Sunday, September 30, 2012

goodbye, september

Dane is 14 months old! I can't believe how quickly time passes. It's been a busy month 'round here!

One of his favorite "toys" is the swiffer. I am not opposed to him learning to use it-- since I'm usually cleaning up after him and the trillion cheerios he leaves on the floor. :)

 He enjoyed his first try at corn on the cob this month. Apparently, it was delicious!

One thing I have grown to LOVE about Kentucky is having all four seasons. This Arizona girl loves the heat, but a definite break from it (and a gentle ease into freezing temps) is so wonderful. We've enjoyed lots of time outside. I've tried to capture his sweet little features while they still look like they belong to a baby. He becomes more and more of a toddler every day. :(

 Boys.are.dangerous! He will find the dirtiest, germiest, death-defying way to do anything. Doing the stairs by himself is a new trick he's trying to master.

 I should note that after those photos were taken, he missed a step and took a corner to the cheek... it's still green and purple. :(

We tried getting a few family photos while we enjoyed the beautiful weather on a blanket in the yard....our youngest family member wanted nothing to do with it.

 The driveway is his favorite place to play right now because he can run around and around. He loves to "kick" balls-- tennis balls, baseballs, volleyballs. :) He even throws them for Elphie. Elph also loves this time outside because she gets to run free. While she does wander a little too far sometimes, she usually spends her time shepherding her little lamb in the driveway.

watching out for danger. :)
 She's a good shepherd, but a shameless beggar. This is aided by the fact that the baby loves feeding her. :)

Monday, September 24, 2012

little blue dress

My baby is taking an amazing nap. Oops, I better not say that lest I jinx myself. My husband is gone so the house is quiet. I ate lunch. by. my. self. It's the little things, people, that make a good day for a momma.

Just six days left in this month of 7. I have decided that I have pretty much zero follow-through on anything. That's probably why I've started two masters programs and keep starting over at week 1 day 1 of the Couchto5K program. I really made a good effort this month. When I failed to put on one of my seven approved items, it is not out of vanity because "so and so" might have seen me in that outfit twice already this week (though those moments have occurred when I see someone out and about). Nope. I failed because my seven things were dirty-- ok, six of them were dirty and I didn't want to lay around the house in a dress. :)

The entire book convicted me. While I am realizing that actually living out this fast is really hard, it doesn't mean I am any less convicted. I have too much junk. I think it's quite intentional that this month you wear only seven things and next month you give away seven things a day for 30 days-- because I have already had the urge to purge! When you realize that you really CAN get by without fifteen blazers, 20 dresses and 30 pairs of shoes it makes it easier to part with them the next month. So, call me a cheater if you will, but I've already started in on my 210 items for next month. 

I am a clothes horse. I LOVE fashion. I love cute things with ruffles, a tailored blouse, riding boots-- and don't even get me started on accessories. I love to be feminine and girly. I love the way a dress with the perfect cut can make me feel. And there's this one. I have it a few years. Given, it was a TJ Maxx purchase, but it's still Maggie London. It's the perfect length and the most beautiful shade of blue. It looks great with leggings and riding boots, or absolutely precious with a cardigan and strappy sandals. But alas... it is a size that fit me one baby ago... :( 

I had no problem purging most of the stuff in my closet. My (BRAND NEW!) sister-in-law, I knew, would make a good home for a few things. But most of the things, in the spirit of not blessing the blessed, but instead giving away my things to someone who really needs them, went to a local clothing ministry. While I don't need a blazer in every color anymore, there are women in this community who can't afford a nice jacket to wear to job interview. It felt good to fold up some of those things and give them away. I knew they had made me feel beautiful and made me look sharp at meetings with clients, now another woman could put on that crisp white blouse and feel beautiful. I pray she feels God's peace and trusts that everything will work out. I pray it fits her perfectly when nothing else in her world seems to fit. But that blue dress... it would fit me again. I mean, really, it will. I won't keep this marriage baby weight forever. So, feeling fully justified, I left in hanging in my closet. It's so pretty. I can surely camouflage the fact that it won't zip by wearing a chunky sweater with it. It will be perfect for fall- chunky sweater and riding boots. Yep. 

I got an email last week about being a part of a scripture collective in which you send a passage of scripture to ten people and, ideally, they respond to you. I got one response from my round. But, it was the only response I needed. Man-- isn't the Lord so convicting good like that?!

Matt. 6:25-34
 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Isn't there more to life than food and more to the body than clothing? Look at the birds in the sky: They do not sow, or reap, or gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren't you more valuable than they are? And which of you by worrying can add even one hour to his life? Why do you worry about clothing? Think about how the flowers of the field grow; they do not work or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his glory was clothed like one of these! And if this is how God clothes the wild grass, which is here today and tomorrow is tossed in the fire to heat the oven, won't he clothe you even more, you people of little faith? So then, don't worry saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear?' For the unconverted pursue these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But above all pursue His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given unto you as well. So then, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Today has enough trouble of its own."
Oh. Do you hear that? That's the sound of my toes being stepped on. Ouch. "It's a freakin' dress, Allysa!" That's what Jesus was saying. "You have ten others you AREN'T giving away and you're going to get wrapped around the axle about one."

"But, Maggie London isn't exactly on the SAHM budget anymore". 
"Give it away."
"But I will be grateful every time I wear it."
"Give it away."
"Well, there is that friend..."
"Give it away."

