Growin’ things.. and by things I mean a baby

So we are growing a new garden at my moms house and I’m also growing a tiny bb who is expected on April 25th!

We are elated to be expecting a little babe! I’m also slightly (v) terrified because I do not know how we are going to manage two. But I guess we will cross that bridge when we get to it. I mean, some people have FOUR kids and they’re alive. Anyway…excited and petrified. Two totally normal emotions, right?

First trimester is hard. Especially with a toddler. The sickness is lingering this time around. I just get sick when I’m pregnant. I can’t eat. Nothing sounds good. Definitely not stepping foot in a grocery store. Count me out. Cooking? That’s a hard pass. It’s all day nausea for me. At 14 weeks, it comes and goes in waves. I’m still having some food aversions but some cravings are coming in. Cookies, burgers, fries, gummy bears. You know. The healthy stuff.

If you know me, like know me-know me, you know I suffer from permanent exhaustion. I’m always tired. No matter what. I wake up tired. Something new this pregnancy is the trouble staying asleep. I can fall asleep easily. No problem. Maybe a little too early. Like 8:00 pm. But every time I roll over, and I mean every time, I wake up.  Sometimes for like 30 seconds, sometimes it feels like an hour before I fall back asleep. Apparently, this is “normal” but it’s been so hard since I work part time and full time take care of my people. And I need sleep. Emphasis on need. Serious dragon lady without eight hours. Even though I wake up tired, I still need my beauty sleep. I’ve been doing limited electronics at night. Some nights nothing at all. That’s been super hard because I love watching TV when Dane goes to bed. Side note: Hallmark Christmas movies start this weekend so you bet I’ll 100% sacrifice my sleep for those glorious movies. Loading up on iced coffee the next day.

We don’t know the gender yet but we will find out around December 7th at my 20 week scan.

Thanks for being over the moon with us!

finding hope again

Still processing. Still confused. Still devastated. Still angry. Still sad.


Still trusting. Still hoping. Still praying. Still loving. Still believing. Still going. Words from our worship pastor, John Cassetto. Yes, I feel those things too.

I’ve been at a loss of words. What do I say? How do I pray? I am not good with words. Thankfully, I remember Romans 8:26… “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.” (NIV)

Praying for the families who lost loved ones. Praying for the recovery of the 500+ wounded. Praying for change.

So much going on in our nation right now. The fires. The hurricanes. The violence. Las Vegas. Puerto Rico. Houston. Florida. Mexico. So much pain and brokenness and darkness. We are in some serious need of HOPE. The weekend of September 9th, Kay Warren delivered a powerful message about finding hope after a traumatic event, a strained relationship, serious health problems, crushing disappointment, unchangeable circumstances, or a painful loss.

Through all the storms we experience (some quite literal) Kay helps us understand that we can find hope through resilience (definition: able to withstand or recover quickly from difficult conditions. Strong, tough, hard, buoyant, irrepressible, flexible, pliable, supple, durable. Able to become strong, healthy or successful again after something bad happens.) Resilient people survive and thrive in the face of trauma. Resilience can be learned.

There’s this illusion that life is easy. Wrong. Life is harder than you’ve ever expected and Jesus said, “In this word we will have trouble” (John 16:33). The first way to build resilience is to accept that life is tough. But God gives us resources to cope with life. He gives us a guide, a mentor, a savior. We are not alone. He gives us a new mind and a new heart when we accept Jesus as our savior. He’s given us his word as a road map. We can’t control the hard, we wont be held captive by what has happened to us, and we get to choose how we respond in hard times. Here are seven practical choices Kay mentions that can help build resilience:

  • Expand your connections when hope starts to fade. Don’t pull back! Press in to community/relationships.
    • “A friend is always a friend, and relatives are born to share our troubles.” Proverbs 17:17 (CEV)
  • Believe you’re capable in God’s strength of handling anything.
    • “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13.
  • Avoid expecting the worst.
    • “Lord, when doubt fills my mind, when my heart is in turmoil, quiet me and give me renewed hope and cheer.” Psalm 94:19.
  • Practice self-care. Take care of yourself in the middle of hard times. Eat well. Rest. Exercise.
    • “You let me rest in fields of green grass, You lead me to streams of peaceful water, and You refresh my life.” (CEV)
  • Seek self discovery. In the middle of the mess there are learning moments. Trouble has the benefit of exposing the gaps in our faith.
    • “We can also learn from insults and hard knocks.” Lamentations 3:30 (CEV)
  • Practice gratitude. Be grateful for the beauty still in this world even though beauty has been taken from us.
    • “Plant your roots in Christ and let him be the foundation for your life. Be strong in your faith, just you were taught. And be grateful.” Colossians 2:7 (CEV).
  • Decide today that nothing can destroy you. No matter what comes our way, we will grieve, mourn, and be devastated by the losses but we will not let them destroy us.
    • “Nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:39 (NIV)

Kay stresses that we are more than conquerors. When we take the pain, the loss, the suffering, the beauty that was stolen from us, the trauma… When we take what is meant to kill us, and learn from it and use it as the stepping stones to grow more like Jesus we become more than a conqueror. Because of the beautiful scars of Jesus, we are still here. We are still standing.

