


We'll give thanks to You
With gratitude
For lessons learned in how to trust in You
That we are blessed beyond what we could ever dream
In abundance or in need
And if You never grant us peace

But Jesus, would You please . . .

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

sigh of relief...

Last week about this time, I had heard all of the stressful and distressful news that I could take. I felt like there was way too much on my plate, and I was starting to feel like I couldn't breathe. I felt as if I was in a thrashing ocean, just trying to keep my head above the waves long enough to get some air.

In the last few days I've felt this wave of breath come back into me... and I know exactly where it's coming from. It's Jesus.

He's been softly nudging me, comforting me, to relax and trust, to listen, and be quiet. To know that he is always there. That he will truly never give me more than he knows I'm capable of handling. Even if and when I'm not sure that I can handle what he has given me.

I am here to tell you. If you are struggling, feeling alone, or overwhelmed, lost, or afraid of what's to come... that he is ALWAYS there. For me, and for you. Put your hand in his, and follow close to his side, and you will be just fine! Thankfully, so will I!

pugs & chocolate kisses...

Pugs and Chocolate kisses!

Happiness in our house, is today...
A Tuesday when everybody is at home, no work, no school.
Little girls that are getting along, and being sweet as chocolate kisses to one another.
A few days until Christmas, and all the must do's are done! So, now it's time to enjoy... each other, and all the magic and happiness that this time of year can bring!

Happy Tuesday everyone!
Hope your day is full of lots of pugs and chocolate kisses!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

she's got style, galore!

she's got style galore!

I love that Matt thinks to capture the everyday cute, funny, silly, memorable things that the girls do! These pictures are straight out of Matt's phone, and they plain old make me smile! How about you?

Almost every day Meritt graces us with one of her fashion ensembles...
She is always so proud of herself.
I love how she is able to show her big old personality, just by showing her style!
There is not one single thing about this girl that is boring. She is oozing personality. Her goofy ways make you totally fall in love with her.

This is some creativity isn't it???!!!

keep her little...

Never Grow Up...

As a mother there are times when all we want to do is protect our kids... Keep them little, innocent, sweet, unchanged. Keep them from getting hurt, or "labeled". And as a mother when you feel like there is a possibility of something causing them harm it is hard to know exactly what to do.

I've mentioned here before that we are needing to put Meritt into some special therapy for some speech delays she is having. We are in the process of going through the screenings and evaluations needed to place her in the correct therapy that she will need. Yesterday as we were being evaluated... (not the most comfortable thing to be evaluated) the dreaded question came about whether or not she sucks her thumb or has a binky. I fessed up. I told her that she has been a binky baby turned binky kid, and that we are working on getting rid of it all together, but she still has it when she's sleeping. So, I got to hear what I already knew... which is how BAD and TERRIBLE it is to let a child keep his or her binky longer than 12 months, and how hurtful that can be to his or her speech development. I get it... I really do. The next part she said is were she lost me... she told me that if she has anything (aka -a blanket or toy) that she associates with the binky that it also needs to go at the same time. So, I am supposed to take her binky and her softie, her security objects. Gulp.

As I sat in that seat, I got hot, and also felt tears well up. She could see my discomfort. She says to me, 'this whole process is a whole lot harder on parents than kids'. But, what I wanted to say was... but, you don't even know MY kid, how do you know if this isn't going to be hard on her? What I said instead was, that nothing is easy with Meritt. (and it isn't) (not an excuse, but just a simple truth) I told her that since working on the changes with no night time diapers, and no crib, she isn't sleeping. Not only isn't she sleeping, but she isn't staying in her bed. One night she managed to stay awake until 4am. The next night, she went to sleep OK, but was up at 2am. Every night (almost) has been a different version of this. How do I also take her security items away, when she obviously is having issues that we can't seem to fix? (but, are working towards) Well, I was told that she wasn't aware that Meritt had 'so many issues' besides just speech, and that she thought it would be best to schedule another time when we could speak privately about what needs to be done about all of Meritt's 'issues'. Ouch.

I don't want it to sound like this woman isn't nice. Because she is. Really nice, and great at what she does, but she doesn't know my kid (yet). It's hard to hear things sometimes when there really isn't any easy answers. It's always so much easier to look at someone elses problems or life from the outside, and think the solution to their problem(s) is easy if only they would just do it... I don't like the label that is being put on my girl right now. I feel like her 'issues' or 'problems' are going to overshadow her amazing gifts. That she is going to get lost in the shuffle of being 'fixed' and get hurt in the process.

I don't think words can even express how much I want Meritt to get all of the help and therapy she needs to be a success in all that lies ahead of her. But, she's only 3 and a half years old. Sometimes little kids have adjustment problems. Sometimes kids just need a safe and loving place to grow their roots, so they can find their wings.

Now, I am just rambling, and I've probably lost half of you out there reading this a long time ago, but here I am, a mama whose heart is breaking for her girl. I am hoping and praying that I will have the strength to listen to MY instincts, and the faith to keep it in GODS strong, capable hands, in hopes that my little girl will never lose her sparkly eyes, hopeful spirit, and joyful soul!

Please keep us in your prayers right now, we need it!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Storybook Land...

Storybook land 2010

This evening we visited a place I've been visiting since I was a little girl...
A 34 year old tradition in our community, called Storybook Land.

For kids it is absolutely enchanting!
To hear the laughter, and squeals of delight.
To see the smiles from ear to ear.
To feel the happiness they were feeling.
It reminds me, about the magic that this season holds!

