I first started this post two weeks ago...as soon as we got back from Haiti. And. then. life. happened.

It's true. Living is taking precedence over blogging these days and I'm good with that. Yet, I still love the recording of life this blog provides me (no relying on the old brain these days...) and so I will make an effort to stay not to terribly far behind.

My four sweet faces.

And a more realistic moment.


We just got back from Haiti, and once again, I find myself caught in the in between.

I'm at home here and I'm at home there.
When I'm here, I'm there and when I'm there, I'm here.
All at the same time.

Confused yet? Yeah, me too.

It's a weird place to live. I realize our life, our family dynamic is different than most. And I'm okay with different. Usually. On most days. It's just the transitions that are a bit sticky. The re-engaging with friends and family who have regular schedules and lives that kept going while we were gone. I am perpetually in a state of catching up, until I'm caught up, only to start the process over again.

And please don't misinterpret these words: there is not an ounce of complaint in them. I love our life and know that we are exactly where the Lord wants us. I've just got to be patient and re-settle and there is no rushing the process.


On a somewhat related note: our very good friends and Haiti family, Jeannot and Mudlin, caretakers at the House of Hope, just welcomed blessing #4 into the world.

Welcome, Jayla Hope!
(Ella picked out the name...how cool is that?!)


And why not end on a first world note. A new first world favorite I've discovered: Stitch Fix.

Have you heard of it?
Me either, until a friend of mine mentioned doing it and I looked into it.

Stitch Fix is an online shopping experience where you get paired up with a personal stylist who picks out clothes and accessories for you, based on a size and style questionnaire you fill out.

I strongly dislike shopping anymore as I hate to give up any precious free time to doing it. So, when I heard that I could be paired up with someone who would shop for me, stick to my budget, have access to my pinterest so they could know my preferences, pay NO shipping costs, and have no monthly commitment...I went for it and had a really great first experience! There is no pressure, as you only pay for an item if you keep it, and it is a fun way to step out of the box without too much risk.

Click here if you want to try it for yourself.


Happy Tuesday!

The holidays might have ended but our new year started off with a bang. Blur? February is staring me in the face and I didn't even see it coming. Sneaky, sneaky 2nd month.

Jeremiah and I are back from Haiti. The blizzard of the century hampered our getting back to DC to pick the kids up as originally scheduled, but a few flight cancellations and delays and hours spent people watching at the Atlanta airport...and we are officially reunited as a complete family! 

Jeremiah only cried one time knowing he was missing his beloved snow, ha!

The kids did great at my moms while we were gone and my family did an amazing job keeping up with their school and keeping their hearts happy. It truly takes a village to pull off a trip like we did and in the case of my family, they literally have a small village! 

Our time in Haiti was full, and I've got a few photos highlighting some of my favorite moments...

Our construction team installed almost 30 fans in classrooms at Christian Light School.

Jonathan, our favorite mechanic, never stopped working the entire time he was there, getting HOH cars and other local missionary cars back in working order!

Catching up with old friends.

A sweet time of ministry at the Philippine UN base, encouraging the workers who are stationed in Haiti for long stretches of time without their families. 

Spa day for the local long-term missionaries. Ministering to those who are always ministering.

Of course, always loving on the kiddo's.

 Connie and Keith did a great job teaching a music theory class during the pastors conference.

Pastor Randall teaching one of the mens sessions at the conference.

The amazing women of Bethel Baptist leading the woman's sessions.
Jim and Pastor M sharing a moment.

Jeremiah with his playground crew! 

One of the VBS stations at a new village school we visited, way out on the coast.

A second station for the older students.

Due to this fishing villages proximity to the beach we were treated with fresh fish , squid,
 and fried plantains for lunch that day.

And there's more. Much more. And stories. I have some amazing stories...

But the littles are waking up and I have a Saturday morning pancake feast to prepare.

Stay tuned for more...
The pool is nice, 
as is the rooftop, 
but it's the front porch that holds my heart here at the House of Hope.

A long tiled slab, two wooden benches, and a handfull of plastic chairs and potted plants make up my favorite spot.

It's a place to hang out, 
play jump rope or cards, 
watch the dogs, 
watch the kids,
talk about the weather or wrestle through a difficult conversation.

I've watched countless people walk in the gates, 
gather at the porch, 
and pour out their excitement over good news, 
or heartbreak and frustrations over tough life situations.

Good and bad, tears and laughter, this front porch exists as a sacred zone between the public and private, an area that can be shared between the sanctity of home and the community outside. It is in this space that two worlds collide and the lines between American and Haitian blur, and we are all simply...friends.

I'm convinced that just as much ministry happens in this sacred space as in walls of a sanctioned church. Long lasting, relational, life changing ministry. 

Built one conversation and one go-fish game at a time.

In just 2 days Jeremiah and I head to Haiti for our first trip of 2016!

I'm always excited to travel back to our other home, but this time I am especially excited because there is just so much going on that I can't wait to be a part of! We do so much behind the scenes work and scheduling and organizing and planning that it is super special for me when I actually get to be on the ground and get my hands dirty.

We have several teams we will be working with while we are there and there will be a playground being built at a partner orphanage, a pastor's conference, a spa day for the local missionary women, as well as time spent with our kiddo's at HFHM and other loved ones.

It's just Jeremiah and me this trip as the kids will be staying with my family up north. ALL of them were upset not to be included on this trip, but there is just so much going on in a little amount of time and so many people staying at the House of Hope that it couldn't work out this time for them to come. Next time...

The drawer full of hair bows in the kids bathroom is pretty much wishful thinking. Zoe won't let me anywhere near her hair anymore. Sigh.

Ezra: Since it's Hawaiian night at church on Sunday can I wear my Luke Skywalker costume?!!

Ezra (after to listening to a Drake song): He's not really a professional. He just sounds like he is making up words.

Ezra to Jeremiah: Your elbows look soggy.

Oh, Ezra,

Time to get packing...

Next post is coming from Haiti!

Happy Monday!

The ball has dropped, the Christmas lights are (mostly) down, and the magazine headlines be all screaming about the New Year, New YOU.

New body,
new positive outlook,
time to take charge of your new life,
and my personal favorite...new organizing strategies to make your crap look better.

Yes, it's true. Crap looks better in a linen bin with a chalkboard label.

And, lest you think I'm completely above it all with my sarcastic talk,  I do enjoy setting a few personal goals for a new year. I'm naturally a goal oriented person and I like the process of making and working towards a goal.

Yet, I have come to the realization that a new year doesn't bring a new me. No matter what goals I set or even achieve, I will end 2016 as the same me that started 2016.

And, oh, that is wonderfully and blissfully okay with me.
The pressure is off.

A big learning curve the Lord has worked in my heart over the last few years is that I am at my best when I am at my weakest, for it is there I am most dependent and pressed into Him.

I am free to be me, with all my frailty and weakness and failures.
I can own me.
My identity isn't found it what I do or weigh or succeed at or make or fail at.

I am enough simply because of the fact that He loves me, It's who I am.

He is able. And that is more than enough to carry me through this new year.

Although, I'm not opposed to finding a few of those cute linen bins.

These are my absolute favorite family pictures of our year.

Nobody is in coordinated outfits. 
Make-up is not always on and hair is not fixed.
In most, no one is even looking at the camera.

It's life, real life, our life.

I'm convinced that a big life, experiencing a big God, who is writing a big story is really just a collection of small faithful moments.

May your 2016 be filled with little big moments.

Happy New Year!