There's a whole lot of "new" going on at our house.  I'm trying to dip my toe into the pool of new and let myself get used to it all, without totally diving right in so as not to get overwhelmed.  Oh, and this reminds me of a funny random story! On vacation in Branson it was like 60 degrees. WAY too cold for the awesome swimming pools. So we sat in the hot tub instead and watched this gentleman go down the big slide into the freezing pool over and over.  And each time come out shoutin', saying "WHOA MAN, That's COLD!" and carrying on like it was the first time he'd done it.  And repeat. Repeat, repeat.  It was hilarious.  He was having a good 'ol time, shocking himself into that icy cold water.  I like that kind of excitement for the small things. 

In the spirit of NOT shocking my body into all the new, I'm taking baby steps.  This is a view of my art being printed as an "Art Print" to sell in my shop! For weeks I have wrestled with the best option for making prints of my canvases and I finally decided on this printer and to do them myself at home.  As with anything big and expensive you always wonder if it was the best choice. After watching this print and seeing and feeling the quality, I absolutely know it was. 

Hoorays upon Hoorays. 
Less than a week! 
For sale: Prints of my painted canvases! That means you can purchase an 8 x 10 archival quality (it won't fade over time) print on Epson Matte Paper in my shop! 
Originals (the actual canvas) added to the shop later.
Questions? Please ask! (and tell your friends)
I like seeing the same pretty views day after day, like our dining room table adorned with the prettiest of wildflowers. We do lots of real life around this table.  It holds story after story. 
Anna's imagination is at a whole new level lately.  This gal is so clever and funny.  She surprises me....we'll buy a new toy and then she'll want to play for days with the box and stuffing that came with my new printer box.  This day the brown paper was her "roller coaster".  She'll even make the "WHOA" sounds and wiggle her body around like it's the wildest ride ever.  Cutest thing ever I say.

Again with the table.  The light in the spring speaks to me.  I wrote on IG how the combination of light and shadows is speaking volumes to me lately.  I suppose it's the whole "beauty in brokenness" thought, meaning these shadows bring mystery and a somberness...but then that light.  Always that light.

It's hay cutting time also....
evenings spent having picnics watching Brett cut the hay 
and me getting the girls to bed by myself. 
(Treadmill, will I ever, ever see you again?) 

I love hay season though.  Something about those bales of hay....
these beautiful pastures. 

I spy a girl big enough to start potty training!
We started this week and I'm holding my breath big time because so far it's going well. She's almost three and I held out 'till now because she truly didn't seem ready yet and my twin sis (my parenting advice GO TO) suggested waiting 'till three.  

I don't write much about timelines and goals and parenting stuff like that on here because people (ok, other mamas) can just be so "My way or the highway".  Totally not my personality.  I'm just happy to be on the road at all...and to each their own on how they do it. :)  But we're doing it! No accidents yesterday and I could not be more proud. 

These girls. 
They are learning to communicate with each other and actually play together (sometimes) and that is super, super fun.  It has been a long time coming (a year and a half since Bets was born!) 

Brett and I commented the other day what a genuinely happy gal Betsy Grace is most of the time.  Unless she doesn't get enough sleep and then she's super aggressive and throws fits the size of Texas.  But usually, happy and a ball of energy. The biggest wiggle worm I've ever seen.  

I love both these gals fiercely. 
I'm still exhausted 98% of the time. 
But it's a well-worth it kind of tired. 

But things like this keep my mind fresh, and isn't that where it all starts and ends?

What's new in your world?


Get real. Real nice.

I'm real, real tired today.  I just thought I'd lift you up with that lovely thought first thing.  :) No really, I just read a blog post that made me sigh the hugest sigh of relief.  It was a mom showing her house and life and kids and how real it is.  I like people I immediately feel myself around.  I am lucky enough to have a handful of gals where this is the case.  Some I've only known a few months.  They're not the ones you feel like you have to be on your best behavior around.  They're just around. 

So today let's be real.  I was up for far too long with Betsy Grace and my first thought (ok, my second) was that I remembered how utterly exhausting it is (physically at least) to be up with a baby and then get up and be swept into the rest of the world that is carrying on like their night time was completely normal.  It reminded me to be extra kind to other mamas, whether they act like they need it or not.  My guess? They do.  On our Branson vacation a couple followed us out of a restaurant and said they were watching our family while we ate.  My first reaction was a horrified one, considering I looked like a walking Mexican food bar after wrangling both girls at the table.  

The couple then went on to compliment us, the girls, and our happy family.  They said they remembered being exactly where we are, and they now have 8 grand kids! Do you know what sweet balm that was to my heart? 

I'm paying attention to WHO I pay attention to lately and it's changing.  It's not the exclusives, the gals with all the followers and all the money and all the best of the best...
it's the nice ones.  The ones who are real in their struggles (but not pessimists), who are real in their celebrations.   The ones who help others cheerfully and gladly, like my friend Natalie. The girls who know how to have fun and include everyone, those.....

Don't you love it when you spend time with someone and leave feeling like you were the most valuable part of their life at the moment? 
That's how I want to be.  I want to let my real life people know they matter.  To pay attention to their interests, to promote their businesses and hobbies, to celebrate their gifts, to clap and cheer loudest at their wildest dreams, to cry with them, and to deliver kindness.