Monday, December 13, 2010

the stockings were hung by the chiminey with care...

Christmas House

All decorated! Check.
Now, I just need to get a bunch of things done and ready to hit the post office...
and other festive merriment's...
and we'll be all ready!

christmas livingroom


tree hunt 2010
christmas tree hunt 3
Christmas tree hunt 2

Thanks to my husband, and a bit of decoration, tree hunting, charlie brown, and some Christmas tunes, I'm glad to say, I'm beginning to feel a lot more in the spirit!

Saturday, December 11, 2010


today... I am praying for patience.
because I feel I have none.

Meritt, is being a real pill this week.
It is so trying.
It is so exhausting.
I am out of ideas of how to make her behave.
I love her with all of my heart, but I'm tired.

It's the 11th day of December.
The to-do lists are piling up around my ears...
yet, here I lay in bed typing this...
lacking motivation. BIG TIME!

So, I'm going to say a little prayer. (or maybe a big one!)
Go get in a bubble bath, and hope that my inspiration, and motivation will come.
Today is the day to...
decorate my house for Christmas
get a Christmas tree
get some projects done
check things off the to-do list

then maybe I will relax a little!
anyone else out there feeling the same sorts of things?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

eight days later...

potty feet
No more Diapers

Eight days after the diaper fairy came to our house, and several laxatives, a doctors call, many tears, and a thousand trips to the toilet... I am happy to announce we have a happy pooper named Meritt!

She now goes to the toilet a thousand times a day 'just to see' if she needs to poop. She has also let us (and everyone she knows) that she (in her words) 'loves to poop!' It's hilarious, and never fails to make me laugh, every time she says it! We've come FULL CIRCLE. From devastatingly fearful of pooping on the potty, to elated. Who knew...

It has been an exhausting ride, especially since it came on the same weekend we moved my grandma to a foster care home, and the same weekend Bella came down with a stomach bug, but it's DONE! I now feel like I could use to sleep for the next week (and I might!). But, I am so glad to be officially out of diapers at our house! So, so glad I could do a happy dance! (if I had the energy!) We still don't have a Christmas tree, or a wreath, or any kind of Christmas decorations in our home. We still have turkey's and pumpkins decorating the house, but oh well... There are several big things checked off my list, and that is worth more than a thousand Christmas trees in my book! I can now check off my Christmas list to Santa - get Meritt to poop in the potty! That may be the best gift I've received in a while! :)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

no one said this growing up stuff was easy...


I am finding that growing up is hard. It's hard for me, and it's hard for my little Rosie too! There are those of us that are born to grow up, and then those of us that have no desire at all. Meritt Rose is one of those kids that has no desire to grow up. I am pretty sure that she would be happy being a baby forever... and while I'd like to keep her that way for as long as possible, it's time for us both to face facts and realize it's time!

Meritt's daddy and I have struggled alot with how to handle her lack of desire to grow up. We've tried to lay down the law. We've tried letting her be, so that she could go at her own pace. We've tried incentives. We've tried talking... and talking... and talking... about how fun it is to be a 'big kid'. Nothing seems to work. Here we are two months away from her 4Th birthday, and we're facing giving up things that should have been long gone by now. A crib. The Binky. Nighttime diapers. Hard stuff for a little one who wants none of it!

We started with getting rid of the crib. We had tried about 6-9 months ago, putting her big girl bed in her room, and her crib right beside. Hoping when given the choice between a big girl bed and a crib she would choose the bed. No luck, so after months of trying to let it be her idea, a few weeks ago, we made a trip to Ikea. A special trip to Ikea, to buy a big girl bed. (a bit smaller and more sized to her than the previous one) We also purchased her very own CD player (just like big sis) in hopes that listening to music (one of her favorite things) would help soothe the transition. So far, besides getting her to stay in her bed at bedtime, it is going well. We had a few nights of her getting up, and she is up really early... but nap time is going smooth (when I'm home) and she is sleeping without freaking out, which is a plus!

Since finding out about her speech issues, I have made it my personal mission to absolutely put my foot down about the Binky... Oh, boy this one has been hard!
She still gets it, but only at nap and bedtime. The minute she wakes up it goes high on the shelf. (unfortunately because she's part monkey, she has figured out how to climb to get it) So, now I am looking for a new hiding place! Yes, I know I should have taken it away a LONG time ago. I know I am probably a terrible mother. I know that this whole speech issue could be completely my fault. But, in the heat of the battle raising a possibly harder than usual baby and toddler, you do what you got to do. There I said it...

Last January I made it my mission to get Meritt potty trained before she turned 3. (since we had been trying since two and she wanted NOTHING to do with it) We spent about a week maybe a week and a half working on it, and she did really good... except for one little thing. She absolutely REFUSED to poop on the potty. At first she pooped her big girl panties, then with time, she realized if she held it until nap or bed, she could do it in a pull-up and then get changed. Well, of course we tried to nip it in the bud by taking the pull-ups away, but that just led to bigger issues. The bigger issue being she held it for TEN LONG DAYS... until finally her misery and ours led to us giving her a pull up. After talking to MANY people, the advise was, she'll do it when she's ready. Well, that was almost a year ago... and she still isn't choosing to do it on her own. So, here we go, trying this good-bye diapers/pull-ups deal all over again. It's definitely easier now that she's in a bed and not a crib. She has stayed dry now for nap and bed time for 3 almost 4 days. Only problem, we're on day 3 almost 4 of no pooping. I'm sticking to my guns this time. The diaper fairy has come, she's run out of money for diapers, and her SHIP HAS SAILED!!! So now the question is how long can she go? How ugly will this get... and why does this growing up thing have to be so hard on all of us? I am really ready for this stage of our lives to be OVER!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

holy germs batman...

