My Grieving Heart

I’m so troubled by everything I’ve been witnessing on social media and the news. I just don’t know how much more I can handle seeing each day. I keep seeing my “friends” posting things that I not only disagree with, but things that I know grieves the heart of God. My heart is so grieved too. How can these women, many of them who are mothers, and many who claim to be Christians, be pro-choice? They stand up for the rights of animals, but not for the rights of an unborn child. I seriously don’t get it. My heart hurts for God. He had a plan for each and every baby that he planted in the womb.

“Thou shalt not kill.” Exodus 20:13

I pray daily on how to handle this situation. I want to stand up for God and not care what anyone else thinks. He’s the main authority in my life. He’s the one who created me and the one who will judge me when I enter into eternity. I want to be brave for God. I want to empower other woman to stand up against the grain. It really stinks, but you will lose friends over standing up for what the Bible says is right. I know this first hand. But it gives me peace to know that even Jesus faced heartbreak when Judas, one of His 12 disciples, betrayed Him. (John 18:1-12) He knows the heartbreak you feel from the loss of friendship. He will help you heal and move forward.

These women who protested for women’s rights don’t represent me or God. These women need our prayers, but the world needs to see that there are millions of other women like myself who are pro-life women who love and respect our husbands. We are happy with our rights as women. We have so much freedom in America. How dare these women complain and carry on like they have chains around their necks. They don’t like America? They should do research on other countries where women still have barely any privileges. I’m SO thankful that I can stay home with my children and teach them about God. Many countries don’t even allow homeschooling or free worship. (If you are reading this right now from one of those countries and you long for this type of freedom, I’m so sorry for what you are going through. I’m praying for you!) We are women who strive to please God. We do this by respecting the authority figures that He has placed in our lives.

Romans 13:1-3 says, “All of you must obey the government rulers. Everyone who rules was given the power to rule by God. And all those who rule now were given that power by God. So anyone who is against the government is really against something God has commanded. Those who are against the government bring punishment on themselves. People who do right don’t have to fear the rulers. But those who do wrong must fear them. Do you want to be free from fearing them? Then do only what is right, and they will praise you.”

I would like to end by saying a prayer.

Lord, I thank You for all that You’ve done for me. Thank You that my mother chose life so that I may experience Your goodness and love here on earth. I’m thankful for the air I breathe, for warm water, for my family and friends. There’s just SO much to be thankful for. Thank You for the gift of being home with my children and for giving me a hard working husband to provide for us. I pray for those who don’t know You. Please soften their hearts and open their eyes to Your Word and Your plans for their lives. I pray God, that the division will stop right now and that Your love will conquer all. Bring peace to America. I know that division is Satan’s plan, not Yours. He’s having a field day right now. But I know God, that You are the name above ALL names. I know that You have a plan for each and every person on this earth, whether they believe in You or not. I pray that Your plans for us will prosper and that every weapon formed against Your people will fail. I pray for those who don’t have the freedom to worship You freely. I pray that their leaders will be drawn to You and things will change for the good of Your people. I pray that You will protect those who have to worship You in secret. Give them peace God. Give Your people courage and a bold spirit to stand up for what is right and for the things that bring honor to You. But help us to do it with love and kindness. In Jesus name I pray, Amen

Be blessed my friends!



Tonight I finished reading “make me a Legend: For The Dream of a Better Tomorrow” by Chuck Balsamo. Yay! I finished an entire book! That’s a huge accomplishment for a mother of 4 who finds it hard to focus on anything longer than a few seconds. I started out reading this book because I’ve been on this quest for significance in my life. Too many times the title “Mother” just doesn’t seem as spectacular as I hoped that it would. I finished this book with the understanding that I am not just a mother, I will be a legend to them, and hopefully many others. There’s been this very small flame inside my soul for way too long. Maybe I wouldn’t even call it a flame. Have you ever stood over the stove while you were fixing dinner, just so you could warm up a bit? Sadly, that’s how powerful my “flame” has been for at least a couple of years. Looking at my spiritual life now with a new set of eyes makes me want to cry. How pathetic have I been! I’ll get over it quickly though because I’m excited about the new spark that has hit my soul.

