Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Simplicity is Best

           Sitting here listening to the thunder far off in the distance makes me think of how little I truly am in this world. Life should be way more simpler than it is now. One of the greatest compliments I have ever received was that my husband and I live simply. And sometimes if I am not careful, I can get caught up in what the world says I should be doing. However, I know what my purpose right now is; to be a submissive wife and devoted mother. 

           In today's society the word "submissive" alone sends up red flags, not to mention putting it in front of wife. I do not mean submissive in that I only speak when spoken to or that I follow any and all directions from my husband without question. It purely means that as the head of our household, he makes the final decision when it comes to our family and he is the leader of our home. I have trusted this man with my heart, life, mind, children, and everything else I have to offer so it should be no surprise that I would trust his judgment for any decision that comes our way. I have comfort, though, knowing that he values my opinions and ideas and he draws his guidance from God and not solely on his own judgments. My husband has sacrificed more for our family than I will ever know and I strive every day to be the wife that he deserves. I fall short every day, but his love and God's grace keep me wanting to try harder and do better. 

           By being a devoted mother, I do not, by any means, claim to be the perfect mom that I want to be. I lose my cool, yell way too often, and sometimes don't pay enough attention to the make believe games we play. I am saying that I want to provide an organized home, loving atmosphere, and exciting new ways to teach my kids. It is easy to get overwhelmed or discouraged, but it is important to surround yourself with positive people and leaving little notes can be helpful, too! This is what I do to remind me of what is truly important and the woman I want to be :

           I also have such godly women in my life, my mother, mother-in-law, sisters, grandmas, and friends, who are great examples and hold me accountable for my actions. To be a Proverbs 31 woman is hard work, but it is simple: be humble, helpful, diligent, hardworking, giving, honest, get back up when we fail. Because we will all fail at one point, but we need to encourage each other to keep pressing forward. This is one way I encourage my husband. I can have the tendency to nag, so instead I leave him notes or in this case: every day when he opens his closet to get dressed, this is what he sees. And I know that because of his love for his family, that love is plenty to inspire and encourage him to provide more than enough for us. 

           I am so lucky to be able to know what my purpose is right at this moment. I am even luckier to have a husband that allows and even wants me to stay home with our children in a society where careers and your profession are so important. Even though, I am little in this world I am a mom. And moms impact this world more than anything else. 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Phasing in Some New Changes

           With flowers blooming and trees blossoming, Spring is the most exciting and inspiring time of year. And even though the beautiful weather has been a spirit lifter, tomorrow marks the 1 year anniversary of the homegoing of my father in law; a great man whose legacy will last longer than any of us will ever imagine. I am so thankful for the time that my children got to spend with him and the pictures that we have of them together. My son talks of his "Pop" often and sometimes when I sneakily watch them play, he talks to him on his play phone. He tells him about his day and the fishing trips that he and his daddy are going to take. Even though sadness creeps in on us when we think of him, the memories and lessons that he taught my family overwhelm us and we are able to be happy with the time we had. His life and this spring weather has inspired my little family to start making some changes.
           I'm a little embarrassed that it has taken us a year to fully commit to some life style changes, but it is never too late to start. The changes not only include our eating and exercising habits, but our overall perspective of ourselves as consumers. A couple things we have started doing are:

  • Growing our own vegetables  or buying only local produce
  • Making our own juice
  • Buying only second hand or used clothing
  • Recycling
  • Proactively reducing our trash (less plastic use, buying unpackaged goods like at farmers markets) 
  • Only 1 hour of TV a day 
           My favorite change we have made is making the juice for our kids. We haven't been doing it long, but they are so excited to be involved and help make it. I was so tired of finding juices that "weren't that bad". I wanted a drink that actually benefited we are making our own. They love the taste and I love being guilt-free when they are drinking seconds. The more the better! 

           Along with this change, we have given up sippy cups! Sounds drastic, but if you think about it it is an awesome change. I will never have to buy another plastic sippy cup again. All sippy cups promise to be spill/leak free and easy to clean...well in my 3 1/2 years of buying them, I have never been as satisfied as I am with the sippy cups we made. They are simply mason jars that I used to put our baby food in with a hole in the top for the straw. They are durable, reusable, and easy to clean. 

Sippy Cup vs. Jars

           As time goes on, I want to phase in more changes, but for now I am so happy that we are actively doing something to make our lives better. My children deserve it and it will benefit all of us! 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Upside to The Stresses of Unpacking

           Moving in and unpacking definitely has its stresses, but a huge bonus is the chance to get reorganized. When everything has a specific place that is logical and easy to get to, you are more likley to have less clutter and in turn have less cleaning. My ultimate goal is to have an efficient home where I can spend less time with the upkeep and more time keeping my kids company :)
          At our old home, I had stuff everywhere! It was a smaller home with limited storage so I really had to improvise. So, I thought I would share a couple ways that I have adjusted to the changes of the new house. Although there is ample storage space throughout, we have less cabinets in our kitchen so I had to make a couple changes. I have more drawer space and I really wanted to utilize that since I have less overhead cabinet space. So this is what I came up with:

 I always hate having to pull out every spice or herb just to find the one that I am looking for, so instead I put them in jars, labeled them, and stuck them in a drawer right next the stove. Everyone loves to use chalkboard paint and it seems pretty common to have on hand in my house. 
I keep my dish towels and rags in the drawer with them and still have some space to fill. I love the convenience and I love the look of the jars!


           When my home is organized and everything is in its place, I am much more relaxed and able to enjoy the day much more. We love having company and when we have unexpected visitors, I don't find myself rushing around to make our home presentable. Also, by having a place for everything, I am teaching our children how to put things back where they belong and how to organize their own things. If your home is cluttered, start with the little things so that you don't get overwhelmed: organize a bulletin board during a commercial break or rearrange books according to genre or author. By doing this, you will spend less time looking for something and more time enjoying that book out on your porch swing :) 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

A New Move, A Fresh Start

As I was preparing to move out into the country and into a new home, I knew I was beginning a new chapter in my life. An exciting new chapter where I can be just a stay-at-home mom and wife, and nothing else. For the last 5 years I have been in so many different "phases" all at the same time; I was a college student, newly married, a new mom, and at most points I was working part time as a waitress. Not to mention all the life that happens in between. In my day to day whirlwind, I kept finding myself saying in my head.."when I get into the new house, it will be different". As if I was going to magically find the energy to get out of bed before my kids and get all the chores out of the way and give them the one on one attention they deserve the entire day. I felt that I was going to just turn into super-mom, devoted wife and mother. And at times I do feel that my expectations were a little unrealistic, but as we are getting settled in, I find myself realizing that a little more space and a little country air can make a world of difference :) 

I have finished up classes and I graduate in May, so to fill my nap time - as if there isn't anything else I could find to do around the house - I have decided to start a blog. Hope you enjoy it :)

Me with my 2 sons & daughter :)

My husband & I! :)

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