Thursday, October 29, 2009

Simpler thoughts

It’s been a long time since I’ve blogged regularly. You know…blogging is hard when you’re constantly feeling deep. That is the state I am in all too often lately. I worry if my deep thoughts will bog down the few readers that grace this blog.

However, I can’t help it. I know it’s a season. It lines up with all that is going on in our lives right now. It’s just where I am.

Perhaps if I had one of those amazing blogs that all I focused on were beautiful homes and home decor. Trust me, I love looking at those blogs. They are entertaining. And idea forming. And dream giving. But then, for me, I would be focusing on things that are not the best for me. I tend to compare. I think too much on things that just don’t matter that much. So, occasionally, I’ll tackle the home stuff on my blog…because I DO love it. But that’s not the kind of blog I have.

Perhaps if I had a blog on frugality, deal-finding, shopping, and money saving.  I'd be tired.  Those ladies work way too hard!

Perhaps if I had a blog about parenting…but then I would be constantly having to admit that I don’t have a clue what I am doing. I struggle. Every. Day. Prayerfully. I struggle with how present I am with my kids….is it enough? Is it quality? And then…the comparing. Oh, the comparing! Comparing how I mother to how my friends mother. Comparing how my child at almost 3 ½ years-old still occasionally has potty accidents, when other mother’s children that age…don’t.

So, if I had a blog on topics about other things…I could easily be writing daily. But I don’t. My blog is entitled Full Life Simple Heart. My life IS full. So full. And right now, it’s so full of big thoughts, growth lessons, exhaustion, and lots of love. It almost feels too full.

So yet again, I want to focus on my desire for a simple heart. My desire is there. But practically speaking, I yearn for it to be simpler. I wish I could grasp my day more firmly and confidently…and accomplish what I desire to do. I wish my home was more organized. I wish I didn’t have projects looming over me to finish. I wish the voices in my head (not the spooky or multiple personality kind!) were clear thinking right now.

So I am going to be kind to myself. I am just going to sit in my deep thoughts…and occasionally share them, if God leads me to.

Right now I want to bathe in His grace. I want to feel His Presence. I want to watch Him work in mine and my family’s lives. I want to protect simplicity. I want to be okay if things are momentarily chaotic, knowing that they are only momentary.

And I don’t want to worry about whether or not my thoughts are too much for anyone who may or may not read. They are mine. My Father hears me. The heart of my husband hears me. That really IS enough. IF someone else can even remotely be encouraged, then I am glad I spoke my heavy thoughts.

The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak. ~Hans Hofmann, Introduction to the Bootstrap, 1993

Eliminate physical clutter. More importantly, eliminate spiritual clutter. ~D.H. Mondfleur

The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

Aunt Amy....aren't you proud?!?!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Crazy thinking

Remember this?

And then my friend, Jeff, made me this....

And now it looks like this...

(I still have to accessorize it, but I love it!)

I absolutely love it.  My coffee tastes more amazing in the morning, coming from it's own bar.  :)


Do you ever feel like this....

or this......

or this....

at 2:00 in the afternoon?  I do.   

Life can be exhausting. 

Physically... there are very practical reasons I am currently exhausted.
(a)  I am not going to bed on time.
(b)  I am not eating as healthfully as I normally do.
(c)  I am not drinking enough water.
(d)  I'm exercising sporadically at best.

Simply....I'm just plain old doing all the stuff I know not to do...and am obviously expecting different results.  That's just crazy thinking's exhausting trying to carry all the stuff God could carry for me...if I'd let him. 

Sometimes I take things back from Him.  I take my eyes off of Him. I place them on other things.  And then there is unrest, not as much peace, and defintely not the joy

Again, I'm just plain old doing the stuff I know not to do...yet again...
crazy thinking

God can.  He has.  He will.
I should continue to trust.  And seek Him.

And take care of myself.  God is doing His part.  I need to do mine.


This post was sweet today.  Hop over and read it, if you get the chance. 
Aunt Ruthie is adorable, sweet...and inspiring.

Have a great day...with no crazy thinking!

And set your minds and keep them set on what is above (the higher things), not on the things that are on the earth.
Colossians 3:2 (Amplified Bible)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Like grandma used to make it!

Oh, I wish you could've joined me today.  It was one of those dreamy times in the kitchen.

The weather was amazing today....a beautiful, crisp breeze, with lots of sun.  We had all the windows open.  I could hear the boys outside playing in the backyard, while listening to all my favorite praise songs playing inside.  My pumpkin spice candle was lit, and the scent was filling the kitchen. 

And to top it all off....

I made my husband's favorite dessert of all time:  carrot cake.
I used his grandmother's recipe, of course.  He has great memories of her serving him pieces of her carrot cake.  She hand wrote the recipe for me on a card many years ago, before she went to be with the Lord.  I'm so thankful I have that from her, in her writing.

There is nothing like "Momma Doc's" carrot cake.  It's nothing fancy.  Only the good old fashioned basics...made with a lot of love.  And let me's YUMMY!

No comments about my portion size, please.  Carrot cake is a veggie, right?!