With prayer and faith, I will no longer worry about what others think of me. I will be the best me that I can be and if they don’t like it, well, that’s their loss. I have come to a point where I’m so tired of wasting my time, energies, and resources on those who could honestly care less about me. There was a chapter in this book about getting connected with the right people. I’ve struggled so much with wanting to please everyone and be friends with everyone. Tonight I’m feeling better about moving on without those who no longer belong in my circle, and refocusing my energies on those who truly care. Also, I wrote down a quote from the book that I will be meditating on (replaced with the word I), “This is where I overcome my fear of people – godless people, faithless people, and intimidating, self-righteous people.” I have been holding so much back, out of fear of what others might think of me. So many things that I wanted to say, and should’ve said, but didn’t. I held my tongue as to not offend someone, while at the same time I was swallowing down words that would’ve defended my Savior. No more! My eternal soul and your eternal soul matter more to me now. I will preach the gospel and spread His truth with the world. I let go of my fears. Oh so many fears!

I want to cry tonight, but the tears just won’t come. Perhaps because I know how hard it will be to stop them from flowing. As I look back over the last few years, I’ve somehow, ever so slowly, drifted so far away from Jesus compared to where I was. My husband and I had stopped praying together. I can’t even remember the last time we prayed together as a family. How embarrassing to admit this to you. I stopped writing. I stopped singing. I stopped serving. How on earth did this happen? Well, I know how it happened. It’s exactly how Satan had planned it to happen many years ago. But I have news for him! I’m running back to Jesus and His arms are open wide. I feel His embrace surrounding me now. Angels are rejoicing! Look! There is a flame now, where once there was only the feeling of heat.

Perhaps the drifting away all began when I started out on the quest for more significance. I started searching in other places. I started envying other’s lives instead of being content with the wonderful life that God has blessed me with. I wanted more for MY life. Perhaps if I started out asking God what more I could do for HIM, then I wouldn’t have gotten so off track.

Tonight I will sleep peacefully knowing that I am making a difference in my boy’s lives. We will get back to praying together. We will get back to consistent church services and I won’t just be a bystander. I will set the example for my boys. I will make the sacrifices and be a servant for God’s kingdom. I trust God to use me in ways that I never imagined. I will get back to writing (starting with this very post). I will finish a book someday. I will use all of the hurt and heartache that I’ve endured to encourage others and to help bring them out of bondage. I am tired of playing it safe! God has so much more for us and I’ve gotten in the way. It’s like He stepped aside for these few years and said, “OK, have it your way.” He was always there with me. When I was searching for more, He had His arms around me, trying to show me that He is the more. He’s all I ever needed. When I went through painful trials, He tried to reach out and rescue me, but I wouldn’t listen. I prayed to Him, but I couldn’t hear Him through all the distractions that Satan had created in my life.

I believe that the turning point (a major shift) for me came when Chuck Balsamo wrote in his book to ask God to point out anything in my life that may be holding me back. Whew! I had to stop and take a close look a that. I prayed about it and then as I continued to read the book, God showed me more. I’m going to share my list with you as a bold step of faith. I feel in my heart that this list may resonate with you. It won’t all be the same, but maybe very similar. I’m listing these in order that they came to my mind. See how it starts out looking like pretty minor issues, but then God pointed out deeper issues in my heart.

