Motherhood

Let them be little…

Some days I forget how little my kids truly are.  
Their innocents is astounding and it is my responsibility to protect it. 


We had an incident come up this week, (I’ll spare you the details) that reminded me of how young my children really are! 
I struggle with the right balance for my children. I want to teach them to be independent, I want them to be productive and mature, and I desperately want to know that if by chance I die before they are grown they will grow and add something to society. 
But am I making them grow up too fast? Am I robbing them of their childhood, stealing pieces of their innocence? 
I find myself growing frustrated when my children act like, well, children. By the end of the day I’m touched out, whined out, just plain wore out! And I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one. 

Motherhood is hard. Figuring out how to shape these little innocent people is probably the toughest thing I have ever done! (Guess we will see in a few years how well they turn out!)

Momma, those babies need us. I’m reminded that I need to pay attention to those silly little stories that take 10 days to tell, and some days my littles just need a little extra love-ins.

My babies aren’t always going to need me like they do right now. They won’t always come up to me and demand that I hold them. One day I’m gonna pick them up for the last time, and there isn’t anything more important than taking time and letting my children be little for a while longer. 
The world is pushing my children to grow up. Kids now days seem to be getting older so darn fast (and I thought my generation grew up too quickly), I don’t need to make them grow up faster than they have too! 
Though she be but little, she is fierce!

They are little, and oh so fierce, but Im going to strive to let them be little just a little longer, while encouraging to keep that sense of fierceness! 

Marriage

It’s okay to ask for help.

About 4 years ago, Craig and I were in a really dark place.  We fought a lot.  I had unreasonable expectations. I wanted him home more, but we needed more money.  I felt unloved.  I felt unwanted.  I had packed my bags.

“In the heart of every wife is this cry: ‘surely now my husband will love me’ (Genesis 29:32)”

A little background, my parents separated when I was 11.  My dad wasn’t around much anyways because he worked all the time.  My mom worked full-time and raised me and my two brothers.  After my dad left, I felt abandoned.  I didn’t have grandparents living close so seeing what a marriage was to look like was hard.  I grew up in a church but my family never seemed to have strong relationships with other people.  I was also young enough I didn’t pay attention to marriages.   

Craig grew up in a Conservative Mennonite church where there was no divorce but men and women had their own jobs in the family.  Wife did indoor work and cooked.  Husband did manual labor jobs around the house.  His parents never really talked about marriage either. Craig had examples of good Godly marriages growing up with all the family he had close.  But they never talked about marriage or how God intended marriage to be.  

“If a wife is experiencing marital problems, she is no fool in God’s eye’s for trying to ‘be reconciled to her husband’ (1 Corinthians 7:11)”

When we got married I had vowed to myself “DIVORCE WAS NOT AN OPTION.”  Statistics say that 1 in 3 marriages last. Well I was not about to be apart of the statistic.  I had made sure to ask Craig if it was okay if we found someone to meet with before I took any steps.  I had posted to Facebook asking for some Christian counseling services that were local.  We found Cornerstone Brief Therapy at that time.  We met with our Therapist for our first meeting.  She was from the Kalona area which was nice because we were able to make that connection.  

Side note:  I had been reading a magazine article about one of my favorite celebrity couples and how they went to marriage counseling and how that was the secret to their happy marriage.  Here is the article if you would like to check it out.

At that time I was used to counseling services as I had gone to them as a child and before I got married.   counseling and talking with someone about issues you are having I a great thing.  I like to talk things out to figure things out so counseling was good for me.  I was afraid that it would be hard for my non-talking, non-emotional husband. 

“It is as if God said ‘I’m going to allow for tension to exist in your marriage. I intend for you to work this out, because as you work out your tensions, your relationship is going to deepen and then deepen some more, and you’re going to continue to go through life working it out–back and forth, back and forth.” -Love and Respect

Marriage counseling wasn’t going to be our easy way out for solving all our problems.  Craig and I just didn’t have good grounds to help build our marriage up.  We both are very selfish people, and naturally as sinners we all are.  Marriage is about blending two peoples beliefs and we were struggling on knowing HOW to do this.  

Our marriage is NOWHERE perfect!! In fact this whole week we have been fighting.  The issue we come down to most of the time anymore is communication and connection.  Counseling has helped us open our eyes and we are able to see where and how to work through our issues.  So tonight, I found someone to work for me, a sitter for the kids and we’re going on a date. 

Since we started counseling our therapist started her own practice, Imagine Therapy Solutions.  In our sessions we always begin with prayer, then we talk about things we feel need to be talked about or we’ll talk about “homework” she gives us.  Before every appointment I always pray that God will guide the session.  I always go in with my own agenda on what I think we need to talk about or work through. But never fail God always goes another way but the right way.  We always end in prayer.  Usually after our sessions we try and make it a date day and either do lunch or run errands together.  

