Tuesday, March 28, 2017

This Week's Goals and Road Trip Plans

I was pleasantly surprised last week when Evangeline decided to be my building helper.  We had such a great time building this raised bed.  She handed me screws and even helped me hold the boards.  I can't wait to harvest some fresh veggies!
Happy Tuesday friends!  Here's hoping your week is off to a fantastic start.  This is an exciting week at our home because we are prepping for a road trip to Arkansas!  Woohoo!  Spring break is in the air!  I can't believe we haven't actually been to Arkansas since last July.  Our fall was packed with our Disney trip and then we ended up moving after Thanksgiving.  Thankfully we have seen a handful of our Arkansas family on numerous occasions but I haven't seen my three nieces in forever!  I can't wait to see Eli and Eva's face when they see their cousins again!  I'm sure that will be worth the 9 hour drive!  In the mean time here's what goals I will be focusing on this week!  

Marriage, Mothering, & Family:
1.  Go on a real (out of the house) date with Brandon.  He won't be traveling with us this trip so I want to make sure that we spend some good time together before I head out.  I'll be gone a total of 6 days.
2.  Road Trip to Arkansas!  This will be my first time traveling this far alone with two children so I will also be spending a lot of time prepping for this trip.  I've made the trip to Arkansas about three times a year for the past 8 years but I'm still a teensy bit anxious about making the long drive alone.  
3.  Finish reading God's Promises by Sally Michael.  (Have I mentioned how much I simply adore this series?  It's so good.)

4.  Spend at least an hour working on organizing the basement.
5.  Sew a birthday gift which also includes a trip to the fabric store.  (I gave away the large majority of my fabric stash before we moved.)
6.  Leave for our trip with a clean house.  This is an area that I usually struggle with but I simply DO NOT want to come home to a messy home.
7.  Vacuum out the inside of our van and wash the outside.

8.  Continue working through Priscilla Shirer's Discerning the Voice of God.  (I also need to do a little catch up work this week.)  

Ministry & Friendships:
9.  Catch up with a friend on the telephone.
10.  Spend time visiting with my friend Laura who lives in Nashville.  We'll be spending two nights at her house on our way to Arkansas.

I'd love to hear what goals you have for this week!  Do you have any tips or advice as I prepare for a long road trip alone with kids?  

Sunday, March 19, 2017

February Reads

February was such a strange month for reading.  I worked my way through only two books.  Usually the middle of winter is the time of year that I really devour books.  One of those books was actually a Bible Study that I just finished.  I love hearing Bible Study reviews just as much as I enjoy hearing about different books that others read so I am including them here.  

Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple:  I picked up this adorable book in December at a lovely little book store just a few miles from the beach.  I thought it looked like the perfect beach read but I didn't get around to reading it until this month.  We spent a lot of time at the beach in December but I didn't read much.  I was too busy exploring with my kiddos to kick back and read.  I honestly think I bought this book based on the cover.  The title is just adorable!  This book tells the tale of a teenager named Bee who comes to terms with her imperfect mother named Bernadette.  Her mother is quite the complex character.  I'm not sure why but this book just wasn't for me.  I had a hard time getting into it but I finished the book because I really like closure.  Anyone else like that?

Entrusted: A Study of 2 Timothy by Beth Moore: One of my first goals when I joined our new church was to get plugged into a Bible Study.  I love studying the Bible with other women so I was super excited to take part in this study.  I knew nothing about this study before I cracked open the front cover.  (It's actually been a really long time since I worked through one of Beth Moore's group Bible Studies.)  Most of the six weeks I spent working through this study I felt like I was drinking from a fire hydrant.  It was really good but man it was so fast.  I'm definitely someone who enjoys sinking my teeth into a book for literally months.  Overall I enjoyed Entrusted and Beth Moore's writing style is just lovely.

Currently Reading:

Seasons of Waiting: Walking by Faith When Dreams Are Delayed by Betsy Childs Howard

Quick Tips for Busy Families by Jay Payleitner

When People Are Big and God Is Small by Edward T. Welch

Woman Code by Alissa Vitti

Shadow of the Storm by Connilyn Cossette

What books did you read last month?  Do you have any recommendations?  This month I'm specifically looking for children's audio book recommendations.  The kids and I will be going on a 9 hour road trip to Arkansas alone! I'd love to hear your favorite audio book recommendations that won't drive me crazy in the car.  

