Easter & Some Random Thoughts

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Easter. What a fabulous day. The weather was perfect, my family was here, church was amazing and I just felt thankful for so much. Easter is one of my most favorite holidays. We of course had to take some Easter family photos after church and oh gosh! I think I need help- I have crossed that line of LOVING (obsessed with) dressing the girls in matching outfits. They will hate me later but as for now they get a kick out of it and I will ride that train until it’s over. I mean come on? How can I not? They are so stinkin’ cute in their dresses.

Thank you all for the sweet and encouraging comments, emails and tweets about fostering. Totally overwhelmed us in the best possible way. You guys are so awesome. Thank you, thank you! I will definitely be sharing more in the next week about our journey thus far.

This is random but you know what I am listing to right now? The soundtrack to Sister Act 2. So good. It’s been my favorite for many, many years. It’s right up there with the Newsies soundtrack.

I ate a lot of sugar yesterday because 1. Lent was over and 2. It was Easter (duh!) and I am paying for it now. Ugh. So sick to my stomach. Guess that’s what happens when you haven’t had sugar in 40 days. Tomorrow the sugar will be put away and we will be back to clean eating. I have some overall thoughts to share on my first Lent experience this week as well as how I see clean eating fitting into our day to day life. I can’t believe how much this cleanse changed us.

Finley’s had major trouble with teething this past week. Goodness gracious. That poor child has cried for 3 days straight. Today she actually smiled and it was so awesome. I’ve felt so terrible for her and my nerves are shot. We are glad to have you back little Fin!

Ok. With that I am off to take a shower (yep, at 4:34pm). Finley just went down for a nap and Rowan is zoned out watching My little Pony after a full day playing outside. Hello 20 mins to myself.
Hope you had a great Monday!

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OUTFIT DETAILS:

(Me):
Denim Shirt: Madewell
Skirt: Anthropologie
Cap Toe Flats: Tj Maxx (Similar)
Glasses: c/o Bonlook
Watch: Michael Kors

Rowan:
Dress: Gap
Denim Jacket: Crew Cuts
Flower Pin: I made it
Sandals: Saltwaters

Finley:
Dress: Gap
Sweater: Gap
Sandals: Saltwaters

Kev:
Jeans: Forever 21
Denim Shirt: Forever 21
Sweater: Old Navy
Boots: (Similar)

My Everyday Style | 04.18.14

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Sometimes I try to trick myself into thinking I’m fancy. It only last for so long before I slowly start dressing like I am in college again. I can’t help it. I love me a good dress but without a doubt I’m a tried and true tomboy at heart. Simple. Neutrals. Denim. Madewell and Everlane just get me. If I could shop only those 2 places forever and ever. Amen.

Can I tell you how much I LOVE this crewneck short sleeve raglan from Everlane!

Ok. Enough about clothes. Feelin’ pretty somber today actually. The weight of Good Friday always sits pretty heavy with me. I like that though. We couldn’t have the joy of Sunday without it.

Happy Easter weekend everyone.

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OUTFIT DETAILS:

Jean Jacket: J.Crew
High Waisted Skinny Jeans: Urban Outfitters
Grey Raglan: c/o Everlane
Moccasins: c/o Minnetonka
Sunglasses: c/o Warby Parker

And We Begin A New Journey…

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I don’t know why I’ve felt so anxious about writing this post. I feel like the longer I blog the more hesitant I become to share such vulnerable parts of our life. When I was pregnant with Finley, there were a handful of times I thought “I wonder if I could get away with not telling anyone online until she was born?” Could you imagine? If all the sudden I was like “Here’s our baby!”. Anyway, I am not pregnant in case you are wondering and I do ultimately love sharing with this wonderful, supportive community. If you follow along on instagram you might have noticed that on Wednesdays, Kev and I have been heading out for the night just the 2 of us. We always take a picture together to remember the evening. It’s an important night for us because we are actually about 2 months into our certification class to become a foster care family! Our class is every wednesday from 5:30-8:30pm. At the end of May/early June we will be hoping and praying for a new little one to be joining our family. Our end family goal of fostering is adoption. However, I know the goal of foster care is reunification with the birth parents, so we will lovingly take and care for as many children that need temporary homes until one gets to legally become part of our family. I am sure we will continue to foster even after that point. It’s something we really feel strongly about. God has truly laid a desire in our hearts to do something in our community for these children. I’m going to be quite honest and say I am completely terrified and extremely excited all at the same time. Yes, we are excited to adopt thru the foster care system but I am already praying for all of these parents and their children to eventually stay together. Of course we want families to stay together! It will be extremely hard to love unconditionally and then have to say good bye but we are excited to partner along side and co-parent in a supportive and encouraging way. We will become that child’s advocate when they don’t have one and we will honor and respect their birth parents (although I am sure in some cases it will be very difficult) when they feel like they have lost them. At this point I really honestly know nothing. I feel silly even talking about it because I have no clue what it will be like. I’ve been scouring foster care blogs to read peoples stories. Everyone’s is so different, so personal. I may not know what it’ll be like and we have a lot to learn, but we are doing this for the children that need a loving, safe, and stable home for the time being. And THAT is the one thing I do know we can give.

