one is fire,
the other earth.
one breathes passion,
the other whispers depth.
one dances with movement that cries, "you better watch me!"
the other dances in her own way, at her own time,
and could care less if there is an audience.

and yet they are joined.
best friends.
and different as they are,
the joy they offer our family,
this world,
is the same. 

the beauty in these two is unquestionable.
the awesomeness God has planned for them,

i get to be their mama.
it is truly an amazing ride.

this past weekend we celebrated their sixth birthdays.
when they fall into bed with smiles and giggles,
saying "thank you" over and over and
telling you it was the best. birthday. ever.
you know you've done well.

*dolls and crowns were custom made for my girls by the amazing suzy. thank you, suzy, for helping to make their day perfect. visit suzy's etsy shop, tillytilda.*

to move into a new season

hey friends!
autumn has {finally} arrived and
ian is at college.
we are beginning a new, slower rhythm around this place,
continuing life, minus one.
so my blogging may be sparse for the next month or so.
i will blog.
just probably not much.
and i will be guest posting at a couple of places in october so,
i'll let you know when that happens.

half of my family is returning today from oregon,
i'm ending these few days with just my littles.
so i'm quick getting off here,
going back to those snuggles waiting for me.



to say goodbye

he leaves.
a bit of my heart.
the next phase of his journey begins.

headed to oregon in the morning.
we will miss him so.


to be a fraud and still keep going

I was reading on Amazon about a book on gentle parenting, simple living and whole foods and
one of the reviews was incredibly negative, saying something like, I am this lady's neighbor and
she doesn't practice what she preaches.  Don't read this book, don't listen to her, she's a fraud.

It just made me sad.  Because you know what?
Dear friends, I am a fraud too.
I write here of peace, of beauty, of simplicity,
gentle parenting,
whole life learning, living and faith.
I write of what I believe, of what I know to be true and
I write, hoping to encourage some of you.

I write ideals and principles that I try to live by.
I fail.
Does that make my heart any less passionate?
I know gentle parenting to be true and good,
knowing God, I believe it to adhere to His love and parenting of us.
I write all I can about it,
I promote it,
I tell stories of when grace flows through our home,
our parenting, of when
repentance and love harmonize.
And yet,
too often I resort to yelling.
Too often my resolve is squashed by my impatience,
my selfishness,
and I find myself doing that which I do not want to do.
Too often.

So if you were to meet me,
to spend any amount of time with me,
to live next door to me,
you would probably call me a fraud and
announce to others not to listen to my words.
That is, if you were judging me based on my numerous failings.

But I still believe that God is good,
that a simple life is a life well lived,
that compassion, peace, grace, mercy and gentleness need to reign in
our lives, our marriages, in our parenting.
I still believe it.
And I will constantly strive to live it.
And I will often fail but not give up.
For, like Paul,
who wrote epistles filled with what is good and how to live and yet
still called himself the chief of all sinners,
I will write what I know
but I can't live up to it.
Not always. Not usually.
But I'll keep on.

And if you show up at my door and I am speaking too harshly
you can either call me a fraud or
remember that life happens,
that we all fall short
and encourage me to move forward just as
I hope to encourage you.


to begin, wait and need sleep...

my baby won't sleep tonight and
she doesn't want anyone else to sleep either.
she keeps darting out of the living room into the
bedrooms of her sleeping siblings,
trying to find someone to play with.
so i'm here writing this unplanned post because
she is still awake.

tomorrow is our first day of "school."
technically we learn daily and in everything but
we also follow some curriculum and adhere to
some sort of "school" schedule,
however lax that may be.
after all of my learning and planning and reading and
"experimenting," we have just decided to go back
to what we know and love,
what is simple and brilliant,
what works for us.
so, ambleside it is...
the twins will be starting year one,
josiah will be in year 3.5 and
layla in year 6.
oh yes,
and ian is leaving for college in two weeks!
it's pretty unbelievable. 

i'm excited for the more stable rhythms to begin again,
for summer to fade away into the crisp of autumn,
to snuggle in front of red glowing fire,
reading from piles of books.
without ian it will be a bit strange,
a bit somber,
and will certainly take some getting used to.
but it's the same season nonetheless and
it will be beautiful.

tomorrow we begin!
if only i could get some sleep tonight.
come on, pearl jean!
do this...