And one day…

“He will wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying, nor pain. All of that has gone forever.” Revelation 21:4 (TLB).

Watch [this] beautiful message by Kay Warren from Saddleback Church. Be encouraged as you learn what the Bible says about God’s purpose for your life including your work, relationships, health, and more.

Apple pickin’

Dane eats his fair share of apples. It’s v much a staple in his diet. I always get so excited to take Dane to do the things that I did when I was little. Oak Glen is the cutest little place to go pickin’. We’ve been to Riley’s, Los Rios, and always end up at Law’s because they have the best cider. We did not prepare for the cold. It was a crisp 50 degrees at 10:00 am. Not what we are used to. Dane’s outfit was an accumulation of everything we had in the car to keep him warm.

During the week, Riley’s only allows you to pick pears, raspberries, and sunflowers so we ended up buying our apples. Again. And picked everything else in sight. Leaves, apples on the ground, rocks, sticks, hay, flowers. If it’s pluck-able there’s a good chance Dane will pick it. This time of year is so fun. The nostalgia of it all brings me so much joy. I hope that Dane will feel that way as we continue to make traditions.

Now bring on the baking! I’ve got apples up to my eye balls. What are some of your fall go-to recipes?

My romper c/o mien studios

Live for what really matters

Sometimes I gots nothing. No story, no words. But just over here dreaming about a platform where I can share some good news! Even if they aren’t my own words. Giving credit where credit is due, obvi. I pray that this little place will reach someone seeking hope.

I like to talk about what I learn at church. Maybe you don’t want to watch an entire service so here’s the cliff notes. Scott Wilson… what a funny guy. Thanks for helping people get ready for that face to face examination with Jesus. We have two tests:

  1. The first judgement (test): Great white throne- a judgment of sin resulting in heaven or hell.

Revelation 20:11-15. Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

Oh, shoot. Ok, to me this is a little scary. I want my name to be found in the Book of Life. But like Scott emphasizes and makes everything a little more comforting…the good news ain’t so good unless we know the bad news. True story.

  1. The second judgement (test): judgement seat of Christ- a judgement of works resulting in reward or loss.

1 Corinthians 3:10-15- By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward.  If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.

So don’t be confused. We don’t have to be perfect. I don’t even think I could try to be perfect. That’s just too hard. Let’s also go back and look at what Ephesians 2:8-10 says. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

When we are saved we have a calling. A kingdom purpose to live your life for the Lord. Our life will be tested- what did you live for? Things of this world? Or for eternal things of the Kingdom of God. 

What has eternal value:

  1. God
  2. People

Matthew 22:37-40. Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” So lets surrender our hearts, do things his way WITH him. Remember, he didn’t call us to be perfect. He called us to be faithful. Being faithful for whatever God wants. 

Praise hands if you read all that!

Watch this inspiring message from Saddleback Church and be encouraged as you learn what the Bible says about God’s purpose for your life including your work, relationships, health, and more.

eighteen months

545+ days with our little Dane sprout. Happy year and a half baby boy!

One and a half and he’s like a real boy now. He definitely is the epitome of boy. Dirt, rocks, grass, trucks and cars, trashtrucks, trashcans, just plain old trash, trains, bugs, balls. All things he is obsessed with. Obsessed. I don’t know who teaches him these things but he genuinely enjoys them. And I swear he already has a sense of humor. He says things and laughs at himself.

