Thursday, March 10, 2016

Lead Them Gently

Mom Confession: Sometimes (often) I have trouble remembering to be gentle with my kids when I am frustrated.

Currently I have an almost 5 year old boy. He is ALL boy. He is wild and full of energy. He is sweet but loves to play rough. I am okay with all of this. The problem I run into is his lack of self control. Boys at this age (and probably older) do and then think.  Today, I lost my cool with my boy. We were dropping my oldest off at school and he just couldn't find the self control in him to be quiet during chapel. I should have been patient and gentle with him. Training him by modeling the behavior I wanted him to have. Instead, I got frustrated with him. We left chapel early and because I was frustrated I was rough with my other kids as well. I was rough in speech and in body language.

On the drive home I was disappointed with my behavior. The reason we had to leave early was because of my poor self control, not my sons. I heard the Lord say to me. 'All you needed to do was be gentle, the way I am gentle with you. You must lead them gently if you want them to be like me.' Then he gave me these scriptures: Isaiah 40:11 "He tends his flock like a Shepard: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those who have young." and Proverbs 15:1 "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger."

I immediately apologized to my kids for my lack of self control and for not being gentle with them. I then took a few minutes to look up the scriptures that I felt like the Lord was leading me too. I also found Proverbs 15:18. It says, "A hot-tempered man stirs up dissension but a patient man calms a quarrel." Had I kept my temper under control this morning I could have calmed my son down and stayed for chapel. But my hot temper only increased his anger.

To help me remember to be gentle with my sweet kiddos, I printed up these words: "Lead them gently" with Isaiah 40:11, Proverbs 15:18 and Proverbs 15:1 noted underneath. I posted them up in the house in places where I spend time when I am frustrated; By the sink, by the door, in my bathroom and on the kids note board.

See, what I already knew, but needed to relearn today is, gentleness is always the answer. The Lord is gentle with me. I have lots of littles running around this house. It is overwhelming and tiring to care for and pour out so much each day. But the Lord is gentle. He gives me just enough of what I need each day and he corrects me lovingly and gently when I mess up.

The Lord doesn't say that a harsh tone or volume of voice gets people angry. He says a harsh word can incite anger. I can keep a low voice and still say mean things that upset my children. My words are just as important as the tone that I use. This doesn't mean that I should not discipline my children. Let's face it, my son needs to learn self control, or he will have a harder life then what is necessary. What I believe the Lord is teaching me is that should discipline, but that I must do it gently. That discipline done harshly or in anger will not train my children, it will just stir up anger in them.

I do not know what you are struggling with. If you have lots of littles like me or if there is someone in your family life or work place that gets you frustrated. I encourage you to choose to be gentle with them. Be gentle with your words, your tone and your body language. I will be striving to do the same.

In Love,
Leigh Anne



Thursday, December 3, 2015

Jesus and Prozac: There Is No Shame In Either

In less then a decade of life I have
-planned a wedding
-become a wife
-learned how to actually BE a wife
-purchased a home
-suffered a miscarriage
-grown and delivered FIVE human beings in 5 years
-quit my job as a nurse
-nursed 5 babies
-started homeschooling our oldest
....among other things!

I tell you all this not to brag or gloat. That is the last thing that I would want to do. I tell you all this to encourage you!

I have always had to work my way through a little bit of the baby blues after every delivery. Normally I feel better at about 6 months postpartum. With baby number 4 it was at about 11 months. This time around it felt different. It was more intense. If I were a season, I would have been winter. And not the fun, 'it's Christmas and the first snow fall' winter, but the 'it's been cold for so long we are over it' winter. I was stuck in winter. My kids, on the other hand, were in spring. They were learning and loving life. They were happy and I was crying. I was resentful.

I tried to talk myself out of it. I would start crying because I had all these people who just wanted me all the time. I wondered, why if I WANT to be a stay at home mama, am I resentful of the very people who allow me to be just that??

It wasn't until I was talking on the phone with a friend that I finally got it together. I said, "I think I may need some medicine for this." I have been trained as a nurse. I knew the signs. I already knew I needed medicine; But I just needed someone to tell me it was okay to need it! Her response was, "We have been having these conversations for a few months now. I think it's time." It was what I needed to hear.

I am here to tell you that if you are looking for someone to tell you that it is okay to get a little extra help.....well, it is!!

There is no shame in a little Prozac! Your list probably looks much different then mine, but I am sure you could make one that is just as overwhelming. You do not have to be overwhelmed. You do not have to cry constantly. You do not have to live in winter all the time!!

