Still alive.

Yes, we are still fluttering around over here. It seems as though the summer has gotten away however. Between beach days and zoo trips, to visiting friends, along with a couple of vacations scattered in here and there, summertime was rich with experiences. And not much room to spare!

Filling up those little spaces in the memory banks of the youngins’ is always a treat for me.

Sunsets at the beach..

I admit, the beach was calling our name almost every week it seemed like! But we love it there and the kids could literally spend hours digging and playing in the sand. The best part is that they are all the perfect age now for me to pack us up on a whim for the beach without having to plan too much for it. I’ve been waiting for this day to come forever now!

Little diggers

Silliness

And football was a must during the fire pit night we had one evening…

Football fanatic

Might I add that beach nights are absolutely AMAZING to me!!! ūüôā

On the flip side, there was more to these summer beach days of fun. There was the reality of life that still ran through my entire sence of self, as I escaped to sunny days in the rays. The changes and choices that still go on, no matter where I am at any given point. I haven’t felt so inclined to write about these changes yet, let alone have time to keep up with my posts this summer. So much to do, so little time right?! It’s been really great though letting go of my grip with technology, remaining¬†present in every moment and forced to feel life without distraction or escape in that way.

The sand is to my kids what the waves are to me. But not so much for play, for thought really. Whether it’s the mesmerizing water colliding so relentless against the sand. Or the lulling crash and fading away of waves, with a force and song all its own. The vital sound could overcome anything around. Waves unceasingly abound the shore, although each in its own unique manner. Every wave comes with its own speed, size and depth.

When I watch them, I can almost fell the earth speaking. I can relate to its perpetual longing to make it to shore with each break that it makes. It’s the same consistency I find myself clinging to throughout life recently. Everyday brings something new. Whether it’s a fresh idea, inspiring thoughts from friends, soaking in moments with my kids, a new experience or just a renewed energy overall. It’s a pattern much like the uniqueness of every wave. God continually¬†provides opportunities for growth, many times in a different way. To see each one as significant and special is what I try to acknowledge. The subconscious desire to carry on with life is always there regardless of any setbacks. I know that it’s essential to stay constant to get to the place I need to be. Constant and steady like the waves…

Loves.

I have always felt so connected and inspired when I’m at the beach. I’m sure I’m not the only person who would feel that way. How could one not feel affected by the beauty of something so magnificent? It’s energy is undeniable to me.

The beach days of summer are starting to fade to memories, as the new school year is underway. All the experiences will be safely tucked away into the minds and hearts, as we make room for new ones. And as the proverb so gently reminds me… just when parts of life start to seem undone or coming to some sort of end, it is the chance to transcend into the next beautiful chapter!

The Versatile Blogger Award :)

I’ve tried to get this post together now for over a few weeks. The draft was all cozy in the corner, patiently waiting for all of my thoughts to come together on it until two things happened yesterday. The first being that I finally had the 30th follower on my blog…

Yes I’m coming up in this world now, you can say it ūüôā

Well that was kind of a big deal to me! Secondly the lovely blogger who granted me thine award announced that she is closing up shop on her blog which I’ve loved so much. The good news though is that she has started another one which I am happy to hear.

So all of this change around here struck up the fire to get this post completed. And this is how it all began: 

I was reading one of my favorite blogs one afternoon to find that she had been the recipient of this¬†VBA, or Versatile Blogger Award¬†as it’s known. While¬†fully enjoying her seven interesting facts and story about her nomination, I then got to her list of nominee blogs. Skimming over them to see if there were any I’d recognize,¬†I skimmed right past¬†Tethered Butterfly… did a double take and then thought, ‘oh yeah, I’m Tethered Butterfly!!’¬†I almost missed it! Seriously I was rubbing my eyes like maybe I had just made it up in my head because it’s what I hoped to see, but really I didn’t. My eyes did not deceive me however.

