Category Archives: Uncategorized

Third Anniversary Date Swag

Kip and I celebrated three years of marriage yesterday!  Thanks to a week of off & on freezing rain, sleet, snow, sunshine, and then back to freezing rain, (Hey, Texas.) our plans for a night out to Top Golf got cancelled. So, a date night at home it was!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetGoogling “At Home Date Night Ideas” comes up with a bunch of blogs that all say the same thing. And I promise you’ve probably already thought of most of them. Haha. We opted to eat a snack with the babies while they ate dinner, and made a plan to have our date after they went to bed. I am 0% a good cook (can we talk about how the steak looks black in this photo?), but this meal came together pretty easily and quickly! I chose our favorite bottle of wine, and literally planned the meal off of what the bottle said it would pair well with. We so classy!

Some quick Pinterest-ing in the middle of Target turned up these recipes for sirloin steak and bacon-wrapped + cream cheese + craisin stuffed jalepenos. Whoa baby. The steak was pretty good, but those peppers? I could eat them for dinner every night. I also roasted some red potatoes (started those before bed-time routine because they take so long!) and threw together a wedge salad. BAM baby. (P.S., aside from the potatoes and wine, we totally had a Trim Healthy Mama friendly anniversary dinner! BAM.)

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After dinner we sat on the living room floor, played three rounds of Phase 10, and laughed so hard our sides hurt. All that to say, sometimes the unplanned dates turn out to be the sweetest! I am grateful for three years with this sweet man who loves me so well.

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Love, H.

Mesothelioma Awareness Day

Tomorrow, September 26, is Mesothelioma Awareness Day,

Here in Internet-World, we are not lacking in opportunities to raise awareness, support a good cause, or read a heart-touching story. We can easily become desensitized to these messages, so much so that we (literally) require a bucket of ice water over our heads to really wake us up to the reality of a disease.

Do you know what Mesothelioma is? I definitely didn’t. When I received an email from Heather Von St. James, she immediately had my attention. She didn’t ask me to do anything silly- she was genuine and real. She asked for help educating others about this cancer which is caused by asbestos exposure. I didn’t know anything about Mesothelioma, but the more I read and the more I learned about Heather, I knew I had to share.

Heather was diagnosed with Mesothelioma at the age of 36- only 3.5 months after giving birth to her baby girl, and was given 15 months to live. (Now, if that doesn’t pluck a Mama’s heartstrings, I don’t know what will.) Simply playing in her Daddy’s work jacket as a child exposed her to the chemical that would eventually change her life forever. But thanks to a ground-breaking procedure which required one of Heather’s lungs to be removed, she is now an eight year survivor of this cancer, living a full life with her baby girl and husband. Glory to God!

I simply ask y’all to watch the video of her story, and from there I know you will be inspired to learn more- as well as encouraged to look at your life through your own rose colored glasses of gratitude.

Love,
H

“Overdue.”

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Photos taken by my Mother-in-law on my due date, yesterday. Yep, I’m officially big enough for Rosie to saddle up and ride my belly.

Had contractions last night and this morning that actually hurt, but they have subsided as of now. I’m on my way to a checkup with my Midwife in about 30 minutes. I suddenly found myself paranoid last night that Samuel might be posterior, so I’m praying for an encouraging visit that reveals that he’s right where he needs to be!

Just a short update. I still appreciate and strongly desire your prayers.

“Your grace abounds in deepest waters,
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide.
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me,
You’ve never failed and You won’t start now.

So I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves.
When oceans rise,
My soul will rest in Your embrace,
For I am Yours and You are mine.”

Trusting (because what else can you do?),
H

36.5 Weeks

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Ohh lawdy.

Waddling? Check.
Braxton Hicks Contractions? Check.
Stopping in the middle of Target to cross my legs and pray my water doesn’t break? Check, check, check.

I’m feelin’ it.
When I was pregnant with Rosie, who stayed bundled inside my tummy for 42 weeks, I didn’t feel a single thing like this until the weekend she was born. This time, something about hitting 35-36 weeks signaled something to my body and I can tell it has been doing some pre-labor prep for me! Hallelujah! At my 36 week check up I was 50% effaced and 1cm-ish dilated. Which really means nothing, he could still wait until 42 weeks like Big Sissy did. I just don’t think that is going to happen. And hopefully all these “warm-up” contractions will help the real ones along.

I’ve been taking my Evening Primrose Oil and drinking Red Raspberry leaf tea almost every day. Hoping both of these also help labor along, as well as minimizing bleeding post-partum. Doing some of the stretches/yoga poses from the book, Active Birthby Janet Balaskas has really helped my hip and lower back pain. They feel sooooo goooood. And Rosie climbs all over me while I do them!

