Learning Through Listening

One of the areas I have been trying to work on in my marriage has been truly listening to Chris and then reacting to his needs.  You’d think that would come naturally in a marriage, but it has taken surprising focus on my part.  The listening part I have really been working on and that is becoming much more natural to me.  But the second part that I have discovered our marriage needs is for me to react to Chris’s needs when I hear them. I had gotten in this…

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How I Learned Bravery From My Five Year Old

I am constantly amazed by my kids.  Aren’t all parent, I guess?  Every time they experience something new or learn something or are randomly nice to each other, my heart just explodes with pride. “Look at my sweet son!  He chose not to tackle his sister when she stepped on his Lego car.  What a sweetheart!” If parenthood had a suit of armor, pride would be the visor on our helmets.  It’s what blinds us to their imperfections.  It’s what we look through and out of when we look at…

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A New Kind of Mother’s Day

My first Mother’s Day was super special to me. I hadn’t even had Bean yet. After an insane day of nesting and spontaneously needing to clean things that I had never felt the need to clean before in my entire life… …I promptly fell asleep on the couch where I snored and drooled for hours, the way only an eight months pregnant woman can. When I woke up, I discovered that Chris had gone out and bought me flowers. His card said, “I love you because you are already such…

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Household Tricks That Keep Me Sane

Almost from the day Gracie was born, I knew that in order to manage a household with two small children, organization was going to be key. It has taken me several years to figure out what kinds of organization systems work for our family, and I continue to add to and adjust how we keep our house as the needs of our family changes. But today I thought I would share just a few every day tips and tricks we use around our house to keep ourselves relatively neat and…

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The Grammar of Marriage

I’m never more reminded of how lucky I am to have Chris than when we face a challenge together.  Over the years, we have learned that the only way to make it through the ugly parts of life is to lean on each other for support.  I think that’s a pretty good lesson to have learned. I love Chris when he is there for me.  He has this calming presence that just puts me at ease.  He doesn’t have to be near me or touching me or talking to me.…

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Parenting Through Trembling Lips

A lot of parents worry about their kids.  Worry comes with the job description.  But, honestly, I haven’t consistently worried about my kids in quite a while.  Both are old enough to express their wants and needs to me, both have been doing really well in school and at home recently, and family life has seemed easy for the past few months. But this week, parenting has defeated me and I have lived in a world of worry over my kids.  I find myself stopping to pray for them all…

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C’est La Vie

Oh, imaginary friends. I feel like we are growing apart. My silly work schedule at my silly job is draining me this year. Teaching is so intense right now that by the time I get home, I am exhausted. And because we are digital this year, I am also going blind from staring at an iPad screen, a laptop screen, and a Smartboard screen all day. Sitting down at a computer at night is the last thing I feel like doing these days. Another thing draining my time lately? My…

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Charming

Even on the darkest nights of colic-induced hysteria, I knew that Gracie was going to be a charmer.  She has the same annoyingly gifted ability to make people like her even when you really want to kill her.  I call that *charm*.  And it will be what ultimately saves Gracie’s life because without it, I would not be able to handle that headstrong, opinionated, passionate, irrational, high strung firecracker on a daily basis. I have learned that dealing with Gracie is like riding a bucking bronco.  The more you push…

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The Pool Bag

This summer I am trying something new, and so far I am really loving it.  During the summer, the kids and I can be found either out by the pool or at the splash park.  We are water loving fools around my house.  Last summer, though, one of the things that held us up the most was having the condense the diaper bag into a pool or beach bag.  I was forever leaving sunscreen in my diaper bag and not having it when we went to the pool, or leaving…

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What I Learned on a Farm

This past weekend, Bean had a birthday party for one of this classmates at a petting farm.  I had never been to a petting farm before.  In fact, when I got the invitation, I had to Google it before I found out that petting farms are real farms that kids get to visit.  Only, they are allowed to touch everything and try it all out. It was such a fun party!  The kids got to actually milk a cow, for crying out loud! This particular cow was seven months pregnant,…

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