Clearly a germ-a-phobic person such as myself should not be raising a three year old girl named Meritt, that just happens to have a cold.

This kid does not get how germs are spread... and once again God is S T R E T C H I N G ME!!! But, the stories are funny none the less, so I thought I would share so you could laugh at my misery.

Yesterday as I was in the bathtub, I asked Meritt to brush her teeth. As in anything I give her directions to do, she didn't do what I asked. Instead she grabbed MY tooth brush. I immediately said 'Meritt please don't touch my tooth brush, you're sick and that's how we spread germs'... she says, 'Okay, Mama'. Good deal! Or not... The next thing I know (as I am washing my hair - eyes closed) I open my eyes to see Meritt standing over me, with my tooth brush pressed up against her snotty little nose, telling me that my tooth brush smells, Soooo minty and good. AWESOME. YUCK. YUCK. YUCKITY YUCK! So, I do what any good germ-a-phobic person would do, I sanitized it with Clorox, and then put it in the dishwasher on sanitize mode. Matt comes home later and says, why is your tooth brush in the dishwasher, I just shake my head and say, don't ask!

While at the Dollar Tree finding some little stuff, Meritt sneezes... you know the kind.... the snot flying everywhere kind. The there's so much snot what do we do kind. I go to get the tissues or the boogie wipes from my purse to clean her up, hmmm well guess who went through my purse and took them out??? Yup, you guessed it, the same little 3 year old that is standing in front of me with snot EVERY WHERE! So, what's a mom to do? I get the Target ad out of my purse and proceed to try and clean her up with that. Except there's too much. I then tell her, to use her sleeve, and that we're out of there. The lady shopping next to us in the card isle that is trying not to be obviously watching, just looks at me with horror on her face, grasps her cart, and gets the heck away from us! Ohhh yes, I am definitely going to get the mother of the year award this year!!!

So, now I have two kids with colds, a dad who is home sick, a husband with swollen glands, and me with a scratchy throat. Can anyone just keep their grubby germs to themselves??? I DON'T LIKE to SHARE......... GERMS. Maybe I should ask Santa for a has mat suit for Christmas! Ha - it probably still wouldn't work. Darn kids;) What's a Mama to do?

Friday, November 26, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 14(ish)...

Day 14 (a day late). Before our Thanksgiving festivities began yesterday my plan was to document our Thanksgiving with pictures, and then share them here with you for day 14. Then, 3/4 of the way through the day, cooking, dinner, and visiting, I realized my camera never even made it our of it's bag.

At first I was really upset with myself, because I know I could have gotten some beautiful pictures to share with you all.

Then, I realized something...
I was so involved in living in the moment, that I didn't even stop to think otherwise. That's a beautiful thing. Yesterday was a beautiful day. Matt and I and the girls spent a leisurely morning and early afternoon cleaning up, cooking, and resting before our guests came. Then we ate a beautiful meal with family and a friend. Visited, and ate yummy dessert. We watched football, and a movie, and spent good, plain, wonderful family time.

No, I didn't document the day behind my camera lens.
Instead I documented the day in my memory and enjoyed every moment.
At the end of the day that's how we should live our lives, enjoying the moment.
For this I am so thankful.
I realize I have so much to be thankful for in my life...
I am totally content!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 13...

Admittedly this will not be the deepest or most meaningful of posts during this thankfulness challenge... sorry, in advance! Today, and most days... but especially today, I am thankful for owning god's gift to cold feet; my Ugg Boots. I've owned fake ones, tall and short, but none compare to my real Ugg boots that I received last Christmas from my honey. It has been burrrrr diddly COLD the last few days, and there is nothing like putting your tootsies into some real Australian sheep wool to warm ones footsies. Ahhhhh, yes, I love them, more than I should, but I do. I know some people think they are ugly, but I DON'T CARE. I LOVE THEM and so do my feet!


ugg 2

Want to know something naughty? I hope Santa brings me these exact same boots this year in grey! Maybe if I'm REAL GOOD! :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 11&12...


Sorry, it's another 2 in 1 kind of thankfulness challenge!
Yesterday got away from me.
But, yesterday I was thankful for my home.
Today, I am thankful for waking up to a snow day!

Put those two things together and you have a great combination!!!

I am so thankful for this cozy, warm home, that welcomes me each time I walk through it's doors. It's my safe place. My haven. The place our family comes together. I feel amazingly blessed to live where I live. My house is way more than a house, it's a home. The other day after my friend came over for the first time, she gave me one of the nicest compliments EVER... she said being in our home feels like receiving a big hug. Awwwww. Does it get any kinder than that???

Today there is snow & ice on the ground, so here's what I have planned...
cuddling in bed
crafts for the girls
a nice long nap time
going for a snow walk
and lots of hot tea and cocoa!

Very thankful! It's gonna be a great day!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 9&10...


Tonight, after 8+ hours in the car in two days...

We had so much fun!!!
I love my brother...
His girlfriend is a sweet heart...
Their house was cozy...
Their town BEAUTIFUL...
The City was stunning... (my favorite was walking as the snow fell today drinking hot peppermint cocoa)
We ate WAY too much good food...
The Picasso exhibit blew my mind...
All and all it was a blast!!!