So I want to thank¬†Fish Out of Water¬†for that! It was¬†SO¬†super sweet of her to think of this blog as a candidate. I haven’t been a blogger¬†for very long so it’s a pretty cool feeling, and I will gladly accept the nomination. Especially coming from her. I’ll say you¬†must¬†check out her blog while it’s still up and running. She’s had some really sweet posts and ideas during her homeschool journey that she recently embarked on with her son. And she’s super funny!!¬†But you might also want to cruise over to her latest addition as well (Sincerely, Slapdash)

For anyone who didn’t already know, including myself, there is this award/nomination called¬†The Versatile Blogger Award¬†in which a blog gets¬†nominated by another blogger to receive. In order to accept the award, the new nominee must proceed with the following rules:

  • ¬†Thank the person who gave you this award. That‚Äôs common courtesy.
  • ¬†Include a link to their blog. That‚Äôs also common courtesy ‚ÄĒ if you can figure out how to do it.
  • ¬†Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you‚Äôve recently discovered or follow regularly. ( I would add, pick blogs or bloggers that are excellent!)
  • ¬†Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award ‚ÄĒ you might include a link to this site.
  • ¬†Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

Sounds easy enough, but the list of 7 things was really driving me nuts!! I guess I’ll start with the seven things and save the juicy list of nominees for last. ūüôā

1. Ok, I¬†despise¬†being in airplanes and elevators. They both give me horrible anxiety, it’s dreadful. Maybe it was an experience in a past life or something, to me I associate the word disaster with both. I avoid them when possible!!

2.¬†I have a crazy memory, remembering things about my life since the age of 3. And not just traumatic events like when I had a tortilla chip lodged in my throat around that age and the answer was to go take a nap so that it “might” become dislodged… I also remember saying good-bye and giving a hug to my first best friend in kindergarten on the day before my family moved to the town I grew up in. I don’t recall her name, but I remember the look we exchanged as I walked away from her. It was a loss I never knew before.

3.¬†My biggest food weakness is a chocolate chip cookie, approximately 2 minutes after leaving the oven. Warm, gooey, practically falling apart as I eat it… followed by a glass of milk.¬†HEAVEN!!!

mmmmmm… Just writing about it makes me want one this minute!!

4.¬†I really, really feel drawn away from the ‘city’ life and would love to go own a bunch of cute chickens and live on a farm.¬†Like¬†REALLY!!!¬†I am so over the crowded fast-paced world.

Maybe I’ll just own a chicken and walk it in the city…apparently I have options.

5.¬†My favorite song to whistle is Strangers in the Night.¬†Don’t ask me why, it’s been stuck in my head since I can remember… just the first tune that wants to come out of me. It’s a fun one though, you should try it!

6.¬†I have this opinion… I sincerely think we should have stayed in the 90’s. Before computers, cell phones and iAnything’s were all we obsess about, before you couldn’t walk into any public place without seeing dozens of ear buds practically glued into the ears of everyone drowning out any normal bit of conversation that is left of civilization as we know it. Okay maybe I’m exaggerating, but really it just seems like life was so much simpler back then, when you couldn’t even squeeze a cell phone into your back pocket, let alone text without having to decode some upside-down code numbers on a pager. It’s really that lack of convenience that has drawn us to the uber-convenient-gotta-have-it-this-second needs of today’s world. Now is the fact that my argument resides here in my blog, which I’m conveniently typing on my computer failing my point? Oh well I tried. Good-bye forever Zack Morris..

7. I take chances.¬†I’m not going to hold it against myself someday that laughing and whistling gave me wrinkles in the worst spots…at least I have something to show for being happy and joyful… and though I fear dying from cancer as it runs in the family, I do not fear taking chances in this life. The chance to fail, or succeed or love or to hurt in my life is what never ceases to provide such growth.

¬†Now for the nominees (In my best announcer voice). ¬†Pardon me if any of my nominees were already¬†nominated before! These are in no special order I suppose ūüôā

The Happy Wife¬†The sweet story time capsule of my sister’s beautiful family! She’s an amazing mommy capturing the memories!

Sticky Mud¬†I don’t know where to begin to describe the amazing mind that is A Thousand Petals.. You HAVE to see for yourself!!

Cultfit¬†Yes I love this blog, I’ve linked it before. The inspiration, motivation and humor put into such a unique perspective on fitness is unmatched in my book! It’s a daily dose that gets me through my week!

¬†Happy Together Creates¬†The first blog I ever set creative eyes on.. it’s a treasure of ideas!

Rocket Creek The super sweet and creative homeschool mama that I enjoy so many ideas from!

The Pioneer Woman¬†Two words… SUPER WOMAN. She does it all, and does it all so well. You probably already know who she is if you watch the Food Network ūüôā Yes she is quite beyond a¬†VBA¬†from little ol’ me, but I have to put her on my list!!

Home Grown Families¬†from book reviews, to giveaways and DIY it’s a great collaborative blog!

Cooperative Catalyst¬†the other side of teaching.. and for changing education. Many contributor’s= many minds= many points of view ranging from students to teachers/faculty. Quite interesting!!

Ross Mountney’s Notebook¬†writing’s about family life, parenting and educating. I was so happy to find her wealth of knowledge.

