Monday, February 28, 2011

Babylegs Giveaway!



In honor of my little Mia Glory turning 3 months old,
I thought it was a good day for a fun giveaway.

This time, it's one of my FAVORITE items for little girls.
Babylegs

Mia has worn them since the day she was born.


I wanted something she could wear in the hospital with her little hospital tee that would keep her legs warm, look cute, and make it easy on the nurses to change her diaper. I didn't want to be one of those moms they talk about because I put a full on outfit on her with a
big 'ol bow, but I still wanted her to "stand out"
{look at those little chicken legs! I just want to squeeze them!}

I like to put a pair on her with a onesie when we are just hanging out at home, or with a little dress if we are going out. Basically I look for any reason for her to wear them.

I love them for Bella also. I really think they were one of the main reasons I had such an easy time getting her potty trained. She is super independent and always wants to do things on her own and whenever she wants to. Once I started making it a point to dress her in her big girl underwear, a dress and some babylegs, she was able to go whenever she wanted without having to tell me
or needing me to help her undress.

These are great for girls and boys!
Not only are they handy for potty training but they are perfect for protecting little knees when your baby starts crawling. I will be putting these into overtime when Mia starts learning to crawl for sure!

Yeah yeah ok, so they totally serve a great purpose HOWEVER,
they are also CUTE.
I love that they add a little fun and uniqueness to any outfit.

I usually let Bella pick out a pair on her own to wear
(Well, I don't let her, she insists)
...which usually results in some pretty interesting ensembles.
But hey, we gotta let them express themselves right?
{She wanted to wear her cow print ones with this
but I have to draw the line somewhere!}

She was so proud of this particular coordination.
Lord have mercy on me when she's 16.

Babylegs also has some adorable socks for boys and girls, which are just as amazing in quality and the socks happen to be the only ones that aren't falling off Mia's tiny ankles at the moment.

So alright already...on to the giveaway.

Winner will receive the following:
4 pairs of leg warmers
one each in:
Rain and Sprinkled Hearts {Secret Garden collection}




Anchors and Crab {Seaside collection}


1 pair of socks in 'Blooming Love'
{Secret Garden Collection}


And 1 pair of tights in 'Juicy'
{Also Secret Garden}


These tights are footless, so they will go perfectly into some of the warmer months with a cute sundress!

There will be 3 *official* ways to enter:
1- Follow Faith Hope Love and then leave a comment (one entry)
2-'Like' my Facebook page and leave a comment here (one entry)
If you already do either of the two, you can still leave comments for entries.
3- 'Like' the Babylegs Facebook page, let them know Faith Hope Love sent you and then come back and leave another comment telling me you did (one entry)

*Bonus Entry*
This blog began with a purpose. If this is your first time visiting my page, I would love for you to take the time to read a little further and get to know me!
Most importantly, it is my heart and hope that you leave
inspired, encouraged, and maybe have a laugh!
So for an additional 4th entry, check out some of my other posts and let me know if one of them did any of the above for you!!
(anyone is eligible to do so)

Very simple. Have fun. Check out Babylegs and enjoy your reading!

Contest will go through next Monday the 7th.
I will use random.org to generate a number and announce the winner Tuesday morning.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Learning From Our Children



Sometimes being a mom is hard.

We wonder...if we're doing a good job.

If we're doing too much,
or too little.

If we are giving them enough time...
and enough attention.

If we took enough time to teach...
to discipline...
to talk...
to listen.

We pray for wisdom... guidance... patience...
understanding and for the answers...

Then God has a way of reminding us
that the answers can be found in them.

In watching...
the quiet, content, spirit of a sweet new baby girl...


the determination of a strong willed big sister


and the happy, carefree attitude of a little boy...


To remember...

to just be still and take it all in.


keep giving it our all...


take the time to laugh, be silly,
and not take ourselves too seriously


Because in the end,
what they will remember the most...

is that we were always there for them


and most importantly, love was always present




Tuesday, February 22, 2011

It is Well

I wrote about the significance of this song before, but I was reminded of it again this weekend during our trip to Dallas for the C3 conference at Ed Young's Fellowship Church in Dallas.

On Friday night, the last service of the conference, I made it a point to feed Mia before service and then left her in the nursery with a nice old woman who promised to rock and hold her the whole time. I made her pinky swear to me that she would spoil her.

No really I did.

Judah Smith spoke that night. I'd never heard him because apparently I was either in la-la land when Brandon talked about him, or living under a rock the last couple... years...??..!

He was the youth pastor for City Church in Seattle, Washington and is now THE Pastor for the 6000 member church that his father led. He is only 32. Can you imagine? Such responsibility... such a legacy that he was left by his dad who passed away suddenly just a couple of months ago. But he has such a gifting and is certainly anointed for it. He never expected to be filling the role so early but God did. God is never surprised by what we encounter. He always has a plan and intends to see us through it.