Marriage is probably the hardest thing in life. We always forget that our marriage is what is going to hold our family together.  So here are some things we have found to help our marriage out.

~Marriage counseling.  It’s not for everyone but it never hurts to try.  It’s also nothing to be ashamed about. It’s a great time to talk about your marriage and have at least one hour of uninterrupted time together.  

~Shared google calendar.  This is something I struggle with but has also helped with the communication issues. We put our event in the calendar and then when the other wants to do something they know if it is available. 

~Scheduling dates AND sex.  We struggle with this one as well.  Everything else becomes a priority or we have a hard time finding a sitter.  My goal for this year was to have 2 dates a month.  One out and one in.  Helps to save money and forced to find creativity.  You may have heard the scheduling sex part before.  That one is simple pick a few days and there’s no turning back.  Build up to it. Text each other throughout the day.  Look forward to what is to come when you get home.  

~Laugh.  Laughter is so good everyone! not just in a marriage.  I love to laugh! Try not taking things so seriously.  Life is short.  

~Mentors.   After Craig and I were married we were paired up with a couple in our church that we met with for a few weeks and have now developed a relationship with.  They don’t have to be older but someone you can be comfortable with.  Someone to ask questions.  

~If you like to read I recommend reading “Love and Respect” by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs.  This book is so good to go back to when things are tough. When you need a good reminder that our relationships are often how we view our Father in heaven.  “In the ultimate sense, your marriage has nothing to do with your spouse, it has everything to do with your relationship to Jesus Christ”

 ~Never be afraid to ask for help!  This one is SO IMPORTANT.  If you are hurting or need help. NEVER FEEL ASHAMED TO ASK! You’re marriage is so precious and God doesn’t want to see you hurting.  Ask for prayer, ask for help, ask for guidance.

 

Love always,

Asenath   XoXoX…

This past October Craig and I celebrated 10 years together.  We will be celebrating 7 years of marriage this year.  Our marriage is far from perfect and we struggle a lot, but I would never change who I married for a second.  I truly believe God chose Craig for me!

Fashion

My #1 Fashion Tip!

So yeah, hmm, style…

I am really not sure how I managed to land myself a style post. I rock that I-have-three-kids-under-5-at-home-and-I-don’t-sleep-through-the-night look.

You know what I am talking about right? 

It can’t be just me, rocking the yoga pants, the baseball tee, and the messy bun (you know the one that’s messy cause you haven’t brushed your hair in three days, not the one that’s messy cause it is cute).

I don’t often wear makeup, and my only truly mastered hairstyle is wearing it straight and down! So this probably wont be the style post you are expecting…

Its is so easy to live your life comparing yourself to other. I do it. I know a lot of other people who do. Y’all know what I mean. Those thoughts of “if only I were thin like her, I’d be happy then!”, the “her life is perfect, she’s so put together, her life is so neat, she’d never like me!” thoughts.

I can remember hiding out in corners because I felt like I didn’t measure up to this women that were so much thinner, prettier, wealthier than I was. I remember beating myself up, I felt like I had to be just like them to fit in. I can remember that horrible inner voice, MY INNER VOICE. This women weren’t saying “she’s not like us, we don’t like her” or “she can’t fit into a size two, she’s not worth our time.” I was doing that. I was comparing myself to these women and worst than that I was talking for them!

Proverbs 14:30 A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh, but envy makes the bones rot.

I’ve learned a lot about self love since then. I’ve learned that God didn’t create us with a spirit of comparison. That regardless of how much make up I wear, how well I’m “put together”, or even my weight, I am no less loved! God loves me, my husband loves me, my children love me, and I love me! 

So if I had to leave you with any style advice it would be to just be you! If you want to get all dolled up to stay home you do that, if you want to wear yoga pants all the time don’t let anyone convince you otherwise! Be you all the time, ’cause God made you to be exactly who you are! We weren’t created to all be the same!  

You are BEAUTIFUL! 

You are unique! 

You are one of a kind! 

 Xoxo 

Drena

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Motherhood to Me!

Being a mother has probably been one of the most challenging aspects of my life. I cant count the amount of times I have cried in the shower wondering if God some how made a mistake when he gave me not one but three little kids. I cant sit here and say that this whole mom things comes easy to me, ’cause I’d be lying. I have often felt like I’m barely keeping myself from drowning in life and some one has handed me a baby! I have felt lost! Sometimes I feel like I’m just barely figuring out this whole “Mom” thing, hopefully not at the expense of my children. But when I get the rare chance to observe them without their knowledge, I know that on some level, I am doing okay!

