Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Please tell me there are days when you feel like an absolute failure.

When I spent my days in the office, we could for weeks wearing clothes out of the clean laundry basket. “It needs to be ironed? Pick a different outfit, honey.” “No clean cereal bowls? Use some Tupperware.” “I didn’t make that phone call today, ehhh, I’ll get to it tomorrow.” As a type-A organizer who made my living as a grant writer and personal assistant to the president of a booming small college, those things were drops in the bucket compared to the things I dealt with at work. I was usually worried about a looming deadline for a multi-million dollar grant proposal, getting my boss ready for an appearance, or discretely handling a student issue. But now, those drop-in-the-bucket things-the laundry, the dishes, the phone calls- those are my job.

Being a momma is a full-time job. And if you have a full-time job on top of that…well, bless you. Yesterday I finally had to drag the mound of laundry to our bedroom because it was overflowing into the walkway of the laundry room… and because I didn’t want to look at it anymore. The dishes were overflowing out of the sink, because no one had unloaded the clean ones from the dishwasher, and the whole kitchen smelled like whatever we’d had for lunch two days ago. Yuck. My baby cried.all.day. He does not usually do this. He is high needs, yes. A crier? No. (Which, btw, should have been my first clue something was up with him.)
By about half past naptime yesterday afternoon, I was sitting in front of our little outdoor fireplace, with my bible, a blanket… and a glass of wine. Y’all, it had been a very long day. I tried writing in my prayer journal but the words wouldn’t come together. What I got instead was a doodle illustration of the word “control” in all capital letters. Because (surprise!) that’s what all my frustration boils down to. Some of you are going to quit reading now because you’re just about fed up hearing the play-by-plays in the never-ending God vs. Allysa: Battle for Control.

Do you know what? It. Is. Not. A. Battle. He has already won. Thank heavens. All control I think I hold on to is false control. The Lord already knows where my next home is, He already knows how He’s going to make our budget work for next month, He already knows what my husband’s next job will be. HE ALREADY KNOWS. And that means I do not have to know. I should place my trust in the ONE WHO IS, because He knows… and I do not. I feel like if I mull over it long enough I will come up with some answers. The truth is I can’t sell this house, I can’t balance the budget, I can’t take away my husband’s stress. But. He. Can. It’s frustrating carrying a burden I wasn’t made to carry.

I went to bed wrestling with control and feeling like a complete failure. My job is to take care of my husband, my son and my home. And as of bedtime last night, I felt that I had ruined all three of them! Dinner time felt like we were standing in the middle of the freakin’ circus. The grill wouldn’t light, the kitchen was a mess… and as he sat in his highchair screaming for no.good.reason, I saw something in Dane’s mouth. Two tiny little white lines on his bottom gums. Insert head smack here. My child has fussed and cried all day because his teeth hurt.  Mother of the year? Yep.

I went to bed thinking I wasted a whole day. The laundry that I had moved to the bedroom became a heaping pile that the dog decided to make a bed in. The dishes were still stinking up the kitchen. The dogs stink and need a bath. My husband still hadn’t done his grad school homework (not my job, I know, but I feel like I should motivate instead of enable by watching TV). After a bath and Tylenol, Dane finally nursed to sleep (and slept from 7:30pm-6:15am! What!?).

I hadn’t wasted a day. I had been pretty darn productive. I took two walks with said fussy baby and carried him until my arms ached. I washed five loads of laundry to contribute to that mound of clean clothes. I cooked a couple of healthy meals for my family which accounted for the dirty dishes in the sink. I let my puppies run free through the fields around our house which made them stinky, but worn out and thereforeasleeponthecouchandnotunderfootthankyouJesus.

It’s all a matter of perspective. A year ago I would have told you I failed by not getting that multi-million dollar grant, now failure is putting my baby in (biodegradable, chemical-free) disposables because I forgot to wash his cloth diapers. Today I know God is in control. Proverbs 16:33 (Thank you, Jaynee for this!) says “We may throw the dice, but the LORD determines how they fall.” He does give me a teensy bit of control by letting me throw the dice. But, praise be to Him, He doesn’t leave my future to chance, or leave me to my own devices.

Thanks for letting me ramble. The words still seem choppy, but I think my fog is clearing.

Sunday, February 26, 2012


You've probably noticed I've been on a blogging hiatus. It wasn't intentional. In fact, I wish I could write something. Usually when I have this much swimming around in my brain I benefit from putting pen to paper and getting it out of there. Right now, however, I just can't seem to put words to what's going on. I feel as though I'm walking through a fog. I can hear the Lord gently calling me in the distance, I think, but the noise around me makes it difficult to discern whether it's His voice or just another distraction. I'm spending time in the quiet, searching His word for direction and trying to catch up to the light from the lamp that is supposed to be guiding my feet. Your prayers are deeply appreciated.
in His love,

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Sometimes I laugh at the fact that just over six months ago I was wining and dining generous donors at fancy lunches...okay, maybe not "wining" since it was a church-affiliated college, but nonetheless, most day it was pretty glamorous and lots of fun. I laugh because now I try to make it through lunch without wearing puréed peas and make every effort to coax my often-unwilling lunch buddy to eat his food... The best part is it's the most fulfilling thing I've ever done in my life. 

