Tuesday, February 26, 2013


I have SUCH a lazy blogger! Yesterday I was email a girlfriend and thought I am going to nail two birds with one stone. I am going to copy and paste sections of this letter on my blog. So here it is..... fuzzy photos, hurried words and all. 

 I am in Spring cleaning "mode" at the moment and have thus abandoned the internet all together.  Today I tackled my laundry room, the girl's playroom and my closet. Tomorrow I will purge my linen closet and hopefully convince Nate to help me tidy up the garage. I can't even get in there at the moment. 

Nate and I have decided to start trying for our third in October. I am actually getting pretty excited about it. October 5th marks our tenth wedding anniversary and we are planning on going on our own to Tofino for a couple of days. We used to go there a lot before we had children and it holds a lot of good memories for us. In the past we usually camped or stayed in a hostel but this time I think we will stay in  a fancy lodge. 

We had a really low key Valentines. Amelia and I made a bunch of homemade cards for her classmates at preschool and Nathaniel and I made heart shaped pancakes for the girls and took them swimming.

We have had a lot of visitors.

Nate recently did the ERT candidate selection try out and said that it was REALLY tough. He was sore for days afterwards. He is currently off caffeine. We will see how long that lasts :0) His dad was with us for about three weeks and they spent a lot of time together. They took a trip to Vancouver, rode motor bikes, went shooting, talked into the wee hours of the night and worked in the back yard. I am hoping to visit my brother and his wife Jill in Victoria mid March for a couple of days. Jill and I are going to decorate her nursery (she is going to have a little girl early June) and help her start preparing physically and emotionally for the birth. 

My girls are thoroughly enjoying one another's company and have been  spending hours giggling, making forts, splashing in the tub, pretending they are kittens and going for walks. Watching my girls play together makes me SO thankful that I had two and makes me want to have another. And, they keep each other busy pretty much ALL day which allows me to do all sorts of stuff. It has taken awhile to get to this point, but it feels as though it has all be worthwhile.  Claire still doesn't say much, but she understands EVERYTHING I say. I started potty training her this month, but I am worried that it might be too early for her. She will be two in a little over a month, and I am ready to ditch the diapers. Amelia and I are planning her fourth birthday party. She really wants a Unicorn party - go figure :0)

I am SO excited for Spring. I want to buy myself a pair of mint colored jeans, wear dresses, host a tea party and make shortcake smothered with strawberries and frosting, paint my girls room, start biking again and get skinny!  I just started 30 day shred this week too!!!! I have not been very disciplined since I moved to Nanaimo and I have slowly let 10 pounds creep back onto my body. Now it is time to get rid of them. I would really like to get back to 143 and I am going to have to work hard to get there. I have pretty much cut sugar out of my diet, and I am trying to eliminate wheat as well. I have started making my own salad dressings, eating beets, hemp hearts, chia seeds, and all sorts of other "healthy" stuff. The other day I made pancakes out of oats, cottage cheese and some bran. They were pretty good!. I have started running again as well. There is a lake close to our house and it has a great trail around it. Hopefully I will be in decent shape by the time summer arrives. 

Now that the weather is milder we have been able to do a bit of work in our back yard. I took an axe the the ugly enormous stump in our back yard and managed to gain a few blisters in the process. Hopefully we will be able to finish our deck, put in a fence, get a HUGE load of topsoil, and put in some sort of flagstone or cement this summer. In the meantime we have been digging up ferns from the forest, snow drops from the side of the road and building rock walls from all the rocks lying around. I REALLY want to get the majority of it done before summer arrived so that we can spend our days swimming at the lake, camping, and sharing meals with friends.

 I recently ditched all my chemical laden cleaning products and switched to a evolutionary cleaning system by a company called Norwex. It is awesome!!!! I am trying to develop my "green thumb" instead of anyways putting Nathaniel in charge of all the garden stuff. I recently moved my bedroom around and I am in the process of getting rid of stuff in my craft room. I am trying REALLY hard to stay within our budget, but it is SO hard. I pretty much have forbidden myself from shopping. It is just too dangerous. I am afraid I will see something I love and want to take it home with me. Hopefully next month I will  be able to buy some linen to re-upholster my ottoman. It is in rough shape. I would also love to buy a light fixture for our family room, which is currently, quite cave like. 

Well, that is it. I am going to bed. 

Bellies and babies

Recently I had the privilege or being asked to take a few photos of one of my friend's belly.  She is pregnant with her third and well into her last trimester. She is  planning on having a home birth and has asked me to be her doula. I cannot begin to express how excited and honored I feel. I have thoroughly going enjoyed getting to know her and her family and I am excited to be a part of such a significant event in her life. Yippee!

