the flower girl


You know those moments that your heart is snagged (in a good way) and you just fall in love with someone all over again? Well today Ava got to be a flower girl in Brandon and Kailey’s wedding. We have been talking about this event for months. We practiced on Tuesday night as she would toss and pick up. Toss and pick up. I honestly wondered how today would go. Not only was it ohhh 95 degrees out but my baby was going to be a flower girl. Now she is only 3 years old and at the age of 3 you can’t bank on how the situation might go.

Will there be tears because you don’t want to wear your cute flower garland in your hair?

Will you make it down the aisle?

Will you know what to do?

I know what you thinking… sheesh she is only 3 years old, and I sure hope you didn’t put all of that pressure on your poor little 3-year-old. Nope. I think I did a good job at not doing this. It’s just stuff you hold inside. Just wondering. And Hoping that things will go how you somewhat expected.

Well it was Ava’s turn and I watched from the sidelines. I couldn’t have been more proud. I know she was just a flower girl, but little miss  melted my heart so much today. She really pulled at my heartstrings. I really wish I would have captured it on video because it’s one of those precious moments that I will play over and over again in my mind.

The sheer glee on your face as you pranced down the aisle today was so wonderful. You pranced and tossed those flowers so well. I know you were not there to perform for anyone. But today you truly gave your best and the Joy that beamed out of you, well it melted my heart. I think it melted God’s heart as well. You had no worry or care in the world. You were determined to do the job you were called to do and you did it with more Joy then I do most of my life. It’s funny how much you can learn from such a quick instance. From such a tiny person. But you put your best foot forward, grinned, and proceeded with Joy. Oh how much fun you have when you/ we proceed with Joy. Anyhoo…

I’m sure other people thought oh what a cute little girl, but honey you were wonderful and I am just so proud to be your mommy! Someday you will prance down that aisle again and when that happens you will be given away to a man. I guarantee I will see you as a flower girl and remember this day and your Joy will radiate from your sweet face once again.

I just hope you know what a gift from God you are to me and your daddy. Know that you will always be our little girl, no matter how old you get. The joy of the Lord spills out of you and I pray that you continue to radiate the Glory of Gods Joy all the days of your life. Thank you for giving me so much joy today and once again I love being your mommy and am so proud of you!

The Happy couple!

And the exhausted hot family. Time for bed!



A few weeks ago we braved a 9 hour trip to Idaho and a 10+ hour one back to Oregon. It was quite the adventure. This is the longest trip we have taken with two kiddos in the ghetto van thus far. Like I said it was an adventure, isn’t it always? (life that is). Steve and I had discussed leaving on a Tuesday night after work, but as that Tuesday approached I started to get anxious and wondered if it was such a hot idea. You know “hoping” that the kids would fall asleep in the car, like good little children and there would be no potty breaks, uh yeah right! So we decided against the insane idea (of leaving at night) and left the next morning. I enjoyed this idea much better because we packed the car the night before, woke in the morn, threw all of our bodies in the car, and started the trip with some Starbucks, now we are talking!

I think on the way there we stopped oh 10 times or more. We prayed over our ghetto van several times because once we hit the nothingness in Washington (who knows how many miles of no buildings) the temp spiked to the 90’s, 100’s somewhere in there. Just to give you an idea of the ghetto van, (now don’t get me wrong, we love the van, it was free and is a bigger blessing than we realize) but this van is from 1993 and it is a Ford Aerostar. The van has a radio and tape deck. We do however have AC, state of the art for her time I’d say.

  Now quick  side note… my friend Jacqueline drove one of these babies in college and it burned all of the way down to the ground in the Roth’s parking lot. For reals. I got the call after it had happened, my friend telling me she was standing in the parking lot looking at her burt to a crisp car. Is this the first time we have heard this, ummm nope! Apparently it’s an Aerostar thing. So you can see why one would pray hard over a van like this driving in to no man’s land, with 90+ degree weather…

So back to the 90’s+ weather… “We” start to get a bit worried how the ghetto girl will fair in this type O’ weather, because extra heat added to the already working hard engine bueno.  Will today be the day she burns down? (honestly we really hope we never cross that road) Will the heat be too much for her to handle? So for miles of nothingness we worried, I mean we trusted the Lord… uhhh we just worried. The Lord was gracious and we finally made it to our destination! No cranky kiddos, no broken down car, no grumpy parents (well not too grumpy)… we had made it! Halleluia!

