Monday, May 5, 2014


Sometimes I take him location scouting with me.
I'm always glad that I do. 
I love him.

Friday, March 7, 2014


Today Griffin said, "Mom, wouldn't it be just so great if we could have a house.
A real house with space and we can have lots of guests?".

That hit me so hard. 
So much has changed for us in the past year and a half and I thought Matt
and I were the only ones having to "deal" with this small apartment. 
I've worked really hard to make this apartment feel like a home and I think I just
assumed that most kids don't feel "space". I thought Griffin just saw this place as his home.
And I was wrong.

 Maybe he hears me talk of my dreams to Matt. 
My dreams of a place for Griffin to run and play.
Space to create and craft.
Space for Jasper to roam.
Space for Matt to build things with Man Tools.
A space for guests.

I guess I need to speak less of my dreams and more of our realities when Griffin is listening.
Our reality is we have everything we could possibly need within the walls of this tiny space.
There's barely enough room to fit two people in the kitchen to bake cookies
but there's room.
There's barely enough room for dance parties
but there's room.
There's barely enough room to run and play outside
but down the hill a ways there's room.
There's barely enough room for all of us to play in the living room together
but there's room.
There's barely enough space for both boys to share a bedroom with space to play
but there's room.

Because there's a time in I think everyone's lives where they have to learn to let go of what
doesn't matter and learn about what truly does matter.

For us, right now, this tiny space will suit us just fine.
And when we are ready to spread our wings and fly, God will provide the wind.

This is what I must teach Griffin.
I love the little ways that he teaches me by me having to deal with my demons
in order to teach him.

Little stinker.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Project *JOY*, Week 8

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner is still
my favorite times of the day with him.
It brings me so much joy just to sit and watch him.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Instant Happy

After reading this post from Meg's blog I knew Griffin would love these.
So we made them. 
Pretty self explanatory.
Good stuff. 
I hot glued the Popsicle stick stars to some baker's twine and I strung some up in the 
boys' room and some up in the living room. 
Instant happy!
Get your craft on!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

*Project Joy* Weeks 4, 5, 6, & 7

So yes.
A little bit of catch up.
Here are my joys from these past few weeks.
Peaceful naps
My nook. This little spot on the couch is where I crochet, edit pictures, blog, read, and generally relax. 
Everyone needs a nook.

Teensy crocheted balls
Jasper giving me the business during an impromptu Valentine shoot.
New fishy friends. Teepee and Sammy.
Teepee was only with us for a few days before passing on.
Talks with Griffin about tomorrow not being guaranteed is not a joy for me.
But the tender heart of my child is.

Oh happy day!


Friday, February 7, 2014


A few days before Christmas, I let Griffin do laps 
up and down the hallway to burn off some energy.
He tripped into his room and split his eyebrow open 
on his loft bed post. 
In 5 years, that was the first moment my heart plummeted into my stomach. 
Luckily my mother hadn't moved to Texas yet. 
She came right over to stay with Jasper (who was already down for the night) while we 
took a trip to the ER.
Three stitches.
Griffin lived up to his name and was a total Rockstar while enduring the shots (which went deep into the open wound) and stitches.
It has been a few weeks since the final butterfly strips fell off.
I've got to admit.
I was freaked out about "MY BABY'S BEAUTIFUL FACE"!!
But nothing has changed.
He's just as handsome.
If not, more so now.
I got a glimpse of what he is like under pressure.
When he knew that something had gone horribly wrong, he was uncontrollable.
Then I started counting.
So did he.
By #4, he was calmly ticking off numbers without even a whimper.
My son amazes me.
So here he is.
The new
and improved
Griffin Rockstar Allen.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Project JOY *Week 3*

A little late for week 3 but hey...
Only one picture pretty much summed up last week. 
Jasper finally had his first tooth pop through.
It was a rough week for him. 
For me too.
This little furrowed brow was all I saw for an entire week.
Cutest furrowed brow EVER.

It is truly my joy to be able to stay at home during these milestones.
There are rough days.
Rough weeks.
But I'm here for every second of it and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

*Project JOY* Week 2

An Instafriend and Facebook friend of mine, Mia, has challenged
anyone who wants to participate in a 52 week photo challenge. 
It's all about joy. 
Finding joy in the big and the small of our days and capturing it all. 
But for me personally, I'm not going to limit how many photos I post each week. 
I know the idea (for me) is to get out that big girl camera and use it more
but I find that if there are too many parameters set, I tend to burn out quickly if there's one time I fail to live up to the expectations.
So, some weeks I may post one photo.
Some weeks 20!
But I do like this project. 
Finding the joy in all situations is an amazing challenge for us all. 
Week 1 was last week and I just posted 2 photos to my personal Facebook page. 
But I think it's good to fold this challenge into this space. 
My little slice of the Instaworld.
Our apartment is small with little to no source of natural light. 
It has kept me from capturing our days with anything more 
than my cell phone camera.
That's another reason why I like this challenge.
It forces me to stray from what I would consider perfect and 
get these moments documented.
So, here you have it.
 The way he notices me taking pictures of him now and he 
charges the camera at warp crawl speed.
 The way they interact with each other. Jasper thinks that Griffin is pretty much the funniest thing known to man. 
Griffin thinks the same.
It's a match made in Heaven.
 The way he crawls.
 The way he drools on EVERYTHING now that he's teething.
And the way even his pained faces can look so ding dang cute.
The flushed cheeks of a teether.

