life, lately.

I sometimes read back through the archives of my blog. It helps me remember what the girls looked like two years ago. Or what feelings I was having (all the feelings). Last night I read over the three posts where I explained that we were moving – part 1, part 2, part 3. And it makes me want to go back to talk to that girl that I was and tell her “everything is going to be ok”. I’m not saying everything will be easy. Or everything will be fun. Or you will have the time of your life!┬áThat girl was scared. Terrified. She was so worried about starting new and making a new life and giving her kids less by wanting to give them more. She was newly pregnant and overwhelmed. And if I could go back and hug her and comfort her I think she could feel a lot more peaceful about the future.

When Kelly took the job and came down to look at churches he went to mass with just the girls (I had to stay in Omaha for a church committment). He said to me after mass “you have to meet the priest. he’s amazing.” and I thought, well, ok, that’s strange. Amazing? I don’t think I had ever heard my husband describe a priest as amazing. But his enthusiasm helped me to agree to come to this parish and hold out for a house in the neighborhood. And to give things a try. I now think the holy spirit was calling us here.

I’m not going to lie and say it was easy to move. Clearly it wasn’t – home but not home was a sad, post-partum hormonal post, but it still held some truth. I was here, living amongst so many people, and yet so lonely too. Moving in the winter was hard. Moving while pregnant was hard. It took me a good year to feel at home here. I was invited to join a bible study. I felt more involved with the church and school. I started running again and met some lovely women. I also posted an update on the above post. And it still holds true. I feel a lot of peace about being here now.

I miss our old friends and my old neighborhood. I miss our old church and school. I miss the restaurants. I don’t think that will ever change. But we have met some wonderful friends here, people we are truly blessed to have in our lives. My parents and one of my sisters are here. We have a vibrant and lively church. Our school is very active and involved and the kids love it there. I’m finding enough places to eat. ;) We visited a new (to me) area of Sioux Falls this weekend and I remarked that I had never seen this side of SF before, that it was a nice place to be. And I began to ponder (out loud, my poor husband) how I think we can be happy (or unhappy) just about anywhere. It’s really what you choose to focus on and what you choose to do with what you have. Put yourself out there, let yourself be vulnerable, discover new places, find out who you really are. And just be grateful for every second of it, that’s the lesson I continue to learn.



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last week in photos

baby on the bookshelves
she decided to just sit in the shelves.

school supplies
we got all of the school supplies!

Ada's 4th birthday
Kelly was out of town for Ada’s actual birthday so we celebrated Monday night.

Ada's 4th birthday
while we sang Happy Birthday to her.

Ada's 4th birthday
her favorite toy from my parents.

well child visit
Cora and Della well child check ups. My mom kept the baby which was so amazing, we were there for over an hour.

park playdate
beautiful morning for a park playdate.

from the park
they picked all these berries at the park.

a little coffee and chocolate chip cookie afternoon snack for me while the girls stayed with our babysitter.

Ada's 4th birthday
her actual birthday was Thursday.

Ada's 4th birthday
when I asked her how old she was now. she was so, so excited to (finallY!) be four.

Ada's 4th birthday
she wanted donuts for breakfast.

Ada's 4th birthday

Ada's 4th birthday
we had a playdate birthday party at our house.

Ada's 4th birthday
and dinner at Olive Garden (alone! the husband was out of town).

pool Ada's birthday
and then we went to the pool. I think she had a good day.

SD trip
the husband got home at 1 am and then we drove to South Dakota on Friday.

we got to the hotel and Kelly ran in to get our room and Luisa stood in the front seat to stretch her legs. she was charming everyone as they walked by while she waved and said “hi!”

rainy SD
Saturday morning started off cool and rainy.

great granny Helen
we stopped to see the girls Great Granny Helen, she is 96!

sleeping Luisa
and then we went to a family reunion for the husband’s family. Luisa had too much fun and fell asleep.

sleeping Della
Della slept on the way back to Sioux Falls.

sleeping Ada
and Ada slept too. but not Cora and not Luisa.

we had dinner with some friends in Sioux Falls. Kelly and the husband in the other family went to high school together. They have four girls and so the girls had a super fun time playing with all the girls.

Luisa on the way home to Lincoln, she took a 3 hour nap!

watching Annie
watching Annie.

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monday: best of last week

:: living with kids ::

:: “Children are not a commodity, nor are they a burden, and our culture of convenience seems to have convinced us that they are both.” “I’m not afraid of my fertility (anymore) ::

:: in defense of the mess ::

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seven quick takes

linking up with seven quick takes!

:: 1 ::

One of the girls I run with (hi Erin!) told me about The Wonder Years coming out on dvd this fall. At first I thought that it was an absurd amount of money for a television show on dvd. And I still do, sort of. But at the same time? I really, really want to buy it. I loved that show. wwyd?

:: 2 ::

The only television show I’m watching at the moment is Fixer Upper on HGTV. I love, love, love it. The show is hosted by a married couple and I think they are just super cute. I found a blog/shop website that the woman writes – Magnolia Homes.