With all that being said, to me, motherhood is SCARY, it is intense, it is crazy, and it is extremely BEAUTIFUL! Some days its a piece of cake and I feel like I am on top of the world! Other times its trading sleep for midnight cuddles. It is making the hard decisions on when to discipline and when to just let it go. It’s knowing that at least on some level the decisions you make today affect them tomorrow. It’s pure unconditional love from day one. Its giving forgiveness and it is also asking for it! It’s no privacy in the bathroom, and never having anything to yourself anymore.

Its 10 million selfies on your phone that don’t belong to you! It’s blogging with one child at your feet, one on your lap and the other begging to sit beside you. It’s learning that you aren’t always right, and learning there’s not one way to parent. Motherhood is a rollercoaster. It’s putting yourself on the back burner cause you have 45 minutes till you have to leave and these babies need breakfast, and they all need help getting dressed! It’s finding balance between raising your child to be independent and being humble enough to ask for help.

Motherhood is not a one size fits all garment! We all have our own ways to parent! Motherhood is full of hard things, but its also full of sticky grins and wet kisses. Its silly drawings cause they’re little but they still want to give their momma a Mother’s day present! It’s “momma hold me” moments, and little babies who don’t care if your hair is brushed or if you showered yet this week! It’s answering the hard questions, and seeing the world from a long gone perspective! It’s funny stories to share later, and lots of laughs. It’s watching someone (or lots of someones) learn and experience new things, watching them grow and change literally before your eyes! It’s knowing that those manners they use so well came from you! You taught them that momma! It’s growing eyes behind your head, and knowing most of the time what is going to come next, even before they do!

It’s “mom, I only eat my boogers ’cause they taste like BANANAS” moments. It’s screams from the bathroom “why did dad poop in my panties” when they didn’t wipe all the way, laughs! Its running around the house in blanket capes cause they truly think you are SUPER MOM.

It’s raising your arrows and knowing when you let them loose they  aren’t just going to fly, they are going to soar!! Motherhood is often synonymous with LOVE, and full of GRACE. Grace from God, grace from our children and to them, and Grace from yourself!

You are a great Momma, and you’re doing a wonderful job! Be a little more patient with yourself and show a little more Grace to YOU! Know God chose you to be those babies Momma, for a reason! You were made for them and them for you! Enjoy the crazy ride, don’t forget to stop and appreciate the roses along the way! For they are still little now, but tomorrow they’ll be one more day older, and what motherhood means to you will certainly change. Absorb it, Momma, take it all in, and when it gets to be too much know its okay to take a little me time! Because you can’t pour from an empty cup!

Happy Mother’s Day y’all!

XOXO

Drena

 

 

Oh man, so I don’t know about you but I’m one who around Mother’s Day being a mom is least on my mind.  Dreams of the amazing gifts my family will give me, or should I say my husband.  And the relaxing quiet day it will be.  I’m a stay at home/working mom.  I own my own business, pay all our bills, clean everything, plan everything. So, I naturally expect that I should get at least 1 of the 365 days to myself.  NOPE, NOT THIS MOM!!  My husband works this year.  He didn’t get me anything.  He’ll probably not even say anything.  I’ll cry because I see all the awesome mom’s who get nice things from their families and dream it was me.  I’ll probably clean my living room or put clothes away. This is going to be my Mother’s Day.  But it shouldn’t even be about Mother’s Day.  Why do we feel we need to be valued or told we’re great moms on Mother’s day?

Guess what?!  I get told every day!! Every morning my son wakes up beside me 90% of the time, gives me a kiss and hug, Says “good morning mommy” in his sweet voice and then says “give me milk” and if I dont give it to him now he says it until i’m out of bed getting it for him. Yes, that didn’t end so well but to me motherhood is crazy hard.  If we dont look at the big picture and see all the happy things we will just be bitter old ladies one day.  Every day when I pick my daughter up she always runs to me with open arms.  My kids say thank you after I help them with something, most of the time.   Friday my daughter brought me a present she made, home from school.  I opened it. It was a quart sized mason jar she had painted and drew hearts on.  The excitement in her eyes said everything!!   

I think, we, as mother’s really struggle with this fear of disappointment…in ourselves.  Like if we don’t get the “I love you, hunny. You are so amazing!” from our hubby’s, we did something wrong.  Or our house isn’t clean enough or we didn’t make the nicest dinners.  Our friend’s do cooler things than us.  They write nicer blog posts. or even just seem to have this life thing put together.  Guess what.  We’re wrong!  We need only to please God.  And by doing that, we need to be preparing for His kingdom.  I know us mom’s maybe need to read the Philippians 4:13 verse every day before we get out of bed or even have coffee (yes, I just said that!)  “We can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Seriously!!  So when we’re in Costco and our 4 year old is yelling about all the food she wants and you’re 2 year old is screaming on the floor and the baby needs fed.  God will give you strength!!  or you have 500 things to do before you host mother’s day dinner, you’re husband is working late and you have no one to help you out.  GOD WILL GIVE YOU STRENGTH!!

