July 2014 | Being Jane

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Sweetest Story For Your Littles

I had the opportunity to read a new book to the girls, called Miraculous Me. Friends, this story is so encouraging to little ones! It is about a mother and father's excitement and love for their little one as they watch them grow in the womb and dream about what their little life will hold! Miraculous Me talks about God's love and design for the little baby and how special they are to Him and their parents.

While at work, Daniel got to talking with a regular customer about a children's book she wrote! This lovely mom of two, Ruth, was kind enough to give me a copy and I get to tell you all about it!

What I love about the message in this book is the positive, encouraging words that let little ones know how special they are... How wonderfully made they are... And how God shaped them to be JUST who they are for their own little purpose.

A lot of children's books talk about what they can be when they grow up, but I've never read one like this! It talks about the military, being a pastor, or even a MOM. That page touched me to the core, honestly. When asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, as a little girl I always said "I want to be a wife and a mom". Miraculous Me tells children they can be ANYTHING that they want to be, no matter what role they are filling.

An excerpt I love is...

When the picture of me appears, Momma exclaims with joyful tears, "Those precious feet, with those wondrous toes! Where in this world are they destined to go?"

I encourage you to get a copy of this beautiful book for your family! The message it brings for your children to grow up with is unique and so important. 

Emma, Audrey, and I read this book at least once a day and I can just feel the peace of God flowing over the room as we talk together about how wonderfully made they are. Gods precious design. 

You can visit the Miraculous Me Facebook page here 

This post contains affiliate links, meaning that I may get a commission if you choose to buy this item by clicking on the links in this post.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

I Lasted 11 Days Make-up Free


So.. Eleven days ago I said I was going makeup free for 30 days. I started out feeling confident and beautiful in my natural self. I even went so far as to refrain from straightening my hair when I wore it down. 

Since my decision to do this challenge I have progressively felt more and more insecure in myself. I've felt the need to dress even more feminine, such as constantly wearing skirts and dresses, and adding jewelry.

This opened my eyes to the fact that I am not as secure in my natural beauty as I thought I was. I am always a naturalist, and I even go so far as to use plant-based makeup and all-natural shampoo free of sulfates. I'm a little anal about these chemical free concepts. But I still can't stop wearing makeup. 

It's a battle with myself, for sure! Part of it is that I feel plain. Another part is that I have always had a young look, and without makeup I look even younger. Another aspect is confidence. My confidence as a woman, wife, and mother is stifled when I don't feel good about myself.

Obviously this isn't a healthy way to view myself, but I am being upfront with you in case you might feel this way too. 

I did not add back in eyeliner though! Yay me! It used to be that as long as I had eyeliner on I could forego all other makeup because I felt someone "awake" and put together.

Do you struggle with makeup? How does it make you feel when you aren't wearing it?

Monday, July 21, 2014

Gotta Dance!

Last night I went to Derek and Julianne Hough's "Move Live on Tour" show (more on that later), and at the end they dared us to do what we love. To do it even if it means sacrificing something else in life or rearranging your expectations of your normal.

They said "it doesn't have to be dance, it can be whatever makes you feel alive". 

Well for me it IS dance, and watching them perform for two hours LIVE! (subtle DWTS reference) really lit the fire and ache I have to be a performer. 

I don't know how to pull it off. I don't know how to make my passion happen. I haven't actively danced in over 6 years! Daniel has worked so hard to give me the time and finances to get back into it but each time the situation fails. One time it was a class that wasn't challenging me, the next time it was my miscarriage that forced me to withdraw. 

Daniel has gone as far as buying me Dance Central and Zumba for the XBox to help me stay connected to my passion! I sure try, but I really miss performing and being challenged with choreography. I miss lyrical, jazz, tap, swing, ballet...

With two small children, responsibilities, being college students, financial priorities... It just isn't the time for me to go off and try to get back into this. Ironically I was about to last year when Emma was finally old enough to be fed and put to bed without me. And then we decided to have another :)

One day this will happen. I don't know how, but I know it is what I love. I've struggled with my personal identity for a couple of years, outside of being a wife and mother. I call myself a dancer. But I don't dance. I call myself a singer, an actor, a writer... But I don't do any of those things right now. So how do I embrace my identity while keeping up with my daily responsibilities? How does Daniel find what defines his personal dreams outside of school and work and the Marines? 

I think this is the plight of all of us adults. The challenge is: do we stay stagnant? Or do we try to keep our passions alive?

Friday, July 18, 2014

No Title Today, Just My Heart

See this girl? This is my Bean. My sweet, sweet, loving little Bean.

You guys, I've been quiet this week because we have been dealing with some really hard days with Emma. This has been going on for a couple of months now but over the last couple of weeks it has been escalating to a level that we can't manage on our own.

I'm always raw and open with you all. I have a policy with myself to not hide hard times. This, though... This is hard. I'm not sure where to start or how to describe what is going on.

Most everyone that I talk to about this tells me it is normal for a 2.5 year old. Almost everyone tells me I am overreacting. Everyone except two sweet friends and my husband. 

But I'm not overreacting. I have spent my life working with children under the age of 3 and I have never seen a child act this way, even the most troubled child.

Emma's symptoms resemble a disorder that isn't very big in the pediatric world yet. Some doctors don't even think it should be a "thing". I'm almost convinced she has some form of it though. She has been battling sever emotional distress over different elements in her day. Yesterday it was her sandwich being "closed" instead of "open". Some nights it is her nightgown not being straight or long enough. Other times it is a severe meltdown of sobbing, high-pitched crying, anxiety, and years over something as minuscule as a toy not being in the right place, or her car seat buckle being latched.

