618 days….that’s how long it’s been since my last blog post. Gosh I’m horrible at this! If my livelihood counted on me keeping up with this blog, I’d be living on the streets! I like to blog, I really do. I also love reading other people’s blogs, especially when they are about food, cooking, health, mom and life hacks. I think the funnest and yet most challenging part of being a Mom of 3, is finding ways to balance it all. Balance a budget, chores, meal plans, love, life, play, God and discipline. All while teaching a cutie-patootie 2 year old to go potty, breastfeeding a three month old, and playing ninjas with a four year old. Life is grand as a parent. It’s also tiring, trying, overwhelming and rewarding when you can go to bed, look at your husband, smile and celebrate how you only screwed up 10 times today instead of 15 the day before, or 50 the week before that. I have the most amazing, stubborn, independent, dramatic, smart, feisty and loving kids in the whole world ( I certainly hope every mom thinks that of their kiddos!) and they wear me out and test my patience every day. They show me where I still fall short in giving of grace and patience. They show me how innocent life can be in the midst of chaos and turmoil that’s going on around me. They teach me what it means to love someone unconditionally, when my son walks up to me and hugs me for no reason or my daughter snuggles my far from perfect post 3 baby tummy and says “I wuv you mom “. She doesn’t care how thin I am or not. She doesn’t care about the color of my hair or if I’ve taken a shower or if I have spit up all over my shirt, a shirt I haven’t changed in 2 days. My kids love me for who I am, in my most raw, true, honest self- they love me. They show me what it means to make mistakes over and over again and to not give up. For a small part of my life, I get to be in the presence of pure innocence and love. Something as grown ups we tend to forget even exists anymore. As grown ups, bills pile up, stress overtakes our emotions and selflessness turns to selfishness. Sleeping like a baby turns into tossing and turning. Fun turns into work. Love turns into hate and broken hearts. Sin enters our hearts and our minds, overtaking our ability to show grace and to forgive. It takes away our compassion toward one another. 

319 days….that’s how long it’s been since my heart was broken, shattered into pieces. Today also marks the first day I have talked about it. It has been the hardest, most difficult and trying 319 days of my life. Each one of them. I’m not even sure who I am right now. The person who, when around others, acts like she has it together. Or the person, when left alone with her thoughts, is still falling apart, as much as I was the very first day. Maybe I’m somewhere in between. When did life get so hard, so unrecognizable? Most days, I just go through the motions of what I’m supposed to do. Get up, breathe, keep kids alive, fed and clean (that may be debatable), and entertained. Everything else I need to do and be depends on the day. I cry everyday, sometimes about nothing. But mostly because of what happened 319 days ago. I have become anxious, more moody towards my kids than I ever wanted to be. I have become a version of myself that I always feared I would be. I feel inadequate and not worthy of love. I sometimes feel hopeless to ever feeling normal again, to ever really feeling happy. I’m scared that my life will never get better, that I will never be good enough. That I will always fall short. I fear that the anger I feel inside will overpower my ability to continue to forgive and show grace. I fear that I will never be able to find true joy in my life, with God, Levi, my kids and my home. Right now, and for what seems like a long 319 days, I’m just numb. Trying to change, trying to just sit with what’s happening right now, but it gets hard. Life, heart ache, bills, stress, exhaustion….it’s all real. I am no longer me anymore. I’m someone else. A shadow of who I once was. Some days I do very well with controlling my feelings and living with what is true about my life, what I believe to be true. I have 3 amazing kids who I know love me. I know my family loves me. I believe that God loves me. The rest of my life I am unsure of. I want so desperately to find happiness in my life. I long to feel normal again, like I matter. But what I want, probably more than anything, is to be accepted, truly accepted as I am. Right now. No changes need to be made, I am perfect as I am. Who I am is enough. And to feel confident in that. But that has never been the case for me, ever. My whole life I’ve always had to change something about me, I’ve never truly been enough. I guess I’m curious if all women feel this way? Maybe at some point in their life? I am not writing this to get sympathy or advice. I’m just needing to get some thoughts out there, because this is the first time I have written or spoke of the last 319 days, and I think I need to do it more, to help me find ME again. To think through how I’m truly feeling instead of hiding behind the girl who looks like she has it together.  And to not worry about being honest.

I woke up Monday and realized I need to make a change in my life, with myself. I got motivated. Sometimes the smallest change can make the biggest difference. I need to rid my life of as much stress as I can. I need to READ not skim, but really take time for myself and read. I never get to do that anymore, read for myself, for enjoyment. I need to find time for self care, to take a shower everyday! I can’t live behind the excuse ” I don’t have time” anymore. I need to make time. I need to really enjoy my kids and let them be kids! Let them fall and make mistakes. Let them make a mess!!! For those who really know me you know I hate messes, and have the hardest time letting my kids make them. I need to get back into an exercise schedule. Liam is my last baby. I can now work towards being done with pregnant and post partum bodies once and for all. Well, except I still need to nurse for another 9 months or so, but after that, watch out! I need to work on being ok with my life being a mess right now, and dealing with the day to day as more of a blessing than inconvenience. Because even though I’m hurt and angry and sad, I still really want my life with my kids and Levi. I need to learn how to appreciate them more and be content with where God has me right now. I am Noah, Abagail and Liam’s Mom. I am Levi’s wife. But outside of that, who am I?? The past few weeks I’ve been contemplating whether or not to start compiling recipes of my own and eventually  write a cookbook. I know I’m not Rachel Ray, or the next Food Network star, but I have a lot of good ideas and recipes. My goal over the next few years, and you heard it here first, is to educate myself more in the culinary arts; whether that’s cooking school or just classes here and there. Because I really would like to start my own at-home catering  business named after and inspired by my kiddos. Nothing extraordinary, just small events. But I want to transform my kitchen into a small getaway for me, a place to create food and memories with my kids. I really want them to appreciate food and how it’s prepared and where it comes from. I feel like that’s important, for anyone, especially in the world we live in today. There’s so much genetically modified foods, and less raw, organic foods that God created.

Being a stay at home Mom means the world to me, no matter how difficult it has been for me, and I plan to never ever miss a soccer game or ballet recital because of a job. I will always put my family first in whatever I do. But I have a real desire to pursue cooking as well as a couple other ventures I will hopefully share later as they come together. I am more myself when I’m cooking, feeding others and hosting get togethers than I am cleaning a house or doing laundry (I do love to clean house!). Right now, I live in a house I absolutely LOVE and a town with so much to do. I’m excited to see what the upcoming years bring us. I want to use my blog to share adventures, battle hardships in parenting, celebrate achievements in parenting! And as a little escape from the messiness of my life right now. And hoping those who may stumble upon and read it will keep me and my family in their prayers. I will get there. I know it. 
Until next time…..

Have a fabulous day 
Noah’s recipe store!!