Friday, April 24, 2015

Me Right Now

I'm sitting here in my stripey pajama pants with a cat on my feet and a smile on my face, because it's FRIDAY! Gah. Finally.

The last few weeks have been so intense. Last night Cory pulled off the 1st Annual Elkhart County Jail Ministry banquet for over 400 people. It's so fun to watch him do his thing. He morphs into this uber-detail-oriented dude that just takes care of business. Who would have guessed jail would end up being his passion? Not moi.

Aside from that major event, I've been stockpiling smaller things to tell you, because it's just what I do. I leave nothing to the imagination...

...including my kitchen shelves.

I spruced them up for Spring. And by "spruced", I mean I collected a few random, clashing dishes from the thrift store and a rogue trip to Ikea and threw them all together. It's like a flower garden, only the kind where some of the flowers are actually blue zebras and some are jailbirds.

Whatever. It makes me really happy.

Sidenote: Do I need to lecture you again about decorating on-the-cheap with things that just make you happy? Because it feels like it's been several weeks since I've preached about this.

"Don't overthink. Don't spend cash you don't have. Don't worry about what Pinterest or that one redonkulously stylish friend would say. Swim towards the happy. Float in its sea. It'll make your heart feel prettier."

(Lecture over. Until next time.)

Can you even believe this stunning art from the hand of my lady, Aliza?
She just dashed it off, just for me. When it showed up at my door I felt like I'd just won the PowerBall.

Visitors in my home think it's sort of fun and ironic. BUT YOU KNOW BETTER.

In related news, I found myself growing weary of the circus tent curtains, so I started an exhaustive search for something new. Since curtains make my eyes cross with their inane price points, I considered stitching up some sheets again. But then I remembered the last time I tried to sew and shelved the idea.

In the end, I found these polka-dotties from Joss and Main. They're more sheer than I thought, but I sort of love them, and not just because they cost me $20 for the pair, but mostly exactly because of that reason. (And the polka dots.)

It's such a fun source for quirky, inexpensive stuff. I need to remember to look there more often.

When we're not working and fluffing our shelves and hunting for curtains, we're still doing regular living, and while it's been extra full lately, I find myself more thankful than ever for those normal, everyday moments that bring me right back to the core of who I am.

Things change, but some things never do. I need that reminder playing on a loop.

Last weekend I got an afternoon with just Ruby and Si. They were so dreamy. They got along like old mates and we ate Subway in the sun. It felt like summer, in all the right ways.

(Then it SNOWED on Wednesday. SOB!)

Silas has been ultra-adorable lately. He usually tells me at least once a day, in a voice dripping with amazement and awe, "I'm so glad I got the best mommy!"

(((Heart eyes! Heart eyes! All of the emojis!!!!!!)))

Maybe he's always been this way? I can't remember.
He's always been charming and easy, yes?

NO. The answer is everything that is the opposite of charming and easy. So Mama, if you're in a rough stretch right now, one you've renamed "eternal reality", take heart. Hope is somewhere on the horizon. I never would have believed it myself, and yet, here it is, right in front of me with a missing front tooth and a premature mustache.

He ebbs and flows. We all do. But I'm happy to hang out here for a while.

Other Important Stuff:
Just finished: The Rosie Project (So funny and strange! Loved it.)
Starting: All the Light We Cannot See
Listening to: Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors - Good Light (my kids are OBSESSED, too)
Eating: black bean/brown rice bowls FOREVER. Not a ton of "real" cooking happening here lately, but these are easy, healthy and delicious. I top mine with avocado, tomato, cilantro, pickled jalapenos, a little sour cream, and sriracha.

Welp, Chunky Pants is here visiting with my sis and Ihear him stirring. Gotta run!

I'm sure you understand, but on the off-chance you need convincing, try this. Or this. I have watched them both one hundred times and have no plans of stopping. Instant day-brightener!

Luv to all the homies,

*affiliate links present!


  1. All the Light We Cannot See is one of my new favorite books ever. Absolutely beautiful and one of the rare books that I love so much that instead of raving about it to my friends and family, I want to keep it close to my heart. Because if I recommend it and someone says back to me that it was okay or even good but does not understand how amazing it is, I will have to re-evaluate the person!!! Hope you love it like I do. I kept thinking the whole time I read it, how did the author think of this...Enjoy your weekend!