:: 3 ::

We bought school supplies this week. Ada needed a backpack. I tried to convince her to get this one:

backpack (not that I would spend that much money on a backpack). I even tried saying it’s Royal Blue – for princesses! And she wouldn’t have it.

This is what she picked out:


Do you let your kids pick their own stuff? Even if it’s ugly and gaudy and so LOUD that you can’t stand it?

:: 4 ::

Have you heard of Clouds by Zach Sobiech? I saw his video on Jennifer Fulwiler’s blog. I watched the video she posted. And I bought his mom’s book – Fly A Little Higher (and sobbed through it). I also watched his My Last Days interview (and sobbed through it). And seriously, such good stuff. It’s a beautiful story of hope and love and the grace that can flow through suffering.

:: 5 ::

There is a whole Soulpancake channel on youtube with My Last Days videos. And I’m intrigued but scared to watch.

:: 6 ::

Isn’t this t’shirt just cute?

:: 7 ::

Today we are headed to Sioux Falls and then even further north. The husband’s family is having a cousin get together and his grandmother is in a nursing home and we hope to see her too. Hopefully we all stay sane through all the driving. Happy weekend!

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last week in photos

sisters playing
sisters playing.

I took the kids to the (Lincoln) zoo and forgot my phone! They kept asking for me to take a picture but I couldn’t. So I took this one of Della when we got home while she told me about the zoo.

giving her baby kisses. Luisa kisses = sucking on the baby’s head.

lunch outside
we had a gorgeous week last week, lows in the 50’s and highs in the 70’s. so we ate lunch on the porch.

and the girls had a picnic in the grass.

'sissy's here!'
Luisa was fussing so Ada ran over repeating “sissy’s here! sissy’s here! no crying!”.

our neighbors across the street had us over for s’mores.



Friday morning at the library.

pushing the toy cart around
and lunch with Grandma and Aunt Mimi – they love pushing this toy cart around.

Luisa is standing
Luisa started standing on Saturday. Her hand is blurry because she was going to start clapping – she wants everyone to clap and yell ‘yay’ for her!

city meet
city swim meet on Saturday afternoon.

and out with my husband that night. we saw Begin Again and we liked it a lot. then we walked down to the haymarket for a drink.

Della Kate Lydia
we had some friends in town Sunday morning that we miss dearly, so nice to see them!

swim meet potluck
I had a baby shower in the afternoon and then we had the swim team potluck that night.

participant medals
they got participant medals and were so, so happy. thrilled.

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monday: best of last week

:: Living With Kids – I love that it’s not perfect, not fully redone ::

:: will someone please have a breakfast taco bar and invite me? ::

:: appetizers for dinner is my most favorite dinner. ever. ::

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So I’ve “attempted” a whole30 twice now. I say “attempted” because I’ve only lasted two days each time. I have so many thoughts on how we eat and I don’t know how to get them all out but I’m going to try.

The whole30 is a 30 day program that eliminates a bunch of different food to try to get you to healthier eating habits and a healthier (better functioning hormones) body. I think in general the idea can work. I don’t know that their specific plan is the best. They say that you can’t eat any sugar, alcohol, legumes, grains (including rice and quinoa), or dairy. They also limit additives. If you dig around their website you will find all kinds of reasons on why these foods are not good for us. I even bought, and read, It Starts With Food and the science seems legit (I’m not a scientist obviously).

So my biggest issues with the diet lifestyle?

: I just don’t know how healthy it is to eliminate whole food groups for the rest of your life. I see their success stories. People with MS that have completely healed. People who have IBS or Crohns or whatever digestive disease and who feel completely better.

: I feel terrible on the diet. I know they say you have ‘carb flu’ for the first week or so and I believe it. My brain stops functioning correctly though. I have four little kids to take care of! They are talking to me and asking for things and I have to make them meals (and keep them alive!). And I felt like I couldn’t register the words coming out of their mouths in my brain.

: The food got boring. I was only two days in but I could barely get the food down. I was sick of only eating vegetables and protein. I nearly gagged trying to get down my lunch. I suppose I could lose a lot of weight on a diet that was full of foods I could barely eat. I don’t really want to lose a lot of weight though.

: I do think sugar is bad for us, I doubt even in moderation it is good for us. I don’t know about the legumes and grains though. I’m sure alcohol has no redeeming qualities but I like a little bit here and there.

: I restricted my food a lot in high school. I wasn’t anorexic but when I look back at what I allowed myself to eat I feel shocked. Half of a plain bagel does not count as dinner. When I started the whole30 it felt like disordered eating to me. My friend posted an article on facebook today that talked about orthorexia and the whole30 reminds me of that so much.

I like popcorn and a movie. I want chocolate on a daily basis. Are my eating habits going to make me less healthy in the long run? Am I going to get MS or cancer or a terrible bowel disease? I don’t know and that is the question I guess. How much is it worth. If I were really, really sick would I be willing to shift my eating habits for the rest of my life? I don’t know that either. For me it just takes the fun out of life and the fun out of eating.

Do you follow any specific diet plan? Do you think grains or sugar or alcohol (or whatever food group) are all bad?


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