Gooooood morning Rosy Life friends!
When I typed that I heard it in Ty Pennington's voice, on that silly show Extreme Home Makeover that used to be on. Funny what our brains remind us of, I haven't seen that show in years!
I'm at my normal writing spot, at least for the school year. That will change this summer.
At this particular spot (a local library) I heard a LOUD, crying newborn. You know the newborn cry I'm talking about. Like MAD and hungry. I hear it going on and decide to mind my own business. I put my headphones in and the music starts to play, but that little baby's screaming is still ringing in my ears. After quickly taking my headphones off I hear two middle-aged men laughing and joking about the cry, saying we should "recycle that one."
A fire immediately lit under me and I grabbed my laptop and purse and walked over to find the crying baby. I quickly see a formula can sitting on a table and then look up to see a grandpa trying to hold the baby's bottle in its mouth with his chin. I quietly whispered "Are you ok? I heard your baby crying and I'm a mama. I know what it's like to have a crying baby and no one offers to help." He assured me they were fine now that the little boy was drinking its milk and thanked me several times for checking.
Friends, I may appear strange to some, but when did we start caring so little?! It's not as if I was putting myself in harm's way, I know better than that. But in a public place FULL of people the best we can do is make a joke and continue on our way? I don't think so.
Ok, big breath, rant over. Let's look at this beautiful, grown-up girl instead! She graduated from preschool this week you guys! Kindergarten starts in the fall and we are both excited/nervous. I am fully confident in our decision to do public school, which is something that isn't the norm among our friends and family. But I know God has a wonderful plan and teacher waiting for Anna next year. I pray it, believe it, and claim it.
Little Betsy has one more year of pre-school and then she'll be headed off to kindergarten too! She is my chef and food lover. There isn't a dip or flavor in sight she hasn't tasted and she's often found mixing her own unique creations on her plate. She helped me make muffins and some cookies this week for our camping trip we went on last weekend.
Our first camping trip of the year was a success! We went over Mother's Day weekend to the White River with my twin sister and her family. They have a new camper my brother-in-law has built himself that they took out for the first time. The weather was perfect!
My real-life reflection on camping is that it was mostly good. It started out pretty rough (ok, really rough) the first night and morning because the kids were SO excited and basically going bananas, a.k.a. not obeying. Or my kids were at least. But then we took the crew on a challenging hike and that seemed to put everyone in a good mood. :)
I really love getting time with my niece and nephews! This sweet boy is almost always up for a hug.
Camping isn't particularly all about packing light or just throwing things in the car and going, but it is mighty nice to have the men cook once we get there!
As for packing, I have a master camping list of things that need to stay in the pop-up camper all the time and an additional list of things to pack for each trip. And we do try to keep the packing pretty light, it's mostly food and blankets we're stockpiling.
Of course no camping trip is complete without some nature books, watercolors, and colored pencils! All of the cousins are into art and my favorite part is to stand back and watch what shows up on their page.
This time I got smart and brought my slippers. They are padded on the bottom like a regular shoe so I wore them at least half of the weekend, padding from my campsite to my sister's.
My sister brought her dog, which the girls enjoyed!
We're hoping to bring Bouncy along for a camping adventure, but she's currently on some medicine so we had to leave her home this time.
A few hiking photos! We held the hands of the littlest children and the bigger kids did really well on their own. Huge thanks to Uncle Seth for helping Anna, she was feeling a bit nervous because the hike was pretty steep. But onward she went, brave as she could be!
All of our children are really great hikers.
Although my craft time is pretty limited in this season of life, I'm still finding little ways to fit some creativity in. For example, I quickly sewed this bunting (and one for my sister) the afternoon before we left. This is one of my top favorite crafts to do, ever.
I simply grab a handful of fabric, quickly cut out a stack of triangles (no measuring here), then run them through my sewing machine.
Our pop-up camper could really be renamed the brown mobile, because there are brownish/green curtains everywhere. This is our third year to have the camper and a little wave of inspiration finally motivated me to try and do something about the curtains. I got four of the curtains re-covered with pretty, colorful fabric and I'm loving how it looks!
I simply took the old curtains off, measured a piece of colorful fabric to go on top, pinned the new fabric to the old, and stitched around all the sides.
I still have a few more curtains on the side of the camper to go but we'll see if those happen this year or not.
Do you see the heart?!
Saturday afternoon we took a drive and headed towards Eureka Springs, which is about 25 minutes (a guess) away from our campsite. We adore Eureka Springs and have been going there for at least 10 or 11 years. My favorite coffee in the world is there, at the Daily Roast. Brett got me a frozen latte and we drove through Main Street. This did my spirit tons of good. So many memories are packed into that tiny town! I've been there dating Brett, married to Brett, expecting Anna Ruth, expecting Betsy Grace, and as life is now, expecting foster care babies.
Thanks to my sweet sis for bringing bubbles! These provided hours of fun for the kids.
