Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The other day I got a renewal notice from Go daddy about my domain name.
Honestly, I started to wonder if it was worth paying to keep my website name because it's been YEARS since I've written on here (are blogs even a thing anymore??)
 I love writing but I've always gone back and forth with how much to share on the www. Even more so after we had babies.
However, I've decided it's a much needed outlet for me & I really don't care who reads it (and who doesn't.) That sounds harsh, but I just mean I write as a type of therapy and it's okay with me if people aren't interested in what I have to say.

SOOOO much has changed since I last shared on here.
We've had another baby (who's now almost 2!)
Our sweet FOUR year old started pre-school.
We "quit" traditional ministry.
We moved to the Mountains.
We built an incredible home.
We got pregnant with our 3rd sweet baby & had to say goodbye too soon.
The Lord has met me in a place of grief. He's revealed a sense of joy within sorrow that I have never experienced before. 
I've started counseling again.
We both turned the b i g 3 0
We've made new friends, reunited with old, and kept in touch with the true.

In time, I want to write specifically about each of these things.
I'm in a place where I am trying to (unapologetically) be ME.
I want to love the things that I love, grieve the way that I grieve.
I want to parent the way Nathan & I think is best without feeling bad about it and constantly questioning every thought & decision.
I say trying, because honestly, I'm insecure and always wondering if how I think, react, grieve, hope, hurt, feel- is wrong. This has been a life long battle, and I'm not ashamed to say, something I hashed out with a counselor for quite a bit of time in my 20's.
But writing helps me process and it's my hope it can be an outlet for me once again.
With Love,

Friday, July 31, 2015

Nursing the Babe + a Giveaway!

Before Elle was born the one thing I wanted more than anything was to be able to breastfeed her. After a pretty traumatic start of bringing her into this world, I was bound and determined to breastfeed. When Nathan brought her to me in recovery, we tried right away and she latched on perfectly. I was so thankful for this as it was a huge answer to prayer.
E and I went through lots & lots of stuff nursing, including sicknesses and major latch issues, but we powered through and now I don't see us stopping any time soon. I remember when she was tiny and we had to leave the house, I was terrified of nursing her in public. I would always be so frustrated with the many nursing covers I tried because they were either too short & Elle could kick it off in a matter of seconds, or I couldn't see her well enough to insure a good latch. I avoided going anywhere if I knew she would need to eat, which let's face it, is always, when they're newborns. However, I knew I couldn't avoid it forever but it never did get easier until she got older. Honestly, if I would have had a better cover, I wouldn't have been so nervous that my goods were gonna be shown to the world and I would have had more confidence that I could get her to latch well because I would be able to SEE her. Because of our latch issues, if I didn't get her to latch right, I would be in excruciating pain later & it just wasn't worth it.  Plus.. let's be honest, most nursing covers are ugly. They have weird patterns and odd colors. Basically, I didn't know any better and wish I had. 
Fast forward a full YEAR of just dealing with those horrible nursing covers. I can't believe I waited that long to find something I love considering how much of my day is taken up by nursing, but I am so happy to say I finally found one that exceeded all my expectations. I love SO many things about my new cover.
It's so soft. It feels like a light blanket and not something heavy I have to add to my clothing. 
I don't have to wear a bra under a tank under a shirt. In the middle of summer in the dessert, I am so thankful for this. I can just dress in ONE normal shirt and use this to cover up. I can also just wear this AS part of my outfit because its adorable. 
It's cute. I no longer feel like I have to pull out my ugly, weird patterned nursing cover and feel slightly embarrassed that it seems I have no fashion sense at all.
I can SEE my daughter but people can't see my stuff. Its super long in the front and back and since she is much more active now and has yet to kick it off of me, I'd say that's a win. 
I can use it for other things like a blanket for Elle or a carseat cover in Elle's big seat OR a newborn one. (Can't WAIT to use it for this when we have another tiny baby!)
They make GREAT gifts. Before I even had one, I grabbed one for a sweet friend of mine who also loves it. 
Just today I was out and about & needed to nurse Elle. We were playing peek-a-boo under the cover & she thought that was hilarious. In the past I would have NEVER messed with the cover once it was on because I wouldn't want to take the chance of being exposed. I cannot say enough about this cover. I am so so happy with it and would recommend it to any of my nursing mama friends! Luckily,  one of you has the chance to WIN one. Head on over to my Instagram to enter the giveaway! & if you can't wait, enter the code JMN15OFF for 15% off any nursing cover! 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Our Family- Short update. + I'm back. +New blog.

