The picture of love

My mom was married to my dad for almost 23 years.

She has been bringing flowers (twice a year) to his grave for 18 years.

This year, when she went, it was freezing outside and there was a funeral going on nearby so she couldn’t spend a lot of time trying to find his gravestone under the blanket of snow. Since I live closer to his grave than my mom, I offered to go back for her once it had warmed up. This past Sunday we went with the kids. We put the flowers on and I took the picture to send it to my mom.

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The experience helped me to realize how lucky I am to have parents that loved each other like this.

18 years is a long time. Some people aren’t even married for that long. And still, she keeps going. Rarely do I hear about it or even know when she goes. She doesn’t Facebook or Instagram the photos. No one see’s the beautiful flowers or even praises her for going. My dad may see it from heaven or he may not. But she does it out of the overflow of love from her heart and to honor their relationship. 

Sometimes love is like the movies–passionate, fun, exhilarating and new. But more often it is seen in simple acts of monotony–cleaning the dishes, changing a diaper, fixing a meal, or putting flowers on a grave.

 

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From his lips…

E: “Mom, are you going to work today?”

Me: “Yes. I am leaving now.” {dressed in scrubs}

E: “But you are still dressed in your pajama’s! You can’t leave yet.”

—–

Me: “Bye Elijah! I will see you later.” {wearing my red peacoat}.

E: “Bye mom. You look like Santa!”

—–

E: “Oh look! There is a dog. He is white because I like to pet him!”

—–

E: Ella say, “shhh!”

E: Say “shhhhhh Ella!”

Ella: “shhhh”

E: “Ella stop that. That’s bad.”

A little piece of my heart

Sometimes…when I think about my dad and that I really only knew him for 11 years, it feels like a long time. But when I think about how many years have passed since I last saw him {almost 19}, it really doesn’t feel that long at all.

But what it always does help me to understand is this: When you are loved, truly loved, by someone and you truly, deeply love them back in return, the amount of time you spend together doesn’t really matter. Continue reading

the sabbath & nap time

Today I had a quick photo session and then came home to my sweet hearts. We went to church last night and don’t have much that is expected of our little family today.  I love it.

The weather was forecast {earlier in the week} to be cold, windy and possibly snowy. I love when the meteorologist’s are wrong. All four of us played outside for a long time after lunch which made nap time easy–the kiddos were exhausted.

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*My* Women of Faith

One of the things that was hardest for me when we moved up to Denver was finding a church. We left such a wonderful body of believers in the Springs. Our time at New Life {me 8 years, David 3} pushed us both to go deeper with the Lord and grow in our faith. We met some amazing friends, were involved in a great young married’s bible study and felt like we fit.

We honestly struggled to fine a church “home” for a couple years. I don’t even remember how many churches we tried. Thankfully the Lord, as He always does, answered our prayers and led us to a wonderful community, Jubilee Fellowship Church. Even after we started going there, knowing that it was where the Lord had led us, I struggled to find women that I could connect with on a deeper level. I cried and prayed a lot, begging God for a community of genuine women to seek the Lord with.

After Ella was born I was blessed to have 3 months off work and decided to commit to finding a bible study at my church. When I was looking at the list, I felt the Lord calling me to a specific study. The first day that I went I left astounded! The Lord had led me to such a safe & Holy place. A place where women are able to be themselves. A place where we can confess our sin, struggles and insecurities and then experience the acceptance of God from one another. A place where people who have never raised their hands in worship or prayed in their prayer language or even prayed out loud actually feel safe to do so. A place where the Holy Spirit meets with us weekly. A place where we are sharpened by one another to become better wives and sisters  and mothers and daughters.

I truly feel as if it is a little slice of heaven. It is a little answer to Jesus’ prayer: 

Your Kingdom come.

Your will be done.

On earth as it is in Heaven. 

This past week we had a potluck to complete the fall session. I have been going now for four sessions! God and these women have blessed my life in countless ways. I cannot imagine my life without this safe place. I am so thankful for them all!

{Photo Credit goes to Sandra, our leader. She doesn’t even know I stole these photos off her Facebook page. shhhhh.}1400643_10202231870494299_1322487896_o Continue reading

Thankfulness x {five}

::1 My mom. She turned ___ years old on Monday. I am SOOOOO thankful for my mom. Words can’t even describe what a blessing she is, has been and will always be to my life. I really did get the BEST mom. Losing my dad at such a young age was horrible. But to lose my mom, at any age, would be even more painful to me. She has taught me so many things: to work hard, to be kind & compassionate, to give joyfully, to be creative, to love the Lord, to trust God, to be a good friend…the list could go on!

::2 My photography business. I’ve been busy, really busy, these past few months. Perhaps I shouldn’t call it busy but instead call it blessed. Because truthfully, it has been such a blessing to me. Not in the monetary-sense that you would expect but in the people-sense. I love getting to know so many different people, watching them interact with loved ones and capturing precious moments. I feel as if it is such an honor. And I LOVE it!

::3 Megan. I have this amazing friend, Megan. And she is moving back to COLORADO!!!!! I could not be more thankful for this because I will get to see her more often and my babies will know her now!!!!!! And I just love talking to her and being with her….that’s all. 😉

::4 My husband. I know I already talked about him once before but he truly is a DAILY blessing to me. He helps with the cooking, cleaning, and watching the kiddos. He makes me laugh, rubs my neck, prays for me, loves me, encourages me and pushes me. He really does lay his life down for me and I don’t deserve it. But I am thankful for it. 😉

::5 A dirty house. I know that seems weird, coming from me especially. But there was a time, waaaaaay back when {read: in my late teens and early twenties} were I hated myself and looooonged for my life to be different. I always had time to clean my house, everything material that I owned was put in its place, I slept well and my car was spotless. During that time I prayed my life to be different–to have good friends, a husband, a good job, and a life. Now that so many of my prayers have been answered I don’t have the same amount of time to tend to my material possessions like I once did. {Praise the Lord!} My life is too full of giggles, cheerios, bible studies, shopping for birthday gifts and going to birthday dinners, pot-lucks, photography sessions, date nights, and snuggling on the couch. If I am honest with you {the blog-world}, I would tell you that I don’t always have this perfect perspective. Just ask #4 in this list about my breakdowns… wait, am I the only one who has those? 😉 There are times that I wish I had a house that was clean for more than five minutes. Or that I didn’t have to spend $80 a month on diapers. Or that my closets were organized. But when it comes down to it, I am so thankful for my life now. It’s full of plans and people and blessings and not very much sleep! 

Making Some Lemonade

After my beloved, new camera had a small malfunction on Thursday and I had to ship it to Nikon in California, my weekend schedule got rearranged just a bit. I had to reschedule a photo session and that left Saturday afternoon wide-open for church and an impromptu date night.

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I absolutely, hands-down have the best mother-in-law. She sends me texts like these:

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As a result, David and I got to spend some quality time together. I found a cute new cardigan at Forever 21, David wanted to look at some new golf bags and putters at Golf Smith and then we went out for dinner. Simple? Yes. Delightful? 100%. We also ran into some of our long-time friends while we were at the mall.

It was a lovely night thanks to a broken camera & always thoughtful mother-in-law.

I feel thankful and blessed!