  1. Cookie Jam Oh how embarrassed I am to admit this. In case you didn’t know, this is a game that I play on my tablet. I’m on level one thousand and something. I’ve been playing it for less than a year. I’ve wasted so much time just spacing out and playing this game, when I could’ve been using that time to draw closer to the Lord. There are so many better uses of my time. 
  2. FaceBook Raise your hand if you’re with me on this one. Scroll, scroll, scroll…Wow! How did I just sit here for half an hour looking into everyone else’s lives? Meanwhile I’m feeling sorry for myself and feeling like an inadequate mother and wife because Super Mom just posted again about her glorious world that she lives in. 
  3. Anger (deep breath) This is so hard for me to admit. I’m so ashamed to bring it to the surface and share it with you. But I know I’m not alone. I’ve been working on this for years. I know this has gotten in the way of God moving in my life. Tonight I surrender all anger over to Him. I know I will still have outburst, but I also know that He is alive and working in me. All things are possible and this is one of the mountains that I expect to be moved so God has a straighter path to my heart.
  4. Bitterness This issue came about during some hurt that I’ve experienced in the last few years. It’s a newer feeling that I hate to carry around. I’ve tried to let go, but it rises back up and rears it’s ugly head at me from time to time. What I’ve learned is that there is no trying harder here. I’ve tried, and tried, and tried. What needs to happen is God’s transformation in my heart and I believe that I’m on the doorstep of this happening. 
  5. Other’s Opinions of me This! This has been a major setback for me in SO many areas of my life. Chuck mentioned in his book that unlike Jesus, we seem to need our world to like us, enjoy us, approve of us, and celebrate us! Did you catch that? Unlike Jesus! We were put on this earth to please our Heavenly Father and to model His example. His opinion should be the only one that truly matters! I’m sharing all of this with you right now because I know that I am doing the work of my Father, so it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks. This is a HUGE step for me!
  6. Fear Fear has held me captive for way too long! Fear of bees, tornadoes, something happening to me, something happening to our children or my husband, fear of going broke, starving, fear of letting people down, fear of what others think, fear that I’m not good enough, pretty enough, smart enough. The list goes on and on and on. Why? God’s word tells us that worry won’t change anything. And this brings me to the last thing that God put on my heart.
  7. Lack of Trust in God Tonight God showed me that all of my fears are due to a lack of trust in Him. Wow! The one who created the entire universe and keeps it all functioning every single day. The one who made me and you. There’s no reason to not give Him my whole heart and fully trust Him. I know He wants to give me complete peace and rest that’s only found in Him. All I have to do is let Him!

Tonight I saw myself as the woman in this skit. With each character that tries luring her away from Jesus, I pictured all of these issues that I just mentioned that have been holding me back from Him. Thank God that I didn’t go down many of these terrible paths. But I can’t help but wonder what would’ve happened if I didn’t stop long enough to listen to that still, small voice inside of me. That voice that was pulling me back to Him. He was the voice!

I’m so sorry God! Help me to trust You more! Break theses heavy chains that have had me bound so tightly. Fan the flame and make it grow! Give me more opportunities to share Your love with others and help me to be bold. Help me and my family to be Your hands and feet. Help us to bring thousands of others to You. Break the chains that bind Your people. Break the mold off of their eyes and make them pause long enough to see how much Satan has been distracting them and slowly making them drift away from You. Help Your people to rise up again. Give them back their backbone and their voices! Draw them out of the dark places and light their souls on fire so that they will be the light to others. In Jesus name I pray! Amen!

My Life at the Moment

I don’t think many people truly understand what’s going on in my life. Raising 4 kids is SO hard! With Aaron working long hours, it just makes things that much harder on me. I can’t blame him (even though I do at times because I can be a very selfish human being). He works so hard to provide for our family and when I can take a deep breath and reflect, I’m so very grateful for his hard work and dedication. I know I don’t show that nearly enough. Because I’m drowning here at home! I’m so depleted. I feel so alone, even though I’m very blessed to have a handful of great friends. They’re busy living their lives too.

You know what’s funny? Well, not really. I had a friend once (when I only had one child) who had 5 kids. She would always use her kids as an excuse for not being able to go places and do things with me. I completely didn’t understand. My thoughts were, “Well, she knew what she was getting into when she had all those kids.” OH my how bad I feel now for the thoughts I had towards her. I actually ended our friendship because I got tired of her “excuses”. Now here I am with my 4 children and I feel terrible. Now I (sort of) know what she was going through.

I always dreamed of having 4 children and honestly, I thought it would be a glorious walk in the park. Even after my first 2 kids, I was still thinking, “This is great. We should have more.” So, along came my sugar booger. He’s the sweetest child ever, but he can also be SO rotten. Ever heard the term threenager? That’s him! Let’s step back for a second. When he was just over a year old, we thought it would be great to have another baby so we could have 2 kids close in age. I also really, really wanted a girl. Less than a month of thinking we should have another baby, Aaron and I agreed that maybe it would be best to wait a year or so until our finances were better and we were more prepared for a 4th child. Well, God had other plans because I was already pregnant!