Learnin’ on the River¬†A lovely blog about learnin’ on the Mississippi!! Simple, direct, and fun..I love it!

Embracing the Mundane A great blog that I found some awesome inspiration from..creative and organizational.

Less Than Perfect Life of Bliss¬†What a fun style she has, and some very unique design inspiration. The ‘eye’ that I try to have when it comes to design!

Tip Junkie¬†Another one beyond this award,¬†but seriously¬†it’s the best place to go for anything you can think of when it comes to ideas, Diy, recipe’s, organization… seriously anything!!!

Mission Impossible¬†Quite frankly, she is a woman “on a mission” and she has a beautiful blog I recently came upon which she does this through. All things parenting/homemaking/schooling etc.

Homeschooling Helicopter Mama what another sweet blog of a homeschooling journey. She has little ones too which I find so inspiring that she does so much with all of them!!

WOW!! So that does it I guess… A lot of work for one blog award without even a wall plaque. I guess the blog button will have to do. ūüôā ¬†Also here is a link to the Versatile Blogger Award page for more information if needed!

A Mother’s Day Tribute

For all the beautiful Mother’s out there:

God could not be in every place

With loving hands to help erase

The tear drops from each baby’s face,

And so He thought of mother.

He could not send us here alone

And leave us to a fate unknown;

Without providing for His own,

The outstretched arms of mother.

God could not watch us night and day

And kneel beside our crib to pray,

Or kiss our little aches away;

And so He sent us mother.

And when our childhood days began,

He simply could not take command.

That’s why He placed our tiny hand

Securely into mother’s.

The days of youth slipped quickly by,

Life’s sun rose higher in the sky.

Full grown were we, yet ever nigh

To love us still, was mother.

And when life’s span of years shall end,

I know that God will gladly send,

To welcome home her child again,

That ever-faithful mother.

~George W. Wiseman

For my mom… The most beautiful inside and out. She never falls short of giving so much love of herself as a mom, and now as a grandma (Mamu) as well.

Mom and Ella

And my little ones… They are such a gift, I’d probably be lost without them because so much about the person I am today has been from living and learning through them. I love them more than words can say.

 

Ellen DeGeneres <3

CONFESSION!!!!

*We rushed after Ella’s cooking class and skimmed through our Math and reading this morning… with intentions of playing a little catch-up tomorrow.

Yeah, it was one of those rushed sort of mornings that I ever so hate having… and all on a count of Mommy had tickets to go see a taping of The Ellen DeGeneres Show this afternoon. To my advantage the tickets were for the afternoon taping which allowed time to get in some of our essentials beforehand. We normally are afternoon schoolers though lately because mornings are the leisurely play/bike/play/eat/play/read etc. time for us. But of course learning happens when it wants, so I’m not super set on this. It definitely makes for nice flexibility in our day when something like today comes up!

CONFESSION #2

*I don’t actually watch The Ellen Show

oops did I just say that out loud?! What I meant was I am a huge fan of her’s…just love her, she is amazingly talented, engaging and hilarious…did I mention beautiful?! The thing is we don’t watch TV in our house besides movies, as in ¬†ZERO cable…. so I don’t watch any show for that matter.

Yes it might seem strange or horribly boring to most folks, but that is just the way it is, and the way I like it! It frees up more time for other things!!

But TV opinions aside, I won’t pass up a chance to go see a live taping, I mean COME ON!! It’s just super fun to be¬†part of! Years ago I went to The Jay Leno show which was a very fun experience. Two Christmas’s ago was my first time at an Ellen Show taping. It was¬†just¬†fabulous¬†to take¬†part in her Twelve Day Giveaway. It couldn’t have been better timing because that particular taping seemed perfectly suited for families. We went home with a trampoline, Wii’s, Dvd collections and more. The kids were so blessed that Christmas!! She is quite DeGenerous lol!!

Ellen’s show is definitely an awesome one to see. Not only does she get you up dancing, (My fave!!) she is just SO entertaining and great to watch. I was thrilled when I got the call to attend another taping this year. Might I add this is ALL made possible by the mother of my best friend from childhood. All I know is her mom likes to do her part to help us attend things like this and win things. I am very thankful for her!