Whew, I'm TIRED!
Girls are tucked in bed.
I took a hot bath.
I scooped the two days worth of kitty poo.
I started a load of laundry.
I read the mail.
I posted this...
Sleep tight...
I hope you are thankful for your cozy bed too!!!

Friday, November 19, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 8...


I am thankful that tomorrow morning Matt, Bella, and I will head up the freeway to see my big brother, and his adorable girlfriend Kate; and that together we will go see the Picasso exhibit at the Seattle Museum of Art!

I am thankful that my mom and dad were willing to watch Meritt so that the three of us can go and have a bit of peace and quiet, and time just the three of us. I am thankful to spend some quality time with my brother (that is rare). I am THANKFUL to spend the weekend in the big city soaking up a bit of culture and art.


I am thankful to introduce my daughter to a once in a lifetime opportunity to the works of Pablo Picasso in real life.
It has been said that you cannot and will not see a better exhibit of his work except for maybe in Paris.... and well since Paris isn't in this years budget, we'll settle for Seattle!

I am thankful that we can crash at Ansen and Kate's for the weekend!
I am thankful that Matt's employer gave us the opportunity to purchase discounted tickets... and that Bella is still free! Yay.


So, I'll be away for a few days, I'll be back Sunday evening with lots more thankfulness to share!!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 7

Today, I am thankful for motherhood. I'm not thankful for it because my kids are perfect little angels, far from it. I am not thankful for motherhood because it's easy. I am thankful for motherhood because my girls fill my heart up in a way I never knew even to be possible before they entered my life. These two little people are my everything, and it is my mission in life to make sure that my children grow to be amazing, strong, confident, God fearing, honest, loving, kind, intelligent women. Hopefully, if I do my job right, maybe someday they will have the joy of knowing the love of being a mother.


Most days I hardly manage to keep the chaos of my kids and the messes of life straight. There are days I have to remind myself to take a deep breath a thousand times a day. There are days I yell, and have to ask my kids for their forgiveness, because motherhood is the greatest challenge I have ever faced. There is nothing easy about it. At the same token there is nothing as rewarding and fulfilling as being Isabella and Meritt's mama.


It is truly my great honor that God sent these two little girls to fill my days. They teach me, they bring me unmeasurable love, they make me laugh, they make me think about things I might never have thought of before, they make me worry, they make me cry, they warm my heart, and they make my cup flow over! They are truly my joy in life! I am so thankful that they are mine!


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 6...


Okay, so if I am keeping it real, today it's hard to think about what to be thankful for. Life has kind of been raining down on me lately, and quite frankly I'm ready for it to stop. We've been dealing with taking care of my grandma and her failing health, I've been dealing with a few of my own health issues that the doctors are having a hard time diagnosing, and today after visiting with a Speech Therapist, I found out that Meritt's speech and language development is severely delayed, and will be needing private, weekly therapy - (aka $$$$$).

Money has been really tight this last year or maybe two... it's hard to keep track. It's been one of those years where when it rains it pours. Matt's employer was bought out, thus changing his pay. Our washer and dryer bit the dust, our vacuum bit the dust, our dishwasher bit the dust, we were in completion mode of our basement, we had a major water leak in our irrigation system... well you get it, the list goes on and on. It's life, right???

Sometimes, when all of these things pile up around your ears it's hard to remember the good. It's hard to feel thankful in the midst of the stress, that it all causes. The truth is that you do what you can, you work hard, and take things one day at a time, and as they come.

The bottom line truth is, our family is blessed. Compared to others out there struggling to keep food on the table and roofs over their children's heads, we are BLESSED! We can keep figuring out how to do with less 'stuff'... because our blessings don't come from the 'stuff' - but from each other!

So today, even though I am feeling stressed, and anxious, and like my blessings are sitting out in the fog at the moment. I am going to keep walking through that fog until the blessings are clear.

I am thankful for:
Having jobs
Health Insurance - even if it's not the best in the world, it's better than not!
Our overall health
Our warm house
Food in the fridge
...and all of the love I have in my life!

I know that this post wasn't very rosy...
But, it's real.
It's stuff that we all face, and deal with, and I think it's so important to be able to see all of the good in spite of the bad that may be happening. Don't you agree? God is great, and I know that he will NEVER give me (us) more than I (we) can handle or bear. His faithfulness is abundant! His lessons are infinite!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 5...

(Gigi and the girls December 2008)

A few weeks ago, my grandmother that has Alzheimer's disease, started on a downward spiral. She has become so very confused, disoriented, weak, tired, sometimes mean, and completely unlike herself at all. It's hard. It's sad. I've cried a lot of tears in the last few weeks. It's awful when someone you adore doesn't even know who you are. She no longer knows my name. But, yet in spite of all of that, her spirit is still inside fighting. She told me the other day she didn't remember me... all I could say in return was, that I remembered her, and my memories would be enough for both of us.

I've been in charge of giving her medicine to her morning and evening. Some days she tries to shove me out the doorway. Some days she gets mad, or acts bothered by my presence. But, after I give her the pills she hates to take, she usually forgets why she was mad to begin with. I guess that is one beautiful thing about the disease she has.