The Threenager

 When our little Sweet Pea arrived in June of 2015, this put him and my Sugar Booger exactly 2 years and 3 weeks apart. And man, did life change!!! I thought things were hard before this and that it wouldn’t be that different just adding one more child. Again, I was so wrong! I can’t remember a time in my life where daily living seemed like such a struggle. A year and a half later and we still can’t sleep through the nights consistently. I’m constantly cleaning up messes that the baby throws all over the floor after ripping things to shreds. If something isn’t bolted down, the baby will find a way to move it or climb on it. Or, if it’s something to get into, he will get into it and take everything out and throw it all over the place. He then jumps off of things, like the chairs, slides, and the couch. Keep in mind, he can’t stick a landing yet. I pray almost daily that this child won’t need an ER trip for a broken bone. His newest feat is climbing all the way onto the table. I sure hope he doesn’t try to jump from there when I turn my head for 2 seconds, because that’s how fast he is. I want to spend time with my friends, but I’m realizing more and more that it just can’t happen with the baby around (unless we are in my mostly baby proofed home). I try hanging out with others while I have him and every single time I want to walk away in tears. He’s all over the place. I can’t put him down outside because he’ll run so fast, I’m afraid he’ll fall and hurt himself on the concrete. I can’t put him down inside someone else’s house because he gets into EVERYTHING! I’m constantly chasing him around while trying to keep up with everything else. I’m trying to keep up with homeschooling, house cleaning, and all of our financial stuff. I have to prepare meals, grocery shop, extracurricular activities for the kids, and somehow try to find time for myself, my husband, friends, family, and God (not in that order). Oh, and I’ve completely gone off of the deep end and added a puppy to the mix. I love him, but, “What was I thinking?” Again, I was only thinking of loving my son who has been begging for a husky for over a year.

My life feels like a wreck right now. I feel like I’m losing friends. Because, just like I once judged a friend of mine, I feel like my friends are now judging me. They don’t understand. And I don’t think you can understand unless you’ve walked in my shoes. My marriage is suffering. There’s no time for us. When we do have time, we’re both completely exhausted. It seems so unfair. I wish someone would rush in and save me. Someone to just help me get this all figured out. Someone to give me a real break, where I can leave the house and not worry about the kids or what time the sitter may need me back. That would be so wonderful! I love my kids with everything in me. Perhaps that’s my problem. My life really does revolve around them. But at this moment in time, I don’t know how to change that. And honestly, even though things are completely bonkers around here, I don’t know if I want to change that. Our oldest just turned 17. Time is like grains of sand being tossed in the wind. Before you know it, it’s over.

I want to cherish this time with my kids more, but I’m so stressed out on a daily basis. What I want everyone to understand is that I need you! More now than any other time in my life. My family doesn’t live near me. I need encouragement, prayers, and company. I need YOU to pick up the phone and call and text me (because my brain is constantly occupied here and I honestly forget). Maybe even ask for some one on one time together. I can make that happen…if anyone showed that they care enough about me to want that time with me. Don’t get me wrong, I do have a friend or two who gets it! If you’re that friend, thank you SO much! Everyone else, please just bare with me. Don’t give up on me! I know I’m a great friend if given the chance. And I know in time, I will be an even better friend, mom, and wife. Because I expect this journey to get a little easier as my babies continue to grow up. Thank you to those who are on this journey with me for the long haul! I know you’ll never completely understand unless you’re in my shoes, but hopefully my little cry of desperation here will just let you know how hard things have been for me lately. And if I seem distant, it’s not because I want to be, not at all.


This world is moving so fast these days. I mean, technically it’s not spinning faster than it was 10 or 15 years ago (I don’t think), but with advanced technology, most people have become better multitaskers. Maybe better isn’t the correct word. It surely isn’t correct for me. I feel like I’ve been forced into some futuristic world where it’s almost impossible to just sit and relax with good company without everyone tuning out by looking at their phones, tablets, or television. I’m guilty too. Oh so very guilty. I’ve been sucked into this vortex and I’m having trouble getting out of it. Gone are the days where I could just go to the bathroom and think to myself or read a good book. Oh no, now I have to make sure to take my phone and spend waste more time on Facebook or checking useless e-mails. I know it’s gross, but you know you do it too!