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

This Week's Goals

I just finished up my current Bible Study on the book of 2 Timothy this afternoon and man am I fired up!  I just keep thinking: set some goals, get your work done, enjoy your family, and work hard to further the Gospel this week! Here's what I'm focusing on this week:

Marriage, Mothering, & Family:
1.  Eli starts soccer practice this week!  This is his first time playing and I'm so excited for him.  I also need to take him to the store to buy some related sports equipment before practice.  Eli and Eva are also continuing with gymnastics and start a new session this week. 
2. Read three chapters of God's Promises by Sally Michael aloud to the children this week.  This book is fantastic and I"m hoping we can finish by the end of the month so I can let my sister-in-law borrow it when I see her.  We have also read the first book in this series entitled God's Names.  
3.  Enjoy an at-home date night and spend some time intentionally chatting about life.  

4.  Have our house inspected for potential damage from the tree that landed on our roof.  (I'm not anticipating damage but just wanted to make sure since I can't actually see our roof.  It is really high up so I'm not going to risk climbing onto the roof.)  
5.  Spend at least two hours working on gathering tax information.
6.  Order new lamp post and light fixture from Home Depot.  

7.  Finish reading Seasons of Waiting and begin reading another book which is yet to be determined.  Any suggestions?    (Perhaps a nice long visit to the library is in order.)
8.  Exercise three times.  We just joined a gym last weekend so I'm hoping to get in some great exercise this week.

Ministry & Friendships
9.  Spend time catching up with a friend on the phone.
10.  Attend a women's conference at our church this weekend!  Yipee!  I'm super excited.  It's been a while since I've been able to attend a conference specifically geared towards women in person so this will be quite the treat.

What goals do you have for this week?  Did your home have any damage from the storms and tornadoes from last week?  

Sunday, March 5, 2017

February at Our Home

We love family fun days!  After enjoying a Madcap puppet show we enjoyed dinner at Brandon's favorite IHOP!
 We have now been in our new home for three months.  Our hearts are beyond thankful at the Lord's good gift of blessing us with a home that we love so much that is so close to Brandon's new job.  When we began looking for a home I doubted that we would be able to find what we were looking for but the Lord had other ideas!  I'm still amazed that we found this little haven so quickly.  It is our prayer that God would use our home to bless and encourage all who enter it.

This month Eva has been obsessed with art.  She spends hours drawing,
painting, coloring, using pastels, and even this aquadoodle mat.  
 This month we enjoyed a wonderful visit from Brandon's parents who came all the way from Arkansas.  It's always great to see Nina & Poppy Steve.  They haven't seen our home since the weekend we moved in so it was neat to show them the small progress we have made.  We've also been discussing a partial basement finishing but Brandon and I can't seem to agree on the layout design.  (We are currently weighing the pros and cons of an open layout.)

We have both chosen to invest first in others so honestly our progress with the house is going a little slow.  The majority of our house is unpacked but I really haven't touched the boxes that are in the basement.  (Sounds like a great weekly goal huh?)  When given the option to organize something or spend time building new friendships I am opting to spend time with friends.  I'm thankful for the many people who have made us feel so welcome so far.  We have enjoyed play dates and one of the best super bowl parties ever.

A sweet collage from one of our first park outings here!  If you look closely
you can see that Eli is wearing his sister's helmet.  We still haven't found his!
 As part of getting more involved in our community both children have enjoyed taking gymnastics lessons.  Evangeline's occupational therapist actually recommended gymnastics since we were ready for a therapy break.   I have been so pleasantly surprised to watch Eva at gymnastics!  She is a completely different little lady.  Eli has also loved the challenge and Ninja Warrior aspect of his gymnastics class.

The month of February has felt like such a whirlwind with the crazy weather we experienced.  We enjoyed both snow and days that felt like summer.  One day it reached 81 degrees!  I have lived somewhere in Kentucky my entire life and I can't remember a February this warm.  We have enjoyed playing at three different parks and look forward to exploring the other parks that our city has to offer.
We had a great time visiting the zoo with friends this month.
I think a big part of me is still holding out for a nice big snowstorm before Spring hits in a few weeks.  February ended up being a weird month.  Eva was sick for a week and then I also caught a bug.  Thankfully we are all feeling better now.  I also didn't really read at all which is so out of character for me!  I think I'm ready to tackle a few house projects and squeeze in as much fun as possible this month!

Here's to a wonderful month of March friends.