Clothed with Grace

Thursday, August 25, 2016


I recently had an IG buddy wonder how I had time to be a mom, wife, read, work, blog and keep my house clean (ha!). She joked I must have found some kind of time space continuum (I wish!) But, in all honestly, I could really use a bit more time in each day. Couldn't we all?

School is keeping me extra busy with huge curriculum changes, and I've been carrying a book around for the last week and haven't had time to crack it once.  I had a moment last night (right before I wrote this) where I was like, "Oh yeah, I need to get a post ready for tomorrow..." I hadn't written it over the weekend, because I had nothing interesting to say, and I still don't. Whoops! I also have nothing planned for next week either, and honestly, I'm ok with that. 

I have the Belong Tour this weekend, which I'm really excited about, but that means no time to take pictures, which is fine by me. I'm hoping to share a recap of the event next week with you all, we'll see what else I have time to share. So, moral of the story, I'm not aware of any time space continuum, and now I'm going to finish up this post and go read my book while sitting next to my husband....that's quality time right? ; )

I just got this top and love it! It's so fun and different and it's less than $20! I wore this outfit last weekend. It was pretty cool, so it was nice to get out my flares again!

I also just got these Nickel & Suede earrings on sale.  I'm pretty sure I want to add every color to my collection at this point....

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Food for Thought

Last week I saw this video on my Facebook feed. It's all about how we as adults talk to kids and it specifically was talking about the school setting. You should seriously take two minutes to watch it! It really made me think. As teachers and adults in general, we make such an impression on the children we teach, as well as our own children (obviously).

We can easily get annoyed at our students and our children, but how we respond has such power over how they feel about themselves. I notice that it's usually pretty easy to keep my cool with my students, but I can easily lose it with Grant at home. I want Grant to know he is loved, so my words and actions should be showing that. 1 John 4:19 says, "We love because he first loved us." God has always loved me, even though I don't deserve it, so I'm really out of excuses when it comes to showing love to others.

My current goal is to make my interactions with my students, as well as at home show love, even when I don't feel like it. No excuses.

I've been wearing this top like crazy. I wore this to church recently and ended up adding a white cardigan, since it was a cool morning. These red pants are also one of my favorite purchases this summer, I've been wearing them nearly each week, and hope to carry them into the fall too.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

8 Months Old

Hannah is officially 8 months old! It seems like a lot has happened since I did her 7 month update. This month has been crazy with back to school and girlfriend had a cold that just wouldn't quit. It was her first, and I know I should be grateful that she went 7 months without getting sick, I still hate it.

Getting Hannah to sit still for a picture this month was pretty much impossible, I gave up after a few minutes, because it's so true to who she is right now. She wanted, me, the camera, and to crawl, she did not want to pose for a picture. ; ) She wants to crawl so badly and keeps getting on all fours...than going backwards. Whomp, whomp.

Hannah is generally a pretty great eater when it comes to cereal and baby food, while she'd gotten a bit finicky when it came to bottle and nursing. She was getting so distracted, so anytime she nursed I had to go to her room. Then she was sick and suddenly she was all about the nursing and literally turning her nose up to baby food. Luckily, she's eating baby food pretty well again, but she was totally stressing me out! There's nothing worse than a sick baby who can't tell you what' bothering them!

Hannah also got her first tooth! Finally! I'm assuming number two isn't that far behind, but she HATES when I try to check out her mouth for more teeth.

She's also starting to cruise a bit, but I wish she knew she needed to learn to crawl first. ; )

Hannah has started babbling and say consonants on repeat, which is super fun. She also thinks it's super hilarious when I say them back to her. I see "mama" and "dada" in her near future.

She has also started to get super excited when I pick her up to daycare. She's reaching for us at home and thinking about waving too.

I know I've said this a million times, but we are so blessed to have this little girl in our lives! I'm excited to see what this next month has in store!

Monday, August 22, 2016

In the Groove

Ok, I'm going to say it, I feel like we're getting into a predictable routine around with the house. Brian and I are getting into a flow of getting everyone out of the house by about 7:15. My days at school fly by, then I'm able to get the kids around 4:00, come home, play with the kids, then get dinner ready while Hannah takes a nap.  I'd really hoped she'd be down to two naps by now, but her naps at daycare are not great, whomp whomp, so girlfriend is tired come 5:00.Then, it's time for me to cook dinner and clean up the kitchen. Then, we eat as a family once Brian is home. Hannah is up at 6:00, and it's dinner for her, baths for the kids, then some playing before bedtime. That leaves about two hours for Brian and I before it's time for us to go to bed.

If you'd asked me last spring is I felt like I was in a groove, the answer would be a resounding no. I was stressed about getting dinner cooked and totally exhausted from being up at night with Hannah. Now that she (pretty much) is sleeping through the night I feel like a new person! There is light at the end of the sleep deprived tunnel! I feel like we are finally getting this "family of four" thing figured about and I know I'm doing a much better job of "letting" Brian help, and he's doing a much better job of taking on tasks with the kiddos too.

There are plenty of times when #momminainteasy , but man, we need to celebrate when times are good, then remember them once they get tough again too.

A little note, I tried to take pictures Saturday and it was windy and gross. The picture above was a one take shot by Grant Sunday morning, and it was way better than any picture I tried on Saturday. The two below are from Saturday. I switched up the jewelry above and and didn't pull my hair back. Real life, people. :)

I just got this dress in the mail and love it! The style is fun and flattering, and the quality is great too. For reference, I got a medium.  Also, let's talk about these shoes for a minute, they are the best! I had a 30% off coupon for our local department store, so that helped with the price, but I think they will be worth every penny. I'm not sure if it's getting older, or what, but heels and I just aren't getting along like we used to. I'm pretty sure these will be on constant rotation!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Love Makes Good Impressions

As I've shared, I'm going through The Love Dare book as my devotional. It's really been helping me to be more purposeful with the little amount of time Brian and I have together each day.