Over the last few years I'm ashamed to say I've stopped visiting her very often. My heart just felt crushed every time I saw her and I knew she had no idea who I even was. I feel thankful in an odd way that she has taken this turn, and needed extra help, it has forced me to step up and do what I knew to be right all along, which was to love her, and take care of her, even though she doesn't know me, but because I KNOW HER. Not only do I know her, oh how I love her. My love is deep for her. My sweetest childhood memories ARE HER. She was my very best friend until her disease stole her from me. There have been times as a grown adult, that I needed a certain kind of advise, or a special kind of comforting, that I would have given any earthly possession to be able to crawl in her lap and have a talk...


(Gigi with Meritt when she was days old!)

These last few weeks have taught me an incredibly priceless lesson. I was afraid to spend too much time with her with her disease, afraid that I would only be able to remember her as she is now. I was fearful my other memories would fade. I now know, that just isn't true. My memories are mine. No one will ever take that away. Not a disease of the memory and mind, or any time in between...

(Gigi with Bella Christmas 2006)

Today, I am SO GRATEFUL for all of the memories I have with my Gram... she was an amazing lady. She was fun. She had this way of always making me feel I was home, and that I belonged.

I hope as I spend this time with her now, even though she doesn't remember, and is so confused, that somehow, she'll still know and feel the love that has always been between our two hearts!

I am so glad that my girls have at the very least had some time with her. Especially Bella, she loves her Gigi, and will always have her own memories with her. I am so glad that I have these pictures of my girls with Gigi, they are priceless to me!

Monday, November 15, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 4...


I was driving along this morning, do errands, listening to an India Arie C.D. that I checked out from the library, when this song came on... it hit me what I was thankful for today... it's him. My love. My Matt. My Honey. My Boo. The man that has made it his mission to make all of my dreams come true. The man that is the most amazing dad to our two little girls that I could ever wish for. I am so thankful that God paired us together. As unlikely as the two of us were to find each other, God knew, and designed the whole thing, even though no one else understood it, or got it. God knew. He knew our hearts... our two teenage hearts, and he put us together, and we grew into grown ups together. Good days and bad, he's still my very best friend!

Here's the song........ how is it that songs are able to sum up our emotions and words far better than we are ever capable of???

Song:"The Truth"
C.D.:"Voyage To India"

Let me tell you why I love him

Cause he is the truth
Said he is so real
And I love the way that he makes me feel
And if I am a reflection of him then I must be fly because
His light it shines so bright I wouldn't lie no

I remember the very first day that I saw him
I found myself immediately intrigued by him
It's almost like I knew this man from another life
Like back then maybe I was his husband maybe he was my wife
And even,things I don't like about him are fine with me
Cause it's not hard for me to understand him cause he's so much like me
And it's truly my pleasure to share his company
And I know that it's God's gift to breathe
The air he breathes

How can the same man that makes me so mad
Do you know what he did-(Spoken)
Turn right around and kiss me so soft
Girl do you know what he did-(Spoken)
If he ever left me I wouldn't even be sad no
Cause there's a blessing' in every lesson
And I'm glad that I knew him at all

Cause he is the truth
Said he is so real
And I love the way that he makes me feel
And if I am a reflection of him then I must be fly because
His light it shines so bright no

I love the way he speaks
I love the way he thinks
I love the way that he treats his mama
I love that gap in between his teeth
I love him in every way that a woman can love a man
From personal to universal but most of all
It's unconditional

You know what I'm talking about-(Spoken)
That's the way I feel
And I always will-(Spoken)

There ain't no substitute for the truth
Either it is or isn't
(Cause he is the truth)
You see the truth it needs no proof
Either it is or it isn't
(Cause he is the truth)
Now you know the truth by the way it feels
And if I am a reflection of him then I must be fly
Because he is, yes he is
I wonder does he know -Echoes

Sunday, November 14, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 3...


Okay, so admittedly this is not the deepest thing in the world to be thankful for, but I am... Maybe more than I should be! It took us close to 5 years to complete, but alas the day is here that we are actually living in our basement. It is the best space in the world for our family, and our guests when they come. We play, hangout, watch t.v., craft, do laundry, sew, read, and snuggle in our basement. The best part about it taking so long for us to finish, is the fact that we were able to think out each space and how we would best use it. It gave us time to really put a lot of thought into what we wanted to do in our extra space.... and I really have to say we use it exactly as I thought we would!

Selfishly, my favorite thing about the finished basement, is my new washer and dryer, and my very nice, incredibly roomy, lovely laundry room! It makes my life about a million times easier, and the piles and piles of laundry I do each day, at least a little more bearable!

P.S. Uhhhhhhhhheeeemmmmm, I've noticed not much participation here with this thankfulness challenge, and you all are making me feel like the geeky kid at school that no one would play with. Please play... you don't want me to feel like a geek that no one likes now do you??? What would that do to my overall self esteem?P.P.S. I know that there are readers out there reading this, so PLEASE, PLAY ALONG!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 2...

God's Grace

Today & everyday I am so thankful for the Grace of God. His love is shown for us in every grain of sand, every leafy tree, every sunset, and in the faces of those we love... for he designed each one. I am a totally imperfect person, but he loves me unconditionally. He forgives me, and gives me his grace to start anew each day. For this, I am truly thankful!

Friday, November 12, 2010

14 day thankfulness challenge 2010 - day 1...

most thankful

My most thankful thing in my life, is the love and joy I receive from being part of our little family. I thank God each and everyday that these 3 people are mine to spend all my days with. It's my true pleasure and delight to be his wife, and their Mama!


