+  the simple task of baking brownies brought so much joy to my monday evening. i don't bake like i used to, but this was a nice reminder that i should start again.


+  this was week two of no phone after 4pm during the weekdays. i am starting to think this may just be a permanent practice in my everyday life. 


+  i am really proud of myself for two things i did this week:  i finally said no to a situation that i have felt like i could never say no to, and i figured out a big task at work that has been puzzling me for weeks. i am a recovering people pleaser + typically ignore things that seem too hard, so this was a good week for those two areas of my life.




  blog posts from this week:  



  blog posts from this week in years' past:  

  life + such (a pandemic life lately in 2020)
•  i shared about my first miscarriage fours years ago this week
•  a weekend photo diary from 2014
•  that one time my photo was featured in a fashion magazine


 




  H A P P E N I N G S -  

+  we celebrated jackson's birthday with a party at our house. my family came up from oklahoma. we shopped + played mini-golf, + ate delicious food. after a crazy morning, it ended up being a great day of celebrating our boy.

+  i printed out hannah brencher's 1,000 unplugged hours tracker. the internet is loud, and i can get in my head about all the posts i might miss, but there is joy in not knowing every little thing.

+  we celebrated independence day with our neighbors - shooting off fireworks + hanging out + swimming. 

+  jared + i had a date night at botanica. we walked around, + i took tons of photos of flowers, as usual. it was romantic. 

+  we took a short weekend camping trip with our neighbors. it was SO HOT, but we still had a lot of fun.
  



 L E S S O N S  +  O B S E R V A T I O N S - 

+  steak sauce is such an underrated condiment.

+  it is easy to offer advice on a situation that you have not been asked to walk through. 

+  if insults are included in an argument, it is not a solid argument. you should never have to tear someone down to get a point across.

+  i am not the Holy Spirit; it is not my job to convict someone.

+  over the last several years, i developed this mentality to just blend it. whether it was my clothing choices or what my interest are or how i carry myself, i did not want to call attention to myself. i had this realization when i was cleaning out my closet. i used to be such a fashion-loving girl; now my closet is mostly filled with black shirts + cardigans. i am on a quest to uproot this mindset + get back to what i like - not what is trendy or what keeps me under the radar.

+  gentle parenting is (mostly) not biblical parenting. i said what i said.

+  i started a weeknight habit of no social media after i get home from work. it started off as a simple practice, but its benefits are making a huge impact on my everyday life.
  



  3 THINGS I LOVED IN JULY- 

1.  dreaming of autumn.  i needed a respite from the inferno outside, so i started browsing fall aesthetic hashtags on pinterest + tiktok. i took it a step further and browsed the fall decor aisle at home goods + hobby lobby. this may become a new late summertime ritual.

2.  evening swims with our neighbors.  our boys play in the shallow end + we float in the deep end, laughing + talking about life. it is one of my favorite parts of summertime.

3.  bougie pajamas.  i have always been a t-shirt + comfy shorts girl when it comes to bedtime attire. but my mom bought me a pair of real pajamas at target, + it is a little luxury that makes me so happy. (similar set here

 



i was recently reading this blog post by michelle + it reminded me of the life lately posts i used to write back in the good ol' days of blogging. so here's a life update -- stream of consciousness style -- because i have a free hour before my saturday gets started.

as i am writing this post, it is cool + raining outside. after weeks of 100º weather here in kansas, it is a much welcomed relief. i am curled up in bed (my favorite writing spot) with a cup of coffee. the vibes are so reminiscent of fall - i can practically taste the pumpkin spice latte right now.

--

in september, we will begin homeschooling jackson. i never, ever thought this would be our chosen method of education. i had assumed private school would be our only choice. not a lot of people know this, but last thanksgiving, jared left his job to become a stay-at-home dad. i became the sole provider of our home.

it was obviously an adjustment, but it only took us a few weeks to get acclimated to a new routine. we had a few people who were . . . confused? not unsupportive, but not necessarily supportive either. there were a lot of comments that would not have been voiced if the roles had been reversed, but that's another blog post for another day.

when i look back on the past eight months, i praise God for His provision + wisdom. it wasn't just a step or leap of faith; it was like jumping out of a plane. He has provided in ways that are not just financial. i am so grateful.

--

i recently started deleting social media in the evenings each week. couple that with my social media sabbath that goes from friday afternoon to saturday afternoon -- i have been spending significantly less time on my phone. i fill that time with bible study, blogging, reading, taking walks, time with family, baking, etc.

what started as a random idea to see how (or if) my evenings would change has now morphed into a daily practice. my creative work has blossomed. i didn't even realize how much social media was hindering my creativity. 