I found this quote the other day.  “Motherhood is not a competition to see who has the smartest kids, the cleanest house, the healthiest dinners, the nicest clothes…Motherhood is YOUR journey and YOUR children.”   The first two years in MOPS were huge for me.  I finally realized the mom I was, was OKAY!!  My house is rarely 100% clean, unless my mom helps.  Yes, I have 2 planners and I still forget  appointments and plans I make.  I’m pretty sure all my kids eat is candy and sandwiches.  (a little exaggeration). and my kids LOVE hand-me-downs!! They think it’s so cool because their friend wore this too!!  Mommying is HARD!!!  Stop beating yourself up! You’re doing an AMAZING JOB!

Motherhood…

Motherhood is AMAZING.  When you set aside the stereotypes and the comparisons and just embrace your children, nothing matters anymore.  Yes, we’re all going to have our ups and downs.  But you can’t have your mountain tops without your valleys!!  

We are to be that example for our children.  Prepare them for what’s ahead.  Teach them.  Our kids don’t know from right and wrong.  God placed them in our hands to be their teachers. Our dishes will always be there, our clothes will eventually get folded.  No, this doesn’t mean your house has to be a disaster all the time.  So teach them how to fold or do the dishes. This is that quality time your kids will always remember.  Our kids will grow fast!! So don’t waist your time on your phone, or on the computer, or watching TV.

Celie is almost 5 now and I see she’s already becoming more independent and can see in another 5 years she won’t want to sit with her mom and read books anymore or cuddle on the couch.  Take time!!  Give them responsibilities.  Prepare them!

This Mother’s Day, yes, will not be as I hoped but I know my kids are happy.  I feel that appreciation when my kids always want me over my husband.  Or they always ask me for things.  They run up to me for hugs and kisses.  They cry for mom.  It’s the little things we take for granted.  

So you mom’s that don’t get the relaxing weekend or the flowers. You’re not alone.  But remember you’re kids will always love you.  You will always be their mom.  Your teenager may hate you but give them a few year’s and they won’t.  Time goes quick so cherish your children and take time. 

So this may not have expressed how I feel about being a mom and I’ll be honest I’m not really sure.  We’ve had a lot of changes since January and I struggle with change.  Being a mom is AMAZING it is also CRAZY HARD. But really Drena made a beautiful post on this.  Motherhood is BEAUTIFUL!!!  Even though crying yourself to sleep at night, yelling at your kids to quit eating your boogers for the 15th time today, separating them because they can’t seem to leave each other alone.  God really has a plan for all of this!  HIS PLAN IS BEAUTIFUL,

Happy Mother’s DAY,  

XoXoX…

Asenath

Uncategorized

My 10 Favorite Things

Bones

I love a good crime show. I also love comedy and romance, and this show has all three! When you find that one show you can watch all day long it better be good.  I love watching the relationships of all the characters! Seeing how they work as a team and all the fascinating elements of solving a crime.  Yes, I understand it’s not all real or possibly even right but dont spoil it for me.  🙂  

Green Apple Italian Soda

Seriously, if you haven’t tried one of these, DO!  We have a local small town coffee house that makes them and they are amazing.  An italian soda is club soda with flavors in it.  I love them!  I usually get a raspberry one, until I found this one! Its sweet which is what I like!

Agnes and Dora

This clothing line is like Lula Roe! Don’t get me wrong I like Lula Roe also but A&D has won my heart!  Their clothing fits me much better. It’s comfortable. It’s sophisticated patterns.  It’s fun. Check out my dear friend Brandi Mc’s facebook page and check out her clothes!

Feathers

                    

I don’t know how I became a huge fan of feathers.  They just started popping up all over the place and became a reminder that God is in control.  I loved this so much that in 2015 I tattooed it to my forearm. It’s a white ink so it’s hard to see on my skin. 

My Kids

I know this sounds a little ironic but yes one of my 10 favorite things is my kids.  They have taught me so much.  They constantly are challenging me in ways I never knew. Good ways.  They have brought so much joy and are a constant reminder of God’s love.  Unconditional love. No matter how naughty they are, or how many times you spank them and they run away mad. They will always come back with hugs and kisses.