This is what Judah Smith spoke about that night. His testimony of losing his father and being faced with unanswered questions, promises that were unfulfilled and ...sorrow.

Sorrow- that's a word we Christians seldom use, because...well, we're expected to always be full of faith and joy, right? But something I'm learning is that it's ok to feel all of those emotions, including sorrow.

Judah asked the question
"What do you do when promises go unfulfilled."

He didn't have the exact answer. Trust me, I was listening for it. I wanted to know...what DO you do? I clung to every word he said because I needed to hear each one of them.

You see, I struggled and sometimes still do, with the promise I believe I was given after we lost Faith, when God told me I would have twins. That I would receive "double for my trouble." I praised God when we found out we were in fact expecting twins. I shouted it from the rooftops...declared his faithfulness and goodness...Then we lost one of them at 14 weeks... Jett Samuel.

I still continued to declare God's faithfulness. His love. His mercy. His grace. I still believed I served a God that is good...all of the time.

But inside, my heart ached. My mind questioned. My soul was stirred.

With questions. Lots of them. Any many of them remain unanswered.

Part of that promise...a baby... went to heaven. Yes I will be his mommy one day for an eternity...But still....

If I'm honest with myself and I'm honest with you, that is hard for me to be O.K with sometimes. Sometimes that isn't good enough. Sometimes I still get mad.

What?! Mad? "But you're not supposed to feel that way!"

Please don't misunderstand me, I'm not angry with God. The Bible says that satan comes to "steal, kill and destroy"...so trust me, I know where to direct my anger.

And I think God is ok with me being angry about it. I think he wants me to be real and honest with Him.

After we found out we lost one of the twins, I felt like I had to be strong. Because everyone was watching. How was I going to deal with a promise being unfulfilled. How was I going to deal with the pain and the heartache of losing another baby...'surely she would break now, surely she's not that strong'

So I had to be. I had to be strong. I had to fight past the sorrow, past the questions. I had to push down the feelings of disappointment. Because I felt like I wasn't allowed to feel those things.

And because I still had this precious baby girl growing inside of me. Trust me I was so, so thankful. Words I could write on a blog would never be enough to express my love for Mia. I do believe I received my double portion in her. Our promise.

Each day I look at her, I'm amazed. She represents so much to me. She is not only our manifestation of God's glory here on earth...our splendor and bliss of heaven...She is part of my healing.

When you get a cut, it hurts. Sometimes you cry because it hurts so much. Depending on how badly you were cut, you may cry a lot. It might get better and you may not need to cry for a while but one day it may start hurting again and you might need to cry some more.

But it will become less and less.
It will hurt less and less.

That is all part of the healing process. It may take some time. It may come and go...its a process.

Slowly as time goes on, you may not need to cry anymore at all. It may not hurt anymore. But you might still have a scar that reminds you of it all.

The beautiful thing about that is that if you allowed yourself to process through it...to feel it, to hurt, to cry, to heal....that scar is a beautiful thing to you. Because it reminds you of how you found strength in your weakness. How God turned your sorrow into joy.

And it taught you...That what you do when a promise goes unfulfilled is you look to Him. Because in the end, all this life is about, is to point ourselves, our lives, our words, our actions, our heart...to Jesus. My life is not just about the loss I've experienced. I could make it about that... but instead I make it to be about Him...His goodness, His love, His favor....my blessings.

But I think sometimes, especially in our healing process, we need to hear that it's ok to feel sorrow.

It's ok to have questions. God actually wants us to ask him those questions. He wants us to have those kind of conversations with Him. Because it's in those conversations that we grow...that we exercise our faith. We may not get the answers to the questions but just having those conversations with God pushes us to the next level of relationship with Him.

One thing I desire in my life more than anything is to be real. To be honest and to be transparent. It's why I started this blog. So that I could reach out to other people in a real way and share my life. To let them know that though we may face tragedy, trials, sadness, sorrow, disappointments...unfulfilled promises....there is still joy to be found.

I struggled with writing this post. I struggle with even saying that I still cry for my babies. Because I fear that it may be taken for weakness. For lack of faith. But the truth is, I'm human and I do still have my days where I need to cry. I'm still healing. And I can say that and know that it's ok.

I don't know why I've felt so strongly to share this. I can only believe someone needed to hear it. It's ok to feel sorrow. It's ok to feel weak. But know that God is your comforter and your strength....and that though the sorrow may last for the night, joy ALWAYS comes in the morning.

John 16:33 says "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”

It doesn't say our life will be perfect or that we will never feel hurt, sorrow, or experience loss. It says we WILL. But the second part of that verse tells us to "take heart, because He has overcome it all."