Over the past couple of weeks  I have been plowing though Ina May Gaskin's "Guide to Childbirth", re-reading Ami Mckay's "the birth house", Jack Newman's guide to Breastfeeding, The "baby Catcher  by Peggy Vincent, and most recently "Hypnobirthing" by Marie F. Mongan. Needless to say, I feel immersed in all things pregnancy and childbirth. 

For the past month I have had the privilege of spending time with one of my oldest and dearest girlfriends. She currently lives in a remote community on the west coast and had come to town to await the arrival of her third child.  In the past, it was not uncommon for us to see each other once every couple of years, so it has been lovely  been lovely to see her on a regular basis. We got to spend a whole day together shopping and eating delicious things WITHOUT OUR CHILDREN. It was wonderful!!!!

Just look at this AMAZING salad!

On Valentines Day she gave birth to this beautiful little girl. 

*SIGH* If it is possible to have baby fever, I have it, especially after holding sweet little Solvieg. I have already started counting down the months  until Nathaniel and I give it another whirl. The thought of having three kiddos is a a little terrifying, but also exciting. It has taken me awhile to want another child, but now that Claire is sleeping through the night, weaned and nearly potty trained.... I feel ready to do it all over again. Am I crazy?

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Family Day


Sunday, February 10, 2013

My "testimony"

 Sometimes it is difficult to get out the door Sunday morning groomed, fed and dressed (especially with two girls in tow), but I never regret the effort. Some mornings my keys go missing and I have been known to search the house frantically until I find them, sometimes turning my house upside to do so. By the time Sunday rolls around I am desperate for uninterrupted time with my heavenly father.

There is something so beautiful about assembling together with other believers and worshiping. It is powerful, moving and exhilarating  The other night I attended an evening worship service and danced for the first time in years. I wept  and I danced and it was amazing!!!!

Time with my heavenly father  revives and encourages me. Now matter how challenging my week has been, how broken I feel, the Lord meets me where I am. I can sing my heart out, lift my hands, weep and enter into the presence of God. The beautiful thing is, that I can do all of these things at home, but often I am so distracted by life's daily demands (the dishes, making meals,...) that  I forget to. When I go to church I am there for the sole purpose of worshiping him, seeking his face and learning more about him.

I have always been skeptical , logical and cautious  but I cannot argue with my  experience of his presence. I cannot define it, I cannot ignore it.  So when I am scrambling to get out the door  on Sunday morning, you can understand my motivation. Undisturbed time my beloved,  time to bask in his love. In my opinion, there is nothing that compares. Being in God's presence is better than the euphoric feeling I experienced after I gave birth to my girls and held them for the first time, better than intimacy with my husband, better than the endorphins that rush through my body just after a trail run on a mountain, better than the most epic cheesecake ( and I LOVE cheesecake), better than a kiss, better than that sweet moment when my child wraps their arms around me and tells me that she loves, me, better than anything I have ever experienced. His presence is all encompassing, powerful, and life changing.  It is during those times that I become aware of just how much He loves me and  how much I need Him. He reaches past all the rubbish and barriers I put up and goes straight to the my heart of hearts - the core of who I am.  During those times He reminds me that I am his beloved, his child, that I am NOT alone, and that he has forgiven me and will always love me.

There have been many periods in my life when I have neglected my relationship with Jesus, where I have given other things more priority. Life carries on, of course, and things feel fine for the most part, but I always have this lingering sense that something is missing - that even though I have a wonderful husband, healthy children, a beautiful home, friends, hobbies.... there is a void. A void, that I have learned, cannot be filled with items from Home sense (my favorite store), a beautiful pair of new boots, a heart to heart conversation with a friend, intimacy with my husband.. All of these things are great and make life pleasurable, but they don't fill my void. Without intimacy with the one that created me, I am unfulfilled,  hungry and restless.

Perhaps you have heard people share their "testimony". They typically follow a similar refrain. Someone was living in a life of sin and brokenness until they had a revelation of God's love for them and their lives were transformed. In the past I have avoided sharing my "testimony" because I didn't feel as though it as powerful or dynamic as other people's.  I always long to share my faith with others, but I don't always know how to. Sometimes I worry about offending people, although that is NEVER my intention. In my heart of hearts I long for everyone to know God's incredible grace and unconditional love. I long for people to experience him the way that I do, not as some distant entity to be feared or avoided.

  I come from a stable home, a loving home where I learned about God's love daily. Around the age of eleven or twelve I was at children's church at a family camp and I choose to give my life to Christ. Up to that point I had always attended church, sung church songs and prayed before bedtime, but I hadn't really made a decision to make the faith my own, I had simply followed the motions. One evening, as was singing "as the deer pants for the water so my soul longs after thee..... you oh Lord are my heart's desire and I am long to worship thee....", I experienced something that left me on the knees sobbing my my heart out. I finally understood just how much Jesus loved me. My faith, my religion, my relationship with God became personal that day and has remained that way since. 

Link to a song that encapsulates my heart perfectly