Friends

    

These are my two best friends.  One is newer than the other but they both feel like we’ve known each other all our lives.  We have learned so much from each other.  We’ve seen God’s hand in our relationships.  Our personal experiences have mostly been by the other and we’ve been able to walk hand in hand together through good times and bad.  I don’t know where I would be with out them!

My Mom

      

This lady is one of the strongest ladies I know!  She was a single mom two 3 teenagers!!! A Rock! My favorite part about her is that she always loved us.  She used to read to us at night between our bedroom doors.  She taught us how to cook.  She taught me how to can salsa.  She’s taught me that life isn’t always going to go the way we plan but He’s always with us.  My Mom will always be favorite. She now has moved away from me and it’s been hard but it makes those times together more valued!

Craig

I guess I should probably put him in here somewhere.  We’ve been together since 2006!!  This year we celebrate 7 years of marriage.  I will be writing on this more in a week or so, so stay tuned.  He’s taught me so much! Marriage hasn’t been easy and we’ve been learned a lot from each other.  He’s stuck with me through all the hard times.  We’ve had a lot of good memories also.  I can’t imagine what life would have been like without him!

Family

   

Family has always been a strange concept for me.  I didn’t grow up with a lot of family around, and I personally have a small family.  When I married Craig, I feel like I married half our community. At that time it was hard. When we had family reunions I struggled with being around so many people.  My family rarely has reunions.  So up until about a year ago and lot of prayer family has become a huge part of my life.  I love being around Craig’s family! I come from a blended family and with that I have gained so much  more family.  My grandparents moved from Oregon to Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.  My maternal grandparents have played a huge role in my kids lives and has helped to grow my relationship with them. Family has become more than just family it’s becoming a way of life. 

My job

    

I LOVE my job!!  I’m a cosmetologist and I love helping people feel beautiful. My salon name is called “BIABO Salon and Spa”. BIABO stands for Beauty Inside And Beauty Outside.  This has been my mission. It also goes with 1 Peter 3:3-4.  

Here are just a few other of my favorite things:

Cooking

Games

Food

Gardening

Canning

Re-purposing

Shellac Manicures

 

Don’t forget to comment you’re favorite things and let us know what you’re thinking!!

Thank you and have an amazing day!

Business

Balancing life and business

Take a quick look at this passage from Proverbs 31:

10 A wife of noble character who can find?

    She is worth far more than rubies.

11 Her husband has full confidence in her

    and lacks nothing of value.

12 She brings him good, not harm,

    all the days of her life.

13 She selects wool and flax

    and works with eager hands.

14 She is like the merchant ships,

    bringing her food from afar.

15 She gets up while it is still night;

    she provides food for her family

    and portions for her female servants.

16 She considers a field and buys it;

    out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.

17 She sets about her work vigorously;

    her arms are strong for her tasks.

18 She sees that her trading is profitable,

    and her lamp does not go out at night.

19 In her hand she holds the distaff

    and grasps the spindle with her fingers.

20 She opens her arms to the poor

    and extends her hands to the needy.

21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household;

    for all of them are clothed in scarlet.

22 She makes coverings for her bed;

    she is clothed in fine linen and purple.

23 Her husband is respected at the city gate,

    where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.

24 She makes linen garments and sells them,

    and supplies the merchants with sashes.

25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;

    she can laugh at the days to come.

26 She speaks with wisdom,

    and faithful instruction is on her tongue.

27 She watches over the affairs of her household

    and does not eat the bread of idleness.

28 Her children arise and call her blessed;

    her husband also, and he praises her:

29 “Many women do noble things,

    but you surpass them all.”

30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;

    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.

31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,

    and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.
We as women often aspire to be the woman of proverbs 31, but more times than not we all feel like we are struggling even to just get the babies feed and changed while keeping the house at least halfway clean! (Or maybe it’s just me who’s struggling) Through in extra activities, doctor appointment, the kids extra curriculars, and time for my husband and I feel the waters rising above my head! And forget it if any work is required! 


Not many people know that the new year brought some new struggles for the Eicher family. As If balancing being a wife, a mother and a care taker for my handicap brother weren’t enough for me, I decided to take on the role of business owner as well! 
In January I launched my Eichermade business, specializing in vinyl creations and personalized handmade goods! What started as a hobby soon turned into a burning passion and it didn’t hurt that it brought in a little extra income.  But with this new business venture came finding time to fit everything in to my day! 

Then we introduced the blog into my life! Another passion I have found that takes up a part of my day! 

