Love is a Language
Heart Cries
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2y ago
My love language is acts of service. I must be a minority because no one in my life speaks my language, fluently. For some reason, I am surrounded by people who need and love words. [If you have never read Gary Chapman's theory on love languages, do it! Understanding the five languages - service, time, touch, words, and gifts - will provide incredible insight to your relationships] Apart from God's radical love for us, the reason Ben and I have such a rich marriage is because we've learned to love each other in the way that is most meaningful to each of us. While Ben appreciates my mad h ..read more
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FF: Chili & Cornbread
Heart Cries
by
2y ago
                              We only have a handful of recipes that score high-fives all around the table and this is one of them. Seventeen years ago, I worked with a Hispanic woman who taught this know-nothing-newlywed how to wow my husband in the kitchen. I've never found a chili that rivaled hers - now ours. FF: Crockpot Chili & Cornbread Chili: 2 cans of Rotel (We like original, but you can go spicy!) 1 can of black beans  1 can of red beans 1 diced onion 1 diced green pepper 1 diced red pepper 1 lb ..read more
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You're Not Even My Real Mom
Heart Cries
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2y ago
"I hate living here," he shouted through the bathroom door. "All you think about is YOU. And you're not even my REAL mom." I knew this day would come. I remember talking about it with Rebekah, months after Ty was born. I was an emotional teenager once who didn't understand why my parents were bent on standing in my way or dousing my love-struck heart with buckets of ice water. His words still felt like a punch to the heart and arrived a few years earlier than predicted. He knows me better than any of his siblings. He's thoughtful and perceptive. He rubs my back when he feels tension and sit ..read more
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Making A Way
Heart Cries
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2y ago
Have you ever been on a carnival ride with endless spinning and find yourself in somewhat less of a  neutral state? You can't say you hate the ride because the darling next to you is wide-eyed and giggly, but the spinning is quite annoying, your heart is a little panicky, and your eyes are closed, begging for time to hurry and dump you back to a place that is more comfortable. This is the scenario that best pictures how our life has felt over the last several months and prompted an unintentional departure from this space.  In the quiet moments, I know the truth. But...quiet wo ..read more
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God Sees
Heart Cries
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2y ago
"I don't know what to do! Tell me what to do!? I think I'm going to cut my tether and run." Wait, wait, wait....slow the information train down.  I hadn't heard from Sweet Mama in over a month; the last few conversations we had were difficult ones. She discovered she was pregnant, again, and waffled between abortion, parenting, or asking us to parent. She admitted it was an uncomfortable conversation to have with me (I agreed), but she had no one else to turn to.  I mostly listened while my insides screamed. "They put me on a tether and if I don't have a permanent place to live T ..read more
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Fight for Love
Heart Cries
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2y ago
In looking back over my year, there is one question circulating my mind and it doesn't have anything to do with my house or money or body weight. With what measure did I love? Fourteen months ago, God violently shook our hearts and asked us to step outside of our plan and bring home baby number five. Only weeks into sleep deprivation and complete chaos, God pulled me in further and asked me to show up for Sweet Mama. This wasn't a gentle calling that lead to a casual check-in. It was more of a walk-into-her-room-and-scatter-the-darkness type of event. After 30ish years of walking with the L ..read more
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Adoption is Ugly
Heart Cries
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2y ago
We had the rare privilege of sharing our weekend with Ty's first mama, Rebekah. Our last few visits have been in Colorado, which means this was the first time Rebekah had met all of our kids! Having her in our home at our dinner table made the world right, again. The first few hours, Ty couldn't stop talking. He wanted to share his whole world. Between writing samples and yo-yo tricks, he would ask, "What's your favorite color?" and "How long did we live together?" My heart soared the heavens watching Ty's love explode at having both of his mamas in one place. I had to push tears to deep p ..read more
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Small Moments
Heart Cries
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2y ago
When I was younger, who was going to be where was a big deal. In fact, when I was 16, I threw a party and the first two calls I made were to the coolest boys at church. I wasn't crushing on either of them, but if they showed up, they would draw numbers and the party would be a success. As the story goes, both boys came. And I ended up marrying one of them. I would definitely consider that night a win. I, recently, turned 35. Hands-down my favorite thing about my thirties is the rich contentedness. I still like that same boy to show up to my parties, but beyond that there is a settled peace a ..read more
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Light-Wrapping in the Dark
Heart Cries
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2y ago
I am a hard-working, educated mama. For dinner, I had a large salad and chicken pizza, drizzled in barbecue sauce. For dessert, I had a sugared donut from our favorite cider mill. I could call more than a dozen people, right now - this instant - that would show up for me if needed. My bed is warm, my bills are paid, and my morning is full of promise. I didn't spend much time, today, thinking about the mamas that went without. Actually, I didn't spend any time thinking about anyone. I rushed around trying to do my best to get all my little people to their places. It was one of those days that ..read more
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Pieces of Me
Heart Cries
by
2y ago
My leave-taking from this space was unintended. As it turns out, raising five kids, is tough. Really tough. And it's not just because none of them pee without spraying the toilet first. Somewhere in the meal-making, clothes folding, hair cutting, appointment driving, T-ball cheering, and job going cycle, my identity became singular in focus and so many of my favorite attributes shelved themselves. It wasn't like this happened overnight. The changes came slowly and, mostly, I was able to re-adjust to each new state of crazy, while living content. I am a career mama by choice and the sacrif ..read more
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