Samuel’s “spot” has been all set up in a corner of our bedroom. We have the Pack & Play set up with the bassinet attachment, and all his little clothes washed, folded, and organized in the space below it. Rosie got a whole room, Sam gets a corner. Oh well. {Little boy, you are still loved and one day we will make you a fun, manly little room! What will it be? Pirates? Cowboys? We’ll see… :)}

My birth bag is almost completely packed. Samuel’s take-home outfit(s… ya know, in case of diaper explosion before we leave), diapers, wipes, and a few of my clothes are packed. The thing is, our ridiculous Texas weather has literally changed from 80 degrees on Sunday to sleet and ice on the ground Monday and Tuesday… and today it is warming up a little more. I have no idea what to pack to come home in. A coat and sweatpants, or shorts and a T-shirt? Haha. Hoping for the latter. I am also obsessively collecting Rosie’s paraphernalia (snacks, diapers, sippy’s, Desitin, etc…) and putting it all in a central location. I have written ridiculously detailed notes for my Mother-in-law for when she comes to watch Rosie while we have the baby. They are mostly to make me feel better that I have told her every detail about Rosie’s life, because my MIL is a completely capable Granny. 🙂 I’m learning I might be a bit of a control freak. Also, my Mama gets here on Sunday! She will be here for my new niece, soon to arrive (eeee!!), and then for Samuel. My sister and I are so thankful!

As far as spiritual and mental prep, I am listening to my “Labor” playlist on Spotify, and the mantra “I will do this” has been playing over and over in my head. Note: “will” instead of “can”. At some point I know I will want to believe that “I can’t do this”… but I know I can always hold onto “I will do this.” Because really, the baby is coming no matter what I can or can’t do. 🙂

I’m so excited to nurse a baby again, to spend those quiet hours in the earliest of the morning just he & I. I can’t comprehend how tired I am going to be, haha. But with Rosie’s first year still fresh on my mind, I know now how fast it will go by. I’m holding onto every minute!

Any last minute words of wisdom/encouragement for me? I’d love to hear it!
Waiting,
H

4 Years Ago

This time last year, I was desperately waiting for Rosie to make her appearance- today was her due date! Little lady, thank you for waiting 12 more days to be fully baked before you were born, and for sanctifying your impatient Mama. 😉

This time four years ago, I gained certainty that I was a Child of God.

When I think of where I was just over four years ago, I can’t begin to understand how I could be where I am today- a wife to a sweet man, and a Mama to an almost-one-year-old girl and to an almost-here baby boy. It is a miracle that “because of His compassion we are not consumed,” but what’s just as unbelievable is our “adoption as sons” and the overwhelming Fatherliness of God. He gives good gifts to His children.

His Glory. I can’t understand how my good is for His glory- but I’m overwhelmingly thankful He made it so.

Last year I posted my testimony, and I’ve now included it as a page on my blog. I hope to be less about me and more about Him in the coming days, but I also want to share what God has done!

Happy January 16th! ❤
Love,
H

Thankfulness.

This is the season that calls us to remember all we have to be thankful for. There is something magical about leaves changing colors, the sun setting earlier, and a cool breeze circling your nose that really does make these coming months the most wonderful time of the year.

The Lord has been specifically teaching me over the last few weeks what the words joy and thankfulness really mean. If you’re struggling for something to read in the Scriptures, or have struggled with having joy in your season of life, I would encourage you to do a study on these words! Grab a concordance and look up every verse they are in. I have found that they are almost always found hand-in-hand with one another, as well as words like: singing, dancing, shouting, steadfast love, and best of all… the Presence of God. When I invite him into my home, into my day-to-day life, He brings joy with Him. I can’t just “sense” Him; I have to dwell on His word, His promises, and above all remember to thank Him for all He has done. And He has given so, so much to be thankful for!

Happy Fall, from our family to yours!

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“But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise.” -Psalm 79:13

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“It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High; to declare your steadfast love in the morning, and your faithfulness by night, to the music of the lute and the harp, to the melody of the lyre. For you, O Lord, have made me glad by your work; at the work of your hands I sing for joy.” -Psalm 92:1-4

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“For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.” -Isaiah 55:12

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“And let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, and tell of his deeds in songs of joy!”
-Psalm 107:22

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“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good. His steadfast love endures forever!” -Psalm 107:1

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“Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name. For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.” -Psalm 30:4-5