a not-so-typical Easter

Oh, hello there little neglected blog! I remember when you were my first love. Now I'm so busy with a billion other things. Like THIS. and THIS. Also, I hate to admit it, but I cheat on you with Instagram on a daily basis because I love me some insta-blogging. Screen Shot 2014-04-20 at 10.19.13 PM

This past weekend was Easter weekend. Saturday was awesome, filled with Easter egg hunting and fun at Mimi & Poppy's house. But Sunday?  It was TOUGH at our house. Every little thing seemed to fall apart and the behavior from the tiny humans was off the charts awful. It's like a (not-so) gentle reminder that raising people is hard and it's just a normal day in their world. From digging up their new plants indoor, to the donut order being wrong (after my fancy bunny pancake plans fell through) and the hours spent in time out over fighting and disobedience. It just WASN'T a favorite day of mine.

THEN.....

I pulled out our hard drive where all of our pictures are backed up, because I wanted to look through pictures from when we were in Israel and visited the tomb where Jesus was buried. That's when my world came crashing down. Half of the pictures were GONE. 2007-2012 to be exact. Wedding, births of two kids, all the good stuff. I was in complete meltdown mode all day and my amazing husband worked so hard to restore it and figure out what the issue was. Thank goodness I found our wedding pictures elsewhere and I'm so glad I have blogged every moment of the kids lives. BECAUSE OUCH. That stings.

I know it's just "stuff", but I love that stuff. 

At least I got a couple of cute pictures to cherish of the good moments from the weekend, and I will back those up 5 times instead of two. Because apparently 2 back ups isn't enough. UGH.

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Ok, a couple of announcements for this lovely Monday before I start crying (yet again):

TOMORROW is the last day to order Mugs + Journals for the Thrive Moms Retreat! And there are only a handful of mugs left so HURRY!

Use the code "MAMALOVE" for 15% off Mother's Day Collection cards this week!

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Happy Monday!!

 

chick-fil-a copycat nuggets

Let's just be honest, I hate Sundays because Chick-fil-a is closed. So, I was thrilled when I discovered this copycat nugget recipe. I practically have to force feed chicken to my kids when I make it at home. But when I made these nuggets...silence at the table (and any mom knows how great that is!) We made these for the Super Bowl last night and I just had to share the recipe with you guys! Make them for your kids this week and you will be a hero!!

chicken

SAUCE:

1/2 cup mayo 2 tbsp. mustard (regular prepared yellow mustard) 1/2 tsp. garlic powder 1 tbsp. vinegar 2 tbsp. honey 1 tbsp. bbq sauce

NUGGETS:

6 chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces 2 eggs 1 cup of milk 2 1/2 cups flour 1/4 cup powdered sugar 4 tsp. salt 3 tsp. pepper 1 tsp. paprika Oil for cooking (I use peanut or canola)

INSTRUCTIONS:

1 - Combine all of the sauce ingredients and mix well. Set aside. 2 - Heat oil in a dutch oven or stockpot until it reaches 375 degrees. 3 - In a gallon size ziplock bag, combine all dry nugget ingredients and shake well. 4 - Combine eggs and milk in a bowl and stir well. 5 - Soak chicken pieces in egg wash and place in the ziplock bag. 6 - Shake well. 7 - Use a slotted spoon to remove chicken pieces and place in frying pan. 8 - Cook about 5 minutes until chicken is fully cooked. 9 - Remove with a slotted spoon and allow chicken to cool on a plate.

Serve with dipping sauce. ENJOY!

 copycatchicken

less of us {a guest post from magnolia & dot}

Good morning friends! I want you to hear from the heart of one of my very precious friends today. She's an incredible friend, mom & follower of Christ. I adore her and am SO thankful she is in my life!  You will love hearing from her!! 
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My mama-heart is proud today.

Olivia is growing and learning so fast.
With every passing day she teaches me something new. Showing me daily, the precious and sweet things of life. Singing in the grocery store, witnessing to my brother-in-law, saying grace over our dinner.

Most days are precious and filled with hugs and tippy-toe turns. Tea parties with sweet, stuffed friends. Watching her take care of her babies, making sure each one is perfectly wrapped in their blanket.

Some days are tough; after all she is a toddler. And a head strong one at that. I couldn't begin to count the number of temper tantrums, or cries of frustration. (From her and me, let's be honest)
But I am uniquely blessed to be this child's mother.
When I was pregnant I wondered what kind of child she would be.
I wondered how she would change our family...  How she would change me.

I prayed over my belly- that He would use her and that her spirit would shine brightly for Him.

As she has grown to be the person she is today, three things are abundantly clear.

1. I love her in an insane, unfathomable, indescribable way.
2. She is not mine. She is the daughter of a great Father, who loves her far better and far more than I ever could.

3. She is watching me, in every way.

I saw something once that said "our children become who we are, so strive to be the person you want them to be." That may not be the exact quote- but you get the point. I pray that when Olivia looks at my life 5, 10, 15 years from now she'll see a woman of dignity, of grace.

A woman who loved the Lord first, her husband second, and her daughter more than she could ever put into words. I pray that the legacy I'm leaving will inspire her. That she would see the "why's" behind every decision. That she would respect the wife, mother, sister, daughter, and friend I am.
I live each day in prayer that He is molding me to be the best version of myself. For her.

 

This world is an ugly, broken place- and these babies we're pouring ourselves into; they all too soon will be watching it all unfold.

Friends I think if there's one thing we can all agree on it's that we want the best for them.

We want them to be happy, and healthy. There are countless books written that will tell you how to be the best mother, the toughest mother, the fill-in-the-blank mother; and they're all filled with advise from well-meaning authors. I've even read a few of them. Well, I read a few chapters anyway.

But I think the most important thing that we can do for these precious souls is to be who we were created to be. To be honorable, and humble. Help little old ladies, and wash your hands.

Be true, and a great friend. Be more worried about who is sitting next to you than what you're wearing. Read the Word of God, and don't just see the words, but live it too.

Because, sweet friend, they see us, in every moment. Let's make sure they see more Him and less us.

Too much cute to handle?

Sometimes they are so adorable it makes my heart want to burst. It's been a tough weekend, but I'm overjoyed by these sweet (and sassy) moments they give me!! I hope you guys are having a great weekend!! Who needs a Sunday afternoon nap...or an extra cup of coffee?

Make sure you're signed up for the Thrive Newsletter, tomorrow is going to be good!!!!

clinging to the truth

I sit with a very heavy heart tonight and attempt to put words on this screen. I think I've hit the delete button about 20 times. It's just so hard to form words when your heart is breaking. Precious Diana, a sweet online friend, said goodbye to her baby boy Kaden last night as he went home to be with Jesus. He joins his brothers. 3 babies she has now lost. I can't fathom the pain, I can't grasp the devastation.  All I can cling to during a time like this is the truth. The truth is: God is still on the throne and He is still good. Although we may be angry and not understand, we simply have to cling to that truth. This is a time to grieve with our friend. For this fellow mama, daddy & big sister. Tonight I was hugging my 3yo so tightly after I heard the news, and as I cried she asked me what was wrong. I couldn't imagine having to tell her she would never see one of her baby sisters again. That precious Bella will not see her brothers until they reunite in heaven. My heart aches for her so badly.

Lets join the thousands in covering this family in prayer. We grieve as they grieve.

Rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn. Romans 12:15

I you would like to make a donation to the Stone family to help cover all the added costs over the last few weeks and to come, please do so here.

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I just love the pictures that Ounces of Hope captured. What a blessing it will be to have these to remember the joy and the pain of those few weeks with their Kaden.