Anyhow in Idaho we stayed at Steve’s folks spot on “The River”. About 40+ family members showed up. We basically hang out for days, float down the river a few times, eat, talk, relax, and sleep in campers! It is pretty great if I do say so myself. And because I am a caffeine addict I always enjoy my sis n’ law and the fact she brings her rock star of an espresso machine to the river. It’s like wake up, have a legit latte, eat yummy camp food, and float da river! Can’t beat times like this with the fam.

Alrighty here are some precious pics of our time in Idaho!

Good morning to you!

Beautiful girl!

Yes they have everything at the river, even a kiddie pool for the youngsters.

Papa loves. I think he’s cute. This is good because Steve will potentially look like this someday.

My darling niece.

Aunt Kelli and Kyla. Getting ready for an outdoor movie night! How fun are my relatives?

On our way home from Idaho, we stopped in the windy Gorge.

Oh my Family is cute!

That is all.

gone again…

Hello I’m back, I know I know my last blog said something about goals. And something about me blogging once a week…. blah blah blah.  Well that is a goal and that is still on my heart. Unfortunately, for the last 6 weeks I have been taking some grad classes which has consumed my time. I really don’t like using that word but it is probably the truth. One of my classes was awesome and the other not so awesome, but I got A’s in both so I suppose I am a happy camper.

I am glad I took the classes because I have learned a few things about myself and a few things I was supposed to learn. I needed to take these classes so that I would not loose my teaching license. It’s something they make you do, if you teach, which I suppose is good if you send your children to public schools (knowing that the teachers are always learning). Every few years you get this treacherous letter in the mail from TSPC (teacher standards and practices) saying you either need to get your masters or do some grad credits within a certain amount of time (and this happens every 3 years). For me I am not teaching right now, well not in a “school” per se. I honestly don’t know if I ever see myself teaching in a public school again. Not because I am against this profession or anything but because God has blessed me with a husband and some sweet children. He has called me to something more because of the gifts he has blessed me with.

It says in Titus 2:3 “Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, and train up the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.” – I honestly enjoy staying at home and I embrace my title as a Stay at home mom.

Proverbs 31: 27 “She looks well to the ways of her household”

I feel like in the last 6 weeks I have had some troubles at “looking well in the ways of my household/family”. Although the time I have spent was on something most people see as important, it was time nonetheless that took me away from my home obligations. My children got bits and pieces of me but not all of me, and so did my husband. Many nap times were spent reading many many books and writing a ton. Many evenings I was up until midnight composing papers, which I haven’t done since college. Due to staying up so late, it was often hard for me to want to rise up at all in the morning.

(aren’t they sweet??? How could I not want to spend all of my daytime hours with these girls?)

The classes did suck up a ton of time which I can never get back, but I have learned a few things about myself:

I am very capable of blogging once a week if not more.

I am also able to read more than once thought. (This has been a constant struggle for me since having children).

I have a new perspective for students who I minister too and how much time classes do take.

I understand different ways people interpret text due to their surrounding environment, which should be helpful when leading bible studies.

And I really do love reading and learning. I love engaging my mind.

So there you have it. That’s what I have been up to, with a few other things squeezed in as well.

This week at a glance…

 So I am trying to commit as one of my new goals, to blog once a week. We will see how this works. I often have many “blogish” ideas or things I would just like to remember in life and never get around to blogging them. So here’s hoping that I can accomplish this. Other goals that I have are:

Read a new book each month.

Read the Bible in a year.

exercise 3-4 times a week. (Hoping that this gets easier this summer, also another goal that stems from this was… exercise regularly before getting preggo again, here again we will see.)

Read more books to my girls daily.