So it definitely was another fun day at Ellen’s show today! My parents, sister Bree and her boyfriend had tickets as well. My friend Pam came with me, plus we had a huge extended group with us. Diane Keaton and Green Bay Packers wide receiver¬†Donald Driver were the guests today. (Really it was Monday’s show we were taping) Each of us got a copy of Diane’s memoir¬†Then Again, and got to watch Donald show off some of his latest moves from Dancing With the Stars. He was good… and a super sweet man, proud of his family and grounded in his purpose, being that he had an unfortunate childhood that he turned around for the better. ¬†Very refreshing messages today!! Feeling inspired in many ways I must say.

I’m actually quite excited to dive into this book! Something else to make time for around here...*sigh**¬†I’m due for a good read though! I’ll let you all know how it goes!! ūüėČ

Thirty things about 30

I was recently shared this fun article and felt it would make some good reading for a post…

Turning 30: 30 Things Every Woman Should Have And Should Know

In 1997,¬†Glamour¬†magazine published a story titled “30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know by the Time She’s 30.” The list, written by¬†Pamela Redmond Satran, was so popular that women started emailing it around, misattributing it to various female luminaries including Maya Angelou and Hillary Clinton. Noting what a phenomenon it had become, the editors of¬†Glamour¬†created a book around it, featuring essays from (mostly) famous women on each of the items on the list. The book, released today, includes meditations from Katie Couric on work and love, Portia de Rossi on accepting your body, and one from the list’s original author, who is also aHuffington Post blogger, on¬†how to live alone.

Because the list still makes us so,¬†so¬†happy, we asked¬†Glamour‘s permission to reprint it here:

By 30, you should have …

1. One old boyfriend you can imagine going back to and one who reminds you of how far you’ve come.

2. A decent piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in your family.

3. Something perfect to wear if the employer or man of your dreams wants to see you in an hour.

4. A purse, a suitcase, and an umbrella you’re not ashamed to be seen carrying.

5. A youth you’re content to move beyond.

6. A past juicy enough that you’re looking forward to retelling it in your old age.

7. The realization that you are actually going to have an old age — and some¬†moneyset aside to help fund it.

8. An email address, a voice mailbox, and a¬†bank account¬†— all of which nobody has access to but you.

9. A résumé that is not even the slightest bit padded.

10. One friend who always makes you laugh and one who lets you cry.

11. A set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra.

12. Something ridiculously expensive that you bought for yourself, just because you deserve it.

13. The belief that you deserve it.

14. A skin-care regimen, an exercise routine, and a plan for dealing with those few other facets of life that don’t get better after 30.

15. A solid start on a satisfying career, a satisfying relationship, and all those other facets of life that do get better.
By 30, you should know …

1. How to fall in love without losing yourself.

2. How you feel about having kids.

3. How to quit a job, break up with a man, and confront a friend without ruining the friendship.

4. When to try harder and when to walk away.

5. How to kiss in a way that communicates perfectly what you would and wouldn’t like to happen next.

6. The names of the secretary of state, your great-grandmothers, and the best tailor in town.

7. How to live alone, even if you don’t like to.

8. Where to go — be it your best friend‚Äôs¬†kitchen table¬†or a yoga mat — when your soul needs soothing.

9. That you can’t change the length of your legs, the width of your hips, or the nature of your parents.

10. That your childhood may not have been perfect, but it’s over.

11. What you would and wouldn’t do for money or love.

12. That nobody gets away with smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or not flossing for very long.

13. Who you can trust, who you can’t, and why you shouldn’t take it personally.

14. Not to apologize for something that isn’t your fault.

15. Why they say life begins at 30
What’s on your personal list of things to have and know — and possibly do — before turning 30?

List excerpted from¬†Glamour‘s¬†“Thirty Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know By The Time She’s 30.”

Read and excerpt from the book here.

So it’s safe to say I can check most of those off my list and obviously I’m a little beyond knowing how I feel about having kids by now…ahem…. 3 amazing ones at that! It was just fun to read this knowing that I am at that point in my life. It’s all an “opinion” of course, but entertaining!! Now it makes me wonder what a list of 30 things for MEN would sound like…hmmm.

In case you haven’t read about my apprehensiveness¬†to turning thirty this year, it was a hard pill to swallow. But it’s actually been more bearable than I thought. With completing a goal¬†I set out to do, and plenty of inspiring words from friends and loved ones, I’d say I’m actually enjoying it….No really. It’s actually¬†OK!!

One of my cousins put it so beautifully. She stated, “Your 30’s ARE your winning years because you have experience that makes you strong, time that gives you perspective, and knowledge that makes you interesting… all those things together make you more lovely and amazing than ever.”Thank you again for that Jess ūüôā

So this is what winning feels like… YEESSSS!!

And the journey carries on…. xo