I am blessed beyond measure with some amazing friends, as well as an extended family that means the world to me. However, these five people; my parents, my husband, and my girls, are my world. Each of these people mean more to me than I could ever define in words, they are my rock and foundation in this earthly life! They have been with me on my best days and my worst, and love me just the same. I count myself the luckiest girl in the world to be loved by these 5 people!

What is your most thankful thing???
Today's the day...
or post your own at your own blog and let me know!
Let's remember to be thankful!
Can't wait to hear from you!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

save the date...

November-2010 thankfulness challenge

I'm starting a new tradition around here at Bella's little Rose...
Last year I wrote everyday for the two weeks before Thanksgiving about what I was thankful for that day. (check out the label on the sidebar to read last years) It was just such a great exercise for me to get myself in the right mind frame for what the holidays and what Thanksgiving should really be about. We all have so many blessings all around us, that sometimes we are too busy to see or acknowledge. I invite you to join me each day here, starting this Friday for my 14 day thankfulness challenge. You will be amazed at how many things you have in your life to be thankful for! Feel free to either comment, or link your blog to mine, and let's see how much we can be thankful for! So start thinking... it starts Friday! (even if I am the only one that plays! But, I hope not ;) )

Monday, November 8, 2010

Market of Choice

We live in a fairly small area. We don't have all of the variety of shops that say a larger city might be able to provide. But, even though we live in a fairly small, farming community, there are still big changes, and good things on the horizon all around us. There are more and more people like me and my family that feel that it is increasingly important to educate ourselves about what we put into our bodies and where are food is coming from. People also realize that we need to keep things local and sustainable to keep our earth, and people healthy! Our little community just got a Market of Choice grocery store. Saturday afternoon we piled in Sassy (our little VW) and went to check it out for ourselves... WOW... it is great! Finally, we have really needed a place to shop like this! Now maybe I won't have to go to 5 places just to get everything I need. (Maybe!) It's definitely a step in the right direction! If you live in the Albany/Corvallis area you should really go check it out. Make change part of your routine! Every little change we make in the right direction makes a HUGE difference!

Here is a little snippet from their website to tell you a little bit about what they are about!

At Market of Choice, we do our best to walk the talk. That means striving for sustainability by meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. From packaging and composting to biodegradable bags and solar power, we continuously work to achieve that goal.

It begins with the products we carry, the materials we recycle, and the choices we offer customers. It’s also about buying local. Buying local simply means purchasing food, or any product or service that is produced, grown, or raised as close to your home as possible. We support local vendors, so that you can too.

But it doesn't end there. Being sustainable also means investing in people, who in turn, invest in their community. We truly believe that paying our employees living wages and offering comprehensive benefits is an investment in our community. We can achieve even more, with your help. If you have an idea, contact us! We’ll consider them with care.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

you are loved...

you are loved

the best Sunday afternoon...

After two weeks straight of working day in and day out at the shop, getting everything ready for our 'Holiday Open House' and getting through the weekend of Holiday Open House. Today was the day... the day to take a deep breath, get clean sheets, vacuum my furry home, go to Costco, take a nice afternoon nap, and then go with Bella for a date to see the Secretariat at the Pix (our favorite theater)! What an absolutely inspiring film. Loved, Loved, Loved it!!! I highly recommend this movie! My little horse lover was at the edge of her seat. I was truly inspired! I am not even sure I can put into words how wonderful this film was... everything from the touching story to the beautiful fashions, it was just great! This was the absolute perfect thing to do on a rainy Sunday afternoon! The best part... holding Bella's hand (for a two hour movie, sharing popcorn with my girl, and the sparkle that was in her eyes every time she looked at me throughout our 'date'!) I've missed my girls... and my guy! I'm glad this two weeks is over, and I can now soak up my real life (ha ha) once again!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

family photos...

family collage

We had the pleasure of getting our photos taken by the amazingly talented Meghann Street of Your Street Photography for the second time... here is a sneak peak at our 2010 family photo shoot!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

sing me to sleep...

When I was a little girl, one of my favorite things was spending a Friday or Saturday night (or both)with my Gram. I always slept in her bed beside her, we would cozy in and read a book or two, and then she would sing me to sleep, rub my back, and lull me to sleep...

Even now when I'm upset, or really tired, afraid, or feel alone. Or maybe I'm just a little lonely for memories of her, I hum her song.

Lullaby, and good night,
With pink roses bedight,
With lilies o'erspread,
Is my baby's sweet head.
Lay you down now, and rest,
May your slumber be blessed!
Lay you down now, and rest,
May thy slumber be blessed!

Lullaby, and good night,
You're your mother's delight,
Shining angels beside
My darling abide.
Soft and warm is your bed,
Close your eyes and rest your head.
Soft and warm is your bed,
Close your eyes and rest your head.

Sleepyhead, close your eyes.
Mother's right here beside you.
I'll protect you from harm,
You will wake in my arms.
Guardian angels are near,
So sleep on, with no fear.
Guardian angels are near,
So sleep on, with no fear.

Lullaby, and sleep tight.
Hush! My darling is sleeping,
On his sheets white as cream,
With his head full of dreams.
When the sky's bright with dawn,
He will wake in the morning.
When noontide warms the world,
He will frolic in the sun.

Today has been a hard day. I wish for just a moment I could go back to being that little girl in her bed, comforted by her song...

Friday, October 29, 2010

in times of anxiety and worry...