Jesus came to save you. He is the first thing you need. The MOST thing you need. Prozac will not save your soul; Jesus does that. But there is no shame in needing help either.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Princess and Tractor Party

The twins turned three this month. THREE! It's hard to believe 3 years ago I was a crying heap of hot mess. I would cry because I felt so amazed and grateful for two beautiful kids (at the same time! I mean really? Two babies in my tummy at the same time! Totally crazy!) And then the next second I was crying because having twin infants was SO hard and all I wanted was 5 straight minutes of sleep.

Well, now they are three. They are in Big Kid Beds, Big Kid Undies and their own Big Kid Rooms! Everything about them seems to be big kid!

Sweet girl twin shares a room with her 2 sisters. She loves princesses and hates taking naps. Her 'quiet time' is almost never actually quiet. She has the cutest little pout when she doesn't get what she wants. She is a sweet big sister and a devoted little sister. She always wants to help mama with the chores; making dinner, washing windows, cleaning the bathroom or doing the laundry! She loves ridding her bike and our horse. She has turned in to a super wonderful Big Kid!!

Buddy Boy is the most amazing little man you will ever meet. He is happy and almost always silly. But he also has a sweet side to him that makes my heart melt! He has a special bond with his Paps (my father in law). They are two peas in a pod. He loves almost everything that is boy.... Tractors, four wheelers, motorcycles, sandboxs and dirt!

To celebrate their 3rd year of twindom we had a Princess and Tractor BBQ. Daddy made Buddy Boy a sandbox. He loves it (the girls do too) but I totally didn't think it through. With in an hour I had sand all over my house! It's like living at the beach with out the ocean or the vacation!! We got him some new tractors to play with to go with the party theme.

Sweet Girl Twin wanted Snow White to come to her party. So we invited her and guess what? She came!! I enjoyed meshing the two themes of Snow White and Tractors!

The Food.
We had Burgers and Hot Dogs as well as.....






 

 A tractor full of hay bales!
 
 Cupcakes to look like Snow Whites dress.
 
A construction seen cake for Buddy Boy!
He was so excited to get the trucks off the top!
 
 
The Party!





 
 
The Wishing Well
 
Make a wish.
 
Throw in a penny.
 
 And get a lip gloss!
(there were cars and trucks for the boys!)
 
 
The cake!
I thought about paying someone to make the cakes
but then I decided to give it a try!
They turned out pretty good of an armature!


 
The princesses and some of our little guests!
 




 Our neighbor and someone Buddy Boy loves gave the twins a ride around the neighborhood.
Sweet girl is keeping it classy in this one!
 




 
 
Birthday questionnaire.
I separated the twins when I asked them the questions so no one would be "sharing" answers!
 


Sweet Girl Twin
 
1. What is your favorite color? Pink
2. What is your favorite toy? Blankie
3. What is your favorite fruit? Watermelon
4. What is your favorite TV show? Doc McStuffins
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Mac & Cheese
6. What is your favorite outfit? Purple and white jumper
7. What is your favorite game? Duck Duck Goose
8. What is your favorite snack? Goldfish
9. What is your favorite animal? Goat
10. What is your favorite song? Doe Ray Me (from the Sound Of Music)
11. What is your favorite book? A princess book
12. Who is your best friend? Haley and Owen
13. What is your favorite cereal? Lucky Charms
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Slide
15. What is your favorite thing to drank? Milk
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
17. What do you like to take top bed with you? My teddy bear
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Goldfish
19. What is you favorite thing to eat for dinner? Goldfish
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? A mother
21. What is your favorite season? Spring
 
*I may or may not have let her have goldfish for breakfast. I plead the fifth!
 
 
Buddy Boy
 
1. What is your favorite color? Blue
2. What is your favorite toy? Airplane
3. What is your favorite fruit? Peach from the Fruit Guy
4. What is your favorite TV show? Doc McStuffins
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Pizza
6. What is your favorite outfit? "This" (Points to the miss-matched outfit he is currently wearing)
7. What is your favorite game? Duck Duck Goose
8. What is your favorite snack? Goldfish
9. What is your favorite animal? Tiger
10. What is your favorite song? Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
11. What is your favorite book? "This one" (picking up the closest book)
12. Who is your best friend?  Owen
13. What is your favorite cereal?  Charms
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Slide
15. What is your favorite thing to drank? Milk
16. What is your favorite holiday? Halloween
17. What do you like to take top bed with you? My Teddies
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Goldfish
19. What is you favorite thing to eat for dinner? Chicken
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? Astronaut
21. What is your favorite season? Spring & Fall

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Today I will

Today I will.....
....Remember that my children are not my own. They belong to God. They are HIS and I am borrowing them. I will remember that HE loves them more then I do.

Today I will
.......Remember that being a toddler is hard.
I will remember that being a mom of a toddler (or 3!) is hard.
Today I will give us both grace as we lean to be a toddler and a grown up with a toddler!

Today I will.....
.....be both fruitful and productive.
Both are valuable. Both are important.
But if the day dictates that I must choose- I will chose to be fruitful!

