Monday, October 12, 2015

Those Days

You know those days . . .
Those days that start with your alarm going off at 5:30am but a minute after you reset it for 6:00am your child wakes up.
Those days where the routine is out of wack and your child is clingy and doesn't want to play in his crib like usual.
Those days where you have to wake up your grumpy husband to watch the grumpy baby so you can take a quick 3 minute shower.
Those days where you're trying your hardest to quickly get ready but continue to be interrupted because you have to remove the child from playing in the toilet and then bribe him with animal crackers every 5 seconds so he stays away from the toilet.
Those days where you are getting lunch ready for all members of the household, starting laundry, and emptying the trash all before the daylight breaks.
Those days when the dog snatches the bread out of your hand at the same time the child throws his head back hitting you in the face during his attempt at a fit.
Unfortunately, it's been one of those days - and this mom lost it.
Upon arriving at working and reading my devotions in my inbox, I was quickly reminded of a verse in Philippians 2 (14-15) :
Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world
We need to remember that when we have days like those days, God's grace is all we need. Even though we are completely undeserving, God's love and kindness reaches down to us through Christ.
For this I am so thankful.  

Friday, October 9, 2015

An Obsession: Illustrated Faith

Have you heard about this fad (that I think is here to stay) called Illustrated Faith/Bible Journaling?
To say that I'm obsessed is an understatement. It's all the rage right now - popping up all over my IG feed and my Pinterest Page.
If you don't know what I'm talking about - check out:
 #illustratedfaith or #biblejournaling or #drawinginthemargins on IG.
Lovely ladies (mostly) from all over the world share their love of the Lord through creative doodles, drawings, scripts, etc. It's another way to connect to the word of God and to worship.
I started dabbling in the bible journaling community last fall while I was on maternity leave with Kingston. Before you knew it, life took over - I lost interest and my bible sat with all my craft stuff just waiting for me to find the time and inspiration again. Unfortunately, I hate the reason that got me back into bible journaling and really spending time with the Lord. If you read my previous post, you know that CT and I experienced a missed miscarriage last month resulting in an immediate D&C.
What a crushing few days it was for me. I recognized I needed an outlet and something to pour myself into and that happened to be creating - in my sewing room, in my planner, in my bible. Quickly I realized how much I missed creating for the Lord and how good for the soul it is.
My situation was perfectly stated in my daily devotional from She Reads Truth:
I cannot fully grasp the sweetness of God without knowing the bitter taste of life in a fallen world. What a truth this is. I'm ashamed that it took something so awful to bring me back to God, but now that I'm back - I'm more excited than ever!  
(side note: I was never really 'away' from Him - but I wasn't craving a relationship with Him like I am now)
Here's what I've been up to lately:

By drawing and doodling in my bible, I've found that I'm able to concentrate on the verses or themes that I'm creating - and this helps me retain the scripture better.
If you aren't comfortable drawing in your bible - start with a journal - but what ever you do I know it will bless you like it's blessed me!
 I wake up wanting to create in my bible and I go to sleep thinking about creating in my bible!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

A Week Ago

A week ago was supposed to be one of the best days of our lives. CT and I had planned to announce to the world that we were expecting Baby #2 and that Kingston was going to be a big brother come March. 

Instead, a week ago we went to the Dr. and learned that our baby who was supposed to be 10 weeks and 6 days was only measuring 9 weeks and 1 day and that it's heart had stopped. 

 What was supposed to be one of the best days of our lives quickly turned into one of the saddest.

As CT wrote on FB:
"Well, we were going to post this awesome picture yesterday to announce the great news that we were expecting our second baby, but instead we have horrible news. Yesterday we went to the doctor for a check-up on the baby and to see the heartbeat, but to our dismay, there was no heartbeat. It goes without saying, we are heartbroken and totally crushed. We know our baby is in Heaven with plenty of loving family members to hang out with. I don't know why God does the things he does in my life, and it's dumb to waste my time stressing over it, because I know He does everything for good reasons I can't fathom. Tiffany is the strongest woman I know and I couldn't ask for a better mother to Kingston and my future children. Seeing how courageous she has been in everything she has had to go through the last 2 days makes me proud to be her husband. It's hard not to bust out and cry over every baby we see or anything that reminds us of a baby, so we really appreciate your prayers for healing and understanding, and the kind words you have given us. We just ask that you please continue to pray for us."

