Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tip for Moms: You Can't Handle it All

"Our core fear that we can't handle it, that we're not enough, I believe it. I don't think we can handle it, at least not on our own. We're not expected to handle it on our own. Notice that in all the examples in Scripture, God doesn't say, "Do not be afraid. You've got this!" He says, "Do not be afraid. I've got this." That basic truth has the power to overcome all our fears if we allow it to." - Clout by Jenni Catron

I've mentioned before that I've been experiencing a lot of changes and growing pains recently. Nothing like endless summer days, working from home, trying to be a hot wife, raising two spirited amazing little girls, having little to no alone time or girl time, to make you feel spread thin and like a total failure (just me?). I recently sent a defeated email to my group of women that I meet with once a week. We've taken the summer off and I have felt that void. The email went something like this, "I'm drowning, I'm not having fun, my babies are sick, I feel like I can't please anyone, I'm exhausted, HELP."

My friend Emily texted the above quote to me. It was life giving. I thought I would pass it along in case you needed to hear it too. We can't do it all. I was recently talking to my friend Dana and she had me belly laughing about the fact that she had never met any woman who was physically fit, a great mom, kept a clean house, cooked healthy dinners every night, was an amazing friend, successful at work and had an amazing romance happening with her man.

Y'all, I haven't met her either but I admit to wanting to be her! The truth is, it is impossible. We have to make cuts of what doesn't work and plug in to what does. For instance right now I don't want to be tethered to twitter or facebook (read more about that here). Are they great for some people? Sure. Not for me. I got off my personal facebook a few months ago and all of a sudden my mental clutter was half. Praise!

What also works for me right now is going to bed early and waking up early, having an hour of quiet time in the morning - a moment with my God before I do anything else, taking unplugged walks, not trying so hard to please people (cause it's impossible and draining!), living in the moment with my girls, keeping a prayer journal, going on date nights, long talks with encouraging friends, waiting for the right time to respond to texts (it's ok! people will still love you and I hope that my friends know I have that same grace for them). The noise has.to.quiet down.

What keeps you balanced?

all photos from instagram

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Back to School Gear

Kindergarten is just a few short weeks away and I've been swimming through a sea of emotions this week. I'm distracting myself with some back to school shopping (so fun!). I'll take Matilda on a special date to pick out her supplies but these are a few things I have in mind (we already snatched up that cute striped lunch box). I'm going to be sharing some of her lunches once I start making them, want to pick up this book for some inspiration!

I'm obsessed with these youth back packs from Herschel. So many cool prints. You can't go wrong with a Fjallraven Kanken either. I don't know if I'll be one of those over-the-top bento moms, but how cute are these?!

for her: birdhouse back pack | spoon + fork | bright stripes lunch boxhot pink glass water bottle | bento food picks (!)

for him: Fjallraven Kanken | spoon + fork | dinosaur lunch box | dino water bottle | lunch box notes

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Weekend Notes 20

Hope you're having a good weekend! We are loving this sleepy, rainy weather. The perfect excuse to watch The Life of Mammals and just talk. Feels so, so nice. Have you ever seen a Kangaroo be born?! Marsupials are like totally, totally mind blowingly amazing.

New favorite read (photo above is hers).

An instagram feed I like.

My friend Kristin threw the dreamiest garden party for her little Chloe this weekend and we were lucky enough to get to be a part of it.

Best shaving cream, ever! Makes your legs so soft (bought after trying their lip balm).

I've been reading She Reads Truth for about a year and was SO excited about their new (free!) app. It is so beautiful and easy to use and worthy of being on your phone. :)

My friend Lindsay makes the cutest and softest tees. We love them!

Matilda has been practicing reading and it is truly amazing to watch. These cards and this book have been super helpful.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Styling Umbrellas

I'm sort of fantasizing about a European summer, something straight out of Stealing Beauty or A Good Year (both amazing movies!). Picturing quiet pools surrounded by lush greenery with black and white striped furniture and potted boxwoods. Ahhh! Im craving a foreign land to explore. The summer does that to me. In the meantime, you can find me sourcing and sharing inspiration for some of my favorite outdoor spaces that style umbrellas perfectly. Check it out here on Wayfair's blog!

Can I get a "yes, please?!"

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Last Weekend

Last weekend we headed north to the lake. The weekends tend to be extremely needed these days, just a little help goes a long way during the long summer days with little ones. If I'm honest this summer has been a huge time of growing pains, much needed soul searching, and slight desperation for refreshment. I could have handled a few things better planning wise, but I'm choosing to see this time as a chance for growth and wisdom seeking. At night I've just been praying a lot for truth and grace and knowledge and it's been so good for me.

Our road trip usually takes us to Poole's BBQ. It's one of my favorite places and I had to snap a photo of Sam and the girls in front of the "Pig Hill of Fame." This place makes me happy.