Make coffee, chai, and ice tea at home. (Am I addicted to caffeine, I’d say yes. Am I addicted to Starbucks, I’d yes once again. Do I go to Starbucks all that often, no. When I found out the grande caramel macchiato is now $4.05, I wanted to barf in my mouth. That is $16.20 a month if I went each week… I get $50 for fun money. So because I also have a longing for addiction to be a shopper, I’d rather use my $50 on clothing or some other item… we will see what happens. *side note, I have this stove frother that makes awesome foam, so if you too are in the same dilemma as me, I advise investing in one such product. 🙂

I’m sure I could add more to the list like get my craft on more often or bust out the guitar that’s collecting dust in the garage… but for now the above list is just fine.

So onto the Happenings of the week…


We went to Afton Field Farms. It is this awesome Farm down in Corvallis that is all about organic practices and sustainable living. Right up my alley. They also do a meat/eggs/raw honey CSA which I will be splitting with a friend. So excited. I know it sounds obnoxious, and to some it might be, but I’m stoked to have found this place and be able to eat food that I know is not full of other stuff. Anyhoo…. Ava, Charis and I took a little field trip down to visit the place. We got to hold baby chicks, saw piglets, and coveted the old farm-house on the property. (If you want to know one of the items on my wish list, it’s a house that was built in the 1930’s or before, specifically farm-house with a red barn out back.)



Want me some chickens!

Later that night was a bit sentimental, at least for me.

 These lovely ladies have been coming to my house all year long. Love these ladies so much. The last 20 weeks we have been doing a bible study called, “Breaking Free By, Beth Moore”. It is an awesome study based out of the book of Isaiah which is also so so so rich with truth. Anyhow we completed the study! I know this doesn’t sound all monumental, but it really is. It is a blessing that these girls, and myself crossed the finish line and completed it. The study touches on a ton of deep-rooted issues, which if I didn’t have Jesus I would have bailed (ok well actually this is the almost 3rd time I have done this study… so back in college I attempted it but was not that intrigued so I never finished it, then I did it over last summer and loved it and then had the opportunity to do it with these young ladies.) Needless to say they started it and monday night marks the night we finished the entire study. And it was so so so good. *sigh*


End of the year BBQ for our CRU group.


Charis so wants this hot dog.

Ava loves Crusade and all of the students. And they love Ava!


Just chilled… Charis is loving sitting in chairs now.


We painted nails and braided hair. That’s what you get to do when you have little girls.



Went on a crazy adventure with my friend Dana. We drove to Portland and got a FREE piece of furniture. Not sure where it will go in this small house… maybe it’s a sign that we need to move ;). Then we tried out the new Starbucks “Trenta”, 30 oz’s of black tea goodness (just for the record this beverage is under $3! Holla!) Then from across the parking lot we spotted something… Awesome. Hanna Anderson outlet! Had no idea this existed. Don’t worry I didn’t go crazy…. remember I only get $50 a month. Charis got a brand new best friend though: cutest stuffed dog ever (will make a separate post for him later). seriously she will not let this guy go. Finally wrapped up our little escapade with a little PF Changs action, mmm mmm mmm lettace wraps. (Not gonna lie, I felt like I was living the life on Thursday, definitely not a normal occurence for me.) And I topped off the evening with a birthday party sushi style outing. (High life people, high life.)

This weeks been good thus far and the weekend has just started.

Such a great week. Love. my. life. (And it’s all thanks to Jesus!)

Reindeer Jammy Love

These jammies are Ava’s favorite jammies ever. This face, as a side note, is her “big face” as she calls it. This little girl is hilarious and just fills my heart with so much delight. I can’t stress enough how much this little girl loves these jammies. Whenever I put Charis in these Pj’s which are erring on the side of too small, Ava begs to be put in the same ones. It will be a sad day when Charis no longer gets to sport the same jammies as her big sis.

Even when Charis is not in these Jammies these are the ones Ava asks for first. She talks about her Reindeer Jammies when she’s not in them and talks about them when she is in them.

Plain goof ball I tell ya.

And now we have to change in to clothes for the day and this is what I get. She’s still cute when not happy.

Can’t believe she’s 3!

Ava turned 3 this last friday! We have been practicing how old she would be for the last month or so. She holds up 3 fingers now and no longer 2. The day before her birthday we celebrated with our sweet friends the Balints. We went to the Tulip Festival. They have some fun things for kids to do there: slides, pony rides, a train ride around the field, puddles to jump in. If you know Ava at all you would know that she is not a fan of unusual noises. So unfortunately for the first hour or so, the sound of the train was a bit scary for her. But we finally convinced her it was fine and decided to take a ride…

This is the best pic I could take while holding Ava between my legs and having Charis strapped to my front.