Another problem I have is getting through one book at a time. There are so many great reads out there! I would go buy about 5 books at a time and expect to read just a little bit of each one every few days. Tell me you have this problem too and I’m not just a crazy lady. I feel so bad for most people who try to have a conversation with me (especially my husband), because I just tune them out without realizing it. I can’t count the times that my husband has had to repeat himself to me. I completely bar talk him all…the…time. I don’t do it on purpose. I don’t even realize I’m doing it. Well, I didn’t realize it, but now I’m trying much harder to put my agenda aside and completely FOCUS on others around me. This is my word for 2017, but I’m starting early.

Realizing that you have a problem is the first step towards change. 

There are so many signs that have been screaming in my face lately, telling me that my lack of focus is a real problem. My husband feeling like he’s not important to me was a huge smack in my face. So I vow to go against the grain and the world’s ways of doing things, to help my friends and family feel more loved by me. Focusing will help me too. I will be able to accomplish so much more. My first experiment with focus was to get through an entire book before going on to another. And guess what? I did it. I finished an entire book! That’s so huge for me. Now I’m working on another. It’s so refreshing to actually remember what’s going on in the book because you’re not switching between several books at a time.

So, here are some things that I’m going to do to help me focus in 2017. I’m not going to try everything all at once because I’m afraid that would set me up for quick failure. Maybe you can give some of these a try too.

  1. As mentioned above, I vow to only read one book at a time. This doesn’t include my Bible time or my devotional.
  2. I will stop getting notifications from Facebook on my phone. This should drastically reduce my time on there. When I see a notification pop up, I just have to see what so and so said.
  3. I will spend more time in God’s Word and prayer, asking him for daily guidance and for His help to help me focus more on the people and things that truly matter the most, Him being my first priority.
  4. I will intentionally stop and listen when someone is talking to me. I will also tell them to hold on a sec if I’m not ready to honestly listen. Or maybe I’ll even ask them to talk to me later when I’m not focused on something else.
  5. I’m going to create a schedule for myself that will include time at the gym, play time with the kids, chores, and maybe even down time.
  6. I will stop trying to multitask. This means, I will stop checking out Facebook on my phone while playing a game on my tablet, while the television is on and my kids need me. Yeah, I’m seriously guilty of this. Pretty pathetic huh.
  7. I will seek out others who value real relationships and one on one time with others. People who can put their phones down and look me in the eyes and savor our time together.

What will you do to be more focused? Or maybe you don’t have a problem staying focused. If you could choose one word to gear your life around in 2017, what would it be?

My Review of the L’Oréal Paris COLOUR RICHE® La Palette Lip

I really like the L’Oréal Paris COLOUR RICHE® La Palette Lip and would give it 4 out of 5 stars.  I didn’t give it 5 stars because there are a few things I would change it if were up to me. But first, let me tell you what I do absolutely love about it!


My favorite thing is that there are so many different colors to choose from (8 to be exact), so you can create a look that is unique to you or how you are feeling on any particular day. I’m a pretty laid back, easy going gal who normally prefers more natural shades of makeup, so I chose the Nude colors. For me personally, I love lining my lips with one of the darker colors, filling in all but the center with a slightly less darker color, and then finishing it up with the lightest color (the highlight illuminateur). It really makes my lips pop! The nude colors work extremely well doing it this way. I also love how well it goes on with the brush, nice and silky smooth. The brush is very precise and doesn’t get all bent out of shape after a few uses. If you have really dry lips, it’s best to apply some clear lip treatment prior to putting on your lipstick. I have tried this lipstick for a couple of weeks now and I can say that it stays on pretty well. It will last several hours as long as you aren’t using your lips a lot; you know, kissing, eating, drinking, etc. But that’s with any kind of lip product! I’m also happy with the price. I’ve checked these out at my local shopping places like Meijer and Kroger, and I’ve seen them for right around $15 each. That’s definitely a price I’m willing to pay for EIGHT different color options. I know some lipsticks cost more than that, and you are stuck with just one color to choose from.

