The Chronological Archive

Select the month / year which you'd like to search

May 2014

Over The Weekend


This past weekend was full of everything and nothing all at the same time. Those kinds of weekends are pretty awesome aren’t they? I feel like most weekends are full of plans, outings and errands. This weekend we didn’t really go anywhere far or have any set plans. It was fun to just go with the flow of each day. As I mentioned in yesterdays post there was the carnival, there was also our regular trip to the farmers market, a Mommy daughter date with Rowan, good music, gardening, washing the car, a visit from Kev’s parents, and a bbq with friends.

I planted my first legit vegetable garden this weekend. My tiny container garden did ok last year, but I wanted something bigger. I dug out one of our garden beds on the side of the house that gets the most sun. I reworked all the soil and spent way too much time tilling it all up. Gardening is a lot of work! It really is rewarding though. I am starting to see why people love it so much. I got all organic starter plants from the farmers market. I was so nervous!! Everyone does it so different it seems like and there always seems to be this crazy science between peat moss, manure, soil, etc… It can feel overwhelming to someone who does not garden (me). Finally I decided to get over my fear and just go for it. It won’t grow any better if it isn’t planted. Might as well just plant and see what happens. Rowan and Finley had a lot of fun helping as well. We have crazy little critters in our yard so I had to fence it all and stake the fence to the ground. We ended up planting cucumbers, brussels sprouts, 2 kinds of cherry tomatoes, swiss chard, 2 kinds of kale, zucchini, sugar snap peas and green beans. My fingers are crossed something grows.

Anyone have any tips for a first time gardener like me?

















Making Memories, Taking Pictures.




The tiniest carnival pulled through town over the weekend. I am a sucker for the color, lights and smiles a carnival brings. As a parent there is nothing I love more than watching the girls enjoy and experience something fun. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not without it’s challenges sometimes. There was definitely a melt down when we said no more games, but we try to roll with the punches and always make the best of the situations. Kids will be kids, right? It’s always worth it in the end.

When you really think about a picture- doesn’t it sort of blow your mind? hahahaa. That a camera can capture every detail of a particular moment in a push of a button. I know this is 2014 and I can’t really be blown away by the technology, but still, sometimes I look at our pictures in such amazement. Not over how good I am at taking pictures (because I am not) but that I have this tangible thing I can hold and remember these moments. The smiles on the girls, the ice cream all over Finley’s face, Rowan’s hands stretched high to the sky as she rode around the ferris wheel, or Rowan lined up among all the teens to play the water game. It’s these tiny details that if they weren’t captured in a picture might not be remembered forever. I am all for living in the moment and there is definitely a time and a place for taking pictures vs. being present but, oh goodness! I just love capturing moments with my family. Memories to pass on to the next generation of family. I love looking at old photos of my parents, my sisters and I. I hope one day our girls will value these as much as I do!

















Crafts With Kids | Dream Catchers


Rowan and I are sharing a tutorial on how to make these adorable dream catchers over on the Little Hip Squeaks blog today. Head on over there and check it out! I promise your kids will love them! Rowan couldn’t be more excited to hang her’s up in her room.










My Everyday Style | 05.15.14


This ol’ blog pretty much started because I loved getting dressed. Sometimes it still blows my mind that I use to post 5-6 outfit posts a week. It’s fun to look back at old posts and see what I was wearing. Taking outfit pictures captured a moment in each of those days. I remember so much about each one; where we were, what the weather was like and what we were up to (My very first outfit photo over 5 years ago). One of the things I’ve really enjoyed about getting older and becoming a Mom is this undeniable sense of who you are. Of course when you first become a Mom things are a bit crazy. It felt more like an identity crisis, but things smoothed out and I feel like I’ve become my true self. Someone who is more confident, more relaxed, less dramatic, I know what I liked and I’m not afraid of projecting that. I think a little has to do with age but a lot has to be with becoming a Mom. It changes you. I feel like looking back over all my outfit posts you can see this change too. Most outfits I still like- not that I would wear them again but I like them, some make me cringe a little, while most are very fashion bloggy (is that a word?). I really enjoy who I am at the age of 31. Of course there about a thousand things I am still working on to make myself a better person, but I’ve come a long way from that person in that very first outfit picture.

