Saturday, July 28, 2012

Saturday Status Journal

I realized recently that my statuses on facebook are a journal of sorts in and of themselves. And it might be cool to see them all lined up and think about what the past week held. So when I have time on Saturday mornings I'm going to just copy and paste the dates and statuses from the week before onto my blog. (This goes back a bit further than a week)

July 12:


All is for your glory
All is for your name
All is for your glory
That in all things you would have the first place
That in all things you would have preeminence

July 25: 

Friday, July 27, 2012


What is forgiveness?
...a choice, not a feeling.
...not pretending you were not hurt.
...not saying they were not wrong.
...not saying you need to trust that person again.
...not removing the responsiblity of action (Jesus forgives the thief but does not remove him from the cross).
Forgiveness is a decision that I make to obey God, and then to walk out forgiveness as a lifestyle - living in a higher realm by not allowing some one else's actions or attitudes to dictate my actions or attitudes. It is releasing them to God while not requiring them to be accountable to me to make it right. It is a willingness to move in the opposite spirit of the one who hurt me, making sure I am willing to be an unrestricted channel of the love of God.

perfect song. please listen to it.  

[I can not take credit for anything in this post. These were notes by Bethany Brown on a teaching she heard in YWAM. The song is by Matthew West.] 

This is post number 2 for me on this subject. Unfortunately my reaction in my first post is not what I would have liked it to be and therefore has not been shared. Thankfully, God is leading me down the path of forgiveness and helping it to become real in my heart. 

Friday, July 20, 2012

Quotes to inspire.

"Don't let yourself become so concerned with raising a good kid that you forget you already have one." 

I am in such an emotional/contemplative mood... Reading this quote for the first time just moments ago nearly brought me to tears. In fact, I am still fighting them. Maybe I should just give in. My sweet boys. My heart and soul. My innocent little babies. I want so badly to be all that I can be as their mom, exactly who they need me to be. But it's a learn-as-you-go kind of job. God, help me. Children come into this world so innocent, so dependent, so pure. Help me protect their innocence, love them through their struggles as they wrestle life and learn who they are, and see their sweetness instead of the tantrum they are throwing. 

"I suppose since most of our hurts come through relationship, so will our healing. And I know grace rarely makes sense from the outside looking in." (The Shack)

Life is so much more complex than I thought it was as a child. All I know is that I want grace and love to prevail in my life. Who am I to judge? By the measure we judge others we too will be judged. I would prefer to always err on the side of mercy. And I want to always choose relationship instead of offense. 

I read my journal from 2004/2005 the other day. God did so much in me. And he continues to. I pray He is never finished with me. Actually, I know He never will be, I just hope I never start to act like He is. The two quotes that helped to begin to change my life: 

"There is no growth without change, no change without fear or loss, and no loss without pain." 

"You are not where you want to be, but neither are you where you used to be." 
(Both from The Purpose Driven Life." 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Connor James

 Connor turned one January 23rd, but we waited to do his one year photos for several reasons. It's always nicer to have outdoor photos, and we tried to do them in the spring but it kept getting pushed back for one reason or another... The day we finally did them was HOT, but there was a nice breeze and Connor was a champ. He did awesome and gave me some really sweet smiles. This boy is going to be such a worshipper. He has such a sweet, cautious and lovable spirit. When he was a newborn he had some photos taken in an itty bitty wagon... So I thought it would be fun just to show case what a transformation can take place in a year! 


Love this one of him holding his baby photo.... :)
 Some photos with his big sister :) 

His monogram. 

Love this candid. He is such a sweet heart. 

There's another smile! 

Wish I could show this series a little larger... It's adorable :) 

Connor loves his blankie! 

And one with his whole family. This was my favorite from the day. 

I'm so glad I got the opportunity to do these photos for them. They are a beautiful family, so giving, so in love with Jesus, desiring to be in tune with His spirit and follow His calling on their lives no matter what direction He takes them. I love how they are teaching their kids to live lives of worship and listen to the voice of their heavenly daddy. They are such encouragers to us. We are so blessed by their friendship and support, the way they are always willing to listen and be there for us. We love you guys!! 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Food, Health, Garden....

Here's to rambling: My thoughts on all things healthy and edible.

It's no secret I like to cook (and eat) good food. But I like it to be healthy too. Shaun is SUPER into health and eating right and feeling good. We've listened to several conferences from Bethel church in redding california about health and wellness and eating right. And it's so stinkin' fascinating besides just being good for you.