--

i don't have a good segue into this, so i'm just going to say it: we are not going to have more children. at least, not biologically. i went to a fertility doctor back in april to set up a scan/test that could tell us if there was a cause to the five miscarriages i have had over the last four years. 

four days before i needed to schedule the scan, jared + i had a long talk about it. after prayer + thinking on it for a couple days, we decided not to go ahead with any further testing. 

almost overnight, i let go of the tight grip i had on this situation. what i know to be true is this: His plan for our lives is far greater than what i think i want. i don't have an answer for the loss of our five babies; i may never know why. but He is still good. 

--

life update, cliff notes version:
Jesus is where the joy is.
faith is not just the big moments, but also the day-to-day parts of life, lived out.
bake some brownies
time away from social media will always reap a harvest.
“everything is necessary that He sends; nothing could be necessary that He withholds.” [john newton] 





+  ashlee gadd wrote an essay about how instagram is broken, and it is exactly what a lot of creatives have been feeling in regards to the app + its ridiculous changes as of late.

+  if you have a random craving for brownies, i made these recently. they were delish! 

+  i discovered notion a few weeks ago. it is basically a place to make a bunch of lists, so it's amazing to me!

+  discovery+ is offering a promo right now where you get the first two months for $.99/mo. i immediately signed up,  and let me tell you - we love the magnolia network. jo's cooking show is our favorite, followed by no demo reno

+  i have raved about ibotta before, but it's because it's so easy to get a little cash back every few months. here is a link where you get $10 + i get $10! it is an easy way to earn a little extra moolah.

+  this post on gentle parenting is so, so good! i have seen the fruitless results of this method, and i am glad someone is bringing it to light. 

+  i recently discovered architectural design has a youtube channel with celebrity home tours. obsessed. (but i pray for most of them because whyyyyyy do they all have so many crystals in their homes?!)

 



+  whether it be social media, healthy eating, exercising, etc. - if it becomes something we cannot live without, it is an idol.

+  when jackson leaves to go play with his friends, he always says, "love you". it makes me smile every single time.

+  i downloaded discovery+ (mostly for the magnolia network, lolz) and jackson + i have loved watching magnolia table together!

+  to combat the inferno outside, we ventured out to get an iced coffee + then roamed the fall decor aisles at hobby lobby + home goods. it was delightful, even thought it was 105º outside. 

+  another way we combat the summer heat is swimming in the evening. our neighborhood block (who are also family) all get together + the kids play + we all swim. it is something i don’t take for granted one bit. 


 




+  “motherhood [and all of life’s everyday moments] is made up of a million tiny moments that are springboards to worship.” 

+  good things come to those who wait. after months of searching for a fiddle leaf plant, we finally found a thriving one for only $30! (costco!) 

+  “everything is necessary that he sends; nothing could be necessary that he withholds.” [john newton] 

+  jackson has started asking me if i played wordle each day. it is so cute! on the weekends, i let him watch me play. 

+  we camped with our neighbors over the weekend. it was SO HOT, but still a lot of fun.



 













 












+  this is about the time of summer where i start to dream of autumn days. i don't want to rush it, so the best way to satisfy this unseasonable desire is to watch autumn tiktoks, listen to this thunderstorm playlist while i write, browse the fall decor aisle of hobby lobby, + look at my pinterest board.


+  discernment is such a good thing. but for some instances + people, it's specific for them. don't be so quick to question all of your life's decisions because one person [usually a very outspoken, opinionated one] has viewpoints you don't necessarily agree with on certain topics.





 



writing  //   my weekly what i want to remember post 

enjoying  //  my give me Jesus journal 


listening  //  my worship playlist  •  the coffee + crumbs podcast 

loving  //  notion  +  eyeshadow sticks  

wearing  //  this pajama set. it is luxurious + makes me feel extra bougie 

drinking  //  jalapeño limade from trader joe's + lots of cold brew
 

making me happy:  rabbits + fireflies in our front yard  •  evening swims  •  all the goodies i bought from a recent trip to trader joe's  •  rewatching one tree hill  •  dreaming of autumn   



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+  our family movie night in bed while the windows were open (at the end of june! such a delight.)

+  sometimes you just need to take a spontaneous trip to trader joe's late in the evening on a tuesday night without a care for bedtime or you much money is spent on snacks.

+  we celebrated jackson's fifth birthday

+  it is easy to offer advice on a situation that you have not been asked to walk through.

+  after i showered, i was headed to the bedroom to put my clothes away when i realized there was a rainbow outside. i grabbed mine + jackson's robes, and we hurried outside to find a beautiful full rainbow filling the sky. it was a sweet moment with my boy, standing in the street in our robes, admiring the sky.

+  i finally got a nice pajama set for bed [similar ones here]. it is so luxurious + makes me feel bougie. 




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