Phoebe is super into books these days and Matilda can read her some of the ones she has memorized. That girl is a sweet sister. They love reading this book and this one together. Matilda is more into games and staying up late. She's going to kindegarten camp this week and I've teared up a few times today. It's completely bittersweet, isn't it?! Any other mamas out there going through this?

One of my favorite things about getting away to the lake is spending time with my family and eating long, leisurely breakfasts. Sam is amazing and always cooks these incredible feasts that we eat on the back porch. The mornings are usually cool and slow and the sounds of the lake are my favorite.

My dad's best friend Grier came up and took the girls fishing. Matilda caught two but wouldn't get close enough to the fish to have her picture made with it. ha! Phoebe likes walking up and down the dock. My dad is a saint and does a lot of the chasing when he's around.

My friend Jen made this bag for me and I love it so much. Hope you all had a great weekend!
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Monday, July 14, 2014

Back Yard Camping

A few weeks ago Wayfair contacted me about sharing a favorite childhood summer memory. SO up my alley and the perfect opportunity to check another one off of our summer bucket list. They wanted a group of us to take a childhood summer memory and put an adult twist on it. Such a fun idea, right? You can see everyone's interpretations here.

I chose camping! Confession: I haven’t been camping since I was in my early twenties and trying to fit in with the cute crunchy guys I went to college with. However, I do have the fondest memories of camping with my dad, brother, and sister in the North Georgia mountains when I was little, this memory ranks up top. Since I'm not the hugest fan of roughing it, a few hours of romantic back yard "camping" as a date night sounded pretty dreamy to me.

Let the kids help with the set up, get them all tucked in, hook up that baby monitor, fix some adult beverages and lay under the stars. Here's a step by step on how to recreate a camping date night at home. So magical, you'll want to do this every weekend.

Nothing says camping like a tent, first things first Sam started setting up camp and we were instantly like little kids wanting to get inside. The girls holed up to keep the mosquitos away while we got to work setting everything else up (pre bedtime). We left the cover off of the tent for a gorgeous view of the sky. We also used the cord hole to run an extension cord for us to string up some lights inside.

To make things extra cozy we set up a blow up mattress (aka camp bed) and covered it with a quilt and pillows for some relaxing conversation time (and bedtime story reading). We blew it up easily with a hair dryer and an extension cord. After stories I got the girls ready for bed and set up “the bar.”

Meanwhile, Sam started our supper: pork and beans (classy, right?!). We took our firepit and turned it into an outdoor grill / s’mores station (best part of camping imho). We used a heavy-duty steel camp grill as a cook top. The hot dogs were grilled in a cast iron pan while the beans simmered in a casserole dish that we protected with tin foil on the bottom. The dinner was perfect, especially paired with adult beverages!

We ended the night with a banjo serenade to the glow of mosquito repelling candles and moonlight. Topped off with s’more making and adult conversation of course. Perfection!

Have you done any back yard camping? Can't wait to do it with the girls! Such a fun and inexpensive way to soak up nature and each other.

all camping equipment graciously provided by Wayfair (thank you!). opinions my own.

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Friday, July 11, 2014

Weekend Notes 18

Packing for a road trip. My favorite! Headed to the lake and I am looking forward to hopefully getting a little rest and reading in. After having a sick baby for two weeks I'm in need of a little reprieve. I'm so thankful Phoebe is feeling better and it's always such amazing perspective for me of how vulnerable we all are and how thankful to be that we are healthy people. So, so grateful. Amen. Speaking of Phoebe, baby girl is so in to dressing up these days. It is amazing. She hands me these crazy outfits and wants it all on. Picture life jacket, tutu, bracelet, necklace, Matilda's shoes.

Lately Sam likes to make fun of me because I like to get real deep and talk about how crazy hands are and the universe and just how freaking awesome it is to be alive. I'm reading about galaxies and you guys it just BLOWS my mind.

A few little take aways from this week:

I discovered a new magazine called Deeply Rooted that I really love. This photo above is from a great "new to me" blog, Pie in the Sky.

Wednesday night I sat on my bed and was completely blessed and inspired by the way Jane studies the word. Lucky for us she shared her tools and recorded it. It's now available for purchase here.

I have watched this video and listened to this song on repeat since my friend Jen shared it with me. You may have seen it already on facebook but it bears repeating. I am entranced by that little dancer.

Ate here on a double date with Joni and her husband this week and loved it.

Love that I have made some genuine friendships in this crazy online world, friends that I have their phone numbers and we talk about life and it's good. Jen is one of them. Love that girl and her adventurous soul.

The Home Depot booth at the Haven Conference was inspired by the Patio Style Challenge and they used our pergola. So awesome!!

One of my best friends is putting on a crazy awesome half marathon.

Pinned this recipe. Sounds so good.

Also, today is the last day to enter the Earth's Best giveaway. Good luck!

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