And now for the things I would change if I could. I love having so many choices, but I also like to carry my lip products with me wherever I go so I can always have fresh looking, vibrant lips. However, with the L’Oréal Paris COLOUR RICHE® La Palette Lip, it’s pretty bulky for my tiny purse. I would much prefer a more compact lip product, perhaps one that is 2-tiered where you can unfold it, so it would be a square instead of a rectangle. This is just my personal preference. I also think that adding a mirror would increase the value of this product, and I’d be willing to pay a little extra for that feature. And last, but not least, I really love the brush that comes with it, but I’m terrible at cleaning my makeup brushes like I should. So it would be great if this came with either a double sided brush, or an extra brush so my colors don’t get all mixed together on the brush.

Overall this is a really great, new, exciting, and innovative product and I have already shared it with some friends and will continue to share because it’s one of my favorite pieces to my makeup routine now.

The picture is of me after trying on the product for the first time. It looks pretty light and simple, but that’s what I like. I also realized at that moment that I needed some lip treatment. After treating my lips for a few days, the L’Oréal Paris COLOUR RICHE® La Palette Lip colors looked WAY better on me!

Managing Chores with Multiple Children

I’ve tried many chore systems over the years and I’ve finally come up with something that really works for my family. I have 3 boys who are completely capable of doing chores. They are 16, 8, and 3 years old.

I found these awesome metal 3-cup caddies at my local Hobby Lobby store. I let each of the boys pick out their own color. Since things are color coded, I don’t have to write names on the cans. Eventually my oldest son will be out of the house, and my one year old will take over a can. I absolutely love these colors (and there are even more colors to choose from).

You can check out all of the colors at Hobby Lobby’s website. Just CLICK HERE! If the caddies are not on sale, don’t forget to find a 40% off coupon to use. 


The only other purchases you need to make are Popsicle sticks (I prefer the large ones because they’re easier to write on), and an extra fine Sharpie marker. If you have multiple children, it’s best to get different colored markers. This way they can’t try sticking their unwanted chore in their sibling’s can, or stealing the easier ones!

Start out by writing down every chore that you can think of that you would like your child to do. Be sure to keep it on less than half of the stick so they can’t see the chores. Having many chores helps keep them excited because they’re not doing the same things every single day. I include several “FREE PASS” sticks. It means exactly what it says, they get a free pass instead of the chore they could’ve picked. This keeps them more interested in picking chores. My rule is that they are only allowed 1 free pass per day and it cannot be used when a chore is picked as discipline (more on that later). I include some hard chores, like sweeping ALL of the hardwood floors, and I include really simple things like refilling the water container that we keep on the counter for the baby’s water. Try to think outside the box. Your kids will love you for it!

Some examples of the chores for our 8 year old:img_3267

Some examples of the chores for our 3 year old (Flash is our bunny rabbit):img_3268

With the 8 year old, the sticks are very specific. For example, his sticks would say to “Find 10 things to throw away.” For his 3 year old brother, it just says, “Find garbage to throw away.” This way it keeps it more fun for him and any garbage he finds is a win!

For more chore ideas, check out my post HERE!

Here’s what to write on the cans: #1 ~ Pick A Chore


This is the can where you will initially put all of those sticks that you wrote the chores on. Put them in wording side down so they can’t see what they are picking.


I have my boys pick 3 sticks each school day and 5 on Saturdays if we don’t have plans. No chores on Sundays except for their regular everyday chores which are not included in the sticks. My 16 year old has to take care of dishes everyday and my 8 year old has to take care of his bunny and the cage everyday.

I also use these chores as discipline. It helps to keep me from getting angry. If they do something wrong, I simply tell them to go pick a chore. If they don’t pick a chore with a good attitude, then they get another. And so it will continue as long as they have a bad attitude about it. Be consistent. Stay calm! It will work!

Now, rotate the cans clockwise and write, “To Be Checked”. 


This can is where the children will place their sticks once they have completed the chore. Then you can take them out and check each one. If there are any that aren’t done properly, just go over with your child how you would like it done. This is another thing that gets easier with time as they learn what you are expecting of them.

Now, rotate the cans clockwise and write, “Completed” on the last can.


Once you are satisfied with the chores that you checked, then YOU place them in the completed can. Continue following this method each day until there are no more sticks in the “Pick a Chore” can. Then simply take all of the sticks from the Completed can and start over by placing them in the Pick a Chore can.

I hope this helps! Feel free to leave me comments if you give this a try or would like to share with others what works for your family!

