On Marriage…


I am no marriage expert. Let’s get that out there first before I write a big ol’ post on marriage. Kev and I celebrated our 9th anniversary back in June and while we have so much still to learn, we’ve also come a long way from when we first got married. I totally laugh now about some of our first “big” fights after we got married. They were shallow, silly and soooo embarssing. It’s been on my heart lately to share a little bit about my thoughts on marriage and how it works for Kev and I. We started off this year a little out of sync. Things were far from bad by any means but we just felt a little disconnected. I can’t quite put my finger on what it was exactly (probably crazy 1st trimester hormones) but I think the daily grind, monotony of life and taking care small children had sort of taken precedent over nurturing the most important relationship in our family… ours. As our anniversary month started nearing, I began praying a lot about our upcoming 9th year together. I wanted to find a verse from the bible to sort of guide us in our marriage for the next year. I started reading in search of this perfect 9th year motto. Nothing seemed to fit at first. There were all the traditional wedding verses and standard marriage ones but then I randomly started reading in Ecclesiastes one night. Not really the book of the bible one would think to find an inspirational verse about marriage, but there on a random Monday night I found it. The Lord just totally laid it out in front of me…


Wow. A wave just totally rushed over me with understanding about what I needed to fix. In a lot of ways, I had stopped seeing us as a team. And not just a team together but also a team with Christ as the center (a cord of three). I think when we lose sight or don’t trust that our spouse wants the best for us in any situation things get really messy. Fights happen at the drop of a hat, tensions rise and our guard is constantly on high. I love this quote from Tim Keller’s book The Meaning of Marriage… “Within this Christian vision for marriage, here’s what it means to fall in love. It is to look at another person and get a glimpse of the person God is creating, and to say, “I see who God is making you, and it excites me! I want to be part of that. I want to partner with you, and God in the journey you are taking to his throne.” And when we get there, I will look at your magnificence and say, “I always knew you could be like this. I got glimpses of it on earth, but now look at you!” Each spouse should see the great thing that Jesus is dong in the life of their mate through the Word, the gospel. Each spouse then should give him or herself to be a vehicle for that work and envision the day that you will stand together before God, seeing each other presented in spotless beauty and glory.”

How beautiful is that? I want that. I want to do everything I can to help Kev become the man God has designed him to be. I am a part of his journey and he is part of mine. Together as 3 (God, Kev and I) we are stronger than on our own. I fully trust that Kev and I want the best for each other and that God wants the best for both of us as well. He is not a distant God. He is present, loving and rooting us on to succeed. He just wants us to come to Him.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

I believe the purpose of our marriage is not for our own happiness (yes that comes as a bonus for sure — goodness I love that man) but for God to mold us to be more like Him. So this year I am clinging to Ecclesiastes 4:8! Knowing that I have a role to play in this team and that both Kev and I are working in unison to build each other up in every aspect of our life together. I designed the poster (above) and printed it off to hang in our bedroom as a daily reminder. I also made a hand bound journal (stitched with 3 different color pieces of embroidery thread) for Kev as an anniversary gift as well. We decided that to keep us extra close this year we would use it to write notes of encouragement to each other; sweet nothings, doodles, jokes, particular verses that we want to share to each other, etc.. and pass it back and forth from one night stand to the other. When I add something I put it over on his side and when he writes back he puts it on mine. Sure we could speak these things out loud to each other (and we do as well), but there is something extra romantic about seeing the journal back on my night stand with a hand written note from Kev.






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The Lemonade Stand


With the summer winding down quickly, we are trying to pack in as much as we can before the schedule of school starts. We’ve been marking items off our summer bucket list as best we can. Top on Rowan’s list was a lemonade stand. She’s been talking about it for months! She made a whole business plan for the stand including name, logo and how she was going to get customers to stop and buy the lemonade. #ladyboss in the making. The stand was called The Lemonade King. She only charged 1 penny for the lemonade, which of course everyone took pity on her poor (or super smart) asking price and gave her mostly dollars instead. The neighborhood policeman came by for thirds even. We made the lemonade from scratch by juicing a whole bunch of lemons and making a simple syrup to mix together. After getting out a Pink-a-licious book from the library where she makes pink lemonade, Rowan knew for sure she wanted to have that option for customers as well. We just added some crushed up strawberries to the lemonade to make it pink. It was a super fun day that actually brought out a ton of neighbors we hadn’t really talked with before- it was awesome!! I love that things like this bring people together. By the end of the day the girls were full on dancing on the street to try to get people to stop. It was pretty dang cute!