I choose to see Him in it and I choose to allow other people to see Him through me. Doesn't mean that I don't still hurt sometimes. That I don't miss a baby I never got to meet and that I don't wonder why. But I take heart. Because I know my source of strength--the one taking care of me, the one who holds me in the palm of His hand...has already overcome it.

And...it is well.

"When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul."

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Because I don't say it enough...

I have an amazing husband...

I write about my kids a lot.
About my passion as a mom and my love for my children.
They truly are my heart and soul.

Yes I am "Mom/Mama/Mommy"
But my identity does not end there. I have many roles to fill...

My favorite?
Being a wife....

To the most loving, patient, selfless guy I know.

{Not to mention handsome!}

I watched him this afternoon as we were grabbing lunch at the mall and thought about what a good husband he is. He does lots of things daily to make me feel that way, but today I reflected on them a little longer...

...the small things that could go unnoticed but I try not to let them.

Like waiting in line at 3 different places to accommodate what 3 different people wanted for lunch....and waiting to get his last.

Like coming home after a long day and taking over right away.
Putting aside his own desire to relax, get comfy, unwind, and instead he feeds the kids dinner, gives them baths and puts them to bed... so that I can get some quiet moments to myself.

And in the morning, he gets up earlier, makes breakfast, changes diapers and gets them settled before he gets himself ready for his day...so that I can get a little more sleep.

He gives me those extra moments to myself because he knows I need them..so that I can be the best mom possible.

I may look as though I've got it all under control, my house is usually clean, kids are fed, clean, clothed and happy, I get to do fun things with them and for them, and I certainly cherish my time with them, but the biggest reason I am able to do all of that is my husband.

Not only does he help me to be the best mom possible for our 3 children, but he encourages me beyond my role as a mom.

He knows there is more to me.
Dreams that have yet to be realized but still burn inside me.
Goals, wishes, interests...

He lets me talk {and talk} about them..and he listens.

I love that about him. He gives me my moments- his time,
so that I can be at my best.
I don't know that there is a better example of selflessness.

As parents to young kids we are happy to make sacrifices...that may also mean we aren't able to spend as many quiet moments together as we would like.
But no matter what, we make time for each other first.
So that we can be the best husband and wife for each other.

Because when we give each other our time, our energy, our love...we can then turn around and do the same for our children.

I love being a mom.
and even more,
I love being Brandon Caddells wife.

Friday, February 18, 2011

"If we do what we can do, God will do what we can't do"
-{Joyce Meyer}

I heard this last night and it's floated through my mind ever since.

I don't know about you but I have a hard time feeling like what I CAN do is ever enough. I feel like I have to do it all...and perfectly.

I have to have it (life) all planned out and know where all of these little steps that God leads me to take are going to end up.

But that's not always the case. In fact what we think is going to happen or what we think we are working towards is often much smaller than what God had planned.

So I've learned something.

Stop planning.

Don't get me wrong, there are times when planning is totally necessary, especially as a mom. Lord have mercy, if we didn't have some kind of plan or solution for any and every scenario.

But in the bigger scheme of things, as in.. our life and God's perfect will for it...I've given up planning. I've given up trying to figure it all out. Trying to know what "it" is all for.

Because I don't want to limit God.

And because just when I think I've got it all figured out. Like I know where God is taking me...my path changes. I take another turn and the road starts heading in a new direction.

And you know what? That's perfectly O.K with me.

Because I would much rather know my life is in his hands, than my own.

So that takes a little dieing to self. A little letting go...

...and a lot of trust and faith,
in The One who holds my every day in His hands.

It takes listening for that whisper...that nudge...that guidance...and the peace that comes with obeying it.

And most importantly it takes DOing it.

We have to believe that what we 'can' do is enough to fill the gaps between what we can't do. And that God fills those gaps above and beyond what we ever imagined.

I don't know about you but that gives me a lot of freedom. I don't have to do it all and I certainly don't need to be perfect at it.

I just need to take the steps forward. One by one. Little by little.

There is so much peace in knowing that those steps are leading to an end result that is bigger and better than we could have ever planned for ourselves.

"....to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace"
Romans 8:6

Friday, February 11, 2011

These Are The Moments

I woke up this morning to the sun streaming into our windows and this little face next to me...



The last few nights Mia was sleeping in her own crib.
Because I thought I would sleep better without her in bed with me.

But I didn't

In fact I woke up just as much.
I listen for her, check on her, think about her, anticipate her waking up to eat
...and I miss her.

I missed my little snuggler inch worming her way back over to me
I missed hearing her little grunts and snores and I missed her little body snuggled up
next to mine.

So last night, I kept her with me.