So, hang on because, because I’m about to get all preschool educator on you. Skip this paragraph if it makes you go cross eyed. Dane can rote count to “gwelve” (twelve). Yes! Count. It’s mind blowing. I mean, sometimes he skips a few numbers but still. At 18 months, he’s demonstrating math readiness skills. He can label several colors and he’s using his language to request. Except, we need to work on a need vs. a want because he will say things like “need a popsicle” at 7:00 am. Decline. Insert choices. You can have yogurt or toast. We sing lots of songs up in here. ABCs, slippery fish, drive the fire truck, baa baa black sheep, and wheels on the bus to name a few. We are also thinking of putting together a two disc compilation album of the random songs that we make up (that all happen to have the same tune haha). All your favorites, like “We’re Almost Home” when he’s losing his mind in the back seat, and “Nice And Warm” when he gets out of the bathtub. Yours for only 3 payments of 19.99! Just kidding. Seeing him grow and go through this language and learning burst has been super fun. Def a proud mama.

I wanted to share this developmental chart for one-two year olds, since I get so many questions about how Dane can talk so much. And really…I don’t know how Dane is demonstrating skills that are above his age level. Maybe it’s all the book sharing we do? I’m honestly not sure. If you have any questions at all regarding your child’s speech and language development, please, please, email me or send me a DM. I would be super happy to help!

*developmental chart from

18 months has been fun but we definitely have our ups and downs. We transitioned to one nap and we’re officially in the toddler meltdown stage. I’m so not ready for tantrums. That’s a whole new world of parenting. We’ve been working on “name it to tame it” from No Drama Disciple. So now he screams, throws something, and says “mad”. Then we hug and work it out.  All in all, I’m not ready for my baby to be a big kid. But as he gets older, he’s also gotten cuddlier and even sweeter, giving hugs and saying “snuggle!” Today he even grabbed his raccoon and mouse (Travis insists on giving him a variety of woodland creatures) and hugged them both and said “Cuddle party!”  Savoring this precious time.

entertaining busy bees on airplanes

Flying with a toddler = anxiety. At least for me. Travis is all mr. calm, cool, collected, while I am a hot mess, basket case. Anyway, I was super worried about flying with Dane since he legit doesn’t sit still when he is home. He is constantly moving and playing and saying, “walk” or “ready to go”. But I do have to say now that we are home, the hardest part wasn’t the traveling but coming back home and trying to settle back into home routine. And trying to get rid of that dang paci.

Luckily, he fell asleep on both flights so that bought us about thirty minutes. For the rest of the time, we ate snacks and read books. The highlight was the bottle with pipe cleaners and gel stickers. I would hand him one pipe cleaner at a time, he would put one in, and then we dumped them out and started over. He loved it! We did that for a good fifteen minutes. Bonus, this activity targets fine motor skills. You can use a water bottle, milk bottle, or whatever bottle you have lying around. Gel stickers for the window were entertaining but they get a little gross when they fall on the ground. We loved stickers and magnets. Anything that you can take off and put back on, or put in and dump out. I definitely overpacked toys but I really wanted to use manipulatives before we resorted to using the iPad. We did great on the first two flights but coming home we needed to use the iPad for some entertainment. You win some, you lose some. I hope these materials and activities work for you too! Good luck, mamas! You can do it!

ps. practice universal precautions! Hand sanitize and soap & water! 😉

p.p.s. you can find some good stuff in the target dollar section too.

Travis. Always taking one for the team. What a guy.

Side Note: This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission if you purchase something through the provided links. These products are truly things we love and fit our style. 

bend, OR

Vacation; noun: an extended period of recreation, especially one spent away from home or in traveling. We took a “vacation” and it was an experience! I joked I was going to look up the definition of vacation when we got home because I don’t feel like we took the standard vacation. Rest. Relax. Rejuvenate. Those things didn’t really happen but we still had a good time. I read a caption by @taylergolden about traveling with children and it really changed my views. “Deciding not to travel with your children while they are young because ‘they wont remember’ is a little like saying you’re not going to read to your children because they wont remember the books you read. You read to your small children because of the sounds they will hear, the words they will see, the skills they will acquire and the habits you hope they will form. Traveling with young children is very much the same.” How true!

We love Oregon! The people are so kind. Everyone greets each other and asks what’s going on for the day. I know Seattle is known as the emerald city, but Oregon is just as green and beautiful. If I could move anywhere, it would definitely be to the PNW. We ate, we hiked, we had date night, my mom and I got massages for her birthday, we ate some more, Dane played in the grass, we saw deer and squirrels, and ate some more, went to the high desert museum, Dane caught a cold, drank some yummy coffee, collected 5,000 pinecones. We had a grand ol’ time but we are (I am) happy to be home.

Stayed tuned because I am going to share my research in entertaining a busy bee, toddler on an airplane!