I know we won’t get to everything but I’m still hoping to accomplish…
1. camping
2. zoo
3. more bonfires
4. drive in
5. make a pie




IMG_3626^^waiting for customers can be tough…





My Everyday Style | 31 Weeks


Oh man! Took a bit of time off there. I just can’t seem to find the time to sit and write on this ol’ blog. I have blog post ideas and backed up photos from the beginning of the summer. One of these sleepless nights (dang pregnancy!) I just need to get them all typed out into drafts. So! How is everyone doing? I joined Snapchat! Am I crazy? I don’t know yet? I can barely figure it out BUT I am kind of loving it. I LOVE making daily little stories that I can save to my phone and have to watch over and over. What a fun way to remember the regular, everyday things we do. I also love watching friends in their day to day as well. Are you on Snapchat? Do you love it or hate it? Any tips you have for me. There is so much I do not understand. It makes me feel so old.

Come find me on Snapchat @ Jenloveskev (betcha couldn’t have guessed that)

We went home to Massachusetts last weekend to visit family, sneak away for a date and go to Kev’s sister’s baby shower. I wore this dress to the shower and felt pretty dang good. It’s not maternity but it worked out perfect. I just sized up a ton and made sure the front wasn’t too short after it had to cover my belly. Love me some T.J.Maxx. Hello 31 weeks! Just put my deposit on my birth pool. It’s getting real around here.

p.s. my hair is doing wild and crazy things this summer with the humidity but I am just going with it!





Dress: T.J.Maxx (similar here, here and here)
Shoes: Target (similar here and here)
Sunglasses: Toms

Dating Your Kids and Favorite Rowan Things.


Do you date your kids? Hahahah- that sounds kind of funny, but do you? Kev and I try to make it a point to go on dates with the girls. Life is busy and it doesn’t happen a ton but at least every month we try to go out with Rowan or Finley individually and then switch kids the next month. The girls love it! They always look forward to it- I also use it as a gauge as to how the girls are doing attention wise. I know if Rowan starts asking for it- it means she definitely needs the dedicated one and one time. Not that you can’t give that to them at home but this is just a little extra special. In the summer the New York City Ballet always comes to the Saratoga Performing Arts Center for a week of performances. It’s something I look forward to every year! I get so excited to bring Rowan but also to get to see Justin Peck’s newest ballet. Ooh it’s always so beautiful, I just love him! Anyway, Rowan is always more interested in getting dressed up and doing all the activities they have for the kids than seeing the actual ballet but that’s ok with me. She’s 4 right? I can’t expect her to sit the entire performance. On family nights at SPAC they have all kinds of fun things for the kids. They had some of the ballerinas (and male ballet dancer? he’s not called a ballerina is he?) come out and teach the kids some of the steps from the ballet and talk a little about how they got started in their careers. There was balloon animals, free ice cream, photo booth, instruments you could try playing, and lots more. It was a great night to spend with my sweet little Rowan.

I had a mini break down in the car the other day when I was driving. It totally hit me she is starting kindergarten in a few weeks. Ahhh!! It wasn’t so much the kindergarten that was making me cry- I mean she is just going for like 2.5 hours every morning- more the idea that this is the start of her not being with me most of the day, all year long for…like… ever (insert all the crying here). She has always been with me. My little buddy. My sidekick. Then all the sudden she is just gone for 18 years of her life. I know that is being dramatic but Waaaaa! It makes me feel so sad. Now don’t get me wrong, most days I am ready to ship her off somewhere (I kid, I kid) but even on the toughest of days I wouldn’t change her being with me. We are taking each year as it comes with school. We loved home schooling last year but we just felt like this year with the new baby coming maybe it wasn’t a good idea. Who knows though, maybe the school she is going to will be such a great fit we won’t home school anymore. I don’t know. It just feel like such a big change this year.

