Friday, June 27, 2014


The first month of summer and things have moved very very fast in June.   The boys kicked off their June by going on a camping weekend with our church:  Dad & Kids Campout.  You know I've wanted a little girl forever, but this first weekend where the boys bonded with fishing rods and sleeping together in a tent-----suddenly I saw a lifetime of me, alone, having these weekend retreats to myself and I felt a sudden rush of giddiness! :-)

What did I do while they were gone?  Oh yeah, girls night Karaoake!  That Sunday they came back and we had the Hessel family over for dinner - they were in town from North Carolina.

Also this week marks the last day of school for my first grader!

I've been doing a lot of fun girls nights this month.   Love these girls!

Father's Day was very special (at least I think Patrick thought so) not a whole lot of fuss, but I did do a little video for him and the kids wrote cards and he got to celebrate his father as we picnic'd together at Algonkian park.  Beautiful day!

I've also been doing a Marriage Study with an intimate group of gals.  I am LOVING this study, but I'm really enjoying the women.  The lady who leads us has such a heart for mentoring and teaching the younger women what is good (Titus 2).  Also, our Shepherd group wanted to keep meeting over the summer while most groups break for the summer (wow!) and  Patrick is doing a wonderful job of leading them this year.

One of our neighbors is leaving us and moving to a single family.  We did a goodbye party in our backyard.  It was really a fun time and I'm really glad we started entertaining more outside!

And what would summer be without kicking off swimming lessons?  The boys were freaking out the morning we were supposed to go and I didn't know how to calm their fears and I finally just shared a time when mommy was 12 and couldn't swim and everyone laughed at me.  That got them feeling sorry for me and thankful that they have more and more chances to be a good swimmer. Whatever works!!!  First day: Micah swam the entire length of the pool and back!

We've had a few birthday parties (4 year old and a 40 year old), a lot of summer play dates and I'm leaving tonight for a Girls Overnight with my Shepherd Group at one of the ladie's lakehouse.  It's been a wonderful June - with intentional appointments and deeper connections.   I'm not going to lie - I love my life and I'm so grateful for so much.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Girls Weekend in San Francisco

Our dear friend Tanya, who I have known for 14 years now, when we were in the same woman's bible study, moved out to Alamo, California with her family.  We've been talking about going out to see her for years, so finally - Virgin America had a sale we couldn't refuse!    Here is the three of us at a really great vineyard in Sonoma.

Michelle  and I left super early in the AM and our 5 hour trip was so quick because we talked and laughed the whole time!

Every time I traveled (I was traveling 4 out of 5 days a week to places all over the world!) There was something about change of place + change of pace = change of perspective. I always became clear of mind at 35,000 feet altitude.  I often used that time to pray and get clarity!

When we got there, Tanya took us on a Pacific Coast tour going to see places like Monterrey, Santa Cruz and Carmel!

The next day we hit Napa and Sonoma, and then went into Danville ( a really quaint town for dinner!) This was more my style of just relaxing, eating and enjoying.

Our last day was shopping in Walnut Creek (another super great town) and then hitting the Golden Gate Bridge!  While it was 5 pm pacific time, Michelle was saying goodnight to her kids on the East Coast. :-)

We had dinner in a beautiful town of Sausalito on the water (reminded me a little of Sorrento and Capri in Italy.)  

It is definitely tempting to want to live out here, especially when you see the views from Tanya's house.  Here's what she looks at everyday from her backyard:

 And this is her front!

Looks like Tuscany, doesn't it?  The views were lovely, but it doesn't really matter where you go, the fun of the vacation is truly being with people you love and enjoy----and it was so fun to catch up with Tanya's family!  I always feel so grateful to God for these amazing blessings and thankful to my husband for giving me such a gift.  We decided we'd try and do this every year, so next year she will come out closer to us for the girls weekend!!! Woot woot.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

A Wise Woman Builds Up Her House - Mother's Day 2014

I think I may be becoming more mature because in recent years I've felt a little entitled to having a special day just for me - well, I birthed three children and it's been a lot of hard work, so I deserve it!  Oddly, I may have just understood that the blessing is mine in knowing that I have given away myself fully to loving and raising my children and to my husband, and to building our home.   In this giving, I have been the one who has been blessed!

Ironically, as I arrived here- now.... they're pulling out all the stops. :)  Starting with breakfast in bed!

Maybe Tristan isn't happy he doesn't get this yumminess?  Or he's frightened by my big hair?  After church, we met my brother's family at Trump National Golfcourse to celebrate our mom.

We had a really nice brunch full of my favorites!  Champagne, too.


Patrick said so many words of praise today that are etched in my heart.   All four boys wrote me cards----but there was one that got the biggest laugh and even a few tears. Here's what I look like to my oldest child:

This might make more sense when you read this:

I read a little excerpt the other day about the the Proverbs 31 woman in the bible---she is praised by her husband and children----evidence that her primary ministry was to build up her home in wisdom.  I smiled and thanked God for the work He's done here in our home.  They are my primary ministry - what I ultimately want to be defined as.  I have great relationships, I've had a good career, but I want my legacy to be from my husband who said she brought me honor and from my children to say she gave selflessly to us as Christ loved.  It's my desire to be a "wise woman who builds up her house." (Proverbs 14:1)  It's in being this woman that God created me to be that I am truly fulfilled and I can stand before God with no regrets.  Unashamed.