In the spring I decided to plant a teeny tiny little vegetable garden. I tried starting some of my plants from seed, which I've never done before. I used baby food jars and toothpicks and made little flags from tiny pieces of paper so I would know what was what as it came up. The baby food jars weren't the best for starting things indoors as they have no drainage, but I was trying to do it using things I already had and spending as little money as possible. My cucumber plant did awesome, and so did the lettuce. But my peppers never came up, and my tomatoes came up but then died. I ended up starting my peppers from seed outside once it got warmer, and I also had several tomatoes come up around where my tomato plant had been last year that I transplanted. I planted carrots and more lettuce once it got warmer outside. I ended up buying one pepper plant, one tomato plant and one cucumber plant that were further along than mine so that I wouldn't have everything becoming ready at the same time. And the thing I'm most proud of is my little orange bell pepper plant that I started from the seeds from a pepper I picked up from the grocery store... I mean, who knew?? Aren't you supposed to buy "planting" seeds in a little packet at a hardware store? Can you seriously grow plants from seeds from actual vegetables?? Wow. This is exciting news. (I know I am a blonde, so just in case you think I was serious, that was sarcasm...) And let me just say, it is the best feeling EVER to just walk out the back door and pick something and turn it into a meal.

We have gotten several cucumbers, lots of lettuce, a bunch of tomatoes, and at least ten banana peppers so far. One of my favorite things is that you have to be a bit creative to use what you have when it's ready. Pico de gallo is perfect for using tomatoes and whatever kind of peppers. I make a new batch of this every few days and we eat it on wraps and salads and as a dip... Another favorite is my no bake bruschetta. My best friend made this for me the first time I had it. Just slice a baguette, top with olive oil, a slice of mozerella cheese, a slice of tomato and a sprinkle of garlic salt and mccormicks Italian Herb Grinder... They look fancy and taste delicious, but are super
simple to make :)

And mint. It grows like nobody's business.... I have more than I know what to do with. If I don't keep my eye on it I'm pretty sure it has a secret agenda to one day take over my entire back yard... It keeps me busy trying to find legitimate reasons to cut it back. I make mint tea pretty often, but we also found a "recipe" for mineral water. Basically, take a jar, and whatever kind of fruit or herbs you want, fill the jar with water and said fruits/herbs, and let sit in the fridge over night. We tried pineapple mint. It just gives a hint of flavor to the water and is nice and light. Shaun makes it all the time to take with him when he's landscaping. I want to try raspberry lime sometime too. It's fun to try to be creative with what you have....

Sliced cucumber and sea salt. Simple. And perfect. One of the things the seminar on wellness we listened to said was that it's important to eat a fat, a carb, and a protein each meal. The combination of the three will keep your blood sugar nice and steady and help to prevent an afternoon energy crash... They gave examples of healthy options for each category. Fat: avocado, coconut oil, butter, olive oil...  Carbs: fruits & veggies, quinoa, wraps, pasta... Protein: eggs, chicken, beef, turkey, salmon. Tonight I made one of my favorite pastas for dinner and it is perfect because it provides something from each category. It's a Bacon Basil and Avocado Pasta. I made it with egg noodles. And it is SO good... :)
Another healthy kick we are on is (dun dun dun...) Yonanas!!! If you haven't heard of it, now you have. :-P Our friends Meg and Joel introduced us to it and I bought one for Shaun for father's day. I got it from Bed Bath and Beyond. It turns frozen fruit into ice cream. Yup. Frozen fruit.... into ice cream. Bananas make it creamy, and just add in whatever other frozen fruit you want. I like it with berries... No sugar. No dairy. Just frozen fruit. And it's delicious. You can mix in chocolate chips or peanut butter if you feel you need to have something less healthy to make it count as "dessert". ;-) But it's great all by itself.
We have been listening to a lot of messages by Kris Vallotton lately. He has been preaching on us being not just spiritual beings, but on having a body and soul that shouldn't be neglected either. It feels good to take care of the body God created for me. I am definitely not a fanatic (yet) and still eat normal desserts and processed foods too. But there are so many awesome foods that are good for us too... Why not choose those when I have the choice?
Hope somewhere in my ramblings there was maybe one fun, healthy inspiration for you!

Monday, July 16, 2012

little pretties around the house.