Rowan at 4 years 10 months:

1. calls funerals sad parties
2. loves to give run hugs
3. tries to put air quotes around words when she talks- hasn’t quite figured out the appropriate use but it sure is funny when she does it
4. jumped off high dive at the pool
5. only likes peanut butter on her sandwiches
6. comes up with the best, most creative drawings ever
7. everyday wants to be something new when she grows up (latest as of the last 3 days: zoo keeper, model, hockey player)
8. best big sister in the world
9. loves to retell the plot from movies to people who haven’t seen them yet. Current favorites… Big Hero 6 and the new Annie
10. belts out Tomorrow from Annie in the car when she thinks no one is looking
11. has a very particular, super nervous laugh she does when she is actually scared but trying to pretend it’s really fun (Like petting animals and swimming in the middle of the lake)
12. says underwhener instead of underwear
13. loves to come into our bed in the morning and fall back asleep cuddled up to me super close
14. LOVES and I mean LOOOOOOOVES to go out to eat. I think she suggests it about 2 times every day.
15. always wants someone to play with
16. learned to swim in 2 swim lessons
17. Rowan is super excitable. We’ve noticed when she is doing something especially fun for her she act this certain way that Kev and I call “captain papa”. We call it that because the first time we noticed it she was on my Dad’s boat in FL walking around shouting “Aye, Aye Captain Papa”. It’s this very sweet, over the top, making silly jokes, talking nonstop, everything makes her giggle in almost a fake kind of way sort of thing. I don’t even know how to describe it and I think it’s only something Kev and I would really pick up on but we love it to pieces and I also love the little inside joke Kev and I have about it now. What a doll she is!














Maternity Style | Week 28


We are at the tail end here of week 28. Hello 3rd trimester! Boy, oh boy! The summer is getting’ HOT and I am feeling like a stuffed sausage in most clothing. It’s funny when you get to this point and you think “there is no way I can get bigger than this” and then you realize you have like 12 weeks left and you better believe you are getting bigger sister. Ahh! Before this pregnancy I was in a very happy routine of pant wearing bliss. Jeans were my best friends. Pregnancy on the other hand is not and jeans, shorts or any pants for that matter that are not these leggings drive me crazy (although I did just found some pretty awesome jeans). I’ve been wearing a lot of dresses and well, this skirt. It just feels so much more comfortable to me. Plus hats make any frizzy, humid bad hair day better.

What was your number one pregnancy clothing item?


Leah Maternity Top: c/o Isabella Oliver
Striped Skirt: Old Navy (similar)
Sandals: old (similar)
Hat: He>I





Exploring The Great Wolf Lodge


Have you ever visited a Great Wolf Lodge before? I had actually never heard of the hotel before until about a month ago. We are always looking for new places to go as a family. Vacation criteria has really changed for us over the last few years. It’s hard to avoid when you become a parent. We still like to take the kids to visit new cities and foreign countries but there is also something so wonderful about bringing them somewhere that is totally geared towards them. It makes for such a fun, family experience. This is 100% the Great Wolf Lodge!! What a blast we had! We headed down to the Pocono Mountains location a few weekends ago to visit and celebrate the grand opening of their new Slideboarding water slide (which Kev thought was super fun!). The week before we left I showed Rowan the website and all the fun stuff she was going to get to do and let’s just say she did not stop talking about it all week. She told everyone she saw that week about it. We arrived late on friday night and were greeted in the lobby with a full on kids dance party going on. Rowan was in heaven! Our room was large yet cozy and cabin like. They had a packn’play already set up for us with our own diaper pail to use throughout the weekend (so thoughtful for a traveling family with small children!). There was also a whole s’more smorgasbord for us to snack on and heat up in the microwave.

The hotel had daily activities going throughout the day for the girls to be a part of like facepainting, story time, kids games, etc… There was a huge, I mean HUGE indoor waterpark that was beyond fun for the kids and even us (well Kev- dang pregnancy!). I don’t think Finley has ever been so happy. She loves, loves, loves the water!! They had a great toddler kids area! They also had their own Build-a-Bear type store in the hotel that allowed the kids to pick out stuffed animals and outfits based on the hotel’s themed characters. There’s this really fun interactive scavenger hunt that involves the stuffed animals that takes you all around the hotel the girls loved playing. We played lots of rounds in the mini bowling alley, went glow in the dark mini golfing, and took Rowan to the kids spa where she was treated like a little princesses. We ate lots of ice cream, enjoyed a HUGE outdoor ropes course, and played games in the giant arcade. Someone asked me on Facebook if there was enough stuff from smaller kids to do and the answer is YES! Holy cow, YES! We didn’t even get to everything our day was so filled to the brim.