Seven four 2017

Sad day… I am not a gifted writer. It’s a struggle for me. I took an entire twenty-four hours writing (Ok, two that felt like twenty-four), deleting, writing again, deleting again. I got’s nothing! I’m learning to be OK with my style of writing and that I don’t have to be this serious, crazy good, inspirational writer. And that’s most likely pressure I put on myself. But I’ll keep praying that He shapes me into the writer He wants me to be!

Here’s how our fourth of July went:

  • woke up
  • walked to Starbucks
  • took a nap
  • ate some lunch
  • took another nap
  • went to my mom’s for BBQ
  • picked 1039056 ripe and non-ripe tomatoes
  • mowed the lawn with bubbles
  • ate some baked beans
  • got real dirty
  • toddler melt downs
  • bathed the dirty bird
  • skipped fireworks
  • BED

Let me tell you about those toddler meltdowns, eye roll:

  1. when your mom has to change your 100 pound, soaking wet, soggy, non-swim, POOPY diaper. End of the world!
  2. when you can’t play with the screwdriver. You’ll poke your eye out!
  3. when mom and dad have to take away the hamburger bun that you’re holding, NOT eating, just holding, because it’s bath time. But you strong willed child, refuse to give it up so you take it in the bath, dump it in the water, and try and eat. THEN it gets taken away and WWIII.

It’s rough being a toddler! And maybe rougher (is that a word? more rough?) being a parent of a toddler. From the wise words of miss T Swift, you just gotta shake it off. Hope everyone had an eventful 7/4!


on me: tank, overalls, sunglasses, scarf, birks, similar sunhat

on dane: tank, bloomers, sandals, sunhat

Keepin’ it 100

There have been a handful of times (most recently) where the message at church truly gets me. Shoot, maybe that means I really need to work on myself 😖  😝   regardless, God spoke, to me, through pastor James Grogan. And everyday heroes in the home was just what I needed to hear.

When James told his stories about terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days and how he was just, “keeping it 100”, I knew it was going to be good as I can relate to having terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days. Think overcrowded Disneyland with two parents running on fumes, 90 degree heat, and a toddler who skipped his morning nap. We were all snappy McSnappertons. It was not a pleasant day. Yes, Disneyland is the happiest place on earth but not every visit is all rainbows and butterflies. And Ps. that’s just one example of a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. Also, keeping it 100 is a super clever way to express keeping it real. You bet I’ll be adding that to my vocabulary. Thanks, James.

So, the message…conflict is inevitable but we can learn how to deal with conflict. Look at some wise words from, James 1:19. Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Ah, yes, SLOW. Noted. Going to memorize that one. Working on being slow in so many areas of my life.

  • When it comes to family don’t believe the lie: “I don’t care”.

2 Corinthians 5:14-20

14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. 16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ,the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.

  • Through Christ, God removed every obstacle to reconciling with us except us.

Do you get it? At first, I didn’t. Let’s break it down…Nothing stands between us and God. Accept his love, grace, and forgiveness. He extends all the grace.

  • A key to understanding our reconciliation to God is in this phrase- “in spite of”.

Reconciliation is in spite of not because of our sin. As followers, we should model love, grace, and forgiveness. We can’t experience it (God’s love, grace, and forgiveness) and not give or model this to others. The world will know about the love of God through people of the church. We must show it and model it.

  • Everyday heroes forgive as they’ve been forgiven.

We must release pain, extend forgiveness, let go, and open the door to reconciliation. We do to others what the Lord does for us.

The end of my message notes.

If you made it through this novel of what was my chicken scratch church annotations give yourself a high five, a pat on the back, a round of applause. You go. And thanks. I hope you are inspired and are on fire to model love, grace, and forgiveness.

Watch {this} inspiring message from Saddleback Church and be encouraged as you learn what the Bible says about God’s purpose for your life including your work, relationships, health, and more.

The end of another school year

Another year as a preschool speech therapist in the books. I love my job! Emphasis on love. I love the students and the teachers and assistants I work with. I love the school campus. I find purpose and joy in serving my students. This is my calling.

With that being said, it was a really, really, really difficult year. Around February, when Dane starting walking and being more adventurous, I noticed working full-time is a tredmenous challenge. Ok, maybe that’s a little extreme, but it was hard. I was exhausted on so many levels and I felt like I couldn’t keep up with everything outside of work. Like laundry.

I am elated that I will be returning in the fall with a part time contract. This is such a big answer to prayer. A huge weight has been lifted. I’m looking forward to fall but for now I’m going to enjoy summer with my boys.

Happy, happy, very happy summer!

Ps. how cute is my classroom? The building I was in is really old and I love it.

Sweet preschool faces blocked for privacy.