I like to take pictures of the way I decorate my house for a couple reasons. First, it's fun to see your style evolve and develop and change over time. Second, it's helpful to look back at what you've done and liked as inspiration for future interior design. And sometimes looking back at photos of the special touches you put into your home makes you feel good and happy and remember the extra effort you put into something to create a certain feel... 
And then sometimes taking pictures of things you like shines a little light on just what it is that you do like. I suddenly realized that I like groups of things together much more than any one thing by itself. Whether it's an arrangement of objects or a photo collage on the wall, I like to pull several things together to signify my style or a feel. I have a hard time committing to just one big signature piece all by its lonesome. 

This is the ledge above my kitchen sink. Fresh basil and nectarines. I couldn't even just let the basil sit by itself, I had to put another summery, fresh, wholesome thing with it. Interesting...

A tiny portion of my mantle. There are several groupings of old books in various faded colors, candles, greenery and this beautiful little pot from anthropologie that was part of my bridesmaid gift from Brittany. 

Foot rest turned end table. The lid of this cube flips upside down to become a tray. Pottery barn lantern filled with moss and a candle, orange calla lillies in an izzy bottle and my Bible, with another piece of my bridemaids gift from Brittany. :)

Other end table. Pottery barn lamp, plant on a simple black pedestal, black and white photo and dark wooden coasters. 

There. A few pretty little things I like to look at... :)

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Rainy Saturday updates on life

It's a cozy, rainy day here at our house this Saturday morning. The heat has backed off and its a nice, restful gray outside... The rain's coming down steadily and we are all tucked into the house for the day. Shaun's playing some beautiful worship music on the guitar in the living room and the boys are playing with toys on the floor. It's perfect, really, since they are still in the final stages of recovery from a yucky virus that went through our house. I keep thinking I'm getting it but miraculously am still feeling fine. Thank the Lord. 

Isaiah is all of the sudden not a baby anymore. (We left for vacation, were gone for 1 week, and when we came back we had to immediately lower his crib mattress and put up a gate at the bottom of the steps and put outlet covers in the outlets... it changed that fast). He started crawling a little less than a month ago. Now he's pulling up to standing on things and taking little steps holding on. He climbed the whole way up the stairs a few days ago. And he's COMMUNICATING. That boy, he is so very social, this should be no surprise. He's been saying mama since about five months old. In the last month or so he's added quite a few more communications to his repertoire... :) When I say "Give mommy kisses!" he leans toward me with his mouth wide open and kisses my lips. He claps his hands when he's excited about something. When he's headed toward things he knows I don't want him to do (such as the dog bowl, to try to eat Zion's food, or the toilet paper roll, to unravel the whole thing) I say "Isaiah Matthew..." and he looks at me and starts shaking his head no with an ornery little look on his face. If he hears "no no" or "don't" he starts shaking his head too, and sometimes he will be shaking his head like he's trying to tell himself "No No" while in the midst of doing something he shouldn't be. He says "maaaa" with a growl when he wants more food. He started playing peek-a-boo where he is the one holding the blanket over his face about 5 or 6 days ago. He is SO happy all of the time, but if he does get his feelings hurt, or fall down and it actually hurts him, he cries like his little world is falling apart and it just breaks your heart. Usually within a minute though he is back to his happy little self. 

Drew is our little musician. I've gotten a few home videos of him lately singing his little heart out either into his microphone or while playing his guitar. His favorite worship song is "10,000 reasons" by  Matt Redman. His version though is "Bwess da ORD oh my soul, worship my God, Sing ike NEVER BEFORE!!! oh my soul, worship Jesus...." (He really gets into the "never before" part... sings it so loud and will sometimes shake his head or lean over really far... it's adorable. He's a just a little charismatic I think....;) ) He has entered in the "why" phase of life. He asks it about everything. Still my little perfectionist. Everything has to be just so for him. He plays perfectly, wants to know exactly how to do something before he will try it, and walks around with a miniature version of what I call the "Kauffman swagger" :) He still wants me to hold him as often as he can get me to. And yet he's also started saying he wants to do things "by MYSELF!" The other day it hit me that he will be THREE in the fall... I cried. That's half way to six. And six seems so old, and these three years have flown by... Time just needs to slow down. Besides being super into music he's also a little pro at technology. The other day I came downstairs and he had our gps at the counter and was doing who knows what on the touch screen... I asked him what he was doing and he looks at me with his big, innocent brown eyes and says "Mommy, I'm just sending e-mail..." As I type I can hear him on his pretend cell phone having a conversation with someone. Then he says to me "mommy, she didn't answer, so I just eft a voicemail..." 