So how do I find something that resembles balance and order? How do I attempt to stay on top of things ( like the never ending laundry and dishes or living room that gets messy just as fast as I pick it up)? How does one fit in all the extra things in life outside of the house? Like date nights, time with friends, work meeting, me time, lunch dates, ect. 
I have learned that I have to physically write things down or I will forget them! (Just ask Asenath, it’s probably what she’s tiffed at me most about!) For some people the reminders or notes on their phones works just fine, for me not so much! I need to see it, I need to feel it, I need to make the connection with my hands and head. 

This year I started using an actual planner, and my life has been running much smoother than before! And let me tell you I love this thing!! 

It’s a creative 365 planner I purchased from Michaels. You can customize it pretty much however you like, in my planner I have my regular monthly calendar, my weekly calendar, and one dedicated to fitness and health. I also have a home section with my meal planner, cleaning schedule and monthly budget! I legitimately would be lost without this thing! 


I have found it helpful to break down my day. In my weekly section of my planner I have three good sized boxes for each day. I use one for home, one for business, and one for my children and personal obligations, responsibilities, or appointments. It is a great way to keep on track and ahead of my day! 


I have also learned that delegating and sharing the work load is not only okay but it is actually needed, and good for our family. My children have chores and responsibilities too. Andreana and Scarlett are responsible for picking up their room,  putting away their clothes and helping mom with the day to day chores. It helps teach them responsibility, they learn to do things for themselves, and it keeps their lives balanced and disciplined. 

I don’t know if the proverbs 31 woman did everything in one single day, everyday, but for me that’s just not always feasible! I’d like to think my family views me as a blessing and worth far more than rubies! I’m convinced that mindset starts with myself! If I give myself value they will too. If I beat myself up over what didn’t get accomplished today, I’m setting the tone of my inner voice and how I perceive what others say or may be thinking of me. 
That being said I the biggest thing I have found to help find balance is showing myself some grace! Life doesn’t always go the way we plan! I could plan my day out to a T, but that doesn’t mean it always happens that way. Sometimes my littles need a little extra mom time, or my husband and I need to take time to connect and fill each other’s love tanks. Some times the kids get sick, or I am just too tired to function. Other times it’s just a lack of motivation. But you know what momma? It’s okay! You’ll get to those dirty dishes, and maybe even to the mountain of laundry that’s been living on your couch! But you don’t have to do it all at once. So when life isn’t going the way you want it, show yourself a little grace and take it one thing at a time! 

Food

Healthy No Bake Cookies

I came across this recipe about a year ago when I was doing the 21 day fix and fell in love with them!  We don’t have central air so anything that doesn’t involve baking in summer is okay by me.  The other plus is they make great breakfast cookies, protein cookies, and they are very filling.  These are great for breastfeeding mothers with the added protein and old fashioned oats.  They are only 69 calories a cookie!!!  I hope you enjoy these as much as my family and I do.

 

21 day Fix No Bake Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup Peanut Butter  (I use Hy-vee brand because that’s what normally get)

3/4 cup Honey  (I love to get local honey, it’s a bit more money but it’s great for your healthy.  It is great for allergies, inflammation, throat irritation. Its a great natural sweetener.)

1/2 cup Coconut Oil (I use Hy-vee Brand Organic.  I was told to do Organic not sure why but this is what I buy)

2 tsp Vanilla (For this recipe I used all natural vanilla from the Dominican Republic.)

2 1/4 cup Old Fashioned Oatmeal (This is where they are great for Breastfeeding Mammas!)

In a sauce pan you want to mix the peanut butter, honey and coconut oil over medium heat.

Mix until everything is all melted.

Stir consistently.  Add in the vanilla.

After everything is all mixed together add in the cocoa powder. 

After everything is mixed together and a smooth texture add in your oatmeal.  This needs to be a thick consistency so that they will stay in cookie form after freezing.

I use a Pampered Chef small cookie scoop.  This gives great sizes for cookies.  Great for kids!

I place parchment paper on a cookie sheet and start scooping.  

After cookies are on the sheet place in the freezer before placing them in your air tight container. 

I place them in the freezer for about 30 min.

After they are frozen you can keep them on a counter in a container. I like to keep mine in the refrigerator in an air tight container.  Since I dont have central air I need to keep them where they are kept cold and not melt.  Keeping them in a refrigerator also helps when the kids eat them they are not all melty gross.  Anything to eliminate a mess.  

I like to make a double or triple batch of these cookies.  They freeze really well.  I keep them stocked all summer for the kids and I to snack on.  They cover the sugar cravings but also are healthy for you!!

69 calories per cookie

One yellow container in the 21 day fix!

Enjoy and Have a great summer!!!

 

Uncategorized

A letter to my best friend

I’m supposed to be writing a post about a DIY project. But tonight I feel led to write about something else…. 

Dear Best Friend, 

I love you to pieces! You are one of my favorite people to see and I don’t think I could go more than a few days without talking to you! I’m so blessed to have you in my life! 