Won't you join us in this challenge?
I know there are so many of them out there. 
But I'd love to see your JOY too!

Oh happy day!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Polar Vortex, Hulking Out, and Fox Holes

 Late last week we got a deep freeze here in the Show Me State. 
Polar Vortex is what they are calling it. 
I went to the store to stock up last Friday. 
I still have not left the house. 
Matt was only today able to get to work. 
We were all here. 
Us four plus two cats.
Tripping over each other for days in our teensy apartment.
It was actually really awesome until yesterday.
We all had a great time and eventually I let it go 
about the housework and clutter.
Griffin is high energy and Jasper has just learn to crawl so it took everything Matt and I had just to keep up with them.
It was a mess
But a beautiful mess, I'd have to admit.
The windows had about an 1/8" of ice all around them on the inside
and Griffin couldn't go outside to play in the glorious knee-deep snow
because the winds made it too dangerous.
The sun was hiding for four days, which made our already cave-like 
apartment seem darker.
But when tensions ran high, emergency dance parties were had.
We watched loads of movies, baked cookies, water colored, 
built Legos, and played.
We cancelled our plans to visit my in-laws 
(our second cancelled trip thanks to snow!)
so we had nowhere to be and all the time in the world.
I will admit that yesterday was tough for me. 
I'm normally a homebody but cabin fever set in big time and I was on the verge of hulking out all day.
But Matt was amazing. 
He let me nap and was totally supportive and rode out my storm.
For a short time yesterday the sun shown bright and strong.
I got out my camera and snapped a few pictures of 
Matt and Jasper playing on the couch.
This is our life right now. 
Blurry and full of love.
When I was dating Matt, my father told me to marry the man I would be fine 
being stuck in a fox hole with.

I married that man.



Monday, January 6, 2014


Christmas this year was incredibly low key and relaxing.
We stayed at home all day and didn't get out of our pjs.
My mother took a day off from packing to spend the whole
day with us. We loved spending one last holiday as we knew it with her
before she began her new life in TX.
(More on that in a different post.)
I did take my camera out for about 10 minutes on Christmas Day.It's hard to beautifully capture life here in our apartment.
There aren't many windows and it's very small.
But I can't just not capture anything because, as a photographer, I don't like the setup.
I'm a mom first.
So I snapped away.
 Griffin enjoyed playing Santa this year. He got really into seeing the reactions of
others as we opened our gifts.
If we had a theme this year it would be "handmade".
We didn't even decorate our tree with the normal ornaments.
Throughout the month of December we made several ornaments, paper chains,
and popcorn garlands to decorate the tree.
Sleepy daddy and a contented Griffin.
Oh and that enormous wound on Griffin's brow?
He took a running header into his loft bed post.
More on that in another post.
Griffin's big gift was the one Santa brought him.
A bow and arrow (soft foam for the arrow).
Normally Matt doesn't like that the copper lamp (in the Pepsi box behind Griffin)
doesn't have a shade
But the bare bulb made for some pretty awesome pictures!
Jasper was busy, as usual!
On Christmas Day he had yet to crawl but you better believe that
he found ways to get around!
Scooting backwards on his belly was his method of choice.
 Just a day or two before Christmas, Jasper started clapping!
He gets so excited when we all cheer for him.
 Griffin adores Jasper. And vice versa.
Griffin keeps talking about when Jasper can grow a bit so they can play and play
and they won't even need mommy and daddy to play with them anymore.
So, Christmas was all about standing still for us.
Not running around.
Not worrying about dinner or a clean house.
Dinner was ready when it was ready.
I tried not to worry about the clutter.
We stood still and enjoyed each other.
And enjoyed Nana.
Christmas was about life as it is now.
Messy floors, happy kids, sleepy/happy parents.
All of us together in our little apartment.
Feeling grateful.
Feeling happy.
Breathing deeply.
Also, we have been doing devotions with Griffin each night and reading through
the Bible with him each night.
We have been loving teaching about the love of God.
This year....the whole meaning of Christmas...he got it!

And for that...THANK YOU JESUS.

I hope your Christmas was just as calm and relaxing and joyful!