This time of year is inevitably my most stressful. A lot seems to snowball on top of me. There are times that I let all the stress, worry, and anxiety pile on top of me, and bury my heart. There are years and times that I have totally forgotten who to put my trust in so that my anxiety will be at peace. Today, I am conscience of this stirring within myself... and I am not giving in to this stressful time. Sure life is still stressful... Sure I'm still tired as a dog... But, I know, that God will never give me ANYTHING I cannot handle. By worrying, and feeling anxious, I am sending God the message that he in fact does not have my trust or my confidence that he has me covered. So, in this season of stress, I give HIM my anxieties in prayer, and feel totally at peace!

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you."

Philippians 4:6-9 ESV

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

this and that...

Okay, so I know, I know, every time I post I talk about how I have been totally in a blogging rut. Yup, you've heard it, you know it, and guess what??? My story is still the same. I guess all of my creative juices have been used for other things lately... There is just not an ounce of creativity left to pour into this little Ole blog of mine. So sorry, all you who are still reading this, I really am!

So, since I haven't any of my own creativity these days, I will leave you with a few new blogs I have found that are fun and creative reads all their own!
Under the Sycamore
Hello, from the Nato's
The Reed Life
Deliciously Organic
Joy's Hope

For the next two weeks or so I am working everyday... long hours, getting ready for the holidays at our shop Emma Downtown. So, at the current moment all of my energy and time is going into re-doing a 2,000+ SQ foot shop into a wintry wonderland, doing all of my normal wifey and motherly duties, decorating 7 Christmas trees, (yes, 7)and basically staying upright. Prayers are always appreciated! :) I do love this time of year... I wouldn't still be doing this if I didn't!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

a funny little tale...

I know that I haven't really been very good at blogging lately. Ever since my trip, I've been knocked off my horse so to speak. Maybe I'm having a hard time getting back into the swing of things, maybe there is just too much to do and too little of time to do it all in, maybe it's because I've had a terrible U.T.I. for a few months (yes, a few months) and it finally got so bad I was forced to take care of it with heavy doses of antibiotics, and rest. Maybe it's a combination of it all... That's life. Pure and simple. However, I just don't like documenting the upheaval in life as I do the fun stuff, the joy, and the sweet little memories. So, that's why it's been a little quiet around here.

Something happened last week that made me laugh... it made me stop, and realize the sweet little memories are in the everyday stuff that happens. Even in the midst of what feels like upheaval.

Last Friday, Bella was off school, Meritt was in school, (Bella was thrilled to have me all to herself for 2 whole hours...). While Meritt was in school we went to run some errands, first thing we did was go by Starbucks for a Venti Black Iced Tea (aka lover of my soul). When we got to the window at the drive through the Batista hands me my drink and says 'I have a present for you!' I said 'I love caffeine presents!'... and Bella chimes in from the back seat, 'I don't need caffeine, kids don't need it, kids are born with caffeine!' Amen. There is a true statement if I ever heard one! Kids are born with caffeine! That's why I never needed it before I had children, and now that I have two, I am hopelessly addicted! She was so tickled with the fact that she made us all laugh with her witty and true remark, that she began to giggle at herself. In a pure seven year old way, that lights up the day, and makes everything right in the world. She giggled, and snorted, and laughed, until we were both laughing until tears came out. Leave it to kiddos to say it like it is, and be able to see the humor in the truth! I love that girl!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

my favorite easy apple recipe...

Okay, so after you had to listen to all of my 'venting' and 'belly aching' yesterday I decided you deserved a little treat. So, I am sharing with you my most favorite easy apple recipe. I have been making this recipe for YEARS, since I was in 4H way back in the day.... that was a loooonggg time ago. It's really good. Really easy. Really comforting, and kind of one of those fake-out dishes that really tastes like you spent way more time and effort than you have. (love those!)

So Here it is...

Apple Crisp

4c. sliced apples
2/3c. brown sugar packed tight
1/2c. flour
1 stick butter
1/2c. quick oats
3/4tsp. cinnamon
3/4tsp. nutmeg

(use this topping for any kind of crisp you want just substitute apples for what ever fruit you like... I've made this with blackberries, marionberries, & peaches - it's all good!)

Place apples in a 7 by 9 inch greased pan. Mix remaining ingredients in a bowl with wooden spoon until crumbly, and sprinkle over apples. Bake at 375 degrees or until brown and crumbly.

(you can easily double or even triple this recipe for a larger groups of people... also you can bake individual crisps in ramekins for petite desserts! Serve with vanilla icecream or fresh whipcream and oh, yeah...)

I finally bought one of these today... oh my gosh, had I known what I was missing, well, I wouldn't have done 50lbs. of applesauce in August without it. It's awesome! I'm not one for a lot of gadgets and gizmo's in the kitchen, or recipes for that matter, but these two are worth trying! Hope you enjoy. Happy apple season!

"seeds of discouragement cannot grow in a grateful heart"...

Hello blog friends,
It's a new day! Hooray. Woke up a little growly again... but I'm nipping that feeling in the bud before it has a chance to bloom. Got a very nice little note of encouragement from my friend this morning, and her advise was "seeds of discouragement cannot grow in a grateful heart"... I love it! Thank you friend! Just what I needed to hear this morning!