My boys may have a few similarities, but they have SO many differences. The amazing thing about being a mother is that you can whole-heartedly love opposite traits when they appear in your two children. I love Drew's sensitivity and Isaiah's orneriness equally. I adore them both for exactly who they are. When I compare them it is only because I can't believe that combinations of the same two people could come out so differently. I don't want either to ever feel he needs to be more like the other. I want them both to be fully appreciated and praised and unconditionally loved for the individual God made them to be. I smile as I type... I just love them both so much. :) 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


So the whole point of this "what I wore" thing is accountability for stay at home moms to put some effort into themselves. At first I thought it wasn't all that practical for me to attempt. (Let's face it, taking care of baby boys and dogs and cleaning and cooking can ruin a favorite shirt. And long necklaces are either annoying or broken by the end of the day. And curling my hair on a daily basis just doesn't fit into my schedule...) But I do love fashion... a lot. And maybe if I don't have to go too all out I can squeeze a little more of it into my daily life. Maybe I don't have to totally sacrifice that love just because I'm a mommy... Hmm... :)

(Linking to The pleated poppy)

Sunday for church. 

Navy tank- Target. Pants-Aerie (birthday gift from Shaun). Infinity Scarf-anthropologie (on sale 19.99). Flats-Ross (12.99). Earrings-American Eagle awhile ago. Sunglasses- anthropologie for mother's day last year. 

I love the subtle pink and metallic stripes on the scarf. 

And... here's a normal day: 

cut off shorts, tank top, crazy hair that had been braided and went swimming and been slept on, no accessories, no make up... Here's to real life :) 

Even though "real life" outfits for me may not be very glamorous, still feels good to make the effort to "get dressed" every day. Even if it's just gym shorts and a tank, I'm trying to be a little more put together/coordinated/presentable. It's not a great feeling when someone stops by in the afternoon and you suddenly realize you haven't looked in the mirror one single time the whole day and you're pretty sure nothing you have on was on purpose... Don't hold me to it, but I might just stick with this little experiment... :) 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


This past week Shaun was able to take a day off work for a spontaneous trip to the mountains with our friends Todd and Bethany and their kids. We spent the night at a cabin thurs. night and took the kids to Lakemont Park on Friday. Bethany has been raving about this park since they went last year, and I can see why now! It is so perfect for kids, no lines, lots of great kid rides, an awesome water park with a pirate ship with slides and squirt gun cannons, and best of all, only $5 admission!!! 

Here are a few pictures of Drew and Izzy.... they play so well together! 

Bethany and I got to ride a roller coaster while the guys stayed with the kids...

Sleeping at the water park 

Introducing Drew to his first "roller coaster". He did great and loved it!! 

That's us up there! 

Priceless little grin while riding the airplanes :) 

The boys, cruisin'. 

My cute little blue eyed boy with a faux hawk :) 

Another precious smile. He said the boats were his favorite. 

Little man on the merry go round. :) 

After a long, hot, awesome, so fun (and did I mention hot?) day at the amusement park we got dinner and free frosties at wendy's and headed back to the cabin. The kids all crashed pretty early and we got to have some quality adult time later that night. Strawberry wine, coconut m&ms, great friends, laughter and deep conversations both. It was perfect. Took me a little while to catch back up on sleep (I haven't stayed up til midnight in awhile, and the kids were up early after going to bed so early the night before. But totally worth it!) 

Thanks Todd and Bethany for asking us to come along!! 

Monday, July 9, 2012

Kevin and Kasey: Announcement Time!

I am so excited I can finally share this photo shoot with everyone!! Kevin and Kasey asked me to do a photo shoot of the two of them so that they could announce to their families on father's day that they are expecting their first little one!! What an awesome plan! I had so much fun brainstorming ideas for this shoot. The night we did the photos the rain held off just til we were almost finished, and the lighting was fabulous. Here are a few of my favorites: 

My inspiration for the "little peanut" idea was a favorite shirt of Drew's this past winter... And my original idea for what to use in the "pink or blue?" pictures wasn't available... so I settled for balloons.... maybe in a future shoot I can use my original idea... :) I was so happy with how these turned out, and it was so difficult to choose my favorites because there were so many that I loved. Thanks again Kevin and Kasey for asking me to do these, I had a blast! You two will be amazing parents, and I hope these photos will show your little one someday just how excited you were about them coming into the world, and how much you loved them from the beginning.