Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Banana Bread

With Caden being sensitive to dairy and eggs, I've had to search for a new repertoire of favorite recipes that we all can enjoy together. 

And folks.  
This banana bread. 

I think my family inhales it -- it disappears so fast! It's moist and yummy; I find myself buying extra bananas at the grocery store just to ensure I have them on hand to bake bread later in the week.

Here's what you need:

4 small bananas
1/2 C coconut oil, slightly heated & melted*
1/2-3/4 C brown sugar
1/2 C coconut milk*
1 t baking soda
1 t vanilla
1 pinch salt
1 1/2 C flour

Combine mashed bananas and oil. Add milk and vanilla, then stir in sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add flour and stir just until combined. Pour mixture into greased and floured loaf pan (or 3 mini pans). Bake for 60 minutes or until wooden toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool before removing from pan(s).

*If you aren't concerned about dairy & lactose, you can of course use milk and butter instead of coconut products. 

Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

I want to be that mom

"...The mom whose faith is real, whose Bible is open, and who stops fretting about all the time she doesn't have but makes use of the hours she's given. 

My children need me to diligently teach them the gospel. And it isn't just beneficial for their hungry souls. God uses it to feed my heart too. Independent and collaborative Bible reading, memory verses, and prayer time—there is time to seek Him snuggled in bed, in the play room, the backyard, and the breakfast table. God is faithful to use the noisy and the quiet, the long and the short, the messy and the clean times. I need only to welcome them." 
~Grace Anna Castleberry 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Arianna Mae

"Can I take your picture, Ari?"
"Because I love your adorable three-year old smile."
"Because you are growing and changing so fast and when you are all grown up I want to always remember your cute three year old face."
"Will you take more pictures of me when I turn four? and five? and six?"

such blue, blue eyes

trying so hard to hold up just three fingers


Thursday, February 19, 2015

Toddler approved

These long, cold, snowy days seem endless. Ari keeps asking: "can I go out and ride my trike now?" One of these days I'll be able to say yes, but until then I'm always looking for ways to keep her busy indoors.

Stamps and play dough!

She loves using ink pads and paper, too, it just takes a little more oversight with a two year old!

Ari is already a huge play dough fan, so this was a fun, new activity that she enjoys, too. 

What are your favorite ways to play indoors with littles during the long winters?

Tuesday, February 03, 2015

My Little Man

A year ago I was snuggling my newborn, amazed at his perfect little size.

Now I'm watching a little boy waddle around the house; listening to him giggle and laugh at his sister's antics; picking up after him as he displays his increasing delight in the law of gravity; and constantly, constantly feeding him.

His top 10 favorites are currently:
time with Daddy
bath time
bedtime cuddles
...and did I mention bananas?

Happy first birthday, my sweet Caden James!

What a face. 

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Looking ahead

Wait -- is it too late to share some of my goals for this new year?

I'm attempting something new as I look at things I hope to accomplish this year: instead of a list goals, I'm going to focus on something different each month. As I learn to balance wife/mommy/home/personal responsibilities, I'm looking forward to using my little bits of extra time and energy to push myself in 12 different areas this year. (Is it a cop-out to admit I don't have each month's theme planned quite yet? I like to call it being flexible for the needs that might arise!) 

For January, I prioritized health and fitness.

My specific goals were:
--work out 3-4 times a week 
--drink more water each day
--experiment with egg/dairy free options for Caden

I was so excited to find a few other mom's who wanted to exercise consistently, too, which not only pushed me, but also held me accountable! Three mommies, six kids -- and we made it happen 4 or 5 times each week this month. I have discovered that when I exercise on a consistent basis, it makes me think twice about what I eat, it makes me pay more attention to my posture, and reminds me to drink more water! What benefits do you find when you exercise?

Did you write up goals for this year?
And can you believe January is almost over already?


Friday, December 19, 2014

{the best is yet to come}

After five years filled with everyday responsibilities and date nights, love and laughter, loss and tears, faithfulness and patience, diapers and drool, my heart still skips a beat to hear Dan say "I love you."

I vividly remember the first time he told me...and when he whispered it in my ear on our wedding day five years ago today. I've heard it every day since. I've seen it in action over and over again. And his love still amazes me. 

Love that surprises me with flowers.

Love that gives sacrificially of of time and energy.

Love that gets up and goes to work each day, never complaining.

Love that slips his arm around me at church (when both littles are behaving!) 

Love that asks the hard questions.

Love that prays for me and encourages me in Christ.

Love that calls me beautiful with all the changes that happen during pregnancy (and after!)

Love that sends a text that makes me smile the rest of the day.

Love that helps me understand in a grander and fuller way the love that Christ has for His bride, the church. 

Love that gets on the floor to play with our children, even tho it's been a really long day.

Love that is patient and forgiving of my failures.

Love that makes me laugh and adds just the right humor at needed times.

Love that makes me want another 100 years + a day.

{bunny trail: when you bribe your-bottomless-pit-man-child with popcorn, 
a few pictures will definitely turn out with him reaching for the bucket behind the photographer!}

"Bless the Lord, O my soul, 
and forget not all His benefits...
who crowns you with loving kindness and tender mercies..."
Psalms 103:4

married 5 years
moved 4 times
blessed with 2 precious littles
excited to meet 1 baby in heaven
 2 bar exams passed with flying colors

photo credits:
the wonderful Kori Wissmann

Monday, December 08, 2014

II Thessalonians 3:5

"May the Lord direct your hearts
 into the love of God,
and into the PATIENCE of Christ."


Thursday, November 27, 2014

1 Chronicles 29:13

"And now we thank you, our God,
And praise your glorious name."

Though I strive to make gratitude a habitual attitude, taking time to stop and reflect on the blessings that abound in my life on this specific day of the year always brings me do these sweet, little people in my life who call me "Mommy." 

Happy Thanksgiving, y'all! 

Monday, November 03, 2014


Our sweet Caden is nine months old today-- which called for an impromptu photo shoot to capture a few smiles of this lil' man who takes up such a big part of my heart (and day!) 

He'll be walking and blowing out his first birthday candle before I know it.


Saturday, September 13, 2014

Two steps forward, one step back

That has been my mantra this week.

After a wonderful, packed summer with weekends spent traveling to see family, a camping trip,  catching up with friends, photographing a wedding, and numerous other everyday responsibilities, this week was one of trying to be consistent with a few things that I let slide over the summer. (Three cheers for potty training, sleep training, and continuing to work with my little guy's eczema).

Thrilling successes. Disappointing failures. But we're all learning, right?

Two steps forward, one step back is still progress.

[photo credit: Hannah Wissmann]

Any of your goals or projects not go quite as planned this week?

Here's to the weekend -- and more days to try, try again!

Thursday, August 28, 2014


"Dear Jesus,
Thank you for the strawberries & blueberries & corn & carrots & cucumbers & ranch & little spoon & chapstick & birds. 

Monday, August 25, 2014


"Worship is forgetting about what's wrong with you and remember what's right with God. It restores the joy of your salvation.
It re-calibrates your spirit. It renews your mind...
Is it easy? Absolutely not. But one of the purest forms of worship is praising God even when you don't feel like it, because it proves your worship isn't circumstantial."

Mark Batterson