And, so, thanks to Holy Spirit using my friend Mike to send EXACTLY the right scripture, I gave it away. I took it from it's precious little spot in the back of the closet (you know, where all the "maybe next year" stuff hangs), folded it carefully and placed it on top of a bag of clothes I was giving to a friend who also lives on a frugal SAHM budget and gives tirelessly to her girls but not as much to herself (any mommas who can relate?). I knew her delicate little frame- that you would never believe carried two babies!- would look gorgeous in that satin-trimmed number I loved so much.  

She texted me to say the clothes were a "perfect fit". I knew they would be. The Lord's pretty good like that. 

So, Month #3 hasn't even begun and the Lord is chipping away at my closet and the need for approval I store in there. I'm excited--and a little scared-- to see what else comes from this. If you're in the market for new clothes, probably wouldn't hurt to stop on by. My prices are unbeatable. :)

Monday, September 10, 2012

7: month 2

Sooooo, month #1 of 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess was a colossal failure. We made it three days...okay, Tevie made it three days, I had to have a cup of coffee by the afternoon of the first day. Obviously, I have weaknesses I need to work on! 

This month is clothes month.  Seven items of clothes for 30 days. A difficult task for September since the weather can vary pretty drastically in Kentucky as fall tempts us with cooler temps only to be overtaken by summer's blazing heat and oppressive humidity for a few more days.

This month we're wearing seven things. 
  1. blue 5millionminus1 tshirt
  2. grey fitted, v-neck shirt
  3. black knit capri pants
  4. jeans
  5. striped cardigan
  6. versatile cotton dress
  7. silver/white sandals and tennis shoes (two pair= one item)
We had one big, beautiful wrench thrown into this month: Tevie's brother got married this weekend! So, our council (comprised of us and Linz & Gord) gave us a reprieve for the wedding festivities because the bride and groom-- as precious as they are-- might have thrown a huge fit had a bridesmaid and the best man stood up there in jeans and tennis shoes. ;)

This month has been much easier than I thought, given that I am a clothes horse and ache to be fashionable, even if I'm just wearing yoga pants and t-shirt. It's so freeing to not have to think about what you're putting on! It's already picked out for me! The Lord has really been convicting me as of late thought to not be concerned with what people think about me. Not to dress to be cute and to be noticed, but to bring glory to Him in everything-- even my accessories. 1Sam 16:7 has been on my mind-- reminding me that God looks at my heart, not my outward appearance. I have also been meditating on 1Peter3 and the instructions to not be concerned with the stuff I put on, but to remember that true beauty comes from my "inner self" and that "the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit" is of great worth to God. Of course, there are days when I want to throw all of that out the window, but keeping those verse in mind and writing them on my heart gives me ammunition to fire back at satan when he tells me I'm not pretty enough, not thin enough and that everyone is judging me based on how I look.

I have been doing more laundry (downside!) in an effort to keep our seven things clean. Because obviously after you've worn something all day, worked out in it and then slept in it (which is gross enough!) you don't want to wear it again the next day. This weekend ended up being a break from the whole thing as we sweated through everything we had brought and with the wedding rush didn't have time to wash. So we borrowed clothes from Tevie's parents for sleeping and wearing to church on Sunday. However today everything is clean and we are back on track!

Baby Dane is NOT participating in this month as it would be cruel and unusual punishment for me to have wash a baby's clothes and I can't exactly take him everywhere in a diaper. :)

Stay tuned for the wrap up of this month! There's more to come on this little experiment.

Thursday, September 6, 2012


My sweet angel is napping-- and for now the second day in a row he is napping well! He's eating us out of house and home and taking some serious naps so I'm calling it a growth spurt and trying to enjoy every minute. :)

This morning as I watched his sweet chubby fingers dig blueberries out of a bowl and devour them, I was overwhelmed at how freakin' awesome my kid is. He is so smart, so beautiful and so precious. He loves to be loved and give love. He loves to learn. He loves to read. He loves to play and is somehow, innately it seems, becoming a boy.

What a blessing to be his mom. What a burden, though, to teach this perfect little being the ways of the Lord. To be a godly wife to his father. To be the embodiment of Christ's love to others and an example for him. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

over the river...

And through the woods to Granna's (and Papa's) house we go!

We spent the weekend visiting my family in NC and Dane was spoiled to no end. In fact, we've been doing a little grandparent detox the last few days!

Dane's Papa arrived Thursday and was shocked when Tevie and I headed out to do things we needed to do and left HIM to bathe the boy and put him to bed! Dane was in very capable hands!

Friday it was off to NC where we met Aunt Brynnie and Uncle Ryan for dinner and watched Uncle Chase play in the pep band at Dane's first high school football game. Dane was soooo tired he screamed and cried every time the band played or the crowd cheered, so we left before the first quarter ended. :)

I love spending time at my parents' home. I think no matter how big you get, you always feel at home at your momma and daddy's. Dane has so much fun playing with special toys (that were his mom's!-- I think they call it "vintage" now!) and taking baths in Granna's giant tub. He is covered in kisses and tickles and showered with love. It's always hard to come home!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

wild man

This kid has a head full of the softest curls. When he sleeps, he wraps himself up in a little cocoon... and the result is this crazy bedhead. :)