  2. Drew Holcomb and the neighbors forever!!!!! :) Love your IKEA bowls. I need some on my next trip.

  3. I needed that encouragement regarding Shorty with the 'Stache. I'm peering onto the brink of an upswing, and I'm super hopeful, but still not quite in the happiest of happy places. But I think it's coming! So glad it has for Silas.

  4. I seriously love you woman. In a sort of creepy but not really meant to be that way way. Yeah, I said way way. Sitting here in the car while my two youngest kidlets sleep cause I know that if I try and transfer them into the house that naptime will suddenly and tragically end. My middle little just had a mini meltdown at the eye doctors this morning so your words of encouragement about how upswing were most definitely well timed. Thanks!

  5. My book club just picked All the Light We Cannot See as our next book to read! Its been on my list forever :)

  6. The ruler shelves!!! Where on earth did you score those beauties? They are perfection!

    1. Joss and Main! (a couple years ago) But see what I mean???!

    2. Joss and Main! (a couple years ago) But see what I mean???!

  7. YEP to "The Rosie Project"! ....."All the Light..." is on my list as well! Just finished reading "Wonder" which is a really go YA fiction.

  8. "Don't overthink. Don't spend cash you don't have. Don't worry about what Pinterest or that one redonkulously stylish friend would say. Swim towards the happy. Float in its sea. It'll make your heart feel prettier."
    I want this qoute hanging on my wall. Hard and fast rules for life.
    "All the light we cannot see" is on my eventual list too. Author is from my home state!

  9. Be still my salsa-loving heart, I do love that print. I suffered with some pretty severe reflux a few years ago and when my ENT asked what I was eating I didn't want to tell him. My daily salsa habit was wreaking havoc on my system...sigh!

  10. i am supposed to be finishing up my curriculum writing for a class i start teaching on--wait for it--monday, and my guys start arriving in five hours, and i'm not yet dressed for my death-by-running date in 23 minutes, but still it feels important to check in with you.



    1. my uncle just e-kindle-gifted me that 'all the light' book. i've had it on my amazon wish list FOEVAH, and he is just the sort of Stop Dreaming Start Doing person in my life that i need.
    2. i remember you saying to just give it another year (do you know what i'm referencing? i shall just keep going like you do) and so we are coming up on year four in june/july. and i don't know, it feels like while a lot has changed, the hard things haven't?? and it's starting to feel like my fault again, circa the first six months where clearly if i were just the right person he'd be dreamy and in love with his mama. ah well.
    3. earlier this week (must've been weds) todd said, so i guess it's snowing in south bend, and i was all oh yeah, that's why i don't actually miss midwest weather. except for the 340 days when i do. which is dumb, ps, because we have perfect weather here, but SNOW! and FALL BLUSTER! and 10PM SUNSETS + FIREFLIES! i do miss those guys.
    4. love you.

  11. I can't wait to hear your thoughts on All The Light We Can Not See. I'm almost finished with it. It is different than I thought it was going to be, hard to keep reading when you get to the middle of it, but now that I'm almost finished I'm glad I didn't give up on it. It is one of those books that has so much detail and sometimes it's hard to keep track of it all, I think I will have to read it again to get it all.

  12. You are the fourth person to mention All The Light. I must go read it!

  13. Um, for REAL, if you're thinking about selling the circus curtains, they would go GREAT in my living room, and I would totally buy them, and I live close. For real. There might even be my insanely easy recipe for Hacienda salsa included with the cash. Just sayin'.

    1. Really??? Do you need measurements? And remember, I "sewed" might not be aware of how truly janky they are! Email me if you wanna talk about it more. :) shannandmartin gmail

  14. So, today, I spoke at a gathering of about 50 women at our church. And I might have used you and your family as an example of someone who is doing what God's asked them to do even though it makes people shake their head and think they're crazy. Hope that was okay. Kinda 'day late and a dollar short' to ask permission but, good news, your story, and I DID NOT sugarcoat it, resonated with these women and encouraged them in a new way. Thank you for being a light to people you don't even know. Someday you will meet them all and you'll be blown away by how big your circle was!

  15. Amen and amen about your decorating lecture! Love the salsa print!

  16. All the Light We Cannot See ranks as a highlight of my reads last year. Absolute-lose-yourself-ability--which is a must.