Last night as I was feeling a little down about spending the evening at home, alone with the girls, we decided to get out of the house... so, we went to Costco ate a $3 dinner, and shopped around. We bought nothing, but it was fun to check out all of their new seasonal stuff! Then as we were driving home we drove by our favorite thrift shop, the girls said "Mama, let's go see if Vinnie's has any treasures"... girls after my own heart. I LOVE THRIFTING! So, we stopped... I didn't find any treasures this time, but Meritt found a toy pony for $1.50 and Bella found two of her animal ark books she loves to read for .50 cents each, so they were both thrilled. As for me, I'm just grateful that my girls are still amused and grateful to get a used pony and some old books! I'm sure that won't last forever, so I am going to enjoy it while it lasts! Matt beat us home, so I avoided the bedtime/bath time routine alone... (hmmm, as if I planned it ;) ) Got home, gave the girls a quick bath, and off to bed they went. Then Wednesday night funny TV... which I love! Especially Modern Family, have you watched it? It's hilarious... if you haven't check it out next Wednesday!

So, today my friends, I have a grateful heart, for the little things, the big things, and all the other blessings in between!

Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

needing a pep talk...

Hello blog friends... at the moment I think you are my only adult outlet, so I am turning to you. To vent. Sorry... turn off your computers and run now, if you like!

Today has been one of those blah kind of days. Not bad. Not good. Somewhere in between. Most of the time I am pretty good at seeing the beauty in the small stuff. I am more of a glass is half full than a half empty kind of person. Even on the really bad days, I (usually) don't feel sorry for myself. I don't today either.

I realize I live a completely blessed and happy life. I have a good husband, sweet, good girls, a wonderful home, and supportive family, dear friends, you name it I have it, I am, in a nut shelled, blessed beyond measure. I am aware of the suffering going on in the world around me. I can see the struggles on others faces as I pass them on the street or in the grocery line. I am by no way oblivious or unaware of these things around me. So, I realize for me to be typing that it has been a 'blah' kind of day, is sort of indulgent, since, my life is far from anything that a lot of folks face. But none the less, I am still human, and every now and then, even amongst the blessings that I have in my life, I feel, well kind of lonely.

I spend most of my days with little children. That like I said before are sweet, and good, loving, and adorable. But, at times they are also whiny, and self indulgent, unaware of other's feelings, and all about themselves. Just as I was to my mother when I was a child, and just like I'm sure every other kid out there is like. While I can logically realize these truths, there are still times, when the fits about sharing, or the complaining about the dinner that is put in front of them, wares at me... It's hard to remain patient and kind. It's hard to remain hopeful and optimistic. Most days I do. Today, well... I'm trying.

Tonight after Matt gets off work he starts his fall league of basketball. (his mistress if you will) (yep folks my husband is in love with something else besides me, and it's name, basketball) So, here's where the venting comes in... (Matt STOP READING THIS...)

Is it bad to feel a little resentful when your partner gets to play, when you are still, well, doing your duty? I want him to have an outlet for stress. I want him to do things in life that bring him pleasure. I want him to have hobbies outside of me. But, when the hobby comes in the way of the two hours a day I get to have his help with the girls it makes me GROWL! It makes me resentful. It makes me...... I don't want to have to feed my kids a third meal today without him. I don't want to give them baths and put them to bed without him. It's hard. It makes me feel lonely on these 11-13 hour days without him around to be my partner. So, it's 5:15, a little over two hours until he's home. So, I sit trying to give myself a pep talk to put my big girl panties on and 'deal with it'. I also try to sit and think of something to do, but can't come up with much, so I guess, I will put those big ol panties on, make dinner, clean it up, bathe the kidlets, read them stories, pick up the house, and tuck them into bed... and then still try not and be 'snarly' (yes that's his word for me) when he gets home, throws his dirty basketball clothes on the floor, and wonders what's for dinner. (by the way, I love my husband... a lot - I'm just human) Yes, as I say in my sidebar, life is not roses or songbirds all the time for any of us. Sometimes, we need to be, to say what's on our minds, to vent, to be blah, to be able to say that we feel lonely or resentful, even if just for a moment, so that the feeling can fade... or if nothing else, so we (me) can move past it move forward, and see the rainbow after the rain is done.

Thanks for listening to be vent blog friends. You have no idea how therapeutic typing out my feelings is for me. Some people jog to release stress, some play music, play basketball ;), take walks, bubble baths, or shop, me I have always preferred to write it out... Thanks for giving me the opportunity to do that here. It's nice to have a place to let my hair down. (if I had enough to put down) Hmmmm, now, back to what's for dinner????....... Reality is calling, got to go!

Monday, October 4, 2010



October gave a party;
The leaves by hundreds came -
The Chestnuts, Oaks, and Maples,
And leaves of every name.
The Sunshine spread a carpet,
And everything was grand,
Miss Weather led the dancing,
Professor Wind the band.
~George Cooper, "October's Party"

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot

No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace
As I have seen in one autumnal face.
~John Donne

Sunday, October 3, 2010

pumpkin picking...

Today we did our annual trip to the pumpkin patch. Or 'punkin patch' as Meritt exclaimed all day before and after our trip. I love this tradition. It's easy, and fun, and it's always so nice to enjoy the fall weather, bounty, and harvest. We are truly blessed to live in an area with so many local farms and farmers around us to find fresh fruits and veggies!

We got lucky and received a beautiful October day, with sunshine, and a slight nip in the air! This day has made me ready for fall! Bring on the cozy days of fall! Cuddling up, fires in the fireplace, slippers, pumpkins on the porch to greet us, yummy comfort foods, and lots and lots of family time!