I wake up sore most mornings from holding her in my arms...
I am sleep deprived...
She won't take a bottle...
She doesn't want to be put down and wants to be held all of the time...
She insists on being rocked to sleep for every nap...
and I can go hours before getting to "me"....

But the truth is,
I wouldn't have it any other way.

Because I know, that way too quickly
this...




Becomes this..

{His Spiderman Soccer Move}


And this



Becomes this....

{Her model pose}


Way.Too Fast.

I can't stop time but I can savor it.
I can make memories and special moments.
I can create significance in the every day.

I can capture the moments like this where I get to watch her waking up









And I wouldn't have it any other way
Cause these are the moments you can't get back and ones that will last forever

RuffleButts Winner!



I intended to announce our RuffleButt winner much earlier today,
but this is the first time I've sat down all day.
And the first time I haven't had my little snuggle bug attached to me.
Good thing I love that little stinker so much.

Now for the winner...I used random.org to generate a number between 1 and 53.

And got 33.

The person receiving some very cute little ruffles for a special little someones butt is....

Naelyn Gamel!!!

Thanks so much to everyone who participated!! I'll be announcing a NEW fun GIVEAWAY in the next few days so keep checking back! And I have to say I'm pretty excited about this one so STAY TUNED!!

Naelyn, message me your info so Rufflebutts can send you your
adorable swing top and bloomers!





Thursday, February 10, 2011

Easy Valentine T-Shirts

Sooooo basically, I don't sew.

Not sure if you knew this about me.
I would like to. In fact I would love to.
But honestly just the look of a sewing machine intimidates me.
For right now, it sits on my wish list of things Id like to do, right next to running in a 10k.

One of these days....

Until then, I love to find ways to make cute t-shirts for my kiddos, without having to bust out a needle and thread.

I was looking for a very simple way to make the girls some Valentine shirts when I spotted these red heart doilies at Michaels and knew what I could do!



I'm sure this has already been done many times and may be old news but humor me anyway...

I grabbed my sponge brush and pink fabric paint and painted the doily right side up making sure to cover the whole thing evenly.
Then laid it paint down on the t-shirt.
I then covered the doily with a piece of paper and used a roller of some sort to roll over the doily- a kids paint roller, a play-doh rolling pin, or a glass works great too.

Make sure to roll over the whole doily and press down hard.
Then lift off the paper and the doily should come off with it.

That's it!



The pink showed up very faint, but I liked it in the end.

I got a little creative with Mia's and added a red bow with fabric glue
and painted the red heart in.





I didn't want it to look too perfect cause I wanted it to go with the overall look of the shirt- kinda organic, you know? (Go Green!)


And of course, she's sportin it with her Rufflebutts!

WAY TOO EASY and oh SO cute!
(If I must say so myself...and I just did)





And BONUS this little project only cost me ONE DOLLAH cause I already had everything but the doilies.
Which was great cause let's face it these are a one hit wonder...



And P.S It was a fight to get Asher to wear the Old Navy "Future Heartbreaker" t-shirt I had for him to wear to school today so I figured he'd be ok with not having his mom make him a Valentines shirt.

P.P.S -I don't think I've ever used the word doily so much in my life. I don't even know if I'm spelling it right.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Valentine Wreath

I realized the other day that Valentines Day is right around the corner and I don't have a bit of decor to show for it.
I didn't want much, just something simple and cute.

And this was perfect.



Ever since I made these pom pom hanging flowers for Mia's room and
realized how EASY they are



I've become a little obsessed with making "flowers" out of different material...cloth, felt, scrap fabric, tissue paper, crepe paper, and now cupcake wrappers.

Say Whaa? Cupcake wrappers??

Yep.
I saw this Valentine wreath on one of the blogs (tatorotsandjello) that I like to check in on for ideas and knew I wanted to try one.
So easy. How could I go wrong?

So Bella and I got to it yesterday. She was a great little helper.....



Who am I kidding. She was good for nothin with the brownies near by.
I quickly caught on that she was only hanging around for the occasional brownie break mom was taking
(A girl needs fuel when working so hard!)

I got the supplies at Michaels
(found the wreath at the dollar store--Holla!)




Wrapped the wreath with red ribbon, then bunched the cupcake wrapper to resemble a flower and hot glued them around the wreath willy nilly...as is my style.

Just go with it- you don't have to have a rhyme or reason for where you place them, just eyeball them and make sure it looks nice and full in the end.

It was really easy. Fun. Simple. My kind of craft project.
And it looks so cute hanging in our living room. It can hang around for about a week which is just the right amount of time before I get tired of seeing it :)



This cold day is a perfect day to try this out if you happen to have the supplies hanging around.

And now I must go because in the time it took me to post this, my kids have decided to make me a Valentine card using permanent marker....

Have Fun!

Done. Bye.





Friday, February 4, 2011