But, deep down ( well not even that far down) I’m jealous of YOU! You are so beautiful, you’re always so well put together. As I sit here with snotty leggings from a child who thinks I’m a tissue, struggling to do something more than a messy bun with my hair.  


I’m jealous of how natural of a wife and mother you are. You garden, bake, can, run a business, volunteer, decorate, and even find time to continually work on your marriage, all without missing a beat! 

You are an amazing person who loves passionately, head over heels! You never leave a person in need if you can help it and you always give more than you take!

I’m so glad to have met you! You push me to do better, you help me in areas that I struggle in (like my hair!) and you help keep me grounded while encouraging me to dream! 


I want you to know you’re not the only one who often struggles with jealousy, I think we all do. We both have our strengths and weaknesses and that’s what makes us unique!  You my dear help me in ways I never knew I needed help! Thanks for always being there for me! 

Love you always! 

Xoxo

Drena!

Motherhood

You’re not my favorite.

Favoritism, according to Merriam-Websters dictionary, is the practice of giving unfair preferential treatment to one person or group at the expense of another.   This is that person:

This is my youngest, Brice James Shetler.  Born July 18th, 2014.  He loves to cuddle, laugh, and be with mommy.  He favors my family genes and therefore I think he’s cuter.  He takes the cake on co-sleeping.  He holds still.  He’s a mamma’s boy. But this isn’t about Brice, this is about his big sister Celie.

Celie Ann Shetler, born June 13th at 12:35 am.  7 lbs, 14 oz.  My labor was fast, 6 hours.  I was 22 years old. I was selfish.  I wanted a child.  I thought having a child would help make life better; to fulfill some kind of void in my life.  This wasn’t the way to start our relationship.

My life before this point is another post.  Lets just say life experiences and expectations were that having a baby would make everything better and life would be great again.

I think after having Celie I had this great expectation that having kids was easy.  That SHE was going to be easy.  That this would give me more friends. That she would be my company.  She was brand new, no manual, no help. She wouldn’t nurse like I had dreamed.  Craig, my husband, was gone working night shift so it was me figuring out this tiny baby.  I was alone.  My expectations quickly turned into resentment and frustration for this child.  I was sleep deprived.  I had just started cosmetology school so life was crazy.  My relationships with friends had changed because I had had her.  Having a child can change the relationships you have with people who don’t have kids.  All the expectations just manifested into what now was resentment.  

Celie is now just like me.  She’s energetic, happy, inquisitive, hyper active when tired, independent, and a mommy.  She sings ALL the time!  All the things that annoy me about myself.  She drives me crazy.  She bosses her brother around all the time.  Just like I did. She yells at him.  Just like I do to my kids when I’m fed up, tired, or feel like it’s the only way they listen.  (This has been something I’ve really come to realize the importance of being an example.)  She cries about everything.  She always wants to help.  Ugh, it’s so annoying.

We all have that one child that we just wish was not who they really were.  My mom always tells me, “She’s just like you were”.   I roll my eyes and think “ya I know”.  I then look back and remember I was just like her.  I was mean to my brothers, I bossed them around.  I asked a lot of questions.  I’m sure I was annoying too. Why can’t I see that this girl that is just like me is a good thing?

Why is it so hard to look at all that’s good in this beautiful child and realize she’s not so bad after all?  God’s really laid this on my heart big time lately.  Maybe it’s because I’m seeing time slip by so fast and before I know it she will be all grown up, or could it just be that God wants me to see this sin.

“My brothers and sisters, believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ must not show favoritism. Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in filthy old clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?

Listen, my dear brothers and sisters: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? But you have dishonored the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? Are they not the ones who are blaspheming the noble name of him to whom you belong?

If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself,”a] you are doing right. 9 But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. 10 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. 11 For he who said, “You shall not commit adultery,”b] also said, “You shall not murder.”c] If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker.

12 Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, 13 because judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment.”  James 2:1-13

I had someone mention something the other day.  “These are not our children. These children were given to us on loan, by God,  So that we can help Him further His kingdom.”  This hit me in a weird way. I can’t explain how it felt. This weird sensation that you may get, like I knew exactly who it was meant for and what it meant.   So if i’m treating Celie unfairly I’m committing murder just as someone who lusts commits adultery.  This is not furthering Christs Kingdom.  I’m only damaging it.  We dont choose our children.  God does.  God gave me Celie for reason. God made Celie for who she is.  God placed her in my body to grow and strengthen her and that is what I am here to do.

