Monday, April 24, 2017

Love Others

I found this photo. It's from about 1 year ago. Ronan was about 7 months old. I was still nursing and I had just run the Music City half marathon. I was still feeling a little chubby but all my clothes fit and I was in great health. Sure, I had a little baby weight but I dont see it now. I'm still about 8 pounds heavier than I was before I got pregnant but I'm about 10 pounds lighter than I was in this photo. In a few days I'll run that same half marathon and I anticipate I'll shave about 30 seconds off each mile this time around. My mental health is great, despite a mountain of stress that is : 3 jobs and buying a house. But when I stop focusing on myself and my own "probelms", when I pour into my family, friends and neighbors, I am full. I am happiest when I'm not thinking of myself.
John 13:34-35 says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Loving and accepting myself has allowed me to love and accept others more fully and readily. What a trip, right? 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

It's the End of March

My big baby, growing up too fast.

I have to admit, life has been busy and the desire to write has been replaced with work and play and probably too much Hulu. I can't really believe that we're 3 months into 2017 and it's the end of March and have I been hibernating or something? We're literally 25% through 2017 and I feel like I was just counting down to New Years Eve last week. So, in all the hullabaloo, all I have time for is one of these life lately posts from blogosphere circa 2013. I'm ashamed to admit that I've been working on it for a week. Dont judge.

There's something about winter that I simultaneously love and hate. I love the coziness of the season, the time of rest and restlessness, the expectations are low and I truly let myself hibernate for a few weeks. But I always long for warmth. I long for parties and pools. I miss the hot, sweaty days and the 9pm sunsets. Although we had a mild winter, I'm truly enjoying the spring. My days have been filled with training for another half marathon, editing photos, taking the boys to parks and playdates, and hours at the computer for one of my three jobs. Yes, three! I am still running my photography business, event planning and in December I started working part time for a marking company. I love it, but it's made for a busy, busy life. Much busier than I've been lately. It was a big adjustment but I find myself at my best when I'm being stretched, even just a little. 

Tweak by Nic Sheff is story about a young man with a "normal" yet privileged upbringing who struggles with methamphetamine addiction. Around the holidays, I entered a book chain mail of sorts and was sent this book. I recognized the story within the first few paragraphs. I have read another version of this story about 5 years ago! When we first got Liam, our pediatrician recommended "Beautiful Boy" by David Sheff. I loved the book but didn't get a lot out of it and wasn't sure why a doctor wanted me to read it. Now I understand. I'm getting so much out of Nic's story and understanding narcotics addition more than ever. Coincidentally, I'm realizing more than ever that Liam will need the help of a great community and a whole lot of prayer. These tendencies are biologically part of him but I know that miracles can happen. 

I joined the 21st century and subscribed to Spotify. I am loving the new Acceptance album: Colliding by Design and Jimmy Eat World's Integrity Blues is like Futures meets Chase this Light (which is a very obscure reference unless you, like me, have been following Jimmy Eat World since 1999). As for new music? I dont listen to much but I have enjoyed some of the poppiest pop like Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and Bruno Mars. Sometimes you just need a little pop music, right?

Speaking of being busy... we're working on buying a house! We found a foreclosure in the exact style we like (early 1900s) with hardwood floors, a mantle, a cute attic and a big backyard. It was too good a deal to pass up so we made a bid and won! It has not been an easy process so far but we're enjoying it as best as we can. We have HUGE plans to completely remodel the bathroom, update the kitchen and replace some flooring before we move in. It will be a process but we're so excited!

I have, honestly, been wearing jeans every day. I've adopted a very basic wardrobe that makes me want to throw away anything "extra". I love the simplicity. I also got my hands on a dark green "leather" and "lambswool" (read: fake) jacket that I LOVE. I can't ALWAYS wear black, white and denim.

My family. They are just the absolute best. We're miles past the days where Ronan is boring and Liam is bored. We're all having a lot of fun together and the boys are just growing up too stinkin fast. It's bittersweet realizing that they're not very little anymore but so sweet to see the people they are becoming. Liam has been cleaning the whole house every few days. He gets this burst of energy and starts to organize and tidy EVERYTHING. He's also doing great in school. Ronan still adores his mama and gives me the best cuddles. They are both fairly independent but always make time for mama and daddy. Daniel and I love to talk about the house and all the plans we have for it, even if it ends up in a fight about the budget or what type of tile to get. We thrive on these kinds of projects together. 

It's been a great season. I can't believe it's almost April!

My sweet Liam with a bag full of sweets.

Dan stepped in as a model on a recent styled shoot of mine.
Selfie with a big ol camera like ours is no easy task.

Dan and Ronan in the bathroom that we're tearing out in just a few weeks.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016


I end every year pretty much the same way: addicted to sugar, addicted to shopping and desperate to get back into a routine. I admit that I enjoy starting afresh but I also hate when Christmas ends. Our homes look barren when the tree and lights come down. Our bank accounts are empty, our refrigerators are empty and we ourselves can sometimes feel empty. Part of me wants every day to feel like Christmas; eating cookies with reckless abandon, giving gifts, singing carols, not a care in the world. I walked around downtown Nashville with my sweet little family on December 26th and I fought the sadness with hope and anticipation for the new year. I have goals for our family and for my business. They motivate me; they give me life. I have one resolution, something I've been working on ever since we embarked on this new way of life, when we paid off our debt and started living on a [much] smaller budget. I resolve to no longer worry about our finances because God has proven, over and over and over, that not only will our needs be met but He wants us to have the desires of our heart. I'm going into the new year incredibly grateful for all God has done for my family, every trial and every joy. I also resolve to let Liam take more pictures. He's amazing!

Photos by : Dan and Liam. Madelines and Cappuccino by : Headquarters. Photos taken in Sylvan Park, Nashville, TN.

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