I can't believe it, but I think this is the only picture I got of my sweet nephew!
He is 10 months old and the cuddliest, happiest baby boy. I tried to hold him as many times as possible, which is probably why I don't have a picture of his big grin.
Sunday morning we had breakfast tacos!
Corn tortillas topped with scrambled egg, cheese, sausage, and hot sauce.
It just doesn't get better than that.
Maybe with an avocado.
Once we arrived back home it was time to focus on finishing up the last week of school and start preparing for the summer. We have some vacation time planned, swim lessons, plenty of popsicles, picking wildflowers, and all that comes with glorious summer.
It is truly my most favorite season of the entire year.
And yes, I am obsessed as ever with the daisies this year. In fact, you might not want to read for the next few months if you don't like these flowers because I just cannot get enough!
The day we went to pick this big bucket of them we drove slowly through a tiny part of the pasture. The fields are SO thick it's important to stick to the mowed paths and be very, very careful when straying off the path. We came to a stop and I helped the girls out of the car, giving plenty of reminders to watch for snakes and holes when all of a sudden Anna said "Mom! A fawn!" Sure enough, just a few feet away from us, was a spotted fawn nestled down in among the daisies.
It was a chill-worthy moment.
We watched it for a few minutes and then off it ran for the woods!
We almost couldn't believe our eyes, having never been that close to a fawn on the farm before.
Me: Anna, how do you feel about finishing up pre-school and starting kindergarten?
Anna: (this face)
I also managed to catch up on Project Life this week!
I was seriously about 3 or 4 months behind but found it was so easy to catch up.
Reason one million why I really like this memory keeping system and think it is so perfect for all types of seasons of life.
Here's how I caught up so quickly:
I took a day last week when I was already at the computer doing something, to print a handful of my most favorite photos from the past few months. That way they were already printed and ready for me to cut and put into the page pockets whenever I had another spare minute.
Next, I waited for a morning where I had the dishes and clothes washing and a few minutes of extra free time. Then I pulled out all my scrapbook stuff and spread it out on the table. The girls got all their scrapbook stuff out too which was really lovely to be sitting at the table with them.
Then I started to lay out my photos in the order I wanted them to go on the page. 3 or 4 months of photos ended up equalling 3 or 4 scrapbook pages because I printed the photos rather tiny.
Last I taped my photos down on some cute scrapbook cards and put them into the slots. I only journaled on a few cards this time, the lyrics to Oceans and a list of what I'm currently loving.
That's it, done. It was seriously so easy to get caught up and it just delights my heart every time I flip through my Project Life album. It's just so full of LIFE and happy and memories.
I've said it all along and it's still true. No matter how busy you are, Project Life is totally do-able. It's those beautiful scrapbook cards that make it so easy for me and the easily accessible pocket pages. You could really spend a lot of time on these if you wanted, I certainly have ideas galore for watercolor inserts and all kinds of pretty things.
But this is also good too! I think the point is to just record those memories somehow. If scrapbooking isn't your thing, why not print some photos and tape them in a journal with a few memories jotted down?
I probably shouldn't keep reminding myself and others how busy this season of life is because I know I'll look back on it soon and laugh at how SLOW it really was.
But, let's just say my time/priorities have shifted as my kids have gotten older. Instead of grumbling about less free time I've been finding ways to fit art in, with little bursts here and there. Because friends I still ADORE art. I mean it literally makes my heart beat faster, whether making it myself or looking at someone else's.
These are two little sketches I completed this week. I am really enjoying my PrismaColor colored pencils.
Happiness is summer time and a new sprinkler!
I sure do love these two and love being their mama.
Let's see, this past week I also baked two kinds of healthyish cookies,
watched a ton of Gilmore Girls while I edited photos,
and announced on IG that I've teamed up with Jerusalem Greer to help celebrate her newest book At Home in this Life by combining her book quotes with my photography.
You can see a couple of examples below!
These will be available for purchase in my Etsy shop (along with about 10 others!) as 8x10 art prints starting on Tuesday! Stay tuned to my IG (therosylifeblog) and Jerusalem's IG (jerusalemgreer) for more details! My photography prints are actually part of an entire curated collection made to celebrate the book and its meaning.
And we'll end on this note.
This time of year is so fast and full of splashes and fun and sunshine that I don't want to get too caught up in the busy that I choose stress.
Instead, I quiet my mind and move into my heart.
A message that is consistent all throughout Jerusalem's book and also in the scriptures God keeps bringing to mind.
We open officially for foster care Monday, June 5th. As I stated on IG, I feel called but not qualified. I understand it's exciting and the baby clothes and toys are being gathered with grins from the girls and I. But I also understand this whole process will be marked with a certain sadness my girls didn't have to endure before entering our home. I could write a novel here, but I won't.
I'll keep you in the loop as much as possible (no pictures allowed at all of our foster babies) and I ask that you pray mighty strength for us.
What are you up to this summer? Big plans or little?
Hope or dread? (be honest)