Grandma's Carrot Cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Sift together:
2 cups flour
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups sugar

Beat together:
4 eggs
3/4 cup oil (add slowly)

Add dry ingredients to the oil/eggs alternatively with:
2 cups raw grated carrots

Add 1 tsp. vanilla.

Prepare two 9" cake pans. 
Bake for 25-30 mins. or until toothpick comes out clean.

1 large package of cream cheese
1 stick butter~softened
1 box confectioners sugar (1 lb.)
2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup nuts, finely chopped

Take, eat, ENJOY!

I'm happy to post this at To Everything a Season.  Hop over there and check out lots of great dessert ideas. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Be still my heart.....

I have loved this piece of furniture from the moment I laid eyes on it.  I knew we could be happy together. 

I instantly pictured it in my life, sharing my space, letting me adore it for the rest of my life. 

The only problem was...I didn't own it.  It wasn't mine.  It was someone else's. 

Oh, but I dreamed about it.  It would fit into my home, assisting in so many ways!  But I instantly thought how it could love our family so well in the area of a coffee bar....another deep love and passion of mine.

And random day, I asked my amazingly talented friend, Jeff, if he thought he could make one.  "Sure, he could try."  We talked about how much money it might be and realized it might cost a couple of hundred dollars worth of wood. 

And for now, that wasn't a possibility.
But God is a God of possibility, isn't He?

Jeff came across some fence wood from a neighboring house.  They were replacing their fence, and there was actually nothing wrong with the old fence. 

So with free wood, Jeff's amazing talent (and many hours!), and his sweet, giving heart....

Isn't it amazing?!  I love it!  I'd marry it, if I could.  :) 

I haven't yet painted it, but how close is THIS to the original picture?!
(My pictures do not even do this fabulousness justice!)

He even put glass in the upper hutch!

AND a light underneath! 
Let me catch my breath....

I wish I'd taken an up close photo of the cute little tray he made, too.  I have the PERFECT spot for coffee table.  And I needed something just like it to go there.  I'll come back to that with pictures later.

Jeff, you are a talented man.
And a dear family friend.
Thank you for your blessing.

And thank you, Colleen, for loaning Jeff's man hours to work on this.
You're both so special!!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


This will probably be a longer post than anyone would possibly want to read today, but that’s okay. I’m overwhelmed by God’s presence in our family and in my life right now…I can’t even begin to express it. So, in this feeble attempt, I’ll try.

There is nothing like need to draw you to the feet of Christ…which is so where we should be always, even, in our excess. But when we feel NEED, and are at the end of ourselves, that is when God shows up.

When your fear of God is bigger than your fear of your circumstance, then God says, “WATCH THIS!”
Tony Evans

In this trial, we have not panicked. But before you pat me on the back, know this…it is God. It is GOD who has placed us in the family, in the church and in the community of friends he placed us in for such a time as this. It is GOD who has revealed His Truth to us in His Word. It is God who hears our prayers…and answers. It is GOD who draws us closer to Him so we feel His presence in our lives. It is GOD.

So we have been faithful to take Him at His word. And He is showing up. He never ceases to amaze me. He delights in faithful kids, looking upward to the Hand of the Father. He is faithful. He said He would provide. He has. He said He would give us peace that passes all understanding. He has. He said He would guide our steps. He has. He said He will never leave us. He hasn’t. He is a God that doesn’t deceive and doesn’t lie.

On a lighter, less “preachy” note…..

What have we been doing around here?

Well, this is who joined me for breakfast this morning….

Meet Darth Vader and the Storm Trooper

Then a few days ago as we were outside playing...and the mosquitos were just awful, this is what Braden did.

I wish I had gotten a "final"picture...he was coated in mud!!  I found out later that he was protecting his skin from mosquitos, like Bear Grylls, on Man Vs. Wild.
Makes sense, right?
And truth be told, he's the only one that didn't get bites that night....


In my quest to simplify life right now, I've been trying to FINISH some old projects that have been hanging over me, before I start any new ones. 

Last weekend, my strong man started on my (almost completely cost free!) compost bin I've been wanting him to build.  We planned this building adventure weeks ago and then Bill broke his knee cap and has been out of commission.  As you can see, he is back in "Honey Do" mode!  Can I hear an Amen?! 

He even had a little bit of help...

...until it was time to rest and dream about being a villian in outer space....

Remember this project
I finished. 
(I think I hear the Hallelujah chorus playing in the background...)

And remember this?
It turns out beautifully. 
I wouldn't recommend spending a whole lot of time taste testing....
not that I speak from experience....

And now, I've finally started on this.
Stay tuned....



They are powerful in my life.  I am truly blessed.
I was able to spend many luxurious hours with my sweet girlfriends, Connie and Meleah, on Sunday, perusing the Canton flea market.  Under the circumstances, I didn't really have any money to spend, but enjoyed many rain-soaked hours, walking around (ankle-deep in water) with these amazing women.  They, along with so many other women friends, are treasures in my life.  But Sunday with these ladies was filled with encouraging words, sweet moments and precious conversation. 

And my sweet friend Connie blessed me with this t-shirt, that is so fitting right now...

Thank you, friend.