It feels good to be typing again. I've been "gone" for so long, I feel like I have so much to say.
Motherhood has ROCKED my world. Nothing quite like adjusting to becoming a mommy for the first time. So many, "am I doing this right?" questions & figuring out who you are in the process.
Elle is the cutest, sweetest, most squishest babe.
  Two days ago, she turned ONE. 
My tiny, 7 pound baby is now a ONE YEAR old. She's not even considered a baby anymore. 
I do not know how to handle this news. I am avoiding dealing. 
How can this be? I can't even believe I am typing that. I remember when we first found out we were going to have a baby. How at the end of my pregnancy, time seemed to drag on. And how the first few months of her life I was doing everything I could to just survive. 
Now, she's just a part of me. She goes everywhere with me & loves her momma fiercely. Weird/Cool how you just adapt. How you just become a mom. How it is so much of who you are. 
Nathan says I like the "fun things" of being a mommy. Basically everything that includes Elle and nothing that includes housework. I'm not sure I see a problem with that. He might disagree. What does he know? ;)
Our marriage has changed a lot. I get that question a lot too. Yes, yes things change. But they aren't all bad. Adjusting to a baby after almost 6 years of only being married was no easy feat. We're officially a year into this and things are just starting to become normal. We have fallen into somewhat of a routine although neither of us are the routine type, so I use that term lightly. 
We've done a lot of growing & changing & figuring out how to adjust. and thats OK. and that's GOOD. 
I would be lying if I said there weren't a couple occasions I texted a dear friend stating "everything is falling apart." But they never did. And things worked out like they always do. 
After trusting God for a baby and working out with Him that this was HIS plan, you can imagine my surprise when things weren't always perfect. I thought I had some right or something. Some right to say Hey, Lord, um you asked me to give up control here so.. um.. yeah. Why is this still hard? Why am I experiencing fear so intensely again? Isn't this what you wanted? And I know it was. So why this? Why is it hard?
It's been months & months of learning I need to trust God. All over again. It's been hard & often times I have felt so alone trying to figure this out. The one thing I have always let creep in.. that I am alone in all of this. That there is no one that experiences the same things I do. (which I know is a lie.. hello, 1 Corinthians 10:13) but it gets easier with easy passing day. With each truth I declare to believe. 
New favorite verse? God is within her, she will not fail. Psalm 46:5
Camp has come and gone this year and it was real special. The best we have experienced yet. We have an amazing set of leaders right now. They truly are our "dream team." I've seen them get to change lives and that's been the coolest. 
Our young adults group is getting to the good stuff and we're all agreeing the current study is just what we were all needing. We seem to grow every week & I love the time we get with each other.
Been busy making new friends & loving on friends in need. That is my heartbeat. 
We've experienced some hard news with family and also have seen God do great things.
We've been learning lots about community and praying hard for our friends. 
We took family pictures recently that I can't wait to share soon. 
We've been dreaming of the future and praying about BIG things.
We leave for vacation in 42 days. 
I have mastered the "mom bun." it's super easy you guys.. just don't wash your hair for 5 days and spray a ton of dry shampoo in. Simple. 

Hope you love the new blog, I do. 

Friday, July 10, 2015

Elle's Nursery

In honor of Elle turning ONE (I'm crying) this month.. I figured it was about time I shared her nursery with you all. better late than never?

Honestly, it did't take me long to decide what we were going to do with her room. It went like this:
Me: Hey babe, here is what I found and want you to do with E's room (showing him my Pinterest pin)
Babe: Alright. 
See, done.