I don't know what to do. My heart is aching because amidst her sweet smiles and joyful moments, she is struggling to hard with these anxieties and breakdowns, incapable of bouncing back and calming down. I hate seeing her battle this. I don't know what is wrong. I want so badly to get help for her that I am self-diagnosing her left and right to help myself find answers so that I can assist her better.

She is a brilliant little girl. So bright. So happy. So curious. So loving. She doesn't deserve to live her little life inhibited by these issues. 

We are meeting with her pediatrician next week to get a referral for her to be evaluated. She is also going to preschool 2 half days a week starting next month, for a change of scenery and socialization.

Please bear with me as we figure this out. I'll try to be here as much as I can, but my tank is empty most nights. It's not fair to Daniel or Audrey either. I'm just hoping we can get some answers and she can get help as soon as possible. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Taking Time For Me

Everyone tells moms to make sure to take time for themselves. I've always wondered if those people actually have kids. It is so hard to take a step back from parenting, housework, the to-do list, and everything else we balance.

The house is a wreck today. Leftovers from our rush out the door before our trip, the bags I haven't unpacked since we got home, toys everywhere. But I'm not going crazy-cleaning-mommy today. Sure, I'm picking up here and there as I go along. I'll get to the suitcase full of dirty clothes. Eventually.

The world won't end if I don't do it today. Isn't that funny?

Have you ever sat back and realized that the pit in your stomach and burning in your chest isn't worth it?

Your little ones won't become illiterate and they won't be held back in Kindergarten if you let them watch one too many Full House episodes today.

The world will keep turning. The laundry will still be waiting tomorrow.

Go enjoy those kids of yours. Lay on the floor with them and be silly. Guide Cinderella and Belle on their adventure through the dining chair woods.

You won't regret it.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Going Away For Awhile!

I surprised Daniel with a cabin/cottage in the mountains for the weekend. Because I'm the bomb, I went out on a covert mission last month and requested off his birthday weekend at his work, unbeknownst to him. Yes, I'm awesome. 

The cabin is a 2 bedroom, 1 bath cozy, little dream home. I honestly wish we could buy it and move there! We will be gone for an extended weekend and to make you even more jealous...the temperature will be in the upper 70's during the day and in the 50's. This Arizonian is sure thrilled to get out of the 100+ temperatures we have been experiencing down here!

Have any of you been to Flagstaff? I would love any recommendations for fun things to do (kid-friendly) and places to eat! I am sure I'll be using Yelp a lot. 

Get excited for some awesome photos when we get back!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

I Could Have Been Famous

It's true! I wrote many songs in high school, and poems that would turn into songs.

The best song I wrote was called "Limit". I am sure it is cheesy now, but at the time I was so proud of it and I even talked to a producer about recording it. I was so sure I was going to be famous! I figured that it was an easy segway into using my faith to reach millions, and I would write inspirational songs about love and life that weren't found in the current music industry.

Looking back, most of my songs sure sounded like Taylor Swift's style. Usually my inspiration for writing was frustration or infatuation with a boy. I was boy crazy.

I should have jumped on it, because I could have been famous first and then Taylor wouldn't have seemed so special and original! ;)

What do you think? Should I record it on YouTube for you all to hear? Or leave it locked away in my notebook?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

A Picture Perfect Lie

You read the title right, that isn't a typo. 

Do we all represent ourselves too perfectly? Are we afraid of showing our scars, our hang ups, imperfections, and struggles? Do some of us complain too much? Do we only talk about our kids and their accomplishments instead of letting others know our kids throw tantrums too?

Today I was asking myself if I come across like I'm trying too hard or if people think I act like I am above others. 

I only want everyone to see my real heart. Not the part of me that stresses about what to wear everyday so that others can't "judge" me. Not the part of me that worries about how little or how much makeup I should wear. Not the part of me that cares too much about how my house looks to others.

Truthfully I'm struggling with balance right now. I either feel like Emma is getting the short end of the stick, or Audrey. I'm constantly worried that Audrey isn't getting as much of me as Emma did and therefore isn't learning like Emma did. I'm always falling behind on the house. I'm always doing homework the hour before it's due. I always feel like I'm fitting Daniel in, and then racing to bed to get enough hours in before the girls get up at 6am. I don't have time to read or do things for me at night because nothing is ever done and we all have needs that have to be met before I can take a timeout. 
Daniel works his butt off 5-6 days a week, sometimes 7, and can never catch a break. And I'm not there for him like he needs me to be. Heck, I complain everytime he asks me to make his lunch to take to work and usually all he wants is PB&J. Seriously, what kind of lazy wife am I?

The boos and professionals say to put your spouse first, and then your kids. But when they are little that is almost impossible. I don't know how it's done. If someone has figured out this balance let me know! My scale is completely uneven right now.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Derek Hough, 8 Months, and COLLEGE!

Oh friends, there has been so much good here! I am doing well in school so far this semester, and I have some news...

I was accepted into ASU as a transfer student! Woo!

Daniel is doing really well and plugging away at Trader Joe's as well as on his pool route! 

We have all been watching Full House together and it has really cemented the mood in the house. It's nice to have a classic, calming show that everyone can enjoy. 

Emma has been dealing with some painful tummy troubles and icky diapers that have pushed us to take her to an allergist. We see him on Tuesday morning so if you could keep that in your prayers I would appreciate it!

Audrey is just a bundle of giggles and fun, with constant standing and babbling going on! She never stops moving! She also turned 8 months on the 1st:

In a couple of weeks I'm going with a friend to see Derek and Julianne Hough's Move Live on Tour!! I'm freaking out and we have super close seats! Are you as in love with Derek as I am? Don't worry, my husband knows. Derek looks an awful lot like Daniel did when I met him so that's my excuse for it being ok ;)