Nice matters.
Those two words could properly sum up this whole post. 
One day a friend of mine texted, asking for prayers.  She was having a bit of a rough morning and I was so thankful she felt comfortable asking for help. We need each other, don't we? 

I always keep Target paper goods on hand because I watch the clearance section for them.  I packed up a mini canvas and peanut m and m's and delivered it to my friend to surprise her. 

When I saw her face and felt her hug, I knew again.
Nice matters. 
Let's get real. Real with our lives, real with our friends,
real with our love. 
Real nice.

{Go here to read the answer to the question "What are you selling?" in my shop. One week 'till it opens!}

Fishin' for the first time.

Last night we hung our "gone fishin' " signs on our minds and hearts and headed down towards the pond, on the log barn place.  Anna Ruth was delighted with a pink pinwheel that would spin and spin as we drove down the road, all four of us packed into the truck together. 
We stopped to admire the daisies still standing strong, tall, and beautiful.  My most favorite patch, which you can read about here, was thick and looked like the friendliest bunch of wildflowers you ever many flowers all crammed in together.  I'm sorry to say they're all gone now, wiped out when the preparation for the power line (which is out of our control) happened.  I sure am glad I stopped to fully enjoy them last year, it takes a bit of the sadness away.. (but not much).  

Do you like daisies?  My mom says they used them in her wedding.  Doesn't that sound wonderfully cheerful and hopeful? I think so.
We bought Anna Ruth a Dora fishing pole (her choice) before we went on our mini vacation.  She was pretty excited to get to use it all by herself this time.  She was probably most excited with her daddy's tackle box, all those neat and tidy spaces to organize the lures.  This is just her thing.

Brett helped her cast the line into the water 2 or 3 times and then she was able to do it all by herself! We were so, so surprised and proud!  I tried using this pole today out on the boat and it is not an easy one to cast.  She has quite the arm on her.  

Of course, little sister always wants in on the fun too!  Most of the time Betsy Grace gets swept up in the moments of whatever's going on and you might overlook how much she's observing and learning.  When I handed her the pole she first pressed the button in, and then began to try reeling it in.  She doesn't miss a thing!  (and those legs! What a cutie)
So we didn't actually catch anything with the Dora pole. Brett and I both caught a fish with the big pole.  He carried his over to show the girls and the reaction on their faces was priceless.  I don't know that they could decide whether to be amazed, intrigued, or grossed out.

Me and my catch......
We were all hanging around the truck, having the best time.  Anna Ruth knows her mama loves to make art and take pictures and just lately has really started taking an interest in both.  She asked me (or told me rather) "I want you to take my picture".  And this is the face she quickly made.  Priceless.

I sure am glad God got my attention with Brett 7 years ago or so and helped me realize how much the country life is for me.  It is my greatest pleasure to roam the pastures, fish the pond, gaze at the wildflowers and teach my girls how to savor and appreciate this beautiful way of living.  Every time I hear Anna's tiny voice say "Look! A beautiful butterfly!" I feel certain we're storing up things in her heart and mind that will last....whether she grows up to become a city gal or not.
Here's to many more days of fishin',
and and catching more than just fish. 

Farm Retreat.

My goodness this weekend is off to a refreshing start.  We have this neat cabin on the property right next to our house.  It belongs to the entire family and is just magic waiting to happen.  I had the idea a few months ago to invite my twin sister (YES, I have a twin!) over for a weekend retreat.  She gladly accepted and this weekend was our chance to unwind. 
 She came out yesterday evening and we had the best time sitting on the back porch, eating pizza like we were in our 20's again.  (I only downed three pieces, my oh my)

 We went for a farm drive on the Ranger and I drove.  I am happy to say I did just fine, great actually.  What a treat it was to have my hands free for driving and taking pictures.  The farm is our hobby, part-time job, beauty, and challenge.  It is nice to take a break from the work side of the farm (which is really Brett's doing more than me) and just enjoy this beautiful land we get to call home. 

 We also watched a movie, ate loads of popcorn and candy, and talked about every subject under the sun.

A good breakfast and few cups of coffee later and I am feeling like a new woman. 

All in way less than 24 hours. 

Sometimes life tells us that because of money and time, retreats and relaxing and joy found aren't for us, only those who can afford it.  I say, not so.  If you don't have your own spot to go to, why not pick some flowers, brew some coffee, light a candle....and sit where the evening light is just right.  And breathe.  Real, real deep.  Imagine, sing, rest, pray, cry (happy tears, I hope).  

And leave your phone inside :)  Nature and God and the heavenlies are waiting to meet you. 

Do you suppose she's a wildflower?

Captured my gals in a little photo shoot today......
"Do you suppose she's a wildflower?" ringing in my thoughts..

Yes, I suppose they are. 

Wild and free, silly and strong. 
This is what a summer+childhood looks like. 
Wildflowers indeed.

{Come on over to my art blog, The Rosy Life art, for updates from my studio! And a pretty peek around }

The rosy in my real life!

Hello friends! I'm here for another edition of "rosy in my real life!"  I tried to number these and do one for every week o...