Blessings Learned

Beginning this by saying that this is an incredibly rare occurrence. My hubby is the best. Really, he is. I’m just worn-out today and thought it was a pretty good text and wow, I totally did lose my cool tonight in front of lots of family, but you know what? It happens.

Dear Hubby,

This is a quick note to tell you about things you should try not do at 8:45pm.

1. Tell wife you’ll be back in just a minute and set off on an adventure to track a deer.

2. Not come back in just a minute.

3. Leave overly exhausted wife with four kids who didn’t nap and are crashing from a sugar high, 1.5 hours after bedtime.

Said kids, especially the threenager, will not listen and will make mom lose her cool in front of everyone and leave mom frustrated and angry.

4. Make mom frustrated and angry. It’s not good for anyone.

Trying to Not Be Frustrated and Angry Mom, Who’s Trying to Carry All Four Kids in from the Car to Bed

Blessings Learned

Paper Jams

Need a good laugh today? See below…

jam 1.png

I was just minding my own business trying to print labels for holiday party invitations today, and my printer had a different idea. At first it was just two labels missing off of one sheet (after spending 5 minutes trying to figure out how to put the paper in to print on the right side in the first place). I thought I cleared the jam, and that the labels were just missing from that page before it went through the printer. So, I started over and quickly realized I was wrong. That’s how you get the mess that’s pictured above. After a few choice words and threatening the printer within an inch of it’s life, I cleared out the paper jam (plus stickers) again.  It should have been smooth sailing from there, but the printer was still really hungry and it tried to eat like six sheets of labels at once. I finally learned my lesson, only after clearing the paper jam for a third time, and fed the labels through the bypass tray one at a time. Success at last!

Besides giving us all a good laugh, there’s something to be had from this frustrating experience this morning.

Life is the printer. God is the Operator. We’re the piece of label paper.

Our life prints out on the paper smoothly, until it doesn’t. Sometimes the labels peel away from the paper and become an obstruction just like illnesses, sin, divorce, and debt can be obstructions in our lives.  It can be so difficult to look to God when we are facing obstructions. Sometimes we feel that the obstructions are so great, that there is no hope or maybe we feel that our sins have made us unworthy of forgiveness.  Like the paper being unjammed from the printer by the operator, we come through parts of life torn apart and crinkled up. The pieces of our lives may seem so messy, that we think we can never be whole or serve a greater purpose. These labels below seem pretty worthless, don’t they?

labels 2

But we can be whole and we can have a greater purpose. The Great Operator can take the torn, crinkly pieces of our lives and  transform them into a beautiful picture (if we let Him).










The Sweet Stuff

Apple Pie & Ice Cream

If you’re a fan of apple pie and ice cream, you’ll love these cupcakes! Grab a box of white cake mix, and substitute 1/4 cup of Greek yogurt for each egg , applesauce for oil (1:1) and apple cider for water (1:1). Mix-in a 1/4 tsp. nutmeg, 1/4 tsp. cloves, and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon. Stir until thoroughly combined and bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until done. While your cupcakes are baking, you’ll want to get started on your apple pie filling. Core and finely chop four fresh apples (I used honeycrisp). Then melt 2 tbsp. butter with 1.5 tsp. cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. nutmeg. After the butter is melted add in your apples, along with 1/3 cup sugar and 1.5 tbsp. water. Cover and cook the apple mixture over medium heat until the apples are tender and the mixture is bubbling. You’ll want to let the filling cool a bit. The frosting is a simple whipped cream. Just combine 2 cups of heavy whipping cream with 1 cup granulated sugar and beat with mixer until fluffy. Once your cupcakes are done and cooled, you will want to core them. I don’t have a cupcake core remover so I improvise and cut out a 3/4″ hole in the center of the cupcake with whatever I can I find. Fill the center of your cupcakes with apple pie filling, and top with whipped cream and a bit more of the apple pie filling.

These cupcakes have a nice spice to them and are best when still a bit warm. Enjoy!

Blessings Learned


Today, I’m facing a challenge. It’s not a bad challenge but it might be life-altering. It’s terrifying and exciting and overwhelming, and wrapped up neatly into one messy ball.

I’m a perfectionist.

I’m a control freak.

And I’m not perfect and definitely not in control this week. And what’s even more of a challenge for this closet D (personality), other people are going to realize that I’m not perfect or in control. I hate it when people figure that out.

Okay, really they already know that but I have to acknowledge that they know it.

I don’t like that.

But, you know what?

The experiences we can’t control and that aren’t perfect tend to be the ones that grow us. While my experience today has pushed me to the brink of insanity, I’m still alive and I’m growing. And that my friends is pretty great.


Say Cheese

Time sure is flying by. I knew that blogging would be harder once I returned to work, but I didn’t think it would be this difficult to squeeze it in. Life has been moving so quickly. We were able to fit in some time to get updated family pictures as a new family of six (just in time for Christmas gifts). I wanted to share a few of the best and my personal favorites, the out-takes, because who can’t relate.

How cute are these kiddos? Our photographer has the patience of a saint.  Really.

I loved the dresses that I found for the girls at Target, and the little guy had the perfect matching shirt from abercrombie kids. Thanks to bestie one for helping me coordinate these outfits and convincing me that they could wear them to a wedding and for family pictures.

Over the course of the two and a half-hour session, our photographer really got some great candid shots of what life and pictures are really like with four kids – it’s chaos. She had photography assistants, a toddler who wanted to play with rocks, a break for a dance party, and a whole lot of not having it from the littles.

I’ll have a blog post in the next day or two on my lessons learned from Halloween this year. Plus, some make-up blog posts on a comforting dessert (blueberry slump), one of my kiddos favorite fruit dips (so easy), and more!