Today I will.....
......Not get frustrated with my children for being children.
Instead I will remember that God has charged me with training and teaching them. That I model the behavior that they will imitate. I will remember that my children are learning and that I GET to teach them. I will remember what a blessing that is!!  

Today I will......
....Remember that the only effective disciple is that which is done in love. I will discipline my children with love and I will speak words to them in love.

Today I will.....
.....Remember that my words have more power then I can fathom. Planting a seed today may in fact reap an abundant harvest in the future. I will remember to water and nurture that seed when ever I am given the chance!

Today I will......
....Remember that everyone I meet is fighting a battle that I know nothing about. I will give the grumpy old man at the grocery store grace. I will wave and smile at the person who cuts me off in traffic. I will remember that I too am fighting a battle and I also deserve grace.

Today I will....
.....Remember that my husband is my team mate. We are on the same team! We are not opponents. We are on the same team! We play for the same coach (God), we protect the same goal (our marriage and our kids) we run towards the same goal line (that our lives, our family will be a testament for god's kingdom).  I will remember that he too is fighting a battle and that he also deserves grace!

Today I will.....
......Remember that the inner voice in my head is not always right. I will tell that inner voice to speak truth. I will silence that inner voice when it try's to tell me lies about myself, my looks or my worth.


Today I will....
....Remember that the choices I make today will effect generations who follow me. I will remember that my obedience to God is more important then the acceptance of this world. Because as society changes in how they see success and worth, God Word never does. To society I may be loved and accepted one day and the next not. But to God I am loved and accepted every day.

Today I will.....

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Don't Judge A Book By Its Cover


"And this is the confidence that we have in him, that,
if we ask any thing according to his will, he hears us"
-1 John 5:14

"Don't judge a book by it's cover."

That's what I kept thinking after I got off the phone with one of my girlfriends. She shared some devastating news with me. The kind of news that is all to common in our society but devastating none the less.

She was the girl that had it all together. I love her dearly but I have also always been *slightly* jealous of her. She has many traits that I often wish I had!

To be honest after talking with her and hearing her news, I felt terrible. I totally judged her, and I got it all wrong. I always thought she had it together, that things were perfect for her. But they aren't. And silly me for thinking that way, they aren't for anyone!

I can honestly say all these years we have been friends and I have barely prayed for her. I have a few friends who are going though tough spots right now. They have been open with sharing their struggles with me so I have been diligent on praying for them.

But her. She had it all together, she didn't need prayer! Oh how wrong I was.

See, the mistake I made was thinking that only people in my life who were in tough spots need prayer. But we all need it. We all do, all the time. If we aren't in a tough spot now, its because we just got out of one or we are headed into one. That's just life.

Now, I am not saying that by my lack of prayer I contributed directly to her issue. But prayer is important for many, many reasons. One of which is to bring us closer to God and another is to bring us closer to each other.

Had I been praying for her, despite my incorrect assessment that her life was perfect (and my admitted jealousy), I may have been more in tune with knowing what was going on with her.  I would have been checking in on her on a more regular basis. I would have known sooner that something was a miss and that might have made a difference!

Don't judge a book by it's cover.

And don't judge your friends by what you see on Facebook.

We all have issues that we keep inside and don't share. We all have things we need prayer for.

I encourage you to reach out to that women who you think has it all together. Reach out to her and ask her how she is really?! And ask her what you can pray for her about. Chances are that if you think she's got it together, others do to. This may leave her uncovered by important prayer!

I had a Facebook friend who posted a picture of her empty calendar. She told her friends that she wanted to pray for them. Pick and day and she would pray specifically on that day for their specific need. I loved this idea, so I copied it.

I asked all of my friends to tell me what they needed and on what day. Folks, it was shocking who needed pray and for what! Some posted on my wall and others privet messaged me with their pray requests. I was taken aback by the amount of people who I thought were leading happy non-prayer-needing-lives, but were really craving prayer!

I am sad for my friend. I am sad that I let her down in prayer! But, remember, where we mess up, Jesus cleans up! I encourage you to take two minuets right now and pray for that one women in your life who you think has it all together.  Because I guarantee you, she doesn't.

Pray without ceasing.
 1 Thessalonians 5:17




Saturday, June 7, 2014

How God Used A Pair of Scissors & A Toilet to Remind Me That He Loves Me.

My husband and I will be celebrating our 6th wedding anniversary next Saturday.  Years ago if you asked me to make a list of what I thought was important in a spouse I may have said something like this:

-Good looking
-Funny
-Likes to travel (which is so silly because I am a total home body!)
-Smart
-Not too controlling (or dominate).
-I also remember telling someone, "My husband WILL wear a wedding ring or I wont marry him."
-Loyal and faithful in marriage.
-Someone who loves animals

After 6 years of marriage and 4 kids, looking at this list I see so much fault in it! Some of these things are so totally not important! But, even though my head knows this, some days I forget how lucky I am. A few days ago God used my son to help me remember!