I decided on adding the blue for a pop of color and we went from there. 

We LOVE the hutch we found. Really neat, my sister had the exact same one for her girls when they were small & I really wanted it but she had sold it years ago (I guess she was getting pretty impatient thinking we weren't having kids, wink.) Anyways, we were visiting our home town one weekend and found this gem at a consignment store. I could not believe it! Even better? It was a STEAL. 

We had to get creative with the gold triangles on the wall because we really wanted the gold metallic look, not yellow. N's mom suggested the craft paint that comes in a tube (genius!) and it worked like a charm! 

Her crib we got from Pottery Barn, for FREE. Long story short, we were given one (thanks sis!) that had a broken piece. Upon calling them, we learned they don't give new pieces.. they give new cribs..for free. score. Best customer service EVER.  

Everything blue you see (chair, rug, monogram E)- Pottery Barn. (also free, thanks to some gift cards we received from work)
'Baby Things' basket- Michaels (Thanks Sally!)
Rocking chair (Gifted from my sister)
Curtains (Target)
Painted wall letters (Gifted from Nathan's sister)
'Elle' frame (gifted from our amazing friend Tiffany)
Sheets (my mom made these + 2 more sets!)
Tassel (made by our amazing friend April)
Peters the Deer (Amazon)
Owl (Kohls) 
Hamper (Baby's R us, gift from Kelly!)
Photos by the amazingly talented Amy Leah 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

How our family is Thriving (and not just surviving!)

This week marks the first week at my new "job" as a Stay at home mom! 
It's funny because a while back during a counseling session I was asked what I wanted to do with my life. School? A specific job that I liked? She asked me to list some things I really enjoyed and so I did. She listened intently and then announced, "Well! Looks like your perfect "job" would be a stay at home mom/wife, everything you listed falls right into that category." Not gonna lie, I kinda didn't take her seriously. Me? A stay at home mom? I just wasn't too sure. 

And then Elle came along. And I was sure. I was sure she had been right & sure that I didn't want to do anything else but be that little one's mama. Fortunately I've been able to work from home these past 5 months since I wasn't able to quit right away which was such a blessing in and of itself. 

Fast forward to the beginning of this year when Nathan became a full-time youth pastor at the Church we've been serving at for 3.5 years. In the past he was working a full-time job + 3 different jobs for the church so this was such great news! During this same time we started a series at church called "Thrive, more than just surviving." Nathan & I had already been talking about how we think God might be calling us to step out in faith & him accepting the role at the Church had been one way. With SO many answered prayers, we decided to really start praying to see if we might just be able to swing it so I could focus on just being a mommy. At first, I really didn't see how we were going to make this work, but we kept praying that God would make a way.  I had been putting it off for a while because I was terrified. Not only of not having enough money, but of solely being responsible for a tiny little life (which I already had been for 5 months so this is ridiculous!) but Nathan & I knew this was the next step for our family and we knew this is what God was calling us to. After looking very closely at our budget & praying some more, we found that this was totally doable if we were strict with our income. Even though I know there will be times we have to rely solely on God to provide, we couldn't ignore that He was urging us to take this step..  So, on January 2nd, I gave my two weeks notice.. to my mom, because she was my boss. I thought she might cry..  but was very understanding.. she's pretty great.. and probably reading this.. Hi mom! I love you! ;) #runonsentencemuch? 
^^^ the bib doesn't lie. 
This week has been everything I had hoped for and more. No, it wasn't perfect and yes, there were plenty of poopy diaper blow-outs & scream fits of an overtired baby that almost had me crying, but it was a huge answer to prayer. It's the sense of knowing I am right where God wants me.. and that's being Elle's mama. He is still working in me & has so much for me to learn & grow in this process .. equipping me for more and walking with me every step & I can't wait to just keep being a mommy. Elle is certainly a demanding boss considering her size, but she's the best boss I've had yet (sorry mom!) and I think I'll keep this job forever. :) 

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