Sunday, February 23, 2014


It's been seven short years since my baby boy came into this world.  I know people say it all of the time, but it really and truly feels like yesterday.  How he can be seven already just blows my mind.  We only have him here in our house for 11 more years.  Frankly, that's terrifying…knowing now how fast time goes. Only 11 more years to pour into him, teach him, raise him to be a responsible man, a loving spouse, a wonderful father, to choose a wife well, to love Jesus above all else.  It seems overwhelming to think about.  So I won't. We will continue living each day knowing that it is a gift from God.  We will watch our responsible boy make good choices and help him when he struggles. We will continue to take him to church 2 times a week and pray that his relationship with Jesus continues to be his own, and that it grows like a wild fire. We will watch his compassionate heart touch other's lives, and we will see all of the places God takes him.

If I'm being honest, Jude is the oldest seven year old I know. He's what I think of when I hear the term 'old soul'.  He's more responsible, determined, rational, caring and compassionate than I could have dreamed of being at his age.  I wish you could see the way he cares for his siblings. He carries other's burdens and prays and cries for them.  I know God has big plans for him, and I'm excited to see them unfold, but for now I just want him to be my little boy a while longer. To not be embarrassed to hold my hand when I pick him up from school.  To sit in my lap and play hide and seek.  To think it's still okay to call me momma.  

I know he's growing up. He scored 24 points at his basketball game last weekend.  His only requests for his birthday was to have a birthday dinner with friends instead of a big party, and he wanted a desk in his room. Even though the years still pass, he'll always be my baby.  

I'll love you forever
I'll like you for always
As long as I'm living my baby you'll be.  

What he's into right now..

The rainbow loom.  Every parent of a 6-10 year old knows of the bracelet phenomenon happening right now. At least some of you have ruined a vacuum or gone completely insane from the number of rogue rubber bands trapped in your carpet, cars and furniture. Jude loves his. His favorite bracelet to make is the fish tale.

Legos.  Jude got several lego kits for his birthday and put them all together on his own.  The most impressive was the back to the future time machine.  That thing looked so hard to make and he put that puppy together in no time!  He loves building.  

His desk.  He will sit there and make bracelets and build things for hours.  I'm so happy we set this up for him.  I surprised him with it after school on his birthday and he was so excited.  I think he's most happy to have a place to keep his small pieces out of Hattie's reach.  And just to have a place of his own to work on things.  

Sports.  We just wrapped up basketball and it was so exciting.  Jude was so determined and improved leaps and bounds from the first game to the last.  He was the top scorer on his team and many times received awards like, 'Most Christ-like', 'Best Offense' and 'Determination'.  Proud momma.  Baseball is already heating up, and he's so pumped.  He's been running drills on his own in the yard and practicing sprints.  I caught him lifting weights the other day and stopped him.  He just wants to be the best he can be so bad.  Love this kid to the moon.  

Happy 7th Birthday, Jude.  You are amazing in every single way!  

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

loft makeover

I don't know if I can consider this room a makeover, it was just a room full of toys before, but it feels so much better now that it's officially decorated.

We have this loft space at the top of our stairs.  It's classified as a 'game room' according to the builder, but it's a small space and open to the living area below.  For nearly four years now it's been nothing.  We have had toys in there for 2 years, a drum set at one point, but empty for the most part.  I should also mention that there are barely walls in this space (roofline and loft wall).  There's really only one wall that's usable for decor, so I felt like it really needed to be a focal point.  This room is also a pass-through to the rest of the upstairs (I know, it's a decorating challenge all the way around), so the placement of furniture was key to getting  it right.  Did I also mention it's a small space?  I think 12x12, so the scale of furniture was a huge factor.  I also wanted to use as many of my own unused things to decorate as possible (budget).

My biggest requirement and goal in decorating this space was to step outside of my box.  I wanted to do something that I haven't been bold enough to do in the main rooms in our house.

I had all of these frames in my stash.  I had mats made for some of them and added the mirrors. 

And this is the loft wall.  It overlooks our living room and is a steep drop.  I didn't want any furniture along this wall in case we have tiny jumpers.  

See what I mean?!  Steep.  

  So far we love it.  We have used this space so much already, and it makes me happy for it to not be a wasted room in our house.  It feels good!  

Monday, February 3, 2014

a constant struggle {and a mini-makeover}

I blame the cold weather for all of my antsy antics lately.  I've been decorating and rearranging like a fool. Seriously, it needs to be done for a while.  I honestly struggle with my desire to redecorate decorate all of the time.  I've even taken to decorating my friend's and neighbor's homes when they ask for help. I feel like it's time wasted when I could be doing so many other things (don't hear what I'm not saying, I really enjoy it). Volunteering, cleaning, playing more with my kids, cleaning, having more time with the Lord daily, and well, cleaning.  You know, more.  It's also on my mind a lot.  What could I do in this room? How would that look? I should go shopping and see what I can find.  Honestly, that's just not where I want my head all of the time.  I feel as of late I've been more in the world and of the world than I desire to be.  My biggest prayer this month has been for God to focus my mind and attention on what He would have me focus on.  That my precious time with my littles would not be wasted, and that He would always show me where I'm needed, and what's needed of me.  For contentment.  For me to be satisfied with where I am and what I have and not desire more or different.  To not take for granted His blessings in my life.  It's kind of a long prayer.

I was so blessed when I read Emily's post here.  It was like God was speaking right to me through her.  I'm sure lots of moms struggle with similar things, but it's nice to see someone talk about it, and make you feel that you are not alone in a like struggle.  And in the end, I love that she talks about it being okay to want to make your house pretty.  Somewhere you and your family will appreciate.  My husband thanks me all of the time for wanting to make our house a home, and I'm so very appreciative for that.

Ultimately, I know this is a season in my life..where my kids need me and are home with me.  It will be gone before I know it.  Faster than I can imagine.  I don't want to miss it.  I know there is a balance that I can find.  I will get there.

Here is one of my latest time-sucks (I'll share more as I have time)..

This is our kitchen eating area.  We had a tiny table in here that was so very squished in when we entertained, and this is the only eating area we currently use.  I converted our formal dining into a reading room for now. Most tables I found were either too big or too small for this area, so I had this table made to just the right size for our space, and then finished it from raw wood.  It was a hellish nightmare:).  I thought it would be super easy, but all told the finishing process I used was 7 steps.  It took about 2 weeks of working on it in the driveway, the garage and the cold to get it done.  I'm still not sure I'm done with it.  I'm thinking of having a piece of glass cut for the top.   

I also made the foxed mirror and the dead boxwood wreath that is hanging from it. We hung the bamboo blinds and are calling it finished..for now!  I would love to have those two windows encased to look like one, and have a large header over them to really give them presence, but we are shopping for new windows and these windows are horribly uneven, so that will wait.

AND here's the newly (thanksgiving-ish) painted kitchen to go along with it! 


And for comparison sake, here's what it looked like previously..

I'm always so amazed at what a can of paint can do.  It feels so much more like us now.  Time well spent:).  

Eventually I'd love to find someone who can make my yellowy/orange alder cabinets look like this..

House Beautiful 

 but I have trust issues, so that could take some time.  

All in all, I'm so glad we have made the changes that have made our house our home.  I'd just love to be some point:).