I was upstairs changing the baby when my oldest came up and said, in the whiniest voice she could muster up:

"Brother tried to flush my Ellie down the potty." (Ellie is a soft yellow lovie blanket with an elephant's head on it.)

"Oh no, did it get stuck?" I replied.

"No. It's still in the potty, I didn't want to take it out and make a mess."

"Thank you kiddo." I was amazed at the maturity of my 4 year old and thankful I didn't have to clean up toilet water all over the house.....

Enter my almost 3 year old girl twin, holing a toilet-water soaked Ellie. "I got Ellie." Awesome. There was a trail of toilet water through the enter house! Aaaaaaa!!

Okay. Deep. Breath. No worries....At least the potty isn't clogged!

At this point I made the biggest mistake! I first told my son that we don't ever play in the potty. The only things we put in the potty is pee-pee and poo-poo. Disobedience will result in a spanking! Then I asked him if he flushed anything else down the potty.

"Ummmm......no."

Right.

On this particular day everyone and their brother (literal) had to poop. A lot. And of course the potty wasn't working right. I kept plunging and plunging. But I couldn't get it working. My hubby came home around 7 and worked on it a bit. He decide that he needed to remove the toilet and investigate. So, toilet in the front yard, he busted it open and there it was:



 
 
Scissors.
The boy flushed scissors.  

To keep from crying I laughed.
 
And took a picture.
 
See, we have one bathroom in the house. One bathroom and one potty. A broken potty in the front yard means no potty to pee in.
 
My hubby had had a hard and long day at work. He had lots of book work to do for his company. Instead of showering and eating dinner and doing his book work, he was headed back to Home Depot to buy a toilet for us. It was 8 pm.
 
If it were me, I would have thrown a fit.  A tantrum. A tantrum fit for a 2 year old (I know how to do this really well. I have 4 little people that have taught me!) 
 
I would have yelled at me and said something mean like, "Don't you watch the kids? Why would you let him do this? Do you know how hard I have worked all day? Do you know how much I still have to do?"
 
I mean, I do this almost daily.  I get the kids in bed and then complain in my head about all I still have to do! I worked so hard all day and I still have laundry to do, dishes to wash and a husband to feed. (And don't forget that I didn't fit in my work out or my quiet time.....again.) I mumble and groan and get grumpy.
 
My husband on the other hand looked at me and said, "I'll be back." Gave me a kiss and a smile and was off. I was truly amazed at what a man I got!! I got lucky. Super lucky!
 
Headed into marriage I didn't think about how important it would be to have a man who was a hard worker.  Someone who was slow to anger and slow to speak. Someone who found immense value in a stay at home wife and mom.  Someone who understands that being "rich" has nothing to do with your bank account.
 
Six years ago I wasn't thinking about any of those things. But I got them. I got them all because even before I knew it, God was protecting me and was watching over me. He had a plan for my life and knew that I needed this man to carry it out!
 
Happy anniversary babe! You are an amazing man and I am so very thankful for you!!
 
 
 
 
 



 
 
 
 
 
 
 



Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Month of May

May was a super fun month for our family.

Our youngest turned one!!

My hubby turned 31!!

My love and I got to have a fun date honoring the men and women who have served this country.
 
Breakfast at Morgan's
 
Our baby girl turned one. What an amazing year it has been having her in our family. She is a sweet little thing. She likes to think she's bigger then she is. We had a 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' themed party for her. It was so fun! Thanks to all of our family and friend who came out!


 
The decorations.
 
 
The birthday Girl!


 
Baby Girl with her Great Grandma!


My sweet family!
 


 
 
My amazing and talented friend made these cute little boxes as a thank you gift.
Inside were candy necklaces for everyone!
 
 
 
The Birthday Boy!
 
My hubby turned 31! It's crazy to think I met him when he was just 21. I have to admit his birthday snuck up on me this year. I threw together a party really quick and I think it went well! He bought himself a motorcycle the week before so I went with that!  
 
 
 
 
Before the party started I was trying to get everything ready so The Hubs was on baby duty. I caught this little gem out the kitchen window. Be still my heart!!
 


 The cake was suppose to be a "rolling thunder' theme.
It was beautiful in my head- not so much on execution.
But it tasted good!
 
 
 

 
 

 The Cook!


Rolling Thunder
 
We dropped the kids off with my mother in law and her sister, and we got to enjoy a motorcycle ride to Washington DC. Amazing to see all the people lined up along the road to wave. Many were holing signs of their loved ones who are serving over seas.







The aftermath of the kids spending the day with their Nan-nan!