First Day of School

Tuesday, September 1, 2015


And like that, my sweet babies are both in school. Second grade and kindergarten.

Holy cow.

Our morning went smoothly, for the most part. Don't they look so grown up and handsome? I hope they have a wonderful first day, but they are in their teachers' capable hands, so I'm certain they will. I just have to get used to all this...quiet.

Dear Mother

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Dear Mother,

Yesterday marked the second anniversary of your passing. I suppose I should still be in grieving, but I find myself still feeling rather little. Your last words to me still burn in my brain: "You were the biggest mistake I've ever made." I have reflected on them quite a bit over the past two years. Your mission to hurt me was once a success, but now those words have only strengthened me.

How could I be your "biggest mistake"? You didn't even know me. You left long ago. You chose to miss out on countless birthdays and Christmases, band and choir concerts, spring and summer breaks. You weren't there for first loves or first heartbreaks, cram sessions, book reports, or science projects. You weren't there to see me graduate high school -- even my dad was there for that one. You missed my engagement, my wedding, and the birth of both of my sons. You missed all of their firsts, as well; they don't know you at all. Tell me again how I ruined your life?

Today, I don't grieve you. I pity you. While you may have considered me your mistake, God doesn't make mistakes -- I was meant to be. Meant to be disowned by a mother, but adopted by the Father, who sent His Son to redeem me and grow me into who I am today. And He has always been there, every single step of the way, especially when you weren't. Thank you for making your "biggest mistake", because it has turned out to be my greatest blessing.

Your Daughter

California Trip Highlights

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Battery Point - Crescent City, California - 2015
Ah, vacation. It's a glorious thing. We took a whirlwind roadtrip to California, driving from one end to the other. Our stops included the Northern Coast, the Redwoods, San Francisco, Oceanside Beach, Nana's house, and LEGOLAND. Eight days, four states, and over 2,300 miles driven. It was nuts, but we had a blast! 

Trees of Mystery - Klamath, California - 2015
Golden Gate Bridge - San Francisco, California
Oceanside Pier - Oceanside, California, 2015
LEGOLAND California - Carlsbad, California - 2015

Our Top 5 Favorite Children's Books

Friday, February 13, 2015

I know I haven't posted in quite awhile. Life, again, has been crazy. You know how it is. But during this time, we have started picking up a fun assortment of books for the boys and I wanted to share a list of our favorites.

I'm not associated with in any way, but I shop there frequently and added links to each book for convenience.

1. The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak

This book is our all-time favorite! As the title suggests, this book contains no pictures, but instead forces the reader (usually an unsuspecting grown-up) to say some pretty silly words. The boys love it because Daddy and I have to make total goofballs of ourselves because "that's how books work...those are the rules". I highly recommend this one for some great read-out-loud/bonding/laughing time.

2. The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt

I love the creativity of this book. A little boy just wants to color, but instead he finds a stack of letters from his beloved crayons. Many of them are voicing their complaints, but one is perfectly content with his job. It's really fun to read aloud and the illustrations are adorable.
3. The Scrambled States of America by Laurie Keller

We just recently bought this one, but it was an immediate hit. It all starts with a disgruntled Kansas, who just wants a change of scenery. He and his neighbors decide to throw a party to get to know the other states. By the end of the night, the states decide they want to switch places, which they quickly find to be a huge mistake. This book is so funny and a great way to learn US geography. And, evidently, Idaho is the "politest state", which I find amusing and not very accurate. =)
4. I Need My Monster by Amanda Noll

This is one of Drew's favorites. A little boy has a monster under his bed, but they're on a first name basis. All is well and fine until his monster decides to take a day off. Now the boy can't sleep. So, the monster agency sends replacements, but none of them are HIS monster. I love this book because it addresses a common childhood fear of something under the bed and puts a funny spin on it. Now we joke about the monster under the boys' bed and imagine what he might look like. The illustrations are extraordinary.
5. The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

We watched the short movie on Netflix before we bought the book, but the story is basically the same. To avoid being eaten by various woodland predators, a little mouse makes up a fake, fearsome creature that he claims is afraid of him...until that creature turns out to be real. This is a fun rhyming book with an unexpected ending. Another Drew favorite.