Then we played in puddles…

Your BFF Lyddi. You two are complete opposites but you sure love each other.

The next day was your actual birthday. A few days prior we asked you what you would like for your birthday and you said “A blueberry pie.” (Oh my). So I made you a lemon blueberry coffee cake for your birthday breakfast instead. You were so satisfied and now you will always call coffee cake, pie. Whoops. We also had your birthday present set up in the living room… you got an easel to further your expressive side. It was quite funny because we told you that this was your birthday present and you insisted that your “birthday was in the garage”. This was due to the fact that you had seen the UPS man bring the box into our garage and had no idea what was in that box. You were not convinced. To you the easel was o.k. and  that your “birthday” was still in our garage. Oh well.

Then we packed up and headed out for a little adventure.

We went to the humane society to look at the kitties and puppies. We thought this would be fun since you like kitties. After much driving and viewing animals we headed back home and grabbed some Burgerville. That evening we went to our CRU retreat. To say the least it wasn’t a wildly adventurous day, but we all had a great time as a family.

I really can’t believe you are already three! The time has flown by but I have loved being your mommy for all of it so far. You are a smart kid who doesn’t forget anything. You remind us, often of the good memories we have had and even the bad ones. You love singing hymns like “come thou font of every blessing” and you are a crazy dancer. You are known for you hugs that never let go and your heart is full of mercy and tenderness towards others. I love you being my sweet little girl, no longer my baby. I can’t wait to see what sort of woman you become. And just for the record I am so proud to be your mommy!

Happy 3rd Birthday Sweet Ava!

A child, her sweetness, and love for Jesus.

So tonight we got home from Crusade before Steve. I had the pleasure of putting both girlies to bed, which is usually tag teamed by the hubs. I placed a reusable shopping bag full of snacks and other things in the kitchen and ran off to get Charis nursed and put down to bed. We have quite the routine with both girls and I don’t ever want to skimp on it in the least bit. I usually get Charis and nurse her, sing a few songs to her and finally pray for her. Ava gets a story, songs, and prayer with daddy. Tonight however I asked Ava to sit on the couch while I helped her sister and then we would read her bible and do our bedtime thing. As I was singing away to Charis, I kept hearing loud banging noises from the kitchen. I would then stop the singing, call out to Ava and ask if everything was ok. “I’m just putting my sippy in the sink” she would say. Then it was Charis’ sippy so on and so forth. Finally I was ready to read to her and help her to bed. After she was down I went to the kitchen to remove the contents from my bag and realized my sweet almost three-year old had done it for me. She had placed the Tupperware on the counter, placed the bag of apples on the shelf with the other food, and finally hung the bag back up. My heart just melted. What a lovely little lady this little girl of mine is turning into. I was reminded how blessed I am to have this sweet child. That she is my blessing from the Lord. And what a blessing she is.

Not only does this girl have spunk but she also has heart. She loves people, she loves Jesus, and she just plain loves life. I often hear her belting “bind my wandering heart to thee, let thy goodness like a fetter bind my wandering heart to thee, prone to wander Lord I feel it, prone to leave the God I love….” My heart is forever changed when a child shows fondness or love towards God.

This last weekend Steve took Ava to the park for what we like to call a “daddy date”. This consists of swinging for sometime. As she was pushed in the air she yelled out “look God I’m swinging”. She has started saying these sorts of things, often. The weekend before she was showing God how to blow bubbles. It makes my heart melt every time and I am certain God is just beaming with Joy. Oh the simplicity of child like faith and even a relationship with the Lord. I mean I know my child is a sinner and don’t let me mislead you,  I definitely see plenty of sin, but when I see such kindness and love flow from my child I am just moved to love my Jesus like her. She didn’t think twice about helping this evening put stuff away. She was so innocent in her actions. She expected nothing. And I was blessed by her actions. Oh how much I can learn from such a small little person. Thankful this evening for the ways the Lord blesses me through my sweet family.