I’ve teamed up with Lou & Grey for a few outfit posts to showcase their new lounge wear line that you can find at the LOFT. Their tag line “clothing for a comfortably confident life” really sums up this stage of life for me. I want to be comfortable, chic and live confidently in all that I do. Life is busy with little kids, there is not much time for myself. Clothes that are effortlessly chic are like my best friend. The Lou & Grey line is simple, cool, reasonable priced (LOFT always has great sales going on), and well made. I’ve been eyeing all these cute rompers I see around stores at the mall and have yet to try one on that didn’t make me want to pee my pants from laughing so hard. I realized I need to stop looking at stores like target, forever 21, etc… these clothes are made for 14 year old girls. Somethings work out great from those store, but some items…Eeeeek! It’s very apparent that they are not made for my 31 year old, post 2 kids, tall stature body type. This romper from Lou & Grey though? Perfection! Fits like a glove. Love the cute details, length is great, and super comfy.

Make sure to check out all of the Lou & Grey pieces over at the LOFT.










Romper: c/o Lou & Grey via LOFT
Necklace: c/o Wrenn Jewelry
Watch: Michael Kors
Flats: Target

also for those that asked my Jumpsuit from the post the other day was from Marshalls but these ones are pretty much the same. ( 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 )

p.s. I will always love this yellow on yellow delightful dozen outfit.

p.s.s I was able to pick out pieces I liked from Lou & Grey but they never said I had to write anything. All opinions are my own. I was just so pleasantly surprised by how much I loved everything when it arrived, I wanted to share my love. I did find that everything ran a bit big. I ordered down and it worked out great.

p.s.s.s (?) can you tell i’ve been garden? DIRRRRTY KNEEEES

A Sunday Hike



This past weekend, summer decided to show up in full force. We all knew it was going to be short lived (it’s cold and grey again today) so we tried to soak up as much fresh air and sun as we could. The girls just love being outside. They live for it. Finley especially. I’ve mentioned on twitter before, but she is like a little indoor cat waiting for a door to open to leap outside before anyone notices. Yesterday I found her outside (our backyard is fenced) by herself just sitting on top of her slide. I secretly watched her from inside. She sat there for 8 mins just looking at the bird in the trees. Then she slid down the slide, took a little lap around the trees in the yard and then came back in. Goodness, it was cute.

We headed to one of our favorite kid friendly hikes on Sunday. There was some shuffling with packs and kids but it worked out pretty great. It already has me scheming up a summer bucket list of hikes and adventures I want us to do. Shouldn’t all weekends in the summer be 3 day weekends? Yep. That sounds like a good idea to me.












Did you notice how blonde Finley’s hair is????!?!?! Where did my brown haired baby go?

Also, did you notice Kev and Rowan are making the same face in the second picture at the top? Hahaha They were really excited about the hawks that were flying around.

An Aching Heart To Do More.


It was Mother’s day yesterday and as much as I had a wonderful day filled with love and life, this year was different. There was an ache in my heart that I just couldn’t shake. As you might have noticed I wasn’t up for much blogging last week. It was one of those weeks where every post seemed so trivial. Does that ever happen to you? A bit of that carried over into Mother’s Day I guess. I love my husband and my girls with everything I have, but there are so many children in this world who need so much more. My heart was thinking of all the children in the foster care system who really just want to be back with their own Mothers and can’t. My heart breaks for those children, for those families. Do we realize the need around us? In our neighboring, tiny, tiny county, they had almost 30 kids that needed to be placed in stable, loving homes in one week. One week?!?! That blows my mind. Can you imagine what the need is in an actual city? Let’s not just live in our beautiful bubbles, let’s get passionate about something and make some change. There is real brokenness, that needs REAL change all around us. That doesn’t just mean fostering, adoption or orphan care. I know not everyone is called to help in those areas, however, there are lots of ways we can make a difference around us. We are all busy. I get it, I do. It has just been so heavy on my heart lately that we need to do more. I keep thinking over and over how foster care is sort of a bandage for a greater problem. It’s such an important step to healing but what if we never got hurt and needed the bandaid in the first place? How can we support, love and encourage these families from the very start? I don’t want to see broken families.