 Deep down I just knew. It was too easy this time. It took 2 years to get pregnant with Kingston and 2 weeks to get pregnant with this baby. It never totally sunk in and it never really felt real. I kept saying "I'm so nervous. I so badly just want to see a heart beat and a growing baby." Last minute I made CT get a sub for the afternoon because I had a feeling our appointment would take longer than his lunch break. Looking back, I think the Holy Spirit was slowly preparing me for the heartbreaking news we were about to get. 

So many emotions went through me this past week: 
I felt sad. Sad because no mother should go the the fear or pain of having a baby vacuumed from her womb. I felt mad. Mad because we now have a massive hospital bill with no precious gift to show for it. I felt selfish. Selfish because I'm upset at the amount of time lost. It takes forever to get pregnant and even longer to get even 10.5 weeks in. So much time was lost and now we have to start all over. I felt responsible. Responsible because I forgot those two days of pre-natal vitamins and had that one Dr. Pepper that afternoon. But mostly guilty. Guilty because I didn't pray over this baby or pregnancy anything like I did with Kingston's.

I also felt hopeful. Hopeful because I know the Lord knows what He's doing even when we can't seem to understand. And thankful. Thankful because I know the Lord spared CT and I from greater heartbreak down the line. 

Laura Story's song Blessings has been playing in my head non-stop these past few days:
What if Your healing comes through tears.
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near.
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise.

It's crazy, my Dr. (Dr. Maki who is seriously a God send) said 1 in 6 pregnancies end up this way. We shared the news on Facebook a week ago and 16 people reached out saying they had experienced what we were going through. That just goes to show that any healthy pregnancy and healthy baby is truly a miracle. 

I know we will get to experience pregnancy again soon. I just hope I never have to experience this experience again. 

PS - Thank you to everyone for the texts, calls and messages - the kind words and prayers for our family. 
They can be felt. 

Monday, August 31, 2015

Rug Love: Recap

CT and I have been in our house about 4 months now and we've went through our fair share of trying out and returning rugs. Because rugs make such a major impact on the room design - especially if you have wood floors - we sent back 3 rugs and finally have a few we love, another we like and a few that were mistakes but we can't return. 

When searching for our rugs - my 3 main websites were:

RugsUSA is always my go to website because they always seem to have a sale usually up to 70% off. I can never pass up saving money!! 

About 2 years ago we bought Kingston's 5x8 chevron black and white rug for roughly $50. We love it and it will be a staple in whatever room design he grows into. 

If RugsUSA doesn't have what I'm looking for, I then turn to Wayfair. Their prices are extremely reasonable and they have a great variety of home decor. I usually 'favorite' things to my favorites board and then continue to check prices for a week or so. Every few days they have different categories go on sale - so sometimes if you wait long enough your item will go on sale. 

My favorite Wayfair purchase is this nuLOOM shag rug, which is also my absolutely favorite rug! It's so soft and plush and perfect for our living room. If I could, I'd have one in every room. 

We also received a complimentary rug pad from the Rug Pad Corner and it helps tremendously with the softness of this rug. Not only does it keep our rug from slipping because of its felt and rubber texture, but it also gives it so much extra cushion. It's so soft that Kingston will purposely walk over to the rug, sit down and then free fall backwards. He'll only do this on our living room rug because it's the only one we currently have a pad under. 

Finally, if I can't find what I want from either RugsUSA or Wayfair - sometimes Joss & Main will have a curated board specifically for rugs and something will speak to me. These boards are hand picked from different contributors with their favorite things - all with items on sale. You have to be fast though because they sell out quick and the boards are only up for a few days. Once they are gone, they're gone - unless you can find the exact same item on another website (but it'll be full price). 

We originally purchased both of these rugs (not sure the names) from Joss & Main- the grey for our bedroom in a 8x10 and the multi colored blue for our dining room in a 5x7. We ended up sending the grey one back because it was a darker grey then what the photo shows, and the multi-colored rug currently resides in our dining room. This is the one I'm only in like with. 

I think I would love it more if our flooring was different, but for now it does the job. 

I've also had good luck finding random rugs at the local Ross, TJMaxx and Nebraska Furniture Mart.
For example:

I originally bought this rug for the pattern on the front (because it matches the color scheme of the multi-colored dining room rug) but then I realized I could turn it over and like it even more. 

Another love purchase from NFM. 

It's hard to pass up a $9 rug in the perfect shade of emerald! 

I've also purchased white bath rugs for every bathroom in our house (because look how great the pictures make them look) ...

but don't be fooled - in reality they pick up every piece of dirt, makeup mark and piece of hair! These are ones I hate and can't take back. This was definitely a waste of $50 on bath mats. 

Where are your go to rug shops? 
A girl can never have too many rugs! 

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