I saw this short film a few weeks after we started our class and it just wrecked me… like to the core. I don’t know if I had all kinds of built up emotions from the intense stuff we are learning in our class or what but, I was sobbing for like a good 30 mins after this video. I just wanted to share it here. I feel like there can be a sigma that comes along with foster care children. Do we ever really stop and think about what is really going on behind their actions?

I’ve really loved these 2 blog post as well…
Foster Care Isn’t For You

“Won’t my biological kids be effected by foster care?”

This is going to be a journey I am not sure how will play out. I just trust that God will give us the wisdom and strength with all that lies ahead.

In The Morning Light

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My girls. I just love these 2 so much! We have our moments but they breathe such life into me. They spent the night at their grandparents house this past weekend. It was something I had been looking forward to for so long. It’s funny though, as my Mom started pulling out of our driveway with them my heart ached. I could feel the tears welling up. At that moment I didn’t want them to go. Kev and I had such a wonderful time together though. We actually got to go to a late movie, to dinner and I slept in till 9:30!! I found myself a few times while they were gone looking thru the camera at these pictures from the other morning. Life with little ones can be very mundane. Same routine over and over. But you know what? There is such beauty in so many of those moments. Last week was indeed very rough. I found such redemption in the morning light though. It’s warmth, the glow, watching the shadows dance around as we got ready for our day. It was what my soul needed.

Just wanted to share a few moments that brought me joy from our Monday morning last week…

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*always, always, always. At some point in the day the cushions end up in a giant jump pile.

** Umm Blind Melon on the Kids XM station? I don’t get it but it made me happy.

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”
Lamentations 3:22-24

American Blogger

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As I’m sure you have heard (and seen) the trailer to the American Blogger documentary was released earlier this week. Chris was here last July to film us for only a few short hours. We had such a wonderful time. Kev and I enjoyed some deep conversations with Chris well after the camera had stopped rolling. He is real. He is genuine. And it was clear as day just how talented, passionate and so excited he was about this movie. I have not seen the movie yet, but I’m excited to and I’m proud to be a part of it. Since the release of the trailer, I’ve been appalled by the cruelty surrounding it (listen when I say constructive criticism is valid and warranted) but I’ve actually felt embarrassed to be a part of a community that has been so disrespectful in how they’ve handled their opinions. We’re all entitled to our own opinions for sure. I mean, I get it, I do. Could the trailer have been different? Yes. Could there have been more diversity with people and genres of bloggers? Sure. Should it have been called American Blogger? Maybe not, but I truly believe Chris had no ulterior motives with the name or the movie. He wasn’t trying to exclude people. He came up with the idea based off Casey’s success and the community she had built around it. It’s their family story to tell. End of story. I’m not here to defend Chris’s decisions or who he selected to be in the film. I will let him speak for himself. However, what does have me all riled up are the comments grouping the women (myself included) in the movie as being all the same. That we aren’t “real bloggers”. I’ve been seeing “cookie cutter”, “perfect lives”, etc… This really grinds my gears. I’m sorry but the twitter thread I saw this morning about how they couldn’t relate to any of us because they still had their sweatpants on and hadn’t had time to wash their hair yet. Ummm hello? You don’t think that happens to me too? And I bet you a million dollars that if someone was coming to film you for a documentary you would have washed your hair, cleaned up your house and gotten out of your pajamas. It seems so ridiculous to judge someone for that. I wish we could celebrate each other. I wish we could celebrate that people have strengths where we might have weaknesses. That we’re not all created as an exact copy of each other. We are all different in wonderful ways. I love the positive community I have created from blogging. I find daily inspiration in these women who are passionately and creatively pursing what they love. Whether that is working full time, being an entrepreneur, writer, being a Mother, an artist, a musician, fashion lover, interior decorator, whatever it is. It’s inspiring to read! Especially when it’s in an area that may not be my expertise. I love hearing their stories. And I have my own story I am trying to tell. My journey has been a roller coaster just like everyone else. We have worked damn hard for everything in our life. I juggle all the same life stresses that you do. I have days where I fail completely at everything. I have days when I struggle at being a good wife and mom. And yes, sometimes my kids have cereal for dinner. So it doesn’t sit well with me when the internet is judging these women in the clip saying we are not deeper than what they see. Each one of us is different in our own way. Let’s not make light of that. I am not one who normally writes about controversial topics, I just truly felt I had to say something. Shame on all of you who are minimizing the stories of these women in the movie. They are real bloggers just like all of you are too. We are all bloggers, in our own communities, writing about our own journeys. That’s the beauty of blogging. I am proud to be in the movie. I am proud of the giant under taking Chris and his family took to work towards this dream of his. This was their story.

With that said… You can have your opinions of course. You can disagree and you don’t have to watch the movie. But think about what you are going to say before you say it. Let’s not spew hate.

*just a note: there is a big, big difference between difference of opinion/constructive criticism and being rude and hateful. I never said we couldn’t share our opinions. In fact I welcome the discussion. I’m not asking for people to have the same point of view. I am talking about being respectful in how we write them.

*also. No ones comments are being deleted so you don’t need to re write a comment accusing me of this. Comments are set to be moderated and sometimes I am just not at the computer to approve them all at that moment. All comments will be approved at some point.

Hi, I'm Jen!

Welcome to my personal lifestyle blog. It features topics such as motherhood, family life, fashion, cooking, and all sorts of adventures. I hope you enjoy what you find!

Jen Loves Kev