One of the days I read about recently was focused on how to greet your spouse. It talked about how we great out friends, new people when we're introduced, and even strangers. Then, it asked us to consider how we greet our spouse. After all, greetings show your care for others, your joy for seeing them, and it should make them feel good.

I have to be honest, I haven't been doing a great job of this. I could blame it on the hustle in the morning, when we say a quick "Bye" as we each leave with one kid, headed to daycare or school. I could blame it on the hustle in the kitchen of me finishing up dinner when Brian arrives home from work, but that's pretty much a cop out. I got lazy and I don't think my greetings had showed my love for Brian.

Our task for the day was to think of a purposeful way to greet our spouse, letting them know how important they are to us. Since then, I make sure to give Brian a kiss goodbye and tell him I love him. When he's gets home, I make sure to stop what I'm doing to say hello and ask about his day. 

Greetings show that we find value in someone else, that they matter, that we "see" them. We do this with even strangers, shouldn't we do it even more with our spouse? Maybe you're really great at this, maybe not. Regardless, I think it's an easy way to show our spouses we care. 

It's been nice to wear my work clothes again. I've had this jacket for Loft for a few years now, but this jacket is super similar and on sale. I got this dress last spring in a few colors when it went on super sale, but Target has fit and flare dresses again this fall and in some great colors too! I would say the hardest part of going back to school, clothing wise, is trading my sandals for heels. It just seems so much more painful...literally this year. Wearing shoes that are leather, does help, but I miss my sandals!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Appreciation Room

I shared with you all that I had decided to do The Love Dare book again as my devotional. I'm really glad to be doing it, and it's causing me to think a lot, not just about how to not take my husband for granted, but the way I treat others too.

One of the days early on in the book that really stuck out to me was the discussion of two metaphorical rooms in our heart, one is the Appreciation Room and the other is the Depreciation Room.

In the Appreciation Room the walls are covered with all the wonderful things about your spouse. All the great memories, qualities, and things you appreciate are housed here. Early on in your marriage you probably hung out in this room a lot and were adding to the walls daily.

Then, life, kids, and the realization that your spouse (and you) aren't perfect sets in.  That's where the Depreciation Room comes into play. It's walls are covered with all the annoyances, fights, anger, and letdowns of your marriage hang. If you're not careful, this room can become your new hangout and you'll eagerly wait to find fault in your spouse to add to the walls that are now packed to the gills. The appreciation room is forgotten, and this is your new home.

1 Corinthians 13:7 says "Love believes all things, hopes all things." When we get into the mindset in our marriages of focusing on all the bad, that's all we are going to see, and our tone and attitude towards our spouse is going to perpetuate the negativity.

God has put together two broken sinners in a broken, sinning world. Neither within a marriage is perfect, each has flaws, but our mindset about our partner makes all the difference. Our love for our spouse should encourage us to believe the best in them, and hope for the best in them. However, if we spend all our time in the Depreciation Room, that will never happen.

The dare for the day was to write two lists: one with the things that I appreciated about my husband and one for the things that frustrated me about him.

Here's what I found, I could think of a whole lot more positive things than I could negative. However, if my mindset is wrong, I can magnify the few things on the negative list and make them heavily outweigh any and all good. Once I realized this, it really caused me to think. I'm sure by husband could make a pretty hefty list of the things about me we wishes I did differently, but that's not what I want him to do, and I bet you don't either.

Now, no one is perfect, but I am really working to focus on the good, because there is so much, and not let the bad be my focus. I'm want to be cozy in the Appreciation Room and bar the door to the Deprecation Room, visiting there no more.

Today I want to challenge you to write your own list, if you think you're spending too much time focusing on the negative. Then, make the choice to let those things go.

I was planning to wear this outfit during the first week of school, but couldn't wait and wore it last Sunday instead. I just got this cardigan at the Loft outlet. I've needed to replace my old one for quite awhile, so I was excited to get it for less than $25. I can't find it online, but I like this one from the normal Loft. I've been wearing this top a ton and thought it would be fun with my white jeans. I really like how it came together!

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Glory Over Everything: Book Review

This last December I read The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom, and it was amazing! Check out my review then go out and read The Kitchen House, ASAP. After you've done that, you're ready for it's companion, Glory Over Everything.

Glory Over Everything picks up where the The Kitchen House leaves off, but this time it's from the point of view of Belle's teenage son, Jamie, who has run off after tragedy struck on the plantation he's always called home. I don't want to give anything away from The Kitchen House, but it needs to be known that Jamie is mulatto, with his mom, Belle, being a mulatto slave, and his father being a white man. Although Jamie appears to be white as well, during those times he was considered black and was about to be sold as a slave.

Jamie escapes to the North and with the help of another slave who had escaped from a different plantation, then begins to establish himself as a white person and builds his new life.

The story goes back and forth from Jamie's life a a teenager to his life as an adult, then Jamie's past begins to haunt him. He fears that everything he's built will be taken away in the blink of an eye. We see Jamie try to fix everything, help a friend, and grow as a character.

Overall, Glory Over Everything was an amazing novel and follow up to The Kitchen House, I'd highly recommend reading them both!