Dane is such a precious baby and he lights up every room he enters. Especially lately since he's learned to flirt. Oy! Ladies, watch out. Those giant blue eyes and sweet dimples will be inescapable when he's grown!
giving momma a silly grin... would you look at that crazy hair!
"I can turn my own pages, momma"
biggest little fan in Big Blue Nation. C-A-T-S! Cats, cats, cats!
I love every ounce of his chubby 16lb body- especially those biteable cheeks!

Friday, February 3, 2012


I think one of the hardest things about being a women is the lie that you must have everything together. I mean who really does? None of us. That's who. My friend and neighbor sent me a great blog post about how we women compare ourselves to everyone. I have to admit, I get tired of evaluating myself and making sure I compare with other women. 

I think there is some (false) idea that stay-at-home moms have everything put together. This stereotype made (ok, makes) me feel inadequate sometimes. While I wish my floors were always clean, the laundry was always folded and my husband came home to a brand-new recipe every night, that does.not.happen. We pick up balls of dog hair off the floor, we wear clothes out of the (clean!) basket, and we eat a hot, homemade supper most nights. Praise Jesus for frozen pizza. 

I think most mommas, SAH or Working, have days like mine. You rush to get ready, hit the door running, trying not to look like a chicken with it's head cut off as you rush through the grocery with your tired baby, only to notice when you get home that you have dried breastmilk rings on your shirt and baby food in your hair. I have learned to LOVE things like that. I wear them as a badge of honor because it means I'm somebody's momma. And you know that every other momma you passed at Wal-Mart didn't even notice your pureed-peas-breastmilk mess because she's too worried about getting the peas out of her own hair! 

For you mommas who need a reminder that even those of us who look like we have it together DON'T always (and so it's written down lest I forget about it and miss out on the opportunity to embarrass my sweet boy with this story later in life) here is a story to put your mind at ease. 

We were celebrating Dane's great uncle's induction into a local Hall of Honor. As a SAHM who wears yoga pants and houseshoes most days, I relish the opportunity to get dressed up and go out. So I put on a cute satin dress with tights and zip up my riding boots. I even through on a cute little coat, because nursing mommas need layers. Dane slept through the reception before the ceremony and was wide awake when everyone took their seats in the auditorium. Apparently severe constipation is par for the course when introducing solids, so when The Boy is finally going, you pretty much know it. 

I jumped up from my seat and grab the diaper bag. As we hit the back doors of the auditorium he spits up all over himself and me... I hurry to the bathroom  and grab some paper towels to get us cleaned up. He's now crying because going #2 when you haven't been in days in apparently pretty painful. I forgot to mention we're in a high school auditorum so, of course, there are no diaper changing stations in the bathroom. Ugh. Right out side the bathroom is a bench underneath a window. Beggars can't be choosers, right? Out comes to trusty changing pad and I lay my screaming baby down to change him. I get him cleaned up and slip a new diaper underneath him... but he is not done. There.is.more.poop. So I sit and wait...and wait, as he continues crying, trying to let him finish while digging around for more wipes and another diaper. I probably resembled Mary Poppins pulling everything out of that stupid bag looking for one freakin' diaper. It has to be there, right?! I brought more than one! Please, mommas, tell me this sounds familiar. When you have a little boy, you must hold the diaper in place while he finishes his business because if you let it go to say, search frantically through your bag for another diaper, he will decide he needs to pee, too, and shower the window with urine. Oy. That poor school janitor. 

Thankfully by this time my mother-in-law heard me Dane crying and came to the rescue. If we're being truthful she sat and laughed hysterically while trying to soothe the baby. I guess that's payback for the time a momma cow bucked her into the bed of the four-wheeler instead of offering aid I laughed until I cried. Sorry, Dana. :) Ya'll, I'm just saying that that much poop should not come out of a tiny baby. Finally the eruption stopped, we cleaned up the window and I found a clean diaper. We decided to sit in the lobby for the remainder of the ceremony.

There I sat holding a traumatized baby in a pee-soaked, puke-covered onesie (the ONE time I forget a change of clothes!) looking down at the puke on my pretty satin dress and the run in my tights from the zipper on my boots. I learned a few things that day. 1) Nursing mommas should never wear satin, 2) zippers will pull your tights 3) don't try to act like you've got it all together because your baby will make a fool of you, and 4) God has a sense of humor.

There you have it, sweet friends. We all look "together" until you get close enough to smell the spit up. :)

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Picture perfect

Thanks to instagram, I take dozens of photos a day. I mean, look at this kid. He was made to be photographed!