Chore Ideas

Here are actual chores that we use in our home. We include very simple things and some tough jobs. Each child picks 3 chores on a school day (and extras if needed for discipline).
I hope they help you come up with more ideas!

For the 3 year old:

Find garbage to throw away. Any garbage he finds is worthy of celebration.
Use a Lysol wipe to clean with. Again, anything he cleans is great!
Water the plants outside. I give him a water bottle use.
Pick up toys.
Clean the playroom. This is just mostly putting toys in the toy box.
Dust the TV Stand.
Spend 10 minutes with the bunny rabbit.
Take all dirty laundry to the laundry room.

For the 8 year old:

Clean little brother’s potty seat
Find 10 things to throw away
Spend 10 minutes with the bunny rabbit
Clean hallway bench
Clean table off and wipe clean
Sweep all hardwood floors
Play with baby brother for 20 minutes
Play with 3 year old brother for 20 minutes
Read younger brother a book
Sweep laundry room floor
Swiffer laundry rom floor

Clean 10 dirty spots on the walls
Clean downstairs bathroom cabinet
Lysol big toys
Clean inside of glass doors
Mate socks
Sweep basement stairs
Clean Mom and Dad’s bathroom baseboards
Clean bunny area
Take all dirty laundry to the laundry room
Vacuum the living room floor
Clean bottom of kitchen cabinets
Sweep Mom and Dad’s bathroom
Swiffer Mom and Dad’s bathroom
Clean highchair
Water plants outside
Clean downstairs toilet
Clean Mom and Dad’s toilet (he actually likes cleaning toilets)
Clean outside of dishwasher
Clean your bedroom and vacuum the floor
Clean shoe area
Empty all small trashcans and replace the bags
Clean your bathroom sink
Pick 1 dirty window to clean
Dust a set of blinds
Clean your bathroom door
Clean outside of the oven

For the 16 year old:

Mow the lawn
Sweep all wood floors
Swiffer all wood floors
Vacuum the playroom floor
Read a book to his younger brother
Clean bunny cage completely
Vacuum Living room floor
Dust TV Stand
Clean top kitchen cabinets
Clean downstairs bathroom sink
Vacuum stairs
Clean downstairs bathroom mirror
Vacuum upstairs hallway
Put all of the toys away
Mate socks 
Clean kitchen chairs
Clean living room baseboards
Take all garbage to the trash can in the garage
Fill water pitcher
Clean handrail and banister on the stairs
Vacuum living room couch and chair
Clean 1 section inside the refrigerator
Clean 10 dirty spots on the wall
Clean microwave inside and out
Clean your bedroom and vacuum the floor
Clean whiteboard
Clean outside of glass doors
Find 10 things to throw away
Clean kitchen counters
Swiffer your bathroom
Lysol door knobs and light switches
Pick one dirty window to clean
Clean old food from refrigerator
Clean Mom and Dad’s bathroom doors
Clean outside of refrigerator
Clean outside of front door
Clean your toilet inside and out
Sweep your bathroom
Dust a set of blinds



We’ve spent at least our last three summers taking care of babies and barely getting out of the house. It has been a trying (but precious) time for our family. My husband wasn’t making as much money as he’s making now, so our summer fun has been extremely limited. Since my husband has a better job and our youngest is going from baby to toddler, I decided to not let another summer pass us by. I came up with a long list of ideas of things we would love to do together as a family. I created a summer bucket list and hung it on a huge poster board in our hallway so we have a daily reminder of all the fun things we want to try to do. Having this in front of us has really helped do away with the “What is there to do” questions where we’d always just end up eating dinner at a restaurant. Boring! I’m happy to say that many of these things have already been marked off! I love making all these memories with my kids and husband! 

The things with asterisks are activities that can be done when it’s raining. Yesterday we went to the Newport Aquarium and today we will be making Rice Krispie Treats. As you can see, I’ve included several big and little things. I can’t wait to update you at the end of summer (most likely into the fall) and share all of the cool things we’ve done together.  

Here are a few of the fun things we’ve done so far:





 Be blessed my friends!


Me on my special day (wearing clothes
bought with my birthday money)!