I have been sitting on this blog post all day. So many thoughts are rolling around in my head. I just haven’t figured out how to get them all out. A blog friend sent over a link to this blog and I seriously can’t stop reading all the posts on fostering and adoption. Jason Johnson writes everything that’s in my heart. I can’t even come close to expressing it better than him. Here are a few excerpts from some blog posts that I’ve been reading over and over today…

“On one side of foster care is the need for us to respond to the plight of these kids and intercede on their behalf. It’s right and honorable and a reflection of the heart of God to secure and protect the rights of the helpless and hopeless. On the other side of foster care is the need for us to proactively respond to the brokenness of families and intercede on their behalf to ensure that their children never become foster kids in the first place. This too is right and honorable and a reflection of the heart of God to bring healing to what is broken and hope to what otherwise is destined for destruction.”

“This is foster care – interceding into dark stories in order to bring light into them. It’s advocating the cause of the helpless, seeking justice for the defenseless and maintaining the rights of the oppressed. This is nothing less than what Jesus has done for us. We, therefore, are compelled to do the same for them.”

“This is the essence of the battle we engage in and the platform upon which Jesus is presented as the true Hero. If the real enemy in the care of orphans is not the biological parents but Satan who kills and destroys lives and families, then the true hero is not those who foster or adopt or care for orphans in some other capacity – it is Jesus Himself. The heroic efforts of so many who fight for justice for the marginalized and even adopt children into new forever families only points to the work of the true Hero who redeems and heals and restores and transforms grievous wrongs into glorious rights. Any sense of a personal “hero complex” must be crucified on the altar of pointing to Jesus as the real Hero.”

“I know we can provide her a good home, a safe and loving environment, possibilities and opportunities that she may not otherwise have available to her if she were not with us. I know she will be loved here, cared for here and protected with every ounce of our energy from things that are dangerous, harmful or unhealthy for her. Yet, for all that we may be able to provide, God’s ability to be good to her in a difficult environment is far greater than any good we could offer her in a comfortable one. No amount of “good” we can give her can compare with the goodness of the sovereignty of God in her life, wherever she may end up living it. There are no guarantees in foster care, except one – God is sovereign in the life of this baby girl. He is good, and He will be good to her always, no matter where she lays her head at night.”

I want to be frank for a minute and say for some reason talking about foster care has opened up the flood gates for negative comments about our family here and on other sites. I have not read any of the comments other than the ones that have been written directly on my site. I am not sure why it’s happening and honestly I am not sure I will ever understand why. It’s ok though. I stand firm in our calling to become foster care parents. I trust what the Lord is doing in our family. I am no hero nor am I am trying to be a superhero out to “save” families. I’m not perfect (not even close!). I have my short comings and I fail daily as a parent. I do try my best though and I was tired of sitting on the side lines saying I wanted to help. You may not think I am a great person, mother, wife, whatever but I hope that through any of this you can respect that we are at least trying to do something. I am not looking for glory. If fact the whole notion of people praising us for this makes me feel uncomfortable.

Let’s love. Let’s get involved and let’s remember this is not about ourselves, it has everything to do with these kids and these families.


(I am not sure what kind of pictures you put with this kind of post?- anyway, since it was Mother’s Day and I do feel forever thankful for my girls. Here we are.)






My Everyday Style | 05.01.14


There were a few trends I was reluctant to jump aboard this season 1. The jumpsuit 2. Birks and 3. (even though it’s not new this season) white jeans. Well, I am now the owner of all three. Doh! I saw enough pinterest pictures of chic women and I caved. I decided to try all three if I found the right pieces- fit is everything right? Well, I was at Marshalls one day and there it was…. a black jumpsuit. I tried it on ready to laugh at myself but as I wrote on twitter the other day, it was if the clouds parted and angels were singing. Omgoodness it was so comfy and I felt so effortlessly cool in it. For $14.99- it was a no brainer (It looks like this). The other 2 items just sort of happened as well. The white jeans showed up in my Stitch Fix box as well as this black denim jacket and I took it as a sign we were meant to be. Have you used Stitch Fix before? I kind of love it. Fill out a style profile and monthly you get a box of 5 items sent to the house to try on. Buy what you like, send back what you don’t. So easy. So fun! You can even link to a pinterest board (if you have a fashion/style one) so your stylist gets a good sense of your style.







White Jeans: Stitch Fix (Similar)
Mavi Black Denim Jacket: Stitch Fix (Similar)
White Eyelet Shirt: Old Navy
Scarf: Target
Lace Up Sandals: Steve Madden (Similar)
Mint Crossover Purse: c/o Fossil
Reilly Sunglasses: c/o Warby Parker

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