My favorite thing about the weekend was sitting down with the staff of the Great Wolf Lodge and hearing about the importance they place on the food they serve. I am super nerdy about that stuff and it’s something that is really important to me. I always feel like I have to compromise how I feed my family when I go to places like this. The Great Wold Lodge goes out of there way to accommodate allergies, food restrictions and tries very, very hard to serve lots of organic, healthy, clean eating options for people who want that. I really, really appreciate that about them. Something that I feel sets them apart to other family resorts out there.

We had such a fun time and the pure joy that just beamed from Rowan and Finley the whole weekend will be something I won’t forget anytime soon. We want to say a big huge THANK YOU to the Great Wolf Lodge team for inviting us to come share this special weekend with them. We will definitely be back!!


















It’s a big ol’ Baby Sale!!

Have you ever really shopped online at Target? I don’t normally buy a lot of stuff online at Target because duh! I am there basically everyday. Anyway, they’re having this crazy awesome baby sale right now and for the heck of it I went online (sale is in stores as well!) and looked around at the baby items and holy cow! they have even more awesome stuff online then in the store. I found so many of my most favorite brands and filled up my cart real fast of things we needed to get for the baby. Now until July 11th spend $200 on baby gear get a $40 gift card (or spend $125 get a $20 gift card). Also all Graco stuff is 10% off and then there are handfuls of select items that just straight up give you gift cards when you buy them! Hello money for diapers! Target you have my heart for sure.

Here are a few items that ended up (or would have if we didn’t already have them!) in my cart…

1. Ergo 4 Position 360 Carrier: We LOVE Ergo! One of our favorite ways to carry our babies and with this purchase you get an extra $30 gift card! How awesome is that?

2. Toys!: I love the online selection of wooden toys for kids. How cute are these blocks?

3. 4Moms Breeze Playard: You know we love 4Moms in our household. We have this playard already and it’s about the easiest, most awesome packn’play there is out there. I think it’s funny hearing stories from Moms about their horror stories of trying to set up the packn’play late at night in the midst of their travels and the sides wont stay up (why is there some weird law about which sides need to go up first for most packn’plays to even work?). With 4Moms you just press the middle down and you are done! PLUS!!! Free gift card with purchase!!

4. LifeFactory Bottles: Our bottles of choice! We’ve used them for both Rowan and Finley and they are by far my favorite. I didn’t know Target sold them until I looked online. Added a few more to our collection! They aren’t necessarily on sale but totally contributed to my $40 gift card for spending $200.

5. 4Moms Rockaroo: We have the Mamaroo but I love this smaller verison. It was such a life saver with Finley. She pretty much took all her naps and slept nights in that thing for the first few weeks of life. With other kids to take care of what a life saver that was!! We can’t wait for the newest to get all cozy in it! And GIFT CARD!!!

6. Honest Diaper Bag: I always try to get a nice, new diaper bag for myself whenever we have a new kid. This is the lucky winner for baby number 3! Love everything from Honest!

7. Orla Kiely by aden + anais Swaddles: Umm? How amazing are these patterns? We have a ton of these swaddles already and they are seriously in my top 3 must have items but I coulnd’t resist adding these new patterns to the mix. The boy patterns are just as awesome!

8. Graco Umbrella Stroller: We have a garage full of strollers we love but I was on the hunt for a simple single umbrella stroller and with 10% off all Graco products- this works out prefect!

9. Honest Diapers: When you buy certain packs of Honest diapers you get a free $10 gift card. How awesome is that! It’s like free money on products I already buy!!

10. 4Moms Infant Tub: Let me gush on 4Moms again! We have the 4Moms faucet spout but for new baby we are definitely adding this tub to the mix. Love the design and function of this tub!

*This is a sponsored post by Target. However, all opinions and products were hand picked out by myself. These are products I actually use and stand behind. Thanks friends!

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