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

With this week God has opened my eyes. I’ve seen things I’ve never seen before.  Celie is absolutely incredible.  She’s smart.  She absolutely LOVES school.  She’s strong.  Loves being outside.  She’s the best big sister.  Her laugh is contagious.  She’s brave.  

Celie got to test for her first belt in Taekwondo April 8th.  Celie is usually afraid of men she is not familiar with.  But this girl powered through her kick routine.  She cried and it broke my heart but I have never been so proud in my entire life.  You can check out her video HERE.

So this past week I’ve been working on how to make up for lost time or to make sure that favoritism doesn’t happen again. Take a look around.  You’re laundry will be there tomorrow.  For real, just stop.  Let her talk to you.  Take a ride around the block, ask her questions.  Take her for ice cream and let her get whatever she wants.  Take lots of pictures and videos.  Look at the clouds.  Laugh. Play games together.  Let her teach you.  Give her small tasks like putting the silverware away, or folding wash clothes.   Give her some responsibility but let her have fun too.  She’s only a child.  Kids were put here for us to teach them, but really I think it’s for them to teach us.  I’ve learned so much in the last week. Like my needs are much less than her’s.  The clock doesn’t wait for you.  So show love, kindness, grace, forgiveness. Smile and let them see you happy.  Make sure you keep the lines of communication open so that nothing gets lost or unsaid!  LOVE YOUR CHILDREN.

My Dear Sweet Celie Ann,

Please forgive me.  Please forgive me for the times I spank you out of anger. For the times I yell at you for laughing to loud, because I was annoyed.  Please forgive me for saying no to reading books to you when I thought my stuff was more important.  My heart hurts because I was selfish.  Forgive me for the times you want to help but I say no just because I dont want you to.  For not spending more time with you individually because I thought Brice needed me more.  Celie, I am so very sorry

Never stop singing! Never stop wanting to read! Never stop loving school!  Always love your brother and being with him! Just like you do now!  Always be kind, loving, helpful, generous.  Never stop laughing!!  You’re laugh is so contagious.  Never let go of your imagination.  You have such an extraordinary Imagination.  That will take you great places one day.  Celie, you are so smart. You cannot be fooled.  Never stop loving church and Sunday school. I love when I’m exhausted and I just want a family day at home and I tell you it’s Sunday you always get excited because you get to go to church.  Celie, I could go on for days of thing I never want you to stop doing but the most important things I want you to remember out of all of this.  Never stop loving Jesus!  Never Stop Loving! and always remember that Mommy ALWAYS love YOU!!! 

My precious Daughter I love you with all of my heart!!

Love Forever & Always,

Mom   XoXoX…

 

 

Marriage

Better Than Me

There’s not a day that goes by where I don’t hear “Moooooommmmmm, can you…” “Moooommmmmm, I need….” Or “Moooommmm, will you…..” about 8,000,000 times a day. I mean come on y’all! Their dad can be sitting on the couch and they will come ask me for milk while I am upstairs in the bath! And while more times than not, it can be frustrating, I find myself jealous of my husband when my children request certain things from Henry, rather than from me!

If you ask my children what is daddy better at than mom, this is what my oldest will tell you:

Andreana: “Daddy makes the best corn, and mac-n-cheese, and steak! Oh and the best fish sticks. And dad is better at dressing than you!”

(Apparently my children don’t appreciate my daily look of leggings or yoga pants, and baseball tees!)

While he is amazing with his grill, there are definetly things he is better than me at!

He is the master of bed time and nap time!

He is the better driver and always puts my parking to shame!

He has a mind for business that I can only wish for!

But what he is best at is Love!

I know that sounds weird. Like how can someone be better at love?!?!

Well this is how!

He is the first to forgive, and the last to bring up past arguments. He is the first to turn the other cheek, even when his heart is breaking. He’s prone to ask about others’ feelings, even when he knows he is right about something!

He’s compassionate and he’s caring. He almost always puts others needs before his own, and would give the shirt off of his back to anyone in need. He is the first to pick up on clues  that something isn’t quite the way it should be, and always makes an attempt to fix it!

He’s sensitive and he’s sweet. He always has a listening ear, and is willing to help if you need him. There are lots of times that he picks up on things that I am going through before I even say a word about it. He’s always there when I need him, with a hug waiting for me. He always seems to know what to say and when I need to be held!

And most of all he is so much more trusting than I! He doesn’t have as many walls to knock down and he doesn’t guard his heart as much as I seem to!

He loves me and he loves our children! He’s helped me knock down walls and has helped lead me closer and closer to God! His help shows me what true love is and for that I am truly blessed! One day I hope my children recognize the love their daddy spreads to the world and I hope they learn from him.

 

(P.S. Most of the time if we are going in public, he does truly dress better than I do! :/ )