Today is a special day to me. It’s my birthday. I’ve not always considered this a special day. Once I even threatened my husband that if he did anything for me for my birthday, I’d be so mad at him. I didn’t want to be older. Back then, I didn’t like the fact that I was entering my 30’s. I wanted to stay in my 20’s forever! Over the years I have dealt with so many bouts of depression (usually from hormonal changes that sometimes come with having a baby). I thought I hated myself and my life. I’ve also had to deal with anxiety, just as recently as this past March. But you know what? I’ve had enough! After this last battle with anxiety (and it really is a battle because you have to fight with every tool that God gives you) I vowed that this year would be my greatest year yet! I even wrote down a countdown to this day and started marking the days off, looking forward to it with great expectation. I will no longer allow those demons of depression and anxiety to have control over my life. I created a summer bucket list to make sure that my family is spending fun, quality time together. No more wasteful summers! I have also started taking steps to ensure a healthier future for myself. The biggest thing I’ve done is give up pop. I haven’t had any pop since March and I know that has helped me lose weight and I have way fewer headaches than I use to. I also walk almost every night that I get the chance. I’ll do my part and let God handle the rest. 

Some unfortunate events in my life have led me to a new perspective on life. Sometimes that’s what it takes to wake us up and snap us out of our pitiful life so we can see the beauty of life that God created for us.

My mom’s story is one of those things that was a true game changer for me. She has been through so much this past year. It has broken my heart to know the pain that she’s had to endure. She had unexplained, debilitating pain in her body for months. Doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her. She was also repeating herself quite frequently. I was wondering if she had Alzheimer’s or something. I’d listen to her tell me an entire story and then five minutes later, repeat it just as she did at the beginning of our conversation. Then one day, she went to the bathroom and she couldn’t stand back up. She just lost the functionality of her legs. She had also fallen prior to this, but I guess no one realized how big of a deal it was. When my dad took her to the hospital, they found a mass in her head. Eventually she had the mass removed and we found out that it was the size of a tennis ball. Can you imagine? Every time I see my kids playing with a tennis ball now, I think about what my mom came through. Thankfully, it wasn’t cancer. But even so, this was enough to jerk me out of my pity party and realize that life is a gift. We don’t know what tomorrow holds.My mom’s surgery went great, but since then, she’s been dealing with blood clots. I know she’s going to get through this! She’s a woman of strength and she’s setting such a good example for me and my kids. 

My grandmother, Dad, Me, and my mom
(and my brother and my youngest son in the background)

Another way that God has used my mom, is in my dad’s life. Years ago, I was prophesied to by a man that I respect and I believe the words he’s spoken over me and my family. He told me that my entire family will be healed and they will be saved, but I must leave it to God. I cannot save them. Wow, turns out that he was right! The night before my mom’s surgery, my dad took my mom and my grandmother to revival at my grandma’s church, and that night, my dad gave his life to the Lord. When I got this wonderful news, I was beyond amazed and excited over what God had done. I felt like this was a huge gift from God to me. Because honestly, if my dad had died before this night, I wasn’t sure what would happen to his soul. Now I thank God almost daily for saving my dad because I can live with absolute peace that he will spend eternity with Jesus! 

About a week ago, my grandmother fell and broke her hip. She’s had a rough road since the surgery, but I also have peace about this because God told me that it’s not her time to go yet. She’s going to come through this. I had the privilege to speak with her today and tell her all that God shared with me. Through her pain, God is using her as a witness to bring the rest of her family to Christ. I reminded her that they are still watching her and she needs to stay strong and continue fighting the good fight.

Another thing that I just can’t ignore is what is going on in America and in our world. Again today, there were more deliberate police officer shootings. I want to cower back in fear, stay home, and keep my kids safe. But I know that isn’t the answer. I know that just allows Satan to have victory. What I will do instead is to pray for peace and for God to have mercy on all of us. I will pray for the victims and their families. I will pray for the people who have caused the tragedies, and their families too. And I will go out, and I will live my life to the fullest. Because in the end, God already knows when my final day will be. Nothing I do will change that. But until then, I will chose joy, forgiveness, and love. I will chose to be thankful for this life that I’ve been so blessed to have. And I will continue sharing my stories, hoping that at least one person will be encouraged. Keep fighting the good fight my friends. You never know how your fight or your simple acts of kindness will change someone else’s life. It might just impact their life beyond their walk on this earth!

Be blessed my friends!